Top Ten Tuesday: Summer Reads

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the Broke and the Bookish. Today’s theme was:

Ten Books I Plan To Have In My Beach Bag This Summer or Ten Books I Think Make Great Beach Reads

I’m not really a beach-y person. If you can’t tell from my picture, I’m pretty pale. I’m one of those people that gets sunburned after about twenty minutes on the beach. BUT I do have a hammock on my front porch, so my list is ten books I plan on reading on the hammock this summer. 🙂 All titles linked to Goodreads.

Never Always Sometimes by Adi Alsaid  Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between by Jennifer E. Smith  Mosquitoland by David Arnold  More Happy Than Not  Grace’s Guide: The Art of Pretending to be a Grown-Up by Grace Helbig
Never Always Sometimes by Adi Alsaid
Hello, Goodbye, and Everything in Between by Jennifer E. Smith
Mosquitoland by David Arnold
More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera
Grace’s Guide: The Art of Pretending to be a Grown-Up by Grace Helbig

The Scorpio Races  The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh  Paperweight by Meg Haston  Jessica Darling's It List by Megan McCafferty  Little Pretty Things by Lori Rader-Day
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
Paperweight by Meg Haston
Jessica Darling’s It List by Megan McCafferty
Little Pretty Things by Lori Rader-Day

What books do you plan to read this summer? On the beach or not.

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Bout of Books 13: TBR, Goals, & Updates

IT HAS BEGUN. Again. Bout of Books 13 kicks of today, and as always, I’m so excited! I shared my TBR on Instagram and Twitter yesterday, but I wanted to post it here as well. This week, I’ll be reading from this pile:

Bout of Books 13 TBR

Devoted by Jennifer Mathieu / The Secret Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oakes / Little Pretty Things by Lori Rader-Day / Hawkeye: My Life As Weapon / Loki: Agent of Asgard / Stephen King’s The Dark Tower: The Gunslinger Born / Young Avengers: Style & Substance / and several single issues I need to catch up on.

Not pictured: The Gracekeepers by Kirsty Logan (which I’m currently reading) and Trigger Warning by Neil Gaiman (my current audiobook).

GOALS:

Bout of Books 13– Can I say none? I just started my new, full-time job last week, so I don’t have as much time and I’m still learning the ropes. I don’t want to really set any goals because I don’t know what I’ll have time for. However, a few things:
– Make time every day (at least 30 minutes) to just sit down and read. Do nothing else.
– Participate in at least 2 challenges because they are FUN.
– Participate in both Twitter chats (This Saturday is one of my two Saturdays this month to work at the library, but I should have time to chat a bit)

That’s it. No other expectations or goals, and no pressure on myself to read that whole stack. It’s not going to happen, but I’m going to try.

UPDATES:

Monday

Pages read today: I was reading an eARC, so I read 42% of a book today, which I believe is about 134 pages of this book
Total number of pages: 134
Read today: The Gracekeepers by Kirsty Logan
Number of books I’ve read today: 42% of 1
Total number of books I’ve read: 42% of 1
Challenges participated in: The Bookish Survey challenge hosted by Lori at Writing My Own Fairy Tale, which was fun!
Notes about today: I found out yesterday morning that I had to close at the library…after I was already at the library at 8 a.m. SO that sucked, but I ended up making it home around 8:25 so I was able to participate in the last half of the Twitter chat, which was crazy fun as always. I’m glad I was able to finish The Gracekeepers, which was beautiful. Can’t wait for more BoB!

Tuesday

Pages read today: 208
Total number of pages: 342
Read today: Young Avengers, Volume 1: Style > Substance (120 pages) and Devoted by Jennifer Mathieu (88 pages)
Number of books I’ve read today: 1.3
Total number of books I’ve read: 1.75
Challenges participated in: Character Face Off hosted by LuLo FanGirl – I put Ronan Lynch up against Celaena Sardothien. Who do you think won?
Notes about today: I didn’t have as much time to read today, but I read a whole trade paperback of Young Avengers at work and started Devoted, which I’m really loving so far. It’s disturbing and fascinating at the same time.

Wednesday

Pages read today: 79
Total number of pages: 421
Read today: Devoted by Jen Mathieu
Number of books I’ve read today: Part of 1
Total number of books I’ve read: Almost 2 (by adding up the several parts)
Challenges participated in: None. I’m not a big fan of poetry or haiku.
Notes about today: I didn’t read as much as I wanted to today. I’m loving Devoted, and I wish I could just sit down and finish it in one go.

Thursday

Pages read today: 93
Total number of pages: 514
Read today: Devoted by Jennifer Mathieu
Number of books I’ve read today: Part of 1
Number of books I’ve read total: I’m going to say two (parts of several to make to whole)
Notes about today: Thursday was a long day and I just didn’t have time to read as much. I also completely forgot to do my update on Friday morning, so this is late. Oh well.

Friday

Pages read today: 521 (65 pages of Devoted, 136 pages – Hawkeye: My Life as Weapon, and ten single issue comics at 32 pages each)
Total number of pages: 1,035
Read today: I finished Devoted by Jennifer Mathieu (which I really liked; review soon), Hawkeye: My Life as Weapon (which wasn’t the best thing ever but I enjoyed it, and these single issue comics: Convergence #2, Return of the Living Deadpool #1, Wytches #5, The Walking Dead #138, 139, 140, Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor #4 and 5, Divergence #1, and Batman and Robin Annual #3. WOW!!
Number of books I’ve read today: I don’t even know how to count this anymore.
Number of books I’ve read total: Ditto above
Notes about today: Another busy day, but when I got home from work, I was just like, “I want to read ALL the comics!!” It was a pretty good reading day!

Saturday

Pages read today: 32% of Valiant by Sarah McGuire
Total number of pages: ~1,157
Read today: I started Valiant by Sarah McGuire
Number of books I’ve read today: 32% of Valiant
Number of books I’ve read total: I don’t even know how to count this anymore
Challenges participated in: I did the Favorite Read Photo Challenge from Once Upon a Chapter. You can see my entry on Instagram. My favorite read of BoB 13 was Devoted!
Notes about today: I was a Saturday Librarian yesterday, but I got to participate in the last BoB 13 chat! I also participated in the Favorite Read Photo Challenge, which was easy and fun! I was going to start a different book, but I decided to go with Valiant by Sarah McGuire and it’s not quite what I was hoping for but I’m not NOT enjoying it, if you know what I mean.

Sunday

Pages read today: 42% of Valiant
Total number of pages: ~1,300?
Read today: Valiant by Sarah McGuire
Number of books I’ve read today: 42% of Valiant
Number of books I’ve read total: I don’t even know how to count this anymore
Notes about today: Today was a pretty chill day. I was able to read almost a half of Valiant, which has picked up a bit since yesterday, so that’s awesome. I’m sad that Bout of Books 13 is over! Can’t’ wait until August.

Thursday Thoughts: What I’ve Been Reading aka GIVE ME ALL THE DIVERSE CONTEMPORARY

I’ve been in a weird place recently. You might’ve read my post about changing jobs which kind of explains it. Transition is always weird, but because of the feelings surrounding this change and all of the other things I’ve been feeling recently, my head’s been in a strange place. I don’t know if it’s because of that or something else entirely, but for the past month or more I’ve been mostly craving a certain type of book and not much else.

I’ve been craving contemporary, especially diverse contemporary. And that’s it. Yes, I’ve read a few fantasies here and there, but I’ve wanted to read books set it our world, with realistic characters. I’ve just wanted to be in this world but with different people. I haven’t wanted to read about other worlds for some reason. Fantasy is my favorite genre, so this has been a little bizarre for me. But since it’s been going on for at least a month, I want to try to talk (type?) through it and figure out why:

I honestly think it’s because so much has been happening with me that, while I do want to escape (that’s always been what reading has done for me), I don’t want to escape to a completely different world. I want to read about people who could be real, who could be me. I want to read about something real but not what I’m going through. I know I’m a mood reader, so I know I get in these very specific moods because of what’s going on with me. It’s not new, but this is the first time in a long time, maybe ever, that I’ve exclusively wanted to read contemporary. Up until last year I wasn’t even a big fan of contemporary (other than a random Sarah Dessen here and there), but my love and appreciation of it has grown so much in the last year because of blogging – how can you be a book blogger and not see all the love for Stephanie Perkins, Morgan Matson, Jennifer E. Smith? You can’t, and it’s infected me too.

But this is more than that. I’m actively seeking out new contemporary, especially if its diverse – mental illnesses, physical disabilities, LGBTQIA, POC leads, anything. I’ve always been interested in and appreciated people who were different than me. I have never understood racism, sexism, homophobia, etc. It makes no sense to me, but it happens and people go through and experience life differently when they don’t look (on the outside or inside) the same as you or even when they do. I have always enjoyed learning about people who aren’t what I am or what I’m used to, and the books I’ve been reading are exactly that.

I still don’t know if I’ve fully explained this mood I’m in, but I’ve been enjoying it and I don’t think it’s one of those stints where I’m going to burn myself out on contemporary. At least not for now. Summer is PERFECT for contemporary, so bring it on.

A few wonderful contemporaries I’ve read recently:

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli (who’s shocked by this one?) | My review
Belzhar by Meg Wolitzer
Made You Up by Francesca Zappia (review soon, but this one is SO good)
None of the Above by I.W. Gregorio (READ IT) | My review
I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson (My current audiobook. I’m not even done with it and I already know I want to reread it in the future)

GIVE ME ALL THE RECOMMENDATIONS!

#ReadingMyLibrary Challenge | Week Three Update

Before I start, don’t forget that our Twitter chat is TODAY, April 18 at 2 p.m. CST!! I’ll be hosting and we’ll be using the #ReadingMyLibrary hashtag!

#ReadingMyLibrary Challenge

This was National Library Week! We did book dominoes at my library which was so much fun! I’ll be posting a video of it later. As for reading, I finished the Jackaby audiobook yesterday, and I really liked it. I’m looking forward to the next book in the series. I’ll probably review the book soon. I also read some comics!

ReadingMyLibrary Week Three

I’m still currently reading Deadpool & Cable, and I also started Watchmen – though that seems to be one you take a while to read. I don’t think it’s one to read in one day. I also decided to DNF The Orphan Queen. I feel like I’ve already read it even though I haven’t. It’s too similar to a lot of other books I’ve read and I’m just not in the mood for it right now. I might try again at a future date.

This week, I saved a total of $142.91 – $22.95 (Jackaby Audiobook), $34.99 (Deadpool: The Complete Collection – Vol. 1), $14.99 (Tress Vol. 1), $39.99 (Deadpool & Cable Ultimate Collection – Book 1), $29.99 (Superman: Earth One). Comics are expensive, dude.

Overall in the challenge, I have saved a total of $194.30! (Still counting The Orphan Queen even though I DNF’ed).

Each week during the Challenge, we’ve chosen a topic to discuss during our weekly update. This week’s topic is:

Why you love libraries or why you love being a librarian.

I love libraries because there are whole worlds contained in them. They can inspire, teach, console, and relate. They’ll make you laugh, cry, and realize you aren’t alone. You can visit places all over the world or places not of this world. You can meet someone who understands you completely or learn about someone who is completely different from you. I love libraries because they are full of friendly, helpful, interesting people (I’m not just tooting my own horn here, promise) who will introduce you to your next favorite read. I love libraries because you can apply for jobs, apply for a passport, send in your taxes, make copies of your research, print out you application to college, and more.

I love being a librarian because I can inspire, teach, relate, and recommend. I can help you apply to college or find your next favorite read. I love being a librarian because of the look on my patrons’ faces when they return a book they loved that I recommended. I get to help with homework or job applications. I get to order books I know my patrons will love (or that I’ll be able to passionately recommend). I get to discover new worlds, new characters, new books and comics and movies. Being a librarian is basically having a book blog in real life.

Why do you love libraries?

LINK YOUR WEEK THREE UPDATE BELOW!

And don’t forget to enter the #ReadingMyLibrary Challenge giveaway!

THE #READINGMYLIBRARY CHALLENGE HAS STARTED!

Hello, everyone! Today is April 1, which means the #ReadingMyLibrary Challenge has begun! And no, this isn’t an April Fool’s joke! No worries if you haven’t signed up yet; sign ups are open until Wednesday, April 15, so you still have a whole TWO weeks to sign up. Also, don’t forget that you only have to read ONE library book to participate, and why wouldn’t you? If you’re already going to be reading books from the library, just sign up and enter for a chance to win our giveaway!

Here’s the beginning of my #ReadingMyLibrary Challenge! I started the audiobook of Jackaby yesterday (oops), and today I can’t decide if I want to read Beautiful You by Chuck Palahniuk or The Sin Eater’s Daughter by Melinda Salisbury. You don’t need to remind me how ridiculously different those two are. I know. I just can’t decide which I want to start with. I’ll probably just pick right before I head to work – whichever one catches my eye first.

#ReadingMyLibrary ChallengeWhat are you going to read first?

A little more info on the weekly updates since we’ve had some questions. These updates do not need to be super detailed or anything. They’re not even required, but more of a fun way to see what everyone is reading! My posts will discuss (and probably contain pictures of) what I’ve read that week. I’ll answer the weekly questions and talk a little about the challenge. I will probably include how much money I’ve saved that week by checking out the books from the library instead of buying them. That’s it! If you want to just tell us what you’ve read and nothing else, that’s cool too! Up to you. Just have fun! Each week, I will include the linky in my own weekly update post, but it’ll also go HERE on the Weekly Updates page.

Once you create your sign up post, don’t forget to enter the #ReadingMyLibrary Challenge giveaway for your choice of book up to $15 from The Book Depository!

Sign ups are open for the #ReadingMyLibrary Challenge!

Hi guys! So remember how last month I posted about the #ReadingMyLibrary Challenge that Amy at Read What I Like and I were working on a challenge for the month of April all about libraries and reading library books? Well, it’s HERE and sign ups are open today! You might’ve noticed my brand new tab at the top of my page called “#ReadingMyLibrary Challenge” – no? It just magically appeared? Yeah, I’m good like that – where you can find more information about the challenge, including a schedule, rules, and a FAQ of sorts, even though no one’s asked any questions yet. 🙂 Continue reading

Thursday Thoughts: How to Deal with Getting Overwhelmed – Open to Suggestions

Thursday Thoughts on Caught Read Handed

I’ve felt super overwhelmed lately. To the point of almost having a panic attack the other day. I have this problem where I take on way too many things for a few reasons – 1. I have a problem saying no. 2. I like to be busy. 3. I like having a lot of projects to distract me. 4. I really don’t know how to say no.

BUT it’s okay. I’ve got an awesome mini-road trip coming up this weekend with a friend (including some live music!) and I’ve decided to take a break from technology and the internet for the whole weekend – NO Twitter, NO Facebook, NO blog (sorry, guys!), NO Instagram (Okay, maybe one or two pictures), etc. I need the break for a lot of reasons and I’m really looking forward to it. I’m bringing at least two books with me, ones that I want to read FOR ME and not ARCs, no books I should read by a certain date, just ones I’ve been looking forward to for a while.

The whole point of telling you all this is to start a conversation with you. I know I’m not the only one who gets overwhelmed; this post isn’t a pity party. This point is meant to see what you do to deal with feelings of anxiety or your to do list that feels like it’s going to smother you and give you a few examples for how I deal. What do you do to calm yourself down, to focus on what you have to do and get it done?

Here are a few things that I like to do that (sometimes) help me stop overthinking, freaking out, panicking, giving up:

  1. Read. This is a given. But I mean read FOR ME. Like a lot of bloggers, I have a list of ARCs that I’ve requested/been given and sometimes I just want to NOT read them. So I pick up a book I want to read and read it. I try not to think about how I’m going to review it (which has become a problem for me recently – WHY do I do this??). I lose myself in this new world and take a mental road trip, if you will. Sorry that was cheesy.
  2. Listen to music. This is another given for me. However, I have to fit the music I’m listening to to the mood I’m in. Lately, I’ve been listening to a lot of pop stuff because anything dark or with lyrics that hit too close to home (read: twenty one pilots – one of my two favorite bands but not something I’ve been able to listen to for about two weeks). I’ve been listening to Vinyl Theatre’s Electrogram a lot. I’ve also created a playlist on my computer called “Get out of your f*cking funk” that has some Eric Hutchinson, Fall Out Boy, Uptown Funk, One Direction (I don’t even care if you judge me), Bleachers, and a bunch of other peppy songs. Any recommendations?
  3. TRAVEL. I know a lot of wanderers will be able to get this: I feel a constant restlessness when I’m not going places. Traveling – driving, experiencing new places, seeing amazing sights, meeting fun new people, all of it – is something that settles me. It calms me on the inside and centers me. Some people won’t understand this at all and that’s okay. But for me, travel is a necessity. I’ve just downloaded and printed Sarah Shott’s Adventure Generator to take with me on my trip – a choose your own adventure type thing for the real world! I’m so excited to use it. I think I’ll probably share where the Adventure Generator takes me.
  4. Sleep. I tend to not sleep a lot when I have too many things going on. I stay up way too late working on whatever it is and then, because I’m a morning person/I’ve got an internal alarm clock that wakes me up around 6 a.m. every day, I wake up without being fully rested. Sometimes I just have to tell myself that I need sleep and the project will wait until tomorrow.

  5. Breathe some fresh air. I work inside at the library and since I have an online job, I spend most of my time inside. This is really horrible for me but I somehow forget that all the time. Then one day I’ll realize I can barely breathe because it feels so stuffy wherever I am, and I’ll do #1 outside. It’s amazing how much better I feel immediately when I go outside and breathe some fresh air. I’ll sit on my porch and read – even if it’s only for thirty minutes. I feel so much better.

So now I want to hear from you – How do you combat the stress? What do you do that helps you breathe better and not panic? Or if your one of the lucky ones who doesn’t freak out or knows how to say no when you have too many projects already, how do you keep track of what you have to do? Let’s talk for real in the comments!

Seize the Tuesday: Inhale the Tuesday

Seize the Tuesday - Let's Get Lost

Seize the Tuesday is a book blogger meme created by Adi Alsaid and the Let’s Get Lost Buddies Street Team, to share stories about how we’ve seized the Tuesday, with a special focus on the particular book we’re reading. We’ll share our posts online with the hashtag: #LetsAllGetLost. The idea is to share little ways in which you may have embraced Bree’s motto of seizing the Tuesday. To relate it to books, you can talk about what book you’re reading, and how you stole some moments from the day to enjoy reading. It doesn’t have to be about reading, but we all know that a well-read day is a day seized. The idea is not just to help spread the word on LGL, but also to remind people to live fully, even/especially if that means spending a part of your day reading.

It’s been cold and rainy for about a week or so down here in Mississippi. I’m not complaining at all – in fact, I like both the cold and the rain. BUT it’s difficult to sit on the front porch and read when it’s freezing and/or pouring. Finally, today, a reprieve for a few hours in the afternoon. I meant to spend all of it outside, but online work kept me occupied for longer than I’d hoped. Eventually though, I was able to sit on the porch and read. It was super humid, so much so that it felt a little like I was swimming. I usually hate this, but it’s been a several days since I was able to actually spend more than a quick run to or from my car outside, so I sat down and read. I wasn’t out there long. Twenty to thirty minutes at most. But it was what I needed. I needed to be outside in the sun breathing in the (albeit humid) fresh air. I spend a lot of time indoors, whether I’m at work or at home working or reading, and sometimes it gets to be too much. I feel a little like I’m suffocating and not being able to go outside because it’s way too cold or pouring makes me feel trapped.

It’s funny I feel this way because I used to despise being outdoors. Yeah, I was the pale, weird kid who’d rather sit inside with a book than play out in the dirt. I’m still that person, but now I’d rather sit on the porch and read and get some fresh air and good ol’ vitamin D. I breathe better, more freely, when I’ve spent some time outside. I’m very happy I was able to do that for a little while yesterday.

Tuesday seized inhaled

By the way, I was reading The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black, which I have since finished.

SUNDAY FUNDAY: February 2015 Wrap-up

The lovely Cristina over at Girl in the Pages started Sunday Funday as a way to recap the bookish (and not-so-bookish) things that have happened that week.

Hello, lovelies! February has come and gone and it is MARCH FIRST. WHAT IS HAPPENING TO TIME?! …anyway, as I said back in January, I’m going to wrap up each month by showing you the quotes I’ve saved in my book memories can.

This is the Life - Book memories challenge

“The old black dog was back, or maybe it had never gone away. I knew that Louis had always had it snapping at his heels.” – Loc. 572 (ARC)
I like the description of depression as a dog, chasing at you and barking, hope to take a bite of your heels. GR / My review on WatchPlayRead

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight - Book memories challenge

“People talk about books being an escape…this one feels more like a lifeline.” – Page 153-154
Does this one really need an explanation? GR / my review of TSPOLAFS (Wow) will be up this week

ADSOM

“No, Lila had been running toward something. Something better. And even if she hadn’t reached it yet, she would.” – Loc. 1593 (ARC)
I’m running toward something better. Always. GR / My review

To Be a Cat

“A boy who had no ideea what would happen in his life, or where it would take him, but one thing he was sure of was this – he would always try and be himself.” – Page 289
I try to always, always be myself. No matter what. No matter where I am or where I’ll go. GR

The DUFF

“Escape is impossible, so why no embrace it?” – Page 277
B and I are trying to escape different things, but the quote works for both of us. Just embrace the challenge. GR / My review

It's the End of the World as We Know It

“Q: How many mad scientists does it take to change a light bulb? A: Two. One to hold the bulb, the other one to turn the universe.” – Loc. 14 (ARC)

I just love that. No reason really, other than the idea that someone could turn the universe around them is fascinating and wonderful. GR / My review

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

“I fall a little bit in love with everyone.” – ARC page 32
Speaks for itself, I think. GR / Review soon!

I also read/listened to the audiobooks for The Funny Thing is… by Ellen DeGeneres and Spirit Animals Book 1: Wild Born by Brandon Mull.

So far in 2015, I have read:

19 books (well, one DNF at 50%) which is 5,608 pages
3 audiobooks
2 trade paperbacks
36 single issue comics

Favorite book in February: A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab / My review
Least favorite book in February: Tear You Apart by Sarah Cross. I had to DNF this one. You can read my review to find out why.
Favorite post to write in February: I think I’ll have to go with my Thursday Thoughts post on mood reading. It seems like a lot of you can relate and feel my pain. I love talking to you guys about bookish (and not-so-bookish) stuff!

A few other updates:

The Bloggers’ Book Club I was working on with April at Bookishly Speaking is HERE!! Our first read (for March) is The Glass Arrow by Kristen Simmons. Head over to  the Goodreads group and sign up!

I met another Mississippi book blogger this month! I wrote about it in one of my Seize the Tuesday posts. If you live in or near MS, definitely let me know! We’re working on planning a meet up. 🙂

Coming up in March is my ONE YEAR BLOGIVERSARY! I can’t believe I’ve been doing this for a year. Look out for a giveaway near the end of the month! ❤

How was your February? What did you read?

The Bloggers’ Book Club

Hey guys! Remember how I posted a few weeks ago about the possibility of an online book club for any and all bloggers?

The Bloggers' Book ClubWell, it’s HERE! April at Bookishly Speaking and I have created the Bloggers’ Book Club, and after a poll between the members who’ve already signed up, our first read will be The Glass Arrow by Kristen Simmons! I would absolutely love if you joined us. Head over to the Goodreads group and sign up! We’ll be starting our discussion of the first book on March 1 – but don’t worry if you can’t get the book in time! No spoilers will be placed in the discussion without a spoiler tag so you can join in whenever you’re ready. We’ll also be having two live chats in a chatroom during the month where we can get more in depth with our discussions.

Don’t want to read The Glass Arrow? That’s okay! You can skip this month and join us in April. Feel free to put forth a title in the thread for April suggestions or email us at thebloggersbookclub [at] gmail [com]!

I hope to see you in the Goodreads group!

A little more information for you:
– You’ll be able to come and go as you please – don’t have time to read the book this go around? No problem! We’ll let you know what the next book is and hope you can join us then!
– ANY blogger can participate – not a book blogger? Doesn’t matter as long as you love to read!
– All genres will be read – we don’t want to exclude anyone by focusing on only YA contemporary or only fantasy books. We’ll be taking turns with all of the genres so that everyone will get a chance to put forward their favorites.