The Looooong and the Short of It with a Giveaway: October 2023 Wrap-Up Post and What to Expect in November

Posted November 2, 2023 by Lisa Mandina in End of the month post, giveaway / 28 Comments

There’s always so much going on in October for me that it just flies by! My birthday, a friend’s birthday, this year there was a library conference out of town, and unfortunately my stepdad was back in the hospital and getting chemo again. My reading was about average this month, with a total of 16 books finished. I did have about 4 DNFs, though, and a couple audiobooks that didn’t work for me, but I didn’t get far enough to even count for a DNF.

  • # of pages read: 4575
  • Amount of time spent listening to audiobooks – Since I only count what I finished, my time spent was 15 hours and 8 minutes for 3 audiobooks, I tried to pick a couple shorter ones to get my number of books finished up before the end of the month, but one of them turned into a DNF.

Here are my stats from StoryGraph:

October Reviews

Of the 14 specific titles listed last month, I got 11 read and most reviewed, one DNF, one that I didn’t even start because as behind as I had gotten due to issues popping up, I decided I wasn’t interested in it anymore since it was one the publisher sent an e-galley of and not one I’d requested, and I’m still working on the last one I mentioned as a possible finish. I did get one more Gateway finished as an audiobook as well.

Challenge Wrap-Up

No new books read for this. Although as I’d already met and exceeded my goal, that’s okay.

  1. The Hunger Between Us by Marina Scott
  2. Twisted Love by Ana Huang
  3. Lord of the Fly Fest by Goldy Moldavy
  4. Always Jane by Jenn Bennett
  5. My Second Impression Of You by Michelle I. Mason
  6. Gold Mountain by Betty G. Yee
  7. Spicy Pickle by J.J. Knight
  8. My Mechanical Romance by Alexene Farol Follmuth
  9. Forging Silver Into Stars by Brigid Kemmerer
  10. Rima’s Rebellion by Margarita Engle
  11. The Lost Dreamer by Lizz Huerta
  12. One for All by Lillie Lainoff
  13. The Dachshund Wears Prada by Stefanie London
  14. Beyond the Wand by Tom Felton
  15. I Must Betray You by Ruta Sepetys
  16. The Warning by Kristy Acevedo
  17. Shame on Me by Tara Sivec
  18. Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon
  19. Howl by Shaun David Hutchinson
  20. Swing and a Mishap by Tara Sivec
  21. Shame On Him by Tara Sivec
  22. Twice Shy by Sarah Hogle

I did finally do another discussion post, about trying to get to my TBR. I also did a Tell Me Something Tuesday Post that I feel like could count as one. So now I just have to get 4 more done before the end of the year. And I do have penciled in days to do them over the next two months, so just have to figure out exactly what to do!

  1. Don’t You Know That You’re Toxic or Why Don’t People Get the Point of This Book?
  2. Got to Get You Into My Life or How Am I Ever Going to Read All Those Books I Bought as soon as they were Published??
  • Blogging:
    • 1. Keep my Netgalley percentage up to 80%. Still at 81%!
    • 2. Discussion Challenge: See update above, I’ve now only got 2 months to get 4 posts done
  • Reading:
    • 1. As always is my Goodreads goal of 200 books. I keep hovering between 4 and 5 books behind even after adding in some novellas and shorter audiobooks.
    • 2. My TBR Challenge above.
  • Writing – As I’m still done with writing, I’m continuing to help my author friend get ready to hopefully get a bunch of new readers at Flirty in KC in February.
  • Book Buying Ban – Pretty sure I’m not doing this anymore, lol. But I did skip the Book of the Month again for October as they keep not having any books I want as the choices.

What to Expect in November

Lots of family stuff with Thanksgiving I’m sure in November. Still another full month of review posts. I’ve got to stop scheduling so many. But I am hoping to do a Read-A-Thon towards the end and even be sort of a co-host for that

Here is my proposed TBR for November:
  1. Check & Mate by Ali Hazelwood – an e-galley I finished at the beginning of the month and post the review on the 3rd
  2. Christmas Cupid by Ilsa Madden-Mills – an e-galley for an author review team that I forgot I signed up to read and post a review, hopefully on the 2nd!
  3. The Way I Am Now by Amber Smith – I have the ARC to read from the publisher and hope to post my review on the 4th
  4. The Hunting Moon by Susan Dennard – another ARC from a publisher and I hope to post that review on the 6th or 7th
  5. Night Shift by Annie Crown – an e-galley I have and hope to read and review on the 13th
  6. Down for the Word Count by Piper Sheldon – hoping to have an ARC or egalley from the author to read and post a review on the 16th
  7. Sex, Lies and Sensibility by Nikki Payne – another e-galley that I hope to read and post the review on the 18th
  8. Snowdown at the Old Schoolhouse by Margaret Amatt – e-galley for a blog tour review on the 20th
  9. Naughty-ish by L.B. Dunbar – e-galley for a blog tour review on the 22nd
  10. Always the Bridesmaid by Laura Carter – e-galley for a blog tour review on the 23rd
  11. Didn’t See That Coming by Jesse Q. Sutanto – got an ARC from the AASL conference and hope to post the review on the 25th
  12. He’s Not My Type by Meghan Quinn – should be reading for the author’s review team and posting my review hopefully on the 27th or 28th
  13. Along Came Holly by Codi Hall – planning to listen to this on audio as part of the Ho-Ho-Ho Read-a-Thon I’m doing, so review will probably be part of a monthly L-L-L post.
  14. The Ex-Mas Holidays by Zoe Allison – hoping to possibly read as part of the HHHRAT too.
  15. The Tourist Attraction by Sarah Morgenthaler – this one would be for the HHHRAT too, but would also fit on my TBR Challenge!
  16. Maybe Oops, I’ve Fallen by Max Monroe – one I started for the TBR challenge back in September.
  17. A Heavy Does of Allison Tandy by Jeff Bishop – the current audio book I am listening to as November starts, also on the Gateway possibility list.
  18. Any other audiobooks I listen to – such as Nothing More to Tell by Karen McManus which would also go with the next item on this list
  19. Any other Gateway possibilities I get a chance to read

Final Thoughts

So how was your October? The fall weather finally started really showing up, even with a few days of 80 degrees still. I got to have a couple fun birthday celebrations with family, and had a wonderful time at the library conference in Tampa.

How are you doing on your reading/blogging/personal goals for 2023 so far? What are you looking forward to in November? I’m looking forward to Thanksgiving – especially the whole week off of school, the annual craft fair that both my mom and stepmom get a booth together to sell their stuff at, and just hoping the weather continues to cool off and that my Kansas City Chiefs keep winning!


Below are ARCs I’ve finished and also a couple of finished copies, the winner will get to pick out 2 books from the list, and I add any others I finish between the time I post this and the end of the month. Now that The Book Depository is closing, the only way I can really do international is if I can send you a $5 Amazon gift card somehow, so we’ll see how that works! Just fill out the Rafflecopter below the picture. My September Wrap-Up post got over 900 entries, so I picked 9 winners! Although I had to go on to a few different people as a couple that the Rafflecopter picked when I emailed them I never heard back.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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28 responses to “The Looooong and the Short of It with a Giveaway: October 2023 Wrap-Up Post and What to Expect in November

    • Lisa Mandina

      Goodreads is really the only goal I stick to. I tried COYER, but with all the reviews I’ve signed up for, I don’t get to those like I used to.

  1. Looks like you had a great month and I hope your step-dad’s chemo is going well. I am continuing on with spooky books until Nov. 16th and then I’ll be participating in the Ho Ho Ho Challege so I’ll switch to holiday theme stuff primarily to finish the year out. I hope to read Along Came Holly as well. I absolutely loved the first two books. Hope you have a wonderful November!

    • Lisa Mandina

      He seems to be doing well after this second time. I’ve kind of started a little earlier than planned with the holiday books thanks to a novella for an author review team this week!

  2. LeonieT

    My October could have been better, I’m job hunting and nothing came up. Here is hoping November will be successful.

  3. Nice work on the reading, even with DNFs. Looking at your November list, I’ve read The Ex-Mas Holidays by Zoe Allison, and see a couple I wouldn’t mind trying, if I could find time. My November has some LONG fantasies, which take a while to read because they aren’t so breezey. I’ve decided to read both via audiobook, which helps.

    I hope your step-dad is doing well with chemo. *hugs*

    • Lisa Mandina

      Fantasies definitely take time to read! I can’t listen to them usually as audiobooks because my mind will wander during long descriptive parts. I guess it always just depends on the book though. Second round of chemo seemed to go okay, so hoping that continues, thanks for the hugs!

  4. You read a lot really. Interesting to see the Emily Henry book was a DNF, I’ve read a couple of hers but I have to say I haven’t been carried away by them, although they are popular with man.

    • Lisa Mandina

      I might enjoy reading them, but the audiobook didn’t work for me. Plus maybe it’s because the character in that one is supposedly a beautiful perfect woman which I do not relate to at all?

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