2016 Book Challenge – Sept update

Well. This is probably better known as the ‘dafug did i just read’ update. I haven’t been able to read since completing the last book cause they were just full of WTFery. No really. Let’s begin.

dafug did i just read books.. 

Audition by Ryo Murakami – the last time i updated, I had just finished a bunch of Banana Yoshimoto books and thought I’d expand to other Japanese authors to see if there was anyone else I liked. This book started as a really cool book only it ended up like some Stephen King psycho murder thriller book. And that would have been fine if I knew what I was reading. I DIDN’T. so what you had is me reading this book till 2am in the morning cause it was getting exciting and it was one of those just one more page sort of nights and then BOOMZ. there was gore everywhere. Again, this would have been fine if I was prepared for it all. I was not. I was expecting a happily ever after ending. not mutilate the crap out of people ending. SIGH. This led to me being very wide awake at 2am and traumatised for the rest of the day.

The book is actually very good. The pacing and plot and well, you don’t see the plot twist until it’s too late to stop reading. I just wished I knew what it was before I started reading it. Which brings me to mistake number 2.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. See, I thought this was a coming of age sort of book. Like the girl is gone, here is a woman now type thing. BOY WAS I WRONG. ZZZ. again. you’d think i’d learn by now right? Let’s just say this is definitely as far from a coming of age book as you can get. The plot, and its many, many twists in this book, is very, very good. I have to say for a book with so many unlikable characters, especially the main two characters, I actually couldn’t put it down. Again, would have preferred to know what I was reading before I got into this, especially after reading that crazy book literally just before this. ZZZZ.

So after that, I was like OK. ENOUGH. Let’s read something that is definitely NOT a psychological thriller.

Hard boiled Wonderland and the End of the World – Haruki Murakami. Well. The good news – it certainly wasn’t a psychological thriller.  The not so good news. i still don’t know what I just read. I’ve been on a break since reading this book in Mid Aug cause my brain cannot handle more of this shit anymore. hahahhaa.

I also have no idea how these books fit into the list below so I’m going to take some liberal interpretations with them. HAHAHAHhAHA


  1. Book based on fairy tale
  2. National Book Award winner 
  3. YA bestseller
  4. Book you haven’t read since high school
  5. Book set in your home state
  6. Book translated to English –  Moonlight Shadow by Banana Yoshimoto
  7. Romance set in the future
  8. Book set in Europe
  9. Book that’s under 150 pages – Kitchen By Banana Yoshimoto
  10. New York Times’ bestseller –  Perks of being a Wall Flower by Stephen Chbosky
  11. Book that’s becoming a movie this year 
  12. Book recommended by someone you just met
  13. A self-improvement book
  14. A book you can finish in a day – Lake by Banana Yoshimoto
  15. a book written by a celebrity –. Yes, my accent is real by Kunal Nayer. Good stuff.
  16. a political memoir
  17. a book at least 100 years older than you – Black Beauty by Anna Sewell
  18. a book that’s more than 600 pages
  19. a book from oprah’s book club
  20. A science fiction novel – I read Parasite by Mira Grant  and it was awesome (it’s also a reread cause I wanted to read the sequel and could not remember much of it, and I don’t care. It still counts).
  21. a book recommended by a family member
  22. a graphic novel
  23. a book that is published in 2016
  24. a book with a protagonist who has your occupation – *this is done* Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. Well, Amy was a copy writer-ish. It’s prob the closest thing I’ll ever get striking this off the list. [I did say I’d be quite liberal with my intepretation]
  25. a book that takes place during Summer
  26. a book and its prequel
  27. a murder mystery – *this is done* Audition by Ryo Murakami. Yeah this is pretty close to a murder mystery. 
  28. a book written by a comedian
  29. a dystopian novel
  30. a book with a blue coverSymbiont by Mira Grant. Sequel to Parasite (book 20 on this list)
  31. a book of poetry
  32. the first book you see in a bookstore
  33. a classic from the 20th century – Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
  34. a book from the library
  35. an autobiography
  36. a book about a road trip
  37. a book about a culture you’re unfamiliar with – *this is done* Hard Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World – Haruki Murakami. HAHAHAH all of Murakami’s culture is alien to me. 
  38. a satirical book – terry Pratchett counts right? i have the last few of his books left to read.
  39. a book that takes place on an island
  40. a book that’s guaranteed to bring you joy

12 books in 9 months. SIGH. well. at least I’m still reading I guess?


Where Mel meets Mao

After we said yes to Mao coming, we started the standard cat arrival prep. set aside litter box in his room, beds, mats, water bowl, food etc and kept telling melvin he was to expect an older brother soon.

We did everything you were supposed to do, when mao finally arrived, we had them bring him in directly to the room and shut the door. While melvin was thrown into another room so he wouldn’t see him coming in. His old family passed over his old bed, carrier, some toys and food / litter etc and just like that, we became parents to another cat.

Now the introducing of Mao to Melvin and vice versa was one of the toughest things I’ve had to do. First couple of days, we kept Mao in his room so he could just get used to his new home. In fact, I spent most of the first week just sitting in the room with him, reading, sleeping and just ignoring him to get him used to our smell. During this time, Mao was still afraid of everything including us and would constantly run from us to hide or hiss.

Unfortunately, Melvin was also not the least bit happy that there was a new cat in the house and kept posturing outside the room and meowing. I’ve never heard him get so mad at anything before and kept having to reassure him.

melvin outside

unhappy cat is unhappy

After Mao seemed somewhat less afraid of us, we moved on to site swopping in weeks 2 and 3. What this means is that you swop cats and play with them in each other’s area. So Melvin got to into Mao’s room and Mao got the run of the house for a while. It did not really go well, cause Mao kept trying to hide. and Melvin was just distracted by the fact that there was a cat outside the room. During the first week, there was still almost no improvement. Between the meowing, hissing and worrying about both cats, it almost felt like we had a newborn in the house as we were getting up constantly to hush Melvin and got very little sleep.

In week three, there seemed to be some improvement. Melvin stopped trying to attack Mao and Mao was hissing less. In our sleep deprived state, we thought this was the breakthrough we were looking for and decided to let the cats have the run of the house for one night.

WE THOUGHT WRONG. We woke up to screaming cat sounds and a loud THUD sound and Melvin looking like this.

melvin tooth

boh gay boy

YAR MY STUPID BOY LOST A TOOTH. And you know what, he was probably the one lunging at Mao and either due to clumsiness ran into a wall or just Mao’s sheer size couldn’t actually bite him and lost his tooth in the process [I swear that cat is built like a truck with elephant or hippo hide].

The morning ended in tears on my end and apologising to Mel for not realising he wasn’t ready for it and calling the vet & my good friend Jenny, who came readily at 7 plus to pick the cats up to go to the vets for a check up.

True enough, Melvin had to go for dental surgery to remove the tooth but Mao was perferctly fine. 700 bucks later, everyone was back to at home shaken up but ok.