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February 2019

MsWas's Message Corner

Greetings Cannonballers,

CBR11 has gotten off to a great start with the most number of people posting in January - 100! I’m burying the lede though, because vel veeter has already hit the finish line! He was the first person to make it to 52 books read and reviewed this year - congratulations! Read Bothari43’s interview with him from last year to find out about this speed demon.

There have also seen some excellent reviews from some of our new participants, and I’m just thrilled. Now if you’re worried that you’re behind in your reviews and won’t ever be able to catch up, never fear. You’re not required to review every book you read this year - that’s completely up to you. If you have any questions at all about books or posting or anything, contact me or ask in our Facebook group and experienced Cannonballers can help.

Happy Reading!


Q&A with a Cannonballer: Bothari43 (and introducing Q&A real-life pictures!)


What was it that first helped you fall in love with reading? Was it a particular book? A person? Something else?

I don’t even remember a time in my life that didn’t involve books. My dad read the Hobbit to my brother and me; Mom read us Little House on the Prairie. My aunt made us our very own audio books, where she would mail us picture books with a cassette tape of her reading the books aloud. The Oz books were a huge part of my childhood, and Edward Eager, and on and on. Books were just always around, and I remember loving that I had such easy access to all these other worlds.


See what else yours truly has to say »



CBR11 participants far and wide

We have 256 readers registered for Cannonball Read 11, and we are delighted to have each and every one of you. Just a little housekeeping before we get too far into the year: please do a quick check of your bio, photo and badges to make sure they're correct. If you need help updating your photo or your bio, check the FAQ page. There have been a few hiccups with the badges (those adorable little things in your bio), so be sure to check on your posted reviews that your bio box at the bottom is accurate. 

Also, check out this volunteer-made map (thank you, yesknopemaybe!) of CBR participant locations. If you see a Cannonballer in or near your town that you want to try to meet up with, contact MsWas for some matchmaking assistance.  



Each year, donations are used to pay for web hosting fees and miscellaneous upkeep, and then all the rest goes to the American Cancer Society. Usually by the end of the first quarter, we are able to make our first donation of the year. Please help make our first CBR11 donation substantial - there are lots of ways to contribute! Thank you - we literally couldn't do it without you!





What could make the upcoming adaptation of Good Omens even more exciting? An excuse to reread it and a chance to discuss it with fellow Cannonballers, of course! The first #CannonBookClub this year will be May 17-18, before the series comes out on Amazon Prime. Then, as a follow-up, there will be another discussion covering the show on June 14-15. So if you have not read Good Omens, the masterpiece by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman, you have plenty of time to fix that.
Watch for details about the fall #CannonBookClub in March. We have lots of fun stuff to come!

Style Guide


We're pretty flexible here at CBR (though I will mock you if you put an S on 'anyway'), but CBR has been running long enough that we've figured out some best practices to improve readability of reviews. Here are some tips and tricks we've gathered over the years.

Did we miss anything? Any suggestions? Let us know!

Stuff We're Reading

Flying - Shibuyama review

Feb 20, 2019 08:21 am
I picked up Seveneves purely on the basis of seeing its opening line quoted on a blog: “The moon blew up without warning and for no apparent reason.” I mean…right?? Knowing nothing else about the book and never having read a Stephenson book before, I went into it expecting a disaster movie of a novel, some sort of alien encounter, or something equally odd and action-packed. I was not expecting a sprawling, meticulously researched saga spanning millennia. In fact, it’s a bit of an effort not to just make the entire review a shouty “Do you have any idea how […]
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“That’s because pizza is a precious natural resource. It can heal tiredness, bad mood, falling morale, and a fading will to live. Pizza realigns the heart chakras.” - faintingviolet review

Feb 19, 2019 11:52 pm
First, as someone who suggested The Hating Game to literally anyone requesting a romance recommendation in the past two and a half years I feel the need to send an apology out into the universe for Sally Thorne – I never wanted you to feel so much pressure for your next book. That being said, I’m so glad you were able to work through it and produce this, your sophomore outing. It is very worth the reader’s time and another example of the kind of contemporary romance I’m happy to read and extoll its virtues. 99 Percent Mine is a […]
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“You’re a superhero. Deal with it.” - Caitlin_D review

Feb 19, 2019 10:27 pm
After rating All the Bright Places 5 Stars on Goodreads The Unlikely Hero of Room 13B popped up in my recommendations. While it is an enjoyable read that also tackles mental health through an adolescent protagonist it pales in comparison; especially read is such close succession. Either way I think it is great that there are so many books geared towards teens that shed light on mental health issues and help to lift the stigma of asking for help. Adam suffers from severe obsessive compulsive disorder and is part of a teen support group where he meets Robyn and falls head over heels in […]
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The Fault in Our Stars meets Eleanor and Park is apt - Caitlin_D review

Feb 19, 2019 08:23 pm
As I said in last night’s reviews, I have been listening to a lot of YA audiobooks on my commute and next up is All the Bright Places which nearly brought me to tears as I took my exit Friday morning. Trigger warning for suicide. “It’s my experience that people are a lot more sympathetic if they can see you hurting, and for the millionth time in my life I wish for measles or smallpox or some other easily understood disease just to make it easier on me and also on them.” Theodore Finch, a boy obsessed with suicide, and Violet Markey, […]
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Truth Be Told I Don’t Know How to Review Poetry… - Lisa Bee review

Feb 19, 2019 05:52 pm
I’m not exactly sure how to go about this review because poetry is not exactly something I read often (at all, really), nor do I know much about it, so everything here will be coming from a place of very little knowledge. So then why did I choose to read this collection of poems? Because I had an itch to try something not really in my comfort zone, you know, branch out to some new forms and see how it goes. And why John Keats? Well you see, I absolutely adore Ben Whishaw and was watching Bright Star wherein he […]
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Amanda Howard (aka "Bothari43")

The Cannonball Read Newsletter Editor
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