Thursday, March 23, 2017

The Friday 56 (With Book Beginnings): A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic #3) by V.E. Schwab + 50/50 Friday


Welcome to The Friday 56, a weekly meme hosted by Freda's Voice.

These are the rules:
1. Grab a book, any book.
2. Turn to page 56, or 56% on your eReader.
3. Find any sentence (or a few, just don't spoil it) that grabs you.
4. Post it.
5. Add the URL to your post in the link on Freda's most recent Friday 56 post.


I'm also taking part in Book Beginnings, a weekly meme hosted by Rose City Reader.  The rules are pretty simple - you share the first sentence or so and your initial thoughts, impressions, or whatever else it inspires.  Don't forget to link up your post's url with Rose City Reader.


This week I'm spotlighting one of my most anticipated reads of the year, A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic #3) by V.E. Schwab!  I'm so excited to be starting in on this series finale, but I really don't want it all to be over.  Anyway, without further ado:


Beginning:

Delilah Bard - always a thief, recently a magician, and one day, hopefully, a pirate - was running as fast as she could.

56:

The driver didn't fight the magic, or if he did, it was a battle quickly lost.



This week I'm also taking part in a brand new linkup called 50/50 Friday, which is hosted by Carrie @ The Butterfly Reader and Laura @ Blue Eye Books.  Every week they'll have a new topic featuring two sides of the same coin - this week the topic is a Novel Worth/ Not Worth the Hype.

Worth: 


Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff - Both it and it's sequel - I'm dying for the third book in the series to come out already!


Not Worth:


Passenger by Alexandra Bracken - It kills me a little bit to say this since this was one of my most highly anticipated releases of 2016, but it just live up to my expectations.


What are you reading this week?  Have you tried any of the books I've mentioned above?  If so, what did you think of them?

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday: Shortest YA Books I've Read


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Happy Tuesday and welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish!  This week's topic is Read In One Sitting Theme like ten of the shortest books I've read, top ten books I read in one sitting, ten books to read when you are short on time, top ten books that will make you read the whole day away, etc.  I've decided to share the shortest YA books I've read not counting short stories, audiobooks, or graphic novels.  Here we go, in order of length:


Wheels of Change: How Women Rode the Bicycle to Freedom (With a Few Flat Tires Along the Way) by Sue Macy, 96 pages - This is an absolutely fascinating nonfiction piece discusses women's rights and freedoms by way of the history of the bicycle.


Aquamarine by Alice Hoffman, 112 pages - I loved this in middle school so much!


Amelia Lost: The Life and Disappearance of Amelia Earhart by Candace Fleming, 118 pages - I've always been fascinated by Amelia Earhart and this work of nonfiction's no exception.


Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt, 139 pages - You can never go wrong with this classic!


Haunting Joy by Lena Goldfinch, 156 pages - Eerie ghost story with a bit of romance for fans of the tv series, Ghost Whisperer.


Coraline by Neil Gaiman, 162 - Neil Gaiman is one of my favorite authors and this is one of my favorites of his works.


Sammy Keyes and the Hotel Thief by Wendelin Van Draanen, 163 pages - The Sammy Keyes YA mystery series will always be a favorite of mine.  If you've never tried them before you should look into it.


Redemption by Elora Mitchell, 171 pages - You might have seen me mention this excellent YA dystopian in the past - it's well worth your time!


Unholy Alliance by Haley Yager and Lacy Yager, 174 pages - I read this paranormal romance for review and it's pretty great.  If you like urban fantasy and vampires, you may want to give it a shot.


Some Writer!: The Story of E.B. White by Melissa Sweet, 176 pages - If you're in anyway interested in the life story of E.B. White, the author of Charlotte's Web and Stuart Little, this tribute is a must read.


Have you read any of these books?  What are some of the shortest books that you've read?  As always, thanks for visiting my blog and perhaps even commenting.

Monday, March 20, 2017

Music Monday: Harry James and His Orchestra


Happy Monday everyone and welcome back to Music Monday! Let's share some songs we've been enjoying lately!  If you would like to play and I really hope you do, please see the rules and link up below.

Rules:

Every Monday share one or two songs you've been enjoying lately.  It doesn't have to be a specific genre, new, or one of your favorites - just something you'd like to share with others.  If possible, share a music or lyric video of the song and your thoughts on the song(s), artist(s), and/or music video(s).

If you would like to participate in Music Monday, please join the link up by sharing your post's url.


This week I'm spotlighting a couple of my favorite Harry James and His Orchestra songs.  I know I've mentioned this bandleader and topnotch trumpet player on my blog before, but that was from 1939 when Frank Sinatra sang with him before moving on to work with Tommy Dorsey.  I just happened to stumble upon a 78 rpm record at a local Goodwill store that features "Flatbush Flanagan" an instrumental number on one side and "I'll Get By (As Long As I Have You)" on the other which features vocals by Dick Haymes (who replaced Frank Sinatra and who also later worked with Tommy Dorsey as well).  Harry James originally released both of these songs in 1941, but they also gained more popularity later in the '40s as well after being rereleased.  Harry James is one of my favorites and I have several of his albums on vinyl (these two are the only ones that are on a 78) that I've picked up at antique shops or thrift stores.  I always find myself going back and listening to these two songs the most, though.



Saturday, March 18, 2017

Beauty and the Beast Book Tag


I saw the perfect tag by Amber @ Du Livre!  As you can probably imagine, I'm dying to see the new Beauty and the Beast movie starring Emma Watson and Dan Stevens.  As I won't be able to see it until Tuesday, I'm tiding myself over with this tag that Amber created in the meantime.  Tuesday can't come soon enough!


A Villain You Can't Help But Love!


Victor Vale from Vicious by V.E. Schwab - Strictly speaking, Victor isn't quite a villain but he isn't the hero of the story either.  He occupies a very intriguing gray area, and he's probably the most memorable "villainous" character I've met in quite a while.


Your OTP


Ronan Lynch and Adam Parrish from The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater - You've probably heard me mention this before!  This is also one of my favorite  pieces of fan art featuring the two characters.


A Character That's Destined For Bigger Things


Matilda Wormwood from Matilda by Roald Dahl - She's destined for much more than the Wormwood's have to offer.  I'd love to check back in with her as a high school or college student.


A Book That Makes You Hungry


Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl - I'm getting hungry just typing this!


Opposites Attract


Bianca Piper and Wesley Rush from The DUFF by Kody Kepplinger - These two definitely fit this category since they start from off as enemies.


Thanks for making such a cool book tag, Amber!  I'm not going to tag anyone specifically, but if you'd like to do it please feel free!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

The Friday 56 (With Book Beginnings): Caraval (Caraval #1) by Stephanie Garber + 50/50 Friday


Welcome to The Friday 56, a weekly meme hosted by Freda's Voice.

These are the rules:
1. Grab a book, any book.
2. Turn to page 56, or 56% on your eReader.
3. Find any sentence (or a few, just don't spoil it) that grabs you.
4. Post it.
5. Add the URL to your post in the link on Freda's most recent Friday 56 post.


I'm also taking part in Book Beginnings, a weekly meme hosted by Rose City Reader.  The rules are pretty simple - you share the first sentence or so and your initial thoughts, impressions, or whatever else it inspires.  Don't forget to link up your post's url with Rose City Reader.


This week I'm spotlighting a book I've just started and I'm already loving, Caraval (Caraval #1) by Stephanie Garber.  As soon as I heard that this novel was being compared to one of my all time favorites, The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, I knew I had to try this novel.  Let's just say that I'm very happy to have finally joined the party!

Beginning: 

It took seven years to get the letter right.

56:

Up close the sand looked fluffier.  Fluffier, and now that thought about it, much more like snow.  More than she'd ever seen on Trisda.  Resting clouds of magical white, a cold carpet stretched across the entire shore.


This week I'm also taking part in a brand new linkup called 50/50 Friday, which is hosted by Carrie @ The Butterfly Reader and Laura @ Blue Eye Books.  Every week they'll have a new topic featuring two sides of the same coin - this week the topic is Best/ Worst Debut Novel.

Best:


The Girl from Everywhere by Heidi Heilig - Easily a favorite debut from 2016!  If you haven't read this yet, what have you been doing?!

Worst:


The Art of Not Breathing by Sarah Alexander - This was definitely one of my more disappointing 2016 debuts.  It's one of those where the concept and premise is much better than the overall execution.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday: Books On My Spring TBR


Happy Tuesday and welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday, a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish!  This first week's topic back from hiatus is Books On My Spring TBR.  In order to narrow my focus a little bit, I'm sharing some 2016 YA releases that I hope to read this spring since I missed them last year.  The titles I've listed below are all books that I either own or that I'm on hold for at the library.  Here we go, in alphabetical order by title:


The Diablolic by S.J. Kincaid - I'm really excited to get to this one, especially since I've heard so many great things about it and the sampler I got to try was very intriguing.


Half Lost by Sally Green - This series has been one of my favorites and I need to know how it all ends.  I'll be listening to this on audio, and hopefully my hold will be arriving soon.


Heartless by Marissa Meyer - I still can't believe I haven't read Marissa Meyer's newest  novel!  Soon, soon.


Iron Cast by Destiny Soria - I purchased this when it was released, and somehow I've left it on my shelf.  I will have to remedy that soon.


The Midnight Star by Marie Lu - I've been on hold for this on audiobook for ages and I'm finally getting closer to having the opportunity to hear the conclusion to what has been a fantastically dark series.


Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco - I've heard so many wonderful things about this novel that I need to try it sooner rather than later.


Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare - I can't resist the Shadowhunter world, and plus it will help fill in some gaps between the end of The Mortal Instruments series and Lady Midnight.


This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab - I simply need more Schwab in my life!


Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake - I'm also on hold for the audiobook here and have been on hold for it for many months, so I hoping it will arrive soon.  I'll be interested to see what Blake does.


A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir - I still can't believe I haven't read this sequel yet based on how much I loved An Ember in the Ashes.  Must be the nerves - I'm hoping it lives up to the hype!

Are you planning on reading any of these books this spring, or have you already read them?  Do you have any recommendations for which I should try first?  As always, thanks for visiting and perhaps even commenting on my blog.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Music Monday: Big Fish (2003)


Happy Monday everyone and welcome back to Music Monday! Let's share some songs we've been enjoying lately!  If you would like to play and I really hope you do, please see the rules and link up below.

Rules:

Every Monday share one or two songs you've been enjoying lately.  It doesn't have to be a specific genre, new, or one of your favorites - just something you'd like to share with others.  If possible, share a music or lyric video of the song and your thoughts on the song(s), artist(s), and/or music video(s).

If you would like to participate in Music Monday, please join the link up by sharing your post's url.


I don't know if I've ever mentioned it, but Big Fish (2003) starring Ewan McGregor and directed by Tim Burton is one of my favorite movies.  (I know it's based on a book by Daniel Wallace, but I haven't read it - yet.)  If you like magical realism, fairytales, and fantasy adventure with a dash of comedy, you'll probably enjoy this movie, too.  Anyway, I just rewatched the movie for the umpteenth time this past week (and I still get misty eyed at the end), so I thought I would share some of my favorite songs used in the soundtrack.  The score itself is wonderful - and, you guessed it, composed by Danny Elfman - but instead of sharing my favorite parts of the score this week, I thought I'd share two of my favorite well-known songs used in the movie.

"Everyday" by Buddy Holly (1959) - This song appears in the movie just as Edward Bloom is leaving the circus to meet the girl of his dreams at her college.  It totally fits Edward, the tone in that section, and even the color palette onscreen.  The entire scene as Edward's trying to win Sandra over is one of my favorite parts of the movie.


"Let's Work Together" by Canned Heat (1970) - This song appears when Edward Bloom just happens to run into Norther Winslow, the poet he first met in Spectre, at a bank in Texas and he suddenly finds himself as Norther's accomplice in a robbery.  The scene is probably my second favorite scene in the movie and Steve Buscemi really helps make it.  Plus, Edward drives a cool 1966 Dodge Charger.