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Showing posts from August, 2014

It's Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini - Review

❋  ❋  ❋  ❋  ❋ Fifteen-year-old Craig gets into Manhattan's Executive Pre-Professional High School and faces incredible levels of stress during his first year. It becomes so unbearable that he contemplates committing suicide but checks himself into a mental institution. While there he meets many others attempting to work through their issues and he begins to examine the source of his own anxiety. The author, Ned Vizzini, actually spent some time in a psychiatric facility as a young man and the authenticity and emotion behind the words on the page are palpable. The majority of the story takes place at the hospital and the characters Craig encounters are all fully formed and realistic. It offers the opportunity to get into the Craig's head, and other patients through the brain maps he creates (which I expect are much cooler than the one on the cover). It's jarring to listen to the story while knowing the fate of the author before reading this remarkable novel.

Sunday Funday

Most exciting news of the week: Lots of yard sales this Labor Day weekend!  I picked some of the best sounding ones to see if I could come across any astounding deals that I would need to get and I found some good ones! Second most exciting news of the week: I won another Goodreads First Reads Giveaway! Naturally, I'll start off with the books I found for great prices at the yard sales!  I found a copy of The Cat Who Could Read Backwards  by Lilian Jackson Braun, Little Bee  by Chris Cleave, and The Red Queen by Philippa Gregory. I wasn't sure that I would go back to The Cat Who books (I've only read #2 and #7), but I did prefer the tone of the second book  so I figured I'd go back and see how it began with The Cat Who Could Read Backwards .  I also wasn't sure if I would go back to The Cousins' War , but The Red Queen  was only a quarter and I am interested in that time period. During the yard sale madness, I stopped by the local college bo

The Liebster Award Pt. 2

I can't believe it, but I've been nominated again for the Liebster Award.  This time I would like to thank Lady Bee at  Let Books Bee  for the nomination! Since I've already been nominated and answered questions and nominated others that way, I believe this time I'll just be answering the questions from Lady Bee. Here we go: 1. There's a fire in your room! You only have time to grab one book and make a run for the door.  Which is it? I have several books that have been in my family for a long time so I would definitely choose one of those.  I'm not 100% which one at this point, though.  However, I think The Prattler: A Story Book for Boys and Girls, edited by Uncle Herbert may be up near the top. 2. Say, you get to interview any author, either alive or dead, who would it be? I'm tempted to say the Bronte sisters - that would be an amazing opportunity! 3.  A new Twilight spin-off will be made!  Love it or hate it?  Why? I'm not that mu

Every Day by David Levithan - Review

❋  ❋  ❋  ❋ Every day A wakes up in a different body, different life. There's no warning as to who and where A will wake up. A has made peace with that because there's nothing he can do to change it and he has no answers as to why it happens. A tries not to interfere in the lives he shares which means not getting noticed and to never get too attached to his many "families" and "friends". This is all well and good until he wakes up as Justin, the boyfriend of Rhiannon. A realizes he wants to spend the rest of his life, every day, with Rhiannon. A takes a big chance and tells Rhiannon his story and hopes she will believe him and hopes for a future relationship between them. David Levithan is a captivating storyteller when it comes to complex and unique contemporary YA. He raises many excellent questions about (same)love, self-identity, masculinity and femininity, and use of personal pronouns. We are also treated to a diverse cast (partly due to

Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson - Review

❋  ❋  ❋  ❋  ❋ Actual rating 4.5 stars Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson is absolutely fantastic! If you like Cyberpunk or Dystopia, sword fights, skateboarding, virtual reality, high-speed/ high-stakes pizza delivery, mythology, and epic characters, you should really look into this one! I highly, highly recommend this novel! Hiro Protagonist, the greatest sword fighter in the world and the Metaverse, is a hacker-extraordinaire and pizza deliverer for the Mafia-owned Uncle Enzo's CosaNostra Pizza Inc., in a future where the country has broken down into corporate-franchise city-states. Hiro and a young Kourier called Y.T. get pulled headlong into a dangerous mystery revolving around a designer drug called Snow Crash and Sumerian culture, and face what could potentially mean an information apocalypse. I enjoyed reading both Hiro and Y.T. in this novel as both are spectacularly written characters, but to tell the truth Y.T. easily steals the show. That's how you writ

The Liebster Award

The Liebster Award is a tag meant to spread the word about about great blogs.  Here are the rules: 1. Link and thank the blogger who nominated you. 2. Answer the 11 questions your nominator gives you. 3. Tag 11 other bloggers who have 200 or less followers. 4. Ask the 11 bloggers you have nominated 11 questions and let them know you nominated them. My thanks go out to Brittany from Space Between the Spines  for nominating me - don't forget to stop by her blog! Here are the bloggers I nominate for the Liebster Award: 1. Tanya at  A Book Paradise 2. Ashley at  Books to the Tea 3. Emily at  Emily Etc. 4. Marie at  Marie Loves Books 5. Saloni at  My Fantabulous Bookshelf 6. Patty at  Patty's Book Corner 7. Jillyn at Bitches n Prose 8. Ellen at Random Smiles 9. Jessica at The Psychotic Nerd 10. Sarah at  Total Teen Fiction 11. Larry at  It's Either Sadness or Euphoria... The following are my answers to Brittany's questions. 1. If you could da

Top Ten Books I Really Want To Read But Don't Own Yet

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature created by The Broke and the Bookish .  This week the category is the books you want to read but just don't have yet.  I could easily go on and on with this list, but here are the ones I really, really want now. :) 1. Crown of Glass by Sarah J. Maas I'm only halfway through Throne of Glass  and I can say that I already need book two! 2. The Treatment by Suzanne Young I loved The Program  and must continue the ride with Sloane and James, especially after that ending. 3. The Shadow Throne by Jennifer A. Nielsen The first two installments of The Ascendance Trilogy were absolutely brilliant and I can't wait to see how the story wraps up. 4. Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell Still can't believe I haven't gotten around to this one yet...and that needs to be fixed soon! 5. Rebel Heart by Moira Young Blood Red Road , the first installment in this series, is an absolutely brilliant post-apocalypt

Sunday Funday

Most exciting news of the week: I won and received two new books and that's always awesome!  Through the Goodreads Giveaways First Reads Program I won a copy of The War of the Sidhe: Dawn Arising by Annalise Josephine Sullivan (sounds very interesting) and Renegade by J. A. Souders (doesn't it look great!) through an Author Q & A hosted by one of my favorite Goodreads groups  David Estes Fans and YA Book Lovers Unite! Second most exciting news of the week: I have the entire weekend off from work which hardly ever happens so yesterday I went to the nearest Der Dutchman Restaurant and then Barnes and Noble.  By the way, Der Dutchman makes some excellent pies and I can't recommend their Rhubarb Crumb mouth is starting to water just thinking about it!  Anyways, I purchased two new books Hunted  by Kevin Hearne (The Iron Druid Chronicles #6 - I can't get enough of this series) and Dead Things   by Stephen Blackmoore (it's been recom

2014 Mid-Year Book Freakout

I've noticed some of my favorite book bloggers are participating in the  2014 Mid-Year Book Freakout survey  and although it's past mid-year now I'd still like to throw in my two cents.  So here we go - on to the survey! 1. Best book you've read so far in 2014. It's hard for me to choose just one, but I can narrow it down to these:  All Our Yesterdays by Cristin Terrill , Blood Red Road by Moira Young , Code Name Verity  by Elizabeth Wein , These Broken Stars  by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner , Half Bad by Sally Green ,  Peter and the Starcatchers by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson , and Doubt  by Anne-Rae Vasquez . 2. Best sequel you've read so far in 2014.   Cress  by Marissa Meyer  - easy! 3. New release you haven't read yet, but want to. Downfall by Rob Thurman  - I love the Cal Leandros  series! 4. Most anticipated release for the second half of the year. Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater - the third instal

Friday Flicks - Night of the Living Dead: Resurrection & It Happened Tomorrow

This week I got to watch two movies - one was absolutely horrible and the other was awesome! I'll start off with the horrible one first.  It's called  Night of the Living Dead: Resurrection  and if possible I would give it zero stars, even though I only watched the last half hour.  Thinking back on it I'm actually surprised I watched a full thirty minutes... It's set in 2012, also the year it was released, and does it's own thing with George A. Romero's classic .  For all intents and purposes, that means that the action takes place in Wales.  Very cheap photography, sound, and makeup effects, along with cheesy dialog and poor acting.  When I say cheap, I mean it looks and sounds like it could have been made with someone's phone.  Now that I think about it, I probably only made it through those thirty minutes because I was so stunned that something so bad could be made. In the name of sanity, avoid this movie at all costs.  Of course, the only thing

Penny Palabras Season One: It's Later Than You Think by James B. Willard - Review

❋  ❋  ❋  ❋ I received a free ecopy of this graphic novel from the author in exchange for an honest review. Penny can see the paranormal, which most cannot, and she knows that most things are not what they seem. She is currently tormented by a malevolent creature called the Straw Man and she desperately needs to figure out how to stop him from doing any more damage. As he continues to gain power while she looks for a solution, she starts seeing more and more ghosts, her nightmares won't let her sleep, her family and friends can't understand, and demons come to call. Season One includes the first six episodes plus a short segue. This graphic novel is definitely worth the read if you enjoy urban-fantasy with a noir undertone. I really like the art throughout and how Penny is drawn made me think of Ellen Page. By the way, Season One also includes developmental concept art which was interesting to compare to the final designs. As a Doctor Who fan, I also couldn'

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness - Review

❋  ❋  ❋  ❋  ❋ An ancient, wild monster shows up at 12:07 a.m., but it isn't the monster Conor's been expecting. He's been expecting the one from his nightmare, the one he's had every night since his mother started her cancer treatments. This particular monster, however, wants the most dangerous thing from Conor - the truth. In the heartbreakingly beautiful A Monster Calls , Conor is forced to come to terms with his grief and anger at his mother's illness, family relationships, and the bullying he faces at school. He is forced to be honest with himself on very weighty issues and the truth is not an easy thing for him to say aloud, let alone accept. It's very easy to relate to Conor, at least on one level, because everyone has had similar thoughts or experiences in life. As the end of the story draws near, while sad, there is still a glimmer of hope. Although part of me wants to know more, I love the way Ness chooses to end the story. I was incre

Blast of the Dragon's Fury (Andy Smithson #1) by L. R. W. Lee - Review

❋  ❋  ❋ I received a free ecopy of this book in exchange for an honest review. Andy Smithson, an average video-game loving ten-year-old, finds himself mysteriously transported to a (parallel?) fantasy world called Oomaldee in order to break a 500 year curse. Andy has the adventure of his life while in Oomaldee, a Camelot-esque kingdom, makes new friends, takes a daring journey, faces danger around every corner, and learns a lot about himself in the process. I love the concept behind this middle-grade story. I think it would be most appreciated by its target audience (8-12 years old) for it's sense of humor and adventure. The story also teaches moral lessons (see: the inneru, etc., as well as the author's link to discussion questions) and we see Andy grow as a character over the course of his adventure. We also get some interesting supporting characters. For example, the King dresses like Steve Jobs and we don't really know if he's good or bad. We also ha