Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Random Junk Again


Hey everyone! I have a few things I want pass on to you today.

First of all, I was going to do a nice post about all the author events of the past week. But I didn't take any pictures at one, and the other, we ended up not going to, so instead I'll just share pictures of the one I would like to mention: Ransom Riggs! Add him to the list of very nice looking authors. Handsome Ransom. Sheesh. I had to say it. I was sad his wife (Tahereh Mafi) ended up not being with him after all. But maybe next time. He did sign her book for me though:

Ransom signs for Tahereh

What a cool looking title page!
 
Tall!

Gazing at Kami.

Feeling silly as usual!
But look at his shoes! :)
(Picture courtesy of Kami!)

For more and thorough recaps of this event, check out the posts over at Kami's Library Thoughts and Jenni Elyse's blogs! Now I just need to read the second book.

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Are you fond of taking surveys? If so, help out the wife of one of my coworkers by letting her know your feelings on YA dsytopian novels! She's doing her big paper on this subject. Here's the link to the survey:  http://goo.gl/forms/KmjQ6oL5ec I knew you'd all have tons to say, so I thought I'd share and let you help out a student! :)

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So, guess what? BLOGGIESTA IS COMING! Again! Sheesh, that rolls around fast. The crazy thing about this event is that it's going to be ONE WEEK LONG!! You asked for it, you got it! But that also means that we need some totally awesome challenges. And we have only few so far, so I need more! I need you all! Let me know if you have a fabulous idea for a challenge. If you've been thinking about doing one, but have been too shy.. this is your chance. Now! Let me know! Anyway, mark your calendars: March 23 to 29. Plan to work on your blogs all week long. It'll be a blast.



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If I was participating in Top Ten Tuesday over at The Broke and the Bookish today I'd be posting some favorite books of the past three years. And if I were to make that list it would probably include:

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand
All the Laini Taylor books in the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series
All the Veronica Rossi books in the Under the Never Sky series
Pivot Point and Split Second by Kasie West
The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot
The Name of the Wind and The Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
Blackmoore by Julianne Donaldson
The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey
All the Truth That's In Me by Julie Berry

Yeah, it would probably at least include those.

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Letter month is over! I didn't do great, but I didn't do terrible either. I sent a letter to everyone on my list! I meet a few new people. I wanted to try a fan letter again, but couldn't figure that out. I think I ended up sending maybe 20 or so pieces of mail. I'll keep going even if it's not February you know. Just in case you wondered. :)

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Okay, well. I have no idea what else I meant to spew out today. I guess I'll leave it at that. Have a wonderful day.











Monday, March 2, 2015

Book Review Discussion: Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

Book: Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi
Genre: YA Dstyopian
Rating:★ ★ ★ ★ ☆
For: Fun
From: Bought it 

Short Synopsis: This is the third of a crazy exciting series, so beware spoilers for the first two. So Juliette wakes up from the shooting incident that ended book two. And Warner is taking care of her. Yeah. And then he tells her how the compound she's been staying at has all been destroyed, with everyone it. Juliette freaks out, but of course, it turns out to not be quite as bad as she thinks. Which means, of course, that she has to deal with the Warner/Adam issues. Yeah. Awkward!! And once she deals with that, she has to figure out how to take down the corrupt government once and for all.

My Response: Well. This is one of those series that I felt just got better and better as it went along. The first book was okay, but as Juliette grew. . . and as we got to know  Warner, the books got better. And I know some people are sick to death of the love triangle thing, but I must say, I was very much into this one! And I think I said this before for my review of the second book, Warner is one of the best and most fascinating characters ever. Not to mention hot and steamy. I sort of want to go back and read all three books again now that I know what I know.

Bottom Line: Great ending to a fun series. I hope, in fact, we might even get more someday.

Let's Talk About: Are you REALLY sick of love triangles? I mean, really? Or, are you okay with them if they are done well and involve interesting characters? I, for one, am okay.

Other Reviews:

Well done. Well done on her writing style, on her character development, on her plot twists, on her world building, and the pacing and for finishing a series of Novels that has the ability to take my breath away and scream and cry and get excited and shocked. From Page Girl's Page

Normally love triangles REALLY annoy me. And I guess in a way there was that kinda love triangle thing happening in the Shatter Me series, except it was done right. It was done the way it always should have been done. At some points in this book, the things I was reading in this book hit me so hard that I was actually feeling heartache. From Book Nerd Reviews

Warner. I don't even know what to say but I'll try to be coherent! Warner is one of my favourite YA characters of all time. No doubt. From City of Books

On a final note, Tahereh Mafi is very good at hot scenes, let me tell you. From YA Book Queens

Sunday, March 1, 2015

My Writing Week: Sharing Sentences



It's been a pretty fabulous writing week. I've managed to tie some new chapters into the previous chapters I already had. And here's hoping they mesh somewhat smoothly. I need to read them altogether all at once to see if I can agree to that.

And I revised the crazy crap that I threw up during Nano13 when these words first came out of my head. Not sure if it's much better. Not sure if it makes sense. Not sure if any of it's staying. But I revised.

Now, if only I could think up an ending!

Current word count for this project which still has no title: 75,160

Some sentences I wrote this week:

He held me tight to him and leaned down, whispering in my ear, “It’s time to change the course of history. You will not be with him, you will be with me.”

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“I know, funny how the genes shake down, isn’t it?” He smiled. “I’m the fair one. The fairest of them all.”

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“You’re kidding me, right? You kidnap me and you want a hug for it? Dream on.”

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“I know! Do you by chance have some other Indian chant-spell-thing up your sleeve that will work here?”

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I wanted to move. I wanted to scream. But nothing worked. Except my eyes. They opened wide with fear and helplessness.

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Well, that was interesting, trying to find a sentence or two worthy of sharing! And now let's see if I'm brave enough to actually hit the publish button here. Anyone want to share a sentence that they've written this week? 

Wish me luck on an ending idea! Like I told my writing buddies... I'm totally pondering a sunset. :)



Saturday, February 28, 2015

February 2015 Reading Wrap Up


We've had some beautiful days this past month.
I thought it was pretty bad reading month, but I squeezed a few more in there last minute and I guess it's not too bad after all. Though I've hardly any reviews to show for it! Reviews for the two Ignite books coming up this week. And the Love, Lucas book will be coming up closer to its release date. So be sure and stay tuned!

Anyway, here's what I read this month:

Half Bad by Sally Green: This is a modern day witch story set in the UK about Nathan, who is half black witch and half white witch.... the question is, which one does he favor? This will determine everything!

Love, Lucas by Chantele Sedgwick: Oakley is spending a few months away from home to help her deal with the recent death of her brother Lucas. But what helps her the most are the letters he left behind, just for her.

Shutter by Courtney Alameda: A group of ghost hunting kids (most of them descended from the likes of Van Helsing or Bram Stoker) are infected by a deadly entity and must find the ghost that did it before it's too late.

Landline by Rainbow Rowell: Georgie and Neil are having marriage issues and during this Christmas while they are separated, they reconnect by using magic landline phone that lets Georgie of the present talk to Neil from the past. 

Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi: The final book in the Shatter Me trilogy where Juliette is forced to solve the Adam/Warner problem and come to terms with her own power so she can take down the bad guys.

Ignite by Sara B. Larson: Alexa is now guard to the king, who she loves, even if she's told him she doesn't. When his brother is kidnapped, she runs to his rescue and in the process she is forced to fess up to her true feelings.

Favorites of the month: Landline, Ignite Me and Love, Lucas. Half Bad wasn't half bad either. Ha. Sorry, I had to.

Plans for March:

  • read Winter's Tale for book club, though I'm starting to get worried about it given the reactions of others who have already started and are complaining!!
  • read some of the random library books I picked up the other day... The One is one. Ha. 
  • if Life After Life doesn't make it on our new book club schedule, I'm going to read it this month, once and for all!
  • there's a couple of random review books on my Kindle that I might manage to sneak in too.
  • I really have no specific goals for this month. How very strange. It will be interesting to see what ends up on my monthly wrap up a month from now!

Friday, February 27, 2015

Getting to Know You: Games

I hate to admit I'm not much of a game person. My problem? I hate waiting for my turn! It gets boring! So I like games that are fast paced and where you are constantly involved, no sitting around waiting and pondering and thinking. And I often enjoy word games, though people get mad at me if I do too well, which then makes me mad because isn't that the point of playing a game?

So some games I like are:

"Board" Games
Taboo
Catch Phrase
Mad Gab
Outburst
Boggle





Card Games
Nertz (I'm gathering some people call this one Spit too?)
Crazy Eights
Speed
Spot It
and that game that I can't remember the name of where each round people have to switch seats according to how that round went and the seats are ranked and you don't want to be the loser in the bottom seat



Video Games
Um.... I don't do video games, unless you count Zumba! :) Once upon a time I liked Jill of the Jungle though! And Tetris! And the first Donkey Kong!



Running Around Games
Back in the old days as a kid, I loved to play Hide and Seek, Sardines, Red Rover, Steal the Sticks (or Flag,) No Bears Are Out Tonight, Red Light Green Light and Statues. These days, I refuse to play running around games. I'm too old.

I will play Settlers, Ticket to Ride and Dominion if talked into it though those games make me crazy. I never win and they get too long and boring after awhile.

Lately we've been enjoying Telestrations and Headbanz... both games are great for a big group and can have you laughing long loud and hard after awhile!

What games do you enjoy? Link up your favorites over at Jenni Elyse's blog! Do you have any suggestions for fast paced games for me to try?


Thursday, February 26, 2015

The Walking Dead Discussion: S5E11 The Distance (Spoilers!)


So, I've been feeling like the last few episodes have been a little sleepy, a little not-so-nail-biting. But this one had me on the edge my seat again.  Probably because everyone had to forget about all the sad stuff and get back on the defensive again.

We left off last time with a new guy, Aaron, suddenly appearing. He's full of stories about their wonderful place in Alexandria, and that they've been watching the group and have decided they want them to join up.

Of course, Rick is like, Yeah, right. He's so scary these days. So scary. So they question the crap out of this Aaron guy and after much talking they decide to take some of the group to go and see if it's for real.

On the way there, Michonne is asking him "the questions" (how many walkers have you killed, how many people have you killed, etc.) and he answers them "correctly." But something happened and everyone freaked out sayiing "they've been listening to us!" I didn't get that part. Anyone want to explain?

And then, suddenly a flare explodes from out of nowhere and just after that they start slamming into a zombie horde. Things got scary so fast! I didn't quite follow all that was happening, but I think that was on purpose. We as viewers got a feel for what they as characters were feeling... total chaos. And they got all separated killing walker after walker. In the end, they found each other again and untied the Aaron guy and pretty much decided to trust him. But I'm still not sure what was going on with that flare.

After regrouping, they went back to the barn where the other group had found Aaron's partner/friend who turned out to be his very much more than that person. Aaron freaks when he thinks this guy has been hurt... and I forgot what his name is already. Anyway, they have sweet reunion which was . . . interesting. And after much talking to, Rick decides to let them be together.


Next day they all go to the new place, driving in a huge RV. Rick had said to Michonne. "What did you hear when we found the Governor? Silence. What did you hear when we found Terminus? Silence."

When they pulled to the wall of this new place, right away we could hear the sounds of kids playing. Everyone looked at each other and... the episode ended.

But, do you think they've found a true sanctuary finally, once and for all? Somehow, I think not.


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Horror vs. Paranormal

Vs.


Discussing genre is always fun, right? Or is does it just make us crazy? Trying to pin down a story into a certain category?

As you may or may not know, I've been pondering the differences and the sameness-es of the horror and paranormal genre categories these past couple of weeks. After some other random discussions and looking it up here's what I'm understanding:

Paranormal is a story that includes something that can't be explained in our real life world. Something, you know. . .not normal. This could also be described as supernatural actually. I'm not sure there's a true difference between these two words either.

I was just reading something where people think that if you say paranormal that automatically makes people think romance. Really? Okay. If you say supernatural, you take the romance connotation out of it. Hmm. Something to think about there I guess.


Horror basically means a book that is trying to scare the readers, whether that's through intense suspense (oh, I like those two words together!) or the creep factor, or blood and guts and gore. But bottom line, it HAS to be scary.

So that being said, a paranormal book could be horror and a horror book could be paranormal, right? But you could have horror with normal everyday events, and paranormal without being scary.

But like the word paranormal, I think most people assume that something considered horror will have certain elements. Blood and guts and gore perhaps. Really creepy monsters maybe. Crazy insane people. Clowns. Doll faces.


Do you think that paranormal is a subset of horror? Or that horror is a subset of paranormal? Do you think paranormal ALWAYS has romance? What about supernatural? So would saying a book is a paranormal romance be redundant? And would saying a book is paranormal horror be a thing? Or is that redundant too?


And speaking of paranormal, are you all so turned off by that genre lately that you turn your nose up if something is described as such? And the big question of the day: Is horror "more cool?" Seriously. Genres have a reputation and if one's story gets labeled a certain way, it's a big deal!

I want to know what you think!

(Stay tuned for another genre discussion next week: historical vs. contemporary and at what time period does one become the other?)





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