Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books I Was “Forced” to Read

Top 10 Tuesday is an original feature/regular meme hosted at The Broke and The Bookish!





Top Ten Books I Was Forced to Read

Well, I was lucky in a sense because I was homeschooled for a large part of my education. It expanded my freedom of reading material, but sometimes I "had" to read something anyways, just because it's one of those stepping stones you need to do to learn. 

1. Candide by Voltaire: This is the most recent book that I was forced to read. I had a History class last semester and this was required reading for a paper. I found it to be not only interesting and thoughtful, but very funny! I regret not having read it sooner. 

2. The Vampire Academy Series by Richelle Mead: Yes, I was basically forced to read this. I checked the first book out numerous times and kept thinking I grabbed the wrong book and would put it down. I was assured that it was the right book and that I would catch on. I did and I'm very glad I took the time to get past the first few chapters. 

3. The Shade Series by Jeri Smith-Ready: Yet another series I was encouraged strongly to read. Hands down the best decision ever, because it became an instant favourite. 

4. Black Beauty by Anna Sewell: This is one my Mother bought me when I was young and made me read. I didn't live with her at the time and I was about 7 and had just spent the summer with her, but was getting ready to road trip back to Iowa from Colorado. I hated leaving my Mom. So, naturally I cried the entire drive back, but it was double the tears because this was a very sad story! 

5. Little Women by Louisa May Alcott: Required to read it in school and I am very happy it was required reading material, because I absolutely fell in love with all of the characters! 


6. Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë: Forced reading and I absolutely despised it. I have heard that the outlook on the story can change with age, so maybe in the next few years I'll re-visit it and see if my perception changes... For now, the "wtf these characters are all horrible and nasty" is still clear enough in my mind. 

7. Gone With the Wind by Margaret Mitchell: The first time I read this was in 2005 when I was pregnant with my daughter. I had went to Russia for the summer and ended up staying for the rest of the year and my mother in-law bought it for me and told me I had to read it. I wasn't actually very keen on reading it at the time, even though it's basically a classic and I like to read a classic at least once. I eventually read it out of pure boredom because it was the only English book I had lying around and I ended up liking it alright. 

8. The Onion Girl by Charles de Lint: My best friend begged me to read this book for a while and I finally did. It was quite a few years ago, but I really remember loving it. I remember the general story, but a lot of the details are rusty. I'd like to pick it up again sometime and read it. 

9. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden: This was definitely a "it's so popular, everyone is reading it, I need to read it before the movie comes out" type of deal. I absolutely freaking loved it. In fact, I ran across a copy of it yesterday at my local library's used book section and snagged a hardcover of it for $1 and I read the ending this evening. Sayuri + Chairman = heart melting. 

10.  The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas: A required read which became a favourite story of mine. I know I am at 10, but Jane Eyre needs an honourable mention, because it was another required school read and I ended up loving it as well. 

Monday, September 9, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books I Would Love To See As a Movie/TV Show

Top 10 Tuesday is an original feature/regular meme hosted at The Broke and The Bookish!




 Top Ten Books I Would Love to See As a Movie/Tv Show


Well, I have been lucky, both Vampire Academy and Divergent are coming out next year! I've heard Hush, Hush might be seriously becoming a film as well, and there are a handful of others soon: The Book Thief and The Fault in Our Stars are two that I'm eager to see as well. As you will be able to tell by this post I am quite the fan of television. And I am. When I'm not re-watching episodes of Buffy, Roswell or any of the other shows from my teen years I'm watching Pretty Little Liars (Me+Wren=Love), Once Upon a Time (Me+Hook+PrincePhillip=I'minheavenomg), Revenge, Parenthood, Scandal and pretty much any show that looks good.





1. The Summer Series by Jenny Han: This would be the perfect teen summer flick. This needs to happen. It could even make a good television series! It'd be better than Dawson's Creek! 

2. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins: I love this book. This would be like Passport to Paris, but way better. (I just watched Passport to Paris not too long ago with my daughter and it was a ride down memory lane!)

3. The Shade Series by Jeri Smith-Ready: My favourite series pretty much ever and needs no further comment.

4. My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick: I really love this book and I definitely feel it could translate to the big screen well. 

5. School Spirits by Rachel Hawkins: A stand-alone that was meant to be a series (but isn't happening *insert my saaaalty crocodile tears* at least not anytime soon) could be the start of a good show for ABC Family. Hint, ABC Family. Make it happen.




6. The Mythos Academy Series by Jennifer Estep: This would make a really good paranormal television show! I really love this series!

7. The Covenant Series by Jennifer L Armentrout: This could make a great television series as well. I just really need a mythological show to watch. Her Lux series could also be a hot show. I would watch it with loving obsession.

8. The Wolves of Mercy Falls Series by Maggie Stiefvater: Anything by Maggie Steifvater in a film version would be amazing!

9. The Statistical Probability of Love At First Sight by Jennifer E Smith: I really loved this book and I think this could definitely make a beautiful transition to the big screen! 

10. The Mediator Series by Meg Cabot: I seriously love this series. So hard! I really wished I owned the whole set of them. Actually, I do, but they're at my mother in-laws in another country. Very sad! I think this series could make a really good television show as well! 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Cover Reveal: ALLURE by Lea Nolan

Today, we're celebrating the cover reveal of Allure, the sequel to Lea Nolan's Conjure, coming October 1st from Entangled Teen!



Worst. Summer. Ever.

Emma Guthrie races to learn the hoodoo magic needed to break The Beaumont Curse before her marked boyfriend Cooper's sixteenth birthday. But deep in the South Carolina Lowcountry, dark, mysterious forces encroach, conspiring to separate Emma and Cooper forever. When Cooper starts to change, turning cold and indifferent, Emma discovers that both his heart and body are marked for possession by competing but equally powerful adversaries.

Desperate to save him, Emma and her twin brother, Jack, risk their lives to uncover the source of the black magic that has allured Cooper and holds him in its grip. Face with the horror of a soul-eating boohag, Emma and Jack must fight to resist its fiendish power to free Cooper long enough to join their strengths and face it together, before it destroys them all.


Praise for Conjure

"Richly filled with exquisite imagery, a compelling story, and a strong, smart heroine, Conjure will keep you up way past your bedtime." ~ Trinity Faegen, author of The Mephisto Covenant series

"A true adventure, complete with pirates, romance, a flesh-eating curse, and ancient magic. I couldn't put it down!" ~ Inara Scott, author of The Talents (Delcroix Academy) series

"Ifthere is one book teens and adults should have on their must read list, Conjure is it! Fans of young love and adventure will hurry to the end of each chapter, in anticipation of what will happen next. Unfolding at an easy pace, this tale is magical and spellbinding. Nolan is one to watch!" ~ RT Book Reviews, 4 ½ Stars Top Pick

"Conjure is a sweet, adventure-packed romp for young teen readers... There are pirates, lost treasure, curses, and ancient curses, chases, narrow escapes, and secret letters galore." ~ New York Journal of Books

"This is an unexpected read: exciting, dangerous, adventurous - everything we want from a good book. Yet Nolan puts that creative twist on all the elements, making Conjure something special. Conjure is recommended, 4 out of 5 stars." ~ Teen Librarian's Toolbox

About the Author

Lea Nolan couldn’t read until the third grade. After a lot of hard work she finally got the hang of it and quickly learned the best way to get out of doing chores was to tell her parents she was reading. Soon she was hooked, devouring books by Roald Dahl, E.B. White, Judy Blume, C.S. Lewis, and anything with a shiny Newberry Award sticker on the cover. Books provided a portal to enchanted lands where anything was possible and characters relied on their wits to wiggle out of sticky situations. Today, even though she’s all grown up, Lea writes the kinds of stories she sought as a teen--smart paranormals with bright heroines, crazy-hot heroes, diabolical plot twists, plus a dose of magic, a draft of romance, and a sprinkle of history. She holds degrees in history and women’s studies concentrating in public policy and spent fifteen years as a health policy analyst and researcher. She lives in Maryland with her heroically supportive husband and three clever children, who’ve figured out how to get out of doing their chores.


Giveaway

Enter the giveaway below to win one of the first five electronic ARCs of Allure from Entangled Teen!


Rafflecopter Direct Link: http://www.rafflecopter.com/rafl/display/1cb554136/

Waiting on Wednesday: This Side of Salvation by Jeri Smith-Ready

Waiting on Wednesdays is hosted by Breaking the Spine! It puts a spotlight on upcoming releases we're anticipating! 

THIS SIDE OF SALVATION BY JERI SMITH-READY
Release Date: April 1st 2014

Everyone mourns differently. When his older brother was killed, David got angry. As in, fist-meets-someone-else’s-face furious. But his parents? They got religious. David’s still figuring out his relationship with a higher power, but there’s one thing he does know for sure: The closer he gets to new-girl Bailey, the better, brighter, happier, more he feels.

Then his parents start cutting all their worldly ties in to prepare for the Rush, the divine moment when the faithful will be whisked off to Heaven…and they want David to do the same. David’s torn. There’s a big difference between living in the moment and giving up his best friend, varsity baseball, and Bailey—especially Bailey—in hope of salvation.

But when he comes home late from prom, and late for the Rush, to find that his parents have vanished, David is in more trouble than he ever could have imagined... - Good Reads


I need this now because this is what comes out of Jeri Smith-Ready's fingers / mind: 



Sunday, September 1, 2013

Movie Thoughts: The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

I'll admit, I haven't read the book series. Please don't hate me! I have picked up City of Bones on numerous occasions, but never could get past the first two chapters. I always put it right back down to start something else. I think partially because I find it difficult to get into third person narrative. I’m so used to first person, that third person often ends up feeling too formal and impersonal. I am happy to report though, that as soon as I got out of the cinema after seeing it the first time, I came straight out and walked down the street to Barnes & Nobles to buy the book...then I saw the price, walked back out, and went home to buy it on Amazon! 

Overall, this movie was spectacular! I really, really, really don't get why critics are giving it such a hard time. I hate to contrast and compare, but honestly, this totally isn't even comparable to the film that it seems everyone wants to compare it to. I won't say the name, but I think we all know what I'm talking about. My husband, who went with me today to see it (my second time, his first), agreed. One of the first questions he asked when we got outside was, "Why do they compare it to _____????" I'm in agreement here. No clue over here whatsoever. And my husband really liked it. Yeah, I pretty much have good taste in men. He found the storyline much like Diablo, which is one of his favourite games.

The visual effects were amazing. A few scenes in particular gave me a start because it was so realistic! The action scenes were also very brilliantly done. In most action films, fight scenes often feel very fake, but City of Bones seemed to handle fighting scenes very well. There was a moment when Clary was thrown across the room into something and it looked to me as if she really was and it wasn't just an act and I was on the verge of feeling sympathy pains! 

There were only a few things I could nitpick: Clary sets the kitchen on fire. Um, that was just a little too unrealistic in that sort of situation, in my opinion, but I'll overlook it. The garden scene on my first viewing seemed cheesy, but the second time around, it didn't seem as bad and the kiss scene was lovely! 

If you're on the fence about seeing this, give it a try! I really enjoyed it. Perhaps I can look at it a little differently because of the order I've experienced it, but I still really think this is the best film I've seen in a while that has a fantasy/paranormal/youknowwhatImean setting.

If you've seen City of Bones, what did you think? I'd love to hear about it! 


P.S. How did I not know Lily Collins is Phil Collins daughter?! Whoa! I was answering a question for my husband, googled her and read that. I was having a conversation just a little while ago with my Mother about Phil Collins and Genesis, so that was coincidental! 

Thursday, August 29, 2013

Review: The Fault In Our Stars by John Green

The Fault In Our Stars by John Green

Published: January 10th 2012
Publisher: Dutton Books
Page Count: Hardcover, 316
Source: Bought
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary
Find the Author: TwitterWebsite
Buy This Book: AmazonBook Depository
Add It To Your Good Reads Shelf

Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten. - Good Reads



I read this while I was on a blog break last year and wanted to post a review on it, mostly to share the love. This book was absolutely heart breaking. Thinking about it still gets me teary. Mostly because I actually lost a friend to cancer a few months before I read it and she actually was the only real life friend that I had that really loved to read, and she read a lot of YA. It hurts my heart that she'll never get a chance to read it, or any other book for that matter. And the character of Hazel reminded me a lot of my friend as well. Sarcastic and intelligent. The love story in this book is very beautiful and it's just...

Honestly, I don't want to ruin this book for anyone, but the ending surprised me, and I absolutely and completely recommend The Fault In Our Stars. Read it at least once. It's worth it!

And they just started filming for a film adaption! So we can all look forward to shedding tears with complete strangers in a crowded cinema! 

“Oh, I wouldn't mind, Hazel Grace. It would be a privilege to have my heart broken by you.” 

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday: The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith

Waiting on Wednesdays is hosted by Breaking the Spine! It puts a spotlight on upcoming releases we're anticipating! 

THE GEOGRAPHY OF YOU AND ME BY JENNIFER E. SMITH
Release Date: April 15th 2014
Lucy and Owen meet somewhere between the tenth and eleventh floors of a New York City apartment building, on an elevator rendered useless by a citywide blackout. After they're rescued, they spend a single night together, wandering the darkened streets and marveling at the rare appearance of stars above Manhattan. But once the power is restored, so is reality. Lucy soon moves to Edinburgh with her parents, while Owen heads out west with his father.
Lucy and Owen's relationship plays out across the globe as they stay in touch through postcards, occasional e-mails, and -- finally -- a reunion in the city where they first met.
A carefully charted map of a long-distance relationship, Jennifer E. Smith's new novel shows that the center of the world isn't necessarily a place. It can be a person, too. - Good Reads


I absolutely loved This Is What Happy Looks Like and The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight. I need to read this NOW! I don't want to wait until April 15th!