Monday, November 26, 2012

Novel Thoughts #1 and Gratitude Giveaway Winner!

****Note on Gratitude Giveaway: The Winner of Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo as determined by Rafflecopter was....
Kelly M!
Winner has been emailed and if she doesn't respond in 48 hours, a new winner will be chosen. Thanks to all who entered!!****
I was really excited to be invited by  Chey, Inky, and Megan to participate in the second outing of their new Novel Thoughts meme! They're featuring my question this week. I'm flattered *blushes, shuffles feet*
You can see their answers to the Question of the Week below....Just click the links:


What is Novel Thoughts? Every two weeks, a bookish question is asked and answered. The goal is lots and lots of discussion, so please COMMENT AWAY! :) I really do want to hear your answers:

QUESTION:  If you could live in the world of any book, which would it be? And which fictional world would scare you the most if you woke up there tomorrow?

First, I want to live in a post-Deathly Hallows world. I wouldn't want to drop right into the struggle between Voldemort and Harry where Death Eaters are running around and all that scariness. But after all that was settled? I would love to be a witch. (Obviously, I don't want to be in the Harry Potter world if I'm just a muggle...) The first magic thing I'd really work on learning would be housekeeping spells. You know when Mrs. Weasley is using spells to get things ready around The Burrow before Fleur and Bill's wedding?? I guess it shows my age and that I'm an overwhelmed at-home mom and terrible housekeeper, but I remember thinking: That is the most wonderful thing I've ever read! lol!

As for what fictional world would scare my socks off?? A lot of them, actually, since I'm a big 'fraidy cat. But I'm going to go with the post-Apocalyptic bad-angel filled world of Angelfall by Susan Ee. Not only are there angels terrorizing humanity, but--as it is prone to do--humanity is terrorizing itself as well! If you're not in danger of getting kidnapped by angels for nefarious purposes (I'm trying not to get spoilerific with this!) then you're in danger of roaming gangs of people wanting to do you harm in various forms.  And what happened to  the kids???? People who have read this book, I KNOW you know what I'm talking about. Those who haven't, if you have a strong stomach and a pretty high horror tolerance, read it. The book is marvelously paced, the characters are complicated and engaging, and I don't know when I've read a book that played out more vividly in my head, like I was watching a movie. (Sometimes, I wanted to close my eyes I was so freaked out, but sadly, one can't read with closed eyes...and I was desperate to finish and see what happened!)

Alright, comment time! What fictional worlds would you love to live in? And which ones would scare you to death??


Sunday, November 18, 2012

Review: REACHED by Ally Condie

Y'all, REACHED....


So stinking pretty. Just... I'm gonna give coherency a shot. I'm making no promises.

 Here we go!

 Ally Condie wraps up the MATCHED Trilogy using three POVs: Cassia, Ky (we've heard from both of them before) and Xander.  The Society is struggling, the Rising is on the move, things are not going quite as planned for anyone, and, oh: there is a plague. Big giant plague, which I think we can all agree is never a good thing.
Cassia, Ky, and Xander all have important parts to play in helping pull this new and unstable civilization back from the brink of collapse.  How each of them view the Society, the Rising, the Pilot, the plague, and their misgivings about the future is interesting to see, since they are three very different people. All the questions we had are answered, and there are a few nifty plot twists.

I realize this isn't much of a plot summary, but I'm terrible at those kind of reviews. I just want to talk about ALL THE FEELINGS. (As evidenced by the gifs...this is how I operate in life also. Even I find it hard to be around myself sometimes!)

Although the storyline is often grim, it's also beautiful. Condie's writing reminds me of Robert Frost's poetry. It's spare, almost simple, yet somehow so evocative. Images stick with you. There's nothing flowery or showy about the way she writes, but it just tears me up.
If you let hope inside, it takes you over. It feeds on your insides and uses your bones to climb and grow. Eventually it becomes the thing that is your bones, that holds you together. Holds you up until you don't know how to live without it anymore. To pull it out of you would kill you entirely.

 I just dig her writing style.

Something else I liked: the resolution to the Cassia/Ky/Xander thing.
 Hear me out, love triangle haters! Because I, too, usually want to start slapping people when I read a love triangle. But this one was wonderfully written. There was a point in her life when Cassia could have made a completely different choice than what she did. Xander and Ky both have wonderful qualities that would make either of them good partners for Cassia.
 But here's the kicker: Once she decided, SHE WAS DONE. No "oh, maybe I wanna make out with you over here, you're so hawt, no wait, what about you again...." nonsense like in some books.
 No. Condie does not play those games. I think the message here is: Life offers you alternate paths, different ways to proceed into your future, and any choice you make automatically shuts the door for other choices. Pick a path and keep moving forward. I found it refreshing to see such a mature attitude toward life from fictional teenagers.

And on the subject of moving forward: Xander. Oh, I loved the path his character takes in this book. I love seeing real, hard-earned growth. Another true-to-life fact woven into the plot of this book: you can't undo the pains and losses life hands you, but you can learn from them and grow. Any world is imperfect, but there is beauty and love to be found anywhere if you are brave enough to look for it and create it. I'm so happy to have met Cassia, Ky, and Xander and shared their journey.

Anyone else read this?? What did you think?



Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Gratitude Giveaway: SHADOW AND BONE by Leigh Bardugo

*I'm posting this now because there's a good chance I'll forget tomorrow and autopost and I aren't getting along right now...**

This nifty blog hop sponsored by Kathy at I Am A Reader, Not A Writer.

I really am so grateful for each and every follower! It's a big boost for a new blogger to see the Follower count going up. :) Plus tt helps me feel like I'm not talking to myself on this blog, because really, I talk to myself enough in real life anyway without doing it online as well! :)

So to say THANK YOU! to all my awesome followers, I'm giving away a copy of

SHADOW AND BONE by Leigh Bardugo!

**If you'd like to know more about the book, I just noticed Amazon has the first five chapters for Kindle free right you could get a pretty good preview that way!**


Contest runs through November 25, 2012. US ONLY! This is a hardcover book and shipping outside the US would be too expensive. :(


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

CINDER Winner and something else...

Thank you to EVERYONE who entered the 100 Follower/New Blog Design Giveaway. Y'all are fabulous, you know that, right??

AND the winner as selected by Rafflecopter's random selection feature is....


Winner has been emailed. If winner doesn't reply in 48 hours a new winner will be selected.

For those who didn't win, take heart! I'm hosting a stop on I Am A Reader, Not A Writer's
 Gratitude Giveaway Hop that runs November 15-25.
 Whoot!!! A post detailing my giveaway will be up sometime Wednesday.

And my other really big news of the night: I am in posession of  REACHED by Ally Condie. I anticipate much poetic dystopian goodness in my near future, people.
 Anyone else get it today?? Anyone else fired up about it?? :)


Friday, November 9, 2012

Feature and Follow Friday

Q: Do you mind books with similar ideas to other books? Similar concepts, backgrounds, retellings or pulled-to-publish fanfic?

A: I don't mind similar ideas. I read PRINCESS OF THE MIDNIGHT BALL and ENTWINED very close together, and they're both retellings of the 12 Dancing Princesses fairytales. That said, if I read books based on similar ideas, one will always be "better" than the other in my mind. I think comparison is just inevitiable when reading books with obvious similarities.
Retellings: Yes! I'm a fan. If they're super-creative, all the better. I think that's why I loved CINDER by Marissa Meyer so dang much.
 (BTW, I'm giving it away. Enter if you haven't already!! Button that links to the Giveaway page is at the top under my header!)
Fanfic: No. I once read where JK Rowling said something like reading fanfic of her work reminded her of coming home and finding all her furniture rearranged. (Can't remember the exact quote, but it was something like that!) I guess I feel the same way as a reader. Just leave things like they are so I don't trip over a chair when I'm trying to find my way around! :)


Friday, November 2, 2012

Feature and Follower Friday: Dealbreakers

Feature and Follower Friday is a weekly meme hosted by Alison Can Read and Parajunkee where book bloggers gain new followers and answer a bookish question. This week's topic for discussion:

Q: What is a deal breaker for you in a book? For example, do you abhor love triangles? Or can't deal with bad editing?

A: I don't like books with profanity and strong sexual content. It's part of my religion, and just who I am. I realize other readers don't have this issue, but I no longer feel the need to apologize for it like I used to. So now when people say things like, "Oh, my goodness, you have GOT to read 50 Shades" I just tell them no thanks, that's not my kind of book. :) And I always appreciate when a review also has a bit about the content, so I can know if it's going to be something I want to read or not.


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