December 31, 2013

Unaccountably lazy

As the title suggests, I've basically become a blob of goo over the course of the holidays which means I've neglected to update as I should. :-( However, I did finish Treasure Island and it was BRILLIANT. Realizing that a lot of "pirate lore" which I had taken for granted was created in this book was a bit of a shock. Also, discovering that a prequel has since been created has intrigued me mightily and it's already been added to the list of books to read in 2014. (That list is crazy long by the way so I hope you're ready for awesome.) First, I should say that if classic literature isn't your thing then you may not find Treasure Island the treat that I did. Second, if you're a fan of adventure novels (and/or pirates) then you might get swept away by the story itself and forget about the writing style of the time. If you like Pirates of the Caribbean you're going to like this book. Long John Silver will look especially familiar. ;-)

For my next selection I've chosen In the Shadow of Man by Jane Goodall. When I watched a video about her time with the chimps for my Primatology class in college I was hooked. She is such an inspiration for humanitarians, conservationists, scientists, primatologists, women...the list goes on and on! This book is a detailed summation of her time with the chimps in South Africa's country of Tanzania. It details the trials she faced as a young Englishwoman in a field dominated by men who had absolutely no experience in the field...and yet she made profound discoveries about chimpanzee behavior which irrevocably changed the face of primatology. She is a pioneer and a legend. I look forward to bringing you my review of this extraordinary work in 2014.

I hope you all had a wonderful year and I look forward to reading with you for many more years to come!!

December 15, 2013

Arrrr Adventures Ahoy!

Once I finished The Hobbit (which was even better the second time around) I realized that I had no idea what I wanted to read next. It's difficult after reading something so magnificent and engrossing to decide which world you want to inhabit next...especially if you've experienced an adventure through Middle Earth. However, I think I've come up with just such a book: Treasure Island. If you're looking for a classic adventure then you can't go wrong with this book. Robert Louis Stevenson, who if you recall wrote Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde knows how to deliver a story that will keep you riveted from the first page. In fact, this book is the definitive pirate's tale and has been used as the basis for all of the pirate's stories that have come afterward. Where do you think Capt. Sparrow got the song "Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum"? :-D

Yes, this was a really short entry. I've been under the weather and frankly I can't come up with anything more witty than the title above (which isn't my best work admittedly). I hope you all have an absolutely wonderful holiday (just in case I don't update for New Year's) and that you READ READ READ!!

December 3, 2013

Yay for holidays!!

So my last entry was written in the airport on one of those iPads that are for public use (or I just jacked that one off of someone who was in the toilet). Either way it was a pretty short one and I think this one will make up for it in length. :-)

I gobbled up My Booky Wook in a week (I actually finished it on Saturday but it wasn't until this morning that I decided what I was reading next) because it was deliciously fun. It's one of those reads that make you feel like you're doing something wicked...or maybe that's just Russell Brand himself. While I was reading it, I had to keep reminding myself that it was a memoir and these crazy accounts were true (or as near to it as he can piece together afterward). He talks frankly about his addictions and the highs (pun intended) and the lows of his life. At times raunchy and at times poignant (often I'd say), Brand delivers his promise of a memoir that will keep you turning the pages. I don't recommend it to people who are either over-sensitive to language, religion, or life practices (I'm talking kinky stuff people). However, I thought it was brill (footnotes give you language tutorials!). I've already added his sequel, aptly named My Booky Wook 2, to my wish list.

As I mentioned above, I couldn't decide what I wanted to read next. This is not because I've run out of options. It's quite the opposite. In fact, I knew what I really wanted to read but I felt it was cheating...and then I didn't care. I'm re-reading an old favorite of mine that I haven't read in eons: The Hobbit. Yep it's (in my opinion) J.R.R. Tolkien's finest work and I am pretty thrilled to be re-visiting these fantastic characters. If you've only seen the films I highly recommend that you read this book. It will only make you want to continue your journeys through Wilderland, Middle-earth, and beyond. Also, Bilbo Baggins is just one of the best characters ever. EVER. I mean it's not called a fantasy epic for nothing. ;-)

November 23, 2013

I'm typing this on an iPad in the airport...

...and it's not even my iPad.

As you might have guessed this is a post from the road...sort of. I quickly finished up Beautiful Creatures before I left home and I am seriously jonesing for the next book in the series, Beautiful Darkness. So I guess that tells you what I ultimately thought of the book. Full of angst that only a teen romance seems to deliver and bursting with elements of the supernatural, Beautiful Creatures was an absolute delight. For a book with over 500 pages, I certainly didn't feel the burden of reading to the end. The characters were relatable (despite supernatural powers), the setting a perfect backdrop for drama, and the love story enchanting. GO AND READ.

In lieu of having the next book in the series I thought I'd change gears and read a memoir. This is one that I've been wanting to read for quite some time. It's Russel Brand's My Booky Wook: A Memoir of Sex, Drugs, and Stand-Up. Yes, it's that Russell Brand. The opinionated, slightly off-kilter glam rocker who occasionally plays parts remarkable dissimilar from himself (or entirely too similar if you've seen the movie Arthur). If you've ever seen his interviews you know the man is not entirely what he at first seems. He has a sharp mind and an even sharper tongue. I know that I'm in for quite an adventure with this one.

Now it's time for the wait for the plane. 1 hour and counting...


November 11, 2013

Changing gears

Winnie-the-Pooh was exactly what I needed. I basically read it in one sitting and smiled the entire time. There are scenes from one's childhood that seem fixed in place. They are immoveable and grounded in such a way that it's as if they were always there. Many times you try to revisit them in your adulthood and discover that they were little more than cardboard sets and a man pulling strings. Christopher Robin and his friends in the Hundred Acre Wood are a completely different ball of wax. In fact, I learned more about these beloved characters through this book. For instance, did you know that Winnie-the-Pooh had a different name? (I'd tell you what it was but that would be a spoiler. (-: ) Or that Tigger didn't show up until the second book in the series? I recommend that everyone read this book with their children (or nieces, cousins, etc.) because it's beautiful. The storylines are sweet, the illustrations are enchanting, and the way it makes you feel is indescribable.

Of course, as is my way I decided to completely change gears with my next book. I picked this one up at the start of the year after I saw the film adaptation and fell in love with the concept. It's a massive tome though so I'm not exactly looking forward to carting it around on my commute but such is life. It's Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl. I was dubious about this book but within 10 minutes of the film I knew that I would have to read the book to get to all of the meaty stuff that couldn't possibly be covered in a 2 hour film. I don't even know where to start with outlining what the book is supposed to be about. If I had to choose keywords: magic, first love, family discord, and self-discovery. Keep in mind that it's young adult fiction so you just know there's gonna be angst for days. Here we go!

November 9, 2013


I'm not entirely sure what I was expecting from The Alice Behind Wonderland but I came out of this book feeling less than impressed. The main focus was on Dodgson's photography and in particular the photos that he took of Alice Liddell (with main focus on this image). I suppose I thought that this would further my knowledge of the man behind the famous stories of Wonderland and the girl called Alice. However, its narrowed focus on only one aspect of the man (and his relationship with the Liddells) left me feeling disappointed. The book covers Dodgson's fascination with photography and the history of photography itself. Briefly, Winchester touched on the controversy surrounding his "child friends" of which he took many photographs (some of them in the nude). I do appreciate that he made it clear that during this time period (the late 19th century) this was not seen as anything more than an attempt at capturing innocence and purity onto film. Nowadays, the first thought through anyone's mind is PEDOPHILE which we can neither confirm or deny because any evidence was erased long ago (Dodgson removed several pages from his diary or at least someone removed them for him). If you want a tiny glimpse into the man behind one of the world's most famous fairytales then you should take a look at this book. However, I recommend that you delve further and pick up some supplemental reading such as Morton Cohen's Lewis Carroll: A Biography.

I guess I was in the mood for children's fairytales after reading the above so I picked up Winnie-the-Pooh by A.A. Milne. The copy I have came from a used bookstore and it is GORGEOUS. The illustrations and text placement (falling from the top of the page, circling around the illustrations, etc) make this a delightful read for readers of any age. Most of us know all about Pooh and his friends in the Hundred Acre Wood because of the cartoons and movies but have you actually read the first volume of stories that the cartoons were drawn from originally?  I haven't and I am pretty excited to rectify this oversight on my part. Already I'm enjoying the light fluffiness of the stories (each chapter is treated as a standalone). Take me along on your journeys, Pooh Bear!

November 3, 2013

Fantasy masked as fiction

I'm not even sure where to begin with my review of The Land of Laughs. From the very beginning, I was unsure of where the story was headed and not in a "wow this is going to be a really interesting journey"kind of way. The introduction of the main characters threw me off as they weren't necessarily relatable or even likable. If you're like me it's very difficult to really get into a story if you feel completely separate from the characters who are your eyes and ears in the narrative. However, it started picking up speed around 100 pages in when I figured out where the story was headed. The author has a flair for description and he knows how to get you on the edge of your seat. Of course, figuring out the author's plan meant that I knew what the ending would be less than halfway through. :-/ Conclusion: It wasn't the worst thing I've ever read but it was also far from the best.

Simon Winchester is known for his narrative nonfiction. I was first made aware of him when I studied Library Services in London when two of his books were on the required reading list. I was immediately a fan. This time I'm reading The Alice Behind Wonderland. Beginning with the famous photograph of Alice Liddell which Charles Dodgson aka Lewis Carroll took (and which many have speculated about) and continuing with Dodgson's personal journals, Winchester gives a more complete story of the girl behind the famous story. Having done extensive research on the topic myself I'm interested to see his take.

October 30, 2013


I just broke 5,000 views!!!

Thank you all so much for visiting my blog and for taking an interest in reading. It means so much to me that something I am so passionate about (creating lifelong learners and readers) is actually getting a response. My hope is that I get more interaction with all of you. I want to have a dialogue between us so that I can continue to deliver reviews which are relevant and which inspire you to go out and pick up a book (or several!).

So if this is your first time visiting or your hundredth, I appreciate you! Thanks so much for sticking with me and I look forward to the months and years ahead!!

October 25, 2013

Footnotes: A love story.

You realize that you're a nerd when you get excited for a book with footnotes. The probably with this particular book was that the footnotes were actually endnotes which meant a lot of page flipping which I found tedious and annoying. I have to say though that this minor inconvenience was the only issue that I had with Blood Work. As you know already, I'm a huge fan of scientific nonfiction and this definitely fit the bill (with a side of history and murder to make it even better!). Learning about the history of something (blood transfusion) which I've never given much thought about was more engrossing than I had originally anticipated. Tucker made great use of resources to paint a vivid picture of Parisian life (specifically among scientists and academics) in the 17th century. The conditions of the time which included religious bias and political favor (or disfavor) effected any advances that were being attempted by the scientific community. In fact, because of the events which unfolded in this story there was no experimentation whatsoever regarding blood transfusion for over 150 years. It was essentially a dead end that no one dared to attempt (or even cared to attempt). For anyone who's interested in either history or science this book will be ideal for you (and it's a quick read!).

I'm trying to get to my backlog of books which range from earlier this year to many years ago that I haven't gotten around to quite yet. Next up on the "to read" list is The Land of Laughs by Jonathan Carroll. According to a well-known author, "The Land of Laughs is a book for anyone who has ever believed that a favorite book could be a safe place to go when things get hard." When a book has a blurb from Neil Gaiman you know it's going to be a good one. From the title, you'd think that this was a book full of comedy. However, it's actually the story of two people who go on a quest to write a biography of their favorite children's author which leads them on a frightening journey of discovery AND self-discovery. Just because you wish you could immerse yourself in your favorite storybook world from your childhood doesn't mean you'd really jump at the chance to do that if you could. Imagine the frights which would greet you there!

October 15, 2013

I almost wish this WAS only science fiction

Artificial Intelligence, or AI, is not something only relegated to science fiction. It is a reality. Most people immediately think of their smartphones but what about the machinery that powers cities? Would you consider that to be a facet of AI? It could be argued that because many pieces of an electrical grid are run without human interference (or understanding as to why certain parts work the way that they do) that it is a type of AI. However, the book Our Final Invention is about what happens when AI turns from AGI (Artificial General Intelligence) to ASI (Artificial Super Intelligence). At that stage, machinery becomes self-sufficient, self-aware, and self-improving. It's surpassed human intelligence and can continue to improve itself and become even more intelligent. Barrat believes that at this point the machinery which should not be compared to humans will not have "feelings" about its creators. It will wipe us out in its quest to fulfill its own goals and agendas. Replication on a global scale will occur and all matter than can be used for that purpose will be used even if that matter is humanity as a whole. There are some decidedly scary concepts housed within the pages of this book. As if to ram the point home I ran across this article today which talks about the rapid growth of Artificial Intelligence and how the vast majority of the populace is completely unaware of the advances being made RIGHT NOW. Chilling, eye-opening stuff. Conspiracy theorists will be eating this book up.

Blood Work: A tale of medicine & murder in the scientific revolution by Holly Tucker is more than just a history of blood transfusions. It is more than historical nonfiction wrapped up in scientific jargon. It is a political discourse on humanity and its moral and political evolution. The same issues that plagued people in the 17th century seem to be plaguing us today. Is it morally wrong to experiment on humans if it will help the human race as a whole? Is it an abomination against God to put animal's blood inside of a person's body in the hopes that it will help them to survive? I have no idea if this book will even come close to answering these questions but I'm fairly positive it will raise even more intriguing questions while delivering a fascinating depiction of science unfolding.

September 29, 2013


Well, when he titled it My Brief History, Stephen Hawking wasn't kidding. It was very brief. It's difficult to review because I felt like it only skimmed the surface of his life. It started with his childhood and made its way up to the present and all of his scientific and personal victories in between. The illustrations were the icing on the cake (I'm a sucker for family photographs by the way) and lent a personal touch to an otherwise very straightforward autobiography. Hawking's writings are witty and self-deprecating and this was no different. However, I would have preferred that it wasn't written a little more personally. At times, it felt like he would get caught up in science excitement only to remember that he was supposed to be writing about himself. (Not that I don't like science excitement, guys.) I liked it but it didn't hold a candle to A Brief History in Time (which is currently residing on my desk at work 3/4 finished) in my opinion.

If you've seen the movie I, Robot or read the book Robopocalypse  then you're familiar with the concept of a world where Artificial Intelligence takes over and the human race is doomed. The difference between those two stories and the book that I'm reading is that Our Final Invention: Artificial Intelligence and the End of the Human Era is a work of nonfiction. That's right: NONFICTION. James Barrat explores what will most likely happen once we've developed a self-aware AI that hones survival skills to outmatch those of the human race. Why wouldn't it do anything in its powers to survive? Would it stop to mourn human lives that it had to snuff out to reach its goals? Can machines even feel? I'm suddenly reminded of Bicentennial Man with Robin Williams and AI with Haley Joel Osment. Both of those movies simultaneously fascinated and horrified me. We created a life that so closely mirrored our own and yet they were vastly superior to us. We tried to keep them subservient while also imbuing them with human emotions. It was miserable on both sides and ultimately had unfortunate consequences. The thought that this could (and quite possibly already is) happen is frightening indeed.

September 27, 2013

From children's lit to autobiographies

Sky Jumpers may be Peggy Eddleman's debut novel but I certainly hope it isn't her last (especially with these characters and this world). It has been entirely too long since I read children's fiction and probably even longer than that since I really lost myself in it. The world that she created and the characters that inhabited it were so engrossing that I ripped my way through the book in no time at all. Sky Jumpers is an adventure set in the future when we've gone back to our agrarian roots and it is impossible to reach the level of industrialization we once took for granted. Fraught with danger and uncertainty, the world is a completely different place than the one we know. I wouldn't characterize this as a dystopian novel by any means. The world is far from horrendous and the characters are (for the most part) happy and living in harmony. Nothing is perfect, however, and that's where the excitement of the narrative comes into play. This would be an ideal book for children in late elementary and early middle school grades (or adults who enjoy children's literature).

I like to keep you guys are on your toes so my next book is by one of my scientific heroes, Stephen Hawking. My Brief History is exactly what the title implies. It's a short backstory about what shaped the man we know as Stephen Hawking. If you've read anything by Hawking (and remember I attempted to but got distracted) you'll know that he has a keen sense of humor which is already evident in the first chapter of the book. Autobiographies are a sporadic pleasure of mine and reading about scientific figures is most definitely one of my favorites (after historical figures like my bro Abraham Lincoln). I'm fairly sure that this book is going to rejuvenate my excitement for A Brief History of Time...

September 21, 2013

It's time (hardy har) for my review of All Our Yesterdays

If you're a fan of that particular area of sci-fi that focuses on time travel then you're going to enjoy All Our Yesterdays. It jumps between two narrative voices, Marina and Em, but it isn't a jarring transition which leaves the reader confused. There voices are very distinct but the story remains smooth despite the fact that time is not at all a linear concept in the story (or in reality). I'm having a difficult time describing this one without giving away key information... What would happen if you could go back in time and change things to make the world "better"? Do you think you could handle that level of power without letting it change you? What lengths would you go to in order to stop someone from making those changes if you knew they would make things worse not better? This may be a sci-fi novel written for young adults but the themes of the book aren't created with fluff and rainbows. The world is a dark place and a time machine isn't the solution. To know what I'm talking about (sorry it's so cryptic) you'll have to read this book. I don't think you'll be disappointed.

Sky Jumpers by Peggy Eddleman is a children's novel about a young girl named Hope that is growing up in a world where green bombs have destroyed pretty much everything. Hope is an anomaly. Her town is full of inventors and she's...not. Because of the green bombs many people have fallen seriously ill but luckily in her small town they have antibiotics. Unfortunately, bandits hear about these antibiotics and they decide to take them for themselves. It's up to Hope and her friend Aaron and Brock (who fall under the 14 year old limit for census counting) to make it to the next town over for help. Will they make it through the Bomb's Breath in time?

September 19, 2013

I will never look at camping the same way again...

When I started The Troop, I wasn't entirely sure what kind of a horror story it would be. There was mention in the blurb that it was a bit Stephen King-ish (which I must admit is what drew me to it as I'm a huge fan of his). However, what kind of horrendous event could occur to a Boy Scouts troop on an island cut off from the mainland? O_O Let me first say that this is NOT a book for children...unless you want them to have nightmares for the foreseeable future (and you're okay with adult content like coarse language and mild sexual themes). I can't get into a lot of detail about what kind of bioengineered sickness the infectious man who happens on the island has but let me just say that it isn't one I would have ever dreamed up and it was plenty scary. I've been talking about this book all week and every time I mentioned the newest development I got varying degrees of shock and disgust. I LOVED THIS BOOK. If you like horror of the gory kind with a mix of the psychological thriller then you'll enjoy this one.

Next up is a young adult title that I had started a few weeks back but put to the side so I wasn't trying to read two books at once (something I frequently have to stop myself from doing when I get overexcited about a topic). The book is called All Our Yesterdays which was written by Cristin Terrill. Imagine a world where a time machine exists. A working time machine not just some movie prop that you wish worked but is really just a blue box the size of a tiny closet. What kind of havoc would be caused if this machine actually existed? Well, in this story the world is basically destroyed because of this invention and two people travel back to before it was invented with only one goal in mind: kill the guy that did the inventing. However, there's a snag: He's just a teenager. Not only is he just a teenager but he's a teenager with a crush on a girl who likes him back. And it's the like like kind too. ;-) Basically, the story seems to be about one girl's desire to kill who she envisions is the evil villain of her life while another girl just wants to keep the young love of her life safe. I'm up to chapter 5 and so far I'm feeling pretty good about it (not about the murder but you know the arc of the story).

I hope you're all enjoying the lovely fall weather (unless you're somewhere that doesn't have fall then I hope you're enjoying your weather whatever it may be)!!

September 13, 2013

Learning ALL the time

As the title suggests, I think it's important that we strive to continue learning new things. If you read Countdown you're sure to do just that. The book's title sounds rather ominous but the topic broached within its pages isn't fictional or even "this is a scenario dreamed up by the author with enough facts to make it sound plausible". No, the notion that there are too many humans jammed onto this planet draining the limited resources is one that most of us are aware of if not actively concerned about. Homo sapiens has fairly swarmed across the globe gobbling up as much arable land as possible and watering that land through any means necessary. The problem is we're stuck in a cycle. We have so many mouths to feed so we need to grow more food which means depleting more resources and using up more space. However, the more food we put in those mouths and the more we advance medically the more bodies there are to take up space and consume more food and create more bodies get where I'm going with this. I have vaguely thought about this before and wondered what the Earth could realistically sustain while we destroy habitats and cause entire species to go extinct. Where is the line? Have we crossed it already? READ THIS BOOK. I was so impressed by Weisman that I've already downloaded The World Without Us  in which he conducts a thought experiment about what would happen to the planet if all of humanity were wiped out. O_O That'll be down the road because I have another title that's practically begging to be read.

The next title that I allude to is The Troop by Nick Cutter. I was drawn in by this because it claimed to scare Stephen King. That sounds like a challenge that I want to take! It's about a Boy Scout troop that camps out on a deserted island and is beset upon by a stranger that infects one of them with some unimaginable horror. Soon there is frightening devastation (or so I'm promised). It's been awhile since I read a propor horror story so I'm pretty excited (and a little apprehensive I'll get nightmares but that won't stop me!). I can't wait to give you my review!

I hope you're all ready to get back into the swing of things now that summer is pretty much over. I especially hope you'll all continue to read even though free time might be shortened and your lives might be busier. Reading is a great way to unwind!! :-D

August 27, 2013

Good news and bad news

The good news is that I thought Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children was fantastic and there is a SEQUEL (not due out until January 2014 though). The bad news is that I'm already finished with it and the sequel isn't out until January 2014. JANUARY 2014. Okay, maybe I should review this or something. Firstly, I would like to thank Ashley for asking me to read this (and for loaning me her copy). This book is a perfect example of magical realism gone so very right. The author, Ransom Riggs, uses vintage photographs to bring the story to life for the reader. They're so beautifully woven into the storyline that you (well, if you're like me at least) look forward to them every few pages. I really dig photographs (especially those found in old family albums) and I thought it was a clever device for transporting the reader into the world that he had created. These children are "peculiar" because of their abilities and these same gifts make them vulnerable. I don't want to say anymore because I want you to go read this immediately. GO NOW. OH and they're turning it into a motion picture due out in 2015. EVERYTHING IS HAPPENING. Edit: It's actually coming out September 30, 2016 and I'M EXCITED.

Okay if you managed to make it through the paragraph above I have to assume that you're a hardcore fan of mine (hi mom!) and I really appreciate you sticking it out with me. The next book up is another title from NetGalley which means it hasn't been published yet and therefore will not be readily available to you. However, it will be beneficial for me to trundle through it so I can let you know if I think it's worth your time. The book is Countdown: Our Last, Best Hope for a Future on Earth? by Alan Weisman. The basic question that this book is trying to answer is how humanity can come into balance with the earth. He travels the globe asking questions about limiting the growth of humans (not a new concept), ecosystem development (is the earth strong enough to hold all of us?), and what the economy of this newly stabilized (and shrunken) world might look like. I find nonfiction works about the state of our world and our place in it highly compelling which is why I gravitated toward this one. I imagine a world of possibilities that I never even imagined are about to be opened before me!

August 24, 2013

If a book has an overabundance of grammatical errors I find it exceedingly difficult to enjoy the experience. I'd love to sit down with the editors of Edge and find out just what they were thinking when they thoughts this book was okay to go to print. Also, it read like I should have had prior knowledge of events as if there were a prequel. There is no prequel, guys. This is the first in a series. I guess you gather that I don't highly recommend this one. The premise was a good one. The idea that society had degenerated into such violence that the majority of individuals walked around with sheathed knives is a novel one. However, I don't think this book was ready to deliver. Don't waste your time.

In awesome news, I met up with a friend to exchange books and the one she recommended is Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs (great name). Photographs from the past are used to help create fictional stories about children set apart on a deserted island because they may (re definitely) have been a danger to society. I glanced at the photographs and I can already tell that for those easily spooked this book will keep you up at night. Good thing I've mostly gotten over my fear of the dark. Here we go!

August 18, 2013

From scandals to slaughter

Daniel Defoe did not disappoint. Moll Flanders was a fantastic read. If you're into classics (and if you're not please tell me why), then this book is going to be right up your alley. Written in an autobiographical style, the story of Moll Flanders unfolds in England (for the most part) in the 18th century. She begins her life inauspiciously as a servant for a well-to-do family where she is known for her genteel manners and pious spirit. However, this lasts only until she is made an offer from a young man in the household and the next you know she's his mistress. O_O Don't worry, guys, I'm not encouraging you to read smut. The book was intended to be a cautionary tale for both those headed down this path and for those that might come across these ne'er-do-wells. She is purely driven by her fear of becoming destitute and living on the streets. To that end, she marries many times (dubiously for the most part), sells her body (I don't mean for science), and steals. BUT this is a moral tale and so there are messages spread throughout (not so subtly either). Like I said, if you're a fan of the classics you'll like this one.

Next up is Edge by Thomas Blackthorne which is a novel set in Britain. This has classic (not the same as above) science fiction written all over it. An evil corporation has taken over and not only have they legalized duelling but they've made it entertainment for the masses. Basically, the apocalypse has arrived and there's horror around every corner. I'm super excited. Also, it's set in Britain and if you haven't caught onto this fact yet I'm a TOTAL Anglophile. :-D

Is there anything you've read recently that you'd like me to read and review? Comment below and let me know!

August 12, 2013

No shockers here, ladies and gents. I thoroughly enjoyed Ender's Game. What's not to love about apocalyptic earth in a fight with alien enemies with a child as our only hope for survival? I'm super excited to see what the movie will be like now and I'm already plotting how to get a copy of Ender's Shadow which chronicles the life of a secondary character from the book named Bean (which I love by the way). I made the mistake choice to read a portion of this book and I'm hooked. If you're into science fiction with a psychological twist then you'll probably like this one.

Well, as you're all aware I like to jump between genres a lot and so my next choice in reading material probably won't come as much of a surprise. SO MUCH SUSPENSE! Okay, relax yourself. I'm reading Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe. I picked up my copy from a little hole-in-the-wall bookstore that specializes in mysteries, thrillers, classics, and out of print materials. When I saw this little volume I knew that it had to be mine. I often choose books on how they smell. The mustier the better in my opinion. If you're unfamiliar with this particular classic let me fill you in. It's the story of a woman named (gasp!) Moll Flanders who let's say is a creature of the night. It was used as a moral tale but not the way you're thinking. Generally, it's YOU SIN AND YOU REAP THE CONSEQUENCES. This is more like YOU SIN AND REPENT AND YAY. Or so says the dust jacket. I'll read it and let you know if I was right.

I hope you are all having a fantastic Monday night and that above all you're reading!!

August 9, 2013


I hope those of us that don't have to work tomorrow (yay not until the 17th!) will pick up a book and dive right in tonight. I'm about halfway through Ender's Game and besides the odd nightmare involving war I'm thoroughly enjoying it. Never miss an opportunity to open a book and immerse yourself in the world that the author has created just for you!!

August 6, 2013

Nom nom nom that book was delicious

I told you that I loved a good Nero Wolfe mystery. Yes, I did just sit motionless for the last two hours and finish off the book. AND IT WAS GLORIOUS. Mind you, I've already seen the televised version of this story so I already knew how it played out AND YET. Don't get me wrong, guys. Timothy Hutton's portrayal of Archie Goodwin is pretty much why I first picked up a Rex Stout novel. Thanks, dude. If you're at all like me (and you must be if you've wandered here and stuck around) then you'll love Stout's style. Set in New York in the early 50's, Archie is your proverbial private eye complete with dialect and predilection for brute force and curvy women. AND I LOVE IT. Please go read this and comment below with your thoughts (because comments are like cookies but without the calories).

Now of course I'd love to pick up another Wolfe mystery but unfortunately I don't have anymore on tap sooooo a book that I picked up a few months back because I had heard of it and it was in the discount bin: Ender's Game. You might have heard of this title if you've been to the movies recently or you enjoy watching trailers for upcoming films. Yes, they've adapted it for the big screen (Asa Butterfield!!). Orson Scott Card's sci-fi tale about children being trained for war against aliens received the Hugo and Nebula (that's big ya'll). I'd also like to remind you that it was originally published in 1977 which means that kids fighting for their lives in a militaristic society was conceived well before a certain Famished Frivolities was even a thought.

I'd like to take this opportunity to thank you for taking the time to check out my blog. I hope you're finding it relevant and (mildly) entertaining. I'd appreciate it very much if you'd leave me feedback (mmm so tasty) and if you followed me then I'd probably combust with excitement (which sounds painful but I have on good authority is actually like chugging Cherry Coke on a hot day). Happy reading!!!!

August 5, 2013

Murder, Mystery, and Mustaches (Oh my!)

As you might have already guessed from previous posts, I'm rather fond of true crime. So when I saw the title, Jack the Ripper: True Facts, you know I had to give that a read. If you're looking to get every conceivable fact (however minute) about the murders committed in Whitechapel in the year 1888 then this book is perfect for you. PERFECT. However, if you're wanting something that reads a little more like a narrative and which offers some plausible suspect of the crimes then you're barking up the wrong book. While I appreciate an author that knows his facts this book was drowning in minutia which overshadowed the meat (I'm not even sorry for that) of the tale. And most frustratingly the author doesn't offer up his thoughts on who he believes is the killer. This might be due in part because every single piece of evidence conflicted. It's no wonder that no one was ever brought to justice (or were they? Government conspiracy theories abound!) for the crimes with all of the inconsistent "eyewitness" testimony. *sigh* I guess I was hoping for something quite different from this book but in regards to listing out all available data (and sources, yay!) on the subject this book can't be beat.

Because I was disappointed in an ending which was tied up in a neat little bow I decided to turn to one of my favorite authors, Rex Stout. Some of you might recognize the fictional detective that he created, Nero Wolfe. Those of you who don't are really missing out. He is the armchair detective and there was even a miniseries created which focused on a few of his more famous storylines that had Timothy Hutton (ha cha cha) playing Nero's right hand man, Archie Goodwin. I hope I've gotten you excited because the book I'm reading is one I haven't sunk my teeth into before: Prisoner's Base. All of his stories start out similarly. A distraught individual seeks Nero's help. That person gets killed. Then it's up to Nero to solve the case because the police are pretty much bumbling idiots (sound familiar anyone?). It's a rollicking good time!! This one revolves around an heiress (of cotton-towels? ummm).

I hope you're all aware that it's Geek Week. GEEK OUT AND READ A BOOK!!

PS The reason that mustaches creeped into the title is because there were copious mentions of mustaches in Jack the Ripper. COPIOUS. Waaaaay too many references and descriptions of male facial hair. Sooo yeah.

July 16, 2013

An opening of the eyes

I mentioned in my last entry that I was going to be reviewing titles from NetGalley. These titles are in pre-publication status which means that you won't be able to go and pick them up just yet (if you were feeling so inclined). However, if you like the sound of them I highly encourage you to mark them on your "Must Read" list (I have so many of these that it's ridiculous at this point). So with that thought in mind on with the review!

The Why of Things: Causality in Science, Medicine, and Life by Peter Rabins was just as interesting as its title suggests. As a species, humans are always looking for the answers to 'why' things happen. We are by nature curious creatures and the author explains in-depth why it is important that we continue to look for the causes behind different phenomena/events whether they be on a global level (How did the earth begin?) or on a personal level (Why did I develop lung cancer if I've never smoked cigarettes?). The methodologies and disciplines that seek to answer these questions and an infinite number besides were discussed (some quite thoroughly such as the biological sciences in regards to genetics).  If you're interested in learning more about a fascinating topic (and trust me when I say that it is fascinating) then this book is for you. If you're a science nerd (yay nerds!) then you'll love it. Keep an eye out for this one to hit shelves.

Switching gears slightly (are you surprised?) I'm going to be reading Jack the Ripper: The Facts by Paul Begg. It's exactly what it sounds like. A narrative tale about the exploits of one of the most well-known serial killers of all time. He claimed the lives of 5 women in 1888 and was never caught. Paul Begg uses case notes from the time as well as documented accounts to aid in his attempt.  This is a revision of a book that was published in the 80s but which the author explains in the Introduction is almost a complete reworking based on new facts about the cases. As I'm interested in both Victorian England (and England in general if I'm being honest) as well as accounts of criminality I know I'm going to enjoy this read.

I hope you're all taking advantage of the summer to get your hands on books. Please let me know of any that you think I should read/review!!

PS Ashley, I'm working on getting a copy of the book we discussed. Once I do I'll review here for you! :-)

June 30, 2013

Wherein I get crazy with parentheses (are you jealous?)

One of the reasons that this last book took me a hot minute was because I was reading it on my phone. The other reason was that it was a free Google book which meant the font was extra tiny. That being said, I've finished Twelve Years a Slave! I was expecting a book similar to Uncle Tom's Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe and that's what I got. However, while that was a fiction based off of real events this was entirely a true account of one man's plight as a kidnapped slave. Nothing was held back and the scenes described were oftentimes graphic (in terms of violence not sexual assault although that was slightly hinted at) and heartbreaking. If you're interested in a true account of Slavery (it deserves the capitalization) and you're comfortable with the language of the time period then you'll enjoy (not sure if this is the right word choice but let's just go with it) this book.

How many of you guys know about NetGalley? Well, if you have then read on because I'm about to get all educational on you. Okay, those of you still reading presumably want to learn more about NetGalley. The purpose of the site is to publicize upcoming books by reading and reviewing them. I found out about it while I was still in library school but this will be my first time actually using the service. Basically, you request titles and if you're approved you download them and get to reading.

With that being said, my next book up for review is The Why of Things: Causality in Science, Medicine, and Life by Peter Rabins. The book is all about the causality of actions, i.e. why things happen. Reading the description of the book kinda makes my brain swell so I'm guessing I'm going to be a genius after reading it. The word of the day from the blurb: freakonomic which is apparently the melding of pop culture with economics. See? You're already smarter too!

Wish me luck, guys.

June 18, 2013

Yep I'm still here.

Life gets in the way once again and delayed me from finishing up my last book in a timely fashion. However, I've finished it now! Yippee!!!!

The Best Tales of Edgar Allen Poe is exactly what it sounds like. A collection of (what the author felt) was Poe's best works separated by categories. At the start of each new category there was a brief explanation as to what the following stories would entail as well as their significance in the timeline of Poe's life. I found that to be most informative as my interest lies not only with his works but with the man himself. Several of the stories were just what I thought they would be based off of the few I had already read in school. They were dark, macabre, chilling, and grotesque.  A few were downright gory (and I loved it!). What I found delightfully surprising was his use of humor to break up the terror of what he was writing about (in most cases death). Also, it turns out he was a great lover of nature and landscape gardening and the last section was devoted to that (my least favorite of the entire collection to be honest). If you want an all-encompassing view of his works then this is definitely the book for you.

Whenever I hear that a film is being adapted from a book I feel a burning desire to snatch up the book and read it. (I'm one of those people that look for inconsistencies in films and chuckle gleefully when I inevitably find them. Deal with it.) So when I found out that one of my favorite actors was going to be in a film called Twelve Years a Slave and that it was based off of a book I made it a priority on my reading list. Twelve Years a Slave is the true account of a black man named Solomon Northup who was born free, kidnapped, and sold into slavery for 12 years. The book came out right after Harriet Beecher Stowe's Uncle Tom's Cabin and reinforced the reality that was slave labor on southern plantations at the time. I have no doubt that I'll find it a riveting (and eyeopening) read.

June 1, 2013

WHOA! Liebster Award Nomination

I've been nominated for a Liebster Award! The thanks goes to Sarina who was awesome enough to think of me. :-) So what is this obscure award? Well it's not exactly an award. It's an opportunity for bloggers to get some attention. It is intended for small blogs with under 200 followers. I'm excited to be a part of this and to share some love with some of my blogging buddies. 

Here is how it works: 

1. Highlight the person who nominated you (Sarina) to help spread the word about their blog as well.

2. Tell 11 facts about yourself.

3. Answer the questions from the blog that nominated you (Sarina). 

4. List 11 blogs with less than 200 followers.

5. Post 11 questions for those blogs to answer.

6. Notify the blogs you nominate via email.

11 Facts about Alicea

  • I hardly ever sit with both feet on the floor. Even when I'm in a skirt. O_O
  • Sometimes it takes me an infernally long time to get through a book even if I'm really enjoying it. Other times, I rip right through them. This has more to do with laziness than any inherent interest I might have in the reading material.
  • I'd prefer to be constantly busy. I'm always and forever overscheduling myself.
  • The problem with the above is that I'm continually forgetting what I've scheduled myself for and then I end up running all over the place.
  • Not only do I have a passion for blogging but I really love vlogging (video blogging for those unfamiliar). I have a YouTube channel and everything! ;-)
  • A little over a year ago I gave up eating beef and pork. I mostly stick to vegetarian dishes but when I feel like I just have to eat something more "substantial" I turn to chicken or fish. I did this mostly to keep myself healthy but also because I wanted to lose weight. It worked on both accounts. :-)
  • I have a cat named Zuzu (not my idea) that is about the size of a small car. It's not because I feed her human food or even overfeed her. She's just lazy. No idea where she learned that kind of behavior.
  • I'm on pretty much every single kind of social media. Except Pinterest. I refuse to get sucked in by it. REFUSE. Edit: I got sucked in. No one was surprised.
  • I enjoy cooking but I hardly ever do it since it's just me at home. However, this hasn't stopped me from buying (and receiving) a ton of cookbooks.
  • Speaking of books (which is kind of the point of this blog isn't it?), I have so many at this point that they've migrated off of my bookshelves and onto pretty much all the available surfaces of my apartment.
  • I've never really done cosplay but after three different visits to Comic Con I want to try it. I'm thinking of doing Clara Oswin Oswald from Doctor Who

Questions from Sarina: 

Pick one place on planet Earth you would like to go. Tell us why.
New Zealand or Sweden. New Zealand because a lot of the greatest movies have been filmed there and the scenic beauty of the landscapes is magical.  Sweden for partly the same reason except I've only seen it in one show, Wallander.

What is something you have done that is completely unexpected and out of character for you? 
I applied for a study abroad right after I began my graduate program in Library Sciences on a whim. Then I was accepted. I went to London for a month and it was the best 31 days of my life.

Name some weird exotic food you would like to try and tell us why. 
I haven't really tried a lot of Mediterranean food so I'd like to give it a whirl. The problem is that they use a lot of cheese in their recipes and I'm lactose intolerant. :-/

What do you want your wedding song to be? If married, what was your wedding song? 
Oh boy. I've never really given this a whole lot of thought. Wait, are we talking about the first dance song or the one I walk down the aisle to? Well, either way I'm not sure of the answer. I used to say At Last by Etta James for the first dance but now...not so sure. I imagine I'd have to talk it through with my future husband. I'm pretty fluid.

Star Wars or Star Trek? 
Star Trek all the way. The crazier question would be: Kirk or Spock?  Now that is a toughie. I'm gonna go with Kirk because William Shatner is da bomb but I do love me some Spock.

Doctor who fans: Who is your favorite doctor? (non who fans can skip this one) 
There are non-Who fans?! <mind boggles> My Doctor is definitely Ten played by the indomitable David Tennant. Even though Christopher Eccleston was technically my first Doctor, David really blew me away with his performance and just pulled me in FOR LIFE.

If you were going to be sorted at Hogwarts, what house would you want to be in? 
Ravenclaw. I'd be super flattered that the Sorting Hat thought I was intelligent enough. :-)

Why are you blogging? 
I'm blogging for 3 reasons: 1) I think that it's important to encourage everyone to become lifelong readers, 2) I love to talk about excellent literature, and 3) enough people asked me for recommendations that I felt there was a need for it.

Do you use your public library? If not you should! If so, what do you use specifically? 
Yes, but not as much as I used to unfortunately. I generally use the library for its primary purpose which is checking out books. Since I started doing the blog, however, I've dipped back into my own personal collection (I still haven't really made a dent in it).

What is your one karaoke jam? That one song that comes on and you're like, "yes this is my ultimate theme song!
If it's The Carpenters, I'm in.

What did you eat for breakfast? (sorry I ran out of ideas) 
I'm currently in Philadephia for a Comic Con so I'm eating the complimentary breakfast at the hotel. This morning, I had a blueberry bagel (sans cream cheese) and a cup of coffee.

and the nominees are: 

Questions for you guys:

  1. What's the last book you read and should I read it?
  2. If you were a Muppet, which would you be and why?
  3. Candy is dandy but fill in the blank.
  4. Which superhero would you be and what kind of awesome superpower would you have?
  5. Do you have a YouTube channel that I need to subscribe to?
  6. I'm currently obsessed with Wil Wheaton (and you should be too!) because he's hysterical. What celebrity would you like to have as a bestie?
  7. What's your favorite guilty pleasure fast food joint?
  8. I'm Southern and therefore have a moral obligation to consume fried foods. What's the strangest fried food you've ever eaten and how much on a scale of 1-10 did you love it?
  9. Are you involved in any causes? If so, what are they? If not, WHY?!
  10. Are you into reality tv? WHY?!
  11. Got any tattoos? Do you regret them or are you still really into them?

April 23, 2013

IT'S WORLD BOOK DAY!!!!!!!!!!!

I hope you're all taking advantage of the excuse to read like your life depends on it today. ;-)

April 14, 2013

I kinda cheated...

I know I said I was just looking into The New Hunger...actually I downloaded it onto my iPod and read it.  I'd say that I'm sorry but I'm really not.  Isaac Marion might have cracked my top 5 favorite authors and he did it with only two books.  To say that I'm thrumming with anticipation over his sequel (due out in 2014) would be a gross understatement.  The prequel was actually a novella which focused on the characters introduced in Warm Bodies and how their pasts shaped them.  My only regret is that it was only a novella and not a full length novel. :-(

I really am going to read Poe now.  I swear.

April 10, 2013

Shifting Gears

There are some books that you start reading and you just know that you're going to love it pretty much from the very beginning. Warm Bodies was that type of book for me. If you'll notice, this update is coming pretty hard on the heels of the last one because I devoured it (actually I would have been done sooner but I didn't want it to end).  This book isn't so much a fantasy story about zombies. I mean, there are LOADS of zombies but it's more than that. It's a commentary on our world and the consequences of our actions on this planet. It's about hope and never giving up on being the change that makes this world a better place. And it's about zombies.  GO READ IT.

I was at a bit of a loss at first about what I would follow this up with because I was so blown away but then I remembered buying a dusty little copy of The Best Tales of Edgar Allen Poe a few months back. I don't think this needs much explanation. Most people, including myself, are most familiar with "The Raven". I seem to recall reading another short story about a beating heart in the floorboards of an old house. Other than that, I'm woefully lacking in all things Poe. I'll fix that immediately and forthwith.

Note: I'm already trying to figure out how I can get my hands on Isaac Marion's prequel to Warm Bodies which is titled The New Hunger. Pretty sure it's only available through one eBook publisher but where there's a will there's a way!!

Note x2: Why is Warm Bodies categorized as a young adult novel? Is it because the main characters are "young adults"?  That's lame.

April 5, 2013

What is 'chick lit' anyway?

My bestie knows me well.  Where the Heart Is was a wonderful read.  Heartwarming, quirky, dramatic, and romantic.  This book is pretty much the equivalent of a "chick flick".  If you've seen the film and enjoyed it, you'll absolutely love the novel.  In fact, knowing what's going to happen (or in my case vaguely remembering) won't spoil a thing because the writing is done in such a way that you feel compelled to keep turning the pages.  If you're looking for a book with a lot of heart (pun completely intended), this book is ideal for you.

I've discovered over the last couple of years that I'm a sucker for a book that really delivers on the "epic romance" trope.  I'm hoping this next book won't disappoint in that arena.  Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion is about a zombie that falls in love. A zombie!  In love!  This book can either be amazingly awesome or it could be absolutely atrocious.  I'm going to take the bullet for the team and find out.

Until next time, keep reading!!

March 23, 2013

I'm a huge slacker :-)

It's taken me entirely too long to finish up this last book and I have no plausible excuses except that I'm incredibly lazy. :-)  That being said, on to the review!!

The Meaning of Night: A Confession was every bit the Victorian mystery that it proclaimed itself to be on the book cover.  Chock full of suspense, romance, intrigue, and heartbreak!  The only complaint that I can give is that it was a slooooow workup to the main "meat" of the story.  For a book that's 695 pages long, it didn't get really interesting until around the 300 page mark. The first few pages started out with a BANG and then there was a lot of background information. A LOT.  If you're looking for an epic length story that will provide you with enough detail to build your own model of Victorian England, then this book is most definitely for you.

The next book was highly recommended to me by the bestie.  I'm sure you've seen the film version of it with Natalie Portman.  It is of course Where the Heart Is by Billie Letts.  If I remember correctly, it's about a young girl that gets knocked up and then has her baby in the town's Wal-Mart.  That's all I remember.  However, if Krystle is recommending it AND it was in Oprah's Book Club I'm sure I can't go wrong. :-)

Happy reading, everyone!!

PS I promise to be less lazy!

PSS Or at least I promise to try not to be so lazy. :-)

January 28, 2013

Yep, epically bad idea

When I first bought The Fault in Our Stars, it was simply because I had great admiration for the author and wanted to show my support.  I had heard from a lot of people that it was very well-written and that he was known for breaking hearts with his words.  These people were not wrong.  It's no secret (to those that know me off of the Internets) that someone that I loved very much was beaten by cancer.  She was young and vibrant and simply Jessica.  I've read other books about cancer and each of them has stabbed at me in differing ways.  This one focused on the dying part of cancer and not really the fighting part.  Yes, there was the "battle with cancer" aspect but the main character has terminal cancer and she knows that she is simply biding time.  She's accepted her fate.  I did cry while reading this book.  All I could think about were those short yet endless months of my friend's last days and how at the end it wasn't really a fight anymore.  She had accepted her fate.  It wasn't so easy for the rest of us.  Still isn't.

Oh the review.  The book was excellent.  I highly recommend it but I do caution that it will cause you to feel.

The next book in the rotation is a Victorian murder mystery with a bewitching love story (or so the back of the book says).  I chose it because there's a dude with a top hat on the cover.  I'm a sucker for top hats. The book is The Meaning of Night: A Confession by Michael Cox.  

January 18, 2013

I don't have a witty title for this one.  It's always been my opinion that the best kind of literature is the kind that can completely take us out of our own reality.  It's not every book that makes you feel transplanted into the story.  It's not every book that makes you feel as if you are the main character.  The Boy in the Striped Pajamas is exactly that kind of book.  The existence of those living in a concentration is explored through the eyes of a child on the outside looking in.  The point of the book was to make the reader really explore what it means to put up a fence between two groups of people.  It's something that is still happening today.  A real tearjerker and definitely worth a read.

I wanted something a little more lighthearted but I'm not entirely sure I've chosen wisely.  The Fault in Our Stars is written by a fantastically nerdy man by the name of John Green.  I came to his literature through his vlog that he started with his brother Hank.  He's the reason that I know there is such a thing as a nerdfighter and that I know I am most definitely one of their number.  Anyway, he is highly popular among young adult readers and one of those reasons is because he doesn't shield the reader from hurt.  He throws it all out there in your face and you just have to take it (or stop reading I suppose).  I haven't the foggiest notion what this book is about but it was recommended to me by several people.

Edit: I just read the dust jacket blurb and I am in big trouble here.  I don't think there are enough Kleenex in the world!

January 14, 2013

Well, I'll be danged

Thank goodness a riveting story is all it takes to get me back into the groove of reading.  I've finished The Ever-After Bird.  I strongly suggest that if you decide to read this book that you be aware of what you're getting yourself into as regards to subject matter.  If you're familiar with anything to do with slavery in the South you know that it's not a pleasant subject.  This book doesn't pussyfoot about what life for a slave was like on the plantations and the attitude of the majority of the people during this time to what they felt was nothing more than "handling property".  The book focuses particularly on a little girl and her growing understanding of what it really means to be a slave and why what her uncle does with the Underground Railroad is so important. The story line was fast paced and gripping.  I'm not ashamed to say that I had tears in my eyes by the end of the book and I wouldn't be surprised if you fare the same if you give this book a shot.

I guess I'm on a journey of tears because I'm reading The Boy in the Striped Pajamas by John Boyne next.    The main character is a small boy named Bruno but this isn't a book for children.  In fact, I'm sure it will give me nightmares and I'm nearly 30.  I'll say this about it only: Holocaust.

Maybe I should watch some kitten videos before I attempt sleep tonight.

January 13, 2013

Sometimes you just have to throw in the towel...

It's important to remember that you're not always going to like everything that you read and that you shouldn't be too hard on yourself if this happens.

I've been trying my darndest to get through Casual Vacancy by JK Rowling because of the absolutely wonderful experience of the Harry Potter series.  However, her newest book was not AT ALL my cup of tea.  I made it about halfway through it and I just couldn't bear to read one more word.  There wasn't a single character that I could relate to and I didn't find any of them all that likable.  It's difficult to make it through a novel with a host of characters if you can't attach yourself to any single story line for the duration of the book.  Sooooo I gave up and decided it was best if I just moved on.

And move on I did!  One of my friends encouraged me to try a graphic novel interpretation of a book that I've adored ever since I was a child: A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle.  It was adapted and illustrated by Hope Larson.  I'm not a fan of graphic novels.  This is my third attempt and I would have to say it's been the most successful.  I breezed right through it mostly because I'm so familiar with the content of the narrative.  However, I have to say that I wasn't all that impressed.  A lot of the magic was lost in this adaptation and the writing was pretty abominable.  As I said, this was my third attempt at graphic novels and I believe it will be my last.

For Christmas/graduation, I received several books.  I've decided to barrel my way through these before I tackle my overflowing bookshelves.  Next on the agenda is The Ever-After Bird by Ann Rinaldi.  My good friend, and fellow librarian, has highly recommended this YA author who specializes in historical fiction.  This book is about a young girl who learns firsthand what it means to be an abolitionist on the Underground Railroad.  I can't wait to give it a read and give YOU the review!!

Happy reading everyone!!

PS To all of you who have stuck with me on this journey, I really appreciate it!! :-)