Archive for September, 2014


Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. I’ve decided that I want to participate in the Top Ten weekly posts. While I might not post every week, I will as often as I can.

This week’s topic is books that you’ve had a difficult time reading for one reason or another. They’re in no particular order.

The Chosen One by Carol Lynch Williams – This was an incredibly hard book to read because of the subject matter. It’s very sad, and the whole time you want to somehow help this poor girl out of her horrible situation. I started this book at night and didn’t put it down until I was done at four in the morning. It’s a hard story to put down because you want to know what happens next and emotional because you’ll be sad, frustrated, angry, and happy all within a few chapters.

Shizuko’s Daughter by Kyoko Mori – This is another emotional read but for different reasons. Yuki is left all alone when her mother commits suicide. Her dad doesn’t seem to love her, and her stepmother treats her terribly. She is easy to become attached to and you want to be able to help her. It’s told through different perspectives, and during certain ones, you feel extremely sorry for Yuki and what she has to deal with. A great story about a girl dealing with the death of a parent and having to move on with her life.  Full Review

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson – This is a beautifully told story dealing with serious issues. You’re empathetic with Melinda and her situation because as she’s struggling with this difficult problem, everyone seems to be turning against her. There are plenty of times I wanted her to speak up for herself, but it’s understandable why she would stay silent for so long. Honestly, I think everyone should read this story. Especially high school students because I feel the story has a special way of teaching about empowerment and speaking up for yourself, while also showing how the victim feels.

A Fair Maiden by Joyce Carol Oates – Cringeworthy would be a great word to describe this book. It deals with the relationship between a 16 year old girl and an 80 year old man. There are plenty of disturbing moments that make your skin crawl. It’s as if you’re watching a horror movie and screaming at the characters to stop and run the other way. I have never felt so much pity for a character at the end of a novel like I did this one. It’s a really interesting story, but I know it won’t be for everyone. Full Review

My Life as a White Trash Zombie by Diana Rowland – While this was a very interesting concept, it wasn’t quite what I expected. There were some boring moments, and the main character repeated herself so much, it got kind of old. It was a bit hard to relate to her since she has an addiction to pills, but she’s a unique character, and I did like her personality. I liked the overall story, but it was difficult to get through at certain points.

The Fever by Megan Abbott – I thought this would be more of a mystery, but it’s mostly about teenagers and how they act. It had a few boring moments during the middle of the book. There were a lot of red herrings, and the ending was not as great as I was expecting. This book just wasn’t for me. Full Review

Trapped by Michael Northrop – Honestly, I didn’t really like anything about this book. This is one of those books that just didn’t work for me. There were no surprises, the characters were boring and flat, and the ending was unsatisfying. It was difficult for me to finish this novel.

Slated by Teri Terry –  I really wanted to like this book, but the characters weren’t great, and while the plot had potential, it didn’t quite work for me. Full Review

Zombie Blondes by Brian James – I accidentally read it twice because I had forgotten I had read it before. This was way before I discovered Goodreads where I could track all of my read books. I didn’t enjoy this story as much as I had hoped. The main character is judgmental, the father is incompetent when it comes to his daughter, and the plot is predictable. However, the ending had a new twist that I liked.

The Maze Runner by James Dashner – I was prepared to really enjoy this novel because of all the hype, but the hype sort of killed it for me. I did like it, but I had trouble getting through this book at certain parts. As I was reading, I kept picking up similarities to Lord of the Flies, so I did some research and found out that Lord of the Flies inspired The Maze Runner. I often like when books are inspired by my favorites, however, it did ruin a scene during the ending for me because it was almost exactly from Lord of the Flies.

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October TBR

I normally don’t pick books for a full month because I know I change my mind so frequently, but for October I want to have a theme for the entire month. Of course that theme will be horror, and I’m going to have some thrillers and mysteries as well. I’m hoping this will get me out of the reading slump I’ve been in for almost the entire month of September. It’s been awful.

I started off the month strong, but sadly, I wasn’t able to finish Red Rising by Pierce Brown. I wanted to like the book, but I decided to DNF it at 32%. It actually ended up putting me in the reading slump, and I haven’t been able to finish Scarlet by Marissa Meyer, even though I’m really enjoying it. I’ll have it read before the end of September though. I did end up reading Anya’s Ghost by Vera Brosgol and The Surprise Party by R. L. Stine, and I really liked them. They would be a good additions to an October TBR, especially if you want something scary but not too scary.

I’m hoping this theme will help me get out of my reading slump. My TBR could change, depending on how I feel about the books. I mean I might get so scared, I have to sit in a corner and read a happy unicorn book. I’m a pretty big chicken when it comes to horror movies, so let’s see how I do with some horror books. I’ve been wanting to read these books for a while though, so I figure this is a perfect time to do it. Let me know what you’re going to read for October. Anything scary?

*Descriptions taken from Goodreads.

The Shining – Stephen King
Genre – Horror/Thriller

Danny was only five years old but in the words of old Mr Halloran he was a ‘shiner’, aglow with psychic voltage. When his father became caretaker of the Overlook Hotel his visions grew frighteningly out of control.

As winter closed in and blizzards cut them off, the hotel seemed to develop a life of its own. It was meant to be empty, but who was the lady in Room 217, and who were the masked guests going up and down in the elevator? And why did the hedges shaped like animals seem so alive?

Somewhere, somehow there was an evil force in the hotel – and that too had begun to shine…

 

It – Stephen King
Genre – Horror/Thriller

The story follows the exploits of seven children as they are terrorized by an eponymous being, which exploits the fears and phobias of its victims in order to disguise itself while hunting its prey. “It” primarily appears in the form of a clown in order to attract its preferred prey of young children. The novel is told through narratives alternating between two time periods, and is largely told in the third-person omniscient mode. It deals with themes which would eventually become King staples: the power of memory, childhood trauma, and the ugliness lurking behind a façade of traditional small-town values.

 

 

Intensity – Dean Koontz
Genre – Suspense/Thriller

Past midnight, Chyna Shepard, twenty-six, gazes out a moonlit window, unable to sleep on her first night in the Napa Valley home of her best friend’s family. Instinct proves reliable. A murderous sociopath, Edgler Foreman Vess, has entered the house, intent on killing everyone inside. A self-proclaimed “homicidal adventurer,” Vess lives only to satisfy all appetites as they arise, to immerse himself in sensation, to live without fear, remorse or limits, to live with “intensity.” Chyna is trapped in his deadly orbit.

Chyna is a survivor, toughened by a lifelong struggle for safety and self-respect. Now she will be tested as never before. At first her sole aim is to get out alive–until, by chance, she learns the identity of Vess’s next intended victim, a faraway innocent only she can save. Driven by a newly discovered thirst for meaning beyond mere self-preservation, Chyna musters every inner resource she has to save an endangered girl…as moment by moment, the terrifying threat of Edgler Foreman Vess intensifies.

 

The Silence of the Lambs – Thomas Harris
Genre – Horror

There’s a killer on the loose who knows that beauty is only skin deep, and a trainee investigator who’s trying to save her own hide. The only man that can help is locked in an asylum. But he’s willing to put a brave face on – if it will help him escape.

 

 

 

 

Your House Is on Fire, Your Children All Gone – Stefan Kiesbye
Genre – Horror/Short Stories

The village of Hemmersmoor is a place untouched by time and shrouded in superstition: There is the grand manor house whose occupants despise the villagers, the small pub whose regulars talk of revenants, the old mill no one dares to mention. This is where four young friends come of age—in an atmosphere thick with fear and suspicion. Their innocent games soon bring them face-to-face with the village’s darkest secrets in this eerily dispassionate, astonishingly assured novel, evocative of Stephen King’s classic short story “Children of the Corn” and infused with the spirit of the Brothers Grimm.

 

Spirits of the Noh – Thomas Randall
Genre – Young Adult/Horror

Kara Foster is finally starting to fit in at her boarding school in Japan-after all, nothing bonds you with your classmates like having an ancient demon put a curse on you. Hoping life can go back to normal now that the monster has been laid to rest, Kara joins her friends Sakura and Miho in putting on a play for the Noh drama club. It’s the story of the Hannya, a snake demon who inhabits the body of a beautiful woman. When a few members of the Noh club go missing, Kara fears that the real Hannya has been awakened by the curse. Then Miho is abducted, and Kara must find her before the Hannya exacts her terrible revenge. But the demon is wily and may be hidden in the last place anyone would think to look.

 

The Night She Disappeared – April Henry
Genre – Young Adult/Mystery

Gabie drives a Mini Cooper. She also works part time as a delivery girl at Pete’s Pizza. One night, Kayla—another delivery girl—goes missing. To her horror, Gabie learns that the supposed kidnapper had asked if the girl in the Mini Cooper was working that night. Gabie can’t move beyond the fact that Kayla’s fate was really meant for her, and she becomes obsessed with finding Kayla. She teams up with Drew, who also works at Pete’s. Together, they set out to prove that Kayla isn’t dead—and to find her before she is.

The Murder Farm Review

Genre: Mystery/Crime

Goodreads Synopsis:

A whole family has been murdered with a pickaxe. They were old Danner the farmer, an overbearing patriarch, his put-upon devoutly religious wife, and their daughter Barbara Spangler, whose husband Vincenz left her after fathering her daughter, Marianne. Also murdered was the Danners’ new maidservant, Marie, who was regarded as slightly simple. Despite the brutal nature of the killings and the small village where it has taken place, the police have no leads. Officially the crime is unsolved. And then a former resident returns home The Murder Farm is an unconventional detective story. The author interweaves testament from the villagers, an oblique view of the murderer, occasional third-person narrative pieces and passages of pious devotion. The narrator leaves the village unaware of the truth, only the reader is able to reach the shattering conclusion.

*I received this book from Netgalley for an honest review.

The Murder Farm (also known as Tannöd) by Andrea Maria Schenkel has such an interesting way of telling a story. Various villagers recall to the narrator the events leading up to the family’s murder. While the villagers never find out what happened to the Danners, the reader is able to see who murdered the family and the motivation behind the act.

I’ve never read a book that told the story this way, but it works well. Having the story told through so many perspectives creates a different experience for this mystery. With most of the characters only receiving one chapter, it makes the reading go quickly. You don’t have to worry about any dull spots because you know the next chapter will be with another character. Unfortunately that also means that if you like a character, you know your time with them is limited.

However, I really like that every character is unique and seems like a real person. Each one has a distinct voice which sets them apart from everyone else. Each of the characters interact with the family in different ways and due to that you get to see how the family is viewed by the town and learn a little more about them. During the third-person passages, the reader sees the family and how they live prior to their deaths. Unfortunately, since you don’t get to spend much time with them, you don’t get very attached. It’s not as powerful as it could be when they die. If those passages had been longer or more frequent, I really think the story would have benefited significantly from it.

While I like short novels, this book seems a bit too short. It’s easy to fly through the chapters because they are only a few pages long, but the story doesn’t benefit from it. There is plenty of room for more detail, and I would have liked to have more time with each character and especially the family. The characters could have been more complex if the chapters were a bit longer. At the end when you find out who the murderer is, it seems rather crammed in. There’s too much going on and not enough pages to give it the detail that it deserves.

The Murder Farm is unique and enjoyable. It’s a mystery that keeps you guessing and turning the page. While we don’t get to know the characters that well, I feel they all have distinct voices and are interesting enough to keep the story going. The story is told in a very uncommon way, but it works for the plot. If you’re looking for a short mystery, you should definitely give this book a chance.

My Rating: ★★★½

Virginia Beach Vacation

If you’ve been wondering why I haven’t posted anything for the past week or so, it’s because I was at Virginia Beach with Chad and my family. We arrived on Wednesday and came back home on Saturday. We wanted to stay longer but everything had already been booked for the weekend before we made plans. Either way, it was nice to get away from everything for a few days, and we all needed it.

Our hotel was on the boardwalk, and we were able to walk right out onto the beach whenever we wanted. The weather was nice for the entire trip and because we were there during the week it wasn’t crowded at all. We took advantage of that all we could.  We walked at different times and found some really cool stuff. We found a bunch of seashells of all different sizes and brought some of the best back home with us.

While out at night saw some creepy Horseshoe Crabs and a bunch of little spider-like crabs. We saw one regular crab which was pretty cool. There were tons of seagulls during the day, and it was hilarious watching them gather around, waiting for food. There seemed to be at least twice as many seagulls as there were people. The pier was surrounded by them as they waited for the fish that were being caught. There were even some pigeons and ravens as well.

I’m not sure if I’ve ever mentioned this before but Chad and I are sensitive to gluten. It’s hard for us to just go out to eat whenever we want because there aren’t that many options. Virginia Beach, on the other hand, had plenty of options for us to choose from. Our favorite location was Cheeseburger in Paradise, and we ate there several times. That was the first place we ate while there and it set the bar really high. Our waitress was amazing and very accommodating and went out of her way to make us feel comfortable and make sure our food was safe. We very rarely get that sort of treatment and most places don’t even know what we’re talking about when we mention our allergies. Our second day we had breakfast at Sunnyside Cafe & Restaurant. The food was pretty good, but it was nothing compared to Cheeseburger in Paradise. We were still very happy to have several places to choose from though.

We had so much fun that we’ve already decided to go again next year. It was very relaxing and just nice to get away. If you want to see some more pictures from our trip you can click here. I should be back to posting regularly in the next few days. First I have to unpack . . .

June 2014 Wrap-Up

The June Wrap-Up is finally here! I’m getting through these slowly but surely. Hopefully by the end of the year, I’ll be caught up with everything . . . or at least with the summer wrap-ups. 😀

*All descriptions for books taken from Goodreads and all descriptions for movies taken from IMDb.

Monstrous Beauty – Elizabeth Fama
Genre – Young Adult/Fantasy
My Rating – ★★★★★

Fierce, seductive mermaid Syrenka falls in love with Ezra, a young naturalist. When she abandons her life underwater for a chance at happiness on land, she is unaware that this decision comes with horrific and deadly consequences.

Almost one hundred forty years later, seventeen-year-old Hester meets a mysterious stranger named Ezra and feels overwhelmingly, inexplicably drawn to him. For generations, love has resulted in death for the women in her family. Is it an undiagnosed genetic defect . . . or a curse? With Ezra’s help, Hester investigates her family’s strange, sad history. The answers she seeks are waiting in the graveyard, the crypt, and at the bottom of the ocean—but powerful forces will do anything to keep her from uncovering her connection to Syrenka and to the tragedy of so long ago.

Review: Monstrous Beauty is a beautifully written book. I didn’t know what to expect when I first started reading since it was the first mermaid story I’ve read. However, I was pleasantly surprised. Even though this concept has been done before, the author did a wonderful job with it. Everything has a purpose and nothing feels forced. It’s darker than you might expect from a mermaid book but not in a bad way. The characters are unique and feel like they belong in their respective time periods. It’s easy to like the characters, and at times, the story is very emotional. I couldn’t stop reading from the time I started, and I had to know what happened next. If you like romance stories, but aren’t a fan of the typical cliches, then I would suggest giving this book a try. This is probably going to be a book I remember for a long time.

 

Pivot Point – Kasie West
Genre – Young Adult/Fantasy
My Rating – ★★★★★

Knowing the outcome doesn’t always make a choice easier . . .

Addison Coleman’s life is one big “What if?” As a Searcher, whenever Addie is faced with a choice, she can look into the future and see both outcomes. It’s the ultimate insurance plan against disaster. Or so she thought. When Addie’s parents ambush her with the news of their divorce, she has to pick who she wants to live with—her father, who is leaving the paranormal compound to live among the “Norms,” or her mother, who is staying in the life Addie has always known. Addie loves her life just as it is, so her answer should be easy. One Search six weeks into the future proves it’s not.

In one potential future, Addie is adjusting to life outside the Compound as the new girl in a Norm high school where she meets Trevor, a cute, sensitive artist who understands her. In the other path, Addie is being pursued by the hottest guy in school—but she never wanted to be a quarterback’s girlfriend. When Addie’s father is asked to consult on a murder in the Compound, she’s unwittingly drawn into a dangerous game that threatens everything she holds dear. With love and loss in both lives, it all comes down to which reality she’s willing to live through . . . and who she can’t live without.

Review: Pivot Point was awesome. It completely exceeded all of my expectations, and I absolutely loved it. The story is original and very engaging. Having the story play out two different ways is really interesting because you get to see how things could be different based on just one decision. I really enjoyed the characters and thought their powers were neat. While they reminded me of the X-Men, they were distinctly different. There are some great twists towards the end of the novel which I really enjoyed. The ending made me want to find out what happens next, and I can’t wait for the second book.

 

Fangirl – Rainbow Rowell
Genre – Young Adult/Contemporary
My Rating – ★★★½

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan…

But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.

Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words… And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this?

Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?

Review: I have to say, I have some mixed feelings about Fangirl. I was excited for this book because of all the hype surrounding it, but I feel like it didn’t quite live to the expectations I set. The story is definitely cute, and I really enjoy the romance. On the negative side, some of the family elements don’t work for me. The biggest issue I have is that I don’t like Cath’s sister Wren. I know Wren isn’t supposed to be well liked, but I find her extremely frustrating. The only other issue I have with the story are the sections of fanfiction that Cath writes. I feel they are unneeded and add virtually nothing to the story. If you’re looking for a cute romance with a socially awkward main character, then I would recommend this book. The issues I have with it are minor, and most people really enjoy the book, so definitely consider it.

 

X-Men: Days of Future Past
Rating – PG-13
My Rating – ★★★★

The X-Men send Wolverine to the past in a desperate effort to change history and prevent an event that results in doom for both humans and mutants.

Review: I’ve always enjoyed the X-Men franchise, so I was very excited to this in theaters. I was not disappointed. It’s an entertaining movie that pays tribute to the first two X-Men movies, and it corrects a few things that were done poorly in X-Men: The Last Stand. The inclusion of time travel is fantastic, and everyone is in character the entire time. It’s fun to see how the characters interact with each other. Quicksilver is an awesome addition, and I hope to see him in future installments. Every scene he’s in is incredible. There are also a few unexpected twists that keep the audience guessing. X-Men: Days of Future Past is a lot of fun and definitely worth seeing if you’ve enjoyed other X-Men films.

 

That Darn Cat
Rating – Approved
My Rating – ★★★★★

A woman is kidnapped. While in captivity, she manages to send a message out with a wandering cat. The cat’s owner calls the FBI. The FBI tries to follow the cat. Jealous boyfriends and nosy neighbours also get in the act.

Review: That Darn Cat is one of Chad’s favorite childhood movies, so of course he made me watch it. At first, I wasn’t sure about this movie because the description sounded a bit silly. However, it is surprisingly very well-done. There are plenty of funny moments throughout this movie, but there are also serious moments as well. The plot is believable even though the story is centered around a cat. It’s two hours long, but there is never a dull moment and plenty of great dialogue. Overall, I highly recommend this movie, and I’ve even made my parents watch it. I think everyone should watch this movie.

 

Non-Stop
Rating – PG-13
My Rating – ★★★

An air marshal springs into action during a transatlantic flight after receiving a series of text messages that put his fellow passengers at risk unless the airline transfers $150 million into an off-shore account.

Review: Non-Stop is an interesting thriller. Although, I’m pretty sure I would like anything Liam Neeson is in. His characters are always intense and well portrayed. The movie keeps you guessing the whole time and some parts are unpredictable. It’s full of action from start to finish. Unfortunately, the movie is far from perfect. The villain is weak at best, and his/her motive is lame. There are a lot of red herrings, making you believe anyone could be the bad guy. In the end, the character chosen seems a poor choice. I like this movie because of Liam Neeson and the thrills, but don’t expect much from the plot or ending though. It’s just a fun action movie.

 

The Lego Movie
Rating – PG
My Rating – ★★★★

An ordinary Lego construction worker, thought to be the prophesied ‘Special’, is recruited to join a quest to stop an evil tyrant from gluing the Lego universe into eternal stasis.

Review: For a movie about people made of plastic, The Lego Movie was surprisingly great. There is so much nostalgia in this movie. Even though I didn’t play with Legos when I was younger, the movie brought out the kid in me. It’s a really fun movie that plays up childhood imagination. A lot of it is really silly, but the plot is solid and entertaining. The characters are likeable, and it’s easy to root for Emmet and his team. The only problem I have with this movie is the fact the ending takes you out of the world. It’s an interesting addition, but it drags on for a little too long and feels a bit forced. This is a great movie for parents and kids, and I would highly recommend it. Because “everything is awesome. Everything is cool when you’re part of a team!”

Bookshelf Tag

I was tagged for the Bookshelf Tag by littleonionwrites. It’s taken me a while to do this tag, but I have finally finished. Here we go!

Rules:

Answer the following questions about books on your book and then tag five other bloggers. You can answer the questions any way you want, whether it’s on your blog, in a video, or a combination of the two. Then remember to let whoever tagged you know when your post is up so they can read it.

1. Is there a book that you really want to read but haven’t because you know that it’ll make you cry?

The Road by Cormac McCarthy

I’ve been avoiding this book for a while. For one, McCarthy doesn’t use quotation marks, so it’s a little intimidating when trying to read his work. Plus, the subject matter is depressing: a father and son in the apocalypse, and I found out that it doesn’t end happily. I’m not sure when I’ll be prepared to read this novel.

 

 

 

2. Pick one book that helped introduce you to a new genre. 

Wounded by Stephen Cole

This book sparked my interest in the Fantasy and Paranormal genres. As I’ve stated before, this book started my love for reading. It was my first werewolf story, and it helped me fall in love with fiction. Being able to escape the world for a short time to go on an adventure is an incredible experience, and I’m glad I have such a large variety of books in my life.

 

 

3. Find a book that you want to reread.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J. K. Rowling

It might be really shocking, but I haven’t finished reading the Harry Potter series. I’ve only read to the fourth book. I want to reread the first three and continue on with the series soon. I have watched all the movies, of course, but I want to experience all of the Harry Potter awesomeness.

 

 

 

4. Is there a book series you read but wish that you hadn’t?

I haven’t found a series yet where I’ve read all the books and haven’t enjoyed them. Usually, if I don’t enjoy the first book much, then I won’t continue reading the sequels.

 

5. If your house was burning and all of your family and pets were safe, which book would you go back inside to save?

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

If I could only save one book, I would have to pick my signed copy of A Monster Calls. It’s one of my favorite books of all time. While being an emotional story, it has beautiful illustrations to match the tone of the novel. Plus, it was a gift from Chad and holds a lot of sentimental value.

 

 

 

6. Is there one book on your bookshelf that brings back fond memories?

The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L. Frank Baum

I took a Children’s Literature class in college. It was not as easy as it may sound. It was an entire semester packed into three weeks, so we had a lot of work. We ended up writing 2 – 3 page essays every night. One night we had to read The Wonderful Wizard of Oz and write a paper on it. So far, it doesn’t seem like a fond memory, but my friend was also in this class, and we would text each other all night while we were trying to finish all of this work. We had a lot of funny conversations, one of which was about us quitting college and opening a wig shop for the college students who get so stressed they pull their hair out. Suffice it to say, she helped me get through this class, and I’ll always have fond memories of our conversations while we were stressing out.

 

7. Find a book that has inspired you the most. 

Hyperbole and a Half by Allie Brosh

I wasn’t expecting to be inspired by this book. I heard it was funny, and I wanted to read something to make me laugh. However, it was so much more than just a funny book. It’s relatable and the stories in it are hilarious while also being honest and down-to-earth. It’s such an incredible book.

 

 

8. Do you have any autographed books?

I have six autographed books.

All the Truth That’s in Me by Julie Berry

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

Reader by Erec Stebbins

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Sinner by Maggie Stiefvater

Crewel by Gennifer Albin

 

9. Find the book that you have owned the longest.

I would have to say any of my R. L. Stine books. I have quite a few, but I’m not sure which one is the oldest because I’ve been collecting them since I was young. I remember getting them from the bookmobile at school. I will keep them all until they fall apart. Even then, I’ll probably still keep them because I like them so much.

 

10. Is there a book by an author you never imagined you would read and enjoy?

Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card

I usually try to separate the author from their work so I can make my own opinions about the books. I only avoid an author when he/she does something against his/her readers or if the author is rude. At first, I was worried about reading Card’s work because I didn’t know if his strong opinions about homosexuality would be prominent in his books. I was pleasantly surprised when they were not. I’ve only read Ender’s Game, but Chad loves Orson Scott Card’s books, so I definitely want to read more of them.

 

I Tag…

  1. Brilliantly Novel
  2. Stephanie’s Book Reviews
  3. A Bit Behind on Books
  4. Hit or Miss Books
  5. Books & Cleverness

 

A Monster Calls Cast!

The cast for A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness has been announced! I’ve been eager to see who will be in the movie ever since I found out it was being made. It’s directed by J. A. Bayona, and it’s scheduled to be released on October 14th, 2016. I can’t even explain how excited I am about this information.

Cast:

Liam Neeson

Felicity Jones – Mom

Toby Kebbell

Sigourney Weaver

Geraldine Chaplin

Lewis MacDougall – Conor

It hasn’t been stated but I’m pretty sure Liam Neeson will be the voice of the monster, which is just amazing, in my opinion. I’m happy with all of these choices, and I think, if done right, this will be a fantastic movie. Since this is one of my favorite books, I have high hopes for this movie, and I’m hoping they will do it justice.

Let me know what you think about this. Are you happy with the choices or did you have someone else in mind to play a certain part?

I bought all of these at the end of August, but since the haul is going up on September 1st, I’m just going to consider it a September haul. I got most of these books at my local book fair, but I did end up getting one bargain book at Books-A-Million because they were having a sale. Chad and I bought most of the movies from one of our local pawn shops. I’m all about bargains and sales. It’s a bit of an obsession, but I love getting cheap books and movies. Anyway, here are the books and movies:

*All descriptions for books taken from Goodreads and all descriptions for movies taken from IMDb.

Falling Kingdoms – Morgan Rhodes
Genre – Young Adult/Fantasy

In the three kingdoms of Mytica, magic has long been forgotten. And while hard-won peace has reigned for centuries, a deadly unrest now simmers below the surface.

As the rulers of each kingdom grapple for power, the lives of their subjects are brutally transformed… and four key players, royals and rebels alike, find their fates forever intertwined. Cleo, Jonas, Lucia, and Magnus are caught in a dizzying world of treacherous betrayals, shocking murders, secret alliances, and even unforeseen love.

The only outcome that’s certain is that kingdoms will fall. Who will emerge triumphant when all they know has collapsed?

It’s the eve of war…. Choose your side.

Princess: Raised in pampered luxury, Cleo must now embark on a rough and treacherous journey into enemy territory in search of magic long thought extinct.

Rebel: Jonas, enraged at injustice, lashes out against the forces of oppression that have kept his country cruelly impoverished. To his shock, he finds himself the leader of a people’s revolution centuries in the making.

Sorceress: Lucia, adopted at birth into the royal family, discovers the truth about her past—and the supernatural legacy she is destined to wield.

Heir: Bred for aggression and trained to conquer, firstborn son Magnus begins to realise that the heart can be more lethal than the sword….

 

Rebel Belle – Rachel Hawkins
Genre – Young Adult/Fantasy

Harper Price, peerless Southern belle, was born ready for a Homecoming tiara. But after a strange run-in at the dance imbues her with incredible abilities, Harper’s destiny takes a turn for the seriously weird. She becomes a Paladin, one of an ancient line of guardians with agility, super strength and lethal fighting instincts.

Just when life can’t get any more disastrously crazy, Harper finds out who she’s charged to protect: David Stark, school reporter, subject of a mysterious prophecy and possibly Harper’s least favorite person. But things get complicated when Harper starts falling for him—and discovers that David’s own fate could very well be to destroy Earth.

With snappy banter, cotillion dresses, non-stop action and a touch of magic, this new young adult series from bestseller Rachel Hawkins is going to make y’all beg for more.

 

The Book of Spells – Kate Brian
Genre – Young Adult/Fantasy

The year is 1915 when sixteen-year-old Eliza Williams arrives at the Billings School for Girls in Easton, Connecticut. Her parents expect her to learn the qualities of a graceful, dutiful wife. But Eliza and her housemates have a dangerous secret: They’re witches. After finding a dusty, leather bound spell book, the Billings Girls form a secret coven. Bonded in sisterhood, they cast spells–cursing their headmistress with laryngitis, brewing potions to bolster their courage before dances, and conjuring beautiful dresses out of old rags. The girls taste freedom and power for the first time, but what starts out as innocent fun turns sinister when one of the spells has an unexpected-and deadly-consequence. Magic could bring Eliza everything she’s ever wanted…but it could also destroy everything she holds dear.

 

Red Glove – Holly Black
Genre – Young Adult/Fantasy

After rescuing his brothers from Zacharov’s retribution, Cassel is trying to reestablish some kind of normalcy in his life.

That was never going to be easy for someone from a worker family that’s tied to one of the big crime families—and whose mother’s cons get more reckless by the day. But Cassel is coming to terms with what it means to be a worker, and he’s figuring out how to have friends.

Except normal doesn’t last very long. Soon Cassel is being courted by both sides of the law and is forced to confront his past—a past he remembers only in scattered fragments, and one that could destroy his family and his future. Cassel will have to decide whose side he wants to be on, because neutrality is not an option. And then he will have to pull off his biggest con ever to survive….

 

Minders – Michele Jaffe
Genre – Young Adult/Science Fiction

A high concept, cinematic read with a surprising twist, MINDERS asks the question: who is really watching whom?

Q: If the boy you love commits a crime, would you turn him in?

Sadie Ames is a type-A teenager from the wealthy suburbs. She’s been accepted to the prestigious Mind Corps Fellowship program, where she’ll spend six weeks as an observer inside the head of Ford, a troubled boy with a passion for the crumbling architecture of the inner city. There’s just one problem: Sadie’s fallen in love with him.

Q: What if the crime is murder?

Ford Winters is haunted by the murder of his older brother, James. As Sadie falls deeper into his world, dazzled by the shimmering pinpricks of color that form images in his mind, she begins to think she knows him. Then Ford does something unthinkable.

Q: What if you saw it happen from inside his mind?

Back in her own body, Sadie is faced with the ultimate dilemma. With Ford’s life in her hands, she must decide what is right and what is wrong. And how well she can really ever know someone, even someone she loves.

 

The Name of the Star – Maureen Johnson
Genre – Young Adult/Mystery

The day Louisiana teenager Rory Deveaux arrives in London marks a memorable occasion. For Rory, it’s the start of a new life at a London boarding school. But for many, this will be remembered as the day a series of brutal murders broke out across the city, gruesome crimes mimicking the horrific Jack the Ripper events of more than a century ago.

Soon “Rippermania” takes hold of modern-day London, and the police are left with few leads and no witnesses. Except one. Rory spotted the man police believe to be the prime suspect. But she is the only one who saw him. Even her roommate, who was walking with her at the time, didn’t notice the mysterious man. So why can only Rory see him? And more urgently, why has Rory become his next target? In this edge-of-your-seat thriller, full of suspense, humor, and romance, Rory will learn the truth about the secret ghost police of London and discover her own shocking abilities.

 

21 Jump Street
Rating – R

A pair of underachieving cops are sent back to a local high school to blend in and bring down a synthetic drug ring.

Directors: Phil Lord, Christopher Miller

Writers: Michael Bacall (screenplay), Michael Bacall (story)

Stars: Jonah Hill, Channing Tatum, Ice Cube

 

 

Killers
Rating – PG-13

A vacationing woman meets her ideal man, leading to a swift marriage. Back at home, however, their idyllic life is upset when they discover their neighbors could be assassins who have been contracted to kill the couple.

Director: Robert Luketic

Writers: Bob DeRosa (screenplay), Ted Griffin (screenplay)

Stars: Katherine Heigl, Ashton Kutcher, Tom Selleck

 

 

Resident Evil: Degeneration
Rating – R

A warrior seeking revenge unleashes a deadly virus in Harvardville. Responding to the threat are former special forces members Leon S. Kennedy and Claire Redfield, who look to bring down a mutated monster before history repeats itself.

Director: Makoto Kamiya

Writer: Shotaro Suga (screenplay)

Stars: Paul Mercier, Alyson Court, Laura Bailey

 

The Great Gatsby
Rating – PG-13

A Midwestern war veteran finds himself drawn to the past and lifestyle of his millionaire neighbor.

Director: Baz Luhrmann

Writers: Baz Luhrmann (screenplay), Craig Pearce (screenplay)

Stars: Leonardo DiCaprio, Carey Mulligan, Joel Edgerton