Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Armchair BEA Day III

Hi everyone!  This year I am excited to be participating in Armchair BEAwhich is a virtual version of BEA (Book Expo America), designed for book bloggers who, for some reason or another, are unable to attend the actual BEA.  

Today's Topics are as follows:

Expanding Blogging Horizons:

I think expanding blogging horizons means to me the possibility of moving from Blogger to Wordpress.  I've heard lots of positive stories and may make the final change later this summer, but I'm not fully convinced.  I need to contemplate it some more.
In a smaller sense, I think that Expanding my Blogging Horizons is as simple as trying out a new feature, changing the layout, trying different styles of reviews or even just following different kinds of blogs.  I love watching other people's vlogs but I don't think that that is the medium for me (I'm not to fond of my voice on camera), but that's okay, because I have a pretty good niche here! :)

Short Stories/Novellas:

I love short stories.  I think that they give a sense of an author's style without totally revealing their talent for character and plot development, but it is a good taste when your looking around for something new to read.  I also think that they teach writers to learn to cut out the unneeded things and get to the point, no short story is the length of a novel, because then it becomes a novel.  Haha.  Short stories are more forward and have a different pace than novels, which is a fun treat.

Novellas are sort of my enemy.  Okay, that's a little strong, but it's all rooted in the fact that I don't have an e-reader.  I have nothing against e-readers, or people that use them.  I think that they are a great way to get more people reading, and they are convenient for some people.  However, often times Novellas are only released as e-books, so I'm sitting here loving a series and dying for the sequel, but am unable to get a little bit in between because of how I prefer to read my own books.  Now, often times novellas will be grouped together and published as an "anthology" of sorts of novellas for the series, or the novella will be printed in the back of a paperback or new printing of a book, which is fine and dandy with me, because then I have access to them.  I think that I would enjoy novellas more if they weren't so hard to get, or at least were on easier terms.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Armchair BEA Day II

Hi everyone!  This year I am excited to be participating in Armchair BEA which is a virtual version of BEA (Book Expo America), designed for book bloggers who, for some reason or another, are unable to attend the actual BEA.  

Today's topics are as follows:

Author Interaction:

I think that my first glimpse at author interaction was as a kid watching interviews of some of my favorite authors online.  Next I think was even discovering their websites, which is where I first came to realize that I could CONTACT these authors.

When I was twelve I emailed my favorite author at the time, Jaclyn Moriarty.  The email mainly focused on my love for a certain book in the series, and low and behold, a couple weeks later she emailed me back!!!!  She was incredibly excited to know that that particular book was my favorite, because so many people have a hard time relating to the protagonist.  I just about died because she even acknowledged me!!

Although, I have numerous signed books, I haven't actually been to that many book signings.  However, this year I got to meet Marissa Meyer, (The Lunar Chronicles) and while at first we chatted via email we eventually go to meet in person and it was sooooo wonderful!  She was the most genuine person and it was so cool to see her innocent excitement about her books.

Just yesterday I tweeted Katherine Ewell about being excited and spooked after finishing her novel Dear Killer, and later she favorited the tweet.  I almost died.  I guess that's not a big deal to some people, but haha, to meeee…

More Than Just Words:

I'm pretty sure that the target of this prompt was to talk about graphic novels and comics, and while yes, I am a huge fan of both of those things and think that they should be more widespread in YA lit, I'm going to take this in a different direction and talk about music.  

Yes, I know music.  When I listen to a song, and as I think many of you would agree, it's usually to catchy beat, or tone of the music that grabs your first.  I often find that after listening to a song a lot, after looking up the lyrics I appreciate it more.  I almost consider the music the hook to a song, and then the words are the actual content.  Not to say that I don't appreciate songs without words, because I think that they are perfectly refreshing and often times help me focus.

Anyway, I'd like to think that songs are more than just the lyrics.  The lyrics are the poetry, but the music, the ebb and flow of the song, is what really makes it magical.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Armchair BEA

Hi everyone!  This year I am excited to be participating in Armchair BEA, which is a virtual version of BEA (Book Expo America), designed for book bloggers who, for some reason or another, are unable to attend the actual BEA.  
Anyway, today is the introduction day, so here goes nothing! :)

Who am I?  Wow, that is certainly a big question.  I would have to say that I am a teenage insomniac who loves words with a passion, feels music in her fingers, and has art stained into her soul.  
That sounded a little poetic, no?  But yeah, I guess that's who I am.
I've been blogging for roughly 3 and a half years!  *Yay*  I got into blogging because I was like, why not?  Haha, the real story is that my family had been listening to my ramblings for my entire life and the internet was this big large thing that I was excited to be a part of.  I'm blogging from my bed, in my room with my cats and my books in a little town by the ocean.

"I always wonder about raindrops.  I wonder about how they're always falling down, tripping over their own feet, breaking their legs and forgetting their parachutes as they tumble right out of the sky toward an uncertain end.  It's like someone is emptying their pockets over the earth and doesn't seem to care where the contents fall, doesn't seem to care that the raindrops burst when they hit the ground, that they shatter when they fall to the floor, that people curse the days that the drops dare to tap on their doors.  I am a raindrop.  My parents emptied their pockets of me and left to evaporate on a concrete slab." Shatter Me by Tajerej Mafi (Pg. 5)


I would bring The Murder of Bindy Mackenzie by Jacyln Moriarty because Bindy Mackenzie is my favorite character of all time, (besides Sirius Black) and I would love her company.  I would bring The Book Thief by Markus Zusak because it is beautiful and would remind me of my humanity when I'm alone.  Lastly, I would bring Harry Potter and The Goblet of Fire by J. K. Rowling because it is my favorite Harry Potter book and I would give me the most comfort.

My three non-bookish items would be my journal + writing utensil (I think that this can count as one) because I would want to record my island adventures, fooooooooooooood because duh, and my glasses so that I won't be blind.

My blog is a glimpse into my head through books, writing, pictures, and poetry.


This is my favorite Paranormal YA book ever!!!


I love this book so much!  It changed my view on YA fantasy and Fantasy in general forever.

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Mini Reviews: Spring 2014

Mini Reviews:

So there are a couple of books that I've read lately and I thought that I share my ratting and little one sentence opinion on them!  Just to give a little taste about what I thought.  If you want to discuss one of these books further, just shoot me an email! Check out my about me page for more info.

And We Stay
Jenny Hubbard
The poetry in this book is adorable!  I loved this book.

Perfect Ruin
Lauren Destefano
I devoured this book in one sitting because it was absolutely amazing!  A new favorite!

The Eye of Minds
James Dashner
This book was really interesting.  I don't read a lot of books about video games, but this impressed me.

To All the Boys I've Loved Before
 Jenny Han
This book was so cute and so well written!  A diverse protagonist bonus!!

Marissa Meyer
Marissa was as perfect as always.  How am I ever going to wait until Winter?

Lauren Oliver
I can't even describe how upset I was about this book.  I was so excited, but then so disappointed.  The characters were poorly written and flimsy.  The concept/plot was bad and poorly executed.  Not Lauren Oliver's finest hour.

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Unraveling: Creepy Sci-Fy Thriller

Title: Unraveling
Series: Unraveling #1
Author: Elizabeth Norris
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: April 24th, 2012
Format: Paperback
Genre: YA; Romance; Sci-Fy, Thriller,
Rating: ✎✎✎✎


Sixteen-year-old Janelle Tenner is used to having a lot of responsibility. She balances working as a lifeguard in San Diego with an intense academic schedule. Janelle's mother is bipolar, and her dad is a workaholic FBI agent, which means Janelle also has to look out for her younger brother, Jared.

And that was before she died... and is brought back to life by Ben Michaels, a mysterious, alluring loner from her high school. When she discovers a strange clock that seems to be counting down to the earth's destruction, Janelle learns she has twenty-four days to figure out how to stop the clock and save the planet.

My Thoughts and Reflection:

I won a signed copy of Unraveling a while ago, but as per usual never got around to reading it.  I made a vow a couple of weeks ago to not go to the library until I'd put at least a semi reasonable dent in the books I own but haven't read yet.  I've done pretty well, except as you know have since contributed to the books I own but haven't read yet pile (Powell's Extravaganza).  Anyway, so I went into Unraveling pretty much blind.  I'd seen it floating around the blogsphere since before it's release, but hadn't even read the blurb.

We open the book with a completely irrelevant quote from Robert Frost.  And from is most widely known poem too.  I'm not even going to go into the details about how I feel about this.  I think that you get my drift.  So, moving on, page one.  A clock at the top reads 24:00:14:32.  It's obviously a countdown.  (A little side note, I really liked how the numbers faded from left to right, signifying the movement of time, I assume).  We're already not off to the best of feet (foots?) but then it just gets worse.  The first sentence is about a guy.

Maybe I'm picky, but when I start a story, yeah I want to know about the situation that our characters is currently in, but mostly I want to know about them.  How they are feeling, what they are thinking about.  Anyway, I have to sit through several painful pages where our protagonist Janelle goes on and on about his guy Nick.  Quickly, that scene ends and move onto the scene where Janelle, our protagonist dies.  Then she wakes up.  Now the fun begins.

After the painful beginning the book moved at an exciting pace.  Janelle's interesting family dynamic, (although just the tiniest bit cliché) is introduced.  FBI dad, bipolar mom, younger brother that she practically has to raise.  All of that aside, the addition of the neighbor best friend Alex the colleague of her dad who practically lives with them were nice touches.  Thankfully, Janelle moves on from the weirdo and pretty much unnecessary character Nick.  Janelle is much more focused on on the guy that she is pretty sure brought her back to life.

After a while though, the book just starts to get weird.  The concept of the alternate realities and the radiation poisoning doesn't fit together like this magic puzzle as I assume Elizabeth Norris imagined.  The ended was downright bizarre.  So many unneeded things happened, and the last few pages felt over crowded.

Despite how much the plot and other details irked me, I was really fond of the way that Elizabeth Norris portrayed all of her characters.  They all felt so real to me, and it was fun to see how balanced the secondary characters were too.  Ben and his crew of friends were my favorites!  Their friendship dynamic reminded me a little of Gansey and his crew from The Raven Cycle series by Maggie Stievfater.  The romance in this book wasn't completely absent, but it didn't over take the story either.  It wasn't quite as balanced as it should/could have been, but it was ok.
Janelle isn't the normal heroine that we see so often in YA.  She was flawed, she was human, and she worked with other people to meet her goals.  I hadn't realized it before, but there isn't lot of team work in all of our dystopias and other YA books. Interesting…

My favorite relationship was the friendship that Janelle had with her neighbor Alex.  It was so refreshing to have a guy-girl friendship so strongly presented in a book where there is zero mention of romance between them.  I kept waiting for a love triangle, but it never came.  Thank god.

There were a lot of things that irked me about this book, but all of that aside, I was really impressed with Elizabeth Norris's characters, and probably will be perusing the sequel.

Dust Jacket Ramblings:

I don't even think that you should get me started on how much I dislike this cover.  It almost prevented me from picking it up.  The models are wayyyyy to cliché and NOTHING like the characters described in the book.  The font is cool and I like the numbers in the background.  I'm not usually a fan of models on book covers, and this book is one of the examples of why.  I do believe that models on book covers can work well, but this is NOT the way to do it!  It summarizes pretty much zero of the story except that there is a girl and a guy in it.  There are a slew more of important characters. Ugh it just is so frustrating! Okay, I'll stop now.