Monday, August 31, 2015

A Music Post: In Which Ally is too Lazy to Write a Bookish Post Like She's Supposed to.

*gasps for breath*

After struggling to read that strenuous title, why don't you sit back, relax, and listen to this...

Phil Collins - Strangers Like Me

Thank you, Phil Collins. Thank you.

Josh Groban - Brave

*melts at Josh Groban's voice*

Kansas - Carry On My Wayward Son

Before you comment, no I've never seen Supernatural. But I LOVE Kansas.

Glad - Awesome God

When I need cheering up, I go to Glad. :D

Sara Bareilles - Cassiopeia 

You know you want to hit the replay button.

Regina Spektor - The Call

This song gives me FEELINGS.

Big Bad Daddy Voodoo - Jumpin' Jack

Thank goodness for the swing revival.

That is all. I was in a melodic mood. And I have been suuuppper busy with school. College is so time consuming :P. Anyway, I've never done YouTube videos like this, so I hope it all loads okay. 

So what are you listening to?

Friday, August 28, 2015

The Case of the Bygone Brother - Spotlight and Giveaway

About the Book

The Case of the Bygone Brother (An Alex O'Hara Novel) by Diane Burton
Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Kobo Books | Smashwords
Genre: Humorous Romantic Suspense
Release Date: October 29, 2014
Length: 281 Pages

Alex O’Hara finally gets a case that will give her bottom line a much needed boost. She might even be able to change her diet from ramen noodles to prime rib. All she has to do is track down a man who’s been missing for over ten years. Piece of cake . . . until an old flame arrives and a mugger roughs her up with orders to back off.

 Find the author, Diane Burton:

Read an Excerpt from The Case of the Bygone Brother:

She had trouble written all over her.

Like a scene out of The Maltese Falcon, a beautiful woman begs the P.I. for help. Shades of Sam Spade, with a slight difference. The elegantly-dressed woman pounding on my plate glass window was more than twenty years older than me and, even though my name is Alex O’Hara, I’m not male. But I am a PI —O’Hara & Palzetti, Confidential Investigations since 1965. Not that I’ve been around since 1965.

As soon as I unlocked the outer door, the woman burst through, a few maple leaves stuck to her Manolo’s. Frankly, I was surprised she wore only a sweater. She must have been freezing out there. In spite of the fact that it was mid-October, the temp had dipped that afternoon to the low forties. We might even get frost.

“Ms. O’Hara, thank God you’re still here. I was so afraid—” She broke off on a sob. Taking a small, white, lace-edged handkerchief out of her Louis Vitton purse, she dabbed at her eyes.

Now I’m not one to belittle a person’s worries. However, I thought she switched a little too quickly from imperious knocking to damsel in distress.

Damsel? Not quite. I pegged her around fifty-five, give or take a few years, and well-preserved. Even in her Manolo’s, she only came up to my chin. Next to her I felt like a hulking giant. Since I’m five-ten in my socks, I look down on most women. Despite her elaborate up-do, from my angle I could see her roots. A visit to her hairdresser might be in order. But I digress.

“What can I do for you?” I tried not to sneeze from her overpowering perfume. An oriental scent. Shalimar or Opium. I never knew which was which. I tried them on at the perfume counter at Macy’s. That’s the closest I’d ever get to wearing expensive perfumes.

“I need your help.” Her breathy voice reminded me of Marilyn. As in Monroe, not Manson.

Because Pop loved old movies, I became addicted to them. Just like I did with detective novels. I cut my teeth on Nancy Drew, moved on to the likes of Daphne duMaurier and P.D. James before graduating to Dashiell Hammett and Raymond Chandler. I watched Masterpiece Mystery on PBS and every movie Alfred Hitchcock made. In my teens, I watched reruns of Remington Steele. Once, I wore a fedora like Laura’s to work. The Pops laughed so hard I never did again.

I ushered the woman into my office with its mahogany paneling and closed the door. I held out my hand. “As you’ve guessed, I’m Alex O’Hara.” I looked at her expectantly.

She laid her hand in mine. I clasped hers firmly enough to reassure but gently enough not to crush the delicate bones beneath the cold skin.

“My name is Babette Rhodes. Babette Anslyn Rhodes.”

She perched on the visitor’s chair, her back finishing-school straight and knees pressed together. I took my place behind the desk in the big leather chair that had been Pop’s. While she twisted the handkerchief, I stacked the bookkeeping papers and tucked them into the top desk drawer. Once I placed a clean legal pad in front of me, I folded my hands on top ready for her story. A story that could solve my financial problems.

“Ms. O’Hara, I must ask you to keep what I am about to tell you in absolute confidence.”

“Of course.” Hadn’t she see the word confidential on the sign on the door?

“My brother is missing. I must find him.” 

Monday, August 24, 2015

Mini reviews: The Scarlet Pimpernel | Tarzan of the Apes | The Mark of Zorro

Classic, Swashbuckling Tales...

The Scarlet PimpernelThe Scarlet Pimpernel by Emmuska Orczy
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Set amid the events of The French Revolution, The Scarlet Pimpernel is a swashbuckling tale full of adventure, romance, and intrigue. England's daring hero, named for a "humble English wayside flower" (page 40) rebels against the Reign of Terror in France, saving countless people from the guillotine. But the French agent Chauvelin is determined to reveal The Scarlet Pimpernel's true identity and see him perish at the fate he has saved so many others from.

This novel was such good fun! I thought it was remarkable how the Scarlet Pimpernel and his league put themselves in danger by choice, to save innocent lives, when they could have simply let it be. These are really characters to root for. And it was so humorous sometimes, the things they did to evade the Frenchman.

It is fairly obvious who the hero of the novel is, although his identity isn't revealed until later on in the book. I won't spoil it, still. Marguerite, the narrator of most of the events, was a (mostly)passive but likeable and sympathetic main character. All in all, I very much enjoyed the story and the characters within it.

Tarzan of the Apes (Tarzan, #1)Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Tarzan. Everyone knows the tale of the man-ape. The orphan child who was adopted by animals. But most people are not familiar with more than what Disney tells us--with how the story originated with Edgar Rice Burroughs. In this adventurous tale, we learn how Tarzan came to be raised by apes, learn English, and become acquainted with the lovely Jane Porter.

Wow. I know it was to be expected, but this is a far cry from the story Disney told, and I couldn't be happier about that. This was an exciting story. And however much the events seemed unrealistic, unbelievable...I got so caught up in the story and found it so easy to suspend my disbelief. I'll applaud Burroughs for that, and for coming up with such a fun, original tale.

One more note: Most people hate cliffhangers. I absolutely love them. I love the anticipation(and even slight frustration) they can make you feel.

But that was a devious, DEVIOUS ending.

(Oh, another note: 23 SEQUELS. *dies*)

The Mark of ZorroThe Mark of Zorro by Johnston McCulley
My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

Like the famous Scarlet Pimpernel and Tarzan of the Apes, The Mark of Zorro has inspired countless films and spin-offs. In Old California, a corrupt government oppresses the common people. But not if their masked defender, Zorro, has anything to do about it.

Meal mush and goat's milk! That's it, I'm off to watch the movie. I adored this. Zorro was a champion, always brilliant(and maybe almost too perfect) but so easy to root for. This was a lively, adventurious, surprisingly romantic tale, and overall, very simplistic in its telling. I'd highly recommend this one in any case, but especially if you're trying to get into the classics. This would be a great start!

FYI: It is so much to read this book aloud. And I'm not in the habit of doing that.

View all my reviews

What do you think? Have you read any of these? (If you liked one, you'd probably like the others.) Are there any other classic adventure stories you'd like to recommend?

Friday, August 21, 2015

What to do when you're waiting for the sequel

I think we all know the times when we are happily reading a new found book series and finish all the books we have in a day.  Naturally the next step is to get the next book.  Except the next book has yet to come out.  Of course you're freaking out, your mind is racing with the plot, you NEED to know what happens but the book hasn't come out!  My natural response tends to be:

17 Problems Only Book Lovers Will Understand If you’re a self-proclaimed bookworm (or a bibliophile in denial), you can probably relate to these 17 problems.
 That's when a reader's dilemma happens(I am going to call it the EW dilemma, the Eternal Wait dilemma), you want to keep reading so you don't sit and theorize what will happen all day, but if you start another series then you'll get hooked on that one and won't have time to read the new book when it comes out, or worse:  you'll forget about the new book coming out.  I have had this dilemma many times, so I have decided to solve the problem.  But I'm not always good at that, so I have recruited Ally to help with the problem solving.  Together we have made a list of things to do when you are having this EW dilemma.
1. Cry.  And let your fellow book drunkards know about your issue.  We are here for you.  We understand
2. Reread the series.  I often do this while waiting not only because it refreshes my memory, but I also tend to catch little details that I didn't the first time.  

3. Find another series by the same author.  You can read that and have a new plot to think about, but you'll still be in the same area as the other book, and you'll know when it comes out.  

4. Read a standalone book.  One that isn't too long so you can still enjoy reading but you won't forget about your book series when the new book comes out.  Here's a list of some that Ally and I have made:
The Hiding Place by Corrie Ten Boom
Ella Enchanted
Where the Red Fern Grows
The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater
Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
There You'll Find Me by Jenny B. Jones
Entwined by Heather Dixon
Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys
The Forgotten Beasts of Eld by Patricia McKillip
Awakening Foster Kelly by Cara Rosalie Olsen

And when your book finally comes out:  Hide somewhere where no one will find you with chocolate and a kleenex box just in case it's a sad ending and have a fellow geek of the same book on speed dial so you can freak out together afterward.  Good luck.

Displaying Alison Signature.jpg

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Quotables: A. A. Milne, Author of Winnie the Pooh

I've never read anything by A. A. Milne, but I do know that he is the author of the famous Winnie the Pooh books. And I envy his sense of humor. Here are some of my favorite quotes from the man himself.

“[A] quotation is a handy thing to have about, saving one the trouble of thinking for oneself, always a laborious business." 
A.A. Milne, If I May

“Some people care too much. I think it's called love.”
A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

“Weeds are flowers, too, once you get to know them.”
A.A. Milne

“It is more fun to talk with someone who doesn't use long, difficult words but rather short, easy words like "What about lunch?”
A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

“How do you spell 'love'?" - Piglet
"You don't spell feel it." - Pooh”
A.A. Milne

“People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.”
A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh      

“One of the advantages of being disorganized is that one is always having surprising discoveries.”
A.A. Milne

“Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.”
A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh      

“Oh Tigger, where are your manners?"

"I don’t know, but I bet they’re having more fun than I am.”
A.A. Milne

“What I like doing best is Nothing."

"How do you do Nothing," asked Pooh after he had wondered for a long time.

"Well, it's when people call out at you just as you're going off to do it, 'What are you going to do, Christopher Robin?' and you say, 'Oh, Nothing,' and then you go and do it.

It means just going along, listening to all the things you can't hear, and not bothering."

"Oh!" said Pooh.”  
A.A. Milne

“What day is it?"
It's today," squeaked Piglet.
My favorite day," said Pooh.”
A.A. Milne

“If the person you are talking to doesn't appear to be listening, be patient. It may simply be that he has a small piece of fluff in his ear.”
A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh      

“Did you ever stop to think, and forget to start again?”
A.A. Milne

“It's snowing still," said Eeyore gloomily.
"So it is."
"And freezing."
"Is it?"
"Yes," said Eeyore. "However," he said, brightening up a little, "we haven't had an earthquake lately.”
A.A. Milne

“When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.”
A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh

“The old grey donkey, Eeyore stood by himself in a thistly corner of the Forest, his front feet well apart, his head on one side, and thought about things. Sometimes he thought sadly to himself, "Why?" and sometimes he thought, "Wherefore?" and sometimes he thought, "Inasmuch as which?" and sometimes he didn't quite know what he was thinking about.”
A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh      

“Supposing a tree fell down, Pooh, when we were underneath it?'
'Supposing it didn't,' said Pooh after careful thought.
Piglet was comforted by this.”
A.A. Milne

“If possible, try to find a way to come downstairs that doesn't involve going bump, bump, bump, on the back of your head.”
A.A. Milne, Pooh's Little Instruction Book      

Has anyone read Winnie the Pooh? What's your favorite quote from the above?

Read other Quotables:
- Roald Dahl

Monday, August 17, 2015

Review: Where the Wild Rose Blooms by Lori Wick

My rating: 2.5 of 5 stars 
Genres: Christian; Historical; Romance
Pages: 348

Where the Wild Rose Blooms (Rocky Mountain Memories #1)
 Goodreads Description:

In the high mountains of Colorado, Clayton Taggart dreams of the day when he can leave the rough life of a mine surveyor to become a teacher. In the midst of his plans, he meets Jackie Fontaine, a newcomer from the East whose strong willed spirit causes friction from the start. At first Clay gains more pleasure out of teasing Jackie than wooing her. Just as the spark of love ignites, tragedy strikes, leaving Jackie with a secret so terrible she would rather lose Clay than share it with him. Can anything draw Jackie from her self-imposed exile and open the shutters of her blinded heart? Lori Wick at her best...a tender love story set in the exciting early West--a book you won't be able to put down!

I'm more than a little disappointed. 2.5 stars? This is coming from the girl who devoured every single one of Lori Wick's books at the age of 13. I loooovvvvved this book four years ago. But my, how tastes change.
This was a so-so book. I liked the romance(no insta-love in this story!). The relationship between Jackie and Clay took time to develop, and I thought it was really sweet. I also really liked that there was a blind character. You don't see too much of that in fiction, and I thought it was handled pretty well.
A few things bothered me, though. The preachiness, for instance. Now, this IS Lori Wick, and I've come to expect a couple of sermons placed here and there, but it does get tiresome.
I also can't say I was a fan of the multiple points of view. I'd say this was written in third person omniscient, and I just don't think that's how Ms. Wick should have approached writing this. The POV would jump from one character to another, and back to the previous character in just a couple of paragraphs. It was distracting, and a lot of times, unnecessary.
I don't want to end this review on a harsh note, though. Overall, it was a sweet story--easy to swallow. I rounded up the rating--for sentimental reasons.
If you want to try something by this author, I recommend The Kensington Chronicles. They remain my favorite of her works.

Friday, August 14, 2015

7 Ways Book Bloggers Can Effectively Utilize Goodreads

I ascribed this post as a guide for book bloggers, but you can take it however you want. This could also partly serve as a general guide to Goodreads, if you're curious about the site.

What Goodreads is all About:

In its own words,
"Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers and book recommendations. See what your friends are reading, organize what you've read, list your favorite books, discuss literature, form groups, and connect with other readers."
Summed up in a few words, Goodreads is this: Social media for book lovers. Sounds awesome, right?

You might be saying, "that's all well and good, but how can Goodreads help me promote my blog?"

I'll tell you.

It's Not All About Self Promotion:

But before you get savvy with the site and start leaving links to your blog left and right, remember this: it's not all about self promotion.

When I started using Goodreads I didn't even have a book blog. I just wanted to be a part of everything that Goodreads promoted. I joined groups; I organized my bookshelves; I kept track of everything I read; I participated in discussions. It was always an enjoyable experience for me, and that is what it should be for you. Don't make it chore--because often promotion can be just that.

Keep in mind that Goodreads is social media, and that means interacting with other people(NOT spamming). But trying to promote your blog is NOT a bad thing as long you don't overdo it and start to annoy other users.

How Goodreads Can Help Book Bloggers:

  • Add friends--especially other bloggers. This is how you make connections. But please, don't just friend people at random. And don't send that request just because you want their follow. I get this on Twitter ALL the time. And then I get unfollowed because I didn't follow back. (Sheesh, you guys. Only follow/friend people you have a genuine interest in). Friend people you like and if they don't accept your request, interact with them anyway. If you friend someone, that means you're following them whether or not they accept your request. If you find you have something to say, comment on the reviews and statuses of these people. Make people remember you. Eventually they might become more interested in your friendship, in what you have to say, in your blog..... But don't get upset if you get ignored. Some people have a bazillion GR friends and can't pay attention to all of their adoring followers. (I have found loads of other amazing book bloggers through Goodreads. I really believe that interacting with these lovely people through GR helped me to better connect with the book blogging community as a whole. )

via flickr

  • Join a group. Did you know there are some groups specifically for book bloggers? Click on the "groups" link and search "book bloggers." Or check out my own group, Bloggers Discuss. Joining groups like this can be a great way to gain recognition for your blog. Share the link to your blog in the group. Visit the blogs of other bloggers in the group and let them know you found them through a GR group you're both a part of. They may return the favor and visit your blog as well.

  • Be active. Update your status, post reviews. Also, like other reviews and comment on other people's statuses. It's not all about you. Goodreads is a reading COMMUNITY. If you don't embrace the community, the community won't embrace you.

  • Interact with authors. I don't mean harass them. Don't message them everyday. But follow your favorite authors. Even send them friend requests with a friendly, polite message. Leave thoughtful comments on their blog posts and reviews. Remember to stay polite and professional. These interactions may open up future possibilities of collaborating with different authors on your blog.                                                                                                    
  • **note: If you do request a guest post or interview of an author, I suggest you do that by      emailing them. An email is considered to be more professional, but you can remind them of your connection through Goodreads!

  • Leave your blog link in your bio. First, you must write a bio!! Don't just leave it blank. People do actually read these things, you know. There is a designated place for you to leave your site's link in your profile, but it doesn't hurt to leave it in your 'about me' section either.

  • Leave your link in reviews. I'm not going to tell you whether you should put your full review or just a few short sentences with a link to your full review. That's entirely your decision. But either way, you should have a link to where you originally posted your review on your blog.

  • Utilize the tools it provides. Did you know you can blog your Goodreads reviews? Just by going to your review on the site, copying the html, and pasting it into your post, you get your review--with a link to the book and author profiles on GR, a link to your GR review, and a link that will direct your readers to ALL of your Goodreads reviews. Now, you may have a system that works for you already, but I love this feature!

I've said it before, but I'll say it again. DO NOT SPAM. Don't flood your status updates with links to all your different blog posts. It's okay to leave a link in your general status updates on occasion, but people will get annoyed.
Because I want to help you grow your blog audience(and I myself try to utilize Goodreads for this) I hope you found this post helpful.

Truthfully, I do most of my interactions on social media on Goodreads because it's great for getting involved in discussions and making people remember you. You're still more likely to get better traffic from Twitter, Pinterest, and Facebook...but don't think investing in Goodreads is a waste of time.

Just remember, the most important thing is to have fun. ;) Goodreads is awesome. And if you aren't registered yet I hope you'll decide it's worth your while.

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy Review

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, #1)
My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Genres: Science Fiction, Humor, Adventure

        This story begins on Earth a few minutes before the Earth is to be destroyed.  No, this story is not about the people who save it.  In fact, the Earth isn't saved.  It's destroyed by Vogons, a terrible race of aliens Even though the Earth has been destroyed, there is one survivor: Arthur Dent.  Saved from the destruction of Earth by his friend Ford Prefect, only to be taken captive by the Vogons.  On the other end of the story, Zaphod Beeblebrox, President of the galaxy, steals the most technologically advanced and perhaps the most impossible ship ever.  It also runs on improbability.  So, Zaphod runs off in this ship with a depressed robot and his human girlfriend who had escaped the Earth months ago.  Along their way to find the most impossible planet in the universe, Zaphod and his crew pick up Arthur and Ford, and together they race against police and Vogons as they discover things about mice, dolphins, themselves, and places they have called home.  Not to mention they discover the answer to life, the universe, and everything.  No spoilers.      

I picked up this book mostly because it was a science fiction classic and I felt the need to read it so I would be properly versed in the area of scifi novels.  When I first started reading it, I wasn't sure how I felt about the style of writing.  It was very technical in my opinion, and so different from the things I was used to reading.  I quickly warmed up to it though, when I realized how much it helped connect different areas of the story.  Throughout the book I was intrigued with the story.  I never got tired of the plot but there were a few spots where it got kind of slow and took more effort to read through.  I was almost angry because of how often they didn't lose when they should have only because of some completely improbable thing, but Adams played it off in a way that made it acceptable.  Overall, I enjoyed this book enough to know that I will read the next one, and will probably read it again one day.

This book was mostly clean.  I remember about three times when someone cursed.  There was also some talk of evolution and something that disproved God, but the reasoning behind the disproving of God was really far out.  It was actually very silly.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Review: The Heir by Kiera Cass

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Genres: Young Adult; Romance; Dystopian

Pages: 342

Goodreads Description:

Twenty years ago, America Singer entered the Selection and won Prince Maxon’s heart. Now the time has come for Princess Eadlyn to hold a Selection of her own. Eadlyn doesn’t expect her Selection to be anything like her parents’ fairy-tale love story. But as the competition begins, she may discover that finding her own happily ever after isn’t as impossible as she always thought.

My review:

I promised that my full review would be less...nonsensical...than I previously wrote on Goodreads. So, here goes.
I liked this book. More than the Selection, maybe.
In case you've been in the dark about this whole "Selection" thing, let me fill you in a bit. The Selection was created to help the future king find his queen. 35 girls are chosen from throughout Ilea to come live at the palace and compete for the prince's affections. By the end of the competition, one of the girls should have a ring on her finger. I don't know if you've seen The Bachelor or The Bachelorette(I haven't) but The Selection has been likened to those shows.

This is my copy of The Selection! My friend gave it to me as a gift
with the admonition that I had better love it! Lol! I did!

But there is one difference between the competition in The Heir and the previous Selections. This time, it is the future queen looking for someone to rule beside her. Enter Eadlyn: Crown princess and royal pain in the neck. I kid you not.

Eadlyn is Maxon's and America's daughter, and one of the reasons I was so wary to read this book. I have heard endless complaints from different reviews, stating how Eadlyn was a spoiled brat; she wasn't fair to anyone; basically, she's unbearable. And after reading, I some extent.

Eadlyn was selfish at times. And oblivious. And unfair. And yet, I kind of loved her. She made the perfect anti-hero, in my opinion. A flawed and unlikely heroine, but ultimately someone to root for, who goes through tons of development by the end of the story. And, you gotta admit, she had a lot of pressure placed upon her. Being crown princess, for one--tough job ahead of her, I'd say--and having to choose a husband she didn't want in the first place. So yeah, I didn't always like the ways she dealt with matters, but it did seem to me(for the most part) that she dealt with them realistically.

But back to the Selection. I only have one huge complaint about this book--I didn't like the premise. I didn't like how this novel was built upon Maxon's and America's decision to make Eadlyn have her own Selection. I thought they would be completely against the process! I mean, seriously? Subjecting 35 boys to such a silly, demeaning game? It seemed unfathomable to me, because America had been through that. Sure, she got the guy, but that does not make the competition the more respectable. That was, for the most part, why I docked a star from my rating. Still, even though I had reservations in the beginning because of this, I like how Cass executed the rest of the story.
The plot was mostly romance-centered and more emphasis was put on the characters, especially Eadlyn, of course. I really enjoyed seeing her growth as a character. I loved her determination, her insistence that she didn't need a man. But what's more, I enjoyed watching her come to the realization that she could be strong female leader and that having a man rule by her side would not diminish her value.

And okay, I admit, I am super anxious to see who she chooses. (I'm pulling for Erik!). Personally, I didn't buy Eadlyn's and Kile's relationship. What they experienced wasn't love--it was lust. Yeah, I wasn't a fan.

In short, Eadlyn's story was a sweet one, about finding herself and finding her true love. It left me a tad frustrated, but kept me completely engaged.
(Side note(highlight to see spoilers): If it doesn't work out with Erik, I'm holding out hope that Henri is going to pull a "Kris" and it turns out he can speak English and has a better understanding of all the politics than he lets on. But that he still really does love Eadlyn, because, come on. They're adorable. Stupid language barriers. And yeah, yeah. I know it's a long shot.)
If you enjoyed America's story at all, then I highly recommend reading The Heir!
Content: Mild innuendo. But overall a sweet, clean read.

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

The Mustache Blog Tag

And I will answers them! The Glitter Aficionado tagged me to do the Mustache Blog Tag, and so I will. (Even though I generally think mustaches are weird.)
Although.... take a look at this beautiful monstrosity....

Source. It's glorious.
Ok. Here we go!

Four Movies I've Watched More Than Once:
Pirates of the Caribbean.
The Sound of Music.
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban(actually, all of the HP movies, but this one the most!)
Oh. Right! Sorry, Vizzini. Can The Princess Bride get an honorable mention?

Four Books I Would Recommend:
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson
Anne of Green Gables by L.M. Montgomery

Look at this beautiful Night Circus book sculpture! Via wetcanvas.
Four Places I've Visited:
Mount Rushmore in South Dakota
Smokies in Tennessee
Iowa - to visit family
Mississippi - to go to camp

Yeah, I've never been out of the U.S....

Four places I wish I was at right now:
The Neuschwanstein Castle in Germany
Venice, Italy
Monet's Garden in Giverny, France
Or, on a plane going to one of these places.

It's like a fairy tale!

Excuse me while I go DROOL.

Four TV shows I Enjoy:
Doctor Who
Scarecrow and Mrs. King
Gilmore Girls. There's nothing funnier.

Four Foods I Like:
Cookie dough
(By which I mean, AMERICAN Chinese food. Not that authentic stuff. Blech).
Asparagus. Yum.

I tag whoever wants to do this :) The rest of you, let me know your dream vacation spot in the comments!

Monday, August 3, 2015

Paralyzed Dreams by C.B. Cook

Genres: Christian; Young Adult; Contemporary
Pages: 55

Paralyzed Dreams
Goodreads Description

She lost everything she’d ever dreamed of.

Fourteen-year-old Pam Wilson's life is going perfectly. She and her best friend, Lauren, are becoming an amazing volleyball duo, and her dreams of playing in the Olympics are coming along wonderfully. Then a car accident paralyzes Pam from the waist down, and her dreams for her life are shattered. No more volleyball, no more walking, no more future. The only thing she has left is her faith in God… if she would only turn there.

This was a sweet novella, and I'm glad I got the chance to read it. Pam's was an inspiring story. A girl--who has everything going for her, it seems--loses her ability to walk. And her dreams are shattered.
It was easy to sympathize with Pam's hurt. The feeling that she'd lost her identity was hard for her to overcome, but I love how her friends didn't give up on her, even though she was very hard to be around.
Her feelings and reactions after the incident felt realistic to me, although I did think the end was a bit rushed. It seemed everything was resolved too quickly, although I did like the theme about turning to God in times of trouble.
I would recommend this to anyone looking for a quick, inspirational read.
Content: Clean!
**I received a complimentary copy of this novella from the author in exchange for my honest review.