Monthly Archives: November 2015

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

It’s Monday! is a weekly meme now hosted over at Book Date that allows bloggers to post a sort of wrap-up of the past week while also looking to the week ahead. Without further ado…

Last Two Weeks: It’s been a while since I last checked in! As the holidays approach, life is getting busier and busier. Most recently, I celebrated the Thanksgiving holiday with my family and friends. We had a small roommate dinner earlier in the week, then we each went our separate ways to be with our families. My family dinner was surprisingly low-key and not dramatic at all. I don’t go Black Friday shopping, so I spent the day watching Hallmark movies with my grandma. Why are those darn movies so addictive and heart-warming?? After coming back to Lexington, I mostly just sat around and read.

With things slowing down a bit for the break, I’ve had a lot of great reading time. I’ve been cranking through books at a faster pace than normal; I’ve marked quite a few off my “series in progress” list in addition to finishing a couple of books I had borrowed. And I only have 2 books out from the library. Quite an improvement, if I do say so myself! Here’s what I’ve gotten through in the last two weeks.

Posts:

   

  

  

Currently Reading:

  • Soul Screamers, Volume 1 – Rachel Vincent

Soul Screamers Vol. 1: My Soul to Lose • My Soul to Take • My Soul to Save

Looking Ahead: I’ve officially decided to take a blogging break during the month of December. Yes, the entire month. I’ve been finding myself in a strange mood lately, where my motivation is at an absolute zero. I would rather be reading or gaming or hanging with friends than blogging or working or taking care of adult responsibilities. So I’m giving myself a break. A break to read whatever I want, do whatever I want, let go of obligations. I’ll still plan my reading to a degree, because that’s just an intrinsic part of me, but I don’t want to read anything because I “have to”. Does that make sense? I’ll still follow along with you all and keep up with your blogs, but I just need a break from my own.

That being said, during my break I really just want to catch up on some series I’ve been trying to get through for a while. Other than that, who knows? Here are just a few things I’m looking forward to during December.

Mortal Heart (His Fair Assassin, #3) The Witches: Salem, 1692 The Library at Mount Char

Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End Thirteen Guests: A British Library Crime Classic The Z Murders: A British Library Crime Classic

The First Discworld Novels the Colour of Magic and the Light Fantastic The Amber Spyglass (His Dark Materials, #3) Blameless (Parasol Protectorate, #3)

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Review – Chickadees, Bumbelbeez, Pussy Willow Trees and Two-And-A-Half

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Hi there! Just dropping in briefly for a final review before I take a month-long blogging break in December to gather my wits and some such. Thanks to Book Publicity Services for the book!

For length purposes, I’m going to call the book Chickadees, hope that’s ok with you all. Anyway, Chickadees is the story of a small brown monkey, a gray cat, and a pelican, all of whom wonder if there is more to the world than eating bananas, drinking milk, and flying in formation, respectively. So with encouragement from family and friends, they each save enough money to travel to Chickadee Island, a small island somewhere off the coast of Honolulu. They want to explore, learn new languages, make new friends, and see how Chickadee Island is different from their own cultures. They all meet up on the island and become fast friends, going on adventures, playing in the ocean, riding wild mustangs, and finally meeting the elusive chickadees that sing in the pussy willow trees.

For starters, the book itself is pretty gorgeous. In hardcover, the book is sturdy and the colors are bright. I love the artwork and the size of the book. The story is a bit long, especially for parents of children who want the same story read to them time and time again. But the story sounded like a homespun story to a degree, which I loved.

I also really loved that the monkey, cat, and pelican were encouraged to travel, learn, and be independent by their parents and friends. That’s something that we don’t see a lot in this age of helicopter parenting. It was refreshing to see the monkey’s parents telling him to earn enough money to travel, then letting him choose his own destination and travel alone.

The book focuses on a lot of these values. For instance, exploration is encouraged throughout the book, as well as a curiosity for learning. The values of friendship were also touched on quite a lot, but never in an obvious “this is the moral of the story” way. Instead, the creatures learn each of these things subtly throughout their journeys and come away the better for it.

Overall, while I think the book is a bit long, the story itself takes precedence and does deliver what is promised on the cover – “a children’s book of adventure.” I think kids and parents alike will enjoy the story.

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Nonfiction November – I Am Malala Discussion

Nonfiction November 2015

I’m super excited to be participating in Nonfiction November again this year. Last year, I read some great books that I would have otherwise never picked up, so I’m thankful that this event exists to expand my knowledge base. Week 2 is hosted by Katie over at Doing Dewey, where we are discussing this year’s official read-along book, I am Malala.

What did you think of the tone and style in which I Am Malala was written?

I wasn’t a huge fan, to be honest. You can definitely see Malala’s voice coming through, and it’s definitely the sort of writing one would expect from a teenager. Lots of rambling thoughts and some disjointed paragraphs. Not necessarily bad, just not my style.

What did you think of the political commentary in the book?

I enjoyed the political commentary – I’ve read several things lately that have helped to educate me as to the true nature of American politics. More and more I’m finding myself outraged at how we think we can play God with many of the world’s countries. Setting up regimes that depend on us, maneuvering trade deals that are favorable towards us, interfering in other countries against the will of their populations. I think it is despicable when political motivations take precedence over human rights and dignities.

Did anything particularly surprise you about Malala’s daily life or culture?

I was a little bit astonished at how they lack some of what we would call the basic necessities of life in some cases (running water, electricity), but have access to thoroughly modern and American products. It’s an interesting juxtaposition.

Do you think you would act similarly to Malala in her situation? If you were her parents, would you let her continue to be an activist despite possible danger?

I hope I would make a similar stand. And as a parent, I’m not sure. I hope that I would be willing to make those sacrifices and teach those lessons, but at the same time, I would be worried about the very real dangers.

What did you think of the book overall?

It wasn’t my favorite book ever, but I believe that it is undeniably important. I believe that stories like this one must be told. We all have a story and we all have a role to play – building each other up and getting behind worth causes is a great way to change the world! So in that aspect, this book is very appealing and very important.

 

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