Tuesday, March 31, 2009

My March Books

March Books
Total books read: 20
New Authors: 6
Books in a Series: 14
Mystery: 1
Non-Fiction: 0
Romance: 3-ish
Children or YA Fiction: 14

Deep Dish by Mary Kay Andrews
Theater Shoes by Noel Streatfeild
Marked by P.C. & Kristin Cast
The Winged Colt of Casa Mia by Betsy Byars
Personal Demon by Kelley Armstrong
The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong
A Year Down Yonder by Richard Peck
My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George
Rabbit Hill by Robert Lawson
Bone Crossed by Patricia Briggs
Coraline by Neil Gaiman
Charlotte's Web by E.B. White
The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan
Titan's Curse by Rick Riordan
Exit Strategy by Kelley Armstrong
Wondrous Strange by Lesley Livingston
Ballet Shoes by Noel Streatfeild
One False Note by Gordon Korman (39 Clues)
Dark Harvest by Lynda Hilburn
Dead Girls are Easy by Terri Garey

Monday, March 30, 2009

Lady T's Guest Post on Alice

Hey guys, I talk about Lady T from Living Read Girl all the time so after writing up my review for Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass, I asked her to do a guest post here and she agreed! Isn’t she awesome? It’s one of my favorite types of articles she does at her own blog so I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.


Alice in Wonderland, along with its sequel, Thru The Looking Glass, is one of the sturdier cornerstones of children's fantasy literature. Tons of film adaptations (both big screen and small) have entranced generations for decades and yet, the real influence of Lewis Carroll's bizarre tale goes far beyond the nursery.

Plenty of more learned folk than I have pointed this out, but it bears repeating, I think, especially since some of them are so subtle that they easily slip under the pop culture radar. Let me just show you a few examples of what I mean:


Alice in Wonderland is one of the most chatty books for children around; Carroll even lets us know what we're in for during the beginning of the book when Alice complains about how boring her big sister's reading materials is "without pictures or conversation."

Most of the action in AIW and TTLG is a series of conversations, with the Caterpillar, The Cheshire Cat, Tweedles Dee and Dum and of course, the infamous tea party. Such strong love of talking about nonsense in a clever way has been seen on a number of TV shows, with Gilmore Girls being a prime example. Just watch this musical version of the Mad Hatter's bash and this Friday Night Dinner at the Gilmores. Then try and tell me that Lorelai couldn't hold her own against those fellas:

Another down the rabbit hole moment occurs for Rory, when she runs into the offbeat daughter of a seemingly picture perfect Harvard alumnus family. Granted the girl's outfit is referred to as a "birthday bunny," but she does have a very Alice look to her, along with the "late for an important date" vibe:


Lewis Carroll like to sneak some sinister subtext into his work, with all of his nonsense verse not being as innocent as it seemed. The Walrus and the Carpenter, for example, is pretty creepy if you really think about it and more than one person has suggested that it's a sinister satirical look at manipulation of the masses, as pointed out in Kevin Smith's Dogma:


The Mad Hatter has become the most fearsome icon from the story, even tho there are more dangerous dwellers in Wonderland such as the Queen of Hearts with her habit of demanding beheadings for the slightest insult. He's even had the honor of becoming an enemy of Batman (well showcased on Batman: The Animated Series) and Tom Petty played his wicked weirdness to the hilt in his "Don't Come Around Here" video:

So, while Alice and her odd friends may appear to be quaint Victorian story book figures, their reach extends far into our present day realm of imagination. You could say that Lewis Carroll helped to pave the way for surrealism to be accepted in mainstream society and that he created the first popular quest tale for girls. A pretty sweet literary legacy that other storytellers draw from the well of inspiration to create just as powerful images to live within you:

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Virtual Tour and Pics

Here's a virtual tour of the house we're buying. We'll need to paint every room, including that purple front porch! Any suggestions?

Friday, March 27, 2009

My Awards

Quite a few of you wonderful ladies have gifted me with awards lately but since I've been on the go (and since several of these are ones I've already given away before), I've just been saving them to the site and not writing anything up about them. Well I feel bad about it since you were nice enough to give them to me, I ought to at least thank you properly!

The Sisterhood Award from: Alice Teh (Hello, My Name is Alice), Mo (Unmainstream Mom Reads),
Zombie Chicken Award: J. Kaye (J. Kaye's Book Blog)
Your Blog is Fabulous: Cat (Beyond Books)
Friends Award: Bingo (Bookin' With Bingo)

So if you gifted me with an award above and you don't have one of the others, please consider it yours! Also if I missed your award for me, please let me know!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Library Loot 10

It's loot time again! I'm not sure how much time I'll have for reading this upcoming week since we're moving out of our apartment and staying with my husband's dad until we finish closing on our house. I haven't said much about it because I didn't want to jinx myself but we're buying our first home! I'll try to get some reading done while we're waiting on the inspections and stuff so here is what I recently picked up:

The Winged Colt of Casa Mia by Betsy Byars
The Voyage of the Dawn Treader by C.S. Lewis
Julie of the Wolves by Jean Craighead George
Frightful's Mountain by Jean Craighead George
On the Far Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George
Frightful's Daughter by Jean Craighead George
Acorn Pancakes, Dandelion Salad, and 38 Other Wild Recipes by Jean Craighead George
Kitty Raises Hell by Carrie Vaughn

Libraries are Popular Again!

I read something this morning that warmed my heart and I have to share: "Libraries are experiencing a renewal in popularity."

"We certainly have seen nationwide, particularly in these tougher times, libraries become even more popular. Everybody is seeing large percentage increases in their use of books and obviously the computers as well," Longino said.

They're building a brand new library, and it's going to be a big one too, in Biloxi, Mississippi! Katrina killed the old one even though I had never been to it (a little too far out of my library branch) but they're planning to make the new one a central part of the community... as it should be!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

NomNom Time!

This is too cute, I have to share!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Musing Monday- Bookstore

Today’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about bookstores…

How many bookstores do you frequent? Do you have a favourite? If so, which one and what makes it so?

PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Musing Mondays post, or share your opinion in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks.

There is nothing quite like a bookstore is there? When I lived in Georgia there was a used bookstore I would visit every month that had a wonderful selection of books (not to mention DVDs, Cds, records, comic books, etc.) and even after I moved to Mississippi, I would go by every time I visited. Unfortunately, I’ve never found a store quite like that one since around here and it closed last year.

Chain bookstores on the other hand are always good too and although there aren’t as many around here as I’m used to (no independent stores either), there is a small Waldenbooks in the mall within walking distance from my apartment. I have yet to find a truly wonderful bookstore around here but that doesn’t mean I’ll stop looking! Until then Waldenbooks, Wal-Mart, and Amazon.com get my business when I want to buy… most of the time I just go to the library though!

Friday, March 20, 2009

Edgar Allan Poe

Very few people have gotten away without reading Edgar Allan Poe or reading/ watching something influenced by him (like The Ghost and the Dead Man‘s Library by Alice Kimberly). There are harldly any to whom his name is not familiar either since it is synonymous with words like raven, pendulum, or gold bug. I too have read (and listened to) his stories and poems long before I could properly understand them. Hardly a Halloween has ever gone by where I don’t drag out The Tale-Tell Heart, Annabel Lee, or The Raven for a re-read! However you haven’t heard the latter correctly until you’ve listened to it recited by the legendary Vincent Price:

What is your favorite Edgar Allan Poe poem or story?

Library Loot 9

I'm a little late with my library loot this week! Three of the ones I picked up are re-reads for me (the middle ones) that I read when I was younger but I'm looking forward to reading all of these!
Theater Shoes by Noel Streafeild
Kitty Foyle (DVD)
E.B. White: A Biography by Scott Elledge
Hatchet by Gary Paulsen
My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George
Poppy by Avi
Rabbit Hill by Robert Lawson
Lassie Come Home (DVD)
Marked by P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Cooking Shows

Time to bring back the questions/discussion- tie-in thingys! As I said in my review of Annette Blair’s book The Kitchen Witch, I would love for there to be a real TV show like Melody Seabright’s but to my knowledge there isn’t one. It was years before I was interested in cooking shows at all (especially since I don’t cook, I bake) but there are a few I like...

Of course, number one would have to be Martha Stewart, whom I have been completely wowed by time and again. Does anyone else think that she might not be real? She’s too… well, too Martha lol (until you see her blooper reel)! I do know there are people who can’t stand her but I tend to pick up her books and watch her shows whenever I get a chance. Well that’s it. That’s the only cooking show I’ve ever watched and I think I really watched it for the crafts and stuff!

Okay, that’s not true, I also watch a different kind of cooking show… the reality TV kind. Yep, I love watching Top Chef and Hell’s Kitchen. I am aware of others but I’ve only seen these, and I only started watching both of them last year. The petty whining and stuff can get pretty annoying but I just enjoy it any way. There aren’t many other reality shows I watch besides these two (Project Runway and Shear Genius mainly- nope American Idol is hubby‘s thing) though.

There are other cooking shows out there, most of which are found on the Food Network but there are two I’ve never tried before that I would love to do so: Rachel Ray and Paula Dean. I hear these names all the time and I’ve tried two of Paula’s recipes over the holidays (made by someone else) but I have yet to see their shows or try any of their recipes myself. I’d like to know if any of my readers have and if so what? How’d it turn out? What’s your favorite?

Well, that wasn’t the question I planned to end with when I started writing this. So what I’d like to know is, do you have a favorite TV cooking show? How about one that you used to watch that is now cancelled?

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Wear green today!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Quick Post- Thanks for the Fables!

Hey, I'd like to thank everyone that has suggested the Fables series (mainly Kailana and Fyrefly lol)! That's what I've been doing lately and why I haven't paid as much attention as I should to the blogs. I won't be reviewing these, which was a very tough decision but I saw how everyone struggled trying not to post spoilers and now that I'm reading them I can see why. All I can say is that if you've been putting off reading them for any reason- don't! They're really, really great!!!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

It's Treasure Island Day!

Today I’m talking about one of my recent favorite children’s classics Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson over at The Movieholic and Bibliophile’s Blog so I thought I’d mention some of the things that this wonderfully book has been adapted into here.

The Disney Channel actually produced this TV mini-series in 1986 starring Brian Blessed (whom Disney used again as the voice of Clayton in Tarzan) and Christopher Guard. Here is the opening titles (some of the show can be found on YouTube too):

There was also a cartoon that came on in 1993 mainly in the UK that I really wish I could have seen as a kid called The Legends of Treasure Island. All of the characters were anthropomorphic animals but it only lasted two seasons. However, Hugh Laurie (now known mainly as Dr. House) is the voice of Squire Trelawney:

The neat live-action TV series Relic Hunter that ran from 1999-2002 starring Tia Carrere and Christien Anholt, and Lindy Booth featured Treasure Island as the characters search for the lost treasure. Here's the opening:

I loved Alvin and the Chipmunks as a kid and I’ve seen many of the cartoon movies (except the newest one, which I still pretend, doesn’t exist) and especially the TV show but again somehow, I missed their Treasure Island episode in which after their video game breaks, Dave reads to them. Then they imagine themselves living the “Sea Life”:

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Library Loot 8

It's time for another Library Loot! Last week I picked up one or two films that I've seen before but I also got some new to me stuff too. I watched Challenge to Lassie and I read The Titan's Curse & The Battle of the Labyrinth both by Rick Riordan (can't wait for the last one to come out!). So here is what I picked up today:
My Fair Lady (DVD)
My Fair Lady: A Musical Play Adaptation by Alan Jay Lerner
The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong
Inkspell by Cornelia Funke
Inkdeath by Cornelia Funke
Bone Crossed by Patricia Briggs

Can You Guess the Riddle?

Hey guys, I posted Neef's riddle on my other blog. I'm sure one of you will be clever enough to figure out what it is! Please go see!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Lady T is Awesome!

I swear I meet the nicest people thanks to blogging! Lady T over at Living Read Girl offered to get me an autographed book by Carrie Vaughn while she was at Comic Con. Needless to say I was SO excited and when she had sent it to me, she said that she had the book and "a few other goodies." Now, I've never been to Comic Con (being that it's held in New York and I live in Mississippi) but I do know they give out bookmarks and pins- which she did send too- but look at all the goodies she sent me! In that teeny box!I'm still amazed, isn't she awesome?!

Friday, March 6, 2009

I'm Being Spotlighted!

Just a quick heads-up guys, but Maw from Maw Books Blog is featuring me in a Readers Spotlight! I'm not that interesting but she did ask some very good questions while interviewing me!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Library Loot 7

Last week I picked up quite a few things at the library that immediately dug into. I watched Because of Winn-Dixie, Treasure Planet, & The Adventures of Greyfriars Bobby then I read Dark Harvest by Lynda Hilburn, Plum Spooky by Janet Evanovich, & The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan. Now I'm looking forward to digging into these new things:

Baby Take a Bow (VHS)
Challenge to Lassie (VHS)
Charlotte's Web (DVD)
Charlotte's Web (DVD)
Charlotte's Web The Essential Guide by Amanda Li
Adam of the Road by Elizabeth Janet Gray
Ten Cents a Dance by Christine Fletcher
The Titan's Curse by Rick Riordan
The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Musing Monday- Reading

Today’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about the reading……

When reading do you read every word? Do you ever skip chapters or skim over parts? (question curtesy of Wendy)

Oh I used to have such a hard time keeping myself from skipping ahead while reading and it would take me so much time to go back and try to figure out what I hadn't read. Finally I found a solution- bookmarks!

I just use a bookmark and go down line by line and it keeps me on track and my eyes can't stray down to see what happens next in a really suspenseful moment. It really helps and I finish the books so much faster too since I'm not re-reading sections constantly.