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Star Wars, Movies, and Funny Business

So I might be spending more time here, writing review (which badly needs done), posting opinions (which might need done), and wasting time (which absolutely don’t need done, but I do anyways).

GoodReads, my favorite time-wasting site has applied new formatting updates, and they are not up to my likings. So, until either I get used to the changes, or they make changes I can live with, I will be spending less time there.

I have also been spending more time on another favorite that I abandoned a while back, fully intending to quit, but didn’t… ChickenSmoothie! So much fun, and I love giving away stuff at this time of year.

The other day when we stopped by Barnes & Noble, my daughter decided that she wanted something, and I believe in gimmes – that little thing you buy your kids when you go to the store so they behave and don’t ask for the expensive big thing – but her daddy don’t. So when she asked for the Snow Sleigh, and her daddy said ‘no’, she had a mini-meltdown. I tried to do the ol’ bait-n-switch, with a little tinker thing, but she wasn’t havin’ it. At all.

Until I mentioned Star Wars, and we wound up picking this:

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This little girl loves anything Star Wars right now, and that just makes her daddy’s heart melt, so I knew he couldn’t say ‘no’ to this. Sucker!

Later, we watched Tyrion Lannister run around New York with Jupiter Jones while searching for Patch Adams in:

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This was a moving, touching, sometimes funny movie. A real tearjerker, so make sure to cuddle with someone you care about, have a fresh box of tissues handy, and plan on telling at least one person you love them after contemplating your own mortality.

Because, what would you do if you only had 90 minutes to live?

Me?

I’d finish a good book.

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Old Review, New Review, Movie Night

So, tonight was de facto movie night, and I watched two films while cleaning out my email Inbox, and realized that I had missed out on doing the review for one of the books that one movie was based on –

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I Am Number Four…

Read my review on GoodReads here. Read IMDB’s review here.

The other movie was Hank Williams: Honky Tonk Blues.

(The cover on IMDB is not nearly as pretty as the cover on the disc I got from the library. I might update this to match, but then, maybe not.)

Hank was a country music legend, and this documentary not only featured his music and original recordings, but so much that I didn’t know about the man – that I’m sure many don’t know. It was sad to hear how much he suffered, and how loved he was by those who knew him. We can all only wish to be as loved and remembered as Hank Williams was.

It was also very humbling to hear a recording of him using a phrase my Pop used to use all the time – a phrase that apparently Hank used just as often…

“Lord willing…”

Catching Up With Reviews

I am working on catching up with my reviews again, so this page is going to go through alot of transformations in the next few days. Feel free to check back often and click on the covers for their reviews. If a cover doesn’t take you to a review right away, check back in a day or two – I may not have finished it yet.

I post short reviews with the link back to the full reviews on many sites:

GoodReads

Powells

Amazon

and introducing: NetGalley (for select titles)

Posting all of the reviews at approximately the same time takes a little time in itself. I try to make sure each is given equal love. To write and post a review takes about an hour, although depending on distractions, it can take longer. Some books it is hard to say something about, and others I can’t say enough, but each review takes a chunk of time. I try to make it worthwhile, for me and anyone who reads this.

That said, I also have a bit of literary events and interests that I post about from time to time, and since I travel for work, I may get to share locations like this:

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Yes. That is a tunnel made from books. (There will be more photos later.)

I also attend some fascinating events that pertain to literature – in some cases remotely, some directly. Like this one:

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#Thinkitup

And I am continuing my reading challenge – are you still reading along? I’ll be posting my selections for each category soon, and would like to know what you have read…

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Finally, this is the year I have declared to be The Year of Women Authors (#yearofwomenauthors #2015YoWA).  I have read books by men and women, but have tried to find books with an emphasis of women. This has expanded my usual reading choices, and encouraged me to release my own story for publication –

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So continue reading along, and I’ll have more exclusives coming your way soon!

 

Baby Donald Makes a Snowfriend

Read: 20 September 2015

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Punky Brewster (#1)

Read: 19 September 2015

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Cheese & Quackers

Read: 18 September 2015

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This Week’s Reads (2)

This week we are preparing for school to start, so reading time is falling back, but as soon as school starts again, I should have more time to do my own thing… and read! The Year of Women Authors (#2015YoWA #yearofwomenauthors) continues!

Your Baby Can Read: Starter Book

Read July 29 2015

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Black Butler 1

Read July 30 2015

Splat the Cat With a Bang and a Clang

Read July 31 2015

Colors

Read August 2 2015

The Last of the Mohicans

Read August 03 2015

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Read August 04 2015

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GoodReads Review

Behind…

Okay, so I have fallen tragically behind on my reviews, although I have been reading still. It’s just that time of the summer, where the kids are getting bored with summer, errands and chores that were put off at the beginning of summer need doing, and everyone wants a piece of your time – so the constantly growing list starts to look daunting. (This sounds like the good premise of a short story…)

But, I am not to be put off, even if the task is challenging – it just needs to be re-imagined and put into a different format to make it easier to read (or do).

So, without further ado, the list of books that will be pending review (please note that links to the reviews will be available as the reviews become complete):

The Diggingest Dog

Read June 22 2015

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Let’s Go To The Park!

Read June 23 2015

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Splat the Cat: The Big Helper

Read June 24 2015

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The Pudgy Pat-A-Cake Book

Read June 25 2015

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The Guardian Herd: Starfire

Read June 26 2015

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In The Blood (A GoodReads First Read)

Read June 27 2015

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The Walking Dead: Volume 1: Days Gone Bye

Read June 28 2015

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96 Cats

Read June 29 2015

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All I Need To Know I Learned From My Cat

Read June 30 2015

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Ignite

Read July 03 2015

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Sailor Moon 3

Read July 05 2015

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Biscuit Goes to School

Read July 06 2015

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Fifty Shades of Chicken

Read July 06 2015

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Charlie’s Dirt Day

Read July 07 2015

 

Birthday in the Barrio

Read July 08 2015

 

Bad Cat

Read July 13 2015

 

New Dad (A GoodReads First Read)

Read July 13 2015

Book of the Week

Thought I’d get this out a little early this week since I have a doctor’s appointment tomorrow, and I’ve been late enough as it is. Besides, I don’t think any book will outshine this as my Pick of the Week:

 Lightning Lord

By: Shenoa Carroll-Bradd

A lively, rollicking romp around an alternate Victorian London, filled with steam, surprises, and sudden bouts of lightning fill this book with head-shaking, laugh-inducing semi-drama that begs to be read in one sitting and cries out for a sequel!

(Please, please, please write a sequel!!! And can I be a character, too?)

Read the rest here.

Highly recommended!

Book of the Week

This week’s selection for Book of the Week is:

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By: C.W. Gortner

This was an amazing book, which moved forward quickly, without being bogged down as some historical novels I have read were. The second book about the monarchs of Castile, this book details the life of Isabella of Castile, mother to the imprudent Juana (of The Last Queen).

I have not yet read the first book in the series yet. I have placed the book on hold already at the library, however, and am anxious to see how she is handled. This is historical fiction in it’s finest, and although some of the details have been scrambled a bit, and others entirely made up, the author is kind enough to detail these liberties, along with a summary at the end of the book. This was just as interesting a read as the story itself, although, truth be told, the story is what will stick in my mind.

Read the rest of the review on it’s page here.

Do you agree with my selection? My review? Let me know in the comments!

Book of the Week

A new feature, Book of the Week, where I share the most interesting book that I have read this past week. Since Wednesday is my writing night, the week runs Wednesday to Wednesday.

This week’s choice is:

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By: Dr. Seuss

A great little board book version of the original, shrunk down for little hands and little attentions, and perfect for a before naptime story. You can even let the little one take this book to bed with them, and know that its sturdy construction will be safe.

So, I post my reviews that I write here on more than a few sites. And as I added this book, pulling up pages for it from many different sites, I was amazed at the number of complaints from adults about this book! I mean, really people? Really?

There seems to be a vast chasm between purists who like the original text and feel that there should be no further versions, and those who like this little, edited version for it’s own value (myself included). Holy crap! There was even significant swearing involved in this on the review forums! Over a kids’ book! From most everyone’s childhood!

Note: I’m sorry for the liberal use of exclamation marks in this, but I feel that they express my feeling better than writing in all caps. I am seriously wound up about this right now, and will calm down later. Just please be patient.

Back to rant.

So, as for my opinion (the point of having this little blog), this book is awesome, and lyrical enough in a sing-song way to lull a little fussy-butt (of which I have one) into a drowsy state. The book covers the entire alphabet (it’s not like they skipped L-N or something) and the repeating letters (B…b…B, O…o…O) are enough to let the child know what letter was just covered. Extra lines are nice, but not necessary.

As for those purists, get over yourself, and stop being cheap. Buy the full sized book for the full-sized price instead of fussing you were ripped off. Your complaints completely go against the spirit of Dr. Seuss. If the children are happy with it, then all is well! I understand and agree with preserving a complete version of the text, but it doesn’t have to be the *only* edition.

End rant.

Do you agree? Disagree? Let me know!

Who Is Brave Enough?

I have finally caught up on my reviews from my trip to Dallas, and I wanted to let you all know about what’s new and interesting here, as well as draw your attention to some of the exciting things that I have going…

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click for full sized jpeg

My older Army brother challenged me (he declined this, saying he didn’t have the patience), and I have already challenged some of my friends, when I thought, who better to share this with?? You all, of course!

I Challenge You To the 2015 Reading Challenge!

Post below to accept the Challenge. So far, my list is growing. There are 50 different categories listed, and after some conversation with friends, there are two ways to approach this Challenge.

The Hard Way: You read one book for each category, no doubles. This could literally take all year, because some of these may take some time to find…

The Easy Way: You can double, triple, and even quadruple up your books. Read one book and fit it into as many categories as you can, then move onto the next. This way will take as much creativity as the Hard Way, but will take less time to complete.

Print out the list and write in your reads. I will hold a contest at the end of the year for both Ways – will you be the winner? You can start anytime, but you’ve only got until the end of this year, and only books you’ve read this year will count. Are you brave enough to accept it?

Updates, Dallas, and Doing Stuff

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So I just got back from a long trip in Dallas, TX. That was the longest lay-over I have ever experienced. Words don’t even begin to describe. But, as you can see above, I had a travel companion. My suitcase was also packed with books. (My friends laughed at me, but somehow, with everything, I still managed to pack smaller and more completely than they did. Books are magic like that!)

What you don’t see here is my shoulder bag. It, too, was packed with books (and my friend’s laptop). After being stuck in the airport for almost two days, and stuck in the hotel in Dallas for more than that, I was so glad that I packed so many books. (Can you believe that I was starting to doubt myself?!) I got alot of reading done, but I also spent time taking in the sights. Unfortunately, my chargers were all in my suitcase, which I had checked due to the weight of it. (Won’t be doing that again.) So that means you’ll have to take my word on stuff.

But this site is not about my travels, oh, no. It’s about books. More specifically, the books I’ve read. And did I ever read!

Besides the stuff I needed to read for this training conference, I managed to read about one complete book a day. (Did I mention that I had alot of downtime due to being stuck?) When the world gives you time, READ!

I also had, in moments of brilliance, ideas about this site. I have added three new classifications above: Children’s Choices (books my daughter has chosen), Graphically Graphic (a home for graphic novels), and Noticing Non-fiction (an under-appreciated genre). Check them out, and the books that are being added to each.

I have also been working on collaborations and other artsy projects. My younger brother has suggested that I write some of my travel stories, so I am at the idea stage on that. Still not sure about it. I have also been working on taking old pictures from the phones and putting them into mini videos. The editing process is longer than I thought it would be, especially since the software I’m using has updated, and I’m still figuring it out. And now that warmer weather is in sight, there are loads of home improvements to be made, and painting projects to be done.

That means, reviews will still keep coming, but after I catch up, there may be some further house-cleaning here, too. I want to make this site easy to navigate, the pages better formatted, and fun for me! After all, once stuff gets easier to update, that means more time to read!

Oh, yeah, and that update from the mystery author I promised… stay tuned! I have an exclusive excerpt to share! And it is amazing…