WordPress 032 – Monthly Wrap-up 004 and Book Haul 005 (July and August)

Hi everyone, let’s see if I can actually remember how to do this, shall we?

First of all, I’m combining the past two months into one monthly wrap-up and book haul post, mainly because July was a rather hectic time, especially near the end.  I won’t go into that too much though, but it was mostly good in the end.  I’m just all aflutter sometimes.

Anyway, to the post!

Finished in July and August

RobertFrostSelectedPoems

Selected Poems by Robert Frost

It was probably not the best idea to start a read-a-thon like two weeks before classes ended, but that’s what I did.  And I ended up starting on this book of poetry first, which wasn’t even on the “official” list of challenges, but what the hey, I finished it at least.  I only really knew two poems by Robert Frost, one of which I had to memorize in 6th grade, so it was nice getting to read the others.  And as I mentioned, the cover is gorgeous.

Julieseries

The Julie series by Jean Craighead George

I finished this series as well that I had planned to during the read-a-thon (though not during the read-a-thon itself).  I especially liked the last book since it focused more on the wolves’ point of view.  I think wolves are very cool (as do many other people, I’m sure).

MarielofRedwall

Mariel of Redwall by Brian Jacques

Also in the midst of things, I finished this book, which is the 4th in the series.  I started this a long time ago, and finally got around to finishing it.  I have many books by him, for nostalgia’s sake (Mr. Jacques, thank you very much T-T), and I’m going to get through them eventually.  I definitely haven’t caught up with my brother yet, who has already read most of them!

LoversDictionary

The Lover’s Dictionary by David Levithan

This was an interesting book that I found this past month or so, and I read one other book that was co-written by him and another (rather famous) author, John Green.  Basically this book is laid out like a dictionary, with words and their part of speech at the time, but instead of the definition, Levithan writes a scenario that sort of captures the meaning of that word.  There are both good and bad times in the book, as there are in any relationship, so it was a rather real portrayal of what love is/can be.

Book Haul for July and August

Impressively, I didn’t buy too many books these past two months at all, which is a plus (hopefully) because I’ll just read more than I am acquiring.  Aside from The Lover’s Dictionary that I bought, I also got:

SnowCrash

Snow Crash by Neal Stephenson

This was recommended to me by one of my classmates in the Master’s program, who basically posted it up on the discussion forum and told us to give it a read.  I finally got a copy of it, so hopefully I’ll get into this one soon enough.

9thGirl

The 9th Girl by Tami Hoag

I believe this is her latest book, and I’ve read quite a lot of her books so far.  I like the duo in this one (Kovac and Liska), and I should get back to reading more of her books to get them finished.

Anyway, apologies for all the sporadic updates and all, and I hope to get back to a more regular schedule, but who knows with real life!  Thanks for reading as always, and take care!

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WordPress 031 – Update

Hello everyone, many apologies for disappearing for the past month.

Basically, the BookTube Read-a-thon happened right when I had two weeks left of my summer courses, so… I knew I wouldn’t get everything read, but I tried.  It did get rather hectic from then on, and I was just trying to keep everything, including myself, together.  Things in my life changed, mostly for the better, so I’ve been trying to settle in with all the changes.

I did get three books read/finished, one of them a book of poetry, so I got a couple of the challenges completed.  I think I’ll do a big two-month wrap-up at the end of August and hopefully catch up on things by then.  I’ll probably go back to posting once a week, maybe on a Sunday because I’m pretty much busy the rest of the week with work and such.  At least I’m able to squeeze in some reading time here and there as well as do other things.

Anyway, thanks for reading as always, and take care!

WordPress 029 – BookTube Read-a-thon

Hello everyone!

So, this post is going to reveal what I am going to attempt starting Monday, and it’s the BookTube Read-a-thon, or BookTube-a-thon for short.  This was started by two people in the BookTube community on YouTube: padfootandprongs07 and ArielBissett, and I can link their videos where they explain the gist of it.

padfootandprongs07  – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p606hTpUvxo

ArielBissett – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nRd8T_yWukM

It’s basically a marathon of reading starting on Monday, July 15 to Sunday, July 21, and there are 7 challenges you can attempt to do during this read-a-thon.

CHALLENGES:

1) read an average of 300 pages a day

2) read a book with over 500 pages

3) re-read one book

4) finish a series/trilogy

5) read a book that’s been on your shelf forever

6) listen to an audiobook

7) read a classic

It’s all official sounding, but I’m just going to be participating in it as leisurely as I can.  Sure I’m still reading as it is, even without the read-a-thon, but this will give the opportunity to push myself to read even more and read books that fit certain categories and fun things like listening to an audiobook…  I think it will give me more motivation to read, so we’ll see about that!

I haven’t deciding on which books I want to do for the challenges, and I’m sure I can combine the challenges together or have books that fit multiple challenges.  I think I’ll do videos for the next two Mondays, both to start the read-a-thon and let everyone know which books I ended up deciding on and to wrap up after the read-a-thon ends.  Not sure what I’ll do on that Thursday, but we shall see as always.

Alright, happy reading in the meantime everyone!  Take care!

WordPress 028 – Book Experience 013 – Inferno by Dan Brown (Spoilers)

Hi everyone, it’s Monday!  No, there’s no video today, but there will be one next week revealing what I plan to do for the rest of that week.  I’ll half-reveal it on Thursday, but I’ll make a proper video doing that whole revealing bit on Monday.

I’m excited for this week’s Book Experience because it will be on Inferno by Dan Brown.  WARNING: There will be spoilers, more likely than not.

Inferno

First of all, I didn’t get into Dan Brown or any of his books right away; there was just so much hype/controversy over The Da Vinci Code when it came out in theaters that I just didn’t want to get into all that (I tend to avoid things because of hype).  When it came out on DVD, my father bought the DVD to watch, but it wasn’t until later that I too watched it and loved it.  I just really liked the entire… mystery aspect of solving puzzles to get to the next clue kind of storyline.  It’s probably why I liked National Treasure with Nicolas Cage a lot… just anything that has to do with solving things: Sherlock Holmes, Lie to Me, forensic shows, etc., seeing things get solved and how they get solved.  (Although, I must say the scene with Silas self-flogging was a bit much… and I liked Silas as a character.)

Anyway, so I read the book afterward and found out that Dan Brown had written others, so I wanted to check those out too.  I read Angels and Demons, which was actually the first book about Robert Langdon, then I read his two stand-alone novels: Deception Point and Digital Fortress, both that I really liked.  I just really loved his writing style, the mysteries, his plots and the twists he writes because I always get so caught off-guard, and I liked how it keeps me second-guessing myself.  I don’t know if all that he’s written is true, since it is fiction and all that, but I enjoy the very real world he portrayed.  I read The Lost Symbol when it was released, and now, Inferno.

Before getting into Inferno itself, I have read Dante’s Inferno during my undergrad for a comparative literature class, so I was familiar with it and was SO excited that Dan Brown’s newest book was based on it.  (I get a little geeky over literature, so yeah.)  I read the whole thing and did a lot with the professor on the “Nine Circles of Hell,” even wrote a paper on it, and it was just an enjoyable experience with it.  I hoped to read Purgatorio and Paradiso someday.

Having read all of Dan Brown’s books prior, I didn’t expect this one to start out with Robert Langdon injured so seriously, but yeah… that happened.  I mean, Langdon gets into a lot of sticky situations with a lot of risk and possible injury and death, but this book started out that way and didn’t let up at all.  It was so crazy.

I think it’s hard to keep up the action page after page, but it did, and I just love the fast-paced-ness of it all.  I finished the entire thing in two days, and it was like a movie.  I had a feeling that not everything or everyone is as they appear to be, since Dan Brown likes twists so much (and I have no idea how it does it every single time).  But every time I thought I figured out something, it turns out to be something else, and I literally went back to double-check the flashback scene with the character meeting Zobrist to see if Dan Brown had given any hint of who had that flashback because I thought for sure it was that guy.  For sure!  But, no, I was wrong and made a natural, hasty jump.  I think Dan Brown just knows how much hint to give and withhold in order for the reader to make the wrong jump in their mind, and then when he reveals it chapters later, you wonder, “Wait a minute…” and go back to check and find out, yep, you got it wrong after all.  I think it takes some talent as a writer.

From what I remember of Dan Brown’s past antagonists, they weren’t really inherently “evil.”  I mean sure they were the “bad guys,” but not all bad guys are bad or evil or anything like that, and that’s what I like.  People are complex, and good aren’t always good and bad aren’t always bad, so I like how Dan Brown portrayed Zobrist as a un-bad bad guy.  In the end, you realize that he could have done a whole lot worst, but he didn’t, and he was just trying to help humanity in this kind of way.  It may not be the “right” way or the “good” way, but then you have to think, what would be the “right” way, and how many people could do better?

I think it says a lot about humanity as a whole, that we can do simple things to make things better, but most of the time, we are just content to just being blind to everything.  How would we change as a whole unless someone forced us to adapt to a certain situation?  We don’t really change willingly; we just adapt as we need to.  Something to think about.

So, thanks for reading my Book Experience on Inferno, and if you have your own thoughts on the book, discuss it here!

Until next time, take care!

WordPress 027 – Book Haul 004 (June 2013)

Hi everyone, and happy 4th of July in the States!  One of my dogs is normally scared of fireworks, so I’m trying to keep him not scared on my lap.  (This was him earlier by the door, trying to get out of my room and “away” from all the fireworks sounds popping all around.)

Shadowscaredoffireworks2013aShadowscaredoffireworks2013b

Anyway, I have my book haul today, and as I mentioned in my video on Monday, I only have 5 books to show off!  What is this madness!  Yes, I only bought 5 last month, and I am proud.

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There they are: the 5 hardcovers.

WaroftheWorlds

The War of the Worlds by H. G. Wells

I’ve heard of this book, and since I found a rather nice copy, I thought why not pick it up?  It seems to be the first of a collection of a variety of “classic” novels, but I don’t know if I’ll get the rest.

DreamThief

The Dream Thief by Shana Abe

This is the second book of the Drakon series after The Smoke Thief, which I read and thoroughly enjoyed.  I look forward to this one and see if it keeps up the good writing.

QueenofDragons

Queen of Dragons by Shana Abe

The third book of the Drakon series, and I believe there are a couple more books after this one.  But for now, we’ll see how these two go.

WorldWarZ

World War Z by Max Brooks

I had a coupon for Barnes & Noble, so I thought I would get a book I’ve been wondering about for a while, so I got it.  I heard that there’s a movie out on this already?  It seems so fast.

Inferno

Inferno by Dan Brown

I finished this one already, so you can look forward to a Book Experience on it on Monday.  I always enjoyed how Dan Brown writes, spinning all the mysteries, and I always find myself thinking of the wrong person in the end, which is a nice surprise for me.

Alright, those are the 5 books.  I might have a special something next Thursday regarding something-something that I might be participating in, unofficially anyway.  So, we’ll see how that goes.  It all comes down to how much work I have for uni.

Anyway, thanks for reading as always. Until next time, take care!