Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Kill Me softly:

Rating: 3 1/2 out of 5 stars
Recommendation: Positively, you should promptly stop what you are doing and read this marvelous creature of a thing. 
I admit at first I was skeptical, but by the tenth page I was hooked. The sort of hooked that has a girl staying up till 1:07 in the morning, eyelids drooping, and nerves tingling with exhaustion just to figure out all the complexities of this book. And which handsome devil-may-care brother is the brother to be rooting for. 
It was terribly lovely, sweetly-sickening knowing that this was a fairytale retelling, wondering who Mira was, and agonizing over which brother (Felix or Blue, older or younger) I was supposed to romancing backing. 
Bottom Line:
The whole thing was an interesting swell read. I adore fairytales and was appeased by this. The heroine was marvelous at times and at other times horridly pathetic (which I hated). The book seemed to me by the end to drag on I admit, and yet I feel like there is this whole last section that I missed. I am lacking a bit of finality to the book. 

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Pretties:

My rating: 3 1/2 out of 5 stars. 
Recommendation: Yes.
" The city always seemed to claim her in the end."
All I kept thinking throughout the entire book was, who the heck is Zane?
After Tally becomes pretty and is voted Crim everything changes. Quite literally, a costume party brings  New Rusties dressed as Specials and a bubbly feeling to Tally. And suddenly it is all Tally can do but stay bubbly. She adores the feeling and staying with Zane keeps her bubbly so what the heck right might as well kiss him. However, her bubbliness seems to be contagious and soon Tally is leading her and Zane's crims on an escape mission to New Smoke where her old ugly boyfriend is oh yes still awaiting Tally's return. Love triangles right. Always with the love triangles. 
Overall the writing is the same, just fine. Odd words that were used in the first book are carried over and used more frequently. Almost annoyingly. If I never hear "Bubbly"used as an adverb again I may be able to forget the horridness I had began to feel towards the middle of the book. I strongly dislike love triangles and so at first hated Zane. However, I am a sucker for a pretty face so I caved by the end of it. There wasn't as much adventure in this book as there was in the previous one which I missed. But I am intrigued with what Tally finds out in the woods and just what the writer will have her do about it in the next installment. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

I Was Nominated:

I have been nominated by The Booklicker for the Liebster Award. Woot. Woot.
It is an award that helps bloggers with less than 200 followers to get their well -- deserved recognition and more followers - because we blogger love that don't we? And I am so happy and thankful that The Booklicker thought of me. You don't know how much this award touches my heart. 
Gracias, danke schön, thank you!

Thee Rules:

  1. Link back that darling blogger that tagged you.
  2. Nominate 10 wicked awesome blogs.
  3. Enlighten those 10 bloggers of their prestige.

1. How did you come up with your blogs name?


Hmm. A toughie. It is sort of a personal statement of mine. So here's the story: it all began when I was girl and realized I was imperfect. When I got to middle-school it became ever more apparent. Than high school came around and -- back me up here girls, you're never pretty enough, never skinny enough, never smart enough to please everyone in your life. I felt that weight harder than most people, fell into depression, self-harm, and still have self-esteem issues. But writing was my beacon of hope. I could read and escape, write and feel bliss. So when I decided to put my writing out there, there was nothing more proper than the very word I had never been able to apply to myself. But my writing, my writing is perfect because it is an expression and every expression is perfect.

2. What's the first book you got obsessed with?


*Hides her face in her hands* Sigh. The Twilight Saga got me into Young Adult books and once I started reading that genre I was completely hooked. Judge me if you will.


3. Who's your first fictional crush?


Please refer to question #2. With that being said it was not a Cullen. I tend to dig the dark ones. And so when I read the Immortal Instruments Saga, Jace became this lovely rendezvous for me.


4. Which author would you like to meet the most?


Can he be dead? Yes. Okay then! I have two, Ernest Hemingway (of course) and Erich Maria Remarque. There is literally not a day that goes by where I do not draw on the cocky soridness that was Hemingway. *Heady sighs ensues.* We would have had the greatest love affair, well second greatest affair Cole Porter and I's Parisian rendezvous. Whenever I begin to write, basically anything there is a mantra that goes on inside my head and goes a little something like this: "All you have to do is write one true sentence. Write the truest sentence you know."--Hemingway.


5. What's the first fandom you joined?


I don't know what a fandom is so I have yet to join one. The first fanfiction writing website I joined and continuously write on is called: Fanfiction (If you click the link it will take you to my profile and my fanfiction stories. Do go. I encourage the spreading of virtual love.)


6. What's your opinion on fanfiction?


Reading the questions ahead of time would have been swell. But I am an impatient little book hogger. Please refer to #5. separate  from that I adore them and abhor myself for not having the time to read all the novellas I want to on the sites, again Fanfiction (link above) is a marvelous site full of S O M A N Y intriguing genres and every YA book fanfiction you can think of.


7. How long do you think you'll run your blog?

Oh you know, not that long. Just basically until I die.

8. Young Adult or New Adult?


As I do not know what "New Adult" is or means my gut reaction is to say: N E W A D U L T. But I shall not, I thoroughly adore(!!) YA, it is marvelously wondrous.


9. Favorite reading snack?


Hmm. I love carrots, and green peppers. But it takes away too much of my peripheral eye attention :-(] and hot cheeto puffs are far to messy, most likely it is hot tea, hot tea latte, cappuccino, cafe misto, or straight cafe americano. I am big on hot beverages, especially coffee. I might have an addiction, in which case I feel it just make me more of an enigma. 

And when I drink these hot beverages it is all about the #1. baguettes. I have a passionate love for breads, from flaky pastry soft to sourdough hard. 
#2. Biscotti, Click the link to go to my favorite food-blogger and favorite recipe of deliciousness.
And #3. Madeleines (click the link to go to my favorite recipe) which are marvelousness wrapped in a fatty-acids, calories and lovely fluffy, buttery, mouth-melting Parisan biscuit cookie/pastry things. 

10. Which book would you like to see as a movie or TV show?


Hmm. Hmmm. Hm. How am I supposed to know that?! That is an unfair question. Because A: there are far too many choices and B: allow me to refer you to A.

But I shall try to narrow it down. Let me ponder this...
Since you have included the "movie or TV show" segminant I'm going to read between the lines liberally and answer both.
For a TV. series:
The Grimm Legacy Could you just imagine? Can you see the library, the artifects, the heady loveliness of all the mixing character plots. Oh! It would just be so blissfully stunning.
For a movie:
The Bewitching Season Oh the marvelousness of this book. Who doesn't love witches, royal courts, tulle and chiffon trimmed dresses.

Thine Questions:

  1. Who is your favorite author, how has he/she been an inspiration to you?
  2. What is your go-to-quote when you begin writing?
  3. What is on you playlist when you write or read?
  4. Why did you start your book blog?
  5. Tell us a secret you swore you'd never tell. I dare you.
  6. What is the book you just have to read during the Christmas season?
  7. Speaking of Christmas, what books are on your wish-list?
  8. State you love-interest team for the following sagas/books: Hunger Games, Vampire Academy, Immortal Instruments, Beautiful Creatures, Vampire Dairies, and Under The Never Sky.
  9. What is your favorite Classic novel?
  10. What is the best book you never wanted to read but had to read for a class assignment.

Thee Nominations:

  1. Magic of Words
  2. Take Me Away
  3. Studio Reads
  4. Blogging For Buddies
  5. Drugs Called Books
  6. Guerrilla Warfare For Writers
  7. Frizzy Tizzy
  8. Andrea Reads and Reviews
  9. Good Books Never End
  10. April Books


Monday, August 5, 2013

Dark Triumph: (His Fair Assassin #2):

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars. 
Recommendation: Yes.
Sybella thought she was done with the family that drove her mad until the convent gives her the order that sends her back to them. While her brutal father, crossed by the soon to be crowned Duchess enacts his vengeance against his once promised betrothed to rule over the duchesses land. Sybella dodges her lying, scheming, tattle-tale of a lady-in-waiting, Jamette who relays everything Sybella does to her crooked father making her newly acquired convent orders that much more the harder. They being to locate, extract, and return the captured solider that is essential to the duchesses armies survival. It is here in the muck of every narrowly successful navigated suspicion that Sybella's bloody twisted childhood memories come to slowly haunt her, drawing her madness taunt like a bow which she fears shall engulf her once again. 
LaFevers writing style is much like her Sybella, feverish, fluid, and ever seducing her reader into a mantra of "just one more page". I personally love the tormented ice-queen underdogs in stories and well Sybella proved to be all that yet much more. While I enjoyed the darkness of Sybella it seemed her past was a bit much, too much forced horridness that it formed cracks in the very illusion of her. I enjoyed the heady aroma of the book in a whole I was left wanting...more, more adventure. Less emotion, there was a lot of emotion that at some points I began to make it seem like they were unnecessary exaggerations.  

Monday, March 4, 2013

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks: II


This is part two in a five part series.
Henrietta Lacks, you find is the woman behind the infamous HeLa cells, the woman no one knows of, and whose life, as extraordinary as it was, is forgotten. She grew up in a small town called Clover where she was raised by her Grandfather on an old tobacco farm, its roots tracing back to the time of slavery. It is in this town that Henrietta grew up with the man she would marry – David Lacks –  and from here would move to Baltimore, where she’d first discover something was wrong with her. It all started with blood, a bath, and a knot in a place a knot oughtn’t have been. Part One: Life of the book is predominantly set during the early fifties, when the Civil Rights Movement was a dream, Dr. King had yet to march, Rosa Parks hadn’t taken a stand, and Malcolm X was just getting out of prison. To the most of the United States Segregation was law. If a black man or woman needed to be treated medically they’d have to find a hospital that was dictated to treat only African Americans and if they went to a white only hospital they were likely to be kicked out, no matter the extent of their wounds. For Henrietta, she’d either have to take the train in from Baltimore to Johns Hopkins or have her husband Day drive her there around his working schedule. It was inside the Segregated walls of Johns Hopkins Hospital that Henrietta would be diagnosed with and treated for cancer, it would be weeks later until she told anyone about it. Upon the instructions of Dr. George Gey, a portion of both of Henrietta’s healthy cells and tumor cells were collected then shipped down to his lab where his assistant Mary Kubicek “…were sure Henrietta’s cells would die just like all the rest.” And her healthy cells did die in culture, but her tumor cells, well they reproduced every twenty-four hours.
Now normally I am not one for science of any kind, it is boorish and rather frankly disgusting. Coming from a strictly Fascist/ Lutheran German household, I was always taught that as a girl there were things a young lady ought to talk about and things ladies never talk about. Intestates, bowel movements, and medical journals were off-limits, how to dry potpourri, fold a cloth napkin into a swan, quote the classics, and bake the softest Frankfurter Kranz[1] for birthdays however, was basically how large portions of my childhood was spent. So when I got to the section where Skloot details Gey’s  laboratory and how they grew cells, I got an instant sense of fore-boding. I could practically hear my Grandma saying to me “Why are you bothering with such brutish things Annie? Come supper is about ready, help fold the napkins.” However, I had to read on and am glad I did, Skloot’s writing eluded me at every turn, not entirely fluid, not so rigid or complex, and not as crud as I though the book would be. I’ve never enjoyed the inner workings of a laboratory before. Then she turned her focus onto Gey, where she dived into his past as a poor man who took pains to put himself through Medical school with the sort of dry wit the Bronte sisters would use. She has a way of making any character relatable to a point where the reader would sympathize with them by simply saying something like this: “George dug a small coal mine in the hill behind his parents’ house. He’d crawl through… with a pick, filling buckets for his family and neighbors so they could keep their houses warm.”


[1] Frankfurter Kranz: A Buttercream filled Bundt cake basically. It would be topped clusters of chopped nuts, have peeks of hazelnut frosting positioned around the circle cut on the top of each peek would be a cherry. My Grandpa use to call it the Frankfurter Crown, symbolizing Frankfurt which was known as the crown city of the German Empire.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks: I


Author Rebecca Skloot with her best selling book.

This review is the first installment of a five part analytical series. Enjoy dolls.
HeLa cells are different. They reproduce everyday, an entire generation and never die, thus becoming the very first immortal cells ever to be grown out of a laboratory. However, this ironically is not the intriguing part, or at least it wasn’t for me. I found myself thinking: Well where did they come from? Cells have to come from someone right? So who did the cells belong too? Cells are live organisms that are extracted from a living person and cultured in a lab in order to be used, reused, regrown, sold, and thence experimented on. Before the 1950’s medical scientists did not have reproducing cellular organisms and so they had no way of developing vaccines for diseases such as cancer, polio, or syphilis. That is unless they tested the hypothesized ‘vaccines’ on live human subjects, which frankly was not unheard of during the 1950’s. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks tells a story that is unlike anything I’ve ever read. Rebecca Skloot, the author, first heard the story of the HeLa cells in a community college biology class. Were Donald Defler, her instructor gave Skloot the first fragment in a puzzle that would unravel her entire knowledge of her world around her as she understood it. Skloot had received a name, one name: Henrietta Lacks. So she persisted questioning Defler about his knowledge of Henrietta Lacks she asked, “Where was she from?” “I wish I could tell you,” he said “But no one knows anything about her?” I was truly and utterly appalled by this revelation. They’ve used her cells to solves nearly a dozen or more diseases, know the “every quirk” of her cells, and yet know nothing of the person. That to me, was shameful in its own right.
Skloot’s vivid imagery succeeded the dry wit lased in her prologue and managed to turn her biography into something entirely different. Like Henrietta’s cells I was about to find out that Skloot was unlike any biographical writer I’d ever encountered before. By the sixth page I’d started grinning because by the last brilliantly written paragraph I was captured. I felt this emotional connection tying Deborah – Henrietta’s daughter –  and I together. We are much alike, Deborah and I, if it had been my mothers cells and they’d been immortal than I would have liked to know, I would have liked to be involved. The one thing that gripped me about Skloot’s writing was her unpredictably stark truth. For instance, I’d be reading, falling into the grove of the words and then out of nowhere Skloot would throw a sentence at you that you couldn’t have seen coming with binoculars. She’d say; “Patient was one of ten siblings. One died of car accident, one from rheumatic heart, one was poisoned…” and suddenly I stopped reading, mid-sentence just to stare at the words. “Poisoned…”

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Secondhand Charm:


My rating: 4 out of 5 stars.
Directly off the semi-high of 'Darkness Becomes Her' I decided that something light and frilly was just what I needed. So sitting directly by a fire,-because it is like 56 degrees in the house- armed with a wine glass full of cranberry juice, country oldies playing off my I-Phone and a notepad cradled on my left knee; I snugged in under my black faux fur blanket for a nice and pleasant morning. Because I am one of those nocturnal weirdos that spends their time not sleeping at 3:06am but... *gasp*... Reading!
If ever there was a time that I was aching for a sweet fairy tale it would be now, and Julie Berry, well she spun a wondrous tale of feather-y lightness and intrigue with her debut novel The  Amaranth Enchantment.
Her writing style I adore, it is fleetingly sweet and matches the exactitude of the time period/era Berry has set her characters in. The way the words read makes it seem as if you'd have become the story, it's easy going lightness mingles with its straightforward lyricism. I wouldn't go as far as to say it is prose because in that aspect it doesn't mesh at all, but it is smooth as honey.
Miss Evelyn, known as Evie has a reputation in the village, as a remarkable healer she is sought after as a midwife for every to-be mother. Evie herself holds no desire to wed, her heart and head lies stuffed inside a book, she loves her schoolwork and is terrified for when it comes to an end. That is of course until the Royal King visits her village with a sick tax collector, after having proved herself as an intelligent medic the king offers Evie a scholarship to the Royal University. While at a festival in her village a gypsy woman grips onto Evie and proclaims she has saved charms just for her. Out of a tangled web of woven threads and charms Evie picks a love charm, a luck charm, and a protection charm, a charm that provides protection against snakebites. Ironic seeing as how just the day before she was bit on the lip by one.
Evie sets off on a grand adventure to the epic city of Chaceldon, only things go wrong. There's love abound, sinking ships, even more snakes, and filthy bandits. Oh my! If only that were all... When Evie does finally reach Chaceldon, penniless and without grantee of University she sets out for the palace, bent on a letter allowing her acceptance to the university, what she find instead is something entirely enthralling.

Who really is Evie? Why does the new princess take such a liking to her?And how is it that she's never known of the Serpentina's?And the ending; well that will hit you like a wrecking ball, over and again, as it crumbles what you thought would happen and leave you with the settling dust of what truly happened. Me personally I was rooting for the castle and princess, no matter if she be evil or not. Because you know those balance scales are fickle beasts aren't they?