Thursday, May 28, 2009

Ahoy! New book blogger!

A Sea of Pages (Y.A. Literature Book Reviews and More) is a new blog that has been created by Arya, a new explorer of the book blogging ways. So far, I am impressed by her opinions and somehow, the blog has an EmilyRuth-feel to it (Don't worry, Arya! That's a good thing. ;)

Being a newcomer, Arya is very enthusiastic about meeting other bloggers so stop by and introduce yourself! :)

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is where I share with you a book that I am looking forward to reading when it is released.

(idea by Jill from Breaking the Spine)*

The Swan Kingdom by Zoe Marriott

Shadows fall across the beautiful, lush kingdom after the queen is attacked by an unnatural beast, and the healing skills of her daughter, Alexandra, cannot save her. Too soon the widowed king is spellbound by a frightening stranger, a woman whose eyes reflect no light. In a terrifying moment, all Alexandra knows disappears, including her beloved brothers, leaving her banished to a barren land. But Alexandra has more gifts than she realizes as she confronts magic, murder, and the strongest of evil forces, and is unflinchingly brave as she struggles to reclaim what is rightfully hers. Fantasy lovers will be held in thrall by this tale full of visual detail, peppered with a formidable destructive force and sweetened with familial and romantic love.

(I found out that this was a reprint but I just discovered it today so it's new to me. I don't know why I've never heard of it before! It sounds like a great story and I love the cover. :)

Poll Winner

This week's poll was ...

I would never eat:

myself or my friend
jelly beans
a bug

And the winner is ...

myself or my friend!

(Somehow, I think I know who voted for broccoli. TheBookworm? *L*)

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Highway to Hell (Maggie Quinn: Girl vs. Evil)

Highway to Hell
By Rosemary Clement-Moore
5 out of 5 stars

After casting a demon out of her best friend Maggie Quinn is ready for a break. Stuffing her first-aid kit and safety pack into her jeep, Maggie starts off to South Padre Island with her witch-crafted friend, Lisa. But as you may have guessed, Maggie isn’t a normal college freshman. She’s a psychic and her vibes are going on overload when they drive through a small Texas county, on the way to their destination. They soon find out that something unusual is going on there. Livestock are being found dead with deep gashes on their necks. It’s unnatural, they say. But how can Maggie and Lisa help when there is a handsome cowboy, religious grandma, and mysterious chupacabra getting in the way?

Highway to Hell was a guilty pleasure. The main topic of demons isn’t exactly up my alley. In fact, it’s far away from it. But when I started reading, I found that the characters were all-around likeable. It had a quick-moving storyline and unexpected turns that kept my attention the entire time. This book put other famous works to shame.

Author Rosemary Clement-Moore has a brilliant talent that I have never seen demonstrated by any other writer this way before. I was fascinated at how much the scenes are described though I wished, at times, it would be more straightforward. The cover, sadly, I think may not bring the book justice because it doesn’t appeal to most audiences. But, like many people say, don’t judge a book by its cover, right?

*brief strong language
*creepy little demons

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Poll Winner

This week's poll was ...

The 'text language' word you use the most is:

And the winner is ...


(Literally, LOL! :D)

Sunday, May 17, 2009

A Reverie (from a castle)

I recently discovered a new word for my daily vocabulary 'reverie'. I had to look it up because another book blogger had the word in her username. I was pleasantly surprised to find out that is means daydream! All this time, I never knew there was a different word for (as my mom says) being in La La Land.

I decided that, to stretch my vocabulary, I would share one of the reveries I have had while reading the book currently in my grasp.

This week, I had a reverie while I was in a castle:

I was reading The Princess and The Pea by Hans Christian Anderson from one of my all-time favorite books, a collection of fairy tales. This story is only three pages long and I love looking closely at the pictures. The reverie I had playing in my head was this:

I was the princess.

If anyone has read this story, you can imagine that it was fun to picture: a girl says that she's a princess and (having the trusting nature they did) the royal family let her sleep on a whole bunch of their expensive mattresses. Though I wouldn't have explained that I slept horribly (They let me sleep in a CASTLE!), I still liked the princess.

This story was fun to read and fun to think about. And everyone has to admit ... you've imagined you were royalty once, right?

Has anyone else had a reverie while reading a book this week?

Friday, May 15, 2009

Death of a Fictional Loved One

Doesn't reading make you happy?

Sometimes it depends on the book. Is the book a happy one with a happy ending? That usually does it for me. I am a sucker for happy endings. :)

Sometimes mystery books make me happy. I become curious and want to find out what happens (or happened I guess). It's like watching an episode of Monk on USA Network!

I was reading something that RandomBuzz had posted on it's main page here. The main question was: Do you choose to read tearjerkers? Or do they make you too sad? When I read good books that make me shed a tear or two, it's usually because someone died. (When Sirious Black died- Oh, don't get me started on that!) But if one of the characters you like dies, did reading that book make you happy? It's a hard question.

Can you deal with one of your favorite characters dying?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Poll Winner

This week's poll was ...

You accidentally drop 2 crayons on the floor: blue & pink. Which one are you going 2 pick up first?

the pink one
the blue one
whichever one's closer
Neither. They're just crayons! No need to waste my energy.

And the winner is ...

whichever one's closer!

The reasonable answer won. :( I voted for pink! Doesn't anyone like the color pink? :D Jeez.

Thanks to all who participated and please vote for the new poll!

Absolutely Maybe

Absolutely Maybe
by Lisa Yee
3 out of 5 stars

Mabelline had a father once, she knows that much. Her mother never explained anything except when she was under the influence, even then it was only one or two things. Maybe’s mother, Chessy, had a ‘fling’ with a talent searcher years back and now she lives with Maybe in the apartment above her charm school. Charming, isn’t it? After living with six different stepfathers, Maybe wants to meet her biological father. With only a picture and a first name as clues, Maybe sets off for Los Angeles with her two buds to find her dad. While both of her friends are off having the time of their lives, all Maybe has is a bag of clothes, a street corner, and one mischievous homeless woman who is convinced she’s Audrey Hepburn.

While an unrealistic storyline can be refreshing, it made Absolutely Maybe dull and forgettable. I did not enjoy any of the characters. Some parts of the book were sweet, I’d have to give it that, but it was usually ruined by Maybe’s inane thoughts or fast actions. Maybe was a shallow main character that was trying to get portrayed as an unaware, innocent teenager. The writing was a little random and stayed inside the lines. I loved how the chapters were short for a quick run through but they ended abruptly and lacked depth. I still don’t know who Maybe was as a person. There was no moral or lesson and Maybe hadn’t grown at all throughout the book. I believe this read is a waste of time.

*sexual references
*attempted rape

*book copy provided by a trade with my sister (Man, it was so not worth it!)

Friday, May 8, 2009

Calling teenage writers, readers, and artists!

About them:

"We offer teenagers the opportunity to publish their creative work and opinions on the issues that affect their lives - everything from love and family to teen smoking and community service. Hundreds of thousands of students have submitted their work to us and we have published more than 25,000 teens since 1989.

The Young Authors Foundation, Inc. is a nonprofit organization that supports all Teen Ink publications. The foundation is devoted to helping teens share their own voices, while developing reading, writing, creative and critical-thinking skills. All proceeds from the print magazine, website and Teen Ink books are used exclusively for charitable and educational purposes to further our goal."

A little fact: Teen Ink is the nation's largest print magazine written entirely by teens for teens.

What is it to me? If your art work, poems or stories, or book reviews are published in the TeenInk magazine, you will receive a small reward: a wooden pencil, a TeenInk notepad, and a certicate of achievement. But teens read your work all over the country!

A cool fact: If you submit your work online, you'll be able to see how many people have viewed your work, rated it and commented on it. You'll also be able to create an online profile of yourself and share work with friends.

How do I know if this is legitimate? My local library subscribes to this magazine and I love looking at other teenagers' writing and art. If you could take my word for it, it is a great magazine and completely legitimate. If you can't take my word for it, just sign up to receive a free sample of an issue here!

What if I don't get published in the magazine? If you don't get published in the magazine, you might still get published in TeenInk Raw, the unedited part of the website where you can read, rate, and comment on other people's work while they can do the same for yours.

There is no limit on how much you can submit. So go write, read, and draw! TeenInk will be there.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Access Denied (and other eighth grade error messages)

Access Denied (and other eighth grade error messages)
By Denise Vega

5 out of 5 stars

Erin Swift starts the eighth grade with more confidence and friends than last year. But there are other things that she needs to worry about now. When will she get her period? What if her former crush, Mark, has a crush on her this time? Trying to move on to bigger and better things, she meets a high school boy and soon they are going out. Leaving her old life of unpopularity, Erin decides to go to a high school party with the new girl, Reede, where she finds out that maybe being a middle school late bloomer is better than being a high school early bloomer. Tempted by short skirts and sneaking out, can Erin keep her old friends and maybe receive forgiveness along the way?

Access Denied was simple to understand and complicated at all the right times (“Who will she choose?” “Will she do the right thing?”). This book is a great coming of age story that takes all the usual ones to the next level. It teaches forgiveness, trust, and how to deal with loss. It even teaches how to have a good time with your friends while still being under control! In the simplest form: Erin’s story is unforgettable. The writing is great, the scenes are great, the characters are great, and the storyline is terrific! The cover is inviting and completely sums up the story without saying a word (except the title :). I read it in two sit-downs and still wanted more! I hope that in the future, there will be a third book of Erin Swift’s life of trying to survive public school.


some kissing or 'making out'
the reference 'get a room' used
underage drinking

Poll Winner

Last week's poll was ...

If you tried out for a play, which one would it be?

Cinderella (playing Cinderella)
The Little Mermaid (playing Flounder)
Sleeping Beauty (playing a fairy godmother)
The Sound of Music

And the winner is ...

The Little Mermaid (playing Flounder)!
Each answer got a fair amount of votes this time. I'm glad it finally evened out! Thanks to all who participated and vote on this week's poll today.