Tuesday, April 9, 2013

I'm back to blogging....A re-introduction to my life and Loves

How life has progressed through the past year.. for better and worse! All for a reason however! Well through the months I have had moments of wishing I had maintained this lovely outlet a bit more, but no time for shoulda, coulda, woulda... cause I'm here now!

I have read many books in the past year and have slowly taken a turn on the style of books I have been enjoying, but I still read everything I can get my hands on! The last year has definitely devoted time to reading Game of Thrones. Those books have been a great joy to devour and I'm still progressing through the fourth installment- A Feast for Crows. Just amazing, and so addicting.

I haven't even come close to meeting the goal amount of reading I would like to complete in a days time, but I have become open to so many other things like introducing running into my life, very successful but time consuming and I spend a lot of time reading about healthy stuff. I have become a magazine junkie- subscribing to women's health, self, fitness, shape.. etc.... There is just so much information throughout those pages.

Back on track- I have also switched up my work and home life- currently working a very positive industry- the coffee business! I love the connections I get to make with people on a daily basis and have come across many great book recommendations! (I have a hefty list of sample books on my Nook that is growing daily!)

Last year I was very fortunate to meet a special person, Jake Desy. He has become my Best Friend, my Companion, my Significant other and an ideal role model for my boys. I have spent the last year enjoying this persons perspectives, values, interests, and swallowing up so many new things I never thought of pursuing.
First credit belongs to him introducing me to Game of Thrones on our first date at California Pizza Kitchen, I bought the book the next day and have been a fan since, and open to a genre of books I wasn't reading. Next credit goes to Comics. During many of our Barnes and Noble visits Jake would spend time reading comics such as Deadpool, WatchmenBone, and The Walking Dead. I never understood the enjoyment in comics because well I honestly just never read one through. I had become quite interested in The Walking Dead TV show that we had been watching on Netflix and I began reading the comics as well. The stories are so different, and both so great. I have found the comics extremely enjoyable and very addicting. I can see myself reading many more!!

I recently turned 27 and I am enjoying it so much, as well as my munchkins are 10 and 5 now, they are both growing into smart and caring little people!  They are so unique but so much like me and I have learned to appreciate this so much!
I recently purchased a long board (how lovely it is, and how long I had wanted it) and before this I had tried to encourage Blake, my oldest, to be active through different activities, the basics- biking, sports, skateboarding, and rollerblading. My encouragement didn't seem to be enough and he lost interest in these things over and over and I was losing the battle. The day I came home with my long board something sparked in this family! Everyone loves it and everyone rides it! Regardless of the weather we have made it a point to bundle up and get moving outside.
I see my boys enjoy the time we spend taking turns carving the streets of our neighborhood together, it makes my heart smile.

I have also purchased a Nook HD+ earlier this year, after much research and annoying questions. Maybe a future post will be dedicated to the process of comparing the tablets I contemplated. I have been slowly purchasing books and trying to wrap up my stack of TBR paperbacks... but switching back and forth is a nice comfort. I enjoy both equally, just as I knew I would!

Reviews to be coming- first 3 installments of Game of Thrones, & A visit from the Goon Squad. Books I'm hoping to feature are a few from Marlene Perez's Dead is series, Her by Christa Parravani, Life after Life by Kate Atkinson, The Interestings by Meg Wolitzer, and hopefully by the end of this month I will get to my favorite Boneshaker by Cherie Priest!!!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Borders' Closing Liquidation.. not quite the sale.. yet anyway.

Since Borders announced the closing of all their stores yesterday I have been anxious to get into their store and get my hands on some of my reading list wants. However the liquidation is a slow process and YA books were only discounted at 10% off ... I was amazed to find that most shelves had been picked clean of popular books, and while there were still some great finds, they were still pricey. Now the Border's online bookstore will remain open, where you can find most books 20-30% with free shipping with most orders.
With that said I didn't splurge much-

Gena Showalter's Unraveled: An Intertwined novel
Linda Gerber The Death by Bikin Mysteries
The essential iPad2 Handbook

I am sad to see Borders go out of Bussiness as it is my favorite book store, I will miss the weekly coupons, rewards programs and the convenient locations. I will continue to purchase books on amazon or Borders' online store- anybody have a favorite book shop they can suggest? Open for Ideas-

How do you bargain shop for your books?

Monday, July 18, 2011

Infinite Days by Rebecca Maizel Review

Infinite Days
Rebecca Maizel
Pages: 336
YA St.Martin's Griffin
Published August 3, 2010

This theme of this book is vampires, and it is great. The story develops pretty much right away and then slows down to give the details of each event. I enjoy books where the narrator alternates between characters but I really enjoyed the perspective of this book coming straight from Lenah, the main character. There is so much detail and emotion in her thoughts and actions, makes it hard to put the book down.

The setting is somewhat traditional, taking place in two different environments- the first is in a Private school modern day known as 'Wickham' where Lenah finds herself after nearly 500 years of being a Vampire in Hathersage, England.
(I am leaving out much detail, because I do not want to spoil any part of this story)

The plot pulls you in right away in the first chapter and keeps you hooked with different climax points, interesting characters, & love triangles.

The plot really leaves a great opening for the second book 'Stolen Nights' and even gives you a preview of the first chapter at the end. I really enjoyed how the story line was not so predictable it was truely a refreshing read and I am anxioulsy waiting to read the next book.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Would that be Tablet, e-reader, or paperback ...

I have been experiencing complete and total reading malfunction. These days I spend more time reading reviews pertaining to these electronic devices that should in reality provide me with complete reading freedom regardless which e-reader I have.

I first purchased a Sony e-reader pocket edition last summer and planned on getting some heavy duty use out of it in the freedom of the summer months. However I found myself purchasing more Hardcovers for the series I had already started collecting, and for poolside reading which I didn't want to risk my electronic device in the reach of my splashing children or the torment of the Sun.

So here I am a year later just starting to put my e-reader to use, I have overcome my phobia of dropping it in water or damagng it outside, so it allows me a little more leniency with excercising the main purpose of portability and convenience of an e-reader.

Next I found I wasn't too fond of the feel of this e-reader... the screen was dull, the device was small - yes very portable and convenient- but some other e-readers have the slimness as well as height like a normal book.

So I have been switching back and forth from e-reader to traditional books... Honeslty I read more with traditional print books, it just feel more natural and more comfortable, and I truely enjoy showing off the heftyness of my current read, as well as enjoying the cover art. I found I don't mind lugging my books around.

Now my dilema arises- the town I moved to has a fairly small library and the waiting lists for books are weeks out... now most e-books are a fair and cheap price as well as avaialble right away. This is my weakness.. because when I want to get a book and Borders is closed and waiting 2 days for shipping from Amazon does not sound appealing or whatever the circumstance may be.... I buy the e-book.

I have since quit reading on my sony e-reader and downloaded the Kindle & Kobo apps on my ipad 2 which I love the black text and white pages, gives a more realistic sense of a book, the brightness is lively, and the access to both Kindle and Kobo librairies is very nice. I did not purchase the iPad with the intention of using it as a e-reader but have found it very beneficial. However since my recent purchase of the iPad, I have been obsessed with reading reviews of these devices.

Several reviews I have read share that the iPad is too distracting for use as an e-ereader with the internet, games, and email also at your fingertips it is hard to focus on reading. Sometimes I get distracted but usually I get my other browsing done before I read so I don't even think about it. Another feauture is you can disable these distractions or remove them so they dont take all of your focus. These fellow reviewers tend to enjoy their Kobo touch readers available through Borders. I havent read too many reviews about the Nook color, although I used to want one, however I'm not a fan of Barnes & Noble ( No offense faithful B&N customers) so I just strayed from their e-reader products as well.
Quick note: I do not bring my iPad along to read at the lake or pool either- I save my magazines and paperbacks for those occasions. My favorite places to enjoy reading on my iPad are Noodles & Company, any coffee house near me at the present time, or my bed. I like the hands free feeling of being able to prop the tablet up on its stand/case and read while I eat noodles or drink coffee and I can lay on one side comfortably without having to reposition with the turn of a page.

My own quick personal review of the iPad 2 which is non-reading related so feel free to skip if your not interested in a review of the iPad, either way I hope it is beneficial in some way or another:

My iPad has an average of 10 hour battery life- lots of reading and web browsing, as well as lots and lots of Yahtzee playing is done in 10 hours. The iPad2 is slickly slimmer than the 1st generation and you can personalize it with the Vibrant colors of a Smart cover- however I prefer a genuine black leather case myself, the sound is amazing and the Apple App store is the best (I owned a Samsung Galaxy Tablet for one day, Android Market is the only downfall). Apple produces a genuine product with protection plans, lots of support and easy navigation of their devices. I am open minded to other products- I'm not a hardcore Apple brand groupie- I just find I like what I get most of the time- and as I said I LOVE the Apps available.

The conclusion I have come to is that with all the options available there is something out there that suits every individual. I have have found my balance between my iPad as well as continuing to build my own personal collection of books in my home.

I would love to hear how others enjoy their reading, what they prefer or even what e-readers they use and why they like them. PLEASE SHARE your thoughts and opinions- negative or positive they are more than welcome!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Far From You - Lisa Schroeder

Far From You
Lisa Schroeder
195 pages

Lost and alone...Down the rabbit hole.

Alice thought she knew
what solitude was:
Her mother—gone.
Her father—remarried with a newborn
in the icy embrace
of a deadly snowstorm,
Alice faces the true meaning of loneliness.

But hope
may not be as far away
as she thinks....

I enjoy the unique way Lisa Schroeder writes her stories in verse with tons of emotion and detail to what the character is feeling. I loved the character in this book, Alice. She was smart, different and was dealing with so many changes- her mother passing, her father remarrying, and a newborn baby sister. Meanwhile Alice was dealing with not having  her best friend, Claire, around.

Alice wants to keep her distance from the family she no longer feels apart of. When forced to go on a Holiday vacation to her new Step Mom's parents' she can't wait to get home and get back to Blaze, her boyfriend, and when her Dad has to leave the trip early for business, she begs to go with.

Tragically Victoria, Alice and Baby Ivy get stranded on back roads in a snow storm on their way home. Alice is forced to face Victoria and they bond over the tragedy... until days pass and no one rescues them from their icey prison. Running out of food, formula and heat.. Victoria ventures out to find help leaving Alice alone to care for Ivy..

Then ending is touching and Alice's realization to how she has been acting, regrets flood her thoughts, as she prays and hopes for the safety of her Step Mother, & Baby sister. The morals portrayed through this story are deep and well written. I love the tragedy and happiness of Lisa Schroeder's work.

Nice weekend read.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Crazy Love

Crazy Love A Memoir
Leslie Morgan Steiner
St. Martin's Press 2009
322 pages

I came across this book in an article I read In the April 2009 issue of glamour. The article was an Open Letter Rhianna written by the author Leslie Morgan Steiner in regards to Domestic Abuse. I ordered the book the next day and have finished it in awe to the events the memoir unfolds.

I struggled reading this book, it is just tragic to read the details of someone else's misfortune and you feel as though you are there with her through the brutal events as you turn the pages. She describes in great detail her ventures of New York, just graduated from Harvard and taking on a new career at Seventeen Magazine. Through the pages she weaves her childhood and upbringing into the story as she falls in love with a man named Conor. Their relationship feels so right and perfect, even when he shares with her that he was abused as a child, she vows to help him and never abandon him.

She doesn't rush to the horrific details of the crazy moments of abuse, but walks you through her journey of dating and then marrying a man who abused her and used her- breaking her down emotionally, physically, and financially. I found serenity in the moments she describes the Indian summers in the half renovated home they shared in Vermont, or the summer she spent away at an internship, the time she spent on campus at Business School and every moment she was able to escape Connor.

Every wave of emotion I felt with every changing event in this women's life. Through everything I couldn't help but cheer her on as she pulled herself out of this disaster, and stood strong despite the crazy Love she had for Connor.

This book is a good read for anyone, as Domestic Abuse can happen to anyone.
Here is the link also to her web page & Glamour article:


Saturday, October 23, 2010

Marlene Perez Interview

Marlene Perez is the YA author of the DEAD IS series as well as Love in the corner pocket & The comeback. She has just released the fourth book in her series Dead is just a Rumor & has planned on releasing Dead is not an Option Summer 2011. Exciting!

CT: Can you give us a brief description of the ‘Dead Is’ series in your own words?
MP: The DEAD IS series is a teen paranormal mystery series set in the town of Nightshade, California and features the adventures of Daisy Giordano and her sisters, as well as a cast of normal and paranormal characters. The things that go bump in the night are your neighbors in Nightshade.

CT: What has been your inspiration to write the ‘Dead Is’ series and the title?
MP: I love urban fantasy, paranormal, and especially anything with vampires in it. When I was little, my older sister used to babysit me after school and she watched a supernatural soap opera called DARK SHADOWS. I also loved Anne Rice’s VAMPIRE LESTAT books and read every ghost story I could find as a kid. I also had a crush on a character from a book when I was growing up, Strider/Aragorn from LORD OF THE RINGS. When I saw Viggo Mortenson’s film portrayal, I sincerely thought he brought the character to life. He was exactly how I’d pictured him.

CT: Who is your favorite character from Nightshade?
MP: Daisy. I adore her. But I’m kind of fond of Ryan, too.
CT:What are some of your favorite books to read?
MP: I read pretty much every genre and if people are really interested, check out my goodreads list. It’s embarrassingly long, but will tell you what I’m reading. I’ve been reading a lot of research books lately.
CT:When you’re not busy writing, what do you like to do in your free time?
MP: I like to spend time with my family, go to the beach, read, and have coffee with my writing buddies.
CT: What advice would you give to Young Adults who desire to become authors themselves?
MP: Read widely and hone your craft.

CT: Anything else you would like to add….
MP: I love to hear from my readers! There’s a Welcome to Nightshade Facebook Community page and I’d love to see readers there!

CT: Thank you very much Marlene!

Links to Marlene:

 And also look for NightShade on Facebook!!