Wednesday, April 28, 2010

FREE Comic Book Day is Coming on May 1st!

This Saturday, May 1st, is the annual Free Comic Book day. It's nice to get a free comic at your local comic shop but this time I'm really excited because there's supposed to be a Mortal Instruments graphic novel preview!!

Earlier today Cassandra Clare tweeted:
"Free Comic Book Day is upcoming this Saturday: http://bit.ly/4paEVm Find a store near you to get the TMI comic preview http://bit.ly/bENH8J"

Publisher Th3rd World Studios gives a first look at an adaptation of Cassandra Clare's The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones! Use the 2nd link to find a comic store near you, and the 1st link in Cassie's tweet above takes you to a page with info about the free comic.


Tuesday, April 27, 2010

a quick Silver Borne review and April is almost over....


Since it was not a good month for me, I'm happy to move on to May. 

And the first thing I'm looking forward to in May is mailing out Silver Borne to the winner of the contest, which ends April 30th!
I read and loved this book so much.  

In short, the Mercy Thompson series is amazing. Patricia Briggs just sucks you in from the first chapter and you keep reading until you look up and realize, "Sh*t! it's 4:16 am and I gotta work tomorrow!! er, well I mean today....".

It's seriously like being kidnapped by the fey and dragged to Underhill, and then the spell breaks when you stop to go to the bathroom! Ah, but such is the magic of Briggs writing, and Silver Borne is hands-down my favorite of the series so far.

I've always been fond of Samuel Cornick but it has always been Adam the alpha that steals my heart in the series. But in this book Sam really just comes alive for me as a character. As you know from my previous post, I've been grieving the loss of a friend. In hard times I sometimes can't focus enough to read, and my mind wanders a lot. But then a good story (whether in a film, song, or book) will come along and help me deal. It just so happened to be a Mercy Thompson book this time and I'm ever grateful for the beautiful distraction. As I named my blog for that very reason, I once again turned to books to cope. Sometimes it's strange how everything seems to happen.
So good luck to all who entered. You won't be disappointed to read this one. I can't wait to give away a kick-ass book from the amazing Patricia Briggs, and am already thinking up what other awesome books that touched me and gave me joy, that I can also give away after this one :D




There's still time to enter too, so just click on the link in the sidebar and follow directions to enter by 04-30-10 midnight cst :)

as ever,
Bella

Monday, April 19, 2010

A Difficult Time...

A friend of mine passed away unexpectedly last week and I am broken-hearted. I haven't been online much and so I'm not sure when my next post will be. Thank you for your patience and understanding.
of Matt

 
Give sorrow words;
the grief that does not speak
Whispers the o'er-fraught heart
and bids it break.
~ William Shakespeare, in Macbeth, Act IV, Scene III

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

•*¨*•☆Support Teen Literature Day with Operation TBD!.•*¨*•☆

Held on the Thursday of National Library Week, "Support Teen Literature Day" is being celebrated by YALSA, readergirlz, Guys' Lit Wire, and If I Can Read, I Can Do Anything  
(a reading club for Native children founded by former ALA president Loriene Roy) & they will distribute 10,000 new books, donated by publishers, to teens on tribal reservations and Native lands.

Nationwide, librarians, authors and readers are dropping Young Adult books in their own communities tomorrow, April 15th, to raise awareness for this projectMore than 100 YA authors will randomly leave new YA books in public places, with a bookplate from Operation TBD!! How cool is that?!
 
Interested in getting InvolvEd? hErE's hOw:
  1. Plan your own book drop! Be sure to download bookplates from the readergirlz site and paste them into the books you’re donating. You can also download a Operation TBD countdown widget at their site.
  2. Download bookmarks (PDF) and share them at your library to raise awareness. Each bookmark recommends a number of titles for teens.
  3. Add to the official book drop!  GuysLitWire has created a wish list of 750 books that supporters can buy from Powells.com. These purchases will be sent directly to one of two tribal school libraries, Ojo Encino Day School or Alchesay High School.
  4. See where books are going at If I Can Read, I Can Do Anything.
  5. Join the party! Readergirlz will host an online TBD Post-Op party at 6 PM PST / 9 PM EST that evening at the readergirlz blog
TBD 2010 bookmark
    So, for April 15th, leave these books in a public place: at your bus stop, on a park bench, on a table for someone to find. Whoever finds your book will know they're a part of Operation Teen Book Drop too!
     
    Join in, donate books and support Young Adult Literature :D

    Monday, April 12, 2010

    Review : Radiant Shadows by Melissa Marr

    Radiant Shadows (Wicked Lovely, #4)
    Hunger for nourishment.  

    Hunger for touch.

    Hunger to belong.

    Half-human and half-faery, Ani is driven by her hungers.
    Those same appetites also attract powerful enemies and uncertain allies, including Devlin. He was created as an assassin and is brother to the faeries’ coolly logical High Queen and to her chaotic twin, the embodiment of War. Devlin wants to keep Ani safe from his sisters, knowing that if he fails, he will be the instrument of Ani’s death.
    Ani isn’t one to be guarded while others fight battles for her, though. She has the courage to protect herself and the ability to alter Devlin’s plans—and his life. The two are drawn together, each with reason to fear the other and to fear for one another. But as they grow closer, a larger threat imperils the whole of Faerie. Will saving the faery realm mean losing each other?
    --book summary via goodreads.com

    • Reading level: Young Adult
    • Hardcover: 352 pages
    • Publisher: HarperCollins (April 20, 2010)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 0061659223
    • ISBN-13: 978-0061659225

     Review:
         Though I was caught off guard at the fact that none of the Summer or Winter Court characters appear in this book, I was not disappointed. I like learning about the lives of other characters and seeing the other side of the story, which is why I personally loved Ink Exchange so much. The story in this book centers around Devlin, Ani, and their roles in the possible futures of Faerie. 

         Since I only vaguely recalled Ani and Dev from Fragile Eternity, it was strange at first to focus on them as main characters. But I found myself quickly loving Ani! She's spirited, honest, and strong as a female character and I'm sure fans will like her. 

         Ani is the halfling "pup" of Gabriel from the Dark Court so two of my favorite fey, Irial & Niall, are intregal to the story as well. Anyone out there who loves these dark boys will be happy to see them again :) 

         Devlin is the High Court assassin, and the High Court's heavy involvement in the plot also brings the sexy Seth back as well. However, there is also Rae. I hate spoilers so I won't elaborate on this character except to say she was the one part of the book that totally confused me. I don't know if she is important in a later story or if I just really missed something, but her existence and infuence in the book just didn't make sense to me.
         
         But together with the other books, Radiant Shadows (book 5) works as another piece of the Wicked Lovely series as a whole, with its countless moving parts of vast faerie courts and countless faerie lives, which is what I love most about Melissa Marr's stories! It's this intricacy, vivid detail, and being able to see how specific people in both mortal and faery worlds are affected as they clash that makes it all come alive.

         This book is definitely not a stand-alone because these characters and others require the readers to have prior knowledge of them and their stories (like Iri & Niall's in Ink Exchange) so they know what is going on and who is who in the complex court politics. But it also gives readers of the series a chance to meet and love new characters as they enter that other world. Overall, I love it; it's the beauty of all these crazy components coming together in one unfathomable story arc that make the Wicked Lovely series amazing!

    Saturday, April 10, 2010

    Read-a-Thon Activity #5: Declutter the Blog

    This activity is hosted by A Passion for Books, who says, "In this activity, I want you to make some goals, pertaining to cleaning up your blog. This can include anything you would like, as long as it has to do with your blog. For example: sidebars, review and/or author lists, etc." 

    Well I'm gonna keep it simple since I'm struggling to even keep up with my reading this month. And since I was having trouble thinking up goals, I borrowed #1 from Casey, so here goes:

    1. Create better labels

    2.Catch up on my syncing my blog with goodreads, facebook, & any other social network
     
    3.Tag and Organize reviews more consistently

     

    Thursday, April 8, 2010

    Read-a-Thon Activity #4: Clear Out the Pack Rat Mentality & the TBR

    Today's event is by Alyssa at Teens Read and Write, and is about keeping your TBR or  
    To Be Read/Reviewed list down to a reasonable size 
    here are the questions and my answers:

    1.) Is there at least one book on your growing TBR that has been there forever and (if you were honest) you could give up without to much trauma?
     
    Yep, especially since a bunch are library books that I've already renewed once so those are going back when I return next week. Also, there are a couple I own that I haven't yet read so I'll be using them as upcoming giveaways soon.

    2.) What is your latest "Gotta Have It" book? (that you can get once you've given up that one in question #1)
     
    The Dead Tossed Waves by Carrie Ryan! And having too many books on my current TBR is exactly why I've put off buying it for now.
     
    http://gravesok.files.wordpress.com/2009/12/dead-tossed-waves1.jpg


    3.) What are your classics - you're 'comfort books' that you never want to give up?
     
    All my hardcovers because I only buy in hardback once I've read and loved the story. If I absolutely loved it, then I buy it in hardcover to collect and so I can re-read it. Those are also the copies I try and get signed when I go to an author's signing event.
     

    4.) What are your best tips for keeping that TBR in check?


    • Don't buy more books if you already have 3 unread new books.
    • Review the books within a week of reading them; this way story is still fresh and your notes to self about it still make sense! lol
    • If you buy or win a book and you still haven't read it within 6 months, use it for a giveaway or pass it along to a friend or someone you know that really wants to read it. 
    • If it's an ARC you got for review and it looks like you're not gonna get to even read it before its release, you should pass it along to someone you know who can review it before the release date! Because come on people, those are meant to help an author out for promotion!

    Wednesday, April 7, 2010

    Currently Reading: Radiant Shadows by Melissa Marr!!


    I'm sooo excited to be reading this book! It came in the mail as part of a blog tour where Melissa mails her ARC out to the first person and you read it, then mail it on to the next person in line and so on, then the very last person mails it back to Melissa. Great idea, huh?!


    Review -Twilight: The Graphic Novel, volume 1

     

     As a fan of the Twilight books, I was both excited and anxious when I heard a graphic novel interpretation was being made. Excited because I love graphic novels. Anxious because I don't like manga. I've had tons of friends suggest manga they thought I'd love or that they said was just so good I had to read it but in the end the verdict was the same: manga is not for me. I have nothing against it, I just personally don't really care for it. A lot of times it looks messy & cluttered. That being said, I can still appreciate some good manga artwork. One of my favorites is  Sayonara, Zetsubou-Sensei (さよなら 絶望先生) which satirizes all aspects of daily life in Japan.

    So when I picked up the Twilight graphic Novel I went into it with as open a mind as possible.
    The artwork is just okay. Bella is glammed up, manga style and though that was something I was expecting, it still didn't fit for me. Another issue I had was that many of the characters (the males in particular) were graphically indistinguishable from one another. Edward's face looked like Jasper's and Carlisle's in many of the panels, and facial expressions were not great either. Bella also almost always has this sweat drop flying off her face and annoyed the hell outta me. I'm fully aware that the use of the flying sweat/tear drop in manga is standard to show anxiety, fear, and whatnot but these just looked funky to me. It was definitely overdone in an effort to show Bella's famous anxieties but it didn't work for me. The panel below was one where I thought she and Edward were drawn particularly well. 
    (aka no wierd sweat drops flying off their faces, and fairly proportionate bodies)

    Some other things I really liked were that it's a hardcover, and it has quality paper (glossy) inside, as well as color accents to important scenes. The meadow scene was nice and it's where it ends for volume 1. It's an adaptation so the storyline leaves a lot of the intricacies out but overall it was still interesting to see/read. I would not recommend getting it if you haven't read the books, unless you plan on never reading the books.

    • Reading level: Young Adult
    • Hardcover: 224 pages
    • Publisher: Yen Press; Original edition (March 16, 2010)
    • Language: English
    • ISBN-10: 0759529434
    • ISBN-13: 978-0759529434


     

    Read-A-Thon Activity #3: Share the Blog Love

    Wednesday, April 7


     
    With new blogs popping up all the time, it is so hard to keep track with them all. So for today's activity, we are sharing about blogs love.

    Below are 3 blogs I follow and why I love 'em :)

    • The Book Smugglers - Run by Ana and Thea, The Book Smugglers' site is always bumpin', always exciting! Their site was one of the first book blogs I ever visited in early to mid 2008 though I almost never commented at the time because I felt shy (yes, even on the internet!).  AND then I won a giveaway. I was astounded but forever hooked, lol! The book was a YA faery book by Holly Black called Tithe and I went on to read the whole series by her. If you haven't visited their site before you can find them at http://thebooksmugglers.com/

    • Strange & Random Happenstance - Elizabeth's (aka Miss Eliza's) blog covers "Books, Blogs, Brits, and Banalities". I love her unabashed love of british comedy as well as her appreciation of geek humor (b/c I too <3 geeking out). Though I'm most interested in her YA reviews, I often find great discussions going on. You can find her at: http://strange-and-random-happenstance.blogspot.com/

    • Bitten by Books - My 3 favorite genres are Paranormal Fiction, YA, and Romance, and no one covers all 3 of these as well as BBB! Founded by Rachel Smith, BBB excels at book realease fun. Their giveaways are crazy good! AND they host author chats almost every day!! I've chatted or gotten to ask an interview question with Charlaine Harris, Melissa Marr, Patricia Briggs, and many others this year alone. Plus, if you love romance or sexy books then BBB has great reviews & daily chats you'd love too. I dare you to enter a contest and not get hooked, lol: http://bittenbybooks.com/


    Finally, I just wanted to give a quick shout-out to Bookworming in the 21st Century by Kristen because even though you all know her blog (since she's one of the hosts of this Read-a-Thon), it is one of my faves. She was nice enough to post some encouragement and offer advice when I assumed no one but me had seen this blog, lol. So if you're not already following her, do it! :D

    Tuesday, April 6, 2010

    Clear Away the Clutter Readathon: Activity #2

    Today's activity is the Review-a-Thon and it is what you make of it. 
    If you wanna sign up, visit Red House Books.  For me, I'm gonna list the books I'm either currently reading and/or working on a review for this month. It's not a long list but I tried not to over-extend myself since I've got a busy month ahead.
    Here's my Review-a-thon list of books/ARCs to be read and reviewed this lovely month of April:

    1. Radiant Shadows by Melissa Marr
    2. Grave Secret by Charlaine Harris
    3. Succubus Shadows by Richelle Mead
    4. A Vintage Affair by Isabel Wolffe
    5. Seized by Max Hardberger
    6. Kiss Me if You Can by Carly Phillips
    7. Sinful by Charlotte Featherstone
    8. Into the Dark by Gina Showalter
    9. The Dead Tossed Waves by Carrie Ryan
    10. Silver Bourne by Patricia Briggs

    Clear Away the Clutter Readathon: April 5-11th Activity #1

    While visiting Bookworming in the 21st Century and The Neverending Shelf I decided to participate in their Clear Away the Clutter Read-A-Thon.

    Basically I'm setting a goal to read through my pile of books 
    which you can see here:




    here are a couple of places where I have my books stashed...






    in the book cases,






     and on random tables....
                     




    then there are the library books on top of the footlocker (which is full of more books I own)


     ..but my biggest clue I have a book hoarding *ahem* I mean a book loving issue is the fact that I must stash a few under my bed so the boyfriend doesn't catch on to new acquisitions, lol  :")

    Now, lest you judge my beloved boyfriend and say to yourselves, "what kind of jerk doesn't welcome mOrE bOoKS?!", well let me also confess: I collect comics & graphic novels as well!


     uh-huh.... yep. I'm a book geek.

    So part two of this challenge is to make a plan, and here goes mine:

    1. Read all 4 books I need to review this month

    2. Read the other 4 library books that I've re-newed more than 2 times
    3. Suck it up read at least one of the long eBooks I haven't read (because I dont yet have an eReader & hate sitting at my desktop)
      
    And now for part 3, which is get to reading! I know I only plan to read 10 books total in this  week but my sister's wedding is Saturday and her rehearsal dinner is the Friday before so it's gonna be a crazy, busy week for me. I just hope I can make it to my goal of these 10 cuz that alone would really be a big difference on my stuffed shelves :)
    As for the Clear Away the Clutter Readathon, click on the link to sign up if you wanna participate. You don't even have to have a blog, y'all!