Monday, February 27, 2012

I know it's been an annoying meme but...

I just had to share one. Coming from the public library world I've gotta say it's the "what taxpayers think I do" pic that made me laugh:

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Friday, February 17, 2012

Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion

Author(s): Isaac Marion
Genre: Fiction
Mass Market Paperback:239 pages
ISBN: 1439192324
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Adult Publishing Group(April 26, 2011)

I had NO idea what to expect from this book but I’d heard it was good and seen it get an average of 4 or more stars from various readers and bloggers that I trust. So when the opportunity to enter a contest and participate in an online book club for it came along, I decided to do it. And am I ever glad I did:D
This book is amazingly written! The author has a unique way of weaving complex and seemingly random information into not just dialogue but also into the characters themselves. I found myself often reading a portion and then stopping to jot down my own personal thoughts and feelings in regard to R and his musings or actions. R is the main character and a zombie. And since he’s a zombie, there is little he recalls of his former self aside from the fact that his name began with an “R”. The zombie disease spread like the epidemic it is, and all the undead crave living flesh to feed the incessant hunger that plagues them. Eating flesh of the living is the only way they can “live”.

But R is different. Though muddled and sticky, he begins to have thoughts on things other than just human flesh. He wonders how old he is, what did his job used to be that caused him to still be wearing slacks, tie and shirt, and wants to know names of the others. But none of them remember or seem interested in being a philosophical zombie like R.  He feels lonely and adrift until suddenly he eats the brain of young man named Perry. Everything starts to snowball from there, into one of the best and weirdest retellings of Romeo and Juliet I’ve ever read.
Warm bodies is one of those fiction books that is so well written it made me reflect more than most nonfiction I’ve read. It’s a fantastic mix of things I never would have thought could work: zombies, romance, and what it means to be alive.

Thanks to Danielle at Bookwhore.com for hosting the fabulous online discussions (great questions Danielle!) and also to Isaac Marion for donating the copy I was lucky enough to receive. I loved it! 

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Happy Valentine's Day

Have y'all seen these funny Downton Abbey cards? I liked this one the best, with the sneaky footman plotting to win your heart :D I did start reading this really interesting book called Attached, though. It's about how adult attachment and love happen in one of 3 ways: Anxious, Avoidant, or Secure. It's intriguing and I still have quite a bit to go in the book, so I'll wait to finish it before saying more. May everyone have a little love in their day today =) 


Monday, February 6, 2012

Heir of my Sundays

Of course I'm not unique in my new obsession, but ZOMG I LOVE DOWNTON ABBEY! The British tv series airs on PBS Masterpiece and has completely inherited my Sundays:) I didn't begin watching until this year when, in preparation for Season 2, PBS ran a marathon of Season 1. I watched it all in one sitting and now greedily await each new episode. 
The show begins in the early 1900s with the Crawley family losing their heir on the Titanic and waiting to see who will be next in line;the Earl of Grantham and his family currently live at Downton with their staff but since the daughters can not inherit, they are forced to find a male relative for next in line. Season 1 then leaves us as the first World War breaks out in 1914. Season 2 picked up there and is now running with just 2 more episodes to go, but already Season 3 is making news as it's been confirmed that Shirley MacLaine has been cast as Lady Grantham’s mother, Martha Levinson! 
And though I'm aware there are many who don't like her, I just love Lady Mary and am hoping she and Matthew will end up together. I really don't think she's as cold as she pretends to be and there's just something about her chemistry with Matthew that makes me feel like they'd be happy together if they could just work it out, lol. 

Thursday, February 2, 2012

A Lady Awakened by Cecilia Grant



Title: A Lady Awakened (Blackshear Family #1)
Author(s): Cecilia Grant
Genre: Romance - Historical
Mass Market Paperback:346 pages
ISBN: 0553593838 
Publisher: Bantam (December 27, 2011)

This was one of those rare books that makes me the tenacious kind of reader I am. What I mean by that is I am a reader that rarely ever DNF's a book. There may be occasions where my mood changes and I put it down and don't pick it up again for a month but I almost never leave a book unfinished. One reason is I'm pretty good at determining and choosing books I'll like, so it isn't often I pick up something that I totally hate. The other reason is there are books like this one. Books where I'm thinking "aw man, I thought I was going to like this but it's so not working for me". For instance, I had given this 3 stars already. Then suddenly this book took a turn.... for awesome!
The basic premise is like the summary says: Martha, a young widow plots to save herself and her female servants from dire circumstances by engaging in an affair with her rakish neighbor Theophilus to conceive an heir.
But for me the beginning was dragging and mostly I was having a hard time with the absence of any romance or true intimacy. The characters don't flirt or even have any fire between them because, after all, their relations are a business deal. And because of this the sex is terrible and made me just wince from all the awkwardness and obvious lack of pleasure. And I get it; I know it was totally because of the situation but geez it was hard going!
Without that connection between them (for at least the first 100 pages if not more) and cringing at how awful it must be to just have such mechanical sex I was almost about to DNF this one. However the author does a good job of showing the main character's personalities outside of each other and we get to know them in a way that builds just enough to hold on.
Actually, the slow story/character building and humor sort of reminded me of Jane Austen-ish/Elizabeth Gaskell type stuff. The kind where overall it's a romance you're reading but there's all this crappy stuff that happens too, and not a lot of sexy stuff that modern readers are used to in historical novels from this century. The only difference is we know going into those older books to somewhat expect that, and also this book IS modern so it has sex scenes, lol. Once I got into this book I began loving it as I got to know Theo and laughing at some of the hilarious remarks he'd make. He has some really funny scenes with a pig on the farm, and I started looking forward to those scenes with the pig lol! I sort of liked Martha right away and her private conversations with her maid and cleric helped show who she was. Once Martha and Theo started really talking and opening up I liked it more of course.
So it starts slower than most historical romances but it's written so well and comes together in a way that makes it pay off:)


Thanks to LibraryThing Early Reviewers program and Random House for the review copy.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

it's a new year

Well, I'm not sure I feel ready to have everything feel normal again but then when is anyone ever ready? After all, classes have started again and work is busy as always, and I might as well kick myself into doing things I generally enjoy. So even though it's late, here's to 2012 and hopefully a better year and better things to come...