Tuesday, January 31, 2012

The Hunger Pains Trailer (parody)

We knew it would happen sooner or later! Harvard Lampoon (the folks behind Nightlight, which I found hilarious) has written a scene-for-scene parody of The Hunger Games novel AND created a mock trailer to go along with it.

Check out the trailer here: Entertainment Weekly

Oshie and I had several good laughs at it. We both love The Hunger Games, but we believe in being able to laugh at our favorite fandoms, too. So, with that said, if you're easily offended when you see parodies of your favorite books/movies, then you might not enjoy it. But I felt that it's in good humor.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Oldies but Goodies: I Capture The Castle

Since I began book blogging, I've noticed that the majority of books that are blogged about, are new books or soon-to-be-released books. Which is an awesome way to learn about what's new and stay current. However, a lot of the books I acquire (through paperbackswap.com, library sales, randomly given to me by friends and relatives) are actually old books. And (although this might be strangely personifying these books on my part) I feel kinda sorry for them...doomed to sit on a shelf or to be passed from yard sale to yard sale because most people want the latest thing, the new NYT bestseller, instead of taking the time to dig for the hidden gem of a good story that an older book can hold.

We're still awesome inside!

So (to the point already), I've decided to create a new feature on this blog, "Oldies but Goodies," in which, I will review books that are over ten years old and haven't had a lot of buzz lately.

Over ten year old? That's like a grandma in book years right?

For the first "Oldies but Goodies" I picked: I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith.
Vonze: 4 out of 5
Date Published: 1948 (OMG, it is a grandma!)
Book Summary: "I Capture the Castle tells the story of seventeen-year-old Cassandra and her family, who live in not-so-genteel poverty in a ramshackle old English castle. Here she strives, over six turbulent months, to hone her writing skills. She fills three notebooks with sharply funny yet poignant entries. Her journals candidly chronicle the great changes that take place within the castle's walls, and her own first descent into love. By the time she pens her final entry, she has "captured the castle"--and the heart of the reader--in one of literature's most enchanting entertainments."

Review: "I Capture the Castle" is one of the best diary-format novels (The Princess Diaries, Go Ask Alice, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, etc) I've ever read. In 1948 it was probably considered to be a contemporary novel, however, nowadays it reads like historical YA. If I didn't know the date it was published, I would have guessed it was a modern author who did her research well. Dodie Smith's writing style didn't feel dated to me at all. The book stands out in my mind, not only for it's coming-of-age story, but for the bizarre love triangle, square, case of: she loves him, he doesn't love her, he loves her, she doesn't love him, that I've encountered.

I gave it four stars instead of five because of the ending...I'll be honest, she doesn't end up liking the guy I wanted her to like, but my rating isn't based on that. It's based on the fact that the ending is left very open, in my opinion. So much so, that I wasted a lot of time googling to see if there was a sequel to the book...and there isn't. If "I Capture the Castle" was a new historical YA release, this book would probably have been the beginning of a series. However, as it stands, the author passed away in 1990, and now, the reader is pretty much left to imagine if the main character goes after her dream guy or settles for the practical choice. I felt like throwing the book across the room I was so frustrated at the ending. But the writing style is great and the characters are memorable.

So, overall, this oldie but goodie is worth your time.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Restock Yara's Bookshelves

Hey everyone, if you haven't seen the Mundie Moms' post or another bloggers post about the book drive for Yara at Once Upon a Twilight, then please visit this link.

Yara is a fellow book lover, blogger, and mom of two, whose house was recently destroyed in a fire. Thankfully, no one was hurt, however, she has lost a lot. In honor of her birthday, several blogs have banned together to restock the bookshelves of her and her sons.

If you'd like to help please visit one of the links above to donate books or money for Yara and her family.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday (9)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme that was created by Breaking the Spine to spotlight a blogger's eagerly anticipated new books.

For this Waiting on Wednesday, I picked Insurgent by Veronica Roth.

Release Date:May 2012

Book Summary: "One choice can transform you—or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves—and herself—while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love.

Tris's initiation day should have been marked by celebration and victory with her chosen faction; instead, the day ended with unspeakable horrors. War now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. And in times of war, sides must be chosen, secrets will emerge, and choices will become even more irrevocable—and even more powerful. Transformed by her own decisions but also by haunting grief and guilt, radical new discoveries, and shifting relationships, Tris must fully embrace her Divergence, even if she does not know what she may lose by doing so.

New York Times bestselling author Veronica Roth's much-anticipated second book of the dystopian Divergent series is another intoxicating thrill ride of a story, rich with hallmark twists, heartbreaks, romance, and powerful insights about human nature."

My Thoughts: So, back last year, Oshie and I finished listening to the audiobooks of The Hunger Games series and were hoping to find another dystopian adventure to enjoy. Divergent was a pleasant surprise for us. Even though the author is younger than we are, the girl can write! With the action-packed ending to Divergent, Oshie turned to me and demanded to know if there was a sequel in the works. Only a few more months to wait!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Review: Breathless by Becki Brannen

Format: Kindle Edition
File Size: 227 KB
Print Length: 223 pages
Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1468093460
Sold by: Amazon Digital Services
Language: English

Vonze: 5 out of 5

Book description: "What happens when an ordinary girl meets the man of everyone’s dreams?

Keeping secrets is never easy, especially since Ryan Spalding is on the cover of every magazine and this year's "Hottest Hunk under 30." Good thing Carly Sparks is so out of the loop when it comes to celebrity affairs, or she'd realize she was in one!"

Review: Carly Sparks is a busy, successful lawyer. She doesn't have time for trivial things, such as which actor is Hollywood's newest, hottest hunk. So, when the handsome, sweet Ryan Spalding enters her life, the fact that he's a megastar doesn't even register in her mind. What will happen to their relationship when she learns the truth?

I highly recommend Breathless! Carly is a strong, smart heroine. She is an independent, Christian woman with a mind of her own. Ryan is a dreamboat! In the beginning, he's a lost soul with a sensitive side, but love changes him for the better. Together the characters share a sweet romance full of fun.

Breathless is a wonderful, lighthearted read! I'm looking forward to the future sequels in this series!

Check it out there!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Review: Silly Kingdom

Silly KingdomSilly Kingdom by Katie Shanahan

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

If your a comic or graphic novel fan and your not currently following the work of the Shanahan siblings, then you should be!

In their first self-published comic, Katie and Steven (Shaggy) Shananhan give us a short tale of a grumpy, old wizard, Alengrimrichshaw, and the young royals who conspire to give him a 211th birthday party. What results is a comic with hilariously expressive scenes and a timeless, kid-friendly Saturday morning cartoon feel.

I only wish it was longer! I'm hopeful that there will be more Silly Kingdom volumes in the future.

To check this comic out for yourself, visit:

View all my reviews

Review: You Don't Sweat Much for a Fat Girl

You Don't Sweat Much for a Fat Girl: Observations on Life from the Shallow End of the PoolYou Don't Sweat Much for a Fat Girl: Observations on Life from the Shallow End of the Pool by Celia Rivenbark

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Celia Rivenbark cracks me up! Having previously read her book "Bless Your Heart, Tramp," and getting a taste for Rivenbark's comedy, I found "You Don't Sweat Much for a Fat Girl" to be even funnier. I was surprised that this book doesn't have a higher rating on Goodreads! But maybe she's not for everyone. I think you have to understand that her comedy can be very southern. If there was a female version of the Blue Collar Comedy Tour, her material would fit right in. She's a balance of southern sassy and snarkiness, which I enjoy.

In "Fat Girl" Rivenbark uses short comedic essays to cover a wide range of topics. Everything from, of course, weight loss, to Twitter, to Snuggie, to Barbie turning 50th, to funny misadventures with her husband and daughter. The book is, overall, a laugh-out-loud, southern slice-of-life from a nontypical NC wife and mother.

View all my reviews

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Joy of Books video

Hey everyone! Sorry again for the mini-hiatus, my first semester back was pure torture...anyhow, check out this adorable stop-motion video. Who knew a bookstore could be Toy Story-esque?


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