Friday, January 30, 2015

Jane in January Review: Manga Classics: Pride & Prejudice

Manga Classics: Pride & PrejudiceManga Classics: Pride & Prejudice by Stacy King
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have to admit that I'm a little biased for this book, because I love Pride & Prejudice AND manga.

Me when I found out about this book:

pure wonder

Thoroughly enjoyed it!

The illustrator did a great job on all the characters, but especially Darcy and Elizabeth:

Darcy and Elizabeth

The author does put her own, slight, spin on the story. But for me, it kept it fresh. Much like watching the differences in the many tv and film versions of Pride & Prejudice, the heart of the same story is there.

Can't wait for the Manga Classics' version of Emma. I truly hope they make Manga Classics out of all Jane Austen's work!

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Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday (24)

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 The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy.

Release Date: January 27, 2015

Book Summary: (From Goodreads) "Sir Richard Kenworthy has less than a month to find a bride. He knows he can't be too picky, but when he sees Iris Smythe-Smith hiding behind her cello at her family's infamous musicale, he thinks he might have struck gold. She's the type of girl you don't notice until the second—or third—look, but there's something about her, something simmering under the surface, and he knows she's the one.

Iris Smythe–Smith is used to being underestimated. With her pale hair and quiet, sly wit she tends to blend into the background, and she likes it that way. So when Richard Kenworthy demands an introduction, she is suspicious. He flirts, he charms, he gives every impression of a man falling in love, but she can't quite believe it's all true. When his proposal of marriage turns into a compromising position that forces the issue, she can't help thinking that he's hiding something . . . even as her heart tells her to say yes."

My Thoughts: I love the Smythe-Smith family and their horrible family musicale (forced tradition). I'm curious to find out what the big secret is, or my bad, secrets!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Review: A Good Food Day by Marco Canora

A Good Food Day: 125 Recipes for Great Food and Great HealthA Good Food Day: 125 Recipes for Great Food and Great Health by Marco Canora
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

So, how's everyone's 2015 diet goals?

Marco Canora describes himself as a lifer, a professional chef for twenty years. He loves cooking and he loves food. However, like many people who enjoy cooking, it eventually caught up with Canora's health.

He had a wake-up call and decided to make some changes. He would cook healthier. He then created his ten principals for a good food day. These principals include: eating must be enjoyable, cooking empowers you to eat better, proper prior planning prevents poor performance, get in sync with Mother Nature, quality ingredients are everything, eat real food, be a conscious eater, a twinge of hunger isn't the end of the world. diversify, and make indulgences a guilt-free part of the program. His recipes are broken down into: breakfast, salads, vegetables, beans & lentils, great grains, fish, meat & poultry, snacks, and sweets.

So far, my husband and I have enjoyed the recipes I have made from this cookbook. My favorites include: New York City Jewish-Style Chicken Soup, Flavor-Pounded Chicken, and Ginger-Scallion Turkey Burgers.

Yet, some of the advice in the book needs to be taken with a grain of salt, so to say. If you eat a lot of fast food and switch to this book, you will be healthier. But if you already have a healthy diet, some of the recipes call for a lot of carbs and oil, and you probably won't see a difference. I applaud Canora for making personal changes. Still, he is in the business of making food taste good and it's easier for men to lose weight than women. So, that needs to be taken into consideration. Personally, the book includes many ideas that can be tweaked into a healthier recipe. Use fat-free Greek yogurt and leave the coconut oil behind.

In conclusion, I enjoyed this cookbook and Canora's story. For me, his snacks and sweets are a better choice to bring to large family gatherings over the commonly used traditions. For reluctant health eaters, this book would be a gentle introduction. It's a fair start to a good health day.

I received this book from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for this review.

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Thursday, January 15, 2015

Review: As You Wish by Cary Elwes

As You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess BrideAs You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess Bride by Cary Elwes
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

A very enjoyable look back at the making of The Princess Bride!

In my opinion, The Princess Bride is a very unrated movie...even with me personally. When naming my favorite movies, I would probably forgot to mention it, although it had a big impact on my imagination and sense of humor.

When randomly browsing for books, how could the adventurous cover not catch your eye? My interest piqued, I asked for it for Christmas, being a film fan and Princess Bride fan in general.

However, having read the book, I have a whole new level of appreciation for the movie. The struggle the project had, the extremely hard physical work it took to create the fight scenes, and all the fun amongst the cast, really cemented the film in my mind. I suddenly have the fervor to re-watch the movie (it's NOT on NETFLIX, WHY??), buy a copy for my collection and future generations, and try to re-read the novel. There's even a game app that I'll probably be addicted to later. Strangely enough, it's also really piqued my interest in fencing. If I didn't have a bum foot, I'd probably be running around right now telling people to "Prepare to die."

Can you tell that I'm part of The Princess Bride cult now?

Again, a fun, enjoyable, heartfelt read!

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Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Top Ten 2014 Releases I Meant To Read But Didn't Get To

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

2014, Just Ran Out of Time
  1. Love Letters To The Dead by Ava Dellaira - I found this title while randomly browsing and was very intrigued by the comparisons to "Perks of Being A Wallflower." It certainly seems like a good pick for music lovers.
  2. Pioneer Girl: The Annotated Autobiography by Laura Ingalls Wilder - This title was a last minute addition to my Christmas list, but it couldn't be found! Apparently, it's in high demand and out-of-stock most places.
  3. Red Rising by Pierce Brown - As a long time scifi fan and generally enjoying dystopian lit, I want to finally, finally read this book soon! I smell movie to follow.
  4. Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins - In 2015, I hope to make time for the whole trilogy. I saw Stephanie Perkins at the Decatur Book Festival and she seems like a fun and sweet author.
  5. Something Real by Heather Demetrois - This title was discovered from a Secret Santa wishlist via The Book Banner. In the past, I've wondered how people go back to normal after reality tv, and it's interesting that this book explores that idea.
  6. Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng - Although I own this, I never got around to sitting down with this recent and much talked about family drama and mystery.
  7. Console Wars: Sega, Nintendo, and the Battle that Defined a Generation by Blake J. Harris - Growing up a Nintendo girl through-and-through, video game history fascinates me. Although hubby bought this, he gave me full permission to read it before he does...just didn't have time at the end of 2014.
  8. Liar, Temptress, Solider, Spy by Karen Abbott - This author was also at the Decatur Book Festival, however we arrived too late to see her panel. Hopefully, in the future I can catch up on the history and what I missed. 
  9. Black Bird Volume 18 by Kanoko Sakurakouji - Even though I really enjoyed the start of this paranormal romance series, I ended up dragging my feet on buying the last volumes.
  10. The Will by Kristen Ashley - I learned about this book from the Goodreads Choice Awards. Highly rated, maybe I can catch-up on the romance genre later this year.

Monday, January 5, 2015

Review: The Program by Suzanne Young

The Program (The Program, #1)The Program by Suzanne Young
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

For me, "The Program" was an intense, page-turner. One of those enjoyable books that gives you just enough information in each chapter to keep you wanting more.

In the world of "The Program," teenage suicide has become a global epidemic. No one can explain it. It seems to spread like a virus from teen to teen. To fight the epidemic, schools constantly watch their students for signs and symptoms. If signs or symptoms are displayed, teens are forced into The Program. The Program is an intensive, mental ward-esque therapy plan, where no one returns with any memory of their life before The Program.

Sloane, is a strong main character, and when she is forced into The Program, she doesn't go down without a fight. She doesn't want to forget her life, and especially her boyfriend, James, who she has an intense and mature relationship. She strives to find a way to beat The Program and remember.

Suicide is a very heavy and serious subject. My initial concern was The Program would be dark and depressing. However, while it does take its subject matter very seriously, its more of a thriller and mystery.

Overall, it was very thought provoking. It begs the question if depression suffers would be better off without memories. For me, it also skated around the days when forced lobotomies were common, and questioned freedoms and individual rights.

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Thanks again to Miss Print for including this in the Giving Thanks Box Swap!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

EOY 2014 Book Survey

Jamie The Perpetual Page Turner created this EOY Book Survey, and seeing it on several other blogs I follow, I decided I wanted to write my own. Feel free to write one and link back to The Perpetual Page Turner.


Number Of Books You Read: 106
Number of Re-Reads: 1 (Northanger Abbey graphic novel, previously read the novel)
Genre You Read The Most From: nonfiction, manga/comics/graphic novels



1. Best Book You Read In 2014?

It's a tough decision, but, overall, I'll have to say "Hyperbole and A Half." Great fun, stress-relief and inspiration.

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

After reading a biography of Harper Lee, I decided it was time to check out a story by her friend, Truman Capote. So, I picked, "Breakfast At Tiffany's." I recall enjoying the movie and I'm a general fan of Audrey Hepburn. But the book really wasn't enjoyable or romantic for me. It was more on the sad side of romantic. Some of the language is discriminatory, although I tried to keep in mind the date it was written.

 3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read in 2014? 

I started this book expecting to be offended and annoyed. And, although there were times I felt both, in the long run, "Let's Pretend This Never Happened" was also an inspiration.

 4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did) In 2014?

 5. Best series you started in 2014? Best Sequel of 2014? Best Series Ender of 2014?
Best series started: Chi's Sweet Home 
Best sequel: Love, Stargirl
Other than "Love, Stargirl," I didn't finish any series.

 6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2014?

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

I don't read a lot of women's fiction/chic lit, but Higgins has never failed to impress me.

 8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

I found myself thinking about the concepts and characters even when I wasn't reading the book.

 9. Book You Read In 2014 That You Are Most Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

The facial expressions in this book are priceless, funny, and adorable.

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2014?

Ah, relaxing beach scenes.

11. Most memorable character of 2014?

 12. Most beautifully written book read in 2014?

Heyer was so immersed with Regency England, you'd think she was born in that era.

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2014?

Overall, it made me more thankful for the freedoms I have and the things that I take for granted.

 14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2014 to finally read? 

If I remember correctly, it's been out since 2007. I didn't read a lot of graphic novels back then.

 15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2014?
“You are an atrocious person! Since the day I met you I have become steadily more depraved.” - Georgette Heyer, "The Nonesuch"

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2013?
Shortest: Diggers - a picture book given to a cousin.
Longest: Crafting and Executing Strategy - very long textbook.

 17. Book That Shocked You The Most
(Because of a plot twist, character death, left you hanging with your mouth wide open, etc.)

Don't want to give any spoilers away.

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)
(OTP = one true pairing if you aren’t familiar)

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year
Seconds: The awkward friendship between Katie and Hazel

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2014 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

I love all the work I've read from Rachel Hauck. Looking forward to her newest title in 2015!

21. Best Book You Read In 2014 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure:

The husband, Oshie, really pressured me to read Excel Saga, a manga he's collected for years.

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2014?
I don't really get fictional crushes.

23. Best 2014 debut you read?

Amy Poehler's first book.

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

An interesting, impoverished world on the edge of civil war. Nice for reading, wouldn't want to live there.

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

Cute, quirky, mushy, fun.

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2014?

I was really conflicted about reading an unauthorized biography. However, learning about the health struggles that the Lee sisters have faced in the last couple of years hit me emotionally.

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

Cause in many, many ways, it's true.

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

If you like dark and realistic stories, this would be a good title for you. I really needed something more light-hearted this year.

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2014?

My first historical fashion book. Inspired me to take old-timey portraits for graduation.

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

I was a little mad that the ending didn't seem final enough. I'd be happy to read a sequel, but I like my endings to be tidy and not needing a sequel per say.

Bookish Life

1. New favorite book blog you discovered in 2014? 
My Secret Santa peeps: The Book BannerA Little Of The Book Life

2. Favorite review that you wrote in 2014? 
Pride & Prejudice & Kitties

Author liked one of my statements on Twitter :)

3. Best discussion/non-review post you had on your blog?
This is going to sound repetitive, but my Top Ten Tuesday on the Best Books I Read in 2014.

4. Best event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events, memes, etc.)?

5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2014?
Getting to visit The Decatur Book Festival last minute, even with my foot problem.

7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?
Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?

330 views, yay.

8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?
Actually, I'm always shocked and proud that anyone cares what I have to say on here. Who am I to demand love on anything?

9. Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?
That "The Little Shop of Stories" children's bookstore in Decatur, GA gives birthday parties. My kids will have a party there someday!

10.  Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?
Finished my goal of 75 books and upped it to 100, finished with 106.

Looking Ahead

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2014 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2015?

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2015 (non-debut)?
This one creeped up on me! I had no idea that another book in the series was on the way.

3. 2015 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

It sounds a little dark, but hopefully it'll be uplifting and a positive message as well.

 4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2015?
The Secrets of Sir Richard Kenworthy

5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2015?
One of my 30 before 30 items is to give 20 books away. I have tons of books and I really don't want to move them all again. This year I want to read and then thin down my collection.

6. A 2015 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone:

I was very happy to receive a ARC! Lucy Knisley is an awesome artist and storyteller.


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