Showing posts from March, 2012

WWW Wednesdays (Mar. 28)

This is a weekly book meme hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading. To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…
• What are you currently reading?
• What did you recently finish reading?
• What do you think you'll be reading next?

My answers:
1) What are you currently reading?
A Game of ThronesAnna KareninaBleak HouseHarry Potter and the Goblet of FireHistory of a Pleasure SeakerLes MiserablesThe Hound of the Baskervilles 2) What did you finish reading?
Since I haven't done this for a month, I am going to be posting the reviews since the last one.
• Vera's Ghost (review)
• Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman (review)
• The Great Gatsby (review)
• Madame Tussaud (review)
• Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother (review)
• Sarah's Key (review)
• Macbeth (review)
• Death Comes to Pemberley (review)
• The Hunger Games (review)

3) What do you think you'll be reading next?
At this point no clue.

First Chapter - First Paragaph(s) - Tuesday Intros (Mar. 27)

This week's choice:
The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh Originally published August, 2011
For eight year I dreamed of fire.  Trees ignited as I passed them; oceans burned.  The sugary smoke settled in my hair as I slept, the scent like a cloud left on my pillow as I rose.  Even so, the moment my mattress started to burn, I bolted awake.  The sharp, chemical smell was nothing like the hazy syrup of my dreams; the two were as different as Carolina and Indian jasmine, separation and attachment. They could not be confused.
Would you continue reading?

Teaser Tuesdays (Mar. 27)

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

* Grab your current read
* Open to a random page
* Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
* BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
* Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
For eight years I dreamed of fire.  Trees ignited as I passed them; oceans burned.  The sugary smoke settled in my hair as I slept, the scent like a clould left on my pillow as I rose.  Even so, the moment my mattress started to burn, I bolted awake.  The sharp, chemical smell was nothing like the hazy syrup of my dreams; the two were as different as Carolina and Indian jasmine, separation and attachment.  They could not be confused.

~ The Language of Flowers, Vanessa Diffenbaugh

What's on Your Nightstand - March 27

The last two weeks have been somewhat busy with family and such and as a result I haven't been able to get much reading done (I have been also catching up with my TV shows from the last few weeks as well).  I think I am also getting bogged down with my readalongs and not reading much of the stuff that I do want to read.  I suppose it doesn't help that my primary e-reader is unavailable at the moment (I have two devices, one that I got from my parents and the other I purchased) and therefore I haven't been reading much.  But things can change and its quite possible that in the next few days I will be reading on a regular basis again.  But considering the lackluster month, I did get a number of books done and I am hoping that a number of books will be completed in the coming week.

1.  Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman (review)
2. The Great Gatsby (review)
3. Madame Tussuad (review)
4. Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother (review)
5. Sarah's Key (review)
6. Ma…

The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins

Title: The Hunger Games
Author: Suzanne Collins
Pages: 374
Published: 2010 (first published 2008)
Challenges: 2012 Book Blogger Recommendation, 2012 TBR Pile
Genre: Dystopia, Fantasy fiction, Young Adult
Edition: Paperback
Source: Purchased

Description: In the ruins of a place once known as North America lies the nation of Panem, the shining Capitol surrounded by twelve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.

Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister's place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before--and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to, she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life…

Mailbox Monday - March 26

Mailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their homes during the past week.  Mailbox Monday, for March, is being hosted by Anna at Diary of an Eccentric.

This past week I bought a gift set of the first four books in the Song of Fire and Ice series by George R. R. Martin.  And I have started the first book the series, A Game of Thrones.

Sunday Salon - The Hunger Games & A Game of Thrones

I have finally succumbed to the power that is The Hunger Games and have been reading the book for the past couple of days.  I haven't gotten far, but the aim is to get it done by Monday afternoon so that I can go and watch the movie without the hordes of people, although I do expect that there will be quite a number of people in the audience.  At least that is the aim.

Anyways, I am really enjoying the book and even though I am getting close to the end of part one, I am looking forward to Catching Fire.  Yes, I know, I haven't even gotten to The Games yet and I am looking forward to the second book.  I realize why people love this series and why it is so addicting.

This week also saw me start A Game of Thrones and even though I only have barely started the book, I can see myself reading large portions of the book or it being something I read on my Easter break in a couple of weeks.   I am trying to read it before I get the DVD set from the library in a bit, but I may not get …

Saturday Snapshot (Mar.24)

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by Alyce @ AT Home With Books. Photos can be old or new, and be of any subject as long as they are clean and appropriate for all eyes to see. How much detail you give in the caption is entirely up to you. Please don't post random photos that you find online.  Today I chose a photo that my dad took on our only Christmas away from home when the four of us went to Mexico in 2004.  This photo was taken at a resort near Puerto Vallarta.  As you can see, I didn't go far without having a book in my hands.  Enjoy.

Spring Reading Thing 2012: Reading List

Its that time of year again and its Spring, well at least in the Northern Hemisphere.  I have been looking forward to this for a few weeks after it had been announced by Katrina by Callapidder Days.  Its pretty simple.  All you need to do is make a list of books that you want to read (or finish), make a blog post with that list, submit that post on the Mr. Linky on Katrina's site (Callapidder Days), and start reading.

The challenge runs from March 20th until June 19th.  Along with the Mr. Linky,  Katrina has more information on Spring Reading Thing on her site.

Here is my list:
• Les Miserables
• Anna Karenina
• Forever Amber
• Henry V
• Romeo & Juliet
The Hound of the Baskervilles
The Hunger Games
• History of a Pleasure Seeker
• Waiting for Columbus
• Much Ado About Nothing
• Antony and Cleopatra
• Richard III
• Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
• Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
• Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
• The Poisonwood Bible

Top Ten Tuesday - TBR for Spring

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and Bookish, where book bloggers share their Top Ten lists on everything bookish.   This week its the Top Ten on one's TBR List for Spring.Here are mine:1) The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins -  I have heard and seen so much about the movie coming out this coming Thursday that I know I really do need to get this book read.  I already own the book and borrowed the audiobook from the library and will probably spend Wednesday reading the book. 2) Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy - I started this book back in January with the hope that I would get the book done by late March/early April, but at the rate I am going it won't be sometime till May that I will get it done.3) Bleak House by Charles Dickens - I am doing a read-a-long through Unputdownables and I believe it is sometime in May that the book will be completed.4) Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle - I had hoped to finish the book last month but sadly I didn't and with only …

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (Mar. 19)

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a fun weekly meme hosted by Shelia at Book Journey were we share what we've read and reviewed over the past week and what we plan to read next.

Books Completed last week:
• Macbeth by William Shakespeare (review)
• Death Comes to Pemberley by P.D. James (review)

Currently reading:
Anna KareninaBleak HouseHistory of a Pleasure SeakerLes MiserablesThe Hound of the Baskervilles  Books I am going to start this week:
• Forever Amber
• Henry V
• Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
• The Hunger Games
• The History of Reading

Monday Musings (Mar.19)

This week Miz B at Should Be Reading asks:

Would you choose to review a book if its description sounded interesting but the cover was terrible?

Depends on the book, but honestly I have read some books that have had awful covers, but were really good.  While I haven't reviewed a book before it was published, I would think that there would be time to change the cover.  I think most readers don't really care about the cover, but care more about the book itself.

March Prompt - A Classics Challenge

For the month of March, the prompt on November's Autumn is location.  We are to chose a setting within a novel that intrigues me the most.  The one that intrigues me the most is the bricklayer's house that is mentioned in Chapter 8.

I will do the Level two and three questions for this prompt.

1) How do you envision it?
 I envision it as a small, dark space.  I can imagine that the furniture is quite close together, with the beds and the kitchen table probably quite close together, with a chair or two near the fire.  There probably isn't a cooktop, but rather the cooking probably takes place in the hearth.  There are probably a couple of windows, but they are probably quite dirty.   The floor is probably dirt, but it could probably be boards as well.

2) Do you feel the setting is right?
Yes I do.  Dickens makes you feel as though you are in home that doesn't have a lot of money, if any.

3) If this particular setting was changed how would it affect the course of the sto…

Sunday Salon - Don't what to feel at the moment

This week has been a bit of whirlwind and I am trying to get my bearings at the moment.  My week has been somewhat topsy turvey and I feel like I can't get my head on straight.  While I was hoping for a nice, relaxing week, I felt like it was anything but and the last few days have been feeling a little crazy at the moment.  Its not that life has gone bad for me, its just that its been a little busy and I can't seem to get my head on straight at the moment and it feels somewhat weird to be writing this.  While I got over my grogginess by having a good sleep Sunday night and having a few nights of just lying in bed and making myself falling asleep while reading my e-reader, which doesn't want to reset because it can't download the newest update for some strange reason, which I spent most of Friday trying to figure out and which I hope my dad can spend sometime seeing what can be done, hopefully.

Other than that my week was great.  My mom retired from working as an educ…

Death Comes to Pemberley - P.D. James

Title: Death Comes to Pemberley
Author: P.D. James
File Size (Pages): 2100 KB (219)
Published: 2011
Challenges: 2012 Support Your Library, 2012 Historical Fiction
Genre: Mystery, Historical Fiction
Edtion: E-book
Source: Library download

Description: The year is 1803, and Darcy and Elizabeth have been married for six years. There are now two handsome and healthy sons in the nursery, Elizabeth's beloved sister Jane and her husband Bingley live nearby and the orderly world of Pemberley seems unassailable. But all this is threatened when, on the eve of the annual autumn ball, the guests are preparing to retire for the night when a chaise appears, rocking down the path from Pemberley's wild woodland. As it pulls up, Lydia Wickham - Elizabeth's younger, unreliable sister - stumbles out screaming that her husband has been murdered. (via

Thoughts: As much as I really liked the premise of the book, there was just something about the book that made it somethi…

Saturday Snapshot (Mar. 17)

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by Alyce @ AT Home With Books. Photos can be old or new, and be of any subject as long as they are clean and appropriate for all eyes to see. How much detail you give in the caption is entirely up to you. Please don't post random photos that you find online.  Took this at Bouyton Canyon near Sedona, Arizona.  Took this from the parking lot after my family and I took a hike up onto one of the rock areas where one could look into the canyon area.  Was taken about a month ago.

The Classics Club

I saw this pop up on my reader and emails from a variety of places that I subscribe to and thought about whether I wanted to do this or not.  And the longer I thought about it, the more I wanted to do it, especially since I have been on a classics reading bing, even though I am still somehow managing to read more contemporary works as well.  I suppose it doesn't help that I have been on a classic reading kick lately and am quite enjoying them more than my contemporary reads (go figure...)

Basically its being hosted by a bunch of wonderful bloggers at The Classics Club.  Its quite simple in that you are setting the books and you set a time that you wish to complete the list of books that you will choose.  And its in a time frame that you feel you can handle, within a five year time frame. 

The basics are this:

choose 50+ classicslist them at your blogchoose a reading completion goal date up to five years in the future and note that date on your classics list of 50+ titlescome back…

Macbeth - William Shakespeare

Title: Macbeth
Author: William Shakespeare
Pages: 272
Published: 2011 (first published 1606)
Challenges: 2012 Reading Shakespeare: A Play a month
Genre: Drama, Classic
Edition: E-book
Source: Downloaded for free

Description: This drama is one of the great tragedy themed plays by William Shakespeare. The themes illustrated in the play include ambition, fate, deception and treachery. Three witches decide to confront the great Scottish general Macbeth on his victorious return from a war between Scotland and Norway. The Scottish king, Duncan, decides that he will confer the title of the traitorous Cawdor on the heroic Macbeth. Macbeth, and another General called Banquo, happen upon the three witches. The witches predict that he will one day become king. He decides that he will murder Duncan. Macbeth's wife agrees to his plan. He then murders Duncan assisted by his wife who smears the blood of Duncan on the daggers of the sleeping guards. A nobleman called Macduff discovers the body. M…

Musing Mondays (Mar.12)

Miz B at Should Be Reading asks this week:

What book do you wish you were reading right now? Where would you take it to, if you could go anywhere in the world to read for a while?

I wish I was reading Anna Karenina.  I have fallen in love with this book during the course of the last few months of reading it and every time I am not reading it, I wish I was reading it.

I would like to take it to somewhere it was about 78° F and sunny and where I could get free mai tais.  I own a paperback copy of the book.

It's Monday! What are you reading? (Mar. 11)

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is a fun weekly meme hosted by Shelia at Book Journey where we share what we've read and reviewed over the past week and what we plan to read next.

What I am planning on reading next:
Anna KareninaBleak HouseDeath Comes to PemberleyHistory of a Pleasure SeakerLes MiserablesMacbethThe Hound of the Baskervilles What I have reviewed this week:
• Madame Tussaud by Michelle Moran (review)
• Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother by Amy Chua (review)
• Sarah's Key by Tatiana de Rosnay (review)

What is up next:
 • A History of Reading

Sunday Salon - Groggy week

I don't know why but the last few days I have been really groggy.  While I have slept well, I have always felt really tired, especially in the evening hours and this has been a bit stressful for me and has resulted in me not really getting a lot of books done.   The only thing that I can suppose it is that I hit a wall after coming home from my vacation.  And yes, I am planning on doing a bunch of reading today, but just don't know what I am going to read yet...

And this was likely the reason that I didn't post last week, but then again I didn't have much to say as a result.  But I do have a number of book reviews since my last Sunday Salon post two weeks ago and I hope that you will read them and give your opinion about them.

Book reviews:
• Catherine the Great: Portrait of a Woman by Robert K. Massie (review)
• The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (review)
• Madame Tussaud by Michelle Moran (review)
• Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother (review)
• Sarah's Key by …

Sarah's Key - Tatiana de Rosnay

Title: Sarah's Key
Author: Tatiana de Rosnay
Pages: 293
Published: 2008 (first published 2007)
Challenges: 2012 TBR Pile, 2012 Historical Fiction
Genre: Fiction, Historical Fiction
Edition: Paperback
Source: Purchase

Description: Paris, July 1942: Sarah, a ten year-old girl, is brutally arrested with her family by the French police in the Vel’ d’Hiv’ roundup, but not before she locks her younger brother in a cupboard in the family's apartment, thinking that she will be back within a few hours.

Paris, May 2002: On Vel’ d’Hiv’s 60th anniversary, journalist Julia Jarmond is asked to write an article about this black day in France's past. Through her contemporary investigation, she stumbles onto a trail of long-hidden family secrets that connect her to Sarah. Julia finds herself compelled to retrace the girl's ordeal, from that terrible term in the Vel d'Hiv', to the camps, and beyond. As she probes into Sarah's past, she begins to question her own pl…