Booked til Tuesday

Life, Law & Libros

Fiendish by Brenna Yovanoff (1.5 stars)

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The synopsis led me to think Fiendish would be a Sleeping Beauty retelling. It turned out to be a little more Salem witch hunts meets "The Craft" with characters and a plot that disappointed.


Fiendish by Brenna Yovanoff
Series: n/a
Genres: YA, Fantasy
Published on August 14, 2014
Published by Razorbill
Final Rating: 1.5 stars
Synopsis:
Clementine DeVore spent ten years trapped in a cellar, pinned down by willow roots, silenced and forgotten.

Now she’s out and determined to uncover who put her in that cellar and why.

When Clementine was a child, dangerous and inexplicable things started happening in New South Bend. The townsfolk blamed the fiendish people out in the Willows and burned their homes to the ground. But magic kept Clementine alive, walled up in the cellar for ten years, until a boy named Fisher sets her free. Back in the world, Clementine sets out to discover what happened all those years ago. But the truth gets muddled in her dangerous attraction to Fisher, the politics of New South Bend, and the Hollow, a fickle and terrifying place that seems increasingly temperamental ever since Clementine reemerged.

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Updates: Blizzard-less

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The meteorologists once again failed in spectacular fashion when their blizzard predictions resulted in barely a dusting, and only in the north of the state. Unfortunately, Massachusetts and Connecticut and everybody up that way got the three feet of snow predicted, so I hope they're all okay and not freezing.

Meanwhile, the false-alarm blizzard caused a preemptive cancellation of the Brandon Sanderson signing. I wasn't really up for the hour drive anyway, so no worries. :)

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Top 10 Books to Read if I Had a Book Club

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A weekly meme by The Broke and the Bookish

I'm a mood reader, which means I'm not great at book clubs. I've only tried online groups recently and, to my great shame, have pretty much fallen off the edge of the earth with those. ^^;

I like to think I'd be more motivated (read: guilted) to start and finish the books on time if I had to meet up with people in person to talk once a month. So, here are my Top 10 books to read if I had a book club for which I was motivated/guilted enough to conquer my mood reading and do the assigned homework. ;)

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Discussion: Language, Style and Korean Dramas

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Every now and then, I get sucked into a Korean drama on Netflix. I have to be in a particular mood for it (and find a drama that interests me on some level) because the style and feel of it is so different from my usual TV material. There are comparable American shows. (I'm pretty sure most soaps CW dramas are right up there with pensive/wistful close-ups, melodramatic declarations and melodrama in general.) Granted, I don't watch many of those comps. But anyway, because I am incapable of turning off my brain even when purposely vegging out to silly TV, the K-dramas have me thinking...again. :)

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1. Language
All the Korean dramas I've watched are in Korean with subtitles. I took a linguistics class and a Spanish translation course in college, and it's rendered language fascinating to me. (Which is probably why I'm trying five different courses on Duolingo.) Some lines I suspect of being one-level translations. Others make me wonder if I'm getting the same connotations and associations native speakers have. And the sentence structure sometimes makes everything sound formal, even when the tones and facial expressions of the actors say otherwise.

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Art It Up! - Polar Bear

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Art It Up! is a weekly feature hosted by Tabitha @ Not Yet Read.

And I'm back with my first sketch of the new year! I've had a story idea running around my head for a while now, but it's not quite clear enough for outlining. So, pictures!

First up, a polar bear! Fair warning: animals are not my forte, but I want to get better. Today's is a rough sketch based on one of these photos of a dancing bear. :)

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The Mark of the Dragonfly by Jaleigh Johnson (3 stars)

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I initially skipped over The Mark of the Dragonfly because, though the synopsis sounded okay, the cover just wasn't pulling me in; and I've learned to trust my gut cover/synopsis-sense. (It's like Spidey-sense except, instead of physical harm, it protects me from books I'm not likely to enjoy. It's especially fine-tuned and accurate in YA.) Thankfully, Anya did a wonderful review that got me to look past the cover.


The Mark of the Dragonfly by Jaleigh Johnson
Series: n/a
Genres: MG, Fantasy
Published on March 25, 2014
Published by Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Final Rating: 3 stars
Synopsis:
Piper has never seen the Mark of the Dragonfly until she finds the girl amid the wreckage of a caravan in the Meteor Fields. The girl doesn't remember a thing about her life, but the intricate tattoo on her arm is proof that she's from the Dragonfly Territories and that she's protected by the king. Which means a reward for Piper if she can get the girl home. The one sure way to the Territories is the 401, a great old beauty of a train. But a ticket costs more coin than Piper could make in a year. And stowing away is a difficult prospect--everyone knows that getting past the peculiar green-eyed boy who stands guard is nearly impossible. Life for Piper just turned dangerous. A little bit magical. And very exciting, if she can manage to survive the journey.

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Updates: New Toy- Libib

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I found a new bookish toy to play with! And by "toy" I mean cataloging system. (Wow, that sounded a lot less nerdy in my head.) The new toy is Libib.

Note: I have not been asked to nor am I being compensated for talking about Libib. I just found it, thought it was cool and wanted to share.
It has a lot of the same features as Goodreads and it's free, but it's specifically geared toward personal cataloging for books, DVD's and/or video games. You can make your lists public or private. I don't want a list of all the books I own on Goodreads, but I do want an electronic list of them. So I set up an account, installed the app (with its barcode scanner), and here's what I learned:

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Top 10 BEA Fears

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A weekly meme by The Broke and the Bookish

This week's freebie topic sounded like the perfect time to write out some of the BEA worries running through my head. I've only been to BookCon before and, while BEA is a full four months away, I've afraid I've been thinking... A dangerous pastime- I know. (And how many of you started singing the "Gaston" reprise in your heads?)

Top 10 BEA Fears:

1. Clothes
It's sad, but this is at the top of my list. I'm not a fashion person. I had to do a Google search for "business casual" (and I'm still a little confused about the difference between "business" and "business casual" for women). I work in an office, but our dress code is pretty laid back. I guess my question for BEA veterans is, what's the norm? Are the majority of people wearing slacks/skirts and nice blouses and shoes, or are nice jeans okay? Are there certain days when everyone dresses more casually? What about shoes? Everyone says wear comfortable footwear, so is it okay to pair sneakers with nicer clothes?

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Discussion: Spoiler SOL

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Should there be a Statute of Limitations on spoilers?

Nathan at Fantasy Review Barn used this phrase in one of his posts; it stood out to me because, as some of you may know, I work in a law office, and the SOL is one of the most important pieces of information. It differs depending on the type of case, but essentially, it's how long you have from the date of your (e.g.) car accident or firing in which to file a claim. If you don't file before the SOL runs out, your claim is barred and you can't file suit.

With spoilers, I guess I mean the opposite. How much time should pass before it's okay to talk about spoilers without all sorts of warnings, hidden script, etc.?

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Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay (2 stars)

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This is another case of a book that looked perfect for me on paper. A warrior princess with major sword skills on a crusade to save her brother and reclaim her land from an evil Queen? With a hint of classic Sleeping Beauty elements? I was excited. Unfortunately, these elements failed to coalesce into an enjoyable story for me.

Full Disclosure: I was approved for an eARC of this book on NetGalley, but after the archive date; so this review is based on a finished copy from the library, but the review will be submitted to the publisher on NetGalley.
Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay
Series: n/a
Genres: YA, Fantasy
Published on December 9, 2014
Published by Delacorte Press
Final Rating: 2 stars
Synopsis:
Game of Thrones meets the Grimm's fairy tales in this twisted, fast-paced romantic fantasy-adventure about Sleeping Beauty's daughter, a warrior princess who must fight to reclaim her throne.

Though she looks like a mere mortal, Princess Aurora is a fairy blessed with enhanced strength, bravery, and mercy yet cursed to destroy the free will of any male who kisses her. Disguised as a boy, she enlists the help of the handsome but also cursed Prince Niklaas to fight legions of evil and free her brother from the ogre queen who stole Aurora's throne ten years ago.

Will Aurora triumph over evil and reach her brother before it's too late? Can Aurora and Niklaas break the curses that will otherwise forever keep them from finding their one true love?

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Updates: Projects In-Progress

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First, I got this completely awesome library book yesterday! Can you not feel the AWESOME? But yeah, I've been looking for a new crochet project to torture myself with try and at least one or two of these is supposed to be for beginners. Which hopefully won't result in too much blood, sweat and tears. :)


Meanwhile, I'm still clawing my way through the law school application process, which (frustratingly) jumps back and forth between at least two different systems. I have a sneaking suspicion this is like a second LSAT, weeding out the unworthy. >.>

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Top 10 2014 Releases I Meant to Read

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A weekly meme by The Broke and the Bookish

This is what we call the first walk of shame of the new year. This is where we look back at some of the many great books published in 2014 that I meant to read...but didn't get to. Yes, for one reason or another, all 10 of these lovelies remain unread.

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Discussion: Boycotting Books

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I recently read a post debating whether to purchase books written by authors with whose views or actions you disagree. Both the post and comments were really interesting; the majority seemed to agree that poor behavior as an "author" was justification for avoiding a book (or at least not purchasing it); but there were mixed sentiments regarding authors' personal views and beliefs, particularly if an author was known to use some of his/her earnings to support causes with which you disagree.
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I understand not supporting authors who behave unprofessionally or treat their readers badly. It's a job. Do cruddy work or behave disrespectfully toward your buyers, and you'll probably get fired. Boycotting an author because of personal views or beliefs is a little more complicated. It's been weighing on my mind, and I needed to write this post to gather my thoughts. It's a hard question: is it okay to boycott books based on the author's personal beliefs?

I recognize that we're all free to read (or not read) whatever we want based on whatever criteria, including an author's actions/beliefs. The fact that we have that freedom is great. At the same time, I want to be careful. Obviously, if I know a book to have "trigger content" that will result in a less enjoyable reading experience, I probably won't spend money on it. However, if an author believes (random example) the sky is green and cats are aliens, but none of this appears in his/her books, why not? I like the book and happen to disagree with the author on unrelated subjects.

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Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins (2 stars)

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I don't read a ton of contemporary YA, but after getting a copy at one of Stephanie Perkins' signings, I figured it was time I found out why people raved about Anna and the French Kiss. Now, I understand.


Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Series: Anna and the French Kiss #1
Genres: YA, Contemporary, Romance
Published on July 16, 2013 (first published Dec 2, 2010)
Published by Speak
Final Rating: 2 stars
Synopsis:
Can Anna find love in the City of Light?

Anna is happy in Atlanta. She has a loyal best friend and a crush on her coworker at the movie theater, who is just starting to return her affection. So she's less than thrilled when her father decides to send her to a boarding school in Paris for her senior year.

But despite not speaking a word of French, Anna meets some cool new people, including the handsome √Čtienne St. Clair, who quickly becomes her best friend. Unfortunately, he's taken —and Anna might be, too. Will a year of romantic near misses end with the French kiss she's waiting for?

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Updates: New Year's Sprint

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Easing into 2015? Nah. Why walk when you can sprint? Wait, sprint?! O.O

I stayed late at work twice, did library tutoring, stole a few minutes to hang out with my friend before she goes back to South Korea, and we got the first real snowfall of winter. (Which makes for very long drives. If it's not the roads, it's the other people on them. :P) Tonight is catching up with a friend I haven't seen since before the holidays (who is awesome and giving me food) and trying out a new class thing at church. Busy! :)

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With all this stuff going on, you might think I haven't done much reading. You would be right. But not just because I'm busy. I've been spending a RIDICULOUS amount of time playing with the CSS on a test blog in search of a new design for Booked til Tuesday. Like, seriously ridiculous. I need to find a new design I like already and be done with it. You can check out some of the possibilities here. I'm updating the list as I go.

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Top 10 Most Anticipated 2015 Debut Novels

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A weekly meme by The Broke and the Bookish

I realized in coming up with this list that I'm not seriously excited about too many 2015 debuts. But, I am looking forward to trying out a few. Here's hoping they turn out to be worth the hype! :)

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Discussion: Book Buying for a Cause

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As great a cause as my future home library is, it's not the most selfless of goals. Shopping for Angel Tree presents this season got me thinking...
I'm not sure about all the logistics, but I have an idea that may put my book buying addiction to better use. I know a lot of teachers maintain class libraries, especially in elementary schools; but they don't always have the funds or time to maintain their collections. My brilliant idea: I want to contact a bunch of teachers in the area early this year, get their classroom library wishlists, and do lots of frugal (but substantial) book buying throughout the year for them.

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Art It Up! - Blog Redesign

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Art It Up! is a weekly feature hosted by Tabitha @ Not Yet Read.

Happy New Year, everyone! I hope you all had a great holiday and a great start to 2015. It's been a busy week between the holiday and having my sister in town, so I haven't done any drawing. Instead, I've been working on a new look for the blog. I'm still deciding on the final changes, but I thought I'd give everyone a sneak peek at some of the potential contenders. CSS tweaking is artsy, right? :)

Current Theme:

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