Monday, May 21, 2018

Deadpool 2

The after-credits scene is a must. If you walk out before you see it, you're missing out.

I laughed and cringed my way through Deadpool 2. It was fantastic. Was it better than the first? I don't know. I'll just have to watch the first again to find out. The maximum security prisoner was amazing. All the new characters were great. I loved Domino. I loved Yukio. I loved how it all connected. All the main characters go through some kind of growth. Not just Wade, but we see Cable, Domino, and Colossus all learn and grow. They find something in themselves and in each other. Even though the movie is extremely violent and funny, we can see how much caring there is in the way the characters treat each other, even if they are being a$$holes.

You know, we never see Deadpool sharpen those katanas, but they are extremely sharp. Just a thought.

I do have to mention that Vanisher was hilarious, all the cameos were amazing. 

This might be one of my shortest posts. I don't know what else to say about the movie without giving things away. If you were a fan of the first, you will definitely be a fan of the second.

Monday, April 30, 2018

Avengers: Infinity War

These posters are pretty cool
I had so many feelings. It was tense and intense. So much happened. I have so many theories. Hubby thinks he knows how it will all work out. Since what happens in one movie affects the rest of the MCU, I wonder what's going to happen on S.H.I.E.L.D. or in Ant-Man and The Wasp. I can't really talk about anything without giving away something. If you look at the trailers, they're pretty vague too. They are spectacular images and bits of dialogue... not even dialogue, just sentences, phrases. In Infinity War there is always something happening. The movement of the story never stops.

I am going to talk about Thor meeting The Guardians of The Galaxy, because it is hilarious and it is in the trailers. Thor is amazing, Star-Lord is amazing. They all are. I love how Thor interacts with the Guardians. He somehow gets a moment with all of them. The entire sequence from him hitting their ship, to the end, is fun and funny. In general, when any of the different groups met, it was funny. These were the times where I think Marvel and the Russo brothers could add some hilarity. 

Loving these
I loved Vision and Scarlet Witch. I loved Okoye and Black Widow. I loved Dr. Strange and Spider-Man. As many characters as there were, I think all, if not most of the main ones got to have a moment, something that told the rest of them who there were and what they could do. Is it crazy that I think that? Oh well. Seriously, if you haven't seen this movie yet, go see it as soon as possible. Honestly, I want to see it again already. I don't even know if I've digested the movie yet and it's been a couple days. Like I said, I still have so many feelings. I think I might have a movie hangover. 

Infinity War Trailer

Ant-Man and The Wasp Trailer

Monday, April 16, 2018

Fracture Me

I raced through Fracture Me. It was almost all action. The story is told from Adam’s perspective and follows him from the the final battle in Unravel Me, to the events right after. We find out what happened to some of the people from Omega Point, and we also learn more about what is going on inside Adam’s head. I think I like Adam better now. It’s his devotion to his brother James that pulls me. Their relationship can be very much parent-child instead of older and younger sibling. He would do anything for James, even leaving Juliette to take care of herself. Also, James, what power does he have? After everything we've learned in the series so far, he has to have a power. Will it be devastating or sweet like him?

Again, I find myself falling for Kenji. He's amazing. In his own way, he also loves Juliette. I don't know if Adam understands that. I feel like Kenji sees something in Juliette, connects with something that he has yet to express to anyone. Kenji is brave, strong, intelligent and full of hope. His natural charisma and leadership draw people to him. The other characters want to do what Kenji says. Even though he was a big part of Fracture Me I still don't feel like I know enough about him. I hope Ignite Me and Restore Me will teach us more about addition to how everything will play out, whether people like those living at Omega Point will find freedom, and if The Reestablishment will get taken down.

Saturday, April 14, 2018


I love Olivia. She's amazing. She's smart, but sweet and also ruthless. Omens was perfect. I loved every scene. I loved her. I enjoyed each character. I don't know if Olivia's parents are guilty, but she is certainly going to have a crazy adventure finding out. Gabriel. Damn. He is also amazing. An intriguing, beguiling character. I can't imagine meeting a person like him in real life.

I am without a doubt hooked on the Cainsville series. I also can't believe this is the first book I've read by Kelley Armstrong. I'm a fan now, though. I am going to read all the Cainsville books. I want to read the Otherworld books. I also picked up Sea of Shadows, so it looks like I will be reading Age of Legends too. Basically, after reading Omens, I'm a fan.

I don't want to say too much about Omens because I feel like I'll give the story away. The book starts off with the big revelation that this well-to-do socialite is adopted and actually the biological daughter of serial killers. She discovers this and her world is shaken. The paranormal aspects of the story is subtle, woven in slowly, only becoming more substantial as the story progresses. I enjoyed the light sprinkling, slowly building. I imagine it will continue to build like this throughout the series.

Seriously though, I NEED to know what is going to happen with Olivia and Gabriel. There is something there, right? Maybe by the the end of Visions I'll get to see it. Maybe it will take the whole series. They are what are going to keep me coming back. Olivia is so interesting and intelligent. Gabriel is mysterious, but infuriating (in a good way). Their dynamic is special. Also, Patrick. Who is he? What is he? How will he influence Olivia's life? Will Grace have a larger role? Also, gargoyles. I can not resist a good gargoyle.

Thursday, April 12, 2018

International Day of Pink

Yesterday was Pink Day and my children’s school encouraged everyone to wear pink. They sent out an email reminding us about the International Day of Pink and what it means. So, of course, someone laughed at my son for wearing pink on Pink Day. I’ve used this extra day to quell my rage. I called my husband to let him know; he called the school and talked to my son’s teacher. She said that 75% of the class wore pink. She was sad to hear that another student laughed at the boys who wore pink. These children are 6 and 7.

Part of me feels bad. He didn’t want to wear pink. He wouldn’t tell us why, but we could guess. He owns 2 pink polo shirts, which I bought because he went through a faze of loving both polo shirts and pink. Then something happened last year and he stopped wearing them. When we asked why, he wouldn’t tell us. But like I said, we could guess.

It just makes me so sad. My 6-year-old son can’t wear a shirt and colour he loved because he is afraid that someone will make fun of him. We all wore pink yesterday. 3/4 of his class wore pink. But the voice he remembered was the one laughing at him. It makes me want to cry. I’m so sad for him and also for this other boy whose parents are holding him back.

I'm not really sure what else to say. I'm sad. I'm worried. I'm concerned. I am glad though, that his teacher is being supportive and seems to be doing her best to make sure that my son and all the students in the class understand what the International Day of Pink is supposed to be about.

Monday, April 09, 2018

X-Men '92: The World Is A Vampire

The nostalgia factor is high every time I open up an X-Men '92 comic. X-Men '92: The World is a Vampire is not in the same continuity as the rest of the the Marvel Universe. These are the X-Men I grew up watching. (I wish the show was still on Netflix.) Just looking at the cover makes me happy. I'm so happy with the art too, the way everyone is drawn may not be exactly the way they looked in the cartoon, but the essence of the characters are still captured, they feel how I want them to feel.

As the title suggests, the X-Men find themselves battling vampires. They are also without Cyclops and Jean Grey. Cyclops has decided to retire and Storm is in command. They have reopened the school, so there are students to worry about when Alpha Red comes knocking. I love the addition of Psylocke and Bishop, two amazing characters and two characters who do well balancing out Storm and Beast's thoughtfulness. Side note: look who is in love with Storm, not that I can blame him. The battles were exciting. Relationships were tested, new ones were forged. I really hope we get to know the students a little bit more. This edition of X-Men '92 was what I wanted it to be.

I was a little less happy with the final part of the graphic novel, Jean and Cyclop's story. It was still exciting and saw the characters having a pretty big revelation at the end. It was just missing something that the rest of the novel had. Maybe because it was so short, the story didn't get to fully develop. That stuff with Mr. Sinister was creepy though. Something about Jean's hair too. I know that's superficial, but it's just an example of how the art was different and didn't flow from the previous parts of the graphic novel. Maybe it was fine, being a different story, with completely different things happening to Scott and Jean (no vampires), but I don't know, her hair just bothered me.

All together, X-Men '92: The World is a Vampire hit all the right notes. There was the call back to the show in the '90s, and there was also Storm, Beast, Pylocke, and Bishop all being amazing. Wolverine and Jubilee were great. I'm excited to read the next (and final) X-Men '92 installment.

*If you search for, "the world is a vampire" Smashing Pumpkins comes up, not this book. I had to make sure I included "X-Men" to get what I wanted.

Saturday, April 07, 2018

Unravel Me

Unravel Me was the perfect long weekend read. The children had their games and movies, I had my book. It’s times like these where I’m glad I bought the ebook. When it is late, I’m tired, but I need to stay awake, an ebook can light up the dark.

Unravel Me was exciting. I had no problem reading this book for hours and hours last weekend. It was easy to make my way through each event, each problem, the conflict, and the explosions of power. Tahereh Mafi had me hooked. So even when we were (finally) home and I should be sleeping, I just had to read "one more chapter". I barely had time to think about the story, the plot twists and surprises. There was one surprise, in the last third of the story that I didn't expect at all. I should have seen it though. It makes sense based on other things that happened in this story and Shatter Me

Adam drove me a bit nuts though. I'm interested in reading his perspective in Fracture Me. Like Destroy Me overlapped with the first and second books, Fracture Me overlaps with books 2 and 3. I'm hoping to warm back up to Adam Kent. Juliette drove me even more nuts. Just when I though she had finally grown up, gotten some backbone, something happened and she would crumble. I could understand Castle's frustration. Juliette was so positive and happy at the end of Shatter Me, I was surprised at her behaviour in Unravel Me. I think by the end though, Juliette was where she needed to be. 

I'm still thoroughly confused by Warner. I love him, but hate him. I have more sympathy for him now, but he really needs to believe he can change. I have no idea what is going to happen to him. I feel like he could go either way, he could go nowhere.

Kenji was the real stand-out for me though. What is his story? What are his secrets? I can definitely relate to Juliette's curiosity for her friend. She grows to care for him deeply, knows that she can rely on him, but she knows almost nothing about him. She wants to learn more about him and so do I. I'm hoping that happens soon, and I hope he is around for a long time.

I think I am officially out of my reading slump. All I can think about right now are the characters of the Shatter Me series. I'm also still thinking about the characters of Ready Player One. I think I need more fast-paced excitement. I wonder what will be next.

Monday, April 02, 2018

Ready Player One

I finished the book and I saw the movie on the same day. I didn't intend for that to happen, but that's just how things worked out. I don’t feel like I can give a fair evaluation of the movie. I think it was good. It was entertaining. It was fast-paced, so there were no lulls. The effects were good. I liked the actor who played Parzival, I think he did a good job. I liked the energy of the movie. I like the more modern references that the included, it was fun seeing the Spartans in the big battle (part of me was expecting an AT-AT though). I felt like Sorrento could have been more menacing. I would have liked more Og. I wanted more of Aech’s backstory. I would have liked more for Daito and Sho as well.  Also, why did they change Sho’s name. Shoto is a great name. So, while entertaining, the movie left me with mixed feelings. I actually think if I hadn't just finished reading Ready Player One, I would have liked the movie more. My sister-in-law, who didn't read the book, thought it was great.

The book was fantastic. I loved all the references. I liked the tasks after finding each key, having to find each gate. I liked the final gate. I liked the perfect Pac-Man game. Parzival was brilliant. Art3mis was brilliant, strong and fierce, yet shy. I loved Aech, everything about his story was so relatable. I loved how much we could learn from Aech. Og was hilarious. He was perfect. I loved castle Anorak. I loved the final battle, but also the final scenes afterward. Parzival grew so much as a person. He grew up. The contest wasn’t just about escape for him, it became so much more. Ready Player One definitely exceeded my expectations.

I’ve read that Ernest Cline is writing a sequel. I’m excited to read it. I know that some people are nervous because Ready Player One is such a great stand-alone novel, but I’m excited. Instead of being left to wonder if Parzival ever reveals that final secret, I’ll be able to find out. I’m excited to see how Parzival and Art3mis grow together, to find out what happens to Aech and Shoto. What about Og? Does Sorrento get away with it? What about humanity? Can the world become a better place?

So, I definitely recommend the book. It’s just so much fun. I think that I recommend the movie.The movie is good for people who haven’t read the book. For those who have read the book, I recommend taking the movie as it is and not as what you expected it to be.

Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Avengers Assemble: The Forgeries Of Jealously

Based on the goodnight thank you poem by Kelly Sue DeConnick at the end of this collections, I think Avengers Assemble: The Forgeries Of Jealously is the last Marvel book DeConnick worked on. I really enjoyed seeing the Avengers through Spider-Girl’s eyes. I also loved how each partner she had was trying to teach her something. Team Lady-Spider was pretty funny. I loved Spider-Girl and Logan. I like how there was some other big global crisis going on (one of stories from earlier in the series?), but the Avengers were still taking the time to help Spider-Girl find her missing teacher. It was a good, fun story.

Two things bothered me just a little about the story. I don’t feel like the art always fully conveyed the emotion or thoughts of the characters. Maybe it was just the style. I don’t know. It was still good, it just didn’t hook me the way other artists have in the past. The other was the final end. I think I expected something more exciting, like Avengers Assemble, or funny like Science Bros. It was good, emotional, and it showed the connection Spider-Girl made with the team, but it was still missing something for me. Maybe I’ll find it on a re-read. Because I did enjoy it, like I did with the entire Avengers Assemble series. I definitely see myself flipping through these pages again.

Monday, March 19, 2018

Captain Marvel: Rise of Alpha Flight

I need to know more about Abigail Brand. I’ve only see on her in bits and pieces. I know she has green hair and wears green glasses all the time. I’ve seen the character on Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes and in the Spider-Woman motion comic, Spider-Woman: Agent of SWORD. She’s pretty wicked. She is hard and strong and smart. I’m also pretty sure she’s not human. She’s the boss though, but not of Alpha Flight. Captain Marvel has been given command of this station. A desk job? Low key? Maybe, maybe not.

I feel like Carol is barely there for a day when there is a problem. There is a delegation to deal with, but also problems on the station. There are explosions, goo, weird creatures, and the dead. Captain Marvel barely gets time to get her feet wet. Brand tries to get Carol to focus, but she's not one for standing around. When it is time for Alpha Flight to meet a threat head-on, Captain Marvel flies out there with them.

I loved the characters I got to meet in Rise of Alpha Flight. I knew who Sasquatch was, but I had never read a comic with him in it. He's great. So is Aurora. I loved Puck. I loved Wendy. I want Wendy to be around forever. The aliens were certainly interesting. Some people just don't listen. It's nice to know the Kree's reputation spans the universe.

Tara Butters and Michele Fazekas did a fantastic job. I really connected to the art of Kris Anka and Felipe Smith. The comic covers were amazing. Captain Marvel: Rise of Alpha Flight was full of humour, emotion, excitement, and Carol Danvers' amazing attitude. It is the book I needed to read.

Saturday, March 17, 2018

Destroy Me

With Restore Me coming out soon, I thought I should actually finish reading the books I own of the Shatter Me series. I read Shatter Me two and a half years ago and for some reason didn’t keep going, even though I thoroughly enjoyed the novel. I also follow Taherah Mafi on Twitter and I think she's fabulous. I bought Unite Me, the collection containing the Shatter Me novellas months ago (from Better World Books), and still didn’t read it right away. There are just so many stories and so little time. 

Destroy Me is the first of the novellas. It is the story of Warner, the young man obsessed with Juliette and head of Sector 45. Destroy Me is from his perspective and gives us a look into his mind and motivations. We learn so much about him. It begins right after the events of Shatter Me. Warner is recovering, not just from his injuries, but from losing Juliette. Destroy Me dives into how deep his obsession is with her. I don’t know if he can live without her. While Warner is recovering, I wonder what Juliette is doing. Is she more closely examining her time with Warner? Is she trying to dissect his motivations and her own reactions? Also, was what he saw at the end real? Destroy Me has urged me to get back into the series, one that will have more books coming out in the future. 

Friday, March 09, 2018

Wonder Woman: War

Yes! This! This was a fantastic, amazing, exciting installment of the The New 52: Wonder Woman. War was everything I wanted it to be and more. It was Wonder Woman being badass. She was tough, strong and vulnerable. She was a strong leader and a caring sister. She made the hard decisions. She created an army that was a family. Wonder Woman does what needs to be done.

I've got a little crush on Orion. I'm sure he knows Diana could break him, but he carelessly flirts, pushes her buttons, and it's amazing. He also opens up to her, when I don't think he expected to. I'm excited to see how their relationship evolves. I loved Lennox. He's been with Diana and caring for their brother. He was rock solid. Diana inspires loyalty among those in her care. Though she vows to protect them, they also want to protect her. 

War might be my favourite of the The New 52: Wonder Woman series. It was a coming together. It was full of excitement. There were battles, soldiers and strength. There was love and sacrifice. There were surprises. I couldn't put War down. I've even gone back through it and read over some of my favourite moments. Wonder Woman hit me hard in the feels. It was a story that got my energy going and that I am eager to continue.

Wednesday, March 07, 2018

Lumberjanes: A Terrible Plan

You know what isn't "a terrible plan"? Reading this book. Lumberjanes #3: A Terrible Plan was fun. It was lighter than the previous two books. I felt like the girls were in less mortal peril.  A Terrible Plan was about the girls having an opportunity to navigate normal life and learn more about each other. There was definitely still some adventure. Some questions were answered, more were asked.

A Terrible Plan was the book that I needed. I have been in a reading slump. It has been a little while, but I have also been in denial. Since the new year, I had only finished one book. One! When I'm not reading, I'm not writing very much either. When I think about it, I feel bad. I feel as though I'm missing something. I started reading It when this reading slump began (not realizing that I was in a slump). I have been struggling through it. Not that I am not enjoying it. Once I pick it up and have time to dive into it, I enjoy it. I'm excited to see what happens in Derry, what happened when they were kids, and what will happen to Pennywise. But trying to get through a Stephen King novel is not how I get through a slump, though I tried and tried. I was about halfway through when I decided to take a break. I decided what I needed was a fun graphic novel. I think Lumberjanes: A Terrible Plan may have just done the trick. I'm feeling more excited about reading. The story and the art grabbed me. Am I reading to go back to It? No. Next, I'm going to read Wonder Woman: War. (The cover is freaky.)

Maybe I'll need to read another Lumberjanes book or I'll decide I need some short stories. I'm definitely going to let my feelings guide me for the next little while.

Like Mal and Molly's feelings? I really enjoyed the developing of Molly and Mal's relationship. They're getting closer, learning more about each other, their "real lives" not just their lives at the camp. They also get into adventure, and learn a little more about the past of the camp. I'm excited to see more "Bear Woman" too.

I liked seeing more of the other campers. The camp seems to be filled with exceptional girls. As the other three explore more "common" goals, the readers get to see even the "common" is special at the Lumberjanes camp. 

I need to mention that the art is different in this volume of the Lumberjanes. It's not bad. It took me a bit to stop missing the previous artist and stop comparing (which I'm going to do here a bit anyway). I found every thing more "round". I'm not sure that's the right word, but that's the one I'm going with. The faces, the eyes, the hair, the background, there was a roundness to it. I enjoyed the expressions, the faces and the emotions they conveyed. So, it was good. It was just noticeably different.

I have not checked (and try not to check) to see if the artists have changes for book 4. Part of me never wants to know. It's not like I like being surprised, it's just with graphic novels, I feel like even a little bit of peaking can give something away. 

Monday, February 19, 2018

Black Panther

Black Panther was amazing. I loved it. I don't think I could have enjoyed it more. I was so excited to see it. As a Walking Dead fan, I was excited to see Danai Gurira as Okoye. She was badass. She was tough, intelligent, and loyal. She was multidimensional, not just T'Challa's general, but also his friend. Okoye had her own life beyond that of serving the king. Danai Gurira was just amazing. I loved the Queen Mother and Nakia too. For me though, the stand out was Shuri. She is a genius. She is young, but I bet should would give Tony Stark a run for his money. I loved her relationship with T'Challa. They teased each other just like siblings would. They love each other, support each other, and would to anything for each other. It doesn't matter that they are the prince/king and princess. They are family.

T'Challa was amazing. He learned so much about himself and his family. He grew as a person and a leader. He is definitely the leader to take Wakanda into the future. Killmonger and Klaue were amazing villians. They were multidimensional, especially Killmonger. I had some mixed feelings about him, in a good way. 

The characters made this movie for me. Yes, the action was fantastic. I loved the fights, the chases, the explosions. The story was interesting, the plot was well-paced, with great reveals and subtle sub-plots. But the characters drove the story. Everyone from T'Challa, to Agent Ross, to M'Baku. I want more Black Panther. I'm excited to see some of the same characters in Infinity War, but I'd love to see another Black Panther movie. I'm not sure what it would be about, but I'm sure it would be great.

The Trailer (in case you haven't seen it).

Friday, February 02, 2018

Official Blogger With The WCYR

The Writer's Community of York Region (WCYR) is my local writing community. I've written quite a few posts since I volunteered to be their workshop/seminar blogger. I had been to a couple of meetings over the past few years, but  now that I have a little more free time, I became an official member this past September. I spoke with one of the board members that I know from a writing group, and I knew I could help out.

Blogging for the WCYR is definitely different than writing posts here. Each post I write goes through an editing process. This is the first time I've worked collaboratively with an editor. It has been a great experience, trading ideas, making suggestions, and I think it has helped my writing in general. It has added a bit of pressure, trying to get things done on time, but I like a "medium" amount of pressure. I also really like the WCYR, in general. Everyone I’ve met so far has been fantastic. The members are friendly and like-minded. The workshops are more than educational. The seminars are engaging. They give me more than enough material to work with. Every month I look forward to the guest speaker, the topics they will be speaking about, and that I will then be writing about.

My latest post is about a workshop I attended on revising your manuscript. Next is a post about the WCYR elections and the one after is about volunteering with the group. I've gotten to write about adding humour into your work, poetry, backstory, and other interesting topics.  It’s exciting to be able to share what is happening in the WCYR with the writing community.

I've got my own member profile now and I'm officially listed as part of the WCYR team! It's not huge, but it is what my time allows and I like blogging. I love being part of this community and allowed the opportunity to write about it. I hope to help more in the future, but for now, I'm enjoying what I can do.

Wednesday, January 03, 2018

Why I Started Reading Romance Novels

Because sometimes I need a happy ending.

At first, I was going to call this post Guilty Pleasures,  but then I wondered what I have to feel guilty about. They are books. I love books. I am willing to give any book and any genre a chance. Yes, there are some I gravitate towards more than others, but I’m not going to discount a book just because someone calls it "cheesy" or "fluff" or whatever. I have been reading contemporary, ebook, romances. Mostly from Melissa Foster, a few from Bella Andre, some from Gena Showalter and Juliana Stone, and most recently, Merry Farmer.

It first started with Bella Andre. I can't remember why I read the first book in the Sullivan series. I remember it was free at the time. In The Look of Love,  boy saves a girl, but the girl also has to learn how to save herself. She escapes a bad relationship, finds freedom, and also find a super hot guy. Also he’s rich.

A lot of these people tend to be rich, at least one of the two main characters. Some are billionaires, some just live comfortably. They often on their own business that they’ve built from the ground up. A lot of the times, they work hard and don’t have time for relationships. Some of the men and women are more promiscuous then their partner, but love changes them or they see others in love and it changes them before they meet "the one". Usually the men come from a big family. They love their parents or at least one parent, they yearn for love, but often feel they don’t deserve it.

So maybe there’s a formula to a lot of these books, but I don’t care. Melissa Foster has become a favourite of these ebook romance authors. Though she writes about alpha males, females are independent, intelligent and strong-willed. They often don’t have time for relationships too. They are trying to build a business, or move forward with their lives in someway. They don’t necessarily need a man, but when the right one comes along they can’t resist each other, most of them often try.  No matter who these people are or what trouble they have to overcome, there is always a happy ending.

Lately, I’ve needed happy endings. The world is kind of being a difficult place to live in. After a hard day,  after reading the news and watching emotional videos, after listening to abrasive, emotional, commentary, I need a happy ending. I love reading all sorts of book, but they don’t always have happy endings.  I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone, but I wouldn’t call the end of Empire of Storms happy. The Ministry of Utmost Happiness is only kind of happy at the end, the entire novel is laced with sadness. Even the end of the second Wonder Woman graphic novel I read left me a little angry. The Rules of Magic made me cry, as well as Anne Of Green Gables. Sometimes, I just want things to work out. I wanted a man and a woman to be together. I wanted the business to flourish. I wanted the little girl to get adopted.

I have to make a quick comment about why I added Merry Farmer to the mix. I think I was just looking at the Goodreads Giveways page when I saw a book that was number four in a series called Nerds of Paradise! Nerds! Like actual rocket scientists. Nerds who meet small town ranchers, farmers, etc. Boy nerds and girl nerds. I couldn't resist a title like that, so I checked out the series. The first one, Opposites Attract is free, so I read it. I have read the second and third novels since.

So, when I need a happy ending, these authors are who I go to. The books only take a day or two to read, and I am left feeling satisfied. For a few moments (maybe longer), I feel like things can work out. People can be nice. Love will win.

Monday, January 01, 2018

Books of 2017

I read 45 books in 2017! Part of me can't believe it. I've been so busy lately. I'm reading Stephen King's It right now. I had hoped to be done before the end of the year, but nope. I read a surprising amount of Romance this year. It is a genre I used to steer away from. I thoroughly enjoyed each of those stories, which I plan on posting about soon.

The best book I read this year might have been The Shadow Land. I was surprised by how much I loved it. I won it from Goodreads and I honestly don't know if I would have picked it up this year if not for the win. I loved everything about it. The characters were engaging. There was a really interesting mystery. A large part of the book took place in a time and place I wasn't very familiar with, but I ended up learning so much.

Actually, The Shadow Land might be tied with Unless for best book of the year. I loved Carol Shields' novel. I plan on reading it again. I just connected so much with the main character and felt so much for her daughter.

I read a few books from series by Sarah J. Maas. She is one of my favourite authors now. I am eagerly awaiting the next books in the Court of Thorns and Roses and Throne of Glass series.

King's Cage did not disappoint. I had been looking forward to Victoria Aveyard's latest and was beyond excited to read every word.

I started some great graphic novel series, Avengers Assemble, Wonder Woman: The New 52, Lumberjanes, and X-Men '92. I have more books from all of those series. I might take a break from It to read some of them.

The Rules of Magic and Anne of Green Gables both made me cry. 

Brave New World freaked me out.

A Study In Scarlet hooked me on Sherlock Holmes.

I'm really happy with the books I read this year. They called to different parts of me. There was love and magic, family and friends, parents and children. Looking at the image, I would read each of these books again (except one). I might read them all again sometime in the future. 

Plans for 2018? I'm going to finish the Queen of the Tearling series. I got my hands on the 2nd and 3rd books. I'll read more graphic novels. I might start the Ms. Marvel series. I might read something else from Carol Shields. I'm pretty sure I have The Stone Diaries. I will read more Romance, especially the books by Melissa Foster. I'll read some more Captain Underpants with my son. Looking again at the image, I realize I didn't ready any Margaret Atwood in 2017! Last month I got a copy of The Heart Goes Last, so that's definitely on the list too. 

So many reading plans, so little time....and it is only January 1st!

I hope everyone was happy with what they read in 2017 and that they have great books to look forward to in 2018!

Happy New Year!

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Wonder Woman: Iron

That did not end the way I thought it would. Though, I really liked it. It was unexpected. The final image was fantastic. I ended up liking Ares more than I thought I would. I liked learning more about Diana's past, specifically, her childhood. I think I might have a crush on Orion. When I started Wonder Woman: Iron, I wasn't sure where the story was going to go. Obviously, they had to search for Zola's baby, but beyond that, I didn't know.

I really enjoyed the dual story lines of Wonder Woman and the First Born. First Born was definitely an interesting character. I wonder if he is the reason Hera punishes Zeus's other children. Though it's not their fault. If Zola is any example, not all of the mothers knew who he was. Even if they did, it is not the child's fault. Not Diana, Lennox or Siracca. I loved Siracca, I loved how her relationship with Diana has begun. I hope we get to see her again.

Ares has me so confused. Is he good? Bad? Selfish? Selfless? What has changed in him from when Diana first met him to now. His behaviour during Apollo's party was interesting. We certainly know who his favourite siblings are. I think Diana has become more of target of the Olympians as well.

I'm also left wondering what Orion will do in the end. Will he fulfill his mission? How will he fulfill it? Will he find a loophole? Brian Azzarello has created an intriguing story. Cliff Chiang and the other artists created a very visual appealing story. I loved Diana's expressions. All the characters showed their emotions and intentions on their faces. Except for Aphrodite, of course. I don't want to see what someone thinks perfect beauty looks like. Wonder Woman: Iron had a great ending, but also left me excited to read Wonder Woman: War.

Thursday, November 09, 2017

The Rules of Magic

I've been doing really well with the books I have won from Goodreads. Like The Shadowland, The Rules of Magic is one of the best books I've read this year. The Rules of Magic hit all the right feelings. It was an emotionally charged tale of three siblings, though Franny was the star. I loved Jet. I adored Vincent. Since this is a prequel to Practical Magic, I knew the tale would end with Franny and Jet living in the Owens house together. I still hoped for a different ending. I wanted them to be the ones to break the curse. I wanted them to find love and live happily ever after. In this prequel, Alice Hoffman gave so much more depth to Franny and Jet, to their stories. Though, I have only seen the Practical Magic movie, after reading novel, I want to read the book.

Endings are so important to me. The ending can change how I feel about a story. Sometimes I delay reading the end because I have a feeling something bad will happen to a character I love or because I want to hold on to the characters for just a little while longer. Both were the case with The Rules of Magic. I wanted to keep Franny, Jet and Vincent. I wanted to keep Haylin, William, Raphael and April. I wanted so much to know more about April. I wonder if Hoffman will ever write April's story. I liked learning about the Reverend and more about the curse and feud. I liked learning more about the town and the Owens' place in it.

Hoffman's writing was beautiful, flowing from one image to the next. I could see Franny and Haylin swimming, I could see Vincent and his guitar, Franny carrying daffodils, the children listening in on their father. I could see the garden and the box of lettuce, the vines and wild hair. Hoffman transports you into the lives of the Owens', from childhood to adulthood, eating chocolate cake for breakfast. The Rules of Magic has made me a fan of Alice Hoffman and made me more of a fan of the Owens' family. 

Sunday, November 05, 2017

X-Men '92: Warzones

When I found out there was a series called X-Men '92, I knew I had to have it. I talked about it so much with my Hubby. These are my X-Men. These were the X-Men that was on TV when I was young. This cartoon series probably led me to loving comics, and probably led me to being more of a Marvel girl, than a DC. The television series is on Netflix and I've been rewatching it with my Hubby (who also loved this cartoon) and our own children. The nostalgia is strong with this one.

Knowing that this volume was a Warzones collection, I knew that the book wouldn't find the X-Men in the world I was familiar with. These X-Men live on Battleworld with our Lord Doom. They fought a war and won. The world they won seems to be the one that the X-Men from my youth were fighting for. Mutants are free and the X-men are heroes. Baron Kelly certainly seems to like them. They seem to be happy. I want them to be happy, but then it wouldn’t be a good story if they stayed that way

What we learn is that there is a mutant rehab centre for “evil mutants”. The X-men didn’t know about it and they don’t trust it. Even though Baron Kelly reassures them, they have to investigate. I was not surprised by what was going on, but surprised by other things. I was also very excited to see another awesome group of mutants show up.

X-Men ‘92: Warzones was fun and fantastic. It hit the nostalgia where I wanted it too, but also had a great story driving it. I’m excited to read the next books in the series.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Empire of Storms

Aelin, wow. She is certainly a schemer. She doesn’t share. I know it makes for better drama, but all those reveals at the end were crazy. She brought so many people together, from everywhere, through force of will and power, favours owed. It shouldn’t have been a surprise, but I was when certain people showed up. She might be young, but Aelin (and Lysandra) had a very unique upbringing, making both of the capablem of the things that they do.

With so many betrayals and lies in Empire of Storms, there was also trust and beginnings. I also hope in the future books, there will be forgiveness. So many of the characters tugged at my heartstrings. Lorcan, Gavriel, Aedion, Lysandra, Manon, Elide, they were all given dimension. They are more than just players in Aelin’s game, they each have their own personalities, hopes, fears, and desires.

I don't feel like I can say much more without giving away all the secrets of this novel. Empire of Storms was fantastic, heart-racing, and amazing. Definitely a book I couldn't put down, keeping me up late reading. It was exactly what I wanted from the fifth book in the Throne of Glass series. Sarah J. Maas continues to expand Erilea, with wonder, magic, and a rainbow of colours. I’m excited for Tower Of Dawn and whatever other books Maas adds to this exciting tale.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

The Ministry of Utmost Happiness

The ending was beautiful. The words were poetry. Sentences evoking complex imagery. It was an artful ending that I am glad I stuck around for. I loved the funerals and the wedding. I loved the uniqueness and the craziness of Jamat Guest House. I thought it was the perfect place for Anjum. In the end, it was the perfect place for them all. Arundhati Roy created a tapestry of words. I am very glad I won The Ministry of Utmost Happiness from Goodreads.

What grabbed me in the story was Anjum and the Hijra. The discoveries and secrets of Anjum's mother were captivating. I needed to know what happened next in Anjum's life, every moment, every adventure, the sadness and happiness. I really enjoyed reading about the Hijra and how they all lived and loved. Though sometimes a bit crazy, Anjum's life captured my imagination. She suffers so much, yet comes out of it with a home. I still want to know if Anjum gets to live out the rest of her days in peace.

Tilo, the other main character, was also very interesting. She seemed too modern for modern India. She was irreverent about caste, class and etiquette. I liked Tilo. I thought she was unique, which is probably why she was loved by thee different men in the novel. I just felt we spent too much time on her story. I liked Garson Hobart, Naga and Musa. But my favourite part of their love square is towards the end with Tilo and Musa. They are some very interesting situations the three men find themselves in over the years. Tilo has a quality about her though, a grace that I connected with. Still, I felt her part of the story was too long. I wanted to get back to Anjum and Saddam and the baby. I wanted to know what was happening in the graveyard and how the blind Imam was.

The Ministry of Utmost Happiness was not an easy book to love, but I did. I thoroughly enjoyed it. Everything at the end, in the Jamat Guest House was wonderful and the characters went through a lot to get there.

Sunday, October 01, 2017

Lumberjanes: Friendship to the Max

Lumberjanes: Friendship to the Max was so much fun. It was exactly what I expected and exactly what I needed. I loved Jen. Jen is the best camp leader the girls could have asked for. Jen wanted to have adventure, but her first priority was always the safety of the girls. We learn more about the personality and motivations of someone we only saw as “in the way” for the Roanoke campers.

I like that in this volume we get to see more of the camp. There are more cabins, and they are filled with more girls. Their safety is Rosie’s top priority. We also get introduced to new and unique characters. Diane was interesting. I wasn’t sure where she was going to lead the girls. I also liked that we learned more about the boys camp. Who was the bear lady

The bull coming out of the woods thing was pretty funny

I wish Lumberjanes was longer. There was an issue of another comic at the end. It was good, I just expected more Jo, April, Mal, Molly, Ripley and Jen. And Rosie. Who is Rosie? I want to know so much more. I have the next 2 volumes and I know there are at least 4 more after that. I’m hoping we’ll find out more about Rosie in one of them. Because I think the Lumberjanes camp is no accident. There’s definitely something going on.

Also, Jen’s happiness at the end made me happy. Molly and Mal made me happy too.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies

It's been a while since I posted about food or even tried new recipes. I am blaming the children. My son especially is going through a very picky eater faze. I have been sticking to a particular set of foods just to make sure the children eat. You know what they're not picky about? Chocolate Chip Cookies! These are chocolate chip oatmeal cookies from a recipe I have had for almost 15 years. I got the original recipe from a website called, which doesn't seem to exist anymore. Like so many recipes, I've made some changes. I have more brown sugar and less white sugar. This time, I also used a mixture of dark chocolate chips and semi-sweet. I also always use butter, not margarine. They didn't last very long. I took some in for my coworkers for a potluck. They were all eaten. The ones I left at home did not make it to the day after. It made me really happy to see people enjoying the cookies.

Since I can't find the original recipe, I found a couple that are close.

This is from Betty Crocker.

This is from All Recipes

(I don't know what the rules are for posting a recipe from a website that doesn't exist anymore.)

I'm really glad I printed off this recipe, which I highly recommend of any recipe you find online that you know you will continue to use.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Blog Facelift

I decided to give my blog a little facelift. The background picture is different; it is from an ice storm last winter. I kind of love it, the way the ice coats the branches of the bushes, the clarity of the ice, but also the harshness of it. I changed my profile picture. The old one was from when I first started this blog over 10 years ago, so definitely time for a change. The fonts are mostly the same, the colours are different though. I've also made social media connections easier. On the sidebar, I have some pretty icons I got from here, and I used the instructions I found here. I like written instructions with screenshots better than video. There is no pausing and it's quieter. I don't need the kids hearing it and asking me what I'm doing. I changed the theme the blog is based on. It's similar to the old one, but I think it lets the background picture through better. I'm thinking about changing the layout, but I'm not sure. I'm fairly happy with the way it looks now. Different, but not too different.

Monday, September 04, 2017

Queen Of Shadows

That was a neatly perfect ending. Is that giving away too much? I have mixed feelings about that end, to be honest. It did everything I wanted it to, in a beautiful, horrific, exciting way, but I would have liked one twist. I guess there was a twist, but it wasn't really a surprise to me. When it happened, I was like, oh ya, that makes sense

The characters though, are what made Queen of Shadows so amazing, and what keeps me coming back to the Throne of Glass series. I loved the other two female characters that we got to explore. Lysandra was someone we met along time ago, but in Queen of Shadows, Sarah J. Maas explores her thoroughly. She is so much more than she appears. She is forging a path for herself, becoming her own person, instead of what others expect her to be. I also just loved Nesryn Faliq. She was brave, strong and independent, and she loved. Maas created a character that was fierce, but also emotional. There is also more than just what's on the surface with her. I'm excited to see where Nesryn goes next.

I really liked how Maas dealt with Aelin and Chaol's relationship. Part of me wanted it to be different, but I understand why it was that way. It seemed natural, based on what happened to both of them in Heir of Fire. I'm excited for more Chaol. He has been a favourite for me since the first novel. I feel like his loyalties and morality have been constantly tested. He's been through so much and deserves his own story to explore those changes.

I wonder what will happen with Dorian. He has also been through more than his fair share of grief. He's not that young prince we met in Throne of Glass. He has loved, he has suffered loss after loss. He feels as though he has caused pain. Dorian's feelings about his friends, his family and himself are complex. I wonder who he will eventually become. I wonder what new relationship lies on the horizon.

I really liked the dynamic between Rowan and Aedion. Adversarial, brotherly, comrades, soldiers. They developed their own understanding, outside of their relationships with Aelin. I wonder if we'll see more of Rowan's former compatriots, specifically one who will have a big impact on Aedion's life. Will it happen in the next book? It adds to the incentive to read Empire of Storms soon.

I'm interested in how Maas will expand Eleria, as the location of the main story seems to be shifting. I hope that doesn't give too much away, but there's a big world out there and Adarlan is only one small part. What will happen in Terresen? What about the mountains? The other countries?

I was talking about books with a new friend the other day' she was asking who my favourite authors where. I gave my "usual" answers, but I also realized that Sarah J. Maas is now one of my favourites. I've read all but one of her currently published books. I'm always on the look out for when something new is coming out (Tower of Dawn). Where I hear she's touring, I check to see where. Like other favourite authors, there are some books I've liked better than others, but I've enjoyed them all. I'm excited to see what else Maas has in store for her readers.