Sunday, September 29, 2013

Monday, September 23, 2013


I don’t know if I can really explain how amazing MaddAddam was.  The third book in Margaret Atwood’s MaddAddam trilogy, it was everything I wanted it to be.  I loved Toby.  I loved Zeb.  The ending almost had me in tears.  The Crakers are such a unique creation; they're almost human in a way that makes them sort of ideally human.  I know I'm not making sense.  

I think my favourites parts are when Toby is telling stories to the Crakers.  It's so hilarious.  Then Blackbeard, he's a brilliant character.  The books, the writing, how the days are remembered is fantastic.  It's funny too.  There are so many serious issues throughout the book.  There are some sad, angry, emotional scenes, it makes the humour really stands out.  It stands out in such a positive way.  Though the end almost made me cry, I'll always remember how many times I laughed out loud while reading.

I feel like I should still be reading this book.  There is so much to this world and so many characters with uncertain futures.  I'm a little sad that I won't be reading this book again tonight.

I don't typically pull quotes out of what I'm reading, but this one really stuck with me.

“…as the online world became more and more pre-edited and slicked up, and as even its so-called reality sites raised questions about authenticity in the minds of the viewers, the rough, unpolished physical world was taking on a mystic allure.” (pg 169)

We all know so many "Reality Shows" are "scripted".  Situations are created to keep the viewer interested. Here is a world where practically everything is online.  So much of it, that people crave the real world.  They venture out of the confines of their lives just for experience. I hope I never forget to go outside sometimes.  Also, doesn't Reality TV often drive you crazy?

Also, there's a game for the book/from the book.  Maybe I won't be saying goodbye to this world just yet.

I could keep jumping around all the thoughts I have about MaddAddam  Maybe the next time I read it, I'l be more coherent.  There will be a next time, I'm sure of it.  If you haven't read MaddAddam or the rest of the series, what are you waiting for?  If you have, I'd love to know what you think.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

Reading While Walking

When I read the blog post title "Reading While Walking" over at Book Riot, I thought they were going to talk about reading while taking a walk or something like that. What it was really about was reading while in line at a coffee shop, grocery shopping, reading in snippets, whenever you can steal a few lines in our busy lives.  It was an interesting post.....

It still wasn't about what I thought it would be about, what I have been thinking about for a while now. Reading while walking.  I read on most of my lunch breaks. Why?  Because I love reading and it's one of the few (2) times a day I can read. Though I'm often interrupted, it's as uninterrupted as I'm going to get. Lately, I've been feeling the need to get out of the office and take in some fresh air.  I like going for walks, but do I want to give up my reading time?  So, can I read and walk at the same time?  If I can't, am I willing to trade? They're putting in a sidewalk on the street where my office is located, which makes it so much more tempting.  I could at least try to read while walking.  Would I look like a weirdo?  Probably.  Do I care?  I don't think so.

I decided to search "reading while walking" and got this really interesting "how to" from wikiHow.  In case you didn't know, here is how to read while walking.  

Maybe I should have started doing this while the weather was warmer, but I didn't have sidewalks then.

Does anyone out there read while walking?

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

It's Gotten A Bit Chilly: Top Ten Books On My Fall Reading List

I'm really hoping (more than usual) to actually stick to My Top Ten list for Fall books.  Can I read these 10 books by December?

1. Allegiant - Veronica Roth
2. Catching Fire - Suzanne Collins
3. The House of Mirth - Edith Wharton
3. The Thousand Orcs - R.A. Salvatore
4. Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
5. Champion - Marie Lu
6. Fool - Christopher Moore
7. The Last Policeman - Ben H. Winters
8. The Raven Boys - Maggie Stiefvater
9. Horns - Joe Hill
10. Carrie - Stephen King

Can I get all ten of these books read in three months?  Probably not, I never do, but I'll try.  There are definitely a few that are more of a "priority" than others, series conclusions, must-read-before-seeing-movie, but I do want to read all of them.

Thanks to The Broke and The Bookish for hosting.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Television I'm Looking Forward To This Fall

I'm excited about television this fall.  There are shows I've been waiting for what seems like ages to see.  I want to know what is going to happen.  (The list is in no particular order.)

Agents of SHIELD - Do I need to explain this?  I love Marvel.  I'm excited to watch SHIELD dealing with superhuman related problems. (Please be good...)

Dr. Who 50th Anniversary Special  (when does the new season start anyway?) - I don't think I should need to explain this.  It's Dr. Who!

The Legend of Korra - I think the first episode actually aired on the weekend and I missed it. Yikes!  I'm hoping will still have the episodes to watch on their website, which is mostly where I watched last year.  It's a great show, the continuation of Avatar: The Last Airbender.  I just love Korra.

Once Upon A Time - I'm excited to see Neverland.  I'm hoping that it makes me enjoy the show they way I did during the first season.  

Grimm - To be honest, I didn't really watch the first season.  I watched the first episode and didn't really like it. Then I eventually gave the show another chance, watching a later episode from the first season and decided again the show wasn't for me.  Then last year, I caught an episode by accident and thought the show had gotten interesting.  I liked the Nick/Juliet conflict and loved Monroe with Rosalee.  The season finale was crazy!

The Walking Dead - Season three was not that good.  I got bored.  If my Hubby wasn't still watching the show, I might have stopped.  I'm looking forward to this show because of hope.  I have hope that the fourth season will be better.

Masterchef Junior - I really enjoy Masterchef.  Something about this show just gets me. (It's probably the food.) Then I see that they are actually making a kid version of this show for the fall. Well, I just have to watch.

There are other shows I like that I want to see, but I'm not searching them on the internet, trying to find out when they start.  I haven't been listening to news about those other shows all summer. So while I may watch other television, they aren't generating the kind of excitement or anticipation these ones are managing.

What are you looking forward to?

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Top Ten Books I'd Like to See Made Into Movies

This week's Top Ten Tuesday topic from The Broke and The Bookish was originally done on April 2011 (wow, I've been doing this meme a long time!)  Here is my original list, plus a few comments:

1. Oryx and Crake, 2. The Year of the Flood – I’d like to see both books made into movies. I think they’d be horrific and disturbing and fantastic films. They’d (hopefully) be the kind of movie that makes an impact, where you never really forget the story, just like the books.
Comment: This still holds.  I don't know if it will ever happen, though.  I'm reading MaddAddam right now and so far could be added to the list too.

3. The Hunger Games – Oh wait. They’re already making this into a movie. Yay! It better be good.
CommentI really enjoyed The Hunger Games movie and I'm looking forward to Catching Fire.

4. The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo – Oh wait. They’ve already made a Swedish movie, now we’re just waiting for the “Hollywood Blockbuster” to come out. I’ve heard the Swedish movie is amazing. The Hollywood movie better be good.
CommentI never got around to seeing either version of The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo.  I don't know why.

5. Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell – Though parts of the book dragged, if you take some of it out, this would make for an exciting movie.
Comment: I think this would still make a good movie, but after reading some awesome books in the last couple years, I might replace it with John Scalzi's Redshirts.

6. Wicked – It’s a musical already, but it’s not as close to the book or as dark as the book. I think a movie could really show Elphaba at her best and worst.
Comment: I would still love to see a dark, movie version of Wicked.

7. Remember Me? – This one might make up for not having a great interpretation of Confessions of a Shopaholic I think the premise and outcome are unique and interesting. It wouldn’t be another formulaic chick-flick.
Comment: I think someone did a TV show with this sort of premise.  It didn't work out.  Instead, I think I'd like to see Wither, though I don't think a movie that has pregnant teenagers would fly.

8. The Paper Bag Princess – If they’ve done Where The Wild Things Are, why not The Paper Bag Princess? Let’s give the girls someone fantastic to look up to. It’s one of my favourite children’s books and I think a movie of it could be wonderful.
Comment: I still would love to see a movie about Elizabeth besting a dragon.

9. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies – This would be so awesome.
Comment:  I don't know if this movie is ever going to happen.  It was, then it wasn't, and now I don't know.

10. A Series of Unfortunate Events – I know they did a movie encompassing the first three books, which was fantastic. I enjoyed the performances of Jim Carrey, Glenn Close and the actors who played the Baudelaire siblings. They’d probably have to start over since the actors have aged so much, but they’re such wonderful books, I think it would be worth it.
Comment: I think a movie of Who Could It Be At This Hour? would be pretty cool instead.

What books would you like to see made into movies?  For those who did this topic before, do your choices still hold?

Monday, September 09, 2013

This Guy, by Chuck Wendig

This is the picture he has posted of
himself on his website...
For a while, I kept hearing (seeing) Chuck Wendig's name.  I'm not sure where... Goodreads? Bloggers? John Scalzi's blog? His name kept jumping out at me, so I went to his website.  It's interesting.  He has some great advise for writers.  His blog posts are fun and engaging.  He calls his site NSFW and NSFL.  I don't know if that's necessarily true, though I do have some privacy where I work....  One of his headers is "Holy Shit, Free Stories".  Well, how could I resist that?

I decided to keep it simple and I read the first free short story on the list, This Guy.  This Guy is a truly weird story.  I kept trying to figure out what the narrator's "deal" was.  Was it a dream?  Was he insane?  Was this actually happening?  I felt awful for his wife Mary.  I don't know what I would do in her situation.  I can't really say much more about the story without giving it all away.  It's violent, maybe slighly confusing (in a good way) and engaging.  More than anything, it's made me want to read more by this author.

Short Story Monday is hosted by John at The Book Mine Set.

Thursday, September 05, 2013

Oryx and Crake

Oryx and Crake makes me want to know more about this world! I liked Margaret Atwood's Oryx and Crake better the second time around.  I remember the first time reading it thinking that the beginning dragged.  I did not think that this time. Maybe I've changed as a reader. I really enjoyed reconnecting with Jimmy/Snowman, Crake and Oryx.  I liked being reminded of what the Crakers were like. I liked the glimpses of Amanda and Ren (and Bernice!).  I liked being reminded of what Snowman thought of the smoke and the people around it.  I am more excited to read MaddAddam than I was before.  It was just what I needed before diving in.  I'm a little sad that I didn't give myself enough time to re-read The Year of the Flood, but I considered it a more recent read, though it was still a few year ago that I read it.  I remember it pretty clearly, but maybe one day I'll re-read the entire trilogy.

I like the way time shifts through the novel.  It has a fluidity, as it follows Snowman's thoughts.  Jimmy's time with Oryx was intriguing, then getting to know Crake and back to Oryx.  Oryx is such an enigmatic character.  I'd like to know more about what she really thinks.  I think the best glimpse at her inner workings comes at the end of the novel.  She is so dismissive about everything that has happened to her, everything that Jimmy is outraged about; is it because she is trying to forget or it all seemed normal to her?  Jimmy and Crake were also interesting in the way they developed and changed through the course of events.

I could really go on and on about how much I enjoyed my re-read of Oryx and Crake. Beyond just being immersed in an amazing story, Oryx and Crake has, for me, validated re-reading.  I never used to re-read; I always thought that there were too many unread books for me to take the time to go back and read ones I already knew.  Then a couple years ago, I decided I should revisit some old favourites, I had to make sure the reason they were so loved still held.  Re-reading Oryx and Crake has been my best  re-reading experience thus far (even better than Their Eyes Were Watching God, which I loved).  I can honestly say I liked it better the second time, I feel closer to the characters and I'm ready to read the final book in the series.  

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

So, The Summer Is Over?

Where I live, the first day back to school, the day after Labour Day weekend, marks the end of summer and the beginning of fall. Summer isn't technically over until the Autumn Equinox on September 22nd, but that's not how it feels.  I love autumn, but there's so much more work.  Summer always seems to feel more relaxed.  Everything slows down.  I thought I'd take a look back at the summer of 2013 and see what some of my favourite things were.


I read a lot this summer.  A couple of my favourite summer books were The Cuckcoo's Calling and Emma... and Who Could It Be At This Hour?. (It was really difficult to pick.  These were just the first three that came to mind.)


It was a slow summer for movies for me.  I blame the children... we just couldn't always find a babysitter.  I did manage to get out and see Wolverine, which was so much better than I expected.

I also did a full rewatch of Clueless after reading Emma.  It's a pairing I highly recommend.


I tend to think of Continuum as a summer show, even though it premiered in April. It's on throughout the summer when all the "regular" shows are done. The season finale was fantastic and I can't wait to see what they're going to do with the show next year.


We went to Stratford to see Tommy this year and it was amazing.  I recommend it to everyone.


At the beginning of the summer, I blogged about using the Bone Dust Rub.  I still enjoy it... I made enough that I still have a fair amount sealed in a container.

Those are just a few highlights.  How was your summer?