Friday, December 31, 2010

2011 Reading and Blogging Resolutions

To read 200 books. This will not include audio books as I am Deaf and cant hear them anyway. It will include good old fashioned books.

To try a book from each genre. Becoming involved with the book blogging world has exposed me to new genres and I have no idea what they are talking about so I want to correct this.

To be more consistent with my blogging. I have really gotten lazy with blogging. I want to try and post 3 to 4 times a week.

To comment on other blogs more. I lurk at a number of different blogs and never comment. If I don't comment then I cant expect no one to comment on mine. Right?

Become more proactive in getting interviews and such on my blog. I know reviews is a big part but other stuff make a blog more exciting.

Become adept with social networks. I am still learning how to interacting well with people on twitter and such. I want to become even better.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

7 Habits of Highly Effective People

7 habits

You remember while you was in collage, your friends that majored in something such as business administration talked about books such as this one and how much it has helped them over the years? While you who majored in a liberal arts degree who thought themselves above such books scoffed as such nonsense. Fast forward 5 years later and it is clear who is making more money and stuff and you start to wonder if there were a timeless piece of wisdom in such books, so you finally get it from the library and see what you may have missed.  This was one of those books.

The idea is there are seven principles of highly effective people. By effective it seems getting people to see things your way or as Covey describes it, an agreement that works for both people.

He outlines each step as a stepping stone to true independence which is really interdependence. By completing each step you supposedly become more and more effective at achieving your goals.

The one thing that surprised me was that Covey states in 7 Habits of Highly Effective People is he advocates sticking to a principal centered pardagram. I was under the impression that most “business” books was all about getting ahead but I was mistaken.

Overall I enjoyed this book. It not a literary masterpiece but it does have some good advice.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010



Room is a novel set in a 11 by 11 foot soundproof cell. The cell used to be a garden shed before it became a prison by witch 5 year old Jack and is Ma became imprisoned. Jack was born in this room and thinks that everything he sees on TV is made up. He is unaware that Outside is real.

Then his Ma tells him about the things that are on the Outside. He understandably at first does not believe it but the his Ma comes up with an escape plan that is crazy enough to work.

After they both escape they are unprepared of the work they have to do to get reacquainted with the Outside.

I have to admit at first the book which is written solely from 5 year old Jack point of view grated on me. Then I realized I was reading a work of art. How many authors could pull of a pretentious 5 year old voice for a whole book. It did not deviate from his voice even once. That to me was impressive.

The author in the first part of the book did an excellent job in setting the stage in how Jack and his Ma set up routines that they did everyday. We would have though jack would have been more traumatized than he was but as we see his trauma comes mostly from having to adjust being Outside.

Earlier in the book the idea that Jack came from a rape was not central to the story. It wasn't until the second part when people the family had a hard time accepting Jack that the full reality sets in. Again the author set the scene beautifully in describing Jack as solely Ma’s child. The actual rapist and the man that imprisoned them is a secondary character.

The first part of the book was slow going. It wasn't until the second part of the book that things sped up and I realized how essential the first part was to the rest of the plot. I am glad I decided to stick with the book. I almost didn't but I heard so many good things that I decided to stay with it and see what all the fuss was about.

This is one of those books that you need to look at the whole to see what a wonderful piece of art it really is.

Saturday, December 11, 2010


This is a fictionalized account of Buddha and how he became enlightened.0060878819.01._SX140_SY225_SCLZZZZZZZ_ When one envisions the enlightenment phase one tends to think that the people who have attained came to it easily. It is ones personal struggles that seem insurmountable. As this story illustrates however, this is not the case.

Buddha in this story started out life as a wealthy prince. He had every imaginable luxury. Yet he was still unhappy so he abandoned that life and became a holy man. What follows next is his journey to become enlightened. It is fraught with danger and risks that most humans would not take in this lifetime. He is rewarded when one night he finally breaks free of this world and awakens.

This book was well written and encompassed the philosophy of Buddhism. If you are just coming to Buddhism then you will have a difficult time of realizing where he is demonstrating a concept. If you have a basic understanding the this book provides a wealth of information. I have to say that I learned a great deal from this book. For example I think problems are to be defeated. I hate when something stands in my way. He describes that once you let  of the issue and just let it be then it will most likely resolve itself. It also illiterates that Buddhism principles are easy to learn but hard to follow through which is why so many fail to attain enlighten.

There was a previous book by this author that I reviewed, Seven Spiritual Laws of Success. That book I didn't like much but after reading this book I am tempted to go back and reread the first one. This goes support my theory that you should never give up on an author on the first try.

Literary Blog Hop

What is one of your literary pet peeves?  Is there something that writers do that really sets your teeth on edge?  Be specific, and give examples if you can.
One of the things that I hate the most is authors going on and on and on in pretentious language that seems to serve no other purpose than to show how many words they know.One example for me would be Steven King. I mean how many ways can he describe a scene that is essentially some one going crazy and committing a deranged crime. I know I may be stepping on some toes here but that's the way I feel. I fell his editor could do a better job of editing and cut some of that crap out.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Booking Through Thursday


Do you ever crave reading crappy books?

Yes I read crappy books. I will admit it. I am hopelessly addicted to self-help books. I still cant fathom why. Every time I see one I think, maybe this is the one that has the answers to life in it.

It is sad to admit but even at my age of 30 I am still easily moved buy peer pressure. Left to my own devices I generally stick to literary fiction. If every one else and their mother is reading a book though, I must read it too. After all, I don't want to be the loser at a party who has never read Twilight. I hated that series, yet I stuck through all the books just to see what everyone else was raving about.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Sunday Salon

sunday salon

Yesterday I heard we was supposed to get a lot of snow so I risked going to the library to stock up on some books. Not that I needed to but going to the library always makes me feel better so off I went. I had originally planned to get only 2 books but came back with this:


Which was good because I woke up to this



And it is STILL snowing!

So I have enough books to last me until next year.

As I announced yesterday I wanted a place where I could share the rest of my thoughts and stuff but I wanted to keep this strictly for book reviews. I created a tumblr account. You can see it here. If you have a tumbr account feel free to add me.

On the book review front I reviewed Super Sad True Love Story which I loved. I also did a semi review of Seven Spiritual Laws of Success. That book is just OK to me. However I recently finished Buddha the path to enlightment but the same author and I liked it better. Look out for a review this week.

I am now finally reading Room. I think it will live up to its hype.

I am off to do some reading.. What are you reading today?

Saturday, December 4, 2010

In this blog it may seem that I am one-dimensional but I swear I am not. At least I hope not. I wanted to keep this strictly for reviews so I created a tumblr account for everything else. You can see it by clicking here. If you have a tumblr account feel free to add me or to just check out what else I am up to.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Seven Spiritual Laws of Success

I have a co7 siritual lawsnfession to make. I have a secret addiction to self-help books. I am not sure why. Its not like half the books tell me anything new. Like for example; The seven Spiritual Laws Of Success did not say anything that was not also in '”The Secret”.

But I have heard friends tell me Chopra is the best. I had to see for myself. Of its own accord the book to me is just ok. Like I said there was nothing new in there.I have heard people say that it really works but I have not undergone any testing to see. I mean how would you know if it works or not?

It was a quick read. Enjoyable by it’s own merits but not a great work of art or anything like that. On second thought I guess it’s not meant to be.

The basic Idea  is to give you seven laws and if you follow them then you can achieve anything you want.

I would be interested to hear other peoples thoughts on this book. Maybe I am in the minority.

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Super Sad True Love Story

This was the second book that surprised me this year. I have to admit I have not read his earlier work so when this started making headlines I thought, “what's up with all the fuss over a love story?’ Of course this is not to knock love stories. There is some that blew me away. The time travelers wife is one.super sad true love story
Super Sad Love Story is a dystopian novel set about 50 years into the future. People get nanotechnology to prevent them from getting old and dying. I thought this bit was a good play on Americans fear of getting old. I mean think about it. We eat a certain way to avoid looking old, we buy special creams at ridiculous prices to reduce signs  of aging and a host of other stuff. This play in the book only illustrates the heights that people will go to to avoid becoming or looking old.
In the book there is also a war in Venezuela that can be read to mean the current war in Afaganstain. The war is becoming increasingly more expensive to pay for and the soldiers don't always get paid. The not getting paid part is also an excellent way of foreshadowing what might happen. I am not saying that he has a  political axe to grind but it is a brilliant artistic way to show what fiscal responsibility  and wayward cost of war can do.
The most brilliant part or should I say disheartening is the way he portrays America at the edge of fiscal collapse and the world that ensues. People carry these things that sound like a Smartphone but buy the descriptions in the book are more..smartphoney. People can stream their lives and get ratings in everything from Fuckablity to hotness. Which is not so far fetched idea. We are getting close to that now with face book and such.
The author dose a fantastic job of world  building. He constructs things is such a way that it is not to hard to imagine this is what America could look like in the near future. He had the uncanny ability to even make the financial collapse in the book look like it may happen in the next 50 years.
Then there is the love story.
As love stories go this one is not that bad. It just so predictable. When he introduced to characters in the book i could tell what was going to happen. I don't profess to ne an expert on love stories but when you built the rest of the book up brilliantly at least have a little more substance to the love story or rather love triangle that ensues.
The ending was also a bit of a let down after the rest of the book.
It all ended in a predictable way. I felt that with the build up of the rest of the book it could went out with a bang. It didn't
Overall this was a book I LOVED. it had it’s short comings but I think all books do.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Sunday Salon

sunday salon

I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! Mine was good. I came to visit family in Kentucky. Since they are Sarah Palin endorsers and I am a bleeding heart Liberal I took some Klopopion and instead of my blood boiling when politics and the supposed North Korea “attacks” I found it all kind of amusing.

I signed up for the Thankfully Reading challenge on beth fish reads. I finished reading Super Sad True Love Story and Am now reading Buddha by Chopra. Buddha is taking me longer to read it because I have to stop and digest what it is really teaching.

This week will be spent getting Library books read so I can take out my next big batch!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Thankfully Reading Post Two

Well since I am at my parents house for Thanksgiving I will have to take a picture of the books I still have here. This is just two shelves there are many many more books than this. I have to sort them all out and decided which ones I want to keep and which ones to wild release for Bookcrossing.



Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thankfully Reading

thankfully reading

To make up for my horrible outcome on the Readathon last October I am joining in Thankfully Reading. I think this will go better as I am at my parents house and I will not have to do anything chore-wise. So lets see how this read a long goes. Wish me Luck!


Below is a picture that I took of the books I hope to get through this weekend.


Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Body Clutter

body clutter

I have to admit I am a big fan of Flylady. I have heard about  the books and have read From pigpen to paradise and loved it. I follow all her routines and everything. Even a slob such as me can make my apartment look pretty.

Body clutter is all about loving yourself enough to start exercising (blessing your heart) to eating nutritionally sound food. While this may not be new advice they present it in such a way that it comes less about meeting a number goal and more about loving yourself enough to be healthy.

I have to admit that I liked this book more than most others books on losing weight. Other books tell the tale of somebody being a few pounds overweight then they lose a few pounds and tout their way to everyone. While this book does not endorse a certain weight loss plan it only tells the reason why so many of us find it so hard to lose weight. It explains the “mental blocks”. I think the mental blocks are a much bigger hurdle to get through.

It also explains how not to let your routines that you have picked up fall by the wayside but rather incorporate new things into your existing routines.

If you are a fan of flylady you will enjoy this book.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Bitch in the House

0066211662.01._SX140_SY225_SCLZZZZZZZ_This is an anthology with 26 well known woman writers who discuss about motherhood and marriage and one was on weight.
Feminist lit has come a long way than when it was still in its infancy. The woman have almost everything feminist has fought for and yet they still seem to be missing something. They fell out of touch with what feminism is today. That is not to say this is a sad book. It is not. Far from it. There are undercurrents of anger spread through out the book. All of us are like that right?
I found it refreshing to see woman talk so honestly and candidly about the “bitch” that often emerges in motherhood. All to often we hold this part hidden because “good” mothers are not supposed to feel this way. Which itself is a ridiculous notion because really, when you have a crying baby and are trying to handle a demanding job who is ever going to feel “good enough”? This book explores that concepts well. I agree with what a lot of the woman say, just cause you have it all, does not mean you feel like you have it all. This is an example of how some woman have come to feel disjointed by today's feminism.
It also explores how in the coming days of a major event a wedding or a baby the couple believes such things like housework to be split evenly. However once the big day arrives it is usually the woman who gets the brunt of doing housework on top of everything else. This is seems to be a source of pride, sort of like super wife or super mom. Again not every woman will feel this way but it is a recurring theme. I also found it refreshing to hear some of the woman talk about taboo subjects. For example a few of the woman were mistresses. That is not something that media talks about openly.
This book was well written especially since it is an anthology. The woman who put all the stories together did well in making all the different stories flow into one another. It did not read as 26 separate stories but rather as a continuum from one story to the next.
This maybe me digging into the symbolism a little to deep but I also feel that this book encompasses the idea that we all are different with our own unique experience but that we can come together as woman and make a beautiful whole, just like this book.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Sunday Salon

Many people are writing what sunday salonbooks they are thankful for, as for me I am thankful to be able to read.Earlier this year my mind started racing and I couldn't keep track of a single thought. It was as if words whizzed right by my comprehension. All was corrected in OCT and ever since I have been grateful.

I have decided to post  on Mondays. Wensday and Fridays and of course Sunday. I may post more but I feel I need to get into a schedule so maybe this will help.

I decided to sign up for Formspring. Sometimes I run out of Ideas of what to talk about so am hoping you can ask anything and it will jump start my creativity. Click to go to the link.

At the moment I am reading Super Sad true love story and it lives up to its hype. I am loving it. I hope to finish it today.

What are you reading today?

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Friday, November 12, 2010

For the literary Blog Hop


What is the most difficult literary work you've ever read? What made it so difficult?

The first book that stands out Is Old Man and the Sea. It stands out because when I read it in high school I had yet to grasp symbolism so it made no sense. Why would a man hold a fish all the way to shore?

My teacher was telling me and the class it was symbolic. Me being as out spoken as i am was telling her it still did not make any sense. As I am deaf and went to a deaf school the teacher tends to show a movie to help us understand better. I thought the movie was dumb too. After a week of explaining step by step the story behind the story so to speak  I began to grasp what it was really about.

Once I understood it opened up a whole new world for me in terms of reading and enjoying books.

Next up on my list is Gravity’s Rainbow so am curious how that will go.

Monday, November 8, 2010


The booflowk’s premise is to explain how to induce happiness. It goes by the theory that there are certain things that people do that can make their life more meaningful. His most important message was how to induce “Flow” which is the art of losing oneself completely in what ever activity one is doing.

He did research by having people wear beepers and when ever they contacted the person they was supposed to stop and record what they was doing and how they felt. From this he figured out what made people the happiest.

I found some very useful information in this book. I am not sure if it is just me but the sentence that stood out the most was the one on how chess players who is supposedly the epitome of flow exercised to better their concentration. I couldn't help but wonder if it would work for reading also.

The second thing that stood out was that in order to keep gaining satisfaction for our activities we have to keep it interesting and challenging. If something becomes to easy we wont have the same satisfaction as we did when we first started an activity. This makes sense when one thinks about it. How many times have we started something then became bored with it then did not want to do it anymore? I know I have done that many times. We have to find new ways of doing something to keep the excitement.

It also focused on mental activities as ways of warding off boredom in the situations we find ourselves in without any physical activities. I know I could never do this. The very thought of being caught without a book is enough to induce anxiety. There are some people that apparently can do this.

He provides a number case studies so we can see each concept in action. I was somewhat fascinated. He makes his case very well. I came away eager to try some of the concepts in the book.

The writing can be dull at times but i think that is more of his being a scientist than his  writing ability. It is well written and understandable so that the lay person can understand how to implement the concepts.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Woman: An Intimate Journey


First of all I want to comment on Angier writing. It was a cross between a lyrical method and a science no nonsense method. I couldn't make up my mind if I liked it or not. Sometimes I wish she would stay with one kind of writing. At times it grated on my nerves. At other times I thought it was beautiful way of composing a sensitive and oft misrepresented subject.

The context of the book was well written and informative. She uses science and anecdotes from the animal kingdom to illustrate her topics.

She takes the reader on a journey though the female anatomy. At 30 years of age I wish I read this book when I was 18. It provided advice on what's normal and what's not. It also answers questions that you may be to embarrassed to ask. The author is an accomplished biology writer so she knows in depth about what she writes.

I liked that it was written from a feminist point of view. I often feel that there are not enough books that give women a reason to feel good about themselves and their bodies. This is a book that does both.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Candy Freak

I have to be honest. This book made me hungry reading it. On every sugar infested page there were mouth watering descriptions of various candies. The way he described them I could almost taste them. I had to make several trips to the store to stock up on candies. Not good for my diet.
The author Steve Almond (his last name is a testament to his love of candy I think ,and yes it is his real last name) is a self professed candy freak who “has eaten a piece of candy every day of his life”  and decided to see how the “underbellies” of the candy trade were doing. There are the “big three'’ of the candy trade then there is the small independently owned candy factories.
Almond visits  various independent candy factories. He tours the factories and he gives accounts of what it is like. I had to admit at times I was jealous of all the free candy he received. Almond goes into glorious detail of various candy bars. It was almost as good as being there.
Of the various candies I am to young to know of any expect the goo goo clusters since I am from the south.
I loved his humor. It is sprinkled out in appropriate dosage. Even when he was writing about his brief period with depression he still conveyed it in a way that made the reader feel that it was not all that bad and hey he got free candy!
There were even some facts that I did not know before i read this book. For example, candy companies have to pay a shelving fee to have their candies displayed in stores. An independent candy company cant compete against the “big three’ so they have to find alterative avenues like the dollar store. That explains why you see the same candies again and again in almost every store you go to.
There was also a history of candy making that I found fascinating. I now know that my love for milk chocolate is because the big three use milk chocolate so that what you taste most of the time. It is what your taste buds grow accustomed to. If however we were to acquire the taste of real chocolate then according to the “experts” we would have a much more distinguished palate.
This little book provides an entertaining and insightful look at the candy making industry. Just be sure that you have plenty of candy while you are reading this.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

The Sunday Salon


First for those who want an update on my read a thon. It was horrible. I kept getting distracted then I fell asleep. I have a plan for the next read a thon though. I am going to lock myself in a hotel room and dare anyone to bother me.

In other news I have checked out a total of 10 books from the Library. I told myself that I will not check out anymore books until I get those ten read but then I remembered that Halloween is coming and I want to do a Halloween themed post. I need to decided on a book and soon if that is to happen. Any Ideas?

I am still reading Women; An intimate geography. I have an excuse for reading so slow though. I was at the Library and I took a wrong turn and found all the periodicals. The book reviews periodicals that I have wanted to read but did not have access too and was to broke to subscribe are all there. The New York Review of books and others. I was like a little kid in a candy store. I sat down and read all of them for hours.  I hope that by reading them m own reviews will improve drastically.

I will definitely finish Woman today though then I will start on Flow which was recommended to me from a trusted friend. He has never recommend a book that i did not end up liking so I trust his judgment.

For once in my life I will be reading two books at the same time. I decided on a whim that I was going to learn how to knit so checked out Knitting for Dummies. I usually hate reading more than one book at a time so we shall see how it goes.

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Read –a-thon intro post

Where are you reading from today? I am reading from Kent Ohio

3 facts about me

After living in the south all my life I just moved to the north

This is my second read-a-thon

I love to meet new people



How many books do you have in your TBR pile for the next 24 hours

I have five books.



Do you have any goals for the read-a-thon (i.e. number of books, number of pages, number of hours, or number of comments on blogs)?

Not really. I find if I try and set goals and I don't meet them I feel as if I have failed.

If you’re a veteran read-a-thoner, any advice for people doing this for the first time?

Change settings often and have plenty of food and caffeine ready

I woke up in time to start the read-a-thon on time! I have been spending time checking the twitter hashtag and visiting blogs.

I have my books ready and am making coffee. I will start by finishing Woman:an Intimate Journey.

Monday, October 4, 2010

No Pity

This book was suggested by a friend. I have bipolar and I am Deaf. The Deaf part is a minor inconvenience if you ask me. The bipolar part is a huge obstacle. To be honest I was kind of feeling sorry for myself. What did I do to deserve such a thing as Bipoar etc. A friend suggested I empower myself and read books that show that I can deal with it and put the pieces of my life back together. Hence this book.
The title says it all. No Pity. It is true. Disabled people do not want pity but rather an equal chance to do what non disabled people take for granted. For example Deaf people want equal communication access. They do not want any special privileges just the chance to do the same job with the same pay and such as hearing people. Physically disabled people want equal access to public transportation so they can get to their jobs and be independent.
The part that really made me think was the section on mental retardation. I along with 99 percent of the population had always though people with mental retardation needed special help. This book tells otherwise. It shows that people with this can and do lead independent lives. It also goes to show that what people think and the reality is sometimes two completely different things.
That ties in with the major theme of this book. That non disabled peoples attitudes and not the actual disability is what holds most disabled people back. The author gives example after example of this. He also includes a section on ADA and how most businesses and people balk at the idea when in reality they just need to get creative and provide simple and affordable ways to accommodate people. He also shows that the ADA has even helped non disabled people. That when the rights of disabled people are implemented we all benefit.
This is a book I would recommend everyone read. If not for the enjoyment factor but for the education factor.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Sunday Salon


When you read this I will still be camping. Why in the world am I going camping in the north in OCTOBER? I asked myself that very same question. In all seriousness it is called Silent Weekend. It is where Deaf people an people learning ASL get together for a weekend of camping and fun. Of course me being me my in real life friends will have to pry me away from my books. This is my first weekend doing that here so maybe I will even make new friends.

On the reading front I spent all week reading No Pity. It is about the disability rights movement. It wasn't that it was difficult to read it just it made me stop and think. That slowed down my reading. It was a great book.  review will be up hopefully Monday.

I am now reading  CandyFreak. It makes me hungry when I read it but so far I like it. I will probably finish it today so then I will read Women: An intimate Geography. I have been meaning to read this for years but never got around to it. Then I saw an other blogger rave about it so I ordered it from the library.

I got most of my books I ordered from the Library. My friend was joking that most woman want a man with money and that sort of thing but give me a man with access to lots of books and I am happy!

I hope everyone has a happy reading week!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Cures for Heartbreak

cures for heartbreak When Mia was 15 her mother was diagnosed with cancer and dies 12 days later. Then her father has a second heart attack. This is a story about how Mia coped with these two events.

This book is well written. It follows how a 15 year old girl would act and speak. It goes through such details as her having a crush her first boyfriend and school.

It does not pretend that she gets a happy ending and her life is all rosy after her mother dies. It paints an accurate portrayal of how a person would react to such a situation. For example, she fails some classes at school and she faces other tough obstacles.

What could have been a depressing book instead uses humor to somewhat lighten up the mood. The use of humor in this book is appropriate. It does not come of as mocking or to cheapen what Mia is going through but rather as a way to express grief and such in a way that a 15 year old can process it.

The book feels disjointed in ways. There are several stories that interweave with each other. It almost feels like different books. There is a thin common thread that joins them all together. I think this is  a good use of writing technique because it symbolizes how events in our lives seem to be fragmented but in reality there is something that joins it all together.

At the end of the book we find out this is a semi-autobiographical account of the author’s own experience with her mother dying and her father having two heart attacks. After learning this I became curious about her own life. I hope she writes a memoir.

Another interesting fact is that the editor attempted to get this published as an adult novel but no publisher want to do that so instead it was published as a YA novel. I thought it was in between. I could see where it would be taken as a YA novel but at the same time I felt that the issues could stood as an adult novel. Upon father reflection the style of writing mostly reflects how an YA novel would feel.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Booking Through Thursday


If you read series, do you ever find a series “jumping the shark?” How do you feel about that?

And, do you keep reading anyway?

The way my brain works if I don't like a book I tend to repress the memory of that book. So my mind is drawing a blank with this question. However I have read some books in a series that I suspect the author may have had an “off” period. Usually the next book more than makes up for it. My favorite series of books is currently anything by Laurell K Hamilton. All of her books have kept me interested.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Sunday Salon


I have missed two Sudays Salons. Real life caught up with me. I have went back north and it seems that my moving had disrupted everything. I had been in a little bit of a reading and writing slump. It is amazing how not having your desk and stuff set up can disrupt everything. I finally am getting my bearings back but I will be glad to get my desk and stuff set back up.

I have been trying to convince the boyfriend to get one more bookshelf. I am serious just one more. The problem is that we live in an itty bitty apartment and one more bookshelf would really crowd things. I dislike not having my books organized though so I am pushing really hard to get my bookshelf.

Speaking of books, the boyfriend is a grad student and has an ID to the local university. He probably felt sorry that I have no friends here yet so he loaned me his ID and I discovered that with all the libraries that I am virtually unlimited in my selection of books. Which is good cause I am on a tight budget which dose not leave room for a lot of book buying. I went crazy with checking out books. I am just waiting for all the books to be ready then I will go pick them up.

In the interest of organizing and peace I have decided to put all my recipes that I have collected in magazines and stuff on Springpad. My stuff is everywhere and it is distracting. Springpad seems to be good for recipe collection. I hope it is anyway. I rounded up all my magazines and would hate to find out halfway in there is a better alternative.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Booking Through Thursday

bookingthruthursday What are you reading right now? What made you choose it? Are you enjoying it? Would you recommend it? (And, by all means, discuss everything, if you’re reading more than one thing!)

At the moment I am reading No Pity by Joseph P Shapiro. It was actually recommend by a friend. I love it so far. It discusses the disability movement and how disabled people are starting to take control of their own lives.

I hate to ay I am disabled but I have both bipolar and I am Deaf. The Deaf part  I feel is not  a disability, but the Bipolar part is a different story. My friend thought that it would be good for me to see how people are taking control of their lives no matter what disabilities or issues they are facing.

I feel that this is a very important book for people to read. For so long the issue of disabilities tend to get swept under the proverbial rug. There is also some gross misconceptions the non-disabled people have. This book does an excellent job of showing how the disability rights movement is gaining ground.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

What are your rituals before writing?

A friend of mine who also loves to write and I were talking about how we couldn't just sit down and write. We each have our own routine that we go through to get our minds ready to write. I for one cant just sit down and write well. A professor once told me that it is akin to a marathoner. A runner cant wake up and run 10 miles. They have to warm up first. So it is with writing.

As for me I have to be properly caffeinated first. My brain simply wont work without obscene amounts of caffeine. I have tried giving up caffeine before but I would rather go through the seventh circle of hell then have to function without it, After all there is a reason it is called the nectar of the Gods. I prefer to think of caffeine in all of its varieties as a buffet table to pick and choose as a sort of a gift from the powers that be to help us through the more mundane things in life.

To get my brain in shape to write coherently I will often write in my journal first. I currently use Penzu. Once the words start flowing then I will switch to whatever writing project I am working on. That could be a poem or a short story that has popped in my head or anything in between.

If it’s a good writing day then I can write for hours. However if my brain for whatever reason is not cooperating that day then I tend to “rest’ and go read. It is funny how when you thinks the words have ran out then you start reading and another idea will come to you.

My friend said he goes through something similar. However he has no use for massive amounts of stimulants. I know I cant be the only one who needs caffeine to function.

I am now interested in what other people go through to get ready to pen that days masterpiece. I will have to go to the library and see if there are any books on what famous authors through the ages have engaged in.

I am now curious what do you my readers do to get ready for writing? Tell me in the comments below.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Armageddon In Retrospect

This is the last of Kurt Vonnegut’s work.airThis book was published after his death by his son.

For readers who have read Slaughter House Five, this book will strike a familiar chord.  The majority of this book is short stories takes place during world War Two. It provides detailed snapshots of various scenes. Sometimes the same scene will be repeated but with different viewpoints. He combines his  humor with dark subject matter skillfully.

There are some stories in there that makes me sad that there were only published after he died. There is one story. Wailing Shall be in All Streets” that in its short form is on par with his life’s masterpiece “Slaughter House Five”

This not to say the rest of the stories are not good, they are, but some are simply some of the best writing he has done. I felt that these stories should have received more praise than what they had.

One story was written in a fantasy mode and it blew my breath away after I read it. I am not sure why they did not publish these earlier but I for one am glad we got one last finial look at some of his best writings.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Booking Through Thursday


Today's question is suggested by Mae.

"I couldn't sleep a wink, so I just read and read, day and night ... it was there I began to divide books into day books and night books," she went on. "Really, there are books meant for daytime reading and books that can be read only at night."
- 'The Unbearable Lightness of Being, Milan Kundera, p. 103.

Do you divide your books into day and night reads? How do you decide?

I might be in the minority here but when I read that book and that passage my first thought was how strange. I am in the camp of where if I am reading a book I want to finish that book before going on to something else.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

You’ve just dropped your favorite, out-of-print book into a bathtub, ruining it completely … What do you do now?

First I would say a few choice swear words. Then I would drag the book out and let it air dry. If it is too damaged then I would start looking anywhere I could think of to get another copy. If it comes to that beg the publisher to let me buy one more book.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

I saw on a Sunday Salon post this past Sunday(I forgot who) about how one blogger was making her blog more personal because she wanted to expose “non-readers” to books. I whole heartily agree with this blogger. I have been pondering this for some time but was hesitant to implement anything that did not pertain strictly to books. So I am asking you for your opinion. Granted books and reading and writing are my passions so I doubt any posts would go far off the “”map” so to speak, from these topics. I will always label my posts so you can get to exactly what you want. So tell me in the poll below what you think.


Sunday, September 5, 2010

The Sunday Salon


Did fall come early this year? Now the leaves are turning beautiful colors and it gets cooler faster when I go outside with my laptop to write.  Fall is good for having an excuse to stay in and curl up with a good book.

I am going back up north next Sunday so I will have to finish reading five more library books before then. I think I can do it. I will hunker down and do nothing but read this week.

At the moment I am reading The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo. I have to admit when I first saw the cover I thought it was a young adult book, but then I read the reviews and realized it was not. So much for my ability to judge a book by its cover.

Here is the link that I found that states that the novel Heart Of Darkness is going to be turned into a graphic novel. I am hesitant to pass judgment until I see the actual book but my first though was, how can such a substantial novel be turned into a glorified comic book? Can you tell I am not a big fan of graphic novels?

I have found that as I get older my body clock seems to be changing. I don't know why people didn't warn me about all the changes one encounters at 30. Used to be my best writing was at night. Now its early in the morning so I had to adjust my writing and reading schedule.

I have reviewed Push, A Purpose Driven Life and Pain killers this week.

Saturday, September 4, 2010



The first words that came to mind when I finished reading this I need some time to digest the whole story. And no, in keeping with my stubborn “don't see the movie till you read the book them”, I have yet to see the movie.

This heartbreaking tale, which is based on a true story, begins when Precious is 12 and has had a baby by her father. This alone is horrific but the abuse she suffered by her mother only adds to the horror. She is 16 and cant read or write and finally after being suspended from school because of her second pregnancy(also by her father) She finally finds a compassionate soul. Her teacher that teaches her to read and write encourages her to write her life story. And that is the premise for this book.

One of the interesting things we see in this book is it is written from Precious viewpoint, including her own words. We can see the progress that she makes with her writing. Although it is difficult at times to understand what she is trying to write it is a brilliant way to show her progress. She writes with a depth and a certain sort of poetry that makes the reader want to cheer her on.

This is at its heart a beautiful story of salvation. Salvation from the horrors of her old life to the promise of a new life. Readers can take away from this book that no matter how bad your life is at the moment, things can and will improve. That in itself is a valuable lesson.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Booking Through Thursday



Even though it’s usually a mistake (grin) … do movies made out of books make you want to read the original?

Usually I try and read the book first. Sometimes a movie comes out and I had no idea there was a book. Precious was one such example. I saw the movie then I head it was based on a book. “Push”. I went and checks it out at the library and as a book lover first and foremost i wish i read the book first. on the other hand if the movie had never come out I probably would have never heard of the book.

On the other hand I know there is a movie based on Eat, Pray, Love. I am hesitant to see the movie because I am biased against Julia Roberts. I have hated most of the movies she has been in. I feel she lacks depth to her acting. I want to retain good feelings about the book, so I am undecided.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Pain Killers

pain killers Let me begin by saying this is a weird book. I generally enjoy wired book because books are supposed to take you into an alternate reality right?

This book however makes Kafka look tame by comparison. The premise is that A man in hired to go undercover to see if a prison guard is really a  Nazi Camp guard in hiding. It delves into the world of drug addicts and prostitution and other underbelly activities.  It takes twist and turns that no reader could have anticipated. It has dark undertones throughout the book. It also has a good psychological bent as it explores the dark side of human nature. It was entertaining to be able to see that whole spectrum without actually being in any harm. He also injects humor into his subject so you don't feel as if he is dragging you down. Some books after you have read them leave you feeling more depressed than you were before reading them. Not so with Pain Killers.

When I arrived at the end of the book I was like what?! huh? That is a good thing in my opinion. Not many books have that ability. A book that takes you on a ride has accomplished its purpose.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

A Purpose Driven Life

0310276993.01._SX140_SY225_SCLZZZZZZZ_ If you are looking for advice career wise or personal growth this is not the book for you. However if you are looking on living for God this book is perfect for you.

It is written by Rick Warren a pastor at Saddle Back church one of the largest in the world. It explains how to live for God. The premise is that if you live for God then God will help you in other areas of your life.

It has references to bible scriptures and other references that pertain to the book’s theme. Let me be clear on this, it is not written from a fundamentalist view but rather from a sound Christian frame of mind.

The most important part that is stressed is that life here is a practice run for eternity. When one views it from that view point it makes some of our troubles seem more bearable. It also offers a message of hope. That no matter what your circumstances now may be, that there is a better way. I liked how he says there are no accidents of birth that if you are here on earth, God wanted you here. This is a refreshing change from many fundamentalist view points on how people are tainted with unpardonable sin if you were not born and raised in a strictly Christian manner.

It fails to give too much detail on how you can know what God wants you to do career wise but perhaps that was not the aim of the book. Still it would have been nice to have something about that.

According to the bible 40 days is enough time to take a significant spiritual journey. The book is meant to be digested at the rate of one chapter a day for 40 days. I read it in a few days since it was a library book so I cant tell you if it really was a great spiritual journey. I had friends swear by it so I guess for some people it works.

Overall you come away with a feeling of renewal and hope and in today's climate that is a good thing.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Sunday Salon

This week I reviewed two books Outcasts United and Bibliotherpy: The Girls Guide to Books for Every Phase of our Lives. I also focused more on reading and writing in my personal journal in an attempt to improve my writing skills. Question for all, Do you keep a journal?
I also decided to try Get Glue and fell in love with it. It really does offer good suggestions. For those of you who don't know what get glue is it is a site where you can "check in" on what you are doing. For example I check in that I am reading a book or writing and so forth. They have lots of different categories. What I like best is you can go on different sites put in what you like then it gives you recommendations. You can earn badges just like other sites. This one more fits my personality as I would rather stay home and read than go out trying to get points as on foursquare. Here is a link to my profile if want to see it in action.
I have decided to join bookcrossing again and spruced up my profile. I have been reading how people are building their own home library and how book you have on your shelf represents you. There are a lot of books I have that I know I will never pick up again. So I decided to wild release them via bookcrossing. I have went through some and got them ready. Not much but it is a start.
I have read two books this week. A Purpose Driven Life and Push. Look to a review soon. I am now reading Armageddon in retrospect by Kurt Vonnegut. He is one of my favorite authors so of course I like this book.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Bibliotherpy: The Girls Guide to Books for Every Phase of our Lives

I have to admit I am a sucker for books that has list of other books. Book Lust, 1001 Books to Read before You Die, I am a fan and have read all of them. When I saw this book I just had to obtain a copy.

It list different phases of a women's life, such as When You’re Ready to Embrace Your Inner Bitch: Bad Girls Books and When You think You can change Him:Bad Boy Books among others.

It is interesting to note that books can be very therapic. I know I have some of my favorites to fall back on when I need a viewpoint on how to solve a problem. Many of my in real life friends are always asking me how can a work of fiction help me sole a real in life issue. I always respond that it can give one a different framework on how to handle issues. In the same vain this book gives the reader a list of books to help reconcile any issues they may be struggling with.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Outcasts United

This is a captivating story of a football (soccer) coach who is a woman and her charges who are refugee boys. Some are mere children and some are teenagers. They hail from all over the world from war torn regions of the globe.outcasts They all arrived here in America with their families in a predominantly white town outside of Atlanta Georgia.Many lacked even rudimentary skills English.

The coach Luma grew up in the Middle East and came to America for collage. After observing that the boys lacked a positive way to interact she decided to create a football team. She had a lot to deal with as the boys understandably had issues that they were grappling with.

Both preserved and friendships and close bonds were formed. The story goes beyond football. Luma also assisted in other matters also. If one of them did not have adequate food she would buy some. She had her own business and hired several of her charges mothers. She also set up a tutoring program to make sure all did well in school.

This is a perfect example of a woman making a tremendous difference in a group of lives. Not only her football players but also their families. In what could have turned out to be more gang members, because of her they have a real chance of being successful.

I felt that the author Warren St John captured this in his book beautifully. It was well written and illustrated how when a group comes together in a positive way good stuff can take place. It wasn't all roses in the book, the author presented a balanced portrait of the hardships many endured. For example, the lure of gangs. Without providing any spoilers let me just say this, sometimes the “glamour” of being a gang member won out over the hard work Luma demanded. All in all it is worth the read.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

The Sunday Salon


I am back. I participated here i think it was two years ago. I quit blogging for a multitude of reasons. About two weeks ago I was telling a friend how much I missed blogging and writing and they encouraged me to start up again. I am glad I did. I see some old familiar blogs that I cant wait to get reacquainted with.

My writing had gotten a bit rusty so I was reading on how to improve on it. Of course the only way to improve it to write. I looked around for a journal software and once again I came to the realization that Macs have it better in this regard. I have a Dell but someday I will have a Mac. I finally found Life Journal. I down loaded the trial and I have to say I am impressed with it so far. It has guided entries, Daily pulse and much more. I think I will end up buying it.

My reading has slipped this year. This is the worst reading year of my life if I may be so dramatic. I am still hoping I can get at least 50 books read by December 31. Right now I am reading The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren. I am loving it so far. I hope to finish reading it today and have a review up on Monday.

I have also rejoined BookCrossing. I need to spice up my profile. I hope to get to it this week.

Friday, August 13, 2010

To Kindle or not to Kindle

I have always wondered if I should  get a kindle. I know among book lovers this tends to be a heated discussion. Like there can never be a replacement for the feel of a real book in your hand. recently though I have come across some good reasons that having a kindle has shadowed all the reason I had to getting one.

First and foremost I have been losing books. I am only 30 so I am hoping my memory has not started slipping just yet. If it has I have a bigger issues to worry about. Seriously though I have put books down and five minutes later THEY ARE NOT THERE. At least that what it seems like. Everyone tells me there has to be a rational reason such as someone moving the books but all the culprits have denied any part of the ‘lost books” phenomenon. Many of my friends have asked me if I would lose a kindle also. In my defense I had my blackberry for over a year and I have yet to lose it. So no I wont lose a Kindle.

Second they are now affordable to someone with a somewhat limited income such as myself. At only 139 dollars that is much better than the previous 3 hundred and something.

And third I would never run out of something to read again. The Kindle can hold over 1000 books. Never again will i be somewhere and finish a book then think “NOW what am I going to use to occupy my brain?”. Nope. I will have 1000 books to choose from.

Even after all of the above I will still miss the smell and feel of a book. I guess each has its pros and cons.


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