Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme started by The Broke and The Bookish!

For the last Tuesday in January, it's all about the visuals on Top Ten.  This week I'll be doing by Top Ten Comics/Graphic Novels sitting on my TBR.

  1. Lucifer Vol. 1 by Holly Black - I'm a fan of the original character in Sandman and I love Holly Blake.  Lucky for me this one just came in at the library today.  So it moved to the top of the list!
  2. Ghostbusters International by Erik Burnham - Who doesn't love the Ghostbusters?
  3. Lady Killer Vol 2. by Joelle Jones - I came across this right after the first issues came out and fell in love.  I'm super excited to get my hands on the second volume.
  1. A Study in Scarlet by Ian Edginton - I read Hound of the Baskervilles last year and loved it! I honestly need to just pick up the others.
  2. Grayson Vol 1 by Tom Kind - I've been reading Batman Comics for years, and Grayson keeps coming across my radar, so I've finally added it to my list to see if it's as good as I've heard it is.
  3. I Hate Fairyland Vol 2 Skottie Young - I stumbled across the first volume at the library and it was hilarious! The second volume just came in today off my Hold list. So I'll be picking it up tonight.
  1. Lumberjanes by Noelle Stevenson - I didn't realize Noelle Stevenson had another comic series after Nimona until my sister picked this up a few weeks ago.  Since then it's been on my TBR and I seriously need to pick it up.
  2. Constantine by Ming Doyle - There not enough words on how much I love John Constantine. So I'm looking forward to the new series.
  3. Rasputin Vol 2 by Alex Grecian - I original put this series on my TBR because it was Alex Grecian and I love his work.  The second reason is Rasputin is such an interesting person in history that's shrouded in myth.  The first volume was really good, and I've been waiting to get my hands the next installment.
  1. Marvel 1602 by Neil Gaiman - Who doesn't want to see our favorite Marvel Heroes set in 1602 via Neil Gaiman?!
What other comics/graphic novels does everyone else have on their TBR's?

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday - Dodge City

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

Release Date: February 28, 2017
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Author: Tom Clavin
Genre: NonFiction

Dodge City, Kansas, is a place of legend. The town that started as a small military site exploded with the coming of the railroad, cattle drives, eager miners, settlers, and various entrepreneurs passing through to populate the expanding West. Before long, Dodge City’s streets were lined with saloons and brothels and its populace was thick with gunmen, horse thieves, and desperadoes of every sort. By the 1870s, Dodge City was known as the most violent and turbulent town in the West.

Why I'm Waiting: I was born and raised in Kansas.  So I've not only been to Dodge City, I've grown up with the stories of Wyatt Warp and Bat Masterson.  It's hard not to pick up these books, because I never know when I'll learn something new.

So what's everyone else's favorite Wild West Story?

Gemina - A Reivew

Authors: Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Series: Illuminae Files #2
Page Count: 659 pages
Format: Hardback

Moving to a space station at the edge of the galaxy was always going to be the death of Hanna’s social life. Nobody said it might actually get her killed.

The sci-fi saga that began with the breakout bestseller Illuminae continues on board the Jump Station Heimdall, where two new characters will confront the next wave of the BeiTech assault.

This book... I should have posted this review days ago, but the words just haven't been coming to me.  Instead I've been processing the ending and the fact for the last forty pages or so my heart was in my chest.  You can't just kill off my favorite character just pages after we find out the survived something slimy, gross, and with one too many heads!!  While the entire book is full of action, and there's never a dull moment, the last forty to fifty pages is nonstop.  I'm pretty sure I held my breath until I got to the last page.

Honestly, while I was excited for this book, I was also a little nervous.  In times past I have read a sophomore book in a series, and been disappointed. Even to the point it takes me a while to pick up the next book.  Or, as a few cases have been, just not finish the series.  Which was something I didn't want to happen with the Illuminae Series.  I loved the first book!  The characters, the story, the world that Jay and Amie created! All of it was amazing and I was ready to see what happened next.

Thankfully, I was wrong.  So very, very wrong.

Gemina runs a bit parallel to Illuminae.  In the sense that it takes place at the Heimdall Jump Station, which is where Kady and Ezra where headed at the end of the first book.  When we start no one on the Jump Station knows about what's happened on Kerenza. Which was a nice way to get to see our main characters in a natural sort of light.  Who they were before they were forced to fight for the lives due to Beitech Black Ops.

Jay and Amie don't waste anytime getting into the thick of things.  Gemina takes off running from the first page.  They don't waste any time going back through with a recap of what happened in the last book.  Everything is about what's going on at the Jump Station, with reminders of how long until the Hypatia arrives.  Which honestly added a little more stress to the reading, because I know where the plot is currently sitting, and all Hanna and Nik need to do save the day.  Then a page pops with hours until everything gets really, real.

I honestly loved the new cast of characters that came in.  Hanna was a super strong female character that we need more of, but without being too cold.  She felt every blow the BeiTech people threw at her.  Only to get back up and fight harder.  Nik was a precious little snowflake stuck in a bad place with no way out.  He did bad things, but a few of those bad things made me love him that much more.  And, Ella!  Hands down the Little Spider was my favorite.

There was was no missing that his book belonged inside the Illuminae World, not just because BeiTech was invovled or the mention of Kernza.  But, by the way people talked and what the talked about.  The science aspect rolled over, the pacing of the story was the same, and thank you Jay and Amie for bringing back the narrator.  The dude watching all the video and writing up reports about he say.

He was my favorite in Illuminae and he's my favorite bit of Gemina!

I loved that AIDAN back, even if we have to wait until the end to get him. It's worth the wait to sort of see what the last few days with Kady have done for him.  Good to briefly see how things have changed since we left the crew on the Hypatia.

Speaking of the ending, my heart was in my throat the closer to the end that we got.  In fact there was a moment when I nearly closed the book and refused to finish it.  Because if I don't read it, then it didn't happen. Right?! RIGHT?!  It was such a good ending for the build up through the whole book.  Including the bit at the very end in the courtroom.  I love Hanna's last words in the book.

Gemina was an amazing book!  It had everything I loved about the first and then more.  I was rooting for the home team and grossed about the space bugs!  I fell in love with Ella, and made weird faces on the bus as I read.  People noticed, they stared! But it was worth!  I'm super excited for the last installment that comes out this year!!  Best way to start off 2017! I've also decided that for the movies Alan Tudyk needs to voice AIDAN.  Just saying...

Buy, Burrow, or Skip: BUY THIS ONE!  BUY ALL OF THEM!

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme started by The Broke and the Bookish!

This week didn't have a topic.  So I had to sit down and figure out what ten books I wanted to show off this week.  Which wasn't as easy as figured it would be.  Two days of sitting in the delivery van I drive 2 days a week and I'd come up with nothing.  Thankfully my roommate was on form.  So thanks to her I have my list for the week, and that is: My Top Ten Favorite Books I Read as a Kid.

  1. The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster, this was probably one of favorites growing up!
  2. The Pokey Little Puppy by Janette Sebring Lowery, this was one of my favorite, A Little Golden Book!
  3. The Pumpkin Smasher by Anita Benarde, this is one that I made my Grandma read over and over again.
  1. The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Clearly, is my favorite book by Beverly Clearly.  It's also one of my dad's favorite books. He's the one who introduced me to it with his own copy he read as a kid.
  2. The Boxer Children by Gertrude Chandler Warner, is one my mom got me into. I've probably read the whole series.
  3. Harry the Dirty Dog by Gene Zion, is another I made my Grandma read a thousand times.
  1. Daisy-Head Mayzie by Dr. Seuss, hands down my favorite Dr. Seuss. In fact there a cartoon version that came out when I was little that I taped and watched on a loop until tape died.
  2. The Headless Ghost by R.L Stine, I picked this one because this is one of the few Goosebumps books that scared me.  
  3. Magic Tree House Series by Mary Hope Osbourne, I devoured this series as a kid and loved them!
  1. Matlida by Roald Dahl, it was hard toss up between this and The Witches. So had to look at my copies to decide which had seen the most use.  Guess which one won?
Alright everyone, what is your favorite child book, or series?

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday - Arthur and Sherlock

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

Release Date: January 24th, 2017
Publisher: Bloomsbury, USA
Author: Michael Sims
Genre: NonFiction
Series: Stand Alone

As a young medical student, Arthur Conan Doyle studied in Edinburgh under the vigilant eye of a diagnostic genius, Dr. Joseph Bell. Doyle often observed Bell identifying a patient's occupation, hometown, and ailments from the smallest details of dress, gait, and speech. Although Doyle was training to be a surgeon, he was meanwhile cultivating essential knowledge that would feed his literary dreams and help him develop the most iconic detective in fiction.

Why I'm Waiting: I'm a sucker for anything Sherlock Holmes, add to the fact it's the story of how we created, there's no way I'm not putting it my TBR.  In fact I've already put it on hold at my local library!

What's your favorite literary detective?

Monday, January 16, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme started by The Broke and the Bookish!

This week's topic is the Top Ten Most Underrated, or Hidden Gems, We've Read in the Past Year or So.  I'm going to back farther than a year.  Over the weekend I went through some my favorite books and picked the ones that I feel I don't see so often on blogs.  These are also books I've recommended to other readers!

  1. Anno Dracula by Kim Newman -I love Kim Newman's writing style and I got pretty attached to Miss Kate Reed as a main character.  A lot of research and time went into this retelling and I wish it got a lot more love!! 
  2. Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride - This books (duology) is freaking hilarious! What I loved the most about this book was it wasn't the usual trope when it came to paranormal books.  It wasn't just about boy meets girl and then saves the world.  It was more like girl saves boy, and somehow boy manages not to die while saving the world.  Plus werebear!  WEREBEAR!
  3. Alanna, the First Adventure by Tamora Pierce - This book came our almost thirty years ago, and Pierce is still writing books in this world.  Personally, I feel like her books to get enough spotlight.  She has strong female leads, amazing lands, and strong stories!  I'm excited for the Numair books. Finally the absent minded Mage is getting his own book!!
  1. God Save the Queen by Kate Locke - Best accidental find ever! Kate Locke's female lead takes is a no nonsense kind of women, and she evens gets the man in the end.  These books are hilarious and action packed! What's not to love: steampunk, werewolves, vampires, and science experiments gone very, very, wrong! Plus a good old fashion boy meets girl! Or, well, werewolf.. :)
  2. The Yard by Alex Grecian - This a Victorian Mystery that takes place after the Ripper, and is told party from the killers point of view.  The entire series is solid and the characters great! Each book has creeped me out, and I recommend them to anyone who loves mysteries.
  3. Warm Bodies by Isaac Marion - Okay, yeah it was made into a movie.  Which I adore, but the book is so much more!  Despite only by around 250 pages, there so much between the pages.  Behind the gore and the bleak world is a deep look a the world around us.  Isaac Marion is an amazing writer and more people should pick up his books. 

  1. The Crown Tower by Michael J. Sullivan - Hadrian and Royce are one of my favorite literary bromances!  In fact, if I had to pick a fictional boyfriend, I'd chose Royce!  The world building is amazing, the characters strong, and the banter is the best part.  Riyria is an amazing series that I'd love to see more people pick up.  
  2.  Delilah Dirk by Tony Cliff - A graphic novel that follows the adventure of not so Victorian Lady Delilah and her friend Selim.  Not only is the artwork top notch, but the story is amazing! If you loved Nimona, then Delilah is a must read!
  3. Supernatural Enhancements by Edgar Cantero - This book! It was creepy, weird, and told through surveillance footage (think Illuminae Files, kinda). The characters are strong and the plot is faced paced.  It's very X-Files in theme.  I made the mistake of finishing it in the middle of the night alone in my house. I think I double checked the door four times and slept with my lamp on that night.

  1. Warlock Holmes, A Study in Brimstone by GS Denning - I will fangirl about this book until I'm blue in the face.  I loved the switch around with Holmes and Watson.  I loved how Moriarty happened in the last story, and Inspector Gregson should always be an orge. One of my favorites books to be released in 2016!
What about you lot? What books do you think go underrated?

Friday, January 13, 2017

Friday the 13th Special with Warren the 13th

Earlier this last summer I read an adorable little Victorian Gothic book by the name of Warren the 13th and the All-Seeing Eye.  It was hands down the cutest thing I read last year.  The book was hilarious, Warren was adorable, and the mystery of the All-Seeing Eye was a good one.  I loved each character that Tania del Rio introduced, the evil Aunt being my favorite!!  Also, I adored Will Staehle's artwork.  I loved it was in black and white outside of a few pieces that were red.  It was wonderful! Now, I get to be a part the release of the newest additions to the Warren the 13th series in celebration for Friday the 13th!!  The first is a cute little activity book that includes a pretty awesome short story, and the second is the March release of Warren the 13th and the Whispering Woods. I'm so excited for the second book! I've been waiting for it since I got to the last page of the All Seeing Eye and it promised a second book! Only 2 more months!!

Okay, enough fangirling for a moment.  The first piece I want to show off this Friday the 13th is the cover art for the shorty story, Warren the 13th and the Unlucky Day. Below is a bit about it, and it's totally Free!  So if you want for yourself, or your kids, click the cover and download it!

Warren the 13th and the Unlucky Day, is a short story attached to an adorable activity book the Quirk Books has put on Scribd.  The activity book is available for download right now!  It's super freaking cute and the story is adorable.  So click the image of the cover and check it out!  Do it now!!

Now, we all know that Friday the 13th is considered one of the most unluckiest days of the year.  I was curious as to how unlucky it was.  So did what everyone does, I Googled it.  There seems to be a lot of debate on when Friday the 13th actually started to be considered an unlucky day.  Some believe it started in the Middle Ages originating from the Last Supper which had 13 men present and happened before Jesus's death on Good Friday.  Others say it might because of the novel written by Thomas W. Lawson, Friday, the Thirteenth.  My favorite version of the origin was, it could because Phillip IV of France imprisoned hundreds of Knights Templar on a Friday the 13th! 

Wherever the origin came from, it's stuck around scares people to this day.  In fact it scares people so much it's an official phobia, paraskevidekatriaphobia. I know people who won't go anywhere on this day, just in case something happens.  Is it a mind of matter situation, where we think something bad will happen so it does?  No one knows, but more and more people stay home on Friday the 13th.  In fact there are a handful of strange superstitions attached to this day.  I had a few favorites

Friday the 13th Superstitions:
  • If you cut your hair, someone in family will die.  (WHAT?!)
  • It's where the myth of breaking a mirror and seven years bad luck comes in. 
  • Also the reason we can't walk under a ladder. (Though health and safety agree that's bad idea)
  • Apparently being born on this day is bad luck. (Guess no one told Hitchcock that!)
Of course there is a number of ways to stay lucky today. If possible you should keep your fingers crossed all day, only walk South, or wear your clothes inside out.  My favorites are to carry an acorn in your pocket, walk in the rain (seeing as I live in Seattle that'll be easy!), and sneeze three times before breakfast.  That last one happens nearly every day!

For me though, I love that scary movies are played on Friday the 13th.  Everything from Jason to Pinhead.  I love a good 80's horror movie! Also, I work in the public domain.  So it's always fun to see people out and about!  Randomly today is also National Make Your Dreams Come Day!  Which being invited to this Warren the 13th special, kind of did that for me a little. So really how bad can today be?? (Without a doubt just knocked on my wooden writing desk, are you nuts!)

So what all of this have to do with Warren?  Well, he's pretty unlucky.  From no one wanting to stay at their hotel anymore, to a lazy Uncle, an evil Aunt, and a confusing family story about an All Seeing Eye... Things don't seem to have gotten better for Warren in the second book.  

Warren the 13th is back in another lushly illustrated middle grade adventure. When an unexpected detour brings everyone into the dark and sinister Malwoods, Warren finds himself separated from his hotel and his friends and racing after them on foot through a forest teeming with witches, snakes, talking trees, and mind-boggling riddles. Once again, you can expect stunning illustrations and gorgeous design from Will Staehle on every page along with plenty of nonstop action and adventure! (Click the cover to see the Official Goodreads' Page)

Warren the 13th and the Whispering Woods will hit shelves on March 21st of this year!  Of course you can pre-order it now through Quirk Books! Just click their icons above and they'll take you where you need to be!

It's been so cool to be involved with this event!  Thanks so much to Kelsey Hoffman and Quirk Books for including me!  Now, I'm off to work and the I think I'll curl up tonight a bowl of popcorn and watch some Jason Vohrees!  Have a safe Friday the 13th ya'll, and if you haven't picked up Warren the 13th and the All Seeing Eye do it!  What are you waiting for!  

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday - Norse Mythology

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme that was started by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that book bloggers are eagerly anticipating. 

Release Date: February 7, 2017
Publisher: WW Norton & Company
Author: Neil Gaiman
Genre: Fantasy / Short Stories
Series: Stand Alone

Norse Mythology, Gaiman stays true to the myths in envisioning the major Norse pantheon: Odin, the highest of the high, wise, daring, and cunning; Thor, Odin’s son, incredibly strong yet not the wisest of gods; and Loki, son of a giant, blood brother to Odin and a trickster and unsurpassed manipulator.

Why I'm Waiting: I'm waiting because this combines two of my favorite things: Neil Gaiman and Norse Mythology.  Freaking excited about this book!! Drop me a line on your favorite Gaiman book!