Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Teaser Tuesday


TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:
Grab your current read.
Let the book fall open to a random page.
Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
Please avoid spoilers

"No matter how bad things are, you can always make things worse. At the same time, it is often within your power to make them better"

Pg 88 of The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

3 Willows by Ann Brashares (31/2)


Seeds
Polly has an idea that she can't stop thinking about, one that involves changing a few things about herself. She's setting her sights on a more glamorous life, but it's going to take all of her focus. At least that way she won't have to watch her friends moving so far ahead.
Roots
Jo is spending the summer at her family's beach house, working as a bus girl and bonding with the older, cooler girls she'll see at high school come September. She didn't count on a brief fling with a cute boy changing her entire summer. Or feeling embarrassed by her middle school friends. And she didn't count on her family at all. . .
Leaves
Ama is not an outdoorsy girl. She wanted to be at an academic camp, doing research in an air-conditioned library, earning A's. Instead her summer scholarship lands her on a wilderness trip full of flirting teenagers, blisters, impossible hiking trails, and a sad lack of hair products.
It is a new summer. And a new sisterhood. Come grow with them.

This is from the author of The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants which I really liked ... So this is a new book with new characters ....

Well this is definitely a wee book that my 11 year old daughter would love .... A book about 3 young teenage girls and how their friendships grow !!!

I loved the little factual quotes about the Willow Tree it was very interesting ... It is a sweet book and an easy read .... And I am sure alot of young girls will identify with the girls ... My favourite girl in the novel would have to be Ama ... She is funny, smart and willing to give anything a try !!! I cannot really say anymore just that it is a nice wee read !!!

I rate this book 31/2 ***





Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Teaser Tuesday


TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:
Grab your current read.
Let the book fall open to a random page.
Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
Please avoid spoilers

"I shook my head. "I'm sorry, I don't. It wasn't something I was interested in, back when I had access to the information. I'm afraid I took it for granted. Good health is simply a given on every planet I've lived on"

Pg 306 The Host by Stephenie Meyer


Thursday, April 9, 2009

Shadow Kiss by Richelle Mead (4)

It's springtime at St. Vladimir's Academy, and Rose Hathaway is this close to graduation. Since making her first Strigoi kills, Rose hasn't been feeling quite right. She's having dark thoughts, behaving erratically, and worst of all...might be seeing ghosts. As Rose questions her sanity, new complications arise. Lissa has begun experimenting with her magic once more, their enemy Victor Dashkov might be set free, and Rose's forbidden relationship with Dimitri is starting to heat up again. But when a deadly threat no one saw coming changes their entire world, Rose must put her own life on the line--and choose between the two people she loves most.

The third book in the "Vampire Academy" and I have to say my favourite one so far !!! .... Rose is facing her final test as to whether she can be a guardian ...... But she is getting haunted by ghostly figures !!! Will she be able to past her final exam and be a protector over Lissa ... And just when you think things are going well she gets summoned to the Royal Court !!! ....

Again this book is an easy read !!! I have enjoyed going back to fantasy novels it is good sometimes just to escape your world into a totally different one for a while !!! Again there is a wee bit of swearing in this book !!! But I did enjoy it overall !! And now waiting to see what happens next ........

I rate this book 4****

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Frostbite by Richelle Mead (31/2)

Rose Hathaway's got serious guy trouble. Her gorgeous tutor Dimitri has his eye on someone else, her friend Mason has a huge crush on her, and she keeps getting stuck in her best friend Lissa's head while she's making out with her boyfriend, Christian. (So not cool).
Then a massive Strigoi attack puts St. Vladimir's on high alert, and the Academy crawls with Guardians--including the legendary Janine Hathaway...Rose's formidable, long-absent mother. The Strigoi are closing in, and the Academy's not taking any risks. This year, St. Vlad's annual holiday ski trip is mandatory.
But the glittering winter landscape and the posh Idaho resort only provide the illusion of safety. When three students run away to strike back against the deadly Strigoi, Rose must join forces with Christian to rescue them. Only this time, Rose--and her heart--are in more danger than she ever could have imagined...


This is the second book in the Vampire Academy Series and things are heating up for the Vampires ..... The Strigoi are starting to attack ... So is it safer to be all together !!!! .... Rose not only have as to play it cool but has to deal with her mother who is one of the top Guardians in the world !!! Are they ready and prepared to face the Strigoi !!! ..... Plus a new Vampire comes on the scene Adrian ... Is he a friend or foe !!! ....

I enjoyed this book and it introduces you to new characters and also keeps you guessing as to whether Rose and Dimitri ever get together !!!

I rate this book 31/2 **

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead (31/2)


Lissa Dragomir is a Moroi princess: a mortal vampire with an unbreakable bond to the earth's magic. She must be protected at all times from Strigoi; the fiercest and most dangerous vampires--the ones who never die.The powerful blend of human and vampire blood that flows through Rose Hathaway, Lissa's best friend, makes her a Dhampir; she is dedicated to a dangerous life of protecting Lissa from the Strigoi, who are hell-bent on making her one of them.After two years of illicit freedom, Rose and Lissa are caught and dragged back to St. Vladimir's Academy, hidden in the deep forests of Montana. Rose will continue her Dhampir education. Lissa will go back to being Queen of the elite Moroi social scene. And both girls will resume breaking hearts.Fear made Lissa and Rose run away from St. Vladimir's--but their world is fraught with danger both inside and out of the Academy's iron gates. Here, the cutthroat ranks of the Moroi perform unspeakable rituals and their secretive nature and love of the night creates an enigmatic world full of social complexities. Rose and Lissa must navigate through
this dangerous world, confront the temptation of forbidden romance, and never once let their guard down, lest the Strigoi make Lissa one of them forever...


I seriously must be going through a Vampire phase at the moment .... This is the first in a series of books called "Vampire Academy" And I quite enjoyed them !!!

Firstly let me say there are a few swear words in the book but as the series go's on they become less frequent ... Richelle style of writing is really easy going and if you are an avid reader this will be a quick read !! I read all three books within 3 days !!!

It is about a heroine called Rose who is half Vampire and half Human whose job it is to protect her best friend Lissa .... She is a strong willful character who alot of the time is misjudged !!! They attend a school which trains them on how to protect their Royal Princes and Princess !!! ... And shows that even in a Vampire Academy there are the cool kids and the geeks !! Will Rose rise to the challenge to study and obey the rules so she can be best guardian !!!

Not a bad wee read .... If you like fantasy and Vampire books you will love this series !!!

I rate this book 31/2 ***

Teaser Tuesday


TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:
Grab your current read.
Let the book fall open to a random page.
Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
Please avoid spoilers

"Fire ants! AHHHHHHHHHHH! She jumped around and screamed and slapped with superhuman speed and dexterity until she got them all off. After that she looked up slowly, very slowly. In the full light of day she looked up, expecting to see the rest of the campers watching her insane performance"

3 Willows by Ann Brashares pg 161


Saturday, April 4, 2009

Round up of March 09


Books read in March : 5 Books
Total Books Read in 2009: 20 Books
Pages read in March: 1548
Yearly page count: 5835
Paperbacked Books in March:3
Paperbacked Books in 2009: 15
Hardbacked Books in Mar: 2
Hardbacked Books in 2009:5


Young Teen

Classic's

Historical Fiction

Challenges Updates
999: 20/81
Historical Challenge 3/3
Books to Movies 3/6
Victorian Challenge: 1/3
What's in a Name: 2/8
1%: 7/10
End of the World: 0/4


Ratings

1* -

2* -

3* -

31/2* -

4* -

41/2* - The Thirteenth Tale

5* - The Hunger Games - The Field Guide, The Spiderwick Chronicles, Northangle Abbey, Pride and Prejudice

As you can see not that many books read but a really good month for me !!! I super enjoyed my reading list :)

Friday, April 3, 2009

Evernight by Claudia Gray (5)


Bianca wants to escape.

She's been uprooted from her small hometown and enrolled at Evernight Academy, an eerie Gothic boarding school where the students are somehow too perfect: smart, sleek, and almost predatory. Bianca knows she doesn't fit in.

Then she meets Lucas. He's not the "Evernight type" either, and he likes it that way. Lucas ignores the rules, stands up to the snobs, and warns Bianca to be careful—even when it comes to caring about him.

"I couldn't stand it if they took it out on you," he tells Bianca, "and eventually they would."

But the connection between Bianca and Lucas can't be denied. Bianca will risk anything to be with Lucas, but dark secrets are fated to tear them apart . . . and to make Bianca question everything she's ever believed.

I blame one of my fellow bookclub ladies (Legs) for recommending me this book .... And I was not disappointed ....

A couple of things if you loved Stephenie Meyers then you are going to love this book .... And make sure you have dinner prepared for the family because you will be too busy reading to worry about cooking it !!!!

This is a great wee book and just when you have an idea what is going on another wee twist sneaks in .... Thankfully the second in the series is out now (which I will be racing down to my bookstore to get ) and the third comes out later next year !! ....

I have been reading alot of teen novels at the moment and really enjoying them ... I don't want to give away to much of the story-line but it is about a school called "Evernight" where things just aren't want they seem !!! ........ And the connection between Bianca and Lucas !!! Lets just say in Facebooks terms "It's Complicated"

I loved this book and cannot wait to read the next in the series ....

I rate this book 5*****

Round-up for April


Books read in March : Books
Total Books Read in 2009: 20 Books

Pages read in March:
Yearly page count: 5835
Paperbacked Books in March:

Paperbacked Books in 2009: 15
Hardbacked Books in Mar:
Hardbacked Books in 2009:5



Young Teen







Evernight by Claudia Gray - 5* - Pages 327


Classic's



Historical Fiction




Challenges Updates

999: 20/81
Historical Challenge 3/3
Books to Movies 3/6

Victorian Challenge: 1/3
What's in a Name: 2/8
1%: 7/10

End of the World: 0/4



Ratings


1* -


2* -


3* -


31/2* -


4* -


41/2* -


5* - Evernight,


As you can see not that many books read but a really good month for me !!! I super enjoyed my reading list :)


Thursday, April 2, 2009

The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch

Well I am looking forward to this months book so here is the man himself giving his Lecture :) Enjoy ... He is pretty inspiring :)




pausch last lecture transcript

pausch last lecture transcript jojo






Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Discussion Questions for Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

1) Northanger Abbey was the first book that Jane Austen sold but it was one of the last published. How do you think it compares to some of her later works or other books you may have read from this time period?

2) How does the author describe her heroine in the beginning of the book? Did this type of heroine enhance your enjoyment of the novel or detract from it?

3) Who are the villainous characters in the book? Who are Catherine’s true friends? What clues does the author give to lead the reader to these conclusions?

4) What do you feel is the cause of most of the misunderstandings in this book?

5) Henry tells Catherine that his father was genuinely attached to his mother and greatly afflicted by her death. Is that believable? Why or why not?

6) Is there a mystery in this book? What is it?

7) What do you think of Henry as a hero? Why do you think he chooses Catherine?

8) How did the character of Catherine change by the end of the novel?

9) Do you think this novel a satire of the gothic novels so popular in Jane Austen’s time? (A gothic novel incorporates horror, mystery, and damsel in distress or the supernatural along with an element of romance.) Why or why not?

10) Does this book defend the novel and escapist fiction or condemn it?

11) What is the role of fiction in your own life? Why do you read it and what do you want from it?

New Books Added

Two New Books added to be read this year :)


The boy in Striped Pyjama's By John Boyle


A Secret Alchemy by Emma Darwin

Discussion Questions for The Last Lecture by Randy Pausch

Well here's the discussion questions for our next book ..... Enjoy :)

1. When someone asked what he wanted on his tombstone, Pausch said: “Randy Pausch: He Lived Thirty Years After a Terminal Diagnosis.’” [Page 247] If you were to write his epitaph, what would it say?

2. Summing up a theme of his lecture and book, Pausch writes: “We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand.” [Page 32] This is one of many clich├ęs he admits he loves and uses liberally in The Last Lecture. Did he succeed in making any old ideas fresh? How did he do it?

3. Discuss Pausch's statement that "it's not about how to achieve your dreams. It's about how to lead your life. If you lead your life the right way ... the dreams will come to you."
Do you think he's right? Might the reverse be true—that only by working toward (and achieving) your dreams can you "lead your life the right way"?

4. Randy remembers his childhood dreams with clarity. Do you remember your childhood dreams—are they as vivid as his? And how important is it to hold onto your childhood dreams—might not they change over time?

5. Does The Last Lecture make you rethink your own priorities —what you want out of life, your work, your friendships, your marriage? Does it make you re-evaluate—or confirm—the things you thought were important?

6. If you had only 6 months to live (and adequate financial means), how would you spend the time left to you? Would you continue to work? Travel? Spend time with family and friends? Would you make changes in your day-to-day life or continue the life you're living now?

7. What passages in particular resonated with you? Which struck you—personally—as most profound or meaningful for your own life?

8. Why is it that The Last Lecture has struck such a chord with people? Co-writer Zaslow says that "it's because we're all dying," and that Randy's fate is ours. Do you agree? Are there any other reasons?

9. Pausch began his lecture “Really Achieving Your Childhood Dreams” by saying he wasn’t going to deal with big questions of religion or spirituality, and he sticks to that pattern in The Last Lecture. How does the book benefit or suffer from his decision?

10. The Last Lecture recycles much of what Pausch said in his valedictory lecture at Carnegie Mellon and expands some of it. Should people who’ve watched the talk also read the book? Why? What does the book give you that the lecture doesn’t?

11. Pausch could have called his book The Last Lectures, because he structures it as a series of mini-lectures instead of one long lecture. How well does this technique work?

12. The Last Lecture balances general advice such as “dream big” with specific tips – for example, about how to work well in small groups. “Instead of saying, ‘I think we should do A, instead of B,’ try ‘What if we did A, instead of B?’” [Page 190] Which, if any, of the tips struck you as most helpful?

13. Many cancer patients are bombarded with the advice to “be optimistic” or “think positively.” This approach has led to a medical backlash alluded to in the chapter “A Way to Understand Optimism.” Pausch says his surgeon worries about “patients who are inappropriately optimistic or ill-informed”: “It pains him to see patients who are having a tough day healthwise and assume it’s because they weren’t positive enough.” [Page 249] What is Pausch’s view of this? Is he appropriately or inappropriately optimistic? Why?

14. Many people who have heard about The Last Lecture may be tempted to give the book to someone who has had a devastating diagnosis, or who is perhaps dying, hoping it will provide comfort or cheer. What would you say to them? Is this a book for the living or the dying?

15. "What kind of wisdom does this book have to offer about the importance and meaning of life?"

16. If you were going to give your own “last lecture,” what would you say?

Special thanks to LitLovers for some of the discussion questions :)

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen (5)


The carefully controlled and chess-like movements of polite society often conceal passionate hearts, keen minds, and rebellious wills. High-spirited Elizabeth Bennet attempts to stay true to her ideals while her meddlesome mother schemes to get all five Bennet sisters married and to secure their family's fate at all costs. Can a girl who refuses to abandon her independent and scrutinizing ways find true love and a faithful heart? More than one unexpected twist and shocking revelation await our heroine as she must choose between the dashing Mr. Wickham and proud, aloof Mr. Darcy.

Well it begs the question who doesn't love this novel ... From the opening lines of "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife" You just know that you are going to enjoy this book ...

It does take a little time to get used to the language but after that you get lost in in the Bennett household .... Gosh you wonder how people can be so stubborn and how a good line of communication is vital .... Our book club nite was great when we where discussing this novel we totally lost track of time ... But the overall view was that we all adorned the book .... And each of us in our way are married to OUR every own MR DARCY .....

This is a novel that will never go out of fashion it is just timeless ... We all know someone like Elizabeth who is not afraid to speak her mind .... Charlotte who will settle because she feels that is the best they can do .... A Mr Bennett who just wants a quiet life ... Mrs Bennett who we hope we will never have as a mother-in-law .... We all love those bad boys like Mr Wickham and we do get frustrated by men like Mr Darcy but ultimately we just want to be swept away and loved ....

This is truly a classic and if you have never read it you need to rectify that right away !!!


I rate this book 5*****


Ok there are may versions of this out there but I have to put this one in it is from Lost in Austen and is one of my favourite scenes ..... Enjoy xx



Well the second bit is to compare the novel with the movie .... of course there are many different versions out there which I have seen but my favourite and closest to the book will have to be the BBC production .... it may be 4 hours long but it is the best !!! .... There can only be one Mr Darcy for me and that will always be Colin ...

Movies though do have a way of letting you visualize the scene ... I have to admit that when I was reading the book I was picking different characters out of different productions while reading .... Elizabeth and Mr Darcy are both from the BBC production while Isabella, Mr and Mrs Bennett, Mr Lucas and Mr Wickham are all from Lost in Austen series ....

I am a real sucker when it comes to period drama's .... and Pride and Prejudice is one of my all time favourite ones which I will never get tired of watching :)

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