Monthly Archives: August 2012

Top Ten Tuesday Tell-All: Bookish Confessions

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, brought to you by The Broke and the Bookish, is a true confessions exposé. Even the biggest book lover has some dirty little bookish secrets lurking in their closest. Today those secrets are coming to light. Please don’t judge us too harshly.

Bookish confession #1: I have a library book that I checked out in high school. Twenty years ago.  It was for a report on the history of airplanes.  I did not return it on purpose. I am a book thief.

Bookish confession #2: I do not know where the above stolen library book is now. I am an irresponsible book thief.

Bookish confession #3: I have a sizable collection of  lovely bookmarks. At any given moment there is a scrap of paper or a receipt stuck in my book. The lovely bookmarks are collecting dust.

Bookish confession #4: Sometimes I can’t even be bothered to use a scrap of paper and I just leave my books open, face down, on my spot.

Bookish confession #5: I buy books and do not read them.

Bookish confession #6: I hoard new library books. I get to buy them for my library and I usually put myself on hold for them first. Sometimes I think of this as a job perk and also necessary so I can talk them up to my patrons. Sometimes I think this is just bad behavior.

Bookish confession #7: I hate full-cast audio books. Always.

Bookish confessions #8: I have never read a James Patterson book. I probably never will. Ditto for Catcher in the Rye.

Bookish confession #9: I have a handful of books that are very special to me and therefore do not get loaned out. Aside from that, I freely share my books and don’t really care that much what happens to them when they are out of my control. They are just books after all.

Bookish confession #10: This is not a confession. It is a truth. Vanilla lattes taste better with a book.

What bookish skeletons are in your closet?

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

Advertisements

Mondays With Megan-Rainy Day Blues, What Are You Reading, and Recommend A…#9

It’s a rainy Monday morning here in Cleveland and I have to confess that this gray weather totally matches my mood. I wish I was back home in bed with my book. Alas, it is not meant to be so, time to buck up and get busy!

In non-book related news, I finally finished watching the fifth and final season of Friday Night Lights. I never thought I would fall in love with a show about high school football, but I did. If you missed it while it was on the air (like me), I highly recommend going back and giving it a shot. I am trying to figure out who I am going to talk into watching it with me again!

On to book news. Let’s check in with Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts for another edition of It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

  

My major accomplishment of the week? I finished 11/22/63 by Stephen King! You guys, it was amazing. Five stars. Everyone should read it, even people who say they don’t like Stephen King. I also finished Cinderella: Fables Are Forever by Chris Roberson. It’s an interesting spin-off, but I don’t love it like I love Fables.

I cannot start a new book until I have finished the one that is currently monopolizing all the space in my brain that is allotted for books. I am still working on:

A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin. I really thought I would finish this weekend, but I spent yesterday outside in the woods and then later running errands. I’ll finish this week.

The Lost Prince by Julie Kagawa. This Iron Fey spin-off is great! I am about half way through and hope to finish this week so I can start Burn for Burn by Jenny Han and Siohban Dowd.

Agnes and the Hitman by Jennifer Crusie and Bob Mayer. Meh. Keeps me distracted while I am walking and jogging.

I do have one new book for this week:

Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein is my new book on CD. I did a lot of driving this weekend so I may finish it up this week. If I do, next up is Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor. I tried to read it, but couldn’t get into it. Maybe I will enjoy it more if someone reads to me? Admittedly, I did not get very far the first time.


When I finish A Storm of Swords I will read Throne of Glass by Sarah Maas. Hopefully all this awesome reading material will put an end to my cranky mood! Now for some recommendations.

Chick Loves Lit says:

…book with a character who plays a sport. I have two for you.

1. Pop by Gordon Korman. You can read my review for more details, but I love this book about football.


Looking for a female lead?

2. Megan Meade’s Guide to the McGowan Boys by Kate Brian.

Megan Meade is a star soccer player in this cute romance.

Ok, that’s all for me today.

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken Review

The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken
Disney Hyperion
December 2012
496 pgs

In the future a mysterious disease, Idiopathic Adolescent Acute Neurodegeneration (IAAN), decimates the youth population. Those who survive are left with unexplained and uncontrollable powers. The U.S. government, claiming to want to protect everyone and cure the affected, steps in and removes these children from their homes. Most children are sent to rehabilitation camps. Ruby was ten when she inadvertently used her powers, causing her parents to send her away. She spent six years in Thurmond, one of the most brutal government camps. Ruby manipulated camp officials into believing she has a harmless power. In reality, Ruby is dangerous. After six years in the camp her true nature is discovered. Even with the help of a mysterious stranger she barely escapes the camp alive. On the run, she is desperate to find an underground safe haven for kids like her. On the outside she meets another groups of teens who are also searching for the Slip Kid and his camp at the East River. For Ruby getting close to them is almost as frightening as the bounty hunters who are hot on their trail. Will they make it to safety? Will Ruby ever learn to control her powers?

In her sophomore novel Bracken (Brightly Woven) introduces a complex world populated with well-developed characters. There is lots of action, a fair amount of violence and plenty of suspense as the teen fugitives face danger at every turn. As a main character Ruby was inconsistent, but thankfully Liam, Chubs, and Zu stole the show. Unfortunately, they did not make up for the complicated and meandering plot or the poorly explained Psi powers color-coding system. For as long as the book is, very little time is spent on detailed world building and the entire story suffers because of that. After an amazing debut I had high hopes for this book. It is an interesting premise, but I just did not love it. I would have preferred more of Wayland and Sydelle’s story.

This book was provided by NetGalley for review.

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Books Read Over the Lifespan of My Blog

Dear The Broke and The Bookish,

Seriously? For real? Sigh.

Love,

Megan

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is a challenge! I feel bad for all you veteran bloggers out there. At least I only have 2.5 years worth of books to slog through!

So let’s rewind the clock to 2010, when I first started keeping track of my books on the blog. This was a good year. I discovered Hex Hall by Rachel Hawkins, Paranormalcy by Kiersten White, and I fell in love with two spin-off series, The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan and The Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare. I love these authors and their books and they will always have a place on my favorites shelf, but they still can’t top these hits of 2010:

1. Bloody Jack by L.A. Meyer. Jacky Faber is my hero. I want everyone to read these books. A girl disguised as a boy, pirates, bawdy sea shanties, and more! What’s not to love?

2. White Cat by Holly Black. It’s Harry Potter meets The Sopranos. Magic and mafia. A perfectly flawed male POV. I was sorry to say goodbye to Cassel this year. A must read, in my opinion.

3. The Drake Chronicles by Alyxandra Harvey. This series got me out of my post-Twilight vampire slump. I thought I was over vampires. Wrong. I love me some Drakes.

I could go on and include The Cardturner by Louis Sachar and Going Bovine by Libba Bray, but I need so save room for my 2011 and 2012 favorites. Moving on to 2011…

And I thought 2010 was a good year! 2011 brought gems Hourglass by Myra McEntire and Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier (I do love a good time travel book!). the Marbury Lens by Andrew Smith stuck with me for days after I had finished and Where She Went by Gayle Forman actually made me cry. But, the next spots on my Top Ten list are reserved for these four books:

4. Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John. This was the feel-good hit of the year. Again, everyone should read this book.

5. The Ranger’s Apprentice series by John Flanagan. And this is when I truly learned to not judge a book by its cover. I picked up the first book in the series because I needed to find more “boy” books to recommend to my readers. I had no idea that I was going to discover a new all-time favorite series!

6. Blood Red Road by Moira Young. I received this as an ARC from the publisher. It gathered some dust on my desk. I attempted a few pages but was turned off by the dialect. More dust. Then the guilt set in. I had gotten a free advanced reader copy and I was neglecting it! So, I buckled down, and holy crap, it was amazing! I think the little blurb on the cover of the paperback edition declaring it “better than The Hunger Games” is a little mean-spirited and cocky, but totally true.

7. The Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin. I would like to thank a number of coworkers for peer pressuring me into starting this series. I am half way through book 3 and I love it so much that I can hardly think of anything else!

Before Stork by Wendy Delsol and Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins start to feel snubbed for not making the top ten, I need to move on to 2012. I have read some awesome YA books this year, but top honors goes to a non-YA!

8. The Rook by Daniel O’Malley. This has to be one of the most bizarre and intriguing books I have ever read. So unique. And strange. And funny. An awesome debut!

9. Cinder by Marissa Meyer. Another stunning 2012 debut! Cinderella is a cyborg. Love.

10. The ten spot is shared by two amazing graphic novel series. I didn’t start reading graphic novels until about a year ago. Now I am hooked. My favorites have been Fables by Bill Willingham and Locke & Key by Joe Hill.

         

Wow, that was hard. Please don’t tell Ashes by Ilsa Bick and Please Ignore Vera Dietz by A.S. King, Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly, or I am the Messenger by Marcus Zusak that they didn’t make the list. They were awesome and I don’t want to hurt their feelings!

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

Mondays With Megan-End of Summer Reading and Recommend A…#8

Hi All! I’m back from my relaxing staycation and getting ready for back to school at the library. Last week I missed checking in with my favorite Monday memes, but I am back on track now. So, rather than dwelling on the fact that summer is almost over (actually, I am totally fine with saying goodbye to the summer heat. Give me cool fall days!) let me fill you in on how I have been spending my time.

First let’s check in with Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts for It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?
 

Finished since my last check-in:

I absolutely love Tana French, and her newest addition to the Dublin Murder Squad series does not disappoint! Insurgent was on my TBR list for the summer. I loved it (holy twist at the end!) and also enjoyed crossing it off the list. A review of Darkest Minds will be forthcoming. The others were enjoyable, but not very noteworthy.

I am still working on 11/22/63 by Stephen King. I am on disc 25 of 30 and while I am desperate to know how things end up for Jake Epping, I will be sad when in is over. It’s that good. I don’t know what I will pick to listen to next as this will be a tough act to follow. I am considering Code Name Verity by Elizabeth Wein or A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness. Decisions, decisions.

Currently reading:

Ok, so A Storm of Swords is totally monopolizing my time. The Lost Prince is an ARC on my Nook that I have been reading in fits and starts and Agnes and the Hitman is my new Playaway for walks/runs. I have finally accepted the fact that I am just not going to get other reading done until I am all caught up with the A Song of Ice and Fire saga. I apologize now and in advance to all the books I have been and will be neglecting in favor of George R.R. Martin’s book crack. I will take a teeny-tiny break after A Storm of Swords so that I can read Throne of Glass by Sarah Maas. Everything else will just have to wait.

What are you reading?

Moving on.

How about some recommendations? Let’s visit Chick Loves Lit for this week’s Recommend A…

…2012 Debut Author. I am a little embarrassed to admit that I have not read very many 2012 debuts. I am not sure why. But, I definitely have two that I highly recommend, and that’s all I really need for today, right?

Do you love a good fractured fairy tale or retelling? You will want to check out Cinder by Marissa Meyer. It is so darn awesome. Cinderella as a cyborg. Brilliant.

I really struggle with nonfiction, but I do enjoy good memoir. For a laugh-out-loud read, check out Jenny Lawson’s (The Bloggess) hilarious and heartfelt autobiography, Let’s Pretend This Never Happened. I seriously have a new appreciation for taxidermied animals. I never thought I would say something like that. But it’s true.

What amazing debut have I missed this year? Let me know so I can start a list!

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

Top Ten Tuesday: Me, Revealed Through Blog Posts

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, brought to you by The Broke and the Bookish, is kind all about me and my blog. So, I have spent some time sifting through the 362 posts and came up with the following list:

1. My Horde of Teenaged Zombies Wants to Eat Your Brains. This one is a how-to post in which I explain how I made zombie make-up out of household items. There are also pictures of my teen zombies. I am really proud of this program! Now you know that I am totally into zombies. When the zombie apocalypse happens, I will be ready. Just sayin’.

2. Mondays with Megan: Books and Bites Issue. This is a great example of what happens in real life. I thought this was such a cute idea-pick a book and pair it with a snack. I thought it was super clever to pair Pop by Gordan Korman with popcorn (ok, I still think that’s clever). I had every intention of keeping up with this, and making it a recurring topic but work got busy and blogging kind of got pushed aside and then I forgot I had this idea…So, now that I remember that I had it, keep an eye out for more Books and Bites!

3. Audio Alert. Seriously, see above! I include this for two reasons. 1. I kind of like story of my dead car and 2. it is further proof that I have good ideas but difficulty following through. I LOVE audiobooks. Why don’t I blog about them more often?

Ok, those last two posts are good ones and I am proud of them, but what they say about me isn’t the most flattering. I hope I get points for honesty! I try, I really do, but sometimes it’s hard to get it all done. Anyway, on to some more flattering posts. How about some reviews?

4. The Curse Workers Series by Holly Black. I love this series and want everyone else to as well. Also, this post shows how peeved I get with mid-series cover changes!

5. Quarantine: The Loners by Lex Thomas.  I feel like this is an honest and well-reasoned review for a book that I did not care for.

6. Top Ten Tuesday: If You Like Author X, Try This! I love TTT. I love lists and I really love this list because I get to recommend some of my favorites!

7. Fantastic Finds Friday: A Quote From Vera Dietz. *Sigh* Another great idea…Anyway, I like this post because it’s evidence that on a rare occasion I am actually capable of honing in on a great quote…and remembering it long enough to share!

8. Five Flavors of Dumb by Antony John Review and An Interview with Antony John. I really should have led with this one! First of all, I loved this book and I loved my review. Second, Antony John read and commented on my review and then was super cool and offered to do a Skype interview with my book club! Total fan girl here!

9. Mondays “YAWN” With Megan. I love this post because 1. I am totally enjoying participating in Recommend A…, a meme hosted by Chick Loves Lit and 2. Michael Grant commented on this post AND linked it to his Facebook pages. I got all fan-girl squeally when I was check out my FB news feed on a Tuesday morning and saw my very own words on Michael Grant’s Page, for all the world to see!

10. Move Over Vampires, the Mermaids are Coming. This post is the butt of a running joke with my friend, colleague, and fellow blogger, Stacey. This post represents my own dumb luck. It also demonstrates the importance of key words in your titles. This was a silly throw-away, filler post that I ran off in 2 minutes just so I would have something posted before I went on vacation. It’s been 16 months since I posted this. To date it has gotten 43,048 hits! Apparently a lot of people spend a lot of time Googling things like “mermaids”, “pictures of mermaids”, and “are mermaids real?”. Who knew? Also, it makes me a little sad that this is what draws a crowd! Oh well.

There you have it, I am well-meaning blogger with a below average follow-through rating who loves to make lists and occasionally says something clever (or trendy) enough to catch people’s attention. And by people I mean awesome authors and fellow bloggers.

Happy Reading!

˜Megan

Mondays With Megan-Vacation On My Mind and Recommend A…#7

Hi everyone! How was your weekend? I jam-packed mine with lots of good stuff! I went to a local art festival, explored a new hiking trail with my dog and nephews, hit the pool, and I even managed to squeeze in some episodes of Friday Night Lights, season 5 and get some reading in! I am now busy planning my vacation reading. A Storm of Swords, it’s almost time!

Let’s check in with Book Journey and Teach Mentor Texts for another edition of It’s Monday! What are You Reading?

 

Finished: The Litigators by John Grisham, Lies, Knives, and Girls in Red Dresses by Ron Koertge, and Locke & Key Vol. 5: Clockworks by Joe Hill.

 

The first book was fine and enjoyable, the second was odd and full of amazing art, and the third is my new obsession. I need more Locke & Key.

Still working on: 11/22/63 by Stephen King and The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken.

I love the meandering storytelling!

This book is way too long. Other than that, I haven’t decided yet how I like it.

Almost finished with: Broken Harbor by Tana French. ♥

I’ll finish this tonight.

New Audio: Don’t Look Twice by Andrew Gross. This is my walking/running thriller.

Looking Ahead: I’ll be on vacation, who knows what I will be in the mood for!

What are you reading?

This week Chick Loves Lit is asking us to

…book that was recommended to me. My entry is short and sweet this week.

By the time I finished listening to this audiobook I was ready to pack my bags and head west!

Thank you, Dana for recommending The Daily Coyote by Shreve Stockton. I loved it!

Next up, for all dystopian/sci-fi fans I recommend The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness.

I still need to finish the series!

What are you recommending?

Happy Reading!

˜Megan