July 27, 2011

Library Links (3)

Library Links is a feature in which I share links related to libraries, technology, books, authors, and pop culture!

15 Creative QR Codes
So cool! My library just started experimenting with QR codes. I love seeing the different ways they can be used. 

10 Action Librarians
A fun guide to fictional librarians who are anything but stereotypical! 

Are you reading YA lit? You should be. 
AWESOME article. Go read it now! :)

July 25, 2011

Review - The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks by E. Lockhart

I have a thing for books set at boarding schools. I never went to boarding school, so maybe that's part of the fascination for me. I love being immersed in the richly detailed settings and discovering the school's history, culture, and traditions. At Alabaster, one of the country's most competitive and prestigious boarding schools, one of these traditions is an all-male secret society called The Loyal Order of the Basset Hounds. Frankie, a sophomore girl, catches the eye of Matthew Livingston, a senior Basset. Frankie's dad was a Basset, so she already knows a little bit about the society's history, but she sets out to learn even more. Because the Bassets won't allow girls to join, Frankie develops a mischievous plan in which she orchestrates a number of clever pranks for the Bassets to perform, while tricking them into believing that a fellow Basset is behind it all. 

This fast-paced story is witty and engaging. Frankie is a smart, independent teen girl who refuses to accept the status quo or to be underestimated based on her gender. She's one of my new favorite YA heroines! The third-person narrator did a little too much "telling" rather than "showing" for my taste, but overall The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks was an enjoyable read. 

July 23, 2011

In My Mailbox (54)

In My Mailbox is a weekly meme hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. It's a time for everyone to share what books they acquired over the course of the week. I'll share what I received in the mail, bought at bookstores, downloaded to my Nook/iPad, or picked up from the library.
From the library: 
 - Harry Potter Film Wizardry by Brian Sibley
Harry Potter Film Wizardry
 - Revolution by Jennifer Donnelly
Revolution [Deckle Edge] (text only) by J. Donnelly
 - Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Alen
Garden Spells (Bantam Discovery)
What's in your mailbox this week?  

July 19, 2011

Harry Potter Reading Challenge: Books 5, 6, and 7

When I signed up for this challenge, I committed to FINALLY finishing the Harry Potter series. I re-read books 1-4 and then read books 5-7 for the first time. I knew the tone would get a lot darker, but WOW I was not prepared for how just how dark (and amazing!) the final 3 books would be. Here are my thoughts (spoilers included if you haven't read the books):

Harry Potter And The Order Of The Phoenix
Let's start with Order of the Phoenix. From the very first chapter, danger is present, and no one is safe. I felt a sense of unease throughout the entire book, and I had to keep reading to see what would happen to my beloved characters. Harry's angst was somewhat annoying (although it's understandable that a teenage boy in his situation would act that way!). This book introduced one of my most hated characters (Umbridge) and one of my new favorites (Luna Lovegood, a breath of fresh air!). The death of Sirius devastated me. Poor Harry! :( While this book wasn't my favorite, I appreciated the story and understood why it was important to the development of the rest of the series.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Book 6)

Now, on to Half-Blood Prince. As sad as the ending of the last book was, I cried even harder at the loss of Dumbledore. And I even knew it was coming! However, I did NOT know how he would die or who would kill him, so that was a TOTAL shock for me. Even after I found out that it was Snape who did it, I refused to believe that he couldn't be trusted. I knew that J.K. Rowling would figure out a way to explain all of this in the final book! I liked that couples were starting to form in this book, but I had already encountered a spoiler about who ended up together. When I finished this book, I took a couple of days to let it all sink in before jumping into the final book. 

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Book 7)

Ah, Deathly Hallows. What a rollercoaster of emotions! I enjoyed the revelations about Dumbledore's past and the reasons behind Snape's actions. Rowling writes such incredibly complex and interesting characters! I mourned the death of many beloved characters, and shed quite a few tears. I loved the epilogue (although I know many fans do not) because I was glad to see that Harry finally had the family he never had growing up. And I loved that Harry, Ron, and Hermione all got to be part of the same extended family. :) 

If I write any more I'll just start rambling about how awesome these books are, so I'll stop now. I loved the movie adaptations as well. I think it might be time for a re-read, this time on audio. I'm just not ready to say goodbye to these characters yet! 

July 15, 2011

Book Blogger Hop: 7/15/7/18

Book Blogger Hop
The Book Blogger Hop is a weekly event hosted over aCrazy-for-Books where book bloggers can   "connect with other book lovers, make new friends, support each other, and generally just share our love of books!"

This week's question: How/Where do you get your books? Do you buy them or go to the library? Is there a certain website you use like paperbackswap?

I borrow the majority of my books from the library, but I also enjoy shopping for books at Barnes & Noble or Half Price Books. I occasionally order books from Amazon. On my Nook I read library books and books I've purchased through Barnes & Noble (or downloaded on "Free Fridays"). I use NetGalley and GalleyGrab to read eBook ARCs on my Nook as well. It's been awhile since I used PaperbackSwap....

What about you?

July 14, 2011

Library Love (15)

I noticed that when I talk about libraries with friends and family members, they often say, "I didn't know libraries offered that!" Library Love is a feature in which I share many different reasons for people to use and love their local library. Some things I mention may be obvious to those of you who routinely use your public library, but others may be new to you. Either way I hope that this feature inspires you to visit and support your local library! 

15. Enjoy discussing books with fellow readers at book club meetings. 

Have you ever finished a great book and wished you had someone to discuss it with? Do you want to meet other book lovers who share your passion for reading? Library book clubs are a great way to connect with other readers and discuss books. Some book clubs focus on a particular genre, while others switch up genres and challenge their members to read outside of their comfort zone. 

Have you ever attended a library book club meeting? 

July 8, 2011

Review - Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Life by Bryan Lee O'Malley

I’m the kind of person who likes to read books before watching their movie adaptations, so I decided to check out the six-volume Scott Pilgrim graphic novel series. Volume 1, Scott Pilgrim’s Precious Little Life, was a fast and enjoyable read. Scott is an unemployed 23-year old in a rock band. He recently started dating a high school girl, Knives Chang, and his friends have been giving him a lot of grief about it. Before things get too serious with Knives, though, Scott develops an infatuation for Ramona Flowers, a rollerblading delivery girl. But getting the girl isn’t going to be so easy—Ramona has seven evil ex-boyfriends that Scott must defeat before he date her.

Scott Pilgrim's Precious Little Life is a highly entertaining read. Clever dialogue, quirky characters, an interesting plot, and engaging artwork made me a fan. I’ll definitely be continuing with Volumes 2-6. 

July 6, 2011

Review - Where She Went by Gayle Forman

Where She Went is the sequel to If I Stay, told from Adam’s point of view. This review contains spoilers for If I Stay

Three years ago, Mia lost her entire family in a tragic accident and left home to attend Juilliard and launch her music career. Home is not the only thing she left behind, though. Adam, her ex-boyfriend, was devastated when she walked out of his life, and he poured all of his feelings about the breakup into his music. His band, Shooting Star, is now one of the hottest acts around, and Adam has gained rock star status. When chance brings Adam and Mia together one night, three years of things unsaid come to the surface as they re-open the emotional wounds that have never quite healed. 

I loved reading this story from Adam’s perspective as he dealt with his broken heart and the conflicting emotions that come along with seeing Mia again. This is one of those books that you want to read in one sitting—the story grabs you from the very first chapter and doesn’t let go until its satisfying conclusion.  Fans of If I Stay will find that Where She Went is just as beautiful and moving as it was. 

July 5, 2011

Review - The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson

Seventeen-year-old Jenna Fox has just woken up from a coma after a horrible accident she barely survived one year ago. She has no memory of the accident or her life before that day. She watches videos of herself as a child in an attempt to spark some memories. As she slowly starts to remember bits and pieces of her life, she discovers that there are more questions than answers. What really happened after her accident? And why does her family seem intent on hiding the truth from her? 

This compelling story set in a near future really makes you think about questions of medical ethics: How far would you go to save a loved one’s life? Can science ever go too far? Just because we can do something…should we? Fans of Neal Shusterman’s Unwind may also enjoy this suspenseful and thought-provoking read. The sequel to The Adoration of Jenna Fox, The Fox Inheritance, comes out this fall. 

July 4, 2011

It's Monday: What Are You Reading? (37)

What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted over at Book Journey where bloggers gather to share what we have recently read and what we are currently reading. 

I finished: 

The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson (audiobook)
The Adoration of Jenna Fox

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Book 6)

I am currently reading: 

The Disreputable History of Frankie Landau-Banks

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Book 7)

Next up: 

Griffin Rising by Darby Karchut
Griffin Rising

Moon Over Manifest by Clare Vanderpool
Moon Over Manifest

What are you reading? 


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