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Sunday, January 31, 2010

In My Mailbox [2]

In My Mailbox [2]
Okay the books I got this week are...

Now, last week (I'm combining the two) I got some AMAZING swag from Kimberly Derting. Here it is!

Isn't it amazing! I got two signed posters plus a ton of stickers and signed bookmarks. I squealed when i opened it. Now one bookmark in this picture wasn't a part of the swag package - the blue book mark at the top is from one of my best friends and it was just super cute I had to add it. It has a favorite quote of mine on it "I believe in the sun even when it isn't shining. I believe in love even when I am alone. I believe in God even when he is silent." I just love the quote, and its origin.

So, what did you get this week?

Friday, January 29, 2010

The Last Song by: Nicholas Sparks Review

The Last Song
by: Nicholas Sparks

From Amazon:

Seventeen year old Veronica "Ronnie" Miller's life was turned upside-down when her parents divorced and her father moved from New York City to Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina. Three years later, she remains angry and alienated from her parents, especially her father...until her mother decides it would be in everyone's best interest if she spent the summer in Wilmington with him. Ronnie's father, a former concert pianist and teacher, is living a quiet life in the beach town, immersed in creating a work of art that will become the centerpiece of a local church.
The tale that unfolds is an unforgettable story of love on many levels--first love, love between parents and children -- that demonstrates, as only a Nicholas Sparks novel can, the many ways that love can break our hearts...and heal them.

From Me:

I have to start out and say that I am a Nicholas Sparks fan. I have always felt that his stories ended with just enough gut wrenching sadness for me to truly appreciate the growth and development of his characters along the way... and lets be honest any type of gut movement whilst reading is a good thing right?

This book was no exception.

I loved each of the characters and felt they were friends and that i knew them. Ronnie felt so real to me, some of her feelings about life and just the way she viewed things I feel myself on a daily basis. In no way did I feel her character to be two dimensional, quite the opposite really, I felt she was right beside me the entire time.

I loved her relationship with Will as it to felt real. I felt that Will was a typical guy - without being too typical. He was average but then extraordinary all at the same time and I don't know how to describe that phenomenon or how to really say how that is possible but he also was in no way a flat character and also jumped off the page and into my living room. I liked how he wasn't perfect, though he did have all of the traits that would make him so. He had his flaws that rang true, but despite everything he was still just an amazing guy.

Now, onto what I felt was almost the focal point of the book - Ronnie's relationship with her Dad. These parts made me cry. Ronnie hadn't spoken to her father in three years and is now spending the summer with him. There is so much growth within these pages, and there's the ultimate rebuilding of that relationship. My parents got divorced when I was 15, I was in the same boat as Ronnie and maybe that is why this part got to me so much, but it was an absolutely beautiful thing to witness - and then ultimately filled me with so much joy but yet at the exact same time heartbreak.

All of these aspects made this an amazing book, I loved her brother and found him to be at some times the comedy relief in situations, but he was adorable and made me smile.

I do however think that some parts were rushed, I found entire weeks just skimmed over, and a few situations came up very fast and I wished had been explained more, but overall I found this book to be great and I give it a 9.

-Christina

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

"It's a Major Award!"

Oh how happy I was today to go check my e-mail when I saw that I had an award! I had a Christmas Story moment, not gonna lie.




The rules:
List 10 things that make you happy.
Try and do at least one of them today.
Tag 10 bloggers that brighten your day.
Link back to the person that tagged you.


10 things that make me happy


1. Reading
2. Writing
3. My Friends & Family
4. Being outside.
5. Music
6. Cheesecake
7. Lovely quiet moments
8. Having plenty of sleep (never happens)
9. Breaks without school!
10. Anne of Green Gables movies. (Gilbert is my hero!)



I honestly can't think of ten people to tag, so rather I am tagging anyone who shares a few of my likes with me - if you share some then you deserve this award as well, and just leave me a comment informing me of what you enjoy. :)



But thank you to Alexa at Hooked on YA books !!! I really enjoyed doing this!

Author Interviews: Beth Fantaskey edition.

C: What inspired you to write Jekel Loves Hyde?

B: I honestly have no idea where the idea for this book came from. It seems like the title just popped into my head one day, and it struck me as a great start to a YA novel with a paranormal twist. I could imagine lots of possibilities. Before long, the characters of Jill Jekel and Tristen Hyde began to develop in my imagination, too, and the story took off from there.


C: What was your writing process like?

B: I am a pretty disciplined writer. I like to sit down in the morning and get to work, and I set goals for myself, too. Otherwise, because I work at home, it's too easy to get distracted or procrastinate. (And I usually give myself some kind of reward, like a snack, when I meet my goal. I'm like the Scooby-Doo of writers!)


C: How long did it take to write Jekel Loves Hyde? What about Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side?

B: Jessica's Guide to Dating on the Dark Side just poured out of me. I wrote the first draft in about two months, I think - although of course the revision process went on longer. Jekel Loves Hyde was a different story. The plot is more intricate, and has even more twists and turns, so it took a few months longer for me to write.


C: What are your perfect writing conditions?

B: A cup of coffee or a Diet Coke (fountain, preferably from McDonald's) by my side, a very warm room, socks - not shoes, and good music in the background.


C: What kind of music do you listen to?

B: I live in a town with two college radio stations, and I usually like to listen to those, because I like to check out new alternative music. My iPod is pretty eclectic, though. I have everything from AC/DC to +44 - and I'm open to country, a little rap... pretty much anything!


C: Favorite movies?

B: I always blank out on this question, and there are very few movies that I watch more than once. I would say two that I revisit now and then are "The Princess Bride" and the 1980s dark comedy "Heathers." If I see them on TV, they usually draw me in.


C: What would you consider to be your most embarrassing moment?

B: Oh, gosh! There are so many! I am a legendary klutz. One of the worst, though, happened during a job interview with about ten people around a conference table. They gave me the one broken chair at the table, and when I sat down, I ROLLED BACKWARDS out of the chair. Head over heels - while wearing a skirt. (I did not get the job.)


C: What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

B: Treat writing like you would anything you want to be good at - meaning practice. Every day. It's great to have talent, but writing is a skill, too, and you have to hone it.

Thanks to Beth for doing this amazing interview, and I know it's a bit late, but expect an In My Mailbox tomorrow, and now I'm off to watch The Pregnancy Pact on Lifetime!! lol
Later guys :]

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Writing and me.

I am on my high school's newspaper staff and being such I am expected to write articles (obviously) but this is not the problem - since being on the newspaper staff I have discovered how much I absolutely HATE journalistic writing.

I adore writing, I'm working on a book myself, but journalistic writing absolutely drives me insane. My very first story I turned in to the newspaper I got in trouble because it read too much like fiction (which I honestly kind of take as a compliment) but it's just so boring. I hate writing facts, and just facts. Granted I did not stretch the truth but I used words such as buzzing and added description... which I knew was a no no, but in my defense it sounded a whole lot better!

Ugh, I'm just greatly saddened by this. I can't stand this writing style and I have written alot of articles now and it does not get any easier. It just bugs me. I thought that I would be just like Rory Gilmore and discover a love of journalism and go on to Yale and love all things newspaper (the Girlmore Girls lover in me told me so!) I just don't know what I'm going to do about all of this.

Anyone have any secrets for journalistic writing? I took journalism last year so I know about the craft... I'm just no good at it. *sigh* oh well.

I guess we'll see how this semester goes. It's not that my articles sound bad, they just aren't what I want and they are quite difficult to write. hmm We'll just have to see.

-Christina :D

P.S. No In my mailbox this week because I didn't get any actual books - but I did get some swag which I will show you this Sunday!

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Author Interviews - Kimberly Derting edition.

Okay guys, today I have an interview with Kimberly Derting, the author of the much anticipated 2010 release The Body Finder. It is due out in March, you can find more information about The Body Finder and Kimberly at her website located here-http://www.kimberlyderting.com/index.php


C: When did you know you wanted to be a writer?

K: When I was in the 7th grade I really thought I wanted to be a jet-setting Journalist, but somehow I just couldn’t picture myself traipsing through jungles or war zones trying to get my story. I’m the kind of girl that doesn’t even like tent camping. Besides, there were all those facts and truth-telling. Making stuff up is way more fun!

C: How long did it take you to write The Body Finder?


K: In total, it took about six months. I do a lot of my revising as I write, so by the time I’d finished my first draft it really just took another month or so of polishing before I felt like it was ready to submit.


C: What are your favorite books?

K: That is a loaded question! All time faves, I would have to say To Kill A Mockingbird (always!), and of course almost anything by Stephen King. More recently, I just finished Beautiful Creatures, and have to say that it was brilliant. Margie (Stohl) and Kami (Garcia) wrote an amazing book!


C: Where did you get the idea for The Body Finder?

K: One day my husband just randomly threw out the statement: “What if there was a person who could find dead bodies?” From there, my imagination kicked in, and Violet and her creepy ability were born!


C: What character in The Body Finder do you think is most like you?

K: I almost hate to admit it, and maybe that’s why I like her so much, but it’s probably Chelsea . Not so much the athletic part, but her willingness to say whatever’s on her mind, no matter what the setting. I was always kind of like that, especially when I was younger. I think I like to shock people.


C: If you could have one person over for dinner dead or alive, who would it be?

K: I’m sure most people go for the really famous writer or an important person from our history, but I’m going to say Sue Sylvester from the show GLEE. She would totally have to come in character though because she is freaking hilarious! See, I’m drawn to people like me who always say it like it is.


C: What is one of your most embarrassing moments?

K: Ever? When I was 18, I was working in a video store (back when VHS tapes cost like $80 each, so the stores didn’t stock them on the shelves, we kept them behind the counters). This video store also had a “naughty room,” where the “adult materials” were kept. One day, this man came to the counter with his little video tag thingy to get his movie, and I quickly read it and said “Oh my god, you haven’t seen this yet? This is the best movie ever!” And then I turned to get his video and realized that the tag didn’t say “Beverly Hills Cop” (starring blockbuster entertainer Eddie Murphy), it said “Beaverly Hills Cop” (a movie from the naughty room), which had an entirely different cast of entertainers.

I couldn’t even make eye contact with the guy after that. All I could think of was that he must be thinking: “Coolest chick ever!”

And just for the record, I did not watch the porno version of Beverly Hills Cop.


C: How do you normally deal with writers block?

K: I haven’t had to face this too often, and never for more than a day or two, but the best thing for me is to hop in the car and drive. Preferably listening (and singing really loudly) to bad 70’s music. Or Kid Rock. Whichever happens to pop up first in my CD changer.



C: Christina or Britney?

K: Christina, definitely. I don’t care what anyone says, that girl can SING!!!


C: What kind of music do you like?

K: That is the hardest question ever. I like almost everything. I grew up listening to my mom’s music (hello…Elton John and The Carpenters), then I moved into the 80’s for some big-haired rock bands and Madonna, I did a stint in the 90’s with grunge and Will Smith (and may have even had a passing thing with…*cough*GarthBrooks*cough*), and am currently listening to everything from The Jonas Brothers (courtesy of my eight-year-old daughter) to Lil’ Wayne (thanks to my wannabe gangsta 16-year-old son). See what I mean, tough question!



C: What are your perfect conditions for writing?

K: Nothing fancy, just some tea, Hot Tamales (my current favorite candy), my laptop, and some uninterrupted time. It’s that simple.


C: If you were to be in another profession, what would it be?

K: Well, it certainly wouldn’t be an editor. I have a tremendous amount of respect for those who can edit other people’s work. I’m the Paula Abdul of critiquing (meaning that I “love” everything) which probably wouldn’t go over too well at a publishing house. Now that Paula is gone, maybe I should just be a judge on American Idol. I could be the new Paula, constantly showering the contestants with compliments about their mad singing skills and beautiful outfits.

Okay, a huge thanks to Kimberly Derting for the amazing interview!!
And thanks for reading. :D

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Most Amazing Writing Advice Ever.

Okay guys, I saw this over at Kimberly Derting's blog a few days ago and I have to share, I find this video to be amazing and inspiring - just everything about it makes me smile haha. :D

Watch and Enjoy!



Oh, and also for some more excitement - tomorrow I will have an interview with Kimberly Derting (author of The Body Finder) up so look forward to that! I'm going to try to make interviews a weekly Thursday thing as well and so far that's looking good.

Monday, January 11, 2010

"But it's got too many pages!" Oh boy...


I was thinking today about books and their lengths when I was sitting in my English class whilst my teacher passed around copies of The Great Gatsby. Now, I myself consider The Great Gatsby to be a short novel, it's no Of Mice and Men by any means but it is not a Harry Potter either, but as she passed these out a boy sitting across from me let out a complaint saying, "But it's so long!" to which he got hit with a few 'that's what she saids.'

Now for some reason his exclamation disturbed me, and not because of the jokes that followed it. I understand that high schoolers normally don't enjoy reading, especially reading something not of their choosing, but I think there comes a time when certain excuses don't work.

Now this has got me thinking, maybe my view of books and their lengths is off. I want you guys's opinion so I'm asking the question, "What is the longest book you've ever read?"

For myself the longest book was probably Gone With the Wind, but I have also read all of the Harry Potter books.

How do you guys feel about books and their lengths? Would you rather read something long, something short or something in between? I'm very interested, so leave a comment and let me know!

Thanks guys :]

Sunday, January 10, 2010

In My Mailbox [one] :)

In My Mailbox [one]

The week of January 9, 2010

Okay guys so this is my first vlog, hope you guys enjoy! :]



(You may want to turn your volume down, the sound is kinda weird, but turning it down helps my quality alot) lol

Also, I don't know why this stops at Graceling, I did the full video but the only other book I got was The Last Song, so I may do another one showing it, but for now it's late. lol.

Books Mentioned (in no order)

The Looking Glass Wars by: Frank Beddor
Graceling by: Kristin Cashore
When it Happens by: Susane Colasanti
Take Me There by: Susane Colasanti
The Last Song by: Nicholas Sparks
Impossible by: Nancy Werlin


Friday, January 8, 2010

Impossible by: Nancy Werlin

Impossible
by:Nancy Werlin


Lucy is seventeen when she discovers that the women of her family have been cursed through the generations, forced to attempt three seemingly impossible tasks or to fall into madness upon their child's birth. But Lucy is the first girl who won't be alone as she tackles the list. She has her fiercely protective foster parents beside her. And she has Zach, whose strength amazes her more each day. Do they have enough love and resolve to overcome an age-old evil?


Inspired by the ballad "Scarborough Fair," Impossible combines suspense, fantasy, and romance.


*From Me*

To me this book had an amazing idea, the plot was there, the inspiration for it I felt was good and this is what made me want to read it. I as well love Scarborough Fair by Simon and Garfunkel, the lyrics are compelling and the song itself is beautiful, but unfortunately this book didn't give me what I was hoping for in any other aspect.

The main character Lucy I felt never had any real emotions. They were attempted but she was too okay with everything. Intense and horrible things happened to her and she just instantly recovered as if it was nothing at all. Her relationship with Zach as well, I felt it happened way too quickly. One minute they were like brother and sister and the next they were in a serious relationship. I wished to see some depth there, something not so drastic. It just seemed very quick to me.

The story itself also I though took too long to begin. It was page 70 before anything really happened, and then in the 100's before it got really interesting.

As I said before I LOVED the idea. The general plot I thought was good, but it was the way it was done that turned me off. I wish the turning point of the novel had occurred sooner, I felt that certain parts were rushed through and that they could have been put into much more depth.

I hate giving bad reviews, and I realize that this is just my opinion, just because I didn't like this book deffinately doesn't mean someone else might love it, but sadly it wasn't my cup of tea.

If anyone else has read this book and has comments on it, please leave a comment. I would love to see what you guys thought :]

I give it a 4/10.

-Christina

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Contests!

Okay so Angie Frasier is giving out a ARC of her upcoming book Everlasting - and if she gets 100 entries by the end of the week she's throwing in a second ARC!





Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday

Okay so the book that I just can't wait to get my hands on this week is - The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting.

A serial killer on the loose.

A girl with a morbid ability.

And the boy who would never let anything happen to her.

Doesn't that sound amazing? And look at the cover! It's so pretty, and I'll just go ahead and say that yes the cover does matter. haha

It's due out March 10 from Harper Teen - here's hoping I can wait that long. :D

Here's the link to her website for more info - http://www.kimberlyderting.com/

Helloo!

General Info.
Okay guys so I was going to wait for my In My Mailbox post (which looks like it will be a vlog if I can ever get the sound right! eeeek!!) but I will go ahead and explain the reason for this horrible absense.

What has it been three months? That's horrid and I'm sorry. We had alot of family stuff going on but it looks like things are fine now so expect me to be back in the swing of things. I've missed it alot and I have time again finally so, here I am. :]

I'm really excited about the possibility of me doing vlogs. I recently got a new laptop that includes a webcam so it is a deffinate possibility and I like vlogs, but what is the general publics opinion? Would you rather have the summary and picture like I've been doing or would a vlog be a nice change. Perhaps an occasional IMM vlog? I don't know. Let me know :D
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