Category: Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Books that Made Me Think

Posted September 11, 2012 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 7 Comments

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Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by the other blog I write at, The Broke and the Bookish. We LOVE lists over there, and hope you do too!

This week’s topic discusses books that made me think about something regarding my life, my future, the world, etc. Some of these books caused silly epiphanies, whereas others made me really re-evaluate my life. I love it when a book makes me think.

1. Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury
This book is terrifying. Absolutely terrifying. I mean, the main character’s job is being a fireman who actually STARTS fires. His job is to burn books and the houses those books are found in. A world without books? Not only is that scary, but think of a government with that much power.

2. Night by Eli Wiesel
This is an extremely detailed and heart-wrenching look into the concentration camps during the Holocaust. I always knew that that event in history was horrific and inhumane, but my understanding was deepened even more with this book. They say history repeats itself, and I sincerely hope that “they” are wrong in this case. I felt this same way with The Diary of Anne Frank.

3. Matched by Ally Condie
If any government ever tries to tell me who I’m allowed to marry and what pills I’m supposed to take and what food I can eat I will seriously open up a lunar community and leave the planet. If you think blind dates are bad, just think of blind marriages.

4. Wanderlove by Kirsten Hubbard 

This book made me realize that I’m pretty awesome. The main girl found out so many col things about herself on her trip, that I was actually inspired to go on one of my own. I spent 6 weeks in Europe over the summer, and let me tell you… it totally works. I never would have learned what I learned about myself without that trip.

5. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

I swear, this book is not far off from the reality of today. It’s scary to think about kids killing each other for entertainment, but the reality of the situation is that it’s already happening.

6. The Giver by Lois Lowry
Another book where people are not allowed to make their own choices. The world is perfect, with no war or pain. But then there’s Jonah… the one who is going to have to carry the burden of the truth alone. How would that even feel? To know all that pain and pleasure, but not be able to experience it or convey it to anyone? Wow. Talk about courage.

7. Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry

I loved watching these two broken people bring out the best in each other and change into better versions of themselves. It reminded me that I need to enrich my life with people who make me happy and forget trying to please those who are not worth the effort.

8. A Train to Potevka by Mike Ramsdell
The author of this book tells his story about what it was like to come from a strong moral background and go into a career as an American intelligence agent. He discusses the choices he had to made and the compromises he had to consider. I ended up thinking a lot about whether I could ever do any job that made me settle for less than my beliefs and morals.

9. Unbreak my Heart by Melissa C. Walker

This book made me really think back on my time as a teenager and how I wish I had had this book back then. I’ve identified with this books heroine so many times over the course of my life, and this book took me down a darker memory lane than usual. It was good for me, though, because it reminded me what I want out of my life and the people who are in it.

10. Incarnate by Jodi Meadows
I love the way the idea of reincarnation was discussed in this book. I loved the idea of being able to retain memories from a past life and use those memories to enrich a current lifetime. I don’t believe in reincarnation at all, but I did have fun thinking about the “what-ifs?”

So! Which books keep you up at night? Did you choose any of the same ones I did? Link me to your lists, and I’ll stop by and visit!


Top Ten Authors I’d Like to See on a Reality TV Show

Posted May 15, 2012 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 4 Comments

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Reality TV is one of my guilty pleasures. I love it, and watch way too much of it. This topic sounded like SO much fun, so I just had to participate even though I’m currently in Europe and ended up scheduling this one weeks in advance!  If you leave me a comment, I promise I will go to your blogs when I get home and comment on yours! I can’t wait to see where you guys put your favorite authors!

 

 

Suzanne Collins on Survivor
Interesting idea, huh? I’d love to see how she would prevail in the dystopian world of Survivor, much like Katniss did in The Arena.

Tracey Garvis Graves on Survivor
I wonder if she can survive on and island as well as her characters in her book, On the Island, could!

Dan Wells on Boot Camp
Anyone remember this show? Civilian contestants were brought on and went through real Boot Camp. They participated in tasks and missions, and ultimately one person ended up winning. Partials had a lot of military influences, so I thought it’d be fun to see Dan in that environment.

Kirsten Hubbard as my teammate on The Amazing Race
Hello. Wanderlove made me want to travel everywhere, and being paired with Kirsten, a travel goddess, how could I not win?

Stephanie Perkins on Fear Factor
With blue hair and a spunky personality, I highly doubt Stephanie is afraid of anything.

Maureen Johnson on So You Think You Can Dance
I don’t know if Maureen can dance at all, but I think she would be so much fun to see on a show like this. She’s got a hilarious personality and is really likeable. Plus, I totally think she could pull off some hip-hop dance moves.

Lauren Oliver on The Mole
I loved The Mole! Anderson Cooper… ahhh… Anyway, this show is not on anymore, but it was amazing. All the contestants were supposed to work together to complete challenges. For each challenge completed, the group got more money added to the grand prize pot. But… there was a “mole” hired by the producers to sabotage all the events, yet keep their identity hidden as they tried to “help” with the tasks. Each week, contestants filled out a questionnaire all about who they thought the Mole was (they were asked things like, “Where was the mole sitting at dinner last night?” “What color shirt was the mole wearing during Tuesday’s challenge?). Whoever got the most questions wrong was eliminated. Contestants were never told if their questions were answered correctly or not, so they took a lot of notes and hoped they were on the correct path. Correct answers could have been simple guesses, but nobody ever knew. It’s kind of like a big game of Clue! The person left won. Lauren would be a wonderful mole, because she is sweet and harmless-looking, but has a wild imagination. I think she could totally deceive others, and that’s not a bad thing! Haha. I also think she’d be a really perceptive contestant who could probably win the whole thing if she were not hired to be the mole!

Maggie Stiefvater on America’s Got Talent
She’s an artsy songwriter… I wonder if she’s a performer too? Or has a sweet comedy routine?

 
John Green as The Bachelor
Now, I know he’s married. Haha. So this would have been before that. But think of how hilarious a bachelor he’d be? I would be incredibly entertained, and SO many bookish people would audition. Maybe the show would be filled with cool book chats instead of talk of plastic surgery or sugar daddies.

Tahereh Mafi on America’s Next Top Model
Seriously, she’s gorgeous! Now, I’d hate to throw her into the pot with all of those other mean model types on that show, because I know she is way nicer than they are. So, she should have her own room or something. Or a cabin in back. She’s win, though.

So, which authors would you like to see on TV, starring in/playing along on your favorite reality TV shows? Like I said, I’m currently in Europe with very limited computer access! I’ll respond to all your awesome posts when I get home. :)


Top Ten Books I’d Love to See as a Movie

Posted May 1, 2012 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 5 Comments

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So, today I get to talk about all the books I loved enough to want to watch on the big screen! This topic really excites me, because I am a MAJOR movie lover. I love movies almost as much as books, so when an awesome movie makes it to the theaters (as long as it is done well), I get to not only see my characters come to life, but I can share my favorite stories with my non-reader friends. Like… The Hunger Games. My little sister finally got to see why I love the book so much! She went and saw the movie with me (after much begging), and now she might even read the book! Victory! Anyway, onto my list! Oh, and some of these might have movies coming… but I don’t keep track of which authors/publishers have sold movie rights, etc. So let me know if you’ve heard something!


Wanderlove by Kirsten Hubbard
PLEASE? I want to see the scenery and experience the cool things Bria and Rowan get to do on their adventures. I’ve been to Belize, and loved it. But one can’t just hop over to Belize everyday! This movie would take me back, and I’m TOTALLY fine with that. Just sayin’. :)

Firelight by Sophie Jordan
Seriously. I must see these sexy dragons for myself. I have my own picture in my mind, but I want to see what Hollywood can do with this. And the mystical dragon land… and the forests. I just need to see this!

The Hourglass Door by Lisa Mangum
This is one of my favorite books, and it would make an awesome movie! Go read my review to get an idea of why I think so!


Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi
I want to see the Aether in the sky! It sounded pretty miraculous and mysterious. Does it look like Northern Lights? MAYBE! I don’t know! And I want to watch Aria and Perry’s journey through the “Death Shop”. Aria had never seen the outside world until she escaped to find her mom, so I think seeing everything for the first time… through her eyes would be awesome!

The Summer My Life Began by Shannon Greenland

The B&B in North Carolina that the bulk of this book takes place in and around sounds like a piece of my dream of Heaven. This would make a beautifully picturesque movie.

Gentlemen Prefer Nerds by Joan Kilby
This is a really fun, adventurous, romantic, suspenseful mystery and I was seriously thinking the other day that I’d love to watch it! I bet it would be kind of like Knight and Day with Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz. I love that movie!


Incarnate by Jodi Meadows
Ok, seriously, If the only thing I can see is a short film of the sexy masquerade ball, I’d be just fine. The tension can be cut with a knife, plus I’d LOVE to see all the costumes I read about!

On the Island by Tracey Garvis Graves
Hello. This would be so much better than Castaway with Tom Hanks. No offense… it’s just this island is way more exciting than his.

Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle
What a cute movie this book would make! We have three short stories, but they are interwoven so it would totally work. PLUS, it takes place during a blizzard! At Christmastime. I mean, who here wants to see John Green’s story of the blizzardy journey to the Waffle House? No, the better question is… who DOESN’T? I was dying of laughter.

Cinder by Marissa Meyer
I want to see New Beijing. And I want to see this cyborg Cinderella, and her mechanical friend Iko. I just know it would be amazing.

So, what are some of your book-to-movie wishes?


Top Ten Deceptive Books

Posted April 10, 2012 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 12 Comments

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As a blogger, I’ve come across a lot of books I never would have immediately gravitated toward otherwise, whether it be for lack of interest or just lack of publicity for the book. As a result, I’ve come across a lot of books that deceived me for good or bad. Some do not reflect the feel of the cover image, some sound nothing like their book’s summary, and some just sounded like they would be awful/amazing and they ended up being the opposite. I’m here to discuss some of the books that have deceived me.

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

From the title, I thought this would be a cheesy book. The cover image made it look like it would be even cheesier. The back cover summary? SCREAMS cheesy. But you know what? Favorite. Book. Ever. Stephanie’s writing was a home run for me, and the writing is darling.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
The cover is “meh” and the back cover of the book made me cringe. I was not at all cool with the idea of children killing each other as part of a government sanctioned reality TV show. I had to be pressured by the entire world before I gave it a chance, and again: I loved it.

Halo by Alexandra Adornetto
This book is one of the biggest disappointments I’ve run across. The cover is amazing, and the story sounded great! I ended up really hating it, though. Read my review if you’d like to know why.

Delirium by Lauren Oliver
It’s even more deceptive now than it had been, because the new cover is terrible in my opinion. But… I was deceived by this book! Right up until its release date, and even months later I had heard nothing about it. Love a disease? That sounded terrible to me! I loved it! Lauren’s writing is amazing, and the story had me going crazy. Definitely a favorite I was not expecting.

Wanderlove by Kirsten Hubbard

I adore this book, but the cover totally had me skeptical. I mean, the scenery and experiences described in this book are out of this world! Why did they again just slap a girl on the cover and call it good? I can think of so many pretty things that could have been done with that cover.

A Hopeless Romantic by Harriet Evans
The cover is DARLING. The book’s summary sounds light and fluffy and adorable! But seriously. This book was full of boring and swear words. I didn’t even finish it. But that cover? Come on!

Under the Same Sky by Genevieve Graham
From the cover, I expected a fluffy romance. This book is dark and covers a lot of sensitive subject matter! I had a hard time getting through it, it upset me so much. I did finish it, and really liked it… but it was hard for me since I was totally not prepared for that.

Me and Mr. Darcy by Alexandra Potter
Based on the title, I was expecting a cutesy romance involving a Mr- Darcy-like character. I was not expecting the author to make Mr. Darcy come off as such a worthless jerk. I wanted to love Mr. Darcy, but the author was trying to make me hate him.

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
I’ll admit that I loved this book SO much. But the cover never really caught my eye, and I had not heard much about it at all. It was my very first vampire book. My first paranormal book, actually. Well… my first young adult book too! So it opened my eyes to a new genre, and a whole bunch of other books as a result.

Shiver by Maggie Steifvater
I hate Jacob in Twilight, because he kept trying to steal Bella away. Not cool. So I went into this book with a prejudice against werewolves. I loved Sam. I fell in love with werewolves, and I was not expecting to at all. And I think this was destiny or something, because after seeing Twilight the movie, I am SO a Jacob fan. Haha. Oh, and I had no idea Maggie’s writing was so full of amazing. This book and this author totally blew me away.

So, which books have deceived you, for good or bad? Leave links and I’ll come visit!


Top Ten Books On My List this Spring

Posted March 20, 2012 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 31 Comments

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So, apparently today is the first day of spring. Seeing as how it snowed all day yesterday, and has been all cold and wet outside today, I’m not buying it! That does not mean I’m not in the mood, though! I can’t wait for sunshine, warm weather, and flowers. It’s also during this part of the year that I start craving cute contemporary romances and books about people going on vacations to the beach or a cabin. Anywhere, really. So, here we have my top ten books for springtime! Some of them are new releases, and some are ones I’ve been trying to get to for quite a while.

The Fine Art of Truth of Dare by Melissa Jensen
Everyone I know has read this already! I’ve been dying for it since the day I found out it was being published eons ago. It sounds adorable, and just like the kind of book to brighten my wintery mood.

Tempest Rising by Tracy Deebs (and the sequel, Tempest Unleashed. I got both from Netgalley, so thanks!)
Hello, young adult mermaid romance novel! I am SO excited. Mermaids are my FAVORITE! And seriously, do mermaids not scream warm weather, white sand beaches, and undersea fun?

Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver
Duh. I’ll just leave it at that. I loved Delirium so much. I actually read it while I was on a cruise, and the ending ripped me apart so much that I almost threw myself overboard. This has to be read really soon. REALLY soon.

Girl at Sea by Maureen Johnson
Yes, please! A girl on a Mediterranean cruise? The title sold me, and Maureen is one of my favorite authors! I have a wonderful feeling that this book is going to be amazing.

Austentatious by Alyssa Goodnight
This sounds like a fun little contemporary romance set in Austin, Texas with a Jane Austen spin! I love Jane Austen spin-offs, but me recent encounters with them have left me disappointed. I hope this one is amazing, and reminds me of why I love books like this so much.

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith
This title gets me every time! It’s so adorable and looooooong. And a romance in an airport? YES. (I know. How have I not read this already?) I am really excited for it!

Divergent by Veronica Roth
Again, duh. Seriously? I can’t believe this one is still unread. Insurgent is coming out really soon also, so I need to have this read before that one hits the shelves. I want to be cool and read book #2 when everyone else is reading it!

Can You Keep a Secret? by Sophie Kinsella
I have not read a book of hers yet, and this sounds like so much fun! Another plane romance. I hate planes, but love where they take you!

Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally
Ok, another one I should have read months ago. I’ve heard amazing things about it, and it sounds so cute!

Are You Going to Kiss Me Now? by Sloane Tanen
“High school junior Francesca Manning is an outsider, an aspiring writer and secret devourer of celebrity gossip mags. A fake essay to “Seventeen” wins her the celeb-schmoozing opportunity of a lifetime, but after the plane crashes, she’s stranded on a desert island with five of the most clueless, self-involved headcases to escape Hollywood.”

Haha! Sounds interesting, and fun!

So, there you have it! Have you read any of these and loved/hated them? What’s on your list?


Top Ten Books that Take me Somewhere

Posted January 24, 2012 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 15 Comments

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Hey guys! I love traveling. LOVE it. And it’s during months like these that I get the travel bug. January is tough. It’s cold, we’ve got holiday hangovers, and the days are short and dark. It makes me want to go somewhere fun! So for this week’s freebie TTT, I’ve chosen to tell you about my favorite books set in places I’d love to escape to right now (or books with travelers I envy).

By Love or By Sea by Rachel Rager
This book takes place in a quaint little seaside town. It’s a very sweet, clean romance that I just loved. I want to visit this place.

Kiss and Tell by Suzanne Brockman
Here, we get to visit this adorable town in Florida called Sunrise Key. Picture flower boxes, white and blue-striped awnings, and picket fences. Everyone knows everyone. I want to find a bed and breakfast and live there for a little while!

Royal Target by Traci Hunter Ambramson
The heroine is a CIA agent, who goes to Venezuela on assignment and meets Prince Garrett. They hit it off, and her mission is terminated as she receives new orders to go to Meridia (a city on the coast of Italy) to pretend to be his fiancee as part of their security plan. Meridia sounds amazing, and Venezuela would be a wonderful place to visit as well!

My Heart Stood Still by Lynn Kurland 
Here, we get to go to an old castle in on the English moors. An American man falls in love with a Scottish woman from the past. It’s a gorgeous story, and the scenery sounds amazing.

From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler by E.L. Konigsburg
The bulk of this takes place in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. PLEASE let me go! I love the Met, and I could definitely use a trip there right now.

Me and Mr. Darcy by Alexandra Potter
The characters in this story go on the Jane Austen tour of England! I’d love to go on that trip.

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown
A “race through the cathedrals and castles of Europe”. I’ll take it!

Carrie Goes off the Map by Phillippa Ashley
The heroine goes on a road trip through the English countryside with a really sexy guy… I want to do that!

Caribbean Cruising by Rachel Hawthorne
Now, I didn’t like this book very much, but it takes place on cruise ships and there’s nothing I love more than reading on the sun-drenched deck of a ship floating around the Caribbean!

Sailing to Capri by Elizabeth Adler
This takes place on a yacht set for Capri, Italy! Can you tell I love water and Europe?

So! Which books have you read that involve traveling, or just awesome places? And be sure to link me to your Top Ten Tuesday posts! I want to see what you came up with. :) Thanks for stopping by!


Top 10 Books I’d Recommend to if You Don’t Like Contemporary

Posted January 17, 2012 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 14 Comments

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So, I love this week’s theme over at the Broke and the Bookish, because we were instructed to recommend books to someone who does not read _________. Meaning, all the lists this week are going to be different and will cater to many different kinds of readers. It’s so exciting, and I know I will love hopping around to everyone’s blogs!

I used to be one of those people who did not like contemporary novels. I always figured that if I treated reading as an escape, why should I read books that keep me right in the here and now? I should read to travel to a different time, not to hang out here in the world I’m trying to get away from! I’ve change my mind, though, and now I love them! So, it’s kind of like I’m recommending books to my past self. If I’m leaving anything out, let me know! I’m still a new lover of contemporary, so I don’t know all the good stuff yet!

Adult Contemporary Fiction:

Austenland by Shannon Hale
This was the first book I ever read that was completely contemporary. There’s a little romance, and the characters hearken back to regency times… but the whole thing takes place right now. It was a good way to slowly ease into contemporary, because it combined inklings of a genre I’ve always loved: historical fiction/romance.
(Read my review of Austenland.)

Carrie Goes Off The Map by Phillipa Ashley
I LOVED this book. The heroine is strong and independent. She’s been hurt by her now ex-fiance, and wants an escape from her normal life. So she grabs a friend-of-a-friend that she barely knows, and they go on a road trip around England, exploring the scenery, meeting new people, and getting to know each other. It’s a contemporary romance that allowed me the escape I always crave in a book.
(Read my review of Carrie.)

The Guardian by Nicholas Sparks
Nicholas knows how to create such strong, beautiful romances that you forget you’re reading about people just like you. Romances that strong have GOT to be otherworldly, but this book takes place right here, right now. It’s also probably the only book by him that won’t have you crying a TON. I cried a little during this one, but not much. It’s also got some suspense thrown in, which is fabulous.

Nocturne by Syrie James
This book has a vampire element to it, but the rest of the story is so realistic and so “right now” that you’re convinced vampires exist! The scenery is awesome. I love tying a bit of paranormal stuff!
(Enter my giveaway of this book right here!)

Pretty much anything by Mary Higgins Clark
Mary Higgins Clark writes the best, most exciting mysteries ever. They are amazing! She’s an auto-buy for me. I don’t even have to read the summary. I think all of them are contemporary, and I love, love, love the ride she takes her readers on.

Young Adult Contemporary Fiction:

Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle
This book is totally Christmasy, but you can read it anytime during the year. It’s composed of three short stories that are all connected. It’s full of blizzards and romance, and it’s one of my favorites!
(Read my review of Let it Snow.)

Anna and the French Kiss and Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins
Anna was my first YA contemporary, and I have been sold ever since. This is definitely the best book to start with if you’re interested in YA contemporary. I’ve been ripping bookstores apart ever since, hoping to find another novel like this one.

Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares by David Levithan and Rachel Cohn
This book is very light and fun, with a unique storyline. It’s magical, which had me completely sold. Plus, it takes place in NYC, which is definitely the best place in the USA, in my opinion.
(Read my review of Dash and Lily.)

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith
I’m cheating here because I haven’t read this yet (but I have been anticipating this for months)! All my friends love it, though, so I know I will. And seriously, who wouldn’t want to fall in love in an airport??

My Ridiculous, Romantic Obsessions by Becca Wilhite
This book is adorable, and all about this college freshman who is a romance novel junkie, and compares her own life to a novel. But then, when love comes her way she flips out and has no idea how to be anything less than awkward. I died of laughter so many times.


Top Ten Authors I Wish Would Write Another Book

Posted January 10, 2012 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 16 Comments

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This is a tricky one, because so many authors I love have their next book in the works already! I had to work really hard to think of authors and their upcoming books. If any of you know something I don’t about my following 10 picks, let me know so I can be excited!! I love hearing good bookish news!

Stephenie Meyer
know… I know… but seriously! She said she wanted to turn The Host into a trilogy (even gave us the next two titles), but we’ve heard nothing of any plans in years! Just because she’s been moved to the big screen, it doesn’t give her a license to not finish the story!

Lisa Mangum
She wrote a trilogy called The Hourglass Door that I loved more than the Twilight Saga. I LOVED IT. Her writing is amazing, and her characters are so strong. I wish she’d start something else.

Syrie James
I have so many wishes when it comes to Syrie’s books! I loved Nocturne. I want a sequel. And I loved Dracula My Love… I want more diaries/memoirs from people! Like Christine from Phantom of the Opera… I think a memoir/diary from her would be amazing! And I loved Forbidden, but a follow-up/sequel has not been announced. I need more stories!

Sara J. Henry
I loved Learning to Swim! This book is amazing, and a sequel could totally happen. Or just a new storyline completely. Great author, lesser known.

Lee Carroll
This is a husband/wife (Carol Goodman) team, and they wrote Black Swan Rising and The Watchtower. AMAZING. Their combination of his poetry and her mystery-writing skills. Oh man.

Stephanie Perkins
Yes, Isla is coming. I know! But we don’t know what’s happening after that! Stephanie Perkins must write more! She’s not allowed to stop until one of us dies.

Maggie Stiefvater
So… her stand-alone The Scorpio Races is out. What next?? I need more of her writing. It’s lovely, and boy can she tell a story! I don’t care what she does, but it has to be something.

Suzanne Collins
Ok, please just do something! You can’t quit with The Hunger Games! Suzanne introduced me to dystopia, and I will always love hers the best.

Becca Wilhite
Her ability to make me laugh in My Ridiculous, Romantic Obsessions was so refreshing. That book is definitely one of my favorites. It’s such a cute YA contemporary, and I want another just like it.

Alex Flinn
It’s been a while, and I haven’t heard of any new novels! I love her fairytale retellings.


Top Ten Favorite Books I Read in 2011

Posted December 27, 2011 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 5 Comments

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This was a majorly amazing year of reading for me! My goal may seem small to many of you, but I read more books this year than I have in years past (if you don’t count textbooks!). I read a lot of really great books this year, and picking 10 might be tricky for me! These are actually listed in the order I read them this year.

Nocturne, by Syrie James
LOVED this book. It’s all about a man and a woman who find themselves trapped in his remote home during a majorly huge snowstorm. He’s a vampire, and she’s freaking out. And then… the romance happens. Loved it, and Syrie’s writing is gorgeous.
Read my review and author interview here. (Over at The Broke and the Bookish)

Firelight, by Sophie Jordan
I really liked the new paranormal subject matter of this book: Dragons. A dragon falls in love with a dragon slayer, and all hell breaks loose. Now that Vanish, book #2, is out you don’t even have to fret about the cliffhanger at the end!
Read my review here. (Over at The Broke and the Bookish)

Delirium, by Lauren Oliver
Do I even need to explain myself here? Love is marked as a deadly disease, but who on Earth can avoid falling in love? Especially if you’re told not to… Pandemonium can’t come soon enough!

Illusions, by Aprilynne Pike
Oh, I do love fairies… This is book 3 of the 4-part series, but I actually loved it the most (so far)! It was magical, romantic, adventurous, and I got through it in 24 hours!That’s a sign of a good book for me. I never have enough time to read that much!
Read my review here. (Over at The Broke and the Bookish)

(Wow… I just realized I love books with one word in the title…)

The Forgotten Locket, by Lisa Mangum
This was the end of a trilogy that I pretty much love. It’s not very well known in the blogosphere, but I adore it. Basically, the Hourglass Door is a door that Da Vinci designed to travel through time. It can also take you to “the river” which is where you can actually see time and change it. Dante, the main guy… was Da Vinci’s apprentice, and came through the door 500 years later in the present day (as punishment for being framed as a traitor to his country, Italy) and falls in love. But the wrong people get a hold of this door, and come forward to cause major problems that Dante and his love interest, Abby, need to fix. All three books talk about this door, and their quest to save time before the world is destroyed. It’s very exciting. Lisa Mangum’s writing style is beautiful. I found myself re-reading passages because they were incredibly captivating. She described everything in such intricate detail and left me feeling like I was actually there.

Anna and the French Kiss, by Stephanie Perkins
Definitely my favorite read of the year, and one of my favorite books ever. This book got me hooked on contemporary romance, and now I just can’t get enough of it! Stephanie Perkins is my hero.

Learning to Swim, by Sara J. Henry
This book totally surprised me. I ended up really loving it. It was suspenseful, mysterious, exciting, and heartwarming. This woman is on a ferry headed home, when she sees a bundle thrown off the back of a passing ferry. For some reason, she is convinced the bundle is a child, and dives into the freezing water to save him. He’s only 6 years old, and he only speaks French. The story follows this woman as she takes the boy in, tries to find out who he is, grows really attached to him, and has some run-ins with the scary peeps who tried to kill him. It’s very exciting, and I could not put it down.
Read my review here. (At The Broke and the Bookish)

Lola and the Boy Next Door, by Stephanie Perkins
Again, Stephanie is my hero. Loved this book so much for the same reasons I loved Anna.

Carrie Goes Off The Map, by Philippa Ashley
This book was lovely for several uncommon reasons: 1. The characters are my age! I’m so used to reading about tweens, teenagers, and middle-aged adults. I rarely read about characters who are mid-to-late twenties. It was refreshing. 2. This is an amazing book to help you feel better after a nasty break-up. I wish I’d had this book a few years ago when I went through one of those. 3. Traveling!!!!! I love books where people travel, and what’s better than driving through England in a camper van named Dolly? Carrie’s road trip happens as a result of needing time to get over her cheating fiance. She brings along a guy she barely knows, but who also needs some time away. I’m sure you guessed that sparks fly!
Read my review here.

Let It Snow: Three Holiday Romances, by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle
I love the three intertwined Christmas romances in this book. Maureen and John write amazingly perfect and hysterical stories. Lauren’s disappointed me, but not enough to make me love this book any less. It’s pure magic.
Read my review here.


Top Ten Childhood Faves

Posted December 6, 2011 by Jana in Top Ten Tuesday / 11 Comments

TTT

This topic is a little tricky for me! When I was a younger, I pretty much hated reading. I went to a school that made reading really, really suck. They’d give us a reading schedule and packets and packets of in-depth questions to answer as we went. And then they tested us, and made us write essays. I could not just read for enjoyment. I had to memorize the questions and then look for the answers as I read. It was awful. I loved reading as a very young girl, but once I got into grades 4-6ish, I quit unless I was required to read for a grade. It was not until my early college years that I re-discovered my love of reading. And you’re going to laugh when you find out how! I was in a color theory class, and we were assigned to bring in products that utilized color, making them more appealing to the average passerby. A guy brought in Twilight, by Stephenie Meyer. He said his wife was obsessed with this new book series about vampires. Then he went on to talk about how the cover is a very effective use of color and symbolism. When I ran across that cover again, I decided to try it. A new reader was born!

Anyway, a lot of my childhood faves are picture books, mixed in with a few middle-grade/young adult that I either enjoyed in school, or stumbled across in my school’s library while looking for books to do reports on or to supplement research papers. It’s kind of funny that I ended up as a book reviewer, because now I essentially read and analyze books… and write an “essay” on it. It’s my choice, though, so I guess that makes it ok! So, here we go!

Henry the Duck series, by Robert Quackenbush
This series features 4-6 books about a duck named Henry who is always getting himself into trouble. He floods his house, or takes on too many babysitting jobs. It’s pretty hilarious, and the pictures are adorable. I recently bought used copies of all of them so I would have my own set when I have children of my own. My mom would kill me if I took the copies I read. She’s saving them for her grandkids!

Sherlock Chick series, by Robert Quackenbush
This series was written by the same guy as Henry the Duck. These books are all about a little chick who dresses like Sherlock Holmes and solves random mysteries, like what’s making the sound in the barn… or where the gargantuan Easter egg went. Again, very cute. I bought these as well.

The Borrowers, by Mary Norton
I read this in school, and really enjoyed reading about a small family that lives in a really big home, all the while hiding from the owners and stealing their food and odds and ends around the house. I always envisioned having my own tiny family living in my house. I looked for them often, and I’m pretty sure I found evidence that the were there!

From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, by E.L. Konigsburg
Any book that allows children to live in the Metropolitan Museum of Art is my kind of book. I love that museum, and can totally see why it would be a fun place to live.

Hatchet, by Gary Paulsen
I saw this book as being so incredibly adventurous. I’d never heard of a plane crash survivor living on his own on a deserted island before, and thought it was so cool! The idea is no longer groundbreaking, as plenty other novelists and tv show/movie producers have worn it out. I loved reading about the adventures, and how this boy was able to survive for so long.

Full House Stephanie series and Full House Michelle series by a whole bunch of different people
I loved Full House as a child, so when my mom gave me some of these books in desperate hope to re-kindle my love of reading, I obliged. I rembeber feeling so accomplished after finishing one of them! Haha.

The Hound of the Baskervilles, by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
This book scared the crap out of me, and I found it really hard to understand. However, the mystery and creepiness of the story really drew me in. This is the book that made me decide I love mysteries.

Nancy Drew series, by Carolyn Keene
After discovering I loved mysteries, Nancy Drew was the next logical step. I loved this series.

Catherine and the Pirate, by Karen Hawkins (And all of the other books in this series.)
I loved this book so much! I found it in my school’s library (yes, my school library had romance novels!?!?!). It’s a very tame middle-grade romance on the high seas. It was the very first pirate romance I ever read, and I’ve been addicted ever since. This book is one of an entire line of young adult romance, and all of them are now out of print. Luckily I bought all of them before they were discontinued!

I think I’m going to have to stop with 9! I’m so sad that I missed out on so many years of reading as a child, but I got to read a lot of fun middle-grade books with some of my reading students. It all evens out in the end, and it’s never too late to catch up! :) What were some of your childhood favorites? What did I miss?

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