Wednesday, December 26, 2012

My Selection for Waiting on Wednesday: POISON by Bridget Zinn

It's been a while since I've done a Waiting on Wednesday post. This was started by Jill at Breaking the Spine and it's a great way to learn about new books coming out--or just great ones you can't wait to get your hands on. My selection this week is kind of special. POISON by Bridget Zinn is a long awaited read. I feel a personal connection to this book. Bridget died of colon cancer in May 2011. I contributed to an auction to help her pay her medical bills. She was always so upbeat and for a while it really looked like she was going to make it...and then she didn't. It saddens me that she isn't around to see her hard work come to fruition, but I'm glad she left a part of herself behind to share with all of us who love to read. Let's check out the description...

Sixteen-year-old Kyra, a highly-skilled potions master, is the only one who knows her kingdom is on the verge of destruction—which means she’s the only one who can save it. Faced with no other choice, Kyra decides to do what she does best: poison the kingdom’s future ruler, who also happens to be her former best friend.
But, for the first time ever, her poisoned dart…misses.
Now a fugitive instead of a hero, Kyra is caught in a game of hide-and-seek with the king’s army and her potioner ex-boyfriend, Hal. At least she’s not alone. She’s armed with her vital potions, a too-cute pig, and Fred, the charming adventurer she can’t stop thinking about. Kyra is determined to get herself a second chance (at murder), but will she be able to find and defeat the princess before Hal and the army find her?

Kyra is not your typical murderer, and she’s certainly no damsel-in-distress—she's the lovable and quick-witted hero of this romantic novel that has all the right ingredients to make teen girls swoon.

This story sounds so fresh. I'm really looking forward to reading it. A very cute pig?!? Now that's something you don't see in many YA romances! Can't wait to see how that plays out.

I hope you'll join me in reading POISON and giving Bridget's book a real shot at doing well.

POISON will be released March 12, 2013 by Disney-Hyperion.

Toodles to all my fellow book lovers....

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Book Review: Days of Blood and Starlight by Laini Taylor

Book Two
If you haven't read the first book in this series, Daughter of Smoke and Bone, I suggest you get on it--immediately! The writing is poetic, lyrical; the story--awesome! It's a fresh, original premise, filled with fantastical creatures and a intense love story that will leave you breathless trying to figure out how it's all going to come together.

The second book, Days of Blood and Starlight was a total surprise. First check out the description...

Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love and dared to imagine a world free of bloodshed and war.

This is not that world.

Art student and monster's apprentice Karou, finally has the answers she has always sought. She knows who she is--and what she is. But with this knowledge comes another truth she would give anything to undo: She loved the enemy and he betrayed her, and a world suffered for it.

In this stunning sequel to the highly acclaimed Daughter of Smoke & Bone, Karou must decide how far she'll go to avenge her people. It's filled with heartbreak and beauty, secrets and impossible choices.

While Karou and her allies build a monstrous army in a land of dust and starlight, Akiva wages a different sort of battle: a battle for redemption. For hope.

But can any hope be salvaged from the ashes of their broken dream?
I was expecting a continuation of the love story essentially, but that's not what happened. This is about about war! It's not entitled Days of Blood and Starlight for nothing--emphasis on the blood! Hold your horses.  Don't let that scare you. I don't mean that the story is filled with unspeakable gore. Nothing could be further from the truth. But Karou has been betrayed and she's not taking it. She's intent on revenge and making the guilty parties pay--in the only way she knows how. I don't want to spoil your discovery, so you'll have to read the novel to learn how she does it...he he he....

Book One
As I implied earlier, the author took the story in a completely different direction--and I love it. She wrote the chapters from the perspectives of different characters beyond the two lovers, Karou and Akiva. This provides an opportunity to get to know old favorites better and meet new ones. I really enjoyed learning more about some of the unusual creatures in the story and getting a more intimate view of them--how they think, what they feel...The entire world of this story was fleshed out more. One is drawn into and immersed in it.

I'm already chomping at the bit to read the next book...*sigh*...I don't think Taylor is finished writing it yet...*double sigh*...but, I have something great to look forward to! I have a friend that I'm sending this book to as a gift. I gifted her the first book in the series now she's as hooked as I am, including her All three are waiting for me to get it into their hands.

Make sure you don't miss out. I think it's been optioned for a movie. I don't know how they're going to get all these intricate plot points on the screen. Read it now! You won't regret it.

Toodles, ya'll

Sunday, December 9, 2012

I Celebrate the Life of a Beautiful Girl...

Sweetie sitting on my lap
I have a heavy heart today, but I'm fighting against it! The word of God says, "Rejoice in the Lord  always, and again I say, Rejoice." (Philippians 4:4) Tomorrow, December 10, will make a year that I lost my beautiful Sweetie. Her death remains a mystery to me as I don't really know what happened. She was found at the back door with mysterious wounds. I try not to think about it because it hurts me terribly.

Sweetie was such a gentle cat, the thought of her coming to harm brings me to tears. She was such a delight. I've decided to think of the good times with her and thank God that she was such a joy in our home for almost 13 years. We knew her from the day she was born and she never failed to bring us much laughter, fun and happiness.

Waiting for me to get out of the car.
I've lit a candle in her memory as a reminder of the wonderful light she was in our lives. I'll end this post with the words of my dear friend, Cheri. I've known Cheri since we were 11 years old. She wrote this to me a few days after Sweetie's death. They're perfect and capture exactly how I felt then and now:

"May God's Holy Spirit give you comfort and may you have cheer as you remember all the fond memories and times of bliss that your cat daughter gave you."

Amen, to that.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Movie Review: Anna Karenina

I never read the book, so I had no idea what this movie was about beyond a very basic knowledge that it was a love story of some sort. I loved the way it looked in the movie preview, so I decided to check it out.

For those of you who may be as clueless about the story as I was, Anna Karenina is married to a dutiful, but dull husband. She has an affair with the handsome Count Vronsky and tragedy ensues.

As soon as the movie came on the screen, I was confused. It started like a play on the stage and I didn't get it. I didn't know what was going on. As time progressed, it got better. I really began to get into the story, but those play-like elements continued to pop up and I found them distracting. They were interesting at times, but they kind of pulled me out of the story.

The story is an interesting contrast of the morals of the time and what they are today. A woman having an affair pretty much guaranteed the end of a life of any respectability. Today, sex without marriage is of little consequence to many.

The visuals of this film are stunning. That alone is worth the price of admission. Those play-like elements aside, I enjoyed this movie. Now I'm interested in reading the book...oh, and by the way, this is the first time I noticed that Keira Knightly has some rather crooked teeth! Lol...

Toodles, ya'll