Adult, Books, Musings

Try a Chapter Tag

I don’t know if this tag has made its way to the blogging community (probably because I am super late to be posting this here … HA!) but the premise is simple.  Pick some books from your shelves that have been sitting unread and read the first chapter.

This is a great tag for people in reading slumps or who are so excited about too many books and need to pick one… as long as you pick one and don’t keep cycling books chapter by chapter.

 

I tried to step my editing game up a bit with this one.  I have been trying to push myself not only here but in all aspects of my life.  I am tired of being sad and mopey, it is time to stand tall and be proud of the things that I do.

Adult, Books

Betwixt the Books Recommends: Horror!

When I say Betwixt the Books, I mean me because Gretchen does not read horror and therefor would have 0 books to talk to you guys about.  I read aloud a mildly spoopy book about zombies and she was too freaked out.  So, yeah, here I am to tell you where you should start in horror, where I started and what I love when it comes to Horror!

 

That’s all I have for you guys today!  I will have a comic review for you tomorrow and hopefully later in the week there will be a Wrap Up with Gretchen.  This is the final video that I was scheduled to do alone.  If everything works out we will have our precious back!

Adult, Books

A Blind Date with a Book!

I ordered a book from Brittany’s new etsy shop: https://www.etsy.com/shop/UnderTheRadarBooks

She sells books wrapped in pretty brown paper and tied up with string.  A label on the front tells you a little about the book!  She uses recycled materials and used books so you can love a book that has been abandoned and have a little fun.

If you are worried about getting something you won’t like or have already read, don’t worry because she asks for your goodreads account or a genre of book you would prefer before hand to get a feel at your reading tastes.  Every single person I have seen opening their books have loved them, even if they had never heard of them before!

Here’s my book and reaction!

I actually will have a Flicks review for you guys tomorrow so get ready for that~  All of the things this week.  Productivity hoooo!

Adult, Books

The Girl on the Train Book Review

Pop Sugar Reading Challenge Update: 18/40
A Book That’s Becoming a Movie this Year

*warning* This might be a review that has unpopular opinions.  You have been warned.

I decided to do my reviews this week as videos so that I can work on my ability to talk about books on video.  I feel like I never say anything helpful at all about books so I’m working on it.

In any case let’s watch this review:

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Title: The Girl on the Train
Author: Paula Hawkins
Publisher: Riverhead Books
Page #: 325
Genre: Thriller, Urban Noir


I hope you guys enjoyed and I will be back on Friday with a lighter more positive review so look forward to that!

Adult, Books

Uncommon Bodies Anthology ARC Review

I received this book from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for my honest review!

This book is already published if you want to read it by all means pick up a copy!

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Title: Uncommon Bodies
Author: Anthology (full list of authors on Goodreads)
Publisher: Fighting Monkey Press
Page #: 300
Genre: Short Story Collection

I spent a long time trying to figure out how I would review this collection. It is difficult enough to review a collection of short stories written by one author, but when there are so many people writing so many pieces the challenge becomes ever greater. I feel as if that is the beauty of this anthology though. There are so many different stories in it. Some of them I was confused by, others I was awed. Some terrified me and others had me sighing at the adorable protagonist and their love interest. All of these things are held in one book and I was dumbfounded as to how I could sum it all up, and perhaps I can’t.

I’m not going to go through all 20 stories, it would take me forever and I doubt anyone would want to read that so I will do my best to discuss what I think was done really well here, and what I think could have been improved upon.

As far as the collection as a whole goes, I definitely think that it had a great breadth of pieces. I also appreciated how many of the pieces were incredibly inclusive not only because of its seamless discussion of common ailment, disfigurements, and disabilities along side mythical or magical creatures, but its inclusion of different sexualities. I actually thought the relation of physical “deformity” with non-hetero-normative sexuality identification incredibly interesting and if I could go into more detail without spoiling you I would. It is perhaps something I will write a paper on at some point in my life.

I am not sure, however, whether or not I liked the order in which these stories were curated. The breadth of the tones and genres in here is astounding for sure but it was a little difficult for me to go from a romantic story to a horror story to a poem to something else entirely. While I feel like it does allow the book to keep the stories separate from each other it is also a little jarring.

If you want to know some of my favorite stories in the bunch then I would say that the opening and closing stories, We is We by Michael Harris Cohen and Scars: First Session by Jordanne Fuller were incredibly poignant. I think they book end this collection incredibly well. The first was moving in its portrayal of the duality of opinions in conjoined twins. Whether or not it is better to be a spectacle behind the glass or experience the real world. The latter was an incredible story about over coming years of mental and physical abuse. I also want to shout out Undead Cyborg Girl by Kim Wells for its ability to make me laugh and awe on cue.

Stories that I found uncomfortable were mainly only uncomfortable because they were not my preferred style of story. All The Devils by Keira Michelle Telford read a bit like Jack the Ripper fanfiction to me, not only because of its erotic overtones, but because the writing wasn’t pushed as far as I thought some of the other stories were, and Reserved by SM Johnson was equally uncomfortable but only because of the over-sexualization to the point of fetishization of disability. Now I don’t have a disability and I cannot say whether these stories accurately or inaccurately portray such fetishization because of this, but it made me uncomfortable and I would put that forward as my only grievance.

The stories were interesting enough to keep me engaged. I was able to read two or three a day and finish it within a week. If you have an interest in magical realism there is plenty of that in here for you, if you have an interest in connections between perceived deformity and assumed deformity I think this also has some interesting comments.

Overall I really enjoyed the collection and would recommend it to you all if you haven’t already to look into it!

Adult, Books

Night Film by Marisha Pessl Review

Pop Sugar Reading Challenge Update: 1/40 completed

The First Book You See in a Bookstore

This is my first video review in a long time guys and I worked really hard on it.  Something a little different.  It is short and sweet and tells you everything you need to know, everything that I thought was wonderful.  I know this book came out a while ago but I just got to it.  If you have already read it I would love to discuss what you thought of it in the comments below!

For those of you who follow the book club we are having a live show tomorrow afternoon so look forward to that.  It is going to be a fun one.  (I have feelings)  Talk to you guys then!  I hope you have a good weekend!

Adult, Books

This Book is Full of Spiders by David Wong Book Review

You remember when I wrote book reviews, me too.  Let’s do that again.

Title: This Book is Full of Spiders
Author: David Wong (pseudonym of Jason Pargin)
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press
Page #: 406
Genre: Horror, Humor, Science Fiction

This is the Sequel to John Dies at the End.  Actually, the last legit review that I posted was Taylor’s take on the first book in this series or if you want my opinion from earlier this year you can read that as well.

As far as sequels go I think that this definitely keeps the tone of the first book, it is equally terrifying and hysterical.  However as far as structure goes this book is completely different.  Where as the first book was more or less chronological you knew that the story was progressing linearly even if it was more like two lines that you jump back and forth between you had no idea what was going to happen plot wise.  Events were happening left and right that kept you feeling completely overwhelmed much like the characters were.  In this novel the events are very straight forward and make sense but the timeline of the novel is all kinds of messed up.

You jump forward and back in time to meet with different characters as they travel which I think is how you are able to get a handle on what is going to happen next in the story.  There is a very clear trajectory here you just might not read it in order per say.  That isn’t to say that you read something that happens days earlier, its more a few hours but still enough to give you a handle on what is going to happen while keeping you slightly off balance.

I think that part of the charm of these books are the characters.  They are so delightfully flawed.  These are not heroes, they aren’t really antiheroes, they are just normal guys who have been given some sort of higher purpose and they muck up so much that you kind of watch all of these events occurring with a sense of dread settling into your stomach the entire time.  They swear and fail and freak out in all the right ways.

It somehow manages to feel completely plausible while being completely outrageous and I sort of love it.

Plot wise you wouldn’t necessarily have to have read the first in the series because it isn’t so much a continuation of a line of events as another snap shot in David and John’s lives.  However I think that both are outstanding books and should be given a chance.  If you think the structure of this book is more to your liking then by all means read it first.

There will apparently be another installment in this series next year some time and I honestly can’t wait.  While these books will never make it into the literary cannon of classics I think that they have a firm place among the cult classics.  One of the best contemporary series I have read.  Go pick up these books if you haven’t already.  Seriously!  Go do it!