Sunday, 30 September 2012

Tally Youngblood's Literary Mix Tape

I know what you're thinking. When are these library challenges going to end? Well, they're still coming! This next challenge was to make a literary mix tape of songs you might find on a character's iPod, or songs that represent the novel or character. I chose Tally Youngblood through the first three books of the Uglies series (Uglies, Pretties, Specials). Here it is. :)

Thursday, 27 September 2012

The Casual Vacancy!!!!!!!

Yep, that's right! The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling is OUT!!!! Naturally being an avid lover of the Harry Potter series, when I heard about the Casual Vacancy (and it's release date), I was thrilled! As soon as I could, I went to the bookstore to get my hands on a copy. I was really hoping it wouldn't be sold out! Well I really didn't need to have that worry! Red and yellow jumped out at me from every shelf, as well as signs reading "The Most Anticipated Book of the Year". I read the synopsis on the front flap, though I had already read it online. Opening the first page of the 503 page hardcover novel, I read the definition of a casual vacancy, and then proceeded to read the first sentence. "Barry Fairbrother did not want to go out to dinner." I am very interested to continue reading, as I am not sure at all what to expect. I will continue to update you as I read on my liking of her new, and first, adult book.


New note: I have decided that I will not be reading this for a while. I think it will be the type of book I really want to devote my time to and I'm not sure if I really want to do that yet.

Wednesday, 19 September 2012

My Favourite Books

Sounds pretty boring... but there's a twist. Yet again a library challenge, this one is to write out your favourite books in code. I chose morse code, so if you don't know how to read it, look it up! So test out your ninjaa (yes, I spell it with two a's) and crack the code.

My Bookfession

Very, very true. 

Am I not the only one who does this?

Non-Fiction Review

No, I am still not done with library challenges. Just when you thought they were over... This one was to do a book review or simple reflection on any piece of non-fiction. Not having read many non-fiction books, I chose one I read at the end of last year that I quite thoroughly enjoyed. Read on to find out more! :)
Heaven is For Real by Todd Burpo with Lynn Vincent
    I admit, I am not really one for non-fiction books. I personally prefer something that allows me to… imagine more. However, this was a book I really enjoyed.
    “Heaven is for Real” told the story of four-year-old Colten Burpo, who became fatally sick with a burst appendix. The doctors said it was likely he was going to die. No one really had much hope left. Suddenly, he miraculously started to get better, and began recounting to his parents everything he experienced when he “died” and went to heaven and came back again.  
    This was a very thought-provoking read. It made me think about heaven, and all the amazing things Colten was able to remember and recount. He even told his parents about seeing family members (that he had never seen before in his life) that had long since passed away in heaven, and was able to describe them exactly. It truly is an incredible story, and I would recommend it to anyone who is interested in this type of a book.

*Please note that this is not a formal book review. It is more of a reflection, and does not follow the format of a book review*

Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Insurgent- Book Review

So, if you saw my previous post you'll know that I recently finished reading Insurgent by Veronica Roth, which is the sequel to Divergent. You'll also know that I was pretty crazy about it. So here is my book review to prove to you that I'm NOT crazy, because the book is just so good!

Insurgent by Veronica Roth
Sequel to Divergent
525 pages
**** */* (four and a half stars) 

“We both have war inside us. Sometimes it keeps us alive. Sometimes it threatens to destroy us.” This dystopian action novel takes places in a future society where it's inhabitants are bound to the values of their faction. In light of this, a bitter rebellion is rising against the Erudite faction. Fuelled by the fury from the barbaric elimination of the Abnegation, the remaining factions plot against the leaders of the disastrous war. In the middle of all the secrets and conflict is Tris Prior, a sixteen-year-old girl with courage, and maybe too much strong-will. Forced to face her divergence, Tris fights against the city itself to disclose the information that could revolutionize the new world... or destroy it. 
This book was so packed with action and suspense that I couldn't put it down, even when I wanted to! Roth did a masterful job of keeping her characters real. I felt Tris's pain when she grieved over the losses, and my heart ached when my favourite characters lost their lives in the epic struggle. I understood Tris and her choices and felt like her emotions were believable.  And though the book contains a very large amount of violence (the loss of lives I admit is high), there wasn’t excess gore, which I liked. Because of the choices and realizations Tris makes near the end of the book, I discovered the theme is appreciating those you love, and learning to value your own life. The only thing I didn't like was the fact that Roth never explained how the society came to be, and how the factions were initially developed. That being said, I am hoping this will be explained in the third book of the trilogy. I highly recommend this book to action lovers who are 13 and over, due to inappropriate content and violence. 

*Please check out my Insurgent post! I have some information regarding the titles of the books.

Saturday, 15 September 2012

My Harry Potter Collection

All my beloved books, as well as my magical alarm clock and beautiful wand hand-carved by a good friend of mine. Some of my most sacred possessions. :)

Friday, 14 September 2012

Harry Potter Photobomb

Another challenge for the library event I participated in was to take a picture off the internet and photobomb it in some way to either make it a public library ad, or to combine two or more pictures from a book or movie. I chose to make the library ad with my favourite series, Harry Potter. Here is what I managed to do on fireworks and iPhoto.

Harry Potter photo cred. to

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Lord of the Rings

Hello! I am again writing to speak about my current book- The Fellowship of the Ring. Though I am not very far yet (page. 97), I still have a few things to reflect on.

The first thing is the chapter titles. I love it when the chapter name is suspenseful, funny, or just plain odd, and allows me to ponder what the chapter might be about, or makes me laugh. The Lord of the Rings chapters are definitely like that. Here are some examples of many that I really enjoyed.

Three is Company
A Short-Cut to Mushrooms
A Conspiracy Unmasked
And many more!

First of all let me tell you that this is a Warning: Spoiler Alert! This means that if you don't want plot details revealed to you, please look no further until I inform you that the alert is over. So let's begin! In the book, Frodo and his companions, Sam and Pippin, are on a journey to keep the Ring of Power from the Dark Lord's evil clutches. Along the way, they are constantly tracked by the Dark Lord's suspicious servants: Big Folk dressed all in black with cloaks wrapped around them riding on big, dark horses. So here I am going to make an inference. Who do I think these strange henchmen are? I have a few ideas. One, they could be creatures similar to the strange, snakelike-creature, Gollum, in The Hobbit. Or, they could be protectors of the rings that are closer to spirits than actual human beings. But who knows? They really could be anything.

*Spoiler Alert Over*

I will be adding to this post, so keep checking back for updates!

Saturday, 8 September 2012

Lord of the Rings Connections

As you may know, I am currently reading the great Lord of the Rings by J.R.R Tolkien. Though I am not very far yet, I have already began to make connections between the novel and what we are currently learning about: the Renaissance.

In the book, Bilbo Baggins, now an elderly hobbit, owns Bag End and possess much riches. Bilbo's relatives, the Sackville-Bagginses, have been in line for the property, and will do anything to get it, but are angry when Frodo appears on the scene, and therefore becomes the heir. Angry, the Sackville-Bagginses storm away, vowing hatred on Bilbo forever.

Now, how might this connect to the Renaissance? Well, the Sackville-Bagginses remind me of the Albizzi family in the sense that they both are trying to steal the other group's money and power (either Bilbo's or the Medici's). It's the same kind of idea, though obviously not to the same extent in the Lord of the Rings as the Renaissance. This thought immediately came to mind when I was reading. It seems that I have been using some "talking to the text" strategies all along! :P

Keep checking this post for updates as I continue reading!

Friday, 7 September 2012

Book in a Tweet

This library challenge was to summarize an entire book in the form of a tweet- just 140 characters! Being prone to over explaining and detailing, this was definitely one of the most difficult challenges for me. It took quite a few revisions to get it down to the maximum characters, but I managed. I chose to do the tweet for Divergent by Veronica Roth (can you tell that I love this series yet?). This is what I ended up coming up with.

"Tris lives in a world where your choice of faction can change your life. The different values of the groups spur on a rebellion and Tris must accept her divergence."

The Literary Olympics are here!

This time the activity from my library was to complete 1- 4 events of the Literary Olympics! The following are the ones I chose.
  • Marathon: Read a long book
  • Sprint: Read a short book or novella
  • Relay Race: Read a book, then pass it on to a friend, who passes it on to another friend, etc. 

1. Marathon
    For the Literary Olympics, I chose to read the Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan. It is the second book in the Heroes of Olympus series, the first one being The Lost Hero. The book totals to 513 pages (excluding the glossary). It took me 6 hours to read the book, spanned over the course of 3 days. I would classify it as a fantasy/myth and legend/adventure book.
    I really enjoyed this book because it was packed with action. Every second was full of mystery and adventure at every turn. I also really enjoy learning about the Greek and Roman gods and goddesses, so this book was interesting to me. The only thing that I didn't like as much is that sometimes there was so much mystery and so much going on that it was a little overwhelming, and hard to comprehend. The characters could also be more developed, so we learn about them and the plot. 
    All in all, I definitely recommend this book. If you're looking for an action-filled novel, choose this one! 

2. Sprint
    For the Literary Olympics Sprint, I read The Secret War by Jill Atkins. It is 138 pages, and I read it in about an hour and a half. 
    This very good book is about a girl named Sophie living in France during World War II. I liked this book because it made history interesting and enjoyable. It was kept consistently concise and engaging, and was arranged in short diary entries, which kept it understandable and easy to comprehend. Combine some action and suspense and you've got a great short novel! I would recommend this book to anyone who likes historical fiction. Enjoy! :)

3. Relay Race
    Two of my friends and I concluded on a book we were all interested in reading: Uglies, by Scott Westerfeld. I've been wanting to read this book for some time now. 
    After waiting on the hold list for about a week, I went to the library to pick up my book, nearly hopping up and down. I was so excited to read this book! When I got home, I started reading. 
    I sped through the book, reading Part 1 one day, Part 2 the next day, and reading Part 3 in a few days (things got a little more busy). I couldn't put it down! Before I knew it, I was turning the last page, leaving me with a truly remarkable cliff-hanger. 
    "My name is Tally Youngblood. Make me pretty." 
    I was thrilled when the next "competitor" got her hands on the book, hoping she would enjoy it as much as I did. And she did. And so did the third "competitor". And, in fact, I finished the series and was somewhat disappointed. Why did the series have to end? 

Thursday, 6 September 2012


Again with my local library, this challenge was all about the current craze that's taking the book world by storm: dystopia. Being a dystopia fan, I immediately was intrigued by the questions the challenge required you to answer. Here is my views on the futuristic, end-of-the-world genre. 

Do you like dystopia? Why or why not?
I LOVE dystopia!!! It is one of my favourite genres. I enjoy reading dystopia because it makes you think about so many things. Dystopic books are very thought-provoking, and provide interesting scenarios that make you want to know more. All the dystopian books I have read are very engaging because they are filled with action, and make you really think. When I’m reading dystopia books, I find myself asking questions, making inferences, and making connections to our society today.

Of all of the dystopic books you have read, which 'end of the world' scenario do you think is the most realistic?
I'm going to have to go with Uglies, by Scott Westerfeld. Somehow it doesn't surprise me that humans (or the Rusties) would be the ones to destroy our own world. In the book, humans create a nano that results in oil being destroyed when coming into contact with oxygen. Of course, after that it was complete chaos, and our world was destroyed. If you think about the human race, and our desire and need to keep revolutionizing everything, as well as our constant evolution in science and technology, it is actually likely that this scenario could be plausible.

Why do you think people are obsessed with the end of the world?
I think people are obsessed with the end-of-the-world because so many end of the world predictions are going on right now. With the Mayan calendar predicting we’re going to die at the end of this year, it is not surprising that there is a lot of hype about dystopia. Because of the way human nature is, I think people are so intrigued because it could happen at any time. Plus, it's an interesting concept. Think about it: what would actually happen if the world did end?

What is your favourite dystopia novel?
I am planning on reading many more dystopic novels (Matched, Blood Red Road, the Maze Runner, and more!), but the book I enjoyed most was the Uglies quartet by Scott Westerfeld. I thoroughly enjoyed all the books (unlike the Hunger Games where Mockingjay ruined the entire series), and Scott Westerfeld did an excellent job of detailing how their society came to be. I also really enjoyed the Hunger Games series and Divergent/Insurgent. I can’t wait to read more! 

Tuesday, 4 September 2012

Ginny Weasley

Hey everyone! Yet again, I am posting a library challenge. These were two separate challenges, but I have put them both in this post. So! The first challenge was choosing an alternate career for your favourite character. I think you can infer from the title of this post who I chose.

If I had to choose one favourite character, it would be Ginny Weasley from Harry Potter. So, my alternate career for Ginny is a police officer. I say this because her curious, fiery, determined mindset would be perfect for the job. It's a career that would keep her constantly on the move, so she would have many adventures and always be in the action. She is hard as nails, therefore making her tough to break if she were a police officer. And, who knows, if she and Harry were in our world, perhaps she would meet Harry as a police officer too! 

The next challenge was to relate to a character. Originally, when I read the books, I also compared myself to Hermione. Now, however, I am finding that I see much of myself in Ginny. Here's why...

I really relate to Ginny Weasley in Harry Potter. We relate because of many of our values and traits. We are both very outspoken and opinionated, as well as fiery and stubborn. We are both good students who put a lot of effort into their work. I relate to Ginny also in the fact that I enjoy playing (muggle) quidditch. I don't let people change my mind, and stick to my beliefs, like Ginny. We both can also be funny at times. Ginny and I are both curious, adventurous, determined, and independent individuals, which make us so similar. Though are appearance is very different, that doesn't mean that our qualities and morals are unalike. 

Hope you enjoyed it! ;)