Wednesday, June 30, 2010

June Wrap-Up

Books Read:

The Maze Runner 

Nancy Drew Finished:

The Clue in the Old Album
The Ghost of Blackwood Hall
The Clue of the Leaning Chimney
The Secret of the Wooden Lady
The Clue of the Black Keys

Based on a Book Movie Reviews:

Howl's Moving Castle

Challenges Completed:

Read the Book, See the Movie Challenge (8/8)
What's in a Name Challenge 3 (6/6)

Favorite book this month: Howl's Moving Castle.  I know it is an oldie but it is still one of the best books I've read.  Favorite audio book: Well, there were only two and one was an HP so I'll just leave it at that.
How was your June?

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Teaser Tuesdays - Insatiable

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along!
Grab your current read
Open to a random page

Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

But she thought she remembered something about ... oh, something awful.  Why hadn't she Googled Romania really fast when she was in the apartment?

 p. 128 Insatiable Meg Cabot

To check out more quotes, visit my Tumblr at Never Fully Dressed.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Weekly Round-Up 6/28

Weekly Round-Up is my wrap-up of last week's activities and includes what I'm reading this week, reviews I've posted, books in the mail and anything else of interest plus From the Library, my weekly listing of what I've checked out from the library.
This week I'm reading Sleepless (Balog), Nocturne (Harkrader), and Mackenzie Blue (Wells).   I'm listening to Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Rowling) and The Girl with the Mermaid Hair (Ephron).

Since last week I've read Angel Star (Murgia), Insatiable (Cabot) and The Clue of the Black Keys (Keene).

Other Reviews posted:
Donut Days (Zielin)
The Maze Runner (Dashner)

{A little plug for my sister-in-law's bridal blog: The Secret Life of a Bride-to-Be.  She's writing about her quest to achieve 55 things before her wedding, but she recently reviewed a bridal book so I think she's going to do a little more of that.}

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sleuthing Sundays - Nancy Drew 28

The Clue of the Black Keys (Nancy Drew Mystery Stories #28)
"I'm afraid a good detective has to snoop," Nancy said.  p. 70
Nancy runs into a mystery straight off a plane trip.  Coming back to River Heights, she is meet by a handsome young professor who has a mystery for her.  Quick like a bunny, Nancy dives head first into a mystery involving a missing professor and some artifacts that are said to open a treasure.  But danger is ahead for the young sleuth as the villains try to outsmart her in a race for the treasure!

HA! For once, Nancy's dad doesn't foot the bill when she decides she wants to go gallivanting off, but, of course, Nancy is super smart and finds a way.  Also she needs to get a CAT scan because she gets hit on the head a lot.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Popular Picture Books (at my house)

I thought I'd share some of the favorite picture books that we've been reading lately.  My 3 year old son loves to be read to before bed and it has become part of his nighttime ritual.

What are some favorite books at your house?

Class Two at the Zoo by Julia Jarman, illustrations by Lynne Chapman
Class Two goes on a field trip to the zoo and get more than they bargained for when an anaconda decides to make a meal of them.  This is the one we are reading every single night.  I think he likes it because of all the zoo animals and he pretends to be the anaconda and eats every one and I get really expressive.

I Love You Through and Through by Bernadette Rossetti-Shustak, illustrated by Caroline Jayne Church
Very cute book about a boy expressing love for his teddy that has grown with us over the past couple of years.  My son likes it when I point out his hair and his eyes, etc.

Go Dogs Go by P.D. Eastman
This was my husband's favorite book growing up and now the little man loves it when his daddy reads it to him.  My husband does a great read on this one and it is so cute to see them.

How Do Dinosaurs ...? by Jane Yolen, illustrated by Mark Teague
I'm not sure which one to pick as favorite.  We read them all and my child loves them.  Definitely hitting the beginning of his dinosaur phase.  We own a few and usually get the rest from the library.  It's such a fun way to import these "lessons" without being overly preachy.

Goodnight NOLA by Cornell P. Landry, illustrated by Louis J. Schmitt
In the same vein as Goodnight Moon (another favorite), but specifically about New Orleans.  I love this book!  It is so cool to have Louisiana books and, so when I saw this, I snatched it up immediately.

Winner! The More You Ignore Me

And the winner of my ARC of The More You Ignore Me is


I will e-mailed you for your address!
Thanks everyone who entered!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Angel Star

Teagan is an outcast at her school with only one friend.  But when the mysterious and beautiful Garreth starts at her school, she soon becomes wrapped in a fight between the celestial beings and learns she might be the only one to stand in a dark angel's way.
Twisting ever so slightly in my seat, I pretended to look at the bulletin board at the back of the class, and sure enough, those blue eyes were waiting for me.  p.17
Angels are the thing now which is good for me as I have always been fascinated by angels.  But the new YA paranormal romance fixation has lead to the angels being in love with their charges which is even creepier to me than a sparkly vampire in love with a girl he wants to kill, because I would hope that God's angels would be able to resist the temptations.  But maybe that's my own thing.  I digress.

I actually really liked Garreth, the angel in this story.  He is very sweet and pure (as an angel should be), but he has fallen for his charge, Teagan, who he has stayed with for 7 lifetimes.  But something dangerous has come in this lifetime and he asks permission to be with her and to warn her of the upcoming dangers and, of course, there is an irresistible something between them, etc.  I've read all that before, honestly.  Don't look for anything new in Garreth and Teagan's love story.  It's the bad guy that I'm interested in.  I like the dark angel aspect and what Teagan's destiny is though I got a little confused as to how all that works. I hope that is is more fully explained in the next book.

ARC provided by Other Shelf Tours
Hogwarts: Charms

Thursday, June 24, 2010

The Maze Runner (audio)

Thomas wakes up in a box carrying to the Glade where a community of boys have been sent, but no one knows why.  As he struggles with his lack of memory and tries to acclimate to his new surroundings, things begin to change in the Glade beginning with the arrival of a mysterious girl and Thomas' need to become a maze runner. 

The action starts off a little slow and I was getting a little tired of no one answering questions (but then I'm a Lost fan so I've been almost desensitized to that) but once Thomas hits the maze, it's on like Donkey Kong.  The Maze Runner kept me guessing and I kept thinking that I knew what was coming up and I had like three different ideas about the ending, none of which happened.  I liked that.  I don't like guessing the ending before it happens.  I was hoping that the second book was out so I could start on it right away but it doesn't come out til the end of the year.  I won't say I was completely blown away  but I wished I had gotten around to it sooner.  It was a good read.  The relationship between Thomas and the girl was very cool and I wonder more about his relationships between him and some of the other Gladers.  I can't wait to find out more.

Hogwarts: Ancient Runes

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Donut Days

Emma is the daughter of two evangelical ministers, but there is trouble at their church.  It seems that some of the parishioners don't want Emma's mom is preach anymore.  Now Emma is fighting with her best friend and fighting her true feelings for her best guy friend all while trying to win a scholarship.
"Emma!" Mom cried, like I'd just torn up a picture of Jesus.  p.39
When I was young, we went to church all the time and were heavily involved with it.  A lot of my family are very religious and a few are evangelists especially the family that live up in the Bible Belt.  So I understand the atmosphere and the upbringing that Emma has in Donut Days.  I know those very religious and devout families and I understood her fight to get to choose her own way, a way that might not agree with her family's expectations.  I felt sorry for Emma because she genuinely wants to help her family in their difficult time and her parents just push her away.  They don't understand how this big fight over her mom's right to preach can effect her which is so blind sighted I can't even believe it.

I thought the whole doughnut camp thing was so funny and I enjoyed how Emma used that experience to learn new things about herself.  I didn't like how the flashbacks were handled.  The writing seemed awkward and heavy handed at those points.  But I enjoyed the characters and thought the whole thing was sweet and the story was original.  

Won from Juju at Tales of Whimsy
Hogwarts: Muggle Studies
What's in a Name
Twenty Ten

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Teaser Tuesdays - Angel Star

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along!
Grab your current read
Open to a random page

Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

As hard as I tried, I could never picture a face on the angel from long ago.  That is, until tonight.  I gave it the identity that I knew would comfort me all through the night.

p.54 Angel Star - Jennifer Murgia ARC

To check out more quotes, visit my Tumblr at Never Fully Dressed.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Weekly Round-Up 6/21 + award

Weekly Round-Up is my wrap-up of last week's activities and includes what I'm reading this week, reviews I've posted, books in the mail and anything else of interest plus From the Library, my weekly listing of what I've checked out from the library.
This week I'm reading The Red Pyramid (Riordan) and The Clue of the Black Keys (Keene). I'm listening to Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Rowling) and The Girl with the Mermaid Hair (Ephron).

I actually managed to finish The Maze Runner (Dashner) on audio on the way home.

Trisha at Trisha's Book Blog has given me the Versatile Blogger Award.  Thanks so much!
Rules: You have to post 7 things about yourself and pass this award on to 5 blogs

7 Things About Me:
1. I'm a librarian.
2. I have a 3 year old son.
3. I like watching cartoons.
4. My favorite book is Bellwether by Connie Willis.
5. I hate cleaning.
6. I tend to wander off a lot.
7. I love animals

I'm passing this on to:

Celi.a at Adventures of Cecelia Bedelia
Juju at Tales of Whimsy
Runa at One Reader's Trash is Another Reader's Treasure
Lizzy at Cornucopia of Reviews

Won from Ready When You Are, C.B.
Admit One: My Life in Film by Emmett James
Set in Croydon, South London, in the 1980s, Admit One details how self-deprecating writer Emmett James escaped from the pains of adolescence by going to the cinema. Through wry wit and observation, the writer reflects, obsesses, and rages about film and its correlation to our pasts. Life soon imitates art, and the narrator finds that his true calling is in transcendence from one side of the screen to the other. He decides to leave England for the only place where he can realize his dream of becoming an actor-Hollywood. We follow the narrator on his numerous adventures: as he jumps from forgery to pornography to crashing the Academy Awards under the alias of a nominated writer. All the while, the films that inspired each tale contextualize this humorous collection of stories. The narrator ultimately provides a unique insight into the fascinating industry of film, eventually himself stumbling into the biggest box-office grossing film of all time

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Disney World vacation

Last week I went on vacation with my husband, son, parents, sister, and some more of my family to Disney World.  We had a good time though it was hot and we all were super tired every night.  We started out at Epcot on the first day which was the longest and hottest.

Day Two took us to Animal Kingdom which was a nice day with lots of pretty animals and the very fun Everest coaster. We also went to the Magic Kingdom that night to watch the parade and the fireworks. Day Three was an all day trip to the Magic Kingdom and Day Four was our day at Hollywood Studios.
The last day (Friday) was suppose to be my day at The Wizarding World of Harry Potter but I didn't get in.  Due to some poor planning, in my opinion, on the part of Universal, it was a 9 hour wait just to get into Harry Potter World and that was after a 2 hour wait just to get into Universal's Islands of Adventure Park.  That was very disappointing, I'll tell you.  But I spent the rest of the day at the Magic Kingdom with my husband and son and that was extremely fun and I'm glad of that.  We all had a good time and my son saw a lot of characters and we rode as many rides as possible.
Hogwarts: the only picture I could get

A few more pictures:
Tigger, me and Pooh.  Tigger is my favorite

Illuminations Epcot

Monday, June 14, 2010

On vacation!

This week I'm going to be on vacation at the fabulous Disney World in Orlando, Florida.  We are super excited at my house especially my little 3 year old who is dying to see Mickey Mouse.  So I don't know what I'll be reading or if I'll get to read at all, but I probably won't be around on the internet.

See ya next week! Have a good one!

Side note: I'm going to be locking down my posts with blog comment approval while I'm away just in case.

Weekly Round-Up 6/14

Weekly Round-Up is my wrap-up of last week's activities and includes what I'm reading this week, reviews I've posted, books in the mail and anything else of interest plus From the Library, my weekly listing of what I've checked out from the library.
 I didn't get anything in the mail

Reviews posted:
This World We Live In (Pfeffer)
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (audio) (Rowling)
The Clue of the Leaning Chimney (Keene)
The Secret of the Wooden Lady (Keene)

The Red Pyramid (Kane Chronicles #1) - Rick Riordan
Since their mother’s death, Carter and Sadie have become near strangers. While Sadie has lived with her grandparents in London, her brother has traveled the world with their father, the brilliant Egyptologist, Dr. Julius Kane.

One night, Dr. Kane brings the siblings together for a "research experiment" at the British Museum, where he hopes to set things right for his family. Instead, he unleashes the Egyptian god Set, who banishes him to oblivion and forces the children to flee for their lives.

Soon, Sadie and Carter discover that the gods of Egypt are waking, and the worst of them--Set--has his sights on the Kanes. To stop him, the siblings embark on a dangerous journey across the globe--a quest that brings them ever closer to the truth about their family, and their links to a secret order that has existed since the time of the pharaohs.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Sleuthing Sundays - Nancy Drew 26, 27

The Clue of the Leaning Chimney (Nancy Drew Mystery Stories 26)
"My dear," he said, "your powers of deduction contain the wisdom of a Chinese philosopher."  p.142
Nancy is on her way to the bank when she almost runs over a mysterious man!  But he is ok, though mean, so Nancy knows something is up.  Beth asks Nancy to help her cousin look for a valuable pit of rare clay for his pottery studio, leading to an encounter with a Chinese man which doubles back around to the first mystery, of course. Even though the mystery involves Chinese people it is only vaguely racist which is something considering when they were written and the horribleness of The Ivory Charm mystery.  I was stuck by the idea of being double crossed.  Nancy's villains are always mean and cruel and sometimes I want someone close to her to be the one lying and scheming, just to throw her off.  There's a little bit of that in this book.
She knew that the young detective was determined to solve the mystery, but that she would not do anything foolhardy.  p.113
And Hannah is a fool if she really believes this to be true because Nancy will take so many chances and get knocked out, kidnapped, and/or locked away a number of times in any mystery and never think twice about it.  Good thing she is only up against idiots.

The Secret of the Wooden Lady (Nancy Drew Mystery Stories 27)
"If you use the ingenuity and the perseverance I credit you with, Nancy, I believe you'll solve this case."  p.102
Nancy is all set for an adventure on the high seas or something.  I do like how the books manage to tie in that all of Nancy's gang of friends can sail and have sailing experience. This time Nancy is asked by her father to accompany him to find the missing title of a clipper ship so that an acquaintance can buy it.  But Nancy is in for more than that when another mystery about the ship surfaces involving the missing figurehead.
This is one of the few mysteries that doesn't have a completely separate mystery that ties into the original mysteries.  Both are related to the ship and that makes more sense than a lot of Nancy's other mysteries.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Book Blogger Appreciation Week 2010

It may seem early but Book Blogger Appreciation Week is approaching and this year anyone wishing to be considered for an award must publish a post on their blog highlighting and linking to five past posts they feel distinguish their blog in their chosen niche and register. So here I am.

Primarily The Little Bookworm is a YA book blog though I do read middle grade sometimes as well.  That is mostly what I read and what I review.  I am not adverse to reading adult literature , I just don't do it a lot.  My main genres are fantasy and science fiction, but this year I'm doing the Nancy Drew Challenge so I have Sleuthing Sundays where I talk a little about what Nancy Drews I have been reading.  I also review movies when I feel like it.  I also listen to a lot of audio books.  And that's about it.

1. Will Grayson, Will Grayson 
2. The Demon's Lexicon
3. The Knife of Never Letting Go
4. Shiver
5. Sleuthing Sundays - Nancy Drew 10,11,12

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (audio)

Continuing my Potter re-listen, The Chamber of Secrets is one of my favorite HPs.  I didn't have any major questions like I did for Sorcerer's Stone.  Harry is still so innocent and sweet like Ron and Hermione and that is nice.  Also there are a few hints about Ron and Hermione's eventual romance.  I always felt so sorry for Ginny.  Poor little girl!  And knowing what the diary is now is cool.  You can see Dumbledore hinting at it at the end.  I don't know if that was intentional or just ret-conned but I will pretend it was done on purpose.  Lockhart was a horrible choice of teacher and I wonder what Dumbledore was thinking though I think it was said that no one else wanted the job.  But still he is just ridiculous.

Hogwarts: Harry Potter

Also how awesome is this cover for the audio for this UK version with Stephen Fry?

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

This World We Live In (The Last Survivors 3)

Miranda and her family are making it through the climate changes and other changes that the Earth is going through after an asteroid hits the moon, knocking it closer to the Earth.  After surviving a harsh winter, they are still managing.  But her father arrives with his wife and new baby and three other strangers in tow, things get a little harder.  And harder still as Miranda and Alex begin to fall in love.
It was filthy.  I don't know why that surprised me, since we scrub frantically to keep the soot manageable and there was no one at the library to do that.  But there was something about the library being so cold, dark, and dirty that broke my heart.  p.198
Nothing like these books to make you want to take stock of the pantry and buy some more water.  Because Life As Knew It and The Dead and the Gone were brutal.  This World We Live In was less so and that was almost a relief.  This was a good ending for this series though I didn't find it as affecting as the first or even the second one.  The maturity that Miranda seemed to have gained in the first book is taken back a little as she still whines and fights a lot though not to the degree she did before.  I started to question the ability of Miranda and Alex and her brothers to fall in love so quickly but then I realized that in extreme circumstances that this would have happened.  Alex was never my favorite character but it was interesting to see him on the outside of the situation rather than close up like in The Dead and the Gone.  He was still not my favorite character though the two of them are a good match.  I was surprised at the new characters and I wanted to hit Matt for being foolish and a jackass.  Miranda's mom seemed to be less of an influence and I think that was done on purpose.  Overall it wasn't as powerful a book but it was an appropriate and right ending for the series.

Hogwarts: Astronomy

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Teaser Tuesdays - The Clue of the Leaning Chimney

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along!
Grab your current read
Open to a random page

Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

Nancy was wedged tightly between the passengers as the train, with a roar, picked up speed. Reaching for a strap, she caught her breath and quickly planned her next move.

p.85 The Clue of the Leaning Chimney 
Carolyn Keene

To check out more quotes, visit my Tumblr at Never Fully Dressed.

Monday, June 7, 2010

Weekly Round-Up 6/7

Weekly Round-Up is my wrap-up of last week's activities and includes what I'm reading this week, reviews I've posted, books in the mail and anything else of interest plus From the Library, my weekly listing of what I've checked out from the library.
This week I'm reading L.A Candy (Conrad) and The Mystery of the Leaning Chimney (Keene).  I'm listening to Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling).

Since last week I've read The Ghost of Blackwood Hall (Keene),  The More You Ignore Me (Brand), and This World We Live In (Pfeffer).
I abandoned The Krybosian Stairpath (Colvin) (see below) unfortunately.

Other reviews posted:
Forgive My Fins (Childs)
Howling's Moving Castle (Jones) plus movie
The Clue in the Old Album (Keene)

From Goodreads:
In a refreshing change, along comes a children's book that does not rely on magic to explain the unexplainable. The Krybosian Stairpath puts forth the notion that just because you don't understand something, it doesn't mean there must be magic behind it. Knowledge and perspective can make all the difference.
Enter a world of wonder deep inside the earth as 11-year-old geologist Madison Terrence follows her pet gopher down a stairpath portal she discovers in her family's cavern. When she descends the Krybosian Stairpath, a mystery from her family's past begins to unravel. She soon realizes her arrival in the interior world of Krybos is no accident. Madison discovers that she's been pulled into a sinister plot to destroy the most beautiful place she has ever seen.

 The only reason I'm writing anything about this book is because I got it as an ARC from Traveling ARC Tours.  I really thought I would like it and it would be a quick read for me.  But I just couldn't get into it.  The writing and the characters were dry.  I didn't even get to the mystery part.  This book just wasn't for me.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Sleuthing Sundays - Nancy Drew 24, 25

The Clue in the Old Album (Nancy Drew Mystery Stories #24)

Mrs. Struthers smiled and said, "I see now why it was you, Nancy, who spotted the thief.  You are often written up in the papers for your cleverness in tracking down unscrupulous people.  p.5
This was Nancy's weirdest one yet.  She witnesses an elderly lady's purse get stolen and is drawn into a bigger mystery involving the lady's missing son-in-law and a missing doll that could help out her granddaughter.  The son-in-law is a Gypsy violinist and he has been missing for years.  Nancy is up to the job though.  The solution is weird though and seems out of order for a ND mystery.

A couple of observations:  Nancy never wants to give the police clues if they would interrupt her own investigation.  She only calls them when she has information for them that she wants them to know otherwise she keeps it to herself.  Meanwhile, she always expects them to give her all of their information.

Nancy throws her dad's name around an awful lot.  It's always "my father, Carson Drew" this and that.  But by now she has her own little reputation too.

The Ghost of Blackwood Hall  (Nancy Drew Mystery Stories #25)
But she added with a smile, "Have a good time and put mystery out of that pretty head for tonight!"
"How could I?" Nancy laughed gaily. p.47
Nancy goes to New Orleans! (for like 2 chapters)  She is investigating a widow's stolen jewelry and that leads the girl detective into the world of ghosts, seances and charlatans.  There is also a mystery involving girls hiding money in trees.  Good thing our Nancy is up to the challenge.  I have to say I enjoyed this one but Nancy gets hit on the head and/or kidnapped a lot.  Also the widow was extremely annoying, doubting the skills of Nancy and being stupid in general.

Friday, June 4, 2010

The More You Ignore Me + Giveaway

Alice lives in 1970's England with her hippy dad and her crazy mom.  As she grows up, she see more and more of how her mother's spirit has been dampened by all her psychiatric medicines and one day she decides it's time to set her mom free.
She paid the pharmacist and turned to embark on the well-worn walk of the teenager exiting the chemist bearing a product she neither wanted nor needed.  p.131 ARC
This was definitely different from my usual YA fantasy fare.  It was more like the books I read when I was a teenager.  It's described on the back as in "the tradition of the Adrian Mole novels" and I got that impression right off.  It was like a cross of Adrian Mole and Susan Juby's Alice, I Think.

The More You Ignore Me was very poignant.  It was sad in places, and funny in others.  Alice grows up in an odd life, with two parents around but her mom has mentally checked out.  After an obsession with the local weatherman and an incident of nudity on the roof, her mom has been placed on a heavy course of drugs to tamp down on her schizophrenic tendencies (it's the 70's so the diagnoses is uncertain).  Consequently, Alice tends to dampened down her emotions so though things happen to her, the book reads like it is far away from these events, like Alice is not really involved.

I enjoyed this book.  I liked Alice and felt sorry for her whole family.  I thought her mother's family was funny and was amused by her love of Morrissey.  I liked her dad and I really wanted the best for everyone.  This was a good read and I'm glad I got it.

Won from Library Thing's Early Reviewers
Hogwarts: Muggle Studies

Giveaway!  I'm giving away my ARC copy of The More You Ignore Me by Jo Brand.  To enter, just fill out the form below.  Winner will be chosen at random.  US only.  Ends June 25, 2010. 

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Howl's Moving Castle (Book/Movie)

Sophie is put under a curse by the Witch of the Waste and made into an old woman.  When she sets out to break the curse, she finds herself at the moving castle of the Wizard Howl, a wicked man who is said to eat the hearts of young girls.  But as Sophie begins to work for him, she discovers more about Howl and his fire demon, Calcifer and how to break all their curses.

But there was this method to her remorselessness: she calculated that she could not clean this thoroughly without sooner or later coming across Howl's hidden hoard of girls' souls, or chewed hearts - or else something that explained Calcifer's contract.  p.68
I love Diana Wynne Jones.  I was obsessed with her Chrestomanci books when I was younger and that lead me to Howl's Moving Castle.  I hadn't read it in at least 10 years, but the other day I was watching the movie and I decided I need to read it again.  It is a slower moving book, less action than some books especially in a fantasy, but it is such a good book.  I thoroughly enjoyed it as much as an adult as I did when I was a child.  Sophie is such a funny, plain girl, but after she becomes an old woman she gets really feisty and funny.  Howl is very selfish and odd, but he can be kind as well and the scenes with the two of them are great.  Calcifer, though, is one of my favorite characters (I must have a soft spot for demons (I'm looking at you, Bartimaeus.)) and I like the whole story of the Witch of the Waste and where Howl originates from.  It makes it more fun.

Hogwarts: Transfiguration

I also love Miyazaki and Studio Ghibli.  And I love the anime of the book.  The story is almost completely different which normally would bother me, but it is a great movie on its own.  Sophie is still cursed by the Witch, but for a different reason.  The Howl/Calcifer relationship is mostly the same, but Sophie's sisters and their subplot are almost eliminated as are several other characters.  Some characters and plot elements from the book are combined or eliminated to create a much simpler and more streamline story.  I realized this had to be done because there is a lot going on in the book that would be too busy for a movie.  Still it is a lovely movie, both in plot and in looks.  The voice acting for the dubbed version is great.  Billy Crystal plays Calcifer and that gives him more of a comedic tone so that was an interesting choice.  It's not as successful as Phil Hartman in Kiki's Delivery Service, but it still works.  The only problem I had with it (*spoiler for the book*) is the removal of Sophie's magical powers.  I love that part of the book and I wished they could have included it.

Read the Book, See the Movie

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Forgive My Fins

Lily is a mermaid living on land.  She has a huge crush on a boy in her school while she does nothing but fight with her next door neighbor, Quince.  But when a mistake lands Lily and Quince in deep water, she must figure out what really lies within her heart.
It goes against every instinct and mer law I've been taught since birth - to keep our secret from humans at any expense - but I really don't have a choice.  That kiss made this moment inevitable.  p.76 ARC
This is a fun summer read.  It is super fun and fluffy and light and would be a great beach read.  I'm not saying any of that to degrade it, but because that is simply what it is.  It's Meg Cabot with fins and I love Meg Cabot.  The main character, Lily, is the typical "too stupid to see the truth even when it is shoved down her throat" teenage girl that often shows up in these books.  I will say she is very funny and I liked the fishy terminology she throws around.  But she is very obtuse, only seeing what she wants to see.  I wanted to shake her.  But Quince, phew, that's a guy.  Am I right?  Man, he is a great love interest for her and I admire his patience and fortitude. 

I really like the mermaid aspect.  I'm a big mermaid fan.  And the mythology created is very good with some very nice details thrown in.  Lily has some great friends both under and over the water and that was a nice aspect of this book.  All in all, I'd say this is a great book if you are looking for something fun and frothy to read at the beach or by the pool.

ARC from Traveling ARC Tours
Hogwarts: Care of Magical Creatures

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Teaser Tuesdays - The Krybosian Stairpath

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along!

Grab your current read
Open to a random page

Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

Jacin wondered just how many secrets this unusual house held.  He knew his father would be proud of him if he could discover the secrets hidden in the Terrence home.

p.40  The Krybosian Stairpath S.R.R. Colvin

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