Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year 2009! (and TT #5)

Happy new year to all readers! Let's have another amazing year of love, happiness, health, prosperity, friendship, and of course, good BOOKS!!

And because it's Thursday, here's my TT #5: 13 Things to be grateful for in 2008!

1. My book blog has been revived!

2. I've had a great year of reading and discovering new books and authors.

3. I've learned so much from the books I read.

4. I've got enough books to sustain me, and many great 'suppliers' too.

5. I get free books for review.

6. Bookmoochers and Bookcrossers are such wonderful and generous people.

7. I've met many wonderful book bloggers.

8. Who've also supplied me with endless wonderful book recommendations.

9. And great reviews for books I want to read.

10. I started an online monthly real-time book chat because I was unable to find a real-life reading group in my area.

11. I ended up finding a real-life reading group anyway, and we're meeting up for our first book discussion on January 10th!

12. And the book chats are going great too, with 10 participants signing up so far for the first ever book chat (Water for Elephants)!

13. I am so happy and thankful to be a part of this wonderful blogging community.

My other TT is here, it's for 13 things my SO and I have achieved in 2008. =)

Unfortunately, Beth and Carol have stopped the official Thursday Thirteen, Carol's granddaughter has been recently diagnosed with leukemia. My thoughts and prayers are with them.

I've decided I'd go on with TT anyway, and anyone who wants to is welcome to join me. Leave your links with Mister Linky below if you're playing, and remember to leave a comment too. Happy New Year and Happy TT!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro



Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro


As I think is well-known by now, I've got an insatiable curiosity that can be both a good and a bad thing.


I read a basic synopsis about this book, and it said something about how Kathy, Ruth, and Tommy are three of a very special group of individuals, and how Kathy finds out exactly why they're so special, when she grows up and learns more about herself.


So I wondered why they were special too, and I wanted to find out why really quickly, 'cause I was curious, like I said, and I ended up reading this book really, really fast, just to get to the part that tells us why they're special.


Well, it's not that they don't tell you, because they do, but why are they special because of that? I wonder. I almost felt like I should have to extract information from Ishiguro painfully, the way he told us things. Evasive, unclear, hints to this and that, and I ended the book still confused and wondering what exactly happened.


Other than the fact that Ishiguro isn't very forthcoming with information, the book was a great read, and the premise of the book is fascinating, and really fires up your imagination. Perhaps that's why he doesn't want to tell too much, so that there would be something left to our imaginations.


It's quite a heartbreaking book really, and in some ways, scary, but I think it's a must-read, and it's well worth reading too.


This book is available for discussion on Betty's Book Chats.

Monday, December 29, 2008

Teaser Tuesdays: December 30 2008

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

My Teaser:


Because everyone seems to be enjoying teasers from this book, and because it's a long and 'heavy' book and I'm still reading it, here's another teaser from The Lucifer Effect.




"Group pressure from other guards placed significant importance on being a "team player," conforming to an emergent norm that demanded dehumanizing the prisoners in various ways. The good guard was a group deviant, and he suffered in silence by being outside the socially rewarding circle of the other guards on his shift." ~p.221, Philip Zimbardo's The Lucifer Effect: How Good People Turn Evil





And here's a teaser from another book I'm reading at the same time:







"Looking back now, I can see we were pretty confused about this whole area around sex. That's hardly surprising, I suppose, given we were barely sixteen." ~p.95, Kazuo Ishiguro's Never Let Me Go







PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your 2 Teasers in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks!

Sunday, December 28, 2008

The Demon Lover by Victoria Holt


The Demon Lover by Victoria Holt


Victoria Holt's name was familiar to me, but I've never read anything by her, and although I've had this book for a while, I wondered if I should read it or just give it away.


I decided to check's reviews, to get an idea of whether I'd enjoy this book or if it'd only be a waste of my time, and what I found was so controversial that I just had to read it, even if only for curiosity's sake.


I don't want to give away any spoilers, though you'd probably find them if you go ahead to and read the reviews for this book.


My own reaction, however, after finishing the book, is still quite confusing. Perhaps it's because I was forewarned by the reviews what to expect, that it didn't really shock me as much as it might have.


On the one hand, I did think that Holt's writing is great, and I'd probably read another book by her, since a lot of people mentioned in the review that they generally loved her books, just not this one. And other than that particular 'incident' in the book, I thought the whole story was very interesting and that it was very well-written.


That 'incident' does leave me a little confused though, I wonder about the need for it, and I wonder about the rationalization that allowed Kate to forgive the Baron, I wonder why he had to do it in the first place. As I said, I wasn't very shocked because I was forewarned, and in fact, Holt's narrator, Kate, seems to downplay it quite a bit too, which makes it seem acceptable.


I'm not sure if I like the book, and I'm not sure that I don't. It seems this book was more like an 'intellectual study' of the controversy it aroused, than an actual romance book I could read and relax with. Although I didn't exactly study it intellectually, ok I'll admit it, it was more for the sake of satisfying my curiosity.

Friday, December 26, 2008

My Secret Santa's gift to me

My Secret Santa is Tarie from Into the Wardrobe, and she sent me a book from one of my favorite authors, Robin McKinley! I absolutely love McKinley's books! And she also wrote a very lovely note inside the Christmas card that came with it. Thank you so much, Tarie! =)

My gift almost didn't make it to me, because there was a problem with the mailing address; DHL mislabeled my address and left out a number, but Tarie was absolutely great with helping to fix the problem so that I could get my gift before Christmas. Thanks, Tarie! And Merry Christmas to you too!

I'm sorry that my post is a little late, I'm a singer in a band (ohh, I always wanted to say that) and Christmas and New Year's is always a busy time for us. Added to that, my father's birthday is on Christmas, so I had to celebrate an early birthday/Christmas with my family, in addition to practising and performing with my band, in addition to the other Christmas and New Year events with other friends...

Unfortunately, I'm not a very good time manager either, so it's always a struggle to know when to do what. LOL!

So anyway, I'll still be busy up until the 10th of January, that's when the first book chat will take place, and also the same day my real life book club is meeting to discuss our first book. I'm really psyched about both!

In the meantime, I'll be practising for my next performance on New Year's eve, having some belated Christmas dinners with some friends, doing some last minute shopping, registering for marriage with my beloved fiance, and meeting up with an old friend who'd been in Australia for the last 6 years!

I may or may not be able to post occasionally until then, but please do check back often because I will definitely miss you all!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Merry Christmas!

A very Merry Christmas and a wonderful new year to all of Betty's Book's friends and readers! Enjoy your holidays!

Monday, December 22, 2008

Teaser Tuesdays: December 23 2008

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

My Teaser:


I'm still reading this book, so this week's teaser is another one from the book. 




"Trying to remind himself that this is just an experiment, he continues raving, "You're messing with my head, man, my head! This is an experiment; that contract is not serfdom! You have no right to fuck with my head!"" ~p.77, Philip Zimbardo's The Lucifer Effect: How Good People Turn Evil




PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your 2 Teasers in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Cyber Cinderella by Christina Hopkinson

Cyber Cinderella by Christina Hopkinson

I've been reading a lot of heavy books lately, and I just felt like having a little light, fun, book to relax with, especially with how busy this December has become.

Cyber Cinderella is about this ordinary woman, Izobel Brannigan, who googled herself one day out of curiousity (which of us haven't done that?), and then found a website dedicated to her.

She isn't a celebrity, or even remotely connected to one, she hasn't done anything particularly worth noting, she's just an ordinary person. And yet the website dedicated to her seems to be saying otherwise. Izobel is a little bit flattered, but mostly freaked out. Does somebody have a crush on her? Or did she have a stalker? Who is this person who have been following her and taking 'pap' (papparazzi) shots of her and putting them on the website?

The suspense almost killed me while I read the book, wondering who the website creator was. The writing itself was ok, and the book as a whole was enjoyable, but it was the suspense that got to me! I just literally couldn't put the book down, I kept turning the page, hoping that the next one would tell me who the person was and then I'll be content to go to bed and finish the book the next day.

I finally found out who it was, and I ended up finishing the book too anyway. It's a fun read, but I didn't exactly get to relax because I was too curious and wanted to find out whodunnit it a hurry. Oh well, on to my next read then.

Thursday, December 18, 2008

My Year of Reading Dangerously Challenge 2009


Not another challenge! I can't seem to stop! I am getting quite worried that I'm signing up for too many...


Mission: Read 12 books you deem "dangerous." between January 1st and December 31st 2009. They may be banned or challenged books, new-to-you genres, books that seem to inhabit a permanent space on your stacks, or authors you're afraid of. The possibilities are endless! If it's dangerous to you, it's challenge-worthy to us!


For more information, go to the Challenge blog.


I'm taking this one up because there are some books on the recommended list that I plan to read anyway, but I do have to add more later that I didn't plan to read. That's ok though, that's what challenges are about. =)


So here's an incomplete list of books I'll be reading for this challenge so far.


Updated (1/22/09): I've finalized my list of books and the reasons I want to read them. This is going to be an exciting challenge!


1. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens - I've started and stopped this book about 3-4 times, I think it's time to finally finish it.

2. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov - Because it's a banned book and it's controversial. (Finished 2/15/09)

3. Dragons of Eden by Carl Sagan - He says our ancestors were reptiles.

4. The Origin of Species by Charles Darwin - He says our ancestors were monkeys.

5. The Descent of Women by Elaine Morgan - She says maybe we are naked apes, or maybe we are hairy porpoises.

6. The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell - I tried to read this once before but it made my head hurt will all the thinking. But I want to try it again, because it's good to think.

7. Paradise Lost by John Milton - About Hell and all that. Dangerous reading, I'm sure.

8. The Heart of Wicca by Ellen Cannon Reed - The basics on traditional Wicca, completely different from what most people believe Wicca to be. (Finished 3/2/09)

9. Fantastic Voyage by Ray Kurzweil - Non-fiction about prolonging your life to the point of living forever.

10. Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser - It's scary to think of what our eating habits are really doing to us, and very to think of changing our habits. (Finished 2/27/09) 

11. Sophie's World by Jostein Gaarder - Tried this many years ago but never finished it. Guaranteed to make me think though.

12. Moby Dick by Herman Melville - This book daunts me and I just really want to face my fear of reading it. =P

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

One Red Paperclip by Kyle Macdonald

One Red Paperclip by Kyle Macdonald


A few years back I heard about this guy who started with one red paperclip and traded his way up to finally get a house.


I was definitely intrigued, and more than a little curious, but somehow I must have forgotten about it because I never followed up on it.


Recently, just last year actually, he published a book on it, and I finally bought the book yesterday. I read it until late last night and finished it late this evening with tears in my eyes.


It's an amazingly inspiring story, and really kind of overwhelming, in fact. But reading this book and seeing Kyle's attitude, I'd have to say that he was just the right person to pull off this stunt. He's got so much charm, humor, and enthusiasm for what he was doing, you can feel his charisma ooze off the pages.


One_Red_PaperclipHis blog is still up, I just checked, and now he's putting the house he got up for trade. This whole book is an adventure, and I guess he's ready for another adventure. I'm definitely interested in seeing what happens next.


I can't say enough how amazing this whole story is, and how inspiring, and how dreams that may seem outlandish and impossible can actually come true.


This is how the cover of the book looks like, simple and effective.


Go get the book, read it, and be inspired to LIVE.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Teaser Tuesdays: December 16 2008

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

My Teaser:


I found this at a bargain bookstore on Sunday, and it caught my attention because I'm interested in human psychology and what makes people do the things they do.


This book is based on the results of an experiment where a group of students were placed in a mock prison. The study had to be terminated in less than a week, because the 'guards' had become sadistic and the 'prisoners' pathological.


The basic premise is that a good person, if put in a certain situation, can become evil and do things that they never thought they were capable of. Zimbardo asks us to think twice about our own capability to do evil, and to ask ourselves if we would really be capable of horrible acts when put in the right (or wrong) situations.


Quite honestly, I already know that if I had to, I could do anything to make sure I survived, because I have a very strong survival instinct. But of course, just because I can doesn't mean I will. There are always grey areas, and it always depends on individual situations.





"He is dumped into the Hole - with the distinction of being its first occupant. The guards show that they are united about one principle: they will not tolerate any dissent." ~p.51, Philip Zimbardo's The Lucifer Effect: How Good People Turn Evil




PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your 2 Teasers in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones

Mister Pip by Lloyd Jones
I was intrigued by this book because it featured Charles Dickens' Great Expectations as a huge part of the story.
I've read the abridged children's book when I was younger, and I watched the movie. I keep meaning to read the original unabridged book, but just haven't gotten around to it. I'm hoping to read it next year for the Casual Classics Challenge though.
Anyway, Mister Pip is set in an island in Papua New Guinea, torn by civil war. The inhabitants of the island are trapped and caught between the rebels and the soldiers, and it seemed like they were all just waiting to die.
Until Mr. Watts, the only white man on the island, starting reading Great Expectations to the children. Matilda, the narrator, is a 13-year-old girl for most of the story, and she tells about how Great Expectations affected how she thought and what she believed, and how it caused a conflict between her mother and Mr. Watts.
Ultimately, that conflict led to tragic consequences, and you can't help but feel that it was such a waste because it could have been avoided.
I don't want to give away too much, but it did make me think about myself and my own 'ethics', as in, 'what would I do if I was her?', and that's part of the beauty of this book.
Whenever a book features another book as a big part of its plot, it usually demonstrates the power a single book has to affect and sometimes change a person's thinking, ideas, attitude, and life. Mister Pip demonstrates how powerful Great Expectation was in affecting the lives of all who lived on that island, and at the same time, Mister Pip itself affected my own thinking while I was reading the book.
I like books that make you think, and even if you end up not agreeing with what a certain book says, the fact that it made you think at all is a good thing. I also like books that feature other books, and this one did both beautifully. I recommend it to anyone who ever had a book affect their life strongly.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

TT#4: Fun Facts about Fairy Tales

My TT this week is 13 fun facts about fairy tales, and I made the TT graphic above to match. =) Without further ado, here's my Thursday Thirteen: Fun Facts about Fairy Tales.

  1. In the original fairy tale, the prince renamed Thumbelina "Maia". The bird who rescued her dropped her into a field of flowers, and she landed on the flower that was occupied by the prince. He fell in love when he saw her, and said "Thumbelina" wasn't a name beautiful enough for a princess, so he renamed her "Maia".
  2. The literal meaning of the name "Rumplestiltskin" is "little rattle stilt", rattle stilt being a type of goblin.
  3. In the original version of "Sleeping Beauty", the prince's mother was an ogress and loved to eat children.
  4. The prince didn't introduce his new bride to his parents until they had already had 2 children. The ogress almost got them, but her plan was thwarted and she hurled herself into a pit of serpents that ate her alive.
  5. In the original Snow White, the queen eats the heart she believed belonged to Snow White.
  6. The queen was punished by being forced to wear red-hot iron shoes that she had to dance in until she fell down dead.
  7. The Brothers Grimm have written exactly 211 fairy tales.
  8. They were not only renowned for their fairy tales, they were also scholars in the area of linguistics. Grimm's Law, which relates to how word sounds can change over time, is attributed to them.
  9. It is a popular Arab myth that anyone who reads all of The 1001 Arabian Nights will go mad. This myth is similar to the legendary condition known as ‘the motif of harmful sensation’ which states that a person can be harmed by experiencing extreme sensations, this probably comes from Greek mythology in stories such as “Medusa” and “The Basilisk.”
  10. The flying carpet in one of the most enduring images in The 1001 Arabian Nights and it is affiliated with many stories, but contrary to popular belief, Aladdin never flew on the magic carpet. Prince Housain in “The Three Brothers” is the only person to fly on the magic carpet.
  11. The 1001 Arabian Nights inspired Russian composer Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov, who is most famed for composing “The Flight of the Bumblebee,” to write the nationalistic symphonic suite “Scheherazade”.
  12. 2 roses, 2 pearls, 2 diamonds came out of the good girl's mouth in 'The Fairy Gifts' when she said 'I beg your pardon for having loitered so long, Mother'. When the bad girl came home, the things that came out of her mouth were a viper and two toads!
  13. The oldest surviving manuscript of "Beowulf" was written by an Anglo-Saxon in 1000 A.D. The owner of the manuscript, Robert Cotton, gave it to a British museum after a fire came close to destroying it in 1731. However, some scholars believe that the poem could have been written as early as the seventh or eighth century.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Read Your Name Challenge 2009



And yet another reading challenge for me! 2009 is going to be a really interesting year for me, juggling books and work and life. LOL!


This challenge is to read your name in book title first letters, ultimately spelling out your name. You can use any name you want, your real name, your blogger name, the name you always wished you were called, like maybe Princess Aurora, or Superman. LOL!


The challenge runs from Jan. 1st 2009, to Dec. 31st 2009, you can join anytime before Dec. 31st 2009. (Well, if you join on Dec. 30th, you can always just read one book that starts with your initial. *g*)


You can sign up with Mister Linky at the Read Your Name Challenge blog.


I'm using my nickname when I first started using the internet, and it's got my name Betty in there anyway. Here's what I'll be reading:


("The" as in "The Cider House Rules" will not be counted for T's, but "A" as in "A Time to Kill" will be counted for A's.)


1. S - The Summer Before by Patricia Windsor image
2. T - The Third Eye by Lois Duncan image
3. A - A Lifetime Burning by Linda Gillard image
4. R - The Reader by Bernhard Schlink image
5. B -

The Bomb That Followed Me Home by Cevin Soling

6. Y -
7. T - Twilight by Stephanie Meyer

8. E - Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine image
9. S - Scarlett by Alexandra Ripley image

Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult


Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult


I've read this before, and I remembered that I liked it. It's Jodi Picoult, after all, and she's one of my favorite authors.


What prompted me to read it again though, was that I stumbled upon a book club video in, a Borders Book Club video, to be exact, that showed the book club members discussing this book together with the author, Jodi Picoult.


It was such a great discussion, and they talked about so many things in the book, the issues about school shootings, how and why it happens, who's to blame, how does a parent cope with it, whether their child is the victim, or the shooter, how can we, as a society, prevent a tragedy like this from happening....


You can watch part one of the discussion here:




I had forgotten much of what I read, and their discussion made me want to re-read the book and refresh my memory. So I read it again, looking out for the some of the things the book club pointed out in the videos.


It's definitely food for thought, and I completely sympathize with all the characters in the book, including the shooter. I don't completely agree with some of the Borders Book Club's thoughts about the book, but that's ok, I think what's important is that it makes us think.


And after watching the videos, and how Picoult talks about how she developed the story and the characters, I am absolutely amazed at her understanding and insight into the human psyche.


I don't really need to say how good the book is, go and watch the videos, there aren't any spoilers, and I'm sure you'll want to read the book for yourself too, if you haven't already. Or maybe you'll re-read it again, and get more out of it.


This book is available for discussion on Betty's Book Chats.


More books by Jodi Picoult:

Friday, December 05, 2008

Friday Finds: December 5 2008

fridayfinds What great book titles did you hear about, or discover, this week? SHARE WITH US YOUR ‘FRIDAY FINDS’!

My Finds:



The Wedding of the Two-Headed Woman by Alice Mattison


I found this while browsing and was attracted by the title. Apparently though, it's not about the wedding of a two-headed woman, but rather about a middle-aged woman who was inspired when she heard about the wedding of a two-headed woman.









The Bookshop by Penelope Fitzgerald


A book about a bookshop! How can I resist? A widow risks everything to open a bookshop in a small town, and encounters resistance and hostility from a town that doesn't want change.





PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Friday Finds post, or share your finds in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks!

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Cotillion by Georgette Heyer (TT#3)

My Thursday Thirteen today features Georgette Heyer's Cotillion. I've just finished reading it earlier this week and was going to write a review for it, but I thought it would be fun to write my thoughts about it in a Thursday Thirteen post.

I also made my first graphic for Thursday Thirteen featuring Heyer's book! So here it is: 13 Thoughts on Georgette Heyer's Cotillion!

1. It's my first book by Georgette Heyer, and I loved it so much I don't know why I didn't start reading her books sooner.

2. I probably wouldn't have picked up this book if it wasn't because other book bloggers were reading her books and raving about them.

3. This book is about a girl name Kitty, whose guardian decides that he will leave his fortune to her only if she marries one of his great-nephews.

4. She doesn't want to marry any of her guardian's nephews who offered for her because her heart belonged elsewhere, but if she didn't, she would be left destitute without a penny to her name.

5. So she asked one of the great-nephews to pretend to be engaged with her, until she could get the man she had feelings for to offer to marry her.

6. I found myself getting very fascinated with the character's personalities and the way they talked. I thought the way Heyer brought the characters to life was masterful.

7. She's also the master of subtlety; showing off events, situations, and how the characters handled them, giving us the barest of hints of what's to come.

8. This is the most romantic, sensible, and realistic romance I've ever read. Although I enjoy reading them sometimes, I feel that romances that tells stories about tall, macho heroes sweeping beautiful, buxom blondes, are only good for entertainment and definitely nothing like how you should choose your partners in real life.

9. I loved this book because it parallels my own beliefs and notions when it comes to falling in love and staying in love. I think this is the kind of book people who are unhappy in love should read, instead of reading romances that make them expect a prince to come and sweep them off their feet.

10. There's a lot more that I really want to say about why I love this book, but I can't without giving it away.

11. In fact, I wanted to put down my thoughts about it so much, but I knew I couldn't without giving it away, that I actually started a private Book Journal because of this book! Just so I can record my thoughts down.

12. Perhaps one day I can discuss the things I've written in my private Book Journal with someone who's read the book, but for now I'm really happy that this book
prompted me to start a journal, because I'm really enjoying recording my private thoughts about other books I'm reading too.

13. I really can't recommend this book enough. I can't wait to read Heyer's other books too!

And as a bonus: 13 more books by Georgette Heyer!

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

Teaser Tuesdays: December 2 2008

TEASER TUESDAYS asks you to:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Let the book fall open to a random page.
  • Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.
  • You also need to share the title of the book that you’re getting your “teaser” from … that way people can have some great book recommendations if they like the teaser you’ve given!
  • Please avoid spoilers!

My Teaser:

Three sentences today, because I think the teaser goes better when the sentences goes together. I've only just starting reading this book, but I can already say that it's a great book, very thought-provoking!



"You can't say there shouldn't be poisonous serpents - that's the way life is. But in the field of action, if you see a poisonous serpent about to bite somebody, you kill it. That's not saying no to the serpent, that's saying no to the situation." ~p.83, Joseph's Campbell's The Power of Myth


PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Teaser Tuesdays post, or share your 2 Teasers in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Friday Finds: November 28 2008

fridayfinds What great book titles did you hear about, or discover, this week? SHARE WITH US YOUR ‘FRIDAY FINDS’!

My Finds:



Chalice by Robin McKinley


I've been a big fan of Robin McKinley ever since I read her retelling of Beauty and the Beast. This is her latest book, about the new Master of Willowlands and his Chalice. The Master was believed to be killed in a fire, but has now come back from the dead, changed, and the Chalice has to save him from the suspicions and the plots surrounding them. amercy







A Mercy by Toni Morrison


Told primarily in the voice of a 16-year-old African slave, this book lets the reader take a close and painful look at the lives of slaves in the 17th century and the effects and circumstances of their situation.





PLEASE LEAVE A COMMENT with either the link to your own Friday Finds post, or share your finds in a comment here (if you don’t have a blog). Thanks!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #2

Graphic courtesy of Kelly @ Diary of the Nello


This week I'm doing 13 books I bought from this year. Usually if I buy from, it means that I can't get it in my local bookstores, and trust me, there are a *lot* of books I can't get from local bookstores. =( 


I used to buy a lot more from Amazon, because the shipping isn't so expensive in bulk, and the exchange rate was lower before. Recently though, I can't afford it anymore, so it looks like I gotta stop buying for a while. =(


Oh well, it's time for me to start reading the books I've already got anyway!


Presenting, 13 books I bought from this year!


The_china_study 1. The China Study by T. Colin Campbell

I bought and read this early last year when I found it recommended on a blog because I was so impressed with what the blogger wrote about how it affected him. It was the best book I have ever read about health and diet, and I highly recommend it to anyone who cares even remotely about their health. I ordered 5 more copies earlier this year from for my father and his friends who were interested.
78degrees 2. Seventy Eight Degrees of Wisdom by Rachel Pollack

This book is supposed to be about the Tarot, but I was interested because it actually contains a lot of wisdom in its pages. The Tarot cards, their histories, and their symbolizations to life are very enlightening. I'm reading it very slowly because I have to stop every few sentences to think and reflect, and meditate on their wisdom. Wonderful book!
blackthorn 3. Black Thorn, White Rose edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling

This is one in a series of fairy-tale retellings, each book is filled with short stories of an alternate perspective of a fairy tale. I read my first book of the series many years ago and I've been hooked since. I'm trying to collect the whole bunch.
powermyth 4. The Power of Myth by Joseph Campbell

I've heard of Joseph Campbell but never knew what he was about. So I browsed for his books and decided to start with this. I've only looked through it, I haven't started reading it, but it looks very thought-provoking.
CriticalPath 5. Critical Path by R. Buckminster Fuller

I heard about Bucky from Money N' You, he's almost all they ever talk about, but some of the stories about him and the radical ideas that he had are really interesting. What pushed me to buy it though, was when they talked about how hard it was to read, but someone they knew were able to read it in a month. I took it as a personal challenge, but I haven't started it, so I don't know if I'll actually read it faster.
redchamber 6. The Story of the Stone by Cao Xueqin

This is only the first book in the series of five. A friend asked me to order them for him as he couldn't find them here. Apparently, they're about some Chinese history that written on a stone or something to that effect. I'm not so sure, I was only able to browse through them for a while before I had to pass them over to him. They're worth finding out more about though, I think. I'll do it soon.
stitchbitch 7. Stitch 'N Bitch by Debbie Stoller

I'm trying to learn how to knit. I'm doing ok, I guess... still on the simple stuff at the moment, but the book gives some really great tips.
secretmaster 8. Secrets from the Masters edited by Don Menn

My fiance's a very talented guitarist, and I was looking all over for the perfect gift for his birthday. I asked him, very subtly, what kind of books would he buy if he wanted to learn more about playing guitar, and he told me he wanted to read bios of guitarists but full length bios are too long and there are too....(cont'd)
rockguit 9. Legends of Rock Guitar by Pete Prown and HP Newquist

(cont'd) many guitarists for him to read each one's bio one by one. So I spent a lot of time browsing for books that had a compilation of short bios and interviews of guitarists. I found these two, and surprised him with them. He loved them!
unmasques 10. Unmasqued by Colette Gale

I found this while browsing's Bargain Books, and it intrigued me because it was an erotic novel about one of my favorite stories, The Phantom of the Opera. There are a lot of conflicting reviews about it, but I personally thought it was great.
septembersacrifice04 11. September Sacrifice by Mark Horner

Another friend asked me to order this for her. I don't know much about it except that it's true crime and she saw it on TV.
enchanted 12. The Enchanted Forest Chronicles (Boxed Set) by Patricia C. Wrede recommended this to me, and it seemed like the kind of book I'd love, so I got it and it was great! I love stories about dragons, and this series is fun and hilarious!
swansister 13. Swan Sister edited by Ellen Datlow and Terri Windling

Also recommended by, it's just the kind of book I like, fairy-tale retellings, and any book with Datlow's and Windling's names always catches my attention.

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