Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Going through a readers block

I haven't been able to read anything lately (not including fanfiction), and it's beginning to frustarte me. I have some great books to read on my bookshelf, but when I look at them, I just think "meh".

How do you guys get passed reading blocks? Is there a particular book or author you turn to when this happens? Do you find that a light or more emotionally packed book helps better get one out of a reading slump?

Inquiring minds (really just me) want to know.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Review: A Time For Dancing by Davida Wills Hurwin

What do you do when you best friend is dying?


Samantha and Juliana. Sam and Jules--they've been best friends forever. Now, in the summer before their senior year, they're ready for anything! College? Professional dance careers? They'll share the triumphs and face the fears together. But neither of them is prepared for what happens when Jules is diagnosed with an incurable cancer.

My Thoughts:

A Time For Dancing has been a book I've been wanting to read for a long time. The plot sounded great, and like something I could really dig my teeth into. So, when I was at Powells City of Books a couple of weeks ago, and saw it on the shelf, I quickly picked it up.

Every chapter alternates in perspective between the two best friends, Julia and Sam. I actually enjoy books with differnet points of view, but I can see how some might find it distracting and/or frustrating. However, I feel that this didn't take away from the story at all, and actaully worked well for this book.

The thing I loved most about this story is the relationship between Sam and Julia. They have the type of friendship that is just easy, and make you wish that you and your friends communicated and got along like they do. Even from the first few pages, I believed in their friendship and that they cared for eachother, and that's not an easy feat in my book.

Sadly, though, this book wasn't everything I'd hoped it would be. I find it hard to place my finger on what it was that made the book feel off to me. I think it was that the emotion I was really hoping for throughout the whole second half of the book, didn't even show up until the last few pages. Actually, I didn't even really enjoy the middle of this book at all. It was a good story, not amazing, but good.

Overall, A Time For Dancing is a poignant and heartfelt look at how much an illness can effect and change a person, and also effect that person's family and friends. I encourage anyone who finds the plot interesting to pick up a copy, for it is worth your time.

4 Stars

Also, A Time for Dancing recently got a new cover!

I think it's pretty, but I'm glad to have the book with the original cover. What do you guys think? Do you prefer the original or new cover?

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Waiting on Wednesday

Flash, Burnout by L.K. Madigan
Release Date: October 19th, 2009

Fifteen-year-old Blake has a girlfriend and a friend who’s a girl. One of them loves him; the other one needs him. When he snapped a picture of a street person for his photography homework, Blake never dreamed that the woman in the photo was his friend Marissa’s long-lost meth addicted mom. Blake’s participation in the ensuing drama opens up a world of trouble, both for him and for Marissa. He spends the next few months trying to reconcile the conflicting roles of Boyfriend and Friend. His experiences range from the comic (surviving his dad’s birth control talk) to the tragic (a harrowing after-hours visit to the morgue). In a tangle of life and death, love and loyalty, Blake will emerge with a more sharply defined snapshot of himself.

So, I'm a BIG Photography geek. And, I've never really read a book where a character is passionate about it (Except for Naomi from Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac), so I'm very excited to read about that. Plus, I love books from the teenage male perspective, they're way more interesting to me. Also, the plot just sounds great.

What are you waiting on?

Saturday, June 20, 2009

In My Mailbox (2)

In My Mailbox is hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren and inspired by Alea from Pop Culture Junkie.

I just got my brand new laptop charger this last week, so I can actually update my blog now, instead of having to indure pain by going on the virus contaminated house computer. So, the books I list will be books that I've recieved for the last two or three weeks.

Wintergirls by Laurie Halse Anderson

This was a birthday present from my friend Paula. She knew I had been wanting it, but I was still suprised she got it for me. I love the cover, and everything Laurie has written, so I'm super excited to read this one!

This Lullaby and Lock and Key by Sarah Dessen

My friend Anfisa got me both of these for my birthday. I am so happy to have gotten the paperback of Lock and Key because I love this cover way more than the hardback. These both look really nice next to my other Dessen books.

Fighting The Current by Heather Waldorf

I won this book from the Random Contest over at The Shady Glade. I had never even seen this book before, but when I read the description I decided I had to read it. I was so excited to recieve it so quickly, and to find out it was a hardcover. I am obsessed with hardcovers (I think they look better in my bookshelf). Thanks so much for this book Alyssa!

Peace, Love, and Baby Ducks by Lauren Myracle

This was from another contest I won from playing a guessing game on an interview between Lauren Myracle & Little Willow. I've only read one novel by Lauren, and a short story (from Let it Snow), So I'm excited to read more from this author. Plus, I think the book looks adorable.

Leaving Paradise by Simone Elkeles

I went down to Powells a week or two ago, and my mother bought me this one. I usually have to buy my own books (It is my addiction, afterall) but my mother was being generous, and paid for it. I love my mommy.

I know it's over by C.K. Kelly Martin

This was another contest win (I think it was my birthday that was making me lucky) over at Writer Musings. I've actually been wanting this one for awhile, and can't wait to read it!

and last but not least....

Along for the Ride by Sarah Dessen

My sister and I went to Barnes and Noble on my birthday yesterday, so she could buy me this. It was the only one left in the store (at least from what I saw), and I kept staring at it on the way home. I have to read this one fast because a lot of people want to read it after me.
So, that's all for me, what did everyone else get?

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Review: "How They Met and Other Stories" by David Levithan

I normally don't do reviews, but I just finished this collection today and thought I'd put my two-cents in.

How They Met and Other Stories by David Levithan

Book Description:

Just in time for Valentine’s Day comes a confection from David Levithan that is sure to appeal to fans of Boy Meets Boy. Here are 18 stories, all about love, and about all kinds of love. From the aching for the one you pine for, to standing up and speaking up for the one you love, to pure joy and happiness, these love stories run the gamut of that emotion that at some point has turned every one of us inside out and upside down. What is love? With this original story collection David Levithan proves that love is a many splendored thing, a varied, complicated, addictive, wonderful thing.

My Thoughts:

This is a great collection of short stories by an amazing writer. David Levithan is able to show and convey that love just is. Sometimes it lasts, sometimes it doesn’t, sometimes it’s easy, sometimes it’s not, but it exists all the same.

Some of my favorite stories were (in order of appearance): “Starbucks Boy”, “Miss Lucy Had A Steamboat”, “The Number Of People That Meet On Airplanes”, “Princes”, and “Skipping The Prom”.
I also really liked “Without Saying”. It was mysterious and confusing in the best way possible. As soon as I finished, I went back and read it over again.

Overall, if you’re looking for a story with heart, there is a good chance you’ll find that story in this collection. I urge anyone who believes that love can defy gender, age, and sexuality to check this book out because as Levithan himself puts it:

“It doesn’t have to be on Valentine’s Day. It doesn’t have to be by the time you turn eighteen or thirty-three or fifty-nine. It doesn’t have to conform to whatever is usual. It doesn’t have to be kismet at once, or rhapsody by the third date.

It just has to be. In time. In place. In spirit.

It just has to be.”

5 Stars