Monday, November 30, 2009

113 Things to do by 13

by Brittany MacLeod (with a little help from her mom, Terri MacLeod)

113 Things to do by 13 is a short, fun book about 113 things that young teenagers should do before they turn 13. (To be honest, I haven't done several of them.) This colorful, eye-catching book covers a large variety of topics, from self-esteem and makeup to bullying, going green, food fights, and more.

I really enjoyed reading this, and had a blast looking through all the pictures. There are lots of tips from celebrities and "experts" on different matters: for example, Taylor Swift talks about goals and dreams while Matt Lauer (from the Today Show) discusses his favorite vacation spots.

This book is quite inspiring as well - after reading #96 (Floss your teeth.), I think I'm going to do that tonight. :-) 113 Things to do by 13 is definitely something for teenage girls to check out... you won't be disappointed!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Art... with Books?

I recently saw these pictures on the internet. I don't know if they were originally created to look like this (I hope so! I wouldn't want any books to be cut up and ruined.), but they are quite interesting. Here are a few:

I don't know how you would read this one:

Or this one:

But this one is cool and creepy at the same time:

A lot of the pictures were really scary and the books looked like they had been gruesomely mutilated, so I didn't want to put those up. :-O

Thursday, November 26, 2009


Wednesday, November 25, 2009

I've been interviewed!

The Nerdette (a.k.a. bookbutterfly) has featured me over at her blog! Go over and check it out! There are lots and lots of terrific interview questions that I had so much fun answering, and bookbutterfly's blog is fabulous as well.

Thank you so much, bookbutterfly!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Linkage is a funny word

The Story Siren is having an amazing contest over at her blog in celebration of her 1000+ followers! Go and enter! (You have to be 13 or older, I believe...)

The third Lightning Thief trailer is out, and it looks cool! I'm just wondering who the lady at 1:02 is. My friend and I have been running through different characters and no one seems to fit. Except Persephone. And she wasn't even in the first book anyways. Any ideas?

Gracias to Beth Kephart for this post. You're welcome, Beth! :D

I'm going to watch New Moon on Sunday! I'm quite excited, actually. I've heard mixed reviews about it, but the trailer made me laugh and I think it'll be funny (the kind of funny where it's not supposed to be funny but makes you laugh anyways).

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The Heart is Not a Size

by Beth Kephart

Georgia knows what it means to keep secrets. She knows how to ignore things. She knows that some things are better left unsaid... Or are they? When Georgia and her best friend, Riley, travel along with nine other suburban Pennsylvania kids to Anapra, a squatter's village in the heat-flattened border city of Juarez, Mexico, secrets seem to percolate and threaten both a friendship and a life. Certainties unravel. Reality changes. And Georgia is left to figure out who she is outside the world she's always known.

(From back summary)

The Heart is Not a Size is, by far, Beth Kephart's best YA novel yet. It's an incredibly lovely story about finding out who you really are. The plot was terrific and moved at a good pace, and the writing was stellar- beautiful and poetic, yet simple and heartfelt.

One wonderful thing about this book was that it was mostly set in Juarez, Mexico. Reading about life in places like Juarez really opened my eyes to poverty and living conditions around the world. I had no idea that there were communities like Anapra, where there were no bathrooms and just sand stretching on and on. That aspect of the story made it quite interesting and educational as well, and it was really touching to read about how hopeful the children there were, despite their surroundings.

What I most enjoyed about this book was the recurring theme of friendship. It's hard to find good books nowadays that really focus on friendship and support and compassion, but Heart encompasses all those ideas. I loved seeing the ups and downs of Georgia and Riley's friendship, and how both of them dealt with those changes. I loved seeing the bonding between the teenage volunteers and the young Juarez children. All the relationships were so realistic, making the characters quite tangible.

Even though this book deals with some serious issues such as anorexia, I think it's a must read for teenagers. The Heart is Not a Size is a truly exemplary novel about friendship and identity, and I highly recommend it to everyone.

Coming out in March 2010.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

you'll never know what you'll find on google...

I was fooling around on Google last weekend and found TONS of amazing, supercool stuff!

For those people who have an iGoogle page:
Every morning, at 3:14 am, a special "Easter Egg" pops up on several of the Google themes. Go here for a full list. I think that I'll get up and check sometime during vacation. :-)

A lot of fun stuff about Google here...

And finally, the coolest thing (in my opinion). For those of you who use Google Reader, go here and try it out!

I know I've been kind of slacking off on good blog posts lately. I've been really busy, but I promise that there will be more stuff next week (possibly including some reviews!).

Friday, November 13, 2009

friday fun

I got this writing award from Enna-Rin (thanks!):

as well as this 8-question meme from her as well:

Six names you go by:

I've been called several things in my life... too many to count. My favorite one is "Conniving Shrew." Not that I'd actually do anything illegal...

Three things you're wearing right now:

Jeans. Magenta and orange sweater. Magenta and orange scarf.

Three things you did last night/yesterday/today:

Started reading Ice by Sarah Beth Durst/Laughed at Taylor Swift's overly dramatic, chair-throwing performance at the CMA's/Wrote a sonnet.

Two things you ate today:

A banana and a burrito.

Two things you are going to do tomorrow:

Go to a math competition and work on my history project.

Your three favorite beverages:

Water, soda, and apple cider (either warm or sparkling).

I tag anyone who wants to do this!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009


This week is Baby-Sitters Club Week over at My Friend Amy. The BSC books were my absolute favorite when I was younger, and I decided to do a memory post about my first experiences with the series.

I don't know exactly how I got started on them - I think it was just by coincidence that I picked one out of the shelves at the local library. This was in kindergarten. I started with the Baby-Sitters Little Sister series (featuring Karen, Kristy's younger stepsister). I began by reading slowly, savoring the fact that I was reading a chapter book (!) and stumbling over all the hard words.

First grade. I continued reading the Little Sister series. My teacher thought I was "advanced" in reading and told me to pick books from the third grade reading shelf. I saw "Kristy's Big Day," one of the original BSC books, and thought "Hey! I read these books! Let me try this one out."

Well, it proved to be harder then I expected. I hardly recognized any of the characters, and back then, the font was so small and the words were so big! I gave up and went back to the world of Karen and her friends.

In second grade, I was gobbling up the Little Sister series. I would go to the library every week and come out with a teetering stack of ten new books to read. I read book after book about Karen's holidays, school events, friends, and more.

And then in third grade, I finally tried the actual BSC books again. They were much easier to read and so much fun! I remember being in awe of how cool all the characters were, and I wished I could be in junior high like them and do all those awesome things like babysit and go shopping and everything. (Just for the record, I have never had a babysitting job in my entire life, even after reading these books.) Fourth grade came and went and I was still reading the books. All my friends had gotten into them too.

In fifth grade, I started moving away from the series and more towards stand-alone books from authors like Sharon Creech and Janet Lee Carey. I still collected the BSC books and read them whenever I could, though.

Now, I own several BSC books, ranging from the very first one to others that were published much later, when new characters had come in and old characters had left. Even now, whenever I see BSC books at a garage sale or something, I'll always get a few just for the fun of reading them. I recently reread my whole collection, and I'm surprised at how timeless they are. Although a lot of the covers and dialogue are so corny, I still immensely enjoy reading them.

So, to all Baby-Sitters Club fans- reread one of the books this week! Go over to Amy's blog and check out the other BSC posts! I'm sure you won't be disappointed :)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Green Books Campaign: Valentine's Fall

This review is part of the Green Books campaign. Today, 100 bloggers are reviewing 100 great books printed in an environmentally friendly way. Our goal is to encourage publishers to get greener and readers to take the environment into consideration when purchasing books. This campaign is organized by Eco-Libris, a a green company working to green up the book industry by promoting the adoption of green practices, balancing out books by planting trees, and supporting green books. A full list of participating blogs and links to their reviews is available on Eco-Libris website.

Well, the book I was supposed to be reviewing is called Valentine's Fall, and it's by Cary Fagan. And it seemed to be about someone called Valentine who fell off the school roof and died.

However, I never finished it. I actually never got past the first 3 pages. It was just so incredibly boring and choppy and made absolutely no sense. There was no dialogue at all from what I read, the chapters were each one page long and kept changing topics, and it didn't get my attention at all. So I had to put it down.

However, the good thing about this book is that it's eco-friendly! It's printed on FSC-certified paper and the pages were very white and clean :) I'm glad that companies such as Eco-Libris are really taking steps to increase awareness about safe environmental efforts. I hope you all check out the other reviews in this campaign!

Friday, November 06, 2009

tuesday morning

7 am: fog.

bubblegum clouds against a pale blue sky
and the edges of the moon are

wispy like
the smudge on the
car window

frosted opaque except for the
words you traced yesterday.

and the horizon is orange now
as i walk into the fog

carried on a fragile

(Poetry Friday roundup here.)

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

actually, these come in sets of three

From Kirthi

The Dragon's Loyalty Award is for those followers who are the most loyal and give bloggers joy by commenting regularly and with their support.

Thanks, Kirthi! I'm passing this on to anyone who has ever commented on my blog. You guys are great! Your comments make my day.

Monday, November 02, 2009

You don't want to miss out on this!

Fangs, Fur, and Fey is having an AMAZING contest over at their blog in celebration of their three year blog anniversary. They're giving away a Kindle to one lucky winner, and 22 other winners will receive $20 gift cards to a bookstore of their choice (there are 5 to pick from).

I would enter if I were you :) Go on over to read all about it and find out how to enter!