Thursday, February 28, 2013

Liebster Blog Award

Thanks to Alex @ The Book Banner for nominating me for the Liebster Blog Award! Pretty awesome :)

So! The Liebster Blog Award: There are some rules:

      1. Thank your Liebster Blog Award presenter on your blog and link back to the blogger who presented this award to you.
      2. Answer the 11 questions from the nominator, list 11 random facts about yourself and create 11 questions for you nominees.
      3. Present the Liebster Blog Award to 11 blogs of 200 followers or less who you feel deserve to be noticed and leave a comment on their blog letting them know they have been chosen. (No tag backs)
      4. Copy and paste the blog award on your blog.

My answers to Alex's 11 questions:
  1. How long have you been book blogging? I'm fairly new, as I've only been book blogging since September 2012, though I have been writing, reading, and loving books for much, much longer!
  2. Do you have a favourite genre of books? Fantasy. New worlds are awesome. Optional reality is awesome. Magic is awesome. Fantasy is awesome.
  3. Which book made you fall in love with reading? Harry Potter all the way! Reading was good before I read the Harry Potter books, but now I'm obsessed (with both literature and Harry Potter).
  4. If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you go? Vernazza, Italy. Except a flood devastated the small town a year or so ago :(. I went there on vacation a couple years ago and am dying to go back!
  5. What is your favourite dessert? Cake. Well... really, any dessert. I have an insanely huge sweet tooth. Chocolate is my best friend. I love dessert way too much.
  6. Do you have a bucket list? If so, what's something on that list that you'd like to accomplish this year? I guess I have a bucket list, but it isn't a firm, written out list. Just things I want to do, as I think of them. Not too sure what I'll do this year. It's really a matter of what opportunities arise and what I feel like doing.
  7. What else do you do (when you're not reading)? Lots of stuff. I like performing and visual arts, and I play a ton of instruments and also like to write songs. I love outdoorsy stuff, writing, and crafty/creative stuff like sewing and scrapbooking too.
  8. Is there a book that you know you should read, but you're putting it off? Lord of the Rings. I really do want to read it, I just can't convince myself that now is the time.
  9. How do you arrange your bookshelf? Well, it usually starts as height or width or favourite or author or genre or anything, but before long my shelf is just a befuddling mess.
  10. What book have you reread several times? Harry Potter!!! So insanely obsessed :)
  11. If you could have a superpower, what would it be? Flying would be pretty cool. I know its basic and a common superpower to chose, but think of all the possibilities there would be if you could fly!!!
11 Random Facts:
  1. I believe cinnamon buns are best eaten after spreading out the icing evenly and then heating for 21 seconds in the microwave. Random but yummy
  2. One of my life goals is that when you search my name on wikipedia it comes up with info about me and when you search my name on google, the first hit is about me
  3. I really want to go to Alaska
  4. I really want to go backpacking and stay over night in the Grand Canyon
  5. I believe you should judge a book by its cover (an actual book, not the metaphor), since the role of the cover is to portray the story, mood, and theme visually!
  6. I start things but rarely finish... that's why this post is so late
  7. I love embroidery and other needle crafts and sewing
  8. I'm a professional rambler and go-on-and-on-er
  9. I love quotes, but most of all, I love writing my own quotes
  10. Literature is AWESOME, but I love writing more than reading
  11. Lists are fun to write but a pain to finish
My questions for my 11 nominees:
  1. Where is your favourite place to read?
  2. What blog post of yours is the best representation of who you are?
  3. Have you ever dreamt of becoming an author?
  4. What's better: reading or writing?
  5. What fictional world would you most want to live in?
  6. Do you like/agree with the common trends in reading currently?
  7. What would your dream library look like?
  8. How do you judge whether or not to take the time to read a blog?
  9. What's your view on graphic novels?
  10. E-books, hardcover, or paperback?
  11. What makes you want to blog?

So yeah! Thanks to Alex again! Hope y'all enjoyed my post and follow me and comment and smile and have a wonderful day :)

Sunday, February 10, 2013

May & Joe - Vlog

Follow this link to see my first vlog, on the musical production May and Joe!

(password required)

PLEASE NOTE: the images are not mine! They are from rosebud theatre's facebook page and I do not take any ownership over them! Also, the music is from iMovie!

Saturday, February 09, 2013

A Christmas Carol - Special Book Review

Why hello there. Here I have another book review, but not just any book review. This book review is special. No only did I critique the book, I reviewed a peers review of the book. Crazy, hey?!?!?

This wonderful review is on a wonderful book, A Christmas Carol, which is of course by the legendary Charles Dickens. 

My first paragraph is responding to a peers review, which you can check out here
My second paragraph is simply a review of the book and how awesomely awesome it is!!!

*I didn't write a summary, so check out the Goodreads Summary

A Christmas Carol
by Charles Dickens

Most everyone has heard of A Christmas Carol before, be it the play, movie, or original book. Azhar says it could be considered a classic tale, I say it IS a classic! As Azhar said, A Christmas Carol touches the hearts of its audience by showcasing the true meaning of Christmas: giving and joy. To further the idea of messages and meanings, Azhar states in his review that the theme is “don’t be greedy”. I agree that this is a prominent message in the book, but I don’t think it is the main theme. In my mind, the theme is in this phrase: “…that while there is infection in disease and sorrow, there is nothing in the world so irresistibly contagious as laughter and good-humour.” (Pg. 84). An aspect that I really agree with Azhar on is the detailed setting. My favourite instance of this was on pg. 18, where Dickens tells us the journey of Scrooge walking through his house looking for the ghost, meanwhile giving us a superb description of the setting. Detail was in abundance throughout the whole book, to the point that both Azhar and I question if there was a bit too much. This caused the story to move slower, and I often found myself having to read over parts to understand the message being told. Overall, Azhar and I both believe A Christmas Carol is a phenomenal story, and I support his recommendation of the book to anyone wanting an entertaining story and not minding an overload of description.

Since it was such an intricate story, there are obviously many more elements that should be touched on. One aspect that was quite noticeable was the archaic writing, which was super detailed and foreign in comparison to what I normally read. An intense example of this is on pg. 13: “If the good Saint Dunstan had but nipped the Evil Spirit’s nose with a touch of such weather as that, instead of using his familiar weapons, then indeed he would have roared to lusty purpose”. Similarly, elements such as punctuation and sentence structure were different than what we are used to today: ““He fastened the door, and walked across the hall, and up the stairs: slowly too: trimming his candle as he went.” (Pg. 17).  This created a challenge and often required me to read over parts, but it also created the chance for me to see rich, deep, classic literature, which was phenomenal! Having seen theatre and movie versions of the story, I already had visuals of the characters and all, and yet the book was still able to enhance the way I saw each character: “With ghostly spectacles turned up upon its ghostly forehead. The hair was curiously stirred, as if by breath or hot-air; and though the eyes were wide open, they were perfectly motionless.” (Pg. 16). Another positive was the way Dickens communicated the character descriptions, as well as the details of the setting. He was discrete and didn’t push the information right to you, but rather Dickens tied it into the plot and story as a whole to create an awe-inspiring masterpiece. None of the elements were superfluous, and if you read this book, I am sure you will find the experience to be anything but superfluous too.

Monday, February 04, 2013

Litspiration Challenge #2

So! Again, I have my official "litspiration challenge" for the term, a.k.a. something awesome about books. The requirement is just one per term, but I've done way more, but this post is the one I have chosen because I did it with the requirement in mind.

Anyways... I have chosen to do a compilation of songs which I played in the ukulele and for some I sang too, and the point is to connect to the book Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli, as the main character, Stargirl, plays the ukulele to spread joy and happiness :).

Happy Birthday
Throughout the book, Stargirl plays Happy Birthday in the cafeteria in hopes of spreading her joy on everyone's birthday. Therefore, it was a given for me to include this song, as it is where Stargirl's ukulele plays its role in the story!

Over the Rainbow
Melody: Generally a positive, hopeful, major tone, but edgy, minor chords do come in at some parts, creating a perfect balance of emotions to reflect the fact that Stargirl appears happy to the world, though deep down, she is troubled by various things.
Lyrics: The song refers to "somewhere over the rainbow", and the wonderful place their, and I think this relates to Stargirl because that world over the rainbow is her world, where things are happier, more creative, and so very unique. Another line that really reflects Stargirl is "where troubles melt like lemon drops", as I believe this reflects the way Stargirl moves on and strives for a happier world.

True Colours
Melody: The melody of this song has a very hopeful mood, and I find it very motivational. This is the same message that Stargirl tries to bring to the world. Through everything she does, she works to bring happiness, motivation, and hope to everyone she can.
Lyrics: Stargirl is an expert at showing her "true colours", and that's what this song is all about. She breaks social barriers and becomes something everyone is mesmerized by, simply by being her true self. As well, the song talks a lot about being happy and putting on a smile, and Stargirl really strives to do that. Overall, I believe the lyrics fit Stargirl's life perfectly!

Melody: Like many of the other songs on this list, Breakaway has a melody filled with hope and working for success. The verses build hope and emotion, and then its all let free in the chorus where we get an outburst of happiness and hope.
Lyrics: The lyrics speak of breaking free and living large, and this really highlights Stargirl's motives and goals in life, as she hopes to have a big role in life to make life awesome for the world, and she does so by breaking free of social barriers and the status quo.

Just the Way you Are (chorus)
Melody: A positive mood is portrayed in the chorus and an overall sense of fulfilment and hope for the world. Personally, I get an "It's all gonna be alright!" feeling from the chorus, and this is the mood Stargirl tries to bring to everyone around her, even if she may not be feeling that way inside.
Lyrics: The lyrics of this song reflect Stargirl's way of life, as she doesn't mind how others see her, she just goes by the thought that she is beautiful  and amazing just the way she is, both inside and out :)