Saturday, October 27, 2012

The Lucky Little Labrador: Haunted Halloween! Review

Title: The Lucky Little Labrador: Haunted Halloween!
Author: C. J. Smiles 

Lucky, the Labrador dog, returns in The Lucky Little Labrador: Haunted Halloween! to save Halloween. Lucky is a dog that is always getting into trouble somehow. In this “The Lucky Little Labrador” book, Lucky and Kevin go trick-or-treating but spooky things start happening around Kevin before and on Halloween. Kevin doesn’t have to worry though because Lucky is there to save him from all the scary things of Halloween.
This book is entertaining and funny. I was
pleasantly surprised to find myself laughing at the part when Lucky runs off while trick-or-treating with Kevin. He got distracted by a squirrel and that is why he ran off. I could just picture that happening for real! The really scary part of the story is when Kevin has to go to Mr. Jenkins’ scary “haunted” house in order to find his dog. Kevin gets scared at Mr. Jenkins’ house so it is a good thing Lucky is there to protect him! The whole story is adorable though, and the ending was nice. The ending gives children a message about loyalty and family.
There are plenty of cute pictures in this book as well. The author uses real pictures of the Labrador and some other characters throughout the book. My favorite photo was of Lucky dressed in his dragon Halloween costume. He looked so funny and adorable!

I also like the short vocabulary list at the front of the book. It is a great way for children to learn some new words.

There were some great moments in this book that made me laugh for real. The story is very entertaining and makes for a perfect Halloween read.

Rating: 5//5 Moons

 The Lucky Little Labrador: HAUNTED HALLOWEEN! A Bedtime Story with Puppy Pictures for  (Little Readers #5) is a children’s book by C. J. Smiles. The book is offered on Amazon as an ebook. The story is part of a series but can be read independently. This book is for children seven to ten years old. I was given this book in exchange for a review.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Fairy Tale Read-A-Thon Update 01

Ah, so, I guess I have not been too active with my blogging during this read-a-thon. I have been working on a lot of art (mostly for uni) and another blog project. I am still reading though.

I have already finished one book for the Fairy Tale Read-A-Thon. The book is Thresholds by Nina Kiriki Hoffman. It is a pretty good book for young readers. It was fun to read. I love the cover art too. Honestly, that and the price is why I picked this book up. I also started reading The Iron King by Julie Kagawa. This book is amazing in so many ways. I'm really enjoying it so far. I cannot believe that there are only two more days left of the read-a-thon!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Fairy Tale Read-A-Thon TBR and Updates

The fairy tale readathon hosted by Debz Book Shelf started yesterday! I have not had the chance to update this blog with my TBR pile or updates yet because of other commitments. Anyway, I am finally updating my goals and progress for the readathon now.

My goal is to read at least three books. One book will probably be The Iron King since I put it off specifically for this readathon. during my last readathon, I had planned to finish Alice in Zombieland but got a little frustrated with the story. I still have hopes for it though.

The Pile!

The Iron King
Alice In Zombieland
I, Coriandez
La Reina de La Laguna

Saturday, October 13, 2012

24 Hour Read a Thong TBR

The 24 hour read-a-thon about to start! Only eight more hours. I stayed up all night so that I could stay up 24 hours and read, hehe.

So, I have a huge pile of books to get through. I know I won't be reading all day because I have some important work to get done, but I'll try to put in at least 6 hours. I will be updating my progress regularly on my goodreads so please feel free to follow me there if you want. Anyway, here's my TBR pile:

Alice in Zombirland
Juntos (Matched)
Sea: A Novel
Some Dream For Fools
Cold Kiss
Sin Tetas No Hay Paraiso
The Bungalow
A Woman's Asia
Bend Sinister
Escape From Camp 14


Mini Challenges
Introductory Questionnaire

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?
East coast USA!
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?
Oh, wow, I don't know. I'm kind of excited about all of them for different reasons.
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?
4) Tell us a little something about yourself!
I just started book blogging this year but I've been reading since I was a little girl. Aside from books, I like to draw. I'm actually trying to make it as an illustrator at the moment.
5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to?
This is my first time participating! I'm looking forward to everything since I don't know what to expect yet.

Mid-Event Survey
1) How are you doing? Sleepy? Are your eyes tired?
I, unfortunately, opened up skype and have been neglecting my books in favor of talking with some friends. Ah, I probably needed a little break anyway. ;)
2) What have you finished reading?
So far I have finished two books! They are Sea and Some Dream For Fools. The second book was alright but I absolutely loved Sea.
3) What is your favorite read so far?
Sea! I could really connect to the main character's feelings and grieving too since my own mother sadly passed away earlier this year. I was afraid that I wouldn't like this book because of that but it was really good.
4) What about your favorite snacks?
Well... I went to the store and got some sour cream & onion potato chips. So much for the healthy snacking. I blame my brother for wanting soda and junk food! *shifty eyes*
5) Have you found any new blogs through the readathon? If so, give them some love!
I've was checking out and commenting on some blogs this morning. Yep, I've found a few new blogs to follow.

Readathon Snacks

Here's what I'll be snacking on throughout the day. Fruit and carrots! My dad is on a health kick so there is only healthy food in the house. I'll probably be going to the store later today though where I'll pick up some soda and chocopies. :p

Update #1
I finished the first book! I just finished reading Sea by Heidi R. Kling and absolutely loved it It was such a great book. This read-a-thon is making me forget about food though, haha. I almost forgot to grab something for breakfast. Also, I have decided to add the book Some Dream For Fools to my list because I feel like reading it right now. The book is sitting on my desk and I keep looking over to the cover like it is calling to me. It is short (156 pages) so I should be able to finish it today.

Book Haul 3

This is a combination of books that I've gotten over amazon and Job Lot recently. I had won a gift card for $100 at amazon and of course I used it to buy a few books for myself. ;) I mostly just got some more expensive language text books but I did get a couple of books for pleasure reading. Job Lot is a lot like Building 19 in that they have very cheaply priced books.

Amazon Books

All About Particles (Japanese grammar reference book)
Escape from Camp 14
A Woman's Asia
Intergrated Korean beginner I
Japanese for Busy people III
Business and Legal Forms for Illustrators

Job Lot Books

Grandma Calls Me Beautiful
Toss of a Lemon
Dreaming in Hindi (I've been wanting this one for so long. I was kind of surprised to find it to be honest.)
Some Dreams for Fools
Gamer Girl

Sunday, October 7, 2012

A Surprise Delivery!

This came in the mail yesterday! I wasn't expecting it so I was really surprised and happy when I got the package. The book is Breathe by Sarah Crossan and I won it from Epic Reads. This is my first ARC Copy too! I mean, the book was published at the beginning of this month so that doesn't really matter now but I am still excited about it.

I really do have a huge TBR pile now. I need to make some time for all of these books!

FrightFall Read-a-Thon Last Day

Well, today is the last day of the FrightFall read-a-thon. It has been fun! I am going to try to get some more reading in today but I doubt I will have much time. I am so glad that I have tomorrow off since it is a holiday.

My goal for this read-a-thon was to read at least one book. The books I planned to read were Stolen: A Letter To My Captor and Alice in Zombieland. I also had some Edger Allen Poe ready just in case I managed to finish both books. I was only able to finish Stolen but it was a fantastic read. This is a book that I would recommend to everyone. My review for Stolen should be right under this post if anyone is curious. Now, as for Alice in Zombieland, I got to page 28. I like the set up for the story so I am going to continue reading this book.

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Stolen Review

Title: Stolen: A Letter to my Captor
Author: Lucy Christopher

Gemma is a young woman who gets kidnapped at the Bangkok airport. She is taken away by Ty to the middle of Australia where no one lives. There Ty had already built a house where he intends to live forever with Gemma.

This is one roller-coaster of a book!

The descriptions of the setting, the Outback of Australia, were fantastic. I could really picture the beauty of Australia from Christopher's words. The way she had Ty describing his love for the land and living off of it was fantastic too. It made me feel like just taking off and living in the wild myself! There is a quote about nature and the land that fits perfectly with an art project that I am working on that I just loved.

"But without humans, the wild would take over (London). It would only take a hundred years or so for nature to win again."

This quote is a good example of Ty's love for the wilderness and disdain for the city which is a huge part of his reason for doing anything in the book. He talks a lot about nature, humans interacting with it, past stories involving the land and the need to learn to listen to the land.

Stolen takes you on an emotional ride with Gemma as she remembers her home in London, has conflicting feelings over Ty and tries to escape multiple times. The book is written as if Gemma is writing a letter to Ty after everything that had happened. Still, you don't know until the end of the book if Gemma managed to escape her captor or fell in love and decided to stay with him.

Am I the only one who did not completely fall in love with Ty? Even at the end of the book I still disliked him because I feel like he managed to break down part of Gemma. I feel like he played with her emotions to get her to love him. I did love Ty's dedication to the land and did feel a little sorry about what happened to him when he was younger, but a part of me still cannot trust him after everything that he put Gemma through.

Overall, Stolen is a very interesting book to read. It is one that is very well researched and also a bit chilling to read at times.

Rating: 5/5 Chocolate Bars

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Destroy Me Released

Destroy Me by Tahereh Mafi is avaliable as an ebook now! The ebook was released yesterday. Destroy Me is a short novella taking place after Shatter Me. It is basically bad guy Warner's point of view on everything. This is great because I wanted to read more about Warner!

Flirting In Italian Review

Title: Flirting In Italian
Author: Lauren Henderson

I did it! I finally finished Flirting In Italian! This took me longer to read than I had initially expected and the reason why is because I started to get bored and annoyed with the story a little bit before the half way point. I have a problem though were I cannot put a book down once I start it with few exceptions.

Flirting In Italian is the story about Violet who travels to Italy after seeing a painting of an Italian girl that looks just like her. Violet just has to know more about this painting! She also starts to wonder if she was adopted and is really Italian because she looks nothing like her Scandinavian mother or Scottish father. Violet herself loves art history and uses this as a pretense to get her mother to agree to send her to an etiquette school in Italy. At the school she meets another British girl and two American girls. They sort of become friends and go to parties with Italian boys together.

I loved all of the art talk at the beginning which is why I was excited to read this book at first. I also loved the way that the author described Italy when Violet and the three other girls where being driven to the estate. It made me want to book a flight and go there myself!

I started to dislike the book when it became all about the boys and more specifically, all about Violet's crush, Luca. I knew that there was going to be a lot of flirting and making out with cute Italian guys but the actual plot of the story that was set up in the beginning (the mysterious painting) seemed to have been completely forgotten now.

The characters also became quickly irritating.

All of the Italian women were bitches! Seriously. Every single Italian woman that Violet and her friends met were perfectly beautiful and secretly made fun of the foreign girls in Italian. I don't know how Violet knew this since she doesn't exactly speak Italian but she does.

Speaking of the Italian language, I love how there is so much of it in the book! I have to wonder if enough of it was translated though. If you know some basic Italian like me you'll be able to get the gist of things but for someone who doesn't know any Italian, it might be more annoying.

There were a few other smaller things that annoyed me as I was reading the book. Mostly the stereotypes of the American girls and Italian boys, Violet being a mary sue and Violet's (fake) crying at Kelly being poor and having a tough life while Violet didn't even think about how much the trip to Italy cost. I don't feel bad for you Violet! 

By the end of the book I was starting to lose all hope of ever finding the plot again. Maybe Henderson was saving it for the next book. But then the plot showed up again when they finally visit the estate where the painting is. So, the girls go there and everyone comments on how much Violet looks like the girl in the painting. Then someone tried to kill Violet. Yep. We find out who attempted to kill her at the end of the book too and everything seems resolved but I am still lost as to why and what exactly happened. I don't feel like it was a good wrap up to the book. Also, what does that leave for the next book? Is the second book nothing but Violet misunderstanding Luca and then making out with him? I'll pass on that.

Rating: 2 Chocolate Bar

Matched & Crossed Read-A-Thon

This read-a-thon is hosted by The Non Reluctant Reader and Squeaky Books. It goes from October 2 to November 13. It is not too late to sign up though. I just did, hehe. Here's how it works:

10/2 Starting line! Begin reading Matched
10/9 Read to Chapter 12
10/16 Read to Chapter 22
10/22 Finish Matched, Start Crossed!
10/29 Read to Chapter 14
11/5 Read to Chapter 35
11/12 Finish Crossed, buy Reached!

I've been wanting to read Matched for a while now but it wasn't a top priority book. However, since there is a read-a-thon with people having weekly discussions, I think I'll try to join in. I am going to be reading at least the first book in Spanish because I already have an ebook version of Matched (Juntos) in Spanish. I also need to get back into my Spanish reading game!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

FrightFall Read-a-Thon TBR Pile

The FrightFall Read-a-Thon is here! Actually it started yesterday but I didn't get around to writing this post until today. The FrightFall Read-A-Thon is hosted by Seasons Reading and you can check out their blog for more info.

The goal for this read-a-thon is to read at least one scary book. Not all of the books that you read have to be scary, but I wanted to try and stick to that scary theme as much as possible.

Here are the books I will be reading:

Alice in Zombieland (White Rabbit Chronicles #1) by Gena Showalter
Stolen by Lucy Christopher
The Complete Tales and Poems of Edger Allen Poe

Obviously I won't be able to read all of Edger Allen Poe's works, so which story/stories should I read? Any suggestions? I cannot read The Black Cat thought. That ones creeps me out too much. I figured that Stolen can also count as scary but in a different way. It is about a girl who gets kidnapped and is forced to live with her captor in the remote Australian outback. Other than these books, I did see Sense and Sensibility and Sea Monsters at Job Lot yesterday for like three dollars so I might go pick that up

Book Haul 2

I was at the grocery store recently and I ended up picking up The Bungalow: A Novel by Sarah Jio. I usually don't buy books from the grocery store but this one caught my eye. The cover is so pretty and the story sounds interesting. I have also read some good reviews on goodreads so I am looking forward to picking this book up hopefully soon.

I am still trying to finish Flirting In Italian but I am kind of losing the fun feeling with it. I will probably put that book down and continue reading Sea: A Novel that I got in last month's book haul.