Have you missed me?

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guess who is back

I know it’s been literally years, and it’s a tad too long to call this a hiatus, but I am back now!

A lot has changed in my personal life in the last few years, but now more than ever I want to get back to reading regularly and taking the time to write out my thoughts about books.

Instead of having such an ambitious reading schedule I have decided to only set myself the goal of reading 12 books this year, so that’s one book a month. This way it doesn’t put me off reading longer books, which I often didn’t feel like I had the proper time to read. Likewise, for the months that I do have more time, of course then I can read more and have “Bonus” reviews for those.

Likewise, this takes off the stress of HAVING to read books when, well, life gets in the way. I want to be able to enjoy this book journey and not have it as a dreaded to do list.

So without further ado, check out my reading list for 2018 and look out for my reviews, posting them on Sunday evenings!

The Seven Deadly Sins of Reading Tag

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Thank you so much to The Happy Typewriter for nominating me for this lovely blog award, I love doing these too. Sorry it has taken me so long to complete it (I went on a little hiatus!). But I am back now so let’s get started!

Greed Defined as: An intense and selfish desire for something.

What is your most expensive book?

I am going to be super boring and have to say my most expensive book was for my German course in university, cost just under $200. I know, I am so lame!

Wrath Defined as: Extreme anger.

What author do you have a love/hate relationship with?

George R.R. Martin. The fantasy world and the complex relationships that he creates in the Game of Thrones is very awe inspiring…however sometimes the complexity of the plot and just the sheer number of characters in his books get to be a little too much for me!

Gluttony Defined as: Intense over-indulgence.

What book have you devoured over and over with no shame?

Any of the Harry Potter books. I am a quarter of a century old and I still proudly announce that the Harry Potter series is the best thing that has ever happened to me (in the book world of course!).

Sloth Defined as: a reluctance to work or make an effort.

What book have you neglected to read due to laziness?

The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton. I just don’t have the patience or the will power to tackle that read at the moment. So it just sits there on my reading shelf, a big blue spine that just makes me ashamed of my laziness.

Pride Defined as: satisfaction derived from one’s own achievements or from qualities or possessions that are widely admired.

What book do you talk about most in order to sound like an intellectual reader?

HAHA this is such a good question, as I am sure we all do it. For me it’s the The Canterbury Tales by Geoffrey Chaucer. How can you not brag about having read a book published in 1475?

Lust Defined as: a strong sexual desire.

What attributes do you find attractive in male characters?

Nothing beats cleverness/intelligence in a male character for me sprinkled with a little humour of course. However, that should never cross into a know-it-all and the “perfect” male character. I appreciate a flaw or two to make him more realistic.

Envy Defined as: a feeling of discontented or resentful longing aroused by someone else’s possessions, qualities, or luck.

What book would you most like to receive as a gift?

I have to pick just one? This is going to take me forever…

The Tales of Beedle the Bard, Collector’s Edition. If you have no idea what I am talking about click here to see this beauty. It costs an arm and a leg but brings so much happiness!

So, that’s all for me, now here are the bloggers I tag:

Really curious to read your answers!

“The Seven Deadly Sins of Reading” Tag

Wow, I never seized to be amazed when I get nominated for these things. Especially from someone that I look up to! Thank you so much to The Happy Typewriter for tagging me for this book questionnaire. It’s these things that really make me feel like a part of the WordPress community. Here I go!

Greed

Defined as: An intense and selfish desire for something.

What is your most expensive book?

I’d have to say that probably my German textbook for university cost me nearly $250. As for books that I read for fun, I ‘d have to say my special edition of The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde.

Wrath

Defined as: Extreme anger.

What author do you have a love/hate relationship with?

Charles Dickens. That man drove me up the wall with Great Expectations. I actually feel wrathful towards that book to this day and thus have not read it to this day. I loved his The Tale of Two Cities and Hard Times though, so it goes! Real hit or miss.

Gluttony

Defined as: Intense over-indulgence.

What book have you devoured over and over with no shame?

I actually don’t re-read books very often. The list of books that I want to read just grows too quickly. I’d have to say The Picture of Dorian Gray. Real fun to re-read. I can also see myself re-reading Slaughterhouse 5 shamelessly and always feel entertained. Oh, I don’t even count the Harry Potter series, as that is a given 😛

Sloth

Defined as: a reluctance to work or make an effort.

What book have you neglected to read due to laziness?

Hmm, for this one I will have to say The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton. I started reading it and got about 100 pages in and then the motivation to keep going just dropped to dangerous levels. It’s still sitting on my shelf. It’s a big book too so it always catches my eye when I look at my book shelf. #bookguilt

Pride

Defined as: satisfaction derived from one’s own achievements or from qualities or possessions that are widely admired.

What book do you talk about most in order to sound like an intellectual reader?

Blimey this is a tough one, I’d have to say Emile Zola Ladie’s Paradise is great for sounding like you know your stuff about 19th century Paris or if I want to whip out my architecture in 19th century Europe prowess there is nothing like quoting some good old Fin-de-Siecle Vienna by Carl E.Schorske 😀

Lust

Defined as: a strong sexual desire.

What attributes do you find attractive in male characters?

I guess I always gravitate toward the intelligent, charming and witty male characters. There are aspects of Henry from The Picture of Dorian Gray that I really admire, his social prowess/charm/wit I suppose. Then I also like intelligent/practical characters like Mikael Blomkvist from the Millennium series.

Envy

Defined as: a feeling of discontented or resentful longing aroused by someone else’s possessions, qualities, or luck.

What book would you most like to receive as a gift?

I’d have to say the Amazon’s Collector’s edition of The Tales of Beedle the Bard.

I’ve really enjoyed this tag! I’m really interested to read the following amazing bloggers responses:

1. Yvo @ It’s All About Books

2. Emma @ bluchickenninja

3. Karen @ One More Page

4. Eva @ The Paperback Princess

5. The Bookish God

Kazuo Ishiguro on Fiction, Allegory and Metaphor

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Being the bookworm nerd that I am, I am following Kuzuo Ishiguro on facebook and I saw this video posted on his that page just the other day. It’s short and to the point but I think it really taps into the reasons why I absolutely love this author and his books (one of which made my Top 10 list of course).

“I like to create world’s in my novels that are slightly off kilter from the real one, the everyday world that we all live in.”

Do you guys agree? 

Weekly Update and Book Haul

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I have recently went on a little book haul on Amazon (again! It is my weakness!), as they had a 3 books for 10 pounds deal. I can’t say no to that. So below you will find the books I hope to get through over the next couple of months.

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The Maze Runner by James Dashner

  • I’ve recently seen the movie and really enjoyed it. The story struck me as being even better written down than done in movie form, plus this way I don’t have to wait for the second movie to come out in September 😉

Slaughterhouse 5 by Kurt Vonnegut

  • If you have been following my blog for a bit you will know that I have been meaning to give this book a read for a while now, but just never got around to buying it. Well I made the commitment finally and can’t wait to give this a read!

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith (aka JK Rowling)

  • I really enjoyed The Cuckoo’s Calling, and this book carried on with the same main character, Strike, trying to solve yet another puzzling murder case. Again, I can’t wait to jump in!

Empress Dowager Cixi by Jung Chang

  • Unlike the previous books listed, this is a non-fiction book I came across really just by chance. I think my boyfriend and I were discussing and wondering if the dominance of men in history is mostly just a Western influence or whether it was worldwide. This book is about a Chinese Empress who the author claims to be the most important woman in Chinese history. So excited!

The Memory Book by Rowan Coleman

  • I kept seeing this book everywhere, and it has gotten many positive reviews online so I thought I would give it a go

Have you read any of these books? Did you enjoy them?

“Sibterhood” of the World Bloggers Award

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I was nominated for this lovely award by Reckless Indulgences ! Thank you so much for the nomination, it means a lot to me and it really brightened my day!

The Rules:

1.Thank the blogger who nominated you, linking back to their site

2. Put the award logo on your blog

3. Answer the ten questions they’ve sent you

4. Make up ten new questions for your nominees to answer

5. Nominate ten people


Reckless Indulgence’s Questions:

1. Since I hate “favourite” questions, what genre or genres do you enjoy reading most? What draws you to those books?
Oooh this is a hard one! I would have to say the classics or like modern drama. Classics because of the writing quality. It can be absolute magic, a well write verse is almost like music to my brain.  Drama because I am really interested in seeing how people think, why they think the way they do, and the external influences on personality/life. And children books. I am so relieved you didn’t as for a single genre!!!

2. Do you normally pick up and read a title at random if it interests you, or does the book have to come with high recommendations, lots of reviews and high ratings, and/or award nominations/wins?
It doesn’t have to come with high recommendations at all. Over the past year especially I have read high acclaimed books by esteemed authors and have been grossly disappointed. I am a bit book vain, so I am frequently tempted by books with nice covers. Guilty as charged.

3. Have entered any Book or Reading Challenges for 2015? If so, which ones?
I sort of dislike these, because they make reading a chore for me rather than choice. I made up a reading challenge and failed greatly. Probably won’t do one for a little while.

4. What movie and/or book are you most excited to see/read?
Is it sad to say that no to both? I have been a little out of the loop lately. I was excited for the Imitation Game movie to come out. That’s probably the most recent one.

5. Do you collect a certain kind(s) of book? If so, which ones?
Hmm this is a good question. I like hardcovers, but they are a little expensive for me. This Christmas I got one of the Barnes and Nobles classics editions of The Picture of Dorian Gray and I could see myself starting up a collection of those fancy books.

6. Give a guestimate. How many books do you think you own? (Printed books & E-Books included!)
If you count my books in Canada and the UK probably over 100.

7. As readers, we all have TBR lists. How long is yours and do you think you will be able to whittle it down this year?
I’d like to think I’ve been fairly reasonable about my list this year. I average around 4 books a month. I did only get to July at this point, probably will add books as the year goes. I often purchase books that other book bloggers have recommended, some of which I never heard of !

8. How do you usually acquire the books you read: Bookstores, Online (Amazon, Book Depository, B&N, AbeBooks, etc.), Indie Marketplaces, Libraries, Used Bookstores, $1-5 Bins, Gifts from family and friends?
I love the bookstore experience, but I love Amazon’s prices. Probably this past year I have turned mostly to making online purchases. For convenience and bargain prices.

9. Do you have an unusual reading habit? What is it and why do you do it?
I have noticed myself twirling my hair when I read. It’s so embarrassing when I catch myself doing it. I just have to keep my fingers busy.

10. If the zombie apocalypse happened RIGHT NOW, which fictional book character would you want with you? Why, and would you both survive???
Probably Harry Potter, because he increases my chances of surviving. He is the boy who lives after all. 😉


My Questions for you YOU! 

1. What do you miss a lot right now?

2. What is your favourite dish/food? What is so good about it?

3. What book took you by surprise? I want one good surprise and one bad one!

4. What are your goals for 2015?

5. What is your least favourite noise and why?

6. If someone gave you $100,000 how would you spend it? Or save it? Be honest!

7. What is your favourite TV show of all time?

8. If you could be/are really good at one sport, what would it be?

9. Which book/author are you most excited to read from your TBR pile this year?

10. Tea or coffee?


The Nominated: 

1. Yvo @ It’s All About Books

2. Emma @ bluchickenninja

3. The Bookish God

4. Karen @ One More Page

5. My Book Strings

6. Cathy @ 746books

7. ebookclassics

8. Ana @ Ana is the Bookworm

9. Eva @ The Paperback Princess

10. Christi @ I Know What You Should Read

Can’t wait to read your answers!

Books to See This Year

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As it’s the beginning of the year I am struggling to fill my official Reading List for the year 2015. Of course I am going to change it throughout the year knowing my indecisiveness, but at this moment in time it needs to be filled!! Lucky for me I stumbled across this fun web-link peruse, detailing 21 books that are turning into movies this year. Some of them are not big surprises, like Suzanne Collin’s part 2 of the Mockingjay Series and Fifty Shades of Gray, the latter which I refuse to attend as the actor hired to play Christian is so average looking it hurts to even consider going and paying money.

On the plus side there are A LOT of books which I have never even heard of but have real A list stars in them. Like The Mordecai Trilogy (the movie is featuring Johnny Depp!?!?) by Kyril Bonfiglioli, has anyone heard of this? Or Black Mass by Dick Lehr and Gerald O’Neill (featuring Benedict Cumberbatch, Johnny Depp again and Sienna Miller?!?!?!?!?). Did I freaking miss something? Not yet thankfully! So if you are stuck like me and are wondering what book to add or delete from your list, click and see what there is in store.

—–> 21 Books To Read Before They Hit The Big Screen In 2015 <—–cumberbatch

Wednesday Wondering: The dreaded Movie vs Book debate

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Wednesday Wonderings: A chance for me to muse about anything and everything literature.

With the hyped-up anticipation of Gone Girl (the movie), I was inspired to re-think books turned movies. After reading the book I was actually surprised that they were doing a movie of it as a big bulk of the movie was Amy’s diary entries and feelings discussed. I haven’t seen it yet, but it’s gotten 8.6/10 on IMDB which is promising.

There is a huge list of books turned movies that didn’t live up to the hype. Some would argue The Lord of the Rings series, although impressive, never lived up to the amazingness of Tolkien. Harry Potter series especially did not do the series justice. I remember re-reading The Order of the Pheonix a week before the movie came out and being immensely disappointed with just how much they’ve left out.

Then there are those books that are very psychological. I don’t mean psychological as in disturbing, but rather that they deal with the character’s emotions, thoughts and mental being. There has yet to be a film technique to transcribe character thoughts properly. This is one of the powers of the novel. We can properly dip into the mind of the character (if it’s first person narration mind you). It’s what makes books amazing, as they can create a world that isn’t necessarily physical and they are able to make it personal. In movies, you never really fully understand the characters. Frequently, their reactions are overemphasized to try to indicate a certain emotion that isn’t necessarily realistic.

In reverse to that I find that action packed movies are better than action packed books (yikes, what a bold statement!). I couldn’t imagine reading Star Wars and enjoying it like I had the movies or say like the Jason Bourne series with the music, and the car chase scenes. For example the recent thriller I have read, I Am Pilgrim, I could see how amazing it could be in movie format, but I just felt like it lacked in book form. Maybe I am just not as imaginative as I had thought?

What I have learned about movies and books is that you have to do just that, treat them as different entities. When younger, I used to get angry when films did not interpret the books the way I had imagined when I had read the book. But now, I just try to treat each film as a single interpretation of the novel. There is a reason why there is a disclaimer at the beginning of movies, it’s just “based” on a book not identically copied.

I feel like that is a reason why books are still so amazing today. There are able to discuss and bring to light elements of human psychology that cannot be transcribed on the cinema screen.

What are your thoughts on movies turned movies? How to you handle the frequent disappointment?