May 28, 2015

Armchair BEA 2015: Day 2 - Visual Expressions & Social Media

Armchair BEA Headquarters
It is another year and that means another Armchair BEA for those of us who couldn't make it to the actual BEA Conference.  
(Click the Banner for more info)

 This year there is even a theme! DIVERSITY!!! WOO HOO.
If you haven't already, go sign up to play with us, Armchair BEA registration is HERE.

Day 2: Visual Expressions & Social Media

...Visual Expressions...

 Woot for today! I love Graphic Novels, Comics, and Picture books! OH SO MUCH. I love to add them in to read-a-thons as breaks from long pages of words and enjoy the colors and art of wonderful illustrators and artists. It is just such a relief. So here are some of my favorite series (right now) and where to start if you are interested.

Courtney Crumrin Volume 1: The Night Things 

Courtney Crumrin and the Night Things (Volume 1) by Ted Naifeh 

Courtney is one of my favorite series, I love the dark macabre art that it includes and I love the storyline. Courtney is a young girl whose family decides they are going to move to live with her creepy old uncle in a mansion that looks and feels like it is out of the Addams family. Courtney soon realizes there is more than meets the eye with her uncle Al and the story is AMAZING.

Harley Quinn #1 

Harley Quinn #1 (The New 52 Series) by Amanda Conner and Jimmy Palmiotti

So I love me some Batman but that is a lot of backstory to trudge through it you really want the whole experiences - so I stick to what I love - a strong female and Harley Quinn or Harleen Quinzel is just that. AND you get a good amount of story and some back story about her in this new run of comics about her. The New 52 came out in 2011 as a revamp of the older DC comics - trying to regain readership. It was a great idea. There is some time for you to catch up on the 16 or so comics that are out now as DC (and Marvel for that matter) are going another angle for a bit with their new Convergence (and Marvel's Secret Wars). The new Convergence run was only for two months but when we come back to Harley I think we are getting a Harley/ Power Girl Mash up...
Sorry the nerd came WAY out on that one :/



Lenore: Noogies (Issues 1-4)

Lenore by Roman Dirge - Volume 1 Noogies


I am sensing a pattern in myslef with all these creepy crazy female leads in my comics ...hmmm... I should think on that... OH WELL!

Lenore is another one of these darker graphic novels I have read and I think her is adorable - she is a little dead girl who has a plethora of other strange talking things to help her on her adventures, slight spoiler - they do sometimes kill people, but mostly it is COMPLETE coincidence :)

Here are a few others that I enjoy...
Johnny the Homicidal Maniac: Director's Cut  Wolverine: Origin II  The Amory Wars, Volume 1: The Second Stage Turbine Blade  


 

...Social Media...

Social Media is daily for me, I have an office job and there is some down time so I am online A LOT. I have accounts with Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Goodreads, Librarything... I think that is all of them.

 I use Facebook more in my personal life than for Blogging - however I do have a Cover2CoverBlog Facebook Page, feel free to stop by and say hello. 

I have a Twitter account that I hop on almost daily to read through real quick and both my Facebook Page an Twitter are automatically fed my blog posts. Although druing BEA I am not on Twitter much because the jealousy is strong when I see all of the books people are getting -- and I am working :(

I use Goodreads and Librarything for finding books and reviewing very regularly and am on them ALL the time.

 The other accounts are really just around, I use them every so often but not really.

May 27, 2015

Armchair BEA 2015: Day 1 - Library Lovin'

Armchair BEA Headquarters
It is another year and that means another Armchair BEA for those of us who couldn't make it to the actual BEA Conference.  
(Click the Banner for more info)

 This year there is even a theme! DIVERSITY!!! WOO HOO.
If you haven't already, go sign up to play with us, Armchair BEA registration is HERE.

Day 1: Library Lovin'

  I recently found my library - it is a weird situation. I live in VT but work in NH so I pass like 3 NH libraries on my way to and from work but the VT library isn't really on my way anywhere so I had not bothered. But then I realized (even though I have too many TBRs here on my shelf) that I just needed more options. So I found it.... the most adorable and wonderful library :)

This is it...
Photo Compliments of http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:HartfordVT_Library.jpg
Isn't it wonderfully cute and quaint? 

It is pretty much an older home and the various rooms are different sections of books. the basement is all the YA and MG that I love AND they rent DVDs too so I have been checking out older movies of my youth :) SO MUCH FUN.

 SO MUCH love for this place. 

They are even doing an adult summer reading program/ challenge and giving away a Kindle which I found amazing!

Armchair BEA 2015: Day 1 - Introductions

Armchair BEA Headquarters
It is another year and that means another Armchair BEA for those of us who couldn't make it to the actual BEA Conference.  
(Click the Banner for more info)

 This year there is even a theme! DIVERSITY!!! WOO HOO.
If you haven't already, go sign up to play with us, Armchair BEA registration is HERE.

Day 1: Introductions 


Tell us a bit about yourself: How long have you been blogging? Where are you from? How did you get into blogging?
I am Stephanie, I live in the US in Vermont and I have been blogging since February 2012. I read a lot and used to bother my husband while he was doing things and he told me I needed a hobby and I should start book-blogging - so I did and is has become more than just a hobby, I love it!
Why do you loving reading and blogging?
I love reading because you can go anywhere, be anyone for a chunk of time and it is thrilling. I love blogging because I love that I can share my passion for reading with others and I hope they find my reviews helpful.
What is your theme song?
Yesss....  I love this movie and this theme and even have the soundtrack in my car that I listen to (yes I am a crazy person)

What does diversity mean to you?
Wow, that is a hard one. Diversity to me is a variety of things - giving me options. In the book world this can be characters - genders, races, orientations - and even overall themes as well.
What is one book everyone should read?
One? :/ The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. All the emotion - this is how a book should be.
Share your favorite blog post on your blog. (aka written by you!)
hm... this is a hard one. I would have to say one of my first blog reviews The Peculiars, I requested this book through Netgalley after creating my blog and reviewed it for that purpose so really it got me started. It is nothing fancy but it was a monumental occasion for Cover2CoverBlog.
What is your favorite genre and why?
Young Adult Fantasy, because I love the teenage angst (not sure why) and I love mythical creatures and the crazy-adventurous things that can happen in fantasy.
What book are you reading right now?
I have been reading Empire of Sin for a while now, it is non-fiction and I just have to really be in the mood to read it... I am also reading Vivian Apple at the End of the World.
Empire of Sin: A Story of Sex, Jazz, Murder, and the Battle for Modern New Orleans   Vivian Apple at the End of the World (Vivian Apple, #1)
What is the top book in your TBR pile?
Top as in been there the longest? That would be Old Habits a Wicked Lovely Novella (#2.6) Or which one I want to read right now? That would be Carry On  by Rainbow Rowell coming out later this year -- want SO bad to read that one!
What book are you most looking forward to reading this summer?
ALL of them..., no really, I need to catch up on my reading I have so many books I need to review, I really to to just binge read all summer long!
If you were stranded on a deserted island, what author would you want to bring with you? Why?
Oh that is a good question and a hard one...I feel like I would want to be stranded with Agatha Christie they mystery writer (if she were still alive). I love all of her books - esp. as beach reads so why not be on the beach with her?! Right?!
Take a picture of your bookshelf and share it with us! :) (#ABEAShelfie)
 Here are some of my shelves - I really have books everywhere though.

May 25, 2015

Recent Reads: Meerkat Madness by Ian Whybrow


Meerkat MadnessMeerkat Madness by Ian Whybrow
Publisher: Barron's Educational Series
Publication Date:  April 1, 2013


 

Format: Paperback
Source: BEA 2013  (Yes, I still have books in my TBR from BEA.)


Rating:


 

 


Goodreads Synopsis: 
"Meerkat Madness " is an uproarious mini-novel for kids in Barron's frantically funny, stupendously silly, and fun-filled "Awesome Animals" series. Kids will start laughing the moment they open this short, easy-to-read novel--and they'll keep on turning the pages to find out which new tricks these hilarious Meerkats are getting ready to concoct next. Comical black-and-white cartoon-style illustrations appear on many pages to capture the story's zany spirit. All "Awesome Animals" novels are divided into chapters, so that boys and girls can put the books down when Mom calls them for dinner--though kids will want to pick these stories up again as soon as they can! 
Review: 
This was a cute book and I liked it but it wasn't anything spectacular, to me at least. We follow four Meerkats on an adventure that has them fighting off birds of prey, other Meerkat tribes, and even vroom-vrooms. 

I enjoyed the information that this book shares about Meerkats and how they do things - the hierarchy of their groups, how they eat and watch for predictors and how they interact with one another. The story was very fun as well. These four kats are trying to leave their burrow for a new one and their experiences are fun filled and exciting. The book is written in a very clever way, in that everything is from the Meerkat's point of view so human things are foreign to them and it makes for some laugh-out-loud moments.

I think younger readers will get a kick out of this book, it is cute, informational, and fun, and there are even illustrations as well.

May 24, 2015

Building the Book Pile #138

Welcome to Building the Book Pile!  A Weekly meme inspired by Stacking the Shelves

Hello Readers, Bloggers, and Awesome people! 

What's Happening?! 
How was your week ? Let me know in the comments.


This week was another great one. Read more books! I am excited for my 3-day weekend and plan to read/ sleep/ watch corny movies :) What do you have planned? Do you have a long weekend too?
I am also getting ready for Armchair BEA 2015 which starts on Wednesday to coincide with the actual BEA conference. As I am part of the planning committee for it, I am even more pumped than usual - we have a theme! DIVERSITY! So make sure to stop by, sign up, and read through the Armchair BEA Agenda.
Also if you have any Blogging Q&A questions, please share them in the comments and I would be happy to answer as many as I can in Friday's post. :)

I hope you all had a wonderful week! Let me know in the comments!


Giveaways Going on NOW

http://cover2coverblog.blogspot.com/2015/02/recent-reads-lola-going-green-by.html  Moon Mall

Coming up on the Blog...

Next week is BEA and so thus Armchair BEA!
 
Recent Reads: Meerkat Madness by  Ian Whybrow (MG)
Recent Reads: The Friday Society by Ardienne Kress (YA)
Armchair BEA: Introductions/ Library Lovin'
Armchair BEA: Visual Expressions / Social Media
Armchair BEA: Characters / Blogging Q&A
Armchair BEA: GIVEAWAY DAY!!!
      

 

Books Received this Week

May 23, 2015

Blog Blast: Twisted Fairytale Confessions - Death of the Mad Hatter by Sarah Pepper


Death of the Mad Hatter by Sarah Pepper


Series: Twisted Fairytale Confessions
Publisher: CreateSpace
Publication Date:  November 29, 2013



 

Goodreads Synopsis: 
The Jack prophesied: If the king loses his head, then the Queen with a Bleeding Heart would rule the Red Court until Time ceased to move forward. When a second carried on for infinity, every creature in Wonderland would tip their Hat to the misfit girl with a Boy’s name (or was it a boy with a Girl’s name?) who’d end the Reign of Terror. However, it all hinged on the One-Eyed Hare being able to convince an uninspirable Heir that the impossible was indeed possible—like stopping time—and that Love was worth a Beheading.

Heads would Roll…
Hearts would Break…
In the end, would it matter who Reigned?

 



Top Three Interesting Retellings of Alice in Wonderland and why they deserve to be mentioned?




I thought it would be fun to incorporate a few of the original Alice in Wonderland quotes to reference the most significant (to me) Wonderland retellings.



“Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”
― 
Lewis CarrollAlice in Wonderland



I’ve always been a little afraid of Alice’s story—okay, lame I know, but I blame Disney for my irrational fear of all things Wonderland. I watched the movie when I was a young girl, and being a food lover, I was petrified. Why? Because Alice ate some yummy food and then didn’t stop growing!! How could you hide the fact that you snuck a cupcake from Mom when you are ten feet tall? So eating a wonderous breakfast was out of the question. If a cupcake could make me a giant, then I wasn’t about to try the orange juice.



“You would have to be half mad to dream me up.”
― 
Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland



Johnny Depp’s Alice in Wonderland would probably be my next favorite retelling. Any J.D. fan will love his performance. He gets so into his characters, becoming them through and through. Since Death of the Mad Hatter is focused mainly on the Mad Hatter, I was inspired by Depp and hope that is portrayed in the novel. Maybe I, me, and myself, am a little bit mad to dream up a character who is unapologetically insane.



“Off with their heads!”
― 
Lewis CarrollAlice in Wonderland



Wonderland was an intoxicating, magical world where the most farfetched dreams could come true and the impossible was possible. Conversely, it was a realm where the most daunting nightmares could haunt us until the end of time”—Death of the Mad Hatter. To me, Wonderland is a beautiful haunting place (probably because I have mixed feelings about their food). But to another person, the food might be the best part about the fantasy world. I just love how far the imagination can take you, which is why Alice in Zombieland is my third favorite retelling. The author took us to a completely different Wonderland than what most people imagine. So off with their zombie heads!

May 22, 2015

Recent Reads: Atlantia by Ally Condie

AtlantiaAtlantia by Ally Condie

Publisher: Dutton Childrens
Publication Date:  October 28. 2014



 

Format: Hardback
Source: Recieved an ebook from Penguin First to Read back in October and never got around to reading it, so I borrowed a copy from my library.


Rating: DNF (stopped at page 200)


Goodreads Synopsis: 
Can you hear Atlantia breathing?

For as long as she can remember, Rio has dreamt of the sand and sky Above—of life beyond her underwater city of Atlantia. But in a single moment, all her plans for the future are thwarted when her twin sister, Bay, makes an unexpected decision, stranding Rio Below. Alone, ripped away from the last person who knew Rio’s true self—and the powerful siren voice she has long hidden—she has nothing left to lose.

Guided by a dangerous and unlikely mentor, Rio formulates a plan that leads to increasingly treacherous questions about her mother’s death, her own destiny, and the complex system constructed to govern the divide between land and sea. Her life and her city depend on Rio to listen to the voices of the past and to speak long-hidden truths.
 
 Review: 
I tried SO hard to get through this book and enjoy it, but sadly I could not. When I originally requested the arc from Penguin, I thought it was about mermaids... or sirens like the scary kind I have read about in other books but this was not the case. 

What I found with Atlantia was just a slow moving plot line - in the first chapter Rio's sister, Bay, leaves for the Above and I read up until about 200 pages and Rio is still figuring out a way up to ask her why. Now this would have been fine if there was other stuff happened as build up but really everything that happened just seems lack-luster. Rio begins to question the system - but doesn't do anything about it, her aunt becomes part of her life - but she seems fine with it overall, and there is a cute guy - only, she is being detached and off-putting toward him so romance didn't really happen in those first 200 pages either. Everything that should have pulled me in, just didn't.


I really wanted to enjoy this book, and I feel like I stuck it out for about 100 pages more than others the DNFed it, but still nothing - I just wanted to take a nap (and once I even did fall asleep while reading it :/)

May 21, 2015

Early Reader Review: Odd Schnozz and the Odd Squad #2 by Jeffery Burandt


Odd Schnozz and the Odd Squad by Jeffery Burandt, Illustrated by Dennis Cilver and Ramon Villalobos
Series: Odd Schnozz and the Odd Squad Chapter 2
Publisher: Oni Press
Publication Date:  May 19, 2015



 

Format: ebook
Source: From Oni Press in exchange for an honest review. Receiving this ebook in no way altered my opinion or review.


Rating:








Synopsis: 

Liz, Bodey, Maude, and Justine's band, Odd Schnozz and the Odd Squad, are sure to win this year's Battle of the Bands. But when a talking chimp, who claims to be a scientist from the mysterious organization B.L.A.N.K., interrupts their practice session, the band's got a whole new set of problems. Now B.L.A.N.K. agents are closing in, determined to recapture the escaped chimp before he becomes a liability. Jeffrey Burandt (Americans UK) and Dennis Culver (Edison Rex) bring you this thrilling tale of cyborg animals and punk rock teenagers. 1, 2, 3, 4!

Review: 
This chapter was a lot more interesting than Chapter 1 - Odd and the gang still have a talking Chimp, but in this installment there is more of the secret agency going after him... much more interesting than a chimp just appearing. 

I am getting more and more interested in reading these as the story develops a little more and I am finding some of the B.L.A.N.K agents to be hilarious! All in all a very fun quick read. The dialogue is quick and funny and the illustrations are to the point and easy to read through.



 

May 20, 2015

Recent Reads: A'dab's Gift by Talia Haven


A'dab's GiftA'dab's Gift by Talia Haven
Publisher: Talia Haven
Publication Date:  March 23, 2015



 

Format: Ebook
Source:From the Author in exchange for an honest review, this in no way alters my opinion or review.


Rating:


 


 

Goodreads Synopsis: 
The caravan god is given camels as a gift by A'dab's father. But the god refuses to let her father make another pair to set loose in the mortal world.

Mid-grade short story.
 Review: 
A'dab's Gift is a middle grade short story for ages 6-12. It is fast and easy read and I think can be read in one sitting by most readers. This was a very interesting short story about a god and a family that gives him gifts in the world of the gods but when one of this family defies him to help mortals she is punished.

The story itself is very interesting - you question many things like religion, death, punishment, purpose through this short installment. I think I would like to find out what happens after this short tale - what happens to A'dab. I am not sure we will ever know. There isn't much more I can elaborate on without re-telling the whole story, so that is about it...


I think that this short story will intrigue all readers.



 

May 19, 2015

Recent Reads: The Question of Miracles by Elena Arnold

The Question of MiraclesThe Question of Miracles by Elena Arnold
Publisher: HMH Books for Young Readers
Publication Date:  February 3, 2015



 

Format: Paperback ARC
Source: From HMH Books for Young Readers in exchange for an honest review


Rating:


 


 


Goodreads Synopsis: 
Following the death of her best friend, Iris and her family move to Oregon for a fresh start in this middle-grade story of miracles, magic, rain, hope, and a hairless cat named Charles.

Sixth-grader Iris Abernathy hates life in Corvallis, Oregon, where her family just moved. It's always raining, and everything is so wet. Besides, nothing has felt right since Iris's best friend, Sarah, died.

When Iris meets Boris, an awkward mouth-breather with a know-it-all personality, she's not looking to make a new friend, but it beats eating lunch alone. Then she learns that Boris's very existence is a medical mystery, maybe even a miracle, and Iris starts to wonder why some people get miracles and others don't. And if one miracle is possible, can another one be too? Can she possibly communicate with Sarah again?
 
 Review: 
The Question of Miracles is an emotionally deep Middle Grade read about loss, acceptance, and change. Iris is an eleven year old who recently moved from sunny, sandy California, to rainy dreary Oregon soon after the tragic death of her best friend Sarah. Now in Oregon she has to accept so many new things: that Sarah is not there, or anywhere for that matter, that she may have to make new friends, and that Oregon might not be as horrible as she is making it out to be.

This whole book is very character driven, so if you are looking for an adventurous plot, this one is not for you; but if you are looking for an inquisitive, charming book about loss, this is perfect. Even as an adult this book was a wonderful read - it made me think about moving when I was young and learning to accept certain things as they happened - and here with Iris, I think young readers will learn a lot.

Iris is a sad, young, little girl, looking to figure out why her friend had to die and if she can communicate with her spirit - the book questions miracles and why some people get them and some don't, the existence of a god, and even the existence of souls. Really the underlying message that I saw while reading was that everything happens for a reason and maybe your friend did move on but there are so many other things you should be thankful for.

This was a beautifully written book and all the characters were easy to follow and even made me laugh at times. I really enjoyed this one even through its somber back-story.