Blaine - Blazer and Tie

Currently Reading...

What book are you currently reading?
One Day by David Nicholls.

How far in are you?
305 pages of 435.

What's it about?
2 friends, Dexter and Emma, and their lives over the course of 20 years based on just one day of the year: July 15th.

Are you enjoying it?
Yes, I really am. I didn't see the movie but I've wanted to read this book for a long time. I love the characters, they're very real to me, and I love the way it's written. It just feels so effortless. Plus, the fact that each chapter is just one day in every year, but I'm never confused by what's going on is a testament to the writing and Nicholls' talent.
Blaine - Blazer and Tie

Vampire Diaries Reaction Post - S03E07 - Ghost World

I'm behind, I know. I've had a lot going on with end-of-semester assignments and work, etc. I wrote one for last week's episode, but it was short and only done the night before the next episode aired so I didn't bother copying it across to LJ. If you're still interested, you can read the "Smells Like Teen Spirit" post here.

BUT! I'm finished uni for the year now, and I'm determined to do my write-up's soon after each episode. You can also read this week's recap at WordPress here.

Anna looking sad while Jeremy breaks some bad news

Original air date: 27 October 2011
Written by: Rebecca Sonnenshine
Directed by: David Jackson

Official synopsis: NIGHT OF ILLUMINATION — As Mystic Falls prepares to celebrate the traditional Illumination Night, the town is invaded by spirits of the dead. After a particularly violent encounter with an angry spirit, Damon asks Bonnie to find the reason behind the ghosts’ surprising power. Elena convinces Jeremy to use his connection to the other side to help her find a new way to reach Stefan, leading Jeremy to a terrible choice. Finally, Alaric discovers a long-hidden clue to the past. *

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Blaine - Blazer and Tie

Currently Reading...

What book are you currently reading?
The Sword of Albion by Mark Chadbourn. Published as The Silver Skull in the U.S.

How far in are you?
176 pages of 542.

What's it about?
England is under constant threat from Spain but what the majority of the country don't know is that they face war on another front: from the Unseelie Court of malicious faerie folk. Enter Will Swyfte: Elizabethan England's greatest spy, who's job it is to keep the country safe from the faeries and make sure their greatest weapon doesn't fall into Spanish hands.

Are you enjoying it?
Hell yes. I'm really enjoying this book and the only reason I'm not finished it already is because my time has been seriously taken up by work and end of sememster assessments for uni. But the adventure is great and the action enticing. The characters are enjoyable, and Will in particular has those rakish qualities I love in fictional heroes. Plus, it's just an all-around well-written book. Overall a really good read so far.
Blaine - Blazer and Tie

Vampire Diaries Reaction Post - S03E03 - The End of the Affair

I didn't get a chance to write up a post for last weeks episode, but I might go back and do one during the hiatus. I do hate inconsistency.

You can also read this weeks post at WordPress here.

Stefan and Klaus toast the good ol' days


Original air date: 29 September 2011
Written by: Caroline Dries
Directed by: Chris Grismer

Official synopsis: THE ROARING TWENTIES — Klaus and Stefan arrive in Chicago, where Stefan is reunited with a vampire (guest star Claire Holt, “Pretty Little Liars”) who hasn’t really moved on from her interest in him decades earlier. In a flashback to Chicago in the 1920s, Stefan comes face-to-face with a shocking chapter from his wild past. After Damon gets a tip on Stefan and Klaus’ whereabouts from an unexpected source, he and Elena follow their trail. Back in Mystic Falls, Tyler is concerned about Caroline and turns to Sheriff Forbes for help. *

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Vampire Diaries Reaction Post - S03E01 - The Birthday

Last season, I sent all of my reactions via email to a friend of mine, as she's a TVD viewer and fangirl as well. This year, though, I've decided to make it official, with a spiffy new blog on WordPress which will remain linked in the sidebar. However, because so many of my TVD friends are here on LJ, I'll be cross-posting all reaction posts. This one is a bit late because I forgot to actually post it here, but I'll try to be on time in future. You can either comment on WordPress or here on LJ. It's up to you!

This post is available on WordPress here.

Now, without further ado...

The Birthday

Joseph Morgan as Original vampire Klaus, watches over Stefan, his new wingman



Original air date: 15 September 2011
Written by: Kevin Williamson and Julie Plec
Directed by: John Behring

After a 4 month hiatus, The Vampire Diaries is back for its third season. And thank God. For me, the week’s are never longer than when there’s no Vampire Diaries to look forward to.

In the Season 2 finale, we were left with:

  • Stefan sacrificing himself by agreeing to give into his darker urges
    and join Klaus, in exchange for a cure for Damon’s fatal werewolf bite;
  • Damon and Elena shared a goodbye kiss…which then proved awkward when Katherine arrived with the cure;
  • Caroline reconciled with her vampire-hunter mother;
  • Jeremy was brought back from the dead…with the ability to see the ghosts of his dead ex-girlfriends; and
  • Alaric took up residence on the Gilbert’s couch.

With all that up in the air, there was a significant amount of hype around the Season 3 opener.

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Blaine - Blazer and Tie

Currently Reading...

Taken from book_memes.

What book are you currently reading?
The Rogue by Trudi Canavan

How far in are you?
267 pages of 495.

What's it about?
This is the second in the Traitor Spy trilogy (the sequel series to Canavan's hugely popular Black Magician trilogy), and has a number of point of view characters and plot lines, including tracking down the rogue magician in the city of Kyralia, and novices rebelling against the Magicians Guild and learning the forbidden art of black magic.

Are you enjoying it?
Yes, for the most part. Canavan's Black Magician trilogy is a particular favourite of mine, so I was really anticipating the first book in this trilogy. Unfortunately, I was largely disappointed, both with the plot and the characters. So I decided to just borrow The Rogue from the library instead of buy it. Thankfully, The Rogue is overall more interesting. I find I'm looking forward to specific characters, even though I've never been paticularly interested in them in the past. I'd say I'm most disappointed, though, in the novices learning black magic. The main novice is mousey and doesn't actually want to use the magic she's learned. Which is probably the point, but I find her irritating, maybe because Sonea (the MC from the first trilogy, and the first novice to actively learn black magic before it was reintroduced to the Guild) so obviously had a goal in her learning of the magic.
Blaine - Blazer and Tie

Recent Read: Bloodlines - Richelle Mead



SPOILER ALERT!
The following review contains spoilers for the above novel.


- - -


Sydney is an alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the worlds of human and vampires. They protect vampire secrets - and human lives. When Sydney is torn from her bed in the middle of the night, at first she thinks she's still being punished for her complicated alliance with dhampir Rose Hathaway. But what unfolds is far worse. Jill Dragomir - the sister of Moroi Queen Lissa Dragomir - is in mortal danger, and the Moroi must send her into hiding. To avoid acivil war, Sydney is called upon to act as Jill's guardian and protector, posing as her roommate in the last place anyone would think to look for vampire royalty - a human boarding school in Palm Springs, California. But instead of finding safety at Amberwood Prep, Sydney discovers the drama is only just beginning...*

Bloodlines is the first book in Richelle Mead's latest YA series (also titled 'Bloodlines'), a spin-off series from her popular Vampire Academy novels, but Bloodlines will follow a set of characters who were relatively minor in the first series, specifically Sydney, Adrian, Jill and Eddie.

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All in all, this is an excellent read and I'm sure VA readers won't need my encouragement to pick up Bloodlines. The characters are engaging, the plot exciting and the dialogue witty: Mead at her best, to say the very least. The high school element isn't really a large part of the novel either, so older readers shouldn't find themselves frustrated with petty teenage drama. The only disappointing thing about this book for me is that it had to end, but even the ending is a hook. The last line sets up where Book 2 will begin so perfectly  that I'm already on the edge of my seat.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

As an extra, this series was, according to Mead, supposed to be told in third person, with each chapter in a different character's point of view. In that version of the book, it was going to begin with Adrian. Seeing as that's all changed now, Mead officially released Adrian's lost chapter just prior to the Bloodlines release. You can read it here.

*Source
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I fell off the face of the cyber earth...

...and this is my feeble attempt to climb back up.

I've been M.I.A. for a while now. Blame work and uni. I do.

This post isn't anything substantial but I really wanted to post something here. So, of course, I come bearing a (mini-) meme. It's taken from book_memes and they do this every month on the 10th. Basically it's an effort to see what everyone's reading, and it's a great way to start conversations about books that you might have read yourself, or are thinking about reading. My submission for this month:

What book are you currently reading?
The Magicians' Guild by Trudi Canavan.

How far in are you?
328 pages of 517.

What's it about?
Sonea, a poor slum girl, is discovered to have magic where only the wealthy are taught how to wield it. It's the first book in The Black Magician trilogy, which I highly recommend to everyone (but especially lovers of fantasy, obviously).

Are you enjoying it?
Yes! I love this series; it's a particular favourite of mine and I read it every year. This is the commencement of the 2011 reading.

This is something I might start posting here every month, because longer reviews can take a while, especially when reading time becomes synonymous with travel time. I'll also try to post more writerly/book-type things. I miss doing that, so here's hoping.

Finally, some of you may know that I dabble in fanfiction writing in my spare time ("Spare time." LMAO) and post it over at my fiction journal,  ladyknight_fic. In an effort to produce something more than 500 words long, I've opened myself up to filling prompts. If you read my fiction (or are interested in reading it: the masterlist is here), please go here and leave a prompt. Thanks!
Blaine - Blazer and Tie

Recent Read: The Uncle's Story - Witi Ihimaera


Spoiler Alert!!!

The following review may contain spoilers for the above novel.

- - -

 


You remember that book you hated studying in school? The one you had to carry around in you bag for 3 months, trying to get through it and analysing it to death every English class? You probably wrote a pretty shoddy essay on it, an essay which no doubt featured all the same arguments and perspectives every other student was putting forward.

Witi Ihimaera's The Uncle's Story is not that book.

Michael Mahana's personal disclosure to his parents leads to the uncovering of another family secret – about his uncle, Sam, who had fought in the Vietnam War. Now, armed with his uncle's diary, Michael goes searching for the truth about his uncle, about the secret the Mahana family has kept hidden for over thirty years, and what happened to Sam.

Set in the war-torn jungles of Vietnam and in present-day New Zealand and North America, Witi Ihimaera's dramatic novel combines superb story-telling with unflinching realism. A powerful love story, it courageously confronts Maori attitudes to sexuality and masculinity and contains some of Ihimaera's most passionate writing to date. *

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Ihimaera writes with a quiet confidence that wrapped me up from the first page and carried me through to the end. His voice layers the drama and comedy to just the right degree, and it was so...warm. His voice was warm, which is not something I've ever said about another book or writer before.

Strangely, I haven't decided if I'll look into more of Ihimaera's work. I probably will, but it's more that I just want to read this one story over and over again.

Either way, one thing's for sure: this is one school book which won't be seeing in my resale pile.

Rating: 5 out of 5.

* Source


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