Thursday, January 31, 2013

Booking Through Thursday - Lending Books

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly feature hosted by a blog of the same name, where you answer and discuss the question featured on the blog. This week's question is:

Q: Do you lend your books? Are any out on loan right now? Do you have any that have been loaned to you? Do you think people should make an effort to read the loaned book quickly?

Oh boy, this is a tough one for me. For quite a while I had a very hard time lending my books out. At a certain point, my friends wouldn't want to borrow books from me because I was so anal. I am verrrryyyy easy on my books. I dont open paperbacks too far so as not to crease the spine, I am NOT okay with bent corners, and God forbid someone rips or stains a page. These things are just not okay with me.

I remember when I first really started lending out books to my boss, and I only did it because she lent me a few and we talked so much about the books we enjoyed, I thought it would be fun being able to discuss books we had both read.....

Then I got the books back.. *cue scary music* Oh God, I was distraught, but I tried not to show it, because I know she wasnt careless on purpose. I mean, really, she read the books in a day or two, its just that... she was reaallyyy hard on the books. Its just how she is, even with her own.

So I let it go and cringed every time I handed a book over to her, knowing what it would come back looking like. I got a little better, because I tried to tell myself that books SHOULD BE READ. They are SUPPOSED to be shared, and yes, sometimes people are harder on them than I am. Not every one is an anal freak who barely opens a book when she reads it. Well, that and the stress this was causing me was probably not healthy.

I do have some books lent out now - my cousin is making her way through the Mortal Instruments series, and for the most part they've come back okay. No horrible wear and tear or actual damage. I dont borrow a lot of books though, because as you may have guessed, I like to own my books and I like to have them "like new". I know it saves the earth and all by borrowing from friends and the library and whatnot, but I have an obsession and I cant do anything about it.

As far as people being curteous enough to return a book in a timely fashion, that doesnt bother me too much unless it has been several months. Some people, I've also learned the hard way, dont read as fast as I do. Take my boyfriend for example. I bought him a book for Christmas. He finally picked the damn thing up a week later, and now, about a month later, he is only about 3 chapters in. And I've seen the boy read, and the pace isnt exactly swift. He's just not a quick reader. I do, however, think that if you can read and return a book to the library in 2 weeks or however long they give you, there's no reason you cant do the same with someone else's book which is their personal property treasure.

How about you? How do you feel about lending books out? Please tell me that someone else is as crazy as I am about this whole thing, haha.

Happy reading!
Manda C.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday - Most Frustrating Characters

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week's list is going to be:

Top Ten Eight Most Frustrating Characters Ever
8. Jenna from Wither: I know a lot of people are annoyed by Rhine, but she wasnt as baffling for me as Jenna was. I mean, one minute Jenna is quiet and stoic, haunted almost, like she would break if Linden touched her. The next minute she's a sex kitten, playing into her husband's hands, letting him think she really wants him. I dont get it. If she was that haunted or broken dont you think she would've tried to bite it off if he put that thing near her?.. I'm sorry that was vulgar. Okay I'm not sorry, cause that wouldve been me. Those girls are CRAZY for staying there as long as they did.
7. Anastasia AND Christian  from Fifty Shades of Grey: Let me start by saying I hated this series and I could barely make it through the second book, so my judgment might be a little biased. I HATED them. Christian was controlling, a martyr, a little bit crazy, and plain old annoying. She didnt need to be watched over every damn second Christian. I mean, in the first book, with their agreement and all - I get it - thats the point. But once they decided to BE together, like seriously man, give it up. Anastasia is a whole other story. She played right into that m%$@*&'s hands! She was weak, had no confidence or self-esteem, was a freaking NAG! Jesus people, get it together.
6. Professor Umbridge from HP: Oh God, I think you all know the loathing I have for this woman. Not only is she horrible, evil, manipulative and in cahoots with Voldy, but she is the reason that Order of the Pheonix was so incredibly hard to get through. The middle of that book where every five seconds Umbridge was passing a new freaking rule - Oh God I couldnt stand it. I wish the woman never existed!
5. Mr. Rochester in Jane Eyre: Need I explain this one? He's a pain in the ass. And a a manipulative nut job, at that.
4. Cassia from the Crossed series: She was frustrating because she was weak. I feel like in the first book she was just waiting for someone to take care of her. Second book, real strong improvement, but even then, she was just dumb. Third book, not as strong as second in my opinion, but still better than before; however, still annoyingly stupid.... This is becoming a pattern. Maybe I'm just mean and need to acclimate to the character's seemingly unending stupidity....or NOT!
3. Harry Potter in the entire HP series: Okay, I mean, HP is my favorite series of all time, and I am beyond obsessed with the world, but I cant lie. Harry was stupid...and overly depressed. I mean I get his parents were killed and a mad man was out to end his life but seriously - He did stupid things, didnt listen to his friends, couldnt take good advice, got himself and his loved ones into trouble. The list could go on and on. I mean yeah, he saved the wizarding and muggle world as we know it, but give me a break - the first six Voldemort banishings were by chance!
2. Clary and Jace from The Mortal Instruments Series: Yeah, they aggravate my life. I wont say specifically why just in case some of you havent read the books, but when it comes down to their relationship, they are so stubborn... and they are gluttons for punishment. It drives me crazy!!
1. Bella from Twilight: Holy hell, I couldnt stand that girl. She was so... DUMB sometimes, and overly depressed over a boy. I mean I get the point of the book - I actually am a big fan... just not a big fan of Bella. There is no reason that any one girl should be that obsessed with one vampire boy. Its just not healthy.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Review: Reached by Ally Condie

Publication date: 11/13/2012

Pages: 384

My Rating: ★★★★

Goodreads synopsis:

"After leaving Society to desperately seek The Rising, and each other, Cassia and Ky have found what they were looking for, but at the cost of losing each other yet again. Cassia is assigned undercover in Central city, Ky outside the borders, an airship pilot with Indie. Xander is a medic, with a secret. All too soon, everything shifts again."

In-depth review:
Its hard for me to say how I truly felt about this book. For starters, I couldnt put it down. So thats definitely a good sign. The first 200-300 pages were non-stop, I couldnt get enough and the story was captivating. I really enjoyed reading this book from three different points of view. It sounds like it would be difficult or confusing but it wasnt. It was very refreshing and interesting reading from three different characters that Condie makes sure she individualizes and gives their own opinions.

I didnt love Cassia in this final book, she wasnt as strong of a character for me as she was in Crossed. I found that in Matched she was a very weak character also, and I didnt like Matched nearly as much as these second and third installments. I was very happy when Crossed came around and she was such a strong character as compared to the last book and I was hoping she'd be even stronger in Reached but she fell short - only by a little - I mean, I didnt hate her.

I enjoyed Xander a lot. He came off as naive to me at first, and it made me pity him, but by the end of the story I realized how dynamic he was and how much he had changed. The story was exciting and kept me guessing the whole time, with little surprises here and there to make my jaw drop in amazement.

The one thing I didnt like about this book was that around the middle, things started going everywhere. I felt like Condie was mentioning things or having scenes that, in my mind, seemed like they were supposed to be significant, but come to find out, it meant nothing. And then I was left scratching my head wondering why she even bothered because it wasnt something that moved the story forward, and sort of just confused me... It was just kind of all over the place.

Also, I dont want to have any spoilers, especially for those of you who havent read ANY of the books in the series, so I'll just say that certain situations in this story requires some complex explanations, but I feel as if Condie didnt do a great job doing so. She used some big words and didnt tell her readers what those big words or phrases meant, and I dont mean big words that nerds like myself use. I mean scientific and medical terminology that even the average nerd cant be expected to know... and after a certain point I would just skim over them and shrug and move on. Thankfully those complex explanations didnt impact the story enough to make it harder to read or less enjoyable. Just annoying.

By the last hundred pages, I'd gotten past being annoyed about those small things and every few pages there was a new revelation that turned on a "light bulb" or made me understand something I hadnt understood before. I found myself with the jaw to the floor, talking to myself or sometimes the characters or the author, begging for a reprieve. This one was a little tough one, emotionally.

Overall, the book was a fantastic ending to the series, though slightly reminiscent of the Hunger Games without the games - just in the sense of the revolutionary aspect. The world Condie created was elaborate and interesting, and frighteningly real, showing the reader what the world could soon look like.

Final Thoughts...

I enjoyed this book very much. Mid-book, Condie started going all over the place with her plot, with her information, with her scenes full of mystery that ended up leading to nowhere, and her scientific explanations that made me wish I had taken that physics class in high school... It was a bit confusing, but overall it was a great read. Suspenseful, interesting, etc. If you havent read this one, or the series, I would recommend it, with allowing the first book some slack, because its not all that great. The second and third books are well worth it though.

This one gets 4 stars. It was a great read and I would recommend this book to anyone who likes YA/Dystopian novels.

Have any of you read this one or any in the series? What did you think about it - do you agree or disagree with my rating? I'd love to hear what you think!

Happy Readings!
Manda C.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Feature and Follow Friday!!

Hey there everyone! Its F&F Friday again! A weekly feature hosted by Parajunkee's View and Alison Can Read! They ech feature a blogger on their sites, we follow them and follow a bunch of new blogging friends and they will return the favor! Oh and answer an awesome discussion question, too. :)

This weeks question:

Q: What is the last book that kept you up late into the night just to finish it?:

Oh boy... can I just say I have no idea? Haha, it has been a very long time since I've stayed up super late to finish a book. Like maybe over a year. But I know I stayed up super late when I finished the Harry Potter series for the first time last year. I had read books 1-5 in middle school and high school, but once high school came around, it was no longer cool to read. So last year I decided to finish books 6 and 7 and I know for a fact that I stayed up until all hours of the night reading those books. Once upon a time I used to stay up to read ANY book as long as I was enjoying it. Now I'm a grown up and the thought up staying up past 11 p.m. hurts me. :(

How about you? Whats the last book that kept you up?

Dont forget to visit the two featured blogs this week:

Sugar & Snark and Books are the Only True Magic!

Happy reading
Manda C.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Daring you to read [1]

This is my first ever daring you to read post, a weekly feature hosted by Tynga's Reviews.
The idea on this one is:

"...we dare you to read some of our favorite older releases (at least 6 months old). All the books/series we choose to feature are titles we adored and think you should give them a shot! We think it’s a super awesome way to discover that special book who might have slipped off your radar!
You’ve already read the book? Let’s us know what you thought!
You are accepting the dare? We’d love to know!
Have a dare of your own? Leave a comment "
I have only done one review so far on this blog, so I'm not going to go by things I've reviewed. I'm going to go by what I love. This week, I'm daring you to read the Harry Potter series. Okay, I know, first of all, that's seven books, and most of the blogging universe has read this series. But do you know how many actually havent! Its astonishing, and a little heart breaking. :( And for those of you that have read it, and loved it... or even if you didnt - give it another chance. There's nothing like the world Rowling creates and being a part of it!

You'll never experience anything like it.
Well thats my dare this week. If you decide to pick up one of the books and read it - again or for the first time - let me know. HP is my favorite topic and I love nothing more than dicussing the ins and outs of Hoggy Hoggy Hogwarts. :D
Whats your dare?
Manda C.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

WWW and Waiting on Wednesday

 Its WWW and WoW Wednesday! WWW is hosted by Should Be Reading and to play along, just answer the following three (3) question:
  1. What are you currently reading?
  2. What did you recently finish reading?
  3. and what do you think you will read next?
I am currently reading Reached by Ally Condie. I'm pretty much loving it. As usual, I dont want to give anything away as to what I think because a review will be coming this weekend, but this one is giving me lots to talk about. It's a book I really like with high and low points and much to discuss, so thats always good for a review. :)
I just finished reading The Perfect Hope by Nora Roberts. I finished this last week, as you can probably figure out by last week's WWW because I was reading that then, and I did really enjoy it. I really wish I had more time to read because my goal of 100 books is not going to happen this year if I dont speed it up. If by next week, either my last or current read are on the next WWW, somebody slap me because I need to get on the ball.
In my defense, I am moving this weekend, and have been working  a bunch (I work 3 jobs :/ ) so it hasnt been that easy. But after moving day, I'm diving in!
Anyway, what will I be reading next? Unlike the last two weeks where I wasnt sure, this time its a definite. I will be reading Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. I am participating in a Goodreads book club reading of this book before the movie comes out in mid-February. So instead of playing the "omg I dont know what to read" game, I'm just going to let fate decide for me. Ta-da!


Now, this is NOT the official cover AT ALL, it's just a fan-made thing, but I'm dyyying for House of Hades by Rick Riordan to come out this fall! There's no official cover and there's no official release date, but I'm counting down. Its coming soon, I know it.

What are you waiting for?

Manda C.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday - Top Settings I'd Like to See More of

It's Top Ten Tuesday ya'll!..... Okay, the ya'll was unecessary because I'm very much from New York, and I dont say that. "Yo" just didnt seem appropriate, though. Anyway, TTT is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

This week's topic: What settings would you like to see or see more of in books?

This is another really tough one for me, TTT! I dont know that I can think of ten places I'd like to see. Well lets start with one:

1.  I'd like to see more other-planet settings. I know there's tons of sci-fi space travel stuff going on, but I want something non-cheesy or over the top that is set on an actual new planet, not just on a ship traveling to a never-before-seen planet.
2.  Small towns. I've read quite a few adult fiction series set in small towns and I'd like to see more YA like that. I think it is special feeling like you're part of that community, and knowing everyone's name, etc.
3.  Okay, how about a dystopian novel set in a futuristic non-America country. It seems as though a lot of the YA (or even adult) dystopian novels are set in futuristic America or parts of America. I mean I guess that might not be true, and the author just doesnt let on that they are in futuristic Germany or whatever. Okay mayebe the book doesnt have to be set there, but can they at least acknowledge that the rest of the world exists?
4.  More places like Hogwarts! I mean, I know, and I've come to terms with the fact that no one will ever write like, create worlds like or simply be like J.K. Rowling... sigh... but I need something more. Not necessarily more Harry Potter, though I would just die, and that seems like it would be a very wise course of action for her.... anyway.. I want someone to create an entire world like that again, a world I want to be a part of. I know its not a specific setting, but...

5. Definitely Ireland. I've loved every romance novel I've ever read set in Ireland, and that amounts to maybe five. How about some more! How about some YA or sci-fi set in Ireland. I can imagine the myths and legends in Ireland would set an amazing story in an amazing place.
Thats about all I've got. Not quite a top ten, but a top five at least. :)
What settings are you looking for in a book?
Manda C.

Monday, January 21, 2013

In My Mailbox

Happy Monday!

It's time for In My Mailbox, hosted by The Story Siren! This is my first time participating in IMM, but I'll be doing my IMM posts most likely on Mondays, whenever I have gotten something new.

This week, what I've gotten in my mailbox is:

Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood
Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl
The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter
I got the 2nd and 3rd one this past week, and I just ordered Oryx and Crake. I guess that hasnt come in my mailbox yet but I'm forbidden from buying books for a long long time, and since I was excited about that one and wont be buying books for a while, I wanted to share. :)

Oryx and Crake came highly recommended by a friend, so I'm very interested. Have any of you read it yet?

Whats i your mailbox?

Manda C. :) 

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Liebster Book Blog Award - Nominee: Me!

Well, isnt this pleasant! I have only been nominated for one other award, ever, and that was years ago on a blog I had once upon a time, and I cant even remember what it was for. This blog award was given to me by Deidra at Simply Books. Thanks Deidra!!!

Here are the 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 your 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.
Not too bad right?
So here are the questions Deidra asked of the bloggers she nominated, along with my answers:
1. If you could choose to live in one book, what book would it be?
Definitely the Harry Potter series. Even at 23 years old I still hope for a Hogwarts letter in the mail some times. Its the only book I've read more than three times and there have been times that I physically miss being "in" the books.
2. You are on a deserted island, and you can choose ONE book. What book do you take?
Again, Harry Potter. I guess I'd have to choose just one of them, right? Well in that case, I'd choose the first one, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone because... well thats were all the magic begins. Sigh... I think I want to go read HP again.
3. Why did you decide to start a book blog?
Originally, it was because I hated knowing that one day I would forget all of these books I've read. I wanted a place that my love for these books would be preserved somehow. Then, once I began blogging it became so much more. Now its about the creative outlet it provides, and the blogging community I've come to know, etc., etc. I just love it.
4. Moment of truth: Do you judge a book by its cover?
Oh, absolutely. I'm the worst. Ugly cover? You'd better hope the reviews were good, cause I wont pick it up otherwise. Beautiful cover - never heard of it? Oh yeah, I'm all about it.
5. Your favorite book is about to be made into a movie. How do you feel about that?
I'm usually very apprehensive about books to movies. However, I've come to accept that its never as good, and if I go in with low expectations, sometimes I end up being pleasantly surprised at how it turns out. 
6. Where is your favorite place to buy books?
It used to be Borders until it closed. I loved Borders. I was loyal. No Barnes and Noble for me. Now we have a Books-A-Million, which if I had to say I had a favorite, that would have to be it because its local and I'm a paying member. I do order online sometimes, or buy at the grocery store if I see something that catches my eye.
7. Who are your favorite book boyfriends?
I dont really like anyone anymore. I liked Jacob in the Twilight series a lot but I'm kind of over that. I think Ron in HP is great in book 7 when he finally decides he want to be with Hermione, but even then, he didnt make my heart pitter-patter. If the Vampire Diaries books were like the show, I'd love Damon. But they arent, so I only love TV Damon.
8. Which character would you love to slap and why? *We all have those moments*
Oh, God, every stupid girl to ever be in any book, maybe? Like Bella in Twilight, Ginny in HP, Lena in Delirium, Cassia in Matched. Okay, I could go on for ages. Its not that I hate the characters, I actually generally like them a lot, but its hard to sit back and watch "someone" you are attached to make stupid decisions, even if it isnt real!
9. What was your favorite book that you had to read for school?
I loved Romeo and Juliet. I know that wasnt a book, but trust me, I read a lot of crappy books in school, and this was one I truly enjoyed.
10. What is your favorite thing about blogging?
Meeting new people and making new friends. :)
11. Which author are you dying to meet?
J.K. Rowling and Jodi Picoult. Two of my favorites and I would love to pick their creative, original and - lets face it - successful brains for a while.

All about me!
1. Okay, this one is a secret, so dont say anything - but I might be getting engaged soon! I'm not one of those speculating girls who thinks he might be thinking about it and then ends up super diasppointed that he hasnt asked yet. We have talked about it, and have been looking at rings and wedding venues. And we sort of also share bank accounts so he would have to tell me if he spends that kind of money, haha, so there's no point in hiding it. So yes, this girl may be getting married soon! :)
2. I just graduated with my Associates degree and I just started a full time job as a paralegal/legal assistant. I like it a lot, but an office job takes some getting used to after working in retail for 6 years.
3. My sister just had a baby a few months ago, and my boyfriend and I are obsessed with going and playing with "our" neice, Sophia, even though she is still super boring and doesnt even laugh or anything. She's just so darned cute!
4. If you couldnt tell by my answers, I am a complete and total Harry Potter nerd. I am in the middle of reading #4 for the fourth time, though I did get a litted distracted by some other reads and have since put it down. But something tells me I'll be picking it back up when I go home tonight. :)
5. I live in Scranton, Pennsylvania, but I was born just outside of New York City, and I grew up an hour outside of the city until I was 17 and moved here. It's definitely been an adjusment, but 5 1/2 years later I cant see myself going back.
6. I am moving into a new apartment next weekend, and I'm super excited!! It's a 2 bedroom, with lots of windows and cabinets and HARD WOOD FLOORS!!! Go me!
7. I decided to do this part even though Deidra said her nominees could skip it because I'm at work and super bored with nothing to do. But.... now I'm sort of regretting that decision because I've run out of things about myself.
8. I also write. I've never finished anything, let alone published or attempted to publish anything, but blogging helps with the creative outlet of writing. However, I do enjoy writing fictional stories, and have made a few bad attempts at a novel. It'll happen one day, I promise.
9. I like to make lists. I make lists for everything. Budget: list. Grocery shopping: list. What I want to get done when I go home tonight: list. What books I want to read from now until the end of time: list. So I guess this award was sort of the right one for me. Its a problem, I know.
10. I am so bad with eating fast food. When I had time and a place, I was working out in the spring and my body loved it, and decided it couldnt stomach having McDonalds anymore, among other things. Winter came, and so did a desk job and I couldnt resist anymore. I've since gained back almost 5 of the 20 pounds I love over the summer and I'm miserable about it. Once I move next week, we'll be a block away from the park, and I dont care how cold it is. I NEED to start excercising again.
11. I am NOT giving my nominees a free pass on this one like Deidra did, haha. She's much nicer than I am. If I had to do it, so do you! :)
So with that being said, my nominees are (I only have 9 blogs because they are the only ones I know under 200 who deserve the recognition!):
Annabel at In Love With Words
Elizabeth at The Back-Porch Reader
Etsy Nestea at Boarding with Books
Melissa at Book Nerd & Critic
Melissa at Spews of my Views
Kimberly at Kimberly's Novel Notes
Kim at Divergent Gryffindor
Nicki at Nick's Yarn

Make sure you check out all of their awesome blogs, and follow them. And here are my questions my nominees. They are pretty simple, I promise!

1. What is your FAVORITE book of all time?

2. What is your worst reading/book habit?

3. Can you read in the car, or does it make you super nauseas like it does to me?

4. Have you ever read the Reached series by Ally Condie? In that series, the Society only allows it's citizen 100 songs, 100 paintings, 100 poems. I wont make you name 100, but if your society could only have 5 books, what books would they be? (e.g., the books society could not live without)

5. Do you write? If so, have you ever finished a work and/or attempted to publish it? If not, do you want to, or are you content with blogging?

6. (I really hope your answer is yes to this one,) Are you a fan of Harry Potter? Why or why not?

7. Do you have an e-reader or do you prefer hard copies? And if you prefer hard copies, do you buy or borrow from the library?

8. Not exactly book related but, coffee or tea?

9. Do you have a favorite word? If so, what is it?

10. Do you like giving/receiving books as gifts?

11. Was this whole thing are tough for you as it was for me, or did you really enjoy coming up with all of this stuff?

Well thats all folks! I hope you'll visit Deidra who nominated me and all of my nominees, and pass this award along to some deserving up and coming bloggers.

Happy Readings everyone!

Manda C. :)

Friday, January 18, 2013

Feature and Follow Friday!

Yay!!! I love feature and follow Friday. These are the rules, via Parajunkee's View:

How does this work? First you leave your name here on this post, (using the linky tools — keep scrolling!) then you create a post on your own blog that links back to this post (easiest way is to just grab the code under the #FF picture and put it in your post) and then you visit as many blogs as you can and tell them “hi” in their comments (on the post that has the #FF image). You follow them, they follow you. Win. Win. Just make sure to follow back if someone follows you!
There is also the additional rule that to participate, you must follow the featured blogger on Parajunkee's blog. The feature this week is: Anya at On Starships and Dragonwings.
Great blog, go check it out, then add yourself to the linky on Parajunkee's page and gain some new followers!

This week's question on Parajunkee's blog is: Who is your favorite villain from  a book?

That would MOST DEFINITELY have to be Voldemort. He is all sorts of evil and screwed up, and I mean, you've gotta give it to him - he tried and tried to kill Harry until the very end. Oh well, Voldy! Good beats the hell out of evil any day!

Be sure to stop by Parajunkee's View and On Starships and Dragonwings this week, and visit some other awesome blogs!!

Manda C.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Ultimate Book Tag

Found this little baby on In Love With Words, and thought it would be fun to try. I tag all of you go do it too! Leave your links in the comments section, I cant wait to see what your answers are!

1. Do you get sick while reading in the car?
Oh God, yes, and it's awful. A boring car ride and all I'd like to do is kick back and read a good book. But noooo. Five minutes in and I'm nauseas and ready for a nap.

2. Which author's writing style is completely unique to you and why?
Nora Roberts - always has been and always will be. She could re-write the telephone book and I'd read it. Her imagery and detail is unmatched in my opinion, along with her humor and knack for leading several stories at once in one novel.

3. Harry Potter Series or the Twilight Saga? Give 3 points to defend your answer.Harry Potter, hands down. I am a fan of Twilight, but (1) Harry Potter is something that has followed me through childhood - I loved it them and I love it now, (2) the characters in HP are strong, adventurous and noble, not depressed, mopey and vulnerable (Bella just isnt my cup of tea), (3) and Rowling creates another WORLD to be a part of, another LIFE with all new friends, places to visit, evil to fight. I mean reallyyy. Its Harry Potter for God sakes.

4. Do you carry a book bag? If so, what is it in (besides books...)?
Umm... well I'm not in school anymore, but when I was in highschool I did. With the obvious notebooks, pens, pencils, textbooks. College I had a bag but no bookbag, and in my purse besides my wallet and cell phone, you'll find the book I'm currently reading and occasionally a notebook if I feel like writing.

5. Do you smell your books?
Lol, sometimes. Not all that often, unless I inadvertently get a wiff and notice how pleasant it smells.

6. Books with or without little illustrations?
Well, I can do without the illustrations unless it is a map or a family tree. Otherwise, I can honestly say I hardly pay attention to them.

7. What book did you love while reading but discovered later it wasn't quality writing? (Ex. I read Twilight before I read HP and thought the writing was amazing but read HP and now think Twilight is a little bit of a joke.)
Well I agree with the question actually to an extent. I read HP a long long time ago, and read Twilight more recently. I was blown away by Twilight, then decided to read HP again after many years and wondered why I even bothered with Twilight.

8. Do you have any funny stories involving books from your childhood? Please share!
No, I unfortunately dont... or I cant remember any, haha.

9. What is the thinnest book on your shelf?
Lord of the Flies by William Golding

10. What is the thickest book on your shelf?
Definitely Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

11. Do you write as well as read? Do you see yourself in the future as being an author?
I love writing, and one of my biggest dreams is being a published author. Not necessarily like JK Rowling living just off of my writing. But published, with readers and fans and the whole 9 yards. I have never completed anything to send to a publisher though. One day I will.

12. When did you get into reading?
I always loved reading as a child and my favorite place to go was the bookstore. In high school it wasnt as cool to read so I didnt read much at all. It was right after I graduated and moved to Pennsylvania, around age 18 that my obsession came back full-force and hasnt stopped since. :)

13. What is your favorite classic book?
Is it sad that I've only read a few, and the only one that sticks with me is Jane Eyre which I honestly didnt love? Ugh, I feel like a failure in the classic books department.

14. In school was your best subject Language Arts/English?
Haha yes it was. I didnt always get straight A's because I did get a bit lazy in high school but I always did very well and enjoyed my English classes more than any others.

15. If you were given a book as a present that you had read before and hated...what would you do?

Pray to God there was a gift receipt...

16. What is a lesser known series that you know of that is similar to Harry Potter or the Hunger Games?There are no books like Harry Potter. I'm sorry. I've been searching high and low for something similar that I can get into and the closest thing that I've liked even half as much was the Percy Jackson series and the spin off series, which mind you, I love very much. As for Hunger Games,  I dont think anything is too similar to that either. Most dystopian YA books have a similar society and an uprising, but nothing crazy like the Games themselves included.

17. What is a bad habit you always do (besides rambling) while blogging?
Post without proofreading. Bad, bad, bad!

18. What is your favorite word?
Ah... I dont know what I have one. Is that weird coming from someone who loves reading and writing so much? I really just dont, haha.

19. Are you a nerd, dork, or dweeb? Or all of the above?
Most definitely a Nerd. Hence - Nerd is the Word. :))

20. Vampires or Fairies? Why?
Eh, well I'm more comfortable with vampires with all the books coming out over the last few years with them. Fairies... not so much. Unless you mean fairies like in Nora Robert's Irish books, which really just means ghosts, which I can deal with.

21. Shapeshifters or Angels? Why?
Uh, well I liked the angels or part angels or whatever in the Mortal Instruments series, so.... why dont we go with that!

22. Spirits or Werewolves? Why?
Definitely werewolves. Way cooler!

23. Zombies or Vampires?
Ugh please no zombies. They are so played out already. Not that vampires arent but with the formerly-impending zombie apocalypse, I've had enough.

24. Love Triangle or Forbidden Love
Forbidden love. I dont like it too much when one person strings two along, even inadvertently.

25. AND FINALLY: Full on romance books or action-packed with a few love scenes mixed in?
Once upon a time I would have preferred full on romance to anything else, but I have since grown and evolved and would prefer something with an alternate storyline with some romance in it.

Cant wait to see your answers!

Manda C.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

WWW Wednesday and Waiting on Wednesday

Its that Wednesday again! It is WWW Wednesday, a fun weekly meme hosted by Should Be Reading. Here's how you play along:

Just answer the following three (3) questions…
What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?
So the answers here at Nerd is the Word are:
What are you currently reading?: As of last night, I just started Reached by Ally Condie. I dont want to give anything away since I'll be writing a review on it, but suffice it to say that I picked up the book at 9:30 p.m. last night and by 11:30 I was a third of the way through. :)
What did you recently finish reading?: JUST finished The Perfect Hope by Nora Roberts yesterday afternoon. Check out my review here if you're interested in reading it.
I did really like this book and the whole Inn Boonsboro Trilogy. Its definitely worth picking up, especially if you're into romance or a fan of my girl Nora.

What do you plan or reading next?, is the last question. Ha! I have no freaking clue. I had to do a nice little kindergarten-style "eenie meenie miney moe" to pick what to read this time. Ugh.
I THINK I want to read Fever by Lauren DeStefano, but I just bought two new books, and it's going to take all of my will power not to pick up Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. It's coming out in theatres and I desperately want to get to it before the movie comes out so I can go see it. There is a good chance thats what I will do, even though I am in no position to be STARTING a new series. I need to be finishing series that I've already started. Ugh, I guess we will see.

Has anyone read Beautiful Creatures? Should I just bite the bullet and read that one next?

It is also Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by Breaking the Spine.

This is a fun weekly meme where you tell everyone what upcoming release you're excited for. I'll tell you what I'm excited for:

Requiem  by Lauren Oliver. I have yet to read Pandemonium but I loved Delirium and the whole premise of the plot. And - HELLO! - can anyone say beautiful cover art! I love it, and I'm holding off on reading Pandemonium until Requiem comes out because I've heard that Pandemonium has a hell of a cliff hanger, and I'm not interested in the panic and depression that will settle over me when I realize that I cannot go pick up this book and read it right away. But its coming soon thank God. Only a few more weeks!

What are you waiting on!?

Happy Reading!

Manda C. :) 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Review: The Perfect Hope by Nora Roberts

Review: The Perfect Hope by Nora Roberts
ISBN-13: 9780425246047
Publisher: Penguin Group (USA) Incorporated
Publication date: 11/6/2012
Pages: 336
My Rating: ★★★★
Goodreads synopsis:
"Ryder is the hardest Montgomery brother to figure out—with a tough-as-nails outside and possibly nothing too soft underneath. He’s surly and unsociable, but when he straps on a tool belt, no woman can resist his sexy swagger. Except apparently Hope Beaumont, the innkeeper of his own Inn BoonsBoro. 
As the former manager of a D.C. hotel, Hope is used to excitement and glamour, but that doesn’t mean she can’t appreciate the joys of small-town living. She’s where she wants to be—except for in her love life. Her only interaction with the opposite sex has been sparring with the infuriating Ryder, who always seems to get under her skin. Still, no one can deny the electricity that crackles between them…a spark that ignited with a New Year’s Eve kiss.

While the Inn is running smoothly, thanks to Hope’s experience and unerring instincts, her big-city past is about to make an unwelcome—and embarrassing—appearance. Seeing Hope vulnerable stirs up Ryder’s emotions and makes him realize that while Hope may not be perfect, she just might be perfect for him…
In-depth review:
I think I've mentioned before that I dont read romance all that often anymore. Its all I used to read, once upon a time. Now I only pick up Nora Roberts - ONLY - and thats only when I have a hankering for a bit more romance that the average YA or adult fiction book. I tend to get bored anymore when a book only focuses on the romance aspect. Nora Roberts brings a whole new meaning to romance, in my opinion. This story comes packed with ghost hauntings, sexy romps in the sheets and a bitch slap or two, and I wasnt hooked so much by the romance in this series but by the backstory of the Ghost of the Inn Boonsboro and her long lost love.

Nora uses each aspect of the story, the ghost of the Inn and the actual couple that is the focus of the book, to move along the other without making the ghost thing silly or unbelieveable. I think there are many people out there who have seen things moving or heard noises that they couldnt explain. What if it was someone who couldnt cross over? Someone who was waiting for something... or someone, who just needed some help? Wouldnt that be awesome... well I guess if you're not afraid of ghosts.

Nora's writing is superb as usual. Her imagery and amazing detail places you in the towns, with the characters, whom by book three in the series, you've come to know and love as your own annoying (and I mean that with the utmost affection) brothers, vulnerable, spunky and OCD-ridden sisters, loving and scary mother, and I could go on for days.

Having been reading Nora Roberts novels for many years and having read, I'd say about 60% of all of her published works, there are some things I've come to know and love about her novels, as well as know and dislike.

The only thing I didnt like in this book, which is generally the same as how I feel about all of her work is that her trilogies tend to be a little predictable. There's always a blonde, a brunette and a red-head. There's always a vulnerable one, a fiery one and a snooty one. I mean, dont get me wrong, when she gets into her characters, you see them as much deeper and not every one is the same. It's just a little predictable with the basis of her trilogies. Like I said, it's usually her back story coupled with the romance that hooks me in, and her back stories are always different, this particular one being set in her home town and featuring the book store her family owns, Turn the Page in real life. (I love the little plug. It makes you feel closer to an author you already love and feel like you know.)

The other thing that sometimes annoys me is that I feel as if her romantic dialogue is a little unrealistic. I fully believe that all of the messages her characters intend to get across are ones that real people would also, but sometimes the wording of a phrase in what should be a particularly touching moment can be a little awkward or cliche; in other words, I dont think a man would say something a certain way, or string together a sentence the way she makes them. People dont speak that perfectly in real life. But I guess thats why this is fiction and not real life - hence why I love reading it so much.

Final Thoughts:

This read was great and I thoroughly enjoyed it. There were a few things that made it a little less than five star, such as the same three by three person theme in her trilogies and about 5% of her dialogue being slightly unrealistic (which I'm not trying to say makes it difficult to understand or takes away from the story at all... just saying). I can say that there were some Roberts novels that I enjoyed more, and some I enjoyed less, but I flew through this one with no problems and I did enjoy it.


★ ★ ★ ★
This one gets four stars in my book, which means I really liked it, and I would recommend it to anyone who likes Nora Roberts or anyone who is into romance.

On another note, I simply cannot figure out what to read next. I went and broke one of my bookish resolutions already and picked up two books at the bookstore yesterday, and I have to force myself not to read one of those instead of one that has been sitting on my shelf for ages. Lets see. I guess you will find out what I picked tomorrow when I post for WWW Wednesday. :)

What are you reading?

Manda C.

Teaser Tuesday and Top Ten Tuesday - 2013 Debuts I'm Looking Forward To

Hey hey, its TTT again, a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish!
This week's topic is: Top Ten 2013 Debuts I'm Looking Forward To.

This is a really tough one for me since I've been out of the loop for so long, and I dont really know any debut authors. So instead of participating, I'm asking, what books are you really excited for and what do you think I should read as someone who hasnt been very much in the reading/blogging world lately?
It's also Teaser Tuesday, hosted by Should Be Reading! Here's how to play along:
Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!
I'm currently finishing up The Perfect Hope by Nora Roberts, and here's a juicy teaser from that book:
" 'She's just using you.' But there were tears in Sheridan's eyes now, and the quaver of them in her voie. "She's using you and trying to wreck my marriage. You're the one who'll be sorry when she tosses you away for a bigger catch."
This one is a really good read, so if you want to see who is wrecking who's marriage, you might want to pick it up. I am hoping to be done with this book today, and hopefully a review up in the next day or two. What's your teaser this week?
Happy reading!
Manda C.

Monday, January 14, 2013

It's Monday - What are you reading? and Musing Mondays

Hello all! It's Monday! What are you reading is a fun weekly meme hosted by Book Journey.

It's actually very similar to the Wednesday meme I participate in, WWW Wednesday, where you share what you've read/reviewed, what you're reading and what you plan on reading. It'll be fun to see if my current books or books I'm planning to read change in the next two days, haha.

Well, I havent been very good at reading lately, and subsequently horrible at blogging. On this blog, I've reviewed nothing. :/ Sorry guys! So what I've read and reviewed lately is essentially non-existent.

What am I reading? I'm currently reading The Perfect Hope by the one and only Nora Roberts, my hero. I dont read a lot of romance anymore, but every now and again I get a hankering for some passionate lovemaking between the pages of an interesting storyline, and when I do, I go straight for Nora.

This is the last in Nora's latest trilogy, which are my favorite of hers. I enjoy her stand-alones but her trilogies build so much, intertwining each book to keep you stringing along.

I'm enjoying it so far, and I'll hopefully be done with this by tomorrow, with
a review to follow later in the week. :)

What do I plan on reading? Okay, here's my problem. What I'm dying to read right now is The Giver  by Lois Lowry. I've read this book a hundred times, but it is the first book in a quartet ending with her newest release, Son, which I am desperate to read, but I wont let myself until I've reread the other three books that come before it. What's the dilemma? I have just gotten back onto the reading/reviewing wagon and I cant see myself committing to a four book series right now. I need to close up some other loose ends, catch up on some other reads. But I cant stop thinking about these books, I dont know what it is, but sometimes I feel like they literally call to me.

In my last post on WWW Wednesday, I was thinking I was going to read either Fever by Lauren DeStefano or Reached by Ally Condie. I really need to finish up this Ally Condie series, and check it off of my list, and I'm dying to read Fever, but I cant seem to get The Giver, et. al. out of my head. I guess we will see what I do in a few days when I let ya know what I'm reading next.

What are you reading?!

Musing Mondays, another fun weekly meme, this one hosted by Should Be Reading. This one asks the blogger to answer one of the following questions each week:
Describe one of your reading habits. Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).
Tell us what you’re reading right now — what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; what you are (or, aren’t) enjoying it.

Since the above references what I'm reading, maybe I'll talk about one of my reading habits.

My worst reading habit is not being able to put a book down, even if I hate it. One of my bookish goals this year is to learn how to put a book down if I dont like it. I guess I am too loyal to my books one I pick them up and then I begin to feel guilty when I dont finish it. In the last six years, I'd say there were maybe five books I stopped reading. Out of those five, there were TWO that I didnt pick back up at a later date to finish reading. It's my worst reading habit, because then I am stuck dragging through a not-so-great book that takes me a month or two to read, when I could be getting through two good books a week if I would just put it down.

Enough giving chances! If I get halfway through and I'm not digging it, I'm putting it down.

What's your musing this week?

Happy Readings! :)

Manda C.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Booking Through Thursday

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly meme hosted by a blog of the same name, Booking Through Thursday! The idea is simple:
"Copy the questions, paste them into your blog and answer them.
When you're done, come back here and post a quick comment or trackback letting everyone know so we can read your responses. Be sure to leave a link to your actual post! (Just type in the web-address--Wordpress will automatically turn it into a link for you.)"
So this week's topic is:
"I’m usually torn. I love giving and sharing books, but it can be hard. The giftee can be difficult to please, or you don’t know what they’ve read (or what they thought of books they have read). Even people who love to read and love to get books can be hard to gift books to … so, does that make you pause and reach for the neckties or DVDs or sweaters … anything BUT a book at gift-giving time? How do you feel about getting books yourself? Are you picky or easy?"
I LOVE giving books as gifts, haha. Most of my family and friends do not like to read as much as I do.... or at all. I bought my boyfriend a book for Christmas - The Walking Dead, Rise of the Governor. Sounds nice, right? Uh.. well we've been together for almost six years and I've seen him reads maybe a total of four books in the last six years. Why did it buy it? because I cant help myself!
My sister just had a baby 2 1/2 months ago and I told her I'm going to buy my niece books for every holiday and that I am going to read with her all the time. I bought my 2 months old niece a book for Christmas. I mean it was a squeaky Elmo book that she could chew on, but still.
As for me, if I could get ONLY books for holidays, I'd be set. However, I don't like just any book. A couple of times, I gave my mom or boyfriend lists of books I wanted so they could buy them for me - or just asked for gift cards to the local bookstore. I got gift cards for Christmas and the next day went to the bookstore to load up... they then tell me their system is down and they cant take gift cards at that time. What did I do? Went home and ordered four books online - express shipping, thank you very much!!
So yes, I am a book/reading girl through and through. Become my friend, I'll be gifting you a book and you're GOING TO LIKE IT! :))
What about you? How do you feel about giving/receiving books as gifts?
Happy Readings!
Manda C. :)