Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books That Were Hard For Me To Read

Top Ten Tuesday

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(Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. The above photo was taken and altered by me for the purpose of these posts. Please do not take or “borrow” without asking.)

Hello Readers!

For the most part I really do enjoy the books I read. But there are times that even though I like an aspect or two of a book, there are reasons why I find it to be a difficult read. This list is composed of books that were hard for me read – not because of subject matter, but rather because I had issues with them on some level.

1 Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater – I’m a Maggie fan through and through. I think both she and her books are awesome.  So you’re wondering why Shiver is on this list then? Let me explain, while I read and really enjoyed several aspects of this book – the original plot, the realistic characters, and the great writing – I didn’t enjoy one important aspect of the book: the pacing. I found the pace to creep by at a snail’s pace. Because of this, it was really hard for me to read.

2. The Summer I Found You by Jolene Perry – I picked this book up on a whim. Looking for something different, something unlike anything I have read before I jumped into this book only to find that it wasn’t what I was looking for. This book was really hard for me to read mainly because of the main character who I really didn’t like, and one I couldn’t really relate to. That’s why this book was hard for me to read.

3. Don’t Call Me Baby by Gwendolyn Heasley – I was super excited about this book. So when I was approved on Edelweiss I downloaded it and began reading almost immediately. And almost immediately I found this book hard to read. Why? Because I felt it was saying that blogging is bad, and as a blogger myself it bothered me.

4. Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan – I’m truly sad that this book is on this list. I wanted to love this book, but reality was I couldn’t even finish it. The reason why was because of the narrators. It made the book feel disjointed, and that made it difficult to read.

5. Lust by Robin Wasserman – This was a book I read during a self imposed reading challenge. I wanted to read the first book in a series I was curious about. I was curious about Wasserman’s Seven Deadly Sins series, so I picked Lust up from the library and began reading. It was really hard for me to read mainly because I felt like every character was just so extremely mean – almost unnecessarily mean. I love character driven books, I love that I can connect and identify with the characters in a book. I couldn’t connect nor identify with any of Lust’s characters unfortunately.

6. A Corner of White by Jaclyn Moriarty –  I consider this book to be a fantasy. And if you know me, you know that I generally don’t do fantasy. Because of that, this book – though very original – was hard to read.

7. A Wounded Name by Dot Hutchinson – I don’t want to say much about why this book was so hard to read. I don’t want to say why for two reasons – one I don’t want to spoil anything for any readers, and two because frankly I don’t want to relive it. The relationship between the two characters was abusive, and it was hard to sit back and read it.

8.  My Beautiful Hippie by Janet Lynch Nichols – Once again, the pacing was sluggish. And beyond that, I felt like nothing really happened.

9. Modelland by Tyra Banks – I really don’t need to say much about this. This book was hard for me because of … well everything.

10. In Search of Mockingbird by Loretta Ellsworth – The reason why this book was so hard for me to read was mainly because I feel, even though it was trying to pay homage to one of my most fave books, it didn’t do it justice.

Monday Memories (#4)

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Monday Memories is a super easy and super fun meme hosted byThe BookBandit Blog and Miss Print. Participants are asked to post a picture of a book that holds a special place in their hearts, and talk briefly about why this book is so special. If you want to join in on the fun, link up and be sure to link back!

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Hello Readers!

Welcome to today’s Monday Memories Post. Today I’ll be talking about a book that I still think about years after reading.

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I read Bliss a few years ago when I was in grad school. I read it for a YA class I was struggling through, and it became a shining light for me. Bliss is always and will always be one of those books that stay with me. Why? Because I consider myself to be a person that’s hard to scare. Bliss scared me, it left me with a case of the heebie-jeebies. Besides that, I really loved how Myracle intertwined two stories – the one of Bliss and the one of the Charles Manson trial.

Don’t forget, to link up (below) and link back to either the BookBandit Blog or Miss Print’s!

Stacking the Shelves (#8)

Stacking The Shelves

Stacking The Shelves

(Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga’s Reviews. The above photo was taken and altered by me for the purpose of these posts. Please do not take or “borrow” without permission.)

Hello Readers!

Welcome to Stacking the Shelves #8. Even though I don’t have a lot of books to share with you today, they are all books I’m super excited about.

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This week I received my prize – Fiendish by Brenna Yovanoff – from Sarah from WhatSarahRead, and I am super excited about it. So much so that I want to dig right into it. But I won’t – I want to wait until the Halloween time to read this book.

In preparation of this year’s YALLFest, I bought myself paperback copies of TTFN and L8R, G8R both by Lauren Myracle. Now I know what you’re thinking, why would you buy book two and three, but not the first book? Because I already own (and read!) TTYL. Since Lauren Myracle signed TTYL for me at a signing I went to a few months back, I figured YALLFest would be the perfect chance to get the rest of the books in the series signed. (P.S. I have an arc of YOLO I will also be taking with me.)

Lastly, yesterday was a surprise mail day for me. From the lovely folks over at Bloomsbury I received a copy of Soulprint by Megan Miranda. Again, another book I’m super excited about. I read Fracture and Vengeance and really enjoyed everything about them.

Like I said, not too many books, but still books I’m excited about.

What books did you recently get, dear readers? Please share!

I Bet Rory Gilmore Read Banned Books!

Food For Thought, Random

Hello Readers!

It’s banned books week. And to celebrate you can find out what Banned Book you are! (Yes, I took the quiz myself and my banned book is The Hunger Games.)

I have a terrible habit of starting a series and never finishing it. Or if I do continue on it with, I end up forgetting the previous book(s) that I’ve read. Normally I simply ask Miss Print for some help remembering, and she faithfully points me to The Recaptains! Thanks Emma!!!

Speaking of Miss Print and Banned Books Week, head over to her blog and check out her awesome book display!

There’s a lot of buzz on the inter-webs about The Gilmore Girls becoming available on Netflix. While I find this both awesome and useless to me (I have each and every season on DVD – but wait, doesn’t every GG fan), a friend posted this on Facebook and I just had to share. We GG fans will understand this fully!

Flora and the Flamingo by Molly Idle is one of the most beautiful picture books I’ve ever read. Besides that, it certainly is one of my favorite picture books of all time. Well, it’s time for Flora and the Penguin!

Divergent!

 

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books on My Fall To Be Read List

Top Ten Tuesday

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(Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke & The Bookish. The above photo was taken and altered by me for the purpose of these posts. Please do not take or “borrow” without asking. Thanks!)

Hello Readers!

Welcome to today’s Top Ten Tuesday (TTT) post! Now that the cooler weather is setting in, it’s time to bust out the hooded sweatshirts and the fall to be read list! In all honesty, my to be read list is way more than just ten books. But there is really only one book I’m determined to get to!

And that book is:

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The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

Monday Memories (#3)

Monday Memories

Monday Memories is a super easy and super fun meme hosted by The BookBandit Blog and Miss Print. Participants are asked to post a picture of a book that holds a special place in their hearts, and talk briefly about why this book is so special. If you want to join in on the fun, link up and be sure to link back!

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Hello Readers!

And Happy Monday! I’m really excited about today’s Monday Memory. Why? Because it involves one of my favorite books and one of my favorite people.

A few years back, fellow blogger, Monday Memory creator/co-host, and in real life bff Emma told me about this book called Dreamland Social Club. She told me it was about Coney Island, that there was a girl dressed up as a mermaid on the cover, and that the author was going to be doing a signing at Books of Wonder.

Knowing me she didn’t have to ask if I was interested – in the event or the book. I was!

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Yes, I bought this book, went to the event, and had it signed all on a whim. And what a whim it was. A few weeks after the event I went on to read Tara Altebrando’s Dreamland Social Club – and fell in love with it. Yes, I fell in love with a book.

Dreamland Social Club seriously was – no is – the perfect book for me. It’s filled with memorable characters that I still think about and still feel a connection with. It’s set in a place – Coney Island – in which I am fascinated with. And the writing … oh the writing is perfect.

All of those reasons mentioned above are reason enough for me to love this book and for it to hold a special place in my heart, but there is another, more important reason why Dreamland Social Club holds such a special place in my book loving heart: it introduced me to one of my fave authors.

Don’t forget, to link up (below) and link back to either the BookBandit Blog or Miss Print’s!

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Top Ten Tuesday: Top Authors I’ve Only Read One Book By, But I Need to Read More

Top Ten Tuesday

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(Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke & The Bookish. The above photo was taken and altered by me for the purposes for these posts. Please do not take or “borrow” it without permission.)

I’m one of those readers who tends to read within her comfort zone. With that, if I find an author I really like I want to gobble up all the books. But these authors on this list are authors that I really like, but just haven’t gotten around to reading more by them.

Rebecca Serle – I kind of started backwards. I read Famous In Love, Serle’s upcoming book. I skipped book one and two (not purposely, mind you) but I have plans to read both … soon.

Aprilynne Pike – I’ve only read Life After Theft. And yet again, I read it on a whim not really expecting too much from it. Surprisingly, it became one of my fave reads. And since then I’m curious to see what else this author has in store for us readers.

Gina Damico –  I bought Damico’s Croak because I was curious about it. And because author Damico was at one of the mega signings that Miss Print and I go to every year. I bought the book, had it signed, and it sat on my shelf for quite some time.  Quite honestly, I kinda forgot I even had it. But when I re-discovered it, I read it, and like it. I can’t wait to find out what happens in the books that follow Croak.

Stephen Emond – Winter Town was one of the those quiet books that made a lasting impression on me. The words and the images were captivating. I want to read more of Emond’s books. No wait, need to.

Cath Crowley – Graffiti Moon was recommended to me by fellow blogger and in real life bff Miss Print. She told me I’d love it. And I did. Since reading it I’m curious about Crowley’s other work, and curious to see if I will love it just as much as Graffiti Moon.

Nina LaCour – The Disenchantments, to this very day, is still one of my most favorite books. But LaCour has two other books and I haven’t read them. I don’t know what is wrong with that picture!

Deb Caletti – The Fortunes of Indigo Skye was one of the first books I read when I had received my very first kindle a few years back.  One of the only reasons I purchased this Kindle book was because it was on sale. Not really sure what it was about, I read it, and really enjoyed it. It was a fun, smart read.  Since then I’ve been meaning to get around to more of Caletti’s books.

Nancy Werlin –  The only book I’ve read by this author is Impossible. When I read it I found it to be a slow moving book with a very intriguing plot line. By the end it turned out to be a book I thoroughly enjoyed. I don’t know much about this author, nor about her other books but I’m curious about them. I’m not sure I’ll ever get around to them, but I really hope to.

Judy Blundell – What I Saw And How I Lied was one of the most beautiful books I’ve read. I’m sure all of her books are just as beautiful, I just have to find the time to find out.

Rick Yancey – I read the Monstrumologist when I was in grad school. I read it specifically for class. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t want to read it. At this point in time it had been on my radar, and I really wanted to read it. But with other reading commitments, I couldn’t get around to it. Until I had to. I love it, it had Nicole written all over it. But unfortunately, I’ve only read this one. And since reading it I’ve wanted to read more of Yancey’s work.

Monday Memories (#2)

Monday Memories

Monday Memories is a super easy and super fun meme hosted by The BookBandit Blog and Miss Print. Participants are asked to post a picture of a book that holds a special place in their hearts, and talk briefly about why this book is so special. If you want to join in on the fun, link up and be sure to link back!

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Hello Reader!

For today’s Monday Memories post I’m going to get a little sentimental here. I hope you don’t mind.

I’m a reader, not just because of my love of words and books, but because I fully believe it’s programmed into my DNA.  Even though my parents aren’t readers themselves, there are several people in my immediate family who are. My grandfather was a reader. I remember his bookshelves full of books by Robert Ludlum, John Grisham, and Stephen King.

I remember looking at those bookshelves and thinking “one day I’m going to read all of those books.” That was before I realized that my grandfather and I had vastly different tastes in reading.

But one day, I was perusing the shelves and I stumbled across Carrie by Stephen King.  I asked my grandmother, if I could have it. She handed it over to me fully knowing that I would enjoy this book just as much as my grandfather once had.

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Carrie holds a very special place in my horror loving heart. It’s the first Stephen King book I have read. Just like his Pet Cemetery was the first horror movie I saw as a young kid.  I read this book several years ago, and I was captivated. For a book that was published in the mid-1970s it stands the test of time.  Issues like bullying and experiencing societal and familial pressures are real, and because of that readers then and now can easily relate and connect with Carrie. Besides that, I was one of those weird kid who thought I had special powers and could move objects with my mind.

Besides that, this specific edition holds a special place in my heart. It was my grandfather’s book. When he passed away a few years ago this book, among several others of his that I now own, became prized (bookish) possessions. They are tangible items that connect us. This edition is old, it’s worn, and it’s loved. It was loved by him, and it is loved by me.  It even has the bookmark my grandfather used when he read it (yes, when I read it a few years back, I used it too to mark my page).

To share your Monday Memories, use the InLinkz Button below to link up!

 

 

Shootin’ The Breeze With Sarah Beth Durst

Interviews

Hello Readers!

A few years ago I read a book called Drink, Slay, Love.  I loved it. Since then author Sarah Beth Durst has become a favorite of mine. She writes great books, and she’s probably the nicest person I’ve ever met. So it’s really not surprising that when I read her latest book, The Lost, her first book for adult, that I loved that one too. The Lost was unlike any other book I’ve read.  Readers, seriously – read The Lost! You’ll love it, I promise!

In the meantime, sit back and check out this awesome interview I did with author Sarah Beth Durst!

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BookBandit (BB): Can you tell me a little about yourself, and your path as an author?                                                                                                                                           

Sarah Beth Durst (SBD): I’ve wanted to be a writer for as long as I can remember, and it’s the only thing I’ve ever wanted to be (except for Wonder Woman, but that career path really didn’t work out for me, since I lack an invisible jet, magic lasso, or any kind of physical prowess whatsoever).

I started writing stories when I was ten years old, and I never stopped.  I actually think that’s the key to being a writer: don’t stop.  Really, the most valuable trait a writer can have is sheer pig-headed stubbornness.  It can take a long time to write a novel and a long time to get published, and it’s very easy to doubt yourself and your story.  You have to write through all the doubts and seize the joy.

BB: What was the inspiration behind your first adult book, The Lost?

SBD: THE LOST is about a woman whose life feels empty.  She gets into her car one day to go to her dead-end job and instead of turning left at the light, she drives straight… and drives and drives until she ends up trapped in a town called Lost that’s full of only lost things and lost people.

It was inspired by my fear of loss.  I hate losing things.  I don’t mean socks or umbrellas or pens…  I hate the thought of losing moments, of losing memories, of losing the people I love.

BB: How was writing The Lost different from writing your previous books?

SBD: THE LOST is magical realism, and I chose to write it in very, very close first person, present tense.  So that automatically made the writing process feel very intense.  It was a much more organic writing process than many of my other novels — I did have an outline, but I mostly let Lauren wander where she wanted to wander, and I followed her through the town.

BB: What are some items that you lost in your life that you would hope to find in Lost? With that, if you were to find yourself living there, much like your main character Lauren, what is one item you would hope to find (for survival purposes) and why?

SBD: I’m pretty sure there’s a blue butterfly earring somewhere in Lost that used to be mine…  But for survival purposes, it would probably be more practical to find a knife.One of my favorite characters in Lost is a six-year-old girl named Claire who carries only a teddy bear and a very sharp knife.

BB: If the fictional town of Lost could be compared to a town in the U.S.A., which town would you compare it to and why?

SBD: Lost is sort of, kind of in the Arizona desert.  I picture it as one of those nearly-abandoned towns that you see signs for on the highway and then pass in a blink of an eye.

BB: If you had to describe The Lost only using three words, what words would you use to describe it?

SBD: Forgotten.  Wild.  Beautiful.

BB: All of your characters – like the town of Lost – are so vivid, and feel so real – are they based upon people in your life?

SBD: Thanks so much!  Really, they aren’t.  I am certain that bits of myself and the people I know seep into my characters, but I don’t do it deliberately.

BB: Can you tell about any upcoming projects?

SBD: My next YA novel is coming in October.  It’s called CHASING POWER, and it’s about a girl with telekinesis.  THE MISSING, the sequel to THE LOST, will be out in late November, followed by THE FOUND in late March.  And I am working on a middle-grade novel called THE GIRL WHO COULD NOT DREAM, which should be out in fall 2015.  Very excited about all of them!

BB: What advice can you offer to aspiring writers?

SBD: Don’t listen to advice, unless it works for you.  Seriously, every writer has a different process, and what works for one writer might not work for another.  So don’t beat yourself up if you’re not writing as many words a day as so-and-so, or if outlining does/doesn’t work for you.  Learn what does work for you.  Once you do that, it will get easier.  Never easy, but easier, because you won’t be fighting yourself.

A very big THANK YOU to author Sarah Beth Durst for taking time out of her busy schedule to answer a few questions for me and the blog! I can’t tell you how much I appreciate it.

For more information about The Lost and Sarah, definitely check out her website! And make you stay tuned for all the great books that Sarah has coming out.

The Lost

Reviews

The Lost by Sarah Beth Durst

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When Lauren wakes up she just doesn’t want to deal. She doesn’t want to deal with the dull office tasks she’ll have to deal with at work. And she certainly doesn’t want to deal with the bad news she’s sure she’ll be receiving later on in the day.

In an effort to escape Lauren drives straight – through the light, past the turn off that leads to her office, and away from the life she knows. Driving aimlessly, Lauren soon finds herself in a small town at the edge of a dusty desert.

Welcome to Lost – a dusty town that won’t let it’s resident’s leave unless they find what they once lost.

Lauren doesn’t know exactly what she lost. She doesn’t even know where to look for it. Stuck in a dead-end town, Lauren finds shelter in a small yellow house away from the mobs of people who seem to want her dead. She finds unlikely friends in a knife wielding six-year-old and a tattooed stranger called The Finder. And ultimately, she finds herself.

But is what she finds enough to send her home to the reality she once so desperately wanted to escape?

The Lost, written but author Sarah Beth Durst, is the first in a trilogy. Besides that, this book which is chock full of mystery and intrigue, is Durst’s first novel for adults.

Durst’s writing is nothing short of stellar. The writing that files the pages of this book will instantly attracted readers. It’s strong, engaging, and most of all descriptive. Durst has a clear vision of what the town of Lost looks like, and because of her writing reader’s too will gain that clear vision.

Not only is The Lost full of strong writing, it’s full of honest emotions.  At some point in life, I feel like almost every person has felt lost – physically, emotionally, and even spiritually. That feeling of being lost was palpable. And because of that, it was relatable.

But don’t get it wrong, The Lost isn’t a book about being lost, it’s about finding hope in the midst of being lost.

The Lost is full of characters that will leave a lasting impression. Beyond that, each play a key role important to the overall plot line. Lauren, The Lost’s main characters, is strong and determined. Always turning a negative situation into a positive Lauren is a character that readers will root for.

The Lost is a great read. It’s engaging. It’s imaginative. And beyond those fine qualities, it’s full of unforseen twists and turns. Readers will instantly want more. And luckily there are two more books in store for us fans – The Missing and The Found.