TSS – Indy-cision 500 ~ Greatest Speculation in Reading

The Sunday Salon.com

Happy Memorial Day to those in the US, and Happy Sunday to everyone 🙂  Today is one of the biggest days in racing, the Indianapolis 500, and I am wishing for a nice warm and sunny race day,  and for the rain to wait until AFTER the race.  Actually, one of my favorite Indy finishes was Dario Franchitti’s win a couple years ago.  The rain started falling in the last lap or so, and by the time he crossed the finish line, it was pouring down and his wife, the lovely Ashley Judd, came running out to kiss and love on him and congratulate her love.   I’m rooting for Danica Patrick… again…  maybe this will be her year 😀   Who are you rooting for?

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On the book front, I’ve been a bit distracted and slow lately.  But now, all of a sudden, I have an excited desire to read everything, at once, as if the end of the world is near, and I’ve got a limited time to get through every good book ever written. 

And I’m having a hard time figuring out which one to read next!  I think I’ll read You Suck:  a Love Story by Christopher Moore next.  But…  I have an extra copy of Goblins! by Royce Buckingham for a giveaway, and I could read it next.  OR….. I also have an extra copy to give away of The Triumph of Deborah by Eva Etzioni-Halevy, so I could read that next….  but I have Katka by Stephen Meier to read for a June 9th blog tour date, so maybe I should be responsible and read it next.   And in the “being responsible” vein, I have Of Bees and Mist by Erick Setiawan to read for Barnes & Nobles First Look program, so maybe Bees should be next.  And I’ve been stalled out in Emma by Jane Austen for ages, so maybe I should focus on finishing her up.

Oh, what to read!  What to read! 

So what are you reading?

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And HERE is the Starting Field for the 93rd running of the Indianapolis 500! Danica is starting in 10th position, and Dario is 3rd.

Who do you like to win the race?

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TSS ~ I’m LOST in the VioletCrush of Springtime!

The Sunday Salon.com

Oh my! What a week… or two 🙂  We’ve had the season finale of LOST, which seem to pull in every title and concept of every show for the last six seasons, and left us with quite a quandary (meh, I’m not in a quandary about it, but some people are I guess).  DON’T WORRY!  NO NEED TO CLICK AWAY!  I’m NOT going to post spoilers or anything.  I hate it when I watch a movie, or mention I’m planning on it, and that one pain-in-the-ass tells you, “Don’t bother watching it, John dies in the end.”  (Actual title of a book, John Dies in the End, which has been on my wishlist for about six months or so… NOT a LOST spoiler, so stop white-knuckling the mouse!)

For the most part, I’m not much of a TV viewer anymore.  I watch my TV shows on DVD from Netflix, on the Internetz, or OnDemand.  LOST, however, is the only show the world stops for (at least, at my house it does), and I hafta wait until February of NEXT YEAR before the NEXT new LOST episode… AND next season is the LAST season (okay fellow Losties, I’m sure we can organize a memorial for the loss of our life show).

But, with the end of this LOST season we are greeted by the return of Mr. Sun (Yay!) and the flowers and the green-green-grass and the song birds (even the ones that sing outside our windows at 2 in the morning) and the garden and….. books?  what are those?  and what is a blog?  Seriously, WHERE is my grill brush?  the charcoal and lighter?  Got a good fire going… now where did my book disappear to? 

Needless to say, Spring is a distraction 😀

Add to Spring’s already siren-like call, it’s the end of the school year, which means choir concerts, class parties, summer-school registrations (I’ve lost the paper for my oldest daughter’s enrollment, which is bad… without summer school, she don’t graduate!)  We’ve got eye doctors appointments, calls to the dentist for possible lost fillings (plastic ones, so The Island had nothing to do with it 😀 ), and the question:  Is it scabies? or psoriasis?  Doesn’t matter, just put lotion on it!  (LOL…  Teulah’s dad in  My Big Fat Greek Wedding had Windex, I’m always telling them to put lotion on it…. I’ve got the slipperiest kids in town!)

Ah!  Thus is mi vida loca!  Not living La Vida Loca, mind you, just have a vida loca.  With 2 teenagers and a tweenager, all girls, a dog and three cats, could it be any other way?

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And now, to announce the winner for my copy of Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford.  All entries were randomly compiled and numbered, then the winning number was chosen using Research Randomizer.  Number 12 was drawn, and that number belonged to:

Violet of Violet Crush!  Email me your address so I can get that out in the mail for your reading pleasure 🙂

I wanted to add that I enjoyed Violet’s answer to the giveaway question:

“What tangible thing (a toy, record, woobie, etc) from your childhood you wish you had back the most?  What does this item mean to you?”

I really really wish I had my book of Ramayan back. It was my grandfathers. I never read when I was young but I was attracted by the bright and colorful pictures in it. I spent hours drawing pictures from it. I remember my grandfather reading to me from it but I never really paid attention (come on, it’s a religious book). I wish he would read to me now 😦

After looking up Ramayan, I had to add it to my book wishlist, it looks like a beautiful book 🙂

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And now, some music to read this blog by… crap!  Suppose this should’ve gone at the beginning instead!  Oh well, click play and read it again LOL… or, music to comment by.  Whatever tickles your fancy 😉

OH! BTW! Those who didn’t win, despair NOT! Stephanie of The Written Word is hosting a giveaway for a copy, open until May 20th 🙂

The Sunday Salon ~ Guaranteed Job-Winning Interview

The Sunday Salon.com

I’ve been travelling through space and time a lot this week.  I’ve been to the desert planet of Arrakis, 8000 years into the future.  I’ve been to late 19th century England and Narnia (again) to watch the world’s beginning and the entrance of evil before it was even 5 hours old.  And now, I’ve just returned from a frightening not-to-distant future United States.  Oddly enough, they have more in common than just time.

In all three books, Dune, The Magician’s Nephew, and Fahrenheit 451, there is oppressive rulers and the reaching into the minds of people to control their very thoughts.  With Dune, the Bene Gesserit wish to control who gets knowledge and sight, who marries whom, and even what sex a child will be.  The Harkonnens and Sardukars viciously hunt and kill the Fremen in a pogrom, because the Fremen are independent and refuse to kiss the perverse butts of the disgusting Harkonnen “rulers.”

With The Magician’s Nephew, the Witch destroyed her own world in a bid to control it and take the throne from her sister, using the deplorable word to kill all life except the one who speaks it.  Then she tries to take over England, but without her magic, she’s just a violent nutter on a thieving rampage.  Once in Narnia, however, she’ll hide and bide her time… then make the move to enslave and opress the land for her own pleasure.

Fahrenheit 451, though, is the one I’ve most recently finished, so the thoughts about it are still tumbling around.

The fun thing with Fahrenheit 451 is that it’s been on Mt. TBR since before there was a Mt. TBR, way back when it was just an “I’m gonna read that soon” pile, when there were maybe 20 books on that pile.  I have NO idea how many books are on Mt. TBR now. Library Thing says I have catalogued almost 1000 books, but some of those are books I’ve read, or books I’ve mooched away and NOT read.  I have tagged 493 books either unread or TBR, but I’ve gotten lazy and haven’t been tagging any of the books I add, so I’d say Mt. TBR is well over 300 books (simply “unread” don’t count as TBR books).

So, some of my thoughts on Fahrenheit 451… 

One of the things that Guy Montag has to do is to decide which book he’ll sacrifice.  Captain Beatty knows he took a book and tells him if he turns it in within 24 hours, it’ll be forgiven.  Montag’s not sure if Beatty knows he has one book, a hundred books or which title, so he figures if he brings him one book, any book, he’ll pass without suspicion.  But how can he choose?  He decides not to turn over the last known surviving copy of The Bible, which was a funny moment with his wife, who asked him:  Which is more important, me or that book?  Der, easy answer… 

*SORTA SPOILER ALERT*  After running from the police, Montag finds a group of men hobo’ing who have memorized a chapter of a book, or even entire books, and burned the hard copies, and now wait for a time when society will return to it’s senses and want literature again.  They half-jokingly introduce themselves as the particular book title, i.e. “Hi!  I am Plato’s Republic, and Simmons is Marcus Aurelius.”  Knowing how the statement “I am” is an affirmation, and also that the more you say it, the more it takes hold and becomes a truth about you,  I wonder who they’ll be in 20 years.  Their personalities, and such.

In Fahrenheit 451, Mildred, Montag’s wife, is very attached to her “family,” the people on the television.  These “relatives” yell at each other, call each other names, act the fool, and are otherwise “entertaining”.  They have a device that allows the owner to hear their own name in messages and shows, and the picture is even adjusted to make the actor’s lips appear to say the name.  So that for her, the announcer says, “Mrs. Montag, wouldn’t you love to try Denham’s Dentifrice?”  And their living room, or parlor room, has wall-sized screens (remember, this was written in the late 40’s – early 50s), and when you had all 4 of your wall-screens installed, it would be just like being in the show… surrounded by your “family”.  Creepy!  and sad…

Clarisse McClellen is the oddball neighbor that sets Montag’s feet on the road of awakening.  She tells him of how kids her age frighten her.  They enjoy killing each other and themselves and destroying things.  They go to the “amusement park” and break windows in “Vandalism Town” or drag race legally, as long as they have enough insurance they can destroy whatever they want. 

One of Mrs. Montag’s friends tells how she thinks it was nice having kids, and she does her best to accommodate them the 3 days out of a month she has them (the rest of the time they’re away at school… grade schoolers, btw).  She just plopped them down in the parlor with the “relatives” as soon as they got home from the hospital.   But, she doesn’t know why they hate her.  Hmm…

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And now for something completely random and different  (because the vid clip I wanted to post is embedding disabled).

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So, If you had to sacrifice one of your books to save the rest, which one would go into the fire?

I’d be tossing the Babysitter’s Club ones… maybe the stray Captain Underpants one I think’s somewhere around here. The Reader’s Digest condensed books could be chucked, too… if they’re still here.

If you were one of the books (which was the vid clip, btw… Montag meeting the Books), what book would you be and why?

It’s a book I’d re-read mentally and recite every day… it’d become a part of me and eventually I’d become that book to an extent…. I think I’d pick the book of Proverbs (Montag was the Book of Ecclesiastes) because it’s wisdom. Everything you need to know about dealing with people, living life, psychology… everything…. is in Proverbs.

Your turn! What book would you sacrifice? Which would you be? Why?

The Sunday Salon ~ Do You Eat Kitty Litter for Lunch?

The Sunday Salon.com

I am back from church, and soo hungry I could eat a whole panful of Kitty Litter! LOL… before you go all, “EwWwW, gross!” let me ‘splain.

I’ve just finished my first Read-a-Thon, and was surprised by a LOT of how everything worked out. My thought going in was this: I read every day anyway, how hard can a 24 hour Read-a-Thon be? *cue insane laughter now*

Yeah…. First off, I have kids. I have 3 kids, in fact. Three delightful and loving sisters who delight in few things more than tormenting one another and making each other squeel. Which, in turn, makes ME squeel. Second, the idea of hourly updates really made it harder for me to get much reading done because, by the time I finished the update and settled back into reading, it would be time for another update.

BUT… by far… the greatest enemy I found was that damned evil blue bird, TWITTER.

It seems I have yet to master the skill to be plastered, obsessively, to the TweetDeck AND read a book at the same time. So I ended up tweeting, totally random and slap-happy at times, to an unproductive degree.

On the upside, though, I did have the oppurtunity to offer up some Kitty Litter Cake:

A nice, big, overflowing pan of Kitty Litter Cake!  YuM!

A nice, big, overflowing pan of Kitty Litter Cake! YuM!

It seems to have been a popular post :-D, and I’ll be taking some of this revolting-to-the-eyes-but-delicious-on-the-tongue dessert to the Mother’s Day carry-in 😀

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Oh my… I’ll never get anything done now!

The Sunday Salon ~ Finding a New Home

The Sunday Salon.com

Spring is here 😀 and it’s a time for new growth, changes, cleaning, and new beginnings. Today is Easter, as well. one of those two or three days a year the less-than-faithful drag their butts out of bed and into the church to do their duty, please their parents or as part pf their holiday visits with friends and family.

For me, today was the first time I’ve been to a church service in about a year. For five years we went to a church that was within walking distance. We loved everyone there, worked in the children’s church as a teacher, and it was our family and home. Then they moved to the mall and we couldn’t walk their anymore, so they picked us up (I have no car) and we rarely missed a service. Though we had a ride, the move cut us down to in and out on Sundays (only) on someone else’s schedule, and no more mid-weeks or other activities, and we kind of started to feel disconnected from them. Then one day they stopped coming. No phone call, no card, just nothing.

It’s hard, or at least it’s hard for me, to change churches. I want to find one and stay. I don’t like to try this one, then that, and go everywhere… I used to as a kid, though. I don’t want to tell my life story to all new people every other week or month or year. And this particular one hit me hard, as I did nothing to cause them to dump us. And for the last year, I’ve felt as if they abandoned us, and to pick a new church would somehow be disloyal, to say I’ve given up hope on returning there.

But a year is long enough, I guess. It’s time to accept that we’re no longer part of that family. Yesterday, I took Maggie to an Easter party at the Assembly of God church. It was very warm and friendly, and there were several faces I recognized. Also, a very good friend of mine goes to church there, and they have a great youth group, children’s church, and bus ministry. It’s a bigger church than what we’ve been used to, a LOT bigger, but it’s not the first time I’ve been a member of a big church (when I lived in Kokomo, the church we went to was a 500-700 member church, a lot of them were my cousins).

So today, Easter Sunday, was my first day back into a church. The kids are excited and happy, they’ve always loved church. Maggie even wants to be baptized, and, as she’s now 10, I think she’s old enough now.

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I picked up a lot of books this week (like I need some more!). Maggie’s school had a book fair, and I grabbed a few there:
The Name of This Book Is a Secret
Skeleton Creek
How to Steal a Dog, and more.

Then, we stopped into the library yesterday to pick up a movie on hold for us there, and left with:
Marked: House of Night book 1
Just Ella and its sequel Palace of Mirrors.

Also, I’ll be participating in a few blog tours, among them:
Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and SweetMay 11th
They Plotted Revenge Against AmericaMay 20th
The 19th WifeJune 19th
and for The 19th Wife, I’ll be having a give away for a book 😀

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I had my first experience with a a weird show called Happy Tree Friendsthis week. Netflix suggester thought I’d like it, so it arrived on Thursday. Maggie hates it, she hates anything in which animals are hurt… even cartoon ones. Sam, having a weak stomach, also hated it. Gwen, however, found them to be completely hilarious and was the only one to watch them with me. Here’s an episode for ya 😀

TSS ~ Praise and Awards and Pass the Amoxicillin

The Sunday Salon.com

Hello and happy Sunday everyone 🙂 Thank you for your get-wells last week when I had the stomach flu. I finally got all better from that, only to come down with a bad sinus and chest cold. Lol… I’ll take that over the stomach flu any day, though.

Thank you Wrighty Reads for the cool Zombie Chicken Award, it’s quite a funny pic and description. I passed it along to Bermudaonion, Blodeuedd, Literary Feline, Steph Su, and Chartroose. So then Blodeuedd returned the complement by giving me:

Premio Dardos Award
The Premio Dardos Award

This award is for bloggers who distinguish themselves for showing cultural values, ethics, great and fun writing skills, as well individual values, through their creative writing.

The rules are:
1. To accept and show the distinct image
2. Show the link to the blog from which you were given the award
3. Choose 15 blogs to give the Dardos Award (Premio Dardos)

Okay, so I’m going to slack on #3, because 15 awards? I might as well just point to the blogroll. I would like to pick a few who haven’t received the award and that I do really like. So, here are my nominees:

1.  Devourer of Books~ One of my first bloggie friends, also on LibraryThing 🙂

2.  Fashionista Piranha ~ She has a cool layout, interesting giveaways and her reviews offer a slightly different view on things than my own.  It’s always good to receive from those whose thoughts don’t mirror your own, it makes your world a richer place 🙂

3.  Fyrefly’s Book Blog~ Another of my first bloggie friends and fellow LTer, Fyrefly’s blog is bright and pretty, and we often match up on how we felt about a book.

4.  Presenting Lenore~ Whenever I think of Lenore’s blog, the first thing that comes to mind is her interview with P. J. Bracegirdle  (don’t know why it sticks in my mind), and the second thing is the lovely box of chocolates and candies she sent me 😀

5.  S. Krishna’s Books ~ I do NOT know where she finds the time to read as much as she does, maybe a clone?  I suppose I shouldn’t tell her that I mooched a copy of Haunting Bombay last night…. 😀

6.  Book Sandwich~ Mrs. Hall is very busy with life, and has moved a couple times…  AND I believe she was one of my very first mooches on BookMooch 🙂

7.  Just A (Reading) Fool~  unfinishedperson writes smart post with a dry wit.  Another one of my long-time favorite blogs and fellow LTer 🙂

8.  The Book Lady’s Blog~  I just love her blog 🙂

I’m going to reserve the remaining 7 until next week 🙂 That way I can explore some new blogs to visit 😉

As to my reading this week…..

I spent a week or more on Brisingr, and I’m glad I’m done with that book, it felt like I was reading it forever.  I did manage a few smaller books in, as well. 

Right now I’m about 100 or so pages from the end of The Lace Reader.  I will be glad to be done with it, because it’s been giving me bad dreams.  I don’t know if it’s because of my cold or the book, or a combination of the two, but I’ve been having nightmares since starting it.  AND I never have nightmares, I’m a lucid dreamer and if I’m dreaming something I don’t like, I just change it.  Like most of the nightmares I’ve had for the past4 or 5 years, it always stars my deceased father returning to life.  Ugh.  Not like a zombie or anything, just like he never died.   I’m sure it’s not Ms. Barry’s fault I’m having bad dreams, but still…..

The Sunday Salon ~ Survey SAYS!

The Sunday Salon.com

As I’ve been struggling for the bulk of this past week with a stomach bug, I didn’t get much reading accomplished. However, I did pick up my emails and blogged a bit… very little bit, lol… and in Friday’s Shelf Awareness newsletter, there was a bookie-survey given to Robert Goolrick, author of A Reliable Wife. I love those kinds of things, so I snatched it, filled in my own answers, and made it my Sunday Salon post 🙂

BTW… those of you who’ve asked where us bloggers get out hands on ARCs, Shelf Awareness is one of my favorite sources 😀

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1. What book is on your nightstand now?

lol… I don’t actually have a night stand.  I have one of those high-class, bedside-furnishings found in college dorm rooms everywhere.

The Ubiquitous Milk Crate
The Ubiquitous Milk Crate

But… at any rate… upon said “nightstand” is a copy of Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone that Maggie borrowed from the library and has YET to read, The Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants, and Great Jewish Short Stories.  They’re not there because I’m working on reading them, however.  Rather, they are there because I was sick and didn’t carry them the three feet around the corner to Mt. TBR shelving unit 2 (as, the original book shelf filled up long ago).

I think the meaning of this question is more, “What are you reading now?” And the answer to that is:   I am currently almost halfway through Brisingr by Christopher Paolini, Custard and Company by Ogden Nash, Neil Zawacki’s How to Be a Villain, and From the Corner of His Eye by Dean Koontz.

From the ARC-alanche on deck pile, I’m also reading Something Wickedly Wierd: The Icy Hand by Chris Mould… OH! and, as I glance over my shoulder, I see this one is actually ON the milk crate, too.  I’m a little over 1/4 the way through it.

2. Favorite book when you were a child?

I was not a very prodigious reader as a child… I didn’t really start becoming a reader until I was about 15… but there are a couple books I read until they fell apart.

One was called Nothing At All by Wanda Fag
nothing-at-all

another was How Fletcher Was Hatched by Wende and Harry Devlin

fletcher

and Never Tease a Weasel by Jean Conder Soule

Never Tease a Weasel

There’s another that I read religiously, but I can’t find the name of it.  It had a girl chipmunk, I think her name was Suzy, and a toy soldier in it, but I can’t find it on the net.  It’s particularly enmeshed with Never Tease a Weasel, and I can only guess I read over and over together.

To this day, I unconsciously quote from Nothing At All when I feel like I’m running around in circles, “I’m busy getting dizzy!” is what Nothing At All, the main character of the book, says.

3. Who’s on your “top five authors” list?

Do I hafta limit it to five?!?! Waaaah! ‘kay, I’ll try:   Jane Austen, William Shakespeare, John Steinbeck, C. S. Lewis and…. Dr. Seuss.

4. What book have you faked reading?

LOL… I’m guessing this means What book did I pretend to read for a grade or book club?  Well, I didn’t exactly “fake” reading it because I admitted to my professor that I didn’t read it but it always sticks out there in my mind as a great “fake”.  In our 20th century American History class we were assigned Eleanor Roosevelt: A Personal and Public Life by J. William T. Youngs.  Try as I might, I was never able to get into the book… I’ve always hated biographies, like I want to know a person’s personal life! blech.

5. What book are you an evangelist for?

okay… those of you who’ve been to Mt. TBR before, say it with me:  The Gargoyle by Andrew Davidson

6. What book have you bought for the cover?

Erm… None that I can think of, not for the cover art.  I have grabbed a few for the titles, though.  It’s fun to tell people, “What am I reading? Talk to the Hand!”  Actual book title by Lynn Truss, and very funny in that dry brit-wit kind of way.

7. What book has changed your life?

Any book worth the paper it’s printed on cannot fail to leave its mark on the reader’s life, however I’d have to say the book that has had the most effect on who I am would have to be The Bible.  Second to that… I read a book that greatly helped me to stop cutting called Cutting: Understanding and Overcoming Self-Mutilation by Steven Levenkron.

8. What’s a favorite line from a book?

I just came across a line from Brisingr that every book lover will agree with:

Books should go where they will be most appreciated, and not sit unread, gathering dust on a forgotten shelf, don’t you agree?

erm… *glances at her shelves full of hoarded books and gulps* yeah… sure! I swear I’m gonna get to them all!! 😀

9. What book would you most want to read again for the first time?

easy, The Book Thief by Markus Zusak