Welsh Reading Challenge Blog is Up!

The Welsh Reading Challenge 2010 blog is now online and ready to go :-)

I’m so excited!  It is, of course, NOT done… are they ever done?  But I think it’s ready to receive visitors :-)

I’m fairly pleased with the theme, a nice green and red coloring that goes well with the Welsh flag and our challenge button.  I’m open to suggestions on what more I can do with it, so feel free to let me know.

The Welsh Reading Challenge 2010

The Welsh Reading Challenge blog is open for business!

Also, I need a Mr. Linky, but the site hates me.  I paid for the gold subscription so I can make my own meme, since the Mr. Linky blog said I had to for WordPress… or something.  All I want is a nice, EASY, challenge to manage so I can spend as much time reading and researching for it without having to spend to much time learning GEEK.  I suppose that’s the wish of most book bloggers.

There’s a suggested reading page for titles that I’ve found, plan to read myself, or have been otherwise suggested but not necessarily reviewed.  There’s a separate page for the reviews, of which there are none at the moment, but I expect at least one soon… Charlie and The Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl isn’t taking Mags and me very long to read ;-)

I’ve also included a call for Welsh material in the “Contact Me” widget, and I made a dedicated email account just for the challenge in expectation of a flood of offers :-D  Okay, I hope… am optimistic… or just want to keep the challenge stuff separate from my regular reading and email.  I get a bunch of junk in it, and would hate to accidentally delete something good. 

Feel free to suggest anything else I might have missed, especially since it is my first challenge.  I’m open to all the help I can get!

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Title:  The Curious Case of Benjamin Button

Author:  F. Scott Fitzgerald

Paperback:  32 pages

Date Published:  February 18, 2008

Publisher:  Juniper Grove

ISBN:  9781603550833

A nurse was sitting behind a desk in the opaque gloom of the hall.  Swallowing his shame, Mr. Button approached her.

“Good-morning,” she remarked, looking up at him pleasantly.

“Good-morning.  I -I am Mr. Button.”

At this a look of utter terror spread itself over the girl’s face.  She rose to her feet and seemed about to fly from the hall, restraining herself only with the most apparent difficulty.

“I want to see my child,” said Mr. Button.

…Ranged around the walls were half a dozen white-enameled rolling cribs, each with a tag tied at the head.

“Well,” gasped Mr. Button, “which is mine?”

“There!” said the nurse.

Mr. Button’s eyes followed her pointing finger, and this is what he saw.  Wrapped in a voluminous white blanket, and partially crammed into one of the cribs, there sat an old man apparently about seventy years of age.  His sparse hair was almost white, and from his chin dripped a long smoke-colored beard, which waved absurdly back and forth, fanned by the breeze coming in at the window.  He looked up at Mr. Button with dim, faded eyes in which lurked a puzzled question.

“Am I mad?”  thundered Mr. Button, his terror resolving into rage.  “Is this some ghastly hospital joke?”

“It doesn’t seem like a joke to us,”  replied the nurse severely.  “And I don’t know whether you’re mad or not – but that is most certainly your child.”

-”The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” by F. Scott Fitzgerald, pages 3-4

Originally published in Collier’s,  F. Scott Fitzgerald’s short story, “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” was inspired by a comment once made by Mark Twain.

Life would be infinitely happier if we could only be born at the age of 80 and gradually approach 18.

Such was the beginning for the stories main character, Benjamin Button.  Born as an elderly man, much to the chagrin of his socially and financially prominent family, his father initially intends to name his newborn “Methuselah” after the longest-living biblical patriarch who died at the age of 969 years of age.

Throughout the story, Benjamin lives a life that lacks, for the most part, acceptance.  His father doesn’t accept him as  a child and insists he wear short pants and play with toys, all the while the aged young Button would rather read the Encyclopedia Britannica and smoke Cuban cigars.  At the age of 18 (though looking 50), Benjamin is run out of New Haven, Connecticut by a mob when he insists to the Yale registrar that he is indeed both a freshman and eighteen.  As he grows younger and his wife grows older, she insists he stop being different and grow old like normal people, a sentiment later echoed by his own son.

While “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” is an interesting story, it is dated in it’s language and cultural sense.  A fifty-year-old college freshman would be commended today, rather than mocked.  In a world with the Internet and Paparazzi lurking behind every bush, waiting to snap a picture of the social elite, when those same pictures are discussed for weeks and speculations are made on national television, blogs and by comedians and late-night talk show host as to whether they’ve had work done, are suffering from an eating disorder or are doing crack, the global nature of our “community” would render it impossible to notice Button’s de-aging process.

And I won’t even go into the physiological impossibility for a woman of average height, 5′ 4″ to give birth to a 5’8″ baby.  She wouldn’t have even been able to carry the baby to term.  And this same baby is born with the ability to talk intelligently, to know the difference between milk and steak, and to walk home from the hospital?  OKAY… so this story requires an incredible amount of “willingness to suspend belief”.

But, most of all…. This is a short story that I very much wish had been fleshed out into a novel.  It leaves out so much detail and is over so quickly.  I was able to read it in about an hour, as it was only 26 pages, and I judged a cartwheel contest in that hour, as well.

It is important to remember that “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” was written by Fitzgerald in the early 20s.  I thought about one of my favorite television series from my childhood, Mork and Mindy, the movie Jack and, of course, the recent film version of the short story starring Cate Blanchett and Brad Pitt.

Not only did Fitzgerald take his inspiration for the story, “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button,” from Mark Twain, but the writing style also had a Twain-esque feel to it, which was probably one of the things that helped me get through it.  All in all, I’d say, if ya got the book lying around,  read it… it’s short enough not to be a punishment… but don’t go out of your way to find a copy.  I can now watch the movie, guilt-free, and I’m betting the movie is better than the book, which feels more like a concept for a novel than a completed work.  I give “The Curious Case of Benjamin Button” 3 1/2 out of 5 stars.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Trailer for the movie version of “The Curious Case of Benjamin Buttons”…  And I would definitely HAVE TO SAY that the movie is about as much “based” on Fitzgerald’s story as the story was “based” on Twain’s quote.  From what I’ve seen in the trailer, I’d have to say that it bears little resemblance to the short story, but it looks a lot more magical than the written story was.

Great Goblins! Giveaway

I’ve just started reading Goblins! An UnderEarth Adventure by Royce Buckingham, and it’s a lot of fun. It’s a fast and easy read, and I may get Mags to do a guest review on it, as well… seems like something she’d really enjoy. It reminds me a bit of The Spiderwick Chronicles, with goblins and kids battling goblins and goblin goo all over, but it’s its own book as well.

 

Here’s a trailer for the book:

and a blurb from Amazon.com:

Sneaking out into the woods near the Canadian border, Sam and PJ come across what looks like a mutant gorilla with a bad attitude. But it’s no ape— it’s a goblin, and thousands more of them live under the earth, kept in check only by a small corps of human Guardians.
Sam finds a tunnel below the surface, and in no time he’s in the goblins’ clutches. With goblin leaders Eww-Yuk and Slurp at odds, it will take all of PJ’s strength and ingenuity to get Sam back—but then again, how hard could it be to outsmart a goblin?

Featuring the high adventure and slapstick humor that made Demonkeeper a fantasy favorite, Goblins! is a subterranean romp that will keep readers laughing as they race through the pages to see what happens next.

So, I want to share the Goblin! fun with you! I have a second, spanking-new copy to give away to a lucky winner. I think we’ll keep this one quick and easy.

  1. Leave a comment here to enter the contest.
  2. Blog this contest for an extra 3 entries, and make sure to leave a comment with the link.
  3. email 5 people or more about the contest, make sure to include me ( ibetnoonehasthisdamnid@yahoo.com )  in the CC, for another 3 entries.
  4. Post the contest and link (shortened URL: http://bit.ly/vX3Se ) on Twitter, make sure to include @thekoolaidmom in your tweet so I’ll catch it, for another 3 bonus entries.
  5. Leave a comment on the review of the book when I post it Saturday for another bonus entry.

Contest is open until 11:59 pm, EDT, and I’ll post the winners names on Monday, June 1st :-)  Good luck!

BTT ~ Kool-Aid Flavored Books

Booking Through Thursday

For something different, I’m borrowing a question from … here! One of the very first questions ever at Booking Through Thursday. Back from 2005 when Laura owned the blog but, because it was so new, it didn’t get as many responses as it does now … so, why not revisit?

Here’s the question:

Some people read one book at a time. Some people have a number of them on the go at any given time, perhaps a reading in bed book, a breakfast table book, a bathroom book, and so on, which leads me to…

1. Are you currently reading more than one book?
2. If so, how many books are you currently reading?
3. Is this normal for you?
4. Where do you keep your current reads?

Yes, I am currently reading more than one book, which is normal for me. I can’t stand to just read one book. Part of this is because I get bored with just one story, I suppose it’s the ADD, but another big part of why is sometimes my main book isn’t convenient to lug around with me when I have errands to run.

Right now I’m reading:

  • Love Over Scotland by Alexander McCall Smith. This is my main book, but I’m about 10 pages from the end. My next main book is A Wrinkle in Timeby Madeline l’Engle, a book that I have tried and tried to read and finish all my life, but as yet remains unfinished (Chapter 4 is the farthest I’ve gotten in the book).  I keep my main book in my bedroom (either , on my dresser, on the desk, on the milk crate by my bed, and sometimes actually in my bed.)
  • From the Corner of His Eye by Dean Koontz is my tote-around book, though I’ve kind of been carrying around Mischief Makers Manual by Sir John Hargrave instead. I’m about 80 or so pages into Koontz book, and almost halfway through the M3.  I keep Koontz in my purse, and the M3 is in my coat pocket.
  • How To Be a Villian by Neil Zawacki is my… erm… bathroom read. *cough* I’m about a third of the way through it.  I keep this one in the cubby behind the sink.
  • I was straightening up and organizing all my ARCs and books for which I owe reviews into a manageable pile, and started reading The Forbidden Daughterby Shobhan Bantwal. The copy I have is an unbound galley, so it lives in the mailer that I received it in. When I first got it, I was a bit put off by the fact it’s just a pack of paper, and I figured it would be hard for me to take seriously as a book, a prejudice that has turned out to be completely unfounded :-) It’s an excellent book.   It’s laying on my chest-o-drawers where my Books-on-Deck are kept.
  • I’m also reading Emma by Jane Austen as part of my Jane-a-thon (also kept on the chest-o-drawers), and I’ve started re-reading The Magician’s Nephew by C.S. Lewis, this time with the kids.  I keep this one in the kitchen on top the microwave, we read one chapter at a time after dinner.

So that’s seven books that I am currently, actively reading (though I don’t know if Emma can count as an “active” read, I’ve kind of stalled out in it). I keep track of my reading on my profile page at LibraryThing, as well as on my 75 and 50 book challenge posts.

So how’s your Number Game?  Join the fun at Booking Through Thursday!

THAT Brought You HERE?!?

I am about half way through Love Over Scotland by Alexander McCall Smith and decided to take a quick break and check things out.  Actually, I’ve just read the passage I want to quote for the review, so I’ve started it up and saved it, and thought I’d take a break before going back to the book.  It’s been a slow book to get into, not helped by the fact that it’s the third book in a series I’ve never read, I’m sure.  But in the last 30 pages or so, I’ve decided I really like it.

So, I was clicking around and checking out other people’s blogs, when I happened upon Devourer Of Books post THAT Brought You HERE?, and had to have a go at it myself :-)

From what I can tell, she’s gone into her blog’s search term refferals and posted the ones she liked best.  I’ve always found some of the searches people use to find my own blog rather interesting to read… and sometimes completely bizarre… but I’ve never really gone “in depth” with my look-sees.  Here are a few that I’ve found:

booger theme wordpress -erm… no, actually, I believe it’s called “Freshy Theme”  Dunno if wordpress has a “Booger Theme”… you might have to build your own with the CSS thingamabob-doojigger.

can doctors tell if you eat your boogers – Wot?  seriously… is there something green stuck in between my teeth?  I thought it was the brussel sprouts I had for dinner….

adhd ballet students -  Wait… I’m sure I can find a video clip for that one….

throw poo at somebody – One of these days I’m going to figure out how to change the text color and then I will take over the world…. bwaa-haa-haa… 

yiddish robot – really, I just have nothing to say for this one….  Is Philip K. Dick Jewish?

why girls eat boogers – Again with the boogers?  I swear!  It’s brussel sprouts!  Though, I’m betting some people would rather eat a booger than a brussel sprout….

what is an opinion on the book the book – I don’t know, but I bet Miss Teen South Carolina does, or like such as, and then the US can help the US and such as and like osama the south asian africa such as.

on average how many boogers are in a hum – as many as can fit as long as you hum softly.  They tend to be on your lip, chin and shirt if you hum forcefully.

does cancer cause boogers?  OMG!  It’s not a sinus infection… it’s brain cancer?!?  EEeekk…  oh no… was that my brains I just blew in my hankie?

youtube – sorry, wrong address… you want http://www.youtube.com/  You took a left when you shoulda gone right.   Happens all the time. ;-)

how many boogers do you produce in a day – well, on average, I try to grow between six and ten per day.  However, with this cold and all, production levels are through the roof… it’s a literal product explosion!  Currently I’m working on a marketing scam scheme to make a profit on the overstock.  I’m looking into E-bay… I saw souls and ghosts for sale and thought, “Why not my bogies?”  If I work it right, I could make an Italian flag out of my Kleenex… white, green and a little red.

food humans shouldnt ever eat – Alpo… purina…. Cow cud…  Goldfish flakes…  I could go on.

time will change it, i’m well aware – but YOU fed the baby chili and YOU will change THAT diaper…. I’m not going near that toxic DUMP.  If you’ve seen Mr. Mom, you’ll get that one.

wuthering heights i have no more busines – cuz my spel cheker has brokeded?  Don’t worry, like such as Miss South Carolina will come to osama your help such as.

So what are some of your weirdest searches? AND…. booger or brussel sprout: Which would you eat?

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 :-D

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…. :-D

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…..

Bring On the ZOMBIE CHICKENS!!!

I am excited and proud to announce that Mt. TBR is the recipient of a prestigious award for excellent content, highly-intelligent writing, and a special gift for sarcasm. That, or I just like to fill my Friday Fill-Ins with the weirdest, off-the-wall, funny things I can think of.

Either way, high-quality content or goofiness, Wrighty Reads has given me:

Zombie Chickens Couldn't Keep Me Away!!!

The blogger who receives this award believes in the Tao of the zombie chicken – excellence, grace and persistence in all situations, even in the midst of a zombie apocalypse. These amazing bloggers regularly produce content so remarkable that their readers would brave a raving pack of zombie chickens just to be able to read their inspiring words. As a recipient of this world-renowned award, you now have the task of passing it on to at least 5 other worthy bloggers. Do not risk the wrath of the zombie chickens by choosing unwisely or not choosing at all…

Wrighty ponders how one might stop a zombie chicken, and the answer’s easy… by removing the head or destroying the brain.  That’s how Shaun did it.

And now for my five picks to pass the award to:

1. Bermudaonion’s Weblog offers book reviews that are clear and concise and are interesting to read, she also gives us a weekly vocabularly lesson :-) But more than that, Bermudaonion makes her rounds throughout the blogging world, leaving comments on everyone’s blog. I don’t know how she does it without being a clone!

2. Musings of a Bookish Kitty is the book challenge QUEEN! I’m not sure exactly how many book challenges the Literary Feline participates in, but it’s quite a few. AND I love the cute kitty pics :-D

3. Steph Su Reads offers giveaways, book reviews and more. And in a fun bit of serendipity, I recently recieved a book from PBS with Steph’s return address. It was a fun surprise and made me smile :-)

4.

Boogers and Book Bucks Giveaway!

Dont Eat That Booger!

Don't Eat That Booger!

Do bugs live in your eyelashes?

What does human flesh taste like?

Can you really catch a cold by standing in the rain?

How do astronauts POO in space?

What foods can cure a hangover?

Why is yawning contagious?

Is eating BOOGERS bad for you?

These and many other questions are answered in this 228 page book of useless and GROSS information about your body. Did you know the human skin of an executed criminal was used to bind the book that contained the facts of his crimes, trial and execution? Or, and this one is Maggie’s personal favorite, that 80% of household dust is made of the dead skin cells we shed continually?

Shock your friends with bodily facts. Be the life of the party when you tell of furniture made from human body parts. Surprise your doctor at your next physical with knowledge even he doesn’t know!

Now you can win your very own copy of Why You Shouldn’t Eat Your Boogers and Other Gross or Useless Information About Your Body by Frances Gould.

But WAIT! That’s not all! Not only will you win this fascinating book, but you’ll also get a $10 gift card for Borders! That’s a $13 book and a $10 card, for a total of a prize value of $23!

To enter:

1. Leave a comment here for your official entry. If your name ain’t here, you ain’t in it! (I save the entries here for contact info)

2. Blog it for an extra 5 entries.

3. Each day I will be posting an interesting factoid from the book. Leave a comment on those post for an additional entry.

Contest ends at 11:59 pm on Saturday, August 23rd and the winner will be announced in my Sunday Salon post. :-D (Winner will be picked using Research Randomizer)

GOOD LUCK!

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