Tuesday, March 31, 2009

TLA 2009

It's that time of year again! Most of this week I'll be attending the Texas Library Association conference, which is here in Houston this year. My goal is to NOT come home with the 45 advanced reader copies I ended up with last year, which I've barely made a dent in. I'm sure I won't be able to resist a few, though. Hopefully the fact that I'll have to drag them home on the bus will be a deterrent!

On a reading-related note, I'm still plugging away at The Mists of Avalon. Sheesh, that's one big book!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Once Upon a Time III

In general, I'm not doing any challenges this year. My own, personal, challenge is to read as many of my own books as possible (generally speaking, I'm reading 1 library book for every 3 books from my own collection).

However, how can I resist Carl's challenges?

This year, Carl has included an option for general participation, without having to choose a certain number of books. This fits perfectly with my reading plan, and, as I am currently reading The Mists of Avalon, the timing is perfect.

If you've never joined one of Carl's challenges before, I highly encourage you to join in. It is more than a challenge; it's an experience.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Some of you, at least, have noticed that I now have a Twitter badge on my blog. I actually just added a new reading-specific account which will be the one that updates on this blog now. Feel free to follow any (or all) of my three Twitter profiles:


I am a much more prolific Tweeter than blogger, I promise! :-)

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Just checking in

I started re-reading The Mists of Avalon after I finished my last book, so it will be a while before I post a review, I think. It takes a really long time to read an 800+ book with only a little while each day to read! I first read Mists of Avalon in 1992, and I remember not being able to put it down. I'm not having that experience this time, but I think it's just that I don't have the time to devote to it that I did when I was 20... The fact that I have placed it on my list of favorites consistently keeps me reading.

We've had a very tough week here emotionally (my 10-year-old son had a friend who tragically died), and I haven't been in a mood to lose myself in a book. Knitting has kept me busy while not having to concentrate. It doesn't help that I have 3 time-sensitive projects going and more in the wings.

On a book-related note, we went to see Coraline for the second time today. The first time we had to settle for the 2D version, since the 3D version wasn't playing anymore. I guess they had freed up all the 3D slots for the Jonas Brothers movie (it was opening weekend), because today we noticed Coraline was showing in 3D again. I have to say, having seen both versions, the 3D version was MUCH better and more satisfying.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Goose Girl by Patrice Kindl

I needed a nice, quick read after Tamar, and this fit the bill perfectly. In this adapted fairy tale, a common goose girl, Alexandria Aurora Fortunata, has had a spell cast upon her so that whenever she combs her hair, gold dust falls out, and when she cries, she sheds diamonds instead of tears. This has grabbed the attention of both the King of Gilboa and the Prince of Dorloon, who have locked her in a tower until she chooses which one she will marry.
With the help of her beloved flock of geese, Alexandria escapes from the tower and, naturally, encounters all kinds of obstacles. While the ending may not be a complete surprise, it is entertaining, as is the book as a whole. Highly recommended for fans of the likes of Shannon Hale.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Tamar by Mal Peet

I can't decide if I liked Tamar or not. I liked the story, and I like the subject matter, but the book just seemed to drag. It took me a couple of weeks to read, and I didn't feel overly compelled to pick it up instead of, say, knitting. That's my current gauge. If I'm really enjoying the book, I will choose to read instead of knit. If the book is just so-so, I will often choose to knit instead. I got a lot of knitting/crocheting done while reading this book.

Tamar bounces back and forth between the present and 1944/1945 and between two characters with the name Tamar. One character is the narrator, a young woman recounting the story of her grandfather's death and the process of trying to figure out a puzzle he left her when he died. The other character was a resistance fighter in the Netherlands during World War II. The stories are intertwined, as the girl Tamar was named by her grandfather, in honor of his experiences in the war. Both story lines are compelling, and the mystery revealed wasn't a dead giveaway. Still, I felt there was something missing, something that could have made the book impossible to put down. I would definitely recommend it for someone interested in the Dutch resistance or WWII history, in general.

Library Thing Early Reviewers

I snagged another Early Reviewer this month, after a couple-month dry spell. This month I'll be getting All Other Nights by Dara Horn. This book looks fantastic, and I can't wait to read it!