Monday, December 30, 2013

Literary Easy Challenge

Literary Exploration discussion

Literary Exploration Challenge > The Easy Challenge - 2013 

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message 1: by Michael, Mod Prometheus Moderator (last edited Nov 27, 2012 08:39PM)
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message 2: by Lorilee
Lorilee (lthomas74) | 43 commentsWhat is the easy challenge?
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message 3: by Michael, Mod Prometheus Moderator
Michael (Knowledgelost) | 985 commentsThis is the easy challenge; 12 books, 12 different genres
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message 4: by Lorilee
Lorilee (lthomas74) | 43 commentsThanks I just say the posting!
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message 5: by Sonia
Sonia | 11 commentsWell, I've selected my list for the easy challenge. Should be fun!

Classics - If on a Winter's Night a Traveler
Fantasy - 1Q84
Graphic novels - Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, and Me
Historical fiction - The Children's Book
Horror - Frankenstein
Literary fiction - Umbrella
Mystery - The House of Silk: A Sherlock Holmes Novel
Non-fiction - Inside the Centre: The Life of J Robert Oppenheimer
Romance - The Marriage Plot
Sci-fi - The Handmaid's Tale
Thriller - Truth
Young Adult - My Name Is Asher Lev
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message 6: by Janet (last edited Nov 25, 2013 07:16PM)
Janet (goodreadscomjanetj) | 34 commentsSince I just joined the group I will select the easy challenge. If I complete it I might upgrade. Since I don't like to pick books a long time out I will post as I am ready to read or a month or so ahead.

Classics- Where Angels Fear to Tread 1/2 *** 
Fantasy- The Wizard of Oz 1/5 **** 
Graphic Novels - Persepolis 2/22 ****
Historical Fiction- Jazz 1/15 *** 
Horror - The Picture of Dorian Gray 1/27 ****
Literary Fiction - Mrs. Dalloway 1/8 **
Mystery - The Maltese Falcon3/24 ****
Non Fiction A Street Cat Named Bob 11/25 ***
Romance - Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet 1/21 ****
Science Fiction - The Handmaid's Tale 2/16 ****
Thriller The Hound of the Baskervilles 8/28 ****
Young Adult - The Awakening 1/11 ***** 
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message 7: by Michael, Mod Prometheus Moderator
Michael (Knowledgelost) | 985 commentsSonia wrote: "Well, I've selected my list for the easy challenge. Should be fun!

Classics - If on a Winter's Night a Traveler
Fantasy - 1Q84
Graphic novels - Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, and Me

looks good Sonia
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message 8: by Sally906
Sally906 | 35 commentsSonia wrote: "Well, I've selected my list for the easy challenge. Should be fun!

Classics - If on a Winter's Night a Traveler
Fantasy - 1Q84
Graphic novels - Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, and Me

Nice list Sonia :)
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message 9: by Danielle (last edited Dec 15, 2012 05:45PM)
Danielle (thesunshine) | 3 commentsThis looks like a great challenge. I'm just new to the group, so I'm going to start with easy this time around. Having said that, I'll still struggle to find a graphic novel!

Early ideas:

Classics: Brideshead Revisited
Fantasy: ???
Graphic Novels: ???
Historical Fiction: The Remains of the Day
Horror: Frankenstein
Literary Fiction: Dirt Music
Mystery: The Black Dahlia
Non Fiction: The Mitfords: Letters between Six Sisters
Romance: Pride and Prejudice
Science Fiction: ???
Young Adult: I Can Jump Puddles
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message 10: by Brenda
Brenda | 114 commentsHave you seen this graphic novel Danielle? The Kite Runner  Graphic Novel
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message 11: by Danielle
Danielle (thesunshine) | 3 commentsI had heard of this book, but not the graphic novel version. Thanks for the heads up, I'll look into it.
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message 12: by Brenda
Brenda | 114 commentsDanielle wrote: "I had heard of this book, but not the graphic novel version. Thanks for the heads up, I'll look into it."

No problem:) I'm hoping to get it for Christmas;)

(BTW love your avatar!)
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message 13: by Selena (last edited Dec 14, 2012 07:00AM)
Selena (zebrachick83) | 1 commentsYay! I'm looking forward to this challenge!

Here is my proposed list:

Classics - The Great Gatsby
Fantasy - The Princess Bride
Graphic Novels - Batman Year One
Historical Fiction - Uncle Tom's Cabin
Horror - Frankenstein
Literary Fiction - Pride and Prejudice
Mystery - Murder on the Links
Non Fiction - Far From the Tree
Romance - Back on Blossom Street
Science Fiction - 1984
Thriller - The Bourne Identity
Young Adult - The Hunger Games
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message 14: by Bob (last edited Dec 19, 2012 11:34AM)
Bob | 2 commentsI've only just joined but am looking forward to this challenge. Great fun choosing a list containing some I had planned to read and others I would not have really considered especially the graphic novel.

Classics - To the Lighthouse
Fantasy - Kafka on the Shore
Graphic Novels - Marbles: Mania, Depression, Michelangelo, and Me
Historical Fiction - Wolf Hall
Horror - The Passage
Literary Fiction - The Kite Runner
Mystery - Shutter Island
Non Fiction - A Short History of Nearly Everything
Romance - Love in the Time of Cholera
Science Fiction - Brave New World
Thriller - Killing Floor
Young Adult - The Graveyard Book
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message 15: by Brenda
Brenda | 114 commentsHey guys, can you link your books so we can check out your choices...pretty please?? Thanks:)
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message 16: by Bob
Bob | 2 commentsBrenda wrote: "Hey guys, can you link your books so we can check out your choices...pretty please?? Thanks:)"

Can't refuse a pretty please, so Ive worked out how to put the links in. Quite simple really. Bob
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message 17: by Brenda
Brenda | 114 commentsBob wrote: "Brenda wrote: "Hey guys, can you link your books so we can check out your choices...pretty please?? Thanks:)"

Can't refuse a pretty please, so Ive worked out how to put the links in. Quite simple ..."

Haha! Thanks Bob:) You've got a great list!
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message 18: by Zoe
Zoe | 6 commentsMy list so far is:
Classics: A Tale of Two Cities
Graphic Novels:
Historic Fiction: The Almond Tree
Literary Fiction: Cloudstreet
Non Fiction: Behind the Beautiful Forevers: Life, Death, and Hope in a Mumbai Undercity
Science Fiction:
Young Adult: Pretty Little Liars
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by Rachelle (last edited Dec 12, 2013 03:33PM)
Rachelle LernerI plan to do the easy challenge. I will list books after I read them.

Classics: The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint Exupery

Graphic Novel: Freedom by Frank Le Gall

Fantasy: Kiss of Fire by Rebecca Ethington

Historical Fiction:Penelope by Anya Wylde

Horror :Don't Look Behind You by Lois Duncan

Literary Fiction: Tom Sawyer Detective by Mark Twain

Mystery: A Novel Way to Die by Ali Brandon (read 1/5/13)

Non Fiction: I Am Spock by Leonard Nimoy

Romance: (The) Gunman's Bride by Catherine Palmer

Science Fiction: Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Thriller: You Belong to Me by Mary Higgins Clark

Young Adult: If the Witness Lied by Caroline B. Cooney
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message 20: by Kevin

2013 E-Book Challenge Completed

I hope to do CD level - 10 books.

1.  Homeless in Hawaii
2.  How to Lose a Tooth
3.  Extreme Couponing
4.  Penelope
5.  Murder on the Mind
6.  Chase of a Lifetime
7. The 15th Star
8.  Boo and the Backyard Zoo
9. Dear Cupid
10.  Another Saturday Night and I Ain't Got No Body
11.  Zombie Man:  Feared and Cheered
12.  Enslaved
13.  Kiss of Fire
14.  Perilous Pranks
15. Where Petals Fall
16. Russian Roulette
17. The Ugly Stepsister Strikes Back

Off The Shelf 2013

My books for the Off the Shelf Challenge:  I choose Trying: 15 books.

  1. Homeless in Hawaii
  2. A Novel Way to Die
  3. How to Lose A Tooth
  4. The Detectives Secret Daughter
  5. Let It Sew
  6. There's An Owl in the Shower
  7. The 15th Start
  8. Top-Flight Fully-Automated Junior High School Detective
  9. Boo and the Backyard Zoo
  10. Chase of a Lifetime
  11. Cat Laughing Last
  12. Murder on the Mind
  13. Cat Seeing Double
  14. Quincy M.E.
  15. Once a Ferrara Wife
  16. The Xibalba Murders

2013 Eclectic Finished

  1. Translated fiction:  The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupery
  2. Historical mystery: The 15th Star by Lisa Grace
  3. Romantic suspense:  The Detective's Secret Daughter by Rachelle McCalla
  4. Made into a movie:  You Belong to Me by Mary Higgins Clark
  5. New Adult:  Queen of Babble by Meg Cabot
  6. Urban Fantasy:  Staying Dead by Laura Anne Gilman
  7. Dystopian: Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
  8. Memoir: Homeless in Hawaii by E. C. Stilson
  9. LGBT: Chase of a Lifetime by Ryan Field
  10. Action Adventure: Russian Roulette (Dev Haskell- Private Investigator Case 1) by Mike Faricy
  11. Humour:  Quite Honestly by John Mortimer
  12. Published in 2013: One Hot Murder by Lorraine Bartlett

Staying Dead


Staying Dead by Laura Anne Gilman was my book for Urban Fantasy on the Eclectic Challenge.

Most of Staying Dead occurs in Manhattan.  Wren Valare is a retriever or thief if you wish who finds things that have been missing and brings them back.  She is hired to find a cornerstone that has a spell that was cast upon it.  She uses her friends to help her:  P.B. who is a minor demon, a mage who has lost his mind, and her business partner, Sergei.  Miss Valare is a Talent, which means she uses what we who are nulls call magic to help her in her work.  It turns out that a ghost was in the cornerstone and does not want to return to it.  The client will not pay unless the ghost is returned.

There is a Council that oversees Talent but Wren is a lonejack and takes cases she wants to take.  There is also a group called the Silence who is trying to recruit Wren and have Sergei be her handler.

This is a long book and even though I did look at the very end, I still had to read the book to find out how they got there.  Wren and Sergei work well together and others can see they are in love but they do not kiss until near the end of the book.  The "magic" Wren uses is fueled by current which comes from the ground and can cause power blackouts in the immediate area.

I did enjoy reading this book even though it is over 500 pages long.  I wish I had more time to read it in larger chunks than I did as it had descriptions of the people and locations.  I would say that the use of demons and ghosts would make it a fantasy as would the translocation ability that Wren uses.  I would recommend this book to anyone who wants to believe in "magic".

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Queen of Babble


Queen Of Babble by Meg Cabot is my New Adult book for the Eclectic Reader Challenge.

Lizzie Nichols has almost graduated college. She finds she needs to write a Senior Thesis in her field of study which was Fashion History.  She has a graduation ceremony which her parents attend but received an empty diploma case.

She takes a trip to London to meet her boyfriend Andrew and finish her thesis. Unfortunately, she can't keep her mouth shut.  She is stuck in England without a boyfriend or place to stay until the date of departure on a non-refundable ticket.  Her best friend, Shari, who was her college roommate is spending the summer helping out at a chateau in France.  So, she decides to go join her.  Lizzie talks to a young man on the train about what happened in London and much to her surprise finds out that it is his family that owns the chaeau where Shari is working.

Lizzie is welcome to stay as long as she helps with the wedding.  While on a tour of the place, she discovers a vintage gown that has a rust stain.  She manages to remove the stain and fix it to fit the bride who happens to be the young man's cousin.

Luke is the young man and his girlfriend had her own plans for the place - she want to turn it into a place where people can recover from plastic surgery and get rid of the vineyards.  Lizzie manages to let Luke's parents know what the girlfiend's plans were and what Luke really wants to do with his life - which is to become a doctor.

Will she wind up with Luke?  How does she manage to get rid of the girlfriend?  To answer the questions, you will have to read this book.

I loved this story.  The descriptions of the surroundings are wonderful.  We get to know what people are wearing through Lizzie's eyes.  Parts of her thesis are found at the beginning of each chapter.  It is a fun and fast, entertaining read.

Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Xibalba Murders

(The) Xibalba Murders by Lyn Hamilton is my X and 26th book for the A-Z challange.  It is also my 75th book of the year and fills my Read-A-Latte Challenge to read 75 books this year.

This book is an archaelogical mystery and involves the Mayan culture.  Lara McClintoch owned a successful shop in Toronto, Canada.  When she decided to divorce her husband, Clive Swain, half the proceeds from the sale would go to him and she would have to stay away from any business for a year.  So she decided to go back to school. Until one day, when Don Herman called her and she bought a ticket for Merida. She had made the same trip many times on business as Don Herman was her agent in Mexico.

Xibalba is the underworld, it is watery and Earth  is Imix, a water-lily monster, which could be a turtle or more likely a big crocodile lying in a pool of water with the earth on its back.  Each day has a special name and meaning in the mayan calendar.  The days are used as chapter titles and help the book go forward.

There is more than one murder in this book.  There is a theft and other mysterious things occur.  Unfortunately, Don Herman is one of the murder victims.  There are two handsome young male araeologists.  Lara's search for the murderer takes her through a museum and some nearby towns as well as the jungle and ancient ruins.

The descriptions of the towns and the people and food are wonderful.  There are some foods I might be willing to try if they were not spicy.  Lara's tastes seem to include hot peppers while mine do not.  Lara with the help of her neighbor, Alex, who does internet research for her and is minding her cat, learns that Don Herman may have been looking for a book.  His message included a rabbit who wrote.  We meet varous people along the way and get to follow Lara's journey.

I would recommend this book to anyone with an interest in ancient cultures or who likes a good mystery.  I enjoyed reading this book.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Ugly Stepsister Strikes Back

I obtained The Ugly Stepsister by Sariah Wilson from Feed My Reader for free.  I read it for that and am using it as U book for alphabet challenge.

The title makes you think of Cinderella which in a way is try.  Except Ella in this book is the stepsister and she is not evil and she is beautiful.  Mattie Lowe's dad is an artist as is her mother.  Her parents divorced after being married for a short time.  Mr. Lowe married Rose who was Ella's mother when both girls were two years old.  After they divorced Ella spent summers and every other Christmas with them.  When Rose died, Mr Lowe brought Ella home and the girls started going to the same school.  It was their second year in High School.  

Mattie felt ugly.  She had just recently had her braces removed and Ella was going out with Jake Kingston who Mattie had a crush on since she was nine years old.  Trent and Mattie were great friends and she felt he was like a brother to her.  Ella finally decided to break up with Jake and Mattie and Jake were forced to work on an assignment together.  Soon Ella asked Mattie if she could go out with Trent which was ok.

Since school activities look good for colleges, Mattie was urged to get involved in school.  She decides to run for school president against Jake.  When they are working on the class project, Mattie finds out that she and Jake share some interests in common.  They also want to go to the same college which is not the school their parents want them to attend.

Eventually, Ella helps Mattie discover her outer beauty and gets her made over for the Masquerade Ball.  Jake does not recognize Mattie.  The results of the voting is announced and Mattie was elected President.  When she sees Jake go towards her sister, she misunderstands and runs home.  They meet later and Jake tells her the truth.  

I loved this story.  It is a romantic story which develops as the book goes on.  It certainly is a different take on the classic Cinderella story.

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Russian Roulette


Russian Roulette (Dev Haskell - Private Investigator ase 1 by Mike Faricy is my book for R and I would say it is an unusual action adventure.

Dev is not the best Private Eye in the world and that is perhaps why Kerri choose him to find her sister, Nikki.  Little did he known that he would find himself in the middle of a task force investigation.  It involved Russian bad guys and prostitution.

There are a number of car chases, fighting, and guns firing which I would make it an action adventure.  Dev finds a butcher who turns out to be "The Butcher" the agencies are looking for.  They are amazed at the amount of information he gets.

I obtained this book for free from Amazon thanks to BookBub.

I liked this book and would read more of Dev's adventures.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Hunger Games

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins fits Science Fiction on Literary Exploration hallenge and Dystopian on Eclectic Reader Challenge. I wish to note that I have not seen either of the Hunger Game Movies.

The society has survived a war.  There are twelve districts and each year, 2 younger people from each district are chosen by lot to compete in the Hunger Games, one male and one female.  The games are held in an arena and only one can survive and be declared the winner.There are great perks for the winner, their family and the district from which they came.  Katniss Everdine and her friend Gale have been hunting for years together in a part of their district that is beyond the fense.  Kat is a good archer.  When the time for selection comes, her sister, Primrose's name is called.  Being a good sister, Kat volunteers to go instead.
The young man chosen is Peeta who is the son of the baker.  It turns out that Peeta has had a crush on Kat for a long time and their mentor decides to use this romance as a way to get them sponsos.

I was surprised that I loved the story and the way it is told.  I am not sure if I want to see the movies or not as the descriptions are wonderful and seeing them on screen may spoil my enjoyment of the books should I decide to read the others.

I certainly would recommend that a parent should decide if their child is mature enough for the violence that has to be described in such a game situation.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Almost A Christmas Bride

Almost a Christmas Bride by Susan Crosby was read for the Christmas Spirit Challenge.  It is a 2011 Harlequin Special Edition that was among my books.

Shana Callahan is a single mother who has been working for a temp agency called At Your Service doing clerical or domestic jobs.  She is offered a full time job back home by Lance Kincaid.  The job is live in and she is afraid people with get the wrong idea.   Kincaid is good looking and single and has a large house.  he lets Shana select which bedrooms she will occupy.

They try their best to keep the relationship strictly business but they do wind up sleeping together and she could have become pregnant.  The test is negative and they feel they have bitten the bullet, until a friend suggests that the test was taken at the wrong time of day.  When she takes another test, it is positive.  Kincaid asks her out to dinner and she choose this time to tell him that she is pregnant.  He had prepared a surprise for her, he had a ring ready and he asks her to marry him.  She says yes.  He had even arranged with her father to buy his business on Christmas Eve.

I liked the way this book progressed their relationship.  They started off not fully liking each other and wind up in love.  It is a very easy book to read.