Friday, March 29, 2013

One Year Blogiversary!

Hey everyone!

So in case you didn't read the title to this post, it's my one year blogiversary! :D

( I really want to contain my excitement so I don't sound like such a newbie haha)

I cannot believe that I have actually been book blogging for an entire year, it seems like I was a newbie only yesterday.
I feel that it is only appropriate that I write about my journey of book blogging for a year to celebrate this momentous event. Sure, there are book bloggers out there that have been doing this longer than I have, maybe even longer than I've been alive. But, I'm excited because I'm the type of person who doesn't do well with commitment, I can never stay committed to just one project at a time and end up giving up on old ones when I start new ones. However, I can proudly say I did it for a whole year and didn't quit or give up or abandon it to move on to others, and do not intend to for quite some time to come.
Through book-blogging I have grown. I've learned to see things in books and in different aspects of the written word that would've gone unnoticed before, and even how to do some pretty cool stuff on computers (like formatting pages, posts, and widgets, it makes me feel tech-savvy ;) ). I'm no longer as timid as I was when it comes to voicing my opinions and views, even if it's just about books. Still, before I would've been scared that the author would hate me for saying their book 'wasn't as good as I thought it would be', but now I'm not.
I have loved getting to know members of the book blogging community, both video book reviewers and blog-bloggers like myself. Within this year I've learned so much about blogging, reviewing, socializing, discussing literature, and even reading that I had not known before. Before book blogging I would never have dreamed of interviewing authors and talking to them about reviewing their books, but alas the world of book blogging opened up so many doors for me and I am humbled to know there is so much about the written word I do not know.
Books are a passion of mine and I love that I am able to share that love with you all. When I first started The Literary Forest I had only one follower who would comment on my posts occasionally or just read them, but I was grateful. I'm immensely grateful to you all who read my posts and sometimes nonsensical blathering, it lets me know I'm not sputtering out my opinions of books to an endless infinity.
I know that people generally do giveaways on blogiversary posts, but unfortunately I won't be able to since I'm spring-breaking overseas. There's always next year though! And maybe even half-blogiversarys! ;)

Thank you for going on this journey with me, here's to a year of book-blogging and hopefully many more to come!

Fabulous Finds Friday

Hey everyone!

This is a Marauder ring, a reference from the Harry Potter series. I actually own one of these very rings but I lost it a few weeks ago and have yet to find it again :( which really upsets me because it was my favorite of all of the rings I own. My skin gets a really bad reaction to the metal Nickel and luckily this ring was made of a hypoallergenic Aluminum alloy metal so it doesn't but my skin at all. The Marauders in the Harry Potter series are some of my favorite characters, especially the ones in the 'New Generation of Marauders'; Fred and George who were my favorite characters in the entire series. If you're a Harry Potter fanatic like me and love hand stamped jewelry you'd love this girlie's shop. I am in no way affiliated with this shop nor am I advertising or being compensating for mentioning her shop in a blog post. I bought this ring from her a few months ago and we're not friends or acquaintances. But I thought any fellow Potterheads out there would appreciate the find. :)
Check out the shop; Chasing At Starlight


Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

A blind date with a book sounds pretty cool.


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

"Hatchet" - Book Review

Thirteen-year-old Brian Robeson is on his way to visit his father when the single engine plane in which he is flying crashes. Suddenly, Brian finds himself alone in the Canadian wilderness with nothing but his clothing, a tattered windbreaker, and the hatchet his mother has given him as a present -- and the dreadful secret that has been tearing him apart ever since his parents' divorce. But now Brian has no time for anger, self-pity, or despair -- it will take all his know-how and determination, and more courage than he knew he possessed, to survive.

My Review:

In the fourth grade my teacher decided that she wanted to have 'reading time' with us at the end of the day for at least 20 minutes if we finished our work on time. Looking back now I think that it may have been kind of a way to bribe us to work hard and behave in class. The first day of reading time my favorite teacher I've ever had the privilege to be taught by pulled out Hatchet and told us it was one of her favorite books to read as a teenager back in the eighties. Of course many jokes from classmates ensued. Those twenty minutes at the end of everyday were so magical for me and really sparked my appreciation for the written word.
Hatchet is a story about survival and the strength and greatness of the human spirit. Brian is a character I think many people can relate to. While reading this book you can't help but wonder what you would do if put into Brian's shoes. Would you have been smart enough to think of that? Would you do the same thing if in such a desperate situation? Would you give up or keep going no matter how hard it got? In the beginning of the story Brian is traveling to go visit his father since his parents have recently divorced. I actually began reading this book on the airplane that was taking me to my dad's since I'm kind of in the same boat as Brian.
It's obvious that Gary Paulsen had done a lot of research to write this book, and after the story he talks about how he put himself through forced-falls and left stranded in the woods to fend for himself. That just goes to show how passionate he was about getting into the right mindset to write Hatchet, and I have a great appreciation for writers that will put themselves in their characters shoes so that they can get the emotions and feelings spot-on.
Hatchet is just as amazing to me now as it was back in the fourth grade, almost over ten years later. It's no wonder it's an American classic, it gets your imagination running wild. My wonderful fourth grade teacher only got to read half of the second book to us by the time school was out, and I found out there are five books in the saga. I'm definitely going to continue reading Brian's story in The River.

Thank you Mrs. Wolf for being such an amazing 4th grade teacher.


Friday, March 22, 2013

Fabulous Finds Friday

Hey everyone!

As I mentioned earlier on my last Wordless Wednesday post (link here) I'm going to be doing a different variety of posts on my blog to be more active. The other day I came up with a great idea to do a Fabulous Finds Friday every week. Fabulous Finds Friday (FFF for short in order to not so tedious and redundant) will be where I post a link, photo, quote, book, club, you name it, that's related to the written word that I found throughout the week that I want to share with you guys.
This is the Thomas Fisher Rare Book Library in Toronto, Canada. Just one of the very impressive libraries listed on a blog post about the best libraries in the world. I could explore this library all day long, it reminds me of the architecture of the Library of Antiquities in the Mythos Academy book series.
Check out the rest of the article here. Prepare to have your mind blown.

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

"Delirium" - Book Review

They say that the cure for Love will make me happy and safe forever.

And I've always believed them.

Until now.

Now everything has changed.

Now, I'd rather be infected with love for the tiniest sliver of a second than live a hundred years smothered by a lie.

Lena looks forward to receiving the government-mandated cure that prevents the delirium of love and leads to a safe, predictable, and happy life, until ninety-five days before her eighteenth birthday and her treatment, when she falls in love.

My Review:
I really enjoyed this book. Delirium is a breath of fresh air in the dystopian genre. The concept is so original and unique I was hooked from the moment I read the synopsis on the back of the cover.
While I was reading this book I myself began falling for someone and couldn't help but think "I'm showing signs of amor deliria nervosa."
It was such a wonderful book, the characters were real, even the zombie-like cured ones. Alex and Gracie would have to be my favorite characters in this book, they just captured my heart right from the start. The entire idea of a world without love is just so unfathomable, I could never imagine a world without it. Where parents wouldn't love their children, and people wouldn't  love their pets or friends or significant others. I'm really excited to read Pandemonium after that blood-pumping cliffhanger. I don't want to say too much about this book in order to not spoil anything for future readers. All I will say is that if you haven't read Delirium yet, what are you waiting for?


Wordless Wednesday

There's just something so charming about old books.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Fabulous Finds Friday

Hey everyone!

It's time for another Fabulous Finds Friday! This week has seemed to go by pretty slowly and felt so long, it's hard to believe it's finally Friday. For this week's FFF I found a really cool accessory. A while ago I saw a cool link on Pinterest about a book quote scarf where pages of book quotes are printed onto infinity scarves that look like cowls. They are just the neatest things, and they're sold at an online shop on Etsy. The link to the shop is below if you want to check it out. I don't have one, but I wouldn't mind wearing the Pride and Prejudice one.
The scarf in the picture below has quotes from A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens.



Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Wordless Wednesday

Yes that is a cake, and it looks goooooooooooooooooooood.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

My Fictional Bucket List

Hey everyone!

So as many of you probably know there's a huge book community out there in the inter webs. One section of the book community is located on Youtube, A.K.A. the booktubers. JesseTheReader is one of my favorite booktubers and he recently posted a video about his fictional bucket list (watch here) in which he says his bucket list of things he'd love to do if the worlds of his favorite fictional books were true.
Without further ado, I give you my top 10 fictional bucketlist;

(Listed in no particular order)

Vampire Kisses (Vampire Kisses #1) by Ellen Schreiber

Explore the Sterling mansion with Raven Madison for the very first time.

Touch of Frost (Mythos Academy #1) by Jennifer Estep

Hang out with Gwen and explore the mysterious unknown nooks and crannies of Mythos Academy that students don't know about.
Old Magic by Marianne Curley

Time travel with Jarrod and Kate to the middle ages and ask people if they know where I can buy a boom box.
Switched (Trylle #1) by Amanda Hocking

Wreak havoc in the Trylle palace with Loki (undoubtedly horrifying Finn and enraging Elora).
To Catch a Pirate by Jade Parker

I'd like to catch me a pirate ;).
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (Harry Potter #1) by J.K. Rowling

I would love to explore Hogwarts and hang out with Fred and George and cause havoc with them.

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

I think it would be so much fun to hang out with Augustus, Hazel, and Isaac. We'd have a blast being overly sarcastic and not following the rules. Traveling to Amsterdam with Hazel and Augustus to eat at Oranjee would be really nice too.

Graffiti Moon by Cath Crowley

I would love to explore Melbourne with Lucy in search for pieces by Shadow and Poet and just stare at the murals for hours.
Forgive My Fins (Fins #1) by Tera Lynn Childs

Swim with the mermaids.
Thirteen Little Blue Envelopes (Little Blue Envelope #1) by Maureen Johnson

Travel all over Europe with Ginny following her grandmother's clues left in the little blue envelopes.
That's my bucket list everyone :) though a few of the above mentioned fiction bucket list wishes are subject to change from the top ten because one day I may read a really great book and love that world a whole heck of a lot more. What's on your fictional bucket list?

Friday, March 8, 2013

Fabulous Finds Friday

Hey everyone!

As I mentioned earlier on my last Wordless Wednesday post (link here) I'm going to be doing a different variety of posts on my blog to be more active. The other day I came up with a great  idea to do a Fabulous Finds Friday every week. Fabulous Finds Friday (FFF for short in order to not so tedious and redundant) will be where I post a link, photo, quote, book, club, you name it, that's related to the written word that I found throughout the week that I want to share with you guys.
Here's this week's Fabulous Finds Friday.

"You have bewitched me, body and soul."~ Mr. Darcy
Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice
This is one of my favorite quotes from one of my favorite novels of all time Pride and Prejudice. I'm also a bit addicted to tea and I just love tea mugs.
However you don't have to go out and buy special mugs like this. You're in for a surprise! While scrolling through the big web that is the Internet one day I discovered a really nifty DIY idea to decorate ceramic plates. All you need are Sharpies; ceramic plates, cups, or whatever you want to decorate; and an oven.
Click the link below to get in on the secret so you can make your own delicious book quote dishes.

I hope you liked today's Fabulous Finds Friday


Thursday, March 7, 2013

"The Fault In Our Stars" - Book Review

Diagnosed with Stage IV thyroid cancer at 13, Hazel was prepared to die until, at 14, a medical miracle shrunk the tumours in her lungs... for now.

Two years post-miracle, sixteen-year-old Hazel is post-everything else, too; post-high school, post-friends and post-normalcy. And even though she could live for a long time (whatever that means), Hazel lives tethered to an oxygen tank, the tumours tenuously kept at bay with a constant chemical assault.

Enter Augustus Waters. A match made at cancer kid support group, Augustus is gorgeous, in remission, and shockingly to her, interested in Hazel. Being with Augustus is both an unexpected destination and a long-needed journey, pushing Hazel to re-examine how sickness and health, life and death, will define her and the legacy that everyone leaves behind.
My Review:
"My thoughts are stars I can't fathom into constellations"
~Augustus Waters (The Fault In Our Stars, John Green)
Augustus pretty much spot-on summed up how my thoughts are right now. I'm going to attempt to explain how I feel and what I think about this book, but it probably wouldn't do it justice. The Fault In Our Stars was a beautiful, astonishing, magnificent, wondrous-and any other adjective that could best describe how awesome this book was-book.
I have fallen in love with John Green's writing, and this book is the best I've read by him by far. The Fault In Our Stars has instantly become a favorite of mine that I will definitely be rereading over and over again, which is saying something considering that I NEVER reread books (with the exception of Harry Potter of course).
The characters were so lively, likable, and so real. Gus was definitely my favorite character in the novel, I loved his humor and charismatic personality, and best of all his determination to leave an imprint in the world. Isaac was adorable and such a sweetheart.
Most of the time when I read funny scenes in books I laugh, but not a real laugh, more like blowing air through my nose with a small smile on my face. However, TFIOS had me laughing out loud and chuckling numerous times.
Having lost so many people I've loved to cancer this book hit pretty close to home. TFIOS really showed how the person with cancer isn't the only one affected, sometimes it's almost like everyone you love gets the disease too. Finally a cancer book that's not really a cancer book.
I could really relate to Gus, so many times in my life I felt that I'm not living a life that will be worth remembering or one that will go down in history. But TFIOS, just as other books by John Green, taught me a valuable lesson. It doesn't matter if strangers remember you 100 years from now, what matters is that you loved and left love scars on people. Maybe your story will die with them, but the love you had is infinite. My many loved ones that lost their battles to cancer probably won't ever have biographies or memoirs written about them, but the marks they've left on me were not and are not temporary.
Thank you John Green, for opening my eyes to something I never really realized, yet again.


Monday, March 4, 2013

"Firelight" - Book Review

A hidden truth.
Mortal enemies.
Doomed love.
Marked as special at an early age, Jacinda knows her every move is watched. But she longs for freedom to make her own choices. When she breaks the most sacred tenet among her kind, she nearly pays with her life. Until a beautiful stranger saves her. A stranger who was sent to hunt those like her. For Jacinda is a draki, a descendant of dragons whose greatest defense is her secret ability to shift into human form.
Forced to flee into the mortal world with her family, Jacinda struggles to adapt to her new surroundings. The only bright light is Will. Gorgeous, elusive Will who stirs her inner draki to life. Although she is irresistibly drawn to him, Jacinda knows Will's dark secret: He and his family are hunters. She should avoid him at all costs. But her inner draki is slowly slipping away;if it dies she will be left as a human forever. She'll do anything to prevent that. Even if it means getting closer to her most dangerous enemy.
Mythical powers and breathtaking romance ignite in this story of a girl who defies all expectations and whose love crosses an ancient divide.

My Review:

In all honesty this book did not cut out to be as great as I thought it would be. When I had first read the synopsis for Firelight over a year ago I was beyond excited, not only because it sounded like a really cool unique YA paranormal romance, but also because it was about dragons. Who doesn't like dragons?
This book was so-so. At times I liked the book and was interested in the plot and characters, but at other times it was dull. The rising action of the book fell right into your run-of-the-mill YA fiction paranormal romance novel. It was almost as if I was reading a remixed version of Twilight; the plot grew unoriginal.
Jacinda goes to a new school, falls for the boy that all the girls swoon over but can't have, and he falls for her when he would fall for no one else before. Around that area of the plot I was really annoyed, because with the unique concept of this book (dragons, and shape-shifting humans) it could have been more original.
The relationship between Jacinda and her sister Tamra, however, was something I was interested in. It reminded me a lot of my own relationship with my younger sister; not perfect, rocky more often than stable, and in that aspect I could relate to Jacinda.
Plot was something else I had a bit of a problem with. Some scenes would drag on and on with sometimes dull and boring dialogues and scenarios. While on the other hand, towards the last third of the book everything was happening so fast. Throughout Firelight scenes seemed to jump at wrong parts in the novel while droning on in others.
I had really expected more of Firelight, maybe I had gotten my hopes up too high for this book, but it wasn't bad. I'm thinking about reading the next book in the Firelight series, because who knows maybe it might be a lot better. I hope so with that cliff-hanger.


In My Mailbox - Library Treasures

Hey everyone!

Once again it's time for an 'In My Mailbox'. In My Mailbox is a book blogging Internet meme started by Kristi over at The Story Siren. In My Mailbox is a meme where you talk about books you receive in your mailbox, giveaways, books you bought at stores, borrowed from the library and etc!

I am so excited for this book haul! Though there are only three books, this In My Mailbox is more about quality over quantity. Recently I went to the library after a really long day at school to return due books. I told myself over and over again in my head that I wasn't going to borrow any books this time because I have so many books on my shelves that need to be read. But, of course, I borrowed some books. If you're a book lover you know exactly how it goes. What was really exciting though was that the Colorado government donated a TON of books to the library and many of them are books I never imagined the library having for at least a year or so (my library can sometimes be pretty behind when it comes to getting new books, most of the books on the 'NEW' shelves are from 2010 and 2011). Thank you Colorado government! It certainly made my day, my week! So without further ado;

(In order from top to bottom)
Legend by Marie Lu
The fault in our stars by John Green
Delirium by Lauren Oliver
All three of the books above have been on my to be read list for quite some time now. Having found them at the library had me trying hard to contain my excitement in the quiet building. I'm super excited for this haul and cannot wait to sink into these books!


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