Showing posts with label miscellaneous. Show all posts
Showing posts with label miscellaneous. Show all posts

My Birthday +GIVEAWAY

Sunday, February 28, 2016
So today marks the day that I turn 26.

It's been a hell of a year, but I'm hoping this coming year will be the time that I accomplish great things like finishing my novel/thesis for graduate school, becoming a healthier person emotionally and physically, and ultimately have adventures small and large.

In order to mark this most auspicious of occasions, I have decided to set up a giveaway to all you wonderful people! I've always marked my birthday with a giveaway, and this one shall be no different! 

My Year in Books (2015) + GIVEAWAY

Monday, January 4, 2016

Jamie from the Perpetual Page-Turner is hosting the 6th annual End of Year Book Survey! So let's talk about my year in books and other bookish things! This will be your one stop shop for all my bookish recs so make sure to take a look! I also have a GIVEAWAY at the end, so don't forget that after you read the post!


Number of Books You Read:
61 books in total according to my Goodreads, but there were probably 10 that I did not record.

Number of Re-Reads:
20 books

Genre You read the Most From:
Fantasy


Blogging Stats:

Views: 113,609 (added 70K views this year)
Comments: 1,927 (added 1,110 )
Posts: 435 (added 138 )
Followers: 431 (added 229 )


2016 Reading Challenges

Saturday, January 2, 2016

Last year, most of my challenges kinda went down the tubes due to some crazy life-events, so this year I'm going to go a little easy on myself. I have discovered that I shouldn't stress myself out when it comes to something that I want to do, so I have decided to stick with a few very enjoyable challenges this year.


Last year, I gave myself the challenge of 50 books, but I had actually ended up reading 62 books. Taking that into consideration, I found it necessary to up it by ten and make my annual reading goal and even 60 books.



This is probably the challenge I'm most excited about. Last year was my first year to really jump into audiobooks, so I gave myself a small goal of 10-15 books, thinking that I wouldn't be listening to more than that. Boy, was I wrong. I ended up with around 34 or something like that, and that's not to mention all the times I re-listened to SJM's books throughout the year.
So this year, I am shooting for the My Precious Badge, which is 30-50 audiobooks. I totally think I can do it. I have grown to love audiobooks, and I'm super excited about what I will listen to in 2016.

Audiobook Challenge Wrap-up

Friday, December 18, 2015

One of my big reading challenges of 2015 was to listen to more audiobooks. Luckily, I found that The Book Nympho and Hot Listens was hosting an audiobook challenge that fits my needs PERFECTLY!

Because I'm relatively new to the whole audiobook thing, I decided to make my challenge relatively small for this year.

I chose to go for the Stenographer Badge that requires 10-15 books. Though I technically knocked this one out of the field considering I have finished 33 audiobooks this year.

Fairytales Can Be Feminist Too: Cinderella and the Marginalized

Monday, November 23, 2015

ATTENTION: This post may have spoilers for Cinder by Marissa Meyer. Note that this is part of a project for my Women in Literature course.

There seems to be dozens of "Cinderella" adaptations floating around everywhere. It is one of the most prevalent and timeless fairytales to be recorded, and has thence morphed into hundreds of adaptations ranging from movies, books, shows, and even poetry. It seems that people cannot get enough of Cinderella and her glass slipper. 

Upon reading the Grimm version of "Cinderella," I have come to realize that even though I thought I knew the Grimm version... I didn't. I expected to read about glass slippers, and a pumpkin turned carriage, and a dead father. Turns out it was a "golden slipper," not a glass one; there was no mode of transportation mentioned at all in the story--apparently the pumpkin carriage is a facet of Perrault's version of the tale; and the father never died in the tale, he was consistently aware of how atrocious Cinderella's step family was the entire time (Grimm 91).

As most of us know, Cinderella is a girl who is kind and gracious. We see it in all the movie adaptations and in all the books. If you could place a bet on something not changing in a faithful Cinderella adaptation, it would have to be that she is patient and kind. And Grimm is no different. 

Fairytales Can Be Feminist Too: Innocence and Virtue in Crimson Bound

Sunday, November 22, 2015

ATTENTION: This post may have spoilers for the book Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge. Note this is part of a project I am doing for my Women in Literature course.

As a little girl, Little Red Riding Hood was a staple among the fairytales told to me before bedtime. I grew up on a healthy dose of folklore and fantasy realms as a kid, so what I didn't expect upon analyzing this tale and perusing EBSCO, was that I wouldn't find a ton of substantial research relating to the topic that I wanted to talk about in the context of "Little Red Riding Hood" by the Brothers Grimm.

Earlier this year, I read Crimson Bound by Rosamund Hodge, and I, like many other bloggers and readers I know, was immediately transfixed by the world building and the interesting statements this book brought up, especially as it concerns religion, innocence, purity, and heroism in the female protagonist. 

Let's start with Grimm's tale first, shall we?

Fairytales Can Be Feminist Too: Beauty and the Female Rescuer

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

ATTENTION: This post may have spoiler content for The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman, Illustrated by Chris Riddell. Note this is part of a project I am doing for my Women in Literature course.

We all probably remember watching Disney's Sleeping Beauty as a child and dancing with invisible partners around the living room to the tune of Once Upon A Dream, right? 
No? Just me? 
Well, even so, fairytales have always been a part of growing up thanks to Disney reinventing the original tales given to us by the Grimm Brothers. And the reimagining of Briar Rose is no different. 

Fairytales Can Be Feminist Too: An Introduction

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Fairytales. 

The image that comes with the word fairytales is no doubt the nostalgic wisps of childhood memories, daring sword fights, and maybe even the magic of true love's kiss. One thing is for certain, fairytales and folklore have been around for as long as the oral tradition and has thence moved to paper and ink in order preserve stories of old.

Depending on what translation, edition, or revision you encounter, the purpose for such far-fetched tales varies. Some were intended for children for didactic purposes, others were intended for the record keeping of spoken tales so that they were not lost once print became the common storytelling form, and some were even revised in order to reveal and retain the sexual and/or violent nature of the original tales.

Needless to say, fairytales have always seemed to grow and morph as the years pass. For example, Disney has greatly benefited from such an industry, producing old fairytales reimagined for children in mind. Also notice how, over fifteen years after what they call the "Disney Renaissance" was over, the company has produced newer versions of the classic tales such as Cinderella, Maleficent, and Beauty and the Beast for a newer generation. 

2015 Audiobook Challenge Update #3

Sunday, October 25, 2015

One of my big reading challenges of 2015 was to listen to more audiobooks. Luckily, I found that The Book Nympho and Hot Listens was hosting an audiobook challenge that fits my needs PERFECTLY!

Because I'm relatively new to the whole audiobook thing, I decided to make my challenge relatively small for this year.

I chose to go for the Stenographer Badge that requires 10-15 books. Though I technically knocked this one out of the field considering I'm on Book 28.

I'm Back!

Sunday, August 23, 2015

After a couple months, yes, I am back.

So much has happened over the course of this summer, it's almost hard to put into words. So this will be a time for me to tell you exactly what happened and what to expect in the future.

Two weeks after the end of the spring semester, my mother was admitted into the hospital and diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer. After the initial freak out and drama, we began trying to fight it but she had lesions everywhere... like 5 spots on her brain, a large lesion on her lung, which eventually multiplied into other areas like the other lung, abdomen, shoulder, bone... needless to say, it was a very stressful summer and ended in the tragic loss of my mom. 

She died at the end of July, and it's been some of the roughest weeks I've ever experienced. My sisters and I planned the funeral service, I wrote the obituary and eulogy, I picked up her ashes from the funeral home... the list goes on.

Understandably, I chose to take a break, albeit one that lasted longer than I anticipated. But I've decided to come back. I like the community and mostly, I love the books part.

One Month Hiatus

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Hello, my lovelies! As I'm sure some of you have gathered, a lot has been going on for me the last couple months. I thought that it would be good for me to have something to pour my energy into (my blog) while going through this, but it's kind of hard when you have other things you have to pour that same energy into such as family, thesis, volunteer hours, and work. 

So needless to say, I've decided to take a month away from the blog. All of my ARCs that I'm reviewing don't need to be up till August, so I think that this is the time to take a respite. 

For those of you who are taking part in the Books in Exchange for a Review thing I posted, it is obviously still going on. I will be answering Twitter and emails and such and sending out books, so by all means, take part in the fun. I will just be scheduling the reviews that do come in during the month of July for a date sometime in August or later in the fall depending on when you get it to me. 

I will be around the blogosphere, I just won't be posting on my blog like normal. I will be available to chat through email and Twitter, and I will probably be leaving comments on some of my favorite blogs, but I will be doing it at my own leisure. 

Thanks to all of you lovely folks who have been an amazing encouragement to me over the past month and a half. I love you and really appreciate all you do! :)
HUGS!

ADDENDUM:
My mother passed away recently, so the hiatus will go on for a bit longer. I'm not sure how much longer, you may see a random review or two, because I scheduled them so far in advance. But I probably won't be back until September sometime.

Free Books and Cool Opportunities for You!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Hello, all of my awesome minions! I have a really cool opportunity for you guys who enjoy reading! I have a ton of books that I would love for you to review for me right here on Of Spectacles and Books! And the best part is... you get to keep the book if you review it for me! I know most of the people who follow my blog are book bloggers, so know that I am more than happy to link back to your blog, and you can even add a small bio to the end of the review if you want! I'm hoping this will be beneficial to both parties, bring more people to my blog as well as your blog!

If you would like to see past examples, here are some who have participated in the past:

You can select one book at a time to review (I don't want someone to hog all of the books and leave others without much choice). If you select one and review it for me in a timely manner (though know that I am flexible on the post date and am willing to work with you), I may or may not decide that you can get two next time if you wish. So it's all a matter of turn-around time. If you read a book or begin reading it and decide it's not for you, and you don't want to review it, all I ask is that you send it back to me for another person to enjoy. I don't mind negative reviews on my blog if you find that you don't like the book, I just hope that your review will reflect a professional attitude.

Take note that I'm taking a one month hiatus in July (which I will tell you more about on Wednesday), but I will be prepping to hit August with a bang, and look forward to scheduling a lot of your lovely reviews! :)

Books Available for Review:

2015 Audiobook Challenge Update #2

Friday, June 26, 2015

One of my big reading challenges of 2015 was to listen to more audiobooks. Luckily, I found that The Book Nympho and Hot Listens was hosting an audiobook challenge that fits my needs PERFECTLY!

Because I'm relatively new to the whole audiobook thing, I decided to make my challenge relatively small for this year.

I chose to go for the Stenographer Badge that requires 10-15 books. Though I technically think I'm going to change it to a lot more than that.

These are my audiobook listened to until the first update:
1. Noggin by John Corey Whaley
2. Paper Towns by John Green
3. A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray
4. The Winner's Crime by Marie Rutkoski
6. Death Marked by Leah Cypess
7. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

These are the books I've listened to since March 28th:
8. These Broken Stars by Amie Kauffman and Meagan Spooner
9. This Shattered World by Amie Kauffman and Meagan Spooner
10. Exquisite Captive by Heather Demetrios
11. Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
12. Heir of Fire by Sarah J. Maas
13. The Assassin's Blade by Sarah J. Maas
14. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas (x3)
15. Climbing the Stairs by Padma Venkatraman

My favorite audiobooks so far this time would have to be These Broken Stars. Dude that audiobook is BOMB! And lately because a couple of family illnesses have been going on, I have recently downloaded all of Sarah J Maas' books on audiobook even though I have them all in hardback/ARCs. I've listened to A Court of Thorns and Roses about three times over and I'm on my fourth go-round. I can't help it. The story comforts me for some reason and I just love it so much!

What audiobooks have you listened to and loved?

I got to meet Stephanie Perkins + GIVEAWAY

Friday, April 3, 2015

A couple of weeks ago, I had the opportunity to meet Stephanie Perkins at my local library in Oklahoma. I have only read Lola, and I'm working on the rest of her books, but I was still beyond excited to meet her in person and get her to sign all of my books.

I went to the signing with my friend Addison, who loves Stephanie Perkins's books to death, and it was just all around fun! The Metropolitan Library gave out free copies of Lola....after that, we were just over the moon with excitement!

This was one of the smallest signings I've ever been to, and for it to be so small for Stephanie Perkins of all people is crazy to me! But I LOVED it! There was probably about 30-40 max, and because it was such a small group, there was this intimacy of sorts. 



2015 Audiobook Challenge Update

Saturday, March 28, 2015

One of my big reading challenges of 2015 was to listen to more audiobooks. Luckily, I found that The Book Nympho was hosting an audiobook challenge that fits my needs PERFECTLY!

Because I'm relatively new to the whole audiobook thing, I decided to make my challenge relatively small for this year.

I chose to go for the Stenographer Badge that requires 10-15 books. Right now I'm at 7 and I'm almost done with my 8th, so I'm thinking that I should probably increase my challenge, but I'll give it a bit more time. 

These are my audiobook listens so far this year:
1. Noggin by John Corey Whaley
2. Paper Towns by John Green
3. A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray
4. The Winner's Crime by Marie Rutkoski
6. Death Marked by Leah Cypess
7. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson

I will say that I have listened to some BOMB audiobooks. My top three listens are probably Noggin, A Thousand Pieces of You, and The Winner's Crime! They have amazing audio and they are all around fantastic books. I actually had to go out of my way to own physical copies of all of those books because I loved them so much!

Do you listen to audiobooks? You should get in on the challenge!

It's my Birthday!! +GIVEAWAY

Saturday, February 28, 2015

So today is a special day for me...

That's right, today is my birthday, and I'm officially 25... yes, I know, I'm a quarter of a century. I should feel so old hahaha!

FREE Books and Awesome Opportunities for YOU!

Saturday, January 17, 2015
Hello, all of my awesome minions! I have a really cool opportunity for you guys who enjoy reading! I have a ton of books that I would love for you to review for me right here on Of Spectacles and Books! And the best part is... you get to keep the book if you review it for me! I know most of the people who follow my blog are book bloggers, so know that I am more than happy to link back to your blog, and you can even add a small bio to the end of the review if you want! I'm hoping this will be beneficial to both parties, bring more people to my blog as well as your blog!

You can select one book at a time to review (I don't want someone to hog all of the books and leave others without much choice). If you select one and review it for me in a timely manner (though know that I am VERY flexible on the post date), I may or may not decide that you can get two next time if you wish. So it's all a matter of turn-around time. If you read a book or begin reading it and decide it's not for you, and you don't want to review it, all I ask is that you send it back to me for another person to enjoy. I don't mind negative reviews on my blog if you find that you don't like the book, I just hope that your review will reflect a professional attitude. 

Books Available for Review:

Blog Tour Guest Post: Anne Merchant + GIVEAWAY

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Say hello to Joanna Wiebe and a new Anne Merchant book!

Having already read this book, I will say that it is definitely a great sequel to The Unseemly Education of Anne Merchant, and you won't want to miss out!

The Wicked Awakening of Anne Merchant (#2)by Joanna Wiebe

Goodreads  ||  Amazon  ||  B&N  ||  BenBella 

Synopsis:
Life and death, light and dark, spirit and flesh-on Wormwood Island the lines are always blurred. For Anne Merchant, who has been thrust back into this eerily secretive world, crossing the line seems inevitable, inescapable, destined.

Now, as Ben finds himself battling for the Big V and Teddy reveals the celestial plan in which Anne is entwined, Anne must choose: embrace her darkly powerful connection to a woman known as Lilith and, in doing so, save the boy she loves...or follow a safer path that is sure to lead to Ben's destruction at the hands of dark leaders. Hoping the ends will justify the means, Anne starts down the slippery slope into the underworld, intent on exploring the dark to find the light. But as the lure of Lilith proves powerfully strong, will Anne save others-only to lose herself?

My Year in Books (2014) + GIVEAWAY

Saturday, January 10, 2015
2014 End Of Year Book SurveyJamie from the Perpetual Page-Turner is hosting the 5th annual End of Year Book Survey! So let's talk about my year in books and other bookish things! This will be your one stop shop for all my bookish recs so make sure to take a look! I also have a GIVEAWAY at the end, so don't forget that after you read the post!

reading-stats-2014
Number of Books You Read:
70 books in total according to my Goodreads, but I know there were at least 10 that I did not log

Number of Re-Reads:
4 books

Genre You read the Most From:
Fantasy

BLOGGING STATS:

Views: 43,366
Comments: 817
Posts: 297 
Followers: 198





2015 Challenges GALORE!

Friday, January 2, 2015
 photo challenges_zpsf80c9943.jpg

One of my more unspoken resolutions for this next year is that I want to participate in more challenges. This past year I did Katie's Book Blog Summer Reading Challenge, The Debut Author Challenge, and the Goodreads Challenge, but this year, I want to add a few more annual challenges to the mix. So without further ado, let me tell you about all the awesome challenges I will be partaking in. 


In 2014, I read 71 out of my 70 book goal. I was very proud of my accomplishment, especially considering that there were probably 12-15 books that I didn't log. This year is going to be ΓΌber busy with school, and because I worked REALLY hard to reach this year's goal, I think I'm just going to stick to 50 books in 2015. If I get more, that will be an added bonus.



I participated in this challenge last year, and found some really great reads because of it. Honestly, I always tell new bloggers that this is a great challenge to get in on if you are new to the blogging world or a different genre. 
In 2015, I plan on reading at least 12 debut novels.
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