Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Places Books Have Made Me Want To Visit (whether fictional or real)

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list  that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.


Ten Places Books Have Made Me Want To Visit (whether fictional or real)

(actually visited!)


1.) New Orleans, LA via Interview with the Vampire - although I don't have any personal photographs of my trip on my current computer, Anne Rice's work made me fall in love with the idea of New Orleans. The historical setting, the class, the mystery about it. Her writing made it so real for me and was a great escape. I was very lucky that in 2003, I was allowed to plan a family vacation to the French Quarter. It was my first book-inspired trip.

Monroeville Courthouse with local quilt exhibit (taken by yours truly)
2.) Monroeville, AL via To Kill A Mockingbird - Although the town setting in the book is fictional Maycomb...it is more-or-less based on real life Monroeville. As a child, the movie had a big impact on me, being as it was one of the few VHS tapes my lit parents owned cause they were kinda expensive back in the day. As a child, town reminded me of my own small town and kids could have been me and my cousins...getting into mischief. I have since read the book three times. Once in middle school (on my own, prior to being required), required in high school, and later again in college. Oshie and I had the opportunity to stop over night on the way to a residency interview trip to South Alabama.

Katniss, Peeta Bread, Gale are you out there? (taken by yours truly)
3.) Appalachia/North Carolina via The Hunger Games - Although I'm originally from the foothills of Appalachia, I always wanted to see the North Carolina area in which the first scenes of District 12 were filmed. Although we only drove through on the way to another residency trip, it was very exciting to see. I'd love to spend more time there and maybe even go on a Hunger Games tour.

(want to visit in the future!)

4.) Pemberly (fictional residence of Mr. Darcy) Derbyshire, England via Pride & Prejudice - Sadly, Pemberly does not really exist. However it would be beyond amazing to visit the real life area of Derbyshire. Chatsworth House, the filming location for Pemberly in 2005 P&P, is actually located in Derbyshire and looks beautiful! Hmm, not sure I'd want to leave.



5.) King’s Cross railway station London, England via Harry Potter - While we're on the subject of across the pond, it'd be awesome to see the real life King's Cross in London, England. There's something very magical and almost romantic about old train stations. I've read that there's really a sign for Platform 9 and 3 quarters. There's also a fairly new Harry Potter store at the location.



6.) Scotland via Outlander - And, while we're in the general area, I'd love to visit Scotland, particularly areas that the new Outlander series has been filmed. I believe I've read that a lot of filming is in Edinburgh and Inverness. Although there's not a real Craigh na Dun stone circle to visit and travel through, the area would be beautiful none the less!


7.) Middle-Earth via Lord of The Rings - I'm sure there's plenty of short people with hairy feet out there, but unfortunately Middle-Earth doesn't exist. No elves, no dragons, no Shire :( The next best thing? New Zealand, where the movies were filmed! Literately breathtaking just from the photos.


8.) Nima Sand Museum Kotoghama Beach, Japan via The Sand Chronicles Manga series - The Sand Chronicles manga series uniquely stands out in my mind. It chronicles a girl's life as she visits the Nima Sand Museum over the course of her childhood, young adult, and adult years. The museum houses the world's largest hourglass. If I ever visit Japan, I'd really love to go to this location. 


9.) Prince Edward Island, Canada via Anne of Green Gables - Reading the Anne of Green Gables series, I literally feel like I've been to the places in the books. Avonlea, Ingleside, Summerside, Bolingbroke, etc. Seemingly, from my understanding, these locations are fictional. Yet, they are based on areas that really exist via Prince Edward Island, Canada. Seeing the area for myself would be a great adventure.


10.) Forks, WA via Twilight - Wanting to visit Forks, WA mainly started as a joke between me and Oshie. Living in the deep South, the hot weather really gets to us. One time, Oshie asked my opinion on a rainy, cool area we could move to. I jokingly told him Forks, WA. But the idea stuck and on really hot days we sometimes check the temperature in Forks, WA and sigh. It'd be hilariously fun to actually go there and breath a sigh of cool weather relief.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Review: Words for Pictures by Brian Michael Bendis


Vonze: 5 out of 5

Book Description: "One of the most popular writers in modern comics, Brian Michael Bendis reveals the tools and techniques he and other top creators use to create some of the most popular comic book and graphic novel stories of all time. Words for Pictures shows readers the creative methods of a writer at the very top of his field. Bendis guides aspiring creators through each step of the comics-making process—from idea to script to finished sequential art—for fan favorite comics like The Avengers,Ultimate Spider-ManUncanny X-Men, and more. Along the way, tips and insights from other working writers, artists, and editors provide a rare, extensive look behind the creative curtain of the comics industry. With script samples, a glossary of must-know business terms for writers, and interactive comics-writing exercises, Words for Pictures provides the complete toolbox needed to jump start the next comics-writing success story."

My thoughts: As a manga and graphic novel fan that occasionally entertains the idea of starting a webcomic (I’ve started and stopped several times), I found Words for Pictures to be a wealth of information.

For aspiring comic artists and writers, the book covers the modern comic book script, writing for the artists, the editors’ roundtable, the writer’s FAQS, the business of comics writing, and writing exercises. This being my first “how to write comics” book, my eyes were instantly opened to differences in story outline styles, the aspects and challenges of collaborations, and elements to observe next time I read a really good or really bad comic or graphic novel. I found it helpful that Brian Michael Bendis offers not only his perspective, but also the views and opinions of other writers and artists. I never realized how little I know about the “behind-the-scenes” end of the comic world.

For those interested in writing in general, Bendis offers clear advice in the writer’s FAQs, the business of comics writing (which can be applied to any creative manuscript), writing exercises, and his conclusion. His personal story, of going from fan to his dream job, is very inspiring.

Furthermore, for the typical comics fan, the book is also a fun read to discover how the creative individuals behind the superheroes work.

Overall, the book is a good guide to inform and inspire an individual about the comics writing process. It doesn’t tell you how or what to write (for that I’m guessing you’d need Bendis’ comic and graphic novel writing class), but it gives a strong overview of the aspects of the business.

I received this book from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for this review.

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Classics Corner: Breakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote




Breakfast at Tiffany'sBreakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This was surprisingly disappointing to me. Having never read Capote's work, but enjoying the movie, I decided to cross this one off my to-read list.

Capote was a talented writer, however, the subject matter in Breakfast at Tiffany's was just depressing to me. Holly Golightly is a wild, white-trash, country girl who has escaped to the big city, only to continue to spiral into drama and sadness. Her character is crude, self-centered, and vain. In today's world, she'd be a reality tv star. One could argue that she's also a pathological liar.

Big jump from the elegance and sensitivity that Audrey Hepburn naturally brought to the role. If a true-to-the-book movie was being made, I'd probably cast Lindsay Lohan instead.

In summary, it's a well-written but sad slice-of-life. Not what I imagined because of the movie. I probably would have enjoyed re-watching the movie more than reading this.

View all my reviews

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Authors I've Only Read One Book From But NEED to Read More


Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created here at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists!

Each week we will post a new Top Ten list  that one of our bloggers here at The Broke and the Bookish will answer. Everyone is welcome to join. All we ask is that you link back to The Broke and the Bookish on your own Top Ten Tuesday post AND add your name to the Linky widget so that everyone can check out other bloggers lists! If you don't have a blog, just post your answers as a comment. Have fun with it! It's a fun way to get to know your fellow bloggers.

Top Authors I've Only Read One Book From But NEED to Read More


This is a hard meme for me because once I like an author, I typical read a lot of his or her work.
  1. Ursula K. Le Guin- A Wizard of Earthsea was amazing for me. Sparrowhawk is a very underrated character, in my opinion. If I'm being honest, Earthsea held my interested better than The Hobbit did in high school...just being honest! I should really finish the series and check out Le Guin's Catwings.
  2. Diana Wynne Jones- Similarly, Howl's Moving Castle is amazing and underrated. In my experience, there seems to be a stronger following for the anime than the book. We own more of her work, and I should read the Chrestomanci series when Oshie is finished with it.
  3. Terry Pratchett- I've always heard Pratchett praised for his sense of humor. The Wee Free Men was just ok for me, but I feel I need to read other Discworld titles in order to get a better feel for his work.
  4. Juliet Marillier- As far as I'm concerned Wildwood Dancing is a YA must for fairy tale fans. I also own Daughter of The Forest...but I have yet to read it.
  5. Neil Gaiman- Stardust has been on my to-read list for a long time. I had mixed feelings about The Graveyard Book, however, I cannot deny that I'm still very interested in his work.
  6. Shannon Hale- Author of interesting books for children, teens, and adults, I've only read and enjoyed Austenland.
  7. Sherrilyn Kenyon- The first volume of The Dark-Hunters manga was a pleasant surprise and in the future I need to plan to read the first, original novel in the series.
  8. Mary Balogh- I really enjoyed the maturity and lack of angst in Balogh's Simply Perfect. Looking forward to more of her work in the future.
  9. Diana Gabaldon- Outlander was a very long, but immersive read. Since I'm hooked on the Starz series, I should really pick up Dragonfly in Amber at some point.
  10. Amy Kim Kibuishi- Sorcerers & Secretaries Volume 1 was absolutely adorable. I need to buy the next volume and check out her work in the Flight anthologies.

Friday, September 12, 2014

Review: Landline by Rainbow Rowell


LandlineLandline by Rainbow Rowell
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Overall, more unique, quirky goodness can be found in Rainbow Rowell's newest work. Having also read Fangirl this year, I'm really getting a sense of Rowell's style. I like and can identify with her nerdy, somewhat nonconventional main female characters.

At first, Landline reads like a slice-of-life of a marriage with young children that is on the rocks. There's a real sense of struggle and sadness in the story. Of wanting to do what's right for family but also wanting to advance career goals. Later, magic phone calls add an element of fantasy. For me, the magic calls were really downplayed. I assumed the story would center on the awesomeness of this power, but I really have to stress that the focus of this story is maintaining and strengthening marriage. I was expecting a little more of a romantic comedy, so I also have to stress that the story is fairly serious. It has funny moments, but also has lots of stress and family disfunction.

Most of all, I enjoyed the sweet holiday ending. It was classic Christmas movie worthy.


View all my reviews

Saturday, September 6, 2014

My Highlights of Decatur Book Festival 2014


We had a wonderful time at the Decatur Book Festival! This was our third visit and each year we consistently discover interesting authors, book finds, and friendly volunteers. Although we'd love to go every year, sometimes school work demands attention over Labor Day, and let's face it, Atlanta traffic is stressful enough day to day without Dragon*Con and several sporting events happening all at once. This year was a last minute decision. With recent foot issues, I wasn't sure how well I'd hold up with a lot of walking. However, after checking the awesome DBF website, it was clear that the majority of the panels we wanted to see would be held inside the Marriott hotel.

In years past, we've had a lot of fun at DBF. Although I'm usually too impatient and broke to re-buy books I already own to get autographs (publisher policies...), we've seen awesome people like Meg Cabot, Kami Garcia, and Margaret Stohl. Hearing their insight and sense of humor is worth the trip.


This year I was happy to see Stephanie Perkins and Jennifer E. Smith, whose work I own, as well as, Adi Alsaid and Isabel Gillies who I was not familiar with at the time. It was a very upbeat and chatty panel. Even though the weather was significantly cooler this year, I gotta recommend that DBF consider air conditioned tents! So, so thankful for Emory University's free Carlos Museum fans.

Farm Fresh Georgia was a pleasant surprise. I added it to our list "only-if-we-had-time," but I'm so glad that we did. Growing up on a farm and now adjusting to apartment living, Oshie and I enjoy visiting farms in North Georgia to buy apples, pumpkins, honey, and Christmas gifts. Having bought and read the book since last weekend, I've discovered several interesting road trip stops for future reference.


My favorite panel and the one I was most excited about was "How to Be Graphic" with Liz Prince and Eleanor Davis. Although I wasn't familiar with either author, as a fan of graphic novels and manga in general, I had to check with out. Hands down, I couldn't miss it. As I sometimes dabble in drawing funny little inside jokes with my husband, it was so inspiring to hear the stories of two unique and extremely talented female author artists. Eleanor Davis referred to Virginia Woolf often, which has inspired me to add Woolf's work to my to-read list. Even though I never know what to say to authors in person, in the moment, both Liz and Eleanor had a great impact on me, and I will be following their careers in the future.

All in all, a great way to start our Labor Day weekend. I regret that I didn't get to see Ellen Hopkins, and other great panels that took place on Sunday...but maybe I'll have another opportunity someday. In the meantime, I'll check out their work and keep reading!

Friday, August 29, 2014

Review: Seconds by Bryan Lee O'Malley


SecondsSeconds by Bryan Lee O'Malley
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

We all wish we had do-overs, right? The chance to rethink our actions and explore a "what if"?

Katie mysteriously gets that opportunity in Seconds, with the help of a house spirit and some strange mushrooms. She works and lives above a restaurant, is striving to open one of her own, and is a little frustrated in her love life. At first, having a do-over in case of emergencies is great. However, the temptation to explore the possibilities and alternative timelines becomes too much, and things become really weird really quick.

I loved this. My husband had to beg me not to stay up all night reading from it. My hat is off to O'Malley for creating a cool but funny female main character who's not a teenager. Not that I don't love YA graphic novels...you just rarely see female characters my age with realistic issues in comics. I really connected with her career frustrations and snarkiness. It was refreshing for me to see a character my own age.

It's been a while since I read Scott Pilgrim, and while I really enjoyed it (hilarious series), I gotta say I liked Seconds even better. Can't wait for any and all future works by O'Malley.


View all my reviews

LinkWithin

Related Posts with Thumbnails