Thursday, August 14, 2014

Cat Thursday (31)

Welcome to the weekly meme that celebrates the wonders and sometime hilarity of cats! Join us by posting a favorite LOL cat pic you may have come across, famous cat art or even share with us pics of your own beloved cat(s). It's all for the love of cats! Enjoy! Hosted by Michelle of The True Book Addict.

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Lauren Bacall died this week. She was a great actress, you know, one of the old Hollywood greats. So I dug this up, Bacall with two cats. It's adorable.

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The rest of these are just funny cat pics I found this week!

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Friday, August 1, 2014

More Mini Book Reviews

It's been a pretty crazy few months with moving to Japan and all. While I have read a few books along the way, I haven't really had time to get my reviews up. So I'll do a quick review of them instead and will just have to call that good :)

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1. A Geek in Japan: Discovering the Land of Manga, Anime, Zen, and the Tea Ceremony by Hector Garcia.

This was recommended by my culture class teacher. She said it would help to give me a little bit of insight into the country I was going to be occupying for two years.

Garcia had a fun and informal tone. He provided some interesting history and cultural tidbits. It helped to open my eyes to the beauty and diversity of Japan.

2. The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman.
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I read this for my book club back in the States. They even FaceTimed me in for some of it, though it was hard to hear everyone or pipe in with anything I wanted to say but it was fun nonetheless.

Gaiman has a way of writing about the sad. The story was a fable of what is, how are lives so often go. The title character (he never receives a name) meets three powerful women who live down the lane from him. One seems a little older than him and yet she seems like a full-grown adult. He can't make sense of the daughter, mother, and granddaughter. One day he is thrown into their world of magic. And it changes his life forever.

Beautifully written, difficult to fully grasp, though, for me and just left me with a sad feeling. Not my favorite but still a worthwhile read.

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3. Secrets and Wives: The Hidden World of Mormon Polygamy by Sanjiv Bhattacharya.

I normally don't read books about polygamy. It hits to close to home as a former Mormon and usually any tales to read are filled with abuse and brainwashing. So  I was pleasantly surprised to read this one. He takes the stance of one finding out why polygamists practice. Are there groups that are open and tolerant of the outside world? He found both and some in between. It opened a whole new world of polygamy for me, good and bad. He's a fantastic writer and I enjoyed going on the journey with him.

4. Horrorstor: A Novel by Grady Hendrix.
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What do you get when you combine a knock-off store of Ikea with an old creepy penitentiary full of creepy prisoners and a warden? You get a horror store! This was really creepy. I read it over three nights and got scared a couple of times. The pacing was a bit weird at times and the characters were a little 2-dimensional but I overlook that due to its awesome story and scariness! I'm looking forward to the sequel!

*Received an e-book from the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.

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5. Killing Ruby Rose by Jessie Humphries.

An ass-kicking teenage girl who solves crimes! I had to read it! It was good overall but it had some really slow parts at the beginning. This is Humphries first book and she's also an attorney for her day job. I'm wondering if the kinks will get worked out as she becomes more experienced. And I wondered if she should have toned it down a bit to be a more believable young adult book or if she should have amped it up for a more worthwhile adult crime series....I have hopes Humphries will come through in her second book. Interesting characters and an interesting mystery made it a worthwhile book.