Month: September 2015

Are You There Vodka? It’s Me, Chelsea by Chelsea Handler

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Book Description:

When Chelsea Handler needs to get a few things off her chest, she appeals to a higher power – vodka. You would too if you found out that your boyfriend was having an affair with a Peekapoo or if you had to pretend to be honeymooning with your father in order to upgrade to first class. Welcome to Chelsea’s world – a place where absurdity reigns supreme and a quick wit is the best line of defense.

In this hilarious, deliciously skewed collection, Chelsea mines her past for stories about her family, relationships, and career that are at once singular and ridiculous. Whether she’s convincing her third-grade class that she has been tapped to play Goldie Hawn’s daughter in the sequel to Private Benjamin, deciding to be more egalitarian by dating a redhead, or looking out for a foulmouthed, rum-swilling little person who looks just like her… only smaller, Chelsea has a knack for getting herself into the most outrageous situations.

My Rating: 3.5/5

I’m not a big Chelsea Handler fan. I don’t watch her show, Chelsea Lately, though I’ve seen it. I’ve watched her stand up “Uganda Be Kidding Me” which made me giggle at parts and that’s about my extent of Chelsea Handlerness. I picked up this book while I was leaving work one day. I noticed it on the bargain table and thought, “hmm, it’s already super cheap, plus with my employee discount, it’ll be even cheaper… why not?! ” so by that and only that, I picked it up to read it as an ‘in between’ book. I didn’t really enjoy the first chapter. Honestly after that, I was scared to read the rest and wondered if I was gonna waste my time with this. But I can’t base a book on the first chapter alone, otherwise I would have put down many a great books. I will say the stories do get better the further you get into the book (my personal favorite chapter being “Mini-Me“). I’d give the occasional “hmph” laugh through my nose every once in awhile, but other than that, I probably won’t ever read this book again. Maybe Chelsea Handler fans enjoy it a little more than I do? I’m not sure… but honestly it’s not as crude as I thought it would be from the little I do know of her.. and I can’t figure out if I believe that to be a good thing or bad…

One thing I did enjoy though was I found her not to be as “bad” of a person as I thought her to be and by “bad” I mean… more so a bitch. Not necessarily a bad person. In fact, this book kind of made me feel like I’m the bad one! There were certain parts where she admitted holding back on some things where I would’ve probably said ‘fuck that’ and gone through with it! Butttt then again, she did things I would never in a million years do. But nothing bitchy! Again.. shocked at this revelation! Going back to my ‘favorite’ chapter “Mini-Me,” this seemed to stir up some heated debate! Obviously if you read this, you know why.. it’s basically about her love for dwarf people leading in to one particular story. I don’t care what people think, I thought this was hilarious! Not because this girl was a dwarf, but because of how she acted.  Good comedy crosses lines that common day people will not…. should not… cross. Hence C-O-M-E-D-Y. If you take offense to this chapter, why are you reading her book in the first place? Take the stick out of your butt and remember she’s a comedian. Yeah not all of them do their practice tastefully but I personally don’t believe she was crossing any lines and at the end of the day, she was doing a generous deed to a human being.

That being said, I WOULD recommend this book to fans of her work. I would recommend it to someone looking for a light chuckle, someone who isn’t expecting a hilarious read. But I would not recommend paying full price for it.

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2015 September Bookhaul

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First Ever Bookhaul of September 2015!

SO MANY BEWKS, SO LITTLE TIME! And to think I was holding back because I had to purchase plane tickets to visit home next month. I’d hate for you guys to see what I can do when I’m not holding back heh… heh…. YEAH SO… I’ll have a list below of each book pictured, where I got them, paperback or hardcover, special editions and how much my total purchase at each place was! If you have any more questions – or comments – about this month’s haul, please feel free to leave/ask them below 😀

Total Books: 29 (30 if you count both books in the 2-in-1)
Total Amount Spent: $128

BookOutlet = $42 (includes shipping)
1. ) A World Without Princes, Bk.2 (School for Good and Evil) by Soman Chainani; hardcover
2.) Beautiful Redemption, Bk.4 (Caster Chronicles/Beautiful Creatures Series) by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl; paperback
3.) Everneath, Bk.1 (Everneath Series) by Brodi Ashton; paperback
4.) Everbound, Bk. 2 (Everneath Series) by Brodi Ashton; paperback
5.) Far Far Away By Tom McNeal; paperback
6.) Frostfire, Bk. 1 (Kanin Chronicles) by Amanda Hocking; paperback
7.) Hemlock, Bk. 1 (Hemlock Series) by Kathleen Peacock; paperback
8.) The Bone Season, Bk. 1 (The Bone Season) by Samantha Shannon; hardcover
9.) The Brilliant Light of Amber Sunrise by Matthew Crow; hardcover
10.) The Ice Dragon by George R.R. Martin; hardcover
11.) The Nethergrim by Matthew Jobin; hardcover

Amazon = $20 (free shipping @ $35 – also bought a DBZ Pop Vinyl for my main squeeze)
1.) Allegiant, Bk. 3 (Divergent Trilogy) by Veronica Roth; hardcover
2.) Four (Companion Novel to the Divergent Trilogy) by Veronica Roth; signed hardcover

The Book Exchange (my local 1/2 price bookstore) = $28 (including tax)
1.) The Maze Runner, Bk. 1 (Maze Runner Series) by James Dashner; paperback
2.) The Scorch Trials, Bk. 2 (Maze Runner Series) by James Dashner; paperback
3.) City of Bones, Bk. 1 (The Mortal Instruments) by Cassandra Clare; paperback
4.) Divergent, Bk. 1 (Divergent Trilogy) by Veronica Roth; paperback
5.) Insurgent, Bk. 2 (Divergent Trilogy) by Veronica Roth; hardcover
6.) Lord of the Clans, Bk. 2 (WarCraft) by Christie Golden; paperback
7.) Beautiful Darkness, Bk. 2 (Caster Chronicles/Beautiful Creatures Series) by Kami Garcia & Margart Stohl
8.) The Lightning Thief, Bk. 1 (Percy Jackson & The Olympians) by Rick Riordan, paperback

Barnes & Noble = $38 (including tax)
1.) Beautiful Creatures, Bk. 1 (Caster Chronicles/Beautiful Creatures Series) by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl; paperback
2.) Are You There Vodka, It’s Me Chelsea? by Chelsea Handler; paperback
3.) The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick; paperback
4.) Undead (2-in-1/Night of the Living Dead & Return of the Living Dead) by John Russo; paperback
5.) Breed by Chase Novak; paperback
6.) The Isle of the Lost (A Descendants Novel) by Melissa De La Cruz; hardcover

Giveaway Books = (free)
1.) Waking the Dead by L. Sydney Fisher; signed paperback
2.) City of Words by Steven J. Carroll;signed paperback

2015 September Bookhaul

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First Ever Bookhaul of September 2015!

SO MANY BEWKS, SO LITTLE TIME!  And to think I was holding back because I had to purchase plane tickets to visit home next month.  I’d hate for you guys to see what I can do when I’m not holding back heh… heh…. YEAH SO… I’ll have a list below of each book pictured, where I got them, paperback or hardcover, special editions and how much my total purchase at each place was!  If you have any more questions – or comments – about this month’s haul, please feel free to leave/ask them below 😀

Total Books: 29 (30 if you count both books in the 2-in-1)
Total Amount Spent: $128

BookOutlet = $42 (includes shipping)
1. ) A World Without Princes, Bk.2 (School for Good and Evil) by Soman Chainani; hardcover
2.) Beautiful Redemption, Bk.4 (Caster Chronicles/Beautiful Creatures Series) by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl; paperback
3.) Everneath, Bk.1 (Everneath Series) by Brodi Ashton; paperback
4.) Everbound, Bk. 2 (Everneath Series) by Brodi Ashton; paperback
5.) Far Far Away By Tom McNeal; paperback
6.) Frostfire, Bk. 1 (Kanin Chronicles) by Amanda Hocking; paperback
7.) Hemlock, Bk. 1 (Hemlock Series) by Kathleen Peacock; paperback
8.) The Bone Season, Bk. 1 (The Bone Season) by Samantha Shannon; hardcover
9.) The Brilliant Light of Amber Sunrise by Matthew Crow; hardcover
10.) The Ice Dragon by George R.R. Martin; hardcover
11.) The Nethergrim by Matthew Jobin; hardcover

Amazon = $20 (free shipping @ $35 – also bought a DBZ Pop Vinyl for my main squeeze)
1.) Allegiant, Bk. 3 (Divergent Trilogy), by Veronica Roth; hardcover
2.) Four *signed copy* (Companion Novel to the Divergent Trilogy) by Veronica Roth; hardcover

The Book Exchange (my local 1/2 price bookstore) = $28 (including tax)
1.) The Maze Runner, Bk. 1 (Maze Runner Series) by James Dashner; paperback
2.) The Scorch Trials, Bk. 2 (Maze Runner Series) by James Dashner; paperback
3.) City of Bones, Bk. 1 (The Mortal Instruments) by Cassandra Clare; paperback
4.) Divergent, Bk. 1 (Divergent Trilogy) by Veronica Roth; paperback
5.) Insurgent, Bk. 2 (Divergent Trilogy) by Veronica Roth; hardcover
6.) Lord of the Clans, Bk. 2 (WarCraft) by Christie Golden; paperback
7.) Beautiful Darkness, Bk. 2 (Caster Chronicles/Beautiful Creatures Series) by Kami Garcia & Margart Stohl
8.) The Lightning Thief, Bk. 1 (Percy Jackson & The Olympians) by Rick Riordan, paperback

Barnes & Noble = $38 (including tax)
1.) Beautiful Creatures, Bk. 1 (Caster Chronicles/Beautiful Creatures Series) by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl; paperback
2.) Are You There Vodka, It’s Me Chelsea? by Chelsea Handler; paperback
3.) The Silver Linings Playbook by Matthew Quick; paperback
4.) Undead (2-in-1/Night of the Living Dead & Return of the Living Dead) by John Russo; paperback
5.) Breed by Chase Novak; paperback
6.) Isle of the Lost (A Descendants Novel) by Melissa De La Cruz; hardcover

Giveaway Books = (free)
1.) Waking the Dead *signed copy* by L. Sydney Fisher; paperback
2.) City of Words *signed copy* by Steven J. Carroll; paperback

Beautiful Creatures (Movie Edition) **WARNING: SPOILERS AHEAD**

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Beautiful Creatures Movie Poster

Directed By Richard LaGravenese

My Rating: 10/5

Hands down one of my favorite movies! I will admit, I saw this way before I read the book and I LOVED IT SO MUCH. I watched it like 10 times and it may or may not have been back to back… andddd I just watched it again. I STILL GETS THE GOOSEBUMPS GAIZ!! This movie is visually stunning, it’s exciting, sweet, intense, hilarious, all of the things you could want out of a fantasy type movie. I dare say, I think I enjoyed the movie better than the book. Don’t get me wrong, as you can see from my previous review, the book is great, go read it. I just thought the movie was laid out better and here’s why:

#1.) The movie is way more intense than the book. A great example of this is the character Ridley. Yes, she IS portrayed as a Dark Caster, but in the book, Ethan admits that he didn’t take her as seriously as he should have. She almost sounds like a little girl doing “naughty” things such as her blowing out speakers at the school dance. Not exactly frightening. But in the movie, there’s no taking Ridley for anything but Dark. For example, the first time we meet Ridley here, she takes control over a highway trooper and makes him run his car off the road. Now this is someone I would not want anything to do with.

#2.) Not only was the movie more brutal, it was also HILARIOUS! Book Ethan was already a charmer but movie Ethan had me cracking up almost the entire time, they couldn’t have chosen a better cast:

Lena: …..My family’s…… different….
Ethan: Different how?
Lena: We do things… we do *different* things…
Ethan: So, what – you’re from Europe?

LAWLZ! My husband was face deep in his phone and he even chuckled at this part.

#3.) Okay this one doesn’t necessarily make me like the movie better, I just thought this was a good decision on the movie maker’s part. As you may know (you probably do if you’re reading a SPOILER review), Ethan and Lena communicate with their thoughts throughout the book. I loved this, I thought it was a sweet connection that they shared, but I’m glad they left this out of the movie. I think it would’ve made it really awkward. Anytime I’ve seen a movie where they can hear someone’s thoughts, it just looks so unnatural. Not saying spinning tables and causing lighting bolts to hit the ground near you is natural, but I think you get what I mean. So yeah, high five to whoever made that call!

#4.) Lena erases Ethan’s memory of her once she discovers what it’ll cost in order for her to lift the curse. GENIUS IDEA!! I really wish this were in the book! It was SO EMOTIONAL, GAH! I don’t know how Lena does it, I understand the circumstance but that would be SO RIDONKULOUSLY HARD to erase any memory of you from the person you love, THE PERSON YOU’RE MEANT TO BE WITH! Which leads me to….

#5.) The ending. Holy crap, the ending is AMAZEBALLS!!! My heart breaks for Lena, especially when Ethan drops by the library before he leaves for his college tour with Link. But as Link and Ethan are driving out of town, Ethan takes one last look at the “leaving Gatlin” sign and suddenly HE REMEMBERS HER!! I get goosebumps every time I see this scene, it is my favorite in the entire movie. It makes me so happy, I feel like a kid in a candy store! What a killer way to end this movie! But it also makes me so upset!! They have no plans to make a second movie and I yearn to see a 2nd movie. With the same actors and director. I wish I were a Siren like Ridley. I would use my power and persuade every single one of those people who worked on this film to finish the entire series just for me. I mean, come on, you can’t leave me hanging like that and not do anything *sobs* I wish I hated this movie because it hurts more knowing I won’t get another :'[

Now on to a few things I don’t necessarily care for that they changed in the movie:

#1.) Revealing Seraphine’s hidden identity early on. One of the twists towards the end of the book was the big reveal of Seraphine hiding in Mrs. Lincoln so it kind of was a bummer that they didn’t leave that for surprise, BUT I didn’t hate how they did it. It was still shocking nonetheless and they made her so sinister and sassy that it was nice to experience that throughout a majority of the film.

#2.) Ethan getting shot. Okay this one was a bummer. I did not like this. At all. I think Seraphine stabbing Ethan was WAY more dramatic than Link accidentally shooting him with the bullet Ridley gave him. How did this movie that made the book become more exciting manage to dull this part down? Meh bleh blech. No bueno guys.

I didn’t mind that they left out Boo, Macon’s dog, or Marian, the actual librarian. I think Boo was a fun extra in the book to read about, but nothing significant enough to bring to film. And as far as Marian, I think they did a great job blending this character into Amma. It worked very well.

All in all, I will never understand how this movie didn’t do as well as it had hoped for and I will forever be heartbroken that it’s all I get. Call me crazy, call me blind, I don’t care, this movie will always have a place in my heart and my secret fangirl world.

Beautiful Creatures (Caster Chronicles #1) By Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl

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Book Description:

Is falling in love the beginning . . . or the end?

In Ethan Wate’s hometown there lies the darkest of secrets . . .

There is a girl. Slowly, she pulled the hood from her head . . . Green eyes, black hair. Lena Duchannes.

There is a curse. On the Sixteenth Moon, the Sixteenth Year, the Book will take what it’s been promised. And no one can stop it.

In the end, there is a grave.

Lena and Ethan become bound together by a deep, powerful love. But Lena is cursed and on her sixteenth birthday, her fate will be decided. Ethan never even saw it coming.

My Rating: 4/5

“Mortals. I envy you. You think you can change things. Stop the universe. Undo what was done long before you came along. You are such beautiful creatures.”

THIS QUOTE THOUGH!! AGH! I gots the chills reading that for the first time! I find when books incorporate the title into the story, it’s either really exciting like this one was for me or reallllllly lame. Not to mention the timing; I like how it was held off till the near ending of the book. Great job with this one ladies!

I recommend this for:

Fantasy/Magic lovers!

I adore this book SO much. I might have been influenced though because I saw the movie (like 10 times) before I read the book. I LOVE the movie!! The book itself was fantastic. It was in-depth and it made me feel like I was right there in Gatlin alongside Lena and Ethan. Like I was Boo following them around, I literally felt like the eyes of this dog that they talk about so much. I also really enjoyed that they took a typical southern small town setting and threw in this new world that would shake it up. I’ve been to small towns, I have family that live in small towns, they hit the nail on the head with this. Oh and the term “Casters” sounds so sophisticated/intellectual/mature/respectable, I would rather be a “caster” than a “witch” being I’m light or dark; good or evil. I already feel so much more respected being labeled a “caster.” The only thing I can come up with as to why this story is so controversial (and by that I mean why there’s so many mixed reviews as to how many people enjoy this book and how much more dislike it) is because it is a slow read. I feel you really have to use your imagination to get lost in this book, which is why I said I might have been influenced because I had a lot of the images filled in for me already. But at the same time, it’s why I enjoyed it! I got so much more out of the book than from the film. Details, details, details!

Another thing that I noticed quite a few negative reviews mentioned was Lena and Ethan’s relationship. I personally feel people judged this way too harshly. It sounds like a pretty normal high school relationship to me. You have one kid, Ethan, who lives in a small town where he knows everyone and everyone knows him. Then Lena moves in to town. Any and every one is going to be interested in her because SHE’S NEW. Ethan just so happens to be the one that gets her attention (him being drawn to her helps) and of course she’s stand offish at first! Who wouldn’t be if you were put in her shoes? Eventually when Lena let’s her guard down, they’re able to build a connection. And like ANY high schooler, Lena feels the need to push Ethan away, not because she wants to but because she has some insecurities, these being her not knowing her future of going light or dark. And like anyone who’s been in love, especially for the first time, will chase after that. SO COME ON, lighten up people. One last thing I have to rant on is people saying that this book is just bad writing. It’s one thing to dislike a book, but it’s a low ball to claim something as “bad writing” when it’s just not. There are plenty of books out there that I can’t stand, literally, would rather use as toilet paper or a fire starter than to read it ever again, but I would never put down the writing. Not saying it’s always the case though because I have read a few that I swear must’ve been a joke. Oh and can we talk about that ending?! Whaaaat?! I won’t give away any details but be prepared for multiple curve balls! With all that being said, I stand by this book. The writing is great, the story telling is captivating, it has good morale, it’s relatable AND IT HAS MAGIC, what more could you want?! 😀 I can’t wait to see what happens with Lena and Ethan in book 2 (Beautiful Darkness)!

** Click Here For My Book-To-Film Adaptation Review **

Red Queen By Victoria Aveyard

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Book Description:

This is a world divided by blood – red or silver.

The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.

That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power.

Fearful of Mare’s potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime.

But this is a world of betrayal and lies, and Mare has entered a dangerous dance – Reds against Silvers, prince against prince, and Mare against her own heart…

My Rating: 4/5

If you really loved The Hunger Games, The Maze Runner or Divergent series, then chances are you’ll enjoy this read! And as much as I loved those books, it is also the reason I could only give Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard a 4/5 star review. This book has hints of a dystopian world with a YA-Fantasy/Adventure feel. Book #1 of the Red Queen Trilogy series.

Definitely a great read! I will admit to it having been a bit of a slow start for me because of The Hunger Gamey/Divergenty vibes going on. There were so many similarities that it kind of annoyed me and it was hard to keep focused (like Kilorn, come on, does this remind anyone else of Gale from The Hunger Games?). Eventually, I had to tell myself that it was made pretty clear it was going to be that way from the book jacket description, so I couldn’t blame the book like I was trying to do but only myself for ignoring those warning signs. Once I got over that, I got enveloped in the book and overall it ended up being a fun read! So as long as you can ignore the typical “brotherly love triangle” and the “oh, this sounds a lot like ____” friends, then it’s worth a shot in my opinion. I didn’t find the plot twist quite so shocking as I have read in other reviews, if anything, it was kind of predictable to me. I won’t say I COMPLETELY figured it out, because I didn’t, but I definitely had it as a possibility of one of the outcomes. I still hope it changes to my liking later in the upcoming books though, because it was good… and some what heartbreaking because I was really rooting for the way it was headed :] Also, Mare’s character was a little bland. She didn’t really do much for me. But Maven, oh my wittle Maven…. I enjoyed reading him develop! I will definitely be grabbing book 2 of the trilogy – Glass Sword coming out in 2016!

FIRST! (Does Anyone Else Loathe This Internet Trend?)

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Any who, before I start actually posting reviews, I just thought I’d letcha know what the trend is going to be around here, at least starting off.  I’d definitely like to add more fun book related topics besides reviews in the future, but I suppose that all depends on if anyone actually reads what I’m writing ^_^  I usually read 1 book a week, sometimes more, sometimes not.  This all depends on varying factors such as my work schedule (which changes weekly), babysitting schedule (a newly acquired, hopefully not much longer, life sucking….), house upkeep do goods, and of course, just natural life balance.  I LOVE reading, I do it almost every day, but I do have other hobbies and sometimes you just gotta break it up and give love to the other makings of your heart.  So with that being said, I’m going to be posting a book review about once/twice a week.  Again, it all depends!

The first few reviews I’m going to be putting up are going to be books I’ve read somewhat recently and already have published reviews on via amazon.com, barnesandnoble.com, librarything.com (still trying to figure this one out, this website is a bit confusing), and of course, goodreads.com (I will link all my accounts to these at the bottom of the post, as well as my “Get To Know Me and My Blog” section).  I will be updating these before I put them on here though so they will not be entirely the same cause that’s no fun and defeats the purpose!  But until I catch up on here, the first few reviews I post won’t be that different.  Now the whole reason behind me making this blog was to go more in depth with these reviews, so although they will be similar, if you’re reading it on here, you’re getting THE WHOLE REVIEW so it will be different.  Consider the views on my blog the novel and the reviews on every other website the ARCs or the “first few chapter sneak peaks.”  So you will see me making comments about books-to-screen via these smaller reviews, but on here, they will be 2 separate posts.  To me, it’s like 2 different reviews so I will not mush them together.  I will usually post these book-to-movie reviews either the same day or next day depending, again, on la sheshul (schedule).  Even if I’ve already seen the movie, I like to re-watch it after I’ve finished the book to get a fresh perspective and to make sure I can write the most accurate review possible.  Most likely these reviews will have SPOILERS, but I will put it in the header as a forewarning because I don’t want to ruin anything for anyone but I still want to give my whole hearted opinion!  So now that I got that out of the way, I will be posting my first review to my blog shortly…. dundunDUNNNN!