Monday, June 4, 2012

Armchair BEA 2012: Introduction

Design Credit: Emily of Emily's Reading Room

Hello, everyone! As much as I wish I could be in New York City right now for the BEA Conference, I absolutely did not have the money to get up there but luckily there is this wonderful cyber event that is Armchair BEA for those of us who couldn't make it to NYC this year. For today, I will be answering some questions that Armchair BEA posted up. 

Please tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? How long have you been blogging? Why did you get into blogging?
My name is Bianca and I'm an 18 year old, soon to be college student! whoo!! I have been blogging for several years but only the last three have I been blogging about books and I simply got into blogging because I have always enjoyed writing and I really like the internet, and I couldn't think of a better way to combine the two.

What are you currently reading, or what is your favorite book you have read so far in 2012?
Regrettably, I have not read as many books as I would've like but I got an ARC of Katie McGarry's Pushing the Limits and loved it! Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally was great, too! Oh, and of course, John Green's The Fault in our Stars!!!!

Tell us one non-book-related thing that everyone reading your blog may not know about you.
I will most likely be majoring in a few different things in college. Thankfully, they're all relatively similar. English Education/Elementary Education/Magazine Writing or Magazine Editing. Although, I thought about the last one, I never considered majoring in that but then I got into the nation's best journalism school and figured why not. 

What is your favorite feature on your blog (i.e. author interviews, memes, something specific to your blog)?
It is so sad to admit it but I have not blogged regularly in such a long while to have anything super specific to my blog. I have some great features in my head that I'm going to get to one of these days! 

Where do you see your blog in five years?
Doing wonderfully! A hell of a lot better than it is doing now. 

Which is your favorite post that you have written that you want everyone to read?
I really loved my post I wrote after I saw Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part I

If you could eat dinner with any author or character, who would it be and why?
J.K. Rowling, hands down. Oh my goodness. If I had the chance to eat dinner with her, my life would be complete! 

What literary location would you most like to visit? Why?
London, so I could visit all those great Harry Potter attractions! Also, I'm not entirely sure if this would be considered literary but the annex that Anne Frank and her family hid out at in Amsterdam. After I read The Diary of Anne Frank in middle school, the annex has always intrigued me. 

What is your favorite part about the book blogging community? Is there anything that you would like to see change in the coming years?
I love being able to talk to other book lovers,  staying up to date on books, talking with authors. I think one thing I'd like to see change is the drama that book bloggers seem to have. I don't get it. 

Have your reading tastes changed since you started blogging? How?
Oh, most definitely! It used to be I could read almost anything and like it but since I started blogging and becoming analytical about what I read, I usually do not enjoy "fluff" and sappy, romance books like I used to. 

Monday, May 28, 2012

Review: The Probability of Miracles by Wendy Wunder

The Probability of Miracles by Wendy Wunder
Publisher: Razorbill (2011), 360 pages
Dry, sarcastic, sixteen-year-old Cam Cooper has spent the last seven years in and out hospitals. The last thing she wants to do in the short life she has left is move 1,500 miles away to Promise, Maine - a place known for the miraculous events that occur there. But it's undeniable that strange things happen in Promise: everlasting sunsets; purple dandelions; flamingoes in the frigid Atlantic; an elusive boy named Asher; and finally, a mysterious envelope containing a list of things for Cam to do before she dies. As Cam checks each item off the list, she finally learns to believe - in love, in herself, and even in miracles.

I wanted to love THE PROBABILITY OF MIRACLES but unfortunately it fell short of my expectations.

There is no doubt that Wendy Wunder is a great writer. The writing is not why I didn't love it. The book is a cancer book where the main character, Cam, goes to a small town hoping for a miracle. I have not read many cancer books but this was someone predictable. Except the ending.

The ending was like what the hell because I'm so curious as to what happened.

You know how there are some book titles that absolutely make no sense to why it is the title of the book? Well, THE PROBABILITY OF MIRACLES does not have that problem. Goodness, I think the word, "miracle," was used a hundred times.

In other news, although I did not like this book all that much, I am looking forward to reading the next book Wunder writes. 

2.6 stars out of 5

Cover: D+ Okay, don't get me wrong –the cover is beautiful! I actually find it very pleasing to the eyes but c'mon! The girl on the cover is, I'm assuming, is supposed to be the main character, Cam, yet she doesn't look like she has cancer at all! The only thing that I can see that the MC has in common with the model is that she looks like she could be Samoan, like she is described to be. 
Favorite Character: Um....Cam's grandma or her little sister.
Put-Down-Ability: 3. Though this wasn't my favorite book ever, the writing was pretty engaging and it didn't take me that long to get through it. 

*Source: school library 

Saturday, March 24, 2012

The Hunger Games Movie!

Although I have yet written my reviews for The Hunger Games trilogy or shared my experienced going to Suzanne Collin's book signing a few years ago, I am a huge fan!!!

So naturally, like with any good book or movie, I went to the midnight premiere with one of my friends.


I was so freakin' tired when I arrived but as soon as the movie started, I got an adrenaline rush.

I don't want to ruin it for anyone who hasn't seen it yet but KATNISS, RUE, AND CINNA WERE MY FAVORITES!!!!!! Rue stole my heart. Holy crap, cute little girl if I ever saw one!

Oh and I am mostly Team Peeta but I gotta admit, I think I am definitely Team Gale with the movie. I don't know, the guy that plays Peeta isn't doing a lot for me as of late....Am I the only one who feels this way? Don't get me wrong, I thought he was great but not completely sold on him yet.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Away at a Thespian Conference!

so, I will leave you with a song from the musical I stage managed last month! Gypsy is amazing.

Best high school show I ever did!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday

Insurgent (Divergent #2) by Veronica Roth
Release date: May 1, 2012 (HarperCollins)

One choice can transform you—or it can destroy you. But every choice has consequences, and as unrest surges in the factions all around her, Tris Prior must continue trying to save those she loves—and herself—while grappling with haunting questions of grief and forgiveness, identity and loyalty, politics and love. 
Tris's initiation day should have been marked by celebration and victory with her chosen faction; instead, the day ended with unspeakable horrors. War now looms as conflict between the factions and their ideologies grows. And in times of war, sides must be chosen, secrets will emerge, and choices will become even more irrevocable—and even more powerful. Transformed by her own decisions but also by haunting grief and guilt, radical new discoveries, and shifting relationships, Tris must fully embrace her Divergence, even if she does not know what she may lose by doing so. New York Times bestselling author Veronica Roth's much-anticipated second book of the dystopian Divergent series is another intoxicating thrill ride of a story, rich with hallmark twists, heartbreaks, romance, and powerful insights about human nature

Why I Want This:

I read Divergent about two months ago and LOVED it. Oh my goodness! I don't know how I'm going to be able to wait five months! 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Top Ten Books I Am Excited to Read in 2012!

1. Insurgent by Veronica Roth  - DIVERGENT WAS AMAZING!!! And if you can't tell from my review of it, I want my copy of this book NOW! I need to see what happens next!

2. Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver - Although there is no review up yet, I read this book several months ago and LOVED it. I must reread it again! That cliffhanger just left me on the edge of my seat.

3. Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins - I have only read Anna and although I didn't love it, like everyone else seemed to, I have no doubt that Lola was great and this one will be too.

4. Something Like Normal by Trish Doller - FINALLY! A YA book that is about a Marine. I come from a family of Marines and I just can not wait until this book comes out. I've seen fabulous reviews of this book and I need to read it NOW.

5. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green - I love John Green and so I'll read any of his books and when I listened to him read the first chapter of this book, I was in love. Luckily this one comes out soon!

6. The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith - I am so jealous of all the people who already have this book. All the reviews are glowing and I can't wait to get my hands on this one!

7. The List by Siobhan Vivian - I've only read one Vivian book (Not That Kind of Girl) and loved it. I'm sure this book will be just as great!

8. My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick - The synopsis! Man, I love books like this and it has been a very long time since I read a book like this.

9. Wonder by R. J. Palacio - I can't remember which author it was that wrote a wonderful review of this book but that review sold me on this book. I haven't read a MG book in so long but this one sounds way too amazing to pass up.

10. One for the Murphys by Lynda Mullaly Hunt - Another great sounding MG book! Looks like it will be very moving.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Review: Divergent by Veronica Roth

Divergent by Veronica Roth
Publisher: Harper Collins (2011), 489 pages
Beatrice "Tris" Prior has reached the fateful age of sixteen, the stage at which teenagers in Veronica Roth's dystopian Chicago must select which of five factions to join for life. Each faction represents a virtue: Candor, Abnegation, Dauntless, Amity, and Erudite. To the surprise of herself and her selfless Abnegation family, she chooses Dauntless, the path of courage. Her choice exposes her to the demanding, violent initiation rites of this group, but it also threatens to expose a personal secret that could place her in mortal danger. Veronica Roth's young adult Divergent trilogy launches with a captivating adventure about love and loyalty playing out under most extreme circumstances.
I am awfully glad I picked this book up! I really hadn't heard anything about this book but I was in my school's library and saw that this was one of the new books we had got in and picked it up on whim. I didn't really have any expectations but if I had, DIVERGENT blew all of my expectations out of the water.

Fans of THE HUNGER GAMES and DELIRIUM will LOVE this book. Oh my God. This book is so good that I just completely went through it in a day. The wonderful thing about dystopian novels is the fact that there are so many new and unique plots in them and in Divergent there were several of them to love.

Veronica Roth characterization of Beatrice "Tris" Prior is simply wonderful. In the dystopian Chicago, Roth writes about, there are five different factions the people live in. Abnegation (The Selfless) where Tris is born into, Candor (The Brutally Honest), Amity (The Friendly), Erudite (The Intelligent), and Dauntless (The Brave). When a person reaches age of sixteen, they must choose the faction where they will spend the rest of their life. For the most part, no one dares to leave the faction they were born into but Tris does; she leaves Abnegation for the Dauntless.

Okay, so when I was reading this, I immediately imagined a person who was born into a New York Yankee family switching allegiances and becoming a Boston Red Sox fan. Now, everyone knows that the Sox are obviously the better team to root for and you just can not help but feel sympathy for that person who had to endure those year under the wing of Yankee fans.* And so, as I was reading about Tris' life in Abnegation, I couldn't help but think how much I would hate it. I mean, in theory, that faction sounds wonderful but c'mon! You got to have a little time for yourself, every now and then. I, too, would've changed factions the moment I could.

That's not too say that Dauntless was perfect. But it did have Four! Wow, the parts with Four and Tris were my favorite. And that ending! Jeez. Talk about cliffhanger!!!! I need to get my own copy of this book so I can read it again and so I can see the wonderful cover on my bookshelf everyday. I LOVED THIS BOOK.

Yes that was necessary.

* Hey, as a diehard Red Sox fan, I just can't help but bring them up every chance I get. Especially if the chance allows for me to call the Yankees out…

Wicked Quote:
Peace is restrained: this is free. 

5 stars out of 5

Cover: B+ I love that most dystopian books tend to be gender neutral and look really cool. 
Favorite Character: Love Tris! Wonderful character, can't wait to find out more about her in the next book. 
Put-Down-Ability: 1 I didn't put it down! 

*Source: school library