Saturday, April 6, 2013

Graphic Novel Review of Grimm Fairy Tales Vol. 1

Synopsis:"For over two hundred years the powerful stories of the Brothers Grimm have enchanted millions around the world, but there has never been an adaptation as intriguing or provocative as this. Grimm Fairy Tales Volume 1 explores a much darker side of the infamous fables you heard as a child as these classic tales are retold and re-imagined with a terrifying twist you'll simply love as an adult. Red Riding Hood is forced to confront the insatiable hunger of a terrifying beast; Cinderella seeks a shocking vengeance for the years of torture she's endured; Hansel & Gretel realize that the problems they left behind at home are nothing compared to the horror that awaits them on their ill-advised journey; A desperate girl makes a deal with the hideous Rumpelstiltskin only to find she may lose much more than she ever imagined; Sleeping Beauty learns that narcissism can be a very gruesome trait to possess and an envious sister finds her extreme measures to capture the man of her dreams may lead to much worse than just heartbreak from the Robber Bridegroom. Collects Grimm Fairy Tales issues #1-6"

My Review: This collection was fantastic! I love retelling of fairy tales and myths, these were great updated versions. The illustrations are amazing and vivid. I really enjoyed how it wasn't so much a continued story so you could read one and take a break and come back for another story without having to skim to recap. I am really looking forward to more of these and definitely more by the same artist!
My Rating: I really enjoyed these much more adult re-telling of the fairy tales. I give it a rating of Three Paws and a Stump Wag.

Friday, April 5, 2013

Bedtime Story: Hiccupotamus

Here is your Children's pick from the Spend My Money event in January!
Synopsis: "There was a hippopotamus who hiccupped quite-a-lotamus. And every time he got'emus . . . he'd fall upon his bottomus.

Calamity ensues when an elephant, a centipede, and

a rhinoceros try finding a cure for hippo's colossal case

of hiccups. Zenz's creativity shines through with

his use of colored pencil in this off-the-wall

read-aloud. HIC! HIC! HIC!"

My Review: Well I have mixed feelings about this book. It is a really cute concept and the story is cute how all the other animals try to help Calamity get rid of the hiccups, but it is a difficult one to read out loud with all the made up words. I don't see why it was necessary to add tamus at the end of every other word when you already have the added sound effect of the hiccups. With that said it is cute and the illustrations are adorable, maybe just making up your own story would work well. Munchkin did get the giggles when I hiccuped for him ;)
My Rating: This is a tough one for me to rate, I wanted to love it so bad but just couldn't get over the wording.  I give it a rating of Two Paws.
Good Night! Sweet Dreams!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

After Dark Review of Bear Necessities by Dana Marie Bell

I have added After Dark Reviews to my blog as a way of notifying you of a review of a book with Adult themes and scenes. From now on I will keep my reviews of all books I read that have explicit scenes in them for late night posts for those of you who prefer to avoid them or easy to find for those of you who seek them out ;)
Synopsis: "To hold onto his love, he must release his beast. Halle Shifters, Book 1 Once a Bear sets his mind on a mission, it's best to stay out of his way. Alexander "Bunny" Bunsun is that Bear. Something's not right with his cousin Chloe, and he's come to Halle, PA, to sort it out, turn his Harley around and head home to Oregon. Until an enticing scent lures him into the local tattoo shop. There she is. An inked, Southern-drawled she-Wolf with lime-green hair. His perfect mate. Tabitha Garwood's rotten day just got worse. Her Outcast status makes her a target for harassment with alarming regularity. And now, in the middle of a root touch-up, looking like a half-melted Skittle, she's met her destined mate. The only upside? She finally has a protector in the form of a huge, tattooed, shaved-head Bear who vibrates with carefully restrained power. When Chloe is left for dead and Tabby is threatened, only Alex can keep his growing family safe. Giving Tabby the loving home she needs, though, could come at a price-Alex must give up the control he's worked a lifetime to attain. Which means someone could die at the hands-and claws-of his beast. Warning: This novel contains explicit sex, graphic language, a hunky Bear named Bunny and . . . Yes. I said a Bear named Bunny. I don't know about you but I'm not brave enough to make fun of it."

My Review: Normally I absolutely love everything by Dana Marie Bell but this one wasn't quite up to my expectations. It could have been a mood or funk I was in but I just felt like it was overly dramatic and too much stuffed into the book. I realize that she was trying to set up characters and story lines for future books in the series but it was too much in my opinion. We bounced from one crisis to the next without really getting to know Bunny or Tabby or get a feel for their relationship. What I did get to know about the two of them was that I really like Tabby's personality but Bunny was just a little too overbearing and moody for my liking. With all that said it was a great start to a branch off series. I am really looking forward to getting to know Cyn, Glory, Julian and Cleo in the next several books.
My Rating: Well while this wasn't as spectacular as I wanted it to be I was still thoroughly entertained.  I just happened to like the sub-characters more in this book. I also felt it was a little too much action, both in and out of bed and less of a story and character development. I give it a rating of Two Paws and a Stump Wag.

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Wednesday Writing

So Wednesday is my official writing update day. I have so many story projects going on and I need a push to get some done. So I will be trying to post each Wednesday about how my writing adventures are going (and I may need a swift kick in the pants by you guys sometimes).

Current Active Project:

Tamlyn Marie's Grace -

Think Cinderella only with a matchmaker ;)

Other Works in Progress:

The New Old Home - 17,193 words

Everyone dreams of winning the lottery, but what would you do with that money? That is the question presented to Natalie, when she is at the lowest point in her life, she is presented with an opportunity to make any normal person's dreams come true, but all those winnings can't give her what she wants most.

Princess Bs - 32,131 words

A story about a woman, recently divorced and returned to her home town to figure out what is next. She encounters an old friend and spends a weekend with him and his daughters. Feelings that are long since buried are rising up again, but are her recent loss and his current life going to stand in the way of their happily ever after?

Night Rider - 17,229

Alice is a recent high school graduate who is a very accomplished competitive rider in Hunter/Jumper, Dressage, and Western/Rodeo. Her parents had arranged for her to attend a private college on the east coast geared specifically to equine professions. However, Alice wants to focus on her studies in English Literature. When she arrives at the college she hides her riding abilities, but can she keep her talent and love of horses hidden?

The Last Mountains - 13,468 (handwritten) = 15,766 (typed)

A equine shapeshifting family is being hunted to near extinction and the young new leader must go against all her lessons and approach the elite council for aide. Will they help her? How will she keep her family's traditions and values alive, let alone her herd?

Other Ideas Plotting:

Bloodsoar's Story
A pegasus struggles through life, ejected from the herd, near capture by humans.

The Assassin's Assassin
A student learns what the school is really teaching and sets out to destroy those who support the program.

Angel Story
Angels battle out an age old feud in a parallel world


So I haven't gotten anything done so far this year but guess what?! Its NanoCamp time! Yup that's right instead of summer camp they are having it in the spring this year. A friend of mine convinced me to participate off the site and work on my already started stories.  I have no delusions of thinking I can get 50K words in a month but I would be happy if I could reach 50K on one of my stories or maybe even finish the rough first draft of one.   So I would appreciate any kicks to the butt you can offer me this month LOL!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Bedtime Story: Baby Farm Animals

Synopsis: "Generations of children have loved the realistic yet whimsical lambs, ponies, and kittens in the Little Golden Books edition of Baby Farm Animals. This Golden classic, celebrating springtime on the farm, is now a board book . . . a perfect first book for baby."

My Review: Another great classic! I love the illustrations. It will be great to teach Munchkin about farm animals, especially since we live in a more urban area and he won't have access to the things I did while growing up.         
My Rating:  I adore the golden book classics. The illustrations and stories are just so simple and definitely stand the test of time.  We give this one a rating of Three Paws and a Stump Wag!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Monday Reading List

Its Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Shelia at Book Journey. Share what books you have finished in the last week, are currently reading and what might be coming up next!

Reviews Posted Last Week:
Links will take you to my review

Just a Critter Collection (bedtime stories)

Books Finished Last Week:
Reviews will be posted at a later date

Bear Necessities by Dana Marie Bell
Cynful by Dana Marie Bell
Currently Reading:

Last Regress by Rachel J. Thorne - Nook - on page 118 of 212
October Night by Theresa Oles - Kindle - 2%
Life of Pi by Yann Martel - Audio Book - On Disc 3 of 9
Stealing Parker by Miranda Kenneally - Nook - on page 27 of 174

 Books to be Read Soon:

True Grit by Charles Portis (Book v. Movie)
Twelve Months by Steven Manchester (Requested Review)
Luminaire by Ciye Cho (Requested Review)

Boy, last month was kind of a flop! It was so crazy at home and work I didn't have time for much else but it seems like things are going to start slowing down. Throughout March we had several visitors staying with us, Munckin's baptism was on Sunday and of course all the added doctor appointments for the little man, not to mention the nightmare of teething! Going into April though we don't have any guests coming, a few weekend events, and Munckin's doctor appointments are winding down (we only have one physical therapy appointment left).

I am still crossing my fingers that I can participate in the Dewey's read-a-thon that usually happens this month, note to self check on dates. I am also finally settling into the rhythm of the office again and getting caught up so I can potentially squeeze in a little reading time during the day!

This month I will be reading and reviewing all the books you guys voted on from the Spend My Money posts in January. So keep an eye out for those, I have already read 2 of the books!  I will also be getting caught up on some of my review requests, so hopefully I will get at least several of those up to share with you soon!

And last but not least, your Monday Cuteness, there have been so cute pictures of Munchkin lately I had a hard time choosing one to share with you but of course being a reader I picked the one of him reading by himself.  He is so into books now that we have had to take away bedtime stories and read them to him at dinner because he gets too excited.  He also prefers to hold the books and turn the pages himself.