Tag Archives: Book

Four Crazy Years

After four years with the boif we took our first “real” vacation on our fourth anniversary.  Sure, we’ve gone to his family’s summer home, which I utterly adore – but this is the first vacation that we’ve had to plan everything from how to arrive to where to sleep to what bars to visit.  It was amazing.

Saturday, after work at 3pm, I changed into “travel clothes” (read: jeans and a wife beater) in the parking lot, and drove up to Evan’s house, about an hour of a drive.  At 4pm I arrived at his house.  Moments afterward, his father drove us to the train station where after a quick grab of a cup of coffee, we boarded the 4:42 train into New York City.  We got to NYC just before 6, and arrived at the Downtown Hilton Garden Inn right around 6pm.  It gave us a few hours to *ahem* nap before we had reservations around the corner.  Of course, I decided that after a day of work I needed a beer, so we stopped at the hotel’s bar.  AOA.  My beer, made by Evil Twin, was a Biscotti stout: fucking delicious.

After … napping and a shower, around 9pm we walked to the restaurant where we had 9:30 reservations that had been made three weeks prior.  Ninja NYC.  This event will be a post of it’s own.  Stay tuned.

Sunday was our “big” day in the city.  We got up around 11am, and got to the Matilda box office to rush the show.  Sadly, we did not win the lottery, and I didn’t want standing room, so we went to Guy Fieri’s restaurant, which happened to be across the street.  This will also likely have it’s own post, so continue to stay tuned. Our afternoon ended at the MoMa, which will definitely have it’s own post so that I can post some photos.  After the MoMa, we headed back to the hotel where I ate leftovers from Ninja and we … took a nap and watched Happy Feet on ABC Family, because we’re adults now and we get to decide what that means.  Our day on Sunday ended at the Way Station, which always deserves it’s own post. So, remember to stay tuned during the week for details.

Monday morning, I was nursing a mild hangover.  Let me tell you, the drinks at the Way Station are not low in alcohol content.  I wanted fries, hard.  But first we had to check out of the hotel, and we started to wander looking for a place to  eat.  We managed to wander into what I believe was little Italy and a place called Brinkley’s on Broome Street.  It was delicious, but I have so much to say, so say it with me: stay tuned.  After a brunch at Brinkley’s, we walked to Strand Books.  Usually I love this place, their tag line is “18 miles of books,” what is there not to love?  But my hangover was interfering with my enjoyment.  So I only bought one book: On Such Full Seas, I’ve heard very good things.  After I checked out I headed to The Bean across the street for a chai latte.  We sat on the bench outside and discussed our options.  We had planned on going to the Museum of Sex, but I just didn’t have the energy for another excursion.  So we headed home, arriving back at Evan’s house around 5pm.  One of our best friends came over that night and he and Evan watched some old movie, which I honestly cannot even remember the title of, not because I was drunk but because I just could not keep my fucking eyes open.

This morning, afternoon really, Evan and I rented Happy Feet 2 on Demand, because we’re awesome.  He made me an egg sandwich, but then after the movie ended, I headed home so I could shower and sleep in my own bed before I have to work tomorrow.

What a successful weekend!

I leave you with this picture of a Lisa Frank cement mixer that I snapped.
Only in NYC.

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2014 Wimpy Book Challenge

Happy (almost) Christmas, readers!

On top of my yearly personal challenge to read 100 books in a year (which I fell far short of in 2013), I just found a wimpy monthly challenge to help me along in 2014.  This will give me a theme for at least one book every month.  I found the 2014 Wimpy Book Challenge on Debbie’s Spurts BookLikes.  The challenge is only for one book a month, but I’m planning as using it as a rough theme for the month, to at least get me moving.  Each review I write that fits the monthly theme will be tagged with “2014 Wimpy Book Challenge.”

January: Post Cabin Fever Slump
So, in January, that’s soon(!), read a book that was a holiday gift, or use a monetary gift/holiday bonus to buy a book to read.   Of course, January’s got some pretty crappy weather where I’m located on the East Coast of the United States, so if you don’t get gifted a book and cannot make it out to a store, pick a warm-weather book to escape the cold: pick a beach read.

February: Revive a Stalled Series
This one pretty much speaks for itself.  Everyone has a series that they started and put it down for some reason or another.  Pick that series back up.  Personally, I have big plans to finish A Song of Ice and Fire during the month of February.  Debbie has a note for those of you that aren’t series readers… I say, in this day and age where every single author thinks that books are required to be a trilogy, that you people who don’t read series are closely akin to fairies.

March: New Release
Read something that has been released in 2014.  Hey, we all need to read a new release sometimes.

April: Out of Zone
Read something out of your comfort zone.  The original post says to pick something based only on what tickles your fancy by book review.  I say, pick something, anything, from a genre that you don’t usually read.  For me, this will probably be a crime mystery novel.  They’re just not usually something I am drawn to.

May: Favorite Author
Read something new written by your favorite author, or one of your favorite authors.  I don’t mean a new release, what I mean is something new to you.  Maybe this will be the month I finally read Looking for Alaska, by John Green.

June: New-to-you-author
Pick a book that’s written by an author that you’ve never read before.  This could be an author that’s writing their first book, or an author that you’ve heard good things about but never gotten around to reading.

July: Whittle Your TBR Pile
This one is pretty self explanatory.  Read books from your To-Be-Read Pile.  For the entire month of July, I’m going to exhibit a mass amount of self-control and not purchase a single new book.  I will only read books that I already own.

August: Buddy Read
Get a buddy, join a book club, etc.  Read a book with a friend.  Maybe by August I’ll have more followers on my blog and we could do our own Buddy Read on the Nrrdling.  Either that, or perhaps I’ll poke at our Iggle friends to read with me.

September: That’s What (S)he Said
Post a list of books between 3 to 8 books long on social media (you blog, goodread, booklikes, twitter, facebook, etc).  Let your social media friends choose your novel for you from this list.

October: Another Group/Buddy Read
See August’s description.

November: Review Pick
Pick a book based solely on the reviews or the recommendations of friends.

December: 2014
For the last challenge of 2014, read a book that was published in 2014.

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Vampires Don’t Need to Sparkle, People

4.5 out of 5 stars.  A bloody good read.

For the past … some number of years I’ve been avoiding the vampire young adult novels and movies.  I figure the reason for this can go pretty much unspoken.  I blame the book-series-that-shall-not-be-named.  Twilight.  cough.  hack.  Even saying the name after reading the first two books in the series makes me cringe.  Vampires have been completely tamed, turned into creatures that can be domesticated as long as you love them enough.  What nonsense is that?  Part of what makes them romantic is that they are monstrous.  Dracula was romantic, but damn, he didn’t sparkle.  Gavriel was romantic in The Coldest Girl in Coldtown, he didn’t sparkle either, he bled.  Thank you, Holly Black, for restoring my faith in vampires.

Tana is an average human teenage girl.  She likes to party, has a douchebag ex-boyfriend who she can’t seem to shake, a best friend away at drama camp, and a tag-along little sister.  One night while she’s at a sundown party, all of that changes.  She wakes up, after passing out in a shower, to carnage beyond what she can believe.  The description of the dried blood in the carpet crunching between her bare toes – definitely a winner and when I knew that this had some real potential.  Someone had cracked a window to let a breeze into the locked down farm house and everyone had died for it.  She finds herself on a roadtrip to Coldtown, with her vampire bitten ex-boyfriend and a slightly crazy vampire, Gavriel.

Coldtown is basically a quarantine for vampires. I adored the way that Holly Black approached vampirism.  She approaches it with a combination of a disease, an addiction, and an unlocking of the inner self.  In this world, when you’ve been bitten by a vamp, you are considered Cold.  This is when the craving for human blood kicks in.  Once someone who is Cold drinks human blood, they die and wake up a full fledged vampire.  However, there is a catch.  If a person manages to go eighty eight days Cold, without drinking human blood, they beat the disease.  Of course, these 88 days are basically like detoxing from drugs, except you have superhuman strength and senses.  Usually, once someone goes Cold, they bring themselves to Coldtown, or their families turn them in, because beating being Cold is so rare and difficult that it is basically considered impossible.  Once you’re in Coldtown, you never never ever get back out.

Truly, the only reason that this wasn’t a five star book was something I couldn’t quite put my finger on.  The gore was delicious, the people were real, the background was fascinating, the vampires were tackled beautifully.  However, for some reason that I can’t put my finger on it felt like the writing lacked passion.  It lacked some sort of spark that I kept hoping to find.  It just wasn’t there.

Overall, an amazing book that speaks volumes for the classically gory blood-soaked vampires, even in young adult.  Vampires don’t need to sparkle, people.

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