Saturday, May 31, 2014

Sunday Post

Let's chat about what's going on this week... on my blog.. on other blogs... on the internet... and just everywhere!    I link up my post to Sunday Post and Stacking the Shelves.

I have been super super busy the last two weeks with traveling and family visiting.  Luckily I already had posts written.  So I haven't been able to visit blogs like I normally do but next week I'll be back in action. 

On the Blog:

Around the Blogospere:
Print plus ebooks... would you by both at a discounted rate??

 I didn't see many videos this week... so I thought I would feature one of my favorite people to check out on youtube!  

Books Books Books... 
Well I put my books on a vacation hold so I shouldn't get any new ones till next week.  I am also behind on seeing movies so my reviews for Xmen and Maleficent will be late (is you were waiting to read them!~).

Friday, May 30, 2014

Project Disney - Pocahontas

Project Disney: The plan is to tackle all of the Disney films, re-reading the classic stories and tales that inspired many of them and to look at how the changes the filmmakers made, the new elements they introduced and the essential elements they kept. We will, of course, be talking about the films as movies as well, saying why we enjoy them and what some of our favorite moments are, but our focus will be on looking at them as adaptations. For the films that are not drawn from any one work we’ll be looking at some of the possible literary influences that we see in the stories. I am participating in Project Disney inspired by Picture Me Reading!  

This Project Disney is all about Pocahontas.  This time around there is no book to compare the movie to exactly.  This movie is one I enjoy.. but don't love. The ones based on real life events aren't my favorite movies, plus the research on those are harder then just reading a book for it. So for this Project Disney I have looked through the internet, I did check out some books from the library for it but Pocahontas has different stories from different writers. In this Project Disney instead of really comparing book to movie, we look at historical accuracy.  This movie of course brings up a lot of controversy especially with Native Americans. There is not a lot of first hand information about Pocahontas.  A lot of information came from John Smith's accounts of the time A True Relation in 1607 and The Generall Historie of Virginia, New England, and the Summer Isles in 1624.  It is hard to take Smith's story though as fact because England was at war with the Powhatan when his texts were published.

The real Pocahontas
Since the film is full of different parts of history I am going to do this Project Disney talking about different topics as they appear in the film, similar to how I did Hercules.  I suppose we should start off by talking about Pocahontas herself.  In the movie she is young, vibrant, no fear of anything. Loves to talk to nature, her sidekicks the raccoon (Meekoo) and the hummingbird (Flit).  Disney does not have the animals speak in this film making it more realistic. Historically Pocahauntas (also known as Matoaka) would've been ten when the film took place.  Her father would've had several wives and children.  Pocahontas was his favorite because she was born to his wife of love and also named Pocahontas who died during childbirth.

There is one account of what John Smith looks like and it's not like the film at all.  In real life Smith had a dark hair, a full beard, and 5'4. He was known for being thuggish, though he was known for having great communication skills to help deal with natives. The villain of the film is Captain John Ratcliff. Interesting that he was chosen for the villain since he really has nothing to do with the story. He was a member of the counsel to oversee Jamestown.

On to the adventures of getting to America. the English men do leave England in search of gold and riches.  They are also sent to see what happened to the failed colony at Roanoke and they were told not to offend the natives.  Disney of course changed this and makes it seem like the English were really there to just kill the natives. Historically Pocahontas does get married to Kocoum. Some historians even say the two had a child together.

Next in the movie we seen the British land on the new world and began digging immediately for gold.  The Indians hears this and move in to see what is going on.  Pocahontas meanwhile is running around spying on John Smith.  Historically When the British land there is already a scuffle, someone is shot with an arrow even.  The Indians are on high alert because of the Spanish that have already visited some areas. The British did look for gold when they arrived but it wasn't laborious because the man who came believed themselves to be too much of gentleman to perform hard work.

Now the film covers the time spent between Pocahontas and John Smith.  They hold hands and chit chat.  He tells her he is there to help her people use their land better and she tells him all he is missing when he looks at the land. This is when historians start to disagree on history. All sources say though there was no romantic link between Pocahontas and Smith.  Though people disagree when they met some saying they met when she saved him from being killed.  In the movie Pocahontas and John tell each other that they are going to talk to their people and try to get them to calm down.  During this time they kiss and one of the British (Thomas) shoots Kocoum and kills him.  John gets blamed and the Powhatan decide to kill him.  Historically Smith was already captured by them before he even meets Pocahontas.  In the movie this is where the big battle scene happens and Pocahontas throws herself on John Smith and declares that she loves him.

Pocahontas and John Smith meet

The scene where Smith is going to be killed is debated amount scholars. Some think it happened like Disney shows, while others think it was all for show.. a play type of ritual to add Smith to the tribe.   Some say this didn't even happen at all. And now for some of the big differences in the film vs history.  Smith was injured, but it is thought to have been by some gun powder in his pants that went off.  So he heads back to England.  There is no evidence that Pocahontas or her tribe even knew he left. Disney actually does give us a sad ending.  Pocahontas and John Smith do not end up together.  She stays with her people (Pocahontas II is a whole different movie and well totally TOTALLY incorrect).

Later in Pocahontas story (after the Disney movie time frame) she was captured and put on an English ship by Captain Argall.  She was in captivity for a while during this time her name was changed to Rebecca and married and English colonist John Rolfe. Next up ... there are many point of views about what happened to Pocahontas at this time. Some say that Pocahontas was happy and treated well.  She even converted to Christianity.  Some say she was raped and became pregnant and that is why she married Rolfe to cover it up. We do know for a fact that Pocahontas left for England and was shown around as a savage that could be made pretty.  It would get more investments into the Virginia colonies. Pocahontas died on her return to Virginia though here again it is disagreed upon how she died. Some say poison, some say the London smoke, she was buried in England though her bones are now lost.

I hadn't seen this move for a while so I had a lot of fun re-watching it.  One thing that has always stood out to me with this movie is the music.  Such beautiful songs. There is a song that was not included in the original version called If I Never Knew You (you do hear it during the credits).  You hear little bits of  the harmony at the end of the movie but don't actually see it until the 10th anniversary release.  I think this song should've been included in the original and am surprised they took it out. Of course the song Colors of the Wing is fabulous.  I also find the animation to be amazing. The leaves and colors of the wind.

Here is the Annie Leibovitz Pocahontas picture.  I always like to post these in my Project Disney when there is one that she has taken.  I would like to say that I think that deer is Bambi.  LOL! I will say though that I wish she would've had a Native American girl, though maybe Biel has some Indian in her that I don't know about.

This was another long Project Disney and I hope you stuck around for all the drama.  There is so much more to this story and I didn't want to type it all up here since this got long enough.  If you have time and are interested looking into Pocahontas real life you should since it is quite fascinating.  Do you know any stories about Pocahontas that is different then what I wrote here?  Let us know!  Be sure to check out my other Project Disney:

Snow White
Peter Pan
Treasure Planet
Sleeping Beauty
The Great Mouse Detective 
The Hunchback of Notre Dame
The Princess and the Frog
Beauty and the Beast
Lady and the Tramp
Alice in Wonderland
The Rescuers
The Rescuers Down Under
Oliver and Company
The Little Mermaid
101 Dalmatians
Fantasia 2000
The Jungle Book
The Emperor's New Groove
The Sword in the Stone
The Aristocats
The Lion King
The Many Adventures of Winnie the Pooh (1977)
Winnie the Pooh (2011)
Robin Hood
The Black Cauldron  
Mary Poppins
Lilo and Stitch
The Adventures of Ichabod and Mr. Toad
Make Mine Music
Fox and the Hound 
Melody Time

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Armchair BEA - Blogging Horizons and Short Stories

Armchair BEA

Day 3 of Armchair BEA!!  Woot Woot!  I am sure by now we are all seeing the updates from people who are actually at BEA this year.  Today we are talking about expanding our blogging horizons and novellas/short stories.

Expanding Blogging Horizons:
What do you think about when you think about going beyond blogging or expanding your horizons? Is it a redesign of your blog? Have you branched out into freelance writing or even published a novel of your very own? Or, have you moved into a different venue like podcasts or vlogging? This is the day to tell us about how you have expanded on blogging in your own unique way.

What do I think about when I think about going beyond blogging??   For me ... well I guess I haven't really expanded outside of blogging. I do try to think of new features and in June I am going to finally have a new look on the blog after 3 years of blogging.  So that's pretty big for me. Of course all the time I put into blogging I wish I could get paid from it somehow.  But I have read those little ads that bloggers put on the sides of their blogs can cost more then they actually earn. So for now I just make sure that blogging is something I am enjoying.  I have thought about vlogging but then I would have to get all my makeup done and my hair done for every time I want to do one, and maybe I am just too lazy.

Novellas/Short Stories:
Now it is time to give a little love to those little stories in your life. Share your love for your favorite shorts of any form. What is a short story or novella that doesn’t get the attention that it deserves? Recommend to readers what shorts you would recommend they start with. How about listing some short story anthologies based upon genres or authors?

I love books (anthologies) that are full of short stories.  As far as YA short stories I have read Zombies VS Unicorns which I loved.  I also read Geektastic which I didn't like at all.  I love the anthologies that Charlaine Harris edits, like Apple for the Creature.  I am always looking forward to hers every year. 

What about you today?  What do you do that goes beyond blogging????

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Armchair BEA- Author Interaction and Comics!

Armchair BEA

It's day 2 of Armchair BEA.. for all of us who are stuck at home while everyone else is at BEA in NY.  Today we are chatting about Author Interaction and different mediums of books.

Author Interaction:
 Let’s talk interacting with authors IRL (in real life) or online. This is your opportunity to talk about your favorite author readings that you have attended. Or, you can feature your favorite author fan moment (i.e., an author sent you a tweet or commented on your blog). Maybe you even want to share how your interactions have changed since becoming a blogger or share your own tips that you have learned along the way when interacting with authors as a blogger.

I love love meeting authors.  Seriously for me it's like meeting a rock star.  I am always looking for new author events to go to.  There are a few I've missed in the past year... Joe Hill because I was out of town and Sibley because I didn't know about it till the day of. Boo!  I have been to see though my top three authors.  Charline Harris, George RR Martin, and Stephen King. I took some fun pictures at these events so be sure to check them out.

I used to always have authors do Q&As with my Young Adult Book Club on goodreads.  Unfortunately I feel like a lot of participation has dropped off though so I don't really ask them to stop by the group anymore.   I have had Max Brooks , Rainbow Rowell, Sarah J Maas, and many more stop by.  It has been so fun to get them to get the group members included.  Most of the authors I asked would always answer me even if they weren't able to participate.  I love that about authors!

More Then Just Words:
There are so many mediums that feature more than just words and enhance a story in a multitude of ways. Examples may include graphic novels and comics, audiobooks, or even multimedia novels. On this day, we will be talking about those books and formats that move beyond just the words and use other ways to experience a story. Which books stand out to you in these different formats? 

Comics.  I already mentioned them in yesterday's post.  I didn't actually realize that they were going to be a topic for today.  If you don't follow my blog then you probably don't know that twice a month I have a feature called Comic Adventures where I discuss and talk about the comics I have read lately.  If I happen to read a graphic novel that will probably get a post of it's own.

As far as audio book goes.. I have tried to like and love them. I have actually talked about my attempts at trying to enjoy them on the blog before now. I don't know what it is about them... but I just get bored I guess.  I love multimedia books though.  Pop-up books, picture books.... really I just love when books are presented to me with a new look.

What about you today??  Hope you are having fun during Armchair BEA.

Monday, May 26, 2014

Armchair BEA- Into & Literature

Armchair BEA

Yeah!  It's that time.. time for Armchair BEA.  I have always wanted to go to this event.  Being though that it is in NY well... I just can't make it.  So I am always glad to see that there is an event for those of us bloggers who want to participate.

Please tell us a little bit about yourself: Who are you? How long have you been blogging? Why did you get into blogging? Where in the world are you blogging from? 

Hello everyone!!  My name is Angie and I have been blogging since 2010. No I can't believe it either.  Time is flying.  I am finally getting a new look on my blog next month too for the first time in 4 years (so be on the look out). I originally started blogging to see what it would be like and then I loved reading reviews and meeting new people.  I love learning new things and feeling accomplished every time I do something new on the blog. 

Describe your blog in just one sentence. Then, list your social details -- Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, etc. -- so we can connect more online. 

Books... Movies.... Comics... Video Games

Come and find me!!! 

What does your favorite/ideal reading space look like? (Pinterest encouraged!)
I am not sure what the Pinterest part means?   Make a board about it??  Well how about I just show you!  My cozy chair.

Spread the love by naming your favorite blogs/bloggers (doesn’t necessarily have to be book blogs/bloggers).
I love to do this!!!  First up I love Bookish Whimsy.  She does the most fantastic posts called the Refined Reader that looks at the journey people have taken to become the readers we are today. 
Bookish Whimsy

Next up is the Daily Prophecy.  I really enjoy reading Mel's blog.  She is pretty interactive with her readers. Plus she covers a lot of fairy tale news!!
The Daily Prophecy

And finally today I will mention Oh the Books.  This blog is run by a fun set of girls.  I love to read their posts.. they make me feel like they are my friends!

Oh, the Books!

 What do you think of when you think of literature? Classics, contemporary, genre, or something else entirely? We are leaving this one up to you to come up with and share the literature that you want to chat about the most. Feel free to share a list of your favorites, break down your favorite genre, feature your favorite authors, and be creative about all things literature in general.

What do I think of when I think of literature?  The point of this question is to talk about the literature that you love.  Well... for me my favorites are kind of all over the board.  If you follow my blog you probably have noticed.  I really pretty much can read anything but Non-Fiction. I love Comics to Stephen King to Young Adult.  I really didn't mean to jump into the Young Adult genre.  In 2007 I was on goodreads when it was kind of new and someone asked me to help moderate a Young Adult Book Club.  At the time it was pretty much the only one on goodreads and then BOOM now there are so many of them.  I ended up reading along each month because that is what I thought a good moderator should do and I really liked the books.

I find that I don't make as much time now though for adult novels.  Which I need to do more of.  I do think too that Comics are wonderful.  It just appeals to the geek in me.  I not only love Superhero comics but all types of Graphic Novels.  I have even thought about doing a feature on the blog where I read a comic with another blogger who would be interested in reading one with me and I could help them pick their first one.  I just haven't really implemented the idea yet.   Not sure if people would be interested in this or not.

What about you??  I am excited to see what other people want to say about literature.

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Comic Adventures Issue #11

I read a lot of comics and rarely review them here on the blog. That's because I really don't have a lot to say for an entire post.  So I thought I would review several comics on one post.  I will still review graphic novels on their own now and then, but this is where I will talk about super-hero type comics (DC/Marvel) or sequels to some that I have already reviewed.

These comics in this issue are all ARCs from Edelweiss.  I received this ARC from the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review. I’d like to thank the publisher for allowing me to receive this review copy and inform everyone that the review you have read is my opinion alone. I received from Edelweiss Batgirl Vol 4: WantedGreen Lantern Vol 4 Dark Days, Batman/Superman, and finally Batman Vol 4 Zero Year/Secret City.

I was able to download Batgirl Vol. 4 Wanted from Edelweiss as an instant download.  This is my first one from Edelweiss!!  Yeah!  Maybe on Edelweiss I'll get approved for DC comics.  I never get approved for them on Netgalley. I loved this Batgirl so much.  Again this series is still going strong. I do miss the old illustrator since this issue has a new one. I love the Batman and Nightwing cameos. What I really like about this issue was I thought it really relates and speaks to the girl comic book readers. I think that we get to see Batgirl as a superhero and at the same time a normal girl just trying to go shopping and date boys. I can't wait for this series to continue on.  Thank you to the publishers and Edelweiss for the ARC copy. 

I was given another ARC from Edelweiss to download.  Green Lantern Vol 4 Dark Days.  This one started off a little confusing.  Of course volume 3 ended with a big battle story that included all the different lanterns into one battle so the readers had to be transitioned into a new story.  Hal Jordan in this one is thrown into the roll of being the Green Lantern's leader.  There was a little story in this volume that didn't really fit to me.  All of a sudden the orange lanterns show up to steal stuff from the green lanterns.  Once this part is over the comic gets more interesting with a story about an enemy named Relic.  My problem with the Green Lantern comics is that they have soooo many crossovers in them.  I am reading the Red Lantern comics but I haven't started The Green Lantern Corps yet.  At the end of this issue the Green Lanterns end up policing the galaxy.. taking the rings from everyone trying to get a world without them.  We'll see how this turns out in the next issue.  3 out of 5
I was really excited to receive Batman/Superman from Edelweiss!  I love Jae Lee's art.  When I saw the cover for it I knew I needed to read it. I loved it. We see two different sets of Superman/Batman from two different worlds.  In one world they are friends and one world just meeting.  Darkseid is the main villain in the series.  We get to even see a glimpse of Wonder Woman/Cat Woman and some of the Justice League.  One of the odd things though about this book is that my favorite artist Jae Lee doesn't actually illustrate the whole volume.  Which disappoints me.  In fact... even in the goodreads description you only see one illustrator listed.  Overall this is a strong story to me and I can't wait to read what more is in store.  5 out of 5

Finally I read Batman Volume 4 Zero Year/Secret City.  This comic is all about Batman and his beginnings.  I was surprised this comic jumped back to the time when Bruce Wayne became Batman. This shows us the origins of the villain Red Hood.  I had no idea who Red Hood was prior to this comic so that was a neat introduction to him and who he will become. We also get to get some introduction into the Riddle who appears in this comic.  I wasn't expecting a prequel arc in this series so I was surprised.  I actually have not read the Frank Miller Year One so I didn't find any repetitive stories that others may find. I really enjoyed the art work and love the cover!!  4 out of 5

Well that's it for comics this time around... can't wait to read what comics come into the library next!!

I am now up to 46 books towards my Graphic Novel Reading Challenge!

Bout of Books

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Selected Works of T.S. Spivet by Reif Larsen- Review

Lately I have been on the hunt for unique books.  I love them.  I remember hearing about this book a few years ago and never got around to reading it till now.  It is neat with all the illustrations on in the margins of the pages. Here is the goodreads description of the book:

When twelve-year-old genius cartographer T.S. Spivet receives an unexpected phone call from the Smithsonian announcing he has won the prestigious Baird Award, life as normal-if you consider mapping family dinner table conversation normal-is interrupted and a wild cross-country adventure begins, taking T.S. from his family ranch just north of Divide, Montana, to the museum's hallowed halls. T.S. sets out alone, leaving before dawn with a plan to hop a freight train and hobo east. Once aboard, his adventures step into high gear and he meticulously maps, charts, and illustrates his exploits, documenting mythical wormholes in the Midwest, the urban phenomenon of "rims," and the pleasures of McDonald's, among other things. We come to see the world through T.S.'s eyes and in his thorough investigation of the outside world he also reveals himself. As he travels away from the ranch and his family we learn how the journey also brings him closer to home. A secret family history found within his luggage tells the story of T.S.'s ancestors and their long-ago passage west, offering profound insight into the family he left behind and his role within it. As T.S. reads he discovers the sometimes shadowy boundary between fact and fiction and realizes that, for all his analytical rigor, the world around him is a mystery. All that he has learned is tested when he arrives at the capital to claim his prize and is welcomed into science's inner circle. For all its shine, fame seems more highly valued than ideas in this new world and friends are hard to find. T.S.'s trip begins at the Copper Top Ranch and the last known place he stands is Washington, D.C., but his journey's movement is far harder to track: How do you map the delicate lessons learned about family and self? How do you depict how it feels to first venture out on your own? Is there a definitive way to communicate the ebbs and tides of heartbreak, loss, loneliness, love? These are the questions that strike at the core of this very special debut.  

This book was book was no good. Ugh... I hate to say this.  The book starts out with a lot of promise.  I enjoyed the first half. Then I just felt it was more of a chore to read it. It's a pretty big book. The book is about a 12 year old boy (T.S.)  who maps everything.  I thought that was neat.  Plus we get to see all these maps in the book.  I mean he maps everything!!  The story goes that he was entered and won an award from the Smithsonian.  So he runs away and hops a train to DC to attend the ceremony.

So far ... it's a good book.  I am learning about his family... the mystery of what happens to T.S.'s brother.  Then we end up on the train ride to DC.  T.S. ends up sitting in a Winnebago that is being shipped somewhere.  While traveling he begins reading his mom's notebooks.  These notebooks are a side story about his grandmother and how she became a scientist herself.  While interesting I just didn't connect to this story and finally ended up giving up.  I DO NOT LIKE TO DO THIS.  I feel a story is incomplete. I also rarely DNF a book.  I only had about 100 pages to go and just didn't want to put anymore time into the novel.  

The book is just way too wordy.  I loved all the illustrations, but it has already been taking me a long time to finish this book.  When I DNF a book I always wonder... do I just not want to put the time in?  Or am I really just not into the book.  I want to know what happens to the characters but just don't want to fight through the book.  

While looking up this book (I was googling the plot so I could know what happens to the characters) I did discover that there has been a movie made of the book!  Actually... the movie looks really really good. It is only out in Canada and France and came out last year in October.   I can't wait for it to come out here in the US (it is in English).  I really think the film looks magical.  Though they did change T.S. from a cartographer to an inventor.


I wish I could've loved this book. It just wasn't for me.  I don't think others should avoid it though, it might just be what you are looking for in a book.  I just thought it was really really long and drawn out. 

The crystal ball says:

Thunder is booming!! Run inside and don't bother reading!