My Giveaway + Announcements

*My first foray into an Author Interview with Andrew Xia Fukuda is up! (Should I do more?)
*My first manga review for Natsume Yuujinchou V.1 - please let me know what you think

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Friday Five, or Breaking the Radio Silence

1. Did anyone see the new 2011 Jane Eyre trailer? I think you should go and watch the Jane Eyre trailer. I mean, I don't even like the book very much (Let me qualify this: I was more or less okay with this book, but then Mr. Rochester showed up and I hate his face. And thus I hated the book. I haven't reread or touched the book since that summer eight years ago when I was vacationing in Malaysia and yelled angrily at the book for its ending.) but the trailer's suspense spookiness drew me in. It looks all properly gothic and stuff!! I'll just, I don't know, close my eyes every time Mr. Rochester does that I Am A Poor Tragic Hero crap on me or something.

2. So, that reclist email I promised people who signed up for it. er, I kind of overestimated my abilities to make a personalized reclist? Ahaha, I don't know, I just kind of assumed that it'd be about as easy as reccing things to my friends, which I do more or less all the time, but I forgot to take into account that the reason why it's mostly easy for me to rec things to friends is because I know them pretty well, am familiar with their tastes and can rec things with ease. Whereas here, I'm finding myself having to hazard a guess from people's booklist from GoodReads and their blogs, if they own any. And... it's not the same? Like, I mean, two people can like the same Harry Potter book, but maybe one is all about the hero's journey whereas the other person just really likes boarding school with magic shenanigans. And it's just really tricky to tell.

Also as I was drawing up a preliminary list of possible book recs for each person who signed up, I ended up losing the paper. *dies* That will teach me to go the paperless way more often. Save some tries. And er, not bring blog-related things to class to fiddle with...

Don't worry I won't back out on making the reclist. I'm kind of hoping that my paper reclist is still in my room somewhere since the thought of trying to make a new list of possible recs for every person is making me die a little inside. (I am a horribly disorganized person, fyi... it's quite possible it's still here somewhere, hidden under the piles of disorderly-ness... *crosses fingers*) But if not, when winter holidays comes around I can dedicate at least 48 hours straight on working on this reclist for y'all (and I will be needing at least 48 hours since--if I remember this correctly--I spent at least 3 to 4 days straight working on that reclist before losing it and cursing the world...)

For a sneak peak though, I think a lot of my recs ended up mentioned The Summer of Ubume, Gullstruck Island, and The Lord of the Sands of Time a lot. So if you don't want to wait around until Christmas, you can check those three titles out.

3. Um, this blog. I don't know what to do with it? I had this Crisis wherein I looked at my reviews and was quite horrified to realize that a lot of them read like tangents more than anything. I kind of blame this on the fact that sometimes the things I want to talk about have nothing to do with critiquing the book as a whole but analyzing the novel from one perspective? For instance, no matter how many times I try to draw up a review for Hex Hall, all I really want to talk about is the characterization of the lesbian vampire best friend character. Which er, is not the point of Hex Hall. And they're all so rambly and disorganized! It's like I just vomit out words onto a word document and paste them up online or something! *crawls into a hole in SHAME* (Note: um, this is just me showing that I'm kind of dissatisfied with the reviewer I am and that I'm thinking of changing my reviewing style. I'm not fishing for compliments here or anything.)

And I've been having Thoughts about the whole idea behind book reviewing blogs, and what I hope to achieve with it, and I wish I kind of just knew what I want to do with it then I will know what to do? And it's very hard to organize it all in my brain because I am, in case it isn't terribly evident, one of those people who have Opinions on Everything, but this is meant to be a book blog it's not like I can go around spouting just every little thought that comes to mind and I'm starting to think it'd just be a whole lot easier if I just had a Blog of Opinions, wherein I could just say whatever I want on anything I want and not try to put things in boxes or worry too much about if I'm being coherent and comprehensible or being relevant or whatever.

But I still want to keep a book blog because I kind of miss how it really challenged me to think critically about a book I loved and if I could just find a way to make this blog work for me so that I can talk to my heart's content about the books I've read, and I really do enjoy posting about books I love and particularly doing my best to do justice to books I've loved. I mean, sometimes I feel like I got the review all wrong and it's frustrating, but other times I look back and I'm like, I think I wrote something pretty good here, so yeah. I don't want to give up. Instead, I'm trying to think of a way I can make this work for me, but for now I think it'll be safer to say that I'm on a mental hiatus until I figure something out i.e. figure out my Goals.

However, all galleys and ARC reviews will still go on. If I don't cough up that Solace on the Road review by next weekend feel free to throw stones at me or something.

4. One of the interesting things I've noticed about my reading habit in France is that I'm reading far less books geared towards teens. This is not really a taste thing, but more of a thing of economics. As I was musing with my friend on an email earlier:

I'm kinda amused by my book selection in France. Like, I never really touch the YA section because the prices are like inverse to what happens in Canada. There is only trade paperback and it's frickin expensive, like 25 bucks if we convert to canadian dollars and they don't have a 'poche' edition to them (the french version of a mass bound paperback aka the cheaper books) whereas all the adult books have 'poche' editions and it's actually cheaper to read High Literature of Serious Business than teen lit. Soooooooo I end up reading a lot of very serious novels about war or something, lol. Mostly from WWII and Holocaust related stuff.

And then, you know, I started having these thoughts about how people's reading decisions are limited what is available to them and the way it interacts with all these -isms and ladida all sorts of stuff my brain came up with that is very incoherent and probably of no interest to anyone here. ^^;

5. Hmm, I suppose I should save this for the WoW meme, but I am a very lazy meme-er so~ la. Also i just saw this today and was very excited for it and thought I'd spread my happiness around or something. Yes I know this post is also a meme too, but indulge me, why don't you?)

Isn't it gorgeous? YA Fantasy with Latina lead, and while I can't vouch for the contents at all since I haven't read it, at least we can all admire the cover's beauty and non-whitewashed-ness.

Summary: Consuela is a typical suburban Latina teen until she unwittingly slips into the world of the Flow. Discovering that she has paranormal powers and a mission to save people from dying before their time, Consuela—who has the power to slip out of her worldly skin and cloak herself in elemental skins including water, fire, and air—joins other teens with extraordinary abilities, bound together to safeguard a world they can affect, but where they can no longer belong. Yet when murder threatens to undo the Flow, the Watcher charges Consuela and elusive, and attractive, V (who might prove more than an ally in battle) to find and stop the killer.