Sunday, March 7, 2021

The Princess Is IN: Super Mario Bros. Wreath


Every once and awhile, I need to craft. Something comes over me and I can't rest until I've made something fun and new. This often comes in the form of a wreath. It's easy, I can change them as much as I want to suit the time of year. I love it. But last year, the year of the Dumpster Fire; 2020, I just could not come up with anything to be excited about. 
Then I found this awesome castle wood piece at the local fabric store and finally had an idea.

Level 1-1

Who doesn't love Super Mario Bros.? 

This entire craft was done with felt, craft paint, E600 glue, a skewer, an old crappy frame and a wooden castle.
It's been hanging outside in lieu of wreath since the fall and it's still holding together great! I may even go back to buy some more castles and do other levels too.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

Another 52 - July Edition

July has been a super hot month that has left me hanging out in a nice air conditioned apartment, reading many a book. It's been nice to have time to read again and I'm trying to take full advantage of it by reading as much as I can. Here's what I read this month:

by Paul Jenkins & Humberto Ramos

67 Pages

Fairy Quest is set in the world in Fablewood, where all of the stories that have ever been told live side-by-side. But it is a sinister place indeed. Under the watchful eye of the dreaded Mister Grimm and his Think Police, the characters must keep their story straight or risk having their minds wiped inside the Mind Eraser.
Despite this, Red Riding Hood and her Wolf (Red and Mister Woof) have become friends. And they are about to risk everything to try and escape from the clutches of their oppressors and find sanctuary in a mysterious place called the Real World. Red and Woof will undertake a difficult and perilous journey through all of Fablewood, hoping against all odds that they can remain as friends forever.

This was a great comic about fairy tale characters who no longer want to follow their stories, who want to live their own lives. It's a neat idea about taking your story into your own hands. I really enjoyed what they did with the characters and really need to get my hands on the next issue.

by Kate Leth & Jake Myler

27 Pages

The Fraggles’ journey has led them to the mysterious Crystal Caves where creatures of all shapes and sizes await. They’ll need to rely on one another and maybe even sing a song or two if they’re going to make it through to the Everspring!

I wish these were a collection but I can only get it issue by issue, so it's hard to get a real feeling for the story when it's so spread out. This one was about overcoming fears and that it helps to be with friends. It's still always a fun, short read.

by Kendare Blake

120 Pages

Triplet queens born on the island of Fennbirn can be many things: Elementals. Poisoners. Naturalists. If an oracle queen is born, however, one with the gift of sight, she’s immediately drowned, extinguishing her chance at ever taking the throne.
But that’s not how it always was. This cautionary practice started long ago, with Queen Elsabet—the legendary, and last, oracle queen—whose reign was tinged with blood and horror.
Paranoid, ruthless, and utterly mad, Elsabet’s mistrust led to the senseless slaying of three entire houses of innocent people. At least, that’s the unchallenged tale carried down from generation to generation. But what really happened? Discover the true story behind the queen who, though born with the gift of sight, could not foresee her swift and sudden fall from power . . . until it was too late.

Through out this series, they always talk about the Mad Queen, so I was excited to find this short novella about her. Then I was terribly disappointed with how the story revealed itself. I get trying to twist the story, but I really wanted what I thought the actual story. I think it would've been more amazing to see how the Queen actually went mad. I've been very disappointed with these short stories.

by Kate Leth & Matt Cummings

26 Pages

It has been foretold that four noble warriors of incredible strength would be gifted with cosmic abilities at a moment of planetary alignment...which, yeah, something definitely went wrong here. Amie is a disaffected twentysomething with a lot of attitude, Kevin is a washed-up athlete way past his prime, Sandy's a mother of two teenagers, and a goldfish. Just a normal goldfish. Are we sure we read that prophecy right?

After reading The Fraggles, I wanted to see what else Kate Leth had done and I came across this fun comic about unlikely superheroes. This is also 1 issue at a time, but it's super cute and I want more and more of it!

by Ryan North, Shelli Paroline, Braden Lamb & Mike Holmes

112 Pages

The all-ages smash hit of the year is back with more algebraic adventures in the Land of Ooo!The all-ages hit of the year is back with a new volume collecting even more algebraic adventures! What happens when Finn the human and Jake the dog get a hold of Princess Bubblegum’s time machine and travel to go to the future? Find out in this second volume!

These are always fun and strange and that's just how I like them. This one dealt with the problems of time travel. That problem is robot revolution apparently, but it's still pretty awesome. I'm really enjoying this series and it holds up to the same fun and crazy as the tv show. 

by Marissa Meyer

83 Pages (23:30 Hours)

Princess Winter is admired by the Lunar people for her grace and kindness, and despite the scars that mar her face, her beauty is said to be even more breathtaking than that of her stepmother, Queen Levana.
Winter despises her stepmother, and knows Levana won’t approve of her feelings for her childhood friend–the handsome palace guard, Jacin. But Winter isn’t as weak as Levana believes her to be and she’s been undermining her stepmother’s wishes for years. Together with the cyborg mechanic, Cinder, and her allies, Winter might even have the power to launch a revolution and win a war that’s been raging for far too long.
Can Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, and Winter defeat Levana and find their happily ever afters?

This was a great final book. I really enjoyed how everything came together, yet there where still so many twists and turns that I wasn't expecting. I loved all the character story arcs and would continue to read this story forever. This is the perfect example of what I want in retellings of fairy tales and I want MORE.

by Jen Wang

288 Pages

Paris, at the dawn of the modern age:
Prince Sebastian is looking for a bride―or rather, his parents are looking for one for him. Sebastian is too busy hiding his secret life from everyone. At night he puts on daring dresses and takes Paris by storm as the fabulous Lady Crystallia―the hottest fashion icon in the world capital of fashion!
Sebastian’s secret weapon (and best friend) is the brilliant dressmaker Frances―one of only two people who know the truth: sometimes this boy wears dresses. But Frances dreams of greatness, and being someone’s secret weapon means being a secret. Forever. How long can Frances defer her dreams to protect a friend? Jen Wang weaves an exuberantly romantic tale of identity, young love, art, and family. A fairy tale for any age, The Prince and the Dressmaker will steal your heart.

this was a sweet story about a boy who loved to wear dresses and the woman who loved and believed in him. I really, really enjoyed it and wish there were more stories like these. so much heart and desire and acceptance.

by Sue Monk Kidd

368 Pages

Inside the abbey of a Benedictine monastery on tiny Egret Island, just off the coast of South Carolina, resides a beautiful and mysterious chair ornately carved with mermaids and dedicated to a saint who, legend claims, was a mermaid before her conversion. 
Jessie Sullivan's conventional life has been "molded to the smallest space possible." So when she is called home to cope with her mother's startling and enigmatic act of violence, Jessie finds herself relieved to be apart from her husband, Hugh. Jessie loves Hugh, but on Egret Island-amid the gorgeous marshlands and tidal creeks-she becomes drawn to Brother Thomas, a monk who is mere months from taking his final vows. 
What transpires will unlock the roots of her mother's tormented past, but most of all, as Jessie grapples with the tension of desire and the struggle to deny it, she will find a freedom that feels overwhelmingly right.
What inspires the yearning for a soul mate? Few writers have explored, as Kidd does, the lush, unknown region of the feminine soul where the thin line between the spiritual and the erotic exists. 
The Mermaid Chair is a vividly imagined novel about the passions of the spirit and the ecstasies of the body; one that illuminates a woman's self-awakening with the brilliance and power that only a writer of Kidd's ability could conjure.

I love Sue Monk Kidd and I've always wanted to read this book, but could never find a copy of it. Turns out my mom had a copy of it and gave it to me. This was a lovely story that I wasn't expecting. I shouldn't be surprised, since I've love every other book of hers that I've read. Although the story is about a woman who falls in love with a Monk, but the story of her finding  and freeing herself from who she use to be is the one that I really love. I just fall into her writing and don't ever want to come back out.

by M.J. Scott

352 Pages

She fled to save her life, but surviving what comes next might destroy everything she believes in… 
The royal witches of Anglion have always been bound to serve their country. But Lady Sophia Mackenzie, whose unbound magic and near claim to the crown made her a target, was forced to flee Anglion, leaving behind a dead assassin and shattered loyalties. Now she finds herself in Illvya, where the magic is everything she’s been taught to fear and the only person she can trust is her new husband, Cameron.
Sophia and Cameron must navigate a strange world of illicit temptations, dangerous threats and political intrigue, where as a royal witch Sophia is both prized and reviled.
As she begins to master her powers, the factions seeking to control Sophia close in, and her magical and emotional bonds with Cameron are pushed to the limit. To survive long enough to claim the future she seeks, she may have to choose between love and loyalty, and hope the price of her choice is one she can bear.

I read the first book in this series years ago and only found out that it had a sequel recently, and only on ebook. Although I barely remember the first book, I got into the second one with only a little difficulty. I was worried that it was going to turn into another magical school book, but I'm glad that it didn't. It actually got pretty interesting and I was frustrated when I found out that there was going to be another book, but with no publishing date or info on it. I may never know how it turns out.

by Victoria Aveyard

208 Pages (6:26 Hours)

Discover the truth of Norta’s bloody past in these two revealing prequels to #1 NEW YORK TIMES bestseller RED QUEEN.
Queen Song
Queen Coriane, first wife of King Tiberias, keeps a secret diary—how else can she ensure that no one at the palace will use her thoughts against her? Coriane recounts her heady courtship with the crown prince, the birth of a new prince, Cal, and the potentially deadly challenges that lie ahead for her in royal life.
Steel Scars
Captain Farley was raised to be strong, but being tasked with planting the seeds of rebellion in Norta is a tougher job than expected. As she travels the land recruiting black market traders, smugglers, and extremists for her first attempt at an attack on the capital, she stumbles upon a connection that may prove to be the key to the entire operation—Mare Barrow.

This was 2 books in 1 and both were vastly different. The first story was amazing and I really loved following Queen Coriane and her real/imagined downward spiral. It gave a lot of depth as a background story. The second story on the other hand, was vastly different. Farley's story is annoying and filled with missives back and forth with all the credentials and classifieds and blah blah blah over and over again as they pass messages. It was hard to listen to over and over for very small messages. It made me want to switch over to another book. But I didn't and the story was okay. 

by Kate Leth & Jake Myler

27 Pages

Deep in the Crystal Cave the Fraggles find...Doozers?! Gobo, Red, and the rest of the gang meet a whole new, never-before-seen colony of Doozers with a bit more artistic flare than they’re used to. But will they be able to help the Fraggles get water back to Fraggle Rock?

I love the new Doozers in this issue. I think they are super cute and I love all the machines that they've made.

by Marissa Meyer & Douglas Holgate

238 Pages

When rogue packs of wolf-hybrid soldiers threaten the tenuous peace alliance between Earth and Luna, Iko takes it upon herself to hunt down the soldiers' leader. She is soon working with a handsome royal guard who forces her to question everything she knows about love, loyalty, and her own humanity. With appearances by Cinder and the rest of the Rampion crew, this is a must-have for fans of the series.

I was so excited to learn that the story wasn't completely over yet and that it was taking the time to give Iko her own plot line. Reading it in a comic style was nice after both reading and listening to this story. I'm interested in seeing where this story goes now.

by Kate Leth & Matt Cummings

27 Pages

A traffic jam turns into a battlefield as Amie, Sandy, Kevin, and Silas fight together as a team for the first time!

Although short, this was a fun introduction to the rest of the characters of this series. And I LOVE Kevin's outfit sooo much!

by Mato

162 Pages

The highly anticipated second volume of the popular Twitter hit is brimming with more pages! After naming the emperor penguin she found in her refrigerator “Emperor,” high school girl Kaho is living a charming life with her new pet. Now that it’s summer, will Kaho be able to pull off the bold stunt of taking Emperor to the beach?!

This comic continues to bring me a lot of joy and fills my dreams of having my own penguin pet. I love that she takes him to the beach and how much joy there is in those pages.

by Catherynne M. Valente

154 Pages

A New York Times bestselling author offers a brilliant reinvention of one of the best-known fairy tales of all time with Snow White as a gunslinger in the mythical Wild West.
Forget the dark, enchanted forest. Picture instead a masterfully evoked Old West where you are more likely to find coyotes as the seven dwarves. Insert into this scene a plain-spoken, appealing narrator who relates the history of our heroine’s parents—a Nevada silver baron who forced the Crow people to give up one of their most beautiful daughters, Gun That Sings, in marriage to him.
Although her mother’s life ended as hers began, so begins a remarkable tale: equal parts heartbreak and strength. This girl has been born into a world with no place for a half-native, half-white child. After being hidden for years, a very wicked stepmother finally gifts her with the name Snow White, referring to the pale skin she will never have. 
Filled with fascinating glimpses through the fabled looking glass and a close-up look at hard living in the gritty gun-slinging West, this is an utterly enchanting story . . . at once familiar and entirely new.

This was a great retelling of Snow White. I was expecting it to be a little immature, but it wasn't at all. In fact, I would say it dealt with some really heavy concepts. I enjoyed that the 7 dwarves were actually 7 strong women who wanted to be left alone by the rest of the world. The ending was really strange and abrupt, but the rest was really good.

by Erin Morgenstern

387 Pages (13:40 Hours)

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night. 
But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway - a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love - a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands. 
True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per­formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead. 

I really wanted to enjoy this book, but I really didn't, which was too bad. This book could've been really good and there were parts that were, but the story was so spread out and the years jumped around so much that it was hard to follow or to ever really get a feeling for anyone's character. 

Books that I am currently reading

by Sally Armstrong
150 of 320 Pages

Heroine Worship (Heroine Complex #2)
by Sarah Kuhn
127 of 377

by Jane Austen
53 of 279 Pages

by Jon Messenger 
45 of 300 Pages

Saturday, June 30, 2018

Another 52 - June Edition

art by Stellaarts

Another month has gone by and I am really enjoying this whole summer vacation thing. That being said, I can't wait to go back to school in the fall, but I will take the time to relax and read while I have it. Here's what I read this month:

by Rhiannon Thomas

422 Pages (10:30 Hours)

Freya was never meant to be queen. Twenty-third in line to the throne, she never dreamed of a life in the palace, and would much rather research in her laboratory than participate in the intrigues of the court. However, when an extravagant banquet turns deadly and the king and those closest to him are poisoned, Freya suddenly finds herself on the throne. She may have escaped the massacre, but she is far from safe. The nobles don't respect her, her councillors want to control her, and with the mystery of who killed the king still unsolved, she knows that a single mistake could cost her the kingdom-and her life. Freya is determined to survive, and that means uncovering the murderers herself. Until then, she can't trust anyone. Not her advisers. Not the king's dashing and enigmatic illegitimate son. Not even her own father, who always wanted the best for her but also wanted more power for himself. As Freya's enemies close in and her loyalties are tested, she must decide if she is ready to rule and, if so, how far she is willing to go to keep the crown.

This was a lovely book that I truly enjoyed. Only in fantasy can you find an awkward girl who loves science and has severe anxiety who becomes queen simply because she couldn't stand to be social. I love it! As soon as I finished it I went to look for the next book in the series, only to find out that it was a stand alone book! Don't see much of that these days. It's kind of nice that it can stand on it's own, although I would totally read more about this amazing woman trying to do her best to be queen and still be herself.

by Philippa Rice

108 Pages

True love isn’t always about the big romantic gestures. 
Sometimes it’s about sympathizing with someone whose tea has gone cold or reading together and sharing a quilt. When two people move in together, it soon becomes apparent that the little things mean an awful lot. The throwaway moments in life become meaningful when you spend them in the company of someone you love. 
SOPPY is Philippa Rice’s collection of comics and illustrations based on real-life moments with her boyfriend. From grocery shopping to silly arguments and snuggling in front of the television, SOPPY captures the universal experience of sharing a life together, and celebrates the beauty of finding romance all around us.

This is a very sweet book and I see a lot of reflection of this love in my real life, which is super nice. It reminds you that love is in the little things and that we all show our love differently. I had always loved when I came across some of these comics online, so I was thrilled when I found the whole collection of them.

by Kathleen Grissom

369 Pages

When a white servant girl violates the order of plantation society, she unleashes a tragedy that exposes the worst and best in the people she has come to call her family. Orphaned while onboard ship from Ireland, seven-year-old Lavinia arrives on the steps of a tobacco plantation where she is to live and work with the slaves of the kitchen house. Under the care of Belle, the master's illegitimate daughter, Lavinia becomes deeply bonded to her adopted family, though she is set apart from them by her white skin. 
Eventually, Lavinia is accepted into the world of the big house, where the master is absent and the mistress battles opium addiction. Lavinia finds herself perilously straddling two very different worlds. When she is forced to make a choice, loyalties are brought into question, dangerous truths are laid bare, and lives are put at risk.

A masterfully written book that really hits you in the heart. This was one of my LLB for the year and I'm really glad that I finally decided to pick it up. It's one of those books that discuss race, gender and the terrible treatment of each in the past. For people that loved The Help, The Secret Life of Bees, The Invention Of Wings and other similar books that break our hearts and remind up that we need to do better.

by Amy Ewing

100 Pages

In The Jewel and The White Rose, we follow Violet in her servitude under the Duchess of the Lake. Now we’ll hear the Duchess’s son, Garnet’s, story in this digital novella—a companion story to the New York Times bestselling Lone City trilogy.
Garnet, the son of the Duchess of the Lake, has always been a spoiled playboy. But now, for the first time, Garnet is beginning to realize the horrors that his family, and the ruling community, have perpetrated. And he just may be ready to do something about it.

Unlike the other short stories for this series, I actually really enjoyed this one. Yes, it is a reiteration of the other book, but is a totally different, unique story. I really enjoyed watching Garnet and the beginning of his transformation. 

by Ryan North, Braden Lamb & Shelli Paroline

128 Pages

It's ADVENTURE TIME! Join Finn the Human, Jake the Dog, and Princess Bubblegum for all-new adventures through The Land of Ooo.
The totally algebraic adventures of Finn and Jake have come to the comic book page! The Lich, a super-lame, SUPER-SCARY skeleton dude, has returned to the the Land of Ooo, and he’s bent on total destruction! Luckily, Finn and Jake are on the case...but can they succeed against their most destructive foe yet? Featuring fan-favorite characters Marceline the Vampire Queen, Princess Bubblegum, Lumpy Space Princess and the Ice King!

Adventure Time... come on and grab a friend...
This was pretty much what you would expect from an Adventure Time comic. I think my favorite part was that they introduced a new princess; desert princess, who is a cupcake who had sand powers. Love it.

by Ruby Elliot

256 Pages

IT'S ALL ABSOLUTELY FINE is a darkly comic, honest and unapologetic illustrated account of the daily struggles with mental health. Ruby Elliot, aka Rubyetc, is the talent behind the hit tumblr account, 'Rubyetc', which has over 220k followers and growing. Taking readers on a journey through the ups and downs of life, the book will encompass everything from anxiety, bipolar disorder and body image to depression and identity, shining a light on very real problems - all framed with Ruby's trademark humour and originality.
Ruby balances mental health with humour, making serious issues accessible - and very funny. With the superb talent to capture the essence of human emotion (and to make you laugh out loud), this book is as important and necessary as it is entertaining. IT'S ALL ABSOLUTELY FINE will include mostly never-before-seen material, both written and illustrated, and will be an empowering book that will make you laugh, make you think, and make things ok.

This is another of those comics that I always loved when I saw online, but wow was this book intense. I wasn't quite expecting that. Her comics can be too real and really hit you when you aren't expecting it and her writing gives you a look into her sometimes gritty reality that she tries to deal with through her humor. That be said, the humor is great, but not something to read to cheer yourself up. I made that mistake.

by Gabriella Pierce

320 Pages (9:28 Hours)

What if your mother-in-law turned out to be an evil, cold-blooded witch . . . literally?
Ever since fabulously wealthy Malcolm Doran walked into her life and swept her off her feet, fledgling architect Jane Boyle has been living a fairy tale. When he proposes with a stunning diamond to seal the deal, Jane can't believe her incredible luck and decides to leave her Paris-based job to make a new start with Malcolm in New York.
But when Malcolm introduces Jane to the esteemed Doran clan, one of Manhattan's most feared and revered families, Jane's fairy tale takes a darker turn. Soon everything she thought she knew about the world—and herself—is upended. Now Jane must struggle with newfound magical abilities and the threat of those who will stop at nothing to get them.

This is the other LLB for the month. Yes, I am trying to catch up, since I am already so far behind with these. I tried to read this book a few times and kept putting it back down in favour of something better. Finally I found a copy of the audiobook on the Library and decided to listen to it instead. MUCH better idea. That being said, it still wasn't a great book. There were so many red flags going on that it was hard not to grimace through most of it. I'm glad it ended like it did, but I'm not going to pick up the next book.

by Rhiannon Thomas

337 Pages (8:42 Hours)

A spinning wheel.
A prick of a finger.
A Terrible curse.
One hundred years after falling asleep, Princess Aurora wakes up to the kiss of a handsome prince and a broken kingdom that has been dreaming of her return. All the books say that she should be living happily ever after. But as Aurora understands all too well, the truth is nothing like the fairy tale.
Her family is long dead. Her "true love" is a kind stranger. And her whole life has been planned out by political foes while she slept. Everyone expects Aurora to marry her betrothed and restore magic and peace to the kingdom before revolution tears it apart. But after a lifetime spent locked in a tower for her own safety, Aurora longs for the freedom to make her own choices. When she meets a handsome rebel, she is tempted to abandon everything for a different kind of life.
As Aurora struggles to make sense of her new world, she begins to fear that the curse has left its mark on her, a fiery and dangerous thing that might be as wicked as the witch who once ensnared her. With her wedding day drawing near, Aurora must make the ultimate decision on how to save her kingdom: marry the prince or run.
A Wicked Thing is a surprising, spellbinding reimagining of what happens after happily ever after.

I enjoyed Long May She Reign (see above) so much, I looked to see what else she had written and came across another series by her that was right up my ally. What? A retelling of Sleeping Beauty after she wakes up waaaay in the future! Yes! Gimme gimme gimme....
I inhaled this book, listening to it as often as I could and finding excuses to have it on in the background. I would've gone right into the second book (yes, this one has a second book!) had I not had a few other audiobooks waiting in my auto-checkout. But I can't wait to get back into it.  

by David Roberts

128 Pages

2018 marks a century since the first women won the vote in the United Kingdom, and Suffragette tells the story of their fight. This is a tale of astounding bravery, ingenuity, and strength. 
David's conversational style is accessible and his artwork full of rich detail, bringing to life the many vivid characters of the Suffragette movement - from the militant activist Rosa May Billinghurst to the world-famous Emmeline Pankhurst. Covering the whole range of suffragette experiences - from aristocrats to the middle and working classes, as well as a look at the global struggle for universal suffrage, Suffragette is a fantastic introduction to a fascinating topic.

This book was really neat; part book and part comic. History always seems to skip over these brave and crazy women that got us the vote and it was really neat to get to know more about them. Wow, some of them were super intense with their methods and suffered awful consequences. The one thing that I was sad about was that the last couple of pages were dedicated to women of colour who had helped in their own countries, but there was almost no acknowledgement of the fact that WOC fought along side these other women and were relegated to the back of the parades and congregations. 

by Joshua Palmatier & Patricia Bray

294 Pages

It’s frustrating when a gadget stops working. But what if the gadget is working fine, it’s just “temporally” out of order? What would you do if you discovered your cell phone linked you to a different time? Or that your camera took pictures of the past? 
In this collection, seventeen leading science fiction authors share their take on what happens when gadgets run temporally amok. From past to future, humor to horror, there’s something for everyone. 
Join Seanan McGuire, Elektra Hammond, David B. Coe, Chuck Rothman, Faith Hunter, Edmund R. Schubert, Steve Ruskin, Sofie Bird, Laura Resnick, Amy Griswold, Laura Anne Gilman, Susan Jett, Gini Koch, Christopher Barili, Stephen Leigh, Juliet E. McKenna, and Jeremy Sim as they investigate how ordinary objects behaving temporally out of order can change our everyday lives.

I pick up this book because it had a Seanan McGuire story in it and not really realizing that it was a bunch of short stories. As all collections like this, they can be super hard to read. I'm not a huge fan of short stories and I find very few people can tell them well. There were only a few that I really enjoyed and they others ranged from okay to (when will this be over) terrible. The authors I did like I ended up looking up to see if I could find other books by them, so if nothing else, I did find more books to read.

by Kate Leth, Megan Levens, Marissa Louise, Jen Bartel & Nate Piekos

136 Pages

A road trip story. A magical revenge fantasy. A sisters-over-misters tale of three witches out to get back what was taken fom them.
Andy, Jolene, and Claire aren't your average twenty-somethings. They're legacy witches making their way through a modern world. When a jealous nonmagical ex breaks into their home and steals a spell that could awaken potentials with magical powers, the witches plan their revenge. Traveling down the East Coast, they must retrieve their powerful stolen artifacts and strengthen their friendship... the big bad is even worse than they imagined.

I need more of this. Why isn't there more of this? This comic was so fun and fabulous that I couldn't put it down. I want more stories about these 3 women. I want novels about them; full series of them. Or at least more comics if you please.

by Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis & Brooke A. Allen

27 Pages

The girls have a lot more to worry about than crazy creatures and supernatural events...they have FIELD DAY. It's a competition between the Lumberjanes and the Genteel boy camp next door that's going to be filled with surprises!

I love this gaggle of girls who are ready for crazy adventures. I really wish that these comics had been out when I was younger. It's nice to see. In this volume they come across a secret cave full of magical traps and pit falls and it will take all of them working together to make it through.

by Mercedes Lackey

91 Pages

Kidnapping Persephone should have been an easy task. But in the Five Hundred Kingdoms, nothing's ever simple—and the wrong blonde goddess is stolen by mistake, leaving Prince Leopold without his new bride. At least until he braves the realm of the dead to get her back...

I think I've mentioned over the last couple of years that I've been disappointing in the material that Mercedes Lackey has been putting out. But I remembered loving this series of fairy tales turned on their head and couldn't wait to read this short story about Persephone. I shouldn't gotten my hopes up. It wasn't very good. The story takes place on Olympus and in the Underworld, which was interesting, but none of the characters had any life to them. Some of the main characters are secondary characters from the book before, but I can't recall them at all. It spends half the book trying to remind you of their adventures from before (which I am still coming up blank on. 2010 was a long time ago) and doesn't really go into the story that it's in. The only flipping of the story is that these 2 other people are involved in helping and that Persephone knows who Hades actually is from the beginning. 

by Kristen Gudsnuk

304 Pages

Mary Posa hates her job. She works long hours for little pay, no insurance, and worst of all, no respect. Her co-workers are jerks and her boss doesn't appreciate her. He's also a supervillain. And her parents... well, they're the most famous superhero couple in Crepe City, along with her sister. Cursed with a conscience, Mary would give anything to be something other than a Henchgirl, but no matter what she does her plans always seem to go awry.

This was a really fun comic. Sometimes it's nice to read about the bad guy or his henchpeople. This comic takes a lot of wacky twists and turns that I wasn't expecting and has a great cast of heroes and villains. I also love all the little pop culture Easter-eggs that keep popping up. This is another series that I want more of.

by Kate Leth & Jake Myler

27 Pages

When the water supply of Fraggle Rock mysteriously runs dry, the Fraggles have to journey deep into the caves of Fraggle Rock to find the fabled Everspring where adventure awaits and no Fraggle has gone before! It's the beloved characters of Fraggle Rock in their biggest story yet!

I thought this would be another fun volume to read, but it turned out to only be the first comic. It's very cute and reminded me how much I use to love the Fraggles. I actually had to stop and think about what each of them sounded like so I could get a better sense of them in the comic I wandered around for the next few days with the theme song stuck in my head... and there it is again....
Dance your cares away. Worry's for another day. Let the music play. Down in Fraggle Rock

by Kendare Blake

333 Pages (10:28 Hours)

Old Gods never die…
Or so Athena thought. But then the feathers started sprouting beneath her skin, invading her lungs like a strange cancer, and Hermes showed up with a fever eating away his flesh. So much for living a quiet eternity in perpetual health.
Desperately seeking the cause of their slow, miserable deaths, Athena and Hermes travel the world, gathering allies and discovering enemies both new and old. Their search leads them to Cassandra—an ordinary girl who was once an extraordinary prophetess, protected and loved by a god. 
These days, Cassandra doesn’t involve herself in the business of gods—in fact, she doesn’t even know they exist. But she could be the key in a war that is only just beginning. 
Because Hera, the queen of the gods, has aligned herself with other of the ancient Olympians, who are killing off rivals in an attempt to prolong their own lives. But these anti-gods have become corrupted in their desperation to survive, horrific caricatures of their former glory. Athena will need every advantage she can get, because immortals don’t just flicker out. 
Every one of them dies in their own way. Some choke on feathers. Others become monsters. All of them rage against their last breath.
The Goddess War is about to begin.

I picked this book up because I really enjoyed Blake's Three Dark Crown series. But the 3rd one isn't out in audio form yet, si I though I would give this one a go. Like a lot of Urban Fantasy, the first book of the series didn't start out very strong. It's not that it was bad, it just seemed to be ramping up. As in setting the stage for the later books. The Olympians were interesting and I loved reading about them, but Cassandra and her posse were down right boring most of the time. Again, I realize that not much can happen until they find her and get her on their team. I will read the next book for sure, hoping that it will follow the trend of always getting better.

by Kendare Blake

112 Pages

Three black witches, born to a descending queen. One would rise to become queen in her place. Perhaps the strongest of the three. Perhaps the cleverest. Or perhaps it would be the girl born under the best shield of luck.
Katharine, Arsinoe and Mirabella - three young queens born to fulfil their destiny - to fight to the death to win the crown. But before they were poisoner, elemental and naturalist, they were children, sisters and friends . . .

I find it strange that there seems to be a trend of writing these novellas that fir in between other books. I mean, I get it, but I just find that most of them aren't very good and don't really fill my need of them. This was one such book. It was ripe with possibility, but the mark was totally missed. She could've written the entire thing about Arsinoe's attempted escape from the island, but she just skipped over it entirely. I don't get it. It was okay, and I liked reading about the Black Cottage and the old Queen, but the rest fell flat for me. 

by Noelle Stevenson, Grace Ellis & Brooke A. Allen

27 Pages

After a lot of convincing, the girls are able to agree to get Jen to take them on a hike. Making their way up to the tower and hoping to finally get some answers, they make their way closer only to be stopped by the neighboring boy camp! April, Mal, Molly, Jo, and Ripley have to figure out how to get to the tower, even if they have to use Jen as a distraction to do it.

Another great comic! I still really love this story line. Sadly this was the last comic I had so I have to go out and get the rest so that I can find out what happens next.

by Mato

147 Pages

One day something emerges from high school girl Kaho’s refrigerator—an emperor penguin, the largest of all penguins! When this emperor joins the household, fun and wacky antics with family and friends ensue!

When I was a little girl, I used to dream about one day having a pet penguin and all the fun things that we would do together. This comic made me long for those dreams again. I've got to admit, I've been looking a little longer and harder into the fridge every time I open it. Can't wait to read more.

by Sarah Andersen

108 Pages

Adjusting to life as a world-famous cartoonist isn't easy. Terrifying deadlines, piles of junk-food wrappers under a glowing computer screen, and an ever-growing horde of pets....umm, never mind--it's pretty much the same.
With characteristic wit and charm, Sarah Andersen's third collection of comics and illustrated personal essays offers a survival guide for frantic modern life: from the importance of avoiding morning people, to Internet troll defense 101, to the not-so-life-changing futility of tidying up. But when all else fails and the world around you is collapsing, make a hot chocolate, count the days until Halloween, and snuggle up next to your furry beacon of hope.

This book wasn't long enough. I loved it so much and I want it to go on forever. This comic always finds the right spot of funny, sad and relatable that I love so much. I hope she puts out more books in the future.  

by Seanan McGuire

358 Pages

For once, it seems like the Kingdom of the Mists has reached a point of, if not perfection, at least relative peace. Queen Arden Windermere is getting settled on her family's throne; no one's going to war with anyone else; it's almost like everything is going to be okay. Even October "Toby" Daye is starting to relax her constant vigilance, allowing herself to think about the future, and what it might entail.
And then Simon Torquill comes back, and everything begins to fall apart. In Faerie, nothing stays buried forever. No matter how much you might want it to.

After 8 books, I finally thought all of my questions would be answered. Turns out only some of them were. I need more answers! I guess I'll just have to keep reading. Good thing I've got the next book sitting on my shelf just waiting for me. As always, it was hard to put this book down at any time. Usually it was because my eyelids were getting too heavy and I kept reading the same paragraph over and over.

by Claudia Gray

409 Pages (9:53 Hours)

Sixteen-year-old Princess Leia Organa faces the most challenging task of her life so far: proving herself in the areas of body, mind, and heart to be formally named heir to the thrown of Alderaan. She's taking rigorous survival courses, practicing politics, and spearheading relief missions to worlds under Imperial control. But Leia has worries beyond her claim to the crown. Her parents, Breha and Bail, aren't acting like themselves lately; they are distant and preoccupied, seemingly more concerned with throwing dinner parties for their allies in the Senate than they are with their own daughter. Determined to uncover her parents' secrets, Leia starts down an increasingly dangerous path that puts her right under the watchful eye of the Empire. And when Leia discovers what her parents and their allies are planning behind closed doors, she finds herself facing what seems like an impossible choice; dedicate herself to the people of Alderaan--including the make she loves--or the galaxy at large, which is in desperate need of a rebel hero.

I wanted this to be amazing. It wasn't. It was still pretty good though. My main concern with it was that Leia didn't feel like Leia. She didn't have that cockiness and temper that makes her who she is. She felt a little more like a generic fantasy heroine in a Star Wars novel. This book is more about her "coming of age" and felt a little young at times. I loved that Amilyn Holdo (aka the kick-ass purple-haired Vice-Admiral from The Last Jedi) was a character in it and that her and Leia were friends, but at times she felt like she was just Luna Lovegood in a different skin. 

Books that I am currently reading

by Rohinton Mistry
65 of 603 Pages

by Sally Armstrong
150 of 320 Pages

by M.J. Scott
 155 of 352 Pages

by Sue Monk Kidd
50 of 368 Pages