“How I Choose My Books” Tag!

Oops! It’s been a hot minute since I’ve posted anything. I’ve been pretty busy, but I was lucky enough to be tagged by the awesome conqueror of books, Birdie Bookworm, so here we are! 😀 Thank you again so much for tagging me! This looked too fun to pass up. I’m normally really bad about getting back around to doing tags and awards, so this time I’m getting right on it!

Also, be sure to check out the Birdie Bookworm blog. It’s a great one, and deserves to get lots of love! 🙂

Since my bookshelves contain books AND comics/graphic novels, my answers will be sort of a mixed bag. I love comics, so there’s no way I’m leaving them out. 😛


1. Find a book on your shelves or e-reader with a blue cover.
What made you want to pick up this book?

Even White Trash Zombies Get the Blues by Diana Rowland. I actually didn’t pick this one up myself. It was a gift from a friend since we’d read the first book in the series together in our book club. I’m looking forward to reading it though since I enjoyed the first one called My Life as a White Trash Zombie.

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2. Think of a book you didn’t expect to enjoy, but did.
Why did you read it in the first place? 

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I really enjoyed reading The Girl with All the Gifts, but I had no idea of what to expect from it when I first picked it up. A friend of mine had been strongly recommending it and singing its praises up and down without actually telling me ANYTHING about it. Which I’m glad she didn’t, because this one definitely benefited from going into it blind. I was hopeful I would like it when I read it, but I literally had no idea what to expect. Thankfully, it was a good read! 🙂

3. Stand in front of your bookshelf with your eyes closed and pick up a book at random.
How did you discover this book? 

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One of my few books of poems. 🙂 I’d read and enjoyed Anne Sexton’s Transformations years ago, so I got this one so I could read more of her work.

4. Pick a book that someone personally recommended to you.
What did you think of it?

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Cupcakes and Machetes quite literally shoved this book at me and demanded I read it a while back. I’m so glad she did. It introduced me to not only one of my favorite authors, but my favorite series as well. Kudos to you, C&M. You have yet to lead me astray with any book suggestions. 😀

5. Pick a book that you discovered through YouTube / book blogs.
Did it live up to the hype? 

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I first heard about Giant Days in a nifty post from The Brunette Bookworm Blog a while back and heeded her advice, picking up a copy of volume 1. It did not disappoint! 🙂 In fact, I really liked it! I’m currently reading volume 2 at the moment as well.

6. Find a book on your shelves or e-reader with a one-word title.
What drew you to this book?

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Volume 1 of Monstress. Hands down what drew me to this was the gorgeous artwork. Each and every panel is a work of art.

7. What book did you discover through a film / TV adaptation?

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I read Let the Right One In a while back, after seeing (and absolutely loving) the film. I’ve never watched the American remake, so I can’t say anything about that one, but I was instantly drawn in when I watched the original Swedish horror film. Usually I prefer to read the books before watching any movie/TV adaptations, but I’m glad I was able to see the film first in this case since it introduced me to the novel.

8. Think of your all-time favorite book/s.
When did you read these and why did you pick them up in the first place?

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As if there were any doubt: A Song of Ice and Fire!!! My favorite books (and show) to geek out about. No doubt about it. I wanna say I began reading these in 2011 if memory serves right. There was no option of going back after that. 😛 As I mentioned in a previous answer, Cupcakes is totally to blame for this obsession. lol


Tags:

I’m no pressure about these book tags, so if you think it sounds fun, have at it. If I tag you and you don’t want to do it, no worries. 😉 I’m just tagging some people I think might find this one fun since it’s a bookish tag.

Cupcakes and Machetes

The Shameful Narcissist Speaks

By Hook Or By Book

My Bookish Dream

The Book Raven

Books And Hot Tea

The Happiest Pixel

Bionic Book Worm

Books, Vertigo and Tea

Let me know if any of you decide to do the tag yourself. I’d love to read your answers, too! ❤ ❤ ❤ Hope everyone’s having a great week so far. We’re soooo close to the weekend!!

Locke & Key: Small World

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Back when I first heard about Locke & Key: Small World, I knew I had to add it to my collection of the Locke & Key series. My book shelves absolutely demanded it! It was only a matter of finding it. This Friday was my lucky day though, as I found a snazzy hardcover deluxe edition on one of the “Staff’s Picks” shelves at my local comic shop. 😀

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This pretty much sums up my reaction upon discovery.

I didn’t even open that bad boy up to get a good look at the contents within. I just plucked it off the shelf, grasped it firmly in my little mitts and paraded around the store like it was already mine. Which it basically was. I would dare anyone to try to take it from me at that point. Fisticuffs Mode was fully activated.

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If you’re not already familiar with the Locke & Key comic series, this might seem a bit dramatic. If you are, however, already acquainted, I’m sure you understand. 😉 Joe Hill (the writer) and Gabriel Rodriguez (the artist) are a great team, and their work always leaves you wanting more.

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“For over two hundred years, the Locke family has watched over Keyhouse, a New England Mansion where reality itself has come unhinged, and where shadows have been known to walk about on their own.

Here they have guarded a collection of impossible keys, instruments capable of unlocking unnatural forces. Those who carry the keys bear a dreadful responsibility . . .

. . . and the old wood of this house has been stained with blood more than once.”

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Locke & Key: Small World is a very quick read. It takes readers back to Keyhouse, but introduces us to a different set of characters than the ones we’ve come to love in the volumes of Locke & Key. It still holds the same magic, humor, and horror, but the only downside is that if you’re like me and have been spoiled by reading a full volume at a time, this is like getting a drop of water when you’re parched and just want the whole glass. Still though, a drop of water is of course better than going without, but it really did make me want more to read.

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The rest of the book contained extra content like a conversation about Locke & Key with the creators themselves, an art gallery with variant artwork/covers, and a very detailed look “behind the scenes” of how Locke & Key makes it from rough script to finished pages for the comics.

If this strikes your fancy in the slightest, I highly recommend you go out and get yourself volume 1 of the Locke & Key series, Welcome to Lovecraft. It’s a dark blend of great storytelling and great artwork that draws you in with all the madness that goes down between the pages of the series and leaves you with questions as well as the desire to read the next volume. I’m purposely being vague, since it’s no fun giving away all the good bits, and trust me, this series is full of plenty of good bits. 🙂

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Rev Your Engines for the Blood Drive!

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Is anyone else watching the amazingly chaotic gore-fest that is Syfy’s Blood Drive? I’ve been tuning in since it premiered in June and I’m absolutely loving it! Granted, I do love me some B-Horror goodness, so I may be biased. 😉 (This show certainly isn’t for the faint of heart, so you’ve been warned). Blood Drive knows its audience, and it caters to them with all the classic horror tropes (as well as plenty of new messed up antics all their own)  and all the buckets of fake blood one could ask for.

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The show mainly follows Arthur Bailey (a good cop in a bad situation) and Grace d’Argento (a ruthless racer who will do whatever it takes to save her sister). The world is a dystopian cesspool of homicidal maniacs, cars that fuel up on human blood, diabolical corporations, and countless horrors around each and every corner. Don’t believe me? Check the trailer out for yourself! 😀

Blood Drive is just so damn fun. Even the “bad guys” are highly entertaining. I use quotes for the bad guys part because in this show, just about everyone is forced to push the limits into “bad guy” territory from time to time. The theatrical ringleader of the mayhem going on in the Blood Drive races, Julian Slink is just the kind of villain I love to watch. He’s a wicked bastard through and through, but he’s so over the top and twisted that it’s just really, really fun to watch.

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You can tell when you watch this show that it must really be a labor of love. The creators of the series go the extra mile with fake commercials within the show, old school horror style promos for each week’s coming episode, and they even have a complaint hotline for those who are offended by all the gore/language/sexual content/etc. within the series. With the phone number including “D.G.A.F.” as part of its number, one has to commend them on their massive levels of sass. 😛

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All in all, Blood Drive should prove a great time for horror fans. I know I certainly enjoy it. Season 1 is set to air 13 episodes in total, with episode 6 airing later this week. It’s a great blend of inappropriate humor and horror, so be sure to check it out if those things are what you’re into! 😛

R&R Book Tours’ Launch Party Mega Blitz!!

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I’ve enjoyed reading so many awesome book/film reviews (and other fun posts) over at Reads & Reels, so I’m very excited about today’s big launch party for R&R Book Tours!! Get your party hat on and bust out the confetti, because it’s a blog party, folks! Everyone’s invited to join in on the fun to help R&R Book Tours kick off their official launch. With the festivities starting at 9am (EST), there will be plenty of fun to be had throughout the day. And plenty of great giveaways, too! 😀

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This bash is all about the indie authors, so expect six different indie authors, six different books, and (you guessed it!) SIX different giveaways! 😉

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So be sure to check it all out. I hope you guys all have fun over there at their launch party, and best of luck to those of you who enter those exciting giveaways. 😀 Cheers to R&R Book Tours on their big day!! ❤

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Review- The Art of Alice: Madness Returns

It’s no secret if you’ve been following my blog that I have a passion for art and books. Because of this, I’ve always enjoyed books featuring art collections that range from rough concept sketches to beautifully detailed prints. My mom shares this interest and so we’ve collected many art books throughout the years. I figured I’d make a new category in my blog specifically for art appreciation where I can do artist spotlights and review some of the amazing art books in our collections. 🙂

To kick things off we’ll start with one of mine, a hardcover video game concept art book for American McGee’s Alice: Madness Returns.

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Just look at this creepy, gorgeous cover!

This book takes us down the rabbit hole and through the looking glass so that we can get a good peek at the creative process behind American McGee’s haunting version of Wonderland. With an introduction by McGee himself, we really get to see the long and creative journey that went into making this game. Different chapters cover subjects like pre-production, creating the final look for Alice and her costumes, the separate world building that went into London and Wonderland, cinematics and more!

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Whether you’ve played the game or not, this book is enjoyable for fans of all things Alice (assuming they don’t mind a good measure of horror thrown in the mix), as well as just art lovers in general. The images presented in the book are gorgeous and it’s definitely one of my favorite art books I’ve ever purchased. I’d highly recommend it! If you’re not already acquainted with this game, check out this old trailer for it. As I’m sure you can tell from the concept art seen above, it’s quite the surreal, nightmarish version of Wonderland.

Do you enjoy art books as well? What sorts do you prefer or collect? I’d love to hear about it! 🙂

No Spoiler Review- Monstress, Vol. 1: Awakening

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I just love it when a book lives up to all the hype surrounding it, and Monstress delivered this and then some. Hands down, this story has the best worldbuilding I have ever seen in comic form. It’s a beautiful blend of magic and horror from beginning to end.

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“Set in an alternate matriarchal 1900’s Asia, in a richly imagined world of art deco-inflected steam punk, MONSTRESS tells the story of a teenage girl who is struggling to survive the trauma of war, and who shares a mysterious psychic link with a monster of tremendous power, a connection that will transform them both and make them the target of both human and otherworldly powers.” Goodreads

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Between Marjorie M. Liu’s dark and intriguing writing, and Sana Takeda’s consistently gorgeous and impeccably detailed artwork, it’s hard NOT to fall in love with Monstress. The only reasons I can imagine anyone complaining would be if:

A.) They get squeamish over blood and violence.

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B.) They’re offended by cuss words, and when cats are the ones uttering said cuss words.

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Or C.) They don’t like monsters. Or ghosts. Or the ghosts of monstrous gods.

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Another thing I really enjoyed about Monstress were the characters. Maika (the main character) has seen some shit in her seventeen years of life. She had to become tough to live through the things she’s been through. She has scars both mentally and physically that prove her to be a survivor. The world she lives in is not kind, with war, slavery, and murderous and power-hungry witch-nuns only providing a taste of the dangers that has left most of the population wounded and desperate no matter what “side” they are on. Also, if you are seeking a story that represents strong women, this one’s for you. I mean the pages are literally filled with them. Unlike most stories where male characters tend to vastly outnumber the female characters, Monstress actually flips this concept.

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This is the sort of story that slowly unravels with time, but not in a way that ever leaves the reader bored. It simply has layers. Layers upon layers. Like onions. And ogres. (You’re damn right I just made a Shrek reference there.)

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This first volume did a great job at introducing the readers to the world, characters, and story, but it definitely leaves us with questions. Which is honestly just fine with me because I am really looking forward to reading more when volume 2 comes out this summer! 🙂 Definitely a 5/5 star beginning to what will no doubt be an incredibly epic story.

48 Hours of Sick, Powerless Ick

Oof. I am so glad the last 48 hours are done and over with! Like many others in my home state, I’ve spent the past two days without any power. It sucked. Especially because I’ve also been sick and battling a fever. I’m still a stuffed up, groggy shambling wreck of a human being right now, but at least the power finally came on!

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Due to the lack of power, I’ve got A LOT of catching up to do on my Necro Rhino writing challenge. I had no access to my files of work, and thus lost 48 hours of precious, precious writing time. 😥

One good thing was I got a lot of reading time in though, and had (during daylight hours at least) the magical worlds of science fiction, fantasy, and horror to entertain me.

I also had some crazy ass fever dreams. I won’t go into all of them, but one had me as a blood-soaked Mary, Queen of Scots. I had some pretty damn sweet dresses though, so at least there was that. (Again with that morbid optimism.)

Anywhoo, back to writing. I’ve got much catching up to do! Hopefully if any of you are without power you get it again soon! ❤