Sunday, August 30, 2009

Sunday Salon: Reading, Read, To Read #35

Big happenings going on this past week:

Eva of A Striped Armchair has suggested a mentoring program tentatively called Bookworms to Bookworms. You can read more about it on her blog. I personally think it's a great idea with a lot of potential. I'm always willing to help folks out with their questions. So if you're a newbie blogger and got a question or two for me, I'm happy to help when I can.

The Cybils administration is seeking judges for both rounds for the 09 season. So if you blog about children's books...or YA may want to head on over to the site to see if you qualify and find out how to apply for this very time-consuming but ultimately satisfying job.

Carl has announced the fourth R.I.P (Readers Imbibing Peril) challenge. It officially starts September 1rst. But reviews are starting (slowly) to appear on the review site. There are over 160 participants so far, but there is always room for more!!! New to blogging? Wanting to find a community where you belong? No better way to find your place. Carl's challenges are amazing opportunities to make new friends and connect with book-loving people!

Little happening that made me think (oh no!):

I was reading Stuff As Dreams Are Made On this morning, and I was reading Chris' comments. Pat had a wonderful, wonderful idea that Chris should be suggesting books for others to read--for the "bad bloggers" that always get him in trouble. So then I started thinking, wouldn't it be fun if bloggers did just that. If bloggers had a way to personalize recommendations and gush about books, a platform to 'encourage' readers to pick up books.

I don't know about you, and maybe it's just me, maybe it's because I've been around too many books and read too many blogs. But I read certain books and I think of other bloggers. I start matchmaking in my head. I start thinking so-and-so would really like this one. Or I wonder if so-and-so has read this yet, it's so good!

For example, after reading Renay's oh-so-wonderful rant yesterday about Lee Bantle's David Inside Out, I'd love to know if she has read Cycler by Lauren McLaughlin. While I didn't care for this all, I'm really super-curious to hear what Renay would say about this one. If she loved it--or if she liked it--it might help me appreciate it. It might give me a different angle to approach it with. If she didn't like it, well, that would be interesting as well. Because no one can rant like Renay. That's one reason I love her so much. She's honest. And it may hurt--if you're the author--but she speaks her truth, and she's awesome. Anyway, the book is about a girl--a teen girl--who transitions into a guy, yes, quite literally--once a month.

Another example, I just finished The Martian Child by David Gerrold, and I immediately thought of Debi and Chris. It's about a single father (who happens to be gay) who wants to adopt a child. The child has a very thick file folder spelling out all his troubles and problems (emotional, psychological, etc.). Supposed reasons why adopting this child would be an absolute nightmare, a mistake. Anyway, he's been in and out of foster homes and in and out of group homes since he was abandoned as a toddler. But the man sees the child for who he is and accepts him on his own terms--for better or worse.

Anyway, it's not like the blogging world is really hurting for another weekly (or monthly) meme, but I think it would be fun if such a meme existed that rounded up such posts.

Movies this week:

Star Trek I: The Motion Picture
Star Trek 2: The Wrath of Khan
Star Trek 3: The Search for Spock
Ballet Shoes
Goodbye Mr. Chips
Til the Clouds Roll By, 1946

What I read in a previous week, but reviewed this week:

Hoppergrass. By Chris Carlton Brown. 2009. Henry Holt. 240 pages.
Never Cry Werewolf by Heather Davis. 2009. HarperCollins. 216 pages.
The Tear Collector by Patrick Jones. 2009. Bloomsbury (Walker). 272 pages. (September 2009)
Jumping Off Swings. Jo Knowles. 2009. Candlewick Press. 230 pages.
A Map of the Known World by Lisa Ann Sandell. 2009. Scholastic. 273 pages.

What I read this past week and reviewed:

What is the Bible? by Kathleen Long Bostrom. 2009. Tyndale.
Who Made the World? by Kathleen Long Bostrom. 2009. Tyndale.

What I read this past week and haven't reviewed yet:

The Martian Child by David Gerrold. 2002.
The Immortal Fire (The Cronus Chronicles, Book Three) by Anne Ursu. 2009.

What I've read and really, really need to review:

What I'm currently reading:

The Greatest Knight by Elizabeth Chadwick
Cleopatra's Daughter by Michelle Moran
Opening Atlantis by Harry Turtledove
Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

What I'm just fooling around that I'm reading:

Fearless by Max Lucado
Ash by Malinda Lo
Putting the Amazing Back Into Grace by Michael Horton
The Way We Live Now by Anthony Trollope

What I've abandoned:

© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews


Aubrey (AKA Stacey) 8:27 PM  

I like this layout! Thanks for giving me your lists and happenings!

Chris 8:41 PM  

I love Pat's idea, Becky! I do the same thing as you...I'll be reading books and the whole time I'm reading them I'm thinking of who I could recommend them to. People just pop into my head! I would love it if someone started that meme ;) *winkwink*

And you've just added both Cycler and The Martian Child onto my wishlist..thanks...:/

Renay 10:32 PM  

I am glad you liked my analysis, although the response to it has caused me to be a little depressed!

Sometimes I wonder if there are room for people like me in the book blog community. Sigh!

Cycler is on my reading list, though. You also recommended a short story collection that wasn't out yet a few months ago? I forget the title but I think I have the direct message saved on twitter. I'll have to look those up!

(You're not alone is the book matchmaking thing, though!)

Nymeth 5:00 AM  

This reminds me of the Blogger-Book meme I created last year. I may have cried a little bit when you and Chris turned out to be the ONLY people to do it :P But seriously, you should re-launch the idea. Hopefully there'd be more interest this time :P

DesLily 5:47 AM  

oh wow.. i can remember when my son would watch the Trek movies one after another all weekend long! It looks like you were doing the same thing lol.. my recent reading of Nicholas Meyer's book and George Takei is making me want to watch them again also . It's been years since I've done that!

MissDaisyAnne---Annette 10:23 AM  

I love the book Frankenstein, it is one of my top 5 favorites.

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Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
3) I am not promising anyone (author or publisher) a positive review in exchange for a review copy. That's not how I work.
4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
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