Monday, May 17, 2021
Friday, May 14, 2021
Titanic - 'Iceberg Ahead': The Story of the Disaster by Some of Those Who Were There - Book Breakdown
To have sailed on 'the voyage of the century' aboard White Star Line's RMS Titanic - described at the time as 'a floating palace' - was like being one of the first passengers to fly on Concorde.
On 10 April 1912, people from all walks of life began embarking on Titanic, then the largest ship afloat, for what was to be the trip of a lifetime on the ship's maiden voyage across the north Atlantic. Many were looking forward to starting new lives in the United States.
However, just before midnight on Sunday, 14 April 1912, Titanic's crew began to send out distress signals stating, 'We have struck an iceberg'. The liner had been steaming at speed when it collided with an enormous iceberg which stripped off her bilge under the waterline for more than 100 yards, opened up five of the front compartments and flooded the coal bunker servicing one of the boilers.
The damage was fatal, and some three hours after the disaster began to unfold the last visible part of Titanic slipped beneath the waves. There were only sixteen lifeboats and four collapsible dinghies - which was completely insufficient for the number of passengers making the crossing. As a consequence, more than 1,500 passengers and crew died: two out of every three people onboard perished.
Much has been written about the Titanic disaster, and it has been the subject matter for several films. The author is well-known for his depth of research and his attention to detail, and in a new style of format, he has selected fifty people involved in the disaster, and by using their specific eyewitness accounts he has managed to make the confusing situation much clearer, making it possible for the reader to experience the dreadful events as they unfolded. The book also includes biographical tributes to the fifty people, who came from all walks of life and geographical regions, telling who they were, their experiences during the disaster, and what happened to those who were fortunate enough to survive.
Wednesday, May 5, 2021
Monday, May 3, 2021
I grew up on Pop Punk and Country music. When I found Goth it became my favorite genre. Pop Punk will always hold a special place in my heart. I thought as a genre it was dead but I've seen a few new bands pop up recently! Thought I'd spotlight them here. Hope you enjoy!
Wednesday, April 28, 2021
Wednesday, April 21, 2021
Friday, April 16, 2021
Friday, April 9, 2021
I'm on the fence if to review this book - or any book - anymore. My goal has never been to offend anyone. Yet, I've come to realize that, for some reason, I'm drawn towards problematic books. I'm sure this says something awful about me as a person. Which makes me hate myself. I love this book and the message that drugs are terrible. They ruin not only your own life but others around you. I lived this book, my parents are/were drug addicts, and so are my older sister, brother, and even younger sister. I've watched drugs destroy their lives in ways they can't see because all that matters to them is getting more.
BUT, a huge but, someone else may come along, read this book, and be hurt or triggered by it, instead of seeing the message I do. That's not something I want. There are enough horrible things in this world without me adding to it by accident.
I do not want to add my voice but uplift someone else's who knows better than me. I want to remain teachable and open. I'm sorry to anyone my reviews/opinions have hurt in the past. I hope you'll forgive me. I've got a very long way to go.
Wednesday, April 7, 2021
Last year was awful, really terrible for me. I know what you are thinking, that last year was unpleasant for everyone. You're not wrong. But because last year was grim, I've really fallen behind on NetGalley. I logged on for the first time in nearly a year the other day and saw the books I had. Most were released last summer.
Most of them were due around late summer, but when my father passed away... my world just kinda stopped. I stopped. I still don't think I've gotten back to how I was. It's been nearly 8 months. I'm starting to understand that I'll never be the same.
But I've been reading a little more and decided to catch up on these books! I've got a few to share with you today.
Let's get started!
Sunday, April 4, 2021
Wednesday, March 31, 2021
When I first encountered Ford Donovan, I had no idea who he was...well, other than the obvious. Young, gorgeous, successful, smart. Did I mention young? If I did, it bears repeating. Ford Donovan was too young for me.
Let's back up to how it all started. My best friend decided I needed to start dating again. So, without my knowledge, she set up a profile for me on a popular dating site--one that invited men ages twenty-one to twenty-seven to apply for a date. Those nicknamed Cunnilingus King were told they'd go straight to the top for consideration. The profile wasn't supposed to go live. Another point that bears repeating--it wasn't supposed to.
Nevertheless, that's how I met Ford, and we started messaging. He made me laugh; yet I was adamant that because of his age, we could only be friends. But after weeks of wearing me down, I finally agreed to one date only--my first after twenty years of being with my high school sweetheart. I knew it couldn't last, but I was curious about him.
Though, you know what they say...curiosity kills the cat.
Monday, March 29, 2021
Sunday, March 28, 2021
None of us can stop death. As humans we will all die. We never know when death will come to claim us so we should live each moment to the fullest. Live each day as if it's the last, because it very well could be.
Nothing But Death by Pablo Neruda
There are cemeteries that are lonely,
graves full of bones that do not make a sound,
the heart moving through a tunnel,
in it darkness, darkness, darkness,
like a shipwreck we die going into ourselves,
as though we were drowning inside our hearts,
as though we lived falling out of the skin into the soul.
And there are corpses,
feet made of cold and sticky clay,
death is inside the bones,
like a barking where there are no dogs,
coming out from bells somewhere, from graves somewhere,
growing in the damp air like tears of rain.
Sometimes I see alone
coffins under sail,
embarking with the pale dead, with women that have dead hair,
with bakers who are as white as angels,
and pensive young girls married to notary publics,
caskets sailing up the vertical river of the dead,
the river of dark purple,
moving upstream with sails filled out by the sound of death,
filled by the sound of death which is silence.
Death arrives among all that sound
like a shoe with no foot in it, like a suit with no man in it,
comes and knocks, using a ring with no stone in it, with no
finger in it,
comes and shouts with no mouth, with no tongue, with no
Nevertheless its steps can be heard
and its clothing makes a hushed sound, like a tree.
I'm not sure, I understand only a little, I can hardly see,
but it seems to me that its singing has the color of damp violets,
of violets that are at home in the earth,
because the face of death is green,
and the look death gives is green,
with the penetrating dampness of a violet leaf
and the somber color of embittered winter.
But death also goes through the world dressed as a broom,
lapping the floor, looking for dead bodies,
death is inside the broom,
the broom is the tongue of death looking for corpses,
it is the needle of death looking for thread.
Death is inside the folding cots:
it spends its life sleeping on the slow mattresses,
in the black blankets, and suddenly breathes out:
it blows out a mournful sound that swells the sheets,
and the beds go sailing toward a port
where death is waiting, dressed like an admiral.
Wednesday, March 24, 2021
In a life filled with meaning and accomplishment, Michelle Obama has emerged as one of the most iconic and compelling women of our era. As First Lady of the United States of America—the first African American to serve in that role—she helped create the most welcoming and inclusive White House in history, while also establishing herself as a powerful advocate for women and girls in the U.S. and around the world, dramatically changing the ways that families pursue healthier and more active lives, and standing with her husband as he led America through some of its most harrowing moments. Along the way, she showed us a few dance moves, crushed Carpool Karaoke, and raised two down-to-earth daughters under an unforgiving media glare.
In her memoir, a work of deep reflection and mesmerizing storytelling, Michelle Obama invites readers into her world, chronicling the experiences that have shaped her—from her childhood on the South Side of Chicago to her years as an executive balancing the demands of motherhood and work, to her time spent at the world’s most famous address. With unerring honesty and lively wit, she describes her triumphs and her disappointments, both public and private, telling her full story as she has lived it—in her own words and on her own terms. Warm, wise, and revelatory, Becoming is the deeply personal reckoning of a woman of soul and substance who has steadily defied expectations—and whose story inspires us to do the same.
Wow. Just wow. I honestly have no words for my feelings. This book is probably one of the best things I've ever read. I loved reading about her early life and following her through all the crap she dealt with as first lady.
Something I had always admired about her was how classy she was. How she always seemed so above the stupid rumors that seemed to follow her. It was hard to read about the school counselor that thought she couldn't make it into the college she wanted and it was freaking awesome to see her prove that lady wrong.
Michelle never gave up, she just kept going and that alone is inspiring. I can admit I've let others tell me who I was or how to be before but she never did. She was always herself. I hope I can be half the amazing woman that she is.
I've never had a role model, most of the people I grew up around were trashy and I knew even as a kid that looking up to celebrities was really lame. After reading this... I think it's safe to say she's a wonderful role model.
Monday, March 22, 2021
Friday, March 19, 2021
Friday, March 12, 2021
Wednesday, March 10, 2021
Not far from Dullsville, someone's lurking in the dark. . . .
After meeting the handsome and shadowy Alexander Sterling, goth-girl Raven's dark world has a bright, new glow. But as in her favorite movie, "Kissing Coffins," Raven knows that love always has its complications, especially when Alexander has a big secret to guard.
When Alexander suddenly disappears, Raven leaves Dullsville to begin a dangerous search to find him. Can she stay safe, no matter who--or what--she encounters on the way?
I read this series when I was just a wee little tyke, and even though they were written for a very young audience, I still come back to them every so often. There are so few gothic characters in fiction. Of course, Raven calls herself goth and not gothic but, if you know enough about the subculture then you'll know that Raven is not actually goth but gothic. She doesn't really listen to goth music... only the mention of Bauhaus and then a few heavy rock bands that aren't goth at all.
Not that any of that matters! There I go again, rambling.
The point was, it's nice to read about a gothic character. I really wish we could get more. But I understand that to most goth and gothic is weird and creepy. Some people think we all worship the devil or kill people in our spare time.
So this is why I come back to this series. It's also an extremely easy read. The books are short, the plot is so simple it's not even funny, and everything moves fast. Way fast!
Kissing Coffins follows Raven as she tries to find her vampire boyfriend who has vanished and comes into contact with Jagger, a vampire from her boyfriend's past. Jagger's trying to turn her into his vampire bride forever. They end up keeping Jagger away, but then at the end, Jagger's twin sister shows up.
The whole plot of Kissing Coffins in one little paragraph; the writing helps the pace along, never using too many words to describe anything. The dialogue is pretty cheesy and Raven can be just as narrow-minded as her peers. Still, it's nice to see all the graveyard picnics.
So do I recommend this series? No. Unless you're about 8-12 then I'd say stay away.
Friday, March 5, 2021
March, spring comes this month, St Patrick Day; it starts tornado season here in Oklahoma, the days grow longer, and then it starts to warm up. I miss March back east; it was lovely, cold mornings but perfect afternoons. I used to love sitting outside with a book and watching the river. We lived like two blocks from the Ohio River, and I miss it. I can't wait to visit my family when Covid is over. Until then, I'll lose myself in books. What books you ask? Well, let's talk about them!
Wednesday, March 3, 2021
A powerful, revealing story of hope, love, justice, and the power of reading by a man who spent thirty years on death row for a crime he didn't commit.
In 1985, Anthony Ray Hinton was arrested and charged with two counts of capital murder in Alabama. Stunned, confused, and only twenty-nine years old, Hinton knew that it was a case of mistaken identity and believed that the truth would prove his innocence and ultimately set him free.
But with no money and a different system of justice for a poor black man in the South, Hinton was sentenced to death by electrocution. He spent his first three years on Death Row at Holman State Prison in agonizing silence—full of despair and anger toward all those who had sent an innocent man to his death. But as Hinton realized and accepted his fate, he resolved not only to survive, but find a way to live on Death Row. For the next twenty-seven years he was a beacon—transforming not only his own spirit, but those of his fellow inmates, fifty-four of whom were executed mere feet from his cell. With the help of civil rights attorney and bestselling author of Just Mercy, Bryan Stevenson, Hinton won his release in 2015.
With a foreword by Stevenson, The Sun Does Shine is an extraordinary testament to the power of hope sustained through the darkest times. Destined to be a classic memoir of wrongful imprisonment and freedom won, Hinton’s memoir tells his dramatic thirty-year journey and shows how you can take away a man’s freedom, but you can’t take away his imagination, humor, or joy.
Tuesday, March 2, 2021
Sunday, February 28, 2021
Some say the world will end in fire,
Some say in ice.
From what I’ve tasted of desire
I hold with those who favor fire.
But if it had to perish twice,
I think I know enough of hate
To say that for destruction ice
Is also great
And would suffice.
As someone who was raised Christian, I was always told the world would end in fire. But after growing up and seeing more of the world, I think the hate and coldness of people could certainly end the world as well.
Wednesday, February 24, 2021
Shuusei's sister visits and he and Aoi decide to act like a couple so she will stop bugging Shuusei about moving in with her while she's between guys. It goes kinda well until the sister demands they kiss... then it falls completely apart.
A new guy (Komine) enters the picture and he's got a thing for Aoi won't leave her alone, he wants her to like him back, even going so far as to play up that she's his master and he'll do whatever she wants. Weird guy. Shuusei's apartment is finally fixed and ready to go, he moves out and Komine moves in with Aoi, without her consent kinda. It doesn't go quite as Komine played and by the end of it, Shuusei's apartment is ruined again and he must move in with Aoi once more.
I'm really rooting for these two. I think they are so freaking cute together. The only thing I don't like how sometimes Aoi cries for no reason. Like you'd think she'd want Shuusei to kiss her but she starts crying instead. It really makes no sense to me. If I liked a guy and we had to pretend to date, I'd kiss him, a lot. Not cry when he tried. I just don't get it at all honestly.
Besides that, I'm still enjoying this story and I hope that our couple can finally move on without the weird Komine in the picture. The art is still stunning and I can't wait to read the next one.
Monday, February 22, 2021
If there ever was a place where dreams went to die, it's this place. Countless suicides, deaths, and just strange behavior that takes over the guests - this place has it all. Welcome to the Cecil Hotel, where you can check in but no promises that you'll check out...
Sunday, February 21, 2021
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
Friday, February 19, 2021
If you were to ask my partner, I'm not actually a 'gamer'. If you were to ask most gamers they would also say the same thing. I don't play enough games to classify myself as a 'gamer'. But, I do like to play video games.
This started when I was little and would watch my father and brother play things like Street Fighter, Tetris, Pac-Man, Super Mario World, and all those boring sports games.
Thursday, February 18, 2021
Monday, February 15, 2021
A spine-chilling and steamy romance between a Japanese sweets maker and the man who framed her mother for murder -- Something's Wrong With Us is the dark, psychological, sexy shojo series readers have been waiting for!
Married to the Enemy
Nao has followed in her mother's footsteps to become a traditional Japanese sweets maker. Even at 21, her skills are unparalleled, landing her a spot at a world-class confectionary company. However, when she meets the young, handsome heir to the company, she recognizes Tsubaki: her first friend, and the same boy who framed her mother for murder over a decade ago. As the only witness to the crime, Nao seizes her chance to get close to him, but instead of finding answers, she falls deeper for Tsubaki's allure...
Mini Manga Breakdown
A romance with a mystery?! Sign me up, please!
The plot starting is pretty simple. Everything is perfect for little Nao until Tsubaki frames her mother for the death of his father. Her mother ends up dying on trial, leaving Nao alone. After Nao turns 21, she receives a letter from her mother, saying she didn't kill anyone.
Nao wants to prove her mother didn't kill anyone and find the real killer. When a chance encounter has Tsubaki asking for her hand in marriage, she might get her wish. Though now married to the guy who claimed her mother was a murderer, finding the actual killer won't be easy.
Saturday, February 13, 2021
Thursday, February 11, 2021
Tuesday, February 9, 2021
Stephanie took part in Veganuary, the month-long global challenge to try veganism, for January 2019. In Finally a Vegan she describes how her changing attitudes to animal welfare and exploitation led her from staunch omnivore to vegetarianism in the preceding years. She recalls her excitement at taking part in the challenge itself and shares her daily food diary, failures as well as triumphs.
Drawing on her post-Veganuary experiences, Stephanie then responds to the common questions But what about my boots? But isn't it expensive? and But surely it isn't healthy? before honestly asking herself How vegan do I want to be?
Ideal for vegan-curious readers, Finally a Vegan is an insightful memoir inspired by one life-changing month.
10% of Finally A Vegan profits will be donated to vegan projects and charities.
Monday, February 8, 2021
Friday, February 5, 2021
Welcome to a new month but the same old stuff. Because it seems that the world just can't get it together. Yes, we've made some progress in a way, but in other ways, I feel we are taking series of steps back. But, this is not the post for that.
Today, we're going to talk about the books I want to read this month.
Wednesday, February 3, 2021
Tuesday, February 2, 2021
Monday, February 1, 2021
Sunday, January 31, 2021
To me, this poem is about how we see death during our life. As children, we know about death but never worry about it. 'It can't happen to us, surely'. But as we get older we know that we won't live forever and so we start to fear the unknown, death.
BECAUSE I COULD NOT STOP FOR DEATH
Because I could not stop for Death –
He kindly stopped for me –
The Carriage held but just Ourselves –
We slowly drove – He knew no haste
And I had put away
My labor and my leisure too,
For His Civility –
We passed the School, where Children strove
At Recess – in the Ring –
We passed the Fields of Gazing Grain –
We passed the Setting Sun –
Or rather – He passed Us –
The Dews drew quivering and Chill –
For only Gossamer, my Gown –
My Tippet – only Tulle –
We paused before a House that seemed
A Swelling of the Ground –
The Roof was scarcely visible –
The Cornice – in the Ground –
Since then – 'tis Centuries – and yet
Feels shorter than the Day
I first surmised the Horses' Heads
Were toward Eternity –
Wednesday, January 27, 2021
By 2021, the World War has killed millions, driving entire species into extinction and sending mankind off-planet. Those who remain covet any living creature, and for people who can't afford one, companies build incredibly realistic simulacra: horses, birds, cats, sheep. They've even built humans. Immigrants to Mars receive androids so sophisticated they are indistinguishable from true men or women. Fearful of the havoc these artificial humans could wreak, the government bans them from Earth. Driven into hiding, unauthorized androids live among human beings, undetected. Rick Deckard, an officially sanctioned bounty hunter, is commissioned to find rogue androids and "retire" them. But when cornered, androids fight back - with lethal force.
The Inspiration for the Film BLADE RUNNER.
Originally published in 1968, Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? remains a masterpiece ahead of its time, a prescient rendering of a dark future. Now comes a striking new edition of the classic for future fans to enjoy.
Monday, January 25, 2021
Sunday, January 24, 2021
THE HAUNTED PALACE
In the greenest of our valleys
By good angels tenanted,
Once a fair and stately palace—
Radiant palace—reared its head.
In the monarch Thought’s dominion,
It stood there!
Never seraph spread a pinion
Over fabric half so fair!
Banners yellow, glorious, golden,
On its roof did float and flow
(This—all this—was in the olden
Time long ago)
And every gentle air that dallied,
In that sweet day,
Along the ramparts plumed and pallid,
A wingèd odor went away.
Wanderers in that happy valley,
Through two luminous windows, saw
Spirits moving musically
To a lute’s well-tunèd law,
Round about a throne where, sitting,
In state his glory well befitting,
The ruler of the realm was seen.
And all with pearl and ruby glowing
Was the fair palace door,
Through which came flowing, flowing, flowing
And sparkling evermore,
A troop of Echoes, whose sweet duty
Was but to sing,
In voices of surpassing beauty,
The wit and wisdom of their king.
But evil things, in robes of sorrow,
Assailed the monarch’s high estate;
(Ah, let us mourn!—for never morrow
Shall dawn upon him, desolate!)
And round about his home the glory
That blushed and bloomed
Is but a dim-remembered story
Of the old time entombed.
And travellers, now, within that valley,
Through the red-litten windows see
Vast forms that move fantastically
To a discordant melody;
While, like a ghastly rapid river,
Through the pale door
A hideous throng rush out forever,
And laugh—but smile no more.
This is how 2020 was to me. I started with such promise before slowly sinking into darkness. My own personal life was like that. I went through the darkest time in my life. Some may say that reading dark poems only depress them more. To me, it shows I'm not alone and that we all go through dark times. Makes me feel less lonely.
Thursday, January 21, 2021
Wednesday, January 20, 2021
They call her Traitor Kate. It’s a title Kate Brighton inherited from her father after he tried to assassinate the high king years ago. Now Kate lives as an outcast, clinging to the fringes of society as a member of the Relay, the imperial courier service. Only those most skilled in riding and bow hunting ride for the Relay; and only the fastest survive, for when dark falls, the nightdrakes—deadly flightless dragons—come out to hunt. Fortunately, Kate has a secret edge: she is a wilder, born with magic that allows her to influence the minds of animals. But it’s this magic that she needs to keep hidden, as being a wilder is forbidden, punishable by death or exile. And it’s this magic that leads her to a caravan massacred by nightdrakes in broad daylight—the only survivor her childhood friend, her first love, the boy she swore to forget, the boy who broke her heart.
The high king’s second son, Corwin Tormane, never asked to lead. Even as he waits for the uror—the once-in-a-generation ritual to decide which of the king’s children will succeed him—he knows it’s always been his brother who will assume the throne. And that’s fine by him. He’d rather spend his days away from the palace, away from the sight of his father, broken with sickness from the attempt on his life. But the peacekeeping tour Corwin is on has given him too much time to reflect upon the night he saved his father’s life—the night he condemned the would-be killer to death and lost the girl he loved. Which is why he takes it on himself to investigate rumors of unrest in one of the remote city-states, only for his caravan to be attacked—and for him to be saved by Kate.
With their paths once more entangled, Kate and Corwin have to put the past behind them. The threat of drakes who attack in the daylight is only the beginning of a darker menace stirring in the kingdom—one whose origins have dire implications for Kate’s father’s attack upon the king and will thrust them into the middle of a brewing civil war in the kingdom of Rime.
Monday, January 18, 2021
Thursday, January 14, 2021
Monday, January 11, 2021
Sunday, January 10, 2021
Wednesday, January 6, 2021
I hope you all had a lovely holiday. Mine was kept low-key, but my partner and I did watch the last half of Vikings. God, I won't spoil anything for anyone who hasn't watched it. But I didn't care for the ending at all. It was disheartening to me.
But moving on, it's that time again my friend, where I mention the books I want to read this month and then never read them. Of course, I'm still hoping to change that and so I've picked books that I really want to read. Hopefully, this helps.