December 2011 Archive

Delirium by Lauren Oliver- Audiobook Review

Author: Lauren Oliver
Audio Length: 11 hours and 41 min.
Release Date: 1/24/2011
Narrator: Sarah Drew
Format: Unabridged

Before scientists found the cure, people thought love was a good thing. They didn’t understand that once love — the deliria – blooms in your blood, there is no escaping its hold. Things are different now. Scientists are able to eradicate love, and the government demands that all citizens receive the cure upon turning eighteen. Lena Holoway has always looked forward to the day when she’ll be cured. A life without love is a life without pain: safe, measured, predictable, and happy.

But with ninety-five days left until her treatment, Lena does the unthinkable: She falls in love. Goodreads.

This book really goes to show me not to judge a book before I read it. I thought this premise sounded ridiculous, but boy was I wrong. This book has completely transformed my way of thinking about writing. I 100% believe Lena is a real person- though that is partly due to Sarah Drew’s narration. Lena is a lush character, filled with hopes and dreams that are in accordance with the structure of her society (where love is a disease that people are cured from at the age of 18). After she meets Alex though, she is transformed.

Usually, I’m not a big fan of love as the theme of a book. It doesn’t hook me (check out next Tuesday’s post to find out why), but Oliver made this work. Love wasn’t a goopy, silly thing. It was full of power with the ability to take the film off Lena’s eyes and shows her the truth about her world.

I doubt I can say enough about Delirium and Lauren Oliver’s writing style. She has absolutely risen my expectations for authors and for myself as a writer. If you haven’t read this book, you need to and if you have read it then please listen to it.

Drew doesn’t read like she’s reading a book (which is what I’ve found many readers do). Instead, she becomes the character and completely made me forget I was listening to a book (Jim Dale, Jesse Eisenburg style). Drew is incredible. That’s it. I will absolutely be listening to the other books she has read. Go listen. Now.

(Next week, I’ll review Wither).

The In Between and Synopsis Writing

I am in the strange in between, when my WIP is with critters and I’m not interested in starting a new project. Instead of sitting around, twiddling my thumbs, I’m working on the lovely synopsis. I’m all about using free time wisely.

Incase any of you are in the same spot, I highly suggest checking out Lora Rivera’s checklist. Feel free to catch me on Twitter or send me an e-mail if you need a synopsis writing buddy!

Friday, I’ll have another audiobook review up for you all. Sorry I missed last week, but I was back home for Christmas :)

An Army of Santa’s

This is how Santa delivers all those toys in one night. Quite frankly, it doesn’t make sense; there just has to be more than one of him.

Santa Sleighs!

Don’t you wish you worked with me?? ;) You’d get one of these if you did. I’ve been making candy cane santa sleighs since early highschool and they’re always a hit.

All you need is a glue gun, some candy canes, other random candy (I like to mix up the chocolate with something fruity, hence the Reese’s/Laffy Taffy/Hershey’s) and a santa shaped chocolate (I get mine from the dollar section at Target). Glue ‘em together and Tada! You’ve got yourself a Santa Sleigh!

Merry Christmas!!

Missing You- Audiobook Review

Ever since a walk home on a particularly stormy day, Jessica Mastriani has had an ability like no other. She became known worldwide as Lightning Girl a psychic who could find the location of anyone, dead or alive. Jess finally had no choice but to embrace her newfound talent, and ended up lending her skills to the U.S. government.

But her work for them has taken a terrible toll, and Jess resurfaces months later a shadow of her former self, her powers gone, Lightning Girl no more. Her only hope is starting over in a new place, a big city where nobody knows her. It’s only when Rob Wilkins unexpectedly shows up on her doorstep that she’s forced to face her past. Rob, all the way from back home, needs her help. But how can Jess, her powers gone, find anyone, let alone the sister of a man she once loved . . . when she can’t even find herself?

Missing You, the fifth and final book in the 1-800-Where-R-You series

Author: Meg Cabot
Audio Length: 5 hours and 41 min.
Release Date: 12/20/2007
Narrator: Johanna Parker

I read the 1-800-Where-R-You series in early high school but never picked up the last installment. I happened across this audiobook in the library and figured I might as well finish the series as I enjoyed the first books.

As for the book, Meg Cabot did a nice job of rounding out the series. I was a bit fuzzy on the details of earlier books as it’s been..oh…a good eight or nine years since I read them, but I didn’t feel a bit lost. This book wasn’t as action packed as the others, but I honestly didn’t miss it. It felt like a good, solid end to the series with character plots coming to a full close.

I do recommend this series for anyone who hasn’t read them. Jessica is a fabulous main character.

I’ve lived in the South for long enough now that I can easily tell the difference between a real Southern accent and one put on. Johanna Parker began reading with one of the most awful Southern accents and I knew I wouldn’t make it past the first track. Thankfully, she dropped it come the second chapter. My main qualm with her reading was this and the fact that the voices she chose for characters tended to change, specifically the one for Jessica’s mother.

I have come to fully back Sophia’s claim that actors make the best readers. For some reason, they understand that for a woman reading male dialogue, they don’t have to do a fake attempt at making their voice low, sounding like a man’s. All they need to do is read with a different voice/accent/lilt. Parker’s male voices were a tad strange-sounding, along these lines. Next week, I have a great example of a woman reader who understands this. Stay tuned!

I say, stick with this book as a read, not as a listen.

—-

I was torn between TL and Kim’s suggestions. I love push ups and have already added her suggestion into my routine and Kim went above and beyond, coming up with some great ideas. I had to let random.org choose between them and the winner of Monday’s challenge is…

KIM VAN SICKLER! Yay! Shoot me an e-mail and I’ll line you up with your winnings. Thank you everyone who participated and gave me ideas. I am much happier for them :)

I Challenge You!

to think of something brilliant for me!

I sit all day at work and am not naturally a person who can do this. I like to walk and exercise and have the freedom to move when I want to. I LOVE my job, but unfortunately, in my position, I can’t do these things.

My fix for this is that I walk the back stairwell on my break and do little leg lifts under my desk. I’ve racked my brain and have come up with few other useful ideas.

My challenge to you is to think of useful workouts I can do at my desk, nothing noticeable, but something to keep me from going stir crazy. Extra points for thinking of something I can do for my core.

For incentive, I’ll send one of my cool hand-made journals to whoever comes up with the best/most helpful idea.

Fun challenge? Yes? Have at it! And good luck ;)

(Winnings is only for those in the U.S. Sorry :(  The Challenge ends Friday).