January 01, 2017
So, I am not going to pretend that I haven't been the worst blogger in the world. I am also not going to make excuses... I just got REALLY lazy. I am really sorry that I haven't posted since July 28th. I hope the next year will be better.
I just wanted to take this opportunity to wish everybody a...
HAPPY NEW YEAR!
Genre: Adult Fantasy
Release Date: July 2016
Summary from Goodreads:
Song of Sparrows (Songs of Everealm #2)
Genre; Adult Fantasy
Release Date: July 2016
Summary from Goodreads:
Hello everybody! I am very excited to be a part of this year's Potterhead July, hosted by the lovely Aentee @ Read At Midnight. She has brought a bunch of people together to create a whooping 85 posts to appreciate Harry Potter before the release of The Cursed Child.Today, I decided to put together a bunch of ways Magic has helped build up our imaginations.
- It opens up your mind
If you are willing to believe in magic, something that seems so out of this world and impossible, you will definitely be willing to open your mind up to a wide range of other things that seem like huge stretches to accomplish. That's creativity for you, folks. Being able to think of and believe in basically anything, no matter how hard or how unreal it may seem.
- You are part of something which is practically unknown
Magic is a huge, huge blank canvas that you can splatter many different paints on. You can make it into anything and it would work. It's like the biggest ball of rainbow play-dough in the whole world. You can mould it into anything, make it in any colour, and squish it back into a ball and re-shape it when you're unhappy with it. This gives your mind the chance to explore all those endless possibilities and allows it to be as creative as it can be to bring out the magic in itself (ha ha).
- It excites you
I don't know about you guys, but whenever I think of world with magic, I think about a world where I wield a ginormously huge amount of power over my life, where I hold the ability to do anything with a sprinkle of the secret ingredient, where I can touch the sky and fly up high with no limitations. This excites me a lot, and in my experience, my mind is a lot more creative when it's pumped about something. Things like magic boost up your enthusiasm levels, transferring all that positivity and buzz to your mind, which jumps around with its hands in the air like it just does not care, goes bonkers, and comes up with the craziest and most innovative things.
- It helps you look at things differently
When you immerse yourself in the possibility of magic, it changes the way you look at the world. After reading or watching about magic, I always think of possibilities I could do little things in my life with magic - I could run faster, I could fly to school and bypass traffic and a long, boring bus ride, etc. I feel like this gives my mind an opportunity to be imaginative about usually boring things. It increases my minds ability to rain spirit and animation to any old mundane element.
Those are the ways I think magic helps build up imaginations most. What other ways do you think contribute? Do you agree with choices? What do you like most about magic? Why do you like magic? Leave a comment down below and let me know!
HAPPY POTTERED JULY!
Guest Post July 15, 2016
Hello everybody! Today, an exciting new thing is being introduced to Million Book Mill: GUEST POSTS! The wonderful Caroline @ Culture Coverage has very kindly written a creative bookish post for you fangirls and fanboys! (Thanks a bunch by the way, if you're reading this Caroline!) She has decided to share with you...
5 Great Titles to Make You Feel Like a Literary Snob
Ever walk into a coffee shop and feel like you want to be as verbally abusive of the illiterate as all the wannabe novelists with their MacBooks open? Do you feel like you’ve been left out of literary conversations over time among some of your friends?
Whether that’s your exact imagery (or maybe a very heavily opinionated one of mine), there have been many occasions where I’ve felt left out due to my book choices not being as top shelf as everyone else’s. Fortunately, I’ve got a couple titles for people who have had the same problems. Not only will they be riveting reads, but there will be a time down the road when you’ll be able to ask people why they haven’t gotten to reading it yet.
So whether you’re in the mood to impress the literary elite or just looking to expand your horizons, here are five titles that are sure to get the job done.
Murakami may be known as the greatest Japanese writer of all time for his elusive, magical stories, but it’s his memoir What I Talk About When I Talk About Running that really sets the pop culture junkies away from the true fans. Throughout his training to run the New York City Marathon, Murakami takes his readers on a rare journey into his own storied mind. Containing deep obsessions with writing and running as well as insightful commentary, readers get a good look into the private life of a very personal writer whose words have shaped a generation.
A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
This novel requires a very singular mind to enjoy. Those singular minds usually belong to literary geniuses. John Kennedy Toole’s A Confederacy of Dunces, published 11 years after his death, is a picaresque novel. It follows that mold by having very little plot development, an array of beguiling characters, and a protagonist (named Ignatius J. Reilly) who seems at once delusional and creatively determined at the same time. Set in New Orleans and fashioning himself as a sort of modern Don Quixote, Ignatius J. Reilly himself can take days to fully analyze and form an opinion on.
The Paris Review
There are few things more highbrow than a high-level literary magazine. As far as literary magazines go, The Paris Review is one of my favorites. Founded in Paris in 1953, it’s been headquartered in New York City since 1973. There it has been publishing the best of rhetorical form for over 50 years. Including everything from great interviews right in the front to poems, shorts stories, and works of art, The Paris Review has published big names such as Samuel Beckett, Ezra Pound, Joan Didion and Ernest Hemingway.
A Good Man Is Hard to Find - Flannery O’Connor
Oh O’Connor, what a devilish writer. When it comes to taking apart a Flannery work, it’s best to do so with a Bible close at hand. She’s notorious for bringing strong Catholic (and Southern Irish) culture into each one of her works. Born in Savannah, Georgia, O’Connor was a pioneer of the Southern Gothic style along with William Faulkner, Eudora Welty, and Tennessee Williams. Her most famous short story is just an introduction to her work, which includes another two novels and more than 30 short stories. For this one in particular, a good Southern family heads off on a summer vacation that takes a turn for the worst. It’s an interesting story that will leave you with plenty of nagging questions by its conclusion.
Oscar’s creator, Junot Diaz, may be one of the most celebrated literary figures in modern American literature. As the editor of The Boston Review and author of This Is How You Lose Her, The Brief and Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao is a clear indication that Diaz is on the brink of winning a Pulitzer. Consumed with the lives of Dominican immigrants, the book centers on one nerdy guy named Oscar who searches for love and meaning in the U.S. This happens only for Oscar to return to his homeland to find much of what he was looking for. This alternative literary pick will win you points for its stark diversity and emotional story.
Whether you’re determined for a little self-improvement or just want a couple bragging rights at the next writers’ symposium, these literary works of genius are sure to provide you with something great to talk about.
About the Author: Caroline is a digital nomad and online writer who splits her time between writing for Culture Coverage and Secure Thoughts. She also enjoys reading her way through the stacks at her local bookstore. Whether it's written or watchable, great storytelling is her weakness, and she's out to share the written (and spoken) word with the world.
I hope you enjoyed Caroline's genius work about some wonderful pieces of literature. Do you have any other books that you’d like to add to this list? Do you have thoughts on the books above? Please leave a comment below and tell us what you think!
P.S: Be Sure to check out Caroline's Website HERE. I bet you'll find some fun stuff to look through.
Girl in the Shadows
(Girl on a Wire #2)
Published by: Skyscape
Publication date: July 5th 2016
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult
Eighteen-year-old Moira Mitchell grew up in the shadows of Vegas’s stage lights while her father’s career as a magician soared. More than anything, Moira wants to be a magician too, but her father is dead set against her pursuing magic.
When an invitation to join the Cirque American mistakenly falls into Moira’s possession, she takes action. Instead of giving the highly coveted invitation to its intended recipient, Raleigh, her father’s handsome and worldly former apprentice, Moira takes off to join the Cirque. If she can perform alongside its world-famous acts, she knows she’ll be able to convince her dad that magic is her future.
But when Moira arrives, things take on an intensity she can’t control as her stage magic suddenly feels like…real magic. To further distract her, Raleigh shows up none too pleased at Moira’s presence, all while the Cirque’s cocky and intriguing knife thrower, Dez, seems to have it out for her. As tensions mount and Moira’s abilities come into question, she must decide what’s real and what’s an illusion. If she doesn’t sort it out in time, she may forever remain a girl in the shadows.
The characters were very vibrant. I liked how Moira wouldn't let the fact that almost everybody she loved didn't believe she could achieve her dream, mostly because of her gender, bring her down and make her stop pursuing her dream. I'm glad the author decided to explore gender discrimination and sexism a little in this book. I did find it extremely annoying how she found it almost too easy to fall head-over-heals in love with some random guy, ignoring his every flaw. It was a bit insta-lovey.
The writing style itself was not bad. It didn't bore me to death and it did make me want to keep reading. However, the pacing was a bit problematic at times. It felt very inconsistent, as at times it went so fast I would get through 70-80 pages without noticing and at times it was very slow and a teeny bit bland.
Overall, Girl in the Shadows is a pretty great read with an interesting, unique plot involving an intriguing circus. It consists of very lively characters and an enjoyable writing style. Although there might be a few slow patches, I definitely recommend it.
Gwenda Bond is the author of the young adult novels Lois Lane: Fallout and Girl on a Wire, among others. Lois Lane: Double Down and Girl in the Shadows, a companion novel to Girl on a Wire set in the Cirque American, are next up in 2016. She’s also hard at work on some secret projects you don’t know about yet.
Her nonfiction writing has appeared in Publishers Weekly, Locus Magazine, the Los Angeles Times, and many other publications. She has an MFA in writing from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. She lives in a hundred-year-old house in Lexington, Kentucky, with her husband, author Christopher Rowe. There are rumors she escaped from a screwball comedy, and she might have a journalism degree because of her childhood love of Lois Lane. Visit her online at www.gwendabond.com or @gwenda on Twitter.
Welcome to Sortilege Falls
by Libby Heily
Genre: YA Magical Mystery
Release Date: June 12th 2016
Fire & Ice Young Adult Books
Summary from Goodreads:
Sixteen-year-old Grape Merriweather has just moved to Sortilege Falls and already she knows something isn't right. A small pack of teenage models, too beautiful for words, holds the town in their sway. The models have no plans on making Grape's life easy. But no matter how cruel they are to Grape and the other “Normals”, no one can stay angry with them for long.
Grape's life changes for the better, or so she thinks, when Mandy, the only “nice” model, befriends her. But that’s when the trouble truly begins. Mandy's friendship places Grape smack in the middle of a medical mystery that has the entire town on edge. One by one, the models fall ill from an incurable disease. Grape quickly realizes that the models' parents are hiding a secret, even as they watch their children die. To save her only friend, Grape will have to find the truth–and that means putting her life in danger.
Book Haul June 26, 2016
So.... I went to Half Price Books. I went last summer and got 7 books, this time I got more! I also went to the library because FREE BOOKS (for rent.) Yay books!
Series: Everealm #5
Genre: YA Fantasy
Publication Date: May 30th 2016
Format Read: Ebook
Publisher: The Author...?
Synopsis of Book 1:
Breestlin cannot escape her destiny to become ruler of her father's kingdom, but she never planned to become queen at twenty-three years of age. Upon the return of her first love, Rowan, Bree must quickly learn how to adapt to both her new responsibilities as a ruler and her inability to suppress her feelings for Rowan. To make matters more difficult, her outcast uncle, Silas, will stop at nothing to get what he desires, putting lives and the kingdom in danger. Bree must seek the assistance of the wizard, Dagan, who in a twist of fate discovers much more about his family (and himself) than he could ever imagine in this steamy love story, full of mystery and romance...
Danger awaits, as we journey through Everealm, the first book of the Everealm Series.
3.5 stars June 22, 2016
Author: Rainbow Rowell
Publication Date: July 8th 2014
Format Read: Audiobook
Publisher: St. Martin's Press
Georgie McCool knows her marriage is in trouble; it has been in trouble for a long time. She still loves her husband, Neal, and Neal still loves her, deeply — but that almost seems beside the point now.
Maybe that was always beside the point.
Two days before they’re supposed to visit Neal’s family in Omaha for Christmas, Georgie tells Neal that she can’t go. She’s a TV writer, and something’s come up on her show; she has to stay in Los Angeles. She knows that Neal will be upset with her — Neal is always a little upset with Georgie — but she doesn't expect him to pack up the kids and go home without her.
When her husband and the kids leave for the airport, Georgie wonders if she’s finally done it. If she’s ruined everything.
That night, Georgie discovers a way to communicate with Neal in the past. It’s not time travel, not exactly, but she feels like she’s been given an opportunity to fix her marriage before it starts...