Monday, September 30, 2013

Heat and Santa Fe Rules by Stuart Woods

Abridged Audio CDs
Heat & Santa Fe Rules by Stuart Woods is my first encounter with anything written by Stuart Woods.

I really enjoyed listening to both Santa Fe Rules and Heat as each story was captivating from start to finish... Although I must admit that I enjoyed listening to Santa Fe Rules more than Heat. Both novels fall into the thriller/mystery genre, which is one of my favorite genres to read.

Here is a synopsis of Heat and Santa Fe Rules from Amazon.Com's website:
Santa Fe Rules: When successful Hollywood producer Wolf Willett reads in The New York Times of his own murder back home in Santa Fe, he wonders how the murderer will react to this obvious case of mistaken identity. Home again, Wolf is immediately pegged as the chief suspect and, with everything at stake, hires the best criminal defense attorney in the Southwest. With his life and career in shambles, Wolf sets out to find the truth . . . but will time run out before he can puzzle his way through an elaborate web of intrigue and identify a killer who doesn't play by Santa Fe rules?

Heat: Jesse Warden is at the end of his rope. Imprisoned for the wrong crime, he spends half his time in solitary confinement and the other half fighting for his life because he once was a cop. Then a covert federal agency offers him a chance to get out, for a price. To gain his freedom, he must infiltrate a dangerous and reclusive religious cult in the mountains of the Idaho panhandle, a mission which turns out to be a great deal more perilous than his stay in prison.
I also felt that Tony Roberts does an excellent job of reading both Heat and Santa Fe Rules.

 Until my next post, happy reading!!

Body Surfing by Anita Shreve

Unabridged Audiobook
Body Surfing by Anita Shreve is my first experience reading or rather listening to anything written by best-selling author, Anita Shreve. 

I listened to the unabridged version of 'Body Surfing' on compact disc. I thought 'Body Surfing' was a decent novel and would rate it 3 stars out of 5 stars. 

'Body Surfing' started out slow in my opinion. I just couldn't get into the storyline or care that much about the characters listening to the first three compact discs. In fact, I almost gave up listening to this audiobook altogether. However, I pushed onward and finished listening to the rest of this audiobook despite my initial misgivings. I'm glad that I did because 'Body Surfing' did pick up and I found myself enjoying the remaining four compact discs. The ending of 'Body Surfing' leaves much to the readers imagination as to how the relationship between the two characters mentioned  at the end of the novel will turn out. I don't like these types of endings. I wished that the author had given us, the readers, a tad more direction as to whether the two characters begin a budding relationship or not.

The remaining question for me is will I go out of my way to read another novel my Anita Shreve? Probably not. I just wasn't all that captivated by Anita Shreve's storytelling in 'Body Surfing' enough for me to want to read more of here novels.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

The Scariest Mothers in Books!

I came across an article in the Huffington Post titled 11 Scariest Mothers in Books by Koren Zailckas. I had immediately thought of the novel 'Flowers in the Attic' by V. C. Andrews after reading the article's title, so decided to see if it had made the list. Sure enough, 'Flowers in the Attic' by V. C. Andrews did make the list along with 10 other books. 

Click on the above link to see which other books made the list. If you like reading books that feature scary mothers, you may even have a few new titles to add to your reading wishlist!

Until my next post, happy reading!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

A Boomer's Perspective on Banned Books Week

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Censorship and Invisibility: A Boomer Perspective by Barbara Jones, Director for the ALA Office For Intellectual Freedom found on the Huffington Post website.

In her article, Ms. Jones writes a very powerful message about censorship:
I am deeply concerned about the current deluge of removals of classic books from the American literary canon. I thought that, as a society, we had reached a consensus that the literary canon should represent diverse segments of U.S. society. Multicultural literary works are not being included because of some need for "political correctness." They are included because they are excellent and have been acknowledged as such by countless awards for literary merit. Though books that deal with controversial topics may make some readers uncomfortable, such literature offers a vehicle for true learning and understanding.

I believe that increased attention to educational standards such as Common Core and politically motivated scrutiny is the cause for these calls for censorship. It is great that people care about and pay attention to what students are reading. On the other hand, it is alarming that they do not respect 1) those families that may want their children to read the book; 2) the expectations that students entering college will have already encountered these classic books in high school; and 3) the experience and expertise of the librarians, teachers, and other specialists who recommended these books for the curriculum in the first place. 

During Banned Books Week it is time for us to stop and think. To stop and discuss. Not to create barriers to history, or to conversation. Not to force invisibility on anyone in the United States. 

If we can't look back to our past, we can't move forward.

I wish more people held this same attitude as Ms. Jones does! I do think Banned Books Week is important and "that the literary canon should represent diverse segments of U.S. society."

Friday, September 27, 2013

The Freedom to Read is Under Attack

I enjoyed reading Freedom to Read Under Fire as Attempts to Ban Books Continue by Courtney L. Young, the ALA President-Elect.

Ms. Young writes in her article the following:
What would you do if you went to the library to check out a book, only to find it wasn't there? Not because it was already checked out, but because someone else disapproved of its content and had it removed from library shelves? 

Not likely to happen? Think again.

Despite the perception that censorship no longer occurs in the United States, attempts to ban books frequently take place in our schools and libraries. A challenge is a formal, written complaint requesting a book be removed from library shelves or banned from the school curriculum. 

According to the American Library Association's (ALA) Office for Intellectual Freedom (OIF), there were 464 reported attempts to remove or restrict materials from schools and libraries in 2012 and more than 17,700 attempts since 1990, when the ALA began to record book challenges. 

The statistics on the attempts made 'to remove or restrict materials from schools and libraries' is simply mind blowing! I can't quite wrap my brain around the fact that so many people want books banned or removed from schools and libraries. 

I fully agree with Courtney L. Young's statement that "Censorship denies our freedom as individuals to choose and think for ourselves." I want the freedom to chose what I want to read and not be denied the right to read material that someone else says I shouldn't read.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Sherman Alexie Talks About Censorship

I read Sherman Alexie's book The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian last year during Banned Books Week and LOVED IT!! Sherman Alexie's writing and storytelling is amazing in The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian. I would highly recommend reading this book.

The above YouTube Video features Sherman Alexie speaking out about censorship. It wonderful to listen to an author talk about banned books and censorship when they've been one who has had one of their books banned/challenged.

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Share Some of Your Favorite Banned Book Titles!

This week is Banned Books Week. Share with me some of your favorite banned books.

Here's a list of a few of my favorite banned books:

To Kill A Mocking Bird by Harper Lee
The Color Purple by Alice Walker
Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger
The Awakening by Kate Chopin
One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest by Ken Kesey
The Giver by Lois Lowry
I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie
The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood

Until my next post, happy reading!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Brad Meltzer to Discuss Banned Books Week on Google Hangouts!

Interested in discussing Banned Books Week with New York Times bestselling author, Brad Meltzer? The opportunity to do so is tonight, September 24th at 8pm Eastern/5pm Pacific! You must RSVP for this event at the Google+ Events Page. I hope you are able to participate in this online hangout!

As a side note, I learned about this evening's event from the Comic Book Resources website in an article titled Brad Meltzer to talk Banned Books Week on Google Hangouts by Steve Sunu. Click on the above link to learn more.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Bookish Quote of the Day!!

"Censorship denies our freedom as individuals to choose and think for ourselves." Courtney L. Young

Do Banning Books Encourage More Readers?

I've always wondered if banning books causes more people to read them? My instinct says yes!! I'd be curious as to why people wouldn't want me or anyone to read a particular book. Wouldn't you?? Make a fuss over a book and more than likely, someone will want to read. 

I noticed a few days ago that NPR had a radio broadcast hosted by Michel Martin titled Could Banning Books Actually Encourage More Readers?. I took the time to listen to this brief broadcast as I was interested in learning more about the topic.

Do you think banning books causes more people to read them?

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Happy Banned Books Week -- September 22nd - 28th to All!!

What are you doing this week to celebrate Banned Books Week? I'm choosing to read I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou this week to celebrate Banned Books Week.

According to the Wikipedia page for 'I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings', it states the following information:
Caged Bird has been criticized by many parents, causing it to be removed from school curricula and library shelves. According to the National Coalition Against Censorship, parents and schools have objected to the book's depictions of lesbianism, premarital cohabitation, pornography, and violence.[117] Some have been critical of its sexually explicit scenes, use of language, and irreverent religious depictions.[118] The book is challenging for young readers and some adults, so educators have stressed the importance of preparing teachers to introduce the book effectively.[17] Caged Bird appeared third on the American Library Association (ALA) list of the 100 Most Frequently Challenged Books of 1990–2000,[119] sixth on the ALA's 2000–2009 list,[120] and one of the ten books most frequently banned from high school and junior high school libraries and classrooms.[121]

I read 'I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings' for the first time my junior year of high school for a contemporary literature class. I really enjoyed reading 'I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings' at the time and Maya Angelou has since become one of my favorite authors. I've had the honor of seeing her speak live before an audience twice in my lifetime. What a wonderful experience I had hearing Dr. Angelou speak and what an amazing woman she is!

In high school, I wasn't even aware at the time that 'I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings' was even a banned book. I'm not even sure I knew what a banned book was back then as naive as that might sound to those reading this post. I'm simply grateful that my high school was progressive enough to allow teachers to teach this book and many other books that have also been banned over the years to their students.

I'm currently on page 120 of  'I know Why the Caged Bird Sings' and look forward to finishing it later this week. Until my next post, happy reading!

Ten Banned Book ~~ YouTube Video

Checkout this well put together YouTube video pertaining to banned books!

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Pearl Chase First Lady of Santa Barbara by Cheri Rae

I enjoy reading about local history and Pearl Chase First Lady of Santa Barbara by Cheri Rae fits the bill perfectly! 

Pearl Chase First Lady of Santa Barbara by Cheri Rae is a small book in stature, short in length, but filled with lots of interesting information about Pearl Chase. Cheri Rae writes in the introduction of her book the following about Ms. Chase:
Pearl Chase was Santa Barbara's most influential woman of the 20th century. With her interests in public health and education; the arts and architecture; urban planning and environmental integrity, she was a true Renaissance woman who blazed her own unique trail, and compelled others to follow in her footsteps. 
It didn't take me very long to read Pearl Chase First Lady of Santa Barbara. I truly enjoyed learning more about the wonderful woman who helped shape Santa Barbara. Pearl Chase accomplished a lot in her life as a private citizen and she never held public office. It's simply amazing all that she accomplished!

Until my next post, happy reading!

Friday, September 20, 2013

Friday Finds #9

Friday Finds is a book meme hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading

Friday Finds is a chance to share and show off the books you discovered during the week and would like to add to your reading list... 

Or a place to simply feature the books you've actually purchased throughout the week and have added to your to be read pile!

Earlier this week, I visited The Book Den bookstore in downtown Santa Barbara, California. I specifically visited The Book Den to purchase a book titled Pearl Chase First Lady of Santa Barbara by Cheri Rae. 

I'd learned of Ms. Rae's new book about Pearl Chase through The Book Den's Facebook page. I'm familiar with Pearl Chase's name, having lived near Santa Barbara for the past 15 years, but do not know much about her life. Nor much about Pearl Chase's impact on the community of Santa Barbara. 

I enjoy learning about local history, so I'm look forward to reading Cheri Rae's book Pearl Chase First Lady of Santa Barbara. It's small, short book to read, so I'm sure I can read it in a day and blog about it soon!

Until my next post, happy reading!

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

The Paperback Exchange in Santa Barbara, California!

The Paperback Exchange storefront
 Last Sunday afternoon, my hubby and I visited The Paperback Exchange used bookstore in Santa Barbara, California. 

What a wonderful, small used bookstore packed with the most amazing selection of gently used books for sale!! I had so much fun visiting The Paperback Exchange. I enjoyed talking with Bob, the nice man, who was working when we visited The Paperback Exchange.

Interior of The Paperback Exchange
I couldn't resist buying a couple of books during my visit. I purchased a cozy mystery novel by Annette Blair titled 'Skirting the Grave', which was a book on my wishlist and Ray Bradbury's 'Dandelion Wine'. Believe it or not, I've never read a book by Ray Brabury before!

At any rate, I highly recommend visiting The Paperback Exchange in Santa Barbara. They are open seven days a week.

Have visited any good independent bookstores lately?? Share your recent bookstore experience!

Monday, September 16, 2013

Do Audiobooks Count as Reading?

Image Credit: Luci GutiƩrrez
I enjoy listening to audiobooks immensely --- Especially if they have a good storyline and are well read. 

This year alone, I have probably listened to more audiobooks than in years past. I enjoy listening to audiobooks while traveling, while spending time at the beach or simply to pass the time at home while doing other things.

I recently wondered if listening to audiobooks counted as reading one?? I know I'm not technically reading a book, but listening to the book instead. However, I still consider listening to an audiobook on par/equivalent to reading a book.

Interestingly enough, I recently came across an article on The Wall Street Journal titled Is Listening to a Book Same as Reading? Do Audiobooks Count as Reading? by Dan Ariely, which poses the same questions I've been wondering about audiobooks myself.

The answer provided by Dan Ariely wasn't so straight forward. For me personally, I will continue to equate listening to an audiobook on par to reading one.

After reading what Dan Ariely wrote in his article, I definitely have new food for thought when it comes to 'listening to' verses 'reading' a book, that sheds new meaning for me on how to view the situation.

For instance, in Dan Areily's article he writes:

"...I purchased an audio book and I listened to it on a long flight—and for what it is worth, I find it is harder to focus when listening to a book than when reading one."

I couldn't agree more with Ariely's observation as I find it more difficult to focus on listening to a book than reading one. For me, reading a book is easier to comprehend /focus my attention on than listening the very same audiobook.

Also, whether you read a book or listen to the audio version, you're still enjoying the experience, just in a slightly different way. 

Perhaps, it really isn't that important whether you consider listening to an audiobook counts as reading it. The important thing to consider is how much you enjoyed the book's content.

Click on above to read the full story! 

Weigh in with your thoughts about audiobooks. Does listening to an audiobook count as reading it? What's your preference to a read a book or to listen to the audio version if it is available? Do you find it more difficult to focus your attention to listening to an audiobook verses reading a book?

Sunday, September 15, 2013

The Whole Truth by David Balducci

Audio CD Abridged
I listened to the abridged audio version of The Whole Truth by David Baldacci on compact disc.

I really enjoyed listening to this audiobook. The story line and characters were captivating and kept my interest from start to finish!

I also thought that Ron McLarty did a fabulous job of reading this novel. 

The following is the book overview of The Whole Truth, which i read on the Barnes & Noble website:
"Dick, I need a war."

Nicolas Creel is a man on a mission. He heads up the world's largest defense contractor, The Ares Corporation. Dick Pender is the man Creel retains to "perception manage" his company to even more riches by manipulating international conflicts. But Creel may have an even grander plan in mind.

Shaw, a man with no first name and a truly unique past, has a different agenda. Reluctantly doing the bidding of a secret multi-national intelligence agency, he travels the globe to keep it safe and at peace.
Willing to do anything to get back to the top of her profession, Katie James is a journalist who has just gotten the break of a lifetime: the chance to interview the sole survivor of a massacre that has left every nation stunned.

In this terrifying, global thriller, these characters' lives will collide head-on as a series of events is set in motion that could change the world as we know it. An utterly spellbinding story that feels all too real, THE WHOLE TRUTH delivers all the twists and turns, emotional drama, unforgettable characters, and can't-put-it-down pacing that readers expect from David Baldacci and still goes beyond anything he's written before.
I'd highly recommend reading or listening to The Whole Truth by David Baldacci.

Until my next post, happy reading!

Saturday, September 14, 2013

New Study Shows That Reading Novels Makes Us Better Thinkers!

I came across another wonderful news article published on the Salon's website earlier this year titled Study: Reading novels makes us better thinkers by Tom Jacob. 

I love it when I come across published articles showing proof that reading novels makes people better thinkers!!

In his article Tom Jacob writes:
Are you uncomfortable with ambiguity? It’s a common condition, but a highly problematic one. The compulsion to quell that unease can inspire snap judgments, rigid thinking, and bad decision-making.

Fortunately, new research suggests a simple anecdote for this affliction: Read more literary fiction.

A trio of University of Toronto scholars, led by psychologist Maja Djikic, report that people who have just read a short story have less need for what psychologists call “cognitive closure.” Compared with peers who have just read an essay, they expressed more comfort with disorder and uncertainty—attitudes that allow for both sophisticated thinking and greater creativity.

“Exposure to literature,” the researchers write in the Creativity Research Journal, “may offer a (way for people) to become more likely to open their minds.”
Pretty cool stuff, right? Click on the top link to read more about the study done at the University of Toronto demonstrating!

Friday, September 13, 2013

Happy 97th Birthday Roald Dahl!!

I've had the pleasure to read a few of Roald Dahl's books in my day!! His books teach many wonderful life lessons... In fact, I noticed in an article published on the Huffington Post titled Happy Birthday, Roald Dahl! Here's What He Can Teach You About Life, where readers can discover what Dahl's novels teach readers about life! Check out the link above to learn more!

Until my next post, happy reading to all!!

Friday Finds #8

Friday Finds is a book meme hosted by MizB at Should Be Reading

Friday Finds is a chance to share and show off the books you discovered during the week and would like to add to your reading list... 

Or a place to simply feature the books you've actually purchased throughout the week and have added to your to be read pile!

Earlier this week, I made two visits to our local Friends of Library Used Bookstore here in the beautiful town of Carpinteria on California's central coast. During my recent visits, I purchased a total of six books... So, much for downsizing my to be read pile!!

Attica Locke
The two books that really stand out for me this week where two hardback novels written by Attica Locke -- The Cutting Season and Black Water Rising

I first learned about Ms. Locke's writing through the 2013 Women's Literary Festival in Santa Barbara, California earlier this year. I was not able to attend this delightful sounding literary event earlier this year, but am hoping to attend this annual event next year in May.

The Cutting Season
Black Water Rising

On Attica Locke's website (on her ABOUT page), I learned the following information and her novels about Ms. Locke:
Attica Locke’s first novel, Black Water Rising, was shortlisted for the prestigious Orange Prize in the UK in 2010. It was nominated for a 2010 Edgar Award, an NAACP Image Award, as well as a Los Angeles Times Book Prize and a Strand Magazine Critics Award. The novel was also a finalist for the Hurston-Wright Legacy Award. In addition, Attica has spent many years working as a screenwriter, penning movie and television scripts for Paramount, Warner Bros, Disney, Twentieth Century Fox, Jerry Bruckheimer Films, HBO, and Dreamworks. She was a fellow at the Sundance Institute’s Feature Filmmakers Lab and is a graduate of Northwestern University. A native of Houston, Texas, Attica lives in Los Angeles, California, with her husband and daughter. She is a member of the board of directors for the Library Foundation of Los Angeles.
So, which book have you discovered this week?? Share your discoveries with us here!!

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Here Are 13 Difficult Things About Being A Book Lover!

Oh, these are good, REALLY GOOD!! And, oh so true for us book lovers!!

I just read an article published on The Daily Edge titled 13 of the hardest things about being a book lover. All 13 things mentioned in the article resonated with the book lover in me. Did they all ring true for you? 

Can you think of any other things that make it difficult to be a book lover?? For me, it's difficult not always having the funds to purchase all the books I desire, nor the space to store them all in as we live in a small condominium.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Do You Know Why Readers Make Better Lovers?

I came across an article on LifeHack titled Why Readers Make Better Lovers by Carolyn Heintz. Ms. Heintz wrote in her article, "Unlucky in love? Maybe you should try your local bookstore. Here are 10 reasons why readers make fantastic lovers."

None of the 10 reasons mentioned as to why readers make fantastic were much of a surprise to me. Click on the link above to read why readers make fantastic lovers. Do you think readers make better lovers?

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Life Lessons from Tolstoy's 'Anna Karenina'

While browsing the news feeds, I came across an article posted on the Huffington Post website titled 7 Life Lessons From 'Anna Karenina' By Leo Tolstoy.

I thought this article was a timely one as Leo Tolstoy's birthday took place yesterday on September 9th. If he were still alive today, he would have been 185 years old!

Click on the above link to read the 7 life lessons from 'Anna Karenina'.

Book Collecting Tips!

I'm an active member on Bookcrossing and while recently browsing the Bookcrossing forums, I came across an interesting article about book collecting posted by another Bookcrosser. The article is titled So You Want To Be A Book Collector... by Jared Shurin on the Tor website/blog. 

So You Want to Be a Book Collector... is a wonderful article filled with many tips and advice for book collecting newbies. The article sheds light on how to decide which books to collect, and so much more. Click on the above link to learn more!

Until my next post, happy reading!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Oh, The Joy of Books, Indeed!!

This is a very cool video that I found on YouTube about books! The video is only about two minutes in length. Sit back and be entertained!!

Cats Love Books Too!

I love animals!! So, it was fun to come across 24 photographs of cats on bookshelves in an article published on Flavorwire titled 24 Photos That Prove Cats Take Better Bookshelfies Than Humans by Michelle Dean. Checkout the pictures by clicking on the link above.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

Plan Your Own Literary Wedding!!

Are wedding bells to be heard in your near future?? Do you love reading, books or anything literary? Why not add a literary touch to your wedding day!

I came across an article on Buzz Feed titled How To Have The Best Literary Wedding Ever! All I can say is W-O-W!! The ideas featured in the Buzz Feed post were awesome. I would have loved to incorporate quite a of the featured literary themed ideas in my own wedding.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Double Homicide by Jonathan & Faye Kellerman

Audio Compact Disc Version
Double Homicide by Jonathan Kellerman & Faye Kellerman is the first novel I've read or listened to by either bestselling author. 

I recently listened to the unabridged audio version of 'Double Homicide' on compact disc

The first novella was set in Boston, Massachusetts and read by John Rubenstein. John Rubenstein did an excellent job of reading his novella! I loved the leading characters and the opening scene to this novella, but felt the ending was kind of abrupt.

The second novella was set in Santa Fe, New Mexico and was read by Lou Diamond Phillips. I thought Lou Diamond Phillips did a so-so performance of reading the second novella. The story line for the second novella started off slowly, but soon picked up tempo and remained a solid story through to the novella's conclusion.

Overall, I'd say that I enjoyed listening to these two novellas --- Especially, if you enjoy reading crime, mystery, or suspense novels.

Until my next post, happy reading!!

Friday, September 6, 2013

Another Captivated Reader!

Instead of typing in my blog's url in the appropriate space, I typed the name of my blog inside Google's search box... The search results showed my blog, 'Captivated Reader', in the top spot. :-)

However, a couple of spots below the name of my blog, I also noticed that a video had been posted to YouTube called 'Captivated Reader'. Intrigued by the video's name, I watched the 35 second video, which features a youngster reading a book while walking through his school's hallway. This youngster must be an avid reader and very much captivated by what he was reading. :-)

I'm always excited when the young folks of today discover a love of reading!! Reading books, newspapers, and magazines are a way to acquire knowledge and also a way to be entertained! Promoting the love of reading in people of all ages is a good thing. 

Being captivated by a book is one of my favorite things!! Which books have you been captivated by lately?

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Secret Fore-Edge Paintings Revealed on 19th Century Books!!

I came across an article posted on the This Is Colossal website titled Secret Fore-Edge Paintings Revealed in Early 19th Century Books at the University of Iowa and I was amazed that such amazing artwork even existed!

In the article, I learned the following information:
A few days ago Colleen Theisen who helps with outreach and instruction at the Special Collections & University Archives at the University of Iowa shared an amazing gif she made that demonstrates something called fore-edge painting on the edge of a 1837 book called Autumn by Robert Mudie. Fore-edge painting, which is believed to date back as early as the 1650s, is a way of hiding a painting on the edge of a book so that it can only be seen when the pages are fanned out. There are even books that have double fore-edge paintings, where a different image can be seen by flipping the book over and fanning the pages in the opposite direction.
Checkout the link above to see images of Fore-Edge Paintings!! The paintings are amazing!

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Authors Who Kept Their Day Jobs!

I came across an article on the Huffington Post website titled 11 Authors Who Kept Their Day Jobs, which I found very revealing! Who knew that some successfully published authors kept their day jobs?? Click on the above link to read the article and discover which well known authors kept their day job. 

Monday, September 2, 2013

Do you prefer shopping at big chain bookstores or independent bookstores?

I shop for books in a variety of ways... Simply put, I love to shop for books in a wide variety of ways. The entire book shopping experience can come in many forms to suit my needs at any given moment. 

I like browsing and shopping for books at both large chain bookstores and also at independent bookstores. I also enjoy both experiences for different reasons. 

Large chain bookstores, like Barnes & Noble, are found in most larger towns and cities and they provide the predictable kind of shopping experience one comes to know and expect... There is also some comfort in predictability. 

However, independent bookstores offer variety, fun, and adventure for me in my shopping experience that chain bookstores just can't meet. Each independent bookstore is unique in its own way from their size, store layout, decor, service, and so on. Independent stores have their own unique personality. Visiting independent bookstores are like meeting and making new friends.

I tend to enjoy shopping at independent bookstores slightly more than I do large chain bookstores, because of their unique personality and because I enjoy supporting local businesses and small business owners. 

Each type of bookstore has its own perks and features, whether its an independent bookstore or a large chain bookstore. I'll continue shopping and supporting both types of bookstores. 

Which type of bookstore do you like to shop at for books, chain bookstores or independent bookstores?

Sunday, September 1, 2013

Alabama State Senator, Bill Holtzclaw, Wants a Toni Morrison Book Banned From High Reading Lists!

I read a USA Today article titled Lawmaker wants Morrison book off Ala. reading list by Melanie Eversley. In her article, Eversley writes:
An Alabama state senator is pushing to remove the first novel of Nobel and Pulitzer winner Toni Morrison from state reading lists on the grounds that its content and language are "objectionable."

State Sen. Bill Holtzclaw, a Republican, wants The Bluest Eye pulled from high school reading lists, and says he also would support pulling it from high school libraries, according to the Alabama Media Group.

I completely object to the idea of having this novel pulled from high school reading lists. Let teachers do their job of teaching students. There must be a good reason this book was selected as a teaching tool. Morrison is a distinguished writer and has the honor of winning a Nobel and Pulitzer, so let students read her novels.

Fight censorship! Let people read books!

I Read Banned Books!! Do You?

2013 Banned Books Week occurs September 22nd through September 28th. On the Banned Books Week website, I discovered on their About page the following information:
Banned Books Week is the national book community's annual celebration of the freedom to read. Hundreds of libraries and bookstores around the country draw attention to the problem of censorship by mounting displays of challenged books and hosting a variety of events.
I read banned books year round, but I like to make an extra special effort of reading a banned book during Banned Books Week. 

Help me celebrate the freedom to read what we want to read by reading a banned or challenged book during Banned Books Week!! I'm choosing to reread Maya Angelou's 'I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings'. What will you be reading this year during Banned Books Week?