Wednesday, April 13, 2016

The Birthstone Book Tag

After watching Kassidy Voinche's The Birthstone Book Tag video on YouTube, I became inspired to participate in The Birthstone Book Tag myself and share my answers here with my blog readers... The Birthstone Book Tag is a pretty fun book tag! Happy reading!
Below are my answers:

1. January (GARNET): Associate with warding off negative forces and dark energies - Name a book with the darkest/evilest character you can think of.

East of Eden by John Steinbeck has a very evil female character in it named Cathy Ames (later known as Kate Trask)... She's the most evil female villain I know of and she's a really well done character created by John Steinbeck. 

By the way, East of Eden is one of my favorite all time novels!

2. February (AMETHYST): Purple is associated with royalty - Name a book with regal qualities... You can base this off of characters or choose the King of all books.

I am selecting Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer by Katie Alender for this one, as it features the ghost of Marie Antoinette as a character in the novel. Click on the link to read my review of Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer by Katie Alender.

3. March (AQUAMARINE): Washed out - Name a 'wishy washy' character, a character who is not strong or a follower.

UPDATE:  I realized that character Eleanor Merritt from Game Control by Lionel Shirver is a very 'wishy washy' character! So am updating my answer!

4. April (DIAMOND): A diamond in the rough - Name a book that you loved but is not well known.

The Forty Fathom Bank by Les Galloway is a phenomenal novella that I highly recommend. It's been a few years since I've read it and I am up for reading it again!! The story and characters are what make this book come alive for me. Les Galloway is a really good writer... Too bad I'd never heard of him as an author until I read The Forty Fathom Bank. 

Also, if you enjoyed reading Ernest Hemingway's novella, The Old Man and The Sea, then I think you'll like The Forty Fathom Bank by Les Galloway too. In fact, I actually liked The Forty Fathom Bank by Les Galloway a whole lot more than The Old Man and The Sea.

The following is a plot synopsis for The Forty Fathom Bank from Amazon:
Called "stunning and suspenseful" (Andrea Barrett, Outside), and "exquisitely detailed" (Alan Cheuse, NPR), The Forty Fathom Bank is a gripping novella of adventure and desperation in the tradition ofThe Treasure of the Sierra Madre. Finally back in print, this acclaimed cult classic tells the story of two men seeking riches on a late-season fishing trip off the coast of San Francisco. When a storm hits and the engine fails, they confront more than treacherous seas in their fight for survival. This new paperback edition also now includes the late author's other rarely seen stories of the sea, as well as an afterword by his friend and editor, Jerome Gold. As James Lee Burke says, "No one who reads this book will ever forget it."
5. May (EMERALD): Said to balance energy - Name two characters who balance each other well.

Jamie Fraser & Claire Randall Fraser from The Outlander Series... They make such a great couple in this series. How can I not love them?! They make an awesome couple/team!

6. June (PEARL): Associated with loyalty - Name a character who is loyal to the end.

Last year, I listened to the unabridged audio version of The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski. Almondine, Edgar Sawtelle's dog, is very loyal to Edgar until the very end.

7. July (RUBY): Blood red - Name a book that made your blood boil, one that made you angry.

The House of Sand and Fog by Andre Dubois III. I read this novel when it was an Oprah Book Club selection, but I intensely disliked this novel. I found the storyline, the characters, and the events that occurred in this novel to be so frustrating and annoying. The characters caused themselves a lot of trouble they could have simply avoided if they had taken a different course of action.

8. August (PERIDOT): Pale green (it pales in comparison to other gems) - Name a supporting character who you like better than the main character.

Once again, I am selecting characters from the novel The Story of Edgar Sawtelle by David Wroblewski. I didn't like the leading character, Edgar Sawtelle, very much. I ended up preferring the characterization of Almondine, Edgar Sawtelle's dog a lot more.

9. September (SAPPHIRE): Blue like the ocean which is calming - Name a book that had a calming affect on you.

Reading in general is calming to me! But a specific books that had a calming affect on me is difficult to name off the top of my head... Books can make you laugh, cry, bring one joy or knowledge and even frustration or anger... The first book to come to mind to me is The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz. I read this book years and years ago now. It's probably best if I reread it again as a refresher of the ideas presented within. But I remember like the concepts presented in the book itself.

10. October (OPAL): Iridescent - Name an iridescent book, this can be a book with a beautiful cover (Shiny? Lots of Color?) or you can base it off of a character (Quirky? Colorful?).

I've read Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert and loved this nonfiction book!! I highly recommend reading it if you haven't done so already. I selected this book for its colorful cover. Click on the link provided above to read my review of Big Magic: Creative Living Beyond Fear by Elizabeth Gilbert.

11. November (TOPAZ): Associated with resilience - Name a books with a character who rises to the top in a time of adversity.

I listened to the unabridged audio version of Sold by Patricia McCormick in 2014. It's a short audiobook (under 4 hours) and one that was very powerful. It's the fictional account of Lakshmi, a 13 year old Nepal girl, who is sold into the child sex trade industry in India unknowingly by her family. Lakshmi and her family think she will be working as a maid to a rich family and the money she earns will be sent back home to her family.... This couldn't be further from the truth. What Lakshmi must endure is horrific! 

Long story short, Lakshmi rises above it all to find a way out of her circumstances. Sold by Patricia McCormick is a really well told story and well narrated as well.

12. December (BLUE ZIRCON): Associated with friendship - Name a book with a friendship you'd want to be apart of.

This was another of the more difficult ones for me to name as there isn't a specific friendship I read about in a book that made me say to myself "Oh, I'd like to have a friendship like that!"... I am randomly going to choose the friendship of Cee Cee Bloom and Bertie White from Beaches by Iris R. Dart. I did enjoy reading both the novel and seeing the movie back in the day.

I'm tagging the following book bloggers
to take part in
The Birthstone Book Tag

Miranda Atchley at A Real Writer's Life

Jessica at A Great Read

Liz, Miranda, Michelle, & Jessica,
I look forward to reading your answers to
The Birthstone Book Tag!
Please let me know make a post to your blog.

Until my next post, happy reading!


  1. Thank you so much for tagging me! I'm honored. :) This seems like a fun tag. Will definitely work on this and get my up on my blog soon!

  2. Oh wow! What a fun tag!
    How long did it take you to come up with the answers? I am already stump on the first one. lol
    Other than Steinbeck and the Marie Antoinette book, I haven't heard of the other ones. I really need to broaden my book knowledge.

    1. It took me about a week to come up with all the answers for this book tag. Six of the answers were relatively easy, by the remaining six answers eluded me for a while. I'm glad that I participated in this book tag though. :-)