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Archive for July, 2009

Farwalkers Quest

Farwalkers Quest by Joni Sensel

 

Hardcover: 384 pages
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children’s Books (February 17, 2009)
ISBN-10: 1599902729

Product Description

A classic fantasy quest about finding the truth and finding yourself.
Ariel has always been curious, but when she and her best friend Zeke stumble upon a mysterious old telling dart she feels an unexplained need to figure out what it means. Magically flying great distances and only revealing their messages to the intended recipient, telling darts haven’t been used for years, and no one knows how they work. So when two strangers show up looking for the dart, Ariel and Zeke realize that their discovery is not only interesting, but very dangerous. The telling dart and the strangers lead them on a journey more perilous and encompassing than either can imagine, and in the process both Zeke and Ariel find their true calling.

Ok.. this book is a bad blogger point for Becky.

I think that since I was coming off of just reading  Michael Scott’s, The Sorceress, which was very fast passed (and extremely good) that this book put the brakes on and slowed me right down.

At first the slowness made me think I might not like this book after all, but then I realized that when you find one of those “gawd that book was great” books, and immediately go to the next read, that it’s hard to step back and not be a little disappointed.

But I stayed with the book.  It was much slower, and it didn’t make me grab for it every spare moment,  but I have to say I did enjoy the book.  I do like when a new book comes up with a way to tell a story that I don’t feel I’ve read before, and that was something I felt with this book.  (Self discovery may not be a new plot but the way in which it was told was unique)

I would have liked to have felt that I knew Ariel and Zeke better, but instead I found that the character I liked best, and got to know the best was Scarl.  Scarl, was a person who begins as someone you don’t care for, but before the book is over you have gotten to know a lot about him and he’s a very interesting character. I don’t want to say too much about him and make it a spoiler.  Best just to say that I did enjoy the story enough to put another book by this author on my wish list.

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You’d think that by now I’d be getting used to the daily downpours and lightening and thunder.. nope. just not gunna happen!

 

As the clouds began to form I noticed the Egret headed for the trees.  I guess he doesn’t know you don’t stand under trees during a lightening storm..

The darker Heron was around and posed a lot for me.. so I did as he requested and shot a group of photos..  One thing for sure..they do hold a pose for ya!

Not sure if he was sneaking a peek at me standing in the door with the camera or..

ahhh.. he was preening!

 

.. A close up of this fellow.

At times I wonder..

These birds fly in and out all day long… and eat a lot from the pond.. I must remember to ask if they stock the pond periodically…. for they surely will eat every fish in the pond if they don’t!

Sometimes, the storm ends just at “dusk”.. and sometimes, this happens:

(I didn’t touch the color on the pics.. only sized them )

Occasionally, natures colors are really amazing to behold.

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Nice.  Ummm.. nice  ummm lips.

…love beards….and ummm scruffy.

..obviously not to shabby as a blonde!

..ahhh middle earth type blonde!

..heart be still..

GOOD LORD GIMME A BREAK!

..half nekkid..hmmm, i can deal with that.

..evil but still… you know.

…just in case you were interested.

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I won a book over at Graemes Fantasy Book Review   and it came in the mail yesterday!…  The House of Lost Souls .  It sounds like one I may try for Carl’s RIP challenge .

I also sent for a used book (I am embarrassed to tell you how cheaply I found it!).. anyway… while taking photo’s of them BooBoo decided to get into the act…  At first he seemed interested in the used book, The Merchant Prince, which I sent for, for two reasons, which I will tell you in a moment..

But then, as I readied to snap a photo of both books, he seemed to have decided that he would hoard them both!

I had to remove the cat from the books!

Ok so.. The Merchant Prince.  It was on my wish list ever since I met Armin Shimerman, which as you can see from the photo is the author of the book. …. along with a second author, Michael Scott, who has been writing the Nicholas Flamel series of books which I have taken dearly to. 

 

So that gave me two reasons to want the book.  One: Armin is a super person/ actor (and I wanted to check out his writing) and two, over the time it has taken me to read his first 3 books of this 6 book series,  I have become a fan of Michael Scott!

I guess I can add a third reason: once again the book included John Dee.. and Michael Scott has a hold on me concerning Flamel and John Dee in much of any way.

ok.. now.. a closer look at the cover..

just in case the name Armin Shimerman is unknown to you, it is possible you recognize him?

Ummm that would be Quark from Star Trek!  When I saw the cover I thought that was soooo great that it was painted in his likeness!!  The artwork is done by Jerry Vanderstelt.  Who did a marvelous job painting Armin’s face for the book cover!

Other than that and the fact I am still reading “Farwalker” things are quiet here.. I do have more bird posts ready for posting.. I guess I am grateful that they have given me something to put up on my blog when I don’t have a review.. and lord knows, I am not a speed reader!

This year my reading numbers well be very low, but knowing I broke 100 last year let’s me know I read a lot when I can.. and when I can’t. I still enjoy what I do get to read.

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Meme & Quiz

Preferences

Which do you prefer? (Quick answers–will do )

Reading something frivolous? Or something serious? 

– I do enjoy something serious now and then but more I enjoy “frivolous”.

Paperbacks? Or hardcover’s?

-I wish I could read the mass paperbacks but now my eyes are bad enough to require hardbacks or at least Trade Paperbacks

Fiction? Or Nonfiction?

-Fantasy Fiction mostly

Poetry? Or Prose?

-Prose.

Biographies? Or Autobiographies?

-I prefer Biographies, but lets face it some never wrote their stories and so autobiographies are necessary and I have read some excellent ones!

History? Or Historical Fiction?

-Historical fiction

Series? Or Stand-alone’s?

-Does anyone write a stand alone book anymore??? lol  my answer is “both”.

Classics? Or best-sellers?

-A combination of both.

Lurid, fruity prose? Or straight-forward, basic prose?

-I guess it depends on the subject being talked about.

Plots? Or Stream-of-Consciousness?

-ummm plots.

Long books? Or Short?

-it really depends on how much I am enjoying what I am reading the more I am enjoying it the longer I want it to be!

Illustrated? Or Non-illustrated?

-I love illustrations ! Few adult books have them and that’s upsetting.

Borrowed? Or Owned?

Owned. I never borrow a book!.

New? Or Used?

-both, as long as the used book wasn’t mistreated!.

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A Quiz…  Your Reading Personality

Start quiz 

(my results…)

Your Reading Personality: Serial Reader!  (big surprise huh?!)

You may read a lot or a little, but either way you’re a publisher’s dream, because once you discover a favorite writer you stick with him/her through thick and thin and eagerly await the next in the series; but even you need to discover some new blood from time to time!

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The Big Heron came back !

see the small one on the other shore?

He’s quick! He got his fish.. patience wins out!

 

Sometimes one just need a good stretch, ya know?…

Peaceful day at the Pond today..  with the ocassional exception of these guys.  The piggley-wiggleys of the pond. if I go outside to tear up a little bread for the little moorhens these guys come a running from the other side of the pond “honking” and grabbing up all the bread!

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Her Fearful Symmetry: A Novel by Audrey Niffenegger (Author)

Price: $17.81  Add to Cart

 

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Dragons of the Hourglass Mage: The Lost Chronicles, Volume Three

by Margaret Weis (Author), Tracy Hickman (Author)

Price: $17.13  Add to Cart

 

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The View From the Bridge: Memories of Star Trek and a Life in Hollywood (Viking Press USA) by Nicholas Meyer (Author) Price: $17.13

Add to Cart

 

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The Time Quake (Gideon Trilogy) by Linda Buckley-Archer (Author)

Price: $12.23  Add to Cart

 

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Syren (Septimus Heap, Book 5) by Angie Sage (Author), Mark Zug (Illustrator)  Price: $12.23  Add to Cart

 

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The Magician’s Elephant by Kate DiCamillo (Author), Yoko Tanaka (Illustrator) Price: $11.55 Add to Cart

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The Fiend and the Forge: Book Three of The Tapestry

by Henry H. Neff (Author) Price: $11.55 Add to Cart

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Fire by Kristin Cashore (Author) Price: $12.23Add to Cart

 

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The Islands of the Blessed by Nancy Farmer (Author), Jon Foster (Illustrator)  Price: $12.91Add to Cart

 

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The Shadow Dragons (Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica)

by James A. Owen (Author) Price: $12.23Add to Cart

 

And this is just the “preorder” part of my wish list!… sometimes I scare myself!

And.. as much as I want each and every one of these.. there are two books that when i get them.. will be IMMEDIATE reads!  Most of the time I will finish what I am reading before I go to  a new purchase.. but .. there are some that demand immediate attention!  Those would be

Dragons of the Hourglass Mage: The Lost Chronicles, Volume Three

by Margaret Weis (Author), Tracy Hickman (Author) ..this one got lost in the shuffle.. it was to come out more than a year ago.. so i’ve waited a loooooong time!

The other would be: The View From the Bridge: Memories of Star Trek and a Life in Hollywood (Viking Press USA) by Nicholas Meyer (Author)  (an ARC, .. an ARC…my kingdom for an ARC!!)  I do adore this man.  Love the movies he’s directed and love his writing too. (did you know he wrote some Sherlock Holmes books? Ahhh see there! You learned something!)

But I drive myself nuts each time I go to Amazon and look at my wish list .. and especially the stuff I know I have to wait for!! ARGH!!!

Just Yackin’…

….ok so how many females out there has noticed how damn good looking Karl Urban is?  *whew..sweatin’ here!*

….Just so ya’ll know I did write to that handsome fellow. Just fyi.

….Another fyi: I wouldn’t mind seeing the movie again!

….I found my old (ancient) tripod and my camera fits on it!  I will have to give it a try and see if it helps me get more pictures at the pond.

….I received a message from Michael Scott, the author of The Sorceress which I just read, thanking me for my kind words on his book. I thought that was nice, since I hope it was obvious how much I enjoyed that book and his other two before it.  I also sent for a used copy of The Merchant Prince which Michael Scott co-wrote with Armin Shimerman (Quark!), who i’ve met twice and is a really super nice person.

….My girlfriend called me from near Washington DC.. soon she will be going to a Creation Convention and is excited.. heck I would be too!  Leonard Nimoy is one of the guests!  So is Conner Trineer (too cute!) and someone I never met but loved his part as Sybok in Star Trek, Laurence Luckinbill!  It will be a great show.. i am envious lol.

….I would have loved to see that eclipse that lasted 6 minutes!!

….I marked my calendar.. it didn’t rain today!

SAD NEWS…

…. Those 3 cute ducklings I showed you… only one remains.

Often as in all stories, there has to be a “bad guy” and it blew me away when this huge bird landed very close to my door.. I only got off 2 pictures before he took off..

looks like a big black bird huh? (granted: he was big!)

.. meet the resident black Turkey Vulture.  I have a feeling this is where the ducklings have disappeared to.   (He’s even uglier than Woody!)

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Ok.. so.. Karl Urban surely wasn’t born in 1920 like DeForest!

But he obviously did his homework when it came to portraying DeForest as Dr. McCoy!  And he did it so well, that I forgot to mention that he made me laugh!

It was when he was running all around the Enterprise shooting Kirk in the neck with different medicines… and then Kirk got.. numb tongue!

Kirk- what’s wrong wid ma tongue
Mcoy- You got numb tongue
Kirk- Numb Tongue?!!
Mcoy- I can fix that

You guessed it.. another shot in the neck!

The way my life has been going you couldn’t have told me that this young man playing the part that DeForest made famous would ever (ever!) make me laugh.. but he did.

As I did a little research on Mr Urban I found this very delightful photo below…

Like DeForest, he also played a cowboy!  When I saw this paralleled De, I began to hear the old Twilight Zone music in my head!

I never thought I’d say this.. but..

He makes as handsome a cowboy as De was!  

Geez, now if they could only make ME younger I’d be most delighted to slobber over him!  And don’t go saying “he’s married”.. so was DeForest,  and it didn’t stop me from *admiring* the work he did !

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The Sorceress

The Sorceress by Michael Scott.

 

Hardcover: 512 pages
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers (May 26, 2009)
ISBN-10: 0385735294

Amazon.com Review
The third book in Michael Scott’s “Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel” series, The Sorceress, kicks the action up to a whole new level. Adding to the series’ menagerie of immortal humans (“humani”) and mythological beasts, the book picks up where The Magician left off: the immortal Nicholas Flamel (of The Alchemyst) and the twins, Sophie and Josh, have just arrived at St. Pancras international train station in London. Almost immediately, they’re confronted with a demonic bounty hunter that immortal magician John Dee has sent their way. At the same time, Dee’s occasional cohort, Niccolo Machiavelli, decides to focus his energy on Perenelle Flamel, the Alchemyst’s wife, who has been imprisoned at Alcatraz since the beginning of the series. In this book, Perenelle gets a chance to show off her sorcery and resourcefulness, fighting and forging alliances with ghosts, beasts, and the occasional Elder to try and find a way out of her predicament and back to Flamel. Scott is as playful as ever, introducing new immortals–famous figures from history who (surprise!) are still alive. He also adds to the roster of fantastical beasts, which already includes such intriguing foes as Bastet, the Egyptian cat goddess, and the Morrigan, or Crow Goddess. Raising the stakes with each installment, Scott deftly manages multiple story lines and keeps everything moving pretty quickly, making this third book a real page-turner.

Well, amazon does tell it how it is!…

I’ve enjoyed this series from the beginning.  I think because, even though it’s a YA series, that there are many “adults” in these books as well as the central protagonists of Josh and Sophie.

Indeed the as the books go along there are more and more mythical and “historical” appearances along the way. And throughout the books they are either in England, France, or America.

This series just gets better and better with each book!  This one, although it would be deemed a chunkster, was a fast read none the less!  Once it got going the chapters alternated between Nicholas Flamel and the Twins and his wife Perenelle who was trapped on Alcatraz Island. Most chapters were quite short which is something I love and tends to have me read more per sitting.

Normally flipping back and forth between the characters would drive me crazy but the writing is so well done that the instant you thought, “agh!  he can’t leave me hanging” with one chapter you instantly wanted to know what was happening on the “next chapter” !

Did I mention that I really enjoyed this book?

I try not to leap ahead and figure things out on my own but let the author deal it out in his own time.  And I have to say he deals it out .. and deals it out.. and deals it out.. nonstop, and at a pace that it’s hard to put the book down!

Did I mention that this is one of “those series of books” that will NOT go to my grandson when I am done with them?  heh.

Following all the excitement and thrills to meet so many “known figures” such as Shakespeare and Billy the Kid to name just two,  we find out at the end.. that… oh yes!  we go back to the waiting game for Book 4 to be published, called The Necromancer. I have also found out that there will be 6 books in all.. gads I hope they come out rather quickly so I get to read them all !! (I am of the age where waiting for sequels is not a good thing!)  The Warlock and the Enchantress will eventually follow.

As much YA reading as I do there have only been a handful that I have kept,  knowing I will read them again (or at least hope to).. this is one of the series I intend on keeping!   

So, do I recommend this series? .. you bet I do !!

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40 Years and Counting

“Houston, Tranquility base here. The ‘Eagle’ has landed”.

The photo is the first of many footprints left on the moon, when Neil Armstrong stepped off of the ladder and on to the surface quoting his now famous saying, “That’s one small step for man.. one giant leap for mankind.”

  Neil Armstrong

Buzz Aldrin

40 years ago I was only 25 yrs old.  I had two small children and I was glued to the television to see man step on the moon.  Something that not that many years before, was unheard of… it was science fiction, Man didn’t go to the moon!  But we did on July 20th 1969!

I’ve been in love with those Astronauts all these long years.. they have been and always shall be.. my hero’s.

So.. I was wondering (for the ummm, older readers)….Where were you for that “one small step?”

And if you were too young to remember it… can you imagine seeing it for yourself when we go back to the moon??

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