Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Harry Potter

Thanks to Scholastic Books Park-Avenue Princess is giving away a boxed set of 7 Harry Potter paperback books. That's all 7 titles.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

You must follow Park-Avenue Princess with Google Friend Connect to enter. (If you are not on Blogger read the rules about what to do.)

For extra entries

+5 If you TWEET About The Giveaway (daily)
+10 If you Follow Park Avenue Princess (@APrkAvePrincess) on TWITTER!
+15 If you blog about this Giveaway in it's own post!
+20 If you Put Park Avenue Princess' Button On Your Blog and Link Back!
+20 For every new follower you bring to the site (so make sure to remind them to mention you)

Leave separate comments for each entry.

All entries must be in by midnight October 16th (EST)
Open to the US and Canada, no PO boxes.

More History

Books and Needlepoint is giving away 5 copies of The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova. All you have to do to enter is leave a comment with your email address. But there are a bunch of ways to get extra entries, things like blogging, following, tweeting, referring new followers so make sure you read the list so you can better your odds. The giveaway ends on October 20th and is open to the US and Canada, but no PO boxes.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


I have been entering book giveaways for quite a while now and I have won a number but even after I started my blog I never mentioned any of them here. But I really appreciate all the publishers, authors and bloggers who made it possible so I wanted to give a little shout out to the blogs that my winnings have come from. I think I have managed to pull together an almost complete list. I know there are a few missing but I'm going back over a year so I did the best I could.

From It’s Deeelovely, *Undiscovered Gyrl by Allison Burnett (review)

From Booking Mama, Pope Joan by Donna Woolfolk Cross, and *Gods Behaving Badly by Marie Phillips

From Drey’s Library, *The Devlin Diary by Christi Phillips

From Just Jennifer Reading, *The Vanishing Sculptor by Donita Paul (review)

From Carol’s Notebook, Julie and Julia by Julie Powell, and *Do-Over by Robin Hemley

From Today’s Adventure, Sea Changes by Gail Graham

From On My Bookshelf, Sundays at Tiffany’s by James Patterson

From So Many Books, So Little Time, Made in the USA by Billie Letts

From The Tome Traveller, *The Girl Who Stopped Swimming by Joshilyn Jackson, *We Bought a Zoo by Benjamin Mee (review)

I was also a winner in The Tome Traveller’s Mega Giveaway where I got:
Etta by Gerald Kolpan
Darling Jim by Christian Moerk
The Gates of Hell by Paul Doherty
*Messenger of Truth by Jacqueline Winspear
*Into the Beautiful North by Luis Alberto Urrea
A Trust Betrayed by Candace Robb
*Mistress Shakespeare by Karen Harper
Silent on the Moor by Deanna Raybourn
City of Shadow by Ariana Franklin
Stealing Athena by Karen Esex

From Debbie’s World Of Books, Turnaround by George Pelecanos and *Skinned by Robin Wasserman

From In Spring It Is The Dawn, *Pompeii by Robert Harris

From Shelf Love, *Three Men in a Boat by Jerome Jerome

From Quiverful Family, *A Lever Long Enough by Amy Deardon (review)

From Wendi’s Book Corner, Kitty Takes a Holiday by Carrie Vaughn

From Bermudaonion, *The Terror by Dan Simmons

From Books and Cooks, The Little Giant of Aberdeen County by Tiffany Baker

From Interviewing Authors, *The Saga of Beowulf by R. Scot Johns (review)

From The Things We Read, *Arsenic Soup for Lovers by Georgia Post

From At Home With Books, *Lost and Found by Carolyn Parkhurst and Nefertiti by Michelle Moran

From Cheryl’s Book Nook, *Assassin and *Escape by Rye James

From Blood of the Muse, *His Majesty’s Dragon by Naomi Novik

From So Many Books, *The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly

From Puss Reboots, Brother by James Fredericks

From Books, Movies and Chinese Food, Sweet September by Tricia Goyer

From Camy’s Loft, *Terminal Logic by Jefferson Scott

From Booklorn, *Immortals: The Crossing by Joy Nash

From Reader For Life, *Maybe Baby by Matthew Miller

From Amberkatze’s Book Blog, *Seaborn by Chris Howard

From Historical Tapestry, The Triumph of Deborah by Eva Etzioni-Halevy

From Miss Danaidae, *Violet Wings by Victoria Hanley

From Arch Thinking, Medicus by Ruth Downie

The books with an asterisk (*) in front of the title are the ones that I have read. You may have noticed that there are a lot that do not have asterisks. I am always very excited when the book arrives and put it on the TBR pile but then more things get put on the TBR pile and things get shuffled around and so some haven't gotten read yet. So, since I have managed to finish the two reading challenges that I signed up for this year I've have decided to make up my own personal reading challenge and see how many of these books I can finish by the end of the year. Notice that I haven't mentioned any number. That way I can't possibly fail. And that's how I like my challenges.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Vampyres and Lord Byron

The Book Bundle is giving away a copy of The Vampyre: the secret history of Lord Byron by Tom Holland. To throw your name in the hat share the last book you read that gave you a new perspective on vampires or some other supernatural creature.

Extra entries? Of course!

+3 for being a follower of The Book Bundle already
+2 for becoming a follower of The Book Bundle
+2 for doing a blog post about this contest
+1 for listing the contest on your blog/website
+1 for tweeting about the contest/posting on facebook

You have until October 2nd to get your entries in. This one is open internationally so everyone everywhere can get in on the fun.

I'm a Turkey

Sandwich that is.

You Are a Turkey Sandwich
Conservative and a bit shy, you tend to stick with what you know and trust.
You are very introverted, and you prefer to blend in whenever possible.
Though you may be hard to know well, anyone who does know you considers you a true friend.

Your best friend: The Ham Sandwich

Your mortal enemy: The Tuna Fish Sandwich

This is actually mostly true. Imagine that.
Sorry, Tuna Fish Sandwich, I guess we can't be friends. And that's too bad because I like tuna fish.

Find out what kind of sandwich you are here.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Learn some history

Want to win The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova?

Head on over to The Neverending Shelf. For every 10 entries another copy will be given away, up to five copies in all. Leave a comment to enter. Follow, blog and/or tweet for extra entries. Open until October 16th, to the US and Canada, no PO boxes.

Or go to The Tome Traveller's Weblog. 5 copies are being given away. Share a favorite Halloween memory to enter. Blog, tweet, follow, subscribe or fave the blog on Technorati for extra entries. Open until October 21st, to the US and Canada, no PO boxes.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Playing With Fire

Fire by Kristin Cashore has been everywhere lately. In fact it is on tour. And many of those tour stops have a copy to give away. So stop by a few and enter for your chance to win. Some of them end soon so you will have to hurry. But even if you do not enter you should still drop by and read all about the wonderful characters who you can find in the book.

The Compulsive Reader (enter by September 29th)
Pop Culture Junkie (enter by September 29th, US only)
Lauren's Crammed Bookshelf (enter by October 1st, US only)
The Page Flipper (deadline not given)
Reading Keeps You Sane (enter by October 1st, US only)
Presenting Lenore (enter by October 3rd, US and Canada)
In Bed With Books (enter by October 3rd, US and Canada)
Melissa's Bookshelf (enter by October 3rd, US only)
Shaken & Stirred (can't win the book here but you should still drop by)
Frenetic Reader (enter by October 2nd, US only) (enter by October 4th)
The Book Smugglers (enter by October 3rd, US and Canada)
Fantasy Book Critic (enter by October 3rd, US only)

Some contests require you to answer a question and extra entries are different for each contest so make sure to read the rules at each site.

There are still more stops on the tour. You can go here and find the complete list.

Friday, September 25, 2009

The Friday 56, The Terror

* Grab the book nearest you. Right now.
* Turn to page 56.
* Find the fifth sentence.
* Post that sentence (plus one or two others if you like) along with these instructions on your blog or (if you do not have your own blog) in the comments section of Storytime With Tonya and Friends.
*Post a link along with your post back to Storytime With Tonya and Friends.
* Don't dig for your favorite book, the coolest, the most intellectual. Use the CLOSEST.

The closest book to me right now is The Terror by Dan Simmons. And judging by how far I've gotten it might be the closest to me for weeks to come. It's shaping up to be a good story but if you read it make sure you pay attention to the dates and locations at the beginning of each chapter because it jumps around a lot.

The sentence:

No one could have attended the lengthy service and heard the very lengthy sermon by Sir John without being deeply moved.

I'm sure that's what all the men gathered together to start a long, cold, dangerous sea journey wanted, a very lengthy sermon.

Don't Get Burned

Frenetic Reader is giving away a signed copy of Fire by Kristin Cashore. Which is the prequel to Graceling but I hear you don't have to have read it to enjoy Fire so don't let a little thing like that stop you from entering. Leave a comment saying what color eyes you would like to have (or it could be a design or pattern instead) to enter. For another entry blog or tweet. This one is limited to the US only. It all ends October 2nd.

Thursday, September 24, 2009


The Book Butterfly is giving away a hardcover copy of Another Faust by Daniel and Dina Nayeri and a book poster. And you don't even have to make a deal with the Devil to enter. All you have to do it leave a comment with your email address. If you would like another entry you can link or post the contest to a social network of your choosing. The contest ends October 1st. Sorry people, but this one is for the US only. But hey, that makes better odds for me so I'm not that broken up about it. Good luck!

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The Historian

Peeking Between the Pages has 5 copies of The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova to give away. The books come from Hachette Book Group so it is open to the US and Canada, no PO boxes. Dar will be choosing the winners on October 24th so you want to get all your entries in before that. For the first entry all you need to do is leave a comment with some way to contact you if you win, for more entries follow, for even more entries blog or tweet about the contest.

Sea Hawk Vocabulary

Words from The Sea-Hawk by Rafael Sabatini that sent me to the dictionary.

Demesne - possession of land as one's own: land held in demesne
- an estate or part of an estate occupied and controlled by, and worked for the exclusive use of, the owner.

Lissom - lithesome or lithe, esp. of body; supple; flexible

Untrammeled - not limited or restricted; unrestrained

Froward - willfully contrary; not easily managed

Littoral - of or pertaining to the shore of a lake, sea, or ocean

Trepan - to cut circular disks from (plate stock) using a rotating cutter

Devoir - an act of civility or respect

Asperse - to attack with false, malicious, and damaging charges or insinuations; slander

Sacerdotal - of priests; priestly

Culverin - an early, crudely made musket

Sophistry - a subtle, tricky, superficially plausible, but generally fallacious method of reasoning

There were also a few words that if asked I would have said I knew what they meant but I realized if pressed I would not be able to come up with an actual definition. So I decided to look them up and see if I was even close. I'm happy to say that my vague ideas about the meaning of these words were all in the right general direction at least.

Calumny - a false and malicious statement designed to injure the reputation of someone or something

Inveigh - to protest strongly or attack vehemently with words; rail

Indolent - having or showing a disposition to avoid exertion; slothful
- blithe joyous, merry, or gay in disposition; glad; cheerful without thought or regard; carefree; heedless

Itinerant - traveling from place to place, esp. on a circuit, as a minister, judge, or sales representative

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

The Killing Way

Passages to the Past is giving away an autographed first edition copy of The Killing Way by Tony Hays. King Arthur (well, he isn't king yet but he will be), Merlin, murder, people getting their arms chopped off, sounds good so you'll want to get over there and enter for a chance to win. You can get additional entries for being or becoming a follower or sharing about it in a post, your sidebar, facebook or twitter. The contest will run until October 14th with the winner being announced the next day and it's open internationally. Good luck!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Win a boat load of James Patterson

You must know what I'm going to say by now. You've heard this story from me before. Only this time you have to go to Drey's Library for a chance to win one of two sets of 8 James Patterson books.

The 8 books are:

Maximum Ride: Max
Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment
Maximum Ride: School’s Out – Forever
Maximum Ride: Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports
Maximum Ride: The Final Warning
Maximum Ride: Manga
The Dangerous Days of Daniel X
Daniel X: Watch the Skies

To enter leave a comment and a way to contact you. Extra entries for following and for sharing about it. Enter before 6:00pm CST October 4th. This is only open to the US, no PO boxes, and you must be at least 13.


Passages to the Past is giving away a copy of Godmother by Carolyn Turgeon. For extra entries sign up to be a follower (if you are already a follower that counts too) and/or post, sidebar, facebook, or twitter about the giveaway. It ends October 12th and the winner will be announced the next day. Open internationally.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Beat the Reaper

Books and Needlepoint is giving away 5 copies of Beat the Reaper by Josh Bazell and you could be one of the lucky winners. How? Pop on over there and leave a comment and your email address. Want more entries? They can be yours if you post this contest on a social network or blog about it, are or become a follower, or refer new followers (the new followers will get extra entries if they say who referred them too). The contest ends October 11th. These are from Hachette so it is open to the US and Canada, no PO boxes.

Rosemary and Rue

Confessions of a Wandering Heart has a copy of Rosemary and Rue by Seanan McGuire for one lucky reader. When you enter make sure you leave your email address so you can be contacted if you win.

Extra entries:
+1 Commenting on the review here.
+1 New followers
+2 If you're already a follower
+1 Linking to the contest on your blog, twitter, etc. Include links. (up to 5)
+3 For posting about the contest on your blog. (Must be actual post)
+2 Add Confessions of a Wandering Heart to your blog roll
+3 for referring someone to the contest
+3 for being the person referred

This contest is open internationally! It will end October 1st at 11:59 pm Eastern time.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Vanishing Sculptor Review

The Vanishing Sculptor by Donita K. Paul

from the back of the book:

Tipper, a young emerlindian woman, has been responsible for the upkeep of her family’s estate since her sculptor father disappeared several years ago. To make ends meet, she’s been forced to sell off the artwork he left behind. When at last her father returns, accompanied by two strangers from a distant land, Tipper discovers that her actions have unbalanced the foundation of her world and endangered her father’s life. She must act quickly to undo the threat. But how can she save her father and the world on her own? The task is too huge for one person, so she gathers the help of some unlikely companions – including the giant parrot, Beccaroon, and the aristocratic tumanhofer, Bealomondore – and sets out on a quest, eventually witnessing the loving care and miraculous resources of Wulder.

This was the first Paul book that I’d read and I think this one takes place in the same world as her Dragonkeeper Chronicles. I don’t think you have to have read them to follow the story but there are a few things that might have been explained that were assumed as already known in this book. She uses terms like emerlindian and tumanhofer, which are different races, but we are never told that. There is a glossary to help in moments like this but it would have been nice to have some sort of hint in the text. I like the word usage, like rapscallion, falderal, chicanery, obfuscate. Nothing that will make you run for the dictionary but words that you don’t hear much and makes it more interesting to read. The banter between the wizard and the librarian is fun, light and witty but also sounds real, like two old friends bickering. Lady Peg, who is a little addle minded, is also fun and done well so she does not go too far and become some absurd comic relief but remains an interesting, believable character. There is a Christian message running through the book and it is not subtle. There is a whole page that goes on about the consequences of lying, several proverbs are quoted in a row for no apparent reason, the gifts given by Wulder are listed, and several times it is mentioned that a character knew there was some power behind everything but he didn’t know what, among other things. But as blatant as the message is it is never really explained exactly who Wulder is or who the paladin is or why he is important and that made me wonder if I missed something by not reading the other Paul books first. Despite a few minor places where I felt I was catching up to a story already in progress I thought it was an enjoyable book. There are a lot of interesting well drawn characters that are fun to follow on their exciting quest. I found myself so engaged in the story that I lost track of time while I was reading it. I liked these people and would be glad to follow them on another adventure.

Friday, September 18, 2009

James Patterson Bonanza

A Place For Wicked Good Books has a chance for you (and hopefully me) to win a prize pack of 8 James Patterson books. Two winners will receive:

Maximum Ride: Max
Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment
Maximum Ride: School’s Out – Forever
Maximum Ride: Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports
Maximum Ride: The Final Warning
Maximum Ride: Manga
The Dangerous Days of Daniel X
Daniel X: Watch the Skies

To enter just leave your name and email address but there are also a boat load of extra entries to be had.

You have to be at least 13 and a resident of the US to enter. You have until September 25th.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Gemma Doyal Trilogy Giveaway

Over at Pop Culture Junkie you can enter to win one of two sets of all three books in the Gemma Doyal Trilogy by Libba Bray, which would be A Great and Terrible Beauty, Rebel Angels, and The Sweet Far Thing. To enter leave a comment saying what you like best about Book Blogger Appreciation Week. You can get an extra entry by blogging or tweeting but make sure you leave a separate comment with a link if you do. You have until September 28th to enter. This one is for US addresses only.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Happy Birthday, Mishel!

Mishel over at Mis(h)takes has turned 22 and in true book blogger fashion that means she is giving the gifts. She has four books to give away to four different winners.

Along For the Ride by Sarah Dessen
Wings by Aprilynne Pike
Strange Angels by Lili St. Crow
Undone by Karen Slaughter

These are all ARC copies and one of them could be yours. For your chance to win leave a comment here with the books listed in order of choice, the one you want most being number one, and so on. You must do the list and you must leave an email address to enter. There are a few things you can do to get extra entries as well. You can get an entry for each of the four book reviews that you leave a comment on, an entry for becoming (or already being) a follower or subscriber and another for linking to the giveaway post.

The deadline is September 30th. US addresses only.

Win Cleopatra's Daughter

There have been a lot of chances to win Cleopatra's Daughter lately but if you have not gotten your own copy yet, don't despair. It's Deeelovely has another chance for you. And not only will you get a hardcover copy of this wonderful book but an ancient Roman coin too. But you have to hurry because you only have until midnight (EST) on Friday September 18th. There are two ways to enter, you can leave a comment on Deeelovely's review or you can promote the contest and leave a link to tell her where. It open internationally so everyone can get in on the fun. Good luck!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Adventurous Giveaway

People are happy over at Today's Adventure. Why? They have over 250 followers and over 300 subscribers. Good for them and us. Because to celebrate they are having a giveaway. There will be 3 winners. The first winner will get to pick 3 books from the wonderful list, the second winner will pick 2, and the third winner one. (Obviously the second and third winners will have to pick from what is remaining after the other winner(s) pick.) You do have to be a follower or subscriber to enter but you can do it right now and get in on this. Leave a comment to enter. You get another entry if you were already a follower or subscriber and one more for tweeting/blogging/posting in your sidebar. Open to the US and Canada, contest will close on October 14th.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Cleopatra's Daughter Review

Cleopatra’s Daughter by Michelle Moran

From the inside flap:

The marriage of Marc Antony and Cleopatra in one of the greatest love stories of all time, a tale of unbridled passion with earth-shaking political consequences. Feared and hunted by the powers of Rome, the lovers choose to die by their own hands as the triumphant armies of Antony’s vengeful rival, Octavian, sweep into Egypt. Their orphaned children – ten-year-old twins Selene and Alexander – are taken in chains to Rome. Delivered to the household of Octavian’s sister, the siblings cling to each other and to the hope that they will return one day to their rightful place on the throne of Egypt. As they come of age, they are buffeted by the personal ambitions of Octavian’s family and court, by the ever-present threat of slave rebellion, and the longings and desires deep within their own hearts.

The fateful tale of Selene and Alexander is brought brilliantly to like in Cleopatra’s Daughter. Recounted in Selene’s youthful and engaging voice, it introduces a compelling cast of historical characters: Octavia, the emperor Octavian’s kind and compassionate sister, abandoned by Marc Antony for Cleopatra; Livia, Octavian’s bitter and jealous wife; Marcellus, Octavian’s handsome, flirtatious nephew and heir apparent; Tiberius, Livia’s sardonic son and Marcellus’s great rival for power; and Juba, Octavian’s watchful aide, whose honored position at court has far-reaching effects on the lives of young Egyptian royals.

Selene’s narrative is animated by the concerns of a young girl in any time and place – the possibility of finding love, the pull of friendship and family, and the pursuit of her unique interests and talents. While coping with the loss of both her family and her ancestral kingdom, Selene must also find a path around the dangers of a foreign land. Her accounts of life in Rime are filled with historical details that vividly capture both the glories and horrors of the times. She dines with the empire’s most illustrious poets and politicians, witnesses the creation of the Pantheon, and navigates the colorful, crowded marketplaces of the city where Roman-style justice is meted out with merciless authority. In these chaotic streets and whispering palaces, Selene confronts the same forces that destroyed her mother and struggles to meet a different fate.

Cleopatra’s Daughter basically starts with the death of Antony and Cleopatra where a lot of the time the story is coming to an end. But this time you get to see what happens to their children when they are gone. Selene tells the story of herself, her twin brother Alexander, and their little brother Ptolemy when they are taken to Rome after their parents deaths. Selene is only 10 when they set out for Rome and the whole story is told through her eyes. The children act and sound like children, incredibly intelligent and savvy children true but children, and even though the story is told by, and about, a child the tone of the book is not juvenile and avoids becoming overly simplistic. Moran describes the every day life of the people. She shows you the courts, politics, history, markets, baths, houses, and so much more. Some of it, like the accounts of slavery and of abandoning of unwanted children, isn’t pretty but it is all interesting and brings the world of Ancient Rome to life. All the characters are brought to vivid life as well. They are not history text book characters but real people with their jealousies, spite, loves, insecurities, and complex motivations. No one is one dimensional so even Octavian, who is obviously ruthless and cares more about power than he does about people, has his good moments. I like the mystery element Moran adds to the story. The narrative is so rich and deep that it probably would have worked even without it but is was another interesting and compelling component and was integrated well so it didn’t seem out of place or forced. The book has a list of characters in the front and a glossary in the back. Usually a book that requires that much built in reference material makes me nervous. I assume they will be hard to follow. But I didn’t have that problem here. There are a lot of people who are related in interesting ways so I did refer to the list of people once in a while to make sure I had everyone straight but for the most part the story flows well enough that I didn’t have to and most of the unfamiliar terms are explained in the text of the story so you don’t become confused or lost. At the end of the book there is a author’s note to tell you what is fact and what is fiction, and also, I was happy to see, a wrap up of what happens to the people after the book has ended, bringing closure to the lives you had become so involved in. I found this a very enjoyable book and look forward to reading more Michelle Moran in the future.

I want to thank Michelle Moran for sending me a copy of Cleopatra's Daughter and letting me have the pleasure of reading her wonderful book.

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Describe Yourself in Book Titles

I saw this over at Beth's Book Review Blog and decided to steal it. You can see her answers here.

The rules are:

Using only books you have read this year (2009), answer these questions. Try not to repeat a book title. It’s a lot harder than you think!

Describe yourself: Humpty Dumpty: An Oval
How do you feel: Little Sleep
Describe where you currently live: Over the Edge of the World (more of a mental place than a physical one)
If you could go anywhere, where would you go?: The City Of Dreaming Books
Your favorite form of transportation: Three Men in a Boat
Your best friend is: Savvy
You and your friends are: Adventurers For God (this is overly optimistic but I like to believe it could be true)
What’s the weather like: Storm Front
You fear: Monster Nation
What is the best advice you have to give: Plain Truth
Thought for the day: Milk Eggs Vodka
How I would like to die: Quicker Than the Eye
My soul’s present condition: Darkness (some would even say I have no soul but I think they exaggerate)

Okay, so some of them might be a bit of a stretch but this is hard. Maybe if I didn't read so many Tarzan books I would have better answers but I didn't foresee this when I was picking my books this year.

Friday, September 11, 2009

The Friday 56, Skulduggery Pleasant

* Grab the book nearest you. Right now.
* Turn to page 56.
* Find the fifth sentence.
* Post that sentence (plus one or two others if you like) along with these instructions on your blog or (if you do not have your own blog) in the comments section of Storytime With Tonya and Friends.
*Post a link along with your post back to Storytime With Tonya and Friends.
* Don't dig for your favorite book, the coolest, the most intellectual. Use the CLOSEST.

Oops! Missed last week but I'm back this week Skulduggery Pleasant by Derek Landy. I haven't gotten very far but so far I like the writing style.

The sentence:

"And that is...?"
"Your hat. Take me with you, or I'll stand on it."

I guess a hat is very important to skeleton detectives. Good to know.


Luxury Reading is giving away 5 copies of Amigoland by Oscar Casares. If you are content with one entry all you have to do is leave a comment with your email address but if you are like me and want more entries you can get them by doing things like blogging and following and all the other usual suspects. (You should read the list for exact details.) Make sure you leave a post for each entry (so to get both entries for subscribing, leave two comments). These books are courtesy of Hachette Book Group so the giveaway is open to the US and Canada only, no PO boxes. You have until midnight September 23rd to enter.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Breakfast at Tiffany's: Movie vs. Book

Breakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote
Breakfast at Tiffany's with Audrey Hepburn and George Peppard

Breakfast at Tiffany’s (both the book and the movie) is basically about Holly Golightly and her search to find a millionaire to marry and the whirlwind that is her life as she goes along drawing other people in with her.

Holly is blunt, sometimes crude and unapologetically a user. But people are drawn to her and the reader is too. Capote manages to write her so she is still likable and sympathetic. Much of that is maintained in the movie but the Holly of the movie is more innocent and less harsh. She comes off as less of a schemer and more someone who these things just happen to.

Paul (he doesn’t have a name in the book so I will use his movie name) narrates the book and is just there to tell Holly’s story. He watches from the outside mostly and never really takes part. He gets a bigger part in the movie but it is still Holly’s story. He takes a backseat and seems sometimes just to be there to have an outside look at Holly’s life. Unlike almost everything else Paul seems harder in the movie than the book, or maybe just a little more jaded.

The book is harsher and has more rough edges than the movie. It is a darker story all the way around than the movie. The movie is lighter, sweeter, and nicer somehow. The book can still be fun but is certainly not as happy.

After reading the book I was a little disappointed that the bartender didn’t make an appearance in the movie because I thought he was a good character and gave another view into Holly’s life. But with all the other changes that were made he really wouldn’t fit in the movie so maybe it was better they didn’t try to force him in the story.

There are important parts that are different in the movie but some scenes were taken almost word for word from the book and it is odd to see how close they can be and how different at the same time. Because I saw the movie first I kept seeing Audrey Hepburn in the role of Holly in my head no matter how many times she was described as someone totally different.

They are both good stories but they are in many ways different stories. I think in the end I actually liked the movie better. Partly, I’m sure, because I like Audrey Hepburn but also because it is happier. I never thought of myself as a sucker for happy endings but in this case I think I have to face the fact that I wanted things to work out in a movie magic sort of way. They are both worth a look and I enjoyed them both. And in an unusual occurrence in a book to movie deal I didn’t feel the movie had ruined the book, or feel disappointed in the book after liking the movie so much.


Who's skull would you want? I can't say I have an answer to that question. But if you are interested in winning a copy of Cranioklepty: Grave Robbing and the Search for Genius by Colin Dickey you are going to have to come up with one. Cranioklepty is giving away 30 copies of the book to the people with the best answer to that question. There are lots of places you can go to get your entry in but there is only one entry per person. There are also lots of rules you should read too. So go here and learn all about it. Entries must be in by October 21st.


Beth's Book Review Blog is giving away 3 copies of Legacy by Cayla Kluver. To enter visit the Legacy page on Amazon and go back and leave a comment with something that you learned. There is a list of other ways to get entries too. And make sure you don't forget to leave your email address. You have until September 30th to enter. It is open to the US only, and no PO boxes.

Can you love books too much?

Chick With Books is giving away a copy of The Man who Loved Books Too Much by Allison Hoover Bartlett. To enter all you have to do is leave a comment with your email address but you can get an extra entry for blogging or tweeting. And you can get another entry by letting them know what book you would steal and why. You only have until September 16th to enter so hurry. And you have to live in the US to enter.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009


Bookin' With Bingo is giving away 3 copies of Confections of a Closet Master Baker by Gesine Bullock-Prado. You should go check it out if for no other reason then just for the Chocolate Whoopie recipe. But if you want a chance to win the book too just leave a comment saying if you want to win the book for the memoir or for the recipes. There are a couple of extra entry opportunities but make sure you leave a separate comment for each one you do. The contest is open until September 21st to the US and Canada, but no PO boxes.

Monday, September 7, 2009

James Patterson

The Book Muncher is having a giveaway for a James Patterson prize pack.

2 lucky winners will win:

Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment
Maximum Ride: School's Out - Forever
Maximum Ride: Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports
Maximum Ride: The Final Warning
Maximum Ride: Max
Maximum Ride: Manga
The Dangerous Days of Daniel X
Daniel X: Watch the Skies

Fill out the form to enter. Extra entries can be had for blogging about it and following The Book Muncher blog.

Open until September 20th. Open to US residents only.

Close Encounters

No aliens here, folks. Just wonderful book giveaways for Close Encounters of the Third Grade Kind by Phillip Done.

Just Another New Blog is giving away 5 copies. To enter go there and let them know what the last book you enjoyed reading was. There is a whole long list of ways that you can get extra entries so you are going to want to check those out too. You have until September 18th to enter. This one is open to the US and Canada, no PO boxes.

Beth's Book Review Blog is also giving away 5 copies. To enter leave a comment with your email address. Once again there is a list of ways to get extra entries but to take advantage of them make sure you leave a separate comment for each entry. This one is open until September 28th. Open to the US and Canada, no PO boxes.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Where are they now?

Ever wonder where all those friends you lost touch with ended up? Danny Wallace did so he set out to find out and wrote a book about it. If you would like to read his story head on over to The Book Chick where you can enter to win one of 5 copies of Friends Like These by Danny Wallace.

To enter:

1. Post a comment saying if there are any childhood friends that you've lost touch with and would like to reconnect with (1 entry)
2. Follow the blog and leave comment saying that you've done so (1 entry)
3. Blog/ Twitter/ Facebook, whatever about this contest, and leave a post saying that you have (1 entry)

Leave your e-mail address in your comment. This contest will run until September 29, 2009 and is open to both US and Canadian residents, no PO boxes please!

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Well Between the Worlds Review

Well Between the Worlds by Sam Llewellyn

from the back of the book:

Once, this country was green and pleasant. Now the land is sinking, and the sea batters its walls. Lyonesse has become a place of poison and danger, and its people live in an uneasy truce with the monsters that inhabit its bottomless Wells.
Idris Limpet is an ordinary boy, until the day he is rescued from a terrible death and finds himself thrown into an astonishing new adventure. Can it be that it is his destiny to save Lyonesse? And can one boy and one girl stand in the way of a colossal evil with its roots sunk deep in ages of wickedness?

Well Between the Worlds is the first in a series and as such has some set up and explaining to do to introduce you to the world that has been created. But it is done well so you don’t get the boring lecture where you feel like you are reading the rules before you get to play the game. There are some words that are made up, obviously for the things that are also made up, but also for existing things. They are not hard to figure out (when they are eating zupper you know what that means) but personally I would rather have the real words used instead. There are a few elements that seem to come right from the Legend of King Arthur but there is much here that is original and interesting. The relationship between monsters and men, the setting and the attitudes of some of the characters give the book a dark, creepy, and foreboding feel. There is a sense of menace. You worry about the people and the land. There were a few places when I thought things happened too quickly, they weren’t friends and then they were, Idris is told something that would be hard to believe but without pause for thought he starts making big dangerous plans based on it. The speed at which things were accepted was unnaturally fast sometimes and a little more development in some spots would have been nice. But there is a lot of action and a lot of story so I understand the desire not to slow down the narrative too much so the fast pace is forgivable. Since there is more story to come there are many things that get left up in the air at the end of the book but it does not leave you in the middle of a scene. It takes a nice pause so you get a kind of ending but still have questions and want more. I was left wanting to know what happens next.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Where are your friends?

Beth's Book Review Blog is giving away 5 copies of Friends Like These by Danny Wallace. For one entry all you have to do is leave a comment with your email address but there are lots of ways to get extra entries, just make sure you leave a separate comment for each one. You have until September 27th to get your entries in. These are from the Hatchette Book Group so you have to live in the US or Canada to enter and you can not have a PO box.

King Tut Was Murdered!

Bookin' With Bingo is giving away 5 copies of The Murder of King Tut by James Patterson.

To enter:

+1 Comment and say if you have read any of James Patterson's non-fiction, and if so what.
+1 Be or become a Google Friend Connect Follower and mention it.
+1 Blog or Tweet about the contest and leave a link.
+1 Wait for the review and go back and mention something that you learned.


+3 Try to write your name with the Egyptian type alphabet provided or get up and walk like an Egyptian. This one is on the honor system but it's fun so you don't have to cheat.

All entries must be in separate comments. All comments have to be in by 6PM EST September 28th. The contest is only open to the US and Canada, no PO boxes.


Fantastic Book Review is giving readers a chance to win a copy of Ash by Malinda Lo.

To enter:

1. Comment on Author Interview : +1
2. Comment on the review: +1
3. Link to blog: +1
4. Follow on Twitter +1
5. Follower : +2

(Link and follow them, not me!)

Contest ends @ midnight (CST) September 17, 2009. U.S. and Canada Residents only.

Good luck!

More of the Greatest

The Tome Traveller's Weblog is giving away 2 copies of The Greatest Knight by Elizabeth Chadwick. To enter leave a comment.

Extra entries? Of course there are.
+1 become a follower (current followers automatically included)
+1 tweet giveaway on twitter or blog about it
+3 fave this blog at Technorati (click on the little green box on the left sidebar)
+3 new Feedburner subscribers

You have until September 19th to enter. This one is only open to those with US mailing addresses.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Miscellaneous Vocabulary

I managed to find a few books where there were only a couple of words that I didn't know so I lumped them all together here.

Alan Quartermain’s Wife by H. Rider Haggard

Assegai: the slender javelin or spear of the Bantu-speaking people of southern Africa

Laager: a camp or encampment, esp. within a protective circle of wagons

Kaross: a simple garment or rug of skins used especially by native tribesmen of southern Africa

Donga: (in an ice shelf) a small ravine with steep sides
(in South Africa) an eroded ravine; a dry watercourse

Inspan: to yoke or harness

Kloof: a deep glen

The Strain by Guillermo Del Toro and Chuck Hogan

Elegiac: of, relating to, or involving elegy or mourning or expressing sorrow for that which is irrecoverably past

Mezuzah: a small copy of the Hebrew text of Deuteronomy 6:4-9 and 11:13-21 in a container marked with the word Shaddai, a name of God, and affixed by Jews on their door frames in conformity with Jewish law and as a sign of their faith

Kreplach: small packets of noodle dough filled with ground meat or cheese usually boiled and served in soup

Agonal: associated with or relating to great pain, especially the agony of death

Effulgent: shining brilliantly; resplendent

Raw Shark Texts by Steven Hall

Biro: a pen that has a small metal ball as the point of transfer of ink to paper
(Apparently this is just a ball point pen. How did I not know that?)

Captain Freedom by G. Xavier Robillard

Palliative: relieving or soothing the symptoms of a disease or disorder without effecting a cure

Scofflaw: one who habitually violates the law or fails to answer court summonses

Cannula: a flexible tube that is inserted into a body cavity, duct, or vessel to drain fluid or administer a substance

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Another Faust

Fantastic Book Review is giving away a copy of Another Faust by Daniel & Dina Nayeri. It sounds terrific so you'll want to get over there and enter. How do you do that?

1. Comment on Author Interview: +1
2. Comment on the Review: +1
3. Link to blog: +1
4. Follow on Twitter +1
5. Follower : +2

So you can get lots of chances.

Contest ends @ midnight (CST) September 10, 2009. U.S. and Canada Residents only.

The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker

Mis(h)takes is giving away a copy of The Strangely Beautiful Tale of Miss Percy Parker by Leanna Renee Hieber. To enter just leave a comment saying you would like to win but make sure you leave your email address. There are a bunch of ways to get extra entries so make sure you take advantage of them to increase your chances. Open until September 15th. Open to the US only.

James Patterson Prize Pack

Bookluver is giving away a bunch of James Patterson books. 2 lucky winners will both win 8(!) books.

Maximum Ride: Max (paperback)
Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment (paperback)
Maximum Ride: School’s Out – Forever (paperback)
Maximum Ride: Saving the World and Other Extreme Sports (paperback)
Maximum Ride: The Final Warning (paperback)
Maximum Ride: Manga (paperback)
The Dangerous Days of Daniel X (paperback)
Daniel X: Watch the Skies (hardcover)

Leave a comment to enter. For extra entries link the promotion to your blog or become a follower. Current followers get even more entries.

It ends on September 15. Open to US Residents only

FANTASTIC BOOK REVIEW: Vampires, Werewolves & Fairies - OH MY!

FANTASTIC BOOK REVIEW: Vampires, Werewolves & Fairies - OH MY!

Fantastic Book Reviews has 400 followers! And as amazing as that is that is not the best news I have. To celebrate all these followers there is a big giveaway going on. One winner will get to choose 3 books from a fantastic list of 24 books.

How do you get entries?

+1 Comment - What's so fascinating about these supernatural beings?
+5 Old Follower
+2 New Follower(of their blog, not mine of course)
+1 Link Contest to your blog

Contest ends @ midnight (CST) September 13, 2009. Open to everyone!

Books I Finished in August

9 books in August. I thought I was going to get in a 10th but I fell asleep before I could finish it so it will have to wait until the September list.

Next by Michael Crichton
I liked it but there was a lot of medical talk going on that I didn’t quite understand. It didn’t interfere with following the story though.

Sea-Hawk by Rafael Sabatini
I like a good pirate story. Swashbuckling and the high seas and all that. And Sea-Hawk doesn’t disappoint.

Breakfast at Tiffany’s: A Short Novel and Three Stories by Truman Capote
It’s a good story but I think I still like the movie better.

Captain Freedom by G. Xavier Robillard

Undiscovered Gyrl by Allison Burnett
You can read my review here.

Case of the Empty Tin by Erle Stanley Gardner

Well Between the Worlds by Sam Llewellyn
First in the Lyonesse series. At the end I was left wanting to know what happened next. Hopefully I’ll post a review soon.

The Little Sleep by Paul Tremblay
Funny with a dry wit. Has a noir feel that I liked.

Tarzan the Invincible by Edgar Rice Burroughs
Like most Tarzan books. Edgar Rice Burroughs had a feel for a dramatic cliff hanger type end to his chapters.