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I DID get around to my New Year's Resolution

Hello friends! I've not made much progress on my blog revamp, but I wanted to drop by for a quick blog post.

This year I wanted to read more out of my comfort zones and favorite genres, specifically non-fiction and romance. I'm glad to say I enjoyed most of what I read, too -- always a plus. :)

I will do a post later on the books as a group and will likely review some of them separately. It's just, well, it's a lot to do. I have not kept up with the pile of other tasks I have to do, either. Mainly, I'm working on a project for school and all else is shelved until that is finished. 

I think I will just have to put the blog aside until the New Year, unless I finish that thing before then. Still, I look forward to sharing these wonderful books with you. 


Recent posts

Review: Audiobook Version of 27 Hours, narr. Michael Crouch

HELLO FRIENDS, I know I only just said I was taking a bit of time off blogging to sort shit out, but I HAVE GOT TO TELL YOU about the audiobook I just got. Not the book, which I'm sure is fine, but the performance. 

It sucked. 

[Standard disclaimer: I got 27 Hours by Tristina Wright with the credits that Audible refunded me for returning Eona, a book whose narrator was good but whose story I strongly disliked.

Trigger warnings below: ableism irt d/Deaf people and ASL]

I'm now going to return this audiobook, which is frustrating -- but I think I can stand at least 3 hours or so of it on the drive back home tomorrow morning. Or maybe not. Blegh.

The Narration Style

The speaker's narration is painfully slow and monotonous. He frequently uses pauses at the end of commas that are so long, they sound like periods -- only to resume speaking the rest of the sentence. Crouch makes no vocal differentiation in inflection or pitch between comma pauses and period pauses, which makes it even …

Thanksgiving

Hello! Hope you are having a good holiday. 

I haven't been around on the blog much lately. I'm going to do a revamp of the look of the whole thing and revisit some of my reviews -- revise them, and also revise how I do reviews period. 

I'm going to get rid of star ratings and do some other stuff. I've been reading a lot of books that I want to share my thoughts on, but I never seem to have the time to make full-blown posts. I'm going to try to change that and free up more time for blogging... 

 Have a good turkey day, wherever you are. :)

Book Review: Blind Spot by Laura Ellen

Hello friends! I woke up at 6:15 this morning for NO REASON and with boundless energy. I have no idea where it came from, but I'll take it. Here's a review of Blind Spot, a YA mystery/suspense novel by Laura Ellen. 

I found Blind Spot from an interview with the author on Disability In Kidlit. Their site does great stuff and you should totally check them out. 

Protagonist

Blind Spot is the story of Roz, a teenager with macular degeneration who is put in a Special Education class for the first time -- and then has to solve the murder of one of her classmates. She has a blind spot in the center of her vision, where everything is blurry. Despite living with this for most of her life, it was never diagnosed and she's been in mainstream class her whole life. Roz is initially angry and offended to be put in Special Ed; she feels like she's being singled out and doesn't like the "disabled" label. However, after a suicide of a disabled teen in the past year, the clas…

Review: But Not Up Here by RoAnna Sylver

For today's review, something a little different: a book of poetry! I don't review poetry often (or ever? not on this blog, anyway) but I do read it pretty regularly and I love poetry, so. When RoAnna Sylver, author of Chameleon Moon and generally cool indie writer person, asked if people were interested in ARC's of But Not Up Here to review, I was excited.


But Not Up Here: poems about remembering in neon is a book of poems about grief, loss, and survival. It's a beautiful collection and, as a plus, the cover is gorgeous as well. 
The subtitle, "poems about remembering in neon," references one of the poems in which the speaker talks about Michelangelo's paintings. For years, the poem says, we thought he painted in drab and muted hues -- until art restoration and new technology revealed the bright colors he really used. The speaker of that poem says that anyone who looks at them would think their memories of the lost person are like his paintings -- drab, da…

No, I haven't been around, sorry not sorry

I haven't been around here lately and that's for very good reasons. 

If you're a friend or I know you, I'm very happy to take your email or message. It may take me a little bit to get back to you, but I will get back to you. But if we are friends, don't propose me any new projects or fun activities unless I propose them to you first or it's something we talked about ages ago, like the book club/book swap idea I chatted with someone about a while back. Because I will not be available right now. I wish I was! But I won't be. 

If I have some kind of contract or agreement with you, you are of course very welcome to check in with me about how the work is going. At this point I don't have any of those contracts with anyone except the nonprofit I volunteer for. And despite some weird technical difficulties on my end, I'm trying to get that work done asap. The only other people I should be hearing from are authors who I beta'd for if they have any questio…

Review: The Kingdom of Oceana by Mitchell Charles

I received a copy of The Kingdom of Oceana for free to review from the publisher. So, here's my review!


The Plot
The Kingdom of Oceana is told from the perspective of Ailani, the teenaged second son of the king of Royal Island (Hawai'i). One day, he and his brother Nahoa are exploring, when Nahoa dares him to go to a forbidden spot above a waterfall. There, they encounter a tiki head with a strange, malevolent power. Their encounter shapes their destinies, and that of all the island kingdoms of Oceana, forever. 
This is a classic coming of age tale set in ancient Hawai'i. Ailani struggles with feelings of rivalry, jealousy, and friendship with his older brother Nahoa, who is bigger, stronger, more confident, and seems destined to become the next king. As we see from Ailani's perspective, Nahoa is frequently nasty, borderline abusive towards his younger brother. Their relationship is fascinating as it dances the line between normal sibling rivalry and toxicity. Ailani'…