Category Archives: life

The Book Thief

I finished this one during Hurricane Matthew, one of the few times I’ve found time to read nowadays, and was crying by the end. I will tell you now this book comes with some of my highest recommendations. I haven’t cried for a fictional character in a while, and I’m sorry this review is so late because I haven’t had the time to write it, but I finished another book while I’ve been trying to get around to writing this review so maybe I’ll have that review posted soon.

The premise, for those of you who don’t know, is Death is fascinated by humans. None more so than young Liesel, who has lost both her parents in different ways and witnessed at the start of the book the death of her brother. This is also the first time Death sees Liesel., it will not be the last. The death of her brother also leads Liesel to steal her first book, just before she finds herself on Himmel Street where she spends the majority of the remainder of the book. There she is raised by the Hubermann family, Hans who she comes to call Papa and Rosa who is Mama. They are an odd pair who seem to hate each other more than they love each other, but that is just their way. On Himmel street Liesel makes a friend in Rudy Steiner, who is her neighbor, obsessed with Jesse Owens and wants nothing more than to be kissed by Liesel. Later Hans Hubermann will bring into the Hubermann home, Max the Jewish fist fighter and if I neglected to mention now would be a good time to tell you this is during Nazi Germany. This gang of people form a family. Liesel learns to read on Himmel Street, defies Hitler, even in the smallest ways, and steals more than just books. It’s hard to describe the premise of these book because I fear giving too much away, but I will say I really loved this story.

What I loved about it was that it’s told from the perspective of a young, blonde, German girl who isn’t Jewish. So often books told during the Holocaust are told from the perspective of someone Jewish, and while that makes sense because their stories need to be told, so do the stories of the Germans who didn’t support Hitler’s war or cause. I love that this story, is being told by Death. It’s such an interesting turn of events and kept me wondering how and when Death would meet Liesel again. I love how Death speaks of humans, and the tone he/she/it is given. I really fell in love with the characters. Max, Hans and Rudy were my favorites but they’re all just incredibly well put together and fully realized. I even found myself wanting to know what was happening to the smallest side characters. This is a really gripping story about a young girl, growing up poor in one of the darkest times in history. It’s about her life, the people she meets and loves along the way and the truly haunting aspects of being human. It’s a beautiful story and I would honestly read it again, even though it hurts my heart.

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The Worst Kinds of People

I realized today, after yelling to another stranger who couldn’t even hear me, that they were “the worst kind of person”, that I’ve been saying that a lot lately. As such, I’ve compiled a list of the types of people who I actually do think are the worst kinds of people, because I think maybe not all the ones I accused are actually that bad.

  1. People who cut you off and then slow down. That’s the most recent person I yelled at and he didn’t even cut me off. I watched it happen to the poor person in front of me. My thing is, if you’re trying to get over, use a turn signal. If you aren’t don’t get pissy when someone doesn’t let you over. But most importantly, if you are in such a rush that you absolutely cannot wait to get over, don’t be that person! Do not cut in front of me then slow to 20 in a 45…seriously? Where was that hurry up that made getting in front of me an absolute necessity? Screw you, buddy. You truly are one of the worst kinds of people.
  2. People who get mad when you ask for gas money. If I’m giving you a ride and I’m strapped for cash, me giving you a ride is a favor, you shouldn’t get mad at me for asking for some help paying for the gas you’re using as well. Am I your mother? No? Then fork over at least a couple of bucks or start hoofing it, sweetheart. You are an entitled little douche and one of the worst kinds of people.
  3. Contrarians. So, I know this guy who hates The Beatles. He doesn’t have a legitimate reason, he just says they’re overrated. When asked to explain, he can’t. But the thing is, I know him, so I know he doesn’t like them simply because popular opinion is that they were either amazing or did amazing things for their genre. I hate when people dislike something just for the sake of being different from the norm. I hate when people like things just because the main consensus is that it sucks. Don’t get me wrong, if you have an actual opinion and you really do like/dislike something that most others do or don’t like, fine. But if you are only saying you do or don’t like something because it opposes popular opinion then I need you to stop voicing your opinions immediately because you are one of the worst kinds of people.
  4. People who don’t read and are smug about it. I’m a book nerd…as if you all didn’t know that already. I can’t stand when someone announces proudly to me that they don’t read books. That is not a badge of honor to be announced and waved about. On the contrary, you should be hanging your head in shame or hiding in a dark cave of willful ignorance. When you tell me you didn’t read the book, and smile, I feel embarrassed for you. And so should you, feel embarrassed, because you are one of the worst kinds of people.
  5. Divas. Okay, not like actually musically talented divas. No, i mean that one friend almost everyone has. You know who I’m talking about? The one who only ever wants to do what they want to do and if you aren’t doing that they won’t be there. The friend who is definitely only around in the fairest of weather. The one who also expects you to drop everything for them if they’re having a bad day, but then doesn’t understand when you’re upset they won’t do the same. Sweetheart, you are not Aretha, Tina, or Queen B, so step off your high horse and learn to be a bit less self-absorbed or you’ll forever be one of the worst kinds of people.

I’m sure there are more I’ll think of next time I’m complaining about a customer or yelling at that minivan in front of me, but for now, those are the ones I can think of. I’ve also just noticed I have a lot of rants stored up in my mind that I never get around to yelling at the people I want to, so these will probably continue to happen. Anyway, that’s all for now. Goodnight guys, and thanks for reading.

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A to Z Challenge Post Script

I had more fun than I thought I would doing this years challenge for you guys. I few of the books I mentioned I hadn’t thought about in years and while rediscovering some was not fun, most were thoroughly enjoyable. I won’t say I never realized before how much I love expressing my opinion about the books I read because that would be a lie, but I had honestly never considered sharing those opinions on my blog. After this years challenge, however, I think I might be more inclined to do so. I’m currently read The Silkworm, the second Cormoran Strike novel, and I will probably have lots to say about it when it’s over (I have plenty to say already) so you should probably expect to hear all about it when I’m done.

I also wanted to express my humble gratitude towards everyone who has been following my blog since this challenge began. I always feel a mix of pride and surprise every time someone new pops up here and I’d just like you all to know that I’m thankful for all of you. I have found new blogs to check in on myself and I’m very excited about that as well. The things people come up with for this challenge are so unique and fun to read.

Anyway guys, more than anything I think I’m ready to get back to blogging regularly but not every day and I’m glad to have you all along for the ride. Until next time, thank for reading.

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Zzzz…or My Favorite Bedtime Stories

Yay, we made it to the end guys! I hope you’re as excited as I am. Today, because it’s the end and this felt appropriate, we’re covering my favorite bed time stories growing up. Also, because I haven’t read any books that start with Z. I’ve got three books for you guys today, so let’s get to it.

1. Goodnight Moon:

GoodnightmoonThis one is a classic. I think everyone has at least heard of it once. Goodnight Moon is a book about a bunny who is going through her bedtime ritual of saying goodnight to everything in her room. The bunny says goodnight to her dollhouse, her kitten, her red balloon, etc. At the very end the bunny says goodnight to the moon and goes to sleep. I loved this book because there was something very calming about the ritual of saying goodnight to everything. As my grandmother read it to me, we would say goodnight with the bunny and as everything got dark and all the objects seemed to drift off to sleep together, I would find my eyes drooping as well. Even though the book is colorful with green walls and those crazy striped curtains, I was still calmed enough to drift off by the end of the book.

2. Where the Wild Things Are

where-the-wild-things-areThis was a weird little book about a boy named Max, who dons a wolf costume and wreaks havoc around his house so badly that he is sent to bed without supper. In his room and upset, he finds the place suddenly transforming into a jungle. He ends up sailing to a place inhabited by ferocious beats called ‘wild things’. After intimidating the creatures he is hailed as a king and spends his time running around and enjoying his new subjects. After a while though, Max decides to return home, though the wild things wish him to stay, and when he gets home he finds a hot meal waiting for him. This story was a lot of fun to read when I was younger, and I’ll admit I haven’t read it, or been read it, in a long time. But I still remember being fascinated by the wild things and jealous of the adventure Max went on. I wanted a wolf costume and to suddenly find myself sailing to a land of seemingly ferocious beasts. It was a really fun story, but I’ll admit, it did nothing to get me tired. I really just liked hearing it because it sent my imagination soaring, though that wasn’t the worst thing, as my musings would often turn into dreams without me noticing. I suspect, now that I’m older, that’s the only reason my grandmother continued to read it to me.

3. Corduroy

corduroyOh, this story still leaves me with so many emotions. I absolutely loved the little bear named Corduroy, who wanted nothing more than to be bought and loved by some small child. I used to always wish I could just pull him from the pages of his book and give him a home, imperfections and all.

Okay, so the plot follows Corduroy the teddy bear who sits on display in a department store. One day a little girl named Lisa comes in with her mother. Lisa spots Corduroy and wants to buy him, but her mother doesn’t want to spend money on him because a button is missing from his overalls. After they leave, and the store closes, Corduroy decides to go searching for the missing button himself. He ends up finding the furniture section and thinks one of the bed buttons is his missing button. He pulls and pulls on it, but fails to remove it, instead falling off the bed and making noise. The noise alerts the store security guard who finds Corduroy and puts him back in place. Corduroy is sad and thinks he’ll never have a home, but the next day Lisa returns. She has with her all the money from her piggy bank and uses it to buy Corduroy. At home she sews a button onto his overalls. The book ends with both expressing how they always wanted a friend and hugging. This story always made me feel so much. I was excited for Corduroy, then mad at the mother, then sad when the little teddy bear thought he’d never be bought. But when Lisa came back and took Corduroy home…well my heart was so full and happy every single time. I’d pull my own teddy bear close and hold it tight and promise to love it even if it gets ripped. I’d fall asleep still holding tight to my teddy, grateful for it and hoping he was as happy as Corduroy.

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Years From Now- Shel Silverstein

Although I cannot see your face
As you flip these poems awhile,
Somewhere from some far-off place
I hear you laughing—and I smile.

This poem is the epitome of what good poems and good books make you feel. This is the epitome of what it’s like to find someone who loves the same books or poems you do. I wish I could find an abundance of words to describe better why I love this poem so much, but there is really no better way to say it. This is the connection between every book and poetry lover. Every fangirl and boy, every gamer, every comic book geek…this is the feeling that consumes you when you wear that Ravenclaw scarf, or Tardis dress, or Flash shirt, or slip a subtle reference into conversation and someone…maybe someone across the room, someone you’ve never seen or spoken to before nods in approval or compliments your outfit. This is why you can have the most comfortable conversation with a complete stranger on a bus when any other day of the week you’d just be hoping to disappear into the crowd or very far away from the crowd. When you have these moments, these things that you all appreciate together, suddenly you sense how not alone you are, how much of a community you have, even if you never seen it’s members. Suddenly, you can feel the thousands or millions of people watching just like you, laughing and crying and gasping all together, all at once, even if you’re oceans apart. This poem makes me smile because I know this feeling so very well, and I am glad to share it with everyone who’s ever felt it before.

P.S. Tomorrow we hit Z! can you believe we’ve made it to the end? I’ll be sad to see the challenge go, but I wanted to thank everyone who’s been following along and I wanted to do it here since tomorrow will cover several books and you won’t want a post script by the end of it. It’s been a wonderful April with you guys. I’ve had some great conversations and found some really interesting bloggers from this, so it really has been a pleasure. I was glad to have you all with me. Thanks for reading.

 

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