Back Home At Blogger!

Guess what guys? I’ve moved! I know I know I know…I’m a pain in the freaking ass and I swear this is my last move. I’m now back at my blogger home where I originally started blogging 🙂 And it feels good to be back. If you want to follow me over there, my new web address (or old web address) is http://chrisa511.blogspot.com or http://dream-stuff.com. Both will take you to the same place. If you’re totally sick of me, now’s an excuse to stop following me :p But I hope to see some of you over there!

All the Books I've Preordered!

So I thought I would let you all know the books I’ve preordered just in case there are a few there that you’re going to want yourself 😉 This is what I’m looking forward to for right now:

1. The Alphabet Not Unlike the World: Poems by Katrina Vandenberg – So so so excited about this one!!!! Atlas is by far my all time favorite volume of poetry. I think everyone should read it if you haven’t already. So needless to say I was ecstatic when I saw this was finally available for preorder!

2. Pink Smog: Becoming Weetzie Bat by Francesca Lia Block – Oh yes…this is indeed a new Weetzie Bat book!!! I was made aware of this by Darla D. and I can’t thank her enough for letting me know about it!

3. Earth Unaware: The First Formic War by Orson Scott Card – Ever read Ender’s Game and wondered what happened during that first formic war? Well here are all of the answers!

4. Eyes Like Leave by Charles DeLint – An all new fantasy set in it’s own world with a GORGEOUS cover!!! Ooooh, I can’t wait for this one!!

5. Railsea by China Mieville – Mieville’s new Young Adult movie which sounds amazing!! I can’t wait to get this one either.

6. The Wolf Gift by Anne Rice – I haven’t been this excited about an Anne Rice book in a LONG time!! I love her and the idea of her tackling werewolves is just awesome to be honest.

7. The Unwritten Volume 5: On To Genesis by Mike Carey – Well it’s just obvious that I had to preorder this one :p Though I still haven’t read volume 4 which I need to do soon!

8. The Stuff of Legend Volume 3: A Jester’s Tale by Brian Smith – Another graphic novel that I absolutely love!! Can’t wait for this one to come out!

9. Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz – I don’t even remember anything about this book XD But obviously it sounded good enough to order!

10. Rebel Fire (Sherlock Holmes : The Legend Begins) Volume 2 by Andrew Lane – I still haven’t read the first book in this series but I have it…it sounds awesome! Story of a young Sherlock Holmes.

11. Sweet Tooth Volume 4 by Jeff Lemire – Yet another graphic novel series that I’m in love with. Seriously…I really love this one!

12. Ruins: Pathfinder Volume 2 by Orson Scott Card – I LOVED the first book in this series and this might be my most anticipated series book of 2012.

13. Shadows in Flight by Orson Scott Card – ANOTHER Ender book coming out this year 😀 😀 😀 This is a good year!!!

So my question now is…WHAT DID I MISS???? What haven’t I preordered that I have to preorder? I think there’s nothing more exciting than preordering books for some reason :p So give me all of what you’re looking forward to this year!

Bad Bloggers – 1/14/12

Guys, you will be so proud of me!!! I only have FOUR books for bad bloggers this week. I talked about my finances earlier this month and part of saving money is no longer buying books!! Though I have to admit I have a LOT of preorders coming. Which is ok by me 🙂 I guess it’s my occasional reward for saving money. Maybe I’ll do a post soon on everything I’ve preordered. Anyway, here are the FOUR books that I’ve received!

1. The Total Money Makeover by Dave Ramsey – This book is the impetus for the biggest change in my life this year. It really contributes to everything else that I want! It’s all about getting my debt and finances under control 🙂 And it really is invigorating! I’m almost done the book and then I’ll tell you all about it. This book is definitely giving Carl a point as I would’ve never done this if it weren’t for him 🙂 Point to Carl! (Bought it)

2. The Tiny Book of Tiny Stories by Joseph Gordon-Levitt – I’ve already reviewed this one and I absolutely loved it!! My great friend Nancy sent me a copy of this and it’s such a little treasure 🙂 (Gift from a friend)

3. My Life in France by Julia Child – I’ve always wanted to read this book and I was so excited to get a copy of it via Paperback Swap!!! Can’t wait to read this one! (Paperback Swap)

4. The Fault in Our Stars by John Green – So. Excited. About. This. Book. Of course I preordered this and jumped for joy (literally) when it arrived!!! I got my signature in green 🙂 Which color did you guys get? And did anyone get a Hanklerfish??? I actually haven’t started this one yet because funnily enough, I’m reading ANOTHER John Green book right now, An Abundance of Katherines. And I’m loving it! But this book is next! (Bought it)

Guys! Guys! Guys!!

I passed the NCE today!!! It’s the national counselor exam and I need to pass it in order to become a licensed counselor in Louisiana 🙂 So now I’m a Nationally Certified Counselor 🙂 I have 20 hours left of supervision and then I can apply for my licensure and I’ll be a licensed professional counselor. Which means I’ll achieve my first major goal for 2012!!! I’m so freaking happy guys, I just had to share! I was convinced after taking the test that I failed it. I told the receptionist “God that was bad.” She said…”well you never know” So she went and got my results and said “What do you think?” I told her “I’m thinking I’m going to have to retake it” She said “look for yourself” and gave me the paper. It said pass!!! I needed to score a 97 and I got a 105…after which I looked like a complete loon and asked the receptionist if I could hug her because I needed to hug someone…upon which she let me :p

The Disenchantments by Nina LaCour

I first heard about this book from John Green, so I figured it would be good. Then I was lucky enough to get an ARC of the novel which kind of made me squeal in delight. Then I started the book and thought…er….But FEAR NOT!! I ended up loving it in the end! The beginning of this one felt a little forced and stereotyped, which I’ll talk about more in a little bit, but I think it may have been the author finding their way with the novel. Because when it started to work, it REALLY worked.

The title of the book refers to a band formed by three girls; Meg and Alexa, two sisters and Bev. It’s an all girl band formed under the influences of Sleater Kinney and Diana Ross with some Heart thrown in later. Thing is, they’re the worst band ever. Yet people still love them. There music doesn’t make any sense and is noisy, but not in that good My Bloody Valentine kind of way. But people still love them because of the love the girls have for their music and because their personalities shine when they play.

However, it’s neither of these three girls who are the narrator of this novel, it’s Colby, a boy who just graduated college who is sort of their groupie…and sort of in love with Bev who’s also his best friend. School has ended and Bev and Colby have plans that they’ve made for years to tour Europe together. But before doing that, the band is traveling in a Volkswagen Mini Bus from San Francisco to Portland and playing gigs one last time. And eventually dropping Meg off for College in Portland.

But the journey ends up becoming much more than just a physical one as Bev reveals she’s not going with Colby anymore to Europe and the group is saying it’s goodbyes. From basements to clubs to bathrooms in diners, this is a story of four teens learning who they are, where they belong in the world, and what they mean to each other. And it’s just wonderful.

I had a complaint at the beginning of this review. I felt like the book TRIED too hard at first. Girls with bright pink hair saying pseudo intellectual things, being rebels, all that jazz. But it quickly became real and the characters became so much more than their stereotypes which was SUCH a relief for me. And in the end this was just an awesome book with a sort of hazy summer feel to it and a bit of melancholy.

The book comes out February 16th and I HIGHLY recommend that you preorder this one or ask your libraries to order it because it’s going to be one you’ll want to read. I can see this becoming quite the popular book. Hope you all enjoy it as much as I did!

The Tiny Book of Tiny Stories by Joseph Gordon-Levitt

Well this book is exactly what the title suggests it is. It’s a tiny book filled with wonderful little tiny stories. The book was spawned by Joseph Gordon-Levitt’s project, Hitrecord, an online community that allows users to upload their art in numerous forms and profit from it while maintaining a community around it.

This book taps into the tiny stories section of Hitrecord and is just a small sampling of what they have to offer on the website. I just loved this little book. It’s such a gem. It features stories that pack a huge punch in sometimes just ten words or less. Stories that get to the heart of the human experience and feel much broader than what their small word count would imply.

Accompanying the stories are perfect little illustrations that add so much more depth to the stories. And the book itself is packaged just perfectly. Something you want to just hold in your hands and hug. Definitely one I enjoyed. A wonderful gift from a wonderful friend 🙂 Thanks, Nancy.

Level Up by Gene Luen Yang

I went into this book expecting a story about video games. I guess it is partly that, but it’s more about living your own dreams vs. living someone else’s dreams. And as is typical with Gene Luen Yang, the story is told expertly and the artist he’s chosen, Thiem Pham provides amazing art to go along with the story.

Dennis wants nothing more than a nintendo gaming system for Christmas when he’s a child. He’s fallen in love with the world of video games that he’s discovered and the nintendo has just become available. What he gets instead is a chemistry set. He’s super disappointed and to make matters worse, his dad tells him that video games are a waste of his time and that he needs to plan for his future. He has to make sacrifices.

When Dennis is about to graduate high school, his father dies, leaving things unsettled. Since his father isn’t there, Dennis hallucinates angels from a card that his father gave him as a child that plead with him to go to medical school to become a doctor, and so he does that, feeling guilty for not living up to his fathers dreams. But the question is, can Dennis ever be truly happy if he’s not living his life for himself…if he’s living it for someone else.

This really is a great question, isn’t it? How often do we make choices in life based on what we think others expect of us…how often do we make choices because it feels like it’s the proper thing to do, not the thing that we necessarily want to do. I think all of us do to an extent…whether it’s something small in life or whether it’s what we actually do with our lives. I know I do this on a daily basis. With little things and with big things. I think it’s important to at least acknowledge that.

The thing I love about Gene Luen Yang is that his books really do an excellent job of tackling the essence of human experience…whether that’s about racism, ethnocentrism, money or living for ourselves. And he does it so damn well. In such a relatable way. Can’t wait to see what Yang puts out next!