2008, The Year In Review

I was holding off on writing my end of the year review thinking that I would finish the three books that I’m reading now, but it looks like I won’t. I’ve just been so busy lately at work that I haven’t had time to do much reading. So those three will be the first books of 2009.Β 

It’s been one hell of a year! There have been many ups and downs. On the good side, I read more books than I read last year (only by 1!) and the quality of the books was pretty damn good. I’ve made even more amazing blogging friends throughout the year whom I cherish. I’ve continued the dear friendships that I made during my first year of blogging and many of those have grown into wonderful relationships. I moved the blog over to WordPress which I think was an overall good decision and got my own domain. Depending on if you look at it as a good thing or not, I’ve added quite a few new books to my personal library :p I finally got a job in May after being laid off at the end of 2007! And I’m hosting my very first challenge! Which kind of crosses over into a few not so good things.

I experienced the loss of a dear friend this year as we all have. I just miss Dewey so much. She was an amazing blogger and her death is certainly an event that will stick with me as a memory of 2008. But so will many other great things that she brought to us such as Weekly Geeks, my very first 24 hour read a thon!, the carnivals, and her wonderful presence that’s sorely missed. I also ended a long term relationship with Megan and while we still remain the best of friends, it was still an upsetting event. And we had the drama over the summer with my Dad’s triple bypass surgery and all of the complications. I think I experienced my first severe bout of depression during this past summer, but that’s happily past me now. I’ve been feeling much better.

As they (the proverbial “they”) say, With the good comes the bad. I think the good certainly outweighed the bad though this year, so I’m calling 2008 a success! Here’s hoping that 2009 is even better. So lets look at some reading stats for 2008! I totally stole all of these categories from Nymeth by the way :pΒ 

Total Books Read: 79 – One better than last year’s 78!
Total Pages Read: 20,287
Comics/Graphic Novels Read: 7
Non-Fiction: 7
Novels: 60
Short Story Collections/Anthologies: 4
Children’s & Young Adult: 27
In Translation (that I know of): 6
By Women: 24
By Men: 52 (These stats are embarrassing…I really need to read more books by women next year!)
Featuring both Men and Women authors: 3
New to me authors: 47 (wow!)
Classics: 7
Chunksters (450+ pages): 8
Favorite New Authors Discovered: John Green, John Lawson, Susan Beth Pfeffer, Lynn Flewelling, Bill Willingham, Martin Millar, Simon Van Booy, Cherie Priest, Mary Roach, Keith Miller, Terri Windling
Best Reading Month: March – 9 Books, 2,420 Pages
Worst Reading Month: January – 4 Books, 1,262 pages

And now for the top er…16 books of 2008! It was incredibly hard to limit it down so I didn’t very much :p, but here are my favorite books of the year in no particular order. You can click the title of the book for my review of it.

Four Letter Word ed. by Joshua Knelman & Rosalind Porter – This was the first book of the year that truly WOWed me. In fact, it was a library book and I loved it so much that I had to go and buy a copy. It’s a collection of short stories written by an amazing group of author’s that are all written in the form of a love letter. Doesn’t sound all that incredibly exciting, but trust me, it is. Favorites were Neil Gaiman’s and Audrey Niffenegger’s stories…they stand out to me still.Β 

Witch Ember by John Lawson – This one was a wonderful surprise. I was contacted by John and asked if I would like to review his two books. When I saw the size of them, I thought “holy shit!” But as I turned the first few pages, I quickly realized that the books just couldn’t be long enough. Witch Ember is one of the best fantasies I’ve read in a long time that really belongs in a class of it’s own. It’s part high fantasy, part historical fiction, somewhat urban fantasy, but at it’s heart it’s just an extremely engaging, captivating novel full of some amazing characters and imagination.

Tamsin by Peter Beagle – One of the best ghost stories I’ve ever read. This was another one that I just didn’t want to end. I loved the feel of the house that Tamsin haunted, the mythology that the book presented, the characters, the country side. Beagle has fast become a favorite writer of mine and if I was finished A Fine and Private Place, it would most certainly be on my list for favorite reads of the year…but that would be cheating…but notice I worked it in anyway :p

The Book of Flying by Keith Miller – Seriously, I can’t say enough about this book. I think it has some of the most beautiful language that I have ever read in a novel. The book had Β a wonderful, melancholy feel to it and constantly gave me a sense of nostalgia despite it taking place in a time that I never could have known because it doesn’t exist. If I had to paint a picture of this novel, it would all be in sepia tones. It was a gorgeous book from cover to cover and one that I miss dearly and wish I could discover it for the first time all over again. Thanks to Carl for recommending this one to me.

The Wood Wife by Terri Windling – I still think about this book constantly and I’ve been wanting to visit the desert again ever since reading it. I’ve always been a fan of myth/folklore but had never read anything about Native American folklore until I read this book. I never expected to enjoy it as much as I did. I wish Ms. Windling would write some more novels πŸ˜‰ She has an absolutely incredible talent with all things art related.

The Bone Doll’s Twin by Lynn Flewelling – Wow wow wow. If you enjoy fantasy even remotely, you need to read this book. Even if you don’t like fantasy, I think you’d like this. It’s very atypical of a lot of fantasy out there. A lot of people see fantasy as a type of genre where the characters come secondary to the plot…the task that has to be accomplished. Flewelling does an amazing job at building some of the most incredible fantasy characters I’ve read. I’m addicted to this book and can’t wait to read the next one in the series which is waiting for me on my shelf!

Looking for Alaska by John Green – As far as Young Adult books go, I don’t know if it gets much better than John Green. With Looking for Alaska, he took me right back to my teenage years and made me long for them. Alaska is a character that will haunt my mind for years. This was the beginning of a beautiful friendship indeed. John Green has quickly been added to my list of favorite authors.

When Twilight Burns by Colleen Gleason – This was by far my favorite book in Colleen Gleason’s Gardella Vampire series. This one presented twists and turns and revelations that just blew my mind and I loved seeing the books begin to come together. At the same time, it made me sad as I realized that there’s only one book left in the series 😦 But I’m really looking forward to it. Colleen Gleason is solely responsible for reawakening my love for vampire literature that I hadn’t had since reading Anne Rice’s books as a teenager. In fact, Lilith, one of her vampires…the queen if you will…reminded me of Anne Rice’s Akasha – a character that I loved but was evil at the same time. Β And yeah, that’s totally me modeling on the cover of the book. You believe that one, right?

Bonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex by Mary Roach – I think Mary Roach may be my new favorite non-fiction author πŸ™‚ This book was fantastic and one of the most intriguing books I’ve read in a long time revealing some of the odder sides of sex out there. It’s written in a manner that’s extremely enjoyable to read, educational, and hilarious. I have Stiff (no, that’s not another sex book…this one’s about cadavers) waiting for me on the TBR shelf.

Four and Twenty Blackbirds by Cherie Priest – I’m ready to call Cherie Priest the new priestess of Southern Gothic Lit. I couldn’t put this book down. It’s another one that reminded me of Anne Rice in a way, but this one reminded me of the Mayfair Witches series. I think it was the long family history and supernatural gifts of the main character. And it had that great southern feel to it. I was overjoyed when I found out that this was the first book in a series of Eden Moore books. I totally thought it was a standalone at first.

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman – Ah, what fond memories already. One of my favorite authors and now one of my new favorite books. This one was actually a little of a surprise for me. I didn’t expect it to be half as touching of a story as it was, though I should’ve known better. I always become attached to his characters…but possibly never more so than with Bod Owens. I enjoyed watching him grow up and felt a sense of connectedness with him despite the fact that he grew up in a Graveyard. This was one of the few this year that brought tears to my eyes and a lump in my throat when I think of it. Fantastic new addition to the Gaiman library.

The Secret Lives of People in Love by Simon Van Booy – I’ve been wanting to read this one for awhile now and when I finally read it, it was so much more than what I had been expecting. Van Booy’s language is just gorgeous and he connects his readers to his stories in a short time, but with a strong punch. Can’t wait for his next collection!

Nation by Terry Pratchett – I still haven’t done a proper review of this book! But you can click on the link to see my immediate thoughts on it. This was more than I ever expected out of Terry Pratchett and that’s saying something. I didn’t expect this book to be as touching as it was and it was another one with fantastic characters. How this man thinks of all of these wonderful things, I’ll never know. But I’m glad he does πŸ™‚

Dream Homes: From Cairo to Katrina: An Exile’s Journey by Joyce Zonana – I raved about this book after I read it and I’ll rave about it some more. And I swear I’m not biased because the author was one of my favorite professors. There’s a reason she was one of my favorite professors and it’s because of the passion, love, and history that she shares with people. This is never more evident than in this fantastic book about her life as a Sephardic Jew who immigrated from Cairo as a child and grew up learning to embrace her culture in a foreign land that she came to call home. I’m giving this the award for best non-fiction of the year.

The Uncommon Reader by Alan Bennett – If you love to read, then you have to read this little novella…’nuf said.

Paper Towns by John Green – John Green is the only author that gets the privilege of being on this list twice! Another fantastic YA book with amazing characters. It amazes me how Mr. Green manages to capture the mind of a teenager so well and create such smart, witty, engaging and quirky story lines. I think Green may get the author of the year award πŸ˜‰

Anything on here surprise anyone? I’ve found that my taste in books is becoming more and more eclectic. When I started this blog, it was geared towards mostly just Sci-fi and Fantasy, but it’s become more and more general. Though I’d still say it has a very fantasy centered theme to it. I’m going to do a couple of things differently with my reviews next year. The biggest thing is, I’m going to add a ratings system. I’ve been avoiding this for a long time, because knowing me I’ll just want to give everything 5s :p So I’m going to do like Carl and break it down to 1/4 stars. That way if something’s better than a 4.5 but not quite a 5, I can give it a 4.75, lol. We’ll see if it sticks. I’m also going to list my books a little differently in the “2009 reads” tab than I have in previous years. The way I do it now just takes up too much room, so it’s really just a matter of appearance. I’d like to also divide my books into an alphabetized list by author and by title so all of my reviews are easily accessible. That’s going to involve going back into all of the archives though and labeling everything, so we’ll see if that happens.Β 

Finally, I’m going to keep a detailed written log of everything I read this year. I miss writing in a journal by hand and I love Bellezza’s idea of filling up a journal with all kinds of book stuff. So I’m going to do that. I got a new fountain pen for Christmas and it’s brought back my love of writing stuff by hand. It just feels right when you’re writing with a fountain pen.Β 

To all of my readers, all of my friends, I wish you the happiest of New Years. After 2 years of blogging, I’m still amazed by the amount of traffic this site gets even though it’s not near as much as some blogs. You all mean the world to me and it’s been a pleasure reading, reviewing, and sharing life with you guys. And here we go on year 3! Happy Reading everyone πŸ™‚

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Mailbox Monday (With an index of excuses)

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Is it bad that this post makes me all warm and fuzzy and sends me into a sheer panic attack at the same time? I know I said it last year, but in 2009 I REALLY need to make an effort to read what’s already on the shelves. I’m starting to believe that there may indeed be too much of a good thing :p It would be different if I had my own house with a room devoted as a library, but sadly I don’t. Anyway, here are some excuses for you:

1. Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones – I’ve been wanting to read something by Jones forever. I think I have something else by her on my bookshelf, but I’m not entirely sure :/ I loved Miyazaki’s interpretation of this one and hope I enjoy the book as much as the anime. I mooched this one so it was free.

2. Company of Liars by Karen Maitland – This one was a Christmas gift from Carl! I’m so excited about it. The cover is fantastic to begin with and it’s supposed to be somewhat of a modern Cantebury Tales. Really looking forward to it!

3. Blood Harvest by Brant Randall – This one is a review copy for Pump Up Your Book Promotion. I’ll be doing a review and author interview in January, so stay tuned for that. And Mr. Randall was kind enough to autograph it to me!

4. Comic Book Tattoo ed. by Rantz A. Hoseley (The Flying Dutchman) – I bought this one with a Borders gift card after lusting over it for a long time. I also gave it to Megan as a birthday gift. Let me tell you, this book is absolutely amazing and totally worth the price. I’m about halfway into it and it’s just a beautiful book. For those who don’t know, it’s a collection of short comics by different authors all based on Tori Amos songs. They have the lyrics to each song before it’s comic. Oh, and an introduction by Neil Gaiman in which he explains how he came to know Tori Amos.

5. Enslaved by Ducks by Bob Tarte – As I mentioned yesterday, I had to get this one after reading Bookfool’s review. I also bought this one with a Borders gift card. I jumped right into it and I’m loving it! It’s fantastic. It’s a memoir of Bob and his wife Linda who moved from the big city to a quiet farmhouse where they proceeded to become the owners of many, many animals including ducks, various birds and parrots, rabbits, cats, turkeys…you name it. And they all live in the house :p It’s an automatic top rated book for any animal lover I promise!

6. The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing Vol. 1 by M.T. Anderson – Ok, another one that I bought with my Borders giftcard. It’s about time I read this one, eh? I’m really looking forward to it! It sounds fantastic.

7. Edgar Allan Poe: Selected Poems and Tales published by Barnes and Noble – I can’t tell you how thrilled I am about this one. It’s been on my wishlist ever since I first saw it on Carl’s blog as a giveaway during the RIP challenge in 2007. Unfortunately, it was no longer available at Barnes and Noble…but my mom tracked it down for me for Christmas this year! Yay! It’s beautiful.

8. How to be Good by Nick Hornby – I found this one on Bookmooch and I know absolutely nothing about it. Those usually tend to be the best books! I’m excited about this one.Β 

9. A Long Way Down by Nick Hornby – Got this one on Bookmooch too! I’ve been wanting this one since 2005. I first saw it at a bookstore when I had evacuated for Katrina while looking for something to read. About time I got it!

10. The Eye of the World by Robert Jordan – Am I totally nuts starting this series? I’ve been wanting to read The Wheel of Time series ever since I started reading fantasy in my early teens. I’ve heard very mixed reviews of this series though…I’ll just have to judge for myself! I mooched this one too.

11. Motel Life by Willy Vlautin – I got this one from my Secret Santa! It sounds like an excellent book and it’s another one I know nothing about!

12. I Dreamed of Africa by Kuki Gallman – I had to get this one after reading on Mariel’s blog that it’s her favorite book. I found this one on Bookmooch too! Yeah, I know…I lucked out this week on Bookmooch. It really sounds like a beautiful book and I think it will work well with Eva’s World Citizen Challenge.

13. The Guersney Literary and Potato Peel Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows – Ok, I have no idea if I’ll like this one or not, but it’s been on my wishlist ever since reading all of the reviews. It was another Christmas gift from Mom!

14. Look Me in the Eye by John Elder Robison – Another Christmas gift from Mom…I’m so excited about this one too. It’s written by Augusten Burroughs’ brother who has Aspergers and it’s his story of living with the disorder. I have a special place in my heart for kids with Aspergers so I know I’ll love it.

15. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky – Another one to blame on Nymeth :p After her review I had to read this one. It’s the last of the Christmas gifts from Mom.

16. A Year in the World: Journeys of a Passionate Traveler by Frances Mayes – Borders had a buy one, get one half off sale today, so I blame them for this one. It sounds like a great book though. It’s a travel memoir of a woman who spent a year traveling from country to country and documenting their different cultures and her experiences. This one should work for Eva’s World Citizen Challenge as well!

17. Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain – I’ve been wanting this one for AGES and it happened to be on the buy one get one half off table. As a bonus, it has new bonus material added to it! Looking forward to it. I know Dark Orpheus would be proud of me for getting this one πŸ˜‰

That’s all…I swear…that’s all.

Seriously…They're Totally Taking Over

Wait til you see my Mailbox Monday post on Monday, lol. It’s going to be bad…real bad. However I did get some incredibly cool gifts! In addition to all of the books that found their way into my house this Christmas, I’ve also managed to Mooch quite a few books. Then I got $60 in Borders gift cards, so of course I had to spend them right away :p Today I bought Comic Book Tattoo which I’m so excited about! I got it for Megan for her birthday and she’s in love with it, so I know I’ll love it too. It’s a series of short comics written by different people and each one is based on a Tori Amos song! Cool, eh? I also bought Enslaved by Ducks which I had to have after reading Bookfool’s fantastic review. And The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing Vol. 1. Cool loot, eh? The only bad thing is, my TBR shelf is now completely full, the bottom shelf is doubled up, and there are now 4 piles on the floor in front of it :/

Since this title is also applicable to challenges, I figured I’d also wrap up some 2008 Challenges.

First up, The Young Adult Challenge…here’s what I read:

1. The Thief of Always by Clive Barker
2. Tamsin by Peter Beagle
3. The Blue Girl by Charles de Lint
4. Fablehaven: Grip of the Shadow Plague by Charles de Lint
5. Here, There be Dragons by James A. Owen
6. Paper Towns by John Green
7. Found by Margaret Peterson Haddix
8. Nation by Terry Pratchett (which I’m realizing I never properly reviewed!)
9. Madapple by Christina Meldrum
10. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
11. Gossamer by Lois Lowry
12. Looking for Alaska by John Green

I can’t even begin to pick favorites from this challenge! I really enjoyed them all and many of them will be on the best of list for the year. I love YA lit. I read more than this too, but I’ll count these 12 for the challenge.

The A to Z Challenge: This one was a total failure…I’m not even going to recap it on here, but I’m trying again next year and hopefully I can fill everything up!

The Graphic Novel Challenge:

1. Books of Magic by Neil Gaiman
2. The Book of Ballads by Charles Vess
3. American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang
4. Fables Vol. 1 by Bill Willingham
5. Fables Vol. 2 by Bill Willingham
6. Mateki: The Magic Flute by Yoshitaka Amano
7. Mouseguard: Fall 1152 by David Peterson

I’m so glad to finally have started the Fables series! It’s uber fantastic! If you haven’t read it, you really should. I have book 3 waiting for me. Wrapping up this challenge makes me think of Dewey 😦 She had great taste in GNs and hosted this challenge. The good news is, I have plenty of recs left to read from her!

The Japanese Reading Challenge:

I’ve officially finished this one, but I’m going to read one more…Here’s what I’ve read so far:

1. After Dark by Haruki Murakami
2. In the Miso Soup by Ryu Murakami
3. Mateki: The Magic Flute by Yoshitaka Amano

Bellezza rocks for hosting this challenge. It’s come to be an absolute favorite of mine. I think my favorite of these is actually In the Miso Soup despite my love for the other 2.

I’m calling it quits on the 1% Well Read Challenge….I’m just convinced I’ll never be well read :/

And finally, I’m going to go ahead and wrap up Becky’s Cardathon Challenge:

1. Invasive Procedures by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston
2. War of Gifts by Orson Scott Card
3. The Folk of the Fringe by Orson Scott Card
4. The Worthing Saga by Orson Scott Card
5. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
6. The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
7. The Bone Doll’s Twin by Lynn Flewelling
8. Here, There by Dragons by James A. Owen
9. The Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Patterson
10. Heart Shaped Box by Joe Hill
11. Ender in Exile by Orson Scott Card
12. Zanna’s Gift by Orson Scott Card

Thanks to Becky, my OSC soulmate, for hosting this challenge. It was fun. Favorites were Invasive Procedures, The Bone Doll’s Twin, The Thirteenth Tale, and Zanna’s Gift. The disappointment was Folk of the Fringe.

Phew that post took a long time to write! Glad to have wrapped them up though…now onto the 2009 Challenges!!

Seriously…They’re Totally Taking Over

Wait til you see my Mailbox Monday post on Monday, lol. It’s going to be bad…real bad. However I did get some incredibly cool gifts! In addition to all of the books that found their way into my house this Christmas, I’ve also managed to Mooch quite a few books. Then I got $60 in Borders gift cards, so of course I had to spend them right away :p Today I bought Comic Book Tattoo which I’m so excited about! I got it for Megan for her birthday and she’s in love with it, so I know I’ll love it too. It’s a series of short comics written by different people and each one is based on a Tori Amos song! Cool, eh? I also bought Enslaved by Ducks which I had to have after reading Bookfool’s fantastic review. And The Astonishing Life of Octavian Nothing Vol. 1. Cool loot, eh? The only bad thing is, my TBR shelf is now completely full, the bottom shelf is doubled up, and there are now 4 piles on the floor in front of it :/

Since this title is also applicable to challenges, I figured I’d also wrap up some 2008 Challenges.

First up, The Young Adult Challenge…here’s what I read:

1. The Thief of Always by Clive Barker
2. Tamsin by Peter Beagle
3. The Blue Girl by Charles de Lint
4. Fablehaven: Grip of the Shadow Plague by Charles de Lint
5. Here, There be Dragons by James A. Owen
6. Paper Towns by John Green
7. Found by Margaret Peterson Haddix
8. Nation by Terry Pratchett (which I’m realizing I never properly reviewed!)
9. Madapple by Christina Meldrum
10. The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
11. Gossamer by Lois Lowry
12. Looking for Alaska by John Green

I can’t even begin to pick favorites from this challenge! I really enjoyed them all and many of them will be on the best of list for the year. I love YA lit. I read more than this too, but I’ll count these 12 for the challenge.

The A to Z Challenge: This one was a total failure…I’m not even going to recap it on here, but I’m trying again next year and hopefully I can fill everything up!

The Graphic Novel Challenge:

1. Books of Magic by Neil Gaiman
2. The Book of Ballads by Charles Vess
3. American Born Chinese by Gene Luen Yang
4. Fables Vol. 1 by Bill Willingham
5. Fables Vol. 2 by Bill Willingham
6. Mateki: The Magic Flute by Yoshitaka Amano
7. Mouseguard: Fall 1152 by David Peterson

I’m so glad to finally have started the Fables series! It’s uber fantastic! If you haven’t read it, you really should. I have book 3 waiting for me. Wrapping up this challenge makes me think of Dewey 😦 She had great taste in GNs and hosted this challenge. The good news is, I have plenty of recs left to read from her!

The Japanese Reading Challenge:

I’ve officially finished this one, but I’m going to read one more…Here’s what I’ve read so far:

1. After Dark by Haruki Murakami
2. In the Miso Soup by Ryu Murakami
3. Mateki: The Magic Flute by Yoshitaka Amano

Bellezza rocks for hosting this challenge. It’s come to be an absolute favorite of mine. I think my favorite of these is actually In the Miso Soup despite my love for the other 2.

I’m calling it quits on the 1% Well Read Challenge….I’m just convinced I’ll never be well read :/

And finally, I’m going to go ahead and wrap up Becky’s Cardathon Challenge:

1. Invasive Procedures by Orson Scott Card and Aaron Johnston
2. War of Gifts by Orson Scott Card
3. The Folk of the Fringe by Orson Scott Card
4. The Worthing Saga by Orson Scott Card
5. Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson
6. The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield
7. The Bone Doll’s Twin by Lynn Flewelling
8. Here, There by Dragons by James A. Owen
9. The Bridge to Terabithia by Katherine Patterson
10. Heart Shaped Box by Joe Hill
11. Ender in Exile by Orson Scott Card
12. Zanna’s Gift by Orson Scott Card

Thanks to Becky, my OSC soulmate, for hosting this challenge. It was fun. Favorites were Invasive Procedures, The Bone Doll’s Twin, The Thirteenth Tale, and Zanna’s Gift. The disappointment was Folk of the Fringe.

Phew that post took a long time to write! Glad to have wrapped them up though…now onto the 2009 Challenges!!

Nabaztag Fun!

Ok, so I’m going to rant about the Nabaztag and then I’ll leave it alone. This thing is awesome! I’m having so much fun with it. It’s name is Noel (pronounced like the man’s name) but it decided it wants to talk like a girl, so it’s now Noel pronounced the girl way…which is fine. I named it that because it was a Christmas gift. So I discovered today that anyone can send me messages from anywhere in the world! You just go to Nabaztag.com and click on “My friend has a rabbit” and type in a message (or a song, or even record your own voice!) to “Chris Howard” and then Noel will read the message out to me! How cool is that. You can also email a message to it at chrisa511(at)things.violet.net. It will read those messages to me too. And if I’m not home, I can just hit a button when I get home and retrieve my messages. Oh and if you know someone else who has a rabbit, you can send a message through it’s ears. You just move the ears and however you move them, the other person’s rabbit’s ears move the same way. It’s now reading me CNN headlines and just finished telling me all about young adult books from a YA podcast. Ok, I’m done talking about the rabbit for those who are not tech freaks like me :p Have a good day everyone! Off to work…

The Day After

Thanks so much everyone for all of the warm Christmas wishes. I hope that everybody had a fantastic day! I figured I’d do a short post about some of the loot that arrived on Christmas πŸ˜‰ I got the all time coolest gift in the world from my mom. It’s this thing called a Nabaztag. I had never heard of it before, but my Mom found it at the new Mac store! It’s a cute as hell little rabbit that’s basically your friend. He works wirelessly and does all sorts of stuff. He tells you what kind of mood he’s in, what the weather is like, reads your emails to you, reads your twitter messages to you, reads all your rss feeds, reads podcasts to you, wakes you up, does tai chi, reminds you about appointments, and so much more! It’s the coolest thing…and it has cute little ears that spin around. Here’s a picture of it reading me the headlines from NPR (and yes, that’s the 2009 Murakami Diary that you see on top of the book stack back there):

nabaztag

Of course I got some books as well :p My mom gave me The Guersney Literary and Potato Peel Society, Look me in the Eye, and The Perks of Being a Wallflower. My secret santa sent me my gift!! I got an awesome Powell’s Coffee mug and a book called Motel Life by Willy Vlautin. And Carl sent me a book that looks incredible called Company of Liars.

I also got some clothes, cologne, lots of gift cards and some other fun little things. How did everyone else do??

Best of 2009 post coming up soon! And a winner will be announced on January 2nd for the chocolate monkey for all those who have signed up for the Dewey’s Books Reading Challenge.

Merry Christmas To All

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I just wanted to take a second to wish each and every one of you a Merry Christmas! It’s been another wonderful year blogging with you guys. In fact I think it’s been the best. Over the year I’ve met so many new wonderful people and my friendships with the “old blogging friends” have become even stronger and more special to me. Whatever you do today whether it’s spending a quiet Christmas at home or spending time with family and friends, I wish you all a day of peace, serenity, and cheer. Merry Christmas to you all. Thanks for helping make my life as joyful as it is. It’s the best gift anyone could give.

Here’s a Christmas song from Tori Amos that some guy made fun of on YouTube…it’s a beautiful song, but I couldn’t help but laugh at his interpretation of it…it’s great :p