Monday, November 9, 2009

Library Loot, Christmas Shopping and A Much Better Night....

Well, I guess my pity-party worked, because I feel much better today. Honestly, I think it's just my way of releasing all that stress that builds up. I don't really have a lot of close friends that live around me anymore. It's weird. I have tons of acquaintances. But they usually fall into group of people that think of me as "Bella's Mom" or "Mike's Wife" or something like that. Most of my close friends don't really live around here. And truthfully, with the schedule that I keep, I seem to have alienated the ones that are still around!! So, when I feel the need for someone to unburden myself to, it seems the most logical place is to take to my blog and dump. Whatever the reason, I feel "lighter" today.

I even started Christmas shopping!! OK, that may not seem so amazing, unless you REALLY know me. My usual start for holiday shopping is around Dec. 18th! But the girls picked out some iPod's, and Best Buy is running an amazing sale this week. Plus I could put them all on an 18 month plan with no interest. Each kid is getting a "big" gift, then probably a lot of books!! I'm still not sure what to get Chad. Truthfully, I don't even want to think about Christmas. Normally, each year we have a Santa Saver account that I drop money into each week. This year, with Mike being off, not so much. But I'm trying to pick up one extra day at the restaurant a week. That day, all my money is getting put up just for Christmas. Mike and I have pretty decided against buying each other much. But the kiddies have worked hard all year. They deserve a nice Christmas. They are going to get it too.

Well....I guess I should just get on with my library loot. I swear, I really need to stay off the library's website. Seriously. At least this week, I actually returned about 6 books. This is the list of books that I have picked up in the last week:

This is actually one of the books I'm most excited about. I'm reading it as a part of the Women Unbound challenge. It's Couldn't Keep It to Myself by Wally Lamb and the Women of York Correctional Institution. Lamb teaches writing workshops at the prison and these are some essays that have come out of that experience. So far, I've only read Lamb's introduction, but it had me in tears. Can't wait to read more!

Non-fiction read #2, and another Women Unbound Challenge book is Factory Girls: From Village to City in a Changing China by Leslie T. Chang. Deals with the hardships of women in China. I'm really not a huge non-fiction fan, but this sounds really interesting. I guess we will see how it goes.

The House at Sugar Beach: In Search of a Lost African Childhood by Helene Cooper is a memoir that I wanted to read for the Non-Fiction Challenge (which I failed at MISERABLY!) I liked memoirs. And I've read a couple based in Africa. I'm hoping this is just as good. If I can get to it, I think this will be a great selection for the Women Unbound Challenge.

Bastard out of Carolina by Dorothy Allison is a fiction selection for the Women Unbound Challenge. See what I mean about the library website?? I find a challenge I want to start, make a list of books, and then just go online and FIND them. I've been wanting to read this book for years. Figure now would be a great time!! Heard great things about it.

Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater is a book I've seen lately across the blogosphere. YA and paranormal are my favorites these days, so this one jumped right out at me. I'm thinking it has to do with werewolves. Always kind of liked them!!

The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson was kind of a spur of the moment kind of book. I saw it on the shelf as I was browsing. I remember reading a lot of good reviews. Another YA book, it seems a little science-fictiony. Can't hurt to try it!

Halloween may be over, but that doesn't mean my love for horror novels is completely satisfied. I read about Dark Harvest by Norman Partridge at Carl's blog. He always finds fun creepy reads during RIP time. Thought it would be a good one for those long nights at work when I'm alone and want to scare myself silly. Or maybe not!

I've been loving Rachel Caine's YA series, the Morganville Vampires so much (I have a review to write for Book 5, which I just completed), that I wanted to try her adult series. Ill Wind is the first book in the Weather Warden series. It looks like it will be a fun read!

Breathers by S. G. Browne is another zombie book. I read Chris' review and thought it looked like a whole lot of fun. Besides, the cover just rocks, doesn't it??

Dangerous Angels by Francesa Lia Block is a selection for the GLBT Reading Challenge. I've read a couple of Block's books before and just the lyrical way she writes. When Nymeth and Debi reviewed this one, I knew I had to add it to my challenge list. Besides, it's another book with an awesome cover!!

I'm Not Scared by Niccolo Ammaniti is a book I read about during the Read-A-Thon. I think I saw it over on Eva's blog. Then again, it was really LATE and I could be wrong about that. Regardless, it looks really good. Ammaniti is an Italian writer and this is his American debut.

Reservation Blues by Sherman Alexie is a book that I KNOW I read about on Eva's blog. I've wanted to read Alexie for a while now, and this one deals a lot with music. Another one of my loves. Can not wait to given this one a chance.

Finally, a book I am SO excited about. And one that was a complete impulse. I just happened to be passing the New Release shelf at the front of the library and this book practically jumped off the shelf at me. In fact, I think I might have even squealed out loud!! The Gates by John Connolly is his newest novel. After reading The Book of Lost Things and just finishing Nocturnes, Connolly is becoming one of my favorite authors. I can not wait till I get a chance to read this one!!

That's it was for this week's Library Loot. Of course, it's more than enough for me. The number of books coming in seems be WAY higher than the amount of books going out. Gotta work on that!!


samantha.1020 said...

Yay for a new library loot post from you and the fact that you are doing better :) I have Shiver on my shelves and am looking forward to reading it. I've read Ill Wind and enjoyed it which reminds me that I need to request the 2nd book from the library. Lastly, I've got Dangerous Angels checked out from the library too so hopefully we will both read it and share thoughts on it :)

chrisa511 said...

Oh Steph! You're one of those moms that I just want to plant a big blue ribbon on!! I don't know how many times I've said this to you, but I really don't know how you do it. AND keep your sanity while doing it :p But I know that if anyone can, it's you. Your kids are truly so so so lucky to have you. And you better be over there saying "I know!" to that ;)

I'm so excited to see Breathers in your pile!!! I absolutely loved that book. It'll probably make my favorite reads of the year. It was just amazing. So much different and so much better than what I was expecting. And Dark Harvest is fantastic too! The Connolly book was kind of dissapointing for me, but I can't really judge it. I started it, loved it...and then fell out of love with it as I just thought it was a little odd after awhile. And I never did finish it because I couldn't get into it. Looking forward to what you think of it!

Kathleen said...

Glad you are feeling better and even getting into the Christmas spirit! I'm excited to read the Wally Lamb book. I heard he was volunteering his time with the women in prison but for some reason I had never come across the book. I love She's Come Undone. He has such a special way of relating to women in his stories, I can imagine he connected with the women prisoners and their struggles really well.

Aarti said...

For some reason, I saw the Wally Lamb book as "Wally Lame," and thought to myself, "Oh, interesting, there is a Wally Lamb parody that can be used for the Women Unbound challenge?!"

Luckily, the actual book title and its premise sound just as interesting- if not more so- than my original reading of it. Can't wait to hear about that one!

Marg said...

Glad to hear that you are a bit happier today. Sometimes you just have to let it out dont you!

I have just picked up my first Stiefvater and I am looking forward to it! I always forget how much I like Rachel Caine's books, until I pick one up again to read

Enjoy your loot.

Michelle Fluttering Butterflies said...

Glad you're feeling a bit better. I'm much the same with lots of acquaintances around me and very few actual friends. It can be hard.

I looked at your list and kept thinking 'ooh, that looks good, that looks good' until by the end I was a big ball of jealousy at all your great finds! Happy reading :)

Hazra said...

You've got a great loot! Glad to see you're feeling better; letting it all out does have a calming effect.

Anonymous said...

The only one I've read out of your delicious looking stack is Rachel Caine's Ill Wind. It's not a genre I normally love, all that fantasy stuff which you, Chris and Nymeth are so good at appreciating, but I did enjoy escaping in that book. There was a second one I read that went with it, but I can't remember the title now. I do remember wishing I had the wind powers that the heroine does; they'd come in useful sometimes. ;)

J.S. Peyton said...

I've heard a lot about "Shiver" too. In fact, I've been making plans to order myself a copy this weekend. And, I couldn't wait to get my hands on "The Gates" either! Lol. Of course, I haven't read it yet, but if "Nocturnes" and "Book of Lost Things" are anything to go by, I'll be great. Enjoy!

Ana S. said...

I hope you enjoy Dangerous Angels, Stephanie! And I'm very glad to hear you're feeling better. I second everything Chris said, btw!

Kailana said...

What a great bunch of books! I miss you, Stephanie. I can't seem to catch you online anymore! Maybe you should send me your schedule once in a while or something....I still stay up late, I just seem to be off reading when you are looking for me!

Lisa said...

I have read the first two Weather Warden books and LOVED them, but for whatever reason never got around to the rest, even though I have them. I introduced them to my husband last week though and he stayed up until almost 3 am finishing up book two and half of book three! Now I really want to go back to them.

Debi said...

Glad you're feeling better, Stephanie!!!

Oh my, look at all that awesome loot! I've only read a few of them (House at Sugar Beach, Dangerous Angels, and Jenna Fox), but loved them all! I can easily say that I'd gladly read all the rest in your pile, too! :D Enjoy, Stephanie!

Carl V. Anderson said...

I've done a bit of my Christmas shopping already as well, but not as much as I probably should have done. I used to enjoy the chaos of the shopping, now I prefer to shop early, or at odd times, or online to avoid that same chaos.

Hope you enjoy Dark Harvest. I thought it was a nice dark story, pardon the pun.

Jen - devourer of books said...

Hey, I'm impressed you've started Christmas shopping! Usually by now I have a list of people to buy for, a budget, and an idea what to get at least half of them, but this year I just have a vague idea what to get some of them.

I'm reading Shiver right now and it is great, I hope you like it!

Tif Sweeney said...

I just saw Connolly's book at my library for the first time the other day and barely passed up on it! I'm determined to get through my review books before the end of the year, and then I intend to concentrate on books just as this that I really, really want to read!!