Sunday, October 17, 2010

Book Review

Northfield: A Western StoryNorthfield: A Western Story by Johnny D. Boggs

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I love the writing style! Each chapter is told from a different person's perspective. Sometimes they overlap so that you really get a feel for what happened in, before, and after the James/Younger gang attempted to rob the bank in Northfield, MN. The book is short enough to hold your attention throughout, but had enough details to make you feel like the author was there doing interviews of everyone involved. All in all it was very well researched and set out in a very readable and enjoyable manner.

(Also, Jesse James' jump at the Palisades in SD was mentioned in first person, which was super exciting!! Lame, I know, but I've been there lots and it just makes me happy. Like it's part of my life story to or something...)  ^_^

Shoe Addicts AnonymousShoe Addicts Anonymous by Beth Harbison

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

This book was kind of like if you mashed "The Friday Night Knitting Club" and "The Devil Wears Prada" (the book, not the movie) together and then put a shoe-fetish twist to the whole thing.

It was definitely a fluff book and was pretty enjoyable until you got to the last few chapters where it felt super rushed and poorly executed. These chapters just felt like the author didn't spend as much time with the exit details as she did with introducing the characters and their plot-lines. I was left with the unsatisfied feeling of having been promised a nice, original ending and instead getting a bunch of bad cliches thrown together quickly and poorly just to wrap things up for the publishers.

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If you get your own copy of "Northfield: A Western Story" by Johnny D. Boggs or "Shoe Addicts Anonymous" by Beth Harbison, tell me what you thought of it/them. I'd love to discuss these books with someone!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Book Review

The Strain (The Strain Trilogy, #1)The Strain by Guillermo Del Toro

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book was kind of slow going at the beginning, but it did pick-up and get pretty exciting at times. The biggest problem was that there were so many different storylines going that some of them got somewhat repetitive after awhile. That, in turn, kinda killed the mood.

The writing style the authors used in this book was very reminiscent of my experience with Stephen King's "Under the Dome". I liked it, it had it's slow times and its quick times, the characters were well written and connected logically with each other. "The Strain" wasn't as gory as Stephen King, but it wasn't a fluffy vampire story by any means.

The twist that the authors put on vampire-ism was pretty neat and makes it seem scientifically possible. (Yeah, it's still a pretty good stretch, but it's more believable than some theories.) There's still some aspects of the story that were left open and I'm hoping that they will be addressed in the next two books and not just dropped. With as thorough as the authors have been with everything else in this book, though, I'm not too worried and am kind of looking forward to the next book in the trilogy: "The Fall".

(P.S. Setrakain really reminds me of an older Van Helsing.)

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Thursday, October 7, 2010


So, I'm slightly irritated right now. When I was making Charlie, my favorite crochet hook snapped in half. It was an Addi, so it wasn't the cheapest hook that I could find. You would think that they would have just continued the metal through the core of the handle to prevent something like this. (Like they do with the good sets of knives.)   -_-

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

All Sorts of New Stuff!!

I'm so super psyched!! I spent a good portion of yesterday updating my blog and generally geeking-out with it. There are still a few things that I want to tweek, but it's eons better than it was and I love it.

Yesterday was a day of accomplishing things. I got most of the living-room-mess gone through, found my deep cleaning book (Yes, I do have a book on how to clean. The peanut gallery can remain silent, thank you. Dan has already pointed out how sad it is that I need one.), bought household stuff, groceries, and some Christmas, Birthday (literally), and Halloween gifts. Also, I tackled the kitchen and am half-way through with getting it thoroughly scoured. Those dust bunnies didn't know what hit them!

While I was out shopping, I stopped by a few craft stores because they were having sales. You have to check out the sales, right? Jo-Ann's didn't have much for yarn (no surprise there) but I made a huge find at Michaels:

(In the perfect shade of orange, no less...)

I bought one ball of "Full o' Sheep" in the Clementine colorway. "Full o' Sheep" is an Aran weight, 100% Peruvian Wool. This means that it's a hand-wash only yarn, but it's so buttery and delicious that I don't care!! The spin on it kind of reminds me of Brown Sheep's Lambs Pride Worsted. The yarn does tend to shed a bit if you have to frog/tink back so I'm thinking that it will have a high-pill-factor in garments. (Or anything else that will have a decent amount of friction, for that matter.) This yarn is so soft and lovely, though, that I'm seriously thinking about getting enough to make a sweater for myself out of it.
Until I have the money saved up for that, though... (At about $5 per ball, weighing in at 155 yards, I'm gonna need about 10 balls to make the sweater that I want.) I had to at least try out the yarn that I have, right? So, I made an Amigurumi Happy Pumpkin. His name is Charlie, and he's too amazing for that leaf. (Besides, the leaf kinda makes him look like an apple...)

035 10-6-10

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Dear Old El Paso,

Why did you change your mild enchilada sauce recipe? It now tastes gross and smells even worse reheated. These enchiladas were my fall-back recipe that everyone loved and that tasted amazing. Now what am I supposed to make when I don't really feel like cooking?

I suppose that I could look at this as a way for me to be cooking healthier at home. I'm pretty sure that a pound of hamburger and 1 1/2 cups of shredded cheese isn't the best dinner ever. (No, we didn't eat it all in one sitting, but still...)

I guess that I'm now on a quest to find another enchilada recipe that Dan will eat...

Monday, October 4, 2010


So, our apartment is disgusting. Everything, but our bedroom needs cleaning because we hit it so hard in there the other day that it just kind of exploded into the rest of the apartment. I've got a few hours today so I'm gonna try to do some power cleaning. If anyone wants some free crap, I'll be happy to share.

Yesterday, I opened at the store and have decided that the extra-caffeine gas station coffee is a life saver. Sure, it doesn't taste that great, but, what do you expect from a gas station? I just gets me going enough that I don't feel like a zombie for the rest of the day. Which is really helpful when you're trying to convince people to buy stuff from you and give you their e-mail.

I'm kinda thinking about getting a new e-mail, myself, due to all the spam. However, I'm not quite sure that I've convinced myself that it's worth it. Where do you draw the line on who is acceptable to share your e-mail with and who isn't? Because I guarantee you that the moment you release the new one anywhere online, even if it's just in a post, some spy-ware engine will pick it up and sell it to someone else. That someone else, in turn, will spam the hell out of your nice, shiny, new e-mail account. So is it really even worth it?

Last night I saw The Social Network with a few friends and it was pretty good. Mark is such a super-dick to everyone, but it did make me want to totally geek out and get into web-design again. I have been thinking for a few months now that I want to do a make-over on the blog because it's not really what I want anymore. Besides, coding is just so amazing to me. It's kind of like magic, and I love it.

On the reading front...

So far, I rate it: Meh.

The authors will start with a neat idea, but they focus so freakin' much on details that are irrelevant to the storyline that you really get pulled out of what's actually going on. Also, can we please not have anymore beginnings? I've never read an author who liked to start a new story so much. The first 50-ish pages were nothing but intros to various storylines and the next 50 pages were nothing but a pointless over-exaggeration of an eclipse. Other than the fact that, apparently, everyone in New York was creeped-out by this five-minute event, I can't understand why this emphasis is needed. There was one event that occurred during the eclipse that was key to the storyline, but it didn't need 50 pages of covering everybody else in the entire city. Put simply: the first 1/3 of the book has been pretty boring.

Now that I'm past that part, though, the story is progressing at a pretty good clip. I'm wondering if the interludes with Abraham's story are written by one of the authors and the rest of the book is by the other author. These parts tend to hold my interest more and keep me turning pages. The writing style just feels different and isn't so chopped-up with technicalities.