Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Most wanted new releases

I have sixteen more days of school this semester and it's really getting down to the grind.  I haven't been posting as much, so in the meantime, here is a list of the new releases I am most looking forward to reading:






November RAK Wrap Up

November wasn't a good month for me.  I have my November people picked out but didn't get any of my books mailed out yet.  I plan to more than make up for it in December.  I sent 6 in October, so I'll send at least that many this month.

I did receive and RAK from Michelle at Michelle's Book Blog

If you would like to take part in December's RAK please sign up at Book Soulmates.

My wishlist is here: Amazon Wishlist

Monday, November 28, 2011

So after entering everyone in that had trouble with rafflecopter, a winner has been chosen.  Darlene at Book Nook won my giveaway!  She is choosing Unearthly by Cynthia Hand. 

Congrats Darlene!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

December and January Giveaway Links

It's helpful to have all the giveaway hop links in one place, so I (as well as all of you) can find them easier - so here are the hops I've found for December and January.  If you know of any more please let me know so I can add them (and enter them).  I will most likely be hosting a giveaway in some of these so be sure to check back.

One Stop Christmas Hop – November 29 to December 6

Holiday Gift Giveaway Hop December 1 to 5th

Book Lover’s Holiday Giveaway Hop – December 2 to 6

Gift Card Giveaway Hop – December 9 to 13

12 Days of Christmas Giveaway Hop – December 13 to 24
Mid Winter’s Eve Blog Hop – December 21 to 27

Happy New Year 2012 Giveaway Hop – December 30 to January 3

Best of 2011 Giveaway Hop – December 27 to 31

Young Adult Faerie & Fantasy Giveaway Hop – January 6 to 12

Dreaming of Books Giveaway Hop – January 13 to 18

Young Adult Giveaway Hop – January 27 to 31

Friday, November 25, 2011

Black Friday Giveaway Bonanza

I am giving away a $10 e-gift card to Amazon for those of you in the United States and for International entries I'm giving away a book of $10 or less value from the Book Depository (if they ship to your country).  Please enter via raffle copter.

Ok everyone - for some reason raffle copter is being stupid and intermittently posting an older, closed giveaway.  When I hit refresh it usually puts the right one in. In the event you wish to enter and raffle copter has the wrong giveaway (as in closed) please enter in the comments.  I will be making a spreadsheet and will draw a winner that way.  I don't want to just delete the rafflecopter because so many people already entered.  I apologize in advance for the trouble.  This is the first issue I've ever had with rafflecopter and don't know what else to do.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Tap Dance and massacres

It’s been a little while since I posted, and I apologize for that. The last ten days I have been swamped with end of semester projects and research papers. I just finished a 4000 word paper for my Criminology Class. We had to choose a crime that happened in the last five years and analyze it with one or two criminal theories we studied this semester. I chose to analyze the Virginia Tech Massacre through Robert Agnew’s General Strain Theory and Travis Hirschi’s Social Bond Theory. My decision was influenced by my tap dance class.

I know, that’s weird – how could something like tap dancing make me think of a brutal massacre? We were working on a routine to “Pumped Up Kicks” by Foster the People. I downloaded the song so that I could practice at home, and as I listened to the song for the twentieth or so time, I started catching dark lyrics in the catchy tune …”All the other kids with the pumped up kicks better run, better run, outrun my gun…” Upon looking the lyrics up and then verifying it on the bands website, I discovered that the song is about a kid that goes on a shooting spree at his school, going after all the rich and popular kids (as represented by their “pumped up kicks” a.k.a. expensive sneakers).

I’ve always been fascinated by crime and the psyche of the criminal. When I was younger, I wanted to be a forensic profiler for the FBI. What makes killer’s minds tick? Why do they do the things they do? I clearly remember the Columbine Shootings as well as The Virginia Tech Massacre from the time when they happened and wondering what made these kids snap. What does it take for people so young to become so angry, so full of hate, that they decide to not only end their own lives, but those of classmates and teachers?

This could turn into a HUGE rant about bullies, parents not being involved enough in their kids’ lives, the media, and number of other reasons that have come forth over time, but I’d rather not get into all of that. It’s been said over and over in the past. In the case of Seung-Hui Cho (The Virginia Tech shooter) he was disturbed since childhood, diagnosed with social anxiety disorder, depression and selective mutism – a rare form of social anxiety where the individual is afraid to speak – afraid of hearing the sound of their own voice. Cho’s mutism was so bad he would not even speak to his parents or his teachers. Even in 8th grade Cho identified with the Columbine shooters. Despite years of counseling and medication, Cho snapped.

I’m sure it would be a frightening place to be, but I really want to get into the minds of these killers, and figure out what’s going on. I haven’t had anything above general psych and none of the theories I’ve studied in criminology really come close to explaining the motivations of these trouble young people. Agnew says that adolescents are under strain because they are not treated the way they want to be treated, and that these negative relationships cause anger. From the various articles I’ve read, including the official report by the Virginia Tech Massacre Review Panel, it appears that his family, counselors, teachers, and college roommates all tried to be social, to make friends, etc but Cho rejected their advances. Hirschi says that deviance occurs when there are no strong social bonds to family and institutions (ie. Schools). Again the people in Cho’s life made attempts to bond, but were rejected or treated with hostility and weirdness.

Hours of research and 4000 words later and I am still no closer to understanding the senseless violence that occurred on April 16, 2007.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Know Me Better (week 2)

Know me better is a weekly event held by I Am A Reader Not A Writer

If you were stranded on a desert island what 3 things would you want with you?

I would definitely bring enough food for a year – because I am not a huge meat eater, and the idea of eating island animals, fish or bugs just grosses me out. I’d definitely bring a ton of books because I love reading, and my boyfriend for company because the thought of being stranded on an island all alone is kind of creepy.

What is one book everyone should read?

That’s a tough one. I think the Harry Potter series is a really good one for all ages, because it’s an epic story and the characters have really good values and characteristics young ones can learn from (courage, the value of friendship, etc).

If you could have any superpower what would you choose?

I’d love to be able to fly. I know that’s not a very cool power when you look at Marvel characters that can phase through walls, have super strength, invisibility, control over the weather, etc – but the pure joy of flying through the air just seems like it would be amazing. Oh…teleportation might be kind of cool too since I had driving down the mountain.

Harry Potter or Twilight?

I’m probably about to get flogged by a bunch of Twilight fans…but I definitely think that Harry Potter is the better series. It’s written better, the character development is better…and when it comes to the movies – the acting and special effects are way better. I’m not a fan of Pattison or Stewart, and after seeing the first film I swore not to watch any more. I did enjoy the Twilight books, but the acting – Ugh!

Gum or Breath Mints?

I prefer mints… I really like those cherry flavored Certs. Do they even still make those things? Usually I carry a tin of ginger Altoids or Howard’s Violet Mints (I really love things with flower flavors).

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Getting to know me (week 1)

Getting to know you is a meme hosted by I Am A Reader Not A Writer every Thursday
What's your favorite season/weather?

My favorite season is fall. I love when there is a little crispness in the air and the leaves change color. I love everything associated with Fall – bonfires, warm apple cider, raking leaves. My favorite weather though, is from May to June when it’s warm enough for shorts and sleeveless tops, but not yet too hot.

PC or Mac?

I’m a PC girl. I haven’t used a Mac since elementary school, and wouldn’t know where to find anything on a new Mac.

When you were little, what did you want to be when you "grew up"?

I wanted to be several things when I was little including Rock star (which changed when I realized my fear of singing in front of other people), Teacher (which changed when I saw how awful my classmates treated our substitute when I was in 8th grade, and I realized I would be teaching their children), Lawyer (which I’m still considering)…The most inappropriate thing I wanted to be growing up was a dancer like Jennifer Beals character in Flashdance. I don’t know why my mom let us watch that as a kid, but at the time I didn’t realize that she was an exotic dancer.

Favorite music?

I love music in general. I’ll listen to almost anything. My favorite music of all time is probably new wave/80’s synth pop/80’s goth. I’m a huge fan of the Cure, Depeche Mode, Erasure, Peter Murphy, Psychedelic Furs, Morrissey, The Smiths and many more obscure bands. I also have loved Tori Amos since I first discovered her at age 14 or 15. I really related to her music as a teen, and I’m still a fan, though her music style has changed. I like oldies and swing music as well. I went through a phase at 19 where I went swing dancing all the time with my friends and to sock hops and bought all my clothes authentic 30’s and 40’s from a vintage store specializing in those eras. As far as modern music goes, I hate to admit that Lady Gaga and Ke$ha get stuck in my head. I love anything I can dance to. I love dancing, so if it has a beat I can move it to I love it. I also am a big fan of Joss Stone and Adele – love their smoky, jazzy voices. I like the Band Perry and the Zac Brown band. I like Irish music and anything that sounds southern bluesy.

Facebook or Twitter?

I mostly use Facebook. It’s a very bad habit (darn you Farmville!) and a way for me to keep in touch with my family and friends scattered across the country. I do use twitter though as well, but less often.

What TV show/movie/book do you watch/read that you'd be embarrassed to admit?

I like the Secret Circle on the CW… its way out of my age range, but I loved those books growing up, and so I watch it like a junkie. Movie wise I love some bad ones, lol, - Harold and Kumar, Clerks 2, Grandma’s Boy and Romy and Michelle’s High School Reunion to name a few. As for books, I am not really embarrassed about what I read.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

November Giveaways and Giveaway Hops

There are tons of book giveaways going on in November, so I thought I'd post them all here like I did in October.  If you have a giveaway you want me to add, or see a really good hop, let me know via email and I will add it to my post.

November 1st to 14th - Thanks for the Books Hop hosted by Livre de Amour.

November 8th to 11th - Giveaway Hop hosted by I am a Reader not a Writer.


November 14th to 25th - Nurture Your Books Giveaway hosted by Nurture Your Books

November 17th to 27th - Gratitude Giveaways hosted by I am a Reader not a Writer.

November 23rd to 30th - New Author Blog Hop hosted by Of Thoughts and Words

November 25th to 27th - Black Friday Bonanza hosted by Book Savvy Babe  (I will be participating in this giveaway so check back on the 25th to enter).

October RAK Wrap Up

October was a big month for RAK.  I sent out quite a few books and got three in return. 

For starters, here are the books I sent out:

  to Katie at A Book Obsession, Desires of the Dead by Kimberly Derting

 to Jennifer at The Book Nympho, Broken by Shiloh Walker

 to Amanda at Hippies Beauty and Books Oh My, Shadowspell by Jenna Black

 to Joli at Actin Up with Books, First Girls of Baxter Academy by Pamela J. Roskin

 to Amanda at The Musings of ALMYBNENR , Somber Island by T. Lynne Tolles

 to Zoey at Zoey's Uncreatively Titled Blog, Shattered by Sophia Sharp.

All of the books that I received in October were kindle versions:

 from Amanda at The Musings of ALMYBNENR I received Bloodthirsy by Flynn Meaney

 from Joli at Actin Up with Books, I recieved the Witches of Santa Anna by Lauren Barnholdt
also from Joli at Actin Up with Books, Lucky by Alice Sebold

 from Dani at Refracted Light Reviews, I received Touch of Frost by Jennifer Estep.

Thanks everyone for the RAKs.

If you would like to take place in RAK during November sign up at Book Soulmates.
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