Monthly Archives: October 2016

Halloween Book Tag (v2)

Image result for jack o'lantern wallpaper

Hello, a tag today. :”D I wasn’t tagged but I needed to do something festive for the creepy day on Monday. So here it is. This tag was created by Naomi TheBookLover. Also, totally did this tag last year. Doing it again.

Carving Pumpkins – What book would you carve up and light on fire?

I feel like there aren’t many books I hate with reckless abandon, and even then, burning books in general to me seems a bit excessive. If I had to choose one though… I’d choose Encyclopedia Britannica, purely because it’s effing huge and will keep me warm for hours. :”D

Trick or Treat – Which character is a treat and which is a trick?

Assassin's Apprentice (Farseer Trilogy, #1)Treat: Nighteyes from Robin Hobb’s Farseer trilogy. This character is a wolf bound with the main character and he was a constant source of entertainment and joy throughout the series, even when he was a vicious little puppy. He’s so cute and I want a Nighteyes.Ship of Magic (Liveship Traders, #1)

Trick: Kennit from Robin Hobb’s Liveship Traders trilogy. I’m currently buddy reading this series with Zezee and it took three whole chapters for me to despise this guy. He’s just such an asscrack. Goodness gracious. I like the book, but wanna deck this guy in the head.

Candy Corn – What book is always sweet? What book was a huge let down?

RumbleI hate candy corn so I’m changing this question to something more suitable to my tastes. And now that the question is more accurate, I’m going to go with Rumble by Ellen Hopkins. I wrote a review on this book, detailing my dislike for it. I went into it hearing the Ellen Hopkins’ books were fantastic wonderful things and I was rather severely disappointed. Granted, I haven’t read anything else by her, so I’m probably assuming too much. I would totally be up for trying another, I just don’t know which to pick.

But yeah. Rumble was bad. Icky ick.

Ghost – What character would you like to visit you as a ghost?

I’m assuming the question isn’t trying to encourage spoilers, but it’d be way too easy to drop a few without thinking on this one. So to just avoid that altogether, I’m going with Nearly Headless Nick from Harry Potter. He’s already dead to begin with so no spoilers. :”D

Image result for nearly headless nick chapter art

Wizards and Witches – What is your favorite Harry Potter moment?

Image result for time turner bookProbably the time paradox at the end of the third book. The whole time-turner thing was such a huge missed opportunity and what little they did do with it was pretty great. So it’s my favorite part. :”D


Blood and Gore – What’s a book that was so creepy that you had to take a break from it for a little while?The Monstrumologist (The Monstrumologist, #1)

The Monstrumologist by Rick Yancey. This is a YA horror novel and therefore going into it I didn’t expect nearly as much gore and grossness as I got. It was a great book, don’t get me wrong, it just caught me completely off guard. I’ve heard the next one is even grosser so it’s intimidating me now.


And that’s it! I tag Ace, the Orang-utan Librarian and Zezee to do it (if you’ve done it, ignoring my poking).

Happy reading. :”D


Posted by on 10/27/2016 in Book Tag, Books, Uncategorized


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Top 5 Wednesday: Spooky Settings

Top 5 Wednesday

First time in a long time that I’ve done a Top 5 Wednesday post (or posted regularly at all, whoop). This week’s theme is spooky settings, both ones I’ve seen in books and one I would like to see in books. So this is going to be a more… wordy post. If anybody knows a book that fits any of the settings I describe, do let me know, won’t you. The T5W group can be found here if you’d like to participate.

FiveThe Forest of Hands and Teeth (The Forest of Hands and Teeth, #1)

I really enjoy settings with cultist or religion-gone-crazy overtones, especially if the entirety of exactly what this group of people is doing doesn’t come to light right away. I love that moment of horror, of realization that I get when I see what is truly happening within the group. It’s unsettling and the reason I love it so much is because it’s the most real. People join groups and do horrible things all the time – I’m not condoning or encouraging people to join a cult or anything, but knowing that it could happen makes the book all the more chilling. A good example of this is The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan. The main character lives in a town surrounded by fences. On the outside of those fences are the rest of what once was humanity. As the book progresses, the reader sees that the horrors outside the fence might be matched by the horrors within. It’s so good, it’s so unsettling, it’s so goooood. Another example could be the latest season of American Horror Story: Roanoke. I’m not going to go into detail, but it’s the first season that’s actually frightened me in a long while.


Pitch Black PosterThe fear of the unknown is an excellent driver of horror in my book. Anything where the characters are surrounded by potential horror but they don’t know for sure. The movie Pitch Black is a good example of this. The characters find themselves on a planet covered in darkness and they can’t see or know what lies within it. Jump scares are common in this kind of writing/viewing and are usually super effective on me.

This could also apply to horrors that aren’t supernatural at all – being stranded in the ocean for example or lost in space. The movie Gravity terrified me even though it wasn’t technically a ‘horror’. The fear of getting lost or abandoned kept crawling up my skin while watching it and I couldn’t shake it for a while afterwards. Yuck, I love it.

ThreeTrollhunter Poster

Monsters. I know that’s a cop-out in general to say ‘Monsters’ but I mean it. Monsters! Big ones, vicious ones, ruthless ones. Ones that don’t see humans as anything but prey. That’s what scares me. The thought of being devolved into nothing but meat. Three good examples of this are Attack on Titan, both the manga and the anime (watch it, oh my gosh – it’s available on Netflix), Troll Hunter (also on Netflix) and The Monstrumologist by Rick Yancey. All three call into question my humanity in the sense that… I may be a person, have my own thoughts, feelings and ideas, but there will always be something that doesn’t see that, that only sees the flesh on my bones. It’s creepy, I don’t like it, but I can’t get enough.


Paranormal Activity PosterOne of my favorite horror elements is something that Paranormal Activity captures pretty well. Camera feeds. It’s always so nerve-wracking for me to watch a still feed and just have to wait for something to happen. I know it’s going to happen, but it still scares the doody out of me.

Another thing the camera incorporates is the low-pitched sound when something is approaching. A lot of testimony of people who claim to have seen ghosts or demons or whatever often mention hearing that sound and I think it’s great when it’s incorporated.


My absolute very creepy setting is when the audience is involved in the horror. You the reader are involved. The best example I have of this is actually from an ongoing series written on the /r/nosleep subreddit on reddit (btw, /r/nosleep has a lot of spooky stuff on there if you want scary things to read). This series I’m talking about in particular is simply called ‘Correspondance‘ and was written by a user named ‘bloodstains’. It starts as a simple email correspondance and slowly devolves into horror. The writer involves the reader through technology. Pictures mentioned that have been ‘attached’ to the emails are linked in the posts, videos are linked. It allows the reader to see what the characters are seeing, hear what they’re hearing. It’s really unsettling, especially if you’re reading it in the dark by yourself. It’s like… do I really want to click on this link? Do I really want to see what’s being talked about? It’s creepy, it’s unnerving and it’s wonderful.

If you decide to read this one and are unfamiliar with reddit, know that after you finish the first bit of the series, you can click on the username that wrote it to access the next bits.

This is my favorite method of horror. It allows me to be in it but still at a safe distance.

Happy reading


Posted by on 10/26/2016 in Books, Top 5 Wednesday


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NaNoWriMo 2016

NaNoWriMo 2016 Participant Banner

Happy day! I’m going to participate in NaNoWriMo again this year, and I feel like it’s going to be an interesting one purely do to the format I’m going to be writing in. This year is going to be a bit different. Yes, there will be a rough draft of a novel and it will go towards a word count, but knowing me and my workload this semester, I already know it’s not going to make 50,000 words.

So what I’m doing to do is I’m going to include my projects into my word count. I’m writing (code), and it’s creating a thing, so I’m going to count it (cry). My projects this semester are two huge ones: Create a text miner that will read in raw medical data and do a bit of machine learning to harvest patterns from it, and create a linking package between a tic tac toe game and a NAO robot that will allow that robot to play the game with a human user. Both projects are huge and both will require so much damn code. So I’m going to count that code, just because I know it’s going to suck up hours of my time in November (and now – I’m already working on the damn things). My novel will be a reboot of one I wrote in 2010, so I already know the general plot, I’m just going to rewrite it from scratch since I didn’t like how it had turned out.

So my Nano plans are as follows:

Text Mining and NAO Tic Tac Toe projects as a priority. I’m going to count each line of code as one word, just because it’ll be hard to pick out words from brackets, operations, etc etc.

The novel reboot as a secondary project, because the first two are more important. D:

So yes. I’m doing Nano, but I’m definitely doing it in a very non-traditional way.

Wish me luck! If you’re participating, add me on the Nanowrimo website! 😀


Posted by on 10/18/2016 in Writing


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Book Review: Wonders of the Invisible World by Christopher Barzak

Wonders of the Invisible WorldWonders of the Invisible World by Christopher Barzak

352 pages
YA, Magical realism, LGBT
Read 9-29 to 10-11

Wonders of the Invisible World was recommended to me by a friend, who said she read it in one sitting and absolutely loved it. I took the rec knowing her particular suggestions to me are usually either hit or miss. I either love them to bits or can’t even finish them. This is the first time I think I’ve read a book recommended by her where it landed somewhere in the middle.

This book is set in modern day and follows a teenage boy who feels he has no idea who he is or what his life is about. He walks around in a fog, wondering when his life left him in the dust. When a friend from his childhood reappears, it triggers a series of events that slowly reveal that his life was actually as distant and detached as he thought it was, and that someone was making it that way on purpose. I’ll stop the synopsis there, only saying in addition that this book has both magical realism and LGBT themes, which is a combination I personally haven’t read before.

First and foremost, I feel like this book tried to be a mystery and couldn’t quite get there. There were a couple twists that I predicted early on and when they happened exactly how I thought they would, it was a bit of a yawn. This book didn’t surprise me at all, despite the supernatural elements mentioned that could have been used to do so. The characters as well I felt were a bit lacking. The main character Aiden, that one who’s always complaining about not knowing who he is or what his personality is, really conveyed that. I had no clue what this kid’s personality was. He was pretty damn flat. So… is that good characterization because he knew he was flat or was it bad? Haven’t the foggiest, but as a result I couldn’t relate or sympathize to him very well, which was probably a contributing factor why the twists did nothing for me.

The plot itself was interesting if a bit slow-moving. This was probably my favorite part of the book, regardless of the untwisty twists. Aiden’s memory and personality are in a fog and he starts hearing and seeing things that no one else can. The tree in his back yard starts speaking to him, he witnesses his great grandfather fighting in WW2, and all of it connects to why he’s such a bore, I mean why he’s so confused with himself. As the plot unraveled, I did start to feel something for the characters. Not the main characters, but his mother and his romantic interest. Both of them stood out to me more than Aiden did unfortunately. I ended up really disliking one and liking the other but at least I felt something towards them.

The thing I think this book handled the best was the romance. It wasn’t really.. romantic, I guess, but it felt real, natural. In every LGBT book I’ve read, there’s always some big confrontation before the characters relationship can get started: some realization, some fight with family, something that says ‘this is out of the norm and this book is gonna milk it’. But this book, the relationship just kinda… happened. There wasn’t any fighting from parents, there wasn’t any disowning, there wasn’t any ideological monologue as the main character realized he had feelings for another man… he just accepted it and rolled with it, as did his boyfriend and his family. It was a nice to see an LGBT relationship not put on a pedestal or highlighted as different or bad – it just popped in there like any other relationship would and both characters actually handled it in a mature manner (gasp, no drama!)

So overall, with the pros and cons mentioned above, I liked this book. Didn’t love it, but liked it well enough. So it gets a decent rating from me.

Rating: 3/5 stars

Happy reading. :”D

1 Comment

Posted by on 10/11/2016 in Books, Review


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The Deserted Island Book Tag

Hello, a tag today. :”D I was tagged by The Orang-utan Librarian, so thank you!

Water — A book you simply cannot live without

Rurouni Kenshin, Volume 01

I’d have to say Rurouni Kenshin by Nobuhiro Watsuki. This was essentially one of my first gateway manga and I’ve reread the series so many times that the first volume’s cover doesn’t even offer any resistance when I open it more. It just lays open for me. I love this series and it’ll be my favorite forever.


Food — A book that is a close second on your favourites list

Fullmetal Alchemist, Vol. 1 (Fullmetal Alchemist, #1)

Another manga – Fullmetal Alchemist by Hiromu Arakawa. When I was a teenager, I read almost solely manga. I did read books, but these predominated. This was another series that became one of my staples. I haven’t reread this one quite as often, but it’s definitely up there. If you’re looking for a manga to start but don’t know which to pick, I recommend this one. It’s. So. Good.


Shelter — A book that makes you feel at home and safe

Ella Enchanted

Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine. Again, I’ve reread this book so many times – I used to rent and re-rent it out of the library when I was younger, and when I’m there I feel home, so I thought it would be the perfect choice. 😀

Flare Gun — A book you would recommend to someone who doesn’t read

(What does a flare gun have to do with it, you silly). Again, not to repeat myself, but Fullmetal Alchemist. I’ve found it’s easier to get people who don’t read to pick up comics instead of novels. And this one – the story, the characters – I’m thinking it might be enough to pull them in.

Matchsticks — A book that warms your heart

The Night Circus

I’m going with The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. This book is so whimsical and light and dark and fluffy and dense and all around lovely. I was swept away when I read this and I still think about it. I wrote a review on it, if you’re interested.



Compass — A book that directed you towards your love of reading

Usually for questions like this, I choose Harry Potter or one of the Pokemon novelizations, but there’s another one I just thought of. When I was little, before I could actually read, my dad would read this book to my sister and I. I don’t know the title of it and probably wouldn’t even recognize the cover at this point, but I remember it was a nonfiction about animals where there would be pages of animals in their habitats with numbers by them. At the bottom of the page, there would be a legend with the number that would state the name of the animal, where they lived, what they ate, etc. I remember loving that my dad would let me find the right number, then he would read me what it said. If anyone knows what book I’m talking about, let me know. We don’t have a copy of it anymore, and my father states he doesn’t remember it. I want to find it!

And that’s it! Happy reading! :”D


Posted by on 10/06/2016 in Book Tag, Books, Uncategorized


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