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i am sparkles and glitter, shadows and clouds.
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Ramblings by Category

Ramblings by Year

Fablehaven – Book 3

Fablehaven: Grip of the Shadow Plague
by Brandon Mull

Well, the third book in the Fablehaven series did not let me down. I will admit to having my doubts when I first started it, though that soon changed for the better once I got a few chapters in.

Kendra and Seth are still at Fablehaven and due to the evil Society of the Evening Star still being after Kendra and the hidden artifacts, their grandparents have been making excuses for them to stay longer. School is starting soon and their parents are anxious to get them home. Something evil is turning the magical creatures of Fablehaven dark. Not fallen, but dark and this plague is quickly spreading through the preserve. Even some of the humans get infected, though the effect is a little different for them.

For the first part of the story Kendra and Seth are apart, each with their own storyline – Kendra was off with the Knights of the Dawn trying to rescue one of the hidden artifacts and Seth is dealing with the plague back at Fablehaven. That was perfectly fine with me, because I had thought I would just skip over the Seth chapters, because, you know.. Seth.

Speaking of the annoyance that is Seth, I had completely forgotten about him until I started reading the book and suddenly my thought process was this, “Oh. Right. Seth.” *sigh* BUT I am happy to report that although things started out with me thinking I wanted to smack him upside the head, he turned out to be a) not irritating and b) a help and actually the smart one for some parts.

We get introduced the the existence of dragons in this book and I figured when they mentioned them that this would be fodder for another book – sure enough the fourth book is called Secrets of the Dragon Sanctuary. Heh. I can spot a plot device a mile away – and a cliffhanger, too!

I actually enjoyed the multiple plot-lines, even though they end up sort of meshing by the middle of the book so it wasn’t too confusing to switch from one to the other with each chapter. This story was quite action packed and suspenseful. It’s pretty obvious by the end of the book that there will be another one, because things are far from resolved. Though it’s not quite an edge-of-your-seat cliffhanger like many other series out there (the Morganville Vampires series springs to mind here). I am once more irritated that I have to wait a year for the next book as for some reason they are published in hard cover first. I know if I was in the 9-12 age bracket I wouldn’t be buying hard covers. Ah, well, different generation I guess.

Fablehaven Series

  1. Fablehaven
  2. Fablehaven: Rise of the Evening Star
  3. Fablehaven: Grip of the Shadow Plague
  4. Fablehaven: Secrets of the Dragon Sanctuary
  5. Fablehaven: Keys to the Demon Prison – out now in  hard cover!

    * I edited the date on this post, as I actually finished the book on May 31 and I would like to have this post count as a book read in May!
    ** I had another sort of PS to add and now I don’t remember. Bah. I think it might have had to do with the fact that I took lunch at my desk at work today just so I could write and post this review – I enjoyed the book so much and finished it late in the night last night – but BEFORE midnight. So it counts for May! HA!


    Hey, guess what? My parents are currently on their way to Ireland. Can you believe that? They didn’t even take ME! Humph! I hope they see lots of faeries and green space and hills and rocks and shamrocks and lots of cool things. They’re even going to be somewhere near where my Grandfather was from (though I do not know how close, or if they’ll get a chance to visit the town).

    I can’t chronicle their entire trip but I can do a before and after, so I can see if they’re any different when they get home. (You know, like if they start to turn into leprechauns and stuff!) So here I am with my wonderful parents last night (even if they aren’t taking me with them!)

    It’s going to be weird not being able to just phone up my mum and speak to her whenever I want to for the next while. I’m a big Mummy’s Girl and I like talking to her every few days (once a week even). But I made sure that Shawn and I stopped over the night before they left so that I could give them a hug. I don’t plan on anything happening, but you never know these days, right? And it’s the farthest any of us have ever flown so of course it’s nerve wracking!

    I hope they have the best time. This is their dream vacation and they deserve it. Especially after all that’s happened in the last year! I hope that they relax and enjoy themselves and all that they’ll see for the first time. I am jealous of their trip, and I HOPE that I won’t have to wait until I’m retired to get to Ireland, but I think it’s fitting that they get there before I do.

    We’ll see how my Super7 ticket does tonight. Who knows? Maybe Shawn and I will join them next week. Heh.

    In other news – I have awesome new shoes and now I have to bombard you all with photos of them!

    Not only are they super sparkly, they are all soft and ballet slipper-leathery on the inside. So comfortable! Except the back of the left shoe gave me a blister and cut into my heel. Rude! That’s more my foot’s fault than the shoe’s fault because I have a weird bump back there. Ah, well. And I think they look nice on my piano. 😉

    It’s rain, rain, rain over here right now. And cool. I heard we’re supposed to be getting a cold and wet summer. Which is lousy, because we’ve actually had a spring for the first time in goodness knows when and it’s been so nice and sunny. I like the sun, I don’t like the heat. Ironic, I know. I’d like the sun to come back out again. I still have gardening and dirt digging to do and I do NOT want to do it in the rain. Yuck!


    Dayhunter – The Second Dark Days Novel
    by Jocelynn Drake

    The second Dark Days novel is action packed and never lets up. Mira (the vampire) and Danaus (the Hunter) are on the run from the Coven, the Naturi and well, just about everyone. They’re in England, then in Venice then in Crete. It’s sort of a travel show as Mira tries so very hard to not be the Coven’s puppet, and yet always seems to have to do what they want her to in order to save herself and mankind. Mira and Danaus continue their truce and for the moment are working on the same side – though not without their bumps and suspicions. Mira just wants to do what’s right and try to stop the world from going to war. Danaus wants to rid the world of all nightwalkers and thinks that Mira is only doing what she’s doing to save herself and them. Though you start to see some cracks in his armour and beliefs as Mira’s actions continue to baffle him and hint that maybe she does, in fact, have a soul and isn’t just the embodiment of evil.

    The action doesn’t revolve around the Naturi as much this book, in fact Mira and Danaus are continuously having to fight against the Coven (governing council of vampires) who want both Mira and Danaus killed, though Mira is needed to break the seal which would bring a supernatural war to the world. She’s alive because they need her for their purpose.

    I found that although the story was constantly moving at a fast pace, it was easy enough to put the book down when I’d had enough. And my poor little brain can only take so much strategy and battle-scenes at once. It wasn’t overdone, let me assure you. It’s just the way *I* happen to function while reading (the battle-oriented books in the Belgariad and Mallorean series by David & Leigh Eddings were the same thing!). Happily I was never bored while reading Dayhunter, in fact I quite enjoyed it and it made all my waiting-room visits this past month much more endurable! I just finished the book today while waiting at the dentist office (33 years and still no cavities! Yay, me!). I am looking forward to the third book in September because it is quite cliffhangar-y at the end of book 2!

    If you like Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series, I think you’ll like this one. However, Frost’s series is much  more romance-based whereas Drake’s series has little to no romance and is all about action.

    (I’m stealing DarlaD’s idea and listing the books in this series at the end of my post. As I go forward with reviews of books in series, I hope to update them all like this. Seems like a great idea.)

    Dark Days Series

    1. Nightwalker
    2. Dayhunter
    3. Dawnbreaker
    4. Pray for Dawn
    5. Wait for Dusk (July 2010 – really?)

    this, that & the other

    It’s been drawn to my attention that it’s been 10 days since I have posted anything. I guess that’s true. I don’t really have much to talk about, or at least, I have things but they’re not all that exciting.

    Mostly, I get home and I am exhausted. We figure out what to eat for dinner, I eat, watch some Angel and then fall asleep. I haven’t even been turning my computer on when I get home. THAT’S how exhausted I am. Of course I am almost at the end of Angel. I have about 4 or 5 episodes left before the series ends. And yes, I have watched all this before – when it was on TV. But I started watching all 5 seasons over again over a month ago. It’s something to do, and it’s commercial free!

    I could tell you about the stupidity I run into at my job. But I don’t like to talk too much about work on here, especially if it’s stupidity, because that can just get you into a ton of trouble, right? I’m not the one who’s stupid here. There was a story about my boss and his lost blackberry. A week later they were reunited when someone brought me the phone. I had a block put on it by the cell phone company so that if some nefarious person were to find it they couldn’t wrack up the charges. Though a week later, while my boss was out of the building at a 3-hour meeting, the phone was found. So in my typical cheeky fashion, I set out to try and find a ribbon or bow to adorn it for when he returned. I got the block off of the phone (having to phone the person who could do it, who had left early for an appointment, to call the company right as she was about to enter the appointment and unblock it), I riffled through my boss’ bag to see if by change the charger was there (it was) and though I didn’t find a bow – I did fashion a flower out of pink tissue paper, and someone gave me a red ribbon with a bell on it. So when the big boss returned to his office I had the phone charging, unblocked and festively waiting for him!

    At least I didn’t Tinker Bell it, right?

    Or, I could tell you about how I wiped out and just about turtled on the sidewalk in front of the office on Monday. I was leaving to get some Ben & Jerry’s ice cream with my work-bffs Elise, Maureen and Johanne when my foot caught a caved-in part of the sidewalk (Montreal is riddled with pot holes in it’s streets and on its sidewalks. I hate it here, did I mention that?) and my left ankle twisted, my knee twisted and yet I seem to have fallen on my right knee/leg/elbow/wrist and suddenly I was thinking “Huh, I can see the sky and the tree, weird.” And almost in slow motion everyone’s head just came into my line of sight – ABOVE me. It was like those scenes on TV where someone is lying on the table before surgery or something and you get their point of view of all the doctors staring down at them. Well, it was like that. And I hurt. And random people on the street stopped to help me get up as Maureen and Johanne (I think it was them) helped lift me back to standing.

    And of course, this was noon and so every student, employee and other random person out on their lunch break got to watch me wipe out on the cement. It was lovely. And how much I hurt this week because of that fall is incredible. I hurt in places I didn’t know I even bothered when I fell. As I told my friends, I think I did about 15 Cirque du Soleil moves as I turtled on Monday. Ow.

    I did get ice cream though! And I finally discovered one that I like (because I am not a fan of ice cream). It’s called, um, something about whirrled peace. It has caramel in it. Yum.

    Also, Annie’s blood test results came in on Monday and her liver levels are bad (not really a surprise due to the many years she’s been on cortisone pills). So we are going to have to change her food and likely end up with new (EXPENSIVE) pills. But I will try and stave off the pill part as much as I can. I don’t have $125 a month for pills. Yikes! Plus she’s not showing any signs of having anything wrong, so I am not worried about her. I call her my Curious Case of Annabelle Lappie since she seems to act younger the older she gets.

    What else? Hmm, nothing really. I had a dentist appointment this morning – still no cavities, so my record holds. I will be getting a night guard thing for my teeth so that I stop grinding them while I sleep. Hoping that will stop the immense pain in my jaw near my ears – which I always thought was sinus related, but per my ENT specialist guy it’s TMJ and I need that guard. So we’ll see how that goes. Also, we’ll see if my insurance will cover it because it’s $475. Ick.

    Apparently May is an expensive month.

    I can’t believe Monday is JUNE! Where did May go?? I should have noticed it much more with the amount of money I was spending. Yeech.

    See? Not so much with the exciting or interesting. But I’m home today, so I thought I would update. 😉

    Courtney Crumrin Vol.3 : The Twilight Kingdom

    Courtney Crumrin in the Twilight Kingdom (Volume 3)
    by Ted Naifeh

    This is a totally impromptu and unexpected review-slash-book purchase! And this is also another book that I blame on someone else – DarlaD AGAIN! Darla reviewed this graphic novel about a month ago and I was instantly drawn to the art and font of the title. So I had it in my head that I wanted to look this book up, but I could never remember the title or author. Argh!

    Earlier this week I added Volume 1 to my wishlist in hopes of helping myself remember what it was. Today I was at my comic book store picking up this month’s Buffy Season 8 comic (#25 Living Doll) (And as to that one, I say… WHA..??!?! I have no clue what the hell is going on with this comic and am seriously contemplating cancelling my subscription because it makes no sense and is going NOWHERE! They have no plot! Ugh!) and while there I thought – ok! Now to look for that book and… ack! I forgot the title and author AGAIN! So I made my husband use his iPhone to get to my amazon wishlist so I could look it up. Heh. Way to go iPhone!

    And yes, I realize this is the 3rd volume and that there are two previous ones, but the store didn’t have them in stock – but I did place them on order and boy am I glad that I did! I loved this little graphic novel to bits!

    From what I gather from the story – Courtney’s family moved from their home in, um, some sort of slummy area to live with her weird Uncle Aloysius in his spooky mansion. Courtney seems to have some sort of magical powers and a rebellious attitude. In this particular novel she needs to rescue a boy-turned-night thing from the Twilight Kingdom.

    It’s magical, and dark and I love the art. It’s not quite anime style, which I am happy about because I am so not a fan of anime. There’s something adorable about Courtney. Sort of an Emily the Strange combined with Ruby Gloom. I was slightly disappointed that the book was black and white, but you can’t have everything, right? (I’m a big fan of colour!)

    So I will be the proud owner of Volumes 1 & 2 shortly. Expect reviews of those as well!

    Books in the Courtney Crumrin series:

    Volume 1: Courtney Crumrin and the Night Things
    Volume 2: Courtney Crumrin and the Coven of Mystics
    Volume 3: Courtney Crumrin in the Twilight Kingdom
    Volume 4: Courtney Crumrin’s Mysterious Holiday