Sunday, 31 January 2010

The Sunday Salon: Do Books Have a Time?

The Sunday Salon.com

What Caught My Fancy This Week

Well this is rather sad. I have not posted anything since last week (well I have but I have taken it down). I will be better at it. My only defence is that I have been sick and school asploded on me.

time management

J.D. Salinger died this week and his death got me thinking. Not about death but about a conversation my brother and I once had about his book Catcher in the Rye. Let me set the scene for you: My brother is seven years younger than me. I was driving him home from school one day his senior year and for some reason we started talking about books and I confessed that I did not like Catcher in the Rye. Holden Caufield drove me insane. My brother on the other hand had really liked it. We started wondering if it was a boybook/girlbook thing. Boybook/girlbook has nothing to do with subject matter or intended audience, it is simply a very unscientific phenomena me and my highschool classmates discovered where all the girls would like a book and the boys would dislike it or vice versa (I wont veer off here and talk about gender construction but I will say I have some issues with this theory now) . As my brother and I continued the discussion however, we came to the realisation that he had read Catcher in the Rye in highschool while I had been in my early twenties. We wondered if perhaps our different reactions had to do with when in our lives we had read the book? My brother had been closer to Holden’s age whereas I had been older.

Do you think that there are some books that you have to be at a certain place in your life to enjoy? Or is it more to do with personality in general (my brother and I are pretty much polar opposites)?

From the Papers

andrea_levy_launch_day

The Guardian has an interview with Andrea Levy and The Times has a review of her book The Long Song. They also have a long article about the research that went into the novel. This book would work very well for the POC Challenge. This particular book is about slavery in Jamaica and I know that some of the criticism about books about and/or by POC is that it always harks back to slavery. I have only read one other book by Levy, Never Far From Nowhere. This book tells of the experience of two sisters growing up in London in the 1970s. The two sisters have very different experience of growing up. Olive is the older of the two girls and her skin is much darker than that of her sister Vivien’s. Personally I was not overly fond of the book because I felt that although Olive’s life was definitely changed by the way she was treated because of her colour she also had a sense of entitlement that rubbed me the wrong way. She expected her family to do things for her because she had been treated.

An article in Swedish paper DN in English about an ongoing argument regarding who actually wrote Stieg Larsson Millennium Trilogy (my reviews).

Did you read anything interesting in the papers this week?

Sunday, 24 January 2010

The Sunday Salon: Library Renovations

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What Caught My Fancy This Week
I couldn’t think of anything to write (I thought about the whitewash scandal but I feel like others have articulated my points much better). Then I spent the the afternoon helping my dad dust off and organize our books. I’ve taken some pictures.
Bags of books
001
Alphabetizing piles
winter '09-'10 039 
winter '09-'10 040 
winter '09-'10 041 
Other places where we keep books
Thanksgiving 07 026 
Thanksgiving 07 027 
Thanksgiving 07 028
There are several other places where we have hidden books as well but I don’t have pictorial evidence of them. I will show you the whole library when it is finally finished but we have hit a snag with some of the selves.
Is it possible to have to many books I wonder?
Reading

Madicken Madicken by Astrid Lindgren (Swedish)


Freedom in exile Freedom in Exile: The Autobiography of The Dalai Lama by The Dalai Lama



Reviewed
House of mirth The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton. I read this for The Classic Circuit but had to abandon it. It just wasn’t my cup of tea. I do know others liked it and her other books so head over to The Classic Circuit to take a look at the other reviews.

 
luftslottet som sprängdes The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson. I liked this one the best of the Millennium Trilogy. I wish he had lived enough to write the whole series (and have it edited).


Challenges

I wasn’t going to sign up for any more challenges but then the POC challenge was announced and I felt that I needed to sign up for it.


Fun Stuff
The Spark As usual in January many of us are trying to change our lives. Something that changed my life was joining the website Spark People in March last year. I still have some ways to go but it really has helped me change my life for the better. They have just released a book (which is why I am mentioning it here) and right now you can download a free chapter here.


Copyright ©2010 Zee from Notes from the North.clip_image003This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Friday, 22 January 2010

People Of Colour Reading Challenge: Sign-Up Post

I wasn’t going to sign-up for any more challenges. I really wasn’t. But with the controversy in the last week I feel that I should sign-up for this one. Actually ‘should’ is the wrong word, need is a better word. I belong in the category of readers who does not consider the author when I read. I read a book because the subject matter or story interests me. But I feel like I should start paying more attention to who I am reading as well as what. Like Eva said, I won’t read books that don’t interest me, but I will try and make a conscious effort to read POC books if the book interests me. I’ve looked through the books I have already chosen for my challenges and some of them are by POC or feature POC so I will be using them. The rules for this challenge are:

For this challenge all you need to do is grab the button from the side bar and add it to a post saying you are committed to reading POC authors and characters in this coming year. You do not have to pick your books now but you have to sign up to a level of how many you will read. Leave a comment to your post stating how many books you will read this year and tada automagically you are done.


Level 1: Read 1-3 POC books
Level 2. Read 4-6 POC books
Level 3. Read 7-9 POC books
Level 4. Read 10-15 POC books
Level 5. Read 16-25 POC books

I’m going to go for Level 4.

Books that I will probably be reading:

Tracks by Louise Erdrich (I will definitely be reading this one since it is an assigned read for school)

Freedom in Exile: The Autobiography of The Dalai Lama by The Dalai Lama (currently reading)

The Souls of Black Folk: Unabridged Edition by W.E.B Du Bois (my copy is from Project Gutenberg)

The Namesake: A Novel by Jhumpa Lahiri

A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini

The Forbidden Daughter by Shobhan Bantwal

The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind: Creating Currents of Electricity and Hope by William Kamkwamba and Bryan Mealer

Haunting Bombay by Shilpa Agarwal

I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

The Art of Happiness, 10th Anniversary Edition: A Handbook for Living by The Dalai Lama

Wild Swans : Three Daughters of China by Jung Chang

I’ll be keeping my eyes out for other good books. I’m very open to suggestions.

Thursday, 21 January 2010

Book Review: The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (Luftslottet som sprängdes)

luftslottet som sprängdes

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest (Luftslottet som sprängdes) by Stieg Larsson

Category: Crime Fiction

Challenges: Thriller and Suspense Reading Challenge 2010

Synopsis: Own translation from Adlibris.com Does contain some spoilers if you have not read The Girl Who Played with Fire.

Two badly injured people are taken to the emergency room at Sahlgrenska hospital in Gothenburgh. One is Lisbeth Salander who is wanted for murder of two people. She has a life threatening gunshot wound in the head and has to be operated on immediately. The other person is Alexander Zalachenko, an older man who is seriously injured since Salander hit him with an axe.

The third and final instalment of the Millennium series continues the story where The Girl Who Played With Fire left off. Lisbeth Salander did survive being buried alive but her problems are far from over. Zalachenko was previously an assassin with the Soviet Secret Intelligence. He is also Salander’s father and he is the one who has been trying to kill her. Strong forces are trying to shut her up for good.

At the same time Mikael Blomkvist is writing an expose that will clear Lisbeth’s name and shake the government, säpo and the whole foundation of the country.

My Thoughts: Small little anecdote to begin, the hospital at the start of the book, my mum worked there when I grew up. When I was in third grade the neurosurgeon on duty diagnosed me as having tonsillitis on Christmas Eve and gave me a prescription for antibiotics. This has nothing to do with the book but I so rarely get to have a personal connection to the books I read that I like the ones I have. I KNOW what this hospital looks like :D.

Thank you for indulging me :) On to the book itself.

I liked this one. Not loved but liked. The issues I’ve had with previous books didn’t seem quite as prevalent in this one. Yes it could still have done with a good edit but I think I have gotten more used to the writing style.

I really enjoyed learning more about Lisbeth and why she acted the way she did. What was done to her was horrific and it went a long way to explaining her actions. It also led to some really quite funny scenes.

Previous books in the trilogy had a couple of instances where I felt like I had been punched in the gut. At no point in this story did I feel like that. Instead the story flowed along nicely while still being exciting. This book ties up what happened in the previous book very nicely although the end feels tacked on. The storyline it ties up is important to tie up but in a way it feels rather random. Part of me will always be left wondering where he was going with some of the storylines. There are some parts that are semi-important for the story but also feel like they are actually there to set up events that he had planned for the future books. The storyline with Erika and Lisbeth felt like one of these. Although Erika’s story is important for the story in this book it also feels like her connection with Lisbeth is being strengthened for future books.

Another story that I wish Larsson would have had time to tell is the one of Lisbeth’s sister. I have a feeling that she would become an important part of the story in later books.

Overall I liked this book. It had a nice mixture of action, intrigue and human relationships.

Book has yet to be released in the US (and yes I feel a certain sense of joy at the fact that I get a book first here) but it can be bought from BookDepository.co.uk.

Previous Books in the series:

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

The Girl Who Played with Fire

Copyright ©2009-2010 Zee from Notes from the North.clip_image001This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Wednesday, 20 January 2010

Book Review: The House of Mirth

House of mirth

The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton

Narrated by Barbarra Caruso

Category: Classics

Challenges: The Classic Circuit

Synopsis: From Audible.com Lily Bart, a beautiful, intelligent, but penniless young woman, lives on the outskirts of New York's high society, craving the luxurious lifestyle of her wealthy contacts. But while Lily possesses the grace, taste, and morality of the ideal turn-of-the-century lady, her delicate innocence threatens her survival in that very world. As she fights to maintain her newfound place among the aristocracy, Lily struggles mightily against what lurks beneath all the glitter and gold - greed, vulgarity, and ruthless competition. In her brilliantly perceptive novel, The House of Mirth, Edith Wharton, the peerless, Pulitzer Prize-winning chronicler of Old New York, provides yet another heartbreaking glimpse into the world of manners, privilege, betrayal, and shocking falls from grace.

My Thoughts: Unfortunately this is going to be my first abandoned book of the year. I found Lily to be far to annoying for me to be able to finish the book. I listened to it on audio and I missed loads because I got distracted since the book didn’t keep my attention.

The language was beautiful but did at times ramble.  To my mind nothing really happened. Lily was to blame for her predicament in life. She was arrogant and entitled. She had a great deal of distain for all those around her. She was snobbish and plain annoying.

What it did show quite well was how trapped women of Lily’s class were. If they were not independently wealthy they were dependent on a husband or on relatives. They had few chances to earn their own money and they weren’t educated to take care of themselves. This issue is of great interest to me and possibly why I stuck with the book for as long as I did.

The narrator was actually quite good. She managed to capture the tone of Lily and her world very well. There was also none of the annoying music one sometimes gets with audio book.

I really wish I had liked it more than I did. Maybe I will try and read a physical copy of it.

Copyright ©2009-2010 Zee from Notes from the North.clip_image001This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

Teaser Tuesday: Freedom in Exile


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Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of
Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read

  • Open to a random page

  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page

  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)

  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

Freedom in exile

“When they arrived, people were so impressed by their bravery and persistence that the Government permitted them to stay. Naturally, I was one of the first to hear of their arrival and I became quite curious to see what they were like, especially Harrer, as he quickly developed a reputation as an interesting and sociable person” (pg 41)

Freedom in Exile: An Autobiography of The Dalai Lama of Tibet by The Dalai Lama

I don’t normally do non-fiction for my Teaser Tuesday but this week I’m reading books in Swedish for my fiction so I thought I would give you a glimpse of my non-fiction. Anyone familiar with the film Seven Years in Tibet should recognize this scene :D

Copyright ©2009-2010 Zee from Notes from the North.clip_image002This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Monday, 18 January 2010

Martin Luther King Day 2010

Last year I posted a video. This year a poem that I think speaks volumes.

I, Too, Sing America
I, too, sing America.

I am the darker brother.
They send me to eat in the kitchen
When company comes,
But I laugh,
And eat well,
And grow strong.

Tomorrow,
I'll be at the table
When company comes.
Nobody'll dare
Say to me,
"Eat in the kitchen,"
Then.

Besides,
They'll see how beautiful I am
And be ashamed--

I, too, am America.

~~Langston Hughes

 

Today on this day of service please donate to the Haiti relief effort

Sunday, 17 January 2010

The Sunday Salon: Lost in Translation

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What Caught My Fancy This Week

The other week I heard a story on Swedish Radio P1 regarding the behaviour of English speaking publishing companies (they used the term Anglo-Saxon which I dislike) with regards to translating books into Swedish. The segment focused on the fact that the publishing companies were not allowing time for the translators to translate the books before they released them in English on the Swedish market. They interviewed one man who felt that this meant that fewer people had a chance to read books because they never made it to them because they were never translated. This argument I can kind of buy. Yes, this means that some people might never read these books, but at the same time, the English speaking publishers are clearly making money since they are increasingly doing this. I am probably one of the bad people: 1) I prefer to read books in the original language where I can (which is why I am currently reading Stieg Larsson in Swedish). 2) I refuse to pay double the price for books in a bookstore that is owned by a gigantic corporation that only stocks bestsellers. I buy my books from BookDepository.co.uk or when I buy Swedish from adlibris.com (they only ship in Scandinavia). I would LOVE a nice independent bookstore near me. When I am in Stockholm I always visit Science Fiction Bokhandeln which any fan of Sci-Fi or fantasy would love and must visit when in Sweden (they also have stores in Gothenburgh and Malmö).

In addition to this English is a mandatory subject in Sweden. All Swedes have to pass English in compulsory education (grades 1-9) and if you go on to secondary  education you have to take at least one English course (this depends a bit on which track to choose) and everyone has the option of doing one more course. English starts in grade four (some schools might even start earlier) so this means that all students get at least seven years of English. In order to pass the last compulsory class the student must:

“Eleven tillägnar sig huvudinnehållet i tydliga texter på sakprosa, facktexter och skönlitteratur samt tillgodogör sig detaljer vid en noggrannare läsning.”

My translation of the above text: The student understands the main content in clear texts in non-literary prose, non-fiction and fiction, and understands details when reading the text more closely.

To me this would mean that the student should at this point be able to read most of the best sellers that the bookstores choose to sell us. Technically there is no need for translation of English books in Sweden. Or at least give those of us who want to read them in English a chance to do so before we can read the entire plot online.

And that brings me to my final point. What people seem to forget is that the world is now tiny. We have the opportunity to talk to a wide variety of people from around the world in real time. As someone who is regularly spoiled for tv shows by accident I am a proponent of simultaneous release of books, music, movies and television. That my friends is the solution to piracy.

Kristen at We Be Reading in her Starred Saturdays linked to an interesting article on translation from other languages into English that is well worth reading.

I’m pretty sure you will be hearing more about translation from me over the next few months as one of my gradschool classes is translation.

Reading

luftslottet som sprängdes The Girl Who Kicked the Hornets Nest (Luftslottet som sprängdes) by Stieg Larsson

The last book in the Millennium Trilogy. I’m about 100 pages in and so far it is okay. I still feel that they are wordy and could have done with an edit but…

Freedom in exile Freedom in Exile: The Autobiography of The Dalai Lama by Dalai Lama

I’m really enjoying this book. The Dalai Lama is humble and funny and I am learning loads about Tibet and Buddhism.

House of mirth The House of Mirth by Edith Wharton

This is my current audio book and I am reading it for The Classic Circuit and I hate to say it but I am not enjoying it. I’m finding the main character to be silly and annoying. I’m not sure I will finish it in time for Wednesday when the Circuit is stopping by here at the Notes from the North but I will try my darndest.

Reviewed

Immortal in Death

Immortal in Death by J.D. Robb

The Last Hero The Last Hero by Terry Pratchett

flickan som lekte med elden

The Girl Who Played with Fire (Flickan som lekte med elden) by Stieg Larsson

Challenges

GLBTMinichallengebutton For the GLBT Challenge there is a series of mini-challenges. In Januarys mini-challenge we are asked to write about why GLBT issues matter to us. I posted my reasons this week. For Whom the Bell Tolls: Why GLBT Issues Matter to Me.

Fun Stuff The Spark 

As usual in January many of us are trying to change our lives. Something that changed my life was joining the website Spark People in March last year. I still have some ways to go but it really has helped me change my life for the better. They have just released a book (which is why I am mentioning it here) and right now you can download a free chapter here.

For those of us outside of the US and Canada Lenore from Presenting Lenore is hosting a great Mentoring Program where she is making ARCs available to those of who are considered International. Head on over to see what she is offering.

A non-book giveaway that I really like is hosted by Beth at I Should Be Folding Laundry. She is giving away $50 gift certificate to The Vintage Pearl. If you haven’t seen this beautiful jewellery before I suggest you head on over asap. It is beautiful. My plan is to get my sister “a cup of love” but it will have to wait until July. I want to put the name of her first child on it and since he/she isn’t due until then I will have to wait. And then I might just get something for myself as well. I have been drooling over that page for days now (since before this giveaway was announced).

Copyright ©2009-2010 Zee from Notes from the North.clip_image003This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Help Haiti

Normally this blog is about books. But books aren’t the whole world even if we can see the world through them. Right now on a small island hundreds of thousands of people are fighting for their lives. Please help them!

The best way to help them is to donate money to one of the many organizations that are already in country. My two favourite are:

Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontièrs (link to the US site as most of my visitors come from there but please donate to MSF in your country)

Red Cross (again link to US site)

Friday, 15 January 2010

Book Review: The Girl Who Played with Fire (Flickan som lekte med elden)

flickan som lekte med elden

The Girl Who Played with Fire (Flickan som lekte med elden) by Stieg Larsson

Category: Crime Fiction

Challenges: Thriller and Suspense Reading Challenge 2010

Synopsis: In the second instalment of Stieg Larssons Millennium Trilogy Lisbeth Salander has returned from a longer stay abroad when a series of events conspire to put her well concealed past into the forefront not just of her life but for all the world to see. Only a handful of people believe in Lisbeth’s version of events and they must now figure out the puzzle that is Lisbeth before it is to late. At the front of this effort is journalist Mikael Blomkvist. There is a problem however, for some reason Lisbeth has severed all contact with Mikael and he doesn’t know why. What follows is a dramatic search for a truth that has been protected by the highest powers in the country.

My Thoughts: I liked this book better than I did The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, but I am still not convinced that it is as amazing as people keep saying.

I enjoyed the development of Lisbeth. I felt a great deal of interest in her. She is an intriguing character and the mystery surrounding her background was what kept the story alive. I do feel that this is the strength of the book. Lisbeth, for all her eccentricities and general standofishness is a character one wants to and ultimately does like. She has a clear sense of what is right and wrong and although she goes about setting wrongs right in a slightly odd way she does have a clear moral reason for it all.

The book also delivered a couple of sucker punches that I did not see coming. I won’t spoil anyone who hasn’t read it but I had to read a couple of sections over to make sure that what I thought I had just read really was what I had read.

When I reviewed The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo I referred to Jackie from Farm Lane Books who did not enjoy that book. In the comments to her entry there was a discussion regarding the fact that the books might have been different if the author had lived to work with an editor. While I can see that there can be some problems with editing the works of a dead author but I do feel that some editing needed to be done to this book. My main issue with the lack of editing is the fact that the characters mix using first and last names with just first names, often in the same paragraph. Who uses both first and last name when thinking about their co-workers, especially when you work in a small team? I never did. In addition to this in Sweden we usually just use first names. I can see why it could be important when introducing a major character but I really don’t care if a journalist who works with the main character is Lottie or Lottie Karim. I know who she is. She is only mentioned a few times and I don’t see why we need her last name. The mixing of using just first names and first and last interrupts the flow of the book and I think that this could have been edited and the book would have been better. 

Overall I thought this book was okay. It didn’t wow me but I did think it stronger than the first book in the series.

Previous book in the series:

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo

Copyright ©2009-2010 Zee from Notes from the North.clip_image001This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Thursday, 14 January 2010

Book Review: The Last Hero

The Last Hero The Last Hero by Terry Pratchett

Illustrated by Paul Kidby

Category: Fantasy

Challenges: Terry Pratchett 2010 Challenge and 2010 Challenge

Synopsis: Cohen the Barbarian is angry with the Gods for letting men grow old and die. With him he has the silver horde. They are all old. Their plan is discovered and the Wizards are asked for help in stopping Cohen and the horde. Yes they asked the wizards of the Unseen University. Mayhem ensues. A big bird is built. It is Pratchett what do you expect?

My Thoughts: Please excuse me while I go and sit in a corner and marvel over the pictures in this book for a while.

Thank you!

They are absolutely amazing.

Pratchett is Pratchett and I have much love for him and the illustrations in this book just makes the book even better. Pratchett’s writing is flawless as usual. All the normal characters appear with a cameo by Death pondering Schrodinger’s cat but he ultimately dismisses it because “I DON’T HOLD WITH CRUELTY TO CATS” (pg69).

As usual Pratchett’s book connects with something in our world (or several somethings), in this case the hero myth. In stories heroes never grow old and die. Yet a tenant of the hero myth seems to be that they are invincible. So what does a hero that has grown old do? Why he has to go down in a blaze of glory, that is what heroes do. This is the premise of this story. Throw in some Leonardo da Vinci, pardon me, Leonard da Quirm, the brilliant but slightly spaced inventor/painter and you have a story that is supremely recognizable yet very very fresh.

I’m going to go back to the illustrations for a bit (did I mention that they are awesome?) because they reminded me of my first contact with the Discworld. My first contact with the fantastic world of Terry Pratchett was sometime in the mid ‘90s when we played the Discworld computer game. I grew up playing PC games. And the Discworld was one of the games we played as a family with my brother or me at the controls and whom ever wasn’t controlling the game and our mum telling the controller what they should be doing (aka “helping”). We loved that game. Along with the Kings Quest games (primarily Kings Quest VI: Heir today, Gone Tomorrow). Anyway this was a side point to say that when I finally got my hands on the books a few years later (1998 or there about) I already had a familiarity with the characters. I knew how the world worked…or you know…What I guess I am trying to say is that computer games aren’t always bad, sometimes they are gateways into the world of books too. And I am glad that the illustrations in this book reminded me of that.

Back to the book: This is a fairly short book (175 pages) and I read it in one day. For anyone who is looking for a quick Pratchett fix this is a great read. I am however not sure that this is a good first book. It skates over some things that the longer books explain in greater detail such as why the wizards are the way they are. I’m glad I had a passing understanding of the world before I read it. And as always with Pratchett’s work it helps to be well read in general as much of his wit and irony would be lost on those who do not know our world.

Great book!

Terry Pratchett’s website

Copyright ©2009-2010 Zee from Notes from the North.clip_image001This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Wednesday, 13 January 2010

For Whom The Bell Tolls: Why GLBT Issues Matter to Me

GLBTMinichallengebutton

The first of the Mini-challenges for the 2010 GLBT Challenge asks why GLBT issues matter to me? My answer is a poem by John Donne.

For Whom the Bell Tolls

No man is an island,
Entire of itself.
Each is a piece of the continent,
A part of the main.
If a clod be washed away by the sea,
Europe is the less.
As well as if a promontory were.
As well as if a manner of thine own
Or of thine friend's were.
Each man's death diminishes me,
For I am involved in mankind.
Therefore, send not to know
For whom the bell tolls,
It tolls for thee.

~~John Donne

Although I am a straight woman GLBT issues matter to me because mankind matter to me. I firmly believe that we love whom we love and that it should not matter to anyone other than the people in a relationship. To discriminate against someone because of whom they love is one of the most awful things we can do to another human being. Love is supposed to be beautiful and comforting and when others make it in to something dirty and evil then we have completely missed the point. Why can’t we just love and respect each other?

Copyright ©2010 Zee from Notes from the North.clip_image001This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Tuesday, 12 January 2010

Teaser Tuesday: The Last Hero


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Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

The Last Hero

“Lord Vetinari found it best to set up a committee system. More of the ambassadors from other countries had arrived at the university, and more heads of Guilds were pouring in, and every single one of them wanted to be involved in the decision-making process, without necessarily going through the intelligence-using process first.” (pg 38)

From The Last Hero by Terry Pratchett

 

Copyright ©2010 Zee from Notes from the North.clip_image001This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Monday, 11 January 2010

Book Review: Immortal in Death

Immortal in Death

Immortal in Death by J.D. Robb

Category: Crime Fiction

Challenges: Flashback Challenge and Thriller and Suspense Reading Challenge 2010

Synopsis: Lieutenant Eve Dallas best friend gets accused of murder and it is up to Eve to find the real killer. While planning a wedding. 

My Thoughts: I love the In Death series but part of me had forgotten how laugh out loud funny some of the earlier books are. This one had me giggling several times. The funnies lines are often the kind of throw away lines between characters and this contributes to the feeling of the characters are real. The realism of the characters is something I really appreciate. Although things have happened to Eve and Roarke that have never happened to me I can relate to their problems in blending lives and wanting to keep your life as it was. I can also relate to the dry sarcastic wit that Eve employs as this is something that we use in my family quite a bit.

This book also discusses what family is and that we make our own family. This is something that I personally find fascinating and important. I have a fantastic family but at the same time I also have a fantastic family that isn’t my family by birth but by love. I would like this type of discussion to be more prevalent in today’s world.

Overall this is a great book.

Copyright ©2010 Zee from Notes from the North.clip_image001This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.

Sunday, 10 January 2010

The Sunday Salon: Bloggiesta Wrap-Up

blogiesta

As I have been bloggiestaing most of the weekend I have decided to forego my normal Sunday Salon and just make my Bloggiesta wrap-up post into my Sunday Salon post. So what did I end up accomplishing?

  • Taking down my Christmas Decorations (aka changing my background and header)
  • Write my Author Feature posts
  • Make templates Completed mini-challenge hosted by Danielle from There’s a Book
  • Clear out my need to write file by finishing some posts
  • Clean up and and organise my sidebar
  • Write some of my weekly posts
  • Organise my blogging folders
  • Organise my Google Reader Completed flashback mini-challenge hosted by Rebecca @ The Book Lady’s Blog
  • Various mini-challenges
  • Organise my tags Completed mini-challenge hosted by Beth Fisher Reads
  • Add a footer Done but it is in all caps and I can’t get it to lowercase, if anyone knows how to fix this in blogger I would be greatful. Completed the mini-challenge hosted by Pam from Bookalicious.us. I also decided to put copyright statements at the end of each of my posts.

I still have my author feature post to write but I am off"-“ish” this week (long story that I am not going to get into as it makes my blood boil) so I will be working on it then as well as reading LOADS.

I am really pleased with what I managed to accomplish during this weekend. I don’t know how much actual time I spent on blogging things because in between working on the blog I also harvested several crops of farmville blackberries :D

I want to thank Natasha from Maw Book Blog for hosting the whole thing and to all those who hosted mini-challenges. I’ve learned loads and hopefully made my blog a better place. Finally thanks to those who took time to leave a note regarding the question I had about my background. It seems to have solved itself. No idea what that was about.

I will return next week with a regular Sunday Salon next week when I will be discussing a news story from Sweden on the publishing of anglo-saxon translations.

The Sunday Salon.com

Copyright ©2010 Zee from Notes from the North.clip_image001This post was originally posted by Zee from Notes from the North. It should not be reproduced without express written permission.