Monday, May 20, 2013

Book review: Ten Days by Olivia Mayfield

Ten Days

3.5 stars for Ten Days. This is a retelling of a short story by E. M. Forster according to the author's note. I've never read the original story so no idea how close to the original idea this one is, but props to Ms. Mayfield for the retelling.

This was also my first foray into the "new adult" category that has recently come out. I wasn't sure what to expect in regards to how different it would be from "young adult" literature, so this could be regarded as a learning experience for me. The sexuality was more than with YA, but less than that found in most adult romances. Basically, I think any 17 year old would be fine reading it, but that may not be the case in other new adult books. (And really it just depends on the maturity of the person reading the book.)

The premise of the story is that humanity has moved underground and is entirely dependent on a machine, which has taken on deity aspects throughout the book. It's kind of a standard story from what I remember of high school literature, but the heroine is likable and the reader can tell she is really trying to find her place in the world. I was a bit appalled by the sheer rampant death and destruction at the end, but I believe that was again an homage to the original story.  Overall the story was a pleasant experience and I'll be looking for more from the author.

Friday, May 17, 2013

The Suckage of being a Responsible Adult

I've been doing the on/again off/again thing with my blog.  This has been a very trying year so far in that I'm so very, VERY tired of constantly having to explain to Donald why he needs to continue to work on his boundaries with his mother.  It really feels like I'm living in the office all the freaking time.  If I'd wanted to be a counselor 24/7 I'd have gone into mental health rather than marriage & family and looked for an inpatient psychiatric ward.  Ugh.  Not loving it.  At All.

Anyhow, the fabulous Jesse Blayne wrote another of her very insightful blog posts In Good Company which made all kinds of light bulbs go off in my head.  Donald does not discuss his frustration with his mother to the kids.  EVER.  Now, I'm actually fine with him not talking about what bothers him about what she says/does/breathes around him.  What I'm not fine with is that it has never occurred to him to discuss with the kids (or let them discuss) things the MIL has done that bothered them.  Every single visit with the MIL leads to the boys getting upset in some fashion because of her obvious favoritism of Bess.  Has he ever talked to them about this?  No...but that shouldn't really surprise me because he (unlike the INFJ that I am)  doesn't ever see patterns and apply them to his own life.  (Getting off that tangent & going back to the current one...)

So guess what I'm going to start doing?  I'm going to start encouraging the kids to talk about anything that bothers them about the MIL.  Because they deserve to be listened to and to be able to reason things out in their own ways.  (This is something Donald was never allowed as a child so it's a very foreign concept for him.)

Also (this is where the title of the post comes in) had an interesting conversation with Bess about the MIL regarding a nickname the MIL had created for Lightning during a visit at her home.  Lightning apparently was reminding her of her youngest son (who she buts heads with all the time) and so she created the nickname of Gumpy Pants #2 for him & thought it was hilarious.  Because neither I nor Donald was there, Lightning was called this oh so charming name for over a week.  After the kids got home Lightning let me know he didn't like the name.  I talked to Bess about it today and asked her what she thought about it.  Bess said that MIL couldn't have meant anything mean by it because she loved her grand kids and tried not to be mean to them. (Did you catch that - tried NOT to be mean to them.)  So we talked about how making up nicknames that make fun of people aren't very nice and that it wasn't very nice of MIL to make up that name for Lightning.  Yay, right?  Until I realized the same principle applied to my nickname of Borg Queen for the MIL :-/  Which kind of sucked.  A Lot.  *sigh*  So in order to set the good example (even though my kids don't read this, let alone KNOW I have a blog) I'm going to refer to my MIL as either MIL or the N (narcissist for those who don't know) and leave off with Borg Queen.  (At least on the blog...probably not in my head.)

Angel & Faith: Season 9 Book Review

This series comes after Buffy the Vampire Slayer:  Season 8 graphic novels.  I've been really looking forward to it and so far it has not disappointed.  Here are the reviews:

Angel & Faith: Season 9 Volume 1: Live Through This (Angel & Faith, #1)

4.5 stars for Live through This. Breezed through it in one night & definitely did not regret the purchase. Angel is his usual mopey, humdrum self (I'm a Spuffy gal), but Faith really managed to bring it. I loved her evolution in Buffy Series 8 & she's making me root for her even more in this establishment. I don't think it's too spoilery to mention Giles very much has a place in this collection (since he's on the cover and all.)  For anyone who's a Giles fan, this series gives a ton of background info on our favorite Watcher.  Can't wait for the next compilation to come out ;-)

Angel & Faith: Season 9 Volume 2: Daddy Issues (Angel & Faith, #2)

4 stars for Daddy Issues.  Didn't enjoy this one quite as much as the first volume, but there was some GREAT back story on Giles. Plus, Drusilla (you have to read it to get the awesome factor of this.) Faith is and has been the major pull of this series for me...Angel is just too damn broody. I'm intrigued to see how this Giles resurrection may play out and don't for a minute believe something naughty didn't transpire between Faith & Giles during their time together. Plus....Willow!   Impatiently awaiting the next Nook edition ;-)

Angel & Faith: Season 9 Volume 3: Family Reunion (Angel & Faith, #3)

Family Reunion gets 4.5 stars And gets favorite status because it has all 3 of my favorite characters from the Buffyverse: Giles, Willow, & Faith. Now to be fair there is only a mention of Giles, but we've gotten so much background info on Giles from this series that I'm counting it anyway.

Connor's back in this installation and he isn't the least bit annoying (perhaps it was the lack of Cordelia.) The gang + Willow travels to Quor'toth to bring magic back to the world because it is slowly imploding without it. Willow agrees to give Angel the scythe of Slayerness to help in his quest to resurrect Giles because Giles died while holding it. Faith is wonderful and has really kept this series going for me as the Broodiness of Angel is not something I enjoy. (He's actually much easier for me to take as Angelus b/c he has a sense of humor along with the evil.)

Quor'toth manages to bring out the BAD in the gang, and it's interesting to see how they all handle it. I'm literally waiting on the edge of my seat for the next issue which is SUPPOSED to bring back the King of all Watchers...I'm really hoping they manage to somehow take 20 years off him when they bring him back. Cuz I'm totally shipping Giles and Faith since season 8 of the Buffy graphic novels ;-)