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The Love of my Life <3

The Love of my Life <3

Friday, October 30, 2009

The Taker

We all know of that 3 letter word that strikes panic into our hearts, paralyzing our hands, and freezing our brains. What word is it . . . have you guessed. It begins with an "S" . . . still not sure? Well here it is . . .


It's ok . . relax you don't have to take them . . . or if you do I feel s0 sorry for you. I think I got like a 200/2400 on the test. My HS class year was the 1st year that they started doing it out of 2400. Needless to say I'm SO not a test taker like our main heroine Carly Biels.

She is a student teachers love to have - A's and B's are the grades she receives, she always does her work - and always participates in class. You get the idea, she's a good student. Her Achille's heel would be the S.A.T. or any test that has you color in those totally tiny and annoying dots. I hates those - I always worry that I don't erase enough. When she sees those blue or green dotted sheets her mind goes into instant panic and freezes! The problem is now it's in hyper-drive because it's the S.A.T.s and on top of getting the perfect score she has, and I mean has to get into Princeton. You see her father went to Princeton, her grandfather and even her great-grandfather went and if she doesn't go well then she's a failure (or so she believes.)

When she takes the test she feels she's done decent, and she understands it won't be anywhere near perfect but as long as it's in the 20000s she doesn't mind. She waits for the clock to strike 8am before calling the College Board, and when she hears her score she's sure that there is a mistake . . . her score is 1710!

She gets a text of her cell phone that says "I can help you. - The Taker." The rumor around school is there is a person that will take the SAT for you and get you within 100 points of the perfect score. Carly ignores the text - she's no cheater. The next day she talks to her parents who say that they are all going to talk to Mr. Fellner who is the head honcho of college guidance office. When her parents and her are talking to Mr. Fellner, he puts it bluntly; her scores suck and she has no hope of getting into Princeton. However, Mr. Biels won't take that as an answer and says that there must be something that can be done - and the only solution is for Carly to take Mr. Lettich's SAT prep class which costs $$ and is hard to get into. For now though Carly must study with a tutor and try to get her scores up so that she can get into Mr. Lettich's class. Later that week she gets another message from the taker - last chance, does she want his/her help? The final rule (out of 8!) is that once agreed to there is no turing back. She replies back to him saying that yes, she'll use his help.

The rules of The Tester are clear: keep studying and take the test. When Carly continues to study for the SAT she starts to believe in herself and realizes that hiring The Tester was such a bad mistake! As the test draws near she has to decide to cancel it off with The Taker or cheat using his/her help after all.

This was such a nice break. I'm currently reading a book and I'm just having a hard time getting through it, so when I picked up this book I knew instantly that it was going to be such an adventure :) In the story there are other problems going on in her life: social, family pressure, romance, peer pressure the normal high school "issues". I know that if I were offered to cheat, I certainly would not. I wouldn't be able to live with knowing that my scores were in-fact not my own so that any school I got into wouldn't be my own hard work.

Another issue I had was with Carly herself. Her boyfriend was a totally jerk - but she still stayed with him!!! She constantly let him walk all over her as she continued to make excuses!! AND EVEN WHEN SHE CAUGHT HIM KISSING ANOTHER GIRL SHE STILL QUESTIONED WHETHER OR NOT TO STAY WITH HIM!!!! ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!! LIKE FOR REAL!

I loved this book! It was just such a fun read, I kept laughing at the right times and cringing when the moment called. It is a wonderful book - and if you are getting ready for the SATs quickly read this book as a nice relaxer :) It will have you felling like the SAT is just 3 letter word and that's all.

Other books by J.M. Steele

The Taker by J.M. Steele. New York. (c) 2006

Monday, October 26, 2009


Hey guys.

Ok So I've changed my blog name, as I'm sure you've all noticed.

I did change my blog URL but it wasn't working out, so it's still the same until I find a way to change it and notify everyone. *sigh* such a head ache

SO for now I will have a new blog title and same url :)

Hope that makes sense.

Secret Santa!! Join the fun!!

Kate from The Neverending Shelf is hosting her own Secret Santa! Of course I've totally joined in the fun!!



And the award goes to . . .

Goooood evening my fellow book lovers. I have been awarded the "Honest Scrap" award by Taschim of Bloody Bookaholic. I will now copy and past the rules/details of the award.

This is the Honest Scrap award. It is for those bloggers who write from the heart. The rules are to pass it along to seven bloggers, and then list 10 honest things about myself. Here are those deserving of this honor; bloggers who write from the heart and touch me because of it!

The Bloggers
  1. Meggin from Serendipity Book Reviews
  2. Ann-Kat from Today I read. . .
  3. Kerri from Book Ends
  4. Arielle from Booktopia
  5. Darla from Books and Other Thoughts
  6. Julie from J-Flamingo Reflections
  7. Jessica from Shut Up! I'm Reading
10 Honest things about myself
1 I love Heath Bars
2 I'm not like kids my age (I prefer fashion from the 40's, and classical music)
3 I just learned that I love taking photos
4 I love to bake, not cook
5 I LOVE going to school
6 I really hope someday publishers will send me ARCs or E-books for reviews
7 I'm a very goofy person
8 As hard as I try I still let fear control me
9 I've had such the craving for pepperoni pizza
10 I've always wanted to get a farm were I can rescue animals from pounds and saluter

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Loveless vol. 2

Ok, now bare with me because even though I just finished reading this manga (haha I just put mango) I can't for the life of me untangle the web - and I think it's because I can't really remember whose name goes with whom. So with that being said, may I now bring on the review :)

Ok so in the last volume Ritsuka (the young boy) was dealing with his amnesia, which also effects the way his mother treats him, the death of his older brother, and the new comer/protector of Ritsuka - Soubi.

Soubi introduces Ritsuka to a new world, a world were words have meaning and are used to attack the enemy. Soubi tells Ritsuka that his brothe Seimei was once his person to protect but now he is here to protect Ritsuka.

One day Ritsuka is sitting in a field when 2 former 'attackers' offer him a soda and a warning. They tell him that other more advanced people are coming and they won't be as weak.

When he sees Soubi again he demands the Soubi tell him all of the secrets he's holding back, and Soubi of course says "no". As they are talking another group out to kill Ritsuka challenge Soubi and Ristuka to a duel.

Ok. Ugh, I'm not so happy with this review. There were some scenes in the volume that had action, but for the most part it was a mellow volume. There are some parts in the book that are defiantly for the more mature audience, and I'm still a bit shocked (and I'm still getting over it.) I do like though, that the words have meanings, even the names of people. We generally forget how powerful a name or word can be!


Vol. 2
Vol. 3
Vol. 4
Vol. 5
Vol. 6
Vol. 7
Vol. 8 (September 2008)
Vol. 9 (I'm having conflicting results on when #9 will be published in the US. Some sources report that it should be out now, while others say it hasn't come yet)

Loveless Volume 2 by Yun Kouga. Japan 2003 US 2006

Babymouse: Monster Mash


Ok, I have read it out of order because it's HALLOWEEN THEMED and I'm not quite there yet in the series (this is book 8 and I'm on book 7.)

Babymouse finds a nice scary werewolf costume and while she is reviewing the scariness of it, she runs into Felicia Furrypaws who tells her that girls can only wear nice pretty outfits whereas boys are only allowed to wear the nice scary outfits.

The next day at school Babymouse runs into her best friend Wilson the Weasel who invites her over to his house so they can finish his Frankenstein outfit together. That night at dinner Babymouse's mother says the she can have a party after trick-or-treating! Babymouse instantly starts dreaming up the best party ever with a fog machine, candy, and the best decorations ever. The next day at school Babymouse starts inviting people to the party. When Felicity Furrypaws asks if she can come, Babymouse says yes (after all she cannot NOT invite the most popular girl there!) The only condition Felicity makes is that Babymouse has to dress pretty like the rest of the girls.

Halloween night arrives and Babymouse reluctantly dresses up as a fairy - forgoing her scary Werewolf costume. Felicity and the other girls arrive and they begin trick-or-treating, but as the night comes to a close Felicity tells Babymouse that the real fun is going to begin. Felicity pulls out some TP and tells everyone that they are going to being TP-ing everyone's homes. Babymouse has to decide whether or not to do the right thing.

This was such a cute Halloween book! It was my level kinda scary - I don't do well with truly horrific scary movies/books :) Babymouse has to decide in this book whether or not to succumb to peer pressure (either by dressing like the other girls, or 'tricking' the neighbors.) It made a reference that I'm sure all you adults would know "The Creature From the Black Locker" but of course we all know if should be from the Black Lagoon.

Books in this series:

  1. Babymouse: Queen of the World
  2. Babymouse: Our Hero
  3. Babymouse: Beach Babe
  4. Babymouse: Rock Star
  5. Babymouse: Heart Breaker
  6. Babymouse: Camp Babymouse
  7. Babymouse: Skater Girl
  8. Babymouse: Puppy Love
  9. Babymouse: Monster Mash
  10. Babymouse: The Musical
  11. Babymouse: Dragonslayer
  12. Babymouse: Burns Rubber (January 12, 2010)
Babymouse: Monster Mash by Jen & Matt Holm. New York (c) 2008



My recap if very tiny (how apropos then that it should be in small text :P) Yesterday was the first time in 2 weeks that my hubs wasn't working - so I wanted to spend time with him and wasn't able to do as much reading as I had wanted. But I did have such a wonderful time yesterday and next year I will be more prepared with a schedule :) Thank you guys so much! I can't wait for next year's readathon.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Camp Babymouse (Readathon hour 9.5)

It's that time of year again - summer - where kids get to go CAMPING!!!

Scout Babymouse is ready to lead her troops through the rough and dense forest. She's ready to teach them survival skills like starting a fire and what forest foods are safe to eat. Or not.

When she arrives at Camp Wild Whiskers and is so excited and worried. Her number one worry: did she pack enough cupcakes? When she gets her cabin number she's so excited and runs to it to meet her fellow cabin mates and pick a bed. But the homecoming is less that welcoming. The only bed for her is at the tippy-top. The cabin leader tells everyone of the rules - and that each cabin will be rewarded points for good habits: making the beds, keeping clean, sweeping, etc. And they will also lose points if they don't do their chores or certain activities. This is proving hard for Babymouse, who on the first night loses 2 points for spilling a drink.

As the week progresses, Babymouse is having a hard time. She keeps losing points and her cabin is getting very mad at her. Late in the week she calls her parents and tells them she wants to come home. Can Babymouse tough it out for the next week and make friends?

This was a cute little book, but I still like Babymouse: Heartbreaker more. My favorite part of this book though, is when Babymouse scares Big Foot away with her un-straight whiskers! Poor Babymouse.

Books in this series:

  1. Babymouse: Queen of the World
  2. Babymouse: Our Hero
  3. Babymouse: Beach Babe
  4. Babymouse: Rock Star
  5. Babymouse: Heart Breaker
  6. Babymouse: Camp Babymouse
  7. Babymouse: Skater Girl
  8. Babymouse: Puppy Love
  9. Babymouse: Monster Mash
  10. Babymouse: The Musical
  11. Babymouse: Dragonslayer
  12. Babymouse: Burns Rubber (January 12, 2010)
Camp Babymouse by Jen & Matt Holm. New York (c) 2007

HOLLY SMOKES!! HOUR 2!!! Babymouse: Heartbreaker

Ok, It's 12:49pm and I'm in hour 2 of the 24 hour readathon. I started today at 10:32. So the book I chose is Babymouse: Heartbreaker.

Ah, do you hear that. Birds are chirping and there is such a lovely sound coming down from the heavens. It must be those cute little cherbs singing. It's that day that so many of us hate: IT's VALENTINE'S DAY!!!

The book opens with a throw back to good ol' Shakespeare and that infamous Romeo and his girl Juliet. But in this rendition Babymouse is Juliet who will not rise to the calls of Wilson (Romeo) because it's late at night. THAT made me laugh. Can you imagine during the play . . .
That would've been funny :)

While at school Babymouse learns that there is going to be a dance later that week to celebrate Valentine's Day. She's nervous - who will ask her out? Felicity Furrypaws already has a date and spends no time in announcing to everyone who she is going out with, and that she's getting a new dress. Babymouse waits and waits for one of the boys to ask her out. But when no one does she begins to worry that she's not pretty enough to go out. So she grabs an issue of Glamourmouse and decides that she is going to make her self UNFORGETTABLE by following the instructions on the issue.

As the dance draws closer she still doesn't have a date. Will she find one on time??

This particular book has some references to stories that I don't think the intended audience will get: Romeo and Juliet and Gone With The Wind. It does also have references to Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty though - so it's a nice mixture of both. I'm in love with this series. I always love how she has this mysterious locker monster that always makes her late for class and the explanation she always gives are so over the top. But they make me smile :) - Same can't be said for the teacher.

Books in this series:

  1. Babymouse: Queen of the World
  2. Babymouse: Our Hero
  3. Babymouse: Beach Babe
  4. Babymouse: Rock Star
  5. Babymouse: Heart Breaker
  6. Babymouse: Camp Babymouse
  7. Babymouse: Skater Girl
  8. Babymouse: Puppy Love
  9. Babymouse: Monster Mash
  10. Babymouse: The Musical
  11. Babymouse: Dragonslayer
  12. Babymouse: Burns Rubber (January 12, 2010)
Babymouse: Heartbreaker by Jen & Matt Holm. New York (c) 2006

Mini-Challenge (#1 for me) but hour 4 (but hour 1.4 for me)

Ok. So it's a mini-challenge time. It's host by Bart's Bookshelf. I'm going to copy and past teh rules so I can get back to reading. These are his rules NOT MINE. Ok. And I quote

"I want you to pull three or four books off of your bookshelves and use them to form a sentence, from the book titles, take a photograph and upload it somewhere you can link to it from. (ie: your blog, photobox, flickr etc… etc…) Come back and post a link to your blog post or photo in the comments section.

The challenge is open for two hours, and later in the readathon I’ll post all the entries and a poll to decide the winner."

I have my books all lined up. I chose 3 books - and I think it's quite funny :) (ugh! I'm going to quickly take the pictures!!) MY CAMERA DIED!! BOO! So I'm going to let it quickly recharge.

My sentence is:

Certain girls Undead and Unwed Never Slow Dance With A Zombie On A Pale Horse

And here is my picture :)

Read - a - thon HOUR 1

Ok. Very 1st post, for very 1st read-a-thon. My book is Araminta Spookie: My Haunted House. I should knock it out within the hour :)

Time for the review :)

Araminta Spookie, I would say is about 7 years old and lives in an old mansion with her Aunt Tabby and Uncle Drac. She is in love with the old, spooky mansion. She has a bedroom for every day of the week - and the mansion even has 4 kitchens!! Her Aunt Tabby however, does not feel the love for the mansion. In fact she hates it - especially the boiler. Her Uncle Drac could care less and sleep upside-down in a room full of his bats.

One day Aunt Tabby calls Araminta down for breakfast and tells her that she's decided to sell the mansion, and that once it's sold they will all be moving to a nice smaller house. She is tried of always battling the boiler, and dealing with Sir Horace (the rusty knight armor that is constantly falling apart.) Araminta doesn't like the plan once bit and decides to stop at nothing in creating ways to prevent people from purchasing the house.

The following day Aunt Tabby has Araminta help her in creating a "For Sale" sign. When Aunt Tabby walks back into the house, Araminta adds "not" to the sign so that it now reads "This House is NOT for Sale". When the morning arrives Araminta is shocked to see someone at the front door ready to inspect the house for purchasing. She quickly runs out to see the sign and sees that crafty Aunt Tabby has crossed out the NOT. She decides to add a new word to the sign. She adds "haunted" so that the sign now reads "This HAUNTED House is For Sale!" She is satisfies with the new sign, because who in their right mind would buy a haunted house??! After successfully scaring away the buyer Araminta finds an old key in the foot of Sir Horace and decides that she will go exploring, hoping to find a secret passage way, or maybe even ghosts.

She finds both!! At the very bottom of her basement she finds a young boy ghost named Edmund, who doesn't seem to be that scary. When she gets him to help her, she runs into another ghost - Sir Horace. They join forces and being to plan a way to keep the house from being sold. However, when one family comes to buy the house, Araminta can't seem to scare them off! With her last awesome ambush planned - will it be enough to scare them for good?

This was a fun quick read (for adults) and I think that any young child would like this (maybe 7+). Araminta is such an explorer and loves anything that's old and creepy - or just plain scary - LIKE SPIDERS! I remember being young and always wanting to find the secret passages in any building I went too. I always hoped to find treasure or another world. Sadly I did not. It made me laugh at some spots, while cringing in others (like mentions of spiders.)

Books in this series:

1) Araminta Spookie: My Haunted House
2) Araminta Spookie: The Sword in the Grotto
3) Araminta Spookie: Frognapped
4) Araminta Spookie: Vampire Brat
5) Araminta Spookie: Ghostsitters

Araminta Spookie: My Haunted House by Angie Sage. New York (c) 2006

Thursday, October 22, 2009

.hack// Legend of the Twilight Vol. 3

When we return to Shugo, Rena, and the rest of the party they have been taken to jail by Kamiu (who is part of the CC Corp.'s Cobalt Knight Brigade. Kamiu believes the Shugo and Rena with the help of Zefie (the vagrant AI) have been cheating - Zefie is in their party and Shugo has the rare bracelet. Kamiu also locks up the rest of their party which includes: Okua, Mireille, Hotaru.

However Shugo pleads to Kamiu to let the others go - and she agrees to the protests of the 3 girls. When Kamiu leaves Zefie breaks the jail (which cannot be done - but Zefie has special powers) and they all escape. Shugo and Rean decide that they will take it upon themselves and find Aura (Zefie's mother) no matter what the consequences.

When Kamiu returns she notices the empty jail cells and immediately calls for their accounts to be deleted - but the accounts cannot be deleted. Someone of something is protecting them.

Balmug (the former CC Corp Admin) has re-logged back into the world (from his home computer) as another legendary .hacker Balmug of the Azure Sky. He has rediscovered that in-order to protect the world Kamiu must be stopped. He sends a letter to Shugo saying that he will join in their quest to help Aura and Zeife. However with Kamiu hot on their heels their journey will not be an easy one especially since only 4 people have lived to see the inside of the wold - and they didn't live to tell about it - well they're in a coma.

This was a wonderful continuation of the .hack series. As the story continues, their group becomes stronger and all the members being to truly understand The World and how important it is to each and every person that plays the game. The most development came from Rena and Shugo. Rena began to see her brother in a different light, and acknowledged that her brother had always been a hero. Shugo began to see himself as a hero - but in different packaging. He envisioned heros to have caps, and muscles, you know - the typical description of a hero.

The ending for this manga was rather odd. In fact to say that the ending was rather curt would be putting it nicely. It felt like they were running out of ideas so just said "here - throw this together, it fits - ok good - and we're done". They had some comics that followed but they weren't part of the .hack story board - or if they were then they didn't seem to flow (at least to me.)

Volumes in this manga

.hack//Legend of the Twilight Vol. 3

.hack//Legend of the Twilight Vol. 3 by Tatsuya Hamazaki. Japan (c) 2004 USA (c) 2004

Too Long

I just dusted off the cobwebs! And look, under it all was a computer and tumble weed going across the screen! I don't know why but for some reason it's been so hard to me to read a book - taking me weeks when it should take days - and then to review them! I've been out of the loop! NO MORE I SAY! I have some deliciously good books that I can't wait to crack open! So without further adieu the .hack//Legend of Twilight Vol. 3 Review!

Friday, October 16, 2009

The Van Alen Legacy

To date, this is THE BEST book in the Blue Bloods series. Well this is MY OPINION but I hope that those of you that have read the book agree with me. I wish that I had read it slower because when I got to the end I was sad that book #5 is not out yet :( and now I must wait.

If you are not familiar with the series I have reviewed the 1st, 2nd, and 3rd books.

When the book opens Schuyler and Oliver are on the run - in fact they've been on the run for over a year. The Coven does not believe that one of the major demons, Leviathan, has escaped from his prison. *WARNING - SPOILER - HIGHLIGHT TO VIEW* If you recall from the previous book, Lawrence killed Dylan (an innocent) releasing Leviathan. Leviathan than killed Lawrence before disappearing, leaving Schuyler next to 2 dead bodies - making it appear like she is the killer.

Schuyler and Oliver have now landed in France in hopes that they can talk to the Countess of Paris, Isabelle of Orleans. The Hotel Lambert had been sold, so the countess decided to throw one last Blue Bloods ball. Schuyler and Oliver take the guise of waiters in hopes to talk to her, because she is the only one that can protect them from the Northern American Coven.

Meanwhile, Mimi is with Kingsley and two other vampires trying to track down Jordan. Jordan (HIGHLIGHT TO READ ->) aka The Watcher was kidnapped a year ago and has not been seen since. Mimi and her team of Venators having been running all over the globe in hopes of finding her. Then Kingsley gets an idea and they go back to the scene of the crime. While walking through Rio's slums a little girl tells them that Jordan to her (the little girl) that there would be a pretty lady and that she wanted the little girl to give Mimi a note. The note says "The Sun shall Lead the Way."

Bliss is still confused and lost. Every time the Visitor comes she gets thrown into the dark and loses track of space and time. She knows he is Lucifer and that he is her father, but still she wants to stop him. She begins to fight him - making herself quite when he takes over, and what she learns scares her. She knows that even though she is helpless she must do something to stop him and his evil plan. So she writes an anonymous nots saying "...Beware of Forsyth Llwellyn [her 'father' who is Lucifer's servant]. He is not who you think he is."(p171)

While in France Schuyler runs into Jack, and instantly all the feelings she was trying to hide come back. Jack tells her that she is not safe in Paris - that she must return to New York. Schuyler does not want to return fearing the Conven, but when her mother comes to her in a dream and tells Schulyer that she must "find the remaining members of the Order, alert them of the danger, and keep the gates secure [from the demons]" (p299) and finish her grandfather's work: The Van Alen Legacy Schuyler agree to return.

The battle for the world has never been more dire. Lucifer is just a hair's breath away from once again walking upon the earth. The once prominent Blue Bloods have found themselves weak and and powerless to fight the Silver bloods - and they are dropping like flies. The fate of the Blue bloods and the world lies in the hands of 4 teens: Schuyler, Oliver, Jack, and MiMi.

To sum this book up in 3 words I would say: Action, Romance, Trial. Everyone must be put to the test: are they selfish or selfless? Should Schuyler stay with Oliver? Or follow her heart and be with Jack? Should MiMi still bond with Jack? Or Be with Kingsley? Can they put aside their personal issues, and fight as a unit to defeat the silver bloods? Romance, I'm sure I need not explain :) and adventure - wow. And I mean WOW! I kept turning the page so that I could get to the next scene and I had to make sure that my eyes wouldn't drop down in the page and get ahead :) The fight is just beginning - and the armies are starting to form.

I CAN NOT WAIT FOR #5!!! If I were Ebert and Rupert I'd give it 2 thumbs up, and if this were a movie I'd give it an emmy. Please do not let my review throw you off - it is such a AMAZING book and you will not be disappointed. I love how she winds in history and makes it fit so seamlessly into her story, and I love that as you read further into the book you get the "AH HA!" "No WAY!" moments as the secrets become revealed.

Please Melissa!! I'm dying for book 5 :)

Books in this series:

4) The Van Alen Legacy
5) TBA

The Van Alen Legacy byMelleisa De La Cruz. New York (c)2009

(This book was given to me by the Disney/Hyperion Publishers so that I could review it and share my thoughts with the rest of my peers - and they are in no way trying to "sway" my opinion on the book. I hope this is what the FTC wants?)

Sunday, October 11, 2009

.hack// Legend of the Twilight Vol. 2

Rena and Shugo have logged back into The World to continue their quest to uncover the mystery surrounding the original dot hackers.

They meet back up with Mireille, Ouka, Hotaru and find themselves in-front of a haunted old mansion. Inside the mansion they encounter invisibles - which Shugo vanquishes. They finish their battle in time to return to the City of Watr Mac Anu for the fireworks to start. The programing for the fireworks though begins to act up. It begins to rain and an odd tune begins to be carried in the air.

Shugo, Rena, Mireille, Ouka, and Hotaru begin to look for the odd music. The music has also caught the attention of an CC Administrator - who isn't friendly.

They find the source of the singing, it's a little girl, who Shugo thinks is Aura. In the 1st volume, Aura saves Shugo's life and gives him a very rare and powerful bracelet. Aura is also a mystery that the admins want to delete. Every time she shows up something bad happens. However the little girl is not Aura but Zefie who is an NPC (Non-personal character) who believes that Aura is her mother. The gang take it upon themselves to help find Aura (they also believe it is a mission inside the game.)

The kids have attracted the attention of both Balmug and Kamui but for very different reasons. Balmug and Kamui are both administrators for the CC Corp. but work in different departments. Balmug is interested in Shugo because of his (Shugo's) interaction with Aura. Balmug believes that watching and waiting will help uncover the final mystery. Kamui is the head knight of CC Corps.' own "Colbat Knight Brigade" which looks for cheaters and hackers and punishes them. She is interested in Shugo because she was "tipped" that he was cheating, also because of Zefie - whom Kamui wants to delete permanently.

In volume 2 we learn a little more about The World and the catastrophic event that happened 4 years ago. The event was that some player became unconscious while playing the game and that a whole city lost power and internet connection. They still don't know what caused the event but believe it had to deal with Aura. The unconscious were the original dot hackers who got a glimpse into the core of the world - and since then no one has been able to see it.

In this volume they also introduced some Japanese slang words. The words are:

ganguro - trendy Japanese teen look of tanned skin and white makeup (p39)
kogal - a trendy teen girl into fashion and makeup (p 44)

When I googled ganguro to find images, it was very interesting. Some of the "tanned" skin looked like oompa-loompa skin - I mean it was that very dark orange skin. They had white lips and white around their eyes and blonde hair. It is a very interesting look and I wonder what inspired that look.

Volumes in this Manga

Volume 2
Volume 3

I don't know if this .hack has a volume 4, but after doing some research I've found that there are other .hack story lines out there including but not limited:
1) .hack/AI Buster
2) .hack/Another Birth

For more information on the whole .hack story (there are many spinoffs) please visit the Wiki page on it. I'm just sad that my library doesn't have the other .hack books. I find this Sci-Fi manga very interesting and I would love to read the other stories surrounding The World.

Oh! And apparently this .hack is actually called .hack//Legends of the Twilight Bracelet - the one that Aura gave Shugo. I found that interesting because our English books don't have the title and I wonder why they took off bracelet. Perhaps because boys wouldn't want to read a book that dealt with a piece of jewelry? ;)

.hack//Legend of the Twilight Volume 2 by Tatsuya Hamazaki. Japan (c) 2003 - English (c) 2004

Friday, October 9, 2009

Babymouse: Rock Star


They're chanting her name - and the crowd is going wild.

She gets on stage and ROCKS! After she's done with her performance the crowd begins to scream her name, then she slowly opens her eyes, and it's her little brother Squeak. When she gets to the school bus stop she is greeted by her friend Wilson the Weasel.

Though today was Wednesday and boring, it was also the day of BAND TRYOUTS!!! Sadly she did not chose the clarinet which is my all time favorite instrument (I am biased - since it's what I've been playing since the 5th grade :P) Babymouse chose the flute, along with everyone else in the class.

As she goes to sign up for the tryouts Felicia Furrypaws sneers that she'll need all the luck she can get. Last year Babymouse was the VERY last chair, and was stuck behind a huge elephant who was in the drum pit. However, Babymouse is far from ready. Every-time she plays her flute a loud SCRREEEEEEEECH emits from it. Penny Poodle offers to help Babymouse, but can she in time for the band tryouts?!

Books in this series:

  1. Babymouse: Queen of the World
  2. Babymouse: Our Hero
  3. Babymouse: Beach Babe
  4. Babymouse: Rock Star
  5. Babymouse: Heart Breaker
  6. Babymouse: Camp Babymouse
  7. Babymouse: Skater Girl
  8. Babymouse: Puppy Love
  9. Babymouse: Monster Mash
  10. Babymouse: The Musical
  11. Babymouse: Dragonslayer
  12. Babymouse: Burns Rubber (January 12, 2010)
Babymouse: Rock Star by Jennifer and Matt Holm. New York (c) 2006

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Babymouse: Beach Babe

School is almost out and Babymouse can't wait!!! While taking her last class of the day, science, she begins to day dream during a slide show of marine animals.

Suddenly Babymouse turns into MERMOUSE! Mermouse swims through the ocean looking t her treasure chest of jewels until she comes across a GIANT SQUID! The giant squid attacks her squirting ink all over her! But when she awakes from her day dream, it's actually her pen that's spilled all over her!

That night at dinner her parents tell her that they are going to the beach for a vacation! She's so excited (last years vacation was a disaster in - she had to camp in the woods!)

When she arrives at the beach she can't wait to surf, sun tan, and snorkel - all with out her little brother Squeak. When Babymouse's mother tells her to spend time with Squeak she gurglingly agrees. She builds a sand castle and he destroys it - and then later that night they spend all the time on the rides on the board walk. That night though Babymouse tells her mother that she doesn't have any cool people to hang out with, hurting Squeak's heart. He leaves her a note saying that he's running away since no one wants to be with him.

The lesson that Babymouse learned in this book was that her brother is very important person to have.

Books in this series:

  1. Babymouse: Queen of the World
  2. Babymouse: Our Hero
  3. Babymouse: Beach Babe
  4. Babymouse: Rock Star
  5. Babymouse: Heart Breaker
  6. Babymouse: Camp Babymouse
  7. Babymouse: Skater Girl
  8. Babymouse: Puppy Love
  9. Babymouse: Monster Mash
  10. Babymouse: The Musical
  11. Babymouse: Dragonslayer
  12. Babymouse: Burns Rubber (January 12, 2010)
Babymouse: Beach Babe by Jennifer and Matt Holm. New York (c) 2006

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Luxe

Many of you have seen this book circulating the blogosphere so I will keep my review short, as I'm sure many of you have already read it.

Elizabeth Holland is at the top of the social scene in an 1899 New York. We all know that "all that glistens is not gold" and is certainly Elizabeth's case. With the recent passing of her father, her mother tells Elizabeth and Diana that they can no longer afford the lavish life they once knew - for their father left them in considerable debt. The family's only hope is that Elizabeth can marry into money. The only problem is her heart lies else where.

Penelope Hayes is the most beautiful exotic person in her time. Her 'best friend' Elizabeth Holland has just arrived back from France, and is dying to tell Elizabeth of her crush on Henry Schoonmaker, New York's hottest bachelor. She plans to marry him and won't take no for an answer, and when all the papers are hinting about her and Henry and how surely those two are to be engaged she can't help but feel like her plan will work. But she is a rose with thorns, and is one to be watched.

Diana Holland is a wild child. Unlike her boring family she has a fiery personality. She hates that she has to be dressed in expensive cloths, talk quietly, and be boring. She wants to travel the world and experience life - not live it so dully. When she catches the eye of Henry Schoonmaker her life begins to parallel the romance novels she often reads.

Henry Schoonmaker is New York's hottest bachelor. His family is very wealthy and his father will run for mayor. The only problem for this strapping young man, is that he is known as a heart breaker, and a wild uncontrollable man. When his father comes to him and tells him to marry a respectable woman, so his run for mayor will be better, or else be cut off from the money supply, Henry Schoonmaker find himself in a tight spot. Freedom or marriage?

Lina Broud is Elizabeth Holland's personal maid. The two grew up together and became good friends. But when Elizabeth went to France for the summer, their friendship wilted away. The two have grown even more apart, and Lina has become more and more jealous of her mistress' life style. When an event leads to her dismissal she finds a way to get back at the woman she hates so much with the help of an unlikely source.

Ah, the gossip and drama of 1899!! The book revolves around the point of view of Elizabeth, Diana, Penelope, and Lina. I love how the author details the clothes they wore and the rooms they lived in. You can clearly get a wonderful picture in your head. The book dealt with the age old question of: do you follow your heart or do you do act to help your family forsaking your heart? I enjoyed reading about Elizabeth. On the outside she portrayed her self to society as a perfect woman with impeccable manners. As you continue to read you learn though that she is everything but perfect and is actually not as shallow as she appears. I look forward to the second book!

Books in this series:

1. The Luxe
2. Rumors
3. Envy
4. Splendor

The Luxe by Anna Godbersen. New York (c) 2007

The 39 Clues Book 2: One False Note

Amy and Dan are on the race to find clue number 2, with the only hint being "MOZART". Amy, Dan, and Nellie are all on a train to Austria in hopes of beating the rest of the Cahill relatives to clue number 2.

The troubles that they face never seems to be at a distance. Saladin, Grace's Egyptian Mau, is refusing to eat regular cat food and so has begun to look rather sick. Saladin was used to eating fresh red snapper - a delicacy they can no longer afford. They continue to try and feed him in hopes that he will eat, they can't bare the thought that they'd lose the only remaining connection to Grace.

The gang hops on a train that takes them from France to Austria. They hope that the rest of the Cahill family hasn't caught up with them yet, but when they see the Holts on the next train car they being to panic. They shove their clue and Saladin in an over head compartment and start running to the next car - with the Holts hot on their heels. When the Holts catch them and drag them back to their au pair, they demand that the clue be handed over. Luckily for them Saladin ripped the whole clue to shreds, and when the free-loading Holts are discovered by the train personal they jump off.

When the train finally lands in Austria Amy, Dan and Nellie find a hotel and then begin searching for their clue. They clue they have is one of Mozart's last master pieces " KV 617". When you listen to it - it has an eerie beauty to it (well at least for me.) The kids look throughout his house hopping for any clues. When they spot their cousin Jonah they know they are on the right track but upset that the lead is now up for grabs. Amy and Dan go to the little library under Mozart's house requesting the diary of Mozart's sister. When the attendant finds that the diary is missing, the kids know that their cousin is involved!

They follow Mozart's clues all the way to Venice. While in Venice Amy and Dan doge all the Cahills to find clue number 3. They have to race to Japan in hopes of being the ones to solve the mystery Grace left behind.

I am so in love with the 39 Clues series! It's like The Da Vinci Code - but for kids. Scholastic is even hosting a real game in which you read the books and you get the cards (each book comes with 6 - but you can also buy packs) and try to solve the mystery too! On the back of the book it says "you can win over $100,000 in prizes" - I'd love to play along, but sadly I've never been good with solving word problems!

With each book Amy and Dan over come hard obstacles - both personal and 'professional'. The family members that the kids are going up against are rich beyond means, smart, and ruthless - while the Cahill kids are poor, parent-less, smart, and not ruthless. Amy is slowly becoming a stronger person, while Dan is slowly finding his place. These kids are the underdogs and you can't help but root for them as they continue the wild and dangerous quest to solve the mystery.

Books in the series:

2) The 39 Clues: Book 2 One False Note
3) The 39 Clues: Book 3 The Sword Thief
4) The 39 Clues: Book 4 Beyond the Grave
5) The 39 Clues: Book 5 The Black Circle (Aug 11, 2009)
6) The 39 Clues: Book 6 In Too Deep (Nov 3, 2009)
7) The 39 Clues: Book 7 Untitled ( Feb 2, 2010)
8) The 39 Clues: Book 8 Untitled (Apr 6, 2010)
9) The 39 Clues: Book 9 TBA (Jun 2010)
10) The 39 Clues: Book 10 TBA (Sept 2010)
The 39 Clues Book 2: One False Note by Gordon Korman. New York (c) 2008

Saturday, October 3, 2009


Hey guys! Amy from Park Avenue Princess, along with E. Van Lowe (author of Never Slow Dance with a Zombie) are having a twitter contest!! All you have to do is tweet Amy (@APrkAvePrincess) and/or author @EVanLowe "Never Slow Dance with a Zombie" So you can 'tweet'

@APrkAvePrincess and @EVanLowe: I will never slow dance with a zombie unless they buy me dinner first! (I just might use it - I just came up with the idea now!!) The contest is being held until Oct. 8th! AND 1 winner will be picked daily with the grand prize ($54.60 Amazon gift card) to be given away on the 8th!!

I won yesterday (and I never thought I would win!!) It's easy! All you do is tweet! So what are you waiting for??!?!?!?

Thursday, October 1, 2009


So I just came across this tweet about a read-a-thon. I think it will be so much fun!! I am guessing that you read as many books as you can in 24 hrs :) So if I'm right I'm going to read A TON of manga/comic books!! Maybe some ya chapter books.

Books I read: