A Golden Book Adventure

Wednesday, June 30, 2010 | | 4 comments ♥
Hi, everyone!

I know I've been MIA lately, but I've come back with gusto! This past weekend, I went to visit Hollins University in Roanoke, Virginia. (I'm a rising senior, and have begun touring colleges.) Anyway, it happens that they have a graduate program for YA Literature, and were holding several lectures for their students. One that I attended was Golden Books presentation held by Diane Muldrow, editorial director for the Golden Books branch at Random House.

First, I was very excited to meet a real editor- I've been interested in going into the publishing industry for the past few years, especially after I began Sparrow Review. I was very impressed with the sheer amount of knowledge she was able to share regarding the Golden Books- it seemed like she knew the background of every author and illustrator that contributed to a Golden Book. I don't know about the rest of my followers, but when I was a kid, I loved my Golden books. My favorite was Doctor Dan the Bandage Man, which came with two complementary Band-Aids.

I absolutely recommend that you check out a book that Ms. Muldrow edited, called Golden Legacy. It contains everything that I heard in the presentation with more detail, no doubt. Were you, like me, addicted to Golden Books as a kid? If so, which ones?

<3 Cate

Affliliate Contest (CLOSED)

Thursday, June 24, 2010 | | 7 comments ♥
Yes, my friends, another contest! Basically, there is a chain of affiliate contests going on over the next month or so, to help promote other fantastic bloggers! My affilliate, Kirthi, over at Pages, is giving away a prize pack, and her affiliates are also giving away other titles. Basically, the way to get extra entries in these contests is to follow affiliates!

Here's what I am giving away:

An ARC copy of Never Cry Werewolf!

Each blog has there own contest policy and rules; please be sure to read over them! This contest ends July 8th.
EDIT: Sorry guys, this one isn't International. I always forget to write that. :(

Wishlist Wednesday

Wednesday, June 23, 2010 | | 4 comments ♥
Bet is sixteen, very intelligent, but only knows as much as her limited education will allow. In Victorian England, girls aren't allowed to go to school.
Will is also 16, and though not related by blood, he and Bet act like brother and sister. In fact, they even look like brother and sister. And though they're both raised under the same roof, by the same kind uncle, Will has one big advantage over Bet: He's a boy, and being a boy means he isn't stuck in the grand house they call home. He gets to go out into the world--to school.
But that's not what Will wishes. He wants to join the military and learn about real life, not what's written in books.
So one night, Bet comes up with a plan. She'll go to school as Will. Will can join the military. And though it seems impossible, they actually manage to pull it off.
But once Bet gets to the school, she begins to realize the education she's going to get isn't exactly the one she was expecting. -Goodreads

Eeeeek! I want to read this one sooooo badly!! I believe I am signed up for the ARC tour, and I can scarcely contain myself. Isn't the cover stunning? *sigh* I bet it's going to be amazzzing. :D

<3 Cate

Blogoversary and 4-book Contest! (CLOSED)

Friday, June 18, 2010 | | 10 comments ♥
I still have trouble believing that just a year ago, I was learning the fine points of Blogger and putting up my first review. Truly, this year has been incredibly amazing, and I owe it all to you, the blogging community. To anyone who has ever encouraged me, followed me, given a recommendation, commented, chatted with me, helped with (my many) technological issues, pined over books or drooled over the Dessen boys with me during the past year, I thank you. Your support has meant so much to me. Here's to another fantastic, book-filled year!

Alright, now what you've really been waiting for (haha)...the contest! Since I didn't hold a 200 Followers Contest, I've decided to meld both my Blogoversary Contest and my Follower Contest into one, which means there are four books up for grabs! Please refer to my Contest Policy, and if you have any questions, feel free to email me.

Unfortunately, this contest is not international. Sorry!
This Contest will end July 10th.

The Prizes:


Under the Lamplight: Linna from 21 Pages

Under the Lamplight is a bi-weekly feature that I have created to get to know the blogging community! If you're a blogger interested in being interviewed, please email me.

This week Linna from 21 Pages is joining us! I think Linna has one of the most gorgeous layouts I've seen! :)

Could you give a little blurb on your blog?
21 Pages is an outlet for one 15-year old's ramblings on books. In addition to the standard book reviews, I love to post discussions and other features. You'll see memes like In My Mailbox (Not that I really receive books to review... xD), Captivating Thursday (A meme that collects inspiring pictures, quotes, and videos, hosted by Choco at in which a girl reads) and a one that I've started, Cover Love. It compiles whatever book cover features bloggers are willing to share :) I've also got a pastiche of a rating system- a percentage out of 100, categories, and a five star system. I'm sure it'll smooth out eventually ;D

What got you hooked on reading- did you love it as a child, or was it something you grew into?
I've never been able to stay far from books. I guess I can really thank my sister for exposing them to me so much! Although she was four years older than me, we did everything together- so when she started reading, so did I. I would devour whatever books she brought back from school, which means I was reading Redwall books while I was in kindergarten. Lately, our reading interests have diverged; but books have always been (and remain) as necessary to me as air. Even if it's a cereal box or a supermarket flyer, I have to be reading something!

How were you introduced into the blogging world?
It kind of happened by accident! I was just surfing the web one day and came across a "book blog." I had no idea such a concept existed. I thought it was so unique! So, excitedly, I decided to try to start one of my own. I had no idea there was such a huge community of book bloggers- it's fantastic.

What’s been the most fun or exciting thing you’ve been able to do on your blog lately?
Discussion posts! I've was just so shocked when people actually started replying to my posts. Sharing thoughts, opinions. ideas. It's so exciting for me, since I'm surprised that anyone would want to listen to my rambling! To be able to share your point of view with the world is seriously the most amazing thing I've gotten to do since starting blogging.

What’s your opinion of books made into movies? Love ‘em or Hate ‘em?
I'm actually a little split up about this. I really can't stand it when the people behind a book-inspired movie don't care about the original material at all! Like, honestly, sometimes it looks like they didn't even bother trying, because they know the name will bring in some money. Then, there's the whole debate about finding the right actors so that the fans aren't disappointed.

But you know what has worked really well so far? Animated adaptations of books! This way, there's no restrictions on creating the perfect setting, and you can make the characters look exactly the way they're imagined as in the book. Movies like Coraline and How To Train Your Dragon were critically acclaimed and really did their books justice! It's just a dream of mine to see something like an animated adaptation of The Goose Girl or The Book Thief... *sigh*

You can only afford to purchase one book at the bookstore today. What do you choose?
Agh, tough choice! I'll go with The Awakening by Kelley Armstrong. I really need to find out what happened after The Summoning! It's been out for so long and I really need to get around to reading it.

What’s your favorite guilty-pleasure T.V. show? Or book?
Lol, my sister loves The Real Housewives series and it's like you JUST CAN'T TEAR YOUR EYES AWAY from that show. Seriously. It's like some sort of bile fascination :p

I actually feel a little guilty whenever I read James Patterson's books. It's just... the cheesy tag lines on the covers, the overused plot devices, the saving-the-environment message that has plagued the Maximum Ride series... but I still keep reading them for some reason. I also actually like the books that he's "co-written" better than the ones he's written himself xD

What is one thing that most people don’t know about you?
I'm a bit of an insomniac. Okay, a lot like an insomniac. It takes ages for me to fall asleep, and it's usually books I turn to in times like that! But there's something I kind of like about being the only one awake in the house. My normally crazy-loud family is completely silent, and it feels like I'm the only person in the world. I also get crazy bouts of inspiration and scribble down a bunch of post ideas/possible plots for a book that will never see the light of microsoft word, lol. It's just a quiet time to let me think. Then, as almost everyone who remotely knows me can confirm, I'm a total grouch in the morning. I wouldn't advise anyone to talk to me in the morning. Not a good idea at all ;D

If your life were being made into a movie, what would it be called, and who would you cast?
It'd have to be called something like "Falling Up the Stairs". Yeah, it pretty much sums up my life. Doing lots of random, nonsensical, silly things, making a fool of myself, but loving every minute of it. I'd totally cast Miley Cyrus as the troubled teen that I am. Jk, I'm not sure who I'd cast as myself, but I'd totally want Angelina Jolie and 60s era Gregory Peck as my parents.

Anything else you’d like to add?
Thanks so much for interviewing me, Cate! It was tons of fun :D Your blog absolutely ROCKS. Here's to hoping that you share more bloggers with us in the future!

Thanks so much for stopping by, Linna!
<3 Cate

Wishlist Wednesday

Wednesday, June 16, 2010 | | 4 comments ♥
Cassel comes from a family of curse workers -- people who have the power to change your emotions, your memories, your luck, by the slightest touch of their hands. And since curse work is illegal, they're all mobsters, or con artists. Except for Cassel. He hasn't got the magic touch, so he's an outsider, the straight kid in a crooked family. You just have to ignore one small detail -- he killed his best friend, Lila, three years ago.
Ever since, Cassel has carefully built up a façade of normalcy, blending into the crowd. But his façade starts crumbling when he starts sleepwalking, propelled into the night by terrifying dreams about a white cat that wants to tell him something. He's noticing other disturbing things, too, including the strange behavior of his two brothers. They are keeping secrets from him, caught up in a mysterious plot. As Cassel begins to suspect he's part of a huge con game, he also wonders what really happened to Lila. Could she still be alive? To find that out, Cassel will have to out-con the conmen.-Goodreads

Although I've never read any of Holly Black's other works, I've only heard good things, especially about White Cat! I actually just got this one out from the library, but I've still got quite a ways to go on my TBR pile. It's summer though, so hopefully I'll be able to get around to it soon!

<3 Cate

Because I Am Furniture by Thalia Chaltas Review

Sunday, June 13, 2010 | | 3 comments ♥

Anke’s father is abusive. But not to her. He attacks her brother and sister, but she’s just an invisible witness in a house of horrors, on the brink of disappearing altogether. Until she makes the volleyball team at school. At first just being exhausted after practice feels good, but as Anke becomes part of the team, her confidence builds. When she learns to yell “Mine!” to call a ball, she finds a voice she didn’t know existed. For the first time, Anke is seen and heard. Soon, she’s imagining a day that her voice will be loud enough to rescue everyone at home—including herself.
First, I should say that when I picked up this book, I did not know it was composed entirely of poems. The novel is a pretty decent size, about 350 pages, so I wasn't expecting poetry at all. However, I quickly discovered that it is a quick, but powerful read. Chaltas has this ability to weave an entire story into what must be a third (probably less) of the words used in a similar-sized novel. Truly, I was impressed. Every image, sound, word, told the tale seamlessly and with a grace that I've rarely seen. Chaltas wrote simply, yet profoundly and poignantly.

I could go on for pages about the beauty of Chaltas' writing, but I think I'll keep in short and sweet, just as her novel is. Truly, I cannot wait to see what she has in store for the YA community. I know it will be brilliant.

Rating: 9.5/10

In My Mailbox

Saturday, June 12, 2010 | | 4 comments ♥
In My Mailbox was created by the lovely Kristi at The Story Siren.

For Review:

Manifest by Artist Arthur
I haven't heard much buzz about this one, but it sounds so intriguing! Plus the cover is gorgeous. :)


I won both of these from the sweet Melina at Reading Vacation. I know that there's a new tv series that's been based off of these books, so they should be interesting reads!

<3 Cate

Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater Review

Monday, June 7, 2010 | | 7 comments ♥
For years, Grace has watched the wolves in the woods behind her house. One yellow-eyed wolf—her wolf—is a chilling presence she can't seem to live without. Meanwhile, Sam has lived two lives: In winter, the frozen woods, the protection of the pack, and the silent company of a fearless girl. In summer, a few precious months of being human ... until the cold makes him shift back again.

Now, Grace meets a yellow-eyed boy whose familiarity takes her breath away. It's her wolf. It has to be. But as winter nears, Sam must fight to stay human--or risk losing himself, and Grace, forever.

Maggie Stiefvater is a fantastic writer. Jaw-droppingly poetic, beautiful prose. She has the ability to create the most crisp images, the most heartfelt emotions. It was truly difficult to stop reading; her words melt so easily in your mind that you're not sure where the story starts and your imagination begins. Gorgeous, gorgeous prose.

Sam and Grace were so easy to root for. Both were very likeable, well-developed characters; you couldn't help but get wrapped up in their story. And Shiver is a wonderful romance, no doubt. However, don't expect a deep poignance or earth-shattering message when the book wraps up. Shiver is, most simply, a love story. At times I found myself a little weary of how Sam and Grace became the center of the other's lives; all the two could think about was their other half. It bothered me that because they had found each other, nothing else was important. Yes, Grace went to shool almost every day and finished all of her homework, but its importance was lost once Sam entered the picture. College? A future? Not mentioned. This was the only bit that made me cringe a bit. Once a boy (or the boy, in this case) enters the picture, everything else goes on the backburner. Okay, rant finished. ;)

Rating: 8.5/10

Under the Lamplight: Sarah from Book Duck

Friday, June 4, 2010 | | 4 comments ♥
Under the Lamplight is a bi-weekly feature that I have created to get to know the blogging community! If you're a blogger interested in being interviewed, please email me.

This week Sarah from Book Duck is joining us!

Could you give us a blurb about your blog?Bookduck is a place to document my reading life, share my love of books with others, and discuss anything else I find interesting.

What got you hooked on reading- did you love it as a child, or was it something you grew into?
I hated learning to read, and it wasn't until the second grade that I began to find books that made sounding out the words seem worth it. One day I took a book from the Bailey School Kids series by Debbie Dadey and Marcia Thornton Jones home from the library, and I've been hooked on books ever since.

How were you introduced into the blogging world?
I discovered the blogging world through researching authors of books I enjoyed. I wanted to know how and why they wrote, and that led me to their blogs, which led me to review blogs. Reading blogs like this helped me select books I knew I would like. Last year I decided I wanted to join the book-themed conversation, so I started Bookduck. My favorite part about blogging are all the wonderful people involved and the interesting stories they share.

What’s been the most fun or exciting thing you’ve been able to do on your blog lately?
Lately I've been too busy with school to do much on my blog, but the most exciting thing within the last few months was receiving the opportunity to review a copy of Lauren Mechling's Dream Life and interview Lauren. It was a lot of fun.

What’s your opinion of books made into movies? Love ‘em or Hate ‘em?
For the most part, I like them. I dislike them when they stray too far from the character of the books that inspired them.

You can only afford to purchase one book at the bookstore today. What do you choose?
Hmph. This is a difficult question. Assuming I'm in a magical bookstore full of unreleased books (and maybe a unicorn or two), I would buy A Conspiracy of Kings by Megan Whalen Turner. Her other books are brilliantly plotted and beautifully written, and I'm excited to read this one, which comes out in late March.

What’s your favorite guilty-pleasure T.V. show? Or book?
My favorite guilty-pleasure TV show is Gilmore Girls. I don't believe in feeling guilty about reading.

What is one thing that most people don’t know about you?
Most people do not know that I'm addicted to Cheerios. Best. Cereal. Ever.

If your life were being made into a movie, what would it be called, and who would you cast?
The movie would be called Striped Rainbows and I would be played by Katharine Hepburn, who would come back to life just to star in it. We don't look much alike, but I like the way she talked.

Anything else you’d like to add?
Thanks for having me, Cate!

Thanks for stopping by, Sarah!

In Search of New Layout

Tuesday, June 1, 2010 | | 2 comments ♥
Hi everyone!

For the past year I've had the extraordinary priveledge of having a layout created by the very lovely Korianne from Korianne Speaks. I have had so many compliments on the header and the colors; I was very lucky. However, it's almost my blogoversary, and I want to start off another year of blogging with a fresh layout, and I wanted to ask you, readers, for help.

Essentially, I'm broke. So, if you know of or are someone who enjoys creating layouts for no cost, please contact me! My email can be found in the Contact Me tab at the top of the page.

Eternally Grateful,
Cate <3
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