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Archive for the category “Top Ten Tuesday”

Top Ten Characters (and Literary Figures) That I’d Name My Children After

top ten

Hosted by the awesome folks as The Broke and the Bookish, Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme celebrating all things book.

This week, it’s all about great characters with great names. Names that you like enough to potentially inflict on your children. These are the top ten characters/literary peeps that I’d theoretically name my kids after:

Let me preface this by saying I met a guy called Oberon the other day. Hem. And that’s not what I’m looking to inflict on my theoretical children. (Mostly…)

finalempire

I don’t think I could call my daughter Vin. But I love the name Elend for a boy. Although, again, probably not Kelsier for a boy. Also, have you read the Mistborn series yet? If you love high fantasy with strong characters, a plot that just keeps escalating when you don’t believe it can, and hands-down the best magic system I’ve ever seen – what are you waiting for?! SO GOOD.

Sabriel

I’ve always wanted to call a kid Sabriel. Or maybe Lirael? They’re just lovely names! And the fact that this is a less well-known series means not too many people would get the connection, and I’d just be really cool. Right?!

Crown2

In a series the size of Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time there are going to be a fair few character names to choose from. For my part, I’d be happy with a girl called Egwene or Nynaeve, or even Moiraine (I actually love Moiraine!) But not so impressed with a boy called Rand. Or Perrin. Or even Lan – way too easy to tease people called Rand or Lan!

scent

Avry is an excellent name! For an AMAZING character. And I’d love it – for a girl or a boy. I also think Loren and Quain are awesomesauce names. But I don’t think I could inflict them on a child. Maybe Quain for a girl if I was a little mean…

hunger

Not so much for the Katniss factor. Everybody’s gonna have a Katniss, like all these small humans running around called Hermione. But I think Gale makes a fine boy’s name.

CityofBones

I just like the name Clary – it’s actually a normal name, especially compared to the others on this list, which makes sense as City of Bones is modern urban fantasy. (Make that, kick-ass modern urban fantasy!) Also Jace. Because Jace.

P&P

Again, Austen names are classic (see, I said this list wasn’t going to be all about inflicting childhood scars!). I’d love a Jane, or an Elizabeth, or an Anne – with the ‘e’ at the end. I insist! And I’m back and forth on whether a boy called Darcy is a bit cute or a bit awful – or a bit both…

gameboard

I’m reading the (freaking awesome) Gameboard of the Gods at the moment, and the Praetorian female protagonist, Mae, is just fantastic. Also Mae is a family name, so I could totally get away with that for real! The male lead, Justin, is pretty messed up and great too…

One Day

Because Dexter is a great name for a boy. Dammit, that’s a normal and boring reason. If it helps, I’d be reluctant to do this because of the TV show Dexter. Just a little too creepy for me…

Name of the Wind

Oh, well. Not really, I guess… But I TOTALLY want a kid called Kvothe because Kvothe and The Name of the Wind are both made of awesome and I’d like to think that’d rub off on the child lucky enough to bear his name. A girl called Kvothe might just work, don’t you think??

What names would you like to inflict on give to your future kids? Tell me all about it in the comments!

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Top Ten Favorite Books I Read Before I Was A Blogger

top ten

Hosted by the awesome folks as The Broke and the Bookish, Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme celebrating all things book. This week we’re looking back to those books that started it all. The books you loved long before you could go online to rave about them. The ones you had to rant about in person to your poor (lucky!) friends because they made you the book-obsessed person you are today. Here are the Top Ten books I loved before I was a blogger:

Five

I get that there are problematic themes in Blyton’s work. But to me, Enid Blyton is the crux of my childhood. I can’t count the number of times I read The Famous Five series, The Secret Seven, The Adventurous Four, the Naughtiest Girl and so on. They are classic, wonderful, uncomplicated stories that enriched my young life.

Obernewtyn

Obernewtyn was a series I started reading when I was about thirteen, and I’ve read them a few times since then. Post-apocalyptic before it was cool, Obernewtyn tells the story of a young Misfit girl, Elspeth, who’s been born with powers that she doesn’t understand. Hidden away and mistreated by the authorities, Elspeth learns to fight back. The series isn’t finished yet (!!) but the last book is on its way…

alibrandi

Melina Marchetta was cool WAY before the amazingness that is The Lumatere Chronicles. Meeting the insane, loveable, loyal Italian-Australian family at the centre of Looking For Alibrandi is a must. I studied it in high school and EVEN SO I loved it.

tomorrow

Tomorrow, When the War Began was the Hunger Games of my generation. By which I mean it was the dangerous book we read that our parents worried was too violent for us. Ellie and her friends have ‘gone bush’ for the weekend and by the time they come home there’s a war on, and all their parents are prisoners. What do you do when your home: everything and everyone you love, is threatened? You fight back.

HalfBloodPrince

I’m picking this as my favourite Harry Potter, but I love them as a whole series and a whole experience. I think this generation all grew up with Harry, and while I didn’t need him to rekindle my love of reading, J K Rowling absolutely enhanced my teen experience with Harry’s amazing story.

LotR

Because Tolkien, that’s why. The Lord of the Rings is a brick of a book, a phenomenally imagined world packed with rich, archetypal characters that make it one of the best fantasy novels ever. (“After all this time?” “Always.”) I discovered it as a fifteen year old just venturing into the realm of fantasy reading, and it was love at first read.

Sisyphus

Albert Camus’ philosophy, particularly The Myth of Sisyphus, is fascinating. I love thinking about thinking, about  why things are the way they are, and how they came to be thought of that way. I love the ideas Camus posits in his essays – and I’m not going to go into them here because I’d rather you let his ideas speak to you directly. He does them justice; I can’t!

MoabHow wonderful is Stephen Fry? Whether it’s his accent, his lovely, slightly hoity-toity mannerisms, or the awesomeness that is his show, QI, there’s a lot to love. The most striking element of Moab Is My Washpot, one of Fry’s two autobiographies, is how brutal Fry is with himself. Not just brutally honest: actually almost cruel. I don’t think he has ever felt like a success. And he seems at best bemused by, at worst flummoxed by his popularity. I have such a soft spot for people who are so much more than they believe themselves to be.

anne

Anne Shirley. Who didn’t love the redheaded bundle of energy at the centre of Anne of Green Gables? Growing up, Anne was someone I revisited on more than one occasion. Recently I bought the whole series so I could get my nostalgia on. And I’ll definitely get around to reading them. Soon.

Bridget

I don’t trust people who don’t like Bridget Jones, as a general rule. This ridiculous, manic, endearing, so-very-relatable woman is one of my favourite book people. I hated her obsession with self help books (SO MUCH). I loved her social ineptitude. I despaired for her ability to be happy. I adored her relationship with Mr Darcy Mark Darcy. She’s the best kind of main character.

I’d love to hear about the books you loved before you blogged! Link for me, my pretties, in the comments!

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Characters I Would Crush On If I Were Also A Fictional Character

top ten

Hosted by the awesome folks as The Broke and the Bookish, Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme celebrating all things book.

This week, we’re talkin’ about book boyfriends. Those swoon-worthy guys that our favourite heroines get to ride off into the sunset with. Or perhaps the jilted suitor who loses out in a YA love triangle. These are the top ten characters I’d have a huge crush on if I were also a fictional character:

(This one is REALLY hard! Ten?! I only get ten crushes? WHAT MADNESS IS THIS?!)

SoM

Because like Nemo at the Moonlight Library, I love a badass who won’t compromise who they are to be with you, and loves you fiercely for who you are too.

CityofBones

Mmm. Jace Wayland. Cassandra Clare has a gift for writing slightly broken, slightly bad boys who I just want to look after. Dammit. I also want to sneak in a mention of Will Herondale, here, from Clare’s Infernal Devices series. I’m team Will all the way.

hunger

In Suzanne Collins world I’m a Peeta girl. He looks out for those he cares about but doesn’t let that stop Katniss being her own person (and a fairly awe-inspiring one at that).

fault

Augustus Waters. What a freaking sweetheart. He’s smart, considerate, irreverent, funny, and unflinchingly alive. One of the best book boys out there.

Vampire Academy

Dimitri Belikov. Who wouldn’t crush on this sexy, strong, and completely kickass Russian dhampir? I’ll take two!

Name of the Wind

I’ll let Kvothe introduce himself: “I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trebon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my life. I was expelled from the University at a younger age than most people are allowed in. I tread paths by moonlight that others fear to speak of during day. I have talked to Gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep. My name is Kvothe. You may have heard of me.”  I say again: if you haven’t read The Name of the Wind, you are seriously missing out.

P&P

Because if you don’t think Fitzwilliam Darcy is one of the most crush-worthy characters of all time, then you’re wrong.

(On a related note, if you haven’t discovered the completely delightful adaptation of Pride and Prejudice called The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, head on over and check it out on YouTube. Just amazing!)

One Day

Dexter is far (far) from perfect. But he tries, even after failing once again. He keeps trying for Emma’s sake. That’s my kind of crush. (And this is a gorgeous, heartbreaking, wonderful book.)

gift

Cadvan is prickly, close to overwhelmed with the burdens he must bear, powerful, and so essentially good that it’s very hard to see him struggling. He’s not only Maerad’s saviour, but her mentor, her best friend, and her family. His devotion is so darn crush-worthy!

indigo

I didn’t want to double up on authors but couldn’t resist. Adrian‘s got issues, for sure. He’s also smart, brave, artistic, and incredibly loyal. I’d crush all over him.

Who are you guys crushing on? Do you like any of mine? (It’s okay if you don’t, less fictional competition for my fave fictional characters’ fictional affections can only be a good thing!) ~_^

Hit me up with your excellent TTT lists in the comments, lovelies!

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Books I Recommend The Most

top ten

Hosted by the awesome folks at The Broke and the Bookish, Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme celebrating all things book.

This week, they’re asking what ten books you recommend the most. I LOVE this question! I recommend books all the time – it’s the best part of my job. We often get customers looking for their next book, or trying to find a present for someone. I have to be able to recommend books over a range of genres, and it’s a fabulous opportunity to share books I love with others, passing on the obsession. These are my go-to recommends:

peculiar

The Peculiar is my top pick for 10-15 year olds who enjoy fantasy, both boys and girls. It’s a steampunk faerie tale, and has some of the most glorious language I’ve ever seen, let alone in YA. Absolutely wonderful book.

promise

Promise was the debut crime novel of a former Australian crime reporter, Tony Cavanaugh. Smart, creepy, exciting crime set in Queensland that was good enough to distract me from the real world all day when I couldn’t quite finish it in time before having to go back to work. (The sequel’s stellar, too!)

finalempireBrandon Sanderson is amazing. His magic system in Mistborn is probably the best, most well-established that I’ve come across. And the scope of his storylines is beyond ambitious. The trilogy is complete and infinitely satisfying – this book and this series is a sure thing.

(Actually, I’ll recommend either Mistborn or The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss interchangeably as my never-fail fantasy series. At work we’ll usually have run out of one or the other because I so regularly sell them through, so whichever’s there that day gets my plug!)

This is the old-school cover, the one I have!

I see your Caelena from Throne of Glass and raise you Yelena, from Maria V Snyder’s exceptional YA Fantasy series. She’s one of the original badass heroines, kicking butt and taking names before it was a big deal that she was a woman. This series is phenomenal for YA fantasy fans of all ages, and I keep passing the obsession on.

Rosie

A new favourite, this is one I recommend to customers who like contemporary romance/chick lit but want something a little smarter and more memorable than average. The Rosie Project fits the bill and then some. There are no clichés here, and this book was such a great experience.

stars

Do I even need to explain this one? I recommend it to teens (usually 14+, given the tragic nature of the story) and make a point of telling their parents to read it too. I’ve never come across anyone who hasn’t been deeply affected by how insightful, honest, painful and simply beautiful this one of a kind book is. John Green has delivered an absolute masterpiece with The Fault In Our Stars.

watermelon

Marian Keyes is chick-lit with heart. For women (hey, not stereotyping, just basing it on who I sell this to) who want drama, heartache and for everything to be mostly okay at the end, no-one fits better than Marian. Her grasp of the complexity of human emotions make her novels stand out.

woman

Not only do I recommend this all the time, I’ve bought about five copies for family and friends. Caitlin Moran is hilarious (think Kaz Cooke, Australians!), but also intelligently articulates truths about life as a woman that we don’t necessarily pay enough attention to. The perfect gift for your best friend, or a woman you don’t know all that well but need to find something for. Clever, sarcastic, sassy, and insightful.

wolf

A memoir I recommend to customers looking for something a little different. Scott Johnson‘s dad was a spy, working for the CIA through the Cold War. How this affected Scott, and his relationship with his Dad makes for compelling reading. Added to this, Johnson’s journalistic background is evident – his writing is evocative and often unexpectedly gorgeous.

SabrielNew

I have to have Garth Nix in here! Whenever possible, I’ll introduce someone to my favourite author. Nix’s work is just as good for teens as adults, and I’ve read the Old Kingdom trilogy, starting with Sabriel, more than a few times. Nix’s world-building, characters and inventive magic systems make this a Fantasy/YA Fantasy crossover series that stands the test of time. Unmissable. (Also, I couldn’t be more excited about the forthcoming – 2014 – release of Clariel, the fourth book set in this universe!)

Who are your go-to authors to recommend? I’d love to know what you think of my old reliables!

Top Ten Books I HAD To Buy…But Are Still Sitting On My Shelf Unread

top ten

Hosted by the awesome folks as The Broke and the Bookish, Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme celebrating all things book.

This week we’re looking at those books. You know the ones. They lured you in with a sexy cover, an exciting premise, or an enticing price. And as much as you wanted them, as much as you intended to read them – as much as you still mean to read them – they’re sitting dejectedly on your shelf, untouched.

Top Ten Books I HAD To Buy…But Are Still Sitting On My Shelf Unread

RosieB

Sounds like fabulous YA/dystopia, but although I have two of these on my shelf I’ve never got around to them. I plead slight dystopia weariness, and very easy distractibility!

Dreameaters

Gifted to me by a friend, I have every intention of reading this intriguing book.

Knife (2)

Another series I’ve heard good things about, and interests me a lot. It’ll happen, eventually!

wonder

This has come to me with the highest praise from more than a few people. Goodness only knows why I’ve still not managed to get to it. I keep getting sidetracked by fantasy novels!

special

I really enjoyed the first two books in Westerfield’s Uglies series, and I think he’s one of the best writers in YA Dystopia currently. I’ll get back to his world.

gonegirl

This was one of those novels that everyone raved about. And I just couldn’t get into it. I’ll try again because I hate not being able to appreciate something with such a stellar reputation, but something just wasn’t working for me at the time.

ontheroad

I’ve always planned to read Kerouac, and this has been on my shelf for a few years now. I’m sure I’ll read it right after I finish that YA Fantasy… and that other Fantasy. And that Crime novel. Ahem.

CoKings

Maybe it’s because it’s not as good as Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series (hey, I’m allowed to think that!). Maybe it’s because I hate having all my favourite characters mercilessly killed off. Either way, I couldn’t get into George R R Martin’s second instalment, so, for now at least, that and the rest of the series sit quietly on my shelves. Judging me…

graceling

Another YA Fantasy with a great reputation, that often catches my eye from my shelves. Each time I go “That’s right, I’m totally reading that next!” … And then I accidentally don’t.

earthsea

This series has been beloved for a long time, and I occasionally have people surprised that I haven’t yet read it. It’s ready for me, on the shelf with the rest of these worthy, tragically un-read books. I’m getting to it…

I’m not the only one whose book-buying eyes are bigger than her… well, eyes I guess? I buy so many books (hazard of the day job, yo) and I actually stress about the fact that there are SO MANY BOOKS I want to read, and that there’s never enough time!

Tell me, what are those books you brought home, lovingly, with the best of intentions, and that now sit on your shelves, forlorn, wondering what they did wrong?

Top Ten Tuesday – Top Ten Books On My Autumn TBR list

top ten

Hosted by the awesome folks as The Broke and the Bookish, Top Ten Tuesdays is a weekly meme celebrating all things book.

This week, it’s all about upcoming Spring Autumn reads – because like The Moonlight Library, I’m an Aussie. Here’s what I can’t hardly wait for:

Top Ten Books On My Autumn TBR List

divergent

CoLS

good news

dead girl

knife

convent

golden

warp

WoK2

SoM

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