Monday, March 20, 2017

Just a Note

I just thought I'd tell everyone that I'm taking a week blogging break b/c of puppies! You sort of know about one, but now the other one decided that he wanted more attention so he got a foot infection. It is already looking better but I thought I'd take a break for my sanity... such as it is... 😜

See ya next week!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Arts and Crafts: Creative Maker Case

With everything going on, my crafting has also suffered. However, I was able to get one pressie done before it was due! 

It is a case for my dad. The patten is from Sew Sweetness (affiliate link) and is the Creative Maker Case. The way it is written it is made for those that want to carry a lot of pencils, markers or just create a bunch of pockets. I would say to alter the pattern, it would be an intermediate project, but if you make it as written, it is surprisingly easy.

The outer shell is made with navy canvas and the inner parts are made with mostly quilting cotton fabric. I added a handle on the top spine with 5/8" nylon webbing (which was not a part of the pattern, but he likes handles) and the Bronco logo is a machine embroidery design. I also added a back pocket and made pockets that I hope satisfy what he needs in a case. This is the medium (approx: 7-1/2” long x 9-3/4” tall) which will just barely hold an ipad (average size) and easily hold most ebook tablets. It is also a double zip closure.

The corner flap has a magnetic catch to keep everything in and the small blue line in the spine is fold over elastic which can hold a pen. I also have slip pockets, zippered pocket and a mesh pocket. I hope there is enough! 😁 

I really enjoyed making this one and it was easier than I thought. The hardest part was deciding what I needed to put into it (pocket wise). I think if I make another for him I will lengthen it just slightly and perhaps add more flaps to the slip pockets. 

Hope he likes it. *crosses fingers*


Monday, March 13, 2017

Hunted by Megan Spooner

352 p.
Publisher: HarperTeen
Published: 3/14/17
Source: From Edelweiss and publisher for review
Beauty knows the Beast’s forest in her bones—and in her blood. Though she grew up with the city’s highest aristocrats, far from her father’s old lodge, she knows that the forest holds secrets and that her father is the only hunter who’s ever come close to discovering them.

So when her father loses his fortune and moves Yeva and her sisters back to the outskirts of town, Yeva is secretly relieved. Out in the wilderness, there’s no pressure to make idle chatter with vapid baronessas…or to submit to marrying a wealthy gentleman. But Yeva’s father’s misfortune may have cost him his mind, and when he goes missing in the woods, Yeva sets her sights on one prey: the creature he’d been obsessively tracking just before his disappearance.

Deaf to her sisters’ protests, Yeva hunts this strange Beast back into his own territory—a cursed valley, a ruined castle, and a world of creatures that Yeva’s only heard about in fairy tales. A world that can bring her ruin or salvation. Who will survive: the Beauty, or the Beast?
My thoughts:

I should probably recuse myself from reviewing this one because I love Beauty and the Beast retellings. I really loved this one, not for the romance (actually there was very little of it until the end) but because it is usually the heroine that is the strong one of the tale. This one holds to that tradition and makes Yeva (aka Beauty) a unusually strong woman who loves to hunt and go out into the wood exploring and finding that fairy tales are real.

The core of this tale is also not the romance. That may put off some readers but the theme is really about want and desire. Do we know what we really want? Do we understand what we really desire? The mythos is based on that premise as well as the tale she finds herself a part of. A tale told to Beauty which became her favorite which she starts to fully understand while living it. That does make for an interesting twist as it also becomes her real mission is to see what is before her and know what she really wants out of life. This is also not one where once you figure it out it is all solved, but knowing human nature and that wanting the next thing will always be around the corner. We can only hope our next want will accompany wisdom as well.

I give this tale 4 1/2 stars and highly recommend it to those, like me, that love a Beauty and the Beast retelling. Do be aware that the romance is minimal until the end but the hero is still the Beauty of the tale.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Binge Post: NetFlix Strikes Again!

Yea, my brain has yet to come back in full force. Wait... does your brain actually go full force? What does that mean? 


So, I've still been Netflix'ing more than I had before. I'm one of the cool kids now, right? 😎

Finally saw Stranger Things:
I loved trying to figure this one out and I loved how the relationships in this one all played out. I really do recommend it to anyone who likes fantasy or sci-fi. Just don't expect everything to make sense all the time... or sometimes at all... but that is the fun of this one.

I also saw the first season of The Magicians.
I still need to continue it and while the first season was a bit uneven in pacing for me, I was still hooked and now I have to know what else is going on. This one has some interesting characters in it and I think that is what drives this show and not the magic (at least in the first season).

Frontier. Jason Momoa... need I say more? LOL
This one took me a while to get into it but by about the 3rd episode, I wanted to know more. Note to those that don't like a lot of violence... it is quite violent and bloody.

I've also seen the first season of the Santa Clarita Diet
I didn't like this one as much as I thought I would but I think it was the hype getting in the way. I did love Joel and Shelia's relationship and that really pulled me through the series. No matter what happens to either of them they are there for each other. Yea, this one is ironically the most romantic one that I saw. LOL

I almost forgot I saw Sense8
This one took me a while to get into but once I did I liked it. They all share emotions and they can also share abilities. I'm curious where it will go in the next season. I'm just so sad that Capheus who was played by Aml Ameen is going to be played by Toby Onwumere next season. I'm sure I'll get used to the change but it is always jarring when a show does that to you.

One movie to mention:
The Fundamentals of Caring
The trailer does nothing to show off Trevor's dark sense of humor. Yea, the kid is an asshole but he has reason and it makes you love him for it. LOL Selena Gomez does a good job as Dot and she has the same sense of humor as Trevor. This one surprised me and I really loved the ending to this one. No spoilers... just see it. 


Almost forgot... Happy Women's Day!

Hope you are celebrating it and #resisting

Monday, March 6, 2017

The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco

Series: The Bone Witch #1
400 p.
Published: 3/7/17
Publisher: Sourcebooks Fire
Source: From publisher and NetGalley for review
"Let me be clear: I never intended to raise my brother from his grave, though he may claim otherwise. If there's anything I've learned from him in the years since, it's that the dead hide truths as well as the living." 
When Tea accidentally resurrects her brother from the dead, she learns she is different from the other witches in her family. Her gift for necromancy means that she's a bone witch, a title that makes her feared and ostracized by her community. But Tea finds solace and guidance with an older, wiser bone witch, who takes Tea and her brother to another land for training. 
In her new home, Tea puts all her energy into becoming an asha-one who can wield elemental magic. But dark forces are approaching quickly, and in the face of danger, Tea will have to overcome her obstacles...and make a powerful choice.
My thoughts:

I really enjoyed this author's other work and when I saw the cover for this one I knew I needed to read it. It is as lush in descriptions as her last work, but while that one built atmosphere, sometimes the descriptions here got in the way. I absolutely loved picturing all the gowns (hua) the asha's (magical ones) wore because it was such a part of who they were becoming. It also felt as if it was a complete amalgamation of different cultures, particularly eastern. It was fun exploring the world and what magic she could preform and what was held back in her abilities.

What I thought was a bit weak were Tea's relationships to the other secondary characters. In some ways it worked and they were completely supportive of her character in bringing her to life, but in other ways I thought the relationship should have been more defined. There were a couple of people who were interesting in their own right, felt as if they were going to be built upon but then felt dropped from importance. Now, this may correct itself (and I highly suspect it will) as the series continues, but I would have liked at least one character to have played a more distinctive role in the worldbuilding. Her brother, Fox, was rounded out much better than the others, but there were so many other personalities I wanted to get to know even just a bit better. I think the worldbuilding would have been perfected a bit more with those characters.

I still found the world fascinating and didn't mind the present/past back and forth within the book. To tell it otherwise would have made the book too long. Still, as we are building up in understanding about Tea and her abilities and coming to the climax of what is going on in the "present", the book ends. Thankfully this is part of a series or that would have really upset me.

I give this book 3 stars. I think it has the potential to really take off now that several things have been established. While it had some problems for me, I still found it interesting and compelling enough to want the next book to find out how the ending of this one plays out. I recommend it to those that enjoy YA fantasy with and Eastern bent but do be prepared for the ending. :)