Sunday, February 27, 2011

monday mixtape... on sunday?

I had this idea that I would do a regular thing called "Monday Mixtape," wherein I would fascinate you all with my exquisite taste in music.  I made a playlist on iTunes for it and everything.

It was going to be SO awesome.

But then I went to a Greencards concert, and I can't NOT share that with you, even though it's not Monday, and, technically, neither a "mix," nor a "tape."

If you take these two videos, pretend like they took place at the Square Room in Knoxville on Febraury 26th, and imagine the audience sitting at tables with candles and wine, you've got the opening of the show we went to last night.  Sigh.

Don't ask me why the second video is so much smaller.  I have no control over such things... apparently.

These people delight me.  I know this is silly, but I'm even amazed at the... attractiveness of all involved parties.  I mean.  Just look at them.

Australia never made bluegrass look so good.

Well, Australia and the Philippines and Oregon, respectively.

Friday, February 25, 2011

let's get nostalgic.

Flash back time!

One of my favorite things EVER, from 1993 to 1999 was...

wait for it...


American Girl Magazine.  I'm not even going to pretend like it wasn't.  I had a subscription until I was, like 14.  No lie.  Why, you ask?

Those.  Paper.  Dolls.

Ohmygoooooosssssh, I looooove paper dolls.  Muhumbuuaahh.  [That's the sound I make when I'm melting from excessive happiness, not to be confused with an evil cackle.]
Paper dolls and doll houses.  Little things.  Make me all... twitterpated.

I wanted to be an AG paper doll SO bad.  I was too embarrassed to do the research, though, and too shy to submit, if I ever had.  I thought they were so cool.  You should check out that link up there, if you haven't yet.  Some of those pictures were like stepping right back in time, especially these:
Chrissy.  She was in the first copy I got.
So weird.  I even remembered her name.
Laura.  She looked a ton like Veronica,
my best friend in first grade.
Ashley.  Seriously, like going
back in time.
Sarah.  Wow.  Love the hair.
She had German heritage, like me.
Kara.  I'd know her face anywhere.
Shouldn't that be a little creepy?
And, like, all the rest of them.  I can't really even pick the ones I remember the most about.  I wish I could see all the outfits, too.


I wonder if I still have those magazines, somewhere...
Does anyone else remember these?

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

jessica fixed it!

Here's a big thank you to my friend Jess (who blogs about being a foodie in DC ::here::) for sending me a jpeg of my Mere Christianity word cloud.  So, in case you really wanted to see it big, but didn't feel like clicking the link (links: so overrated), here it is:

Big and pretty.  And, uh, here's a link to Wordle.

My favorite thing about this is the way some of the words come together.  Like, "INTENDED HEART," and, "NICE LITTLE MAN."  There are more, but I don't see them right now.  Please share if you find one.

In other news, I finally realized I could correct the time zone for this thing.  I'd been posting in Pacific Time since I started blogging, almost a year ago.  I just never cared to change it.  It was kind of nice to post something at 1AM and still be able to say it was the previous day.  For example: tornado post?  Totally would have been marked as February 6th instead of the 5th.

So, I guess I'm going to have to start paying attention.  Welcome back to Eastern Time, self!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

mere christianity, and a word cloud.

I finished Mere Christianity tonight, and then made a Word Cloud for it.  It was fun.  Okay, so technically I listened to Mere Christianity, but that totally counts.  And I typed words and phrases into the Wordle box as it went by, which was kind of like taking notes.  Thus, the word cloud.  Now, if someone could just tell me how to make this look like a whole picture instead of the surly link that it is, I would be thrilled.

Oh, to be tech savvy.  Ever in my life.

Wordle: final chapters

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

movies and home and family and a cat.

Well, it's a good thing I read nine books last month, because I don't think I'm even going to make it to five this month.  I, um, got burnt out?  Ha!  That didn't last long.  Another part of it, I think, is that I was reading a lot of fast-paced, addictive stuff, and now I'm rummaging around in that dreaded to-read list.  I'm not used to adult fiction.  Or, for that matter, Christian fiction.  Or non-fiction.  And I really want to get back into reading plays, but does that count as a book?  [My vote says yes.]  Plus, I've been working more, and not sick, and spending time with friends.  Amazing, right?

And I've been watching movies.  Books were starting to overwhelm me, I guess?  Who am I, all of a sudden?  I'm sure I'll get back into it soon enough.  Anyway, Joshua and I watched Ramona and Beezus the other night, as well as Despicable Me (a veritable marathon of feel-goodery, there), and it was delightful.  I loved the Ramona books as a kid.  And the movie was just wonderful.  And, oh, how I cried.  Not that that means much.  I cry at everything.

how cool is this frame? [found here] i need to learn how make these.

I'm home in Louisville right now, by the way.  It's great.  Other than being away from Joshua, that is.  But I get to see my parents and grandmother and friends and some extended family, too, this week.  Oh.  It will be so good for my soul.  Living away from my hometown is both liberating and frustrating.  I like having my own life, being totally independent (at least, of my parents), and working and making my own friends, etc.  But I miss my family.  Gah!  It's not like I'm college anymore, where you sort of prove who you are to yourself by being away from home.  That's how it was for me, and it was the right move to go out-of-state, but I'm past that now, you know?  I have proof of my maturity.  Or whatever.  I just want to be able to have lunch with my mom every once in a while.

Thus, a three-and-a-half-day trip to Louisville.  Go Cards!

I brought Oliver, too, which is kind of hilarious.  How often do you see cats chilling in a passing car, like you would a dog?  We travel with our cats a lot, and I like to think that others get a kick out of it.  Of course, it's a lot easier to let cats roam free in the car when there are two of us.  Since it was only me today, poor Olly Bear had to stay in the carrier.

I think he's over it now, though.  :)

Sunday, February 13, 2011

why, today, i am a grown up:

We bought furniture!  That's right, after a year and three months of marriage, we finally bought new furniture.  And if you'd told me six years ago that I'd be blogging about such things, I would have said, "Well, then it must be an awesome table."  And I would have been right.

Granted, this picture does it very little justice.  Ours has a distressed white wash (without really looking white), and the wood is a lot less even on top.  So, picture that, and you have our new table!  It's modest, sure, but that's perfect for us right now.  Mm, mm, mm.  We also got two (burnt orange stripedy) chairs and a (sage green) bench to go with it (both upholstered), plus the most wonderful, whimsical serving console on the planet.  I have no idea how to find a picture of it online, but it looks like something Laini Taylor would blog about.  And if you're going to trust anyone's taste, trust hers.

Sigh.  I know this is kind of a weird post for me, but I was too excited not to share.  I'll put up pictures once everything is in place.  I can tell that Joshua and I are going to have a very cabin-y home, full of old doors and up-cycled railroad ties for furniture.  And the best-- the best!-- thing about this little table is that once we have need for a larger dining table, it will work as a desk.  For me!  It's called a Palma Desk, in fact.  Now, how is that not just meant to be?  It practically has my name!

saturday night special: abigail washburn.

When I pick favorites, they tend to stick.  Even after I've found something that speaks to me on a greater, or just profoundly different level, I don't change my answer.  It takes a lot of thinking.  A lot of deciding.  And tonight I'm owning up to my "official" favorite musician.  Abigail Washburn (with and without The Sparrow Quartet), you win.  Any album I can listen to repeatedly for almost a year, and not want to stray from, is rare.  And valued.

And, hey, I saw you at Relix in Knoxville back in November.  One of the best concerts ever.  Now the only thing I have to ask myself is, why was I not at the Blue Plate Special the day you guys played?  Seriously?

Really.  I work right across the street from this place.  I eat lunch there (they make a quality pimento cheese sandwich), from time to time.  How did I miss this?

How many times have I rocked out to that very song while driving past that very building?*  I'll tell you.


But it wouldn't be an Abigail Washburn post without my favorite Abigail Washburn song:

Oh.  Oh.  Be still, my heart.

P.s.  I love your hair.

*Yeah, I rock out to bluegrass.  What about it?

Thursday, February 10, 2011

a few more thoughts for today.

I wanted to post my adventures with donating blood last night but, you know, I was pretty tired from the whole thing.  Now I feel great!  A whole pint lighter.  :P

In other news, I took the plunge.  I posted something about myself on a classifieds ad for critique partners.  [Is that the plunge?  I'm not sure.  Maybe submitting work is the actual plunge.  We'll call this the baby plunge.]  Don't worry, it was on a blog I frequent and not just out in the middle of Internet Wasteland.  And, like the big, fearless girl that I am, I've contacted a few of the other writers.  It's been fun and scary and I don't think I've checked my email this compulsively since I was in college, stalking boys.

It's been such a blast learning that I'm not alone in what I like to read and write.  Isn't that a ridiculous thing to just now be learning?  It's not like I don't have real life writer friends (hello, real life writer friends!), but meeting new people who share interests and passions is just thrilling.  And anyway, all my real life writer friends are published poets, and a lot better than me.  :)

Another amazing thing that's happened is... I have new followers!  Whom I don't know in real life!  Hello, there!  Ooh, I feel so interesting.  

So, this is just a quick note to say, thanks for following.  And to my potential crit buddies, thanks for giving me a chance to get to know you.  This is so fun!  Now I only need to tear myself away from blogs and emails, so I can move ahead with writing and actually have something to show for myself.  Ha!

i'll trade you your blood for a cookie.

[A word of warning:  this post is rated PG-13 for arterial spray.*  I know!  It was awesome!]
*slight exaggeration.  but only slight.

Giving blood in a bus parked right in front of your workplace means two things:  you get to give blood with your co-workers!  Also, you have to give blood with your co-workers.  Ha.

My friend Tess and I decided to donate together, since neither of us had done it before.  After assuring everyone that, no, I had not had sex with a malaria patient in the past 20 years, I sat in the funny chair and offered up my right elbow for harvest.  My right elbow has the best, most visible veins on the planet.  So it should have been easier to get it to bleed properly.

I don't know what was going on, but my whole arm went numb and I physically could not squeeze the stupid ball.  "Squeeze the ball," the nurse said.  "Okay," I said, which was code for, "I can't feel my fingers."  Then she told the other nurse, "I need you to look at this."  Great.  Where did we go wrong, here?

And then my boss walked in.

The other nurse fixed the tourniquet and I could feel my fingers again.  She said, "Now it's flying!"  She was really nice.  They were all really nice.  One was just a little tourniquet crazy, I guess.

So it was all hunky for a while, except that Tess finished and went inside, and I was getting bored.  And... ow, that kind of hurts.  Ow, I'm dizzy.  Crap, I didn't eat enough for breakfast.  Crap, I might throw up.  Crap, I'm sitting face to face with my boss, who will go inside and tell everyone about this (I didn't actually have this last thought, but I should have, because it was true).

"Um, I'm a little lightheaded."  Off goes the hat, down goes the seat, up go my knees.  Here, have two icepacks.  Much better.  And then it was over.  I held my arm over my head and pressed the gauze with the other hand, but that was my mistake.  I suppose I misunderstood the concept of "press."  Or, perhaps, my veins were overcompensating for the difficult start.  A second later, I thought, Hmm, my fingers are warm and wet.  I looked up, and it. was. everywhere.

Soaked through my sleeve, all over the floor, even on my collar a little bit.  When I let up pressure for one of the nurses to take over, I think I saw my very first gush of blood.  And it was mine.  And it was... kind of awesome.  It was dense and black more than red, spurting from my arm and running thick on my skin.

I took notes.

I promise I'm not into vampires.  Really.

But the best part of the experience was when I leaned my whole arm over a trashcan and two nurses poured peroxide all over my sleeve.  Tell you what.  Worked like a charm.  You'd have never guessed that shirt had seen a drop of blood in its life.

And then Tess came in and said, "Did you pass out?"  Thankfully, I never did.  I was having adventures with peroxide, instead.  On the way out of the bus, I grabbed a cookie, and Tess and I sat on the sidewalk for a minute before going down to the parking lot.  It wasn't a very tasty cookie.  But it was my prize for giving blood, dangit, and I was going to ENJOY IT.

To celebrate our success, we went and made jewelry.

And after Tess drove me back to Mast, I went inside to say hello.  And the first thing I heard a friend say was, "Are you okay now?  Jim said you turned green and wouldn't stop bleeding."  Oh boy.  Did he forget to mention my charming disposition and nonchalance and constant smile and winning attitude?  Those were the things I was trying to express.  Maybe I AM too small to give blood, even though I passed the weight limit forever ago.  Not by a ton, but still.  And, I mean, I was laughing.  It was funny, especially the peroxide part.  But no one will hear the peroxide part.  They'll only hear the turning green and bleeding excessively part.  Why can't it just be a funny story?

Sigh.  I try so hard to never let anyone worry about me.  I hate that kind of attention.  Don't ask me why.  But in writing, I always find myself creating that kind of attention for characters.  What does that say about me? On the bright side, now I have a mental inventory of how it feels to lose over a pint of blood.  And that's the bright side.  Writers and actors are crazy, and I'm both.  Go me!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

where were you on 2.5.08?

There are days and experiences that one never forgets, and that day, for me and a lot of my friends, was February 5, 2008, when our university was practically destroyed by a tornado.  I used to rattle off details about how big the tornado was, so I could sound impressive, but I've forgotten all those facts now.  All that sticks with me anymore is what I saw and heard, how I walked around campus in a daze, no longer a student but not yet a true alumni (I'd only graduated a month and a half before, and still pretty much lived on campus).  Under these pictures are my original captions from the photo album I put up on FB the week after the tornado.
The million dollar shot- the first thing I saw (at least, the pitch-black version)
when I crossed the street from Cherry Grove at 7:15 pm on 2.5.8.
I'll never forget the terror of that sight, illuminated only by ambulances and police cars.
Here is where I stood for a while, too, helping to clear the path of cinderblocks
and metallic wires while all the McAfee kids made their way to White Hall.
The first thing they saw when they turned the corner was the heaping mass
once known as Jelks and Wingo. I witnessed every group that passed react in
almost the same way: screaming, crying, calling out to God.
I had to leave after a while. It was almost too much.
Sorry.  This post is a downer.  The next picture isn't too wild, but I'd forgotten about this part of the night until I read the caption.  I had blocked it, I guess.  There are some other details I didn't add, but I assure you.  Watching people pass out is scary.
This is where I stood for half an hour Tuesday night, horrified.
A group of injured students huddled on the curb here, waiting for an
ambulance ride or medical attention. If any of you are reading this,
sorry I just stood there. I didn't know what was going on.
I hope you all are feeling better.
I want to say that I could keep going, but I'm not actually sure that I could.  The tornado is something I remember with anxiety, and perhaps a little fondness.  Not because I love tornadoes, but because I love my friends, and I love that no one died, and I love that even the most terrified of my classmates gave glory to God throughout the whole awful event.

And it wasn't just the tornado.  The entire week following was its own sort of experience.  The day after the storm, no one was allowed back on campus, and even though I lived across the street, it was still horrifying.  I had friends who lost everything.  Or, at least, lived without their possessions for weeks.  And the things that were returned to them were never the same.  I still hear people say, "I had that shirt/camera/DVD/book, but it flew away."

Emily had framed a picture of us, which she was going to give to me for graduation, but it was assumed lost in the storm.  Then, amazingly, she found it among her belongings in the big, black trash bag they returned to her, the wrapping paper rotted away.  I keep it on display constantly, not only because I love Emily, but also because of what it symbolizes to me.

My Katie had just moved out of my apartment, because I was about to go back home, and she lost so much because of it.  I still feel guilty about that.  Not that there's any way I could have known, of course.  I'll never forget the day she and I snuck past the caution tape and reached in through her kitchen window to save her tray from Tanzania, which the bag-n-taggers had overlooked.  Oh yes, we did.

There are so many things tied up in this experience, I could devote an entire memoir to it.  For instance, this was when my then-future-husband and I started talking.  He heard about the tornado at Union on the radio... on BBC!  BBC!  And he wrote to me immediately.  That was maybe the wildest part about it.  Being in the news.  People I knew were being interviewed on every major network, it seemed.

I was supposed to move back to Louisville that week, but couldn't.  I stayed and helped.  I sat in the library and was part of the call team, checking in with every single member of the student body.  And when I did go home, I only stayed for four days before coming back again.  I helped the Dean with the re-start of the semester (class had only been in session three days before the tornado).  There's also an incredible bit in here about how Cedarville (where my husband went to school) secretly threw our Howdy Party for us.
Important note:  Yes, Joshua went to Cedarville.  But the party thing was as much a surprise to him as it was to me.  But, still, what are the odds?

So that's that.  For now.  It's emotionally exhausting just to think too much about it.

Here are the links to all the related pictures:  first album, second album, and third.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

how to be alone.

Maybe everybody already knows about this video, but my dear friend, known on the interwebs as Lycaeides, just introduced me to it.  Enjoy.


Adj.  Simultaneously awesome and depressing.

Maybe we should call it Suzannetastic, actually.  It would mean the same thing.

No, but really.  I loved these books.  It was both very like and very unlike reading The Hunger Games.  Similarities:  violence and adventure and anti-war themes.  Differences:  a more juvenile voice, more fantastical elements, and a boy's perspective rather than a girl's.

There is something I love about a boy's point of view, and I don't really know why.  I'm a girl, so you'd think it would be the other way around, but no.  Heck, my own current writing project is from a boy's perspective.  A good chunk of my favorite books are also male POV, now that I think about it.  Life of Pi, for one.  Also, Harry freaking Potter.  And, of course, Gregor.  But also White Cat and Looking For Alaska, both of which I read last month, and The Replacement, which I read back in the fall and then never wrote about, but probably should have because I really enjoyed it.  Let's see...  I think my favorite read of the past year is still Lips Touch, by Laini Taylor, and about a third of that (maybe more, depending on how you define POV) was told through male characters.  I don't know why I'm rambling about this, but it's funny to think about because even growing up, I always got along a little better with boys than I ever did with girls.  Maybe it's because I have a brother and no sisters.  Plus, with male main characters I can have crushes.  With female main characters, they have the crushes.  NotthatthismattersanymorebecauseIammarried.  Ahem.  [Also, this is not an absolute rule because I have both disliked male MCs, and adored male side characters told from female perspectives: examples:  Harry Potter: boo, get over yourself.  Peeta Mellark:  oh my gosh I think I married you.  It is time to move on to another topic.]

Anyway!  Also, like The Hunger Games, Gregor left me in a stupor.  A haze.  Because life sucks and then you die, but there are so many important things to learn from it along the way.  Like, quit killing each other!
[P.s. While typing "are so" just now, I accidentally forgot the space bar and ended up with the word "ares."  Ares!!!!  I want a pet bat.  Just so I could name him after the bats in the series.]

I meant for this to be more about Gregor and less about other things, but it doesn't seem to be working.  Here's something awesome, though:  The Gregor books were published annually from 2003 to 2007, and then The Hunger Games books picked up and were published in '08, '09, and '10, respectively.  Which is to say, Suzanne Collins is an absolute machine.  Is she publishing anything this year?  Goodness knows I will devour it and then be depressed by it, but still love it.

if love makes me sick, at least i'll still be human.

Interesting, but I like the ARC cover better.
Here's the post where I talk about Delirium, by Lauren Oliver.

First of all, I know I read an "Advanced Readers' Edition: Not For Sale," which means that some changes were probably made before the final final final version (like, the cover), so take what I say with half a grain of salt.  But only half.

The major premise of this book is that love is seen as a curable sickness rather than an God-given instinct.  Sounds terrifying, right?  Well, it definitely was.  One thing that has always bothered me about dystopian novels--that kept me from enjoying Brave New World and even tripped me up while reading The Giver--was the blazing frustration of:  Seriously, this would never happen.  Why are we even stressing out about it?  I think we can all agree that that was part of what made The Hunger Games so great: the realness.  The proclivity of humanity to possibly, actually, maybe progress that way.  The world in Delirium did not seem quite as possible, because, honestly, who would agree to a mandated transition from loving your children to feeling nothing but apathy toward them?  I mean, that's barely even human.  I suppose that was the point.

That's another thing that gets me about dystopian.  You want to fight so hard for what the characters believe in--what you believe in--but all you're really fighting for is something that makes you so innately human that it can never be taken away.  Makes the whole thing seem a little moot, to me.  But it works for the same reason:  Readers love having something to fight for.

Anyway, Delirium.  Things I liked:  The relationship between the main character and her best friend, the color of the boy's hair, the ending (no spoiling from me!), the "literature" at the beginning of every chapter, and the way the main character got around to figuring everything out.

Sigh.  I really liked that I had something to fight for (see above), but it bothered me that the first thing on Lena's mind was her romantic love and not the horror of losing all emotion.  I mean, it was there, but at the end (spoiler alert?) when she was deciding to stand up for herself, her reasoning was all I heart this boy, and not, uh,  Hey, this is one sick way to live if a parent can't even console their own child, which is what had been plaguing my mind the whole time.  That was my only real, major complaint, but it made sense to be that way.  I kept reminding myself that I was reading a seventeen-year-old girl, not a twenty-something-year-old woman.  Then I got frustrated even further, though, because I am pretty sure that at seventeen I still would have felt worse about the bigger picture.  Of course, I was never in love in high school.

I don't know.  Maybe it was just the way the people in that world had altered everything from the past, even religion, to serve their purposes.  I kept waiting for Lena to learn that God taught love, not warned against it, because I know that's where my motivation would have been as a teenager.  But that would have made an entirely different story.  That's what I told Joshua when I finished the book:  I was really intrigued by the world (as improbable as it was), but I would have maybe put a different kind of story into it.  I don't know what my problem with romance is.  Maybe it's because I've never been an overly-romantic person in real life (hello, first kiss at 23, here--by choice, at that), but it is really hard for me to grasp, sometimes.  I mean, I really liked both Lena and Alex as characters, and I did (I promise I did) very much like the story (once it picked up), but I so wanted there to be another layer to them the whole time.  What did they really have in common, again?  We all know why Alex stuck out to Lena, but why did she stick out to him?  To be fair, I know this was addressed in the book, but it's hard when you only get one character's point of view.  You know.

Lucky for all of us, this is the first of a trilogy, which I did not know upon finishing, and am a little surprised to find out.  I thought it worked splendidly as a stand alone.  Sure, there were loose ends, but they were poetic enough for me to accept and even appreciate.  So, three cheers for the author on that one.  But some parts of it (vague spoiling ahead) seemed so final, so complete, what else can there be to say?

Regardless, it was a gripping story with characters both lovely and frightening, and the last few chapters had me reeling with adrenaline.  I would recommend this book to anyone who likes romance and standing up for what you believe in, but not much else.  And I KNOW  I didn't read the final copy but, gracious, were there ever some typos.  I think I would make a decent copyeditor.  I usually (not always, but usually) catch all those things that somehow slip through, and no book is immune, it seems (or blog post, for that matter).

The more I think about it, the more I am really looking forward to the rest of the series.  I'm so curious to see where it will go.  Thrilling!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

sicktastic reading binge.

I am illllllllllll.  Then again, I am also dramatic (with a degree to prove it), so it's probably more like "under the weather" than "ill."  In fact, it's just a cold.
Thought:  Where did the expression "under the weather" come from?  Does it mean, like, how you feel on a rainy day, when there's a lot of weather going on on top of you?  And aren't we technically always under the weather?  Tectonic activity, last time I checked, does not count as "weather" (of course, I have not literally "checked").  Maybe a volcano blast counts.  But then the ash would be in the air and you'd still be under it, right?  Obviously (unnecessarily), I digress.

Guess how many books I've read since my last post?  To counteract the abysmal count of "one" from last time, this time I read three!  That's right, I've read NINE WHOLE BOOKS in January.  A personal record.  But don't thank me!  Thank Suzanne Collins for her excellent cliffhangers!  And days off from work!  And being sick!  And all those books we got at the library!

Oh my gosh, can you tell that I'm starting to get stir crazy?

In other pat-myself-on-the-back news, I successfully read Delirium before its release date (uh, tomorrow)!  Thus, I am patiently awaiting my induction into the "people who have read a book before it was released" club.  Sounds like fun.  I bet there will be meetings where we'll discuss "selling out" and "hype" and "this was so much better before anyone else knew about it."  Then we'll go back to the ARCs and moan about the good old days, before our favorite authors were successful.

I'm almost having second thoughts about this club, except that I actually do feel that way about a lot of things.  I'll say, "Oh man I have to tell you about this book/movie/song/TV show, you'll love it!" And then they're like, "Uh, Twilight*, seriously?  Everybody and their mom already knows about that."  And there go all my cool points for that day, for not already knowing about it.
*not an actual anecdote from my life, just an example.  Truth:  I have only read the first page of Twilight, but I've read it three times.  I liked it, I just can't make myself read any more.  It's just... too... popular... and, I'm told, romantic.  Barf!**
**Not that I have anything against romance... but sometimes I kind of hate romance.

I do not know why I am feeling so hyper right now.  Apologies.

Anyway, to sum up my Booksplurge books for January, after the five already mentioned:

6.  Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane.  Suzanne Collins.
7.  Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods.  Suzanne Collins.
8.  Delirium.  Lauren Oliver.
9.  Gregor and the Marks of Secret.  Suzanne Collins.

So pretty much this week has been a serious Gregor binge, interrupted by my mysterious need to join the we-knew-it-first club.  Which is not to say that that's all Delirium meant to me--not at all.  I very much enjoyed it, actually, in a lot of different ways.  It challenged my thinking, which was awesome, and kept me at the edge of my proverbial seat, but also got under my skin.  I think I might devote an entire post to it.  How about tomorrow?  Seems like a good day for that.

Unfortunately, I'm so not in the mood to look up all the book covers and post links to all the Amazon pages... yeah... oh, all right.  All right!  Tomorrow!

See how I weaseled out of doing any extra work for this post?  No real reviewing, no pictures.  I'm lazy today.  But have no fear, I will definitely get around to talking about the Gregor books (in case you were worried about that), once I've finished the last one.  Which may very well happen tomorrow.  Possibly the next day, if I'm a productive little beaver and actually leave the house (a lofty goal when I don't have to work and feel borderline gross).

Whew.  Nine down, fifty-one to go.