Bookish and Not-So-Bookish Thoughts

Posted 8 November, 2017 by Lianne in Miscellaneous / 5 Comments

Bookish and Not-So-Bookish Thoughts is a weekly blogging event hosted by Bookishly Boisterous. It allows book bloggers (and non-book bloggers) to write about pretty much anything, bookish or otherwise (i.e. share exciting plans for the weekend, rants on things they’ve encountered during the week, etc.).

  1. So, shitfest ahoy: my college went on strike mid-last month, right after my Reading Week. As annoyed as I was about school, I’m more annoyed at how this will affect the rest of the school year and into my plans next year. They finally got back to the bargaining table last Thursday but still, that’s about three weeks of schooling gone (and going into the fourth week. That’s a bloody month). So yeah, I am not amused.
  2. I also had a bit of a headache at work–long story there–but suffice to say I started working back at my home unit again. It’s an adjustment, it’s been a long time since I was there so the patient population changed, and of course there’s a bit of the routine and mindset to get used to again. My schedule at work is also a bit tossed around thanks to the college strike.
  3. So, kind of pissed off on top of all the other craziness that’s been happening in my life recently: I realised a while ago that my engagement/outreach on my Instagram account, @eclecticreading, dropped considerably early last month. Looks like I’ve been shadowbanned for whatever reason–bloody algorithms–which is a bummer, but quite annoying in that I’m trying to promote my poetry book too, you know? Luckily I found some tips on how to reset my account from that status, made some changes to the way I’m posting and whatnot and now my account is back to normal, thank goodness.
  4. But I came to the conclusion that when life is crap, just watch this video on Liam Gallagher, it never fails to get a laugh out of me:

  5. I attended my first pen show last month! I heard about Scriptus from the pen and stationery show I frequent so I went to the event on October 29th with my brother and my mum. I was amazed at how many exhibitors were present and how many people attended! It was so busy, it was hard to maneuver around the salon area and check out properly all the pens and inks and paper laid out! But I had a good time, a little overwhelming, but it was cool, and I picked up some awesome ink along the way, lol.
  6. Books I am currently reading: I finally properly settled in and started reading Robert Shearman’s Everyone’s Just So So Special; I had stared reading it a few months back but I couldn’t quite get into it so I put it down for a while, read some other books, and only got back to it now. A good time to read it too as I haven’t really been able to stick to a novel lately…I also started reading Frank Herbert’s Heretics of Dune. I thought I wouldn’t get around to reading it because of everything that’s been going on but ehhh, it couldn’t be helped 😉
  7. It’s that time of year over at GoodReads where you vote for the best books of 2017…And once again I find myself scrolling through the lists, recognising a few titles, but unable to vote because I’m so behind, lol…
  8. I’m kind of bummed out that I’m not participating in NaNoWriMo this year but there’s just no way I can fit it in. Plus, I’m having a bit of a creative drought right now 🙁 So I guess I’ll just focus on promoting my first poetry book, Shall I Be a Poet Instead (did I mention I’m hosting a giveaway for a copy of this book here on the blog?), as well as getting the final draft done for my other book (fingers crossed!) 🙂
  9. I am however participating in Sci-Fi Month this month! 😀
  10. I know it can be a hectic time for everyone, but I’m looking forward to the Christmas season 🙂 And I admit, I’m also pretty relaxed going into this season because I actually already bought most of my Christmas gifts to people already, I just have a few left to pick up and then I’m good :3 But there’s all the Christmas cards I look forward to writing… 😀

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And that’s it from me! How is everyone doing? Hope you all have a lovely November 🙂

Shall I Be a Poet Instead — Giveaway!

Posted 7 November, 2017 by Lianne in Writing / 5 Comments

Yup, it’s live now, my giveaway contest for my debut poetry book, Shall I Be a Poet Instead? As I’ve been posting time and again here for about the last few months, I finally took the plunge and self-published my poetry; you can read all about my journey doing that over at this post. Since then it’s gone live to other retail outlets (Amazon, Barnes & Noble, The Book Depository to name a few) and I’ve also hosted my first GoodReads giveaway last month. Exciting stuff to say the least 😀

So I’m hosting another giveaway contest here on my blog for a chance to win a signed copy of my book. This time the contest is open internationally and will run from 07 November to 21 November 2017 @ 11:59PM EST. Please use a valid email address when you enter in the Rafflecopter below. Winners will be contacted the following day and they will have 24 hours to claim their prize or else I will raffle another winner.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Please let me know if you have any questons about the raffle and whatnot. Otherwise, good luck!

Review: Beren and Luthien

Posted 6 November, 2017 by Lianne in Books / 2 Comments

Beren & Luthien
By: J.R.R. Tolkien
Format/Source: Hardback; my purchase

Painstakingly restored from Tolkien’s manuscripts and presented for the first time as a fully continuous and standalone story, the epic tale of Beren and Lúthien will reunite fans of The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings with Elves and Men, Dwarves and Orcs and the rich landscape and creatures unique to Tolkien’s Middle-earth. The tale of Beren and Lúthien was, or became, an essential element in the evolution of The Silmarillion, the myths and legends of the First Age of the World conceived by J.R.R. Tolkien. Returning from France and the battle of the Somme at the end of 1916, he wrote the tale in the following year.

Essential to the story, and never changed, is the fate that shadowed the love of Beren and Lúthien: for Beren was a mortal man, but Lúthien was an immortal Elf. Her father, a great Elvish lord, in deep opposition to Beren, imposed on him an impossible task that he must perform before he might wed Lúthien. This is the kernel of the legend; and it leads to the supremely heroic attempt of Beren and Lúthien together to rob the greatest of all evil beings, Melkor, called Morgoth, the Black Enemy, of a Silmaril.

In this book Christopher Tolkien has attempted to extract the story of Beren and Lúthien from the comprehensive work in which it was embedded; but that story was itself changing as it developed new associations within the larger history. To show something of the process whereby this legend of Middle-earth evolved over the years, he has told the story in his father’s own words by giving, first, its original form, and then passages in prose and verse from later texts that illustrate the narrative as it changed. Presented together for the first time, they reveal aspects of the story, both in event and in narrative immediacy, that were afterwards lost.

Don’t get me wrong, I love that we’re still getting Tolkien material at an almost yearly basis, but LMAO that he’s getting more stuff out whereas George R.R. Martin is nowhere (supposedly) near releasing The Winds of Winter *shrugs* But anyway, I was very excited to get my hands ont his book since hearing about it as every Tolkienite knows of the story of Beren and Luthien.

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Review: The Inverted World

Posted 3 November, 2017 by Lianne in Books / 2 Comments

The Inverted World
By: Christopher Priest
Format/Source: Paperback; my purchase

The city is winched along tracks through a devastated land full of hostile tribes. Rails must be freshly laid ahead of the city and carefully removed in its wake. Rivers and mountains present nearly insurmountable challenges to the ingenuity of the city’s engineers. But if the city does not move, it will fall farther and farther behind the “optimum” into the crushing gravitational field that has transformed life on Earth. The only alternative to progress is death.

The secret directorate that governs the city makes sure that its inhabitants know nothing of this. Raised in common in crèches, nurtured on synthetic food, prevented above all from venturing outside the closed circuit of the city, they are carefully sheltered from the dire necessities that have come to define human existence. And yet the city is in crisis. The people are growing restive, the population is dwindling, and the rulers know that, for all their efforts, slowly but surely the city is slipping ever farther behind the optimum.

Helward Mann is a member of the city’s elite. Better than anyone, he knows how tenuous is the city’s continued existence. But the world—he is about to discover—is infinitely stranger than the strange world he believes he knows so well.

I’d been eyeing this novel for some time; the premise sounded really interesting and different, and it’s considered a science fiction classic. I picked it up in a semi-whim early this year (trying to hit the minimum for free shipping, you know how it is) and got around to reading it last summer at long last as a break from what I had been reading to date.

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Review: Through Black Spruce

Posted 2 November, 2017 by Lianne in Books / 0 Comments

Through Black Spruce
By: Joseph Boyden
Format/Source: eBook; my purchase

Will Bird is a legendary Cree bush pilot, now lying in a coma in a hospital in his hometown of Moose Factory, Ontario. His niece Annie Bird, beautiful and self-reliant, has returned from her own perilous journey to sit beside his bed. Broken in different ways, the two take silent communion in their unspoken kinship, and the story that unfolds is rife with heartbreak, fierce love, ancient blood feuds, mysterious disappearances, fires, plane crashes, murders, and the bonds that hold a family, and a people, together. As Will and Annie reveal their secrets-the tragic betrayal that cost Will his family, Annie’s desperate search for her missing sister, the famous model Suzanne-a remarkable saga of resilience and destiny takes shape.

From the dangerous bush country of upper Canada to the drug-fueled glamour of the Manhattan club scene, Joseph Boyden tracks his characters with a keen eye for the telling detail and a rare empathy for the empty places concealed within the heart. Sure to appeal to readers of Louise Erdrich and Jim Harrison, Through Black Spruce establishes Boyden as a writer of startling originality and uncommon power.

And here we are at the last book I have by Joseph Boyden sitting on my TBR pile (and second to the last of his published novels that I’ve read to date). I acutally started reading a bit of it over the summer but decided to hold on it, thinking it was more of an autumn-read

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