j-flamingo reflections

Inspired by the grace and beauty of the flamingo, my life reflected by my love of reading, writing and creating.

Teaser Tuesdays (12): Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver

Introduced to me by: Blue Duck Book Reviews
Hosted by: MizB of Should be reading

*Anyone can play ~ Find your current read, share a quote from a random page plus do tell what you're reading.
*Remember, you are always welcome to share your teaser in the comments as well.
*For more details be sure to look up how on the links above.

My Teaser:

"Izzy scrambles over me. I squeeze the chub of her stomach and get one last squeal out of her before she jumps off the bed and dashes out the door."
- Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver, pg. 271

My Thoughts:

I had to share this quote because I loved the way this scene felt in the book. Beautifully carefree!

~Thanks for coming by today!

Teaser Tuesday(11): The Magician's Elephant by Kate DiCamillo

Introduced to me by: Blue Duck Book Reviews
Hosted by: MizB of Should be reading

*Anyone can play ~ Find your current read, share a quote from a random page plus do tell what you're reading.
*Remember, you are always welcome to share your teaser in the comments as well.
*For more details be sure to look up how on the links above.

My teaser:

"Deep within herself, the elephant said this name, her name, over and over

pg. 95 The Magician's Elephant by Kate DiCamillo

My thoughts:

Honestly, I've been quite excited about reading this ever since I read this review from Chris over at Stuff As Dreams Are Made On... I'm enjoying reading this to my kids and we're making an effort to get it read before school starts. Very enjoyable!

Impromptu Flowers

I thought it would be fun to share a few photos of flowers I've seen all around with you. I hope it brings you a smile today!

It seems like I'm like everyone else with the basic fact that you have to take those impromptu trips to the grocery store. If I can avoid it or send my husband, I will. I don't like to go shopping. Lately, I discovered something that has been brightening my day when I do go to that dreaded grocery store and it is the flowers! Many stores have a small flower department and I'm finding that I enjoy taking the time to look at them. It would be fun to buy all the flowers I've been looking at but that's not economically possible. So, one day I started taking pictures on my phone of the flowers and I found that I liked looking at these pictures later. I still don't enjoy going shopping all the time but I do enjoy looking and snapping a picture of those pretty flowers!

People from a planet without flowers would think we must be mad with joy the whole time to have such things about us. ~Iris Murdoch, A Fairly Honourable Defeat

Top Ten Tuesday: Most Dislikable Characters

Today's top ten over at The Broke and the Bookish is very interesting because it is about the most dislikeable characters you find in books. You remember, the ones we love to hate, maybe even give us nightmares, or make us feel strong feelings like anger, madness or frustration over. Don't worry, I didn't have time to expound on each character too much about why I didn't like them so you'll need to discover that for yourself by reading about them either in my reviews or in the book itself.

1. Ray from Living Dead Girl by Elizabeth Scott

2. Meursault from The Stranger

3. Angel Clare in Tess of the D'Urbervilles

4. Uriah Heep and Murdstones from David Copperfield

5. John Willoughby in Sense and Sensibility by J.A.

6. Heathcliff in Wuthering Heights

7. He Who Must Not Be Named (L.V.) in the Harry PotterSeries.

From Non-fiction:

1. Roland Molineux from The Devil's Gentleman: Privelege, Poison, and the Trial That Ushered in the Twentieth Century by Harold Schechter
2. Ted Bundy from The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule
3. H.H. Holmes from The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America by Erik Larson

~Random mentions from others that came to my mind as I wrote this up, since I haven't necessarily read these books yet they're not in my top ten, but because I've heard about them before:

Rosamund from Middlemarch
Ellsworth Toohey of The Fountainhead
Emma Bovary of Madame Bovary
Sue Brideshead in Thomas Hardy's Jude the Obscure

Do you remember any of these from my list? If so, what did you think about them - maybe you even liked them? Otherwise, be sure to tell me what villianous or disagreeable character first comes to your mind in the comments. I can't wait to hear who you pick!

Creativity in Book Reviews

I've started participating in a Thursday meme over at Chrissie's Corner called Radiant Reviews. Basically, this is a meme where you link to any one of your book reviews that has been lacking attention and you bring it up again in the hope that others will see and comment on it showing other bloggers some love as comments really are a vital part of the blog. I love this concept. It's also a way to celebrate book reviewing that takes time and hard work. I've been having fun hopping around to different book blogs and reading their reviews. I'm noticing differences in review style, presentation, what they like to read and it amazes me how unique we all are when it comes to reading and reviewing books. For the most part, I like what I see or I wouldn't keep reading book blogs. I do love book blogs!
I like the creative diversity that can be found in book reviewing. I know I'm as guilty as anyone to falling into a rut and reviewing books in the same way over & over again. I'd like to remedy that. Once in a while, though, I've been inspired by the book to come up with a creative book review. So, I've tried to go for it and use that inspiration. By doing that, it really helps me feel like I've accomplished something. I feel it is important that book bloggers strive to use creativity with book blogging. After all, I think our creativity is what sets us apart from reviews that we could easily find and read on other venues.

Here are some creative things I like to find in book reviews online:

  • Write from the heart and use original short & sweet summaries. If I want a summary from the publisher, I can usually find on the back flap or read it at a site like Amazon. I like to see what the reader's point of view was while reading the book.
  • Use an occasional different format: a Q & A, a table, poem or prose - something that is unique once in a while that fits the book and feels inspired from it. Of course, these reviews take a lot longer to write so it is ok if they don't show up very much but they are sure fun to read when they do!
  • Please let me know if you're going to spoil it. For me, book reading is an experience and I don't want to know a whole lot about a book going in all the time. I like something that will tease me into reading the book. So please, use a spoiler alert, so it's my fault, not yours, if I keep reading the book review and it spoils the book for me.

I realize these are pretty basic in book blogging and this is just my opinion so you don't have to take my word for it anyway. Instead, read other book blogs and see what you think.

Would you like to see more creativity in book blogging? What creative things do you like to see when it comes to book reviews? Do you even read book reviews?

Leave a precious comment and let me know. I'd like to see examples of your favorite book reviews too. :)

*This post was inspired from the #bblog discussion on twitter.

Tweets to ponder:

@SRMcAvoy "Thankfully, we can all find books we love if we read, read often and read deeply." From his disclaimer on book reviewing.

@leewind "If everyone goes home and writes to the trends, then the vampires win." -- Justin Chanda

@markfergbk "let's make sure that love of books is one of the most vibrant messages on the Internet" (roughly) #bookbloggercon

@WritersRelief "Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep." ~Scott Adams

@deadwhiteguys "Not a fan of all-review blogs- I can walk through B&N and read blurbs if that's all I wanted..prefer more conversation.."#bblog

Thanks for reading!
This post is also an official challenge to all book reviewers to show us what you've got and use more of your own creativity in book reviews. I know you can be visionary!

Top Ten Tuesday - Favorite Book Characters

I love these thought-provoking top ten list questions from The Broke and the Bookish! Today's question is:

What are your top ten Favourite Book Characters?

1. Charlotte from Charlotte's Web - She is the first character that I remember thinking I wanted to emulate her characteristics when I was young. I loved her spider web messages filled with kind thoughts, her love and acceptance of Wilbur, her wisdom and courage to be a good friend to someone completely different from herself that she didn't have to invest in but she did anyway.

2. Emma Woodhouse from one of Jane Austen's masterpieces is so unforgettable. I love how clever, happy and even oblivious she is yet she lives without abandon and her intentions are so enchantingly dear. She is so fun to read about and see portrayed in movies but you can't really capture her magnificent persona along with how misunderstood I imagine she truly is .

3. Jacob from Twilight: kind, gentle, a good listener, romantic, yet not perfection just a great attitude that is progressing as best he can through his suprising twist of fate in his life. Being a bit spontaneous is helpful too.

4. Joe Mack from Last of the Breed by Louis L'Amour. I loved his MacGyver type mind, willingness to never give up even in the midst of hindering self-doubts. I just haven't forgotten his journey he faced in this icy frontier.

5. Pablo from Reasonable Doubt by Marcia Mickelson. Confident, charming, helpful, sophisticated and very interesting. I enjoyed this portrayal of a modern gentleman.

6. Professor Severus Snape from Harry Potter. I love the many depths of his character and the way he kept surprising me all the time. Simple, profound and so unique. I felt so much for the many qualities of this character - good and bad. In fact, every time I see a crow now I think of him. I'm not sure why I just do.

7. Lily Bart from The House of Mirth. I enjoyed reading about her and all of her faults, difficulties and hardships. She amazed me with her brutal honesty yet surprised me with her frustrating sensiblities at times. I wanted to see how she would react to the situations unfolding all around her.

8. Eowyn from The Lord of the Rings. She is so courageous, brave and spirited. She didn't worry of what others thought or what she was supposed to do. She took action in spite of warnings not to react. Her loyalty is fiercely not to be forgotten.

9. Beth March from Little Women. She changed the world from her bedside with her broken dreams and dashed hopes but this didn't stop her from loving and caring the people who meant the most to her. She shared all she could with what she was given. She wasn't afraid to say any way she could what was most important. She is a truly beautiful character.

10. Percy from The Scarlett Pimpernel. He's a legend! He speaks fluidly, flowery and is basically very fun to be around because, let's face it, he knows how to work a crowd. He is one extravagant thing yet quite another altogether. A master of disguise and not your run of the mill hero.

Thanks for reading! I'm a bit late in posting but my scheduling of this post had issues today. Sorry. These are the first memorable names that popped into my head from all the different books I've read. I know there are more but I'm glad to have been introduced to and to have read these characters in books. I love to think of them from time to time. Plus, these books are perfect re-reads just to live within the boundaries of these characters lives again.

About this blog

Welcome Readers~to my blog! A tiny extension of myself and my life. Here, I'll share this journey through my top passions in my life - reading, writing, and creating. You can expect to read poetry, view my papercrafts and read design related posts. Every once in a while, I hope you'll grasp an honest feel of my heart. If you haven't noticed, I love flamingos! I think they are beautiful birds. *Thanks for your attention.*
She is pure Alice in Wonderland, and her appearance and demeanor are a nicely judged mix of the Red Queen and a flamingo.
~Truman Capote

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    I love living my life through reading books, creating beautiful things to make people happy, and sharing snipits of the world as I see it through writing, blogging or designing.