Happy 4th of July from us at Stacks!

us-flag-american-literature72You have to love a nation that celebrates its independence every July 4, not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers who file by the White House in a show of strength and muscle, but with family picnics where kids throw Frisbees, the potato salad gets iffy, and the flies die from happiness. You may think you have overeaten, but it is patriotism.
Erma Bombeck

Happy Independence Day!

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Only 32 Days left in 2016, How are your other reading goals going?

img_1341With only 32 days left I’ve pretty much conceded that I will not finish my Diverse Stacks, Diverse Lives Challenge.  Sigh.  I will obviously have to work harder next year but I am only 3 books away from my Goodreads Challenge of reading 65 books this year.  I’ve actually read more then 65 books this year but since Goodreads only counts you are reading for the first time and not books you’ve read before.  That’s kind of a bummer but whatever.  It is what it is.  I’ve been doing the Goodreads Challenge since 2011 and every year I’ve read a little less every year.  In 2012 I read 94 books and last year only read 68. I’m a little sad that I don’t read as much as I used too. I don’t read at home as much as I have in the past.  I mostly only read on the ride too and from work.  I think that explains why my book totals have lowered in the last couple of years.  That being said, reading an average of 77 books a year for the last 5 years is pretty good.  And the whole point of the challenge is to set a goal and try to complete it and I am 3 books away from this year goal and only 32 days to finish it.  So this a long ranting post and round about way to ask how close are you to any of your reading goals or challenges?  Have you finished any of yours yet?  Give us a shout at let us know.

Quick Review: Adulthood is a Myth by Sarah Andersen

adulthoodIt’s the universal truth that being an adult sucks.  Even though today is my day off, I should be working.  I have staff reviews to write, sales data to analyze and what am I doing?  Flipping through Sarah Scribbles tumblr because as I said, being an adult sucks. You have probably seen Sarah’s work on Facebook because I’m sure one of your friends has shared it.  It seems like Sarah has taped into all the stress, anxiety, and fears of what it’s like to be an adult right now and probably ever.  How we all rather sleep or read then go to work or go outside.  That it would be so much easier if we just didn’t have deal with things but we do. At Book Riot Live this past weekend, Sarah was there to play a little game of Pictionary and since her publisher was a sponser they gave out her book for free.  It was a wonderful surprise.  Before the game started I sat in my seat giggling at all the comics and thinking this is all too real.  Some of the comics I have read before but there was a couple of new ones.  They were all great and wonderful and another reminder that I’m not alone.  There are so many others out there that feel the same way as I do.  It just makes me feel warm and fuzzy inside.  Adulting is hard but at lease with Sarah Scribbles we can all laugh at it.

#bklynbookmatch

One of the vendors at the Book Riot Live was the Brooklyn Library. They had librarians on had to do what librarians do best.  Suggest books.  They invited con goers to fill out sheets about books, genres and authors they are looking for and then they play book match.  In the spirit of our Diverse Lives, Diverse Stacks Reading Challenge that I’m failing about horribly, I decided to try them out. I asked for.

YA books with diverse voices, especially POC, LGBTQ or disabled folks. I’m looking for authors like Maggie Stiefvater, genres like fantasy and Historical Fiction.

Here are the books I was matched up with.

1.Girls Mans Up by M-E Girard

All Pen wants is to be the kind of girl she’s always been. So why does everyone have a problem with it? They think the way she looks and acts means she’s trying to be a boy—that she should quit trying to be something she’s not. If she dresses like a girl, and does what her folks want, it will show respect. If she takes orders and does what her friend Colby wants, it will show her loyalty. But respect and loyalty, Pen discovers, are empty words. Old-world parents, disintegrating friendships, and strong feelings for other girls drive Pen to see the truth–that in order to be who she truly wants to be, she’ll have to man up.

2. Otherbound by Corinne Duyvis

Amara is never alone. Not when she’s protecting the cursed princess she unwillingly serves. Not when they’re fleeing across dunes and islands and seas to stay alive. Not when she’s punished, ordered around, or neglected.

She can’t be alone, because a boy from another world experiences all that alongside her, looking through her eyes.

Nolan longs for a life uninterrupted. Every time he blinks, he’s yanked from his Arizona town into Amara’s mind, a world away, which makes even simple things like hobbies and homework impossible. He’s spent years as a powerless observer of Amara’s life. Amara has no idea . . . until he learns to control her, and they communicate for the first time. Amara is terrified. Then, she’s furious.

All Amara and Nolan want is to be free of each other. But Nolan’s breakthrough has dangerous consequences. Now, they’ll have to work together to survive–and discover the truth about their connection

3. Pinned by Sharon Flake

Autumn and Adonis have nothing in common and everything in common. Autumn is outgoing and has lots of friends. Adonis is shy and not so eager to connect with people. But even with their differences, the two have one thing in common–they’re each dealing with a handicap. For Autumn, who has a learning disability, reading is a painful struggle that makes it hard to focus in class. But as her school’s most aggressive team wrestler, Autumn can take down any problem. Adonis is confined to a wheelchair. He has no legs. He can’t walk or dance. But he’s a strong reader who loves books. Even so, Adonis has a secret he knows someone like Autumn can heal.

In time, Autumn and Adonis are forced to see that our greatest weaknesses can turn into the assets that forever change us and those we love.

Told in alternating voices, Pinned explores issues of self-discovery, friendship, and what it means to be different

4. The Passion of Dolssa by Julie Berry

Dolssa is a young gentlewoman with uncanny gifts, on the run from an obsessed friar determined to burn her as a heretic for the passion she refuses to tame.

Botille is a wily and charismatic peasant, a matchmaker running a tavern with her two sisters in a tiny seaside town.

The year is 1241; the place, Provensa, what we now call Provence, France—a land still reeling from the bloody crusades waged there by the Catholic Church and its northern French armies.

When the matchmaker finds the mystic near death by a riverside, Botille takes Dolssa in and discovers the girl’s extraordinary healing power. But as the vengeful Friar Lucien hunts down his heretic, the two girls find themselves putting an entire village at the mercy of murderers.

So I am going to add these to the my to-read list and for anyone else who are looking for books to complete their own reading challenge, check them out for yourselves.  Any great books you’ve read for the Diverse Stacks, Diverse Lives Challenge?

 

Book Riot Live Day 2

Day two of Book Riot Live started off with a bang. Rebecca Joines Schinsky and Liberty Hardy did a live recording of their podcast All the Books. Discussing all the best books released this week. Including Born a Crime  by Trevor Noah and Anna Kendricks new book whose title escapes me. The two are friends and their chemistry is undeniable.

I decided that after this week I needed some levity and light so I went to the Bookish Broadway Sing-along. All songs were loosely based on books one way of another. Classics like Phantom of the Opera to Annie to Les Mis and of course Hamilton. They did a request and we all sang the Circle of Life from The Lion King. I really wish I took better photos and a video.


Next was Live Pictionary with Sarah Anderson and Valentine De Landro. Sarah writes Sarah’s scribbles and Valentine draws for Marvel, DC and cocreator of Bitch Planet. I’m amazed both at the drawing and people able to guess.


After a little donut break. I checked out Slash Live with a Alyssa Cole, Michael Strother and Zoraida Córdova. Slash is sort of like apples to apples and cards against humanity in which everyone had a set of cards with a name and description of a pop culture character. Each person takes turns picking a character and making a situation and everyone else must pick a character from their own stack and create story based on the situation. Like Xander from Buffy falling for Big foot. It’s very fun to play.

The final panel of the night was Nerd Jeopardy with Mara Wilson, Mark Osborn and Sara Farizan. It was like real jeopardy but without Alex Trebeck and all clues were about shoes. Book nerds are the best. If the panelist didn’t know the answer someone in the audience did. It was very amusing and for those who are curious, Mara won.


So that’s it for this year. I’m looking forward to what Book Riot will do next year.

#TenThingsNotToSayToAWriter

A little fun for you all today.  A few days ago, author Joanne Harris, started a hashtag on twitter #TenThingsNotToSayToAWriter and it was twitter gold!  Entertainment Weekly was kind enough to collect some of the best but nothing can top The Outsiders author S.E. Hinton’s contribution.

Check out the tag and keep in mind the next time you go to your next book signing.