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Thursday, December 18, 2014

A Grimm Warning - Chris Colfer

I have thoroughly enjoyed this series.
It's not just the wonderful spin on 
favourite fairy tale characters
but it's also the well crafted characters
and story line.

A Grimm Warning
does not disappoint.

Alex Bailey now lives in The Land of Stories.
She's training to one day become
the Fairy Godmother
and taking over for her grandmother. 

Meanwhile, 
her twin, Connor,
goes on a school trip to Germany
to hear the unpublished story
by the Brother's Grimm
that was found in a time capsule.

Soon the twins find themselves on another adventure.
This time, 
they are trying to protect the land
from a 200 year old French Revolution Army.

Now, 
the last two books
have that lovely fairy tale ending.
You know,
happily ever after.
And when you pick up the next book
you feel like you're back with some old friends
and hearing their latest adventure.
But this time,
this time,
oh my!
Colfer leaves you hanging!
Yes, he leaves us with a cliffhanger.
An OMG-did-that-just-happen
cliffhanger.
And I have no idea
when he'll publish the next installment!
Yikes!!!

Blood Genesis - Tessa Dawn

I have loved this series
since the beginning.
So when I heard there was a 
prequel
I had to read it!

This did not disappoint!

Blood Genesis
gives a glimpse into the origins
of the Blood Curse.
We learn more about the brothers,
Jadon and Jaegar,
the patriarchs of these great vampire houses.

It's a story about 
Timaos and Jessinia
and their sacrifice.

If you haven't started this series yet,
this is a good,
short,
introduction!





The Sisters Grimm - Michael Buckley

I have a love for fairy tales.
So when a parent at school
told me about this series
I had to give it a try.

It is lovely!!!

Sabrina and Daphne's parents
mysteriously disappeared.
They have spent the last year
floating between foster families.
Then, 
they are told their grandmother wants them to go
live with her.
This surprises the sisters,
as they were told their grandmother was dead.

So Sabrina and Daphne meet 
their eccentric grandmother,
Granny Relda.
She informs them,
that they are descendants of the famous
Brothers Grimm
and that all these fairy tale characters
actually exist.

Not only do they exist,
but it's part of the Grimm's family job
to keep them in line.

Soon, 
the girls find themselves on an adventure.
There's a giant on the loose,
and he's kidnapped Granny Relda.
The mayor (Prince Charming)
acts awfully suspicious.
With the help of Jack
(as in and the Beanstalk)
and Puck
(yes Shakespear)
the girls are out to
save their grandmother!


Friday, December 5, 2014

My Dad

My dad was a little man,
with an extremely large heart.
His heart was made of gold.
He cared about everyone, 
and tried to help everyone.
He never judged.

My dad was an avid reader.
Something I inherited from him.
He instilled in me the love of books
and the power of the written word.
He was able to talk to me about any book I read as a child.
It wasn't until later I learnt,
that every night,
after having gone to sleep,
he would read the book I was reading
just so we could discuss it together.

My dad has a large family.
And family is important.
And while the four of us lived quietly in Ottawa,
vacations were spent with the family.
It was important to him
that we knew we had a support system.

My dad loved to travel.
He saw beauty wherever he went.
He was intrigued by the history and culture
of every place he visited.
He'd enthusiastically share with you
the hidden gems
and myths about every place he visited.

My dad believed my brother and I
could be anything we wanted to be.
And while we often mistook it to mean
we were a disappointment,
he always supported us in our choices.
He encouraged us to be better.
He knew we could do anything
and taught us to aim high.

My dad believed education
can get you anywhere.
I hated school
and was never any good at it.
But I am so grateful
I finally got my Masters
and got to see the shine in his eyes
when he realized
I always heard him.

My dad had a way with words.
He wasn't always able to express himself verbally,
but give him a pen and paper,
and wow!
He'd blow you away.

My dad was religious.
He believed in that God is gracious.
He believed there was a reason for everything.
I wish I had the same faith as he.

My dad was encouraging.
He saw the best in everyone
and encouraged it.
When Ethan was two,
he scribbled.
But then told my dad an elaborate story to match the scribble.
My dad went out and bought
pens, colors, paints and paper
to encourage this budding artist. 

My dad was a sensitive man.
He didn't like conflict
and tried to please everyone.
He was open-minded and tolerant.
Qualities I will teach Ethan. 

My dad was amazing.
He raised two incredibly independant kids
and had two amazing grandkids.
He will always be loved.
He will be missed.

I love you. 



Monday, November 24, 2014

Seventh Grave & No Body - Darynda Jones

It took me a long time 
to gobble this one.
But it was not due to the book,
but that I was uber busy.
A flight home from Dubai
gave me the time I needed 
to catch up with Charley, Reyes,
Cookie and the gang.

The fun stuff included:
Cookie and Ubie are a couple.
And a cute one.
Osh, aka The Dealer
is a fun and intriguing new character.
I can't wait to see more of him.
Reyes pushes Charley to learn
more about her powers.
And then there's Jessica.
Dead, but not gone.
Will she continue to be a pest?

This time around,
Charley has to deal with a bunch of people
disappearing,
leaving behind suicide notes.
But they didn't write the notes.
She looks for a grave robber,
deals with the Twelve Hell Hounds
and learns the Vatican has been spying on her.
Oh, and then there's her dad.
He's gone missing.

Yes, 
life with Charley is never boring!
Gotta love that girl! 

This Makes Me Happy

There are many things that can make me
happy.
This weekend,
I was in Dubai.
And while the weather,
shopping,
food and
 mates
were great,
there was something else
that made me truely happy.

I attended a Cultures of Thinking
workshop
presented by Ron Ritchhart.
To spend 2 days,
listening to this man
was inspiring.
And truely made me happy.






Thursday, November 6, 2014

Writer's Workshop - Power's Out

List 7 ways to survive a power outage.

Oh MamaKat,
how you make me laugh!
I mean really?
Seriously?
Do you really know what it means 
to have a power outage?
I'm talking serious outages,
for days, 
weeks,
months.
Not just the bad weather,
oops power's out,
city is under emergency
outages.
I'm talking about the 
welcome to my world,
summer's here,
so the power goes off
every day,
for hours,
for weeks.

So,
I consider myself the expert
on power outages.
In fact,
just two weeks ago,
we had serious power issues
that we had no power for the entire weekend.

So here are the top 7 things,
for power outage survival:

7. Live in a house that has a pool.
It's getting hotter and hotter here.
Summer is on it's way.
Which means the power issues will continue.
You'll need to cool off,
so make sure you have a pool.

6. Do not have a lot of meat in your freezer.
We learnt this the hard way.
Years ago,
we had a mate that went hunting
and brought us some buffalo meat.
It sat in our freezer.
Then the power went off. 
And the meat went bad.
So we threw it out.
Only,
it left behind a horrible stench.
And I mean horrible.
And virtually impossible to get rid off.
It was gross!

5. Have lots of fruit, veggies 
and water handy.
Cos if the power's going to be out for a long time
you won't be able to cook,
unless.....

4. Use a gas cooker.
....you have one of these.
Because with the gas cooker,
as long as you have matches,
you're all set.

3. Get matches. And candles.
That way you can at least walk around the house
without walking into anything.

2. Stay at a hotel. 
Seriously,
if the power's going to be out
for a long time,
and the house is too hot to bear,
stay at a hotel!
The bonus is you get an awesome breakfast
in the morning.

1. Get a generator.
Yes it can be noisy.
Yes the fuel is expensive.
Yes, there are times there's a fuel shortage,
but seriously,
get a generator!