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Earth Day Updates

Happy Earth Day! 

Just thought I’d check in and give you a few updates about what I’m currently reading and what I’ve been up to in general.

I’m almost finished with Brighid’s Quest – I think I have about 40 or 50 pages to go so a review should be coming shortly. 

Still reading An Echo in the Bone and with about 200 pages left, it’s finally getting really good.  I’d be really curious to see what others think of this book who’ve read it, but it seems to me that a few hundred pages could have been easily cut out to keep the story flowing. 

I started The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo on Monday and at first I was surprised to find that I couldn’t really get into the story (the writing style is somewhat abrupt at times, almost like reading a list).  Finally around page 100 I started getting sucked in and now I’m halfway through and something shocking just happened to one of the characters that was like a slap in the face.  Needless to say, I’m hooked now. 

Last weekend I was in Las Vegas and I finally got to go to the Titanic Exhibition at Luxor.  It was very well done and I highly recommend it.  I was amazed by the quantity and state of preservation of the artifacts on display and seeing pictures of the passengers and reading their stories was haunting and deeply moving.  I picked up The Sinking of the Titanic at the gift shop on the way out, which is a collection of witness accounts from surviving passengers and crew that was written in 1912, and got about halfway through it on the short flight back to Los Angeles.  It’s extremely fascinating so far.

Other than that I haven’t really had a chance to participate in weekly memes because I’ve been devoting much of my free time working on a fantasy novel that my cousin and I are collaborating on.  In fact, we just launched a website that will be dedicated to the story and the world of Salona we’re creating and I’m excited to post the link here:

So far we have some character bios, a short synopsis, and an excerpt from the story but we’ll be adding some images soon.  Stop by and let us know what you think! 


This weekend I’m going to the annual LA Times Festival of Books for the first time and I’m so excited to get to meet some of my fellow SoCal book bloggers!  I bought tickets to some of the author panels and I’m planning on lifting my temporary book-buying ban to pick up at least the new Christopher Rice and Anchee Min books while I’m there (and hopefully get them signed!). 

Will you be there?  Have you been to past events?


Inside Out Giveaway Winner!

And the winner of the signed copy of Maria V. Snyder’s new book, Inside Out, is…..



Melanie’s Musings


I hope you have as much fun reading it as I did.  Thanks again to Maria for the giveaway and for stopping by my humble little abode on the blogosphere.

And if you missed my Q&A with Maria you can check it out here.



First Blog Award!

Lauren at Geeb’s Book Club was kind enough to give me te Honest Scrap award!   Thanks so much! 

When you’re given this award you must post 10 honest things about yourself and then pass it along to 10 blogs you follow. Here it goes!

1. My only real regret in life is quitting dance.

2. I’ve lived in California my whole life (minus three years in Texas) and I’ve never attempted to surf.

3. I’m obsessed with ancient civilizations like Egypt and Rome and I’m determined to visit them both someday.

4. I’ve been with my husband since we were in high school (almost 11 years!).

5. My parents have also been together since they were in high school (many, many more years).

6. I think rats make wonderful pets.  I was mommy to several for a few years and they were my precious babies.

7. Foreign countries I’ve visited (not counting layovers): Mexico (stranded there during 9/11), French Polynesia, Croatia, and Bosnia (for about 15 minutes).

8. Interview with the Vampire is my all-time favorite movie and I’ve had it memorized since it came out.  “So you want me to tell you the story of my life…”

9. If I was a best-selling novelist and could quit my day job I’d follow my favorite bands around on tour.

10. I used to scuba dive but had to stop after getting decompression sickness twice for no apparent reason (try spending hours in a glass coffin afterward, NOT fun!).

And I nominate:

At Home With Books

Debbie’s World of Books

Ellz Readz

Literary Escapism

My Overstuffed Bookshelf

Okbo Lover

Should Be Reading

Terra On the Bookshelf

The New Dork Review of Books

Too Many Books, Too Little Time

November Hiatus Over

I’m officially back!  I’ve been MIA for about a month while scrambling to make it to the NaNoWriMo finish line. 

This was my first attempt and I’m proud to say I made it!  I got to 50,000 words on November 29th. 

I can’t deny that it was stressful and at times like pulling teeth but I’m overwhelmed by this accomplishment and the whole experience was definitely worthwhile.

My story wasn’t finished at 50k but it’s wrapping up nicely.  The next big steps will be editing and re-writing once it’s actually finished. 

Now I can finally focus on blogging and I really want to catch up on all your blogs!  I’m still slowly trudging through Drood, I’m halfway through Fire Study and almost done with the first Percy Jackson and the Olympians book.  Reviews of all those to come! 

What’s everyone reading?  I feel like I’m coming out of hibernation and need to get in touch with the world again!

Did anyone else try Nano this year?  How’d you do?

Happy Halloween!

halloweenJust a quick post to wish my fellow bookophiles a Happy Halloween!  What’s everyone doing tonight?  Dressing up?  Taking the little ones trick or treating?  My husband and I are dressing up as Jabba the Hut and Princess Leia (when she’s in her awesome slave metal bikini costume) and hitting the streets with some friends. 

Then tomorrow is the official start of NaNoWriMo, which I’m doing for the first time this year (and trying not to be intimidated by the daunting task)! 

Happy haunting!

Musical Connections

I was driving home from work today, listening to Jenny Dalton’s second album, Rusalka’s Umbrella, and suddenly I started visualizing scenes from Stephen King’s Duma Key.  I saw the Florida sunsets and the obnoxious pink beach house, and heard the chilling sound of the tide grinding the pebbles underneath it.  rusalka

When I was reading Duma Key (an absolutely fantastic book, by the way), I listened to this album a lot and I guess it became connected to the story in a way that when I hear it now I’m reminded of the haunting tale. 

I was thinking about this connection and realized that the music you listen to during the time you’re reading a certain book can become a kind of soundtrack to the story, and listening to it later on can bring back the people, places, and even emotions the book evoked.  Here is some other music that reminds me of past reads:

  • Tori Amos’ Boys for Pele and Queen of the Damned, by Anne Rice
  • Cara Dillon’s After the Morning and Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon
  • Metallica’s S&M and the Dragonlance Chronicles trilogy, by Margaret Weis & Tracy Hickman

Do you ever find yourself being reminded of a book by music?  Does it make you feel the overall tone of the story or the emotions you felt while reading it?