Projections of a Bibliophiles Mind

24 year old avid reader who enjoys exploring all types of book genres. This blog basically sums up my reading experiences, opinions on books, and anything that I find useful to put here. Enjoy!

So I made this…wrote this poem tonight. It sort of just came out, not sure if I actually feel this way or not…I think I’m a little bit depressed or disappointed with life I guess. 

Anyways the artistic border is not of my doing…I found it on google images and thought it made the poem look less depressing. I don’t even know if the poem makes any sense. 

A New Favorite of Mine

By Jay Asher: Thirteen Reasons Why - -Razorbill-

A refreshing read. I really loved this book and can't get over how good it was, I can't believe I've owned it for so long and took forever to finally decide to pick it up.

I found the plot and narrative to be creative and interesting throughout the whole story, making the book really hard to put down. I feel the books I've read recently all come from a female perspective, therefore I found the male point of view really entertaining. The characters were great and you can see a lot of development as the chapters start to reach the end of the tale.

I must warn you that this book deals with topics that are still considered slightly taboo, therefore you have to be prepared to face dark emotions. On the other hand, I found the emotions felt by the characters to be very realistic and I think as a reader it's quite easy to connect with the darkness and vulnerability one feels during adolescence.

I don't want to say much more about this, due to the fact that I feel I may ruin the magic of the story if I talk about it too long.
Anyways I really recommend this to teenagers, young adults and adults...hopefully this might make you aware of the warning signs of suicide and help you reach out to someone in time.

Opening the memory box

This is slightly personal, but I kind of felt like posting it anyways because it was a pretty interesting find for me. 

When I was 13 I used to be depressed and I used to write a lot of angst filled and emotional poetry... I still write poetry, but I guess since I'm much older it feels a lot less intense. 

 

Anyways I was looking through an old book and I found a notebook piece of paper with one of my old poems... It's not really good...in fact I'm sure I could improve it a lot now a days, but I would never touch this because it's a frozen spot in time that takes me back. 

Anyways this is the poem...it had no title:

 

I'm sad when I'm happy, 

I'm happy when I'm sad.

What is life when things are broken, 

What is life when things are bad?

What is pain when life is empty, 

When you suddenly lose it all?

I guess all there is to is....You must embrace the fall.

 

I think I need to post it because I guess I'm going through a lot of dark feelings right now and finding it feels a bit like my 13 year old self knew I would need to read this poem again someday. 

 

A few words on a classic

Emma - Jane Austen

I think I had higher expectations for this classic, I guess all the hype about Emma made me think the book would capture me a whole lot more than it actually did. Nonetheless I must say I did enjoy the story and the complexity of the characters exploring the poles between romance and convenience.

 

Being completely honest, there were several moments while reading that I wanted to slap Emma for being so conceited and egocentric. I think maybe that was one of the reasons I couldn't really enjoy the book as much as I actually wanted to. Still, the writing is impeccable and delicious to read, the richness in the words and sentences formed by Austen never disappoints so it is good read.

 

While I was reading this story, I couldn't help but wonder if Emma might have actually been a lesbian throughout most of the book. Her friendship with Harriet was quite close and I sometimes thought Emma might have stronger feelings towards her friend, feelings that maybe Austen couldn't quite pinpoint during those times due to the fact that female homosexuality wasn't really acknowledged during her times. I may have over thought this a bit though and I guess I will never know if this hypothesis could be correct or way off base.

 

As with all classics, I highly recommend everyone give this book a shot in order to form your own opinions about it.

Esperaba algo más

La psiquiatra - Wulf Dorn

En general considero que este libro es bastante bueno, sin embargo debo admitir que tenía mayores expectativas sobre el desarrollo del relato y los personajes.

La historia comienza de una manera interesante y logra capturar al lector permitiendo que este se incorpore a la realidad literaria creada por el autor. Dorn utiliza técnicas efectivas que van aumentando el nivel de tensión a lo largo de la historia tentando la curiosidad del lector, de esta manera logrando que se mantenga interesado en el relato. Siendo honesta durante la primera mitad del libro no tenía claro si Dorn iba a llevar la historia por un camino paranormal o si iba a tomar un camino realista y psiquiátrico debido a como se van dando los acontecimientos. La inseguridad de Ellen sobre los acontecimientos también abre la puerta a la incertidumbre, sin embargo como ella es la narradora principal uno se ve obligado a creer en su percepción, especialmente porque es psiquiatra y uno asume que su juicio se encuentra bien establecido. Sin embargo, la realidad expuesta por el autor nos lleva a la duda; esta incertidumbre favorece la lectura del libro permitiendo un interés y curiosidad constante en el lector.

Aun así, en lo personal siento que la historia se tornó un poco predecible mientras se acercaba el final y comenzó a perder la energía que poseía en un inicio. Igual considero que es un libro recomendable e interesante, sin embargo quede en parte decepcionada porque sentí que Wulf Dorn prometía algo más terrorífico de lo que se dio en la historia realmente.

Divergent - Veronica Roth
"Becoming fearless isn't the point. That's impossible. It's learning how to control your fear, and how to be free from it - Four"

The afflictions of dedicated readers the world over

Reblogged from Princess Eva Rose:

The Handmaid's Tale and The Hunger Games - What Makes a Strong Female Character?

The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood The Hunger Games  - Suzanne  Collins I Am Malala - Malala Yousafzai
Reblogged from A Reading Vocation:

This month, my book club discussed The Handmaid's Tale. This is one of the books that has been formative in my life as both a reader and a writer. It was the first piece of dystopic literature I read beyond The Giver, and it awakened a taste for much, much more. It also had an understated emotional resonance that I strive to emulate in my own writing. Atwood's narrator, Offred, is a keen observer of her life, although perhaps not as active an agent in it as we've come to expect from our book heroines.

 

The book group I read it with consists of adults who like to read young adult literature. Many members expressed frustration, anger, or even disgust that Offred did so little to change her situation and to "fight back" against the system. They accused her of being passive. Comparisons to Katniss arose. One woman pointed to a scene in which Offred's commander asks her if there is anything she would like to have. She asks for hand lotion because she's been making do with butter for her chapped skin. The book club member said, "Why didn't she ask for a bow and arrow? Why didn't she do SOMETHING when she was alone with the commander? There must have been something she could have used as a weapon in that study where they played Scrabble."

 

I've continued to mull over this conversation in my head. I thought about my own writing, and the characters I create. I thought about my relationship as a reader to Katniss, and to Offred.

 

Don't get me wrong -- I've spent most of my working life in feminist media, and I love that the strong female character of Katniss has reached acclaim to rival Harry Potter's. It's pretty hard not to admire Katniss. She's a survivor, yes, but she also, in many ways, has nothing left to lose. In both The Hunger Games and Catching Fire, death in the arena seems almost a sure thing. It's probably a bit easier to give a big ol' FU to the authorities when they're going to leave you to die, anyway.

 

But what about Katniss's life back in District 12? Yes, she sneaked out to hunt, but that was more an act of survival than rebellion. From what we can see, she was strong before The Hunger Games, but she didn't make much of a stir, or buck the system too hard. Only when the stakes got unimaginably high did she dare that -- not cognizant of the fact that it would start her down a path that would be nearly impossible to walk away from.

 

Offred's existence is more akin to Katniss's before the games than after, and we see precious little of Katniss's life before the games. Offred is living under a repressive regime, longing for her old life and freedoms, and never sure whom she can trust in a world where men hold all the power and women readily betray one another. Of course she wants to buck the system, but she also wants to survive, on the hope that maybe she'll make it out to see her daughter again, or live to see the day when something changes. So she becomes a keen chronicler of her experience of oppression, bringing many of us to a place we don't want to go, challenging us to examine how we might hold up under such sanctioned assaults upon our dignities.

 

I have a confession to make.

 

I'm an Offred, not a Katniss. Perhaps that's why Offred captured my imagination in a way that Katniss just couldn't. I admire them both -- but I only relate to one of them.

 

Even though it's much, much easier for people like Katniss to live in fiction, I'm grateful that people like her do exist in the real world. People who put it all on the line for the things they believe in. People who do the right thing, even when that might be personally disastrous. People who send a big FU up to "the system" even if they have very little power to change it. But when I read about Katniss or watch her on the screen, my thoughts run something along the lines of, I could never do that, and, I hope no one I love is ever that brave.

 

Because I don't want anyone I love to take those kinds of risks. To live that dangerously. I'm honest enough with myself to know that I couldn't.

 

But surviving, day by day, trying to find meaning in the disintegration of life as you know it, that, I understand. When I was an adolescent, I fell victim to bullies the way millions of kids do. I tried everything to make it stop, including standing up to the bullies and reporting it to the school principal. But at the end of the day, I had no power to change the situation, and the people who did have that power did not make themselves my allies. So I, too, fell into survival mode. I, too, went through my life doing the best I could to just lay low and get through it. Perhaps that's why many of the characters I write show their strength in the same way -- by making the decision, day after day, to just keep going. To just get through it. To look for hope and beauty in unexpected places and cherish it when it appears.

 

Most of the girls and women in the world live under some form of oppression, whether it's a culture that discourages or forbids them from getting an education or one that expects them to attain unreasonable standards of beauty. Some girls are brave enough to take a stand against it. Malala Yousafzai comes to mind. But for most of them, it's all they can do to survive and hope for the day when things will get better. And you know what? That is brave. Sometimes, that is enough.

 

There are many, many ways to be a strong girl or woman, in fiction and in real life. For many, myself included, acting like Katniss feels as unattainable as looking like Barbie.The characters we write and those we read and admire should reflect the fact that, sometimes, just getting through the day is brave enough.

 

 

A small treasure

The Graveyard Book -

It feels like I took forever to read this book. I started in July last year, yet I kept putting it off because I had to finish reading final parts of series that I didn't want spoiled on tumblr or any other site.

 

I believe this book is a treasure for any age. It's good for children, teens, young adults and adults because even if you read it to your child as a bedtime story, you can still become immersed in Bod's world and life in the graveyard. I think this is a great companion for children who are a little scared of the dark because it makes the macabre seem less frightening (if you are the type of person who becomes friends with characters like me).

 

I must admit I was a bit confused during the beginning because the chapters seemed a bit episodic and I couldn't join the dots till almost halfway through the book, but that doesn't make it less enjoyable in my opinion. I also recommend alternating with the audible version, I think having Neil Gaiman himself narrate the book is a treasure in itself and makes the book even more interesting.

 

I don't want to say a lot more about it because I'm afraid if I start delving into all of the reasons I enjoyed it, I'll give potential readers spoilers and I like to keep my reviews spoiler free.

 

I really hope you enjoy this book as much as I did!

Because Bitches Be Jealous.

Reblogged from The Fangirl:
Fic: Why Fanfiction is Taking Over the World - Lev Grossman, Tiffany Reisz, Rachel Caine, Jen Zern, Heidi Tandy, Rukmini Pande, Samira Nadkarni, Wendy C. Fries, Jolie Fontenot, Randi Flanagan, Tish Beaty, Cyndy Aleo, Christina Lauren, V. Arrow, Brad Bell, Andrew Shaffer, Darren Wershler, Anne Jamison, Jules Wilkinson, R

"Greater wank hath no fan than to lay down one’s fic for one’s friends and then pick it up again and make millions. It’s not that individuals hadn’t profited from fanworks before Fifty Shades of Grey..."

 

 

Wow, that's not slanted and judgmental at all. 

 

It's ironic considering the next sentence acknowledges that James/Icy was the center of many other controversies long before Fifty Shades of Grey was ever published. Yet it characterizes all of her critics as envious and petty? Wonder where I've heard that before?

 

Oh wait, it tells us exactly where in the same paragraph.

 

"And long before Snowqueens Icedragon, there was the Harry Potter fandom’s Cassandra Claire—now better known as Cassandra Clare of the Mortal Instruments series (which has 7,000-plus fics on FanFiction.Net). "

 

It's interesting to note that this essay doesn't mention any of the specifics of controversies the surrounded these authors while they were in fandom, choosing instead to emphasis their success and popularity.

 

Does you see the subtle framing of this?

 

How from the start of this section the narrative is informing the reader how to judge the situation, without giving any real facts or data, and leaving the specifics of these situations vague.

 

From the title of this section; Wank Matters—Even Though Everyone Wishes It Didn’t. To how the first sentence (quoted at the top) tells the reader that the reasons people are upset with both E.L. James and Cassandra Clare is because they are successful.

 

Then it only vaguely mentions there were other reasons, but never goes into detail. To imply those details are inconsequential. Because after all at the start of this section the reader was already told everything they needed to know about critics of not only both authors but any critical voice in fandoms in general.

 

But even worse, Jamison tries to draw a direct connection between fandom conflicts and sexism, making a flying leap from talking about fandom wank to ship wars and then lands on Jane Austen, of all people.

 

"Jane Austen—also a popular fanfiction source—makes the stakes clear in Persuasion: when the men are the ones telling the story, only certain stories get told. Dramione shippers apparently feel the same way when too much attention is paid to Drarry."

 

It's about power that comes with attention, those who have it are persecuted by those who don't have it. That is the most backward explanation of the very real issues that arise in every fandom, but is especially affects women in fan communities.

 

This ham-fisted attempt to cast E.L. James and Cassandra Clare as blameless victims, being persecuted only because they're success women, ends up painting all the other women in their respective fandoms as petty and jealous. Reenforcing the stereotype that all women are competitive and resentful of each other. 

 

There is nothing feminist about this. In fact, it's a decidedly sexist argument that dismisses the complexity of conflicts in female communities*. It also sets the tone for how "fandom wanks" are portrayed in this section on Twilight and Harry Potter. 

 

 

*I could write a whole other post about conflict, and micro-aggression in female dominated committees, but Rachel Simmons does a far better job of explaining it in Odd Girl Out: The Hidden Culture of Aggression in Girls.

 

 

Reblogged from The Fangirl:


"Shrinking Women" by Lily Myers

 

"I asked 5 questions in genetics class today and all of them started with the word sorry."

Absolutely worth your time to watch. 

 

 

Bookmark
Bookmark

My new Doctor Who inspired bookmark. Really easy to make, just burn the edges of the paper and then dye with coffee...once it's dry you can write anything!

A few comments...

Allegiant  - Veronica Roth

Even though I enjoyed the book, I did become a little bothered and confused that the last book was suddenly written in two points of view. I understand it was a necessary act in order to finish the book the way the author intended. I also feel the story lost a bit of momentum and that my high expectations for the last part of the trilogy interfered with my enjoyment of the book.  

What I really liked was the ending because it was unexpected and raw, I never saw it coming yet once I finished reading I knew I should have expected it.  

I have to mention I thought the writing was impeccable and the character development is great as well. 

Reblogged from The Fangirl:
"Book lovers never go to bed alone." -Unknown
"Book lovers never go to bed alone." -Unknown

[source]

Source: http://writelaurengray.tumblr.com/post/60428166756/book-lovers-never-go-to-bed-alone-unknown