Bridget’s View: Summer Reading!

I’ve decided that there are two kinds of people in the world: those who re-read books and those who don’t. Both are fine, as I see advantages to both sides, but personally, I read books over and over again, especially over the summer. There are a couple books that I always manage to find at the library sometime in July, and they always get checked out on my library card.

For example: the Gone series by Michael Grant. All the adults disappear, and the kids who are under fifteen are left to take charge of their little area of land. Sound good to you? Well, some of them have special powers as well, and it makes things a lot more complicated. I re-read this series every year, mostly because the books just kept coming out and I had to go back to remember the latest plot twists. Warning: these books are thick. If you’ve got a lot of time—say, a long car ride or, I don’t know, a summer off from school, go ahead and read it. But if you don’t have time, don’t start yet, because you won’t want to stop reading until you’ve reached the very last page.

Another good example is Cindy Ella by Robin Palmer, a modern twist on, you guessed it, Cinderella (She also wrote Geek Charming, Little Miss Red, and Wicked Jealous, all of which I would recommend). After a year of reading classics, no matter how much I may like them, it’s nice to be able to read something that doesn’t have ten different meanings. We all need a little chick lit.

Okay, so I may have saved the best for last. Beauty Queens  by Libba Bray is the book that I always take to the beach. A plane that is carrying beauty pageant contestants crashes and the girls have to survive on practically nothing, in the middle of an island. Hilarity ensues. The book will keep you reading and laughing as you nurse your sunburn.

So, see if these books are available at your library if you haven’t read them yet. And if you have, then maybe read them again! I think they’re worth reading many times. But whatever you do, read something. See you at the beach!

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For the Love of the Shoes

Well, the shoe bug bit me pretty hard over the past weekend.  My all time favorite edition is the Air Jordan III, and a completely new color variation dropped on Saturday, February 16th.  I had to have it. When I called the local Foot Locker they said they were not going to be getting it.  But since our local mall has another shoe store, I figured I would try the Finish Line. Success. They were getting pairs and would be on sale at 9am. That changed my entire weekend because instead of sleeping in on a well deserved day off, I would be waking up extra early to go brave the frigid temps and wait outside of U.P. Mall before the sun rises.

This is what separates a true sneakerhead from just someone who might like shoes or someone who says they are into shoes but would not be so dedicated.   I woke up at 5:30 a.m. and took my awesome dog Hachi out for a walk and then grabbed an apple and made my way to the mall to begin my very long and cold morning.  I was there by 6 and had managed to be inside for about 40 minutes before a security guard kicked me out because you cannot be inside the mall before 8:00 a.m. apparently.  It is very weird to be there alone and I was running around enjoying it quite a lot before I was booted.  So then I was escorted outside where 5 other guys were waiting for the shoes I wanted.  It was 6:40 a.m. and the mall was not going to let us into the indoor warmth until 8 a.m.!  That was the longest and coldest 80 minutes I have experienced in quite some time.  It was worth it to me, but I hope that Michael Jordan appreciates my dedication on the day before his 50th birthday.  The minutes went by slowly and my shivering was not helping any. But, it went without drama and another 9 people joined us before the mall let us in with the groups of senior citizens who walk laps at the mall before it opens.  It was 8:00 a.m. and the store did not open until 9.  So it was another hour of waiting, but at least I was inside and could sit down and relax. People were on their phones and the time went by quickly as the anticipation built around the shoes we were about to get.

The shoes. I should speak of the shoes.  This was a brand new color variation and they were quite stunning in the pictures I had seen online.  The “Joker” Air Jordan III’s.  Supposedly inspired by the Joker villain Heath Ledger played amazingly well in The Dark Knight.  I am obsessed with the Air Jordan III and I have many different variations of it and it will always be my #1 shoe.  I had to have this new color and was relieved I did not have to buy it from a reseller and pay a steep premium.

As the store opened at 9 a.m. I was fifth in line and got my size. Everything went smoothly and pleasantly as I inspected the shoes before buying. I got them home and tucked them safely away in their box, among dozens of other pairs.  I walked my amazing dog again and started my day with a smile because I knew I had added another noteworthy piece to my collection.

 

 

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Book Trailers

Maybe the best thing about coming to the library is walking through the stacks, picking up books that have great covers or clever titles, and perusing the pages. The ability to stand and read the first few pages of a book is a great way to decide if it’s something you’d like to read. But did you know that book trailers can also be a great way to discover things to read? Yes that’s right. Book trailers, just like movie trailers. Most authors and publishers have book trailers on their websites that you can watch to get a feel for a book’s characters, plot, tone, and theme. They are tantalizing, imaginative, and often quite persuasive. Below are some great examples. Often times, a simple Google search for a book’s title plus the words “book trailer” will find you great official and unofficial trailers by publishers, authors, and fans alike. Happy Reading!

Fury   Out of Reach    Finale

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The Mortal Instruments

August 23, 2013. Save that date! It is the premier of the highly anticipated City of Bones movie, the first of many films to come in the Mortal Instruments series. City of Bones is the first book of 5 in this series by Cassandra Clare. It was published in 2007 and was followed by City of Ashes, City of Glass, City of Fallen Angels, and this year’s City of Lost Souls.

The best part about this series is that it’s got something for everyone. To just say it’s paranormal romance would be a huge disservice to the book and its millions of fans around the world. This is fantasy fiction at its finest, with angels, demons, monsters, vampires, and werewolves, all vying for survival in a dystopian setting.

Without giving too much away, City of Bones is about fifteen-year-old geek hipster Clary, who thought she was just a normal kid, but normal kids don’t see invisible people, and normal kids’ mothers don’t suddenly disappear, seemingly captured by horrific monsters. But like many fantasy heroines, Clary isn’t normal, and she’s got all the secret parentage, dramatic revelations and amazing magic powers to prove it. Clary is a Shadowhunter, brought up as a mundane but born to fight demons. She and her mundane friend Simon fall in with a trio of Shadowhunter teens, and are soon embroiled in a quest to understand Clary’s past—and incidentally save the world.

Amazing stuff right?! There’s a lot to read here but there’s still a lot of time before the movie! Check out the film’s official trailer and fan webpage. Then check out the books!

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For the Love of the Shoes

I have written on this before, but I wanted to take a few minutes to talk again about the Doernbecher Children’s Hospital and the partnership they have with Nike. Nike’s co-founder and chairman Phil Knight was born and
raised in Oregon. He still lives there and he seems to love everything Oregon. Nike’s world headquarters are based in Beaverton, Oregon and he has given several hundred million dollars of his personal fortune to the University of Oregon and the Doernbecher Children’s Hospital in Portland.

Doernbecher Freestyle was created in 2004 when Michael Doherty, Nike’s Creative Director of Global Brand Presentations and Doernbecher Foundation board member, was talking to his son, Connor, about ways to raise money for the Hospital. Connor had the idea of having Nike create shoes and sell them to raise funds. Michael then invited one of Nike’s shoe designers to take a tour of the hospital to inspire him to design a pair of shoes for Doernbecher. It was designer Marcus Tayui’s vision to see patients design the shoes with the proceeds benefiting the hospital that in many cases has saved their lives. Now in its ninth year, this extraordinary program has raised over $5 million for the hospital, which uses the funds for everything from clinical programs and hospital construction to providing care for uninsured children.”

What Nike does in their collaboration is awesome. The six children who are
selected each year are given the complete and final say in how their unique shoe will look. The materials, design theme, coloring, and even personal touches are all from them and their imaginations, without any limitation from Nike. One of my favorite personal touches is on a pair that I own. On the back of the shoe, under a small flap, is a graphic of a fork wrapped with spaghetti noodles, as this was one of the shoe designer’s favorite foods. The shoes have some great looks and I own a few of the pairs that have come out. Six designs are released each year and they are very collectible and always unique. It is a great cause and it is a way for everyone involved to have some fun, raise some much needed money, and make a real difference in several people’s lives. Thank you Doernbecher and thank you Nike.

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Bridget’s View: The Dead Girls Detective Agency

Finding a book to read that you actually like, while also not being embarrassed of the title or cover, is sometimes pretty challenging. When I saw The Dead Girls Detective Agency by Suzy Cox, I wasn’t sure if this was going to be one of those instances. The cover features a girl lying on the grass, with fog, clouds, or whatever other spooky mists you can think of coming from the title. It’s not the best cover in the world. Yet, the title was intriguing, so I started to read. I don’t think I stopped reading it for about two days (it helped that I was on a trip to see my family riding in a car for ten hours).

The book begins mysteriously, as our main character, Charlotte, dies within the first chapter. As I said in my first review, if you have a main character that dies at the start, you have no story. I wasn’t sure about how a story would progress after killing off the main character. Though in The Dead Girls Detective Agency, I had a feeling from the start that the main characters would be dead.

Here are the “rules” in the book: If you’re a teen in New York and you get murdered, you have to go to this hotel and live there, investigating the “Living” to solve your own murder. You can’t get to the afterlife until you find the murderer and the murderer has confessed.

(The plot gets a hint of chick lit when Charlotte discovers her boyfriend started dating members of the cheerleading squad—right after her death. Not to mention the three girl ghosts that help her with the investigation: the geek, the mean girl, and the semi-airhead shopping addict. And, in today’s Young Adult Fiction market, a love triangle is the equivalent of a cherry on top of a sundae. Here’s the thing though, Charlotte’s love triangle consists of Charlotte, her “Living” boyfriend, and a bad boy ghost.)

Here are the rules for reading this book: Don’t make any plans for the next few days. If you’re anything like me, you’ll be basically ignoring anyone who tries to talk to you, reading until 2 o’clock in the morning, and hiding this book inside whatever huge textbook you’re supposed to be studying from.

Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

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Beautiful Creatures

Any of you who have seen Breaking Dawn 2 in theaters have seen the new trailer for Beautiful Creatures, to be released in theaters February 13, 2013. Did you know this awesome story is based on a series (The Caster Chronicles) of Teen fiction novels? Beautiful Creatures, by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stone is the first book, followed by Beautiful Darkness, Beautiful Chaos and Beautiful Redemption

This supernatural love story follows Ethan Wate, who is haunted by dreams of a girl he’s never met. When new girl Lena Duchannes moves into his small southern town of Gatlin County, Ethan is inexplicably drawn to her. And he is determined to uncover the strange connection between them, even if it means uncovering the one secret that could change everything.

You can catch the trailer for the movie here and the official fan site here. There is still plenty of time to get reading too!

And of course, this post wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the brief, but ever so enticing Catching Fire trailer that debuted as well! Lots to look forward to in theaters. Stay tuned for another post on the upcoming City of Bones. Which are you most excited about?

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For the Love of the Shoes

It has been a while since I have posted about the new and fabulous shoes which Nike continues to release. Today I want to showcase and continue to talk about the Nike ID program. It is a great customization source for high quality shoes made with top notch materials. 2012 is the 30th Anniversary of the Air Force 1 and Nike has released limited materials each month all year long! November’s limited material is glow in the dark.

I have been obsessed with glow in the dark anything for all of my life. Something about it just draws me in, like a bug flying toward a light bulb. I keep building different pairs on the Nike ID website but have not been able to buy a pair…yet.  I keep waiting to see what other holiday treats there will be.

I bought a pair of the Wool Nike ID Air Force 1′s earlier this year and I love them. The whole process is so smooth and easy. The shoes are built and shipped to your door in less than 6 weeks, which is impressive considering the amazing amount of color combinations and that they ship from China. If you want shoes that are very likely to be the only pair exactly like them in your school or anywhere at all, the Nike ID program is an awesome and fun way to get quality, custom shoes for yourself or even for that sneakerhead in your circle of friends.  After all, the holidays are fast approaching!

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Bridget’s View

Happy September! School has started again, and I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling pretty overwhelmed already. I mean, what happened to sleeping in? Now, we’re so tired from getting so many things to do that we could really use the extra hour or two, am I right?

Anyway, DupliKate by Cherry Cheva is one of my favorite books right now, just because it describes what we’re all going through—or what it feels like, at least. Kate is busy with schoolwork and college applications and tutoring and—wow, this is really a lot. Now you know why she’s so exhausted!

But Kate has a little help.

You know those websites that let you create an avatar for yourself? And you can pick out different clothes and change your hairstyle? (It’s just like Facebook, really, because everyone looks better than they do in real life.) Well, Kate had an avatar in eighth grade, and guess what? The avatar somehow gets out of the computer.

So, now Kate has a pixilated twin. And she’s in waaay over her head with everything she has to do (our Kate has a little problem saying no to people.) Do you see where I’m going with this? Yes, Kate sends her avatar to school for her one day. Soon, the avatar is going to coffee with Kate’s friends, taking a test for Kate, and kissing a boy as Kate—but not Kate’s boyfriend.

Basically, picture an ABC Family movie, but with a little more sass. This book is definitely for you if you

a)    are feeling overwhelmed by the new school year,

b)   are looking for a book to read that wasn’t assigned by your English teacher,

or

c)    have just found that your little Webkinz puppy came to life. If so, you are not alone.

Happy school year, everybody!

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See the Zombie & Be the Zombie

Zombie makeup artists from Wicked Jester Entertainment will give five-minute zombie makeovers in preparation for the 2012 South Bend Zombie Walk on Saturday, September 8 at Howard Park. For Teens. Call 282-4614 for more information.

 

When: 9/6/2012

Time: 6:00 pm – 8:00 pm

Where: Main library

Location: Humphreys Multimedia Room

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