December 14, 2017

Best & Favorites of 2017

I thought I make a list of posts that readers may not have the chance to read or missed somehow. You're probably wondering why I'm posting this list now when the year is not even over. Let's just say I rather post this now then later when I won't even remember what I posted. Of course, this list is completely bias as I am talking about what I've created/written. So I guess this is what you would call 'self promoting'?

The Best of 2017

01/ Maroon
— art >> Link

02/ Korean dramas & honest taglines — I watch a lot of Korean (& Chinese) dramas & these are some of my favorites with my very-silly-but-honest taglines >> Link

03/ Seven silly & strange questions 
—  just some questions you may or may not want to answer >> Link

04/ The beast's library
— art  >> Link

05/ Mystery Blogger Award
— q&a of sorts >> Link

06/ Some blogging confessions
— just some honest talks and perhaps a little too much oversharing  >> Link

07/ Top ten items on my bucket list
— haven't done a single of these things yet >> Link

My Favorites of 2017:

01/ How to be good
— a somewhat sarcastic, almost real, almost practical, randomly chosen, honestly presented & foolishly believed list >> Link

02/ Fireworks, stars and dragons
— fiction >> Link

03/ Miss Dot-Dot
— art >> Link

04/ Hello, is this me?
— a little reflection on self image >> Link

05/ Favorite 'Beauty & The Beast' Retellings
— for now anyway >> Link

06/ Bear Meets Lion
— fiction >> Link

07/  What 'personal blog' means to me
— a little too much thinking >> Link

What's your favorite/best posts from your blog?

December 12, 2017

Favorite Books of 2017

Over at The Broke and the Bookish, this week's Top Ten Tuesday is your favorite books of 2017.  Since I usually read books years after they are published, this list is mostly of books I read this year. Here's my list in no particular order.

Barefoot on the wind by Zoë Marriott
01/ Barefoot on the wind by Zoë Marriott
Favorite Quote: "His silence and stillness felt like a chasm yawning between us now. And I found that I was sorry – and I wanted somehow to bridge the silence. Not to ask all the questions that burned inside me, to discover just what he meant – how could anyone forget their own name? – or where this strange home of his was, or what had happened to bring me here. Not even to attempt to placate him for my own safety. I had hurt him and I wanted to soothe the wound."

North Child by Edith Pattou
02/ North Child by Edith Pattou (also known by the previous title 'East')
Favorite Quote: "...The steps of things are where life is truly found, in doing the day-to-day tasks. Caught up in the world of enchantment as I had been at the castle, it had been the routine things I had missed most, which was why I had set up that laundry room and insisted on doing my own washing. But I had missed so much. Sitting at the table back home and peeling potatoes with my mother and sisters in companionable silence. Feeding the chickens, their urgent feathery bodies crowding my legs, and looking up to see Neddy coming back from the fields. Going on one of my long exploring walks, having a blister come up on my heel but at the same time stumbling upon a fox den and catching a brief glimpse of a mother fox nursing a brand-new litter of kits. And though I might have wished away the blister, slowing down to favour the pain in my heel was part of how I came to see the kits."
Hunted by Megan Spooner
03/ Hunted by Megan Spooner
Favorite Quote: "She had always been Beauty when they hunted together, always Beauty when he tucked her in at night. He called her Yeva now, because she was to be a fine lady someday, and her proper name was the one society knew. And yet there was always a half second's pause before he said that name, a tiny catch in his voice that was all that remained of who she'd been before."

Futhermore by Tahereh Mafi
04/ Futhermore by Tahereh Mafi
Favorite quote: "Alice was an odd girl, even for Ferenwood, where the sun occasionally rained and the colors were brighter than usual and magic was as common as a frowning parent. Her oddness was evident even in the simplest things she did, though most especially in her inability to walk home in a straight line. She stopped too many times, wandering off the main path, catching deep breathes and holding them, too selfish to let them go."

The Marvelous Magic of Miss Mabel by Natasha Lowe
05/ The Marvelous Magic of Miss Mabel by Natasha Lowe
Favorite Quote: "...don't you get the shivers just looking at all that space, wondering what's up there? I want to invent a broomstick to fly to the moon."

Anyone but Ivy Pocket / Somebody stop Ivy Pocket / Bring me the head of Ivy Pocket by Caleb Krisp & Illustrated by Barbara Cantini
06/ Anyone but Ivy Pocket / Somebody stop Ivy Pocket / Bring me the head of Ivy Pocket by Caleb Krisp & Illustrated by Barbara Cantini
Favorite Quote: "I am remarkably good in a crisis – for I have all the natural instincts of a five-star general – so in no time at all, I had formed a plan. I picked up my carpetbag and headed down to the lobby, replacing my anxiety with the flickering flame of hope. The streets of Paris were sure to lead to adventure and opportunity. No doubt I would stumble upon something utterly thrilling. Or I might end up a beggar, friendless and starving. Which would be terribly inconvenient. But on the bright side – how wonderfully tragic!"
– from Anyone But Ivy Pocket

The Crow-Girl by Bodil Bredsdorff translated from the Danish by Faith Ingwersen
07/ The Crow-Girl by Bodil Bredsdorff translated from the Danish by Faith Ingwersen (The first of The Children of Crow Cove series)
Favorite Quote: "Her eyes were dark blue, nearly black in the dim light. She had a large curved nose and dark, bristly hair that was very short in front where the fire had singed it."

The island at the end of everything by Kiran Millwood Hargrave
08/ The island at the end of everything by Kiran Millwood Hargrave
Favorite Quote: "And now I see them clearly for what they are: the colours patterning each wing, the black bodies, some large, some small, and all of them shifting like breath across the clearing. Butterflies. Dozens, maybe hundreds of them, coasting on the air like a visible, fluttering wind."

09/Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick
09/Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick
Favorite Quote: "Ben wished the world was organized by the Dewey decimal system. That way you'd be able to find whatever you were looking for, like the meaning of your dreams, or your dad."

Matilda by Roald Dahl with illustrations by Quentin Blake
10/ Matilda by Roald Dahl with illustrations by Quentin Blake
Favorite Quote: "Being very small and very young, the only power Matilda had over anyone in her family was brainpower. For sheer cleverness she could run rings around them all."

Find more favorite books at the The Broke and the Bookish.

What are your favorite books of 2017? 

December 10, 2017

still my favorite places to visit

is there a cat napping in the shadows there?
When I saw this post from Ness Kingsley in which she listed some of her favorite blogs that she have followed for years, it made me think about all the bloggers and blogs I have known. Sadly, many of my favorite bloggers have stopped blogging and probably will never return to blogging. They're mostly somewhere or offline.

I debated whether to post this list as it seems like I'm favoring particular bloggers but isn't having a blog means sharing and promoting not only yourself but others? The blogs on this list (in no particular order) are from bloggers that I have known almost since the day I started blogging which seems like a million years ago but who's counting?

01/ knitting the wind  > link 
Knitting the wind has been one of my favorite blog names for a long while. Sarah had switched blog address from time to time but she has returned to this address, I think recently (I haven't exactly been checking dates). Visiting Sarah's blog is like a dream. One of those good dreams full of splendid imaginary and calmness and stories from a far away place. She blogs from New Zealand which is very far from where I am but isn't it wonderful we can meet people so far from us?

02/ Christine's Blog > link
I don't have the motivation as Christine to post every day but I'm glad she does. She is certainly the most consistent blogger that I know. I always find something to be amused by with what she writes. In between posts about every day life, Christine also posts her lovely artworks.

03/ Michael MacVean Illustration > link
I find Michael's artwork very inspiring. I like his loose, easy strokes, almost the opposite of my own style as I tend to perfect my lines. I suppose that's why I find Michael's drawing style particularly likeable. This blog, 'Michael MacVean Illustration,' is not the blog I originally followed but it has been around a lot longer than most of my blogs. I still sort of prefer his previous blog name – dotty hill.

04/ Beauty Flows > link
Tammie Lee's artwork is one great reason I still follow her blog all these years. Her color choices are always perfect. I feel like a slacker when compare to how much artwork Tammie creates. She also runs a photography blog fill with wonderful nature photos over here.

05/ Carrie Loves > link
I have learned a lot about blog design and htmls and all kinds of tricks & tips from Carrie. Her blog haven't always been just about blogs and design, there are other fun things in between. And I like her spunk. And her design style - clean, organized, aesthetically pleasing. So Carrie haven't posted in a long while but there are still a lot of useful posts on her blog if you need some tips.

06/ Land of Candy Canes > link
I always have fun reading Katrin's posts. 'Never a dull thought' might be the way to describe them. I sort of think she shares the same kind of sense of humor so I suppose that's why I like reading her blog. Sadly, she have not updated her blog in a long while. Perhaps she will return to blogging someday.

07/ Carver's Cards > link
I don't even remember when I started following Carver's blog, it might have been from when I started blogging but I don't remember. I like her sky & nature photography and also, she lives in such a nice place that looks like the country side which really is North Carolina. I always have a nice visit reading her blog.

08/ Selma in the city > link
Selma is a wonderful writer. I dearly love reading her essays about life. But sadly Selma has stopped blogging. She is mostly at twitter which I don't follow but I'm grateful to have discovered her blog though I really wish she hadn't stopped blogging.

09/ Alexandra MacVean Illustration > link
I got to know Alexandra through her previous blog 'Remember Paris' (or something similar as I don't recall the exact name) but I do vaguely remember being a bit sad when she closed her blog but thankfully, she started again. Alexandra's current blog with her namesake is similar but I think, more cheerful posts with adorable artworks.

10/ New kid on the cape > link
You might say Frances is my very first blog buddy. We even collaborated on a photography blog called 'the daytrippers' which is still around though no updates. Frances had been blogging a lot longer than me and I think she might even have more blogs under her belt than me. I have been following her since 'blogjem' to 'just expressing myself' and many others, and even sometimes design a header or two for her. She has so much energy and I think a lot of stories to tell. Technically, 'New kid on the cape' is a new blog but as long as she is blogging, new blogs are always welcome.

11/ La Vie Graphite > link
Abraham posts lots of profound writings, travel notes & photography and if you're especially into reading intellectual essays, then you should go visit his blog. I must admit I don't always have the patience to read the long posts or completely understood what is written, but there is something about Abraham's words that just reminds me of good days, long-forgotten thoughts & there's a little bit of dream-like feel to them too. Most of his posts are rather long but worth reading if you have the time.

There would have been a lot of more blogs on this list but most of them don't exist anymore and sadly, I don't have a list of names to search for them. If you're interested in more blogs, visit my blogroll here — all my favorite blogs are there. What blogs have you been reading/following since you've started blogging?

December 7, 2017

Top Ten Thursday: favorite art

This week's Top Ten Thursday is favorite pieces of art such as paintings, classical music, sculptures, literature, theater plays, operas, etc. As you can tell, I'm more into paintings then most type of art. Here's my list:

01/ Automat by Edward Hopper — you might have noticed my blogger icon is a recreation of this painting but not exactly, it's here if you would like to see it.

02/ Cello Suite No. 1 in G Major by Johann Sebastian Bach — I just love this song but I can't explain why I like it. I have this song in my iTunes and Yo-yo Ma is the artist. You can listen here.
Image is from here.

03/ Love Letter soundtrack by Remedios — this is the soundtrack to the 1995 Japanese film of the same name which I also love. The soundtrack is so perfect for the film and it has been one of my favorite film sountrack for a long while.  It's very dreamy and delicate and well, you just have to listen. I couldn't find a site that have samples but I did find this youtube video for the song 'frozen summer' here.

04/  Strawberry Fields in Central Park designed by Bruce Kelly & dedicated to John Lennon — when I visited Central Park, I got lost trying to find this art as I didn't have a map but I did find it and it's beautiful though I thought it would be bigger. Strawberry Fields is at West 72nd Street, NYC 10019, more info here

05/  Portrait of a Young Woman Drawing by Marie-Denise Villers — I've not known this piece for long but I do love it for it's light and shadow which is perfectly rendered especially her white gown. There is a somehow half-amused look to her face that I like very much. For more info go here.

06/ The starry starry night by Vincent van Gogh — always a favorite though I've never seen it in person
07/ Musician Angel by Rosso Fiorentino — don't know why but I like this angel and even created an art piece inspired by this piece

08/ Young Girl Reading by Jean-Honoré Fragonard — don't you just love the folds/shadows in her sleeves/dress??

09/ The Brooklyn Bridge designed by John Augustus Roebling — I have walked the Brooklyn Bridge countless times and it always seems like I've walked it always in winter, not even sure how that happened.  More info here

10/ Jimmy Liao art — anything Jimmy Liao draws is my favorite and I want to create art like his. I actually have about twenty of his books and whenever I sort of get struck for ideas, I flip through those books.
What are your favorite art?

For more Top Ten Thursdays, visit Tamara's blog here >

December 6, 2017

Don't buy me these things

 ~ the gift of reading ~
I don't know who this list is for since I don't really get presents during the holidays as I don't celebrate Christmas but I like the idea of giving/receiving gifts. Also, I think people should let others know what they don't like especially since money is going to be spent.

Definitely... NO :

01/ coffee related things – I really don't like the scent of coffee. I never got used to the smell or the taste so no coffee for me

02/ wine/alcohol  – I never drank in my life unless you count cooking alcohol & I never have any interest in drinking either

03/ anything that requires me to sign up for membership – I am sick of having to sign up for everything but that doesn't mean I wouldn't if something is really good such as a free lifetime supplies of new books, I wouldn't refuse that...

04/ lavender or anything that smells like lavender – I once received a sack bag that you place under your pillow that is suppose to be soothing and it made me nauseous and I had to throw it away. Actually, I'm not sure if it was lavender but it was purple and looked like lavender. I guess anything with a strong scent or odor would put me off.

05/ anything that has a kind of personalized engraving of sorts – I do not like having things with my name on them

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Most Likely... YES :

06/ paper goods – blank notebooks, sketch/drawing books, stationarys, bookmarks, postcards...

07/ art & craft kits – any diy (do it yourself) such as this snowman diy kit or this autumn leaves embroidery kit or this dreamcatcher kit

08/ gift certificates – to book stores, clothes stores, digital movies & music such as Apple, or for something useful like a desk clock or perhaps something cute like a desk clock shaped like a bunny? the possibilities are endless.

09/ patience – okay, so patience is not something you can buy but it is something you can give, right?

10/ books, books, books – fiction yes. horror, zombies, vampires - no, no, no!

What's on your yes and no list?

November 29, 2017

scribble picnic: generous

'generous gift'

This week's Scribble Picnic is 'generous.' I didn't really have any ideas until the last minute and so this piece is incomplete. He was going to eat a generous slice of cake but it turned into a candy cane gift instead. < See more Scribbles here >

November 23, 2017

Top Ten Thursday: favorite pastries & cakes

coconut buns egg custard tarts chinese swiss rolls roast pork buns

This week's Top Ten Thursday is list your favorite cakes, pastries, cookies or pies.

01/ egg custard tarts — I don't remember when I first tasted egg tarts but it have always been one of my favorite treats

02/ lemon / strawberry cake — I'm sure there are many different types of lemon and strawberry cakes but the ones I'm used to eating are from a cake mix such as Duncan Hines

03/ cheesecake / strawberry cheesecake — haven't eat any cheesecakes lately but I like to eat them once in a while

04/ blueberry muffins — I like the soft kind with real blueberries

05/ sweet potato pie — some people like pumpkin pies but I prefer sweet potato

06/ all butter loaf cake — the Entenmann's brand kind, I haven't tasted other kinds

07/ lemon cream cookies/biscuits — like oreos but rectangle

08/ chinese swiss rolls — I like the kind with white cream or something similar

09/ coconut buns — similiar to swiss rolls, I like the kind with white cream

10/ roast pork buns — this has always been a favorite for as long as I can remember, I like to eat them while they are still hot

What are your favorite pastries or cakes?

For more Top Ten Thursday, visit Tamara's blog here.

November 8, 2017

Scibble Picnic: cookie

'egg tales' - click on the image for a larger view
closeup 1 - click on the image for a larger view
closeup 2 - click on the image for a larger view
This week's Scribble Picnic is cookie. I finished an old piece that happens to have cookies in it.  For more Scribble Picnic, go here.

November 3, 2017

News from nowhere & other thoughts

'the joy fairy' - unfinished
01/ There are no news but I wish I have some to post because I'm sort of mad at myself for being so lazy but I can't help it. I'm creatively lacking. I can't seem to finish anything or even start on anything new. It only bothers me slightly when I think about how much time I've wasted but the whole of October has passed and there's nothing I can do about that.

02/ My last post is just two weeks ago but it feels like a long while. I guess on the web, everything moves so quickly that a day feel like a week. But I don't feel bad for not posting. Well, maybe a little bit. But I have been blogging for a long while now so I suppose now is my 'post-whenever-I-feel-like-it' phase. For me, consistent posting is not something I can do but I do try to post enough to let people know I still blog.

03/ I'm thinking of posting just once or twice a month because things move so quickly that just posting once in a while is enough. But it's just an idea though I seem to have adopted it as I only posted twice in October. I guess the lazy part of me would like to do this but the other active part of me probably will rebel against it.

04/ Some post ideas that I thought up but didn't use:
a) list of chores my (fake) husband can do so I don't have to
b) tag lines for my non-existing blogs
c) list of things I should do but won't
d) how watching dramas could lead to a better existence

05/ I watched a lot of tv dramas instead of reading. Here are the dramas I finished watching in October:

a) Secret Forest aka Stranger
It had a good beginning and the pacing is quite fast but I find it's a bit boring as the characters don't seem to have much to do with each other in terms of relationships. It's more about corruption/bribery/politics/murder and there's hardly any humor in it and having the lead character having almost no emotions really makes the show a bit stale. The actors are great but their characters are just so-so. It would have been better if there were more conflicts or more personal stories but it's not a bad show though it's a very serious show.

b) Queen of Mystery aka Mystery Queen
I just wonder why the housewife aka the queen of mystery is so afraid to offend her family or why she wears the most frumpy/awful clothes and for someone so smart, she certainly have trouble confronting her family. Also, why is the detective such a jerk? Just because he has a tragic past, that doesn't make it justifiable. The housewife also have a tragic past which leads me to wonder if there are characters that have normal, happy childhoods in dramaland. The crimes are kind of forgettable and yet, it's strangely an enjoyable show to watch. I wouldn't have finished this drama if not for the characters.

c) Voice
A bit of a violent show but then I did expected that, but it was still too violent. People keeps dying and there seems to be no end. Some of the cases were actually quite good like the bus story at the end but the overall story about the woman and man finding out the truth about her father's/his wife's deaths is a bit stretched out. Why does it takes so long to reveal the truth? The show's a bit creepy sometimes but if you don't mind the violence, you'll probably enjoy the show.

d) Suspicious Housekeeper
I'm mostly bored by the children's storylines and even the dad's affair is a bit lukewarm. The housekeeper is the only interesting character which is good because most of the show centers around her. But even after we got to know what happened to her, she just doesn't seem like a character I would like. I sort of like her robot-like personality better. It's too bad they didn't go the supernatural route, like make her an alien or a robot, that might make a more interesting show instead of all these family dramas that just seems too cliche and depressing. I admit, I fast-forward a bit. My favorite character is the director woman, she has the most silly laugh but I think her character is the most fun to watch. Overall, not a bad show though the second half of the show seems to take a strange turn to being a revenge show but it stays the same at the end.

Find out about these shows here:

06/ I'm definitely going to do some writing this month but not much. Anyone doing NaNoWriMo aka National Novel Writing Month this November? I've done NaNoWriMo a few times and even though I was completely stressed out by it, I still think it's rewarding as I did get to write a lot. I don't think NaNoWriMo it for everyone but there's no harm in writing, is there?

07/ Here's a little quiz:
A man walks into a bar. He asks the bartender to 'make me a writer'. The bartender picks up a book off the shelf and hits the man on the head several times. The man is shocked. He asks 'What's that for?' The bartender replies with 'I'm making you a writer.'

What do you think the moral/meaning/point of the story is?
(a) The man shouldn't have gone to a bar.
(b) The man should have asked for a different drink.
(c) The bartender clearly knows his drinks.
(d) The man and the bartender are enemies and the bartender took the chance to do what he wanted.
(e) The bartender is a writer & he knew writing is not easy and anyone who thinks becoming a writer is easy probably deserves to be beaten senseless.
(f) Who cares, let's get drunk.
(g) None of the above.

And the answer is... There is no answer because it's a story so you either care what's going on or you don't. So what's the point of this little quiz? You decide what that is.

What things are on your mind today?

October 18, 2017

Scribble Picnic: Fill in the Blank

This week's Scribble Picnic is fill in the blank. I did this little animation.  For more Scribble Picnic, go here.

October 9, 2017

owner of a quiet heart

'a quiet heart'
I was going to write something today but nothing came to me so, enjoy this art piece and this quote:

“I understood that as much as I had resisted the outside, as much as I had constricted my life, as much as I had closed and narrowed the channels into me, there were still many takers for the quiet heart.”
The Pleasure of My Company by Steve Martin

September 29, 2017

Books read in August & September

"Reading is dreaming with open eyes." - YoYo
Here are some of the books I have finished reading with some bits of my opinion.

01/ The Blue Castle by L.M. Montgomery
The beginning of 'The Blue Castle' is great but the middle is a bit slow with nothing much happening but wonderful details of Valancy's new life. The ending is a bit quick and maybe a bit too perfect. I had some guesses that turned out correct. I also kind of expected the story to end this way because I just don't see it ending any other way. So even though there are no surprises and everything just seem so conventional and even a bit mild, I still enjoyed reading the book. I just have a few thoughts:

(a) I don't like the way people around Valancy keeps telling her how unpretty she is and that she lacks beauty. That's just, I don't know, kind of being rude isn't it?  Does she really need the reminder all the time?

(b) I still don't like her name – Valancy – but it's definitely better than the nickname her family give her - Doss.

(c) about the ending – SPOILER AHEAD >>> I think a family who dismissed you and thought of you as dead, suddenly accepted you back because you it turned out the man you married is actually a millionaire and not a murderer or criminal, doesn't seem like a family you want back. They don't even apologize for their awful behavior toward Valancy. Like everything is perfectly acceptable as long as you marry someone rich.  >>>SPOILER ENDS 

Favorite Passage:
"You see — I've never had any real life", she said. "I've just — breathed."

02/ Little Dorrit by Charles Dickens
Reading Dickens is a bit challenging. I like Dickens writing style most of the time – it's quite elegant and sometimes quite blunt with great details but sometimes I think when I'm reading, I'm being taken through a rather long route just to get to the point. And there are exhausted details that I rather not read but I guess if they aren't there and if the length is not long then it wouldn't be a Dickens' book right?

'Little Dorrit' started in a jail with two characters neither which is Little Dorrit nor Arthur Clennam which I thought is rather disappointing but these two are important characters. I sort of want a better introduction to Little Dorrit because in the scene when she is supposed to be seen by Arthur Clennam, she was there but isn't mentioned until later, like she is an afterthought.

I actually saw the miniseries with Claire Foy & Matthew Macfadyen first before reading the book. I know people often say the book is better but to me, the miniseries is better because the stories are condensed and the extraneous characters are removed and I don't have to spend hours waiting for something to happen.

Favorite Passage:
"It was one of those summer evenings when there is no greater darkness than a long twilight. The vista of street and bridge was plain to see, and the sky was serene and beautiful. People stood and sat at their doors, playing with children and enjoying the evening; numbers were walking for air; the worry of the day had almost worried itself out, and few but themselves were hurried. As they crossed the bridge, the clear steeples of the many churches looked as if they had advanced out of the murk that usually enshrouded them and come much nearer. The smoke that rose into the sky had lost its dingy hue and taken a brightness upon it. The beauties of the sunset had faded from the long light films of cloud that lay at peace in the horizon. From a radiant centre, over the whole length and breadth of the tranquil firmament, great shoots of light streamed among the early stars, like signs of the blessed later covenant of peace and hope that changed the crown of thorns into a glory."

03/ Daddy-Long-Legs and Dear Enemy by Jean Webster
'Daddy-Long-Legs' is a bit of a bit one-sided as the story is told completely in letters by Judy aka Jerusha Abbott to Daddy-long-leg aka Mr. smith. It does starts with a short passage which sets up the reason for the letters. I kind of guessed who Daddy-Long-Legs is just by the introduction of a certain character and Judy got along with that character really well though there really weren't that many to choose from anyway.

'Dear Enemy' is sort of a sequel to 'Daddy-Long-Legs' with the similar letter format. Sallie is Judy's friend and she writes her letters to Judy and various other people. I think there are more happenings in 'Dear Enemy' though it's more of the same but probably with a little bit more drama. We get some bits/news about Judy which is kind of nice. I actually like Sallie a lot better than Judy. There just seems to be more depth to Sallie's character here or perhaps we get more about her feelings than Judy in 'Daddy-Long-Leg.'

'Daddy-Long-Legs' and 'Dear Enemy' are fun to read and both have cute drawings by Webster that adds to the humor.

Favorite Passage:
"I went to bed last night utterly dejected; I thought I was never going to amount to anything, and that you have thrown away your money for nothing. But what do you think? I woke up this morning with a beautiful new plot in my head, and I've been going about all day planning my characters, just as happy as I could be. No one can ever accuse me of being a pessimist! If I had a husband and twelve children swallowed by an earthquake one day, I'd bob up smilingly the next morning and commence to look for another set."
–  'Daddy-Long-Legs'

04/ The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis
#1 - The Magician's Nephew
#2 - The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe
#3 - The Horse and His Boy
#4 - Prince Caspian
#5 - The Voyage of the Dawn Treader
#6 - The Silver Chair
#7 - The Last Battle

I read 'The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe' first because I got interested in that book because of the movie which I never saw but I have seen gifs and scenes from the movie that bloggers used in their posts. So I suppose blogging isn't a lost medium like people say because that's pretty much where I find my next read.

Not reading in order didn't make the reading confusing because there are summary of the pervious storylines and the books are self-contained so they can be read in any order.

The writing is very direct and there's no fluff. These are very short books that you can read in one sitting. My favorite of the series 'The horse and his boy' because it doesn't involve the Pevensies children, I don't really like them except for Lucy, I'm sorry to say. Plus the talking horse is named Breehy-hinny-brinny-hoohy-hah or Bree for short and he's a horse that likes to roll on his back.

Ending of the series – SPOILER AHEAD >>> I don't quite sure I like the ending to this series. They all died and get to live in Narnia like a afterlife reward? Sounds a bit too, I don't know, nice? Or perhaps superfluous? And what about Susan & her wanting to be an adult? So Susan lost her imagination and that is why she can't come to Narnia anymore? And what about the fact she is left alone in England with most of her family dead? Are we to ignore that? I could ignore Susan but mostly because I'm not attached to her. I guess I was just a little bit disappointed by the end but it's not a terrible ending.  >>> SPOILER ENDS

Cover notes: I have the paper editions with really nice art but I'm annoyed that the cover for 'The Voyage of the Dawn Treader' has that stupid printed-on sticker about the 'made for movie' announcement. What is the point of a beautiful cover just to have some stupid announcement which I don't care about anyway?

Favorite Passage:
"You don't think, do you," said Bree, "that it might be a thing talking horses never do — a silly, clownish trick I've learned from the dumb ones? It would be dreadful to find, when I get back to Narnia, that I've picked a lot of low, bad habits. What do you think, Shasta? Honestly, now. Don't spare my feelings. Should you think the real, free horses — the talking kind — do roll?"
– 'The Horse and His Boy'

Have you read any good books lately? Leave your recommendations in the comments.
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