Books I have read recently

  • Shirley by Charlotte Bronte — I'm reading a giant biography of the Brontes "Wild Genius on the Moors" By Juliet Barker (amazing!! but I'll post on that when I finish) So I'm reading each novel as it's discussed in the book. I loved Shirley. I have to agree with the critics that it is a slow painful start and it does take about 150 pages till we meet the title character Shirley. But besides that, it is so well written. Caroline Helstone’s angst is beautiful and poignant. And knowing that the last third of the book was written after Emily & Anne died explains so much about the change in the book. Charlotte likes to fix her world by writing about it and in her version the sick heroine recovers where her sisters did not. I definitely recommend Shirley for the Bronte fan. Don’t skip it.
  • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas --- It took me a couple chapters to really dive in but after that I was in love. I had read somewhere that it was based on Beauty & the Beast, which is great. What I did not know is that it is a retelling of one of my favorite fairytales: East of the Sun, West of the Moon!!! What a treat when I discovered that. I love that story. It's whimsical and the girl saves the day which I love love love. Sarah does a beautiful job of it and I can't wait for the next one!!
  • Miss Buncle’s Book by D. E. Stevenson —What a little treat. My mom gave these books to me for my birthday and there are so much fun. It’s a light easy read and it made me chuckle.
  • Shadow Study by Maria V. Snyder— I adore her soul finder books. I’ve been reading them for years. She builds beautiful strong women and sweeping romance. Her magic system is unique and I want to live in her world.
  • The Elements of Style by William Strunk Jr and E. B. White — A must read for every writer. Thanks to Stephen King for the recommendation. It has all those little things that I had questions about and answered them quickly and succinctly. It’s not the funnest read but it’s helpful.
  • Click of Titles to go to the book's Amazon page

Thursday, May 31, 2012


So we are safe and sound at home... Now it's time for pictures!!!
I meant to upload as we went but Matt's iPad did not get along with Blogspot.

Universal Studios Tour of Harry Potter.  The actual sets, props, and costumes they used in the movies.

Me hailing the Knight Bus

Petting Buckbeak. The night before we went to HP Studios I had a dream that Buckbeak was really and I freed him from the Studios. So when I went to pretend to pet him he moved and for a second I thought "Buckbeak is a alive! My dream was true" But alas he was just a robot programed to move every couple minutes :(

Weasley's Wizard Wheezes!! OMG!

The Palace of Versailles

The Gardens

There is this bridge right behind Notre Dame that is covered in "Love Locks". You each kiss the lock, then kiss each other and make a love wish. Then you throw the key in the river. Corny but fun!

Eiffel Tower at night!

Sweet precious Sebastion!!!

Having a rest at the top of the hill near the castle.

Having a treat on the beach.

Stupid mosquitos!!!! My face got all swollen.

Matt & Flat Jake on the Rialto Bridge in Venice


"Il Domo"  The Church
Santa Maria del Fiore

The Trevi Fountain

On the stage at the Colosseum!!!!


We went into the "Wedding Cake" Palazzo Venenzia

Really pretty view from the top.
*Note* Seagulls are very aggressive lol

Well there you go. Europe in 24 pictures. Just enough for you to get a taste.
Thanks for looking.