Top Ten Tuesday – Movie Freebie!

toptentuesday

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is not book related, but should still be fun – Movie Freebie! With the weather getting colder and December only a few weeks away (yikes), I’m going with Top Ten Movies I Watch Each Winter.

Now, some of these wouldn’t necessarily make a film critic’s greatest-of-all-time list but I still love them!

hp

Harry Potter – Because the year just doesn’t feel complete with out a HP marathon!

little-women
Little Women – I love this one! Now if I can just convince my husband to watch it with me.

diehard
Die Hard – It’s technically a Christmas movie, right?

starwars
Star Wars – A Star Wars marathon is great on a snow day.

holiday
The Holiday – This is total fluff and I love it.

anne
Anne of Green Gables – I must watch this every winter. No matter what.

christmasstory
A Christmas Story – Tradition.

elf

Elf – I love Elf! It cracks me up. My neighbors have a huge Buddy cutout they put up every year that is awesome. They also have a HUGE blowup Stay Puft marshmallow man they put out during Halloween. Basically, they have amazing taste in holiday decor.

homealone
Home Alone – A classic.

loveactually
Love, Actually – I have a very serious love of this movie. My favorite story line is probably the Colin Firth one but they are all great.

Do you re-watch movies during the winter months? What are some of your favorites?

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toptentuesday

Time for Top Ten Tuesday! This week is a Halloween related freebie so I’m going with my top ten books to read before/during Halloween! These are books I found to be eerie, suspenseful, dark, and/or just plain scary!

jamaica-inn

Jamaica Inn (honorable mention to Rebecca!) – I really like Daphne du Maurier’s books and Jamaica Inn is one of my favorites.

shining

The Shining – I  read this because I was too scared to watch the movie and thought the book wouldn’t freak me out as much. I was wrong.

nos4a2

NOS4A2 – The author of this bookhappens to be the son of Stephen King. This works well as a Halloween or Christmas read (if you like being terrified at Christmas.) Here is the blurb:

Victoria McQueen has a secret gift for finding things: a misplaced bracelet, a missing photograph, answers to unanswerable questions. On her Raleigh Tuff Burner bike, she makes her way to a rickety covered bridge that, within moments, takes her wherever she needs to go, whether it’s across Massachusetts or across the country.

Charles Talent Manx has a way with children. He likes to take them for rides in his 1938 Rolls-Royce Wraith with the NOS4A2 vanity plate. With his old car, he can slip right out of the everyday world, and onto the hidden roads that transport them to an astonishing – and terrifying – playground of amusements he calls “Christmasland.”

winter

Winter People – I’ve mentioned this one in the past so I won’t say too much on this other than than it was creepy. Definitely a good Halloween pick.

dracula

Dracula – Of course!

morethan

More Than You Know – I’ve mentioned this as well in the past so I’ll just say it’s a ghost story, a quick read, and I really enjoyed it.

Emerson Hills

Emerson Hills – You can check out my author interview with Nicole here. Definitely a Halloween-appropriate book if you are looking for an indie author to check out.

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Devil in the White City – This is such a great book. This is a true story of the 1893 World’s Fair as well as a serial killer that used the fair to lure his victims. This book is incredibly interesting.

sharp-objects

Gone Girl or Sharp Objects or Dark Places – Obviously Gone Girl is the most popular but Sharp Objects and Dark Places are darker in tone, I think.

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In the Blood – Ugh. This book was keeping me up at night. The kid in this is just…no.

Do you like scary books? What are some of your favorites?

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Characters I’d Name a Pet After!

toptentuesday

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic is fun – Ten Characters I’d Name a Pet after! [You can also do child, car, etc.]

addy

Addy (American Girls) – When I was a kid I loved the American Girl dolls. I had the Samantha doll and read the books for each girl that was out at the time. I named one of my cats Addy, after Addy Walker.

john_watson

Watson (Sherlock Holmes) – I feel like this would be a good name for a cat. Preferably one those cute ones with a smushed face.

finn

Finn (Huckleberry Finn) – Not much to say here, I just like the name.

catch-22

Milo (Catch-22) – A perfect name for a dog, if you ask me.

frankenstein

Frankie (Frankenstein) – I had a cat named Frankie. The original owners named him Frankenstein because he had a white lighting bolt-looking patch of hair down the center of his face. He was adorable.

darcy

Darcy (Pride & Prejudice) – I think this could work for a male or female pet.

daisy

Daisy (The Great Gatsby) – I have a little shih-poo (half miniature poodle, half shih-tzu) named Daisy. I’ve always liked the name, I think it’s sweet.

little women

Jo (Little Women) – When I got my cat Addy, I also got her sister, Josie. I was inspired by Josephine March in Little Women when I picked the name.

blanche

Blanche (A Streetcar Named Desire) – Plus it would remind you of the Golden Girls, and that’s fun.Stella also works (probably a little better.)

passenger

Blue (The Passenger) – I’m picturing a dog with this name but it could work for anything, really.

I can’t wait to read your lists! Feel free to posts links in the comments below 🙂

Top Ten Tuesday – Books Read Because of a Recommendation!

toptentuesday

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic: Books You Read Because of a Recommendation! The following books were recommended to me by friends and family – some I enjoyed, others…not so much.

weight

The Weight of Blood: This is a murder mystery/psychological thriller that takes place in the Ozarks. This was recommended by a friend who has similar taste in books and movies. I really enjoyed this book. It’s not a pleasant story but it’s well written and held my interest from start to finish.

50-shades-of-grey

50 Shades of Grey: I had multiple friends and family reading this (and enjoying it) so I finally gave in and got the book. This was probably some of the worst writing in a published book I’ve ever read. I do not get why people love this. Well, I mean I get it but…no.

the_hunger_games

The Hunger Games: This was recommended by a classmate. I saw her reading it before class one day and thought the title was interesting. I asked her about it (having never actually spoken to her before), and she raved about it. I bought it the next day and thought it was great!

the martian

The Martian: This was recommended (and loaned to me) by a coworker/friend. We also went to see the movie together when it came out! Great book and a great movie.

a-walk-to-remember

A Walk to Remember: I have a family member that is obsessed with Nicholas Sparks. When I casually mentioned I hadn’t read any of his books, she suggested I start with this one, her favorite. I didn’t become a Sparks super fan but it was better than I expected it to be.

randomfamily

Random Family: Love, Drugs, Trouble, and Coming of Age in the Bronx: This was recommended to me by a high school teacher (he gave me his personal copy, now that I think of it.) It’s a true story and I could not put it down.

my-sisters-keeper-lg

My Sister’s Keeper: This was recommended by a cousin, who happens to be a big Jodi Piccult fan. I have mixed feelings about this book. I didn’t particularly care for the ending (at all) but it did tackle a difficult subject and raised some interesting questions. I don’t think I would recommend it to others though, just because I was so annoyed at the end.

marley-and-me-book

Marley & Me: This was recommended by my mom. I’ll start by saying I don’t like books or movies about animals because I usually end up crying. That being said, I really enjoyed this and it made me laugh out loud numerous times. And yes, I still wound up crying.

Shiver

Shiver: This was recommended by a friend and fellow fan of YA. She pitched it to me as “like Twilight but better.” I didn’t really care for it but I’ve read some really good reviews of other books by this author so I will give her books another try.

shuuter-island-book-cover

Shutter Island: This was a recommendation by the same friend as mentioned above. I read it just before the movie came out. Since then I’ve read seven other Dennis Lehane books and plan on reading Mystic River in 2017.

Do you read books recommended by friends or do you prefer to pick them on your own?

Top Ten Tuesday – TV Shows!

toptentuesday

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic: In honor of fall TV, do a TV-themed topic! I was originally going to somehow tie in a book theme with this (being that this is a book blog and all) but instead I’m going with TV Shows I Discovered This Year.

Some of these are NOT new – I just happened to start watching them a lot later than everyone else!

Ferguson

New Girl – I actually watched the first season of this when it debuted and really liked it. My husband had never seen it and we couldn’t find anything good on TV so we decided to watch an episode. A month later and we’d watched all 5 seasons! (Thanks, snow days!)

Making a Murderer

Making a Murderer – I’ve recently started watching Netflix and they have so many interesting shows! My coworker insisted I watch this and I was hooked by episode 2. With the recent news that Brendan Dassey’s conviction was overturned I’m sure there will be another season of this.

Stranger Things 2
Stranger Things

Stranger Things – Okay, I LOVED this. This was another Netflix binge watch (sensing a theme yet?) and it was so good. The best way I can describe this is: mix together Goonies and E.T. and then make it really creepy.

FARGO -- Pictured: Billy Bob Thornton as Lorne Malvo -- CR: FX/Matthias Clamer
FARGO

Fargo – If you haven’t seen this (and don’t mind violence) you need to watch this ASAP. Both seasons are fantastic. They manage to pull in some really great actors, too.

Kimmy Schmidt

Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt – First of all, the theme song is the best. This is a really quirky show and it cracks me up. Tina Fey is one of the producers – she also appears now and then – and if you watched 30 Rock you’ll like this, I think.

Jinx

The Jinx – I watched this while I had a free HBO trial and oh my God, this guy is bizarre. Watch this, then check out All Good Things with Ryan Gosling and Kirsten Dunst. And then be weirded out forever.

Bob's Burgers

Bob’s Burgers – I am not usually a cartoon person. I don’t watch Simpsons, Family Guy, or any of those shows. But Bob’s Burgers? YES. This is such a funny show. Tina is my personal favorite but the entire family is bonkers and it’s fantastic.

Breaking-Bad

Breaking Bad – Another Netflix show. We just finished the first season – so far so good!

playing house

Playing House – This is super funny. The seasons are pretty short so you could definitely binge watch this without it taking up your entire life.

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Andy Samberg and Melissa Fumero

Brooklyn Nine-Nine – This has been on for a few years but I just started watching it. I didn’t care for it the first time I watched it but now I’m hooked.

So there you have it – I watch way too much TV. As far as what I’m looking forward to, I cannot wait for Gilmore Girls to come back! Can. Not. Wait.  Oh, and Sherlock. I feel like I’ve been waiting forever for new Sherlock episodes.

What are your favorite TV show discoveries?

Top Ten Tuesday – Rewind

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is a freebie of sorts: Go back and do a topic you missed over the years.

I’ve decided to do Hilarious Book Titles because I’m in a silly mood; plus who doesn’t love a hilarious book title? There are a lot of websites out there with funny/bad/ridiculous book titles – these are some of my favorites:

 

HowToAvoidHugeShips

anybody-can-be-cool
So true.
Outwitting-Squirrels
I love that this is the second edition.

Mommy-Why-is-There-a-Server-in-the-House

Eating-People-Is-Wrong

Still Stripping
I stumbled across her show on TV once and it was about as wacky as this book title.

Lobotomy

fancy coffins

Learned from my Tractor
So…nothing?

Mommy Drinks

I could seriously do this all day but I’ll stop now 🙂   Enjoy your Tuesday, everyone!

 

Top Ten Tuesday – Books set ouside the U.S.

toptentuesday

Happy Tuesday, everyone! It’s Top Ten Tuesday time! Click the link to see future topics and join in the fun!

This week’s topic: Ten Books Set Outside of the U.S. I’m going to attempt to list books I haven’t discussed in previous posts! Or haven’t discussed multiple times, anyway 🙂

lost-city-of-z

1. The Lost City of Z by David Grann (The Amazon) – This is a non-fiction book about a British explorer who disappeared in the 1920s while searching for an ancient lost city in the Amazon. I thought this book was completely fascinating. It also made me want to avoid the Amazon.

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2. We wish to inform you that tomorrow we will be killed with our families by Phillip Gourevitch (Rwanda) – Another non-fiction title, this award-winning book is about the 1994 Rwandan Genocide. The author interviewed survivors and shares their tales. Needless to say, this is not an easy read.

city-of-thieves

3. City of Thieves by David Benioff (Russia) – I absolutely loved this historical fiction novel. It takes place during WWII as two young men are on a desperate search for eggs. It manages to be both funny and heartbreaking. I really loved these two characters.

six-wives-of-henry-viii
4. The Six Wives of Henry VIII by Alison Weir (England) – Another non-fiction book (I’m sensing a theme here). For a period of time I was really fascinated with Henry VIII and this book goes into pretty great detail ( 650+ pages!)

ladies
5. The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith (Botswana) – This is a really fun series about a woman named Precious Romotswe who starts her own detective agency. Each book has a different mystery and the secondary characters are really great too! I think HBO made this into a TV series but I never had the opportunity to see it.

all the light
6. All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr (France and Germany) – This book won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction last year. The writing is just beautiful. It took me a while to get used to the back-and-forth style but it’s really a great book.

houseatriverton
7. The House at Riverton by Kate Morton (England) – This was Kate Morton’s first novel and I really enjoyed it (her other books are also good!) It has a murder mystery, a little romance, an old manor, and a lot of secrets. I highly recommend it!

thirteenth tale
8. The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield (England) – Apparently I enjoy novels set in England about family secrets and fancy houses. Unlike Morton’s novel, however, this one has a supernatural aspect to it. I really enjoyed this book. In fact, writing this makes me want to read it again!

9. The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick (France) – This is technically a children’s book but even adults will enjoy it (I did!) This is an illustrated historical fiction book that was inspired by the true story of filmmaker Georges Melies. If you enjoy old films you will particularly like this, I think. The movie is good as well!

10. Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi (Iran) – This is an autobiographical graphic novel about the author’s childhood in Iran. Even if you don’t typically read graphic novels, give this one a shot! It’s fantastic.

What is your favorite book set outside the U.S.?