• Book Love,  Magpie Reviews

    Book Review: My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows

    Before we left for Disney, I went into a little bit of a book panic. I was looking to figure out what I’d bring with me for the trip and realized I had absolutely nothing that wasn’t heavy and/or (mostly and) depressing. I have a VERY large book collection that is TBR, but it’s full of topics like the Holocaust, Japanese WWII POWs, Death and the Civil War, and various other horrible, heavy, awful things. Because that’s the kind of history I’m drawn to. Take that for what you will. Anyway, the point is – none of it is kid-friendly, nor does it seem like appropriate reading for a week…

  • Book Love,  Magpie Reviews

    Book Review – Dragon Age: Last Flight by Laine Merciel

    Dragon Age: Last Flight is yet another book set in the world of the Dragon Age video games. Using a nested narrative, it provides an engaging look into the history of Thedas without becoming too much like reading a giant codex. I will start right off the bat by saying that this is, hands down, the best of the Dragon Age novels that I’ve read so far. I’ve read both The Calling and Asunder, and Last Flight comes in as most entertaining and engaging, by far. It is also, strangely enough, the only one that was not written by a member of the Dragon Age writing team. Now it’s hard…

  • Book Love,  History Love,  Magpie Reviews

    Book Review: Band of Brothers by Stephen E. Ambrose

    You know, it’s about time I read this. I have seen the series a bunch of times (I’ve rewatched it more than once since my last big rewatch as a historian, which you can read about here), I’ve at this point read several of the guys’ autobiographies, with more of them on my TBR list – but I never actually bothered reading the source material. I went in kind of expecting the worst to be honest. I’ve read a number of online reviews of the book that hammer hard on the fact that Ambrose didn’t really seem to use much reference material beyond the company memory books, newsletters, and interviews,…

  • Book Love,  History Love,  Magpie Reviews,  Nerdery

    Mid-January Pleasure Reading Update

    So far so good on the whole “read more” goal. As of right now, I’ve already finished two books for pleasure this year (although technically the first one was started in the final days of 2015 – but I’m still counting it). I don’t feel like either book is really worthy of it’s own separate review post, as one was just kind of frivolous fun, and the other, well, wasn’t great… so I think mini-reviews will do the trick nicely. The first book is Stanley Weintraub’s 11 Days in December: Christmas at the Bulge, 1944. I bought this a couple of years ago after I read his Pearl Harbor Christmas,…

  • Book Love,  Life

    Torn…

    So yesterday I went grocery shopping, and as I was passing by the book section in our Wegman’s (love Wegman’s) I ended up spending literally 10 minutes fighting with myself about whether to buy and read The Fault in Our Stars. I kept picking it up, and putting it down again. Picking it up, reading the back cover, and putting it down again. Picking it back up, putting it in my cart, walking three steps before shaking my head and putting it back. In the end I ended up leaving without it because I remembered my no-book pledge and forced myself to just walk away. But I’m still torn about…

  • Book Love

    Library Book Sale Day is a Very Dangerous Day

    This post is majorly late in the making – library book sale season is the end of April – but belated though it may be, I can’t help but want to share my haul from this year. I know my spending fast rules specifically outlaw book purchases, but I had stashed $20 away months ago just for this purpose. Afterall, where else other than a library sale can you get antique books for a buck a piece AND support your local libraries? This year I ended up finding some real gems. Or at least some real gems as far as a book nerd like me is concerned. First we have…

  • Book Love

    Redoing the Bookshelf

    I don’t know what it is, but something about the sun shining in and the ability to have the windows open and a breeze rushing through the apartment just makes me want to clean and decorate. Unfortunately, satisfying that urge can be difficult when you’re on a strict spending fast – no, I can’t buy those new throw pillows; no, that bookcase is not purchasable right now… So to satisfy my urge I set my sights on rearranging our single big bookcase – it belongs to the apartmentmate, and is a beautiful, antique behemoth that has its home in our dining room and doubles as a liquor cabinet. Me and…

  • Book Love

    The Book Jar

    I have a book problem. A very big book problem. An “I have filled my parents’ basement with storage containers full of books that I don’t have enough bookcases to house” kind of problem. And the reality is that recently my reading habits have not been able to justify the book accumulating habits I have. So, as already covered in my New Years Post, this year I resolved to read more. On that front, so far, so good. I’ve finished 6 books already over the month of January (although in the interest of full disclosure, one was a silly Doctor Who novel that took a total of maybe 4 hours,…