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Sunday, April 8, 2012

Happy Easter!

I just wanted to drop in and wish you all a very happy Easter and a bright and beautiful Spring!

Friday, April 6, 2012

A Pirate's Life for Me! -- Awesome Giveaway!

Everyone who knows me knows about my life-long obsession with pirates, and I have found that many of you share that attraction to a swashbuckling way of life. So, when I saw that my very pirate-savvy friend Brielle was hosting a giveaway for one of her gorgeous Tia Dalma inspired wrist cuffs, I had to share!

Click here to enter!

While you're over there, be sure and check out Brielle's other full costumes. The pirate costumes are to die for! As is just about everything else. She's amazingly talented!

Here are some of my favorite costumes of hers to give you an idea:

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins 5 of 5 stars.


Against all odds, Katniss has won the Hunger Games. She and fellow District 12 tribute Peeta Mellark are miraculously still alive. Katniss should be relieved, happy even. After all, she has returned to her family and her longtime friend, Gale. Yet nothing is the way Katniss wishes it to be. Gale holds her at an icy distance. Peeta has turned his back on her completely. And there are whispers of a rebellion against the Capitol--a rebellion that Katniss and Peeta may have helped create.

Much to her shock, Katniss has fueled an unrest she's afraid she cannot stop. And what scares her even more is that she's not entirely convinced she should try. As time draws near for Katniss and Peeta to visit the districts on the Capitol's cruel Victory Tour, the stakes are higher than ever. If they can't prove without a shadow of a doubt, that they are lost in their love for each other, the consequences will be horrifying. (Book blurb)

Tensions have been rising in the districts of Panem. How could they not with a continuing ceaseless slaughter year after year of their children? As things rise to the boiling point security is tightened to a choking degree even in the middle-of-nowhere District 12. Even in the Capitol things have become shaky with unrest as an audience who has fallen in love with the two star-crossed lovers Katniss and Peeta watch them be continually punished (even if the Capitol big-wigs describe it differently) despite all they've been through. A heart, soul, and strength appear in Panem as the people rich and poor alike begin to adopt Katniss's symbol of the Mockingjay and whispers of full-on rebellion circulate.

It doesn't take long for Katniss to realize she's the face of this rebellion, that her act with the berries in the 74th Annual Hunger Games has been the breath of air that pushed the tense nation over the edge. She also knows that the President and the Peacekeepers will never forgive her for it.

Catching Fire was just as thrilling and heart-wrenching as The Hunger Games showing that same steely will in Katniss too survive and that undying loyalty to those she loves.The danger and suspense that surrounds Katniss after President Snow's visit and her genuine reaction to the things they throw at her makes me love the character all the more.

What I liked best in this book was how Suzanne Collins showed the politics of Panem coming to a head and the ways in which she let Katniss and Peeta see this: with the strange salute in District 11 and the shooting of an innocent man, with the whipping of Gale, and Katniss being unable to cross over the newly electric fence. Even the way she showed Cinna's own form of rebellion and the genuine sorrow of the shallow beauty techs. All of it matched together so real and naturally and formed in our head no likely the same images of what was happening that were forming in Katniss's own.

I loved seeing the dynamics this added to all of the characters. Peeta's steady strength shown under stress, and Haymitch's blatant disregard for the feelings of the two kids in his care when it came down to it. Haymitch was given a chance to help this rebellion fly and he pushed his Mockingjay under the bus for it. Gale's readiness to fight at the first signs of a possible war in Panem was staggering.

Everything seems so natural, which is probably what's hooked me on this novel. I've always liked books that dealt with history in a way I could understand, by showing the actions (some of which you wouldn't expect at all) from the people who surrounded those events, people you can relate with. This futuristic idea of a cruel totalitarian society in North American and how fed-up the people are with it is made real by the characters, their beliefs and their actions. It's a beautifully harmonized story that made me cry like a baby at least twice while reading it and especially at the end.

There's no one in particular I would suggest this too. I think everyone should at least give it a try because it is an amazing series. Mockingjay, here I come!

And may the odds be ever in your favor!

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