the hunger games

A to Z Bookish Survey.

AtoZsurvey

I recently came across a version of THIS reader survey by The Perpetual Page Turner while reading a blog tour post on THIS site about MY FORMER TEACHER‘s new novel. It seemed like a really fun and simple blog topic, so I thought I would give it a try. I hope you enjoy my answers and feel free to answer it yourself!

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Author you’ve read the most books from:

Back in eighth and ninth grade, when I was a weepy little 13-year-old, I loved novels that took readers and sent them on emotional roller coasters, so I read just about every novel Lurlene McDaniel had ever written. Note: my bookish masochism has not gone away. McDaniel, publish more, please?

Best sequel ever:

Do not let the reviews of this woman’s works fool you, Override by Heather Anastasiu, is a perfect follow-up to Glitch. In some ways, I would even say that it is a better book than the first because it really steps up the action and makes readers settle in for the long haul.

Currently reading:

The last semester of my undergrad degree has officially begun and coursework is eating my life. So, I’m currently reading The Art of Democracy: A Concise History of Popular Culture in the United States by Jim Cullen.

Drink of choice while reading:

Agua, eau, wasser, uisce! In other words, water.

E-reader or physical book:

I definitely prefer reading a physical book. I mean, you completely miss out on the old and new book smells if you use an e-reader.

Fictional character you probably would have actually dated in high school:

Without a doubt, I would have dated David from Scott Westerfeld’s Uglies trilogy. He’s adventurous and natural, but also intuitive and contemplative. What’s not to like?

Glad you gave this book a chance:

The Christy Miller Collection (and the companion trilogy, Christy and Todd: College Years) by Robin Jones Gunn was really an example of me taking a chance on a book. At the time I read it, I was fresh out of Catholic school, and even though I didn’t detest religion, I was really reluctant to allow any more discussion of it into my life. When I finally picked up Christy Miller’s story, I just couldn’t put it down again. Christy and Todd are such addictive characters and

Hidden gem book:

I haven’t actually seen this book mentioned much in the blogosphere and it definitely should be. Freaks and Revelations by Davida Wills Hurwin is a truly incredible story of two teenagers finding their own ways amid the sexual revolution of the 1980s. When you consider that the story is inspired by the true story of interactions between Matthew Boger and Timothy Zaal it simply becomes all the more extraordinary. I have yet to see another book that speaks about the effects of hate crimes, prejudice, and discrimination in such a vivid and beautiful way.

Important moment in your reading life:

Reading Just Listen by Sarah Dessen for the first time way back in my freshman year of high school was a big thing for me. I think I needed that book as much as it needed me.

Just finished:

Someone, please, read Reached by Ally Condie. I need to fangirl with someone!

Kinds of books you won’t read:

I will read almost anything from self-help books to science fiction, but I just cannot stand nature photography books. I get so restless paging through books that are just filled with pictures! There’s nothing wrong with photography and I love physical photo albums, but I have no patience for books filled with sunrises and landscapes.

Longest book you’ve read:

Les Misérables by Victor Hugo. 1,463 pages of awesome.

Major book hangover because of:

The Mortal Instruments: City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare. How am I suppose to deal with an ending like that? Gah! I needed the next book at least 5 hours ago.

Number of bookcases you own:

Technically I have 1 bookcase and 1 entertainment center for books in my room, but my books are actually spread all over the house. At least if a book thief ever pops in, they can’t get to them all in one fell swoop!

One book you have read multiple times:

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling. I may have, kind of, sort of, seriously, read that book more than 20 times since it was published. I may have also read “The Prince’s Tale” alone at least double that amount.

Preferred place to read:

I actually love reading somewhere that isn’t quiet or peaceful, like the living room with my family, a hospital cafeteria, or a park. But, at the same time, I don’t want anyone to actually talk to me while I’m reading. Sorry!

Quote that inspires you/gives you all the feels from a book you’ve read:

“In the absence of real thunder, he’s making his own” (Ally Condie, Matched).

Reading regret:

I wish I hadn’t let college courses get in the way of my book reviewing. 21 course hours this semester and frequent book reviewing is totally possible, right? RIGHT?

Series you started and need to finish (all books are out in series):

Blue Bloods by Melissa de la Cruz

Three of your all-time favorite books:

Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman (It’s technically a poetry collection, but, I’m going to be stubborn, claim it as a book, and stick my tongue out at anyone who disagrees.)

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

The Bar Code Tattoo by Suzanne Weyn

Unapologetic fangirl for:

Divergent by Veronica Roth…err, well, actually, the whole of the Divergent trilogy and the accompanying short stories. Dauntless for the win!

Very excited for this release more than all the others:

I am indescribably excited for the release of Allegiant by Veronica Roth. I need to know what is outside of the fence!

Worst bookish habit:

I’m awful about not noticing the world while I’m reading! If I’m reading a good book, I’m pretty sure an earthquake, hurricane, and sharknado could happen, and the only think I might do is grip my book tighter so it wouldn’t get pulled away.

X marks the spot–start at the top left of your book shelf and pick the 27th book:

I Am the Cheese by Robert Cormier is the 27th book on my shelf, but it is much higher on my favorites list! Cormier does an excellent job of delving into the world of psychology, while still writing the book at a level that can be understood by almost any age group.

Your latest book purchase:

The History and Theory of Rhetoric by James Herrick. Okay, so maybe it was a textbook purchase, but I’m having a “first day of school mental hangover,” so my memory is unwilling to go any further back to remember my last fun reading purchase.

Zzz-snatcher book (last book that kept you up WAY late):

Requiem by Lauren Oliver. I could not handle the feels, so sleep was not allowed to come between the conclusion of that trilogy and I.

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If any of you do the survey as well, I would love to read what you write. Post the linkage in the comments. Cheers!

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Tomorrow Will Be Kinder by The Secret Sisters (Cover)

Please check out my cover of the song Tomorrow Will Be Kinder by The Secret Sisters. You may recognize it from The Hunger Games (2012) soundtrack. Let me know what you think!

Glutton for Punishment: Dystopia Edition

Dystopian novels have held a special interest to me for longer than I can remember, and I have never been quite sure why that is so. Perhaps “dystopian” is simply a writing style or theme type in which I feel that I can be thoroughly absorbed in the story, simultaneously afraid and excited for the pages to run out and the story to end. Perhaps, “dystopian” is intriguing in its revolving nature, constantly shifting from dystopia to utopia. Or perhaps, I crave the day that the worlds of the pages may become the worlds of reality. Some might say that I am simply a glutton for punishment, craving change and revolution.
Regardless of the nature of their attraction, I do know that part of the dystopian appeal lies in my ability to imagine myself in each of the situations described by the author of each novel. As a pre-teen reading Uglies, Pretties, Specials, and Extras by Scott Westerfeld, I could see myself in Tally’s place, battling the internal war of choice between accepting reality and fighting for a better circumstance. As a teenager reading The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, and Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins, I felt the terror and determination of Katniss as she was faced with a supposedly insurmountable challenge that, in spite of the circumstances, she was still determined to overcome. As a young adult reading Divergent by Veronica Roth, Tris brought me along as she discovered her inner strength and battled with being so profoundly different yet simultaneously similar to those around her. Each of these books and the worlds’ they contained consumed me and changed the way I look at the world I live in now.
As I listened to lecture upon lecture in my college classes today and took down countless pages of notes, I emailed back and forth with a close friend (call him CL) about more topics than I could count. Yet, I know that among them, were the relevance of revolution, views on characteristic and systematic division of society, and the difference between modern skills and those of the past. More than once, I found myself referencing book after book, appealing to CL’s naturally inquisitive nature to explain why these books made such an impact on my views. Although CL responded in kind, discussing with me for many hours, I feel as though I am still drowning under the weight of words and phrases and ideas that I did not explain quite well enough. I am drowning in the worlds’ of the books that have changed me so greatly.
Dystopian novels have made my awareness grow, and through each storyline carefully written and equally as carefully read, I have learned the ebbing of the tide of revolution. The drowning notion I claimed so easily as the weight of words unshared is more than I at first suspected; the revolutionary tide is only rising in the current world climate, the ebbing is rare. I mentioned it before, but I will admit to it now: I am a glutton for punishment. I am a risk taker and a theory maker. I want a war to fight and a cause to truly live for. I need a revolution. And one is coming.
I have experienced great things through characters and through life events. I am a puzzle of personality pieces.  This world we live in now is not so different from the worlds I have been introduced to through pages of ink and paper. Revolution is coming and I feel it in each of my puzzle pieces, quivering with the power of being so many things. Smokie. Tribute. Dauntless.
Revolution is coming.
We have read it.
I have said it.
Can you feel it?