quotes Elisquared likes

"Saying 'I notice you're a nerd' is like saying, 'Hey, I notice that you'd rather be intelligent than be stupid, that you'd rather be thoughtful than be vapid, that you believe that there are things that matter more than the arrest record of Lindsay Lohan. Why is that?' In fact, it seems to me that most contemporary insults are pretty lame. Even 'lame' is kind of lame. Saying 'You're lame' is like saying 'You walk with a limp.' Yeah, whatever, so does 50 Cent, and he's done all right for himself."— John Green


Poetry Sunday (10)

This is a fabulous blog feature here at Eli to the nth!  Thanks to Genna from Reading, Writing, and the World of Words, who created this awesome feature and gave me the permission to host it here, as well as, use her cute graphic!  Poetry is one of my passions, but I have yet to share it here.  So this feature gives me the perfect opportunity to do so!
This week I wanted to share a poem by author/poet/illustrator Dalla Clayton.  He's the author of two books, An Awesome Book and An Awesome Book of Thanks, both of which are children's books.  But I love them because they are inspirational!  Really!  Dallas also has a cool tumblr which you should check out for more of his poetry and illustrations!

EXPLORERS by Dallas Clayton
You can’t be an explorer anymore.
Not the way it used to go down -
just being the bravest guy in the room
with a machete and a hat and a desire to walk
long distances across places no one had ever been
(except the native populations
that had been living there comfortably for centuries.)

You can’t discover Nebraska anymore.
We’ve scared off all the dangerous animals
killed them up
or pushed them to the hills.
You can’t be an explorer anymore,
unless you really want to get involved
far underground or deep in the sea.
The easy work’s already been carved out.
They’ve already written their names on the mountains.

You don’t need to be an explorer anymore
We’ve got plenty of space already
to entertain ourselves
with big scary ideas
like “what if new animals came to get us”
and “how would we fight them off.”

We’ve had plenty of time to arm ourselves
with ideas and weapons from the future,
and muscles that you couldn’t get from god.
There’s no need for explorers
just makers
defenders of what we already own.

You can’t be an explorer anymore
unless you really want to
unless you feel it in you heart
and you stop all this thinking
about how all those other guys already saw things
for the very first time
way back before you were born
and what it all looked like to them.

Unless you stop caring about who owns what
and why someone would ever want to write his name on a mountain
and start wondering what it would be like
to go out into the darkness
and get so totally lost
that you never find your way back
and maybe
just maybe
you never want to.

In My Mailbox (21)

In My Mailbox is a meme hosted by Kristi of The Story Siren and inspired by one of her friends, Alea of Pop Culture Junkie where we get to post about the books we receive each week through publishers/authors, our own purchases, contests won, and libraries.

Boring today.  Adding annotations and links later.


Trailer Thursday (03): Inheritance

Inheritance by Christopher Paolini

I'm really excited to read the final book in the Eragon saga.  There are a lot of naysayers out there who think that Christopher Paolini ripped off Tolkien and McCaffery etc.  But what I think those reviewers don't get is that particular books, especially fantasy/sci-fi fall into tropes.  The "epic quest", the "chosen one", the "battle to win all" etc.  These things aren't exclusive to any fantasy book.  So I for one can't wait to read this last installment, it looks good!


Harry Potter Extravanganza: Day 11!


Let us now look back at the premiere of Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part 1!



Harry Potter Extravanganza: Day 10 Part 1!

Today is arts and crafts day at Hogwarts.  
So have your wands at the ready because we're telling fortunes!

In My Mailbox (20)

In My Mailbox is a meme hosted by Kristi of The Story Siren and inspired by one of her friends, Alea of Pop Culture Junkie where we get to post about the books we receive each week through publishers/authors, our own purchases, contests won, and libraries.


Harry Potter Extravanganza: Day 9 Part 1!

If you guys can think ALL the way back to Sunday July 3, you'll remember I posted an awesome post (in my humble opinion...yeah humble) all about an AWESOME wrock band, The Ministry of Magic.  In the world of wrock, however, these guys are youngins.  If you look back at the history of wrock there is one band which is the granddaddy of all: Harry and the Potters.

Harry and the Potters were the first wrock and that I listened to, and from there I discovered others, like The Ministry of Magic.  Because this is such a growing phenomenon, it has caught the eye of popular culture.  In the following documentary, We Are Wizards (directed by Josh Koury) follows big names in the Harry Potter wrock scene and fandom, giving people an interesting perspective on the start and acceptance of the fan world of Harry Potter .


Harry Potter Extravanganza: Day 8!



Due to all this emotion in me from watching the premiere, I am bringing you some Harry Potter Parodies.  Please enjoy, while I sop up my face.


Trailer Thursday (02): Die for Me

Die for Me by Amy Plum

I want to read this so badly!!!  Definitely on the top of my To Be Bought list.

Dead is the New Black by Marlene Perez (Review)

TitleDead is the New Black
Edition: Paperback, 204 pages
Author(s)Marlene Perez
PublisherGraphia Books
Publication Date: September 1, 2008
Source: Bought from Salvation Army

The Summary
Everyone in the Giordano family is psychic—except for Daisy. When her mother, who uses her power to solve crimes, enlists Daisy’s older sister to investigate a teenage girl’s mysterious death, Daisy feels utterly useless. But she takes matters into her own hands when she learns the victim has lots of company — teenage girls are being attacked all over town, including at Nightshade High School, where Daisy is a junior. And when she discovers a vampire may be the culprit, Daisy suspects head cheerleader Samantha Devereaux, who returned from summer break with a new “look.” She looks a little . . . well, dead.

Is looking dead just another fashion trend for pretty, popular Samantha, or is there something more sinister afoot? Daisy will stop at nothing to find out — she even joins the cheerleading squad. And with a little sleuthing help from Ryan, an old friend (who may be turning into something more), Daisy not only reveals the identity of the vamp, she also discovers powers that she never knew she had. 
My Opinion
I picked up Dead is the New Black at my local Salvation Army.  I didn't know what the book was about and I didn't even know it was a part of the series; instead I was drawn by the title and cover (as I often am).  I felt the premise was an interesting one, a whole family of psychics except for the main character Daisy.  This is important because Daisy ends up in the middle of a supernatural murder investigation.

I love Daisy.  I love her tenacity, how she's determined to help her mom solve these strange murders even though she isn't psychic.  Her voice rings with laughter and sighs with romance, the typical teen girl syndrome.  But that is exactly what makes Daisy so relatable, and had me cheering her own the whole book.  I think if Perez had made Daisy psychic from the start the book, character-wise, would have changed the entire feel of the story.

All the supporting characters are great.  I think Daisy's sisters, Poppy and Rose, (I love that they all have flower names) are nice juxtapositions to Daisy.  Poppy is super outgoing and Rose is super responsible, two things which Daisy is not , but I believe this helps make Daisy seem even more average and helps give the ending a bigger impact.

The supernatural elements of the story are good, but I think it takes too long to hit the climax and reach the conclusion.  The discovery of who what and why needed to come at least a chapter earlier, but overall the plot was solid and leads into the other books in the Dead Is series.  I can't wait to find out more about Daisy's escapades!
Final Rating
Book Cover: 3.5/5
Book Title: 4/5
Plot: 8/10
Characters: 9/10
Writing: 9/10
Ending: 8.5/10
Overall: 42/50: B

Harry Potter Extravaganza: Day 7 Part 2!

One thing EVERY Harry Potter Fan must know is the house they belong too.
I, myself, am a proud Hufflepuff.

To help you all find out your house so you are in appropriate house colors for the big premiere, I present the Hogwarts House Sorting Quiz.

I think it's pretty accurate, and it isn't one of those pages upon pages quizzes or the ones which ask, "What's your favorite color?"  And remember, if you think you're a Ravenclaw and you get Gryfinndor it is ultimately up to you to choose where you're meant to be.  Harry Potter did it, and so can you!

Harry Potter Extravaganza: Day 7 Part 1!

Ever wonder what the cast of Harry Potter sound like with an American accent?  Well it's your lucky day because I've got for you an interview with Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, Rupert Grint, and Tom Felton giving us their very best American accents!  Enjoy!

Sass & Serendipity by Jennifer Ziegler (Review)

Title: Sass & Serendipity
Edition: ARC, 350 pages
Author(s): Jennifer Ziegler
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: July 12, 2011
Source: Book Tour from I Read Banned Books

The Summary
Daphne Rivera and her sister Gabby could not be more different.

For fifteen-year-old Daphne, the glass is always half full, a dab of lip-gloss can ward off a bad day, and the boy of her dreams—the one she's read about in all of her beloved romance novels—is waiting for her just around the corner.

But Daphne’s older sister Gabby wishes Daphne would get real. In Gabby’s world, everyone’s out for themselves, wearing makeup is a waste of time, and boys only distract you from studying before they break your heart. The only boy Gabby trusts is her best friend, Mule, who has always been there for her.

Both Gabby and Daphne are still reeling from their parents’ divorce, though in very different ways. While Gabby will never forgive her unreliable father for failing her mother, Daphne idolizes her daddy and is sure that everything would work out fine if her cranky mom would just let him back into their lives.

When a crisis leaves the girls and their mom homeless, help comes from an unexpected source, and both girls are courted by surprise suitors who shake up their views of the world. Suddenly the glass isn’t so clearly half empty or half full . . . and love seems a lot more complicated than they ever could have imagined.
My Opinion
Looking at the cover of Sass & Serendipity I cringed a little.  This book just looks like a middle grade novel with no substance except for butterflies and pretty dresses at first glance, especially due to the wording of Sass.  But I couldn't have been more wrong!  What drew me in and past the cover was that Jennifer Ziegler wrote this as a contemporary retelling of Sense and Sensibility, one of my favorite Jane Austen books.  I absolutely love that the release coincides with the 200th anniversary of the original book!

When you crack open the pages you are immediately transported into the lives of Gabriella and Daphne Rivera.  Both sisters are not only years apart in age, but their personalities are worlds apart.  Gabby is the eldest, cold, sneering and cynical, continually looking for an escape from their little town in Texas.  Daphne is the youngest, sweet, bubbly, and happy, earnestly believing the best in people and love.  One can't stand the other, and there is no love loss between them.  Of course this chasm wasn't always insurmountable, but certain circumstances in the girls' lives have widen the space to ridiculous proportions.

The characterization of the girls is very well-developed.  I felt both of them come alive as I read.  Of course I hated some of Daphne's more frivolous, selfish moments, reliving how I myself acted at 15 (Gosh, looking back I was a little monster).  But the best part of the characterization was the portrayal of the sisterly relationship.

Having an older sister myself, we could have stood in for Gabby and Daphne.  The screaming matches, the careless words, the deep devotion, and the fierce protection against outsiders rang true.  This careful handling of the weird relationship between sisters could have been over the top, but Ziegler navigated the edge effortlessly.

The other aspect I enjoyed was the subtle referral to the girls' Hispanic heritage.  I like how it wasn't shoved in my face because that feels way more realistic then being beat over the head with their ethnicity.  I feel like race, religion, gender, sexual orientation etc. should not be the focus unless it is important to the main conflict (i.e. coming out story, dealing with racism etc.)  Again Ziegler handles it nicely.

The one problem I had while reading was the development of Gabby and Daphne's parents.  I feel they either needed to be mentioned briefly and have the focus entirely on the girls or, due to the major conflict, made into rounded, dynamic supporting characters.  Right now they both are in an in between place which at times felt as if they hindered and not helped the story.

Overall, Sass & Serendipity is an awesome retelling of a great classic. However, it definitely stands on it's own, and has it's own flavor.  Don't pass this one up!  Look for Sass & Serendipity by Jennifer Ziegler for sale on July 12 at your local bookstores, and on pre-order now!
Final Rating
Book Cover: 3.5/5
Book Title: 4/5
Plot: 9/10
Characters: 9/10
Writing: 9/10
Ending: 9/10
Overall: 43.5/50: B+


Waiting On Wednesday (16)

Waiting On Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we seriously can’t wait for.
 Here's my pick for the week, that I seriously can't wait for:

It all begins with a stupid question:

Are you a Global Vagabond?

No, but 18-year-old Bria Sandoval wants to be. In a quest for independence, her neglected art, and no-strings-attached hookups, she signs up for a guided tour of Central America—the wrong one. Middle-aged tourists with fanny packs are hardly the key to self-rediscovery. When Bria meets Rowan, devoted backpacker and dive instructor, and his outspokenly humanitarian sister Starling, she seizes the chance to ditch her group and join them off the beaten path.

Bria's a good girl trying to go bad. Rowan's a bad boy trying to stay good. As they travel across a panorama of Mayan villages, remote Belizean islands, and hostels plagued with jungle beasties, they discover what they've got in common: both seek to leave behind the old versions of themselves. And the secret to escaping the past, Rowan’s found, is to keep moving forward.

But Bria comes to realize she can't run forever, no matter what Rowan says. If she ever wants the courage to fall for someone worthwhile, she has to start looking back

Harry Potter Extravaganza: Day 6 Part 2!

Did you know....
(Factoids courtesy of the Harry Potter Wiki)

    Harry Potter Extravaganza: Day 6 Part 1!


    Teaser Tuesday (15)

    Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be ReadingAnyone can play along! Just do the following!
    • Grab your current read.
    • Open to a random page.
    • Share a few teaser sentences from somewhere on that page.
    • MAKE SURE NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (you don't want to give too much away and ruin the book for other readers)
    • Share the title and author too, so that other readers can add your book to their TBR list if they like your teaser!

    Obernewtyn & The Farseekers: Book 1 & 2 of the 
    Obernewtyn Chronicles
    By Isobelle Carmody
    (retitled The Seeker for American audiences)

    Ours was considered a perilous journey, but an important one.  The expeditions to recover whitestick were vital to the orphan homes, enabling them to function independently.  The council had ruled that none but orphan homes might mine the rare substance, perhaps because orphans were the most expendable members of the community.
    (Page.  9-10)

    I first tried to read Obernewtyn when I was in middle school, but it is high fantasy and got too complicated.  Then I lost track of it.  But I was lucky to stumble upon and awesome Midsummer Eve's Hop entry from the lovely Susanna from Susie Bookworm; that brought back my interest and I won!!

    The Obernewtyn Chronicles is an Australian series which has been released in America.  However some of the books have been split into two editions due to the size of the original, so if you look to purchase them pay attention.  You can get all of the books from the Book Depository and those are the same as the Australian versions!

    Harry Potter Extravanganza: Day Five!

    Don't forget to keep checking back while I countdown to July 15 and the release of the last installment of the Harry Potter films: Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Part II

    Click here to catch up on the days!


    Harry Potter Extravanganza: Day Four!

    Is Daniel Radcliffe Harry Potter? OR is Harry Potter Daniel Radcliffe?
    You decide.


    Congratulations to Allison for winning the Capitol Pack!


    Congratulations to Amanda for winning the Mockingjay Pack!

    Thank you to all who entered!  I really appreciate all my followers, and I'll try to post up a giveaway for my international followers next month!

    Don't forget to be awesome!


    Harry Potter Extravanganza: Day Three!

    I know that there are tons and tons of Harry Potter fans out there.  Fans who are so into Harry Pottet that they've made him an important part of their life!  Well today I'm going to be sharing a super awesome part of that intense fandom: Wizard Rock!

    Wizard Rock, also known as wrock (pronounced rock), is a genre of music based on the Harry Potter series started by Harry and the Potters, Joe and Paul DeGeorge of Boston, Massachusetts, in 2002.  They were joined by Draco and the Malfoys in 2004, when Harry and the Potters were invited by Matt Maggiacomo, who later became The Whomping Williows, to a house show in Matt's apartment.

    Wrock is really awesome, and all the bands are super inventive.  Most of the bands take on the persona stated in their names.  For instance Harry and the Potters often take the viewpoint of Harry Potter (go figure).  I love most of the bands but there is one band in particular that I really love:

    Ministry of Magic



    ( Not shown in correct release date...sorry)

    The Ministry of Magic is a headed by Luke Conard, Jason Munday, Aaron Nordyke, Ryan Seiler, Mark Jennings, and Jeremy Jennings.  They make some of (in my opinon) best wrock songs out there!

    Below I've posted some of my favorites!  If you guys like what you hear be sure to go support the guys! You can buy each of the albums on iTunes, just click the cover and you'll pop over to the site.  

    Check back everyday for more Harry Potter Extravaganza!!  
    I might even post more than once so keep your eyes peeled!!!

    (P.S. I have in NO way been asked by Ministry of Magic to promote them.  I just really like them!!)

    In My Mailbox (19)

    In My Mailbox is a meme hosted by Kristi of The Story Siren and inspired by one of her friends, Alea of Pop Culture Junkie where we get to post about the books we receive each week through publishers/authors, our own purchases, contests won, and libraries.


    Harry Potter Extravanganza: Day Two!

    Did you know....

    (Factoids courtesy of the Harry Potter Wiki)
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