Saturday, July 4, 2015

Monthly Wrap-Up! June

June is what you call the month where the season of summer finally takes over. Beaches are opened, swimmers and beach-goers are sprawled out in the sun. It can't get any more better than this! Oh wait, actually it can! Summer means no school and no school means more READING. So without further ado, we present our fun-in-the-sun month of June! ^_^

Diamond's Wrap Up

..because my friends are awesome!

#BooksForTrade: Tweet me for more pics/details @DiamondCronen // Wishlist
Blog News: Be on the lookout for a brand NEW blog design here @ Dee's Reads! When the new design goes live (this weekend) there WILL be a giveway and there WILL be squealing (hopefully with delight, and not terror) :P haha are you excited? 
Dee News: Things with me are very ...hectic! I am in a transition as my move in date looms closer (first week of August!) I am busily organizing boxing and trading books as fast as possible so that I don't arrive at my new (extrmely small) studio apartment and find that I have NO ROOM FOR MORE BOOKS. I mean, #nightmare. O.o lol jk.. but I did actually get quite a bit of reading in this month all things considered.
*My favorite book I read this month* I have to say it was Illusionarium by Heather Dixon! For graphic novel (I read enough to count them separate—okay? :P ) Nimona by Noelle Stephenson which I gave a hearty 5 stars :star :star :star :star :star!  
Other than that I happily enjoyed the 4th of July early this year with family as the town where my aunt and uncle and cousins live had a great fireworks show this past weekend! :rainbow It was really fun and I took some great pics too :) Of course the blurry fireworks pics were a must haha. There was persian dancing (which I was uninhibited enough to do) and I even met new people and made a new friend! 
So cheers to keeping our heads up during the crazy-ness that is this summer. and CHEERS TO YOU for following me despite the somewhat boring state of this blog.

Alex's Wrap Up

         Saga, Volume 2 by Brian K. Vaughan Saga, Volume 3 by Brian K. Vaughan Saga, Volume 4 by Brian K. Vaughan

Thanks Penguin RH for the advanced copy! 
These are all the books that I read in June. I'm super super proud of how much I read considering all the finals and regents that were happening at the same time. Reviews of these books are all linked if they have been reviewed. For the most part, everything I read in June really put me in a good mood. I was content with everything I read and if I had to choose my favorite, it would have to be Daughter of Deep Silence by Carrie Ryan! That book really impressed me when I thought it was just supposed to be some romantic thriller.

Notable Posts of June 
Reviews of June
Nimona (graphic novel) (ARC)
Mariana by Susanna Kearsley 
The Golden Compass (ARC) (graphic novel)
Illusionarium by Heather Dixon (ARC)
The Cellar by Natasha Preston 
The Ice Dragon by George R.R. Martin
Monstrous (ARC) by MarcyKate Connolly

Other Posts
#BooksForTrade (updated: check it out still lots of books!)
A Book Lover's Summer Must Haves
Waiting on Weds: What we’re waiting for!
Etsy Raves: Nook and Burrow bookmarks
Top 10 Books on our TBR this summer!
Dust Off Your Classics Challenge: A Midsummer Night’s Dream 
Alex discusses "My YouTube Experience Thus Far"

 **remember to stay tuned for a new design, giveaway, and survey where we ask YOU what you want to see on the blog**

- Alex :rainbow Diamond :rainbow

Comment below: don’t forget to include links to your wrap up post 

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Graphic Novel Review: The Graveyard Book Vol. 1

The Graveyard Book Volume 1 by Neil Gaiman and P. Craig Russell

Source: hardcover via my collection

My Rating: 5 of 5 stars :star :star :star :star :star

Publication Date: July 14th, 2014

Publisher / Length: HarperCollins // 188 pages
It Takes a Graveyard to Raise a Child.

Nobody Owens, known as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn't live in a graveyard, being raised by ghosts, with a guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor the dead.

There are adventures in the graveyard for a boy—an ancient Indigo Man, a gateway to the abandoned city of ghouls, the strange and terrible Sleer. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, he will be in danger from the man Jack—who has already killed Bod's family.

Each chapter in this adaptation by P. Craig Russell is illustrated by a different luminary from the comic book world, showcasing a variety of styles from a breadth of talent. Together, they bring Neil Gaiman's award-winning, nationally bestselling novel The Graveyard Book to new life in this gorgeously illustrated two-volume graphic novel adaptation.

Volume One contains Chapter One through the Interlude, while Volume Two includes Chapter Six to the end.

My Review

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman is an award winning children’s book from one of the most creative and unique authors ever. More importantly, The Graveyard Book is one of my favorite books of all time. Talk about pressure! The pressure that this graphic novel had to live up to my expectations was high, to say the least. 

You all know about my love of graphic novels. If not I’ll update you: I love them. I read them continuously and usually gravitate towards non-traditional graphic novels. The more adventure and fantasy involved, the better. That being said, I am picky about this medium. It’s sometimes hit or miss trying to put into graphics a novel that is to my liking is hard enough—to actually fit those graphics with what was already in my head due to it being one of my favorite books? Well, that was what was so exciting about this.

The Verdict: The Graveyard Book Volume 1 was excellent. The drawings were spectacular. The coloring was fitting to the story. The characters were spot on. It helps that the author was involved. Yes, there are books that are made into graphic novels where the author of the original doesn’t really participate in the process. Neil Gaiman and P. Craig Russel was not one of those pairings, fortunately. I kind of knew that too, since Gaiman is a famous graphic novelist (google: Sandman series for more information). 

The story seemed to flow so seamlessly and I started to forget that parts had to be a bit trimmed / it wasn’t completely in the novel format. I don’t think they took too much out of the actual novel but maybe they did and that’s my point. I have no idea. It seemed like it was just like reading the novel. I didn’t feel like there was anything missing or glazed over. I have felt like this with other graphic novel renditions of YA or Middle Grade books and it’s nice to feel like your’e reading the original and get lost in the magic of the illustrations with the story.

Oh and those illustrations were just sublime. Since this was only Part I I didn’t get to see all of what I was excited to. But, I did get to see the dance of the whole town with the old tradition thing and the Grey Lady. I don’t want to go into more detail and spoil it for any of you who haven’t read the story or graphic novel. I just have to say it was probably my favorite illustration of this volume and I am really impressed because it kind of exceeded my exectations. I also liked how dark Nobody’s guardian was portrayed. In the book it’s left a little bit open …maybe that was just my opinion but I really liked how it wasn’t sugarcoated that he is not a “human” who is “nice” he’s odd and kind of left out between worlds (much like Nobody himself is).

All in all I have to say this was a most enjoyable graphic novel read! I am so glad to see it up on my shelf and I strongly urge you to pick it up! If you have read the story you definitely need to pick it up—it’s a whole new experience! If you haven’t read The Graveyard Book you should look into it right away because it’s a beautiful classic :O

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

A Book Lover's Summer Must Haves

It's safe to say that the Summer season is already here and all the readers out there are pulling out there sunchairs and reading their favorite summer reads. I'm not here to tell you what books to read, more like what things you absolutely need to have! The book recs for summer will be in a separate post some other day, but for now.... let's get into the goodies! 

1. You-Bumi Waterproof Book Cover
I bet none of you guys can tell me that this is not cool. LOOK AT IT! I still can't believe I found this online. I'm in shock of my awesome googling skills. But this is self-explanatory. Let's say you're reading a book by the shore and all of a sudden a huge tsunami comes. Of course, you'd want your book to stay dry under the covers, and this is the perfect way to do it. There are even finger slots to flip the page, so you could easily manage to flip through a book floating in the water. 

2. A Book Tent
A bunch of you are going camping, so here's something for you nature and outdoor enthusiasts. Why not get caught building a book tent to show your true love for both nature and your love for reading. I know I'm going to do a lot of camping this year and this is definitely what I want to be sleeping in. These come in many different sizes and book covers!

3. Embellished Sunglasses
Ladies, you're going to be doing a lot of reading at the beach and why not have some drop dead gorgeous sunglasses at the same time! These embellished sunglasses can range anywhere from a ton of money if you buy them in stores to really cheap if you decide to dedicate your time in making some yourself with stick-on acrylic flowers and a pair of nice shades. 

4. Book Umbrella... Literally
A book umbrella- to block the sun from setting your book on fire! :D 

5. Book of Tissue

Who doesn't have allergies during the summer? This box tissue has only the softest tissues on the planet and the most delicate material for your nose! LOL JK, there goes shameless advertising. But seriously this is so cute in the eyes of any book lover.

6. Hammock

I have a hammock in my backyard so trust me when I tell you that these are the greatest things to be invented. I hate it when I'm sitting up in bed reading and my back starts to ache all of a sudden. With the hammock, you can wish away the pains because you're kind of lying and half-sitting. It's a combination of the two and that way, you won't feel the pain!

Monday, June 29, 2015

Etsy Raves: Nook & Burrow Bookmarks

I'm not going to lie. I've done a post about Etsy Raves Lillytales Bookmarks on my own book blog before. I figured this time I would refurbish it and just make people more aware of this talented young lady and her love for making bookmarks and reading. I've ordered from her two times now and both experiences have been met with complimentary requirements and her awesome packaging. 

Nook & Burrow

Nook & Burrow, originally called Lillytales, is a bookmark, candle, and weave shop created by the awesome bookworm, Kate. She has a variety of handmade wooden bookmarks, bookish scented candles, and handmade weaves that can be hanged on your walls. I've only ever ordered her bookmarks but they are such nice quality and won't break on you anytime soon. She does custom orders and regular ready-to-ship orders. Here is a sample of her work: 

Image of STARRY NIGHT - Colourful wooden bookmark Image of CURRENTLY READING - wooden bookmarkImage of MAKE MAGIC - Colourful wooden bookmark Image of PASTEL PRISM - Colourful wooden bookmark
Aren't they pretty? 

These are the ones I ordered... 

I ordered a custom Sarah J. Maas bookmark a while back and now I ordered her newest one, the ocean one :D I'm so glad with how these have turned out and I've had the Sarah J. Maas one forever now! If you would like a custom order, just go to her website and look for the bookmark with a question mark on it. If you add that to cart and pay, she will soon get to contact you and talk to you about what you're thinking of for your dream bookmark! 

Price Range: $$, price can be a little iffy but it pays for good quality bookmarks
Quality: Durable and long-lasting. Doesn't bend easily or have splinters since it's a wooden bookmark
Appearance: Absolutely stunning and cleanly sanded to perfection!
Shipping: Shipping is the real problem since she lives in Australia. also requires payment for shipping. 

P.S. If you purchase a bookmark and feature it in an instagram picture while tagging her, she will comment a 10% off coupon off your next order or free shipping off the next order. 


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