Here they are, the winners of The Girl Who Read’s very first giveaway!
My sister and I settled on the number 10, which is the number of times we will randomize the list to give all the names in the virtual raffle box a good tumble. I then entered all your entries on Random.org, and my sister hit “randomize” 10 times. This is the result:
Congratulations to Jeleen! You win the copy of The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater, and one Forever shirt. Congrats also to Leia and Tricia (isaw08), you won one Forever shirt each.
Please send me an email at thegirlwhoread(at)gmail(dot)com with your full name, contact number, and complete mailing address within 15 days. If I don’t get a response by then, the prizes will be forfeited in favor of the next eligible winner on the list.
Thanks for joining, everyone! Keep visiting because there will be more giveaways in the future.
I was out on an office errand for most of today, so I decided to bring The Strange Case of Origami Yoda along. (Yes, I finally have a copy, courtesy of a certain special someone. ) I had to suffer the long lines (twice!) at the bank, so I had plenty of time to read.
Here’s a shot of one of my favorite doodles. Click to see it in a better resolution and try naming all those characters!
That school bus blimousine is awesome.
It also amuses me that the author named the school after theRalph McQuarrie, who worked on concept designs for Star Wars. Like the blimousine, he is awesome, too.
A few weeks ago, I came across this question on Twitter: What Christmas gift would you want to give your favorite literary character?
Well, just for fun, I thought I’d take it several steps further, and choose 12 literary characters and/or authors from my 2011 Read List who I would like to give a Christmas present to for every “day of Christmas”. It doesn’t have to be real presents or presents that I can actually afford; it’s the thought that counts.
This should have started on Christmas Day, but then who blogs during Christmas?
I encourage you all to join in the fun and post something like this on your blogs (feel free to grab the banner), then leave a link to your post here. You can also share your answers in the Comments section. But please remember, none of those awful birds and maids and lords. o_O
On the 1st Day of Christmas,
I’ll give Arya Stark from A Game of Thrones
1 direwolf pup.
On the 2nd Day of Christmas,
I’ll give Akiva from Daughter of Smoke and Bone
2 bottles of single-malt whiskey (none of that Seraphim wine) to drown his sorrows with.
On the 3rd Day of Christmas,
I’ll give Charlie from The Perks of Being a Wallflower
a 3-day vacation to Disney World so he can get rid of all that emo-ness for a while.
On the 4th Day of Christmas,
I’ll give Samantha Sotto
4 days in London with her favorite Doctor Who actor.
[Update: Sam says she'll spend those 4 days with David Tennant!]
On the 5th Day of Christmas,
I’ll give Kate from The Scorpio Races
5 baskets of November Cakes and apple pies.
On the 6th Day of Christmas,
I’ll give Kaladin from The Way of Kings
6 Emerald broams.
On the 7th Day of Christmas,
I’ll give Laini Taylor
a 7-Day vacation in Prague with her family.
On the 8th Day of Christmas,
I’ll give Deryn from the Leviathan series
On the 9th Day of Christmas,
I’ll give Rick Riordan
9 more mythologies to popularize.
On the 10th Day of Christmas,
I’ll give Poppet from The Night Circus
a book of 10 new stories by Widget.
The first single off the The Hunger Games OST is Safe and Sound by Taylor Swift featuring The Civil Wars.
I like it! This is one of Taylor’s better songs, though I suspect the reason it sounds a bit different from her other releases is it was written by T. Bone Burnett, one of the men in charge of writing music for the movie. The melody seems familiar, though I haven’t quite figured out why just yet and parts of it remind me of Rue’s Four-Note Whistle. The sound does evoke a lot of memories of the book and how I felt about what I was reading, so that’s a good sign to me.
Also, this resonates with me today because someone I know just went through a terrible ordeal: 4 men divested her of her valuables, beat her up, and almost raped her. It’s fortunate that she managed to escape. She was just discharged from the hospital this evening, but she still has a battle to fight. You may or may not know who she is, but I hope you can say a prayer for her recovery and peace of mind, and for justice to be served.
Happy Christmas to all who celebrate it! If you don’t, then Happy Holidays! May we all be safe and sound.
When Suzanne Collins went on her Mockingjay Book Tour, she somehow injured her writing hand, and couldn’t sign books. She had a stamp made instead, and used that to sign-stamp the books of the people who came to meet her during her signings.
Before I hyperventilate, let’s move on to other things.
It’s already been about a day since I’ve seen the first trailer for The Hobbit, and Concerning Hobbits is still playing in my head. I suspect it’s going to be the soundtrack of the weekend…or it’s going to be Gandalf’s voice rattling off the names of the dwarves: Dori, Nori, Ori, Balin, Dwalin, Fili, Kili, Oin, Gloin, Bifur, Bofur, Bombur, and our leader Thorin Oakenshield.
We really need a good mnemonic for those names.
Or maybe a cheat sheet when we watch the movie. We’ll probably be playing eenie-meenie-minie-dwarf in the cinema!
And holy treasure-hoarding dragons, Gandalf! IMAX 3D!
p.s. There’s still about a week left to send in entries for my The Scorpio Races Giveaway! Do continue to spread the word about it.
Welcome to my very first giveaway here on The Girl Who Read and Other Stories!
I have one hardbound copy of The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater and some Forever (The Wolves of Mercy Falls #3, also by Stiefvater) t-shirts up for grabs, courtesy of Scholastic Philippines. I’m happy and excited to give another reader a chance to read Scorpio because I really liked it.
The Scorpio Races
It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line. Some riders live. Others die.
At age nineteen, Sean Kendrick is the returning champion. He is a young man of few words, and if he has any fears, he keeps them buried deep, where no one else can see them.
Puck Connolly is different. She never meant to ride in the Scorpio Races. But fate hasn’t given her much of a chance. So she enters the competition — the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen.
Because it’s the Christmas season and it’s my first giveaway, I’ll make it easy for everyone to send in entries.
1. Post a link to this giveaway in your social network accounts and/or your personal blogs. You can post to as many as you like to increase your chances of winning.
2. Post a comment here and list the permalinks/URLs of all your social network/blog entries about the giveaway. One link = one entry.
3. In the same comment post, include the answer to this question after your link list: “In The Scorpio Races, Puck and Sean live in a beautiful island called Thisby. On which island in the Philippines do you wish you can live and not leave?” All you have to do for your entry to qualify is to name an island in the Philippines, but you can share your reasons for wanting to live there if you want to; I genuinely want to know! Your entries are not valid without your answer to this question.
The 1st Prize Winner will receive a copy of The Scorpio Races and a Forever shirt, and 2 Runners-up will receive 1 Forever shirt each.
You have until December 29th, 11:59pm to send in your entries. The winner will be determined by a Random List Generator and will be announced before 2011 ends. In case one person’s name appears on the Top 3 twice, that person will get the prize with the higher value (if applicable), and the 4th name on the list will move up to 3rd place.
Important note: This contest is open only to residents of the Philippines. If the winner resides outside of the Greater Manila Area, I’ll send the prizes by courier.
Spread the word, and may the odds be ever in your favor!
The new look of the blog is partly due to The Night Circus (black, white, gray, a splash of rêveur red) and partly due to yesterday’s lunch time I-really-don’t-know-what-came-over-me / maybe-I-should’ve-eaten-a-proper-lunch-before-attempting-to-blog-about-Immortals thing. As you can see, the blog post about Immortals did not materialize. *d’oh!* The blog’s look is going to stay this way for a while, though. Unless something comes over me again. (I do hate it when that happens.) :p
I finished reading Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl last week. It’s the Book of the Month of The Mysterious Reading Society, a private Goodreads reading group that I’m in with a few real-life friends.
We agreed not to post (spoiler-y) comments before we meet for our book discussion, but since it’s my Book Hamster who had something to say about a particular passage, maybe this doesn’t count? *adopts innocent look*
Did the Dazed Hamster say “cue Savage Garden”?
(Live performance from the Donny and Marie Osmond show)
We met the legendary Ambeth Ocampo during his signing session at the 2011 Manila International Book Fair. I’m excited to finally get a copy of this book after seeing the actual manuscript of Makamisa at the José Rizal memorabilia exhibit at the National Museum during the “Rizal at 150″ celebration a few months ago.
Title:The Alloy of Law Author:Brandon Sanderson Read Date: 1 December 2011 Goodreads Reading Progress Status Updates: Click here. May contain spoilers. Rating: 4.25 out of 5 stars (I really liked it!)
Three hundred years after the events of the Mistborn trilogy, Scadrial is now on the verge of modernity, with railroads to supplement the canals, electric lighting in the streets and the homes of the wealthy, and the first steel-framed skyscrapers racing for the clouds.
Kelsier, Vin, Elend, Sazed, Spook, and the rest are now part of history—or religion. Yet even as science and technology are reaching new heights, the old magics of Allomancy and Feruchemy continue to play a role in this reborn world. Out in the frontier lands known as the Roughs, they are crucial tools for the brave men and women attempting to establish order and justice.
One such is Waxillium Ladrian, a rare Twinborn, who can Push on metals with his Allomancy and use Feruchemy to become lighter or heavier at will. After twenty years in the Roughs, Wax has been forced by family tragedy to return to the metropolis of Elendel. Now he must reluctantly put away his guns and assume the duties and dignity incumbent upon the head of a noble house. Or so he thinks, until he learns the hard way that the mansions and elegant tree-lined streets of the city can be even more dangerous than the dusty plains of the Roughs.
If Brandon Sanderson’s imagined worlds were real, I would find myself establishing residency on Scadrial, the world of the Mistborn series. It’s a rough world, but Allomancy and Feruchemy fascinate me so much, I couldn’t care less.
Scadrial as it is now, circa The Alloy of Law, is very different from the world that readers saw at the end of The Hero of Ages. The magic system, mythology, and society have evolved, and someone has discovered electricity. Horse-drawn carriages roll down the streets as railroad tracks extend out of the capital city of Elendel and far into the Roughs.
Remember Back to the Future III, when Marty and Doc were in the year 1885? This incarnation of Scadrial has that kind of Western vibe. It’s as if Alloy is Sanderson’s very own flux-capacitor-powered locomotive and he invited readers on board for a temporal joyride. The world also feels a lot like Firefly if you replace the advanced technology with magic so “sufficiently analyzed” and applied that it’s almost science.
I love how Scadrial has evolved. I’ve never seen a fantasy world change through time before, not even in a long-running series like Dragonlance. Granted, I haven’t read every fantasy series out there, but it’s only logical that things should change after 300 years! This makes for a fascinating study of how authors can still expand the genre and keep a book series fresh.
Alloy is an easy read. The core story is less taxing to the emotions (The Hero of Ages made me cry) and there are no spectacular plot surprises or big world-changing events, but it’s still an enjoyable and action-packed adventure.
What happens when thirty gun-toting bandits infiltrate a wedding feast packed with several hundred noblemen and there are only 2 Allomancers around to uphold the law? You get an action scene worthy of a Hollywood movie! I still maintain that should Sanderson want to quit writing, he can get a job as a stunt consultant for a movie.
Alloy also features two other things that I love about Sanderson’s writing: witty dialogue and in-depth reflections on the themes of the book. Yes, I admit to liking the long philosophical discussions on the nature of crime and the law! They really make me think.
My biggest problem with Alloy is–and this isn’t personal but more a concern for other readers–while it’s a good stand-alone in terms of the plot and the characters, it seems to still require some prior knowledge of the first Mistborn trilogy. Sanderson did take the time to explain the magic system and some history in the beginning, but there are references that may go over the heads of the uninitiated or those who haven’t finished reading the trilogy. On hindsight, people who don’t know Mistborn at all might not pick this book up anyway, but in case someone does, they might not get the full benefit of the Alloy reading experience.
Reading Alloy after The Way of Kings is both bane and boon for me. I miss the deliberate plotting and the detailed treatment in Kings, but it’s obvious that this wasn’t meant to be as big as that or Sanderson’s other books in terms of scope. At the same time, it’s a relief to read something fun and light in an epic fantasy setting, and to know that he can pull something like this off. And I mean “light” literally as well–Alloy won’t seriously injure you if you accidentally drop it on your foot.
If this book isn’t part of the second Mistborn trilogy, it’s certainly a big step forward from the first one. We’ve had our sneak peek, and when that next trilogy finally comes along, it looks like Mistborn fans will be in for an epic treat.
Speaking of treats…
The Alloy of Law is available as an audiobook narrated by Michael Kramer, who also narrated The Wheel of Time series and Sanderson’s other books. Here is an excerpt from the audiobook:
Thanks to MacMillan Audio for providing me with the audio excerpt to include here!
There are also text excerpts and other goodies over at Tor.com.
It’s time for another “Every-Flavour Beans” post! :p
Alternative Alamat: Coming 14th December
Paolo Chikiamco (Hi, Pao!) is going to make it easier for me to get into more works by Filipino authors with his new anthology, Alternative Alamat. Rocket Kapre will release the book on Amazon.com, Flipreads.com, and the iTunes store.
Philippine mythology is full of images that ignite the imagination: gods of calamity and baldness, of cosmic time and lost things; the many-layered Skyworld, and weapons that fight their own battles; a ship that is pulled to paradise by a chain, and a giant crab that controls the tides… yet too few of these tales are known and read today. “Alternative Alamat” gathers stories, by contemporary authors of Philippine fantasy, which make innovative use of elements of Philippine mythology. None of these stories are straight re-tellings of the old tales: they build on those stories, or question underlying assumptions; use ancient names as catalysts, or play within the spaces where the myths are silent. What you will find in common in these eleven stories is a love for the myths, epics, and legends which reflect us, contain us, call to us–and it is our hope that, in reading our stories, you may catch a glimpse, and develop a hunger, for those venerable tales.
“Alternative Alamat” also features a cover and interior illustrations by Mervin Malonzo, a short list of notable Philippine deities, and in-depth interviews with Professors Herminia Meñez Coben and Fernando N. Zialcita.
There’s a list of stories and authors included in the anthology over at Rocket Kapre. [Link]
The Hunger Games movie news
Our local SM Cinemas promises they will be showing the film 1 day ahead of the US release. Apparently, this really is 1 “day and date” ahead, so it’s 22 March 2012, Philippine time.
Danny Elfman is out as one-half of the musical scoring team for the film, and James Newton Howard is taking his place. Howard joins T.Bone Burnett on board the multi-album project. While Howard is a solid alternative to Elfman (and yes, I like Howard’s work more), I would’ve liked to see Hans Zimmer or Alexandre Desplat take on something like THG. Then again, since there are roughly 4 months to go and 2 albums to produce, maybe the filmmakers prefer to play it safe.
More Book-to-Movie Madness: “John Carter”
The trailer is out! I saw this in 3D ahead of our screening of The Adventures of Tintin, and it looks like Pixar did a great job on the production design.
It needs better marketing buzz, though, to be honest. John Lasseter apparently didn’t want to use the title of the source material, John Carter of Mars by Edgar Rice Burroughs, because JC isn’t quite “of Mars” yet in this movie. Ye-huh, but “John Carter” does not exactly pique one’s interest. It’s not as if he’s James Bond or something…even if he is played by someone like Taylor Kitsch.
At least they didn’t go with the original Princess of Mars. How about: John Carter, Princess of Mars?
Okay, okay, moving on.
Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day!
They have one in the US! I wish we did, too. We need to change that “it’s like taking a kid to a candy store” expression to “it’s like taking a kid to a book store”. ;p
We don’t have snow here in the Philippines, so I activated the WordPress snow machine on the blog instead! Thank you, WordPress! Winter has finally come. (I hope that doesn’t mean Blood and Fire will follow, if you know what I mean. )
Meanwhile, the quest for the perfect free WordPress.com theme continues. I hope you weren’t here earlier when I was on a theme-changing and background image-uploading rampage and everything was changing faster than you can say “just buy a CSS upgrade already!”