Now You See Me…

Podcasts are one of the more recent types of media to take hold of our society. For a long time we were held captive by radio broadcasts but those fell out of favor once TV happened upon the picture. In such an image driven culture, I’m glad to see people gravitating more toward content instead of what they see.

I don’t know about everyone else but once I hear someone’s voice, I start to paint a picture of what they look like. Once I got hooked on the Reading Glasses podcast, I started to get a mental picture of the hosts. It’s almost funny how wrong I was.

I pictured Mallory as a woman in her mid 30s with short-ish brown hair and glasses. Pretty but ordinary looking until you get to know her. I was way off base. Instead, Mallory has a lot of interesting tattoos, purple and blue/silver hair, and a funky/alternative sensibility I love. I got the glasses and white part right.

I have no idea why but I pictured Brea as a petite woman of east Asian descent with pale skin. I pictured her style like that of several manic pixie dream girls with fun prints and lots of movement. Instead she’s a pretty white woman with dyed platinum hair and a hear shaped face. Very typically pretty with eyes that draw you in. I think got the petite thing right.

Both women are striking in a way I didn’t predict. It further goes to show that readers come in all shapes, sizes, and appearances.

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Spooky Scary Book Tag

I am so in the spirit of the season so I bring you the Spooky Scary Book Tag.

1. What goes bump in the night?: Name a book that has legitimately scared you while reading it.
Bird Box by Josh Malerman. Humans are primarily sight based so how are you supposed to live not being able to use your primary sense at all? Both the story and concept scared me.

2. Jack O Lanterns and Classic Costumes: A book you always reach for during Halloween time.
The Gates by John Connolly. It literally takes place on Halloween.

3. Black Cats and Magic Mirrors: A book you love that is laced with superstition and/or magic.
In the Dark edited by Rachel Deering. It’s a graphic horror anthology so it has a little bit of everything.

4. Witch’s Brew: Favorite witch character in any book/series.
Sabrina from the Archie universe. I read the comices growing up, watch the TV series with Melissa Joan Hart, and read the only available installment in the horror spin-off.

5. Ghouls and Ghosts: A book that still haunts you to this day (good or bad).
Spidey Legs Lana. Worst book I ever read and I had it in hard copy! I want those hours of my life back.

6. Haunted Graveyard: You’re all alone in a haunted graveyard, you get ONE book to give you comfort, which is it?
The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman. Not all graveyards are bad places.

7. The Undead: Favorite supernatural creatures to read about (i.e. vamps, zombies, werewolves, etc).
Magic users: witches, warlocks, wizards, etc. I’ve always wanted magical powers so I try to get it vicariously. If I had to pick a monster, probably zombies because apocalypse scenarios fascinate me.

8. In the dead of night: Pick a book with a black cover.
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. This book had a clever and vindictive female character so I really enjoyed how it shook up the world’s expectations.

9. Trick or Treat?
Treat. Life has played a lot of tricks on me lately and I could use a treat.

Finally Fall Book Tag

The summer heat has finally broken! I felt cause to wear close-toed shoes and sleeves. That means it’s a good time for the Finally Fall Book Tag.

1. In fall, the air is crisp and clear: name a book with a vivid setting!
Alice in Wonderland. It was such a strange and beautiful world but it gave you enough freedom to imagine it in your own way.

2. Nature is beautiful… but also dying: name a book that is beautifully written, but also deals with a heavy topic like loss or grief.
The Trees by Ali Shaw deals with loss, a strange apocalypse, and growing as a person.

3. Fall is back to school season: share a non-fiction book that taught you something new.
The Dog Merchants is about how complicated it is to find our next best friend. It definitely gave me insight I’d never had before.

4. In order to keep warm, it’s good to spend some time with the people we love: name a fictional family/household/friend-group that you’d like to be a part of.
The Weasleys. It would be amazing to be surrounded by that much love and happiness.

5. The colourful leaves are piling up on the ground: show us a pile of fall-colored spines!

6. Fall is the perfect time for some storytelling by the fireside: share a book wherein somebody is telling a story.
Fragile Things by Neil Gaiman has a story entitled October in the Chair where the months all gather around a fire and swap stories. October tells one that is perfect for this time of year.

7. The nights are getting darker: share a dark, creepy read.
In the Dark: A Horror Anthology edited by Rachel Deering.

8. The days are getting colder: name a short, heartwarming read that could warm up somebody’s cold and rainy day.
The Museum of Literary Souls by John Connolly. To explain it would be to spoil it but it’s a must read for any book lover.

9. Fall (luckily, it’s my favourite season) returns every year: name an old favourite that you’d like to return to soon.
Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett

10. Fall is the perfect time for cozy reading nights: share your favourite cozy reading “accessories”!
A comfy sweatshirt, fuzzy socks, and a comfy pillow on my lap.

End of Summer Book Haul

I haven’t had one of these since July so it’s a bit overdue. I’ve been focused on getting as much as I can from my local library which has been a big money saver with all of the excellent books that came out recently. While I patiently await my chance to read Hillary’s memoir and the latest Night Vale, I did manage to score a few.

Goodwill finds

Idaho by Emily Ruskovich
A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki

Season to Taste by Molly Birnbaum

Dirty Words: A Literary Encyclopedia of Sex edited by Ellen Sussman

FHubs and I went to our local Goodwill recently. I got a really good deal on some books. The first two got some major love on BookTube

Bookstore Buys

Calla Cthulhu by Evan Dorkin
Good Night Rebel Girls by Elena Favili

I have no will power but I’m OK with that when it comes to these books about strong women.

Freebies

The Royal We by Heather Cocks

I managed to talk my way into a free book at a library event.

That’s a total of 9 only 2 of which I paid full price for. I’m getting better at this ‘not-buying-all-the-books’ thing

Booktube Halloween Party Superlative Tag

A Sam’s Nonsense original but I modified it to be about book characters instead of BookTubers since I only watch a handful of channels.

1. Person most Likely to win the Halloween costume contest?
Peeta from The Hunger Games. He could literally paint himself into a corner.

2. Person most likely to be watching horror films on TV?
Crowley from Good Omens. As a denizen of hell, he’d probably be unimpressed.

3. Person Most likely to be playing with the dog?
Samuel Johnson and it’s probably his dog Boswell.

4. Person most likely to successfully trick or treat despite being an adult?
Squirrel Girl. She’s got a built in costume being a hero and all.

5. Person most likely to supply the best music for the party?
Deadpool. Based on his movie, which was very loyal to the character’s personality, he’s got fun taste

6. Person most likely to win the pumpkin carving contest?
Thistle from Spells, Swords, and Stealth series. He’s got excellent throwing skill and daggers that come when called.

7. Person most likely to win the baking contest?
Quinn from Final Girls. It was her post-massacre livelihood.

8. Person most likely to entertain everyone with spooky stories?
Mad-Eye Moody. He’s seen some stuff and would throw in a lesson on how not to be an idiot about it.

Wondering about Hillary

I just started Hillary Clinton’s memoir What Happened (like only 30 pages in just-started). She talks about how important her life with Bill is and his support as a partner. I have found my mind drifting to some of the more personal elements of her life.

I wonder how long Hillary knew Bill wasn’t capable of sexual fidelity. Was it early in their marriage, after he was governor, before or after Chelsea was born? People criticized her for staying every time but it’s not that simple.

I’m about to be married and my life has been a very special hell. The only good and solid thing I have is my future husband. When you make a life with someone, intertwine finances and families and goals, walking away isn’t easy. Their personal lives and professional lives are more deeply connected than many of us will ever understand.

I believe he told Hillary the women meant nothing to him because it was probably true. They were a fun aside but not the partner he needed in his life and political career. I think Bill has a deep respect for his wife and Hillary probably helped him become the president he was. She is a formidable woman.

I suspect they have some sort of agreement. He doesn’t have a full-blown affair or get emotionally involved and she’ll tolerate it. Don’t make a fool out of her (again) and there will be no problems. Maybe the marriage is totally open or maybe Bill’s wandering is limited to his eyes now that he’s older. We have no idea and I don’t see either of them talking any time soon.

It’s curious to think about but I’m also glad Hillary will be remembered as more than just a first lady. She was the first woman nominated by a major political party. She was Secretary of State and did remarkable things as a First Lady. She is so much more than her marriage and I’m glad the world knows that is only one piece of her.

I completely understand her desire to step down from politics. I hope she is able to do good in the world in the near future. The world needs it.

Nerdy 30 Activity 19

Did you know Levar Burton has a podcast called Levar Burton Reads? I do and it’s how I completed Activity 19 Be Read To. I’m subscribed to so many podcasts that I cherry picked with Levar Burton reads and listened to the Neil Gaiman short story “Chivalry”. It was a really nice way to start my day.

I was puttering about the kitchen, getting ready to go to work, and hearing a story I already knew and enjoyed. It was certainly a refreshing change from hearing Crooked Media talk about what’s wrong in the world (basically everything).

If you don’t want to commit to a full audio book, give this podcast a try. It’s short, sweet, and I think Burton did a good job.