Thursday, November 14, 2013

The book nook: rating system

Hey guys it's Hannah :) I have decided that for all my future book reviews that I would like to give a number rate for the book as well as the regular review. I don't want you guys to be confused by what  number means what so this is my rating system:

1- trite storyline and uninteresting to me
2- interesting story idea but confusing writing.
3- interesting story with some cool ideas but not the best writing.
4- good story, good supporting ideas, and good writing.
5- completely blown away, a book that changes the way you think or feel. Great story, great supporting ideas, and fantastic writing style.

It's a simple rating system but I hope you guys like it! I doubt I will ever review a book below a three because I rarely pick up a book I don't like, but I am trying to branch out what I'm reading this year so we will see! Please comment your rating system or if you have any suggestions for mine :)

Monday, October 28, 2013

The Book Nook: The Beginning of Everything

Hey guys it's Hannah! Sorry it has been a while, I had a very busy summer. The school year has started again and things are just as crazy but I promise to post more :). The first quarter of my junior year in high school is almost over, and let me tell you, no one was kidding when they said junior year is the hardest grade in high school. Ezra Faulkner though, the main character in the novel The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schnedier, would probably disagree with me.
           Ezra had it easy his whole high school career, that is until a car hit him and shattered his leg, and his girlfriend cheated on him. Before that he was king-the star of the tennis team, in all advanced classes, class president, and had a super hot and popular girlfriend. But then the end of junior year came and his life came crashing down. When senior year rolled around it seemed the thing that would put his life back together was actually a person, Cassidy Thorpe, the new girl.
        I will admit when I first picked up this novel I was expecting a beach read. I was pleasantly surprised. Through this novel Robyn Schneider explores the idea of personal tragedy: the supposed terrible moment that a person can look back on in life and say that changed it all. The reader gets to bare witness to Ezra's personal tragedy and how it changed his life.
       This novel is hilarious and heart-wrenching. It is witty and charming and so much better deeper than I thought it would be, you will fall in love with the characters and be sad to see the book end. Robyn Schneider has written a beautiful book about personal tragedy and breaking out of the molds the people in our lives expect us to fall in. I really enjoyed this book and I encourage all of you to check it out! If you liked it, comment! :)

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Top 90s Shows Teens NOW Can Appreciate

I was born in the early 90s and didn't really get to appreciate many of the shows until I was a lot older, but I do remember sneaking into my [much] older sisters room to watch episodes of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Dawson's Creek, and Roswell. (Just to name a few). 

Now, thanks to Netflix, teens now can appreciate these "forgotten" shows. And since summer is kicking off, many of us have a little down time to kick back and indulge in a little addictive TV. 

*I will warn you. Those who don't really remember the 90s or who didn't make an appearance into the world until the late 90s/early 2000s...yes, the style was a little "weird"*

In my opinion, these are the shows everyone should watch/experience at some point in your life.

1. Boy Meets World. Seriously, if you haven't watched this, you're missing out. It comes on on MTV/MTV2 every day. I mean, they are even making a spin-off, Girl Meets World, which I am STOKED about. 

2. Buffy the Vampire Slayer. It's addicting, cheesy, yet fabulous. You can watch every episode on Netflix.

3. Dawson's Creek. Just do it. You'll understand. (Also on Netflix - or if you're like me, you buy the box set of every, single season.)

4. Felicity. All about finding yourself through college and being off on your own. Also on Netflix.

5. 7th Heaven. I've seen every single episode numerous times and have recently longed to watch it all over again.

There are SO many others I would encourage you to watch.
Roswell. Party of Five. Full House. Fresh Prince of Bel Air. Clarissa Explains it All. 90201 (The original, not the remake) Saved by the Bell. The Wonder Years. Melrose Place. (Again, the original) My So-Called Life. Sabrina, The Teenage Witch. All That. And several others. 

And remember, fashion has come a long way. :)

Until next time. 

Ps. What are your favorite shows? Past or present?

Monday, May 20, 2013

Interview with Rachel Caine

Interview with Rachel Caine

Earlier this week I had the privilege of meeting the international bestselling author Rachel Caine at her book signing in Liverpool, England. I arrived for this event at 4pm however it did not start till 5pm and there was already a long line of highly enthusiastic fans of the Morganville book series in which , she was promoting her 14th installment. Eventually 5pm came and Rachel Caine began signing books for everyone and she was so gracious and sweet to everyone who came along , and some fans even brought all 14 of her books for her to sign and she signed every single one. When my time came to have my book signed I was with a group of sweet girls who were ecstatic as I was over the chance to meet Rachel Caine so much so that when Rachel Caine told one of the girls that she looked like one of the characters in the books, she cried with happiness, we were all given a glow in the dark "Morganville Resident" bracelet, a Morganville bag and a Morganville Resident ID which we were extremely happy about. We then waited until the last fan had their book signed to ask Rachel if I could possibly have an interview with her, and she said YES! she was so sweet answering all of the questions and didnt mind that we wanted to know about the books. It was such a great experience to meet such a down to earth and  successful author whose books so many people adore and love, and thankfully she didnt mind teenagers asking her questions about her books, so here is my interview with the author of the Morganville Series, Rachel Caine.

Q. Where did you get the inspiration for Morganville from ?
A. This is a funny story, so my publisher mentioned to me, I was writing the Weather Warden series at the time, which is an adult fantasy series, and they said "would you like to write a young adult series for us" and I thought "I don't really know how to do that" and my editor said "oh yes you do, just think of something" and I said " well what would you like to see" and she said "oh I don't know, something maybe supernatural/paranormal,I don't know, vampires or something" now this was right when Twilight  was just coming out , nobody was really aware of it yet, although I'm sure the editor was,but I said I used to write vampires, that would be fun ,and then I was driving home and I called a friend of mine and I said "I don't think I'm going to do this because I cant think of anything new to say about vampires,or new to do" and she said "I bet you can, tell me the first things that pops into your head"
So this whole series started on a bet?
Yes ,and it was dark and I said "the streetlights are really far apart" and she said "Why" and I said "because if vampires built a town streetlights would be really far apart so you would have further to run to safety" and she said "well that's interesting,I don't think I've ever seen anyone built a town around vampires before" so that's how it started.

Q.Did you base any of the characters of anyone you know?
A .I try not to base anyone exactly on a single person because it makes for very awkward Christmases ,you know there is always someone who will come up and say "I read that and I don't talk like that" or "my hair is better than that" or whatever, so I try not to do that but, what I do is take pieces of peoples characteristics  or their speech patterns or something that they've done and kind of blend it together, but I rarely lift somebody wholesale, now the historical characters I do kind of fit in and I disguise them just a little bit, just so people will have fun figuring out who's who ,like Ada for example, from the lab is Ada Lovelace , Lord Byron's daughter and one of the founders of computing and I honoured her by making her a vampire and sticking her brain in a jar. 

Q.Once you have finished this series do you think you will ever do a spin-off series?
A. You know, we've talked about it, I think I'm just going to let it alone for a little while I think, I have another book that's coming out after it that is unrelated called "Prince of Shadows"and then I'm going to be looking at what I'm going to do next , probably later in the year ,we'll see, if I do it'll be probably be some one-off books about adult characters I think.

Q.Which character of the series would you say you're most like ?
A. I'm probably most like Claire,only because when I was growing up I was an only child and I was very you know very sheltered and lived out in the middle on nowhere and I loved to read and I loved science and math although I didn't think I was very good at it, but I loved it and so had I applied myself to it I probably would have gone to school for physics and I did take a few physics classes in college.

Q. Have there been any plans for a film?
A. We've had it optioned several times by various producers and its always in conversation somewhere or other but the problem is that there are a lot of things right now that are similar too, like you get people saying "yeah but Vampire Diaries is still on TV and True Blood is still on TV and then Richelle Mead's Vampire Academy is coming out and Being Human" there's a whole range of things that it could be like so we will probably wait awhile.

Q. If it ever did get made into a film is there anyone you would want to cast, as we said Alex Pettyfer for Michael and David Tennant/ RDJ for Myrnin?
A. I dont think we can afford Robert Downey Jr.I really dont but I would be okay with David Tennant as Myrnin, he is my favourite Doctor Who. Okay true story the cover designer who designs these books she actually,we were walking around here neighborhood and she said "oh yes there's my apartment building, David Tennant lives there from time to time"

Q. Obviously because the series is long and amazing did you know from the beginning where it was going to go?
A. No, I knew were the first three books were going to go, and I had planned for six, I never in my life thought it would last past six, so I was writing book six and they came back and said "well we would really like you to do nine" and I said "well that's a problem because I have a plan for six, and it's like a big battle scene at the end" and they said "well you can do one-off books and do something different" and I said "okay I'll give it a try" so we did 7,8 and 9 and by the time I was on eight they said "lets go to twelve and then get it to fifteen"and we actually discussed going to eighteen and I said "I really don't think I can, you know let's take a breath", because I'm doing two a year, so in order for me to do anything else, I have to put it on hold so I can do something else, so that kind of why.

Q.How have you found the UK being on tour?
A. I love the UK, this is my fourth trip and I love it and I could live here ( you should) well my husband would be totally okay with that because he wants to live close to a pub and have a local, when we came last year, the rule was any signing I had he had to go to a pub before or after my signing.

Q. Have you got any tips for aspiring writers?
A. The most important thing that I can think of right off the bat is try to be patient because it is a business that happens slowly, I've been writing since I was 14 years old now Jennifer Lynn Barnes beat me by several years, she said she wrote her first novel at 6, she remembered what it was about, most first stories are always about animals for some reason. But also the other thing is to try a set a little bit of time everyday to write because if you just wait for something to strike you when you want to write it is very easy to get frustrated. If you space it out and have regular time, and you sit down and do it and what happens is ideas seem to come a lot easier because you sort of allow space for them. I know it sounds weird but it's true.

Q.Were there any hard parts to write in the series?
A.Yes it happens in every book,there is always somewhere around the middle of the book I just get this feeling that nothing is happening and I just don't know where I am going to go and I don't know how to get through it and I've become accustomed to that, and most writers feel that way at some point, it's just normal so once you know its normal  to feel that way it's much easier to work your way through it, you just say "I'm going to do five more pages today" and soon enough your in a part of the book which is easy to write.

Q.Are the people on the covers based on the characters?
A.Well on the UK covers, no I would say that they're not, I would say they are more representative of "Here's what Morganville looks like" There are some that look like the characters but on the US covers it's a little easier because they are very representational of the characters so I could tell you those, but the UK covers are more like beautiful art.

Q. Which was your favourite book to write?
A.Probably Last Breath because that one for whatever reason I just went through it in record time, it was just fast and I know every little thing that was going to happen and it all happened correctly and that never happens, so that's my favourite but probably Feast of Fools would be the other one.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Bullying: It's everywhere

(This is a post I originally posted on my own blog a few months back, but it is one I felt I needed to share again because it's so important to me and I hope that it helps someone in a some way, shape or form.)

Several months ago, I read this book and it was one that somewhat punched me in the gut. It touches on a subject that everyone is familiar with in some way or another. BULLYING. Unfortunately, bullying has taken on a completely different level this day and age. Especially with social media taking over the world. (Or so it seems). I was bullied in middle school, a little in high school, and honestly, I've been bullied a little bit as an adult. Basically, some people are just downright mean and I try so very hard to see the good in everyone, but some people just show nothing but their mean side.

It really upsets and sickens me to see, almost on a daily basis, the number of kids, teens, and young adults who take their lives because they have been picked on, made fun of, and bullied to the point where they just can't take it anymore. That world shouldn't be like that, it's just wrong. We should be the change that everyone wishes to see and it all starts with being kind to one another.

I read a lot of books that I absolutely love and will recommend to friends, but every now and then a book comes along that I just have to tell anyone and everyone about.
Keep Holding On by Susane Colasanti is such an inspiring and touching book. It is about something that is very close to my heart….bullying.
In this day and age, so many people, young and old, are bullied for their sex, their looks, how they dress, and so on. It breaks my heart. I have never been physically bullied, but I have been verbally and it really breaks you down. As someone who wants to have kids of my own, I hope and pray that my kids will never be bullied and they will never be the bully. I also hope that as someone who is studying to be a teacher, I will take a stand against bullies and help those who are struggling through school each and every day. 
I really am grateful for Susane for writing such a great book. It will make you tear up, make you angry, but in the end…you will feel hope.

If you or anyone you know has been bullied or is being bullied, please read this book.

And Keep Holding On.
Ps. Susane also includes several resources for those who need help, here are a few:

To Write Love on Her Arm -

It Gets Better Project -

The Trevor Project -

Above The Influence -

And please remember, be kind to one another. It makes all the difference.

Until next time,

[original post by me can be found on]

Saturday, April 20, 2013

British Food

Okay let’s face it everyone has traditions when it comes to food and you would be surprised how much food can differ in different places for example the UK and the USA we both have very strange types of traditions without really realising it, like in the UK every Sunday we have what is called a Roast Dinner without fail, it wouldn’t be Sunday in the UK without a           roast, and I know in America you all love Apple Pie for some reasons I don’t understand. So I thought I would show some UK traditional food and ill explain why they are traditional Okay to start the UK food.

1.       Roast Dinner
As I already mentioned in the introduction a Roast Dinner in the UK is a big thing because its a tradition though we don’t know why, all of my friends and family have it done ever since I can remember and it is like this all over the UK, I don’t really know when this tradition started or why it started but I know it has been a British tradition for a long time. For those of you who don’t know a Roast Dinner is made from any kind of cooked meat you want, any kind of vegetables, and a Yorkshire pudding ( if you don’t know what it is , google it) and gravy ( optional)

2.Fish and Chips
Okay if you know anything about British Culture you will know we love our fish and chips (you can have it with mushy peas and gravy if you want), it’s almost our national dish, you can get them anywhere in the UK we absolutely adore it but I’m not sure why, and we get them from the chippy ( that’s a chip shop, well anywhere where you can get a takeaway) If you come to Britain you have to have one just to embrace the British-ness of it.

3.Full English Breakfast
Okay there is nothing better than waking up and having a full English Breakfast to wake you up, its the best way to start the day (well in my opinion anyway),It consists of eggs, bacon, sausages, fried bread, mushrooms, baked beans and sometimes black pudding (you don’t want to know what its made of, trust me!) But if any of you come to England for a trip your hotel will offer this so at least try it.

4. Bubble and Squeak
Yes I know it’s a stupid name before you say anything, but it’s a British classic. Normally made from leftover vegetables from a Sunday Roast, such as potatoes and cabbage, and other vegetables and then mix them with mashed potatoes. You then fry them in a pan or bake them, which makes it bubble and squeak, hence the name. I have never personally had it but everyone I know who has had it has said it’s delicious.

And Lastly ...

5. Scouse
This is the signature dish where I am from: Liverpool, but it’s still popular in Britain, it’s got its name by the fact that people from Liverpool are called scousers and it just came from there. In the simplest form it’s a stew with beef chunks, potatoes and carrots but you can put anything in it , like beetroot (scousers love it!) some people even put leek in it but you can make it anyway you want. It is so simple and easy to make and it’s delicious.

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Chasing the Skip by Janci Patterson Review

Ricki’s dad has never been there for her. He’s a bounty hunter who spends his time chasing parole evaders—also known as “skips”—all over the country. But now since Ricki’s mom ran off, Ricki finds herself an unwilling passenger in a front-row seat to her father’s dangerous lifestyle. 
Ricki’s feelings get even more confused when her dad starts chasing seventeen-year-old Ian Burnham. She finds herself unavoidably attracted to the dark-eyed felon who seems eager to get acquainted. But Ricki thinks she’s ever in control—the perfect manipulator. Little does she know that Ian isn’t playing their game by her rules.

Review by P10 member, Hannah!

I have recently read a book called Chasing the Skip written by Janci Patterson. This is her first novel, and I liked it a lot. At first I thought it was going to be some cheesy love story between two of the main characters, Ian and Ricki, but I was soon proven wrong. This book is about a girl who was born into an extremely dysfunctional family and forced to navigate life as an adult even though she’s only a teenager. Ricki has severe trust issues caused by the father who walked out on her as a child and the mother who leaves but usually comes back. Patterson can and will make the reader attached to all of her characters with one stroke of a pen. Patterson is clearly a skilled writer and I look forward to reading her future novels, I hope you all pick up a copy of Chasing the Skip!

Tell us--have you read Chasing The Skip? What did you think of it?