Friday, September 30, 2016

October TBR

October TBR:

So as you all will know if you have been with my blog for a few years, in the colder months October- February is when I get a large portion of my reading. So we are in that time window right now! Get ready for a multitude of reviews and very exciting posts coming soon! This month I am carrying over three books and I will fill the rest with a wide selection so I can choose, however it is likely that not all of these will be completed in October.

I know it is ambitious, and quite daunting but I have faith in myself.

 Review Books: 
  • Jerusalem by: Alan Moore
    • I am halfway done with this book, if I get a weekend soon I will wrap it up very quickly! Again I was kindly sent the ARC by the publisher Liveright, so thanks to them I am able to read and review it for you all!
    • Do not forget about my International Giveaway for the UK paperback copy! Jerusalem Giveaway
    • I am extending this giveaway one more week until Friday October 7th!
  • Summerlong by: Peter S. Beagle 
    • I am about halfway done with this book, I received it through NetGalley and Tachyon Publishing group. I will be completing this one first this month as it is much much shorter than Jerusalem.
  • Americanah by: Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche
    • This book I was kindly sent by Social Book Co. who are a reviewing company based out of the UK I believe. They will send reviewers free copies of any book, regardless of when it is published as long as you review it within an allotted time frame, I will make a post about their company soon!
    • The review for this will be live on October 10th
    • Page Count: 588
Diversity Spotlight Reading: 
  • The Sellout by: Paul Beaty 
    • Page Count: 289
    • This is one of the ManBooker shortlisted works for this year, and I read the first few pages of this book in the shop and I fell in love. I will hopefully be getting to this book for my Diversity spotlight segment for October. 
  • Shelter by: Jung Yun
    • Page Count: 336
    • I saw this one on Simon of SavidgeReads YouTube channel and I had to get my hands on a copy! When I saw that the local library had it I jumped on the opportunity to read it!
    • This is also going to be seen in my Diversity Spotlight!
  • In Order to Live by: Yeonmi Park
    • Page Count: 267
    • This book I gifted to a friend last year, and with all of her rave bantering about how amazing and harrowing this story is, I must read it and see for myself what the hype is all about. 
    • This also will be featured in my Diversity Spotlight post for October.
  • I am Malala by: Malala Yousafzai
    • Page Count: 244 pages left to read. 
    • This was a book that I had started for the DiversAThon and I did not complete it during that time, though I am learning so much while hearing her story. 

Fantasy & Sci-Fi: 
  • Mr. Penumbra's 24 Hour Bookstore by: Robin Sloan
    • Page Count: 288
    • This was my book club's September pick which I was sadly unable to read in the month.
  • The Obelisk Gate by: NK Jemisin 
    • Page Count: 391
    • This is the eagerly anticipated sequel to The Fifth Season which I read earlier this year! I cannot wait to read this and see where Jemisin is going to take the story next.
  • The Guns of Ivrea by: Clifford Beal 
    • Page Count: 479 
    • I saw this book on Twitter months ago and I bought it finally right before I moved into University and I am so excited to read about the court intrigue and pirates that are laced throughout this book!
Halloween Night Read: 
  • The Green Mile by: Stephen King
    • Page Count: 462
    • I read the first section of this and was chilled to the bone! I need to know what happens next and Halloween is the perfect night to scare the heck out of myself!


Happy Reading!
What are you all going to be reading this month?

Monday, September 26, 2016

Monday Madness 9-26-16

Monday Madness
9-26-16

As it is now fall, and my optimal reading weather is setting in I am ramping up for a busy few weeks in University and the blog world. I have some pretty amazing books planned for this week that you have all seen before though I am going to finish them since I will need to have posted reviews by Friday! I am going to be trying to complete these two books by Thursday in order to have the reviews up for this weekend! The books for this week are: 

  • Jerusalem by: Alan Moore
    • Which I have about 600 pages to go before this is done for me. I am really loving the plot and all of the characters and the commentary on the Boroughs, as he seems to deal with the themes of poverty and wealth dispersion. 
    • I need to read a total of 177 pages. 
      • I am hoping that this will be do-able by the end of the week, as I am listening to the audiobook on a faster speed than I can read, I have some faith in myself. 
  • Summerlong by: Peter S. Beagle 
    • I have 190 pages left. I will therefor have to read about 50 pages a day which is manageable on its own though in junction of Jerusalem. 
With this lofty goal for the week is very ambitious as usual though I am hoping to have it work out so you all will have some new and inviting reviews to come and enjoy. Though don't expect to see the Jerusalem review until Saturday or Sunday because I have to write out my thoughts on this behemoth, that Moore has devoted ten years to crafting. 

I would encourage all of you to go out and ENTER the Giveaway that I am running until this Friday September 30th. 

Happy Reading...





Friday, September 23, 2016

Friday Reads 9-23-16

Friday Reads: 
September 23rd 2016   


As I am sure you all will be able to guess by now what I will be reading this weekend, though I intend to be completed with this book by this coming Friday September 30th. That book is...: 

Jerusalem

By: Alan Moore

This tome was sent to me by the lovely folks at Liveright Publishing for an honest review. It was released on September 13th 2016 however I am just about halfway through it by now, and I intend to finish it! I am loving every second of this weird and very wacky ride of a novel! The book in theory should not be enjoyable or cohesive at all, though I am thoroughly attached to the place known as the boroughs in England. The narrative voice that Moore is able to capture within this tome is something that few have ever succeeded at before! While the pace of the book is slow, and at times tedious; the over arching plot-line and character growth is a wonderful romp through time and space. Moore has certainly raised the bar from his prior novel Voices of Fire though I still would like to read it, assuming the caveman's speech patterns stop soon. 

  • My weekend goal for this novel is to read at a minimum 400 pages in this book to become ahead of schedule so I am able to write my review promptly for Friday!


Regardless of my incoherent babbling right here in this infinitesimally small blog post, I think this novel is going to be one of an all time favorite scale! Perhaps not the best book of the year but surely one of the most enjoyable romps I have had the privilege to read in a great while! You all should enter my giveaway for a UK paperback copy of this book, link bellow. I will be selecting a winner in my review post this coming Friday September 30th 2016, just follow the instructions in that post to enter!



Happy reading all! 

Those are all of my puny thoughts about reading for this current weekend, and I will now be off to the land of Mansoul to catch up with my new friend Michael Warren in Jerusalem!

A Long Way Gone Review

Review:
A Long Way Gone
by: Ishmael Beah

I recently participated in the #DiverseAThon that was hosted from September 12th-19th. I am going to approach this review in a different manor than the many others that I have posted here on the blog before; both to discuss the issues that are covered in this book and to look at it in more than a purely objective way, though I will discuss the book's writing all the same. 


This book follows the real account of Ishmael's time in Sierra Leon when he was entwined in the Civil War going on there. The book follows him as the War begins, all the way through when he leaves Sierra Leon and flees to America for safety. His story is something that is astonishing, and harrowing to all who will read it! Ishmael was only a young child, of barely ten when he was caught up in the War with the rebels, at which time he was forced to fight for ideals he did not believe in. The radicals as they were called forced Ishmael to fight alongside their men and kill countless men, women and children to propagate their ideals. This true account of a boy soldier growing up amidst the turmoil of Civil War and violence will open up your eyes to the effects of War on humanity. 

Ishmael's story hit me in the stomach and turned my perspective about life in the Western World on its head! I found his bravery and matter of fact style of looking at life to be both refreshing and heart wrenching. I luckily have never gone through a hardship so grand as something like this; though by the end of his memoire I felt a pain and sickness that I have never felt before. I am sad because of the acts that have been committed to Ishmael and people of his country and to those in any war zone. While many of us can "imagine" the horrors of war, I assure you we do not capture any slight portion of its numbing and chilling effects in comparison to Beah's memoire. This memoire treats war with a certain matter of fact style that few others have been able to capture in such a heart wrenching style. Beah's style is simplistic and to the point, almost akin to good journalism without the false statements and attention grabbing key words; he tells you how things are instead of sugar coating the terrifying acts that have occurred. This style lends an air to his account of normalcy which appalled me even more than the acts themselves. 

Beah is writing this memoire in a simplistic and compassionate way, recounting his time in Sierra Leon Africa during their Civil War and adding not an ounce to the story that is unnecessary. The events that are recounted throughout this story are mind-bogglingly abrasive to the psyche to even fathom that someone is capable of committing these acts, let alone become numb to their occurrence. I am obviously reacting to this harrowing story from a wealthy western nation, therefore these events will carry an immense weight in my eyes. This weight and general concern for those who have gone through the events in this book feels almost petty having not gone through something nearly as gruesomely; though after I have read Beah's memoire I have a much more humbled outlook on the life that I am fortunate enough to lead. 

In general the writing was easily understood and flowed with a stream of consciousness that added greatly to the memoire's stark topics. I cannot  comment about character building or plot as these horrific events were actual events in Ishmael's life, though this man has truly shown me that I have nothing to complain about in this life. He is a truly remarkable man, both for overcoming the events he did in Sierra Leone Africa as a boy soldier but also for sharing his story with the world and shedding light on this difficult subject. 

Thank you, Ishmael Beah for inspiring me to be as humble and optimistic as possible regardless of the situation.

Rating: 5/5 Stars

Links: 
Video: 
Happy Reading,
expand your knowledge of others with this book; you will not be disappointed.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Monday Madness 9-19-2016

Monday Madness 
September 19th 2016


Hello Everyone! 

As I am sure you will know, today is the last day of the #DiverseAThon, and I have not read nearly any of my TBR books for the week. I completed A Long Way Gone by: Ishmael Beah, but I have yet to finish I am Malala or even start Homegoing by: Yaa Gyasi.  Needless to say it has been a dismal week for reading! This coming week I intend to make the reading pace jump into high gear with Jerusalem as the review is going up on September 30th! 

Aside from tackling the tome that is Jerusalem, I would also like to slowly continue reading from my #DiverseAThon TBR! I will be completing I am Malala this week and posting a review on Friday if all goes well. I know this is a very bland update, however I am really going to have to focus on reading the tome that is Jerusalem in order to get the review out on time; so I am sorry if this was predictable. 

Posts This Week: 
  • A Long Way Gone by: Ishmael Beah 
    • Review on Wednesday
  • I am Malala by: Malala Yousafzai
    • Review on Friday (hopefully) 
Videos: 
  • #DiverseAThon Wrap up 
  • A sit and chat video
  • Maybe a surprise vlog or video if the mood strikes


Happy Reading!

I am sorry for the short post, you all will be getting a ton of reviews within the coming weeks, since I am nearing the end of so many books all at once!


Don't forget to enter the International Giveaway for Jerusalem! Ending on September 30th: http://mybookishempire.blogspot.com/2016/09/release-day-fun.html

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Diversity

Diversity:

Though as many of you will know, I have not gotten through a majority of what I had wished to this week, I still would like to discuss the topic of diversity one last time in the perspective of books. I may not be seen by some as a person who can speak about this topic because I am a straight, white man; though I mean no harm in what I am trying to say. 

Diversity is seen everywhere in the day and age, through the many social media outlets that we are all hooked into  daily, through the news and the press are all places where we are bombarded with the word diversity. Some may have become desensitized to the word and what it is trying to say, though I wish we all could take a step back and just breathe and realize the message behind the word, diversity. Diversity carries many different meanings to each person who discusses the issues surrounding the topic; the word diversity to  me means: supporting those who have a different race, ethnicity, sexuality, or experiences. With this being said, all of the persecution that has gone on in the past I feel that we all MUST move on and let the issues of the past go and move into a more inclusive world. 

Some of the issues I see within society are:
  • Race issues with the African American communities
  • Stigmas for many ethnicities 
    • The stigma America harbors for muslims
    • The stigma with gay,lesbian, and transgender people. 
  • The disabled bodies vs. able bodies
    • By this I mean that we as a society often times feel bad for those who are disabled and try to help them in any way possible, assuming that they cannot do it by themselves. This assumption can really hurt the feelings of a "disabled" person. 
There are many more issues than the few that I have listed above, however these are the key issues that I would like to change within society. I know that is something that will take a very long time to accomplish especially when some stigmas run deep, though I have a simplistic start to change. As a person who reads primarily fantasy and science fiction, I will be reading much more diverse literature after the awesome read-a-thon #DiverseAThon is done! I would like to highlight diverse authors each month to allow everyone to chat and step into the shoes of someone who is different from themselves. 

The reason diversity means so much to me is because there are many issues that we still exude surrounding people who are different from ourselves. I would love to see the issues resolved and everyone getting along regardless of skin color, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and experiences; each and every one of us who are here on this earth have something to add to the many conversations that are happening across the globe. I hope that the term diversity and everyone under the terms umbrella will be accepted with open arms into society. Acceptance, those are my hopes and dreams for the future; together we can do our part through reading diverse books and gaining empathy for all those who we read from.

Books are a very inexpensive way for people to gain experiences or enlighten themselves, therefore I believe in order to solve our diversity issues we all need to read as widely as we can! I will be doing my part in supporting the acceptance of diversity and the many wonderful diverse authors that we have in our society today, by highlighting a different book/author every month to bring the hard hitting issues to the forefront of people's mind. The best way that we all can help with the acceptance of diversity is to chat about the issues, and challenge the status quo and share our many opposing opinions in a respectful way to spark conversations within society. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Release Day Fun!

Release Day Fun!
Jerusalem 
by: Alan Moore


Guys!

Something epic has happened today, that you all should be dying to hear about! The ever epic and quirky Alan Moore has released his newest, and longest novel by far, Jerusalem. As you all will know, I was incredibly lucky to receive this book from Liveright Publishing for a review on this blog. I am incredibly thankful for their generosity and cooperation for this tome's review on my blog! That review will be going live by September 30th, I am still in the middle of the novel at this point but I aim to share my thoughts on this epic novel then!

Knowing that I have not yet finished the book, I do still have many thoughts about the novel at this point! I love the scope of this novel! This novel is one of the most ambitious novels that I have ever read in its wide scope; we follow the town of North Hampton in England through the point of view of most citizens in the area. Each an every chapter so far has been from a differing perspective within the community, though hopefully that will change so we can learn more about the wonderful people that Moore has created. Within Normal circumstances I would hate this idea of not seeing a lot of the book from a character that I love, though reading this is as though I am putting together a puzzle in mind as I see the peoples connections forming which is making this tome an even greater delight to read. The scope is mind-blowing, though I am really connecting with each character in ways that I truly did not think was possible. There is one character that I feel a special connection to, Harry, he is a man of color who is living in North Hampton after being released from his slave term in America. Moore has written his character and struggles with a singular moral issue so well that I too began to question the issue at hand! I cannot wait to read more from this book and the author once I am done with this book. The singular drawback that I can think about is the pacing, the pacing is very slow to build and get your attention, though thus far it is worth the HUGE amounts of effort required to read this book!

Plot: "In the half a square mile of decay and demolition that was England’s Saxon capital, eternity is loitering between the firetrap tower blocks. Embedded in the grubby amber of the district’s narrative among its saints, kings, prostitutes and derelicts a different kind of human time is happening, a soiled simultaneity that does not differentiate between the petrol-coloured puddles and the fractured dreams of those who navigate them. Fiends last mentioned in the Book of Tobit wait in urine-scented stairwells, the delinquent spectres of unlucky children undermine a century with tunnels, and in upstairs parlours labourers with golden blood reduce fate to a snooker tournament.

Disappeared lanes yield their own voices, built from lost words and forgotten dialect, to speak their broken legends and recount their startling genealogies, family histories of shame and madness and the marvellous. There is a conversation in the thunderstruck dome of St. Paul’s cathedral, childbirth on the cobblestones of Lambeth Walk, an estranged couple sitting all night on the cold steps of a Gothic church-front, and an infant choking on a cough drop for eleven chapters. An art exhibition is in preparation, and above the world a naked old man and a beautiful dead baby race along the Attics of the Breath towards the heat death of the universe.

An opulent mythology for those without a pot to piss in, through the labyrinthine streets and pages of Jerusalem tread ghosts that sing of wealth and poverty; of Africa, and hymns, and our threadbare millennium. They discuss English as a visionary language from John Bunyan to James Joyce, hold forth on the illusion of mortality post-Einstein, and insist upon the meanest slum as Blake’s eternal holy city. Fierce in its imagining and stupefying in its scope, this is the tale of everything, told from a vanished gutter." (Goodreads.com)

Book Information: 
Publisher: Liveright Publishing 
Page Count: 1184
ISBN: 1631491342
Release Date: September 13th 2016

Links: 

I am currently on page 221 of 1,279 that this behemoth is! I honestly am enjoying this immensely though it is very dense at times with a slow pace. Without a doubt this will be the largest book I have ever read when I complete it, and frankly one of the most complex, which I mean as a compliment.

Today, September 13th 2016 this book was released from Liveright Publishing! 

In promotion for the novel I will be hosting a giveaway for the UK paperback edition! 

Giveaway Details: 
  • Follow me on Twitter: @Komondor70
  • Tweet me why you love reading, and that you would like to enter!
  • You can also enter by leaving a comment to this post answering that question. 
    • This will constitute the same as an entry through Twitter
  • Open internationally
    • Or to any country that The Book Depository ships to.
  • The winner will be announced when the final review goes live on September 30th 2016! 

The Prize: 
  • You will win one copy of the UK Published paperback copy, sent directly through The Book Depository.

Though I am giving away just one copy of this novel, I strongly urge you all to run out and pick up a copy of this book and start reading this book to get a feel for the magic that Moore has created! 
I sincerely love this book at the moment and can only see it getting better as I progress through. 

Go forth and read this tome, Jerusalem by: Alan Moore!

Happy Book Birthday Jerusalem!



Monday, September 12, 2016

Monday Madness Sept. 12th 2016

Monday Madness!
September 12th 2016


Hello Everyone, 

I am back again late at night to share with you all my reading plans for this coming week! I have posted a lot as of late about my reading goals and what I am hoping to read in the near future; however a lot has shifted in the last weeks.
This week has a very exciting event going on, the #DiverseAThon which as I am sure you all know or can infer is a read-a-thon that is promoting diversity. Incase you are not familiar with the controversy that has occurred in the past week; I will shed some light on it here. In the past few weeks a video sprang up on YouTube that was bashing diversity and those people who believed that we all need to focus on the topic and advocate, the women who posted this spiraled into chaos and name slinging to those who focus on reading diverse authors. This video infuriated many people within the community due to its commentary and hurtful messages; though some lovely people took this horrific video and turned a positive leaf. That positive leaf is the #DiverseAThon this is a read-a-thon that was created by some lovely people on YouTube who I will link to, where they challenge us all to read from a diverse view point and participate in some crucial Twitter chats throughout the week. I will be participating throughout the week, I have made a few posts about it with my to be read pile and my opinions on the topic of diversity. 

#DiverseSThon Posts & Videos; 
This week I will be very busy trying to participate in the #DiverseAThon, though on top of reading for this challenge I will also attempt to make progress in Jerusalem by: Alan Moore which I was kindly sent for review by Liveright Publishing. Though Jerusalem is released tomorrow, I will not have it completed by the publication day and I intend to have it completed by the end of the month! I will have a giveaway and progress update live for tomorrow (September 13th 2016) morning on the release date of this tome!

I have some very exciting videos planned this week encompassing the topics of diversity and books, including: 
  • My Views on Diversity/ What does Diversity Mean to me?
  • A chat about Homegoing by: Yaa Gyasi
    • This will be a vlog style as I go throughout the book to record and share my thoughts about the book and its messages. This will be up by Monday September 19th 2016.
  • #DivseAThon Wrap up also up on Monday night! 
Needless to say this week will be filled with bookish shennanigans and I cannot wait for you all to come along on this chaotic week with me; stay tuned for some updates soon!

Happy Reading! 

In this coming week please keep an open mind to those who are different from you, in all that encompasses Diversity!

Friday, September 9, 2016

Diverse-A-Thon

Diverse-A-Thon 
An important Read-A-Thon


This is a lovely Read-A-Thon that was created by Whitney at WhityNovels on YouTube, and a few others who are linked down bellow. I am going to participate in this, as I recently watched a video that shook the bookish community to its core this past week. This video was slandering those who believed that books with diversity are needed within this world that we currently live in, which I believe is completely asinine that she judged people in such a harsh manor. Though this post is not my rant yet about the video, though that is certainly going to be coming on Monday morning. 

This Read-A-Thon was created to encourage readers to pick up books written from diverse view points, or by diverse authors. This is going to bring people together within the book community to chat about diverse books and what it means to have diversity within our culture. In the end I believe that is is very necessary for everyone to participate in if we can, to gain some perspective on other cultures and races.

Dates: September 12th-19th
Time: 12:00 AM - 11:59PM in whatever your timezone is, either EST,GMT, Central Time etc...
Goals: 
  • Read Any Diverse book. 
    • Graphic novel, fiction, Non- Fiction, from any genre.
    • The author can be of a different race, or ethnicity, or the character can be diverse. 
  • Read as much or as little as you can.
  • Chat about Diversity on all social media! 
    • Twitter, Goodreads, and anywhere else you have a platform. 
  • Get a conversation going to bring up your thoughts about diversity and its role within society. 
    • This is a personal goal for me
General Info: 
My To Be Read Stack: I will be trying to complete one book and just hear from diverse and unique voices that I have not read from in the past.  
  • A Brief History of Seven Killings by: Marlon James 
    • I began this novel prior to this read-a-thon, however I had put it aside due to its heavy topic though now I feel like it is needed. James discusses a unique time in Jamaica's history during the time when Bob Marley was targeted and an attempted murder takes place. This is not a part of history that I have heard much on, however the patois writing style at times will push me to get beyond the dialects that are different from my own. Aside from the language barrier I believe this will give me an insight into the Jamaican culture that is often glazed over in preference for the "paradise" that society has made it out to be. 
    • Current Page: 132 of 686
    • The Themes:
      • Race
      • Poverty, drugs
      • The stigmas between cultures 
  • A Long Way Gone by: Ishmael Beah
    • This book was given to me by a friend who said that it had been her most influential read of the past years. This book also deals with the issues and viewpoints that deals with the topic of child soldiers in developing countries, which is something I have never read about and I feel as though it would open my eyes to this horrific topic. I am hoping to see the depiction of war from a first hand perspective, and get an un-biased look at such atrocities.
    • Page Count: 218 
  • Homegoing by: Yaa Gyasi 
    • This is the "buddy read" book for the Read-A-Thon. This book details the slave trade in Ghana with the United States, though it has been outlawed for many years within the United States. I would love to hear more about the multi generational impacts that slavery has on those involved and surrounding such devastating acts. 
    • I watched an interview with her that sealed my desires to read this novel!
  • Americanah by: Chimamanda Ngozi Adiche
    • This book has received loads of praise from the general public and it will also be the first novel that I read from Adiche. With this one I am going to take the plunge into the book without knowing anything accept the fact that this is from a beloved writer of color. I believe I will absorb more of the written story through this way of reading, as I will need to focus on every word to understand what is being said.
    • Page Count: 496
I do realize that we all have pre-conceived notions about the meaning of diversity and how we think it should be dealt with, though through reading these books I hope to read from many perspectives and hear about their experiences and to attempt to understand where they have come from.  I do recognize that I will not be finishing all of these books, especially A Brief History of Seven Killings, which is going to take some dedication. Though through this Read-A-Thon I hope to understand and expand my knowledge of diverse groups of people and their histories. 

I urge you all to join in with this Read-A-Thon and or the Twitter chats, in order to discuss the glory that diversity is. I also would like to express that while all of these books deal with a similar group within our diverse world, that is because of the books I have on hand at this time though I do think that I will be carrying on with the diverse reading in future months. This event is just the touch stone for my future plans to read more diverse novels! 

Happy Reading... 
Please let me know if you will be reading along with this group with Homegoing, I hope we all can chat about diversity and all of our differences within our world. 

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Reading Tomes!

What Makes a Tome Worth Reading?


This post is largely inspired by the tome that I am currently slogging my way through; Jerusalem by:
Alan Moore. I read many tomes a year, and each of which is very different from the last. Each tome I enjoy on a varying scale, this is what I look for in the tomes that I read in order to attain the most enjoyment each and every time I pick up a new tome!

Characters. Though in many tomes that I pick up I have never read anything by the author previously; for example when I read Brent Weeks' The Black Prism. Prior to reading this novel I had no experience with Weeks as an author, however I assume that the size of the book will allow for a wealth of character growth, until I am proven otherwise. However I am sometimes disappointed by the character development or vast scope of a story; as seen with Jerusalem. In this tome I am finding a great attachment to prior seen characters though not the current characters that are depicted in new chapters. When a novel has many characters, such as A Song of Ice and Fire I appreciate seeing a wealth of chapters from their point of view in order to connect to their plight and efforts throughout the story. I have seen many stories that cover all the point of views and do them well, such as the Light Bringer books by Brent Weeks and Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson. The importance of characters to me is for the connection to a story and its plot, along with a more enjoyable experience while reading. The power of connection can help humanity cope with many horrific acts, and through reading and creating a connection I and as I would imagine, you as well, can escape some of the harsh realities of the modern world. 

The plot, like a relaxing television show allows us to escape for a short time and enjoy the talents of each other. The plot of most tomes covers a wide swath of time and characters for the reader to bond with and enjoy their tale, which I find to be a key aspect in enjoying a tome. This enjoyment factor is why I read the majority of what I read within the fantasy and science fiction genres, and a lack luster plot can kill the whole mood of a book. Some novels that have woven plot and character development together quite well include, Mistborn, The Black Prism,  and The Name of the Wind. Others that have done this poorly include books such as The Kiss of Deception, and Armada by Ernest Cline. This "poor quality" plot that I am speaking of is merely personal preference, however I prefer a novel to include adventure, romance, political intrigue, and a widely imagined world to complete the list. Plotting of a novel is not the issue I find most times while reading tomes, that major issue I have is the pacing of a novel. Along with the purely enjoyable and unique plots of the tomes, I look for some insight into current issues within society. If I am able to find a few discussions of current issues within the novel it adds a layer of relevance to the story, though I do not dock the ratings I give if the novel lacks the social and current relevances. Some current issues I am reading into more whilst reading are poverty, race issues, gender equality, and most importantly the gun violence plaguing our world. When looking in depth for these topics I read non-fiction pieces to provide the in depth conversation regarding these topics, instead of the huge fantastical tomes I read so often.

Within pacing there are many terms with varying definitions attached, such as fast pacing, optimal pacing, slow, and slower than molasses in January. These are all terms that I will use through my reviews and speech patterns to speak about a tome once I complete it, though rarely do i use the phrase "slower than molasses in January". This term is reserved for a special kind of book that regardless of the amount of time and dedication you put into reading it feels like you are making no progress; an example for this would be Jerusalem by: Alan Moore. This slow pacing is not always used as a derogatory term in my book, although it requires a specific mood for me to be in in order to enjoy the "slow burning" pace of the tome. Many other terms such as fast and optimal include a lessor nuanced definition. The term "fast paced" has the connotation and meaning of being fun and adventure filled which moves the plot and tome on with a brisk pace allowing you to complete the novel quicker. Optimal pacing has a vary unique meaning for all readers, my personal interpretation of this term is a simple mix of speedy action sequences and slow burning tensions to create an atmosphere laced with character growth and fun scenes to move the plot ahead. Pacing is a personalized preference that is developed through a reader's time reading and analyzing novels; with tomes it varies it can change meaning drastically as well. With a tome many will prefer to read a fast paced plot driven tome in order to complete the book in a timely manor, however I prefer a slower burning novel to connect with the characters that the author has built. 

Three key aspects that is often used to rate a tome's quality often includes characters, plot, and pacing; though these are by far not the only considerations while reading a tome. Other credentials that can be considered when rating a tome's enjoyment factors include language accessibility, dialog creation, and vivid atmospheres; all of these devices can amass into a "perfect" novel that will allow any escape artist of a reader to slip out of reality or delve deeper into reality and examine the current issues. All aspects of a tome come together in an amalgamated mass constructed around paper and ink to allow readers to enjoy and discuss. 

This post was again inspired by what traits I look for in a tome such as Jerusalem by Alan Moore, which has been taking up the reviewing time I have to offer. 

I would love to know all of your opinions about what contributes to create the perfect tome, let me know in the comments what makes the perfect tome for you.

Until Next time, Happy Reading!

I apologize profusely for the lack of videos these past weeks, I am waiting to find the proper time to film for the channel, by the end of the week I will have a new and exciting video up at MyBookishEmpire on YouTube.com!

Monday, September 5, 2016

Monday Madness!

Monday Madness:
 September 5th 2016


Hello Everyone! 

I am back. Yesterdays video on my YouTube channel did not go live, there are many reasons for this most of which are non valid reasons. I will be switching my filming and posting days to Tuesday for the foreseeable future as I have the most free time then. The next video where I show you my reading nook and just chat for a bit will go up this coming Tuesday, September 6th. 

Aside from filming and uploading this week, I will also ramp up my reading goals for some review copies in order to share the awesome stories with you in the form of reviews. I am going to change my pacing for: 

  • Jerusalem by: Alan Moore
    • Old Pace: 79 pages a day
    • New Pace 130 pages a day
      • This pacing will keep me on my feet and always reading this tome! I am aiming to have a review up for the 13th and I have fallen behind on my prior goals therefor I had to readjust. Thus far in my readings (through page 103) I am enjoying the HUGE scope that Moore is taking on with this novel; however my one qualm with the book would be that the pacing is very slow and steady. Usually a slow and steady pace I would not mind, however when the novel is near 1,300 pages long a shot of rapid fire action cannot hurt. 
    • Jerusalem Goodreads page
Regardless if I finish the book to review directly on publication day or not, I will be hosting a giveaway for one hardcover copy of this tome! So check in daily to see when that goes live! 

My next reading goal this week is to complete another novel that I just began a few days ago. I would like to complete:
  •  Summerlong by: Peter S. Beagle 
    • Which I kindly received from Tachyon Publishing group. I have already started this novel, and I must say that it is a very bizarre novel, and I am intrigued when it will transition into the fantastical at this point. 
    • Current Page: 57
    • Total Page Count: 256
    • Summerlong Goodreads Page
These two novels will certainly keep me very busy for the coming week. I am hoping to check in later in the week and let you all know the progress I have made in Jerusalem, which I hope to be a large chunk. With that being said, I am sorry for the lack of reviews on this blog. I do have so many books I will review but this tome, Jerusalem, landed at the top of my review que finally and has clogged the pipes for other books. 

In addition to making progress within Jerusalem this week I will also be posting some creative posts including: 
  • What I thinks makes a Tome worth reading.
  • Shuffling the stacks: An organizational inspiration (Post)
  • End of the year goals
  • Jerusalem Giveaway & Review 
  • Exciting Fall 2016 Releases!
Happy Reading!
Please chat on Twitter @Komondor70 if you have read either of these two crazy well known authors, because these two novels are my first attempts to read their work.


Friday, September 2, 2016

August Wrap Up/ Mini Reviews

August Wrap Up & Mini-Reviews
2016!


Hello everyone! 

This is a new segment that I have been pondering for a while, and I have come to the conclusion that it may be helpful for you all to see the books I have read and reviewed over them month, with linked reviews. I recognize that you will have heard of these books before in a review if you read this blog regularly, however in the same vein this will give you a unique list of all the books I read in a month and my quick thoughts on each. Without further ado let us kick off this segment with August 2016!


The Books!:
  1. The Night Sister by: Jennifer McMahon
    1. This book was absolutely wonderful, it was eerie and shared a wide depth of characters to add the this New England mystery Horror. I love McMahon's writing for the simple fact that she knows the perfect balances between character development and plot, using this she weaves a haunting tale of a lost sister, shape-shifters, and good old fashion Vermont ghost tales!
    2. Rating: 4.5 Stars
    3. Page Count: 384
    4. Publisher: Anchor
    5. Review Link: http://mybookishempire.blogspot.com/2016/08/the-night-sister-review.html
  2. Red Right Hand by: Levi Black
    1. This book was underwhelming to say the least. I wanted to love this for many reasons, but it seemed to fall flat every single time it headed in the right direction for me. I thought the premise was awesome, but the characters just did not work well in my opinion.
    2. Rating: 2.5 Stars
    3. Page Count: 304
    4. Publisher: Tor Teen
    5. Review Link: http://mybookishempire.blogspot.com/2016/08/review-time-red-right-hand.html
  3. Ghost Talkers by: Mary Robinette Kowal 
    1. This book is thus far my favorite fantastical novel of the year! This book will pull you in from page one, and entrance you for hours on end! This author knows her way around the written word, the uses a combination of elevated diction and prose to weave a strong group of characters together into one brilliant story. Everyone should try to read this very soon!
    2. Rating: 5 Stars!
    3. Page Count: 304
    4. Publisher: Tor Books
    5. Review Link: http://mybookishempire.blogspot.com/2016/08/review-august-15th-2016.html
  4. Lexicon by: Max Barry 
    1. This book launches out of the gate with a bang! This book has a pacing that is reminiscent of a bullet being fired from a gun, if you are not holding on you will fall behind! The plot is fun and surely interesting, however the concept "the literal Magic of words" had me entranced as I flew through this fast paced thriller!
    2. Rating: 4 Stars
    3. Page Count: 390
    4. Publisher: Penguin Books
    5. Review Link:http://mybookishempire.blogspot.com/2016/08/lexicon-review.html

Those were all the novels that I completed in the month of August, let me know in the comments what you all have been reading or if you have read any of these gems! 

Happy Reading!