Review: Children of Blood and Bone

I’m breaking one of my rules. I’m reviewing a single book in a series – Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi. This is because the second book (Children of Virtue and Vengeance ) isn’t out yet. So I can’t review the whole series. And I need to talk about this book. I’ve had this book on my radar since I saw the bit about “women writers are automatically YA” and the falsehood this entails. I have to 1000% agree – this is NOT a YA book. At least not in the “sure, 14-year-olds can read” level YA. Maybe 18. Definitely 20. And although I might consider 20 “young adult” – that isn’t what the market actually says (12-18 is pretty standard). This books hits hard on some deep, serious, and difficult topics. Genocide. Trauma. Blood Magic. Torture. Adeyemi doesn’t toe around these topics lightly, she drags you into them in such a way that you wonder where the

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Tech: Tablet… upgrade?

Within 30 minutes of posting my previous tablet piece, Eli messaged me “you know, there’s an apple store right by my office” He also convinced me to go with wifi-only model, with the promise that if I really, truly miss/need LTE we’ll look at adding a wifi hotspot to our cell phone plan. So that night he brought me home my new ipad mini (there really wasn’t much competition, it was a matter of convincing myself to just bite the bullet). So it’s been two weeks – what do I think? So with the money we saved on the wifi-only option, I got a case and a crayon. The crayon is a very nice stylus. The case does exactly what I want – protect my ipad and give me a real keyboard. Thus far it’s been great, the bluetooth has connected without issue. My only complaint with either is he ability to know how much battery is left (this is

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Baby Stuff: Monitor

Baby Monitors are insane. Ridiculous. We were super lucky that some friends gave us their baby monitor to help us get started. It was less than a year old and really has given us a chance to see what is good and bad in a baby monitor. And there are some ridonkulous baby monitors out there in the market. Now, why am I looking at the market? Well, as we’re beginning to transition Remy to his crib (he’s outgrowing the bassinet already) we’ve run into a snag (apparently common with the monitor we were given) where the parental unit battery doesn’t hold a charge and doesn’t want to charge. Quite a few Amazon reviews complain the battery sucks after a year or so. So it goes 2-3 hrs (withOUT video) and is dying. And you have to basically hold the charging cord in to get it to charge. This wasn’t an issue when we really only used the monitor during

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Happy 4th of July!!

I’ve gone through and highlighted some items I think are important to the current political conversation. IN CONGRESS, JULY 4, 1776 The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America. When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation. We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That

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Reviews: How I approach them

I’m sure anyone who is reading my reviews regularly knows this, but I’m going to confess I don’t have a system for my reviews. When I first started them (if you go back and look at the oldest of them), I tried to follow some kind of pattern. Set a structure and stay inside it. Give a rating of some kind. I hated it. I found it very frustrating when the review I wanted to write didn’t fit in this structure I had built. The boundaries weren’t fences keeping the wilderness out – they were a prison keeping me from exploring! So I scrapped the formula and went freeform. What can I say – I’m a pantser at my core. But it helped. I was able to explore. When I feel an author did an exceptional job (either positively or negatively) on a specific element I can chew on it longer. If something like “world building” wasn’t really important, I

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Tech: The Tablet Hunt

My tablet is dying. I have finally had to admit it doesn’t hold much charge, the bluetooth keyboards can not manage to stay connected (yes, I have 2 and both of them are in bad shape too). I do NOT want to do this, but Eli is pretty sure my tablet was purchased in 2013 or 2014…. which means it’s well past “expected life” for tech – much less a tablet. Hell, it’s on Google 6.0 and can’t be updated anymore (I could probably jailbreak it and maybe get another version on there, but I’m also afraid this would brick the thing). So I need a new tablet. Unfortunately, there isn’t a tablet on the market I’m excited about. What I have now: To understand what I’ve had for the past ~6 years, it’s a Nexus 7, 32GB version with LTE access through T-mobile. The Big Problem My current tablet is 7″ and has been the perfect size for me.

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Politics: the GOP is an asshole boyfriend

Fair warning, I am going to use some foul language in this post. I have tried to take it out and I keep putting it back. It needs to be there. The language BELONGS in this post. When I was in college I dated a guy who did one thing consistently that drove me utterly batty. We had this conversation regularly (and most people have had a similar version of this with someone): Me: I’m hungry. Let’s get some food.Him: Sure.Me: Where do you want to go? Him: Oh, I don’t care.Me: Ok, [restaurant #1] then?Him: Uh. I don’t want that.Me: Then where do you want to go?Him: Oh, I don’t care. Yes you do. Yes, you FUCKING DO. I remember the day I lost it on him. And by lost it, I meant I wasn’t putting up with the bullshit anymore. Me: I’m hungry. Let’s get some food.Him: Sure.Me: Where do you want to go? Him: Oh, I don’t

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Writing: Urban Fantasy

I’ve tried a few times to write urban fantasy. I find it less than fun even when I like my idea/character/etc. I recently was re-reading something I had written (in this genre) and reached the “damn, I wish I had finished this – I want to read the ending!” (of which there isn’t one) point. It made me start thinking about other urban fantasies. I see there being two styles to urban fantasy. There is the “Harry Potter” style where the magical and the “real” world never meet – and so there is this idea that WE are just “missing” what’s there. I think most urban fantasy seems to fall into this side – Dresden Files, City of Bones, etc. The protagonist finds out or was raised in a world with magic. It collides with the “real world” somehow (usually) and their attempt to be “normal” OR to escape “normal” people. IE, Harry would do anything not be like the

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SCOTUS: Windbag

I haven’t done a breakdown of a SCOTUS (Supreme Court of the United States) in a while (they were poorly read so I haven’t bothered with the research needed). BUT, I do still sometimes read opinions. And I just have to say Clarence Thomas is a windbag. He isn’t stupid or anything, but I feel like he writes his “concurrent opinions” just too often. And they are too long. This comes up because of the Court Opinion on Quarles v. United States. I mean, in this case Thomas manages to keep his opinion to only two pages – but it is literally 2 pages of “I agree with everyone else.” And since it was (unusually enough) an unanimous opinion – it’s not like he was getting to spar with Ginsburg or something. I just had to say it – it was irksome and I felt the need to vent to the entire internet that Thomas annoys me with his “I

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Review: Wayfairer trilogy

I pretty much stumbled across this series and found myself drawn in. I never realized a book without strong plot could be enjoyable. All those “character books” I had to read in middle and high school (I’m looking at you Pat Conroy) where it’s exploring “the human experience” or whatever. I disliked those. But the Wayfarirer books, there isn’t a strong plot to drive me forward – and I didn’t mind at all. So clearly, these books are all about the characters. And I do mean, all about. The barest of plot/action makes an appearance just to give the books some kind of beginning-middle-end structure, but that is all it seems to be for. These books are about the people and the world. And this world was fascinating. The worlds Beck Chambers builds are awesome. They are deep and real. There was only one alien species I found myself going “I don’t believe they would make it to space on

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