October 11, 2017

New Blog Design+Name!!!

Study Motivation

Hello, my friends!!!


Notice anything different?

Yep, yes, that's 100% right. You're looking at a brand new blog. 

Well. Brand new in a manner of speaking. It's still the same blog....

Let's talk about this.

1) NEW BLOG DESIGN

I've been meaning to do a makeover on my blog for awhile now. With the arrival of autumn, now seemed a perfect time to do so. You may notice, however, that my new design isn't exactly autumnal. That was intentional. As much as I love matching my blog surroundings to the current season, I honestly don't have the time to do it like I used to. Plus, my blog design tastes have gone up in recent years. I don't want to drive myself insane every season wrangling css codes and rummaging through the html coding searching for one little tag.

I hope this design will stay a bit longer than the previous one. I'm super pleased with how it came out—I was going for something a little more professional (hence simply the title instead of a collage header.....not yet sure whether I'm going to miss the photos or not...) but still cozy and personal.

Also, I gotta give credit where credit is due—I was greatly inspired by this girl's gorgeous new blog design. *whispers* I really hope she doesn't mind. My brother said it's not complete plagiarism, though the very similar background may be pushing it a little. *looks around nervously*

2) NEW BLOG NAME
This is probably even bigger news than the aforementioned, though I'm willing to bet you noticed the design before the name. (Am I wrong? Right? Crazy?) (Don't answer that last one.)

So.....WHAT DO YOU THINK???


For yearrrrrs now (pretty much ever since I created my blog) I've thought about changing its name. I was never 100% in love with "Raindrops on Roses and Whiskers on Kittens", but after entering the blogging world with it and having it gain recognition and experience, I couldn't just pull the rug out from my poor baby blog and rename it so soon! It's been good for the past four years. But with growth comes change, and this former name no longer fits my little blog as well as it used to. Kind of like when a child is called "Lizzy" until she grows up and insists on being called "Elizabeth".


*sniff* Back to business. I asked a couple close friends what they thought of my intended name change. With their thoughts and approval goading me on, I am now pleased to announce that "Raindrops on Roses and Whiskers on Kittens" is henceforth to be known as "Ramblings of a Redhead Girl."

It's shorter, more coherent, and MUCH easier to type out. :P

AND IT MATCHES MY URL.

(Now I wish I hadn't originally written my URL with all those dashes, but oh well. Live and learn.)

3) I created a personalized icon, changed my sidebar a bit, and tidied up my "about", "my books", "reviews", and "friends" pages. Check them out if you so wish. :)


So what do YOU all think of my new blog name??? 
I put a little voting gadget thingy on the sidebar for your input. >>>
(It's anonymous, so you can say what you like and I'll never know it was you. ;))

September 19, 2017

Tolkien Questions!

Hamlette is hosting her fun annual Tolkien blog party so hop on over and check it out! :D (Also, the giveaway is EPIC as usual.)

Bilbo and Frodo

1. How long have you been a Tolkien fan?
Since about summer of 2014, when I first read The Fellowship of the Ring. However, I think I was predisposed to like LOTR, having heard much about it and having played and enjoyed the Lego video game.

Whiiiichh, I actually don't recommend. Because when you go to watch the movies, all you see is the Lego version in your head. Ugh. :P

2. Has your love of Middle-earth affected your life?
Mmmmm....I guess so? I mean, The Lord of the Rings is definitely my standard of excellence for fiction now (although, there are certainly differences and allowances to be made for genres, style, target audience, etc.) and the story itself has given me much perspective on the beauty in this world—and encouragement. For when all seems lost, there is still hope.

3. If you had to take the One Ring to Mordor, which character would you choose for your sole companion?
Aragorn.


*cough*
Aragorn is awesome
truth

4. Which is scarier, Shelob or the Balrog?
Uhhmmmmm. Shelob is a spider....a giant spider. But Balrog is like really, really huge and flaming and I actually get a little nervous in the build up to his appearance in the movies....but nothing would be worse than traversing Shelob's lair....

I don't knooooooowww. Both are just hideous. I guess I'll say Shelob. If I had to die by one, I'd rather it was the Balrog than Shelob. (Because you and I both know I wouldn't stand a chance with either.)

5. Which two towers do you think Tolkien was referring to in the title The Two Towers?  (i.e. Orthanc, Barad-dûr, Cirith Ungol, Minas Morgul, or Minas Tirith)
I guess I always assumed it was Orthanc and Bard-dûr.
I love this so much xD

6. Whose wardrobe would you like to have?
Ahhhhhh that is a hard question. Because I absolutely adore pieces from each of the LOTR heroines' wardrobes. Only one?? *thinks very hard for a few moments*

I guess Éowyn's. The muted, autumnal colors of her gowns would look better on me than Arwen's dramatic wardrobe. Plus, Éowyn's gowns tend to be both practical and pretty. I would always be afraid of ripping or staining one of Arwen's gorgeous dresses.

(Can I have Tauriel's hair though, please and thanks? Also  maybe one of Arwen's gowns? No? Ahh well.)
WHY IS THIS SO FUNNY
hahahaha
7. What do you think an Ent Draught would taste like?
I honestly have no clue, but I'm going to suppose it has a rather earthy taste to it. Maybe with a bit of a berry-like tang?

8. Where in Middle-earth would you like to live?
THESE QUESTIONS ARE HARD. I guess Hobbiton. But could I travel to Rivendell and Rohan often? :)

9. Do you have any Tolkien-related opinions that surprise other people?
I love the Hobbit movies. Inaccuracy to the books and all.

And I ship Kili and Tauriel like 10000%.

*hides*

« Hahaha I wish I can have this hair #hair… »
wish this was in the movie bahaha

10. List up to ten of your favorite lines/quotations from the books or movies.

I'm short on time, so I'm only going to share one this time. Sowwy! Behold:



“There's some good in this world, Mr. Frodo, and it's worth fighting for.” 

― Samwise Gamgee





That quote really does encourage me some days. Thank you, Sam. <3 


Favorite Movie adapted from a book- The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring. Peter Jackson did an amazing job with LOTR! This movie will always be a classic.

And thank you for the fun questions, Hamlette!!

September 15, 2017

dreams



...a dream is a wish your heart makes...
I love this dress. It reminds me of space and I'm wondering if I can make a skirt like this with a slightly darker scheme to look like a galaxy....


...years of dreams just can't be wrong...
Anastasia: The New Broadway Musical



...i walked with you once upon a dream...
Sleeping Beauty. I love this one because her dress is true to form of how the story really went with both pink AND blue

...i dreamed a dream in time gone by...
"Now life has killed the dream I dreamed."

...don't take much to be a dreamer...all you do is close your eyes...
I LOVE THIS MORE THAN ANYTHING ELSE IN THE WORLD


...here's to the ones who dream...
lalaland, Tu Na on ArtStation at https://www.artstation.com/artwork/AP84y

...'cause way down deep inside i've got a dream....
Tangled<3:) All those days, watching from a window. All those years, outside looking in.


...now our dreams...they've finally come true...
La La Land International Poster textless by mintmovi3 on DeviantArt

~~~





I don't have much of an explanation for this post, friends. One day I was ruminating on some of my favorite musical theater songs that all have the word "dream" in them....and then this post was born. I know there are probably dozens of songs I'm missing, but this was still fun to put together. Sometimes I need a reminder that it's good to pursue my dreams. So, if anything, this post is a reminder for me—and anyone else who needs it—to....
"Go. Live your dreams."

PS. If you want to read some really good posts about dreams and the pursuance of them, read this and this. :)

September 10, 2017

Four Years+100 followers

It's been four wonderful years. Four years in which Natalie's memory slowly deteriorates, I guess. Because I was all set to sit down and write out on post on "four things blogging has given me".

Then I checked last year's anniversary post and was mildly shocked to see I had already written that post. (Except it was five, not four.)

Wooow.

So, here I am, unsure of what to say. And friends, to be honest, I don't feel much like celebrating. Hurricane Irma is currently on its path to Florida and though I am no where near the danger, it's still a source of worry and fear for me.
Isaiah 54:10 Though the mountains be shaken and the hills be removed, my unfailing love for you will not be shaken.
Florida was my home for 15 years. It was my childhood. Several relatives and dear friends still live there on the west coast, including my grandparents and a dear childhood friend I've known since I was seven.

It's crazy hearing about the evacuations. It's crazy seeing how big this hurricane is. It's crazy thinking what it would be like if we were still living there. It's just crazy.
Christmas in Venice, FL
downtown Venice, FL--a place I went to quite frequently as a kid
I also feel guilty--guilty that I didn't pray for the victims of Harvey as much as I've been praying for Florida. It's just so different. Knowing the place in danger and especially the people who are still there...it puts it into such a different light.

But I know God is in control. I know He reigns supreme. And I'm still grateful for so much--thankful a few friends have been able to evacuate (like Mary!) and thankful that my family and friends still there have a safe place they plan to go.
"But the Lord stood with me and strengthened me."

I'm so thankful for the supportive friends I've met through blogging. Their encouragement and prayers mean the world. If I had to pick the one best thing about these four years of blogging, it would be that. My friends. Each of you are so unique, so dear, and so special.

Thank you so much.

Without you, I probably wouldn't be online here today. I probably wouldn't have written my novel, which opened the floodgates for 1,345 other novel ideas (give or take a little :P). I probably wouldn't be anything like who I am.

To be honest, I wondered whether I should save my thoughts about the hurricane for a different post and keep my anniversary post fun and light-hearted. But that wouldn't be very honest with you all. I don't want to put up a front about my life. Sometimes life is sad and messy and hard and I wouldn't be trusting you all very much if I didn't let you know it.

[ S u m m e r t i m e ] E s s e n c e . O f . S u m m e r


You say, “I choose the appointed time;
    it is I who judge with equity.
When the earth and all its people quake,
    it is I who hold its pillars firm.
Psalm75

From heaven you pronounced judgment,
    and the land feared and was quiet—
when you, God, rose up to judge,
    to save all the afflicted of the land.
Psalm 76

The waters saw you, God,
    the waters saw you and writhed;
    the very depths were convulsed.
The clouds poured down water,
    the heavens resounded with thunder;
    your arrows flashed back and forth.
Your thunder was heard in the whirlwind,
    your lightning lit up the world;
    the earth trembled and quaked.
Your path led through the sea,
    your way through the mighty waters,
    though your footprints were not seen.
You led your people like a flock
    by the hand of Moses and Aaron.
Psalm 77


A favorite song at the moment:




God is trustworthy. 
He cares about the people of Florida more than I ever could. 
And He's going to be right there in the midst of it all.
He has a purpose for this.

And He will never leave nor forsake His people.


Hopefully I can get something more fun together for y'll soon. Would anyone be interested in an Ask Me Anything post? And I really want to host a giveaway sometime soon. Why?

BECAUSE I'M AT 100 FOLLOWERS. YOU ALL ARE AMAZING THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!!
!!!!!!!!!!

But for now, thank you. 

Thank you for four years. 

Thank you for your friendship.
pretty flower picture for you because that's all I have right now ;D
Here's hoping for many more years as wonderful as these have been.

Love you all!!! *hugs*

September 6, 2017

"Cloaked" Cover Reveal~Rachel Kovaciny

I have an exciting book cover to reveal today, my friends. It belongs to Cloaked, a western retelling of "Little Red Riding Hood" by Rachel Kovaciny (aka Hamlette of Hamlette's Soliloquy).
Sawtooth National Recreation Area at sunrise. Sawtooth Mountains, Stanley, Idaho. Photo: Chad Case
random pretty picture from Hamlette's pinterest board for "Cloaked"
Here's the official synopsis of Rachel's book:
On the way to Wyoming Territory to visit her grandmother for the first time, sixteen-year-old Mary Rose meets a charming accountant with a sinister interest in her grandmother's ranch.

And guess what? In only a few weeks (!!!) Cloaked will be available on Amazon in paperback and e-book formats.

You all are going to LOVE this cover. Of course, being part of the cover reveal I got to see it beforehand (heehee, lucky me). I was definitely expecting something amazing for this book, but I am happy to report it was even more beautiful than I dared dream. 

LIKE SERIOUSLY THIS BOOK COVER IS GORGEOUS.

I gasped and stared at it in awe for about thirty seconds.

pretty much my reaction



So. Are you ready to see it?? :D Go ahead and scroll down to behold the beauty....







.....keep scrolling...









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you're almost there, I promise!!!










ISN'T IT BEAUTIFUL????????

Ahhh, it's insanely, amazingly gorgeous. The detail and the styling and just EVERYTHING. I absolutely love it. It's simple without being boring, unique without being odd, and extremely detailed without being overdone. IT'S BASICALLY PERFECT, OKAY? 
 (Look at how his hat is part of the mountains!! I didn't even notice that at first. The more you study this cover, the more you appreciate it.)


Congratulations, Rachel!!!
Thank you for allowing me to help reveal the cover of Cloaked!

September 4, 2017

Ten Things I Hate About Driving

So while writing my previous post, the idea for THIS post fell into my lap. I really don't have much to preface it with, except that *warning* some sarcasm and ranting abounds. :P


10) I promise I'm innocent, officer
I don't know about you, but even seeing  a police officer makes me nervous. NOT because I'm doing anything wrong (I mean sometimes I speed a leetle bit...*cough*) but because I'm trying so hard to do everything right....does that even make sense? I don't know. All I know is that police officers (despite my extreme admiration and respect for them) make me a little nervous and I live in constant fear of getting a ticket. I DON'T WANT MY PURE, SPOTLESS DRIVING RECORD STAINED WITH A SPEEDING TICKET.

9) First rule of leadership: everything is your fault
When you're the driver, you have to balance everything. The phone. The car keys. Making sure the car is locked. Driver's license. Any cargo like library books to return or groceries you just bought. Your brother. Money. Sunglasses. NOT TO MENTION DRIVING SAID VEHICLE. Which involves stop signs. Traffic lights. Pedestrians. Passing cars. Runaway dogs. Speed limit signs.
#more stressed than Legloas battling orcs

8) Four way stops.
Must I really explain why? It's confusing and dangerous, especially for an indecisive person like me. And then there is always someone who is just like....



7) And at last I see the light....and nothing but the light.
Driving at sunset. UGH. Instant blindness will commence now.


6) When the FBI trails you
Okay, honestly I added this one for the gif. But sometimes there's just that ONE car you can't shake no matter what obscure dirt road you go down...


5) DEER!
I live in Michigan, guys. I have deer paranoia. FORGET THE SPEEDING TICKET I'LL TAKE THAT ANY DAY OVER THIS.
*I purposely found a gif of a deer NOT getting killed, you're welcome

4) Slow turners.
I admit it. I'm impatient.

3) Those people who pass you going over 80mph and never get pulled over???
One of my biggest pet peeves is when I'm going EXACTLY the speed limit and people still pass me. I just.....


(the extreme version of this is when you're in the upper peninsula of Michigan, miles away from anything on this desolate back roads and you go ten miles over the speed limit and still every car passes you)


2) No turn signal
FOR THE LOVE OF FRESH STRAWBERRIES PLEASE  USE YOUR TURN SIGNAL WHILE SWITCHING LANES ON THE EXPRESSWAY. OR TURNING RIGHT. OR LEFT. PRETTY MUCH ALWAYS. IT'S IMPORTANT.
It's called a BLINKER!!! - No kidding, this is me any time I drive anywhere, do people NOT know blinkers exist??? angry dog driving road rage


1) PEOPLE WHO TAILGATE.
Guaranteed to cause me road rage* every time.


*except I don't actually do anything associated with "road rage". I just complain about this person verbally--whether someone's in the car to listen to me or not :P


How about you, my friends? 
What are your driving pet peeves?

Dog driving car with kid gif, laugh out loud! Follow RUSHWORLD. We're on the hunt for everything you'll love!

August 29, 2017

Lately//Books&Movies

Aghhh, why does time go so fast?? Guys, August is going to be DEAD in two days. *dying noise*

(*whispers* Natalie, stop being so dramatic. Wow. *end whispers*)

Ahem. So, I got back from a trip to the upper peninsula of Michigan last Friday. That was fun. But that's not what this post is about. Today I'm here with a vague continuation of my last "lately" post, a collection of miniature (VERY miniature) reviews of the books and movies I've read and watched lately. I could probably go on and on in a post about EACH of these, but for my own sanity (and your attention span) I'm going to try and make this quick and painless. Readysetgo.

Watching....

Poldark (season one)
Ross and Demelza
told you I'd steal it, Olivia :P
Just to preface, I will not be watching any more seasons of this show. Season one was sketchy enough and when I looked up what happens in the next seasons......WHO WROTE THIS SHOW? *throws laptop out the window*

(Has anyone here read the books? If so, are they as horrid as this show is/gets?)


Things I loved:
~ROSSELZA. Ross and Delmeza were the absolute end to cuteness. THEY WERE ADORABLE.

~Verity (Minnie ;)) was sooooo sweet and SHE AND ANDREW WERE AS CUTE IF NOT
SOMETIMES CUTER THAN ROSS AND DEMELZA. Ahhh. <333 (Naomi, you would LOVE them.)

~The ocean and cliff side scenery. Like wow.

~The introooo. It's insanely gorgeous. Here, watch it. You must.

~The setting of 1700's England. *nods*

~Speaking of Ross again, he's very attractive, wouldn't you say? And if you don't agree, whatever. I say he is. :P I mean, he's Kili so.....enough said.

~Demelza's amazing hair and her pretty dresses and her accent that I sorely want to imitate but can't. :P

~THE SCENE WHERE ROSS AND DEMELZA HAVE THEIR NEW BABY. That was quite possibly the sweetest scene ever. :')
"How could we have made something so perfect?.....I promise I'll make the world a better place for her."

Ross, Demelza and Baby Julia.
awwwww

~THE MUSIC.

(I aplogize for all the CAPs. I had to get this out of my system. :P)


What I didn't like:
~Um. Need it really be said? This show could have been SO good without all the adultery going on.
I agree, Guy

~Like, the beginning of Ross and Demelza's *cough* romance.  At least Ross was honorable afterwards though.  Like yes, you both did the wrong thing, but then you did the right thing by getting married right after.

(It's like the only honorable thing Ross does tbh so it deserves recognition. *clap*)
Thorin needs to enter this show and beat some morals into Kili-Ross.
~Margaret. And just everything about any scene she's in. No.

~Elizabeth She was just kind of so-so at first. Then she agreed to marry Frances and I was like "aww yeah good girl, see he loves you!" Then she got progressively more annoying. It's not like she didn't have a chance to change her mind before marrying Frances. Stick with your decision. Argh.

~Frances Wow, this guy went from kind of pitifully sweet to myyyyyy woooooordd you are the worst human on the planet wow.

~I could go on, but I won't. :P


All the above things were pretty easy to skip, but even with skipping I don't think watching this show was the best decision for me. This show still really pushes the envelope on my movie standards. And it's aggravating.  It pretty much promotes sin and says that "you can be with whoever you want, never mind who you're actually married to lol!"

But by the time most of that had happened, I was halfway through the first season and I decided to keep going till the end. As long as things were going well with Ross+Demelza and Verity+Andrew I'd ride it out.

Aaaand that's why I WON'T be watching season two. Because Ross cheats on Demelza with Elizabeth and I was so done when I found that out.
may or may not be what I plan on doing to Ross


But, I suppose watching the first season wasn't all loss. I still really enjoyed the GOOD plots from it (like Ross and Demelza being adorable and happy, Verity and Andrew's romance, and just the stunning scenery and cinematography and DID I MENTION THE MUSIC?) and the show actually gave me lots of inspiration for one of my own stories AKA sequel number 37* of my Princess and the Pea story. (One of Alethea's brothers...that's all I'm going to say.)


*exaggeration....kind of

La La Land
La La Land (2016)

I honestly don't have words....this was so beautiful. I wish it wasn't something I can only watch on clearplay because I want to watch it over and over again. I'll grant you, the ending isn't my favorite but it has a beautiful sadness kind of reminiscent of Roman Holiday. And you all know how I love that movie.

Random things I loved:
Mia's wardrobe~Seb's piano playing~ALL THE MUSIC~vintage movie references~the magic~the tap dance-yellow-dress dance~the vintage cars~encouragement of dreaming~the colors~the epilogue sequence~the dance~when Seb makes dinner for Mia dawww~their second dance in the "stars" the one where she's in a white dress~but also the first one when she's in a green dress~almost/pretty much everything~did I mention how magical this film was?~if I go on this list will be crazy long


Iron Man
Ironman is the only person who publicly told people what his secret identity is. I find that mildly amusing. :)
that ending was pretty epic
Watched this on clearplay, too. This was fun, though it lacked Captain America. :P On the whole, I enjoyed seeing Iron Man's backstory and he IS a hysterical character. (Also, can I live at his house for like a week? SO MANY COOL THINGS.) His and Pepper's relationship is pretty cute, too. My only complaint was so many explosions. Can we cut back on the gunfights and explosions? No? I didn't think so.


Beauty and the Beast

Beauty and the Beast
SOOOooooooo I finally watched it, and to put all my thoughts into writing would require a bigger post that this one. Suffice to say I loved very close to everything about it and may or may not have cried at several parts.

The Princess Bride
Movie Poster Movement : Photo -Watch Free Latest Movies Online on Moive365.to

I've finally seen it, thanks to this girl and her siblings. It was fantastic and hysterical and now I want to watch it again. :P

(Also, I really loved Westley. He was a great hero.)


Sense and Sensibility (2008)
Sense & Sensibility directed by John Alexander (TV Mini-Series, 2008) #janeausten #fanart
I received this for my birthday and ahhhh I love this movie so much. I enjoyed it even more than all the other times I watched it. I do believe Sense and Sensibility is officially my favorite Austen story. (Though My. Knightley is my favorite hero. Go figure.)

Persuasion (2007)
Ann Elliot and Captain Wentworth. BBC Persuasion {2007} Gosh I love this movie! Capt. Frederick Wentworth is my favorite Austin hero. <3 He's so sweet!
Also got this for my birthday and enjoyed it, though it just doesn't do it for me the way the good old 1995 version does. But it's still fun owning a different version, though. :) (And that ending is scene is ADORABLE. <3)



Reading....

The Daughter Pays by Mrs. Bailie Reynolds

Lady Rose | Downton Abbey
So, a certain very wonderful friend of mine made my birthday extra specially-exciting by gifting me with my very own copy of one of her favorite stories ever,  The Daughter Pays!!! Of course, any reading a of a recommended book from a friend (especially when said book was gifted to you) is a nerve-wracking experience, because I want so much to like it for their sake!

I needn't have felt nervous on that score concerning this book. I loved it.

*Slightly spoiler-y*
When a certain young man was introduced as the possible love interested for Virgie the heroine, I immediately began rooting for him. Imagine my surprise when she ended up marrying the man who, by all accounts, was the villain. (If this is confusing, read the book. It makes much more sense that way and it's much more fun to experience the drama firsthand.)
*Definitely spoiler-y*
I can honestly say that I never had a complete change of heart about any character like I did for the true hero of this story, Osbert. I went from absolutely loathing him to pitying, rooting for, and even loving him. His character arc is stunning and honestly one of my favorite parts of the story. He becomes a humble, penitent man eager to redeem himself in the eyes of the woman he now loves and he goes about this in the most patient, admirable way.

Though I doubt this was meant as a fairytale retelling, the story reminds me of both Cinderella and Beauty and the Beast—with Virgie as Cinderella and Osbert as the Beast. This only makes me love the story more. :)

*end spoilers*

Set in the Edwardian era, with lots of lovely description and sparkling dialogue, I totally and whole-heartedly recommend this story.


Little Men by Louisa May Alcott

"Little Men" by Louisa May Alcott, illustrated by Ruth Ives (http://www.etsy.com/listing/114719806/little-men-by-louisa-may-alcott)

This dear book was one I promised to read for Miss March. And I only wish I had read it sooner!! It was one of the most sweet and wholesome books I had read in a long while. Besides falling in love with the boys and their antics (Nate and Dan were two favorites....but I loved so many of them *hugs*) I also felt as if this book gently guided me more in the direction of honoring God in thought, word, and deed. It truly is a book that lives up to Philippians 4:8.Now I can't wait to read Jo's Boys.

(I still don't understand the order in those titles. Shouldn't the boys be Jo's Boys before they are Little Men?? :P)

Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott
Visit 4.bp.blogspot.com

Finally, finally, finally I read a book I've wanted to read at Olivia and Éowyn's recommendation for a long time. AND IT WAS EVERYTHING THEY SAID IT'D BE.
Wow. There was so much I enjoyed and liked and loved about this story:

~The snark. Even with everyone "theeing" and "thouing", Sir Walter Scott put an incredible amount of humor and wit into the dialogue. Our modern language is missing out.
For instance, one of my favorite parts:

“Nay, then,” said Wamba, “I will pray you for a close sight of that same horn that hath so powerful a breath.”
The Knight undid the clasp of the baldric, and indulged his fellow-traveller, who immediately hung the bugle round his own neck.
“Tra-lira-la,” said he, whistling the notes; “nay, I know my gamut as well as another.”
“How mean you, knave?” said the Knight; “restore me the bugle.”
“Content you, Sir Knight, it is in safe keeping. When Valour and Folly travel, Folly should bear the horn, because she can blow the best.”
“Nay but, rogue,” said the Black Knight, “this exceedeth thy license—Beware ye tamper not with my patience.”
“Urge me not with violence, Sir Knight,” said the Jester, keeping at a distance from the impatient champion, “or Folly will show a clean pair of heels, and leave Valour to find out his way through the wood as best he may.”
“Nay, thou hast hit me there,” said the Knight; “and, sooth to say, I have little time to jangle with thee. Keep the horn an thou wilt, but let us proceed on our journey.”

Maybe it's just me, but I found Wamba's methods of getting a hold of the bugle and keeping it to himself hysterical. xD And that's only one example of many humorous parts in Ivanhoe.

~Rebecca. She was amazing. Absolutely loved her.

~Wamba and Gurth were adorable and/or funny by turns. Those two are priceless. (But Wamba is probably my favorite, shhh)

~Is it weird that I kind of felt bad for Bois-Guilbert after awhile? Like, I know, he was a horrid person and everything about his actions and reasons and mind were messed up but....I still kind of felt bad for him?? I don't know....

~Ivanhoe was pretty cool, although it took forever for the namesake of this book to even be in the story!

~Richard masquerading as the Black Knight was epic. :D

~Athelstane's "resurrection" was priceless.

~ROBIN HOOD.

Things I didn't like:

~Mmm. Not much. It was a long book that could get a little draggy here and there, but on the whole it was a breeze compared to some big classics. (cough, Les Mis) Also, I found it horrible how everyone treated Isaac and Rebecca just because they were Jews. I suppose it was historically accurate. But my word. All these "Christian" characters are not acting as Christians should. And did it ever occur to you that the Jews are God's chosen people?? Read the Bible once in awhile!

(Hush, I know the common folk didn't read the Bible back then*, but still. I'm ranting against history more than anything right now, not Ivanhoe itself.)

*Right?? I think that's how it was...I'm pretty sure only the church had access to the Bible, and then it was read it Latin at services. Correct me if I'm wrong, anyone.

~The fact that Robin Hood also joined in this treatment of Isaac and his daughter was disappointing. I like to think of Robin Hood as really admirable, but all my favorite shows and stories with him in it tend to present a less-than-perfect Robin. Which, you know, I get it, that's fine I just...*sigh*. I expect better of my heroes. :P


The Beginning of the War by Anna Holmberg
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Reading this book was so fun, because it's the debut novel of this girl, a real-life friend who's also a blogger pal now. Her story was, I admit, quiet different from the usual books I read. It was a quirky and funny fantasy and very surprising. (I mean, an eel—called a Bwopper-eel—just dropping out of the ceiling is certainly unexpected. :P) But the characters were fantastic and this book made me giggle many times. Rhondin, Allyn, Dehmatthir....there are so many great characters. One of my absolute favorites, however, is Bruceking the dragon. His snark is fantastic:

"Rhondin looked up at the dragon. "Hello," he said.
Hello, the dragon said, sounding remotely bored.
They greeted him, and he continued, trying to sound nonchalant. So the humans have finally come back. He turned his gaze to Esril. The elf that I don't know has come back too. Who is this stranger?"

I just really loved him. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who like light-hearted fantasy. :D Anna did a great job with her book and I can't wait for the sequel to be released! (I also hope that A CERTAIN CHARACTER is either saved or given a proper death in said sequel. *cries*)

Fun fact: part of this story is set in East Tawas, MI, a place I was actually driving through when I finished reading this book. (No, I wasn't driving myself while reading at the same time. I may text and drive but I never read and drive.) (I'm kidding, I don't text and drive and neither should you IT'S AGAINST THE LAW.) (Hmm, now I want to write a ranty post about driving...)

Where was I? Oh yes. What I was leading up to was that being IN the place where said book was set while reading it was a very fun, new experience. :D

Dare by Tricia Mingerink

My blog review: Dare by Tricia Mingerink -  https://embersreviews.wordpress.com/2016/09/03/dare-a-book-review/

This was a fun read and I definitely want to read the rest of this series some day (I mean, I have to find out what happens to Leith and Renna and Shadrach and Brandi....). Read full review here for more details!!


Exiles by Jaye L. Knight
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ASAKJJFKLJGLDFGK!!!! Read full review here. ;)


Kilmeny of the Orchard by L.M. Montgomery 
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Yay! A new LMM novel!! *confetti* I found this short little book incredibly lovely and sweet. LMM's novels are always full of magic, but I especially love her romances and this one didn't disappoint. :) Eric was such a kind, gentlemanly hero (without being annoying like most "rich young men" are in books) and Kilmeny simply adorable. Definitely am glad I bought this one. <3

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That's it, friends! 
Have you read or watched any of these? 
What are your thoughts on them?

PS. Two more followers and I'll be at 100. Wow. Thank you all SO much. *HUGE GROUP HUG*