Thursday, May 31, 2012

Road Reading

This is what I spent last night doing :-)
Have a great day everybody

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Road Trip!

Heading out on a long weekend road trip tomorrow and as always the best part is when I don't have to drive and can spend hours lost in a good story while the ever changing scenery rolls by.  To this end I have been mentally packing my bookcase with everything I could possibly crave on this trip.  On road trips I always bring a variety of books with me because I never know what I will be in the mood for.  Here is my road trip list so far.

Short Stories Sci-Fi: The Starry Rift  (Nook)
Short Stories Fantasy: The Fairy Reel Tales From the Twilight Realm
Fantasy: Eldest
Classic: Wuthering Heights
Fantasy Series: The Red Pyramid (Kane Chronicles) and Darke (Septimus Heap)
Non-Fiction: Lady Almina and the Real Downton Abbey
Mystery: The Spellman Files (Nook)
Humor: Curses! (Kindle)
Girly Book I Don't Admit To Reading: Great Hexpectations (Dulcie O'Neil series) (Kindle)
Not Quit Sure Which Genre: Garden Spells
Swashbuckling Tale: Ship of Destiny (The Liveship Traders) (Kindle)
Graphic Novel: Worlds End (Sandman Volume 8)
Backup Book: Wildwood Dancing
Backup Backup Book: Firebirds
Just In Case I Don't Want To Read Any Of The Above Books: Good Fairies of New York

I probably will not read all of these books on one four day trip that includes me driving through the mountains belting out the Newsies soundtrack at the top of my lungs until my Hubbin begs me to pull over so he can drive and I can go back to the blessed semi-silence of reading.  Still I always like to have a variety so no matter what urge strikes me I can pick up that particular book and get to reading.

What is your favorite road book?  Is your book bag bigger then your clothes bag?  Are you one of those pooooooor unfortunate souls who gets carsick reading ('cause that really sucks)?

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Splat Goes The Fairy

Bwhahaha Splat!  Sorry, I was just finishing up Lady Cottington's Pressed Fairy Book.

This hilarious spin on the true story of the Cottingley Fairies in which two girls fooled the world into thinking they had actually photographed real fairies. It is written by Terry Jones (of Monty Python fame) and the well known fairy artist Brian Froud.  The book comes off as a discovery of Lady Angelica Cottington's journals, along with her book of pressed fairies.  She finds these little imps pesky and irritating so she slams them between the pages of her book leaving imprints of there smashed little bodies (don't worry the fairies think it is a game and are never hurt).  The story is quit funny with just a touch of Awwww.  The book is written in journal/scrapbook form with plenty of splatted (is that a word?) fairies all over it. This is a fun one for any fairy lovers out there. PS there is a tad bit illustrated fairy nudity so depending on your comfort level you might want to do a quick flip through before you hand it off to the kiddies.
Would you like to go splat fairies with me?  Do you think they make a competition of the best faces?  How much do you love silly books like this :-)

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Memorial Day

This Memorial Day I hope everybody takes a few minutes from the grilling, and the vollyball and the family picnics to remember the ones who gave the ultimate sacrifice for us to all enjoy this day.  These past years have brought this point home more then before when the day was about remembering Grandpas and Great-Uncles who fought in past wars and more about the fathers, mothers, husbands, wives, brothers and sisters who have left us far to early.  Please remember these families when you are enjoying the day with yours. 
Memorial Day

Friday, May 25, 2012

Fairy Haute Couture

On occasion I can be a bit super girly...not often mind you, my morning routine consists of praying I know where my brush is and slapping on a bit of eyeliner as to not look like the walking dead.  However when I am in the mood to get girly I love to go find original clothes, crazy makeup, and kick-ass shoes...then I look at the price tags and go back to my jeans and t-shirt existence :-)  The following book appeals to my girly side, my day dreamy side and my super bookworm girl side.
Fairie-ality: The Fashion Collection from the House of Ellwand 

This is a book full of fashions crafted entirely from nature, things like flowers, plants, feathers, and stones.  They are all photographed to look clothes from a high-end catalog complete with fun descriptions.  This is a great book for anybody who is into fashion, fairies, or just something a little warned that after flipping through this you will find yourself designing little tiny clothes every time you see a cool looking leaf :-)

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Flood of Knowledge

Pretty tired after running with my ambulance crew all night.  We got some pretty heavy rains all week so I've got water on the brain :-)
Jacek Yerka
This painting by Jacek Yerka seemed appropriate, also I really love this picture and really want it...anybody go 450 euro's handy?

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Adventure On The High Seas

Spent last night catching up on Deadliest Catch one of my favorite Discovery Channel shows. I think this show combines my love of the open ocean and of course my beloved Northwest (though to be honest Alaska is a tad more North and West then where I grew up).  It is a show that hearkens back to the days when men risked there lives to keep their families fed, almost something straight out of a book!  All of this made me think of my favorite books that feature a ship and/or the high seas.

 The True Confessions of Charlotte Doyle is one of my favorite favorite favorite books.  I remember first picking it up when I was around nine years old and have read it several times since.  The book is written in a recollection/diary format and recalls the events that led 13 year old high born Charlotte Doyle to be tried and accused of murder.  Charlotte is a school girl on her way home when the crew of the ship she is on mutinies.  She ends up siding with the crew and learning how to become a sailor.  When she gets home her family refuses to believe what happened, choosing to ignore it and force Charlotte back to being "civilized" in the end she runs away back to her ship.  This book is chock full of sailing info presented in a way even a nine year old girl can understand.  I credit this book with jump starting my love of the open ocean.  Now go read it!

  The Bloody Jack Adventure series is a great set of books about an outrages girl named Mary Faber who goes under the name of Jack to stow away on a ship in 18th century England.  This series follows her as she moves from ship to shore and back again.  Her many adventure (not all of her own making) and the trouble she inevitably gets into (usually her own fault).  This is a great series if you are looking for a spunky heroine with more humor and sass (and ridiculous scrapes) then most.

  Capt. Hook: The Adventures of a Notorious Youth is the first in a series about the youth of the boy who will become the infamous Captain Hook of Peter Pan fame.  This book is awesome for several reasons. One: I love it when the stories of villains are told. Two: It is a swashbuckling high seas adventure.  Three:  It's a really great story that is both original and stays true to who Captain Hook will become.  I would really recommend this books to almost everyone!

 The Liveship Traders trilogy is a great adventure story for the adult crowed.  This set of books is a bit more mature and complex then the other books on this list, but the story is absolutely amazing.  The series follows a family who owns a Liveship...that is a sentient ship who talks!  It is way to complex to sum up in just a paragraph, but if you like fantasy, ship stories, and don't mind a little thinking while you read I would highly suggest you get these books.

  The Voyage of The Dawn Treader one of the books in my beloved Chronicles of Narnia series.  Ok so maybe this is the book that got me hooked on a good high seas adventure.  This is still 20+ years later one of my absolute, go to, totally in love with, favorite books in the whole entire universe.  It has EVERYTHING you could want in a great adventure, an amazing boat, princes and princesses, other worlds, dragons, pirates, sea serpants, evil spells, good magicians, an epic quest and you still get a quick not to sappy love story in there...sigh the perfect adventure.

What is your favorite high sea adventure?  What would you name your ship?  How do you make a book water proof? (sorry for the wonking formatting...stupid page is being difficult)

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Running A Little Late

I'm running a little late today
Terry Sedgwick
Anybody else ever have a librarian like that?

Monday, May 21, 2012

A Little Vino With My Books

There is nothing better after a long hard day then slipping into a nice hot bubble bath with a good book and a glass of excellent wine (the cheap stuff works too!)  I know this sounds pretty girly, but I know plenty menfolk who benefit from this as well. To enhance the experience here are some literary wine related things.

Pride and Prejudice Cork
My only problem is I usually finish off the bottle so I don't need the cork!
Harry Potter Wine Charms
We would fight over these at my house
Lord of the Rings Ent wine glass
I want I want I want I want I want I want
Wine Holder Book Ends
 I need to install this in my bathroom

Are you a bubble bath fan or is it to girly for your manly self?  What is your favorite bathtub libation?  Do you think installing a wine cellar/library in your bathroom is a bit much or the most genius idea ever?!?

Friday, May 18, 2012

Before The Hunger Games

With all of the hullabaloo (and yes that is a word spell check says so) around The Hunger Games series I decided to go back to my bookshelf and see what got me into possible dystopian futures in the first place.  As I was perusing the stacks I came across one of my favorite books The Giver by Lois Lowry.  Now be warned this is not "The Hunger Games" it is much slower paced, no fighting to the death, no tracker jackers, but in my mind still very disturbing.
The story starts of with Jonas and his family talking about his upcoming 12th year ceremony and how he will be put into job training.  His sister will be turning 8 and is excited about receiving her bike.  The world seems fairly idyllic, family's are together, everybody has a purpose and every year in childhood brings new rewards and responsibilities.  On the morning of the ceremony he tells his parents of a dream he had, in the dream he wanted to bathe his friend Fiona, but he also felt angry that she was laughing at him.  After hearing of his dream his mother gives him pills to suppress the "Stirrings", she informs him that he needs to take one pill every day for the rest of his life.  At the ceremony Jonas is excited to receive his work assignment, but his
 number is skipped over.  After the ceremony the Chief Elder informs Jonas that he has been selected to be the next Receiver of Memory, he also reveals that one had been selected six years before, but that they had not worked out.  Jonas is frightened of this new task as he is told it will involve physical pain that is not usually felt by the people of his world.  Here it is noted that Jonas has lighter eyes then most of the people in his town, and that all people have a very similar appearance to one another.  Jonas begins his training, and the first step is to stop taking his pill every morning.  The previous Receiver of Memory has become old and before he dies has now become the Giver and must telepathically give Jonas all of the memories of how things were "before", this includes things such as violence, war, hunger, but also happy things such as joy, beauty, adventure and even   animals.  It becomes more apparent that in this place all extremes have been given up in favor of a bland safe life.
 All things and emotions that may lead to extreme reactions or to differentiating people from each other have been eliminated to try and keep people content and safe.
 To further illustrate the lengths this place goes to, to ensure the status quo is kept the book shows Jonas watching his father weigh a set of identical twins and euthanize (which they call Releasing) the lighter one.  The ease with which his father killed the infant who's only crime was being the lighter of the twins and the complete disregard as he dumps the body down the garbage chute horrifies Jonas and makes him realize how wrong this place has become. Back at home Jonas is experiencing the side effects of having all these memories dumped into his head.  One of the effect I thought was really cool was that he could start to see color (here we realize on of the things taken away from the populace was the ability to see anything other then gray scale, now  I am all for being color blind when it comes to race and how people look, but this is just a bit on the extreme side).  Red is the first color to come back and when he was trying to describe it for the first time was fascinating...go ahead and try to describe the color red to somebody who has never seen a color before...kinda impossible.  Anyways these new memories are making it hard to live with his family who are still as bland as always.  They do however have a baby boy named Gabriel in the house (who also has light eyes) and the father is trying to help him get stronger so that they will not have to Release him for failure to thrive.  I thought this was interesting because it shows that these people are not hard hearted monsters, but people who are honestly doing what they think is right for the good of all. It is also revealed that Jonas can transfer memories to Gabriel in much the same way he receives them from the Giver, and uses happy ones to try and soothe the child.
Jonas and The Giver decide that it is time for the people to get back the memories that have been "kept in storage" all this time. They decide the best way to do this is for Jonas to leave the town and all the memories will be released back into the general populace (slight plot hole here 'cause it is never really explained how this works).  As he prepares to leave he learns that Gabriel is not making sufficient progress and will be Released the following morning.  Jonas takes Gabriel and leaves.  The escape seems to work and the search parties are soon called off, however the pair run out of food and start to freeze in the non temp controlled environment.  When he is about to give up Jonas recalls the memory of sunshine and makes on final push to get Gabriel to safety.  He come over a hill and hears music for the first time and comes to a village.  The ending is a bit ambiguous as he seems to be suffering from sever hypothermia.  The ending seems be open ended and the reader can decide if he made it to safety or froze to death with the happy memories keeping him warm.  Two more books and one more one the way are supposed to be sequels to this one and tell us more about the fate of these two and the shape the rest of the world is in, but more on that later.
Wow this post got super long, but I really really really love this book, the other books are ok, but this is the  
    one that really sticks in my head.  I love how at the start of the book everything seems great, they do not seem to be overly controlled, they seem to be allowed to make choices and experience happiness and disappointment.  It is not until later that you see the more insidious and frankly scary measures put into place to ensure this bland existence.  I think it brings up a ton of great questions to think about, like what are we willing to give up individually to keep the whole safe, how much is free will worth, how easy is it to take great ideals such as not judging people by their physical appearance and turn them into something quit monstrous.  This book is not perfect, the plausibility and mechanics are not all sound, but I still think the over all book is one everybody should read and discuss.

What would you give up to ensure your family, community was safe and happy?  What is the line between ideals and oppression?    Did you actually read this whole post?  If you did you should reward yourself with a big gooey chocolate chip cookie!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

I Just Can't Quit You

I've noticed something about my reading habits, no matter how many new books are in my stack, and no matter how excited I am to read them...I will abandon them all in favor of an old favorite.  Anybody who follows my little "what I'm reading now list" probably will always see at least one re-read in there.  Now since I read multiple books at once I am still reading more new books then I am re-reading old ones, but still.  I'm not sure why I re-read so many of my books, I know a lot of people who read a book once and then give it away, in fact people are trying to get me to donate my books all of the time.  I have absolutely nothing against the idea, in fact if you are not a book re-reader I would strongly encourage you to share with anybody and everybody, but I actually do re-read almost all of my books at some point.  I notice if I read a book I don't particularly like,or I thought 
could have been better, I will re-read a book in that genre I know is good to balance it out, or if a new book in  series comes out and it's been a while since I've read the earlier ones I will usually re-read those (I'm looking at you Eragon). Others like Pride and Prejudice are seasonal favorites that must be read per tradition...just like having turkey at Thanksgiving, you have it every year and love it every time.  Some books like The Chronicles of Narnia or Little House On the Prairie are comfort books, just like eating a big bowl of gooey mac and cheese, it just makes you feel good. In the end I guess a new book is like going to a club, you check out the cool cover, hear good things about it, you're anxious to make a new friend and really hope you like it, but there is still the risk of the unknown, will this be a drunken one night stand you regret in the morning and hope nobody ever see's it on your book shelf? Will you 
   have to force yourself through the book only to spare its feelings?  Or will it become one of your beloved friends destined to be re-read even when you have new books waiting?  And that my friends is the appeal of a book you already know, it is like hanging out with a good friend, sure you will probably talk about the same things over and over again, and you know what their reaction to everything is, but you love them for it and that is why you will always go back.

Do you re-read books? What is your favorite re-read?  Do you totally want to go to the club and watch the books make awkward small talk on the dance floor? 

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Raining On My Books

It has been pouring here and that makes me a happy girl, only problem is it makes it harder to read outside...problem solved
Book Umbrella
That's right folks, now you have no excuse not to enjoy the great outdoors AND read all at the same time!

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Buried Alive!

Lately I feel like I can't get any reading done!  I have all these books I'm in the middle of and a whole other stack calling my name.  It's times like these I wish I was still in school and got summer vacation so I could spend 8 weeks doing nothing but read...hmmm maybe a sick day is in order :-)
What do you do when you can get your reading in?  What is the longest you've gone without reading?  Is there such thing as book withdrawl?

Monday, May 14, 2012

A Different Once Upon A Time

Watched the season finale of Once Upon A Time last night and I LOVED it!  I'm not sure why I am so in love with this show, it's cheesy and ridiculous and completely addictive.  The show is all about retelling tales in a twisty mushed together way and we all know I'm love a good twisted fairy tale.  Got me thinking what some of my favorite re-workings of the good old standards and what popped out at me was Gail Carson Levine's  The Fairy's Return and other Princess Tales.  Ms. Levine is known for her retelling of fairy tales, such as Ella Enchanted which is still one of my favorite versions of Cinderella.  Her Princess Tales however are about as humorous as they come, they are tongue-in-cheek, snarky, and oh so funny!

We start off with The Fairy's Mistake which is a retelling of Diamonds and Toads with two girls, one deserving and the other not so much being visited by a fairy just trying to do some good.  When the good girl gets harassed for her gift, and the naughty girl uses her curse to her advantage, all kinds of unintended chaos ensues.

Next we have The Princess Test a based on The Princess and the Pea. In this version the Prince has fallen in love with a blacksmiths daughter who is just persnickety enough to pass the insane test devised for the future bride.

Princess Sonora and the Long Sleep, a re-telling of Sleeping Beauty is my favorite story in this collection.  The author takes the normally passive Sleeping Beauty and turns her into an extremely intelligent, precocious princess who decides for herself when the best time to go to sleep is, I really really really love this one.

Moving on we have Cinderellis and the Glass Hill based on The Princess on the Glass Hill (a lesser known fairy tale)  In this tale we see Cinderellis as our male hero who invents the craziest things on his farm.  My favorite parts of this story was reading the different things he put into his concoctions.

For Biddle's Sake is based on a tale called Puddocky which I had to look up.  Parsley is a girl obsessed with eating parsley, in fact she eats so much her teeth turn green.  When she ventures into the local witches parsley patch she is turned into a toad with very funny consequences.

The Fairy's Return is a re-telling of The Golden Goose.  The fairy from the first story in this collection is now skittish about giving gifts, not knowing how they will turn out.  When she meets the baker's son and finds out the king has forbidden to allow him to marry the princess, she cannot resist helping in the form of a golden goose.

All of these stories are short and sweet.  They do not contain any real objectionable material, so they are perfect reading for all of those young prince and princesses out there.  They are perfect for reading out loud or for curling up on the front porch.

Do you like the humorous twist on these classic tales?  Who do you like to read these kinds of stories to?  How are we going to make it to the next season of Once Upon A Time!!!!!!!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Yay for the Mamma's!

As I was doing some research for today's Mothers Day post, I noticed something odd...Mom's don't come off to well in stories.  The vast majority of older fairy tales have an absent mother (usually dead) and if your a step-mother you fare even worse!!!  In more modern stories the mom is usually absent in an entirely different way, either divorced, left the family, or distant.  I'm not sure if all of these writers had sever Mom issue's or they feel that a story just isn't as exciting with a mothers (or mother figure) loving touch.  So to combat this motherless literary world I have compiled a list of some of my favorite literary mother figures.

 Marmee from Little Women is probably one of the warmest, loving, involved mothers in literature.  She encouraged her daughters to be smart, strong, independent and loving all while taking care of a household and paying the bills while her husband was off to war.  This is one of the few times in a"classic" book that the mother who is "blessed" with all daughters isn't pushing to marry them all off to the richest man they can find.  She is one good Mamma.

Molly Weasly from the Harry Potter series is one of my favorite moms in recent reading.  She can turn from sweet, comfortable, cleaning, cooking housewife and mother to a ferocious she-bear protecting all of those she loves so very much.  Her love and acceptance goes beyond her immediate family to include anybody who may be in need of some major TLC.  Mrs. Weasly is proof that being "just" a mom and housewife is a really untrue statement and it is one of the most important jobs out there (the other being a good Daddy of course...but we'll save that for June)
 Marilla from the Anne of Green Gables series is an example of a reluctant mother figure.  She starts out almost the villain for wanting a little boy instead of Anne, but before we are a couple chapters in Marilla begrudgingly gives this odd little girl a home and by the time the book and series are over they are as close and loving as any natural mother and daughter could be.  I always love the stories where somebody has to choose to love, it always feels so special to me.  The contrast between flight, dreamy Anne, and the stoic, responsible Marilla really makes this relationship special and highly entertaining.

Mrs. Bennet from Pride and Prejudice makes me laugh every time I read her. She may not be the shining example of...well...anything.  She does however have one virtue that I feel places her in the good mother category.  She love her children no matter what.  Mrs. Bennet will blindly defend her girls, even when they do "unspeakable" things she is always there to love them and find the silver lining.  I feel this unconditional love is a very important part of being a parent and that is why this ridiculous mother is on the list...also it's my list and I can put whoever I want on it teeheehee.

 Mandy from Ella Enchanted takes on the mother figure role after Ella's beloved mother dies.  Mandy may not be able to control the circumstances that lead to some of Ella's bad times, but she is always there to lend an ear, a shoulder to cry on, and just enough magic to make her life bearable.  Mandy always tries to to what is best for Ella, even in the confined role of the cook with no real social power.  This is a great example of how a little love and kindness can go a long way towards making somebodies life better, even if you are not their "real" mom.

Hopefully these examples have restored your faith in motherhood and reminded you of how important a good "mom" can be.  On that note I have to take a moment to tell my own Mamma how wonderful and amazing she is, she embodies almost all of the traits of a good mom (just gotta work on that cooking...I kid...I kid).  She is my best friend, she has and continues to make my life wonderful.  She has taught me the joy of life and for that I can never thank her enough!  Also shout out to my Sis M, Sis E, and Mamma Jimenez for all being amazing mothers in my life, you guys ROCK!!!!

What literary mother figures are your favorite?  What mother figure in your life has inspired you?  How do you get your mother figure to realize you've grown up and now you can choose your own bedtime?!?

Thursday, May 10, 2012

The Joy Of Books

This is a really cool little video.  I especially like the colors on the bookshelves

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

He Is Where The Wild Things Are

Maurice Sendak children's author and illustrator died yesterday.  He is probably most well known for his book Where The Wild Things Are, which has been a favorite of mine for many years.  The images this book evokes are amazing, and recognizable the world over. I love the story this book tells and the sheer imagination that it encourages.  Thanks Mr. Sendak for this great memory.

When was the first time you read this book?  What other books evoke those good memories.  How many awesome tattoos of this have you seen?!?

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

A Natural State Of Reading

Today is one of those days I really wish I could be outside with a good book.  The temps are in the low 70's, sun is out with just a few clouds, the light breeze bringing all the yummy scents of blooming flowers, all I need now is a hammock and a few hours off of work :-)  This also got me thinking about where in the great outdoors I would like to loll about with a good book.

Mmm hammock on the beach...with a yummy pina coloda!

I could curl up on one of those big branches

That log would make a perfect reading seat

All we need is a nice big blanket to spread under that tree

So pretty!

Just don't get so into your book that you fall off

I love the sound of waterfalls in the background
I think reading in space would be an ultimate adventure!

Where is your favorite hideaway to read?  If you could read anywhere where would it be?  Are you an indoor reader, an outdoor reader, or who cares where I am or what is happening as long as I have a good book reader?

Monday, May 7, 2012

You Did WHAT Now?!?!

Every time I have weekend duty at the station I always have a few people I want to nominate for the Darwin Awards.  Seriously the stuff people do is just insane!
The Darwin Awards
Do you know someone you would like to nominate?  Have you ever been witness to a Darwin moment?  How many times have you heard a story and said "really...REALLY?

Friday, May 4, 2012

Except The Queen

Flowers blooming, sun shining, trees out in full leaf, time to take a visit to Faerie.  Except the Queen is a book that shows how collaborating authors can really make an excellent story.  Midori Snyder and Jane Yolen take us on a fairy tale ride that crosses the borders of Faerie into our own time and space. My baby sis picked this book out as part of our book club (another good pick sis) and it was also printed in a much sparser short story form in the anthology The Fair Folk.
Two mischievous sisters, Meteora and Serena are banished to the human world as old ladies after letting slip a scandalous secret about the queen.  The sisters are split up to try and live out their old, un-attractive lives the best the can here in the human world.  While living there lives the sisters each encounter a lost soul that is in need of their protection and guidance.  These two "children" (really young adults) troubled as they are. end up being the means to save Faerie.  The book is told from a zillion different view points, with different characters in different voices doing the telling at any given time.   My favorite view point is when the sisters write letters to each other, there is where you get a lot of the background and history and start to piece together the story. The story can get pretty dark at times, but it is interspersed with some great moments of the sisters learning how to cope in this world with very little magic and without even their beauty and youth to rely on.  The sisters each make some very unique friends both magic and mundane, and both learn almost as much as their young charges.  A word of warning, this book is
definitely not written in a straight-forward manner, it has a floaty skippy dreamy/nightmarish feel to it.  I personally liked the way it was written, it was beautifully crafted and I thought the different viewpoints and styles added a lot of flavor and contributed to the confusion the two sisters must have been feeling.  In the end everybody gets some sort of happily ever after...even if it wasn't the ever after they thought they wanted.  All in all a very beautiful book, different from a lot of the single view tales.  Some people may have a hard time getting into it, but if you stick with it I found it was well worth it.  I give this book 6 out of 7 double tall skim no whip mocha's.

Did you like the various viewpoints or did it give you a migraine trying to keep them all straight?  How beautiful was the prose and can you believe TWO people collaborated on this?  What would you do if you went from eternal youth and beauty to waking up in a fat 70 year old body?