Thursday, July 26, 2012

Audrey's Guide to Witchcraft Review

Audrey's Guide to Witchcraft by Jody Gehrman

Spoiler Free!

Bree Ogden, Jody Gehrman’s agent, asked on twitter if bloggers would review her book, and I volunteered. Soon I was sent a pdf of awesomeness and I was sent to reviewer heaven.

This book is, as the title announces, the guide book to Audrey’s life as she is introduced to an unexpected magical life. Perhaps best described as a supernatural thriller, it is definitely a coming of age story. It begins the day her journey beings, and that is the day that her mother goes missing. This is the story of Audrey discovering her identity and her new abilities. Instead of other YA lit protagonists who adamantly refuse to accept the changes associated with young adulthood, Audrey wants it. Now. Not because she wants to be more mature and have all the responsibilities-she wants to save her mother from the big bad that threatens them.

Audrey is a believable protagonist. Not perfect, but protective. She makes mistakes. A lot of them. Her heart is always in the right place. She has a talent for baking and science, which help her very special talent. Snarky. Intelligent. Fierce. Funny. 

Without her mother, Audrey has to learn from another witch, Sadie. Sadie is cool, beautiful, and has a thing for animals and plants. But she is not the same type of witch as Audrey. It’s slow going, especially considering that Audrey was not raised with the knowledge of her mother’s hidden past. And really, nothing is known about Sadie other than she just showed up...          

I like Meg, the little sister. Instead of being the secondary character of blah place-holding, Meg has her own unique characteristics. White-blonde hair, beautiful, seductive, and she's in a band that leaves audiences rapt. She’s not pinned as the annoying character, the sweetheart that everyone loves, or the obvious character to be killed off dramatically. I would have to say that she’s probably more emotionally complex than Audrey.   

Other Things...
The “Canadians had only slight accents” bit made me giggle, eh?  

The cover is gorgeous! Not really sure where to place Audrey in that red dress, but I will let it slide.

The incantations are not corny but still mysterious and believable. The way that Gehrman writes the alchemy that goes on inside of Audrey is rich with details that make it so convincing.   

I kind of wish she wrote in her book more. Even if she just mentioned that she was writing something down in there. She writes down spells and recipes (like one for a killer chocolate cake) and other “How To” lists.

Maybe it is because I am, in fact, not a teen, that I saw the big reveal a mile away. I’d like to ask some teens one day if they saw the trope before the big moment.

The ending has so many loose ends, making it not enough of an ending for me, but it definitely sets itself up for a sequel, which I would be more than overjoyed to read.

I would love to do a book club with this book in the future. It does not have the crass and crudeness that this conservative community might run in fear from while making the cross symbol with their fingers. Okay, it has witchcraft, and that might get them in a tiff, but its good witchcraft! Overall, it is a fantastic book that I highly recommend.

Jody Gehrman's  blog is over here, and her website is here
The author is giving away free copies of her book every dark moon, the next being August 16-18, so get in on it!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Catfish Review

Spoiler Free!

A little while ago I was watching a DVD (might have been Paranormal Activity 2) with someone and the previews for Catfish came on. We both thought it looked pretty cool-documentary style (more on that in a minute) horror about meeting someone you met online in real-life. I had my fingers crossed for the person to be a serial killer. 

The previews lied-it's not a horror movie. It's a...sad but sometimes funny film.
Painting of Abby's mother, Angela.
Yaniv (Nev) Schulman
It starts with Yaniv (Nev) Schulman getting a painting in the mail from a little girl named Abby, who is a prodigy artist. This painting, of one of his photographs of two dancers, sets off a pen-pal relationship. It's very cute and lovely. And then social networking becomes involved. Everything is peachy and he begins to friend all of Abby's family, including Angela, her mother, and Megan, her sister.

Message from Meg
Things roll along and he and Meg become close. They've never met at this point. Things get more involved. They start to fall in love.

And then he catches her in a lie. And another. And a few more. He doesn't know how to feel anymore, so he decides to go meet her, face to face. After all, he has feelings for her still.

The reveal was pretty good, I'll give it that.

Some quick Googling will bring up some different opinions about the authenticity of this film. To me, I don't particularly believe that it is real. That three friends would start filming the pre-stages to the entire relationship, the moments with Abbey and her paintings, doesn't make much sense to me. Does it really matter? I still enjoyed it with my doubt.

Final Verdict
It was a pretty good film. Had the warm and fuzzies, sadness, and some funny moments. If you like soft drama documentaries I recommend it. For me, it was a good, non-serious movie to watch. I certainly wouldn't buy it, but worth the watch.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Big Brother 14

I was at someone’s house on Thursday and we were just hanging about and on the satellite listing I saw it: Big Brother 14. No one else in the room had much of an idea of what it was. “It’s like Survivor but they’re in a smallish house and the challenges are fun and there is a lot more lying and deceit going around and sometimes they think they can date each other and it's funny.” It was a hard sell but everyone was nice enough to humour me.

And we had an awesome time watching the first episode.

Boogie!! <3




I don’t really have a favourite HG at this point. Jenn is cool, but I'm not a fan of obnoxious and loud people. But Boogie is a Coach! I can honestly say that I’m 90% sure that one of Boogie’s people will win. If it isn’t one of Boogie’s, it will be one of Dan’s. Brittany is a stupid bitchy blonde who got played and who doesn’t have much of a place as a Coach. Don’t even get me started at the huge joke that is Janelle. I was hoping that Evol Dick and Will (with Boogie, of course) would come as Coaches. Having Janelle and Brittany is a joke. I would HATE myself if I got on Big Brother and got either of them. With Boogie, as long as you listen you have a great chance of winning the social game. Dan is a close second. But the girls? I’d just pack my bag because I could play a better game than them and I can’t stand lying to people.

Jodi was evicted first. I don’t feel bad at all because she kept pushing her whole “I’m so FIT and IN SHAPE!” attitude. Sorry, but she has WAY too much jiggle in her wiggle. Normally, I don’t give a shit if someone has some extra pounds. I don’t like people who are deluded. If she was in such great shape the first challenge would not have been so hard for her. Good riddance.

The next episode is tonight, but at my own apartment I don’t have cable (let’s face it, I don’t watch much tv). I can get it through various internet sources, but the power has been going on and off today. In the worst case scenario I can watch it later in the week. Also, I won’t be blogging about BB every week or episode unless something HILARIOUS happens and it’ll be a short post. 

All pictures are from Big Brother Buzz.