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Thursday, October 27

Giveaway | Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen Book and DVD Bundle


Win a book/DVD bundle of WATER FOR ELEPHANTS, out on Blu-ray and DVD November 1! Based on Sara Gruen’s epic novel about forbidden love, and directed by critically acclaimed filmmaker Francis Lawrence (Constantine), WATER FOR ELEPHANTS stars Robert Pattinson as Jacob, a man devastated by the sudden death of his parents at the height of The Depression. When Jacob abandons his veterinary studies and stows away on a train carrying circus performers, his life is changed forever. Hired as a veterinarian to care for the circus’ animals, Jacob is temporarily filled with the promise of an exciting life that comes with a traveling circus troupe. However, as he falls in love with the star of the show, Marlena (Reese Witherspoon), they become prey to the circus’s owner, Marlena’s abusive husband August (Christoph Waltz). With their love on the line, the circus begins to crumble from within, and Jacob and Marlena come to a crossroads that will forever change their destiny.
For your chance to win a prize bundle including Sara Gruen’s novel and a copy of the WATER FOR ELEPHANTS DVD, simply fill out the below Rafflecopter form. Please read the Terms & Conditions at the bottom of the entry form before completing any entries! NOTE: Since this widget relies on Cookies, you may have issues doing the daily Tweet. If so please just put TWEET in the mandatory entry field. Questions? Email me!

Book to Movie | Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen

On behalf of 20th Century Fox via Think Jam publicity, I have read Water for Elephants and watched a screener DVD of the movie adaptation for the purpose of discussing "book to movie". Here are the discussion questions I'll be addressing.

   The elements of the 1930's that I enjoyed the most were the references to the depression and prohibition. Knowing that our current economy is suffering much the same as it did during the depression; it was enlightening to see how Americans worked through the issue of not having money. Bartering for services or goods wasn't uncommon in the 30's. The fact that Jacob's entire situation is the result of the depression is quite sad. His parents decided that his education was worth the bank owning their home. It didn't help any that his father provided veterinary services in exchange for eggs or chickens. Jacob is very much like his father. He quickly puts the safety and wellbeing of himself behind the needs of the animals he loves to take care of. Prohibition is one thing that baffles me. I don't understand why it happened really. I guess I fell asleep during that history lesson. It seems a lot of no good resulted from prohibiting the making, selling and consuming of alcohol. Seeing that first hand in Camel's character was quite sad. The book does a finer job at depicting the close relationship that Jacob has with both Camel and Walter than the movie did. Having written the novel from Jacob's point of view was a great idea. I thoroughly enjoyed reading his thoughts and emotions. I don't think I would have enjoyed it from Marlena's point of view. Maybe switching between the two would have been nice. Jacob had never seen a naked woman and was a virgin in the book. This wasn't portrayed in the movie at all. I was disappointed in that small detail being taken away from Jacob's character. Robert Pattinson added quite a lot of "boyishness" to Jacob. His smile was so genuinely bright, like a kid in a toy store most of the time, you could tell he was a softy, wet behind the ears. Robert did such a great job showing how Jacob matured throughout the movie. Reese Witherspoon did a great job portraying Marlena. I liked what the director, or whomever it was, said in the "extras" of the DVD: Reese spills American from her pores (not verbatim but that's the gist of what he meant). She just looks like the perfect, average American woman. Her style of clothing in the movie was exactly as I'd envisioned while reading. The romance between Jacob and Marlena is a touchy subject for me. First, I am not a fan of any form of adultery. Why Marlena was still married to August if she didn't love him enrages me. I know it has everything to do with the fact that it was the 1930's and again, that enrages me. The fact that woman were stuck in relationships with men that abused them in one way or another is mindboggling. Parents, friends and society should not disown you because you want to divorce an abusive man. The romance between Jacob and Marlena was handled okay in the movie. I do think it was steamier in the book because we know exactly how Jacob thinks and feels for her. There was also a bit more steamy situations in the book than the movie. I had no idea how a circus did it's thing at all before reading Water for Elephants. I didn't even know they traveled by train! I learned so much from reading this book. I haven't ever been to a circus before either, which I now am adding to the list of things I want to do before I die. My daughter went to one this past summer with her grandparents. I really wish we would have been invited to go along. I have much respect for the performers and the working men and women of the circus. There were only a few scenes in the movie where music was played and I honestly didn't pay much attention to it. In the book it's mentioned a couple of times too but music in books doesn't really register to me too much. The glitz and glamour were treated just fine in both the book and the movie. The movie did a great job with the train cars, especially August's and Marlena's, as well as with the overall scenery. This was my first time seeing Christoph Waltz in a movie. I know he was in Inglourious Basterds but I didn't watch that one. I think he did a great job of portraying August's paranoid schizophrenia, which was named in the book but not the movie. He had the look of the charmer and the look of the crazy, angry nut head. I want to know why Big Al wasn't a character in the movie? Why merge his character with August? Those quotes are great quotes. I remember hearing them in the movie. I also remember the movie taking quite a different look and speed at the events in the book. I know quite few scenes didn't happen the way they were shown in the movie as they were in the book. So, to me, these quotes had no impact on me what so ever. I do remember not liking that Marlena said I Love You first to Jacob. I loved that he poured his heart out to her in the book. I wish that would have stayed the same in the movie. The best scene that was done perfectly in the movie as it was done in the book was when Jacob feds Rex with August. It was nearly flawless, minus August telling Jacob which bucket of meat Rex should get, and all sorts of funny and shocking. I watched the movie with my husband. He didn't know what was going on. He was laughing because Rex was roaring and growling at Jacob. He was shocked when Rex latched onto Jacob's arm and he was baffled as to why August thought it was the funniest thing in the world. I sat and watched both the movie and my husband's reaction. It was identical to my reaction while reading the same scene. Very well done. The special features or "extras" as they're titled on the DVD I watched added that extra information you're wondering about while reading and watching the movie. How did Reese learn how to be a performer? Why'd they pick Robert Pattinson to play Jacob? Why switch up the ending of the book and make it the beginning of the movie? Which I HATED! Reading about Jacob's days in the nursing home were some of my favorite scenes. It showed his personality, even in his old age. I really enjoyed hearing the author talk about the research that she did to write the book too. Thanks to 20th Century Fox I will be posting a bundle giveaway of the book and DVD of Water for Elephants! Please stay tuned for that post.

General thoughts on the book

The book was great. I highly recommend it to any one. There were a few adult, R-rated, scenes that I’d be leery of letting a young teen reading but nothing too explicit. I learned a ton about the circus and the 1930's.
Water for Elephantsby Sara Gruen368 pages, Algonquin Books, (2011-03-01) $8.31 (

Wednesday, October 26

Trailer and Giveaway |Destined (House of Night, #9) by P.C. Cast, Kristin Cast

St. Martin’s Griffin, via Zeitghost Media, has another great trailer and giveaway for a series I’m pretty far behind on reading! I have the books but just haven’t dedicated any time to read them! :(

Destined (House of Night) by P. C. Cast

336 pages, St. Martin's Griffin, (2011-10-25)

$9.48 (

Check out the trailer for the newest release, Destined, which was released yesterday.

I can’t believe this series is up to book 9! Goodness! If you haven’t read this series yet, now is your chance to get in on it!

About Destined

"...Zoey is finally home where she belongs, safe with her Guardian Warrior, Stark, by her side, and preparing to face off against Neferet – which would be a whole lot easier if the High Counsel saw the ex-High Priestess for what she really is. Kalona has released his hold on Rephaim, and, through Nyx's gift of a human form, Rephaim and Stevie Rae are finally able to be together – if he can truly walk the path of the Goddess and stay free of his father's shadow…"


For your chance to win one copy of Destined by P.C. Cast, Kristin Cast, simply fill out the below Rafflecopter form.

Please read the Terms & Conditions at the bottom of the entry form before completing any entries!

NOTE: Since this widget relies on Cookies, you may have issues doing the daily Tweet. If so please just put TWEET in the mandatory entry field. Questions? Email me!




Win a DVD copy of ATLAS SHRUGGED: PART I, out on November 8th

Powerful forces trigger a global revolution when the highly anticipated film adaptation of Ayn Rand’s bestselling novel, ATLAS SHRUGGED: PART I, emerges on Blu-ray and DVD November 8. The first installment in a planned trilogy, ATLAS SHRUGGED: PART I uses a talented cast to explore themes of individualism, socialism, and anarchy.

In 2016, the country is on the verge of economic collapse. Dagny Taggart (Taylor Schilling, “Mercy”) runs one of the largest remaining railroads despite her inept CEO brother, James (Matthew Marsden, Resident Evil: Extinction). To save the railroad from financial ruin, Dagny seeks out entrepreneurial industrialist, Henry Rearden (Grant Bowler, “True Blood”), whose super-strength metal alloy holds the promise of the future.

As government interference continues and the country’s most competent and productive workers systematically disappear, Dagny refuses to give up. As she bears witness to seeing the motor of the world stopped, Dagny increasingly hears people reciting: Who is John Galt?


For your chance to win one of three available copies of ATLAS SHRUGGED: PART I on DVD, simply fill out the below Rafflecopter form.

Please read the Terms & Conditions at the bottom of the entry form before completing any entries!

NOTE: Since this widget relies on Cookies, you may have issues doing the daily Tweet. If so please just put TWEET in the mandatory entry field. Questions? Email me!

Release Day! The Iron Knight (Iron Fey, #4) by Julie Kagawa

The Iron Knight (Harlequin Teen)by Julie Kagawa 400 pages, Harlequin, (2011-10-25)$9.99 (
Yesterday was the release of the final book in the Iron Fey series. I absorbed the first three books. They are amazing adventure stories full of dangerous creatures. I’ve started The Iron Knight but unfortunately I haven’t finished it. I had hoped to get back to it and have a review ready for today, however, I ran out of time. My apologies! I’ll have review up as soon as I can. Today I have the honor of presenting an excerpt from The Iron Knight! There are many other blogs participating, so keep going to see the other excerpts.
This was a dangerous part of the wyldwood, more so than most— not because of the catoblepas and the jabberwocks and other monsters that called the dark swamp their home, but because of the resident who lived somewhere deep within the marsh. The one we were going to see. Something flew past my head from behind, barely missing me, and spattered against a trunk a few feet away. Stopping beneath the tree, I turned and glared at my companion, silently daring him to do that again.
I can certainly say that it is quite different being inside of Ash’s head. To be honest that’s why I stopped reading. He is not as flawless as Meghan made him out to be. He’s quite the brooding type and I was not in the mood to be reading about his depression. But I love this story and I will be giving it another go soon. Read the next excerpt over at Reading Teen tomorrow!


The Iron King (Harlequin Teen)by Julie Kagawa 368 pages, Harlequin, (2010-02-01)$9.99 (
Winter's Passage (The Iron Fey)by Julie Kagawa Harlequin Teen, (2010-05-20)(
The Iron Daughter (Harlequin Teen)by Julie Kagawa 304 pages, Harlequin, (2010-08-01)$9.99 (
The Iron Queen (Harlequin Teen)by Julie Kagawa 368 pages, Harlequin, (2011-01-25)$9.99 (
Summer's Crossing (The Iron Fey)by Julie Kagawa Harlequin Teen, (2011-06-01)(
The Iron Knight (Harlequin Teen)by Julie Kagawa 400 pages, Harlequin, (2011-10-25)$9.99 (

Tuesday, October 18

Introducing 'Cents and Sensibility'!

Hello my lovely followers! I need to write up my current In My Mailbox, only got a few books so no big deal. I'll try to do that tonight. Any who, I'm posting today to let you know that I've created a new blog! Yes, reading is my passion. But do you know what else I enjoy doing? SHOPPING! Trying the  newest and coolest products! Therefore, I decided to create a Blogger blog dedicated to just reviews of products (read: anything that can be bought and used) I've used, either by purchasing, borrowing, or promotional copy. Cents and Sensibility is up and running. I went back to some of my reviews and copied them over. I have a bunch more product reviews to transfer over but it's been slow going. I also have quite a few recent purchases I want to feature too. Today's review is of Trend Micro's Titanium Maximum Security software. I'd be honored if you'd hop on over there, read a review or two, comment, and follow me via Google Friend, Twitter or even Facebook, all 3 would be amazing! I don't have a blog button yet so please follow the below link!

Visit Cents and Sensibility!

Tuesday, October 11

Giveaway | Break Away (Away, #1) by Tatiana Vila

Break Away (Away, Book 1) by Tatiana Vila

ebook, Smashwords, (2011-10-10)

$0.99 ( (ebook)

A new release for Tatiana Vila! Just yesterday this released. I received my review copy today and am so excited to offer one of my readers a chance to win a copy for yourself! This giveaway is for one ebook coupon for Break Away via Smashwords!

Summary (Goodreads)

Ice Queen. That's what everyone calls Dafne at school. The girl with the striking looks of a Raven Princess but whose cold-steeled touch freezes everyone in her way. Her reputation works for her and she even likes it. People don't mess with her—except for her sister's infuriatingly handsome boyfriend, Ian, who loves pushing her subzero temper to its limits.

Life in Berryford is flowing exactly as she wants it—no drama, no boy trying to get into her pants—until she starts noticing odd, glazed-eyed students everywhere. Something weird is happening and, unusual enough for her, she needs to find out why. But when people start falling into a coma with no reason, among them Dafne's sister, she decides to take the matter in her hands, because if her intuition is right, this isn't something doctors or virologists can fight. This is something…more.

With frustration and guilt leading her way, and Ian forcing himself to her side, Dafne will step onto a road that'll open her eyes to why ignorance is bliss, why hate is so close to love, and why our imagination might be the most dangerous weapon ever known.

That first paragraph had me and I wanted to start reading this asap! Alas, I will have to wait to read this so I can finish a few other books for tours I have scheduled. :( Boo hiss!