friday5 for July 1, 2016



Another busy couple of weeks. My little girl is officially finished her first year of school--and her first round of swimming lessons to boot. I can't believe how quickly that went. It makes me kind of terrified for how quickly the next several years will go. Having kids has definitely taught me a lot, but one thing that stands out more now than ever, is how fast time flies, and how important it is that we pursue the things we love, and enjoy them for as long as we possibly can. 

In other news, Happy Canada Day! 

I'm so proud to be Canadian, always, but especially today as I see the world around us struggling. Of course, we're not perfect either, but things here in Canada are vastly improved these days with our kind and compassionate new PM. His love for this country and its people is palpable, and I truly believe it's spreading, bringing this country back to life after many years in the dark. 


Have you been sorted into your Ilverymorny house over on Pottermore yet? I have, and apparently I can add Thunderbird to my house resume (along with my Hogwarts house, Hufflepuff--I'm sure at one point I'll share the story of how I discovered I'm a puff, hated it, then came to absolutely love it). Pottermore also features a really cool intro video for those who want to learn a bit more about the NA school of wizardry. I've seen some interesting theories as to how the new houses might relate back to the ones at Hogwarts too, though JKR herself denies there's any connection. Really, Jo? Really? If you've been sorted, I'd love to hear what you are--and what you think of these new houses to obsess over!


Ready for more Gilmore Girls? Not yet? Blasphemy! But okay, I feel you. Netflix has released a cute little video starting chief Gilmore Girl, Lorelei (Emily would have you believe it's her, but it's not; it's totally Lor), explaining that GG is now global for all your binging needs. I don't think I'll have time to rewatch the entire series again before the movies hit Netflix in the fall, but that's okay. I've probably already watched it six or seven times already and I know I'll get around to another rewatch before long :)

4. JUST PRESS PLAY: 5 Things That Are Harder Than Registering To Vote, Featuring President Obama (warning: Game of Thrones spoilers)


Maire is a baker with an extraordinary gift: she can infuse her treats with emotions and abilities, which are then passed on to those who eat them. She doesn t know why she can do this and remembers nothing of who she is or where she came from.

When marauders raid her town, Maire is captured and sold to the eccentric Allemas, who enslaves her and demands that she produce sinister confections, including a witch's gingerbread cottage, a living cookie boy, and size-altering cakes.

During her captivity, Maire is visited by Fyel, a ghostly being who is reluctant to reveal his connection to her. The more often they meet, the more her memories return, and she begins to piece together who and what she really is as well as past mistakes that yield cosmic consequences.

From the author of The Paper Magician series comes a haunting and otherworldly tale of folly and consequence, forgiveness and redemption.

-Courtesy of Indiebound


Happy Weekend!

friday5 for June 17, 2016


Well, the summer is filling up quickly, and I can already say, the Friday5 is not going to be able to be a weekly feature over the next few months. There's just too much going on! But it's all good. And we all need a little vacation sometimes. I wish I could say the reason there hasn't been a June Friday5 yet is because I've been relaxing, but it's actually quite the opposite. I've been working like a mad woman on everything from freelance edits, to back cover copy, to my own writing, to attending end of the school year events with Little E, to building a vegetable garden in the backyard, to, well, the list goes on. But I think you get the idea. It's been a busy few weeks, and it doesn't appear to be slowing down anytime soon.

Everyday life stuff aside, I've also been finding myself feeling a bit overwhelmed by life stuff lately as well. A lot of heavy stuff in the news, pushing down, settling deep. If you happen to be reading this at a time other than the week of June 17, 2016, maybe google what was going on and you'll see what I mean. I don't really want to get into it here because I know I can't do it justice, so I'll just say this: the world is full of love and goodness, but it's not enough. We need more of it. We're at like, 80% love, and we need closer to 95%, maybe even 100%. Okay, I can already feel myself wanting to launch into a long rant, so I'll leave it at that. Love. LOVE <3

I also want to add a quick note about the ups and downs of being on submission, because I'm in a bit of a down trend right now, feeling the hopelessness (which is probably only compounded by badness in the world right now). I've posted in the past about rejection, and how it's all part of the journey, and how you can't take it personally, and need a thick skin, and can usually learn so much from the experience, and YES, all of that is so, so true. But even when you know that logically, you can still find yourself in a funk sometimes. It's rough ride. And if I somehow knew it would work out in the end, I wouldn't mind the bumps so much, but not knowing makes it hard sometimes. Of course, that doesn't stop me from writing, and it doesn't stop me from trying. Even when I'm feeling really down about the whole thing, the seeds of hope are still there, asking me to water them, because they want to grow big again. They don't want me to give up, and thank goodness, that's usually enough--enough to keep going. Keep working hard and keep hoping. Maybe you can relate, in some way or another, with regards something that you want, but can only do so much to achieve. If you don't want to give up, you have to learn to live with hoping, but not knowing. You just have to. Because when you want something, there's no other option than to keep going.

But enough about that. Let's get to some news, shall we?


Photo credit: @HPPlayLDN via Twitter

Photo credit: @HPPlayLDN via Twitter

I feel I must address the fact that Harry Potter and the Cursed Child has now been seen. I won't post any spoilers here but I will note that I have read them, and everything I've heard has me hoping more than ever that a much wider audience will get to see the play, as opposed to just reading it when it hits the shelves on July 31st. Screen it in theatres, show it on TV, I don't care, but let us see it. Because it sounds like something that needs to be seen. And while I'm certain I'll still buy the play when it comes out, I can't help but feel I'll be missing something vital if I don't get to see it with my own two eyes. 


Photo credit: EW

Photo credit: EW

Are you excited for Bryan Fuller's adaptation of Neil Gaiman's American Gods? You really should be. The cast is shaping up to be fantastic (Gillian Anderson!), and you can't go wrong with the source material. EW has just released a few teaser images to whet our appetites too. Will you be watching when American Gods debuts?


Note: This section of the Friday5 was formerly called, "Trailer Worth Watching"--I've decided to rename it to open it up to other share-worthy videos, though this week, it is a trailer for what looks like Disney's next hit:



They are four best friends who've shared joy and secrets, love and memories, and since the beginning, Lorna was the one who held them all together. Then, the unthinkable happens. During a storm, Lorna is swept out to sea, leaving the three survivors with nothing to cling to except grief and questions. How did this happen? Why was Lorna in such danger, and was she alone? When her body is never found, the mystery deepens. Did Lorna really die? Or has she made a crazy bid for freedom? Inevitably, the dynamic of the four friends' everyday life is changed forever. But the pain and confusion go deepest for Jackie, who must face her feelings of unrequited love for Lorna's boyfriend as well as try to put to rest her own questions about Lorna's presumed death. Does one of the boys in their inner circle know more than he's letting on? Will Lorna's fate ever be discovered? And how will Jackie become her own person in the wake of a wound that may never close? In this beautifully written, intense novel, one girl has to travel through loss and disillusionment to make sense of her own future.

-Courtesy of Indiebound


Happy Weekend!

friday5 for March 11, 2016

I don't know about you, but I'm bracing myself for March Break next week. If I'm being perfectly honest, I'm looking forward to a few days where it'll be just me and my girl E (with Baby H in daycare), but I know E is going to miss the routine of school, and will probably get quite squirrely by the end of the week. That I'm not looking forward to... Needless to say, there won't be a Friday5 next week, but with the PLL finale airing, there will be at least something of a Pretty Little Reaction post. Housekeeping note over. Let's get to the Friday5!

1. Have you seen the official promo for the new season of Game of Thrones? No? Then you need to. Yes? Then you need to watch it again. There are a lot of goodies in here to discuss. Where to start? Oh, I dunno, how about BRAN AND THE FREAKIN' NIGHT'S KING? Okay, clearly this isn't really happening cause Bran is standing tall, but what's that all about? Is it possible Bran's story won't bore me as much as it has up to this point? We will soon find out!

2. Speaking of GoT, does anybody believe Kit Harrington's claims? Anybody? I'm seriously asking. I go back and forth about this several times a week. It's not like the guy has to worry about credibility. Not really. 

Photo credit: HBO

Photo credit: HBO

3. Queen Rowling herself is releasing a whole lot of new information about the North American Wizarding World, to mixed reviews (but let's not get into that here). Feelings about the specifics aside, does anybody else find this feels kind of surreal? Harry Potter fans have been immersed in the UK Wizarding world for so long that it feels really, really strange to now hear these kinds of details about magic's existence outside that. Don't get me wrong, I love the expansion of the wizarding world. I want it to live and grow forever, but it all feels so...disconnected for me right now. Like, everything in HP 1-7 is real, and this somehow isn't. Maybe Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them will change that. I hope so.  

4. Get ready for more Kimmel. ABC has announced that Jimmy Kimmel has been tapped to host the 168th Primetime Emmy awards. I think this is a good choice. He did a plenty good job the last time he hosted, and when it comes to these awards shows, I always find the best hosts are the people who are used to hosting as a regular gig. Should be good. Let's just hope the nominations reflect the actual best talent out there, and not just the same old tired choices year over year. 

Photo credit: ABC

Photo credit: ABC

5. Noteworthy New YA: BURN BABY BURN by Meg Medina

While violence runs rampant throughout New York, a teenage girl faces danger within her own home in Meg Medina's riveting coming-of-age novel. 
Nora Lopez is seventeen during the infamous New York summer of 1977, when the city is besieged by arson, a massive blackout, and a serial killer named Son of Sam who shoots young women on the streets. Nora's family life isn t going so well either: her bullying brother, Hector, is growing more threatening by the day, her mother is helpless and falling behind on the rent, and her father calls only on holidays. All Nora wants is to turn eighteen and be on her own. And while there "is "a cute new guy who started working with her at the deli, is dating even worth the risk when the killer likes picking off couples who stay out too late? Award-winning author Meg Medina transports us to a time when New York seemed balanced on a knife-edge, with tempers and temperatures running high, to share the story of a young woman who discovers that the greatest dangers are often closer than we like to admit and the hardest to accept.

-Courtesy of Indiebound

friday5 for February 5, 2016

As I mentioned in a post on my Facebook author page yesterday, it's been a busy week. More than busy. Plus, I'm recovering from this cold that doesn't seem to want to go away. I guess recovering isn't actually the right word then. Enduring? Kinda. Anyway, I had to do a bit of condensing with regards to bloggie things this week. Sorry about that. Hopefully, we'll be back to normal as of Monday, but for now, here's the Friday5, including a mini version of this week's Pretty Little Reaction!

1. Let's talk Gilmore Girls revival, because I don't think we've touched on that yet and the four episode (more like four movies given their length) series began filming this week. There's a lot of information swirling out there right now (like this great rundown). For once, I'm actually somewhat trying to limit my exposure to too many details, because I want to be surprised. But oh man, this interview with Lauren Graham has got me so excited: 

Photo credit: NBC

Photo credit: NBC

2. Another favourite comic book universe is coming to prime time--X-Men, and FX, the network behind the adaptation, subtitled Legion, has announced that Aubrey Plaza, Dan Stevens, and Jean Smart will be joining the cast. Any thoughts on these choices? Personally, I see a lot of potential, but the scripts will have to be just right. Will you watch when Legion premieres? Or are you getting prime time comic book adaptation fatigue?

Photo credit: FX via THR

Photo credit: FX via THR

3. So, Rupert Grint upset many a Harry Potter fan this week when he predicted that Ron and Hermione probably eventually got divorced. I mean, he had to have been kidding, right? Joking around in a self-deprecating, of-course-Ron-would-fail-at-marriage kind of way? Yeah, that must be it. Cause in reality, I don't see Ron and Hermione, my favs over even HP himself, ever letting go of each other... 

Photo credit: Warner BRos.

Photo credit: Warner BRos.

Look, I know Ron and Hermione had their ups and downs--they were still children when they first fell in love! They had a lot of growing up to do!--but they'd both come a long way by the end of Deathly Hallows. Did they probably argue a lot? Of course. That's part of their spark! But you can't convince me these two wouldn't continue to love each other enough to work through any problems they might have as a married couple.  

4. As promised, here are my top impressions from this week's episode of Pretty Little Liars--again, sorry about the abbreviated edition! If you want to avoid spoilers, please go right ahead and skip to the Noteworthy New YA.

  1. As I feared/suspected, Spencer and Hot Caleb didn't just kiss. They went for it. Like, went for it. Under the category of small mercies, I'm glad Hot Caleb was asleep during that morning after scene. I really didn't want to see AM canoodles between these two.
  2. In other news, PLL has finally found a way to make me feel for Toby. I might even be starting to like the guy. Or maybe I just want him to dump the new chick, and conveniently step in to soften Spencer's fall when Hot Caleb inevitably gets back with Hanna. Either way, he's miles from where he used to be back in the Creeper Toby days. And yet, I miss him being creepy too... this is clearly my head-cold speaking now. I'll leave it at that. 
  3. What is wrong with me that I actually like Aria's yellow zebra sweater? Is she... growing on me? First Toby and now Aria's wardrobe? Hmmm. I don't feel like I have a fever, but maybe I do!
  4. Hanna's fiance is definitely likable. That doesn't mean I want her to be with him, but calling a lawyer when your girl confesses to evidence tampering? He's clearly the smartest person in the liars' lives right now. If--scratch that--when Hanna gets back with Hot Caleb, I hope they keep Jordan around just for his logical coping methods. 
  5. Is Aria's dad the killer? I don't think so. But of the suspects they've hinted at so far, I think he's the one I'd most like to see actually responsible. He's definitely not the creeper in the old man mask though... was that supposed to look real? Cause it definitely looked like a mask. New A doesn't appear to have the big budget that old A did. 
6.14 New Guys, New Lies | Photo credit: Freeform

6.14 New Guys, New Lies | Photo credit: Freeform

5. Noteworthy New YA: ASSASSIN'S HEART by Sarah Ahiers

With shades of Game of Thrones and Romeo and Juliet, this richly imagined fantasy from debut author Sarah Ahiers is a tale of love, lies, and vengeance. Fans of Kristin Cashore and Rae Carson will devour the flawlessly crafted action and inventive world building.
Seventeen-year-old Lea Saldana is a trained assassin. She was born into one of the nine clipper Families in the kingdom of Lovero who lawfully take lives for a price. As a member of the highest-ranking clan, loyalty to Family is valued above all, but that doesn't stop Lea from getting into a secret relationship with Val Da Via, a boy from a rival clan. Despite her better judgment, Lea has fallen in love with him; but she's confident she can anticipate any threat a mile away.
Then she awakens one night to a house full of smoke. Although she narrowly escapes, she isn't able to save her Family as their home is consumed by flames. With horror, she realizes that Val and his Family are the only ones who could be responsible. Devastated over his betrayal and the loss of her clan, there's just one thing on her mind: making the Da Vias pay. The heart of this assassin craves revenge.

-Courtesy of Indiebound

Happy weekend!

friday5 for September 13, 2013

It's baaaaack. The Friday5 took a little summer hiatus of sorts, but now it's back, and while my schedule will dictate whether or not it manages to be a weekly feature here on the blog, I have missed dishing on the latest news with you, my dear bloggies. There is so much I could catch up on from the past several weeks, but in an effort to keep things on track, I'm going to focus on recent news only. So let's get to it!

1. Is it even possible to start with any other news item when there is major Harry Potter film news to share? No, it's not. A Wizarding World spin-off movie is in the works, based on Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them and holy crap, the internet hasn't been this excited since we found out that Queen Rowling is also King Galbraith. Though I'm a little sad we won't be seeing Harry, Ron and Hermy, the premise of this spin-off is truly worthy of our excitement. Plus. it will mean new characters for us to fall in love with, living in the HP universe. Excitement!!

2.So this is interesting. Tumblr has announced an official book club, aptly called the Reblog Book Club. I like the idea of this, but it does have me wondering (and maybe I just haven't done enough digging) if this is a genuine freestyle book club or are marketing dollars driving their selections? I don't really have a problem with it either way, but I like my book clubs to be transparent :) Regardless, I think it's a good platform for something like this and I'll definitely be watching to see where it goes!

3. Hooray! The Fall TV season is upon us! Maybe it's just because I was super busy all summer, but the annual hiatus didn't seem that long. Not nearly as long as it seemed when I was a teen, waiting for my favourite WB (now CW) shows to return. Plus, new shows, including one from Joss Whedon! Let's just assume that everyone is planning to watch Agents of SHIELD because, obviously, but what other debut shows are you planning to check out?

4. Speaking of fall...actual fall-ish weather is finally here! Okay, yes, this doesn't necessarily apply to you, depending on where you're located, but after a brief September heat wave, the usual beloved September cooling off is happening, making way for perfect weather to pop on a sweater and go for a stroll. I see leafy paths and pumpkin patches in my future. Give me a comfy sweater, a good book, a mug of cider and some country air and I'm a happy girl. I think my small town is showing...

5. YA book rec time! Ah, it's been so long since I've done one of these and there have been so many good books! But since we're keeping things timely, and since I already mentioned the Tumblr book club, let's take a look at its first pick, Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell.

"Hey baby. That's a really strange position to be typing in..."

A coming-of-age tale of fan fiction, family and first love.

Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan . . .

But for Cath, being a fan is her life — and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.

Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words . . . And she can’t stop worrying about her dad, who’s loving and fragile and has never really been alone.

For Cath, the question is: Can she do this?

Can she make it without Wren holding her hand? Is she ready to start living her own life? Writing her own stories?

And does she even want to move on if it means leaving Simon Snow behind?
(Summary from
That was a long synopsis, right? But it definitely has my attention. Actually, the title itself is what first caught my attention because I consider myself to be a fangirl (as does everyone on Tumblr, which is why it's a good pick for them). Before I go any further, it's confession time. I have not (yet?) read Eleanor & Park, Rowell's NYT bestselling breakout title. The truth is, I've been avoiding it. It looks like the kind of book I usually hate. Cute, hipster cover. Cute, hipster title. And Rainbow Rowell? Doesn't that sound suspiciously like a pseudonym for someone who is actually James Frey running young creative minds through his fiction machine? (It's not, by the way. From what I've read, Rainbow Rowell is her real name.) Okay, so fine, I don't read E&P, despite the hype, but then along comes the synopsis for Fangirl and ugh, it sounds so good! And the reviews of Rowell's writing are so good. And she sounds like a genuinely nice and awesome person so I think I need to get past my own weird hang-ups about hipster covers and just read Fangirl because it sounds delightful. What are you reading this week?

Happy Friday the 13th and happy weekend!

friday5 for March 22, 2013

1. THE VERONICA MARS MOVIE IS HAPPENING! I never thought this day would come, but huzzah! Rejoice! The dream is a reality! Thanks to a groundbreaking, record-setting kickstarter campaign, show-runner Rob Thomas and series star, Ms. Mars herself, Kristen Bell, have put a plan to bring Veronica to the bring screen into full-on, movie-making action. Not only did they hit their goal in record breaking time, making the Veronica Mars movie a thing--a real thing that we'll one day get to see with our real eyeballs and there will be much weeping over the epic love story of Veronica and Logan--but the prizes they're offering are fantastic and well-priced and just everything about this is SO EXCITING, YOU GUYS! If you haven't checked out the hilarious video they made to launch the campaign, get to clickin! Uuuuhhh, I mean, no! Wait! Read the rest of this post first then get to clickin!)

2. Shailene Woodley is on fire. Not literally. That I know of. I don't really have any way of checking on her, but I'm going to assume she's not literally on fire. But her career is definitely blowing-up. She's Mary Jane in the new Spiderman, and as we've discussed, she's Tris in Divergent (which is getting a lot of buzz and will very probably be a very big deal when it comes out), and now, as though those roles weren't already putting her name everywhere, she's now been cast as Hazel in The Fault in Our Stars. I feel really torn about this news to be honest. As I've said before, I think Shailene is quite talented and I fully support her as Tris, but now here we have her in another big YA book to film adaptation and it feels... weird. Now, to be fair, Divergent is a big franchise while The Fault in Our Stars is a one-off, but still. I shall reserve my judgement until I see how this pans out for myself! They are very different stories so we shall see!
2.2 Bonus Item! There is so much Divergent casting news that I seriously can't recap it all, but Four has been cast and Kate Winslet's role has been revealed! If you're as excited about this film as I am, be sure to check out the updated IMDB page! I will likely weigh in with my thoughts after I've had some time to digest some of these casting choices!

3. Emma Watson is basically amazing. For some reason (where some means, but seriously WTF?), people have been speculating that Watson might play the female lead in the Fifty Shades of Grey film adaptation. My reaction to this news has always been along the lines of, "That's some serious fanboy wishful thinking. Emma would never bother with a role like that!" Well, it looks like Emma herself has been thinking along the same lines. You rock, Emma.

4. Two things you must watch on the interwebs if you haven't already: School of Thrones and A Very Potter Senior Year (make sure you've seen first two productions beforehand--it's a lot of viewing time, but it's soooooooo worth it!)

5. It's not newly out this week, but since I was on hiatus I need to play a bit of catch-up! This week's YA Book Rec is Requiem by Lauren Oliver. Oliver has been rockin it since Before I Fall and Requiem is the finale to her Delirium trilogy--dystopian romance done right. 

They have tried to squeeze us out, to stamp us into the past.

But we are still here.

And there are more of us every day.

Now an active member of the resistance, Lena has been transformed. The nascent rebellion that was under way in Pandemonium has ignited into an all-out revolution in Requiem, and Lena is at the center of the fight.

After rescuing Julian from a death sentence, Lena and her friends fled to the Wilds. But the Wilds are no longer a safe haven—pockets of rebellion have opened throughout the country, and the government cannot deny the existence of Invalids. Regulators now infiltrate the borderlands to stamp out the rebels, and as Lena navigates the increasingly dangerous terrain, her best friend, Hana, lives a safe, loveless life in Portland as the fiancée of the young mayor.

Maybe we are driven crazy by our feelings.

Maybe love is a disease, and we would be better off without it.

But we have chosen a different road.

And in the end, that is the point of escaping the cure: We are free to choose.

We are even free to choose the wrong thing.

Requiem is told from both Lena’s and Hana’s points of view. The two girls live side by side in a world that divides them until, at last, their stories converge.
(Summary from
Okay, so, confession time, I don't love the cover. I don't know what it is about it that irks me, but it's something. It might be her eyebrows, even if that makes me a horrible person. And that said, I don't hate it. It's just meh for me. But that's okay because it's the contents of Oliver's books that are the reason I'm rec'ing this series. In a market flooded with dystopian romances, the Delirium trilogy stands apart because of Oliver's skilled prose and likable characters. If you're looking to satisfy your dystopian YA appetite, this series is deffo worth checking out!

Happy weekend!

friday5 for February 15, 2013

1. Happy Valentine's Day! With a baby at home, The past two Valentine's Days have been more about family than romance in my house--and honestly, it's kind of nice. Valentine's Day really is a Hallmark holiday. We should be showing our loved ones we love them all year around. We don't need a special day... that said, while I've never been big on the Hallmark-ness of it all, I am a fan of romantic dinners, chocolates and yes, even roses. But until the husband and I can easily return to that kind of Valentine's Day, I'm perfectly happy just celebrating my family.

2. The spring-cleaning itch. I don't see any reason to wait until spring to start your spring cleaning. Sometimes the mood just strikes and if you tend to have moments of laziness like I do, then you should embrace to urge to purge (not in the barfy way) when it strikes. This week, I found myself flagging articles of clothing in my closet, things I've worn this winter that I'm ready to put in storage or donate, despite season not being over. I always find a good clean and sort to be refreshing and I come out of it with a clear head. In fact, cleaning and organizing is a great project to work on when you have writer's block. Something about the process really clears out the mental cobwebs!

3. This happened. And the internet wept with pure unadulterated joy. Obama is clearly someone who never forgets to be awesome.

4. I don't know what to think about this. Apparently, Shailene Woodley is being considered for the role of Hazel in The Fault in Our Stars film. As I've said before, I have full confidence in Shailene's acting abilities, but given that we're about to see her as Tris in the film adaptation of Divergent, I worry. Is that silly? I certainly don't want any of these young actresses to be pigeonholed or type-cast, but I feel like relatively fresh faces can go a long way when it comes to YA film adaptations. We wouldn't have wanted to see K-Stew as Katniss or Tris. It's not that we can't accept her taking on other roles, but in the mainstream YA film world, she's Bella. On the other side of things, The Fault in Our Stars isn't a series. It's not going to be a franchise of films the way Divergent will. Maybe that's enough of a separation.

5. The YA book rec is a bit different this week. Instead of highlighting a new release, I want to bring your attention to the exciting new cover art for Harry Potter!

I am seriously diggin' this cover! The Harry Potter books are timeless modern classics and I believe they will continue to be taught in schools and read by children for generations to come. It makes sense that the covers will receive a little refresh from time to time to attract new readers. I believe only the cover for the first book (which we in Canada happily refer to as The PHILOSOPHER'S Stone) has been released so far, but I'm greatly looking forward to what else they have in store!

Happy weekend!

friday5 for December 14, 2012

1.Let's kick things off with a little tech news. Because you may need to get on this stat. If you have an iPhone, and you've upgraded to the most recent OS, you may be experiencing some problems with their newly native maps app (I know I have!). But fret no more! Google maps has returned and can now be downloaded in the app store. I'm a huge Apple fan in general (this post is being written on my iMac), but the maps app has not been an enjoyable experience. I'm happy to give it a another go if Apple works out the considerable kinks, but until then, I'm switching back to Google.

2. There were several sets of award nominations announced this week, including the nominees for the Golden Globes. Every year I scan the list and think, "Not surprised...Seriously?...Why wasn't <insert amazing movie/TV show here> included?" This year, I sort of skimmed over everything else and honed in on the fact that a smaller movie that I very much enjoyed is nominated in the Best Motion Picture, Musical or Comedy category. It may be in the company of some stiff competition, but just seeing Moonrise Kingdom on there made me happy. What a fantastic film. If you haven't seen it, you really should. It's funny, poignant and beautifully shot. And the cast is spot on. I don't know if it'll win over some of the other knockout films it's against, but this is one case where I'm just happy to see it nominated.

3. Harry Potter news! Say what? I thought we were finished with that franchise! Of course not. Don't you know Harry Potter can't be killed? :) Rupert Grint (our dear Won Won) has reportedly been filming new Harry Potter content! This is super-exciting, even though it's almost certainly for use in the Wizarding World Park in Orlando, and not for some ultra secret ninth HP film. I haven't been to the Wizarding World (yet!) because of the distance, but I like just knowing that it exists. I like knowing that the world of Harry Potter has such staying power that I will very likely be able to take my daughter there one day, after I've read the books with her. As our girl JK Rowls would say, "Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home." Love it.

4. On the opposite end of the spectrum (the non-warm-and-fuzzy-end), it looks like the CW network has green-lit a Hunger Games-ish reality TV program. First off, did we learn nothing from the HG books? I don't know how to feel about this news. I get why they're doing it, and as someone who enjoys the occasional season of Survivor and Amazing Race (though beyond that, I'm fairly opposed to reality TV--not in a snooty way, there's just too much quality scripted stuff taking up my time!), I think I might actually enjoy watching this, but it still feels wrong, you know? What age are these contestants going to be? Are they really not going to provide them with any essentials or are they going to work in a bit of food and shelter as they do in Survivor? I guess time will tell. I'm intrigued, but I'm also a tad worried. 

5. Before I get to the YA book rec of the week, I should say that this will be my final Friday5 before the holidays. Everybody needs a little vacation, and being a stay at home mom for the duration of 2012 means I haven't really had a vacation all year. So a mini blog-vacation is in order.
And speaking of not-relaxing, the blog-vacation is necessary because I now have a daughter with a December birthday, plus two Christmases, plus etc etc. It's a busy time of year, yo!
Rather than rec a new release, I'm going to be all seasonal and recommend an older holiday read for you to cuddle up by the fire with--Let it Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle:

"Come take a bite of my forbidden apple, uh, I mean, present..."
The cover is a little Twilight-y for my taste, but hey, it was 2008. I get it. (Side note: apparently this happened.) Ideal YA holiday reads pretty much have to be contemporary romance, which, as I've said, I don't read a ton of, but it's the holidays, and if you want a feel-good read, you can't have zombies or shapeshifters gumming up the works. I don't think I need to tell you how superbly talented the above three writers are. Their other works speak for themselves. And if you like your sappy holiday cheer in small doses, a collection of shorter fiction is just what the Santa ordered:
Sparkling white snowdrifts, beautiful presents wrapped in ribbons, and multicolored lights glittering in the night through the falling snow. A Christmas Eve snowstorm transforms one small town into a romantic haven, the kind you see only in movies. Well, kinda. After all, a cold and wet hike from a stranded train through the middle of nowhere would not normally end with a delicious kiss from a charming stranger. And no one would think that a trip to the Waffle House through four feet of snow would lead to love with an old friend. Or that the way back to true love begins with a painfully early morning shift at Starbucks. Thanks to three of today’s bestselling teen authors—John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle—the magic of the holidays shines on these hilarious and charming interconnected tales of love, romance, and breathtaking kisses. (Summary from
Okay, that was cheesy. Ugh. Don't you secretly love it, though? ;) 

So that's it for now. I'll be back with a regular Monday post on December 31st and then the Friday5 will return in January. I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season, filled with good food and loving company, regardless of what/how you celebrate. Until the (almost) near year! :)

2010, the year that wouldn't relent (in a goodish way)

Somehow, I don't know how, it's November 10th. The last thing I remember, it was the middle of summer and the second half of the year was still stretched out before me. So what happened between then and now? A lot. And rather than write a 5000 word essay to explain it all, I'm going to try and keep this brief so that I can feel caught up without boring us all and then happily move on to other things!

In April, I got engaged. Later in April, we decided to get married in September. I suppose that decision was pretty primary in where my summer/fall have gone.

The wedding planning was non-stop and intense, but fun. After five years together, boyfriend and I felt there was no reason to draw out the engagement and with a venue in place (the charming historic farmhouse where my parents live), everything else just came together. Just like magic! Ok, not really, but with a little work and a lot of time, we made it work.

boyfriend got an upgrade; he's a husband now!

It was a wonderful day and we had a great time, even if it did rain during the ceremony (we thankfully had a tent filled with twinkle-lights as a back-up). The upside to the rain was that we'd chosen this as our cake topper:

who needs the sun when we have each other?

Looks like it was part of the plan all along, right? Yeah, we're clever like that ;)

So now we're happily married, had a wonderful honeymoon in Hawaii, and are on the hunt for a house (another all-too-time-consuming activity, but alas, we--or more accurately, our possessions--have outgrown our midtown Toronto apartment).

Between the wedding planning, the wedding itself, the honeymoon, the house huting and everything that goes along with them, I also became an aunt for the first time (on my birthday no less!), got a promotion at work (officially an EA instead of just an AA) and have read many books (both for work and for pleasure when I can manage it)!

like this, except less tome-like and more teen litish

Unfortunately, the busy life I've been leading has left a pitiful amount of free time to work on my next book, and that kills me because my excitement level for it has never waned. But now I'm back on track, trying to work on it when I can (though I find I'm working right through my lunch these days, which had previously been prime writing time). Along with finding a house, I want to make finishing this book a priority.

poor, neglected book baby

With mere weeks left in the year, I feel like I'm missing time, but there are many reasons to be happy it's November. Case in point:

oh, HermioRon, i heart thee so!

Also, the holidays are on their way and though November is still a bit early for me to start decorating, I can't help but feel a bit of holiday spirit bubbling up inside when I hear Christmas carols in all the stores (even if they did start playing them before Halloween, which, let's face it, is kind of insane).

Mostly, I'm just happy to be married now and have all the planning out of the way. It's good to finally get back to "normal", whatever that means, and have more time to write and look forward to everything that comes next!