Saturday, January 17, 2015

Review: Age of Miracles

Please take a moment to read the note at the bottom of this review. Thank you! <3 <3  

Title: Age of Miracles
Author: Karen Thompson Walker
Category/Genre: Apocalyptic, Sci-Fi, Fiction, YA

See it at Goodreads

“It’s never the disasters you see coming that finally come to pass—it’s the ones you don’t expect at all,” says Julia, in this spellbinding novel of catastrophe and survival by a superb new writer. Luminous, suspenseful, unforgettable, The Age of Miracles tells the haunting and beautiful story of Julia and her family as they struggle to live in a time of extraordinary change.

On an ordinary Saturday in a California suburb, Julia awakes to discover that something has happened to the rotation of the earth. The days and nights are growing longer and longer; gravity is affected; the birds, the tides, human behavior, and cosmic rhythms are thrown into disarray. In a world that seems filled with danger and loss, Julia also must face surprising developments in herself, and in her personal world—divisions widening between her parents, strange behavior by her friends, the pain and vulnerability of first love, a growing sense of isolation, and a surprising, rebellious new strength. With crystalline prose and the indelible magic of a born storyteller, Karen Thompson Walker gives us a breathtaking portrait of people finding ways to go on in an ever-evolving world.

Age of Miracles probably would have never happened for me if it hadn’t been for Kara’s recommendation of it-- I mean, she insisted on this title until I found myself putting it on my wish list and then before I knew it, she’d gifted it to me (I believe if I remember correctly it was for my birthday or Christmas in 2013). But you know how most of us are… we can get some of our most-wished books and they can still end up sitting on our shelves for months due to books and books stacking up to be read.

Well, I finally sat down and picked it up. And I’m so so so so glad I did. (I’m sorry I let it sit on the shelf collecting dust for so long though.)

This may sound a bit funny to you, but I’m practically prepared for an apocalyptic situation. Whether it’s zombies, heavy war fall-out, environmental, or whatever. If I should find our world in a crumbling state that required us to shut down, close up and be stocked up to last a while, I can nearly safely say my home would be ready depending on the situation and timeframe. Probably not anything as far as going into some bunker, but enough to lock down and be stocked up.

But that’s the problem. Someone isn’t ready for just everything, right? Especially something as sudden and drastic as the rotation of the earth slowing, changing the gravity, affecting so much else like hours, environment, tides, weather, and more. Who could really expect something like that? After all the years of global warming research or years of dealing with tensions of war or even years of strange experimental science? It was a complete blindside!

And this is where Age of Miracles picks up. Julia, a young eleven-year-old girl, growing into her adolescence and a curious mind, tells the strange story of this phenomena that Karen Thompson Walker weaves for the reader. Making sure not to leave out any details. Julia even includes the sad deaths of the falling birds-- because the gravity is different after the slowing of the earth as she tries to explain-- and the odd illnesses that people get, and I sympathize with her worries and her deep sense of only wanting to help anything and everyone she can try. I also get a sense of motherly protectiveness when she begins her first crush, and has other experiences that crush me (I don’t want to go into too many details afraid of spoilers) and relatable experiences as a growing pre-teen. I liked that Walker tried portray to Julia’s growth and life moving forward despite the current Armageddon.

Age of Miracles was one of the last reads I finished before 2014 ended. I’m glad I ended the year off on such a good note with this fantastic book. A tragically sad one, but beautiful. The way it ended openly, leaving the reader with many questions and thoughts still left me satisfied because it leaves you to your own conclusions. I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys end-of-the-world type reads, fiction, family drama, teen drama, contemporary, or surrealism.

Speaking of end-of-year reads: This may very well be my last review for The Bookaholic unless I guest post for Taylor from time to time. I’m making my final move to blog over at Great Imaginations and I hope to see you all there as well. You can still contact me at the provided places in the contact section if needed or find me on Twitter or Goodreads. The Bookaholic has been up for four wonderful years. I’ve been blogging for four wonderful years. I can only hope to continue doing fantastic things for many more.

Thank you everyone for the continued support. <3 <3


Sunday, January 4, 2015

Announcing Big Changes For The New Year

The last year, The Bookaholic has seen its fair share of changes including picking up a co-blogger, a new look, and a bit of neglect (sadly). The blog has also grown quite a bit when it comes to followers and views--and I appreciate that--and I've met some wonderful people through my last four years of blogging. I also absolutely had a blast going to BEA 2014 in NYC for my first time and meeting so many people in person (and traveling to NYC for my very first time, also flying in a plane for my first time ever--which was AMAZEBALLS). But okay, I'm starting to get off topic and I tend to do that when I get super excited and I'm writing out this post as I go along straight from the page instead of writing it out first and posting later when it's actually ready like I normally do. Ha!

Back to the topic: Over the last several months, I've been under a lot of stress. I'm a writer, too. Some of you don't know that because I don't really advertise much. I'm only a small-time gal. And I'm not some fantastic piece of work, trust me. I just love what I do, and I'm trying to get better. The only way to get better? Write, right? I can't do a lot of that, and then blog and read as much as I want without some help. I had a book releasing, another in the works for NaNo, another I'm trying to get finished and polished for later this spring. The stress was eating me alive. I got into a lot of reading slumps. And blogging slumps. That's why The Bookaholic became neglected. It got to a point where I almost thought I was going to have to quit entirely... My passion of blogging and sharing my love of books had died. It became more of a chore than a love. That's a terrible thing, and I was afraid to admit it to anyone.

I didn't want to quit though. The thought only nagged me. I mean, all the hard work I'd done through the years? It broke my heart mostly to think I could just let it go like that. So, when Lyn of Great Imaginations made an offer, I began to consider some things. Then, well, more encouragement came (and maybe some begging... Lol...) and now I can make this announcement:

As of now, I'm going to be guest blogging at Great Imaginations! You can read more about it at this post.

What does it mean for The Bookaholic?

For now, The Bookaholic is still in operation. I will still be posting here, though maybe not as regularly as I'd intended for the year. I haven't yet decided if I'm going to somehow share the same reviews that I do share there when I post (or if I just share a link where you all can go read the reviews I post when I'm putting a guest review up). I'm not considered a co-blogger (yet) at Great Imaginations, but if/when I make the permanent move over to blog there, I'll be sure to definitely let you all know.

What does it mean for Taylor (my co-blogger)?

Taylor is still my co-blogger. I've had a discussion with her over this decision already as we do text when we can. Taylor also has a very busy schedule with two jobs so I understand that life gets in her way and she's not capable of keeping a steady schedule. She's welcome to post when she can and I'm sad that things didn't work as planned for us to blog together the way we wanted. We did come to agree that even if I leave the blog at any point, I don't mind her taking it over as a single individual to use for a place to share her reviews if she wants... otherwise, she can just rebuild her old blog again. Solely her decision.
For now, like I said above, as long as I'm still around, Taylor is still around also when she's available. 

Will The Bookaholic still do any challenges/features?

I'll participate in what I can. I hadn't really planned on hosting anything. If I get any ideas to host something, I might... depending on the timeframe. It may be something I run by the others first though to see if they want to feature first. :)

Are you excited?


I really am. I feel the passion for blogging and reading again. I'm just so happy!

Here's to an awesome year!!!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Welcome to 2015!

Before I get started with this post, let me first say that it’s been a rocky year here at The Bookaholic. I know that. It was one of the most horrid reading years I’d had in a long time also--only tapping out at 26 books for my total. My schedule couldn’t quite help it, but it still made me feel awful at times, and I ended up some pretty bad slumps whenever I did actually have time for reading.

The good news is that the new year is bringing me a lot of changes along with a lot more different reading opportunities. I see myself even making some huge goals for the coming year, and I’m super excited to be sharing some news sometime in the coming weeks. You may notice a different pattern to the blogging, too.

I don’t want to list all the books I’m planning to get to this year-- but for the next five to six weeks I’ve already scheduled enough to keep me going:

Heir of Fire
Gone Girl
A Court of Thorns and Roses
The Fiery Heart
Salt & Storm
Messenger of Fear
I’ll Give You The Sun
Conspiracy of Blood and Smoke

My total goal for 2015 is to read 175. This includes a month-long re-reading challenge I’ve constructed for myself (I love going back to visit old favorites!) that I haven’t quite set in stone on exact books, but would love to re-read the HP series, Winter girls (Laurie Halse Anderson), and The Historian (Elizabeth Kostova). My goal also includes another reading challenge called Flights of Fantasy ( because I want to read more fantasy books this year--and I love fantasy--and Brandon Sanderson--so I’m going for it. I’m setting myself to read at least 15 for that challenge. Hey… those books are super long most of the time, so I’m going to set that bar kind of low for now. Haha..

I hope your year has started off good already! I look forward to all of the excitement and good luck with the reading everyone!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...