**Gone--Micheal Grant

Have any of you ever watched the TV shows Lost or Heroes? Do you like those? If yes, you’ll LOVE Gone.

One day all the adults and teenagers over the age of 14 disappear. They just… poof! They leave behind kids who have no idea what’s going on, and even stranger things start to happen. A tyrannical maniac takes over, a sadist oversees the discipline in the community, animals begin to mutate, kids start developing super-powers.

And that’s not even the half of it.

This is a wild roller-coaster ride of a book that kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time. It got a little crazy (very similarly to Lost) but I liked it all the more because of it.

I cannot wait for the sequel, Hunger. Holy COW!

~Enna Isilee

Book Review Backup

Whoops! I just checked my "read in 2008" list and saw that I have 11 books that I haven't yet reviewed on my blog! The oldest one I read in MAY! Geez. So. I'll be posting a book review about every other day now, peppered occasionally with news about the numerous plays I'm in/directing, and whether or not I get my wisdom teeth out this January (I'm terrified. I'm kinda old to be getting my wisdom teeth out, and I'm really not a fan of pain, or fat-cheeks.).

So, hobey-ho here we go!

~Enna Isilee

Crazy Bookcases!

I want these. They're so cool! Here's a picture without books. And here it is full of books. AWESOME!

Time for Cramming!!

I have read 79 books this year, that is one of my lowest counts ever! I've got to bring that up. So, for the last 9 days of December I am going to cram. But the thing is, I need more books! I dunno what to read!

So, welcome to another recommendation post! What have you read that you really liked?

May I have a collective "yay!"?

Woohoo! Ya'll are reading words written by the next Norma Henshaw! I got the part! The play is called The Diviners. There's very little information out there.

I'm so happy. All of my finals are over. School is over for the entire year(heh)! I've got nearly all my gifts. So happy!

~Enna Isilee

Call Backs and Thereafter

I had call backs today. I was hoping to read for the part of a crotchety old woman who didn't believe in "divine intervention" and that sort of stuff. Instead, the director only had me read for the part of an over ambitious true believer, and I fell in love with the character. She is funny! I love funny! And she's obnoxious, which is fun too. All the other people who auditioned said that I have the part in the bag, but I'm not so sure. I'm really nervous. We find out tomorrow at 3 pm who made the cast.

~Enna Isilee

T minus 17 hours and counting

Gulp. I audition tomorrow at 3. I just finished my pre-audition ritual*. I'm auditioning at the same time as one of my best friends (who is going to help me with the play I'm directing this spring, and was in You Can't Take it With You with me), we plan on giving each other moral support.

I memorized my monologue in about 20 minutes, I'm a really fast memorizer, and I hope it shows enough depth of character. Eeps! I dunno what I'll do with my life if I don't make this play! Work... I guess... earn money for next fall's tuition... but that's no fun!

Wish me Bonne Chance!
~Enna Isilee

*my pre-audition ritual consists of taking a very long bath (sometimes with bubbles) in which I shave every part of me that is meant to be shaved (legs, pits, and even my feet [I have hobbit feet], I know TMI), then I lotion myself, blow-dry my long (it's never been this long) hair to shiny-sleekness, lay out my nice clothes, read a book for a few minutes, and then take some melatonin (a sleep aid). *sigh*

Squeaky News Volume III

Yes! The third Squeaky News Newsletter is out! If you've signed up then you should have received it. It contains info on some good books, an interview with Kristi over at www.thstorysiren.com, and some shameless begging (please help me with those contests, PLEASE).

Plus, there are some apologies in there.

Happy reading!

~Enna Isilee

Another play, another monologue!

Yay! I'm trying out for another play. I'm super-excited, but super-scared, because I'm not sure how well I'll fit in this one. There may not be a part for me. I'm not going to tell you what the play is yet, but I will post my monologue that I'm using for my audition:

The Possessed
by Fyodor Dostoyevsky

VARVARA: Stay, hold your tongue, don’t be in a hurry! You’re a sensible girl, and there must be no mistakes in your life. Now … though you will have the money under my will, yet when I die, what will become of you, even if you have money? You’ll be deceived and robbed of your money, you’ll be lost, in fact. But married to him you’re the wife of a distinguished man. Look at him, on the other hand. Though I’ve provided for him, if I die what will become of him? But I could trust him to you. Stay, I’ve not finished. He’s frivolous, shilly-shally, cruel, egotistic, he has low habits. But mind you think highly of him, in the first play because there are many worse. I don’t want to get you off my hands by marrying you to a rascal, you don’t imagine anything of that sort, do you? He’s an old man, but you know, that’s all the better for you. You understand me, don’t you? Do you understand me? He will complain of you, he’ll begin to say things against you behind your back, he’ll whisper things against you to any stray person he meets, he’ll be forever whining and whining; he’ll write you letters from one room to another, two a day, but he won’t be able to get on without you all the same, and that’s the chief thing.

Tada! Wish me luck. I audition on Tuesday, and find out if I made callbacks Thursday, and then find out if I made the play Friday!

Rowan of the Wood-- Christine & Ethan Rose

Christine and Ethan Rose’s new book Rowan of the Wood. Rowan tells the story of Cullen, a twelve-year-old foster-child/bookworm. Cullen loves to read, fantasy epics are his favorite, and suddenly he finds himself in one! Cullen finds a wand in the forest and his body is no longer his, Rowan, a druid priest from the 500s, is inside his mind after having been imprisoned in the wand for nearly 1,500 years!

Rowan longs to be reunited with his love, Fiana, but despares that she is dead by now. Little does he know that Fiana has been searching for him all these years, but she had to turn to dark magic to keep herself alive, so she may not exactly be as he remembered…

I’m going to be completely honest: I did not expect to like this book. I have gotten so many stinky books lately that I’ve been really depressed and wasn’t planning on putting this book on the top of my “to-read” list, but then I saw the contests the authors are hosting: http://www.christineandethanrose.com/?p=394
Holy cow! I want to win one of those! (Check your e-mails soon, I'll be sending around my newsletter with more information about those contests) I immediately sat down with the book and gobbled it up in one day.

And ya know what? I actually liked it! I thought that they were able to artfully blend pagans and druids, vampires and epics, modern times and ancient times. It was just the thing to get my mojo back again!

With that said, I do have to say this:

I wouldn’t recommend this to anyone under the age of 14. I know the intended age range is 10-12 year-olds, but I don’t think it’s quite right for them. The writing is simple enough, but there are some things that I just don’t think kids would understand-- Cullen has some deep thoughts about God; he’s treated cruelly by his foster parents (but they don’t beat him, which I liked); and there are a few sexual references (not many, but enough for me not to recommend it to someone age 10 or 11).

Aside from that, though, I thought it was a fun, light read. It’s no Marillier or Hale, but then again, Marillier and Hale have almost reached god-like status. ;)

~Enna Isilee

The Book was Better Than the Trailer

What exactly is the purpose of a book trailer? I suppose it's the same as the purpose for a movie trailer: a teaser into what the feature is about. It's a strange concept though, because a book isn't in a visual medium like a movie is. Trailers work well for movies because they're like mini-movies, giving you a taste of what will be in the full length movie, but a book trailer (unless the author/publisher has a tens of thousands for a trailer budget) is normally just still images, moving text, and mood music. It really doesn't have much to do with the experience of the book.

Book trailers seem to be one of those things that are done to simply help market a book on the internet. Now if we could only get people to watch these commercials! Okay, they're not that bad, but visual image with mood music and fleeting lines of teasers is not how I decide to read a book. I like to pick up and hold a book in my hands, examine the cover, read the synopsis on the back, and maybe the first page, even check out who wrote the endorsements.

So why make one?

Well, we live in a techno-savvy, YouTube-watching, web 2.0 visual world. We're all much more visual now. I even incorporate YouTube into my college-level Composition II class! Having a book trailer is just another way for a book to be seen.

Okay. So. Ready for another why-am-I-watching-this book trailer? Actually, ours is pretty good (if we do say so ourselves). Here it is:

Leave us your comments on this blog for a chance to win a limited-edition print of Christine's Green Man II painting AND leave comments on the YouTube Channel TheTuberRose (and follow the other steps) for a chance to win a digital camcorder! Then you can make your own live action book trailer!

Book trailers do have a place in today's book promotion process, but a way should be found to make them more interesting. If they are funny, interesting, and or enticing, than they will be worth watching for their own sake and, in consequence, become a much more effective marketing tool, something that anyone who sees it will want to share with their friends.. (until then, we just have to bribe you with prizes!)

Speaking of prizes! We're giving away more prizes worth over $500 and some signed books on our blog. All contests end at the end of our Geekalicious Yuletide Book Blog Tour: 9pm CST, December 16th.

Christine and Ethan Rose are the authors of the new YA fantasy novel Rowan of the Wood, available wherever books are sold. They live in Austin, TX with their three dogs and Shadow the Cat.
www.christineandethanrose.com * www.rowanofthewood.com

Blog Tour of Roses

Squeaky Books is excited to host Christine and Ethan Rose, authors of the new, award-winning YA fantasy novel Rowan of the Wood during their Geekalicious Yuletide Blog Book Tour! The authors are kicking off their holiday blog tour HERE on Tuesday, December 2nd as guest bloggers. Their post: The Book was Better than the Trailer.

Christine and Ethan will be blogging about book trailers, and you'll get to see theirs on here. They're hosting a contest on YouTube and giving away a digital camcorder just for following four simple steps. Check it out!

Rowan of the Wood
The story of Rowan and Fiana and a young boy named Cullen

An ancient wizard possesses a young boy after a millennium of imprisonment in a magic wand. He emerges from the child in the face of danger and discovers Fiana, his new bride from the past, has somehow survived time and become something evil.

Come back and visit on Tuesday, read their blog, and post comments. The authors will be available all day Tuesday and Wednesday to answer your questions. Every comment on this blog is an entry to win a signed, limited edition print of Christine's Green Man II painting. The authors are also giving away autographed books and over $600 in other prizes through their website.

Okay, so none of that was my actual words, but I agree with it. I am excited to host the Roses (that sounds cool)! Their book sounds right up my alley. You'll hear more from them on Tuesday, and more from me after I read the book.

~Enna Isilee

I'm Thankful for Crazy Twilight Fans

Yep. For one day in my entire life I was actually thankful for those crazy Twilighters.

I saw Twilight on opening day and it was a BLAST! The movie was corny, the soundtrack really got on my nerves, and some of the lines had me laughing out loud (psst. They weren't the ones that were supposed to make you laugh). And yet I had a really great time! Those twiterpated teenagers screaming their heads off every time He came on screen. Ha! It was really funny.

Okay, aside from my sarcastic-ness, I do have some valid comments:

I thought the actors did a good job for the lines they were given, I really did.

I absolutely adored Jasper. I thought he was so FUNNY! ('He's the one who looks like he's in pain.' 'Don't worry, Jasper. You won't hurt her') Ha!

I thought Rosalie was really mis-cast. I don't mean to sound rude, not at all, but she wasn't skinny or pretty enough to play Rosalie (that's not an insult to the actress, it's just that Rosalie is supposed to be inhumanly gorgeous, so how could they find a human that could play her?)

Soundtrack really did get on my nerves. A soundtrack is supposed to really bring you into the movie, I thought this one took away from it.

Whenever they did one of those Carlisle flashbacks I thought it was really scary, and not the way they were meaning to make it.

Hm... those are the only things that come to my mind. I could easily think of more positive and more negative comments, but I'm going to stop there. I waited this long hoping that the rest of y'all might have seen it by now.

*PLEASE* No bashing. This is my personal blog where I am allowed to state my own personal opinions. I'm sorry if you disagree.

~Enna Isilee

And so the Mojo Died.

Well, I did get my mojo back. I read three books in four days. :)

And then it died.

I have to read Wuthering Heights for my Literature class and, while I'm really enjoying the story, it's taking me a really long time to get through.


I've been meaning to write a post about my thoughts on the Twilight movie, but I'm kind of scared. I don't want people to attack me again, even thought my thoughts aren't that bad.

*again, sigh*

Well. I think I'm gonna go read more WH so I can get that mojo back, again.

~Enna Isilee

Want to Make Your Own Book? Act FAST!

Get your free book!

Click on that link and you'll get to make your own free book. Unfortunately, you have to sign up within the next few hours and then the offer is void. It really is free, no gimicks. My mom's already made one. Y'all can thank Oprah. I don't have time to tell ya the details, because I've got to get the word out ASAP!

This is a reall, hardback, nicely bound book. It'd make a great Christmas gift.

I found one that's butterfly themed and I'm going to fill it with some of my stories. SQUEE! I'm so excited!

Sorry I didn't mention this sooner, I just found out!

~Enna Isilee

**Cybele's Secret-- Juliet Marillier

Summary found here

"I absolutely adored this book. Ah! I loved it! I didn’t at first, because it took me almost two weeks to read the first 100 pages, making me find it a little boring. But oh, I was wrong. "

I wrote that over six months ago when I read the prequel to this book, Wildwood Dancing, and I am absolutely thrilled to say that it still stands true for this book.

Yes, it did take me two weeks to get through the first 100 pages. They weren't boring, but I was so busy that I guess I was just slow. Plus, I couldn't see where the story was going, not in a "I'm so confused. What the heck is going on?" way, but in a "Huh. This story is really keeping me wondering and focused. What will happen next?" Then the story picked up and I was into a world of magic, mysteries, murder, and love.

*sigh* Man can Marillier write love stories or what? I honestly couldn't tell you which of her stories pulled on my heartstrings more, but I really want to find a Costi or Stoyan of my own, I can tell you.

There isn't much about the previous story that carries through to this book, but Marillier's magical writing story certainly does.

Pure genius and joy.

~Enna Isilee

Why I Love Hot Cocoa, and a New Poll

I love hot cocoa. First off, the word cocoa, doesn't it look cool? It looks like something a wild bird should say, "Co-Coa! Co-Coa!" Plus it has this rich, creamy, awesome taste (when prepared correctly) that makes me melt into a world of pure comfort. Some people are addicted to coffee, but since I don't believe in drinking coffee, cocoa has become my ever present friend. It's my second favorite thing about winter (right after being able to snuggle in my bed), although I drink it even in the summer (ask my family, it's true). It's a wonderful companion to books (if you're careful not to spill), which is what I'm going to use to segway into my next topic:

I am determined to start reading again. Gah! I've only read about 3 books in the last two months, and one of them was required! I just finished Cybele's Secret (Loved it! Review forthcoming), and I'm going to start Everlost. But what should I read after that? I can't decide, so I'm going to let you decide. Please vote for one of the following options in my poll:

Pilage, by Obert Skye
Poison Study, by Someone-who's-name-I-can't-remember, I think it's "Something" Snyder
Or "Other." Suggest a book you think I'll like. I need to get a list going!

Woohoo! I'm bringing back the mojo!

~Enna Isilee

Have ya ever just been busy?

Oi! I have no time for posting, reading, or other fun activities! The only really fun fun I've had in the last week was when I went to a party last night dressed as Sarah Palin. (Tee hee. I really am clueless when it comes to politics, but Tina Fey inspired me)

I've been reading the same book for a long time and I'm not even 200 pages in.
I got straight As (And have had no life because of it)
I've got a coworker who's been causing me some trouble, but I think it's better now.
I've had to cancel the play I was going to direct this spring because another theatre is doing it at the same time.

And that's just a few of the things going on.

Oh, and 30 Rock starts tonight, I'm SO FREAKING EXCITED.

Anyway, I'm not dead, just busy.

~Enna Isilee

An Interesting Experiment. A Meme Headcount.

So you remember that "Be Heard!" meme I posted a while ago? Well, it was kind of an experiment. I made it up, and I wanted to see how it would spread throughout the blogging world. I tried to make a map of how it spread, but it got a little bit too complicated.

I posted first, then Q got Danielle, Leigha, and Merrisa to do it. Merrisa got Froggy to do it, Danielle got Summermoon and hwalk to do it. Summermoon got Anilee and Taiger to do it.

And it just goes on and on.

I was really interested to see how many people said things like "Everyone has already been tagged for this, so I'm not going to tag anyone." But truthfull, not everyone had been tagged.

Which has prompted me to say this:

If you like doing meme's, and would like to be tagged occasionally, please comment. If you do not comment, I will cease tagging you for memes. And if ever I do tag one of you that does comment, I will be sure to leave a comment on your blog so that you will be aware.

I LOVE doing memes. I think they're some of the greatest fun EVER. However, I often don't see that I've been tagged (Since I check my blogroll once a week, if I'm lucky). So if you tag me please let me know.

All right. That's all I have to say for now.

~Enna Isilee

Order! Order! I will have order!

Heh. I really think this blog post title is clever because it has a double meaning.
Meaning #1:
About 7 months ago I posted this:

Gasp! Enna Isilee! What kind of book lover are you?! To let your books fall into such disarray is shameful!
I know, I know. Which is why a month later I posted this:
Tum ta tum! Much better. I also posted a picture of the sad little I mean... cute and cozy bookshelf that I own:
This picture actually makes it look bigger than it truly is.

But now, over six months after that, I am now proud to present to you for your veiwing pleasure and enjoyment...

*Twentieth Century Fox Theme* My New BOOKSHELVES!

Aren't they gorgeous?! I got them at IKEA for only $101.44! I'm so excited. You can tell by how I'm breathing in the video. Plus, you can see that I gave Shannon her own section (even though that means her books aren't exactly in alphebetcial order).

I'm a bit nervous though, because they're already almost full!

Meaning #2

I recently ordered (and will soon order more) books! Coming soon in the Enna Isilee reading list is:

Everlost by Neal Schusterman

Cybele's Secret by Juliette Marillier

Inkdeath by Cornelia Funke

What's Math Got To Do With It? A surprisingly facinating non-fiction book by Jo Boaler

WOO HOO! I'm excited! I'm having a hard time deciding if I should read Everlost or Cybele's Secret first. I think I'll read Cybele's Secret.

~Enna Isilee

Be Heard! A meme

Here’s a meme where your opinion gets to be heard! Here are the rules:

1. Copy and paste the blank form into your blog twice, only fill in one.
2. Fill in the blanks with whatever you think is the appropriate answer, bold your answer if you wish. And they don't exactly have to make sense.
3. Add one more item to the meme
4. Tag 4 people and comment on their blogs

I think it should be mandatory for each household to have ________

I think the President should name August 22nd _________ day.

I think stop signs should be a different color, I think they should be ________

I think that _______ is/are wasting America’s time, and we should replace it with _______


I think it should be mandatory for each household to have hot chocolate mix

I think the President should name August 22nd National SSR (Sit down, Shut up, and Read) day.

I think stop signs should be a different color, I think they should be florescent green.

I think that ospreys are wasting America’s time, and we should replace them with penguins.

I tag…

NerdGoddess (nerdgoddesswriter.blogspot.com)
Q (thecurlyq.blogspot.com)
Gretchen (gretch-a-sketch.blogspot.com)
Miss Erin (misserinmarie.blogspot.com)

The City of Ember-- Jeanne DuPrau

An entire civilization was moved underground to ensure the survival of the human race. Their supplies are dwindling, the lights are flickering, and there doesn't seem to be anyway to escape.

Really liked this book. Read it in 2.5 hours. Some aspects reminded me a lot of Ayn Rand's Anthem. I thought that the author could have made it a little longer. Some of it was rushed, and the story, though wonderful, could have been more developed.

I'm very tentative to see the movie. I've already seen some errors in just the trailer. Eeps!

~Enna Isilee

An Ideal Life

The ideal meme, tagged by Taiger

Rules: if you're tagged, make sure to add one more ideal "thing" to the list, besides the items that are already there. Be as descriptive and random and silly as you want.

My ideal...

Snack: Dill pickles, cold string cheese, and cold, crisp apples.

Day: Acting a bit, playing a bit, reading a bit, relaxing a bit, hanging with friends.

Book: One with my name underneath the title (Yeah, at the rate I'm going that's never going to happen.).

Friend: Funny, witty, patient, kind.

Weather: Torrential summer rain!

Adventure: Hm... I'm really not much of an adventure person. I'd much rather just write about it, while in a five star hotel. Heh. Or just my bed. I've never been outdoorsy, I do like to travel though.

Music: Depends on what mood I'm in. Sometimes I want meaningful lyrics, sometimes I want a beautiful melody, and sometimes I just want something to listen to.

Birthday: Oh, maybe going to see Shannon with a few friends, then going to a bookstore, then going out to eat with aforementioned friends. (Hey, this sounds like my last birthday! ;) )

I tag... Gosh, who hasn't done this before? Um... NerdGoddess?

~Enna Isilee

Happy October!

Thanks for all your comments in the last post, gals (and guys?).

Just wanted to say happy October! (Crazy! It's already October!)

~Enna Isilee

Books I Didn't Like? Really?

When I mentioned Tithe, a lot of you had stuff to say. Which brings up a question:

Do you guys like it when I review/mention books I didn't like or didn't finish?

I generally avoid even posting about those types of books, but would you guys like it if I did? Of course, I wouldn't be mean, I'd just say what I thought. So for Tithe I wouldn't say:

Oh my gosh! Holly Black must be a totally bad person to write a book with so much stuff I didn't like! I hated this book.

For one, I know that's not true. Shannon talks about Holly all the time, and she seems really funny. For two, I didn't hate the book. It just wasn't my style.

Anyway. Do you guys like me mentioning those types of books?

~Enna Isilee

You wanna know something really, really sad?

Have any of you noticed a lack of book reviews lately? *sigh* Yeah, me too. That's because I haven't read anything since I read Rumors back in AUGUST! First it was just school, and I needed to get into a new rhythm, then it was work, and I actually needed to find time to read, which was not easy. And then I agreed to help out with a side project that has consumed a lot of my reading time and yet I still feel like it's taking me forever. I really enjoy this side project, but I've had my sibling's birthday, my birthday, work, school, there was a time when I thought I might have mono (don't worry, it's just a cold, no mono). *sigh* again.

Anyway, back to reading. I've been searching high and low for a book I want to read. But here's what happened:

I wanted to read Cybele's Secret, I ordered it, but it won't get her for a while.
I wanted to read Tithe, full of not-nice stuff, so I stopped reading it (after the first chapter).
I wanted to read City of Ember, this series has intrigued me for a while now, but no library has it because EVERYONE apparently wants to read it!
I wanted to read Inkheart, so that I could refresh my memory for Inkdeath, but my copy is lost, and the library copy is lost!

So yesterday, after work, I got desperate. I ran to the closest bookstore I could find. Didn't even have to scan the shelves, I knew right where I was going. I grabbed City of Ember off the shelf, ran to the front desk, bought it for $5.75(Cheap right?), and dashed back home.

*calming sigh* I'm going to start it today.

Oh geez. If it's a disappointment my head may explode.

Wish me luck!
~Enna Isilee

Some Exciting New Releases

Alright, there has been a sudden rush of new releases that I'm excited about!

Cybele's Secret is now out.
Brisingr is now out (which I'm mostly just curious to read, not so much excited)
Inkdeath comes out in two days.

w00t! It's gonna be fun. And maybe I'll work time into my schedule to actually READ! Gasp!

~Enna Isilee

Psst, ~Firefly~, I'm still waiting for your e-mail.

Some unfortunate news, week 3 winners, and a cry for help

Okay. I have this weeks winners! The grand prize winner, receiving a personalized Shannon Hale Book, a book charm bracelet, and my eternal love, has already been chosen, but I’m going to let you all suffer for a bit longer. Muahahaha!

I’m really sorry, I should have forseen this, but it didn’t even cross my mind. I should have made this contest open to US residents only, but I didn’t. As it is I cannot ship out-of-country. However, if any of our foreign winners have family or a good friend in the US that I can ship their prizes to, I would be happy to do that. Be sure to ask their permission though, and send me an e-mail. If not, I’m really sorry, but I just can’t ship international.



All three will get to choose from my remaining books! Q gets to choose first, then Alessandra, then Cuileann. I know that I said there’d be a t-shirt involved, but that kind of fell through.

Ugh. So many things have fallen through! At least I have excuses, heh. heh… aw.

Congrats, e-mail me.

~Enna Isilee

But wait! Wait! I need your help!

I'm in a bit of a bind, my aunt asked me to read and write 8-10 questions about some books, but I haven't had enough time to do them all! The books are:

Fairest by Gail Carson Levine
Dragon Rider by Cornelia Funke
Crispin: the Cross of Lead by Avi

Those are just the books you may of heard of, the others are completely random titles, and I'll work on those. However, if you've read these books and have any possible questions at the ready, please post them here. They're meant for 5th-6th graders. For example, here's one of them that I have for Fairest:

Q: What is the name of the prince's dog?
A: Oochoo

Don't feel obligated, I know some of you are busy too. But I just thought I'd throw this out there. Maybe you can consider it your birthday gift to me? Heh. ;)

Thanks much!

*sigh* My bad.

*Sigh* I should have asked the week 3 people more in advance. Here's today's:

Here’s the next installment in Enna Isilee’s (squeakybooks.blogspot.com) big birthday contest. Today’s mode of entry is:

What was Jenna’s favorite color, and during the course of the story, what did her favorite color become?

That’s all you have to do! E-mail Enna Isilee your answer at Books@Squeakybooks.com . You get 2 entries for answering the question and 5 entries if you get it right. So you could get two entries just by e-mailing! These entries go towards the weekly prizes and the grand prize. This week’s prize winners will be announced on Monday morning, and the grand prize winner will be announced on Enna Isilee’s birthday, September 22nd (the same Monday, just later in the day).

Have fun!

Aw snark.

I just thought of something. My question today was supposed to be what was the Blackbringer called before he was the Blackbringer. I just wanted to clarify that I am talking about the creature Blackbringer, not the novel. Though the creature is inside the novel.

Week 3 News and Week 2 Winners

Alright! We have our winners! But first, a little about this week’s contest:

This week’s contest will be trivia. On a few blogs, as always, you will find a question. E-mail me your answer, and you get points! Right answers get you 5, wrong answers get ya 2. And just ta let ya know, it’s worth it to e-mail. Our first place winner this week, won because of wrong answers (sorry, bud, but it’s true). I think what I’ll do is I’ll have a question for each book that we had last week. So that’s your hint. All of the questions will come from a book that I gave the first line to last week. Though I may throw in a Shannon Hale themed one, just to keep things interesting. So I’m not going to tell you what book the question is from (though you should be able to glean it from the text) so that all you brilliant book people might be a little more challenged.

I have now contacted everyone I needed to help in this last week. And I’ve updated my sidebar link-list so I won’t have to post every day. Check your e-mail inboxes, and if your blog is listed in the sidebar, I definitely sent you an e-mail.

The contest today will be at Alessandra’s blog. http://alessandrasplace.blogspot.com/2008/09/enna-isilees-birthday-extravaganza.html
And now our winners!

In third place: MADISON/ANILEE/ANIDORI- ISILEE She gets to choose one of my fabulous books.
In Second Place: SUMMERMOON! She also gets to choose one of my fabulous books.
In first place winning one of my fabulous books and a pair of Nerd Goddess’ earrings/2 charms/ necklace is… TAIGER!

You need to contact me by Wednesday the 17th in order to claim your prizes. Books@Squeakybooks.com

All right. Now hop on over to Alessandra’s place and win, win, win! This next week I’ll be giving away a book-themed T-shirt along with more, more books!

~Enna Isilee

The End of Week 2

Here's the last bit of Week 2 (I really need to get thinking on week three) it's at my friend Nerd Goddess' blog.

Failure! Again!

Wow. I love you Charybdis, I really do, but now I'm pretty convinced that you don't like me so much. ;) Glitches happen, I understand. No need to grovel for forgiveness (but you can if you want to). So, here we go. Sorry guys:

This week in Enna Isilee’s (squeakybooks.blogspot.com) big birthday contest, you must identify the novel this opening line belongs to:

“I used to be someone.”

That’s all you have to do! E-mail Enna Isilee your answer at Books@Squeakybooks.com . You get 2 entries for answering the question and 5 entries if you get it right. So you could get two entries just by e-mailing! These entries go towards the weekly prizes and the grand prize. This week’s prize winners will be announced on Monday, and the grand prize winner will be announced on Enna Isilee’s birthday, September 22nd.

Have fun!

And again today, plus a meme

Here 'tis. We're giving Charybids a second chance.

The 3
(which is unfortunately my unlucky number)

Here are the rules: I am going to list three categories of books. 3 MUST Read Books, 3 Keep Your Eyes on These, and 3 Look For These Soon. Keeping with the theme, I am going to tag at least 3 bloggers. They should put these same lists on their blog but SUBTRACT one book from each list and ADD one of their own. Then they should tag at least 3 more bloggers. It will be fun to see how the lists change as they go around the blogosphere. Please come back to this post and leave a comment so I can see how the lists are changing.

Since this is Book Buzz…please keep your lists to titles released in 2007-2009.

So, here goes…[asterisks are next to my additions]

3 Must Read Books:
A Little Less Talk and a Lot More Action (Signet Eclipse) by LuAnn McLane
Book of a Thousand Days by Shannon Hale**
The Host: A Novel by Stephenie Meyer

3 Keep Your Eyes on These:
The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen
The 13th Reality by James Dashner**
Small Favor (The Dresden Files, Book 10) by Jim Butcher

3 Look For These Soon:
Cybele's Secret by Juliette Marillier**
Magic And The Modern Girl (Red Dress Ink) by Mindy Klasky
A Fatal Slip by Melissa Glazer

And I'm going to tag:

Alysa (http://www.everead.blogspot.com/)
Verity (http://www.somefantasyinreality.blogspot.com/)


Today the contest is here. I should just save myself the time and fix my sidebar but... I'm lazy.

Good Question: Win Twice?

Yesterday, ~Firefly~ had a good question. Should you be allowed to win the weekly prize multiple weeks? Of course anyone who wins the weekly prize will still be eligible for the grand prize, but should they be eligible for more weekly prizes?

Please vote in the poll. Here are you options:

a) If you win a weekly prize, that's it, you can't win anymore weekly prizes. All of your entries will be counted towards the grand prize, so you should still do the daily entries, but you can only win the weekly prize once.

b) You can win a weekly prize every week. So perhaps someone would win the weekly prize all three weeks, and you are eligible for the grand prize. So basically, one person could sweep the whole contest. Chances of this happening are very slim though.

Thoughts? I'll close the poll by Sunday.

Oh, and the contest is here today.

Week One Winners, and Week Two Instructions

Oi! I’m never going to do that again. I cut up 323 little pieces of paper and put them into a box! But I do have this week’s winners. But first:

The answers to Saturday’s questions:

1. My favorite color is: GREEN
2. My favorite animal (anything not human) is: BUTTERFLIES (duh!)
3. My favorite author: SHANNON HALE (I’m really glad no one missed this)

Alright, now that we’ve gotten that out of the way I’ll announce the winners of the drawing.

Oh, but before I do that I just wanted to say that Q had the most amount of entries, 17. Anyway…

In first place (she gets the first pick of all the books I’m giving away) HEATHER Z
In second place (getting the second pick of books) BUNNY B
And in third place (I think you get the drill) ~FIREFLY~

There you have it. You can tell Heather Z really wanted to win, because her piece of paper literally jumped out of the box. It was quite miraculous.

Shoot me an e-mail and I’ll let you know how to collect your prizes. If I don’t get an e-mail by Wednesday your prize will be forfeit and I’ll pick another winner.

E-mail to: Books@Squeakybooks.com

ALL THE WEEK 1 POSTS ARE CLOSED. Feel free to answer the questions, but you won't get any entries. Now it's all up to Week 2:

This week requires a little more work on your part. You have to e-mail me your answers, but there are more opportunities to get more entries than last week.

Every day, on someone’s blog, will be posted the first line of a novel. You have to identify the book the line comes from. E-mail me your answers to Books@Squeakybooks.com . You’ll get points even if you get it wrong. However, I would ask that you would also comment on each respective blog when you e-mail me, just so I can tell if any e-mails have been lost.

The prizes this week are(You may notice that the prizes get a little better every week):

1st place: Your choice of one of the books I’m giving away and any pair of Nerd Godesses’ punctuation jewelry (earrings, necklaces, charms, and more!)
2nd place: Your choice of one of the books I’m giving away
3rd place: Your choice of one of the books I’m giving away

Today the contest is hosted by Cuileann: http://www.thehollyandtheivy.blogspot.com/

I’ll update the list on my sidebar soon.

Chao! And happy guessing!

~Enna Isilee

On Naming [Part II], and the last leg of Week 1

I'm really excited for the contest today. It's all about me! I want to see how many people know the answers to those questions. Run on over to Q's blog (www.thecurlyq.blogspot.com) and enter.

I thought I'd list some of my favorite boy names now:


Oh... I can only think of one name. Hm...

You see, I like the name Tegus (my favorite male hero in Shannon's books) but I would never name a kid that. It's not quite so versatile as Enna.

Do you guys have favorite boy names? Maybe it'll spark my brain.

The First Curse: On Naming Children

I was thinking, a name is really the first curse your parents put on you, or blessing. Your future is completely in their hands. Will they name you a name that is statistically successful? Or one of those names that everyone has (i.e. Brittany, Ashley, Jessica). I like my name. It makes me happy.

The reason why I was thinking this is because I was thinking of names that I could name my future children. I think about this a lot, because I like names. Here are some of my favorites(They’re all girl names, maybe I’ll post my favorite boy names later):

Lindsey (with an “e.” “a” is okay, but I like “e” better)
Kimberly (or Kim)
Aly (Just Aly, not Alyssa/Alysa/Allysa/however you spell it, though I like those names too)
Kari (Pronounced Car E [like the vehicle and the letter])

But the name I like best (and fully intend to name my daughter) is Enna. SHOCKER! I wouldn’t necessarily be naming her after the character (after all, if you name someone Ashley are you naming her after every Ashley? No.), I just love the name. Having the name shared with a kick-butt novel heroine is just a bonus.

Then I started thinking about middle names. I like simple middle names. Like Jane, or Lynn, or Lee and so on. So I started paring names together.

Enna Jane (No, just doesn’t sound right)
Enna Lynn (I like that one better)
Enna Lee (Hey… wait a minute)

I totally didn’t think about that at first. How cool would it be if I had a daughter named Enna Lee? My pseudo-nickname is Ennalee!

I just thought that was cool, and wanted to share it.

Of course, with my luck I’ll probably marry a guy who’s last name was something like Tennabee. I don’t know if that’s really a last name, but Enna Lee Tennabee would not work. Not at all.

I should marry someone named Smith. That’s a safe name.

~Enna Isilee

Uh-oh. The first glitch.

Charbydis never posted the contest post for today. Whether it's because they hate me, or just didn't get my e-mail, I don't know(Don't worry about it Charbydis, no big deal). Either way, I'll post it here so that people who want today's entries can have them.

List your three favorite authors

That’s all you have to do! Just leave a comment that lists your three favorite authors and you’ll automatically receive 3 entries towards this week’s prizes and the grand prize. This week’s prize winners will be announced on Monday, and the grand prize winner will be announced on Enna Isilee’s birthday, September 22nd.

Have fun!

Just plain happy

I am just plain happy. That's all I have to say. I feel like singing "I feel pretty." Everything is going my way. Work is great, home is great, school is great, friends are great, life is great.

Love the world!

Oh, and check out the latest things Shannon's been posting about how to be a reader, they're awesome! (Just be nice, please)

Quick! I need you!

Please go here and enter my contest today! I'm currently in a reading slump, so I really want to see what all of you have to say!

Enna Isilee’s Birthday Extravaganza!

Alright, to get into the action today all you have to do is comment. That’s it. Just comment. Really.

You might also want to mention if you’ve posted about my contest, and I’ll give you the 10 entries towards the grand prize.

If you have any questions, you can just view the post below this one. It has the info.

Okey dokey then. Let the contest begin!

EDIT: I added a list of links to my sidebar that show where the contest will be each day, just in case you get lost.

Slight Change in Plan

I'll be announcing winners and such on Mondays, not Sundays.

Ready to rock ‘n roll!

All right. I’m all set to start my contest.

Do ya wanna hear something amazing? I had EXACTLY the amount of bloggers I needed that contacted me. EXACTLY. There are 5 of you I still haven’t e-mailed, and that’s because you’ll be participating in the last week, and I haven’t thought of what I’ll be doing for the last week, so stay tuned.

Here’s how this is going down:

Every Sunday (like today), I’ll be giving a recap. I’ll let you know where the “hints” are going to be every day, and I’ll announce the winners of the weekly prizes. I hope to give away at least three prizes a week, possibly more. Which means that at least three people will win a week. The prizes vary from books, to jewlery, to custom t-shirts, and more. Then there’s the grand prize, of course, which I will announce the winner of on my birthday, September 22nd. And it’s gonna be grand let me tell you. At least… if I won it I would be very happy. A part of the grand prize is a personally signed copy of a certain book by a certain author. And when I say “personally” I mean it will have the grand prize winner’s name in it. And that’s just a part of the grand prize. Money may be involved. May. ;)

This week’s “hints” are simple. All you have to do is answer whatever question is asked in the comments. Amount of entries per day will be varied, so keep a lookout. The “hints” will be located:

Monday: Squeaky Books (that’s me!)
Tuesday: Wendy's Minding Spot
Wednesday: Some Fantasy in Reality
Thursday: Charbydis
Friday: Gretch-a-sketch
Saturday: The Curly Q

And then on Sunday you come back here and I announce the winners. Got it?

Every week the entries will be wiped clean for the weekly prizes. But ALL of your entries will be counted for the grand prize.

And here’s a way to earn more entries:

If you blog about my contest tomorrow (as in, September 1st) I will give you TEN ENTRIES towards the grand prize. TEN. 10. As of right now that is the most amount of entries you can earn at once. However, those ten will not count towards this week’s prizes, just the grand prize.

Now let’s get to it! (I’m so excited!)

~Enna Isilee

Have any questions? Let me know in the comments.

Calling all Bloggers! Check your E-mail!

Allo fellow bloggers!

I sent out an e-mail today asking for your help with my contest. Please check your inboxes and spam boxes! (how could I ever be considered spam? Honestly. ;) ) If you didn't get the e-mail it either means you're not subscribed to my newsletter or you're extremely unlucky.

You can still help out though! I'd love it if you did! E-mail me at Books@Squeakybooks.com

In fact, anyone who helps me out gets 5 free entries towards my contest!

Hope to hear from you soon!

~Enna Isilee

**Rumors--Anna Godbersen

After bidding good-bye to New York's brightest star, Elizabeth Holland, rumors continue to fly about her untimely demise.

All eyes are on those closest to the dearly departed: her mischievous sister, Diana, now the family's only hope for redemption; New York's most notorious cad, Henry Schoon-maker, the flame Elizabeth never extinguished; the seductive Penelope Hayes, poised to claim all that her best friend left behind—including Henry; even Elizabeth's scheming former maid, Lina Broud, who discovers that while money matters and breeding counts, gossip is the new currency.

As old friends become rivals, Manhattan's most dazzling socialites find their futures threatened by whispers from the past. In this delicious sequel to
The Luxe, nothing is more dangerous than a scandal . . . or more precious than a secret.

This was a whirlwind of a sequel! I was caught up in the action by the word go. And by action I mean mischievousness, scandals, lies, and all around craziness!

As I stated in my review of The Luxe, this is not my type of book, and yet I LOVED it! Why is that, you ask? Well… I still don't know. Both of these books are really just reading about stupid mistakes the characters make, and yet… I really like them.

The only thing I didn’t like about Rumors was the ending, but I won’t say any more than that.

~Enna Isilee

Nerd Goddess' Fabulous Giveaway

Hey guys, you should hop on over here to Nerd Goddess' blog where she's giving away a set of her fabulous punctuation earings (Or necklace or charm). These things are so cute! And they're really cool (I've seen them in person, on Nerd Goddess' ears).

Aren't they awesome?

Please go and support her and her store, you won't be sorry!
~Enna Isilee

Donations Anyone?

Alright, I saw someone (I think it was Book Vault) asking for donations for a contest. I thought that was a super-cool idea!

I'm going to be having a HUGE contest in September celebrating my birthday (seriously, guys. This thing is going to be massive. And I'm hoping to give away some really fantastic books and other various prizes every week!).

Any authors want to donate some of their books? Anyone made something cool that they'd like to let people know about? Send me a buzz:


I'd love ta hear from ya!

~Enna Isilee

Going out of town... again

Okay. I'm leaving again. This time just from now until Sunday afternoon. In retrospect I probably should have gotten a guest blogger or two. Oh well.

I kept forgetting about this trip. I'd have to be reminded. It's not a big thing, just a little getaway.

However, I get to read Rumors sequel to The Luxe. I'm excited about that.

Until Sunday!

~Enna Isilee


a memory on snowy wings
has waited long to wake
and fly into that gilded world
beyond those big glass gates

but memory her heart was pierced
when she saw what lay beyond
not glitterings and friendships
but something far forgone

this wasn't the same yesteryear
that she had grown to love
this was something new and wrong
unfitting for this dove

this place where she had bloomed and grown
had turned to something stranges
he didn't know if she could make it
ever be the same

it wasn't long before despair
struck deep within my friend
a tear rolled down her now-grey cheek
she wished it was the end

and all i could say was continue on
and please be strong and true
try onward till the end
for what else can we few do?

perhaps your shine's not meant to last
but meant to see the truth
for at the close there is one thing we choose
and that is Youth.

~Yolie Matsutamo

**Life of Pi-- Yann Martel

Life of Pi
Oh. My. Goodness.

This is the kind of assigned reading they should have in schools. This book had so much to offer psychologically, symbolically, and philosophically and yet it was a FACINATING story. If you really wanted to, you could read it exactly as it's written, just a story. But you have the ability at the end to go back and see everything with wider eyes.

Here's the summary from GoodReads:

Actually, I've decided not to give you a summary. It's so much the better when you don't know exactly all the details. I'll let you know what I knew when I first began this book:

Boy doesn't like his name. Boy gets trapped on a lifeboat with a tiger.

That's all I knew.

I started this book yesterday evening and I finished it about 25 minutes ago. I was that enraptured (Plus I had to have it finished by tomorrow for school).

And even if you're going through the whole book going "What in the world is going on. I'm so confused." know that it's totally worth it at the end.

MY WARNING: It really helps if you read this book and then have someone to discuss it with. I would recommend an entire book club. For me, I had my mom. I would have been completely shocked and frozen by this book if it hadn't been for my mom telling me, "Calm down, this is what happened:" Also, there's a bit of gore. After all, he had to kill his own food.

Ah! I loved it!

~Enna Isilee

**I've decided to star all books that qualify as "Squeaky" books. So if you see asterisks before the book title, you'll know it's squeaky!

Arkansas 12th Grade Reading Test

All right, I discovered these as well when I was gone. Made me laugh out loud. This is the Arkansas 12th grade reading test, would you pass?

Please read the following out loud:


Did ya get it? Let's try a few more:





Heh. Made me giggle. Expecially because I like to draw out the LIB. L I---- B.

Y'all have probably seen these before, but I just had to share.

~Enna Isilee

And then there was one...

Alright, I'm back and I've removed my guest bloggers from my blog. I was slightly hesitant to do this because it seems that they do such a better job than me. I read their posts and went: "Wow. No one wants to hear from plain old me anymore."

Guest blogging is so fun, I think I'm going to have people do it more often. Even when I'm not out of town.

Okay, in other news please note Book Vault's Birthday Riddle, it's one post down. I really wanted to write a "I'm Back!" post, or else I would have waited until tomorrow to write a new post.

Things that happened to me while I was gone:

1. I got no sleep
2. I got a cold
3. I swallowed a pill for the FIRST TIME IN MY ENTIRE LIFE
4. I ate WAY too much...
5. ...but I had to walk A LOT so I didn't feel so guilty
6. I just about tore out my hair when I realized there was NO computer access
7. I finished Silksinger by Laini Taylor (It's AMAZING)
8. I'm so excited to be back.

*sigh* Happy days.

~Enna Isilee

Book Vault’s Birthday Contest Riddle

This is the next leg of The Book Vault’s birthday book riddle contest! For more information on the contest, go here: http://the-book-vault.blogspot.com/2008/08/birthday-contest.html
Each correct answer counts as an entry into the drawing on August 29th!

She was less talked about than her infamous sister, but she and her sister shared the same thing with a certain well-known figure from Great Britain, who was known for his numerous spouses and some drastic political moves. This novel features the girl who was overshadowed by her ambitious sister.
Which book is this?

Know the answer? Send Dominique an email at bookvault@yahoo.com with:

“BDAY CONTEST” in the subject line
The Riddle:
She was less talked about than her infamous sister, but she and her sister shared the same thing with a certain well-known figure from Great Britain, who was known for his numerous spouses and some drastic political moves. This novel features the girl who was overshadowed by her ambitious sister.
Which book is this?
Answer: (full book title + author)
The name of the site where you found the riddle: Squeaky Books
Your site’s URL: (if you have one)

Please send a separate email for each riddle you answer!

Good luck!!

Guest Post: How I Read

Hello fellow Squeaky Book readers! This is Nerd Goddess, a fan of Enna Isilee's blog as well as her friend/writing buddy out in the 3D world. ;)

Since this is a book blog, I figured I'd write a post about books, but I've had a hard time trying to decide what to come up with. So, since lists seem to be popular around here, I think I'll make one of my own. ;)

How I read:

1. Position: My favorite reading position is, at the moment, lying on my stomach on my bed with pillows under my chest. I like it because the pillows prop me up, and I can read without having to hold the book. This works better for hardback books and longer books, as they stay propped open better. The downside is that it tends to hurt my ribs. When I was at college, though, I preferred reading while I was sprawled out on the couch in the kitchen, as it was often more quiet than my room. So this is something that changes.

2. Munchies: I know for some people eating while reading is an absolute taboo. But I find I like munching on things whilst I read. Especially popcorn, Smarties, Nerds (heh, Nerd Goddess...), anything with chocolate in it, and anything else that can be eaten with one hand without getting crumbs all everywhere. However, if I don't want to get a book dirty (like if it's new, or I'm borrowing it) I will refrain from doing this, just in case.

3. Page Count: This one's a little weird. I am always acutely aware of what page I'm on when I read. It matters not if the book is so gripping I forget how to breathe, or if it's so boring I can hardly stand it, I always check what page I'm on. And I always know how many pages are left. I never read the last page of the book, but I always carefully check to see what that page number is, and I silently count down in my head as I go. 300 pages left, 200 pages left, 100 pages left. I don't know why I do this, but I'm kind of curious to see who else does this.

4. Critiquing: I only just started critiquing books as I read, and I think Goodreads is probably to blame, since you can post your reviews on there. I find that when I read now, I note when things are bothering me, like if I haven't gotten enough time to know the characters, or the dialouge is stiff, or if the writing isn't smooth. It's kind of distracting, but I think it also shows that I'm starting to pay more attention to things other than the plot. It makes for more informed decisions on reviews, but it makes it a tad harder for me to enjoy a book if "ly" adverbs keep glaring at me from the page.

I think that'll do for now. I'm sure I do other, random things, like make funny faces or grunt at the book or something, but if I do I don't know about them, so they shall not be told of in this post. So my well-read friends, how do you read?

Edit: If any of you happened to read the post that got posted an hour ago, sorry about that. I had it scheduled, but I meant to delete it, since I wrote this post instead. My apologies on any confusion.

What Makes a Squeaky Book

A guest blog by Q

What makes a book (in the words of my esteemed patroness Enna Isilee) squeaky? I've compiled a short list of things a book ought to have to be awarded this prestigious adjective.

1. Characters
In my opinion, characters can make or break the book. If I don't like the characters, chances are I won't like the book very much either, unless I don't like the characters (i.e. the first Artemis Fowl) in a good way (if that makes any sense at all). Squeaky characters should be distinct and real--and having a funny character in a book isn't a bad plan, either. There shouldn't be so many characters that it gets confusing. And I usually think it's a good thing when I yell and scream at the characters, because it means I care about them. Unless it's Eldest, in which case yelling and screaming at the characters is not good at all.

2. Plot
Plot is kind of like a character. It should make sense, and it shouldn't be too complex to follow, especially in a short book. I often like it when the author strings the reader along and then when you think everything is resolved says, "Just kidding! You didn't really solve the problem!" and makes everything fall apart. If they do it well, that mean twist can be really fun.

3. Beginning and ending
A beginning should introduce the reader to the setting and characters, but most importantly it should get the reader involved with the plot. Squeaky beginings should draw readers in, wrapping tendrils of story around them until they couldn't put the book down if they wanted to.
Endings should wraps everything up--all the loose ends, subplots, everything. The very last pages of a book should make readers cry (The Book Thief), laugh (Rapunzel's Revenge), swoon (The Queen of Attolia), tear their hair out in a good way (The Well of Ascension), or just sit back contentedly with the knowledge that for one brief moment all is at peace in the world (Harry Potter).

4. Length
The book should be just long enough to tell the story--no shorter, no longer. Length is an often overlooked but crucial element in a story. All too often long stories fizzle out in the middle while characters do almost nothing, then the author seems to remember that there is a story to tell and makes the ending really good. Long books should not run out of crucial plot elements to tell--even if the author wants to give a sense of waiting. A squeaky long book (Elantris) should have a lot happening all the time. Waiting for something to happen should be kept to a minimum (Not a book, but "Ratatouille" does a good job with this). Short books can feel rushed. A squeaky short book should feel tight--like it told exactly the story it wanted to with no ifs, ands, or buts (The Adoration of Jenna Fox, Speak).

5. Language
Is extremely important. After all, I can't very well read it if it's in Bali, can I?
Just kidding. That's not what I meant.
Some writers do really well with wordiness (Robin McKinley). However, I think it takes a special kind of writer to make wordiness squeaky. Most of the time, writers should strive to take out any unnecessary words.

Gosh, that sounded an awful lot like writing advice. Oops. Who am I to be giving anyone advice about writing?

Some Pig

Salutations! I'm Gretchen--I write at Gretch-a-sketch and the very-under-construction Soda Pop Reviews. Given the choice to write about anything on Enna Isilee's blog, I choose books.
Real creative, right?

Because I'm a list maker by nature (you should read the one where I talk about the literary characters I want to marry), I present you with...

The Ten Kid Books Every Child, Teen, and Adult Should Read
(By no means comprehensive or in any particular order...)

1. Charlotte's Web, by E.B. White
I'd be lying if I said I wasn't tearing up just thinking about it right now. Charlotte and Wilbur are such a dynamic duo and it effectively combines the worlds of the farm animals and humans. The animated movie is awesome, but I never saw the recent version, because Dakota Fanning weirds me out.

2. From the Mixed-up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler, by E.L. Konigsberg
I have a little brother who's four years younger than I am. He's 100% Jamie and I'm 100% Claudia, so this book means so much to both of us. Answer me this: What person doesn't want to run away from home and live in a museum? Even just a little? I know, I can't think of anyone either.

3. Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle, by Betty MacDonald
They're kind of old-fashioned, but the humor and lessons involved are classic. Read the whole series--you will not be let down. (Also see: Amelia Bedelia)

4. Sideways Stories From Wayside School, by Louis Sachar
I hesitated to put this instead of Holes, but I think I made the right choice. This is one of the funniest books I have ever read. For example, three of the students are named Eric Bacon, Eric Fry, and Eric Ovens. Hee!

5. Princess Academy, by Shannon Hale
It would be seriously remiss of me to not include Shannon Hale on this list. Miri is so pure and wise that all girls (and guys!) can learn from her.

6. Matilda, by Roald Dahl
This is the first chapter book that I ever sat down and read all at once, thus leading to a long and grand tradition of consuming books in one sitting. Roald Dahl truly knew how to connect to a person's inner child. It's also a great introduction to dark humor.

7. The Ordinary Princess, by M.M. Kaye
Have any of you read this? I'm under the impression that it's lesser-known, which is a darn shame. Brief synopsis: Amy is the seventh daughter of the King and Queen. She's blessed/cursed with the gift of ordinariness. There's even a dash of romance. Read it. Soon. Trust me.

8. Where the Sidewalk Ends, by Shel Silverstein
Shel needs no introduction. It's bizarre and punny and the best collection of poetry out there.

9. The Owl Who Was Afraid of the Dark, by Jill Tomlinson
Plop the Barn Owl is scared of the night-time. This is an issue if you're an owl. If you have the chance, listen to this delightful tale of discovery on tape.

10. The Giver/A Wrinkle in Time/The Dark is Rising
Three-way tie! Things they have in common: 1. Great moral endings 2. They're all my favorite. 3. Their respective series all rock.

What books have influenced you?

Guest Blog: Books I Want

By: Lauren
Blog: www.shootingstarsmag.blogspot.com
Come and Visit!

I’m pretty excited about doing a guest blog today. I only wish I had more time to come up with something AWESOME to post. Alas, I did not…and I’m not very creative, so this is what you get: A list of books that I would love to read. I’m always coming across new finds and if I had a ton of money…I would get these titles as soon as I could.

Note: I don’t know how to get pictures to stay next to the number…so sorry for the lack of them!

1. In Search of Adam by Caroline Smailes

Amazon Summary: Motherless, rootless, and unprotected, Jude Williams childhood is fractured by the horror and experience of sexual abuse, forcing her to exist somewhere and nowhere in between childhood and adulthood. Caught within the limitations of her own language and trapped within a family secret, Jude becomes the consequence of her mothers tragedy. As she moves through the 1980s, Judes life is buffeted by choice and destiny and she collects experiences that layer her personal tragedy and plunge her into the darkest of worlds.

Why I want it: I’m always interested in these types of stories. I realize they are very sad and intense, but it’s interesting to see a life so different from my own.

2.What the Dormouse Said: Lessons for Grownups from Children’s Books by Amy Gash

What it’s about: A list of quotes from children’s books that can very well apply to teens and/or adults.

Why I want it: It just seems like a really sweet book, and I’m a big fan of finding quotes.

3.The Ninth Life of Louis Drax by Liz Jensen

What it’s about: I think giving you a link would help more than trying to write up my own summary of the book. Go here!

Why I want it: I suppose this would be the same reason that I gave for In Search of Adam. It deals with big, tough issues. It just seems like a very fascinating book to me.

4.Disconnected by Emily Davidson

Amazon Summary: Devon Wilkins is a bored, middle-class, self-proclaimed anarchist who feels as if he’s stuck in an uninterested world. He is confronted daily with what he calls “fake” people whose lives are consumed with keeping up appearances—people who are slaves to “the man.” When Devon’s therapist leaves for a book-signing tour, he asks Devon to keep a detailed journal of his thoughts and daily life as a form of personal therapy.

Devon fills his journal with rants about society, religion, school, and everything else he feels contributes to humanity’s slow demise. Devon begins to fixate on his next-door neighbor, a fifteen-year-old girl he’s never spoken to. The girl, whom he calls April, even though her real name is Stephanie, goes through a difficult time during the period that he watches her through his bedroom window. His life begins to change as his obsession grows.

Why I want it: I love books that are told through letters or diaries and the like, so this fits that idea. It also seems like a thought-provoking book in many ways, especially if Devon is stating his opinion on so many topics.

There you go! Four books that I have come across and would love to get at some point in the near future. Four books here…a TON more on my actual list!

So what books are you pining for these days? Are they out yet, or are you still waiting for the release?

Guest Blog Line-up

All right, assuming that everyone I asked to guest-blog accepts, here's what you have to look forward to:

Tuesday: Lauren
Wednesday: Gretchen
Thursday: Q
Friday: Nerd Goddess

And I'll be back on Saturday.

Thanks guys!

~Enna Isilee

Looking for Guest Bloggers!

Hey, I'm going away for the next week, and rather than pre-schedule my posts, I'd like to get some guest-bloggers!

If you're interested in having control of my blog for a day, just comment here then send me an e-mail.


~Enna Isilee


Because I could not stop for Death,
He kindly stopped for me;
The carriage held but just ourselves
And Immortality.

We slowly drove, he knew no haste,
And I had put away
My labor, and my leisure too,
For his civility.

We passed the school, where children strove
At recess, in the ring;
We passed the fields of gazing grain,
We passed the setting sun.

Or rather, be passed us;
The dews grew quivering and chill,
For only gossamer my gown,
My tippet only tulle.

We paused before house that seemed
A swelling of the ground;
The roof was scarcely visible,
The cornice but a mound.

Since then 'tis centuries, and yet each
Feels shorter than the day
I first surmised the horses' heads
Were toward eternity.

~Emily Dickinson

The first real rain

This is the first real rain we've had all summer. Right now! I'm soaked to the bone and wearing a towel over my clothes.

Ah. It's great. It rained like this on my birthday last year and I knew that was Mother Nature's gift to me.

I love rain.

I just remembered something I wanted to ask!

Okay. So, I have a question:

Would any of my readers be interested if I had a big contest, similar to what The Book Vault is currently doing? This contest would span almost an entire month, and there would be many books/various prizes given away and many opportunties to win.


Breaking Dawn-- Stephenie Meyer

No spoilers in this post

I’m going to start out by bluntly saying: I liked it. I really did.

I’ve heard a lot of people say that they didn’t like it because it seemed so different from the other books. That’s why I liked it. It definitely seemed more HOST-ish to me than TWILIGHT-ish. But that’s all right because I really liked THE HOST.

For the first… oh… five or six hundred pages I just read with my mouth agape. As a Twilight pessimist I had thought up a lot of really random plot-lines that were just stupid jokes.

Imagine my amazement when one of my “Really Stupid, Random Plot-Lines” turned out to be the actual plotline.

So for a majority of the time I was reading it I was going “WHAT IN THE WORLD?!”

But then at the end I kind of realized why all that crazy had to happen. The ending satisfied me. And, in my opinion, made everyone happy (if in an odd way).

With the previous three books I could never really get over how… not good the writing was. I immediately thought the book was not good because the writing was not good. I couldn’t really see the plot through the errors and… not goodness. (Wow, I am articulate today!) With this one the plot (despite weirdness) immediately sucked me in. I’m going to have to re-read it in a couple months to see if the writing is any better, but from first glance I’d say that it is. I’ve heard someone say that it reads a lot like fanfiction, but not BAD fanfiction, in my opinion.

Another plus for me is that there wasn’t any… sin in the book, per say. No sex until they were married, and no swear words beyond hell and damn. And I have to concede that it’s perfectly normal for some people to say those things.

I know that opinions are going to be wildly different about this book, but there’s mine. I liked it. I thought it was a little weird, but I liked it.

~Enna Isilee

So... Breaking Dawn...

So... Breaking Dawn comes out in two days.

I'm excited for it, but in a purely pessimistic way.

I'm also really glad that this will end it. No more getting together with my girl-friends and having them go:

"Oh my gosh! Will Bella turn into a vampire or what?"
"Like, totally!"
"I actually think Jacob is really hot."
"No way! Cuz I totally love Edward!"
"Oh my gosh!"

Okay... so my friends aren't that ditzy, but you get the point.

Volume II is out!

All righty! I sent off Volume II of Squeaky News last night. How was it? Could you see the images this time? Was your text all weirdly centered and squished? Was the content amazingly brilliant and informative? ;)

Also, what do you guys think of the blog colors changing every month? Or should I just stick with red and blue?

~Enna Isilee

Duh! If you want more color, add color!

Okay. So, Q, I read your comment about missing the flowers and I thought "Yeah. I miss 'em too." But I was sick of having just green.

So, ta da! I changed the colors!

I wanted to have something to do with butterflies, but I didn't like how much white space was left over. So, the colors may fluctuate, but I think I'm going to stick with the flowers. Because, to be honest, I wasn't getting a vibe that people liked the butterfly layouts so much as the flowers.

What do you guys think of having different colors every month? That could be cool.

This project has consumed me today. I have made absolutely no progress on my writing, but my photoshop skills have improved.

Switchin' it up again

Okay, I made changes to the layout again:

1. Obviously, it's pink now. I hoped that would get rid of the "Jenna Fox" feel, because that was NOT what I was going for.

2. I dimmed the crease in the back, because people said that was distracting.

3. I gave the rick-rack a shadow and lightened the butterfly more, hoping that would make the butterfly less distracting. (I'm not sure it worked...)

Also, even if you don't or do like this layout, you may like this one better:

Click for full size

I've changed my poll on the side, now you can vote for green or yellow. But I still really want you guys to comment, because I want to make this right. If you still don't like either, let me know!

What think my judges now?

New Blog Look

Okay, so I re-did my blog look again. Please vote in the poll. Is it better? No? Questions? Comments? Concerns?

EDIT: Is there still stuff that's hard to read? What? I tried to fix some of the colors. Also, I can't fix the text below the poll, that's stuck that way.

Are there any clashing colors? My goal was to make my blog more colorful while still making it seem a little classy (too much color makes my eyes bug out!).

If you have ANY suggestions, please give them.

A week of interesting events

My week has been crazy! Nothing really happened on Monday, but on Tuesday I had to go take a huge test on alphebetization at this really great library because they were trying to weedle out from a group of people the ones that were good. I got called in for an interveiw today, in only a few hours! Squee!

Plus, we had our first critique group meeting on Wednesday and it was great (hwalk, check your e-mail. And, Gretchen... I would have e-mailed you, but I don't know your e-mail). Unfortunately almost as soon as I got home I was hit with gastroenteritis (or, Stomach Flu) it's been going around my family/neighborhood all month. Bleh.

But, while feverish with the stomach flu, I send a very wierd e-mail to Laini Taylor and made it onto her blog! Yay! This makes me happy.

And honestly guys, if you haven't read any of Laini's books-- well... her one book that's in print right now-- you should. She's really amazing, and probably one of the funniest/sweetest authors out there. I've ha her on my Reader feed forever and have never regretted it. You should have her on yours too!

Alright, that's it. Well... now I have to go find a skirt to wear to my interview...

~Enna Isilee

Journal Obsession

Okay, confession: I am obsessed with journals. I very rarely write in them, but I LOVE them. I just thought I’d post some pictures of my collection (and this collection has grown since I took the pictures):
Here’s all of the ones I could find.

This one’s probably the oldest. I wrote quite a bit in it, but it’s still less than half-way full.
This one’s written in a different language that I made up.
This one contains a story that I wrote. The story I never finished. It was really… not good.
These two are both completely empty.
This one contains the same story that’s in the polka dot one, only typed up.
This is one of my newer acquisitions. It’s like an old-fashioned sketchbook. I really like it.

I also have bought a cream colored one with colorful flowers, and a purple and green one with butterflies, since I took these pictures. I’m too lazy to take new pictures.

So, I guess that’s just the writer/pack-rat in me. I love all kinds of notebooks.
~Enna Isilee

Writing for Charity

The Writing for Charity event was, first off, fun. I loved getting together with other writers and swapping ideas and criticisms. Shannon did a marvelous job orchestrating the whole thing, and enough money was raised to get over 50 wheelchairs!

It started with all of the authors (I think there were 16 of them) answering questions like “why do you write?” Then we broke off into smaller groups (I was in the fantasy group), and had a Q&A.

Then the part I was dreading and yet really wanting: the critique group.

Here’s where I, personally, made a few faux pas.

I mis-read the instructions. I just barely re-checked Squeetus and I don’t know how I could have misunderstood this. This is what Squeetus says:
On the day of the event, bring 15 copies of the first page of your novel
or picture book text (maximum word count: 300 words) for some hands on workshopping.

I read it as 300 words of picture book text, or you can bring the first page of your novel. When I should have read it as: 300 words of picture book text, or the first 300 words of your novel. And, honestly, maybe my subconscious really was trying to cheat and get in more words for critiquing. Oh, geez. I hope not.

Celes (who’s story was AMAZING, by the way) can attest to this: I felt so bad. Not only was mine WAY over 300 words, it was single spaced and not in Times New Roman because I had literally just printed it off my computer that morning and I like to write in different fonts. *sheepish*

Despite my blunder, however, I loved getting critique/compliments! I had a lot of my heart on the first line of my story (first lines are my favorite), and I got a lot of compliments on it. My first page was also a lot of stream-of-consciousness and a little rambly, so I took their advice and re-wrote the first page as soon as I got home. I turned it into a scene and I already like it better.

I only wish that we had more time for each person. I really benefited from hearing other people get critiqued because I would go, "Hey, yeah, that's really good advice" or "Ooh... I do that sometimes." but we had to hurry because we only had 90 minutes to get through 13 people!

Overall the experience was very positive. And it caused me to want to start a weekly critique group (which we are going to do, we’ve already set a date and time). I’ll definitely be going to the future Writing for Charity events.

Thanks, Shannon, for organizing this! You did fantastic!
~Enna Isilee

Woo, crazy week!

Woo! I've had a pretty crazy week. I've been at BYU's book symposium for young readers and this Saturday I'll be attending the Writing for Charity event.

Good news, I went book shopping today! I bought four new books including some Eoin Colfer, Nel Schusterman, D.J. MacHale, and Sherwood Smith.

So, no new book reviews as of yet, but they're comin' and they're good ones!

~Enna Isilee

Two years ago today

Two years ago today I first met Shannon Hale.
Two years ago today I first began The Goose Girl.
Two years agot today a chain of events began that caused me to:

Read squeetus. Join LRRH. Find out about book blogging. Go to all of Shannon Hale's events. Meet some amazing people (Laura, Celes, hwalk, Faith, Gretchen, Q, and so many more).

Two years ago today my life changed.

And it's rocked ever since.

Thank you Shannon Hale!
Thank you BYU!
Thank you all my wonderful friends who put up with my obsession with July 14th!

Thank you.

~Enna Isilee

P.S. Yes. I know it sounds crazy. And if you ask Shannon she'll say something along the lines of: "Well you really shouldn't be thanking me because my parents made me the way I am, and their parents made them the way they are and..." yada, yada, yada.

Whatever, Shannon. It's shorter just to thank you. ;)

The Adventures of Howl and Sophie--Diana Wynne Jones

This series has been my latest obsession. And for those of you who have seen Miyazaki’s animated version of the first book Howl’s Moving Castle know that, while the movie is really good, it’s nothing like the book. That being said, I’m going to write a review of each book in the series:

Howl’s Moving Castle (1986)

I don't know why I love this book so much. It's weird, it's wishy washy, and it's AMAZING. The little quirks it has just make it such a wonderful story. And how the romance slowly blossoms... ah! I love it!

It follows the structure of a European fairy tale and tells the story of Sophie Hatter. Sophie is the eldest of three girls and is thereby destined to lead a very average life. However, a visit from the Witch of the Waste changes all that when she turns Sophie into an old woman! Sophie strikes out on her own then and runs into the fearsome wizard Howl (who turns out to be not so fearsome) and sets out on the greatest adventure of her life: cleaning Howl’s Moving Castle, and falling in love along the way.

This book is, as I said, AMAZING. It’s got a lot going at the same time and yet I remained perfectly calm while reading it and was able to enjoy every last bit. It seems like it was written by a very… young writer. The story is just so pure and untainted that it just kind of… oh. I can’t find the word to describe it. Go read it yourselves.

Castle in the Air (1991)

This is my least favorite out of the series because you don’t see a lot of Sophie and virtually nothing of Howl. It follows a carpet seller who falls in love with a princess but she is stolen from him by a powerful djinn. Of course, the carpet seller(I’m calling him that because I’ve TOTALLY blanked on his name) goes off to save her.

This book had more the feeling of a middle-eastern legend (think Aladdin) and thereby didn’t connect with me as much. Plus, this one was really, really plot driven, unlike Howl’s or House which just seemed to float along, and I missed the innocence of the other books. (I don’t think innocence is the right word, but it’s the closest I can get)

House of Many Ways (2008)

I ran off to buy this as soon as I finished Castle because I could not wait to read it! The main character in this book is Charmain, who is volunteered to look after her great-uncle William’s house (He also happens to be the royal wizard of High Norland) while he is ill. While watching the house she runs into a great purple Lubbock, a clumsy apprentice, and is taken on to help with the king’s library. While at the royal mansion she meets the sorceress Sophie Pendragon, who has been called upon to help the royals with a very serious problem. And wherever Sophie is, you know Howl and Calcifer aren’t far behind.

LOVED this book, mostly because it had A LOT more Howl and Sophie than Castle did. Howl was so funny! This one seemed to carry the same “innocence” as Howl’s and thereby left me feeling happy and light when I finished it. Although when I did finish it I felt very angry that there was not a fourth book I could run to.

Which brings me to my last statement—you may have noticed that I added the year of publication after each title. Why? To show you that absurdity! Howl’s was published in 1986, and then people had to wait 5 years to get Castle and then another SEVENTEEN YEARS to get House. HOW COULD PEOPLE WAIT THAT LONG? I’m really glad I became truly obsessed with the series (I had read Howl’s about two years ago as well) after House came out. I may not have been able to go on.

Well, I believe I’ve blathered enough.

~Enna Isilee
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