Saturday, 6 June 2009

2 years of blogging! and traditional giveaway!

And another year has gone by!
To be honest, I didn't feel like blogging at all today. It's been such a gloomy and rainy day. I've been shuffling around the house unable to do anything else apart from being miserable about the weather. Also, I tried to draw a pretty picture to represent my second blogiversary, but it was rubbish. I spent at least 3 hours trying to make it better with photoshop, but I forgot I can't use photoshop to save my life, so I ended up being extremely frustrated . My second, much less ambitious attempt will have to do. But enough with the moping, I should be celebrating here.
Whoohoo! 2 years of blogging!! Awesome!! I can't believe I'm almost a veteran.
Now, I DO want to keep the tradition alive by giving away books, BUT, since I'm much poorer (financially) than last year, I can't, unfortunately, offer to buy books as a prize.
I still want to give away something, so this year it's gotta be proofs! Yes, those I have aplenty:)
There's something for every taste: YA, chick lit, thriller, name it.
If necessary I will e-mail the full list to the winners. Which are going to be 3. Like last year. I like traditions. You can start choosing from this list:

Chains by Laurie H. Anderson (YA historical)
The Bohemian girl by Kenneth Cameron (thriller/mystery)
The Information Officer by Mark Mills (thriller/mystery)
Broken Glass by Sally Grindley (kids/YA)
Inside the whale by Jennie Rooney (General Fiction)
Winter song by Jean-Claude Mourlevat (YA adventure)
Waterslain Angels by
Kevin Crossley-Holland (YA thriller)
How Kirsty Jenkins stole the elephant by Elen Caldecott (kids)
Blue Flame by K.M. Grant (YA fantasy)
The Twin by
Gerbrand Bakker and David Colmer (General Fiction)
The Mother's Tale by Camilla Noli (General Fiction)
The Household Guide to Dying by
Debra Adelaide (General Fiction)
Black Rabbit Summer by Kevin Brooks (YA)
Shire Hell by Rachel Johnson (General Fiction)
Counting the Stars by Helen Dunmore (historical fiction)
Tethered by Amy McKinnon (crime/mystery)
All we ever wanted was everything by Janelle Brown (General Fiction)
Real World by Natsuo Kirino (general fiction...crime?)
A Bad Boy Can Be Good for a Girl by
Tanya Lee Stone (YA chick lit)
The Undrowned Child by
Michelle Lovric (YA fantasy)
Beautiful Dead by Eden Maguire (YA zombies)
Sunbathing Naked and other miracles cures by
Guy Kennaway (Memoir)
The book of Fires by
Jane Borodale (Historical Fiction)
The Madonna of the Almonds by
Marina Fiorato (Historical Fiction)
The Lady in the Tower by Marie-Louise Jensen (YA historical)
The War of the Witches by (YA fantasy)
The Gypsy Crown by
Kate Forsyth (kids - historical)
The Atlas of Impossible Longing by
Anuradha Roy (historical Indian fiction)
Carved in Bone by
Jefferson Bass (crime/thriller)

So, what you gotta do to win one of these alluring ARCs?
You need to look at another list of books! Mine:)
To be specific, you need to browse the TBR Mountain and tell me which books I should totally move to my nightstand. You can choose a max of 3, a min of 1. And you should REALLY make me want to read it. Like, really. Some of them have been there for years, so it would take a big push to convince me they are the business. OK, I bought them/took them home at some point. But you know the attraction of new shinier books all too well! Instead of typing here the whole bleedin' list, I'll give you the link to my tbr tag on library thing which is --->here<---.(ETA: Sorry, I put the wrong link, I hope it works now!)
Oh and please avoid to praise:
- Firmin
- Middlesex
- The elegance of the hedgehog
- The time traveler's wife
- The Hunger Games
- The Goose Girl
- Neverwhere
- What I saw and how I lied
- Tapping the Dream Tree
- Shadow of the Wind

Because they're already in the priority queue.
Ah! You thought this was gonna be easy :P
To make things more interesting, I'll give away three books: First prize to the person who will write the most irresistible praise for the book chosen. Second and third will be drawn randomly.
Also if you help spread the word about the giveaway, I'll throw in your name twice.
Deadline: Next Saturday, June 13th
Ah, yes, the competition is open worldwide.


Ana S. said...

Happy bloggiversary, Valentina :D As I think you know, you're one of my very favourite people, and the blogging world wouldn't be the same without you.

As for your giveaway, it's a great idea, but the link doesn't seem to be says zero books found :/

valentina said...

it doesn't?:(
It works for me...OK, I'll type them in later on!
thanks for telling me Nymeth!

valentina said...

I've changed the link, it should work now!

Amanda said...

At first, I thought this would be difficult, but then I saw you had Possession by AS Byatt on your list. It's my favorite book, I have to plug it! I love this book so much that I have written *multiple* book reviews about it. First at MySpace, then at The Zen Leaf, then as the Book That Changed My Life.. People say that The Time Traveler's Wife is the ultimate romance - forget that. Possession is far, far greater. In fact, The Time Traveler's Wife actually quotes Possession in several places, and draws on its concepts and themes. It's beautiful and heartbreaking all at once.

Congrats on your 2-year blogoversary. I like your drawing. :)

Celine said...

Happy Blogbirthday! I won't go in for the competition, but based on your 'books I want to read list' I MUST urge you to read Dracula and also The Grapes of Wrath!!!! (after you've read your TBR pile of course)

Laura said...

Auguri! Nice drawing. Are the stars the ones from Coraline's sweater?

Melody said...

Happy Blogiversary, Valentina! :D

Pam said...

I remember reading and loving a couple of those books as a child but I know I can't convince you to read those now.

One I do recommend highly is "Life of Pi". It was clever, original, hopeful. Martel's character development was fantastic as I found myself falling in love with Pi and forgetting that his companions were zoo animals and not humans. I questioned at times whether Pi was describing humans as animals based on their personalities. Fantastic read!

melacan at hotmail dot com

throuthehaze said...

Happy Blogiversary! I looked at your list and gasped! You have missed out on reading some awesome books! Things like The Amulet of Samarkand (did you already read the first two?), The Hobbit (of course), Watership Down, etc. I could go on. Most of all though you NEED to read The Borrowers! (and the rest of the series too) I read it as a child and loved it and I have ready it very recently as well and it was AS WONDERFUL AS I REMEMBERED!! (which unfortunately does not happen enough)I URGE you to read(its not thick so it wont take long) and then read the rest of the series. Enjoy!!

throuthehaze at gmail dot com

silverhartgirl said...

Happy bloggiversary!
I read Artemis Fowl to my son a couple years ago and we fell in love with it and had to read all the books.

D Q said...

Of course The Hobbit and Watership Down you really must read. The Hobbit was the first fantasy book I read as a young adult and it let me to read many many more.

Kelly said...

I don't need any more TBR books (drowning in them!) so I'm not entering the giveaway. But I wanted to just say happy 2 years to my fellow NHYA judge! :)

hermansji said...

Auguri per i 2 anni di blogging divorando libri!! E grazie di essere passata dalle mie parti!!

hermansji said...

Auguri per i 2 anni di blogging divorando libri!! E grazie di essere passata dalle mie parti!!

KR said...

I'm a kindergarten teacher so you just have to read The House at Pooh Corner!! You'll enjoy a carefree afternoon filled with reminiscing your favorite childhood memories!


Anonymous said...

Hi Valentina,
non ci conosciamo perchè la mia pigrizia nel commentare ( e nell'aggiornare il mio blog) è inquantificabile.
Ma ti leggo sempre volentieri.
Happy blog-o-versary, ovviamente.
E dai un'ovvjiata ad Artemis Fowl.
Come si può non innamorarsi di un nome bellissimo come quello di Holly Short?

thebestvillain said...

Hi Valentina,
non ci conosciamo perchè la mia pigrizia nel commentare ( e nell'aggiornare il mio blog) è inquantificabile.
Ma ti leggo sempre volentieri.
Happy blog-o-versary, ovviamente.
E dai un'occhiata ad Artemis Fowl.
Come si può non innamorarsi di un nome bellissimo come quello di Holly Short ;) ?

Serena said...

I wanted to stop by and wish you a happy blogiversary...mine is on June 12...2 years...can you believe we made it that long?

I won't enter the giveaway since I have too many arcs, etc.

Happy reading.

Lexie said...

Happy Blog-versary!!!

I think you should definitely read 'A Great and Terrible Beauty' by Libba Bray. It has practically everything in it (romance, mystery, horror, history, high society, magic) and isn't what you would call a 'light' book (that's a joke, you'll see why). Darker themes run the gamut throughout the book tied to the girls themselves and also society. Victorian England wasn't the easiest place to live during, but hell it was harder when you had the magical minions of your dead mom's foes after you!

I also recommend Fruits Basket--the beginning of the series at least is a really sweet and funny tale. I mean Tohru is...unique I gotta give her that. I'm not sure oblivious covers her honestly, but it is close enough. Later in the series it becomes darker, but that only makes sense as the series itself matures.

Princess Academy by Shannon Hale is a good book as well--its a nice comforting read, like all her books are. I was going to suggest Enna Burning, but its better if you read Goose Girl first, since Enna Burning takes place after Goose Girl.

dag888888 said...

I'm not Irish but cannot resist anything Irish. However, I have never read Irish fairy tales! Eddie Lenihan's Irish Tales of Mystery and Magic sounds really really good. There's also nothing like reading children's books even for an adult -- and especially at bedtime! I wholeheartedly recommend Irish Tales of Mystery and Magic for your next read! Thanks and Happy Anniversary, great blog!
dag888888 at yahoo dot com

mrsshukra said...

The title just grabs you: Raven Queen (by Pauline Francis)! And for sure the story will be good night time reading! I like stories like this set in Tudor England and have always been curious about Lady Jane Grey. I also just finished reading Elizabeth Hoyt's The Raven Prince this week so Raven Queen intrigued me. Thanks!
delilah0180 (at) yahoo (dot) com

Lindsey said...

I recommend A Wrinkle in Time. I know, I know - a kid's book. But seriously, those characters just managed to crawl right into my mind and stay there! I remember as a teen being enthralled with Madeleine L'Engle's writing, and now I really want to re-read them all.

A Little Princess: Everyone should read this one! Sara Crewe is a little girl whose story has stuck with me through the years.

You've got a great TBR list there, thanks for the awesome giveaway!

ladyufshalott at

Ana S. said...

I recommend:

The Woman Who Walked Into Doors by Roddy Doyle: I just read this a few weeks ago and I have a newfound appreciation and respect for Roddy Doyle. I actually think he could become a favourite author of mine now. It's an incredibly powerful book: very violent, very dark, but also so tender, and hopeful in the end. You probably know this, but it's a story about violence against women, and I know these are issues you care about. Also, the writing is superb.

The Bloody Chamber by Angela Carter: The language is dense, so it's good to pick the right moment for this book, but it's so worth the effort. Dark, lush, beautiful fairy tales with a feminist twist. Need I say more? :P

Marie said...

I'm going to make a plug for The Hobbit -- it's a wonderful book but that's not really the reason I would suggest you read it. It's also well written, but again not the main reason for my suggesting you read it. I think you should read it because it's a great story in and of itself, with wonderfully drawn characters and a sense of adventure that held onto to me as a young adult and has drawn me back to it several times as an adult. I didn't see it as the "easiest" read but it was well worth the challenge that it sometimes gave me and I highly recommend it. It has depth and heart to it.

Anonymous said...

Happy Blogiversary!!!

Trish @ Love, Laughter, Insanity said...

I know I'm incredibly late, but happy blogiversary, Valentina. It's funny what you say about almost being a veteran. In some ways I do feel a little more experienced, but it seems like the newer bloggers have it more together than I do! Anyway, congratuations. The blogosphere is certianly a happier place with you in it.

Max said...

Wow, two years is a very long time. Good luck in the future.