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Maggie

Purple Rain

*I originally wrote this post as part of the Blogging from A to Z 2017 Challenge. Unfortunately, I dropped off in the middle of the month-long challenge. So, against my perfectionist nature, I’ve decided to go ahead and publish the posts I did get drafted, as I am proud of them, out of alphabetical order. Prince’s epic ballad, Purple Rain, has always been one of my favorite songs. Even though it’s already a long tune, I wish it were even longer – I love it that much. Purple Rain already had a special place…

Why I Blog

*I originally wrote this post as part of the Blogging from A to Z 2017 Challenge. Unfortunately, I dropped off in the middle of the month-long challenge. So, against my perfectionist nature, I’ve decided to go ahead and publish the posts I did get drafted, as I am proud of them, out of alphabetical order. I honestly can’t pinpoint exactly why I started blogging. I do know that I wanted a space on the Internet to decorate and play around with. At first, I blogged about random things and just tested the waters for a…

April = Graphically Reading

Sporadic Update was inspired by The Sunday Post meme hosted by Kimba at Caffeinated Book Reviewer. 😀 Sweet Reads I did my first ever reread this month, as I listened to J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone via Audible. I’ve been wanting to reread the Harry Potter series for a while and I’m thrilled that I decided to go with listening to the books as opposed to simply rereading them – the voice of the narrator, Jim Dale, is perfection. I did not realize how long it’s been…

Ensnared by Rita Stradling

Ensnared by Rita StradlingEnsnared by Rita Stradling
Published by Rita Stradling on May 23rd 2017
Genres: Retelling, Romance
Pages: 380
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley, Publisher
Buy on Amazon, Buy on Barnes & Noble, Buy at The Book Depository
Goodreads

Alainn’s father is not a bad man. He’s a genius and an inventor. When he’s hired to create the robot Rose, Alainn knows taking the money is a mistake.
Rose acts like a human. She looks exactly like Alainn. But, something in her comes out wrong.
To save her father from a five year prison sentence, Alainn takes Rose’s place. She says goodbye to the sun and goes to live in a tower no human is allowed to enter. She becomes the prisoner of a man no human is allowed to see.
Believing that a life of servitude lies ahead, Alainn finds a very different fate awaits her in the company of the strange, scarred recluse.
[This novel contains adult situations and is only suitable for readers who are 18+]

A retelling of Beauty and the Beast, the story arc is predictable, meaning girl falls in love with Beast and vice versa, Rita Stradling’s Ensnared kept me guessing nevertheless. The buildup to the final push of love between Alainn, the pretty captive of Lor, takes twists and turns that actually had me wondering if the fated couple would ultimately be together. What interested me in this book is the fact that it is a futuristic retelling, complete with robots that are very intelligent. Alainn begins her journey into the fortress of the mysterious, scarred Lor, posing as a…

Bout of Books 19

Yay! I’m so excited that it’s time for Bout of Books again! I absolutely cannot believe this will be the 19th installment! This session begins Monday, May 8 and ends Sunday, May 14. In past Bout of Books challenges, I’ve never been successful in completing my TBR for the week; however, the challenge is so laid back, which is perfect for me. I have decided to create a TBR list for this round, but I’m not going to be totally overambitious or necessarily hold myself to my list, as I am a…

Blogging Slump Giveaway

Hey, y’all! Due in part to my intense blogging slump and definitely because I love playing Santa year-round, I’m hosting my first Caramel Files giveaway! I’m really excited about this particular giveaway, as I’m rewarding one lucky winner with two, yes I said TWO, books! The winner will have the chance to choose one book and I will also surprise him or her with a mystery read! The Simple Rules This giveaway is open internationally! The winner will receive one book of choice – excluding pre-orders – from either Amazon…

Blogging Blahs

I really love blogging – so much, whether or not I gain a following. I just enjoy the freedom to write what I want, when I want and to decorate my blog. If you haven’t noticed, I change the look of my blog, even subtly, quite often. However, I’m pretty much in a blogging slump, both here at The Caramel Files and at The Bookkeepers’ Secrets. For a while, it seemed like I was churning out blog material left and right, even if some of that material was merely a nugget of an idea. Now…

Nicholas

My family always had cats when I was growing up. Mom and Dad had two cats when I was born, Nicholas and Alice. Mom has told me of precious memories in which Alice would lay across my baby body while I was being bottle fed. I guess that’s when my connection with cats began. I adore dogs too, but we didn’t get our first, Molly, until I was in high school. Now I’m technically a cat and dog person, but cats will always hold a special place in my heart. While Alice moved in…

Mister to Miss

I immediately burst into tears when, about three years ago, I heard the news that my husband’s male cousin had come out with his decision to transition into a woman. I didn’t cry out of disgust, disappointment, or judgment. I began to cry because I could somehow feel a pin prick of the pain our loved one had most likely lived with throughout his thirty-something years. I grieved not only for him, but with him, from a distance. I cried out of happiness that he chose to reveal his true self rather than take an…

A Literary Journey

While I can’t remember exactly how old I was when I first started reading, I do know it was at an early age. I had collections of Dr. Seuss books, fairy tales, you name it, I probably had it – and still do. I recall reading by the light of the hallway outside my bedroom when I was supposed to be asleep. One summer, maybe after second grade, we were given sheets of paper on which to record our summer reading progress. When I turned in my paper that fall, I had filled it front and back; I…

The Kindle Lending Library

Guess what?! In case you haven’t heard, Amazon now allows readers to loan Kindle ebooks to others! 😀 The only caveat to this awesome new feature is that not EVERY book is eligible for loaning. However, I have some amazing titles available to lend on a first come, first serve basis – due to the fact that each ebook may be loaned out only once. The process is simple – I did have to spend a while to figure out the system, but once I did, it’s easy! If you’re interested in any available books…

Knots

Dread. Sweaty pits. Beet red. Burning up. Dizziness. Shakiness. Tongue tied. The urge to vomit.  Anxiety. Anxiety has ruled my life as long as I can remember. As a child, I went through phases of intense fear of things like being kidnapped, death, being the center of attention, and thunderstorms. I even had – and still have – anxiety about my anxiety. I’m also a shy person, making my anxiety worse, or perhaps causing it, or both. Being a hand-wringing, anxiety-ridden child, I would get intense butterflies in my gut and would basically have to talk…

Juveniles in Like

Dating before I met the love of my life at age 24 was weird and basically nonexistent. Looking back, I did a lot of flirting but was generally placed in the friend zone, as I was really one of the guys. A particular boy that I liked called me after I left him a drunken voicemail and told me I was still his ‘boy’. I was always flattered to be considered a true friend to my guy pals, but it sucked when I had a crush on one of them. Like I think most people do, a boy…

INFP is Me

Every single personality test I’ve taken has given me the result of being an INFP – introverted, intuitive, feeling, and perceiving – or a diplomatic mediator. I cannot agree more with this perpetual result; I’m definitely an INFP. I’m proud to be an INFP, but it’s also hard sometimes, as it seems like everyone else out there is SO much more outgoing than me. I have struggled with my introversion my whole life – a virtual pendulum swinging between ultimate confidence and total self-doubt. Only four percent of the population can…

Heroine

If you have a bit of a savior complex – PLEASE STAND UP! You guessed it – I’m totally standing up! For some reason, maybe it’s grandiosity, but at times I feel like I can save people from themselves, especially those I love. Unfortunately, time and time again, I have failed to rescue others. I may be able to apply a Band-Aid to help, but ultimately, change is up to the ones I think need saving. I’ve written a bit about my best friend, Brian, who died of an accidental overdose due to…