Monday, January 20, 2014

A Poem by Langston Hughes in Honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

This poem arrived in my e-mail this morning, courtesy of the Academy of American Poets ( Poem of the Day. It speaks for itself on this day of remembering Martin Luther King, Jr.

Let America Be America Again

Let America be America again. 
Let it be the dream it used to be. 
Let it be the pioneer on the plain 
Seeking a home where he himself is free. 
(America never was America to me.) 
Let America be the dream the dreamers dreamed-- 
Let it be that great strong land of love 
Where never kings connive nor tyrants scheme 
That any man be crushed by one above. 
(It never was America to me.) 
O, let my land be a land where Liberty 
Is crowned with no false patriotic wreath, 
But opportunity is real, and life is free, 
Equality is in the air we breathe. 
(There's never been equality for me, 
Nor freedom in this "homeland of the free.") 
Say, who are you that mumbles in the dark? 
And who are you that draws your veil across the stars? 
I am the poor white, fooled and pushed apart, 
I am the Negro bearing slavery's scars. 
I am the red man driven from the land, 
I am the immigrant clutching the hope I seek-- 
And finding only the same old stupid plan 
Of dog eat dog, of mighty crush the weak. 
I am the young man, full of strength and hope, 
Tangled in that ancient endless chain 
Of profit, power, gain, of grab the land! 
Of grab the gold! Of grab the ways of satisfying need! 
Of work the men! Of take the pay! 
Of owning everything for one's own greed! 
I am the farmer, bondsman to the soil. 
I am the worker sold to the machine. 
I am the Negro, servant to you all. 
I am the people, humble, hungry, mean-- 
Hungry yet today despite the dream. 
Beaten yet today--O, Pioneers! 
I am the man who never got ahead, 
The poorest worker bartered through the years. 
Yet I'm the one who dreamt our basic dream 
In the Old World while still a serf of kings, 
Who dreamt a dream so strong, so brave, so true, 
That even yet its mighty daring sings 
In every brick and stone, in every furrow turned 
That's made America the land it has become. 
O, I'm the man who sailed those early seas 
In search of what I meant to be my home-- 
For I'm the one who left dark Ireland's shore, 
And Poland's plain, and England's grassy lea, 
And torn from Black Africa's strand I came 
To build a "homeland of the free." 
The free? 
Who said the free? Not me? 
Surely not me? The millions on relief today? 
The millions shot down when we strike? 
The millions who have nothing for our pay? 
For all the dreams we've dreamed 
And all the songs we've sung 
And all the hopes we've held 
And all the flags we've hung, 
The millions who have nothing for our pay-- 
Except the dream that's almost dead today. 
O, let America be America again-- 
The land that never has been yet--
And yet must be--the land where every man is free. 
The land that's mine--the poor man's, Indian's, Negro's, ME--
Who made America, 
Whose sweat and blood, whose faith and pain, 
Whose hand at the foundry, whose plow in the rain, 
Must bring back our mighty dream again. 
Sure, call me any ugly name you choose-- 
The steel of freedom does not stain.
From those who live like leeches on the people's lives, 
We must take back our land again, 
O, yes, 
I say it plain, 
America never was America to me, 
And yet I swear this oath-- 
America will be! 
Out of the rack and ruin of our gangster death, 
The rape and rot of graft, and stealth, and lies, 
We, the people, must redeem 
The land, the mines, the plants, the rivers. 
The mountains and the endless plain-- 
All, all the stretch of these great green states-- 
And make America again! 

From The Collected Poems of Langston Hughes, published by Alfred A. Knopf, Inc. Copyright © 1994 the Estate of Langston Hughes. Used with permission.

With prayers for freedom to ring, this day and always,

Sleepy Hollow Season Finale Tonight!!

One of the unexpected pleasures of this fall's television line-up has been Fox's Sleepy Hollow. The writers have combined elements of two of early American writer Washington Irving's stories, "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" and "Rip Van Winkle" with the Book of Revelations from the Bible, complete with the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Add to that a healthy dose of American history with George Washington's Bible as the key to fighting true evil, including demons who are working steadily toward the Apocalypse, and the seeming Wiccan-style spell cast by Crane's wife, Katrina, that brought Crane back to life in 2013.

And then place all of these intriguing elements in modern-day Sleepy Hollow with a police lieutenant and captain joining Ichabod Crane in fighting the demonic presence that keeps his wife enslaved in a type of purgatory, and we have quite the recipe for suspense, horror, and an epic battle between Good and Evil.

The key to this show's success is the extreme likability of the characters. Unlike Irving's originally laughable Ichabod Crane, this Crane (rarely referred to by his first name, thankfully), is a good man who, although originally a British soldier, becomes a spy for George Washington during the Revolutionary War. In one of the battles of the war, Crane fought a huge Hessian soldier whom he beheaded, but the soldier fatally wounded Crane before he could be finished. Katrina cast a spell on her husband which caused him to lie dormant in a cave until he awoke in 2013--as did the Hessian whom he had beheaded--who became the Headless Horseman.

Left to Right: Captain Irving (Orlando Jones), Katrina (Katia Winter), Ichabod Crane (Tom Mison) and Lt. Abby Mills (Nicole Behaire)

Joining Crane (Tom Mison) in his fight against the evil, murdering Horseman is Lieutenant Abby Mills (Nicole Beharie) and her boss, Captain Frank Irving (Orlando Jones); later they are joined by Abby's sister, Jenny (Lyndie Greenwood). And we see glimpses of Katrina Crane (Katia Winter) in flashbacks and from the "other side" where she is imprisoned by a demon called Moloch.

Tom Mison is simply amazing as Ichabod Crane--his British accent is soothing yet when angered, becomes terrifying. He's of course far more handsome than Washington Irving's original. Crane is admirable for his single-minded pursuit of Good as he fights against Evil in order to free his beloved wife, Katrina, from her otherworldly prison.

In addition, sly humor is scripted in such a way as to make the characters even more endearing. At the beginning of last week's episode (Season 1, Episode 11), we see Crane trying on modern-day fashions rather than wearing his Colonial garb (which we have become quite attached to; Crane just doesn't look right out of his battered breeches, shirt, coat, and boots), declaring after trying to sit down in the binding clothing, "One sign of the impending apocalypse is surely skinny jeans." 

I quite agree with him.

So after enjoying a new episode of Downton Abbey (Season 4) and the premiere episode of the third season of Sherlock last night, we're quite anticipating the two-hour season finale of Sleepy Hollow tonight. While I wish that Fox had ordered more than the half-season (13 episodes) of this amazing show, I am encouraged that Fox has ordered another 13 episodes for next fall.

So may Evil fail and Good prevail!!


Monday, January 13, 2014

Diary of Private Prayer and Quotation of the Week

John Baillie's little volume Diary of Private Prayer (1949) has been a mainstay of my spiritual life for the past fifteen years or so. Written in 1949, this little book contains Morning and Evening Prayers for 31 days plus Sunday Morning and Evening, so that each prayer is prayed once per month.

I find the depth and breadth of these prayers to be a wonderful addition to my own spontaneous prayers as they dwell on worship as well as on praying for myself and those whom I love.

I thought I'd share the Prayers for the Twelfth Day, Evening with you all tonight even though midnight has passed and it's already the Thirteenth Day of this month. I hope that you will find it as inspiring as I do:

Twelfth Day: Evening

O THOU in whose boundless being are laid up all treasures of wisdom and truth and holiness, grant that through constant fellowship with Thee the true graces of Christian character may more and more take shape within my soul:
-- The grace of a thankful and uncomplaining heart:
-- The grace to await Thy leisure patiently and to answer Thy called promptly:
-- The grace of courage, whether in suffering or in danger:
-- The grace to endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ:
-- The grace of boldness in standing for what is right:
-- The grace of preparedness, lest I enter into temptation: 
-- The grace of bodily discipline:
-- The grace of strict truthfulness:
-- The grace to treat others as I would have others treat me:
-- The grace of charity, that I may refrain from hasty judgment:
-- The grace of silence, that I may refrain from hasty speech:
-- The grace of forgiveness towards all who have wronged me:
-- The grace of tenderness towards all who are weaker than myself:
-- The grace of steadfastness in continuing to desire that Thou wilt do as now I pray.
And now, O God, give me a quiet mind, as I lie down to rest. Dwell in my thoughts until sleep overtake me. Let me rejoice in the knowledge that, whether awake or asleep, I am still with Thee. Let me not be fretted by any anxiety over the lesser interests of life. Let no troubled dreams disturb me, so that I may awake refreshed and ready for the tasks of another day. And to Thy Name be all the glory. Amen.

Today marks the First Sunday After the Epiphany. Here is the Collect for this week from The Book of Common Prayer 2011:

First Sunday After the Epiphany
LORD God, in your mercy we ask you to receive the prayers of your people who call upon you; Grant that we may perceive and know what things we ought to do, and give us the grace and the power to faithfully perform them; Through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and rules with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.

The Quotation for This Week is from a book called The Fire of Love:

"It is a serious waste to let a day go by without allowing God to change us."
~Richard Rolle

On that note, I wish you all a blessed week ahead as the Octave of Epiphany comes to a close and we enter the short Ordinary Time between Epiphanytide and Ash Wednesday.

Soli Deo Gloria,

Monday, January 6, 2014

What Is Epiphany?

Today the Anglican Church, along with other liturgical churches, celebrate Epiphany.

The Epiphany, January 6th, marks the close of the Christmas Season with Twelfth Night (the Twelfth Day of Christmas) on January 5th. Epiphany, then, is a kind of extension of the Christmas season as we remember the events of Matthew 2 in which "wise men from the east" come to Judea, looking for the "infant King of the Jews." Herod asks his advisers about the Messiah, and they tell him that the Messiah was to be born in Bethlehem:
Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the east came to Jerusalem, saying, “Where is he who has been born king of the Jews? For we saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.” When Herod the king heard this, he was troubled, and all Jerusalem with him; and assembling all the chief priests and scribes of the people, he inquired of them where the Christ was to be born. They told him, “In Bethlehem of Judea, for so it is written by the prophet:
“‘And you, O Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for from you shall come a ruler
who will shepherd my people Israel.’”
Then Herod summoned the wise men secretly and ascertained from them what time the star had appeared. And he sent them to Bethlehem, saying, “Go and search diligently for the child, and when you have found him, bring me word, that I too may come and worship him.” After listening to the king, they went on their way. And behold, the star that they had seen when it rose went before them until it came to rest over the place where the child was. When they saw the star, they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy. And going into the house they saw the child with Mary his mother, and they fell down and worshiped him. Then, opening their treasures, they offered him gifts, gold and frankincense and myrrh. And being warned in a dream not to return to Herod, they departed to their own country by another way.
--Matthew 2:1-12, ESV

The Baptism of Jesus is celebrated a week later, on the Octave (8th day) of Epiphanytide, the day in which Christ was manifested as the Son of God, as related in Matthew 3:

Then Jesus came from Galilee to the Jordan to John, to be baptized by him. John would have prevented him, saying "I need to be baptized by you, and do you come to me?" But Jesus answered him, "Let it be so now, for thus it is fitting for us to fulfill all righteousness. Then he consented. And when Jesus was baptized, immediately he went up from the water, and behold, the heavens were opened to him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove and coming to rest upon him; and behold, a voice from heaven said, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased."
--Matthew 3:13-17, ESV

From the CRI website:
The Season of Epiphany
Dennis Bratcher

In western Christian tradition, January 6 is celebrated as Epiphany. Epiphany is the climax of the Advent/Christmas Season and the Twelve Days of Christmas, which are usually counted from the evening of December 25th until the morning of January 6th, which is the Twelfth Day. This is an occasion for feasting in some cultures, including the baking of a special King's Cake as part of the festivities of Epiphany. The Season of Christmas begins with the First Sunday of Advent, marked by expectation and anticipation, and concludes with Epiphany, which looks ahead to the mission of the church to the world in light of the Nativity. The one or two Sundays between Christmas Day and Epiphany are sometimes called Christmastide. For many Protestant church traditions, the season of Epiphany extends from January 6th until Ash Wednesday, which begins the season of Lent leading to Easter. In some western traditions, the last Sunday of Epiphany is celebrated as Transfiguration Sunday.

The term epiphany means "to show" or "to make known" or even "to reveal." In Western churches, it remembers the coming of the wise men bringing gifts to visit the Christ child, who by so doing "reveal" Jesus to the world as Lord and King. In some Central and South American countries influenced by Catholic tradition, Three Kings’ Day, or the night before, is the time for opening Christmas presents. The colors of Epiphany are usually the colors of Christmas, white and gold, the colors of celebration, newness, and hope that mark the most sacred days of the church year. 

As with most aspects of the Christian liturgical calendar, Epiphany has theological significance as a teaching tool in the church. The Wise Men or Magi who brought gifts to the infant Jesus were the first Gentiles to acknowledge Jesus as "King" and so were the first to "show" or "reveal" Jesus to a wider world as the incarnate Christ. This act of worship by the Magi, which corresponded to Simeon’s blessing that this child Jesus would be "a light for revelation to the Gentiles" (Luke 2:32), was one of the first indications that Jesus came for all people, of all nations, of all races, and that the work of God in the world would not be limited to only a few. 

The day is now observed as a time of focusing on the mission of the church in reaching others by "showing" Jesus as the Savior of all people. It is also a time of focusing on Christian brotherhood and fellowship, especially in healing the divisions of prejudice and bigotry that we all too often create between God’s children.


Our Collect for Epiphanytide from the Book of Common Prayer 2011, to be prayed throughout the Octave of the Epiphany:

O GOD, by the leading of a star you revealed your only eternal Son to the peoples of the earth; In your mercy grant that we, who know you now by faith, may after this life behold your glory and power face to face; Through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Several years ago, I jotted a quotation into my Quotation Journal by a fellow blogger and pilgrim on the pathway to God that I've always wanted to share on Epiphany, but it kept slipping my mind (an easy thing to do these days). So here it is for you and for me to ponder:
"Keeping the pace while finding wise silences, discernment is knowing where the bright star leads--and then maintaining the trail. But like the Magi, the idea is not to dare to encamp under the compass point, but to be lit further by the Source."
--from "The Speculator" on his blog La Vie Graphite, 9 December 2009
So as we enter Epiphanytide, the time in which Jesus was made manifest not only to the Jews but also to the Gentiles--basically, the fact that He came to save everyone, no matter what sex, race, religion, creed--we welcome Him into our hearts with joy and gratitude, "for this is the day which the Lord has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it" (Psalm 118.24).

Rejoicing with you this day,

Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Lizzie Bennet Diaries

R to L: Charlotte, Lizzie, Lydia, and Jane from The Lizzie Bennet Diaries

During the past year, one of my writing students at Class Day kept encouraging me to watch a YouTube video series called The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. A modern adaptation of Pride and Prejudice that were posted between April 2012-March 2013, this series sounded wonderful, but when does one have the time to hunker down with one's laptop to watch over 100 videos?

Not moi.

But during Christmas break, I did it at last.

And I absolutely fell in LOVE with this amazing adaptation that brought the three Bennet sisters, Jane, Lizzie, and Lydia, into the 21st century--along with Charlotte, the emo Cousin Mary, and Lydia's new kitten, Kitty. (Yes, poor Kitty is relegated to an actual cat....)

Lizzie is a 24 year-old graduate student in mass communication who starts a video diary...or vlog. The first episode begin with Lizzie holding up a t-shirt with the opening lines of Austen's famous novel: "It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife."

We never see the Bennet parents; Lizzie assumes a hat and shawl to represent her mother while she usually pushes Charlotte, her techy and partner-in-crime, into assuming the character of Mr. Bennet, complete with plaid shirt, hat, and pipe. We only see the four characters of Lizzie, Jane (who works an entry-level job in the fashion industry), Charlotte (also in graduate school), and Lydia (a party girl who attends community college) for a good portion of the series. Lizzie gets Jane and Charlotte to represent other characters: Bing Lee, the medical student who buys Netherfield, Caroline Lee, his sister, and William Darcy, Bing's best friend and media mogul.

I won't get into the whole plot of The Lizzie Bennet Diaries, but we do meet Mr. Collins (of Collins & Collins whose chief investor is Catherine DeBourgh), and later we get to meet Gigi Darcy, William Darcy's younger sister who works with him at Pemberly Digital. We don't meet Ms. DeBourgh, but Lizzie provides an hysterical characterization of her for us. And of course we also meet a very handsome George Wickham, a swim coach whose college days were ruined by Darcy who refused to pay his tuition (according to George). And the plot goes on from there....

In a way, this version of Austen's classic has more depth than the novel as the sisters go through real trials together and do what they can for each other. Lizzie and Lydia, who seem polar opposites at the beginning of the videos and fight as sisters usually do, reach a new understanding of what sisters can mean to one another as the series comes to a close. Jane is the peacemaker who sees good in everyone, but she also develops a backbone as "the New Jane" and becomes more assertive by the end of the series.

Lizzie also learns that her mocking way of representing the people in her life can get her into trouble. She learns to open her eyes past "first impressions" (the original title of P&P) and sees that her viewpoint is far from the only one that is important.

While there is some mild language (Lydia calls everyone "bitches" the way we might say "girls") and there is a discussion of sex tapes, I'd rate this series as PG. I think that tween and teen girls might learn a great deal about sibling and even future business relationships from watching The Lizzie Bennet Diaries

And besides that, these videos are simply hysterically funny!! The Lizzie Bennet Diaries are really a social satire of a social satire, and while there is much to laugh at, there is also much to learn.  

So if you have, say, six hours or so to invest in a wonderful series, check out The Lizzie Bennet Diaries!! I still have their voices echoing through my brain three days later....


Thursday, January 2, 2014

The Cuckoo Just Isn't Calling Me...and Other Books


I know.

Three blog posts in two days.

(Don't get used to it.)

When we resume homeschooling and I start back with my new Brave Writer class (The Groovy Grammar Family Workshop starts Monday!!) and my Expository Essay course at Class Day, I won't have so much time for blogging.

Plus, I'm avoiding working on the next chapter of my novel because I went off on a weird tangent during NaNoWriMo and I'm not sure what to do with it....

So while my novel simmers on the back burner of my brain and while I rest up in preparation for starting back to school, I've been reading.

Or trying to read.

Nearly two weeks ago I grabbed The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith (who is really JK Rowling!! -- 2013) from the library shelves. It's been staring at me for weeks while I graded essays in our teensy town library, so with vacation looming, I thought I'd give it a whirl.

I made it about a third of the way through before finally giving up this morning. 136 pages is all I could do. So I'm afraid that's it.

As much as I love mystery novels, this one just isn't grabbing me. Perhaps it's just my lazy mindset during vacation, but the characters just aren't making me care about them, and the mystery seems to be moving too slowly and ponderously. I know it's JK Rowling, but...sigh.

I'm rather disappointed. But perhaps just now (during vacation when I want something mindless and fun--like watching all 100+ Lizzie Bennet Diary episodes on YouTube--but that's another post!) isn't the time for me to be reading this particular book.

And then somehow all of my long-delayed library requests came in at the same time, and I have a teetering stack of library books waiting for me....

I've been waiting for Thrones and Dominations by Jill Paton Walsh and Dorothy Sayers (1998) in which Walsh completes one of Sayers' unfinished Lord Peter Wimsey mysteries--since July. (I later found out that the only copy was stolen, so I had to get it through the Circuit, the network of libraries here in SD County, thus the delay.) I read the second Walsh/Sayers Wimsey mystery which was set during World War II, and I loved it. So I'm counting on this one being just as good, if not better. Walsh does a lovely job of capturing Sayers' beloved and whimsical characters while keeping Sayers' style and suspense flowing nicely.

I also have a third book in the series, only this one is a continuation of Lord Peter and Harriet Vane not from Sayers' drafts or notes: The Attenbury Emeralds by Jill Paton Walsh (2010). This one came quickly through the county library request system, so I can get it again if I don't have time to read it now.

In addition, I have Diane Setterfield's Bellman and Black (2013) which I just noticed is overdue. I adored her premiere novel, The Thirteenth Tale, so I have high hopes for this book...although I will most likely have to return and re-order it when I have more time to read it. Sigh....

With all The Hobbit craze lately (our four kids adored the second installment of the film series!), I happened to run across a newly-published albeit unfinished book by JRR Tolkien, The Fall of Arthur (1930's/2013). While I'm not much of a fan of Tolkien's fantasy books, as a student of medieval literature I love his focus on literature of this time period, and thus the poem and the essays included, edited by Christopher Tolkien, are of great interest to me. I'll let you know what I think when I get that far.

And with the fourth season of Downton Abbey starting here in the States on Sunday evening, I couldn't resist checking out The World of Downton Abbey by Jessica Fellowes (2011), daughter of Downton Abbey creator and writer Julian Fellowes who also wrote the foreword of the book. The book is full of illustrations regarding costuming, sets, Highclere Castle where the series is filmed, and quotes from the actors and others about the compelling characters. The book only covers the first two seasons, but it looks absolutely fascinating.

So these are the books I have lined up to read right now. Some may have to be returned to the library and reordered at a later date while I hope to read others in the meantime. I'll let you know my thoughts as I read.

Booklishly yours,

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Books I Read in 2013

Thomas Jefferson wrote, "I cannot live without books." And did he ever speak the truth....

As mentioned in the previous post, each year I track the books I read and the movies I watch. I posted the films in the post below, and here is the list of the books I read in 2013. Obviously, I was just a wee bit preoccupied with paranormal mystery series since I'm writing a novel in that genre myself. So, listed in alphabetical order are the 41 books I read in 2013....

Books I Read in 2013….

A Presumption of Death by Jill Paton Walsh and Dorothy Sayers (1940/2002)
Abby Cooper, Psychic Eye (Psychic Eye #1) by Victoria Laurie (2004)
Darcy's Passion by Regina Jeffers (2009)
Death Perception (Psychic Eye #6) by Victoria Laurie (2008)
Demons Are a Ghoul's Best Friend (Ghosthunter #2) by Victoria Laurie (2008)
Doom with a View (Psychic Eye #7) by Victoria Laurie (2009)
Down a Dark Hall by Lois Duncan (1974)
Eight Cousins by Louisa May Alcott (1874) (re-read)
Forbidden by Syrie James and Ryan M. James (2012)
Ghouls Just Haunt to Have Fun (Ghost Hunter #3) by Victoria Laurie (2009)
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (audio) by JK Rowling (2007) (re-read)
Have His Carcase by Dorothy Sayers (1932)
Homicide in Hardcover (Bibliophile #1) by Kate Carlisle (2009)
If Books Could Kill (Bibliophile #2) by Kate Carlisle (2010)
Illuminate by Aimee Agresti (Gilded Wings #1) (2012)
Infatuate by Aimee Agresti (Gilded Wings #2) (2013)
Jack and Jill by Louisa May Alcott (1880) (re-read)
Lies That Bind (Bibliophile #3) by Kate Carlisle (2010)
Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare (1602) (re-read)
Murder Under Cover (Bibliophile #4) by Kate Carlisle (2011)
Murder in Chelsea (Gaslight #15) by Victoria Thompson (2013) (re-read)
Murder on Fifth Avenue (Gaslight # 14) by Victoria Thompson (2012) (re-read)
One Book in the Grave (Bibliophile #5) by Kate Carlisle (2012)
Peril in Paperback (Bibliophile #6) by Kate Carlisle (2012)
Persuasion by Jane Austen (1817) (re-read)
Rose in Bloom by Louisa May Alcott (1876) (re-read)
The Awakening (Ghost Huntress #1) by Marley Gibson (2009)
The Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wilde (1887)
The Cookbook Conspiracy (Bibliophile #7) by Kate Carlisle (2013)
The Counseling (Ghost Huntress #4) by Marley Gibson (2010)
The Discovery (Ghost Huntress #5) by Marley Gibson (2011)
The Giver by Lois Lowry (1993)
The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (1925) (re-read)
The Guidance (Ghost Huntress #2) by Marley Gibson (2009)
The Importance of Being Earnest by Oscar Wilde (1895) (re-read)
The Journey (Ghost Huntress #6) by Marley Gibson (2012, e-book only)
The Lightkeeper's Bride by Colleen Coble (2010)
The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson #1) by Rick Riordan (2005)
The Magic Touch by Patricia Keyson (2013)
The Reason (Ghost Huntress #3) by Marley Gibson (2010)
What's a Ghoul to Do? (Ghost Hunter #1) by Victoria Laurie (2007)

You may also follow me on Goodreads if you're interested in the kinds of books I read: Susanne on Goodreads

And please feel free to share any good books you read in 2013!! 

Have a wonderful 2014, everyone!! And keep on reading!! :) 

Films I Watched in 2013

Each year I keep track of the books I've read and the films I've watched via a list in the sidebar of this blog. So here is the list of the films I watched in 2013, in alphabetical order:

Films I Watched in 2013

A Good Day to Die Hard (in theaters) (2013)
Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter (2012)
Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure (1988)
Brave (2012)
Breaking Dawn Part 2 (2012)
Castle: The Complete Third Season (2010-2011)
Cosmopolis (2012)
Footloose (2011)
Gosford Park (2001)
Iron Man 2 (2011)
Iron Man 3 (2013)
Jurassic Park in 3-D (2013) (in theaters)
Les Miserables (in theatres) (2012)
Much Ado About Nothing (1993)
Much Ado About Nothing (2013)
Paranormal Activity (2007)
Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides (2011)
Roberta (1935)
Sherlock Season 1 (2011)
Sherlock Season 2 (2012)
Snow White and the Huntsman (2012)
Stranger Than Fiction (2006)
The Breakfast Club (1985)
The Canterville Ghost (1944)
The Dark Knight (2008)
The Great Gatsby (2013) (in theaters) and twice since
The Iron Lady (2011)
The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie (1969)
The Story of Vernon and Irene Castle (1939)
Thor (2011)
You Were Never Lovelier (1942)

Have you watched anything amazing this year? Let me know! 

Happy New Year!! And today begins a new list of films....


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