Literary Lady: Chronicle Volume 1 & Undraland

Apr 25, 2016

You guys!! No spoilers, I promise, but did you watch Game of Thrones last night? It was so good, and I'm already jonesing for more! To keep my mind occupied, I figured I'd write about some of the books I've been obsessing over lately:)

Back in February, I posted about how excited I was for World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1 by Blizzard, which features gorgeous artwork by Peter Lee and Joseph Lacroix. The hubby and I got our hands on this incredible book a while back, and I absolutely adore it! If you aren't sure what I'm raving about, here's the synopsis:

World of Warcraft: Chronicle Volume 1 is a journey through an age of myth and legend, a time long before the Horde and the Alliance came to be. This definitive tome of Warcraft history reveals untold stories about the birth of the cosmos, the rise of ancient empires, and the forces that shaped the world of Azeroth and its people.

This beautiful hardcover features twenty-five full-page paintings by World of Warcraft artist Peter Lee, as well as a cosmology chart, half a dozen maps charting changes through time, and other line art illustrations by Joseph Lacroix, and marks the first in a multipart series exploring the Warcraft universe; from the distant past to the modern era.

I'm a huge Warcraft geek, and this book does not disappoint. I refuse to spoil the art for you all, but here's a little peak:

So pretty, right?! I've spent so much time just poring over the pictures. The story is incredibly well-written as well! It's a chronicling of the formative years of Azeroth, so there's a LOT of information packed into this guy.

Overall, this book really makes me smile. I'm so glad that I have a couple more of these to look forward to! If you're a fan of World of Warcraft, you'll love this book. It's an especially great start to the lore! I've read a few of the lore novels, but it was awesome getting to learn about the very beginning.

Links: Amazon, Goodreads

The second book I wanted to talk to you all about isn't quite as photogenic as the first since I only own it as an eBook, but it's definitely worth talking about. Undraland by Mary E. Twomey was released last year and is a fairly short read at only 355 pages, but I had so much fun with it! Before I delve into my feels, here's the synopsis:

After her parents and twin brother died a year ago, Lucy Kincaid was determined to put together a normal life for herself. With her heart set on college life, Lucy’s dreams of medical school are dashed when a rabid bear attacks her in the middle of suburbia. When Jens, a handsome yet irritable stranger, saves her life, Lucy’s gratitude is cut short when he abducts her, taking her to a land filled with people and creatures she remembers from bedtime stories she assumed were just Scandinavian folklore. 

Jens takes Lucy to a world she never expected, and cannot escape. Undraland is teeming with oversized garden gnomes, warrior elves, N√łkken, Fossegrimens, and worst of all, Sirens. Lucy goes further and further down the rabbit hole until she signs up to join a band of thieves bent on taking down Pesta, the last Siren. 

Alright, I fully get that it sounds a little cheesy. Rabid bears? Garden gnomes? I went into it with very little expectations, but I'm so happy that I gave it a chance. The story isn't without its flaws, but Lucy is such a funny, down-to-earth girl and I loved glimpsing this crazy new world through her eyes! I also tend to get emotionally attached to fictional characters, so I'm already pretty crazy about Jens. I'm expecting some exciting things (and possibly a stereotypical love triangle) from these quirky characters<3

There are actually nine books in this series, and I'm going to gobble them up! According to Amazon, they're all very short. The others don't even reach 300 pages! A little disappointing, but I'm still glad I have so many more to enjoy. I'm currently splitting my time between reading these and listening to the A Song of Ice and Fire series on audiobook, so I definitely need something that's going to hold my attention.

Links: Amazon, Goodreads

Have any of you read the Undraland series? How about Chronicle Volume 1? I'd love to hear your thoughts!

5 Places I Want Virtual Reality to Take Me

Apr 22, 2016

Hey friends! Today I'm bringing you my very first guest post! This post is by Daria Alexander, a freelance writer with a penchant for all things geeky. As you'll no doubt learn from this post, Daria is currently obsessing over VR, though she's not quite sure which device to buy just yet. Take us away, Daria!

If you haven't heard about the rise of virtual reality in 2016, you've either been living under a rock or continually binge-watching and re-binge-watching the first five seasons of Game Of Thrones in preparation for season six (the latter of which is perfectly acceptable human behaviour). So just in case, here's the deal: virtual reality gaming is finally a real thing. It dominated CES 2016, and now you can actually go online and spend all the monies on your very own headset (or opt for one of the super-cheap sets of goggles compatible with certain smartphones for VR gaming).

Even though all this has been happening, we don't really have a feel for what the best games will look like, or perhaps more accurately, where they'll take us. Most people are focused on things like whether or not a first-person shooter can work on VR, or how Sony's Driveclub game will adapt from PS4 to whatever Sony's calling its VR headset these days (I swear it's gone by 17 different names already....). These are valid questions that will actually matter in the first year of VR availability.

But I'm more focused on the potential of the VR phenomenon to let us "game" in exciting environments—not just to adapt existing popular games as un-clumsily as possible. So with that said, here are my own probably-too-specific picks for where I'd like VR headsets to take me in the near future.

1. Hogwarts

If you don't think a virtual reality version of Hogwarts, Hogwars, Hoggy Warty Hogwarts would be incredible, you are incorrect, and I'm sorry for your incorrectness. But seriously: is there a more thoroughly imagined world in all of fiction than Rowling's wizarding school? Most of the people in the age range that will be buying VR headsets grew up on Harry Potter (this isn't an actual fact, but it seems about right), so whichever developer comes out with a game in which you can explore the castle and wave your wand around is going to make a killing. Accio Harry Potter game!

2. The Seven Kingdoms

I suppose I've already gone on about Game Of Thrones, so I may as well include the Seven Kingdoms. I'm slightly worried that even the power of modern gaming consoles can't quite handle the vastness that is Westeros and the Seven Kingdoms. In fact, that may be why there isn't really a terrific Game Of Thrones video game out there just yet. Telltale Games' attempt certainly isn't bad, but for VR it would need to be largely about the visuals. And capturing the expanses of the Seven Kingdoms seems pretty difficult, but my goodness would it be fascinating to be there. Personally, I'd go straight to the Winterfell crypts to get a look at Ned Stark's bones. If you ask me, they're mentioned a little too frequently in the books not to hold some significance still...

3. The Fury Road

Since people seem to think racing games will be among the most exciting VR activities, I'm already imagining the action film with the greatest chase sequences of all time. Mad Max: Fury Road wasn't for everybody, but it's hard to deny that the chase that pretty much takes up 90 percent of the runtime was out-of-this-world from an action lover's standpoint. But is it wrong that I'd rather play as a War Boy chasing down Max and Furiosa than actually as Max or Furiosa?

4. Casino Royale

I'm not actually sure if that's what it's called, but who doesn't want to play a few hands at the Monte-Carlo casino James Bond bet millions at in Casino Royale? I've heard it suggested that poker would be a pretty easy game to adapt to VR, and there's actually some mild precedent for it. At Gala's live casino page, you can play Hold'Em and several other casino games face-to-face with a live dealer. You're still looking at a computer screen (minor detail), but the idea is to feel as if you're really sitting at the table. Slap that same concept into a VR headset and build a resort environment around the player, and you've got a Bond-based poker game to satisfy poker players and film fanatics alike. Really, I just want to stare down Le Chiffre.

5. The Matrix

Hey, we all live in the Matrix anyway, but let's not focus on such existentially crippling details. Picture this for a video game: On a normal console—say a PS4 or Xbox One—you control Neo and speak to Morpheus and Trinity, and moping around the depressing reality of the Nebuchadnezzar. Then it comes time to plug yourself in, either to the Matrix itself or a training program—and you put on your VR headset, to simulate actually leaving one reality and diving into another. From there, you can track Agent Smith, visit the Oracle, and, of course, learn Kung Fu.

Unfortunately, this is just my little wish list, and not a line-up of games to come. But thinking through these makes VR a little more exciting than imagining just another shooter or racing game. Or at least, I think so!

6 on 6 (kind of?): She's A Silver Lining

Apr 18, 2016

Ever since Emma of Scruffy-Little Nerd Herder started up her 6 on 6 photo challenge back in August of last year, I've posted my photos on time every month. This month, however, I'm twelve days late...whoops! I'm not sure what's going on with my brain this month, but I just haven't been on top of my blog game lately. I have so much going on with work and at home that I'm just kind of putting my blog on the back burner. I'm still loving it, of course, but I'm trying to take it easy. I've been having a lot of fun keeping up with my fellow lady bloggers though! I've said it before and I'll say it again, I LOVE the geek girl blogging community. So many incredibly supportive ladies that I'm so glad I've gotten to know!

Anyway, the 6 on 6 theme for April is silver, and I had a really hard time on this one. I'm more of a gold gal myself, so I don't have a lot of silver throughout my home. I did scrounge six photos together though, so I hope you enjoy them!

I couldn't not include my Captain Phasma pop. Sure, the character was a little disappointing in the movie, but I'm hoping we get more of her. I know I'm not alone in saying that I was expecting big things from Phasma, and I haven't given up hope yet. She still looks super cute posing with Kylo Ren, at least in Funko form!

Had to get a beer shot in, of course! My husband actually surprised me with this beer without even knowing this month's color theme. Such a perfect label for this month, right?! This was super shiny silver, so it was a little difficult to get a crisp photo, but I think I did a decent job.

Okay, I know my Totoro mousepad is more gray than silver, but as I said before, I don't like silver so I'm desperate here! Besides, gray is just kind of dull silver anyway, I think. This mousepad was another surprise from my husband, and I think it's absolutely perfect! So stinking cute, and I love the little soot sprite on his paw! I'm not sure if you know this about me, but I really love soot sprites:P

This photo kind of hurts my insides because I'm showcasing my silver ring with the gold lettering on my Alice in Wonderland book. Something about putting silver and gold together drives me crazy! But I just had to include my silver tea party ring because it's completely adorable. Did you notice that there's tea inside the cup? So clever!

My dad bought me a Doctor Who book for Christmas called Whoniverse, and it's amazing! So much Doctor Who knowledge that I just wasn't aware of (since I still haven't watched classic Who), and this shot of some old school Daleks was too perfect for this month!

And last but definitely not least, a picture of my silver princess, Foster. I may be a little biased here, but she's absolutely one of the prettiest kitties that I've ever seen!

If you're interested in more 6 on 6 fun, check out Emma's original post here or click through my photos from March or February. I hope you all have a fantastic week!

Liebster Award!

Apr 14, 2016

I was recently nominated for the Liebster award by one of my favorite blogging gals, miss Kay of My Open Sketchbook! I'm super flattered because duh, Kay is awesome and how cool is it to be recognized by a blogger you adore? I've always loved posts like this because I really do think it's fun getting to know the person behind the blog. So I hope you're ready to learn all about the lady geek behind this little blog! But first, we need to go over some Liebster guidelines:

  • Thank the blog that nominated you and link back to them 
  • Answer 11 questions from the blogger that nominated you 
  • Tell readers 11 random facts about yourself 
  • Nominate up to 11 bloggers to receive the award next 
  • Give your new nominees questions to answer about themselves when they post their nomination  
Easy peasy, right? Now on to Kay's questions!

  1. What would your Patronus take the form of? Definitely a cat. 
  2. How old are you in your youngest memory? (Bonus: Share the memory if you’re comfortable with that!) I'm two. I'm at Chuck E. Cheese's for my birthday and I'm dancing with the animatronic band. Okay, I'm not sure if it's so much a memory as just a vivid recollection of a story my mom told all the time, but I feel like I remember being there, so I'm counting it!
  3. Given the chance to be immortal, would you take it? Oh yeah! I hope that some sort of crazy technology to keep me alive for 100+ years will be invented within my lifetime because I feel like there are so many amazing things left to see!
  4. Do you collect anything? Funko Pops and beer bottles!
  5. What is the place where you feel most content? Aside from my home, I'd say Cambria. It's this sweet little beach town on the Central coast of California, and it's been one of my favorite places to be since I was a little kid. I also feel super content in (this is going to sound a little weird) hotel rooms. It doesn't really matter where I'm visiting, I just love being in a hotel! I think because it means I don't have to worry about my real life problems for the time being=P
  6. Do your prefer shoes on or bare feet in warm weather? I prefer shoes off no matter what!
  7. Favorite dessert? Oh man, that's a tough one. I'd say pumpkin pie with gobs of whipped cream on top. So much whipped cream that you can even see the slice of pie, you know what I mean?
  8. Are you superstitious? Not at all. I'm a bit of a boring realist.
  9. Do you have a favorite video game franchise? I do! It's definitely Warcraft. I played video games here and there before World of Warcraft, but I never considered myself a 'gamer' before getting into WoW. It's a huge part of my life and I'm truly grateful to Blizz for making such an epic game. I have some disagreements with the changes Blizzard makes every now and then, but in all reality, I've never played a game that makes me feel quite like World of Warcraft does.

  10. What is your least favorite drink? Hm, I feel like I've tried a lot of yucky drinks throughout my life. I'm going to go with the first that comes to mind and say light beer in general. Bud Light, Miller Lite, Coors get the picture. No thank you!
  11. What was the last thing you laughed about? My cat being ridiculous. Sometimes she rolls around on the floor and meows all crazy at us for attention, and I just can't help but laugh. She's so cute it hurts, you know?

And here are eleven random things about me!

  1. I wasn't a big fan of cats before my first kitty, Roland, was born. The second I saw her, I fell in love and was pretty much instantly transformed into a crazy cat lady. 

  2. My favorite actor is Jason Schwartzman. If he is in a movie, I will see that movie.
  3. I'm really into beer. Like, really really into beer. My ultimate dream job is to open my own brewery!
  4. I've rocked bangs for most of my life. I started growing them out about five years ago and I think all the time about getting my bangs back.
  5. I only watched a few episodes of the first season of Doctor Who before skipping ahead to the last episode. Please don't hate me for that! Don't get me wrong, Christopher Eccleston is great! He just wasn't my jam and I really wanted to understand what all the fuss was about. David Tennant changed my mind about the show and got me hooked!
  6. The first anime I watched as an adult was Afro Samurai, and it's still one of my very favorites.
  7. I was painfully shy as a kid. I remember whispering what I wanted to my mom so that she could order for me when we went to McDonald's. I just couldn't bring myself to talk to people!
  8. Despite growing up extremely shy and awkward, I spent my first year working at the courthouse as a Jury Services clerk, which involved standing up in front of up to 800 strangers daily to give them the rundown on jury service. Can you imagine doing roll call for 800 people? It was a nightmare.
  9. I've seen the band Between the Buried and Me in concert seven times. The next band to come close would be Coheed and Cambria, who I've seen three times.
  10. I played clarinet in band for eight years. During high school, I was first chair in concert band all four years and the clarinet section leader for two years. I genuinly consider those four years to be some of the best in my life, all because of band.

    1. Sorry for the crappy quality, but I'm the super cool lady pirate with the clarinet, fifth from the left=P

  11. I knew my husband, Gary, for about five years before we started dating. I distinctly remember bringing my ex-boyfriend to a party and him getting into an argument with Gary over samurai (don't even ask, I don't know). I remember being SO MAD because of all the people at the party, he just HAD to argue with the smartest guy there? So yeah, now I'm married to the smartest guy I know!
Whew! I feel like that was more information than you probably wanted to know about me, haha. If you managed to get through all of that, thanks for bearing with me! These are the fabulous bloggers that I'm nominating:

Karen of Karen Nerds Out
Brittany of xoGeek

Ladies, if this type of post isn't really your thing, please don't feel bad about not joining in! My feelings won't be hurt. I just enjoy reading your blogs and wanted to send a little love your way! If you'd like to participate, here are my questions for you:

  1. Who was your childhood celebrity crush?
  2. Do you have any recurring dreams?
  3. What Hogwarts house were you sorted into and do you agree with your placement?
  4. Do you have a go-to late night snack?
  5. If the Doctor showed up on your doorstep and asked you to be his (or her!) companion, would you go?
  6. Who's your favorite villain?
  7. What is your favorite game, video or tabletop?
  8. If you had to trade lives with any Disney character, who would it be?
  9. Are you a cat person, dog person, or neither?
  10. Do you have a favorite Miyazaki movie?
  11. What do you love most about yourself?
Thanks again to Kay for the nomination! If you do join in, please let me know so I can read your answers. And of course, if you weren't tagged but want to answer my questions anyway, feel free to do so in the comments! I love this little blogging community and really want to get to know you awesome ladies, so don't be shy! No judgment here, I promise<3 I hope you're all having an amazing week!

Geeky Goodies: Orphan Black

Apr 11, 2016

You guys!! Season four of Orphan Black premieres in three days and I'm so excited! BBC America released a sneak peak of the first episode and oh man, it looks like it's going to be amazing.

Yay, Beth Childs! I've been wanting to learn more about her since the show started, so this is definitely looking promising. And it looks like we'll be learning more about the mysterious new character, M.K. Also, who are those affectionate EMTs burying?! I guess I'll just have to wait and see!

I'm super stoked for more episodes because this show quickly became one of my favorites. I figured I would get everyone else pumped up by sharing a Geeky Love post dedicated to the gals (and fella) of Clone Club;) It always amazes me how many cute things people create to show their love for a fandom. These are just a few of the fun Orphan Black goodies I found on Etsy:

  1. Orphan Black Poster | Dustless Soul Creations
  2. Allison Buttons | Black Umbrella Industries
  3. Clone Club Mug | Twenty Seven Things
  4. Sestra T-Shirt | Eclectic Press
  5. Clone Club Felt Hearth Patch | The Okay Art Club

The Golden Snitch Giveaway: April (CLOSED)

Apr 6, 2016

April Golden Snitch Sponsors
Hey friends! I'm a day late getting this posted because work is crazy right now:( I'm super excited to join in on this giveaway again though, it's always so much fun! I'll be posting my 6 on 6 a little later this month...I know that defeats the purpose of the whole 'posting six photos on the 6th of the month' thing, but I've just been so busy and haven't been able to take pictures lately. I can't wait to check out everyone's photos today though! Is it just me or is everyone in our little blogging community getting AWESOME at taking pictures?! Yay! But anyway, on to the fun stuff...


 *Stereotypical Movie Announcer Voice* In a world... where super heroes collide... we bring you...

BATMAN VS SUPERMAN - the giveaway box.

It's time for another Golden Snitch - the monthly giveaway box full of geek goodies that opens at the close. This month, we're all pretty stoked about the Batman vs Superman movie that recently hit theaters (no spoilers, please!) and wanted to offer up some pretty heroic prizes. But before we get into the giveaway and its contents, won't you please take a moment to get to know me and the other sponsors?

I’d Like to Introduce You To…

Since the new Batman VS Superman movie recently came out in theaters, we thought it would be fun to shed some light on what side we're on. Spoilers: There seem to be a lot of Batman lovin' ladies in this group!

Batman vs Superman Favorite and why

KIMI | Kimi Who? I enjoy Batman's sense of responsibility to his city. He could have anything he wanted - including hiring someone to fight the bad guys for him. But no... he takes it upon himself to do the dirty work of protecting the city and people he loves. Batman Forever! #sopunny

LIANA | Art Prints by Liana Batman, of course! He has the superpower of unparalleled resilience and restraint of ethical justice and mad martial art skills. Also he's a super attractive playboy whom no one would expect is the dark knight vigilante. (It probably helps that he's also my all time favorite comic book character.)

LAURA | Con Couture They were both awesome in the movie and fighting for what they believed was right. Each perceived the other as the threat, when in reality they needed to work together. Oh, how I love when things get kumbaya. :) So, I'm going to be that person that can't pick one and say that I just love them both!

HANNAH & SARA | The Perfect Storm BFFs Batman because he's just a fairly normal guy who wants to help people and try to make Gotham a better place. He's trained super hard and uses his gadgets to make that happen. Plus, Batman has the BEST villains!

TISH | The Veganista Foodie I'll have to side with Superman. I love superheroes that have cool super powers. I also appreciate the sense of responsibility he has in helping a planet that isn't even his own.

JENN | The Diary of a Dreamer Batman. He's just a mortal man trying to protect his city.

KATY | Plays Well With Coffee Batman will always be my favorite. Why? Because he's just a man who wants to take the crime out of Gotham city. But also - that suit and cape - yum!

DANIELLE | From Girlie to Nerdy BATMAN! I'll admit, I've never liked Superman. I always thought he was kind of lame (sorry, folks). Batman on the other hand has always been my favorite. Although he doesn't have any true superhero powers, he's smart, creative, and a little dark. Win-win for me!

ASHLEE | Her Geekery Batman forever! I've always liked that he's a real guy (albeit, a ridiculously weathy one) who uses his strength and intelligence to save the day. No superpowers required, thank you very much! But let's be real, between Henry Cavill and Ben Affleck, it's Cavill all the way!

JESSICA | The Nifty Nerd Both these guys aren't necessarily my favorite, but if I were to pick the winning side it'd be Superman. To keep this succinct- Realistically Superman's true strength in power greatly outweighs Batman. He could stay a hundred yards away from Batman and just melt him with his heat vision or freeze him with his freeze breath. He wouldn't even need to get close enough for Batman to use some "trick" like kryptonite.

DARCIE | Homemaker Vs The World It's actually really hard for me to choose between Batman and Superman. In the end, I'd have to choose Team Batman. I think Superman has a bit of an unfair advantage by having the powers to do just about anything, including turning back time. Batman has to use his brain and gadgets to get himself out of situations. I'm also more partial to Batman's backstory. He chooses to do what he does because of what happened to his parents. In the end, while his methods may be a little darker than other super hero's, he does what he does so others don't have to go through what he went through when he lost his parents.

KATIE | KatsyXO Batman all the way. Superman has always been too cheesy for me, and I'm pretty sure rich boy Wayne wouldn't have a problem getting his hands on some kryptonite.

HEATHER | The Nerdy Fox Batman.... because I'm not a fan of Superman. Haha. No, I just like Batman more out of the two.

ANGIE | My So-Called Chaos BATMAN! I just like Batman better honestly...

April Golden Snitch

No matter which hero you are rooting for, you'll look super as the proud owner of this prize box! This month's box includes a great selection of items including:
  • Second-edition Brian Bolland Batman Black & White Statue
  • Mini Batman Bat Signal
  • Superman QPop Figure
  • Superman & Batman Huggie Earrings (Courtesy of Con Couture)
  • Metal Wonder Woman Business Card Holder
Disclaimer: The giveaway is open to Residents of the United States only. Sorry international readers - shipping for these typically heavy boxes can be rather expensive. Please, no contest accounts. Entries will be verified.

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