Some changes

Okay, here are a few things that will be changing at The Life and Lies.

Next year, I won't really be doing any challenges, simply because I don't really have time, and I forgot to sign up for any. I'll have to do them next year.

Also, I'll be really focusing on school, since I now have 2 majors, I'm teaching, and I'm doing an internship this summer (more on that later). Because of that, reviews will be irregular (like they are now) but don't worry, eventually I will have the time to read and write regularly.

Lastly, I'll be writing about writing a lot, since I'm really working on editing my novel, ACCIDENTAL GIRLFRIEND (title tentative). I also want to work on another book I've developed, WHISPERS. If you want to read AG, I'll send you a pdf review copy. I'm currently looking for readers to give me advice/critique on the first draft (it's very very rough!)

So there you go. I've already written my year-end post, about what I've learned this year (instead of resolutions). Also, if you want to follow my personal blog, email me and I'll send you the web address.

Things I've learned in 2011

I've learned some big things this year. I don't particularly like making resolutions because I don't keep them. Instead, I'm making a list of things I've learned. Some of them will seem random, but I'd love for you to tell me what you think in the comments :)

  1. Dare to wait. Dare to be patient. Dare to keep in mind what you want and what you're waiting for, and dare not to settle for second best. It's worth it in the end. (yes I am talking about boys here, but this lesson applies to many things in life.)
  2. Seeking knowledge is one of the best things you can do for yourself, because not only do you become wiser and more intelligent, you gain a greater appreciation for God. (Example: As a writer, I've learned so much about myself, and about God's genius and creativity because He wrote my story, and it's perfect. My stories will never reach that level of perfection. But striving for it and writing about people teaches me about how God works in my life, and how my life affects other people… etc.)
  3. God is faithful. Period.
  4. You have to start somewhere, so why not start here, and why not start now? Sometimes we're afraid to start something because we don't want to go through the hard part (you know, the part where you suck at it?) but you have to start somewhere. So just jump in and do it!
  5. Write every day. Read every day. Over the summer, I wrote a 60,000 word novel in three weeks because I went to the bookstore/coffee shop every single day (seven days a week!) and wrote several thousand words. At first it was really hard, but after a while, it got really easy. It was like as soon as I sat down in that coffee shop, my creativity turned on by itself! I pumped out those words like they were nothing. (okay there were some tough parts, but really, it works.)
  6. You have to take care of yourself before you can take care of anyone else. So for goodness sake, take care of yourself. Eat right, stay healthy, exercise, read your Bible. Find an accountability partner for whatever you need accountability for.
  7. You're always either going into a trial, in the middle of a trial, or coming out of a trial. Always. So know that this too shall pass.

What have you learned this year?

Review: Shatter Me

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Genre: YA, Paranormal, Dystopia, Romance
ISBN: 9780062085481
Published: November 15th 2011 by Harper/HarperCollins

Rating: 5

Shatter Me is one of those books that will stick with me forever. I may even re-read it just because I enjoyed it so much! I mean, I never re-read books! But I may very well re-read this one! It's one that I can pick up the next one after not having read it for a year, and I can jump right back in because I remember it all. I can't wait until the next book comes out! Oh my gosh! Why on earth did I wait so long to read it? Oh yeah. College.

The writing was magnificent (man has it been a long time since I've been able to say that). It was interesting, and different, and felt like a free flowing train of thought instead of conscious sentences or pages from a diary. It was beautiful and poetic, and full of metaphors about nature and beauty and pain that were so honest and true that I couldn't figure out why I hadn't thought them up myself first. Sometimes there would be a phrase that Juliette thought to herself that was true but she refused to admit to thinking, and it would be crossed out. (like that ^). I really liked this, because it showed what she was really thinking, but it also showed what kind of person she wanted to be.

The plot was fantastic. It never stopped moving forward. There were brief times of rest in the thriller aspect of the story, but the tension itself never went away, and there were no dead plot fillers thrown in.

I really liked Juliette. She wants to be strong, but after a long life of being emotionally abused, she's a weak broken pitiful creature who just wants to be loved and nurtured back to health. She will do anything to be on good terms with someone she loves. She's dying to be touched, but she knows she can't be because she'll kill whoever touches her. And she doesn't want to hurt anyone. She wants to help people and comfort them, but she knows she'll kill them. What a horrible place to be in!

I won't say too much about her love interest, Adam, but I will say he is so going on my list of favorite literary crushes. He is hott stuff. And because of that, I'm going to put my recommendation as ages 16+. If you can't read Hush Hush or Hourglass, I'd hold off on this one for a while…

Content/recommendation: Some hot kissing scenes, and I'm seeing a potential for more in the later books. Ages 16+

Trailer. Yeah, you know I never post trailers. This is a good trailer. Watch it.

This review is copyright Haley Mathiot and Amazon Vine.

Review: Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
Genre: YA Paranormal
ISBN: 9781611132977
Published: September 27th 2011 by Hachette Audio

Rating: 5

Review: Daughter of Smoke and Bone was highly addicting. I really should have studied more last week but instead I listened to a riveting audio book.

I'm going to keep this short and sweet. The book pulled me into the story right away and kept me engaged the whole time. The characters were wonderful, real, imperfect, and believable. The plot never stopped and the pacing never slowed and the tension never dissolved. it got more and more interesting and complicated with every chapter, but all the ends were tied up at the end. Every detail mattered. The end was painful but perfect and I will be at the book store the day Book 2 comes out and hand over my hard earned cash to get that book in my hands because I can't wait to figure out what happens next!

This is the second book by Laini Taylor I've read (see my review for Lips Touch Three Times), and she is quickly becoming a favorite writer of mine. Her graceful lyric writing never ceases to impress me.

Audio: I listened to the audio book of DoSaB. I am very picky about audio books because I've listened to a lot of poorly recorded ones, and I've grown up having a very good reader read books out loud to me. But Khristine Hvam did an excellent job, so much so that I would seek out more books read by her. She gave distinct voices to each character, but it didn't feel corny and stupid like some readers do. She breathed and felt the characters and the dialogue, and it worked. 

Content/Recommendation: Clean! Ages 14-Adult

2 Weeks!

2 weeks of school left! One week of classes, and then finals week. I probably won't post much until school is out… but I have so many awesome exciting books to review through the month of December and early January! So keep your eyes peeled!

I'll also be hosting some giveaways and tours soon.

Meanwhile: Check out this video and leave me comments and tell me what you think.


Copyright 2016 Haley Mathiot. All reviews are 100% honest and unbiased. One or more items featured in the blog post may have been free or discounted. Receiving free or discounted product does not affect review. For more please see my disclaimer page.