Thursday, May 26, 2011

For Every Person with a Baby in Their Life...

Do you have a little one in your life or on the way? Wouldn't this personalized night light with THEIR photo be a wonderful addition to their room? I think so! I'd definitely appreciate this if I had a little one. Alas, I do not. I just claim all my friends' kids.

Now, you can "win" your own night light in the TLC Auctions. You know nobody usually bids higher than the worth of a product...so you are getting a deal if you win!

Please give it a look, tweet it to your followers, make a blog post about the auctions (if you're fab!) and generally just spread the word whether you want to bid or not. It would mean a lot and you'd be helping two very deserving people. It's always the season of giving, so come on!! Give back. :-)

More auctions are going to be posted...some bigger and better than ever so you really want people to know about these opportunities, as well as follow the blog so nobody misses out on their MUST HAVE!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Graphic Classics: Edgar Allan Poe (Review)

Graphic Classics: Edgar Allan Poe by Matt Howarth, J.B. Bonivert, Carlo Vergara, and Rick Geary

Review by: Lauren

Copy From: Publisher

Summary: The Graphic Classics books are essentially graphic novels but instead of being one original story...they take a theme or author and include a variety of stories. The Edgar Allan Poe novel, for example, uses Poe's classic short stories and poems and either includes the drawings with them or even shortens the stories so they fit in a graphic format. Included are The Imp of the Perverse, The Black Cat, The Cask of Amontillado, and more!

Review: One of my favorite stories was The Cask of Amontillado just because I found this book made the actual narrative make more sense. I just had a class this past semester dedicated solely to Edgar Allan Poe, so going over the stories/poems in there definitely helped when I looked over this book. However, as I said with Cask, I think using this a tool to learn about Poe or just enjoy his work is a great idea because the pictures and shortened narrative gives you a clearer view of what's happening.



As for the drawings, I think the poem Annabel Lee was done very well. It was very pretty, but not overly so, and the character's features reminded me of a fairly tale drawing. This definitely works well with the poem.

In all, I think it's great that different artists worked on this book because you're treated to various styles of art from more abstract to full-fledged bodies that make you think of a comic book such as in the William Wilson adaptation. Speaking of which, that is another story that made more sense to me in this book than just reading the actual story on its own...as it's originally quite long.

Apparently this is the time of Edgar Allan Poe with some Poe-esque books coming out (or so I hear), a film about The Raven, and even a T.V. show...so don't delay in getting started on your own collection!




pictures are not mine. the top one is the book cover, and the second one is the first page of the Cask in said book.

Friday, May 20, 2011

Extra, Extra, This Just In


So I've been sick this past week which is why there have been very few posts here or on Let's Get Beyond Tolerance. I do have a few things lined up for both sites though and will try and post a bit more regularly next week.

I have been trying to keep up on the TLC Auctions though and you can find two new ones posted today, not to mention the other two still going on. But be quick...they start ending tonight! Some bigger items will start appearing now...so be sure to follow, even if you aren't sure you want to bid!

Next...are you a student of some sort? You might apply for the Living Beyond Tolerance scholarship I've set up. It's very informal. I just want the winner to use it for education of some sort. You have to write an essay to enter but the winner gets $200 automatically. There will be November auctions in hopes of raising more than that though so the winner is supported for the good they do. Do you classify as LGBT or an Ally? Do you know someone who is? Tell them to check this out!



i don't own the above photo

Monday, May 16, 2011

Living Beyond Tolerance Scholarship



I'm setting up a scholarship. It's a bit informal. We won't know the full amount (but the smallest it will be is $200) until the end of November of 2011. However, you can start applying next month (June, everyone!) and I'd really love to see people from all over getting involved. If you can't apply...spread the word. Regardless, there is something most of you can do (big or small) and I'd love to have more help.


To find out more about the scholarship, please go here and read up! It's called the "Living Beyond Tolerance" scholarship and is for those that identify as LGBT or an Ally.

Most of the money will come from a set of auctions this November. There is still plenty of time until then, but that means you should start saving your money to bid now...and if you want to donate something, plan big! If you know early, maybe you can offer something fab! Not that ALL donations aren't fab. They are, and I appreciate everyone's help with things like this!

As for now...I DO have other auctions going on for two people that could really use the help, so please follow them as well. Bigger things coming up!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Book Review- Family by Micol Ostow

family by Micol Ostow

Review by: Lauren

Copy from: Publisher

Amazon Associate: Buy book, we get small percentage

Summary: i have always been broken.



i could have. died.


and maybe it would have been better if i had.


It is a day like any other when seventeen-year-old Melinda Jensen hits the road for San Francisco, leaving behind her fractured home life and a constant assault on her self-esteem. Henry is the handsome, charismatic man who comes upon her, collapsed on a park bench, and offers love, a bright new consciousness, and—best of all—a family. One that will embrace her and give her love. Because family is what Mel has never really had. And this new family, Henry’s family, shares everything. They share the chores, their bodies, and their beliefs. And if Mel truly wants to belong, she will share in everything they do. No matter what the family does, or how far they go.

Told in episodic verse, family is a fictionalized exploration of cult dynamics, loosely based on the Manson Family murders of 1969. It is an unflinching look at people who are born broken, and the lengths they’ll go to to make themselves “whole” again.

Review: Maybe it's weird, but I've always been fascinated by these type of things. Normally it gears more toward school shootings but especially after reading John Belushi is Dead, I've become a bit more fascinated by people like Charles Manson. In family, Henry is a charismatic man that tells these people exactly what they want and need to hear. He talks of a life where everything is shared, where there is no past, where there is only the now and the only family they need is his...forget about the rest, it doesn't matter. It sure sounds good, especially to Melinda, whose "Uncle" abused her and mom let it happen, never saying a word, never saving her.

It might sound crazy or messed up, but reading this book, you do get to see inside Melinda's head. You see the reasons she goes, the reasons she stays, the reasons she does certain things. Like she said, she is broken. I think she can be fixed though and I think she makes steps towards that...even choosing to fix herself instead of letting other people rip her apart even more.

I loved the verse in this book as it felt more realistic to what Melinda would actually be thinking. Sometimes it's short thoughts, sometimes longer. The episodes even jump a bit so you see a little of what is to come and then go back to what is happening in the now. It's one thing that keeps you reading as you can see exactly what's to come...but how does it end?

Really, the one complaint I had is that Melinda repeats certain words or phrases a lot. It makes sense, just like the verse did...it makes it seem more real and lets readers focus on certain things. However, it can get a bit repetitive and annoying after awhile as you continue reading as it's a pretty constant thing.

Regardless, family is an excellent book. It deals with a dark side of the world but still pulls you in, makes you think.

Friday, May 6, 2011

TLC Auctions with The Story Siren


The TLC Auctions, benefitting two very deserving people (and their families) has now begun. Each auction will only last for about four days, with a new one every day...at least through the month of May.

That means you need to follow along with the blog so you don't miss an auction that you really wish you had tried to win.

Again, donations are still appreciated...so if you have something, make something, sell something, write something...get in touch!


I don't own that above photo, but it's super cute, and obviously wants you to bid!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Are You Alive? Can You Feel?

My song right now is "Feel" by Marie Digby. I thought I would share as it's been stuck in my head for a little while now, and I figured I'd see what the rest of you out there have to say!





P.S. Follow the new auction blog.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Dear Wonderful Readers



Dear Wonderful Readers-

Starting (hopefully) later this week, there will be a set of auctions lasting at least the month of May. All of your donations will benefit two very deserving people. I'm hosting this auction with Kristi of the Story Siren. Half the money goes to her cousin, recently diagnosed with cancer and to a family friend of mine who lost the thumb on his dominant hand. You can learn more about both of these canidates (and if their info is not posted, it will be in the next couple days) at the auction site. Please follow the blog and spread the word so that everyone is ready for when the first auctions begin to go up.

I'd also like to let everyone out there know that we ARE still taking donations. If you have something you'd like to add to our list, please write me here: lauren51990 AT aol DOT com. We'll keep taking donations even as the auctions begin until an undertermined date. We'll let you know when donations can stop being added, but we'd like this to last at least a full month...an auction a day...so again, get in touch if you're interested in helping out. Of course, bidding and donating money THROUGH the auctions is a huge help too!!



Authors: I'd like to add that critiques of some sort are always popular as there are many aspiring writers out there. Plus, something like a critique has no actual monetary value...so people can bid up to a lot sometimes. If you can offer any type of critique (big or small), please get in touch as well. Feel free to get your agents or editors involved as well if they have the time!



None of the above photos are mine. I just find them adorably cute...and if they start telling you to donate in your dreams, I can't be held accountable. :)