Mississippi Book Festival

MS Book Festival logo

I have something really excited to talk about today, especially if you live in or around Mississippi. We are getting a BOOK FESTIVAL!! I love the way the festival describes itself: “A literary lawn party celebrating authors & their contributions to the culture of literacy, ideas, & imagination.” It sounds like a wonderful day. On August 22, 2015 at the Mississippi State Capitol, the inaugural Mississippi Book Festival will feature so many amazing authors, and, if you are interested, you can see the full day’s schedule on the festival’s website. One of the best parts? IT’S FREE! I’m excited for the entire day, but I wanted to feature two of the panels I’m most looking forward to: The Children’s Illustrated Book panel and the Books for Young Readers panel. I’m sure you know why I’m excited for these two the most. 🙂

Children's Illustrated Panel at the Mississippi Book Festival

Books for Young Readers panel at the Mississippi Book Festival

You can learn more about the Books for Young Readers in this article from the Clarion Ledger including some fun facts about each author! Also, as far as I know, most of the authors will be available for signings right after their panel!

I’m really excited about what this festival means for my state, and I can’t wait to be surrounded by bookish people for an entire day. If you are located in or around Mississippi, I really hope you’ll consider coming to the festival. And if you do come, make sure you say hi if you see me – just look for the girl with no hair 😉

Taylor Kitchings Event at Lemuria Books – August 18

Hey, guys! I just have a quick post for you about a really cool event happening at Lemuria Books on August 18. Taylor Kitchings, debut author of Yard War (a middle grade book about football during the civil rights movement) will be launching his book at Lemuria with a signing and reading starting at 5 p.m. I know most of you aren’t located in Mississippi, but I wanted to let those of you that are in MS know about this cool event! Here’s a little more about the book and then a flier with more information about the event! (p.s. Taylor Kitchings will also be appearing at the Mississippi Book Festival on August 22!)

It’s 1964 in Jackson, Mississippi, deep in the civil rights movement, and the one black person twelve-year-old Trip Westbrook knows well is Willie Jane, the family maid, who has been a second mother to him. When Trip invites her son, Dee, to play football in the yard, Trip discovers the ugly side of his smiling neighbors. Even his loving grandparents don’t approve. But getting to know Dee and playing football, being part of a team, changes Trip. He begins to see all the unspoken rules he lives by but doesn’t agree with, such as respect your elders. What if he thinks their views are wrong? This engaging, honest, and hopeful novel is full of memorable characters, and brings the civil rights–era South alive for young readers. – Synopsis from Goodreads


Batesville Book Drive

A couple of weeks ago, an electrical fire at the Bateville Elementary School in Batesville, MS destroyed the school building, and with it, all of the books in that school’s library and in the teacher’s classrooms. As you can imagine, this is devastating, not only for the teachers and faculty of that school, but for the children that will go without books. But YOU can help get books back into the hands of those kids. Independent bookstore, Lemuria Books, in Jackson, MS, is hosting a book drive for the school. I know most of you do not live in Mississippi, but if any of you have children’s books lying around your house that you no longer want, I would LOVE it if you could send them to me and I can bring them to the store. Also, like most schools, Batesville Elementary has a list of books that all of their teachers read to the children. If you’d rather just buy a copy (or two) of any of these books and have them shipped to me, that would be awesome! Lemuria is trying to get 1 copy of each of these books for all seventeen teachers at the school – meaning they need 17 copies of some of these books. This list is just a sample, so if you want to get something else, let me know and I can ask the store what they are looking for. Here’s the list (the titles that are bold are the ones they need the most copies of):

Don’t Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus by Mo Willems
Any Elephant and Piggie books
Goldilocks and the Three Dinosaurs by Mo Willems
Edwina, the Dinosaur Who Didn’t Know She Was Extinct
Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed by Mo Willems
Don’t Let the Pigeon Stay Up Late by Mo Willems
I Don’t Want to Be a Frog by Dev Petty

Olivia by Ian Falconer
Go, Dog, Go by PD Eastman
Are You My Mother by PD Eastman
Any Dr. Seuss
Hop on Pop by Dr. Seuss
The Foot Book by Dr. Seuss
Any Pete the Cat by Kimberly & James Dean
Any Jan Brett Books
Any Lois Ehlert Books

Any Eric Carle
The Polar Express by Van Allsburg
3 Little Pigs
Any version of fairy tales written for children
Johnny Appleseed by Jodie Shepherd
From Seed to Pumpkin by Wendy Pfeffer

David Gets in Trouble by David Shannon
Officer Buckle and Gloria by Peggy Rathmann
Fancy Nancy by Jane O’Connor (and any and all fancy nancy books)
Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister
Pinkalicious, Purplicious, Goldilicious, Silverlicious by Victoria & Elizabeth Kann (so basically all the licious books)
First Day Jitters by Julie Danneberg
I Am Too Absolutely Small for School by Lauren Child
Kindergarten Rocks by Katie Davis
Welcome to Kindergarten by Anne Rockwell

I Like Me by Nancy Carlson
Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae
Kindergarten Here I Come by Steinberg & Chambers

If you are interested in helping, you can comment here or email me at caughtreadhanded (at) gmail (dot) com so I can provide you with my address. Or you can call Lemuria Books directly at (601) 366-7619. I hope you’ll help get books back to these kids!

More information about the book drive and why Lemuria Books is helping can be found HERE.

A Mini Hiatus; More Like a Short Break; More Like a Long Weekend

Hey, lovelies! I just wanted to give you all a little heads up that I’ll be out of commission for the weekend – probably until Monday. Today I’m having what can essentially be called sinus surgery, and I’ll be recuperating this weekend and will therefore be avoiding the internet. It feels weird to me because I usually post a review today and try to post something over the weekend. You WILL still be getting a Summer Blogger Promo Tour post on Sunday, so look out for that.

Just in case you weren’t aware, I’ve got a giveaway on Twitter going for my ARC of Paperweight by Meg Haston (did you check out my review yet?), so make sure you go enter that!

Anyway, I’ll miss you all. It won’t be long! I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and no black eyes like I’m going to have. See you next week! ❤

The Disney Book Tag

This tag was created by Katytastic over on YouTube to celebrate the release of The Isle of the Lost by Melissa de la Cruz. I was tagged by Aria at Book Monster and Maren at The Worn Bookmark! Thanks so much for the tags, Aria and Maren!


  1. The Little Mermaid – a character who is out of their element, a “fish out of water”

Rachel from Jennifer Mathieu’s latest novel, Devoted, leaves the home and family she’s known her whole life to start fresh in the “real” world. She doesn’t really understand how the real world works and must navigate first jobs, first roommates, and figuring out what she truly believes.

  1. Cinderella – a character who goes through a major transformation

Kristin from I.W. Gregorio’s debut None of the Above finds out that she is actually intersex. Her life, identity, and world are completely turned upside down and she must figure out who she really is while everyone else does too.

  1. Snow White – a book with an eclectic cast of characters

I’m going to go with a children’s book for this one: The Day the Crayons Quit by Drew Daywalt and illustrated by Oliver Jeffers is filled to the brim with eclectic characters…er, crayons. Overworked Blue and Mediator Green and WHO IS THE TRUE COLOR OF THE SUN? Yellow or Orange?! Love it.

  1. Sleeping Beauty – a book that put you to sleep

Hands down: If I Stay by Gayle Forman. Ugh.

  1. The Lion King – a character who had something traumatic happen to them in childhood

Harry Potter. Duh. He had like a million traumatic things happen to him while he was a child. Actually, all of those kids who went to Hogwarts during those years had pretty traumatic things happen to them.

  1. Beauty and the Beast – A beast of a book (a big book) that you were intimidated by, but found the story to be beautiful

The Book of Strange New Things by Michel Faber is 500 pages long and absolutely intimidating. I’m so glad I read it though. Not only is it physical beautiful (the pages are gilded – they are gold-edged) but the story is incredibly fascinating and strange and…definitely beautiful.

  1. Aladdin – a character who gets their wish granted, for better or worse

I’m going to have to go with Maren on this one: Simon from Becky Albertalli’s debut Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda wishes with everything he has to meet Blue, the boy he’s been emailing back and forth for months, and is it for better or worse? You’ll just have to read it and find out. 🙂

  1. Mulan – a character who pretends to be someone or something they are not

Lila Bard in V.E. Schwab’s A Darker Shade of Magic dresses up like a man in order to be accepted socially, or at least so she doesn’t draw attention to herself. I chose her because even though she’s pretending to be someone she isn’t, she’s an incredibly badass character.

  1. Toy Story – a book with characters you wish would come to life

Hands down, I would want the characters from Maggie Stiefvater’s The Raven Cycle books to come to life. I just want to be best friends with all of them: Blue, RONAN, Gansey, Noah, Adam, and definitely Chainsaw. I want to hang out at 300 Fox Way and fly around in helicopters looking for Glendower.

  1. Disney Descendants – your favourite villain or morally ambiguous character

I’m a big fan of morally ambiguous characters in books. They are often more complex, more interesting, and more terrifying than the protagonists. My favorite is probably Kevin from We Need to Talk about Kevin by Lionel Shriver. He may not be so morally ambiguous. I mean, it’s pretty obvious that he is absolutely evil, but why is he that way? Nature? Nurture? It’s just absolutely fascinating to read about him. Plus, Ezra Miller does a pretty amazing job at portraying him on screen.

I’m tagging: 

Rachel at Confessions of a Book Geek

Alison at Hardcovers and Heroines

Shaina at Shaina Reads

Kay at It’s a Book Life

Joey at Thoughts and Afterthoughts

Bookish Thoughts: Books in Translation

I recently came across Smartling, a company that has a really cool cloud-based translation software program, and started thinking about books in translation and the importance of certain aspects of language while translating. This is a fascinating subject for me as I have always been interested in culture and how certain things are easily interpreted (or not) between Translationcultures and languages. I started thinking about my favorite books and the parts of them that I would hate to be misinterpreted if they were translated into another language. There are even times when I’m reading a book in English that’s from the UK and there are certain aspects that don’t easily translate (words used in the UK that don’t make sense here or cultural norms – school, living, etc. – that are different. For me, I usually know what they mean, but I always imagine someone who’s never been to the UK and if they’d get it. Like how “pants” are what they call “underwear” in the UK). It’s hard to imagine a book about a girl in high school in America obsessed with her looks or any number of selfish things translating into a language in a country where girls aren’t allowed to flaunt their looks.

On the other hand, there are some books that would easily translate into multiple languages (maybe. I’m not a translator. Haha). Comics like Batman and Robin or Iron Man are probably able to be understood in several languages because who doesn’t want to believe in superheroes? Again, not a translator, but I think fantasy books are probably the easiest to translate because they are mostly (if not completely) based in other worlds and most of the elements are made up. I feel like contemporary, real-life books would be the hardest to translate because there are so many things that are culturally important or relevant that wouldn’t make sense in other countries or languages. How do you explain Groundhog Day or Presidential Turkey Pardons or Tailgating to people who have never heard of Thanksgiving or have never seen an American Football game?

Maybe this won’t make sense with what I’ve said so far, but personally, I think this is why books in translation are so important. I LOVE to travel and learn about the world and the people who live in it. Reading books in translation allows me to better understand the world. No, I’m not able to read it in its original language, but that doesn’t mean I don’t get something out of it or learn something new about other countries and people. I tend to read a lot of crime novels in translation (for example, Jo Nesbø) but I’ve also read incredible books by Gabriel Garcí­a Márquez, Niccolò Ammaniti, Albert Camus, and so many more. I mean, who hasn’t read The Little Prince? Whose life wasn’t touched by that one?

Imagine how small our world would become without books in translation. Reading books originally written in another language and set in another country allows me to learn more about the amazing, fascinating, strange, beautiful world we live in.

What do you think about books in translation? Have you read any? Did they make sense or were there confusing moments?

After writing this, I actually really wish I spoke/read another language well enough to see if all of my favorite parts of my favorite books translated well. Hmmmm.

By the way, make sure you go check out Smartling’s software – they translate websites, apps, and documents for businesses in a quickly and efficiently using REAL people and not the one-size-fits-all translation of some other sites. Check out their website to learn more!

The Emoji Book Tag

I was tagged by Lizzy at My Little Book Blog to do the Emoji Book Tag. I don’t have an iPhone which means I don’t really have emojis, but I’m going to use some of my favorites and a few that I use on Twitter. Basically, you’re supposed to go through your phone and figure out your 5 most frequently used emojis and then match up a book to the emoji.

Kissy face emoji

I use this emoji on Twitter a bunch when I’m talking to bloggers or authors, but for me A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas is the most recent representation of this book because you just want ALL THE MAKE OUT SCENES.

Heart eyes emoji

I use the heart eyes emoji A LOT because I read a bunch of books that I just adore. The heart eyes emoji is just perfect when you fall in love with the characters in a book, like I did when I read Simon Vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli. Simon and Blue are just so freaking adorable and I had heart eyes the whole time I was reading the book.

Unamused face emoji

I just finished Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets to the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz, and while I ended up liking it okay, I was just not over the moon with it. I think I was partly a victim of the hype monsters but I also didn’t connect with it as much as I was hoping. I had the unamused face during all the part that the book dragged.

Face Screaming in Fear emoji

This one is technically called the “Face Screaming in Fear Emoji” but I’m taking it to mean “Holy crap, I did NOT see that coming emoji”. The book that perfectly sums up that emoji for me is Made You Up by Francesca Zappia. I was totally shocked by the development near the end of the book, and even though I knew something was going to happen, I didn’t know it was going to be THAT.

Airplane Emoji

I’m a wanderer, a traveler. I have a need to travel, and I feel restless when I don’t, so I feel like I’d use the airplane emoji a lot when I’m feeling the need to plan my next trip. The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith perfectly matches to this emoji as the two main characters meet in an airport and then wind up next to each other on a flight across the ocean.

I’m tagging:

Rachel at Confessions of a Book Geek
Brandie at Brandie is a Book Junkie
Shannon at It Starts at Midnight
Shelumiel at Bookish and Awesome
Katherine at Neon Yeti Reads


The I Am More Happy Than Not Tag

I was tagged by Joey at Thoughts and Afterthoughts to do the I Am More Happy Than Not Tag, which was adapted by Shelumiel @ Bookish and Awesome as a companion to Adam Silvera’s upcoming novel More Happy Than Not. Joey says there are no rules for the tag other than to “highlight ways you’ve been able to express happiness from the things—big and small—in your life.” Thanks for the tag, Joey! I’m super excited for More Happy Than Not, so this was a fun way to fill the time until publication!

Disclaimer: The image used in this tag was created by Lumi himself.

I am more happy than not when…

I sit down at the end of a long day with a cup of coffee and a good book.
I am driving down the road with the windows down and a song I love blaring through the speakers (most recent song obsessions: heavydirtysoul and Doubt by twenty one pilots)
Someone tells me they’ve read a book on my recommendation and LOVED it
I actually get to sleep in past 6 a.m.
A patron at the library is totally fine with me word-vomiting all over them while I give them recommendations
I Skype one of my best friends in Scotland for a chat because we’re always able to make each other laugh
I’m standing at the barrier surrounded by tons of strangers singing along at the top of my lungs with my favorite bands
My online job boss tells me I’m doing a great job and that she appreciates everything I do
I resurface after a few hours of being completely engrossed in a book

When I get restless and stressed and unhappy, I get more happy than not by taking a road trip, even if it’s only a few hours each way, taking a small road trip every few weeks helps settle me and my wanderlust. It makes me exceedingly happy to see new places, to meet new people, to be in the car by myself or with friends for hours just driving.

My family makes me more happy than not when we sit down for dinner and quote silly movies and joke about anything and everything.

Our new puppy and our crazy bird make me more happy than not when they cuddle up with me (definitely NOT at the same time).

Not going to lie (this might be silly), but getting mail (especially bookish mail) definitely makes me more happy than not. I love book mail or letters.

Whenever I’m at a book event surrounded by other bookish people, I’m way more happy than I usually am, and it just further confirms I should be working with books for the rest of my life.

I am more happy than not to help people with anything if I am able.

When I actually have time to paint or make art in one way or another, I am way more happy than I was before. Art is a release.

What makes you More Happy Than Not?

I’m tagging:

Rachel at Confessions of a Book Geek
Selah at A Bibliophile’s Style
Jenny at The Books, The Art, and Me
Katherine at Neon Yeti Reads
Ashley at Dear World…
Alison at Hardcovers and Heroines
Eden at Blogging Between the Lines
Shannon at It Starts at Midnight

AND YOU! Tell me why you are more happy than not.

From Page to Screen: The Scorch Trials Trailer

Alright, you guys. The Scorch Trials trailer premiered the same day I did a post about the new movie poster, so I wanted to wait a day or two to post about the trailer. So let me show it to you and then we’ll discuss it after, okay? Here it is:

Now that you’ve seen it, let’s talk about it. This is going to be a little ranty. If you’ve read the book, this movie trailer is NOTHING like it. There are characters with the group that shouldn’t even BE with the group; there is information given to Thomas and the Gladers that was NEVER given to them like that; there’s just a lot of stuff that’s different. It’s really annoying, but at the same time, it does look pretty AWESOME. It’s still going to be a good movie, I think. Now that I’ve seen TMR and separated the book and the movie in the mind, I can go into TST knowing it’s going to be SO different. Also, the Scorch looks EXACTLY like I pictured, so that’s definitely a plus. I’ve seen that James Dashner actually approved all of these changes. Do any of you guys know if that’s true and where I can see that?

What do YOU think about the trailer?

From Page to Screen: The Scorch Trials poster!

As you may or may not know, this blog started with a review of The Maze Runner by James Dashner, and even though I thought the first movie was REALLY different and some parts of it irritated me, I’m still excited for the next movie, The Scorch Trials, and I’ll definitely be seeing it in the theater. Yesterday, they released the first poster for the movie over on Facebook, and I wanted to share it with everyone because it. looks. awesome.

The Scorch Trials Movie Poster

I’m so pumped about this poster, you guys. It looks A LOT like how I pictured the Scorch, so that’s really exciting. For anyone who’s wondering how much they’ll change the plot though, MTV recently released a behind-the-scenes video in which Wes Ball says they’re basically using the next two books in the series (The Scorch Trials and The Death Cure) as the basis for this movie. You can check out the full video on MTV.com. I thought that would irritate me, but honestly, I’ve kind of separated the books from the movies in my mind because of how different TMR was, so now I’m just kind of excited to see what’s going to happen.