I am going to be offline for awhile due to a bionic upgrade (aka knee replacement), but should be back shortly. Please send good vibes and happy thoughts my way! more details

Monday, August 18, 2014

Review: The Bees by Laline Paull

Book Review: The Bees by Laline Paull - Alexia's Books and Such...The Bees by Laline Paull

ARC received via Amazon Vine in exchange for an honest review

The Handmaid's Tale meets The Hunger Games in this brilliantly imagined debut set in an ancient culture where only the queen may breed and deformity means death.

Flora 717 is a sanitation worker, a member of the lowest caste in her orchard hive where work and sacrifice are the highest virtues and worship of the beloved Queen the only religion. But Flora is not like other bees. With circumstances threatening the hive's survival, her curiosity is regarded as a dangerous flaw but her courage and strength are an asset. She is allowed to feed the newborns in the royal nursery and then to become a forager, flying alone and free to collect pollen. She also finds her way into the Queen's inner sanctum, where she discovers mysteries about the hive that are both profound and ominous. (Goodreads)

My Thoughts:

Flora 717, born to the lowest caste of the hive, is an anomaly. With a large build and considered ugly, she is the only sanitation worker who isn't mute. She has several unusual talents that, along with her intellect and curious nature, make her an asset to her hive.

Surprised at how quickly I was drawn into the story, I really liked Flora and became invested in her story. I was proud of her for not meekly accepting her designated role and wanting more, while still supporting the structure of her hive.

I was fascinated by the various roles every bee played in keeping the hive running smoothly, from the lowly sanitation workers to the nursery feeders to the ladies in waiting. Everyone has their role to play in order to keep the hive running, including the dreaded police bees. Flora 717 steps outside her role, but only because the hive is in trouble and needs her multiple talents.

The book has been compared to The Handmaid's Tale, but I honestly didn't see any similarities. It has been awhile since I read THT, but I know it left quite an impression and made me think. While I enjoyed The Bees, it didn't leave the same impression.

This is an odd book in that I've never read anything like it. An enjoyable read with interesting tidbits about bees and their hive, I took it at face value and didn't try to ferret out any deeper meaning. Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar and sometimes a bee is just a bee. I enjoyed the story and will leave the deep analysis to others.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

July Wrap Up

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Hoping that monthly wrap up posts will help keep me on track this year!

Books read

In order to meet my Goodreads goal of 100 books, I need to read 8.33 books per month. According to Goodreads, I've read 7 books this month:

  1. Shattered by Kevin Hearne
  2. The City by Dean Koontz
  3. Stay With Me by Alison Gaylin
  4. Help For the Haunted by John Searles
  5. No Limits by Lori Foster
  6. Personal by Lee Child
  7. The Bees by Laline Paull

Commenting

Started off strong for the month and easily made my goal of commenting on 5-10 blogs per day for the first half of the month, then went on sabbatical for my knee operation. August will be slow as I know I won't be online very often, but should be back in the swing of things by September!

Overall

In a way, I'm surprised I managed to read seven books last month. I actually took two books to the hospital with me, thinking I'd have plenty of time to read. Obviously, I've never been in the hospital before or I would have known better. Took me several days after I got home before I even felt like reading, and even then I could only manage a magazine. My husband said he knew I was feeling better when I actually picked up a book. Go me!

I'm currently using a walker and going to physical therapy three times a week. My at-home exercises take a few hours every day, but progress seems slow. I know it's only been a little over a week, but I'm impatient. I get tired easily and find myself falling asleep at odd times, even in the middle of reading. The horror! ;)

Thanks for all of the good wishes! It means a lot to know that people care.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Becoming the Bionic Woman (or why I'll be offline for awhile)

Going to be offline for awhile due to a bionic upgrade, aka knee replacement surgery. Not sure how long recovery will take, but I know I'm going to be extremely disappointed if I'm not able to leap tall buildings or make a cool gee-gee-gee sound when I run!

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So many tests! I've learned that no matter where I go, people keep wanting to take my blood. Think I might have gotten on a Vampire Blood Donor list by mistake!

A very nice lady came by Sunday afternoon to set me up with my very own torture device! After I get home from the hospital, I have to strap my leg into this thing for a minimum of six hours a day. Luckily, I can split those six hours however I like, so I'm thinking three sessions of two hours each. 

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Looking forward to all the books I'll be able to read during those sessions! I just have to lie there while the machine bends my leg for me. My kind of exercise! Read-a-thon, here I come!

So anyway, just wanted to explain why I'm going to be offline for a month or so. I'll try to schedule a couple of posts, but don't be alarmed if you come visit and the blog has gone radio silent.

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Please send good vibes and happy thoughts my way! Light a candle. Sacrifice a chicken. Say a prayer. Whatever it takes! See you on the other side!


Sunday, July 20, 2014

Mini Bloggiesta Wrap Up

Mini Bloggiesta Wrap Up - Alexia's Books and Such

Well, another Bloggiesta has come and gone. This round was a major fail for me, as I got almost nothing done. :(

Saturday we hung out with my husband's godson, who brought his family down for the weekend. I bonded with his six year old over books, which was cool! Sunday I got a call that my medical liaison was in the area and could set me up today, so she came over to show me how everything worked. Having surgery this week and I get a fancy-schmancy machine to help bend my new knee. Then of course I had to play with everything and sort of forgot about my list of goals. *sigh*

Bloggiesta Goals:

  • Crosspost reviews on Amazon
  • Crosspost reviews on Goodreads
  • Update TBR Page
  • Update Reviews Page
  • Comment on at least 12 Bloggiesta participants blogs
  • Do at least one mini-challenge
Oh well, there's always next time....

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