Wednesday, November 26, 2008

swept away...

I've been wanting to do a post on these stories for quite a while now, basically ever since I started devouring Robin McKinley's books about a month ago. The richness of her writing has made her very high on my favorite authors list, probably in a miraculous second as far as live authors go. So far I have read six of her books, Sunshine, Deerskin, Chalice, Beauty, Spindles End, and Outlaws of Sherwood.

Chalice is the first book of hers that I read and it is definitely what got me hooked. A young woman, Marisol, who is known for her fine bees and honey, is chosen to be the Chalice, or helper, to the new Master. However, the land which they will govern is broken from the unexpected death of the previous Master and his Chalice. But the old Master left no Heir so Marisol must help the land and the people except his brother who was given over to the priests of fire as Master. This book is a beautiful escape, I wish it had never ended.

Sunshine is her only modern day book that I've read, and when I first realized it took place now, I wasn't expecting to much, because I've found that a lot of fantasy authors can't write realistic stories so well and vice-versa for contemporary authors. I was wrong though, Sunshine did not disappoint me in the least. What made me continue reading this book to find out it was so good was the fact that it was a vampire story. With all of the Twilight craze going on and me not being into it at all, I figured I would find my own thrilling vampire story to read on Halloween. (yes, I did read it on Halloween, I finished it that weekend too) Anyway, I'm not going to say much about this book except for that its amazing, and it made me wish vampires were real (though, I kind of doubt that was the goal of the book) and bake cinnamon rolls.

Spindle's End is a retelling of Sleeping Beauty, and I have to say it Robin McKinley did a good job of it. There were a few thing in it that bothered me a tiny bit, but really they were nothing. The plot is full of fun twists and romance that is very satisfying. The end got a bit crazy, and I had to re-read certain parts to make sure I understood what was going on, but I enjoyed every moment of reading this book. I was sad to have it end.

The Outlaws of Sherwood is the one I've read the most recently, and I loved it all. The end was the only thing that disappointed me, but I would still say its worth reading. It is rightly named since it truly is about all of the outlaws of Sherwood, there are many plots intertwined and at least three romances as well. It changes point of view many times, fallowing Robin for a while then switching to Merian and touching Cecil, Little John, Will Scarlet, and Friar Tuck as well. There are surprising turns and twists through out the book and mainly at the end. Enjoyable, but my least favorite so far.

Beauty is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast and wow, it is amazing. I remember the tale in our copy of A Children's Book of Virtues and reading it over and over when I was probably around the age of seven. This version I will certainly read over and over for many years to come. It doesn't disappoint in any way except for the fact that it ends. There is a sequel, however, that I have yet to read, so there for it truly is without flaw, since it does not end. smile. Heart touching and lovely in every way, you must read this book.

Deerskin is a re-telling of the not well known story, Donkeyskin. Lissar is the neglected daughter of the most beautiful woman in the world and the most handsome king of one of the seven kingdoms. When her mother dies, she finally comes into light, after being forgotten by all in the castle, when she is given a royal gift of a hound called Ash. Then, a horror resulting in pain strikes her and she flees for her life, forgetting her previous life. This is an amazing story of healing and true love, don't expect a child's story, it goes way beyond that. This is my favorite of McKinley's books.

I'm not sure when I'll be back, but have a happy Thanks Giving!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

and so...

Time to get to work on Christmas presents!
My friend, Lauren, and I are making these books together, for each other for Christmas. And I am just having so much fun working on it! We have a rule where we can't see the other's book until they're done, which is extremely hard when we work on them at the same time like we did last Sunday. These are my some of my favorite pages I've done so far.

I got the urge to do this page while I was writing all of the I wants for my last post. It's hands freeing a bird if you can't tell, sorry the pictures aren't too good. The writing is a little almost poem thing I wrote about basically freeing yourself from the cages that people and you put yourself in. I hope she likes this page a lot.

This is the first page I did and I love it so much it gives me shivers. Isn't it grand when things turn out exactly how you pictured them in you mind? Ooh, so satisfying! For this one, I drew out the trees and the girl on different paper and then cut them out (which, I might add was no easy chore) and glued them on to page spread which I had first washed with the blue paint. Also I will add that there are some very impressive (if I do say so myself) tiny branches and leaves that, sadly, did not show up in the picture. I just remembered to add, in case you couldn't tell, that its of a girl on a tireswing.

A circus! Hurray!
Since I'm showing you only my favorites, all I seem able to say is how much I love this or it was fun to make, and this is no exception. I adore this spread and it was a ball to put together. (how'd I do at that? hehe) I got the idea from the circus theme artwork that the blogger of artandghost was doing a while ago that I just fell in love with. Also, after this photo was taken I wrote some things on the edges and bottom of the pages since it seemed a bit bare.

Life's been busy but I'm going to work on posting more faithfully. It shouldn't be to bad since I'm getting much faster about it. I'll write again soon!

Love, Clara

Thursday, November 13, 2008

I want to... Be free, stay at home, Laugh, absorb sunlight, run, love someone, get my hands messy, sew, mail a letter, cook, collect, hold a baby, share, take a long bubble bath, dance, bake bread, design something for someone special, drink wine, clean, tell someone I love them, carve a pumpkin, toss a coin in a fountain, Paint, go skinny-dipping, go to an antique store, Jump on the bed, dink apple cider, run away, build a tree house, meet someone new, say NO, read aloud to myself, dance alone, cry, hold hands with someone, gallop away on a horse, sing and sing and sing, Fly, have a pillow fight, go on a road trip, find the perfect bike, break a law, take beautiful pictures, go caroling, bake cookies, have a food fight, throw a plate against a wall, go sailing, go to a ball, explore a forest, travel, move to my imaginary world, do photo shoots, explore a cave, grow a garden, paint a mural, eat breakfast in bed, be asked to dance, pick apples from my own apple tree, touch some one's life, milk a goat, bless a person, keep bees and collect the honey, not worry, live alone, publish a knitting pattern, live in a story book, learn something new every day, have my own shop, know something no one else knows, howl at the moon, ride in a hot air balloon, Dance in the Rain, have a picnic by myself, decorate my play house, be pushed on the swings, forgive faster, Be happy with my self, grow roses, and set a songbird free.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Promises and pixie dust

Once there was a young girl who wished for nothing more than to meet a fairy,
then one day and without any warning her wish came true!
She gazed at the being of light in shear aw.

Where could she have come from?

The young girl look up and down and all around her but could not find a single clue.

She smiled to think there might be a path out of this world in her own room.

The fairy spoke,
and told the girl her name and where she came from.
The two became friends, telling each other about they're worlds and lives.
Finally, the girl asked if there was a way she might escape into the world of the fairies.

"Yes," the fairy replied, "there is a way."
The girl gasped in delight.
"But," the fairy continued, "I have yet to discover its secrets.
However, now that I have met one of this world,
I shall work all the harder at my learnings,
until I have learned how to bring you back with me."

Disappointed, the young girl sat down, but she did not lose heart.
Someday, she would still get to leave.
Someday, the fairy world would welcome her.

It was now time to say goodbye,
and so they caressed,

and the girl let her go.

(all photos were taken by me)