Challenge Update: Week 5 of Short and Sweet & 1000+ Pages of Epic Fantasy + My Dog Gave Me A Heart Attack

Howdy my captivating, convivial Bookbaggers!

Welcome to another highly successful update of Short and Sweet and 1000+ Pages of Epic Fantasy, peppered with the tale of one of my dogs (I have 3 fur kids in various stages of decrepitude and idiocy) disappearing over a stormy night and generally scaring the bejesus out of me!

On that note, lets begin with:

Short and Sweet challenge badge

There wasn’t a huge amount of activity in this challenge last week, but still worthy of the mighty numbered list:

  1. I have still been reading a lot of Above/Below by Stephanie Campisi and Ben Peek to, from and during work (on my break of course!) and although I didn’t finish Above and flip to Below before the end of the week, I did at the start of this week and (spoiler alert) finished the whole kit and caboodle Wednesday, so in my next update I’ll share my new pick and tell you my general thoughts on the book (spoiler alert again – it was pretty great)AboveBelow-cover1-300x246
  2. I didn’t read any more of Cracklescape by Margo Lanagan last week either, but I did read another story yesterday so I’ll tell you about that in the next update, and since there is now only two stories left, I may even finish it over the weekend and will have another new book 😀Cracklescape_lg_large
  3. Lastly, on Sunday I read 2 stories from The Living Dead zombie anthology, coz I was having an out-of-the-rain-reading-binge again. “The Dead” by Michael Swanwick, was another one which dropped the mindless-dead-eating-everyone’s-face thing and instead had a world of the undead as commodities, bought and sold for cheap labour, the sex industry and as curiosities. Then because I was still in a zombie mood I read “The Dead Kid”  by Darrell Schweitzer, which is about a boy who wants to be in the local tough-kid gang headed by the school’s resident thug until he discovers that they have a dead, reanimated boy in their hideout to use as a plaything and test for potential new members. Both stories had a running theme of humanity being uglier and more deadly than the undead, and the zombies themselves were pretty placid and played the part of the victim more.A bunch of different zombie stories by different authors? What's not to love?

Until next week the contenders remain unchanged:

a clockwork orangeClockwork Orange by Anthony Burgess

i am legendI Am Legend by Richard Matheson

hornHorn by Peter M Ball

BleedBleed by Peter M Ball

deadly belovedDeadly Beloved by Max Allan Collins

ericThe Illustrated Eric by Terry Pratchett (writer) and Josh Kirby

Once again it was the next challenge that I really went crazy with this Sunday:

1000+ pages of epic fantasy challenge badgeAs I said, Sunday was a stay-inside-reading sort of day, especially with the stress of the rest of the weekend (which I’ll get into after official challenge business :P) so I got carried away in my two fantasy worlds again:

The Sending:

Maruman on the cover of The Sending72 pages (3 chapters)

Pages remaining: 272

Brisingr:

Brisingr31 Pages (2 chapters)

Pages remaining: 445

Total:

103 Pages

Pages remaining: 717

At this point because the plot is rushing forward with both books and I don’t feel like I’m in a reading rut anymore, I could possibly amp up my goal to 100 pages a week, but as I don’t know if every week will be so fruitful, I’m not gonna jinx it and instead if I got over 50 pages that’s just a bonus 🙂

Besides the above reading fun I also got stuck into one of my  Free Comic Book Day comics – Worlds of Aspen 2014 – which I quite enjoyed! The zero issue of The ZooHunters had a lovely art style and some interesting elements for a science fiction series, and Damsels in Excess was a solid zero issue introducing the 5 princesses of a realm where all men have been eliminated in some way by an unnamed sorceress. Both caught my interest so I’ll have to look out for their official first issues.

 

Now onto the story of my dog nearly giving me a heart attack/making me keel over with worry.

This is the face of a naughty dog who had me freaking out for a night and most of the next day. Damn cute little bitch (technically not offensive as it's completely accurate!) doesn't look fazed by the whole thing does she?

This is the face of a naughty dog who had me freaking out for a night and most of the next day. Damn cute little bitch (technically not offensive as it’s completely accurate!) doesn’t look fazed by the whole thing does she?

On Friday afternoon I had a dentist appointment, so my lovely mum agreed to pick me up early and drive me there. On the way out to meet her I checked my phone and I had a few missed calls from an unknown number. Thinking it was either someone I hadn’t updated in my contacts or a company trying to sell me something I txted them asking who they were and while we were driving to the dentist I got a txt back saying they had found my dog in some wetlands near my house but she had slipped her collar and escaped their yard!

Right away I rang and rescheduled the dentist appointment and we rushed home, hoping that she had made her way back there, and when there was no sign, we went down to the wetlands to search. After walking a few kilometres calling out to her and asking every dog-walker we saw if they had spotted a salt-and-pepper miniature schnauzer (nope), I rang the ranger to see if she was at the pound (nope) left a description and my details and we collected the collar off the woman who found her before returning home, defeated.

As I said at the start, I have three dogs of various ages and levels of stupidity, two of which I talked about in this post, and a third – Rocky, an excitable and quite thick Maltese/Shih Tzu/something else, possibly a poodle or terrier of some kind – we adopted last year when his owner, a former tenant of my mum’s, passed away. Tia, the only female of the bunch and the escapee falls on the older side of the group being around 10 this year (only a vet’s estimate as she’s a rescue dog) but is definitely the smartest and most sensible of the bunch (most of the time). Despite being generally more well-behaved and sleeping the majority of the day, this is the third time she has snuck past our gate and went walkabout, however the last two times we were contacted by the ranger or fellow dog-owner before we even knew she was gone. This time she was out god-knows-where with no identification, qualities which aren’t conducive to long periods in the wild (she is quite timid due to her background, has the physique of a pampered house-dog, and no teeth) and to top it off, storms were forecasted for the night.

Suffice to say, mum and I were racked with worry, and even though I tried to enjoy my pre-planned night of frivolity with friends, family and plentiful beverages, I think my mournful looks out the window every time a new burst of rain started may have dampened the night. Thanks to the support of said friends, family and beverages I was actually able to sleep that night, and then the next morning went to the library to make a missing flyer with the above photo (as it was the cutest one and has her with a similar haircut to the current one) before mum and I put them up around the wetlands and surrounds. Afterwards I called another pound, with no luck, who suggested I try local vets (my next plan anyway) and a Facebook page called Pets of Perth – Lost & Found.

I was going onto the book of faces anyway to post a status for people to share around, so I went to duplicate the status on the page and check the current posts to see if there was any leads. Almost right away I found a post about a dog which was found that morning in the carpark of the local shopping centre, which didn’t have a picture and described the dog as a terrier, but as I read on sounded more and more like Tia. With my heart in my throat I rang the woman and with only a minute or so of conversation she was also convinced that she had my dog and gave me her address which was only round the corner!

Right away Mum, Sarah (who had stayed over) and I jumped in the car and raced around to her house. As soon as I saw the woman emerging through the front door with Tia in her arms I burst into tears and rushed over. As she passed her over I saw the woman was also getting teary, and when I tried to offer her $50 as a thank you, she refused and insisted that returning her was its own reward.

The rest of the weekend felt so bizarre as the adrenaline wore off into stunned relief and I mainly spent it making Tia comfortable at home and generally trying to get myself back to feeling normal! Tia seemed in an amazing state considering she had spent a night out in the elements and must’ve traveled several kilometres going down to the wetlands, then making her way to the shops in the opposite direction by morning, and mostly she just wanted to rest and be near us and her doggy bros 🙂

Tia and the boys

Tia looking a bit stunned and bedraggled with the boys virtually sitting on her in welcome

My gratitude towards the woman who found her is almost inexpressible. Because of how Tia is with most strangers we knew she wouldn’t allow herself to be nabbed by just anyone, but I’m so glad she found a real animal-lover with a sweet dog of her own, who didn’t take her to the pound or report her to the rangers because she knew, being the weekend, that her owner wouldn’t be able to collect her till Monday. I’m also very grateful to the pound and local vet which told her about Pets of Perth – Lost & Found (and the woman at the pound who put me onto it!), and the Facebook page in general for existing and helping me find my silly old-lady pooch.

Sorry for rambling on about a completely non-book related subject, but since it was pretty major I thought I should share the saga with you, my beloved Bookbaggers 🙂

I promise the next update will be much more on-topic and to make up for it here’s some frivolous fun again!

Firstly this frickin’ hilarious Doctor Who parody video I watched today on A Wordless Blogger:

Next this scene from the last episode of Orphan Black because I think it is the most Sarah and I have ever laughed during this show (it’s usually more of an “AHHH what the hell just happened!? Who the hell is this guy?! Is he dodgy? Ah he’s totally dodgy! What is he…? Oh crap!” sort of show than a bundle of laughs):

And lastly this adorable GIF of a red panda which was featured in the Buzzfeed post The 27 Best Red Panda GIFs Of All Time:

red panda stretching

On that note I’m off as this post has become crazy long! Stay tuned for next week’s update but until then goodbye from your kooky Book Polygamist and my old mate Totoro:

goodbye totoro

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Quote

Notable Quotable #20

Its back door opened onto acres of weed and dirt and sheds with rusting corrugated roofs, patrolled by big dogs that were all fang and spiky hair and looked as if they’d barely survived electrocution.

Versatile is my middle name!…no, wait it’s Louise

On the 14th of June I received a surprise honor – Christie from bibliophiliacs  nominated me for The Versatile Blogger Award! 🙂

For those who haven’t heard of the award before you can find out all about it on the blog, Versatile Blogger Award but the basic lowdown is:

  1. If you are nominated, you’ve been awarded the Versatile Blogger award.
  2. When you’re nominated thank the person who gave you the award and include a link to their blog.
  3. Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly.
  4. Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award.
  5. Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.

So, first things first – thank you once again to Christie from bibliophiliacs. It really was a big surprise as I’m just a fledgling blogger and haven’t been able to post very regularly for a while, so thanks for making me feel special…and versatile 😀

My nominations for The Versatile Blogger Award are:

  1. Christie from bibliophiliacs (WordPress)
    One good nomination deserves another and bibliophiliacs is a well-deserved multiple nominee which consistently offers interesting posts about books, reading, literacy, libraries and the authors workplace – a book store with a cast of quirky clientele
  2. Chelle from Salmon & Avocado (WordPress)
    Chelle is actually one of my fellow Library students at Central Institute of Technology and it’s because of her that I even started Book Polygamist in the first place. Her blog is inspired by two of her favourite culinary ingredients – salmon and avocados – and features tons of quick, tasty recipes, cooking experiments and restaurant reviews
  3. Lauren from The Very Hungry Bookworm (WordPress)
    One of the first blogs I followed, The Very Hungry Bookworm is a clever blog which is a sort of book/food blog hybrid. Book reviews usually include a recipe  adapted from a dish that features in the book (or inspired by the book in general). She also blogs about movies and has one of the best rating systems I’ve ever encountered
  4. Siobhan from The Book and Biscuit (WordPress)
    Another blog I took a shine to early on, mainly because Siobhan likes some of the same novels as me and we both are fans of Alice in Wonderland related goodies 🙂 Besides book reviews she also posts interesting tidbits about book related events or sites, her newest purchases or gifts, and some excellent literary lists
  5. Miss Anderson from The Librarian Who Doesn’t Say Shhh (WordPress)
    A school librarian and teacher who blogs about books (especially Young Adult fiction), her career and other fun stuff like photo editing sites and programs
  6. Stephanie from Listful Thinking (WordPress)
    A HILARIOUS blog which embraces the mighty power of the list! As a Library student turned Library Technician (yes I have qualified – wooting ensues!) and a bit of a weirdo order-wise I love lists and Listful Thinking has some great ones. Check it out for a hearty giggle 🙂
  7. The Byronic Man from….The Byronic Man (WordPress)
    Very funny and clever posts. If I could sit and read the entirety of The Byronic Man in one sitting I would, but since he’s been going since November 2010 I may have to remain content with slowly devouring them. He has probably been nominated many a time but why not one more? 🙂
  8. Neely from NEELYWANG Photography + Design  (WordPress)
    A really stunning photography/design blog. I especially love her Macro Monday posts – beautiful stuff
  9. Jessy from Library Shenanigans (WordPress)
    A funny blog about all the weird and wonderful shenanigans that occur at libraries (they really do attract weirdos and not just bookworms people – trust me!) as well as other funny library related news
  10. Shivani from My Owl Barn (Blogger)
    The only blog on this list so far which is via Blogger not WordPress, but for me it was definitely worth joining and subscribing because I am absolutely crazy about owl things and this gives me a regular owl fix! All the posts feature some kind of owl related product or artwork, but often includes other pieces which are not owls and I have found some stunning art on there so its worth a look-see even if you’re not an owl freak like me :p
  11. J. Vance from A Librarian’s Guide to Etiquette (Blogger)
    A blog I only discovered extremely recently (i.e. last Friday) when browsing the blogroll on Library Shenanigans. Every post made me twitter to myself (as in I emitted a series of little high-pitched laughs like a twittering bird not I sent myself messages of 140 characters or less on a social networking site) and there is actually some great advice for Library workers behind the humor as well
  12. Allie from Hyperbole and a Half (Blogger)
    Another Blogger blog that I discovered on Friday when browsing. Awesomely funny posts accompanied by equally awesomely funny drawings which tell stories from the authors day-to-day life – kinda like a cross between a diary blog and an autobiographical comic 🙂
  13. Ginger from GReads (Blogger)
    GReads receives this nomination mostly for her fun features: Tune In Tuesdays, where she takes a break from books to showcase music; The Blogger behind the Book, where she interviews other book bloggers; and TGIF at GReads, where she recaps the posts of the week and asks her readers a question for them to answer on their own blog or via the comments page. She also has quite an impressive archive of reviews, nicely arranged in alphabetical order 🙂
  14. The gang at The Broke and the Bookish (Blogger)
    The Broke and the Bookish is another blog which is receiving a nomination based on their wonderful features. The blog hosts a few clever features and/or blog memes, but the most popular is Top Ten Tuesday a meme which won the Best Book Blog Meme award during Book Blogging Appreciation Week  2011. Every Tuesday they post a new Top Ten list answered by one of the contributors and their followers are welcomed to post their own list and link back creating a wonderful web of book blog Top Ten lists every Tuesday! I have yet to post a Top Ten Tuesday list but as my regular readers (or Bookbaggers) know I am quite the fond of Top 10 lists and I’m very impressed with the number of themes The Broke and the Bookish has managed to compile over time (over 100 and counting!)
  15. And last but not least:
    lambskinny the administrator at The Versatile Blogger Award (WordPress)
    Because creating and maintaining a place for all nominees to find out more about the award and share the love is worth its own reward 🙂

Nominating 15 bloggers/blogs was surprisingly tricky because I’m still relatively new to the blogosphere and don’t actually follow that many blogs. So, with this list of nominations you are pretty much getting the entirety of my following/subscriptions lists from both WordPress and Blogger BUT they are all well deserved and worth a read 🙂

Lastly here is the 7 facts about me for Christie at bibliophiliacs :

  1. I have two small, furry, old dogs. The oldest one, Charlie, is a Maltese cross Cavalier King Charles Spaniel who looks like a fluffy, curly ball of fur attempting to infiltrate the couch or bed by impersonating a cushion. I’ve had him since I was 14 and he’s approaching 11 now, is going blind, has allergies which causes him to itch like crazy and sleeps 95% of the time but still acts like a crazy puppy when I get home. The second one, Tia, is a salt and pepper Miniature Schnauzer who has only been with us for a little over a year. She was a rescue dog that someone found abandoned in a backyard, with very overgrown and tangled fur, ticks all over her body and teats still producing milk after a recent litter of puppies. It’s been a long road to get her use to people (we suspect she has been abused or mistreated in some way) and she has also had to have quite a bit of medical treatment (an emergency spay due to an infection in her uterus and all of her teeth removed because they were in such bad nick) but she is now such a sweet and funny little dog who is so happy to see me when I get home. The vet estimated her age at around 8 or 9 so she’s not much younger than Charlie which means my fur children are more like furry geriatrics but I love them all the same.

    We are cushions! You do not see us!

  2. As I mentioned above I’m crazy about owls (and I was before everyone jumped on the owl bandwagon!). This makes it pretty easy for my friends and family to get me presents as I collect owl statues and owls of every size, shape, colour and pattern seem to be everyone at the moment. Currently I have around 30 but I haven’t counted in a while and I also have plenty of owl earrings, necklaces and clothing with owls on them. Hoot! 😀

    Some of my growing owl family 🙂

  3. I like dead things. That sounds way creepier than it is and is not a great sentence to lead from but hear me out. Firstly I’m not some crazy goth who likes to fantasize about getting it on with a vampire in a cemetery before finding a goat to slaughter and offer to their satanic master (before any goths get up on their high horses over that statement – chillax. I use to be a goth in highschool and I was just playing around with the stereotypes that get thrown about. I’m not being serious. Please don’t eat me). I also don’t condone killing animals for no reason and even though I am a meat eater I could probably never kill my own cow if I felt like a juicy steak. When I say I like dead things I simply mean that I’m fascinated by dead animals (namely birds and insects) and animal bones. If I come across a dead pigeon on the side of the road I stop and take a photo of it. If a bird has died and the bones have been completely cleaned by insects I may even take one home for my collection. I have a box where I keep dead insects that I find and It has gotten to the point when friends and family will give me insects that they find or even take pictures of dead birds and forward them to me. I won’t go into WHY I love dead things because you may already think I’m a freak but rest assured the reasons are fully wholesome and nothing to do with evil science and creating my own army of zombie animals, I swear…. although that would be pretty sweet…

    MWAHAHAHAHA!…..*cough*….sorry

  4. I use to be a Florist’s Assistant so I have an interest in flowers and especially the meanings behind them. The Victorian language of flowers is a particular interest of mine, especially because one species of flower can often have many different and conflicting meanings. I wish I could grow a whole garden of flowering plants but alas, my mother’s green thumb did not pass on to me and If I don’t kill my plants it’s usually from sheer blind luck.

    Lavender, one of my favourite flowers can mean mistrust or on the other hand love, devotion, purity, cleanliness, luck or compassion. How bizarre is that?

  5. I’m a lesbian, but not a very good one. I say this because at the age of 25 I have only had one serious girlfriend and two disastrous ones and even the serious relationship didn’t last very long. Also I’m usually too busy/lazy/disinterested to go to gay bars or other events where I could meet other lesbians, I’m not particularly fussed about getting married (although I do support same-sex marriage), and I’m usually surprised when a celebrity comes out so my gaydar is shot (only with the ladies though – when it comes to gay men I can generally spot it a mile away).

    Maybe one day I’ll meet an equally rubbish lesbian and we can be rubbish and lazy together 😛

  6. I’m a Librarian who has tattoos. Well, that isn’t 100% true – I’m a Library Assistant with a Library Technician qualification but that’s a mouthful so when I explain my job I usually just say Librarian if I’m talking to people outside the library industry. The tattoos part however is 100% correct. I have two eye tattoos, one which is a tiger’s eye and one which is an owl’s eye on either side of my chest/front of my shoulder (you can see them a little bit in my Gravatar picture). Because of their placement and the dress code at my place of work (smart casual) they remain hidden the majority of the time, so much so that one of my lecturers (who I only had on a day when I worked afterwards) thought they were brand new when seeing them at our end of semester afternoon tea, even though I’ve had them for the entirety of my course.

    This isn’t me obviously – I wish!

  7. I unconsciously sing/hum little songs to myself. To my friends and family this has become endearing I guess because they hardly ever mention it/giggle at me anymore, but I found myself doing it on one of my first days at a different campus library and didn’t even realise until my co-worker started laughing. It usually happened when I’m working on something and the tunes don’t sound like anything really – just a string of notes like the made up song of a child – but if I’m really into a task it may evolve into an actual song but with what I’m doing replacing the real lyrics – i.e. a song about washing the dishes to the tune of Don’t Worry, Be Happy by Bobby McFerrin (to my knowledge I’ve never done that specifically before by now I’ve thought of it next time I’m washing dishes it will probably become reality)

    “Washing dishes in the sink, when I’m done I’ll have a drink! Don’t worry, be happy…”

    So there we go, all the required duties of becoming a Versatile Blogger Award winner have been fulfilled and only…. almost a month after my nomination O.o oops.

    Thanks once again to Christie – I was almost on the verge of shutting down Book Polygamist because I’ve been too busy to post so your nomination gave me the kick in the behind I sorely needed 🙂

    I hope to get onto more posting now I’ve finished my course but since I’ve been working so much it’s been a little tricky so hopefully you, my few but loyal Bookbaggers will stick with me and I can bring you more Book Polygamy in the near future.

    For now Happy Reading! and I hope you find some new wonderful blogs to follow in my nominations list.