Two-Bit Musings.

500 and Counting, Yo.

Woah! Maybe Snap’s got something to say after all?

(she shrugs and smiles)

. . .

Hey hey hey!

I got notified by the WordPress fairies that I have over 500 followers!

I feel like a cool kid! Like the belle of the ball!

Like. . . the world is my friggin’ oyster, yo!

(whispers: “Wait . . . Who’s SnapDragon?”)

. . .

So stay tuned for more Two-Bit Musings.

More Desert Island Picks.

More treasures from the Book Nook.

More art.

More fun.

More half-witted reflections on this fumbling, bumbling experience we call life.

‘Cuz we in this together, love.

And I thank you.

. . .

SnapDragon is a writer, reader, painter, collector of funky earrings, and old-soul drinker of coffee, in all of its glorious forms.

Follow if you dare. (Or if you’re bored. Either one.)

Book-of-the-Month.

Kindred Spirits.

It’s Book-of-the-Month Day, yo!

A short critique of L.M. Montgomery’s Anne of Green Gables

Lovely Little Morning, 2020. Original Photo by SnapDragon X.
All rights reserved.

Good morning, Dear Reader!

As usual, I intend to keep this review short and sweet.

Very sweet.

Because that is exactly how I would describe this absolutely lovely piece of literature.

. . .

I’m not really sure how this one escaped me all these years. As a white girl from the northeastern suburbs of the US of A, you’d think this novel would have stumbled into my backpack somewhere along the lines.

Anyway, you may know that Anne was one of the 100 selected for my 100 Classics Reading Challenge.

And this one’s a keeper, friends.

. . .

For those of you who’ve never actually met me, you need to understand something:

While I am very much an opinionated, embracer of curse words and rock n’ roll, I’d say 75% of me is a combination of librarian, Mother Goose, and Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz.

Hot, I know.

I absolutely love “innocent” things, and Anne has a delightfully-innocent appreciation for. . . well, pretty much everything.

She gets excited about the weather. The trees. The possibility that each day brings.

She reminds me of everything I hope to be:

Optimistic. Loving. A gentle spirit.

And she has vibrant red hair.

. . .

Favorite passage?

“But Anne, with her elbows on the window sill, her soft cheek laid against her clasped hands, and her eyes filled with visions, looked out unheedingly across city roof and spire to that glorious dome of sunset sky and wove her dreams of a possible future from the golden tissue of youth’s own optimism. All the Beyond was hers with its possibilities lurking rosily in the oncoming years–each year a rose of promise to be woven into an immortal chaplet” (Montgomery).

(hugs herself and smiles thoughtfully)

Yes, Anne. Yes.

. . .

SnapDragon is a woman who refuses to live life in fear.

Follow her Two-Bit Musings and more on Snippets of SnapDragon.

Want more Book Reviews? Check it out, yo.

Tuesday Talks.

Tuesday Talks: On Reading.

You’re here because you like to read, no?

So Little Time, 2020. Original Photo by SnapDragon X. All rights reserved.

Today’s Tuesday Talk Question:

What is your favorite book of ALL TIME? Yes, you can only choose one! Tell us why you love it more than all the rest. And who knows? It could be Snap’s next Book-of-the-Month! (high five)

Remember to be kind in your responses! (And, you know. In life in general.)

Okay. Ready, set, go!

. . .

SnapDragon is a mom, homemaker, and certified book worm.

Follow her Two-Bit Musings and more (like book reviews, yo!) on Snippets of SnapDragon.

Book-of-the-Month.

A Delightful Little Surprise.

A short critique of Liane Moriarty’s Big Little Lies

Sweet-Baby Fiction, 2019. Original Photo by SnapDragon X. All rights reserved.

I’m not gonna lie, Dear Reader.

I bought this book for two reasons:

1. It was in the discount bin.

2. Stephen King called it “A hell of a good book”.

And, despite popular opinion of King, and the fact that IT might be his worst publication ever, he’s my literary god.

So I gave it a whirl.

And, let me say, I was extremely satisfied with this piece of fiction.

In fact, I have that rare, extraordinarily-giddy feeling of discovering a new favorite author.

. . .

Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty (2014)

Big Little Lies provided the perfect blend of plot and character; I seamlessly flipped through the pages, genuinely eager to find out what happened next.

The combination of abuse, a murder mystery, and ridiculous gossip and game playing among elementary school parents, kept me invested.

I hope the television series lives up to the book. (But, who are we kidding. You know bookworms like me wear pins on my lapel exclaiming The Book was Better or other such literary snobbery.) Anyway, one can still hope.

Favorite passage? Hmm. This is another paperback now filled with dog-eared selections of delight.

How about this one:

“It wasn’t beautiful people like Celeste who were drawing Jane’s eyes, but ordinary people and the beautiful ordinariness of their bodies. A tanned forearm with a tattoo of the sun reaching out across the counter at the service station. The back of an older man’s neck in a queue at the supermarket. Calf muscles and collarbones. It was the strangest thing” (Moriarty).

Ahh. Fiction at its finest.

I’ll be picking up another book of yours, Liane.

Well done.

It's No Secret: I Love This Book.

It’s No Secret: I Love This Book.

A Short Critique of The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

Shh, 2019. Original Photo by SnapDragon X. All rights reserved.

Ahh. Another book finished. Another book enjoyed.

The Secret Life of Bees made my list of 100 Classics, in case you missed it. (Check it out here, yo.)

It’s mentioned on almost every list of must-read fiction. So I decided to give it a whirl.

I read Sue Monk’s Kidd The Mermaid Chair years ago, which left me a bit disappointed with the G-rated, Nicholas Sparks-type dialogue. So I started this book with half-hearted enthusiasm.

But Kidd’s debut novel is worth the read, yo.

I recently started a habit of placing dog ears on pages I fancy. I can’t quite bring myself to highlight anything, as this feels like a violation of the text and an intrusion on a fellow reader’s experience. But I like to commemorate beautiful phrasing when I encounter it, at least in some small way.

I have dozens of dog ears throughout this book.

I’m a Nerd, 2019. Original Photo by SnapDragon X. All rights reserved.

Kidd writes with confidence and sophistication. Her use of first-person is realistic, and honest. Her characters are memorable, and in a word, lovely.

While I don’t believe I’d ever live down south, the thought of residing in a bright pink house and selling hand-crafted jars of honey makes me happy. This book made me yearn for the summer days of bare feet and ice-cold drinks. Fireworks. Tree swings.

My favorite character is without a doubt Miss August Boatwright. She is the embodiment of pure empathy. She has a patience, a wisdom, and a kindness I hope to employ for the rest of my days. I just want to hug her.

My favorite passage?

(pulls at hair like a cartoon character at the brink of a meltdown)

To make it easy on myself, I’ll go with my gut:

“I sipped. Rosaleen, however, downed hers so fast she let out a belch that the boys in my old junior high would have envied. It was unbelievable” (Kidd).

Yes, Sue Monk Kidd. Yes.

So let’s raise a jelly jar of sweet tea: May we have countless days of curiosity and companionship ahead, dear ones.

The 100 Classics Reading Challenge: The Rules.

The 100 Classics Reading Challenge: The Rules.

See SnapDragon’s selection process for her Ultimate Library.

Heaven at Home, 2019. Original Photo by SnapDragon X. All rights reserved.

So you like to read, eh?

Then welcome to Snippets of SnapDragon’s newest feature:

The 100 Classics Reading Challenge!

(cue ribbon cutting and confetti cascades)

As a certified high school English teacher, a post-graduate of English studies and creative writing, and just a bonafide lover of fiction, I decided it was time to create. . .

The Ultimate Library.

So I asked myself, “What are my favorite novels of all time? What are my favorite novels to teach? What are some novels, new and old, of critical acclaim?”

I envisioned a wall of empty shelves.

What to choose? There are so many novels I haven’t even read yet! (Gulp.)

So I decided to give myself some homework, by creating one doozy of a reading list.

The Rules:

  1. I decided to select 100 volumes for this venture. I say volumes because some of the titles are a part of a set, or trilogy. (For example, The Iliad and The Odyssey came in one volume. So while these are two separate novels, they only fill one space out of my designated 100.)
  2. All 100 volumes are works I have not yet read. As I said, I realized that there were so many “classics” that I’ve never even cracked open. So like a kid in a candy shoppe (or… me in a candy shoppe) I went on a book-buying binge.
  3. I’m a Formalist. Simply put, I want a story to speak for itself. While historical context and the author’s biographical influence can add layers of meaning to a work, that is not how I judge a novel. These 100 volumes were selected by title alone, and therefore do not meet certain quotas based on an author’s gender, race, age, or philosophy.

So there you have it!

My shelves are stocked, yo.

I began this challenge on my 30th birthday, and vowed to finish all 100 by my 40th. Considering I’ve only made it through three so far, I have my doubts about this timeline. (I like to read other stuff, too!)

But I shall not give up!

Check out my next post for the full list!

Happy reading, friends.