Our Blog

Winter Solstice: Best Books to Read in the Dark

Photo by Ruvim Miksanskiy from Pexels

It’s time for the longest night of the year in a year that has felt like a long cold night in and of itself. So what to do in the dark? Traditionally, solstice celebrations are common in any culture where the weather gets cold, and most have the same basic idea: get warm, get inside (ideally with a nice fire, good food, and some excellent booze), and keep your inner light burning until the sun comes up.

Some pagan traditions keep a candle or fire light through the night, with celebrants awake to watch over it, carrying the light through the long night, and there are ways to capture the spirit of this old tradition (without the fire hazard). Instead, set up some soft lighting, and as the sun goes down at 4pm, snuggle up with a good book. What better way to spend a long night than sitting up till sunrise with a page-turner?

Posted by Rose Moore

Books to Fill the Void Now That Supernatural is Over

After fifteen years, Supernatural has finally come to an end. Sam and Dean Winchester, having beaten death, the Devil, demons, angels, and monsters of all shapes and sizes, are now taking on God himself, and no one knows how these Wayward Sons will carry on. All any fan knows is that this is the end of the road for the show.

And with a show that has been on the air for a decade and a half, this ending is going to leave a serious void in most fans’ lives. Where are the lovers of monster-hunting and emotional turmoil going to go next? Thankfully, we’ve got the books to help wean everyone off the Winchesters, and bring them back to the (mercifully monster-free) real world.

Posted by Rose Moore

Alternatives to NaNoWriMo

Image by Pexels from Pixabay

November has arrived, and with it, National Novel Writing Month! The annual event challenges writers, new and experienced, to write an entire novel in just thirty days. And yes, they mean the whole thing! NaNoWriMo has become a global phenomenon, providing not just motivation to write (which, let’s face it, every writer needs from time to time), but communities to discuss writing, meetups, and fun online tools to track progress.

It’s not the only themed month that challenges creative people, either. Inktober (October) sees artists around the world creating daily drawings based on shared prompts, WikiWriMo (February) is all about editing and updating a Wikipedia page a day, and dozens of spin-off challenges exist for writing blogs, haikus, fridge poems, genres of novels, and more. But what about new monthly challenges that aren’t about art or writing? We’ve got some great ideas to try this month, if writing a whole book seems just a little…daunting.

Posted by Rose Moore

Literary Roles of Ryan Reynolds

Image by Yerson Retamal from Pixabay

Ryan Reynolds isn’t an actor who is particularly well known for his cerebral, literary roles. The Canadian shot to superstardom as Van Wilder and a string of similar characters, all stunningly handsome, popular, successful… and in films that capitalize on low-brow humor. From Waiting to Adventureland to The Proposal, Reynolds was the ultimate sexy-guy-in-comedies for over a decade, before adding some action roles to his resume. Now, of course, he may be most famous as Deadpool, the foul-mouthed and funny superhero (who, in many ways, is Van Wilder in a super-suit with a bunch of guns).

However, as the actor turns 44 in October, we’re taking a look back at Reynold’s filmography, and the surprising number of roles that do come from the page. Some may be the comic book page, of course, and others are looser adaptations of the classics, but there should be no doubt that Reynolds has a range far beyond retro stoner comedy.

Posted by Rose Moore

Pop Culture And Literary Elves, Ranked

[Photo by Kenan Kitchen on Unsplash]

Christmas is going to be here sooner than you think—and while that it true every year, this year it feels particularly sudden, as most people are still on their two-hundredth day of March! So to start building that Christmas spirit and adding a little positivity to the world, General Mills has blessed us with a brand new vehicle for morning sugar: Elf-themed cereal. This maple-flavored corn cereal comes with Christmas-shaped marshmallows, and after a year like this, no one is going to judge you for eating it from now till February.

So in honor of these little bowls of sugary joy, we’re taking a look at some of the most iconic elves in pop culture and seeing which are the best of the best.

Posted by Rose Moore

Where to Start if You’re New to Comics

Not too long ago, comic books were the refuge of the strange nerd, and readers had to put up with a whole lot of snobbery. The Simpsons nailed the public perception of comic book fans with Comic Book Guy, a character no one wants to be.

Now, however, those brave souls who kept on reading comics have had the last laugh, with superheroes and comic books taking over the mainstream. Marvel and DC have had some of the biggest blockbusters of the past ten years. Superhero TV has become its own genre. Comic books beyond the classic heroes have started to become fodder for adaptations, and new comics, conventions, and cosplay are booming.

As longtime comic book geeks settle in to enjoy seeing all their favorites hitting the big screen, though, what about the newbies? The people who have never so much as flipped through a Spider-Man comic, who don’t know their Bane from the Batman, and who would love to discover what all the fuss is about? Well, when decades of comic books can seem a little intimidating, we’ve got all the best places to start—whether superheroes are your thing, or you are more interested by the idea of comic books and graphic novels that take a different, less-caped, approach.

Posted by Rose Moore