Sunday, April 25, 2010

"Sunday Scoop" the Gang's Weekly Column!


Howdy y'all (don't hear much of that in NJ!)...  It'sa Me- Mario.  Ok, enough of the little kid stuff.  Actually, there is a good reason I am feeling young and silly again.  With the influx of requests and emails we received recently, it was really hard answering everyone.  What we decided to do since our plate is super full already, is to hand select a few requests that really caught our attention and put them on the "to be read" list.  For those of you who have not received a reply from us yet, be patient with us.  We decided to start off with a few books to review and see where it goes from there.  Now, why I am feeling so silly.  One of the review requests we got had me at "hello".  Why? It was different.  Something unique that stood out.  We got a request by an author named Bart King.  The title of the book- "The Book of Gross Stuff"... If that doesn't get your attention, nothing would!  Needless to say, I asked Bart for a copy of the book.  As soon as it came, I sort of couldn't put it down.  Just by principle, I should NOT have been reading it during dinner, but heck, I couldn't stop reading it!
Bart has done a great job!  What I found was basically all those gross, but cool things that you find out in his book are things that I really was curious about.  Let's be honest here- the more "gross" something is, the more we are consciously OR subconsciously curious about.  I promise if you are thinking that I am crazy, you won't after you read the book.  Bart has also written a slew of other books with the same general thought process involved in each- things I found myself really curious about.  That's Great Dave, but what does this all have to do with us?  Great question... Bart has been invited to and agreed to participate in one of our "Triple Threats"!!  Even better is that we are going to do it asap, prob before next weeks Scoop.  Super cool Bart! Thank you for agreeing to participate.  TLG is really excited to do this for you guys.  What intrigued us the most is how Bart's makes the book a fun read, but educational as well.  I was not surprised AT ALL to find out he was a former middle school teacher.  Anyway, it is coming up shortly, so keep your eyes open.  As part of the triple threat (review, interview, and giveaway contest) we will be giving away not just "The Big Book of Gross Stuff" but Bart and his publishers were kind enough to include a copy of "The Big Book of Girl Stuff" and "The Big Book of Boys Stuff" as part of the contest.  We think it would be fun to have 3 winners, not just 1!  For now, you can find out more about Bart's books and get warmed up for our Triple Threat by going to Bart's site HERE.
So, I have been having some trouble with reading the last few weeks.  It isn't a horrible problem since I have been reading a lot.  My problem is I am getting bored of reading 1 book at a time and finding I must read a few books at a time to keep me going.  Right now, I am in the middle of like 5 books for review, and one I can't talk about yet (you know who you are, and YES- I am reading "P.C." as we speak!).  I am making great progress, but I am about 250 pages into 5 different stories! I don't know... what do you guys think?  Bad thing or common thing?  I just want to make sure that I give each book the attention it needs.  I feel like I am, but just want to see what you guys think.

BEA!- sorry, just excited.  We know that many of you can not attend and we want you to know that is why we are going.  For you guys.  Yes, of course we will be happy about being there, but to be honest, if it weren't for you guys, we wouldn't be so excited about going.  We totally feel that it is our responsibility to go get as much info as we can AND as many of the ARC's and review copies we can for you guys.  As it has been mentioned before, we are going to give back to you guys as much as we can.  We are going to report each night that we are there and let you guys know what is going on.  I do not think we are going to attend all of the conferences, but rather dedicate our time to finding out what is going on out there now, what is hot that will be coming up, and just get a general feel for what is going on in the industry that will benefit us, the readers.  We have been getting emails from the BEA association lately, so the buzz is starting.  Again, if you are planning on attending, let us know and we will see if we can meet up at some point during the expo.  We are not staying in NY (it's about a 45 minute drive door to door) so we will only be there during the day, but will be there all day.  It would be really cool to hook up with some of you if you will be there, so let us know.  To learn all about BEA, you can go to their site by clicking HERE.

As for reviews, we still have everything we talked about coming up.  Since I have been multi-book reading lately, there is a good chance I as well as the rest of the Gang will be blasting you with reviews shortly.  The one I am most excited to do is Dashner's new 13th Reality book, "Blade of Shattered Hope" which I have mentioned recently.  I am totally so enjoying it and will probably get done with it in the next day or so.  I have tried sooo hard to string the book out as long as I can, but every good thing must come to an end at some point.  Imaging the feeling of reading a book you DON'T want to put down, but at the same time force yourself to just to make it last longer. I know that is weird, but you all know what I am talking about, I am sure of that!  Anyway, loved the 3rd installment in the series and James never ceases to amaze me.  All I will say is that some people love "Harry Potter", "Fablehaven", "Percy Jackson", etc. (don't get me wrong, I love them all) but Dashner's "13th Reality" series is my favorite.  Maybe I am a little biased to him, but ya know what... he earned it! 

One thing I want to add to the upcoming "review" list is a book that Mara recently got that she is LOVING!  Harper Collins sent us a book this past week that I do not think I have seen Mara that excited about reading in a loooong time.  Once I tell you what book and why, you will understand.  Especially you ladies out there.  "The Carrie Diaries" by Candace Bushnell. Need I say more???  Even I might secretly sneak the book in on nights that I am up later than my ladies. Who doesn't love "Sex and the City"???  Say what you will, but having all women in my house, I have had to watch the episodes AND the movie many times over.  It kind of grows on you. Anyone out there been waiting for this one?  I believe it comes out on Tuesday the 27th and we have had to wait for the release day to post the review.  I have looked and found some reviews out there for it, but we like the relationship we have with Harper, so we kinda figured we would follow the rules and wait until it is released.  I am sure the review will be an enthusiastic one, as I know Mara loves the girls. That is what is really cool about the book.  From what she tells me, it is about Carrie and basically her growing up and everything leading her up to what brings her to NYC. From there, well you know the rest.  I think that is a really cool idea for a book.  Be on the lookout!

Speaking of movies and books and shows... since the Scoop is about "whatever", I wanted to talk about a few shows that were shows before or book before they are this season's prime time winners on The Gang's list!  So besides the usual "Idol" and "Dancing w Stars" (sorry Kate... It was time!), I have my weekly line up of 1 good show a night from M-TH.  Here's my 1 show a night I HAVE to see:

Mon- "Castle"
Tues- "V"
Wed- "Human Target" which just had it's season finale :o(
Thurs- "Flash Forward"

Castle you all prob know about and Human Target you have plenty of time to get familiar with before season 2 starts.  I just want to quickly talk about "V" and "Flash Forward"... 2 of my favs!  Not just mine, but you'd be surprised to see the Gang huddle up on the couch EVERY week for these!  At first, I had to convince the fam to watch them with me, but once they did, they were hooked.  In fact, (and Mara don't get mad at me for telling this!) I remember I watched the first 3 or 4 episodes of "Flash Forward" myself week after week trying to convince the ladies to watch it with me.  One Sunday morning while Mara and I were up abnormally early, I forced her to watch just one episode on Hulu with me and if she didn't LOVE it, she didn't have to watch any more.  Well, that was the hook!  Mara and I watched all 4 episodes in a row and then we watched them AGAIN, back to back with the girls!  Basically, we did the same with "V".  Now that I think about it, after Flash Forward, they started trusting me with "guy shows" and you can find all 4 of us watching all of the shows I mentioned above.  We don't let the girls watch TV day and night, but after homework is done, after studying and everything else essential is done, we totally believe in watching some good, relaxing show together.  Plus come on... you want suspense?  How many of you watch any of those shows?  How about V and Flash in particular...  Are you hooked like us??  If you just answered "NO" to either of those 2 shows, you better hit up or the channels the shows are on and just check out the first episodes.  If you aren't 100% hooked, I will be totally shocked.  From what I understand, back in the "old days" (sorry dad, that's what they are to us!), "V" was on TV, and Flash Forward was based upon a book.  I actually bought that book and believe it or not, as much as I want to read it, I am waiting.  It is sooo hard for me since I LoVe the show, but I do not even want to have any clues about what could happen on the show.  I hear that the book and show are somewhat different, but they also have a lot in common.  Does that make sense??  Well, it kind of does to me, so I am going to hold off on the book.  If anyone has read the book, let us know if I am doing right by holding off, or if it doesn't really matter.  Trust me, I want to read it!

I actually have a good "REALLY???" that I wanted to put in the Scoop this week, but Mara says since it's my B-Day weekend, (turned 34 this past Friday, that's the 23rd-- so all of you can send me cards real quick... relax, just kidding... but now you have no excuse for next year!) I should keep this week's Scoop "Really???" free.  No need to think of someone's ridiculous tactics on such a joyous weekend.  BUT.. since I can't resist even touching on it... How about $28 bucks for a fast food hamburger, hot dog, and kids meal Chix Tenders (2 little tenders!) AND then agreeing with me when I said that was a little high in price for the food I ordered, especially when we got home and they messed up the whole order. (How could you mess up hot dog and hamburger??)... I'll give a "REALLY???" to them anyway for finding a way.  It's not rocket science.  Ok, sorry about that.... had to get it out of my system.  The good news is that the manager was insistent that we come back and give them another shot.  Being the Gang, we will 100% do that as everyone deserves a second chance!

That's about all we have for this week's Scoop.  As always, thanks again for all your support and we will see you soon!

Dave and TLG


  1. Hiya gang! ^_~

    I briefly checked out Bart's site. Looks pretty neat. Good luck on getting the Triple Threat off the ground.

    Whoo-hoo! I can't wait to see what you have to say about 13th Reality #3! ^_^ Though perhaps I'd like to delay reading your review until I've gotten a chance to read the book myself. (I know the feeling of wanting to draw a book out because I like it so much. Unfortunately, this rarely works for me. 0,o)

  2. Happy Birthday Dave!!! You're making me feel so old, though. Dang.

    My boys would totally love the "Gross" book. Then we'd have to listen to them tell us everything they learned over dinner. It would be a bonding experience for all of us. Now I know what book they're going to cling to next.

    Yay for 13th Reality. You're right, James Dashner is amazing.

  3. I look forward to Mara's review of "The Carrie Diaries," sounds a good book.

    My two boys would love "The Big Book of Gross," I'll look for it.

    Happy birthday!