Episode 3: TBR


Hello readers,

I hope you all had an excellent Thanksgiving and relaxing long weekend – I certainly did. In today’s podcast episode, we cover a lot of ground: I talk about which books are on my TBR (to-be-read) pile right now, I recommend a pre-election read (worth it!), I interview local author Armin Wiebe (also a former CreComm instructor!) and I announce the winner of the first ever Literally, Katrina book giveaway. What an exciting episode!

Thanks for listening to Episode 3 of the Literally, Katrina podcast! What’s on your TBR pile? What should I read next? Comment below, send me a tweet, or get at me on Facebook with your recommendations! I love hearing from you.

If you haven’t already, subscribe to the Literally, Katrina podcast on iTunes or the Apple Podcast App –  feel free to give me a rating, too (5 stars would be awesome!). Ratings help boost the visibility of the podcast – the more booklovers I can talk to, the better!

Episode 4 will be out on October 26th – until then, happy reading!


Top Ten: Guilty Pleasures

Hello readers,

First off, I want to thank all of you for your amazing support! I’m so grateful to have so many wonderful friends and family members take an interest in my writing and even pick up a book recommendation or two. Writing these posts never feels like ‘homework’ knowing that you’re taking a read. You’re all gems.

Now, you may all remember a Top Ten list I posted back in autumn that focused solely on Historical Fiction. True story: I just finished another powerful WWII fiction novel right now!! Don’t judge! I can’t get away from it. I read All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr, which was featured on the “Best Books of 2014” lists on both Amazon.com and Chapters, and it also won a Goodreads Choice Award for Historical Fiction this year. It was beautifully written and I highly recommend it! But, my friends, because I’ve already covered historical fiction extensively, I thought I’d give you a break by covering my guilty pleasures – so fun!

Get excited! (giphy.com)
Get excited! (giphy.com)

TOP TEN: Guilty Pleasures – books so bad, they’re good

1. Lauren Conrad’s teen fiction trilogies are ridiculously addicting! If you grew up watching Lauren Conrad and Speidi on The Hills, these are for you. If you’re a fan of (un)reality TV, you’ll want to read these books. It’s like reading a TV show – quick-paced, dramatic, amazing.

  • L.A. Candy, Sweet Little Lies, and Sugar and Spice
  • The Fame Game, Starstruck, and Infamous
Lauren Conrad is excited about her books too! (giphy.com)
Lauren Conrad is excited about her books too! (giphy.com)

2.  Shadow and Bone, Siege and Storm, and Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo. Teen fantasy fiction with a Russian magical twist – don’t say nyet to these ones!

3. The White Rabbit Chronicles by Gena Showalter. Romance novelist Gena Showalter takes us on a trip (like a really trippy trip) with this Alice in Wonderland re-make filled with zombies, hot boys, and creepy scientific experiments. So bad. So good.

seriously trippy (giphy.com)
seriously trippy (giphy.com)

4. Anything by Clive Cussler. The villains are crazy, the plots keep getting more and more unbelievable, and the twists just keep coming. Clive currently has five different series going but his most famous series focuses on main character Dirk Pitt, played by Matthew McConaughey in the 2005 film Sahara. Good book, good movie. good stuff. Every time I travel, I take one of Clive’s paperbacks with me. I even have one written in German.

5. Dan Brown‘s early novels – Deception Point and Digital Fortress. From the author that brought us The Da Vinci Code and Angels & Demons, these fast-paced thriller-dramas are a little hokey yet totally entertaining. Every hostel I’ve been to has a couple Dan Brown books kicking around.

6. THE TWILIGHT SAGA. Need I say more? Teen vampire romance = the ultimate guilty pleasure.

sums the story up pretty nicely! (giphy.com)
sums the story up pretty nicely! (giphy.com)

7. The Dark Heroine Series by Abigail Gibbs, an ambitious amateur 19-year-old author. The first book, Dinner With A Vampire, caught my eye at Chapters with a big silver sticker on the front cover saying “The Sexiest Romance You’ll Read This Year”, so naturally I picked it up. It was sexy/questionable/so-so/good. The second book, Autumn Rose, was similarly good/bad! The third novel (in what’s expected to be a nine-book series) is set to come out sometime in 2015 and I know I will give in and buy it.

8. Books written by Nicholas Sparks that have been turned into movies – none will ever beat A Walk to Remember or The Notebook, but most of his books are perfect for poolside/beach reading. I always end up reading one of these while on summer vacay.

200-8 200-7

9. Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine. I was NINE years old when I first read this and I still come back to it when I need something cute/cheesy/easy to read. The movie doesn’t do the book justice!

10. Eragon by Christopher Paolini. This was a childhood favourite and I recently re-read the entire teen-fantasy series just for kicks. So juvenile, so good.

Well, folks, that’s it and that’s all for this week! What are your guilty pleasures? Leave me a comment, I’d love to hear from you!

Happy reading,


Happy Halloween, my friends!

For those who know me well, you know how much I love a good read about vampires. For those who don’t know me all that well…you’re about to find out! The truth is, I pretty much like anything vampire related – up until this year, my best friend and I got together every Thursday to watch The Vampire Diaries, and one of my favourite movies to watch around Halloween is The Lost Boys (you must see it to understand!).

If you’re looking for some Halloween-inspired, spooky, vampiry reads, I’ve put together a little list of the best (or perhaps worst) vampire books out there:

1. Stephenie Meyer’s The Twilight Saga: Twilight, New Moon, Eclipse, and Breaking Dawn

  • Yep, I am that girl.
  • I was 15 when the first book came out – give me a break for loving it! I totally re-read these books on a regular basis and even though the movies are really, really bad, sometimes I am just in the mood to watch them. This series is a definite guilty pleasure.
  • True story: When New Moon was being released, the Chapters head office called me to talk about their marketing scheme for the book release and the series, so all those displays in the store when Twilight was a big deal? You’re welcome. Chapters (cleverly) anticipated that the series would be the “next big thing” even before there was a movie deal. They were so right.

2. Thrist No.1 (The Last Vampire, Black Blood, Red Dice) by Christopher Pike

  • This was the first vampire book I ever read – I borrowed it from my older sister, Amanda, and it was scandalous and creepy and cool.

3. The Dark Heroine: Dinner with a Vampire by Abigail Gibbs

  • I really liked this book but it did spark a lot of controversy because of the way sex is portrayed in the book – a lot of critics didn’t like the way the author dealt with consent and violence (read the GoodReads reviews!).

4. The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova

  • loooooooooong but good!

5. All of the vampire books by Anne Rice

  • Also, let’s be real – the movies based on her books!
    • Interview with a Vampire
    • The Queen of the Damned

6. And of course, the ever classic Dracula by Bram Stoker

Hotel Transylvania – giphy.com

There’s a ton of vampire-lit out there that I haven’t read yet but plan on checking out. My sister has all of the Sookie Stackhouse books by Charlaine Harris (True Blood was based on her series) so I will likely borrow those in the future! What are your favourites? In other news, I’m currently reading Donna Tartt’s The Goldfinch (winner of the Pulitzer Prize) and it’s very interesting so far – I recommend it!

Happy reading,