Bibliophile Sweater Tag and World Building Tag

5:26 PM


I was intending to write a real post today. Or maybe get some writing done for The White Rose.

Obviously that didn't happen.

Because I was searching through my 15 drafts - which happen to be dominated by tags and spotted a tag squishing. That included the World-Building Tag and Bibliophile Sweater Tag.

Now, it is almost time to bid sweater weather goodbye (actually, it should have been adieu long ago, it's overstayed it's welcome). So, I shall finally send this tag packing with all the other winter tags (and sweaters).

Back in February (ack! Was it that long??), Sarah @ Plain and Average tagged me for Bibliophile Sweater Tag. She is one of the dearest ladies I've run across on the blogosphere. I look forward to each of her posts, especially her book reviews and her weekly name posts. Seriously, if you don't follow her yet, you should!! You can view her post HERE.

So without further ado, let us begin!

Fuzzy sweater
 (a book that is the epitome of comfort)

Anne of Green Gables (Anne of Green Gables, #1)
Anne of Green Gables by L. M. Montgomery

(Good heavens, can't they put the good cover on Goodreads instead of this awful thing? Every other book in the series has the pretty cover, why not this one??!) 

It was either this or LOTR. This won narrowly, since it's more comforting than LOTR is, really. After all, family life is more comforting than power struggles and war, I suppose. 

Striped sweater 
(book which you devoured every line of)

Princess Academy (Princess Academy, #1)
Palace of Stone (Princess Academy, #2)
The Forgotten Sisters (Princess Academy, #3)

The Princess Academy books by Shannon Hale.

I know, I know, I technically cheat. But I really did devour all three of these books. I don't think I ever put down the 1st one, and the other two were only because of I had to go to bed or some other really important reason.

Funny story - so I picked up the 2nd and 3rd ones from the library, intending to read them one after the other. Somehow, the second one managed to stay at the library. Never occurred to me to check and make sure it was in my stack...

Which means that I read them out of order. Not that it really mattered much, to be honest! I got the jist of what happened!

I will say that I liked the 1st and 3rd ones better than the 2nd. My review for that one is going up on GR later this week (I hope!) 

Ugly Christmas sweater 
(book with a weird cover)

Her Prairie Knight (Prairie Brides #2)



The old covers on this series were so much prettier and so much more indicative of the genre.

On top of everything, I don't really enjoy this series's content either. Kit Morgan, despite the humorous content, has some rather lustful stuff in her romantic relationships. I don't like it and hence of gotten rid of my e-book copies of them.  

Cashmere sweater 
(most expensive book you've bought)

Honestly, the one that jumps out to me is Eragon by Christopher Paolini.
Pity it has kind of soured on me since I bought it - I've been really bothered by the magical system in the whole series, so I've elected not to continue it.

There may be others, to be honest. I know the college textbooks I bought were more expensive than this book...gahhhh. 

(favorite classic book)

Little Women

Little Women by Lousia May Alcott





As much as I love Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens and other classic books, this one is the one favorite on my shelf. Being someone with no natural sisters (Remember, Lia and I mutually adopted each other as sisters), I'm very drawn to the sisterly comradeship in this book.

Seeing the back history of this book at the Orchard House in Concord, Connecticut makes it even better.

*suddenly remembers that I've never mentioned that I've been to Lousia May Alcotts's house.....* 

(book that you bought on impulse)

The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen

It wasn't a total impulse buy per se - I had read Lila Kim's review on it on Rebellious Writing, so when I saw it in the bookstore I knew it was a pretty safe buy. So I figured, why not?

Haven't regretted it!

To be honest, I wasn't so sure about Sage and his attitude...and the power games that he and whats-his-villian's-face were playing. He did deserve a couple of those kicks in the pants he got for being so durned insolent. But that plot twist....gah.

Turtleneck sweater 
(book from your childhood)

Oh...let us go with a classic. 

Little House on the Prairie (Little House, #2)
I loved reading the Little House on the Prairie books when I was little, and hope to read these to my children one day! 

Homemade knitted sweater
 (book that is Indie-published)

Rose of the Oath: A Beauty and the Beast Novella (Legends of Light # 1)

I managed to pick this one up on Kindle when it was free. I'd seen other reviews of Hope Ann's books floating around and figured, let's give this one a shot!

And I love it.

Hope Ann really retold this classic tale in a very original way, and made it a Christian allegory worthy of C.S. Lewis himself. Seriously, go check it out!!!

V-neck sweater 
(book that did not meet your expectations)

The Story of Kullervo
I saw this book in my college library, and since it was by Tolkien, I decided to try it out.

Turns out, it was an old draft that he had sitting around after his death. Or it was an early draft that he abandoned. I forget, to be honest. was so scrambled, it wasn't even funny. Couldn't find a decent story line to place myself for love or money. Coming off of reading works like Lord of the Rings, it was quite a bit of a letdown.

Argyle sweater 
(book with a unique format)

Daddy-Long-Legs (Daddy-Long-Legs, #1)
Well, epistolary books such as this one really aren't "unique" per se. There is a fair amount of them around. But as a traditional "prose" person, any deviation from the normal is considered unique in my book.

Aside from the positive reference to evolution (don't get me started down that road), I did enjoy this book a lot. I kinda wish that we had followed Judy after she was married a little - I would have liked to see her help other orphan girls like her.

Polka dot sweater 
(a book with well-rounded characters)

The Restorer (The Sword of Lyric, #1)

Wow, boy are these characters good. And realistic. They all have flaws, but they also have equal portrayal of their good sides. Even though, like any fantasy novel, there are a million side characters, who can still tell who is who, what their personality is like, and they bounce off each other so well!!

Believe it or not, this book was one of the inspirations for From the Cave!

And so ends that tag! For those who wish to grab it, go ahead! I'll just leave it here for anyone that wants it :). 

And now that my book fix is out of the way, I shall move on to a more writerly tag....

Okay, let me be honest - I was surprised when I saw my world-building post for the Five-Part Writing Special actually go to my top ten posts. Then I thought it over and realized that people were probably reading it multiple times because of the...hem...rather heavy detail I put into it.

My dear friend Megan Chappie tagged me.   You can view her post HERE.

So, the idea of this tag is to relate up to 7 things related to your story world. No structured questions, it's more of a free-write conversation than anything.

So, I'm going to cover about seven different areas of the world of From the Cave/The White Rose that I didn't cover in the 5-Part Writing Special.

Here we go!

Women's Fashion

Fashion is fairly simple for both men and women. Practicality is stressed more than fashion, though subtle differences in rank may be denoted by dress.

The queen often sets the example for women's fashion, but the women are not duty-bound to follow it by any means. Women will wear a simple high scoop-necked gown/kirtle, a couple of petticoats and a surcoat to add a different pop of color. There is subtle shaping of the clothing, the bodice is often custom-fitted. The support garment is like a half-corset/half brassiere of sorts - the garmet sits from the base of the shoulder to the upper sternum, leaving the stomach free of confinement. Gowns are tightened by lacing and belts if needed. The only real variation in fashion for the past few centuries has been the style of the sleeves, and the patterns of the fabric. The women also wear boots and stockings up to their short drawers.

There are woman that push the envelope - like Magda, who cuts pieces out of her neckline to make it lower. Most of the time, these woman are chastised for doing such a thing.


Duventolians eat a diet that is heavier in protein and vegetables. They eat a lot of freshwater fish as well. They do like some grain based food, such as oat cakes, maize meal, and wheat bread. Fruit desserts are also very popular. Tea is the hot drink of choice. On Sacrificial Days, they will abstain from just flesh meats.

Well, fancy that. A ready made picture of a Duventolian meal.

In Aistaraina, it's a much more starch-based and green-food diet. Meat is also eaten on a daily basis, but only really at one or two meals a day. Due to excellent trading relations with Jaquru, they have a steady chocolate supply - and chocolate desserts are very common. On Sacrificial Days, they abstain from meat entirely and even some animal products like dairy.

Agriculture (Crops and Animals)  

Each household produces at least some of their own food. Because of the somewhat warm climate, Duventolilians tend to grow what we would consider summer crops here in the Eastern US: squashes, peppers, tomatoes, oats, spring wheat, yams, and purslane. They also grow trees for oil, palm and olive being the closest equivalants.

At the time of The White Rose, they are attempting to cultivate their own fish stocks - even though the ancient system of subsistence fishing and stock-watching is still employed widely. They are blessed with a fair amount of rivers that they can fish from. Sea-water fish is harder to get because not many Duventolians or Aistarainians are fishermen.

On the turf, both beef and dairy cattle are also raised. Dairy products are intermixed in. Poultry of all varieties are kept - the favorites being ducks and geese.

Aistaraina has a slightly cooler climate, so they will grow potatos, barley, winter wheat, rye, root crops, and leafy vegetables. Animal proteins come from a mix of cattle and sheep products. Nuts from Gwydion are also more plentiful than in Duventoliel because of the distance between the kingdoms. Fish is only in a salted form. Dairy products, especially cheese, are plentiful in Aistaraina. Chicken, quail and pigeon are the standard poultry animals kept.

Pigs are only kept by scattered barbarian tribes, especially of Ravndal descent. Sometimes people will sell or trade food scraps in order to obtain some other good from them. They are actually treated as wild animals for the most part.

Calendar and Time Reckoning

So the Verden calendar is based on a three month season calendar. The first month of the season is called "Rising" (ex. Rising Spring.) The middle is called "High" (ex. High Summer). The last month is called "Waning" (ex. Waning Autumn).

So December, January and February in Duventolian time would be Rising Winter, High Winter, and Waning Winter.

And then time is based on a three hour division as well. The sections of the day are dawn, morning, noon, undern, evening, twilight and night. With the exception of night (which has 6 hours), each section of the day has 3 hours. They are referenced as such: 1st hour of the dawn, 3rd hour of the undern, 5th hour of the night, etc.

So dawn is equivalent to 5-8am, morning is equivalent to 8-11am, and so forth until the night hours which last from 11pm - 5am.

A random example would be 2nd hour of the undern, which is 3-4 pm in Earth time.

Oh by the way, "undern" is a very archaic term for afternoon, because afternoon just didn't make sense to me. I still have to work out what an age is, and how years are documented.....


There are 3 main musical instruments in Duventoliel:

Eija - a flute-like instrument. These can be various sizes, and usually made of wood.

Jalo - a stringed instrument. Very similar to the Renaissance instrument viola de gamba, which you can listen to in the video below.

Drums - self-explanatory.

There is a lot of singing as well - the voice is the main instrument, actually. LOL.

The style of the music...well, let's see.

Simple folk songs and Celtic rhythms come to mind. Subjects often revolve around history, legends, daily life, with some religious overtones as well.

Sacred music is also intermixed into social settings, which can range from being simple to very elaborate. The Duventolians are very pious, and keep religion to the forefront as much as they can.


Nobles and royalty have courier liveryman who pass written messages back and forth. There are written newspaper/leaflet like papers that give public announcements, as well as heralds. And word of mouth is still probably the fastest way news gets spread.

Now of course, I can't just let this little tag just sit around....heehee.

So, I shall pass it along to:

Lila Kims @ The Red-Hooded Writer
Anna C.S. @ A World Through Her Heart
Mary Katherine @ Sarcastic Scribblings

Feel free to steal if you need to work on world-building for your novel/Camp NaNo piece!

And now, I believe I shall curl up with a book or something.....

Scribblingly yours,


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  1. I'm going to steal this tag. In fact I want to steal it about five times, for five different worlds. (or settings actually, at least two are in close proximity, and others may be in the same world).
    But I will do it for my NaNo prject at least.

  2. ANNE OF GREEN GABLES!!!!!! Anne is the closest literary figure to me I've ever read about. Whether it's her love of all things medieval/exciting, writing, tendency to mess things up, etc. I LOVE THOSE BOOKS!!!!!!

  3. Once again, I am so impressed by the details of your fictional world! It's so fascinating to read about. Please, post more about TWR soon! :)

  4. I love how much detail you've put into your world-building! Well done!!! :)

  5. You did the sweater tag! Loved all your answers. :] I LOVE Shannon Hale's Princess books!! And I totally agree with you on Eragon. I think I made it to the second or third book and I just couldn't continue. Little Women is a marvelous classic! as is Little House on the Prairie. Wow, been SO long since I've read those! I've seen The False Prince around, and it sounds like one I'd enjoy. And OHMIGOODNESS. You are one of a handful of readers that I've seen share Sharon Hinck's Restorer series!!! That's one of my absolute favorites!

    The worldbuilding tag is awesome! It sounds like you've thought out your world to the "T"---that's incredible!! I really like your time-set as well as the seasons. That's so neat!

  6. I love the sweater tag! It's one of my favorite ones.

    Great answers, and you're so good at world building!

  7. Lovely, Catherine! Oh gosh, your storyworld is SO well-developed. Me is jealous. :D I especially love how you included what the kingdoms eat on days of fasting.

    The sweater tag is awful fun! Little Women and Anne of Green Gables go hand in hand as favorite girl classics with me--so curl-up-able. :)

  8. Glad to hear the heads up about that Tolkien book. I saw it at the library near where I work and almost picked it up. Then I read the back and thought it was weird. I was just reconsidering going back and getting it. Now I guess I won't. :D


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