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Showing posts from January, 2016

Winter Stroll

Winter Stroll
Elin Hilderbrand
Little, Brown and Company, 2015
Source: Library
Audience: Adults, Older Teens

From Goodreads:
Another Christmas on Nantucket finds Winter Street Inn owner Kelley Quinn reflecting on the past year as he writes a holiday letter to friends and family. Though the year has had its share of misfortune and worry, the Quinns have much to celebrate. Kelley, now single, at least is on better terms with his first wife Margaret, who is using her celebrity to lure customers to the inn in record numbers. Their son Kevin has a beautiful new baby, Genevieve, with the Inn's French housekeeper, Isabelle; and their daughter, Ava, is finally dating a nice guy--her devoted colleague, Scott. 

Now the Quinns are looking forward to celebrating Genevieve's baptism, welcoming Isabelle to the family, and enjoying the cheer of Nantucket's traditional Christmas Stroll. But just when a peaceful family gathering seems within reach, Kelley's estranged second wife, Mitzi,…

Salt to the Sea

Salt to the Sea
Ruta Sepetys
Philomel Books, 2016
Audience: All Teens
Source: E-Galley

From Goodreads:
In 1945, World War II is drawing to a close in East Prussia, and thousands of refugees are on a desperate trek toward freedom, almost all of them with something to hide. Among them are Joana, Emilia, and Florian, whose paths converge en route to the ship that promises salvation, the Wilhelm Gustloff. Forced by circumstance to unite, the three find their strength, courage, and trust in each other tested with each step closer toward safety.

Just when it seems freedom is within their grasp, tragedy strikes. Not country, nor culture, nor status matter as all ten thousand people aboard must fight for the same thing: survival.


Ruta Sepetys does it again. I loved this book almost as much as Between Shades of Grey, and much more than Out of the Easy! Characters in this book didn’t stand out as much as Sepetys’ other books and sometimes four perspectives were hard to follow. My favorite charac…

Paradise Sky

Paradise Sky
Joe R. Landsdale
Mulholland Books, 2015
Audience: Adults
Source: Library

From Goodreads:
Young Willie is on the run, having fled his small Texas farm when an infamous local landowner murdered his father. A man named Loving takes him in and trains him in the fine arts of shooting, riding, reading, and gardening. When Loving dies, Willie re-christens himself Nat Love in tribute to his mentor, and heads west. In Deadwood, South Dakota Territory, Nat becomes a Buffalo Soldier and is befriended by Wild Bill Hickok. After winning a famous shooting match, Nat's peerless marksmanship and charm earn him the nickname Deadwood Dick, as well as a beautiful woman. But the hellhounds are still on his trail, and they brutally attack Nat Love's love. Pursuing the men who have driven his wife mad, Nat heads south for a final, deadly showdown against those who would strip him of his home, his love, his freedom, and his life.

Well, Paradise Sky and I did not get off to a good start.…

The Island of Dr. Libris

The Island of Dr. Libris
Chris Grabenstein
Random House Books for Young Readers, 2015
Audience: Children
Source: E-Galley

From Goodreads:
What if your favorite characters came to life? Billy’s spending the summer in a lakeside cabin that belongs to the mysterious Dr. Libris. But something strange is going on. Besides the security cameras everywhere, there’s Dr. Libris’s private bookcase. Whenever Billy opens the books inside, he can hear sounds coming from the island in the middle of the lake. The clash of swords. The twang of arrows. Sometimes he can even feel the ground shaking. It’s almost as if the stories he’s reading are coming to life! But that’s impossible . . . isn’t it? 

Well, nuts. I absolutely loved Mr. Lemoncello’s Library and it’s one of my favorites to recommend to kids as well. I was expecting the same from Dr. Libris, but I was disappointed and kind of... bored. I think that this book didn’t treat the characters like they were their age. It seemed too young. And I was…

Chasing Secrets

Chasing Secrets
Gennifer Choldenko
Wendy Lamb Books, 2015
Source: Library, E-Galley
Audience: Everyone

From Goodreads:
Newbery Honor–winning author Gennifer Choldenko deftly combines humor, tragedy, fascinating historical detail, and a medical mystery in this exuberant new novel.
   San Francisco, 1900. The Gilded Age. A fantastic time to be alive for lots of people . . . but not thirteen-year-old Lizzie Kennedy, stuck at Miss Barstow’s snobby school for girls. Lizzie’s secret passion is science, an unsuitable subject for finishing-school girls. Lizzie lives to go on house calls with her physician father. On those visits to his patients, she discovers a hidden dark side of the city—a side that’s full of secrets, rats, and rumors of the plague.
   The newspapers, her powerful uncle, and her beloved papa all deny that the plague has reached San Francisco. So why is the heart of the city under quarantine? Why are angry mobs trying to burn Chinatown to the ground? Why is Noah, the Chinese c…

Bone Gap

Bone Gap
Laura Ruby
Balzer + Bray, 2015
Source: E-Galley, Library
Audience: Older Teens

From Goodreads:
Everyone knows Bone Gap is full of gaps—gaps to trip you up, gaps to slide through so you can disappear forever. So when young, beautiful Roza went missing, the people of Bone Gap weren’t surprised. After all, it wasn’t the first time that someone had slipped away and left Finn and Sean O’Sullivan on their own. Just a few years before, their mother had high-tailed it to Oregon for a brand new guy, a brand new life. That’s just how things go, the people said. Who are you going to blame?

Finn knows that’s not what happened with Roza. He knows she was kidnapped, ripped from the cornfields by a dangerous man whose face he cannot remember. But the searches turned up nothing, and no one believes him anymore. Not even Sean, who has more reason to find Roza than anyone, and every reason to blame Finn for letting her go.

As we follow the stories of Finn, Roza, and the people of Bone Gap—their …

Manga Classics: Emma

Manga Classics: Emma
Stacy King, Jane Austen
Udon Entertainment Inc, 2015
Source: E-Galley
Audience: Everyone

From Goodreads:
Just in time for the 200th Anniversary, Manga Classics: Emma brings Jane Austen's classic tale of youthful folly and romantic exuberance to a modern audience with this beautiful, new manga adaptation. The impulsive match-making of Emma Woodhouse delivers both humor and heartache through the gorgeous artwork of manga-ka Po Tse (Manga Classics: Pride and Prejudice). - Manga Classics editions feature classic stories, faithfully adapted and illustrated in manga style, and available in both hardcover and softcover editions. Proudly presented by UDON Entertainment and Morpheus Publishing.

My first manga book EVER. I must say, I was pretty proud of myself for figuring out the reading format quickly. The tutorial helped a lot, that’s for sure! I’ve never been tempted to read manga, but I know it’s following is super passionate about the books. I might be willing to…

I Survived: The Great Chicago Fire, 1871

I Survived: The Great Chicago Fire
Lauren Tarshis
Scholastic Inc, 2015
Source: Library
Audience: Children

From Goodreads:
In a national contest, readers voted and decided that the next I SURVIVED topic will be the Great Chicago Fire, 1871!

In the next book of the I SURVIVED series, one boy will struggle to stay alive as the great city of Chicago burns.


Another I Survived book about a boy. It had more to the typical format of the other books though (boy gets separated from his family, has to get back to them), which was nice. The added elements made the book more suspenseful. Learning about the Great Chicago Fire was awesome, too. I’m glad it won the contest. It was nice to learn about facts and rumors. The explanation in the back of the book is always super helpful. Overall, this is a great book for beginning readers.

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten 2015 Releases

Hosted by The Broke and The Bookish
Theme: Top Ten 2015 Releases I Meant To Get To But Didn't
It’s been SO LONG since I’ve done a Top Ten Tuesday post, and I’m excited to be back. This sounded like the perfect topic for me, so I decided to try posting again. We’ll see how long I last! Here are the top releases that I wish I would have gotten to in 2015.









P.S. Now I remember why I stopped posting. I could never get the stupid book covers to line up all prettily! Next time, I will plan ahead and succeed!



All the Answers

All the Answers
Kate Messner
Bloomsbury USA, 2015
Source: Library
Audience: Younger Teens, Children

From Goodreads:
What if your pencil had all the answers? Would you ace every test? Would you know what your teachers were thinking? When Ava Anderson finds a scratched up pencil she doodles like she would with any other pencil. But when she writes a question in the margin of her math quiz, she hears a clear answer in a voice no one else seems to hear.

With the help of her friend Sophie, Ava figures out that the pencil will answer factual questions only – those with definite right or wrong answers – but won’t predict the future. Ava and Sophie discover all kinds of uses for the pencil, and Ava's confidence grows with each answer. But it's getting shorter with every sharpening, and when the pencil reveals a scary truth about Ava's family, she realizes that sometimes the bravest people are the ones who live without all the answers...


I thought the idea of having all the answers, …

Room

Room
Emma Donoghue
Little, Brown and Company, 2010
Source: Library
Audience: Older teens, Adults

From Goodreads:
To five-year-old Jack, Room is the entire world. It is where he was born and grew up; it's where he lives with his Ma as they learn and read and eat and sleep and play. At night, his Ma shuts him safely in the wardrobe, where he is meant to be asleep when Old Nick visits.

Room is home to Jack, but to Ma, it is the prison where Old Nick has held her captive for seven years. Through determination, ingenuity, and fierce motherly love, Ma has created a life for Jack. But she knows it's not enough...not for her or for him. She devises a bold escape plan, one that relies on her young son's bravery and a lot of luck. What she does not realize is just how unprepared she is for the plan to actually work.

Told entirely in the language of the energetic, pragmatic five-year-old Jack, Room is a celebration of resilience and the limitless bond between parent and child, a brilli…

Lumberjanes

Lumberjanes Volume 1: Beware the Kitten Holy
Lumberjanes Volume 2: Friendship to the Max
Noelle Stevenson
BOOM! Box, 2015
Audience: All Teens
Source: Library

From Goodreads:

Volume 1: At Miss Qiunzilla Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet's camp for hard-core lady-types, things are not what they seem. Three-eyed foxes. Secret caves. Anagrams. Luckily, Jo, April, Mal, Molly, and Ripley are five rad, butt-kicking best pals determined to have an awesome summer together... And they're not gonna let a magical quest or an array of supernatural critters get in their way! The mystery keeps getting bigger, and it all begins here. 

Volume 2: Jo, April, Mal, Molly, and Ripley are not your average campers and Miss Qiunzella Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet's Camp for Hardcore Lady-Types is not your average summer camp. Between the river monsters, magic, and the art of friendship bracelets, this summer is only just beginning. Join the Lumberjanes as they take on raptors and a siblin…

Better Nate Than Ever

Better Nate Than Ever
Tim Federle
Simon & Schuster BFYR, 2013
Source: Library
Audience: All Teens

From Goodreads:
Nate Foster has big dreams. His whole life, he’s wanted to star in a Broadway show. (Heck, he'd settle for *seeing* a Broadway show.) But how is Nate supposed to make his dreams come true when he’s stuck in Jankburg, Pennsylvania, where no one (except his best pal Libby) appreciates a good show tune? With Libby’s help, Nate plans a daring overnight escape to New York. There's an open casting call for E.T.: The Musical, and Nate knows this could be the difference between small-town blues and big-time stardom.

I listened to this as an audio book. I used to say I wasn’t an audio book fan, but I just didn’t know which audio books appealed to me. Answer: re-reads, children’s chapter, some teen, and almost all comedy books. I think my problem with other types of books is that I can’t  just sit there and listen, so I listen while I am doing other things, like driving …