Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Book Review: Death Marked

TITLE: Death Marked
Book 2 in the Death Sworn series
AUTHOR: Leah Cypess
PUBLISHED: March 3rd, 2015
GENRE: Fantasy
PREMISE: Ileni gets caught in the middle of two groups, not knowing who to swear her allegiance too...
MY REVIEW: Leah Cypess's books can be a little hit or miss for me. I wasn't wild about her Mistborn book. But I liked Death Sworn a lot because it went against usual YA rules. This book continues that and I suspect that's probably why a lot of people aren't thrilled by it.
It's full of difficult character i.e. hard to like characters, and the romance...is non existent. The romance that is there...doesn't go well. I'm trying not to give spoilers, but just don't expect happiness here.. Which is why I kind of feel like this is the most realistic handling of a romance in a dark world. So do not read this series hoping for happy endings for all. Most of this is court intrigue and character study and that's not exactly up everyone's alley.
Me...I liked it, though I feel there should be a third book as it ended somewhat abruptly. But apparently this is the last book. If you were a fan of Death Sworn, you'll probably like this, assuming you weren't in it just for the romance. If you were...sorry?
WHO SHOULD READ: fans of Death Sworn (who don't mind the romance not working out), Game of Thrones fans
MY RATING: Three and a half out of Five doomed love stories

Sunday, April 26, 2015

Thematic Sunday: Books for Avengers Fans

So Avengers 2 is already out overseas (I hate you all, but not really because usually we get stuff first), and for you Avengers/Marvel/Superhero fans, here are some (non graphic novel) books to read:

1) The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon

Why: Pulitzer Prize winner that tells about a pair of men coming to America to create comic books.

2) Dark Star series by Bethany Frennette

Why: awesome metaish series that is part superhero, part urban fantasy with demons about a girl whose mom is a superhero.

3) Vicious by V. E. Schwab

Why: More meta about superheros. Really dark superheros, who may not actually count as superheros at all but villains.

4) Renegade X series by Chelsea Campbell

Why: Book about a boy who is the product of a supervillain and superhero's one night stand and is torn between being a villain or a hero.

5) Evil Genius and sequels by Catherine Jinks

Why: About a boy going to a school for criminal masterminds.

6) Bigtime series by Jennifer Estep

Why: About a world of superheros and villains and the romantic mis-adventures various women have in said world.

7) Zodiac Legacy series by Stan Lee/Stuart Moor/Andie Tong

Why: Marvel has started to take over publishing now. This is one of the newest offerings they have about a group of teenagers who get powers of zodiac animals.

8) The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Emmuska Orcey

Why: Consider the Scarlet Pimpernel as the precursor to superheros.

9) Sidekicked by John David Anderson

Why: Middle-Grade about a boy with powers who is training to be a side-kick.

10) How to Succeed in Evil by Patrick E. Mclean

Why: Set in a world of superheros/villains, this is about a guy who is a consultant for supervillains.

Friday, April 24, 2015

Book Review: The Eyre Affair

TITLE: The Eyre Affair
Book 1 in the Thursday Next series
AUTHOR: Jasper Fforde
GENRE: Alternate history/steampunk, fantasy
PREMISE: In a different world that treats books like contraband, time travel is a reality, and cloning is regulated, a priceless book is stolen and Thursday Next is put in the case which puts her in the path of a evil mastermind...
MY REVIEW: I found out about this series from a book list...somewhere. I read so many book lists. This is possibly why my TBR list is over five hundred books long. It sounded interesting and right up my alley so I picked it up.
I am so glad I did too. This series is pretty awesome. It takes place in a alternate history world and has all the imagination that that usually implies. The world-building in this is spectacular. On top of that, it's just a entertaining story. Thursday is a fun character and the narration style is great, slightly similar to Douglas Adams.
In short, I loved this. It's great fun, especially if you happen to be a literature nut. I also highly recommend the audiobook version which is how I got through it
WHO SHOULD READ: those who like books that reference other books, steampunk/alternate history fans, Gail Carriger fans
MY RATING: Four and a half out of Five shady organizations

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Book Review: No Mercy

TITLE: No Mercy
Book 1 in the Mercy Gunderson series
AUTHOR: Lori Armstrong
GENRE: Mystery
PREMISE: A woman goes on the case when native american children start showing up dead in her town.
MY REVIEW: If I could rate this book on just plot alone, I'd give it much higher marks. The plot and mystery part are decent. It's everything else that gets in the way.
The main problem for myself is the slut shaming. Yes, this is one of THOSE kind of heroines. The kind billed as strong and naturally better then basically every woman who she comes across. God, there's so much slut shaming in this book. It's aggravating. I am so tired of this trope and I wish it would die. If you need to throw every female character under the bus just to make your character look strong, then maybe your character isn't really a strong character, much less a strong female character.
There's also a bunch of other little details that served to be annoying, such as the complete one-eighty that Mercy's friend did that was clearly just another way to try and gain sympathy for Mercy. So the mystery part of this is good. A tad predictable, but good. The rest of it? Kind of annoying.
WHO SHOULD READ: mystery fans
MY RATING: Three out of Five annoying main characters

Book Review: The Shadow Cabinet

TITLE: The Shadow Cabinet
Book 3 in the Shades of London Trilogy
AUTHOR: Maureen Johnson
PUBLISHED: February 10th, 2015
GENRE: Urban Fantasy, Mystery
PREMISE: Rory and her friends deal with Jane and her organization one last time...
MY REVIEW: Another great trilogy comes to a close. I don't really have much to say about this one. It was a satisfying read and did most of the usual things closing trilogy books do. There were revelations and closing of plotlines. Personally, I think there's room for a spin-off series here, but if there isn't, it ended in a good place.
WHO SHOULD READ: Those that have read the first two books, paranormal fans
MY RATING: Four out of Five ghosts

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Thematic Sunday: Books to Read for Star Wars fans

So Star Wars Celebration is happening. We've gotten a new Force Awakens trailer and Rebels season 2 trailer as a result. I've already got my lightsaber ready for Christmas. But it's a long way for both, so here are some books to check out while you wait for the new Star Wars stuff.

1) The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy series by Douglas Adams

Why: Adventuring across the galaxy  with a funny bone.

2) Foundation Trilogy by Isaac Asimov

Why: About a galactic empire that rules supreme and a familiar rebels who fight back theme.

3) Dune by Frank Herbert

Why: Also has intersteller empire and adventure in space.

4) Avalon books by Mindee Arnett

Why: Has much adventuring in space.

5) Across the Universe Trilogy by Beth Revis

Why: A dystopian drama that takes place in the future on a spaceship.

6) Old Man's War series by John Scalzi

Why: About a man getting involved in a war in space.

7) Hainish Cycle series by Ursula K. Le Guin

Why: More adventuring and wars in space with fascinating alien cultures.

8) Animorphs series by Katherine Applegate

Why: Got a tween who is anxious for the new movie and Rebels series? Might be a perfect time to introduce them
to this oldie but goodie sci-fi series. You can probably find most of it in your local library. I also think they're being reprinting.

9) Tin Star by Cecil Castellucci

Why: This one is nice and short about a human girl who gets left behind on a space station.

10) Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer

Why: awesome fairy-tale mash-up series set in space with Cinderella as a rebel cyborg princess, Red Riding Hood as a rebel, and Rapunzel as a shut-in hacker. The last book is Winter and is going to have Snow White. Has lots of fighting against evil overlords.

Saturday, April 18, 2015

Book Review: We Were Liars

TITLE: We Were Liars
AUTHOR: E. Lockhart
GENRE: Realistic Fiction
PREMISE: A group of privileged teens lead a comfortable life until a tragedy happens...
MY REVIEW: So, you've likely heard about this book already. Heck, you've probably read it already. It was a pretty huge book around the blogosphere last year. Normally, I wouldn't have bothered because of the genre, but when a book gets that big I at least give it a shot. Plus, I'd read Lockhart's work before and she's a damn good writer.
Unfortunately...I don't think this is one of her better books. It's not bad...it's just not the mind blowing book that everyone made it out to be last year. The first and main problem I have with it is....it's boring. Until you get to the last fifty or so pages, it's just dull. It focuses on privileged children and goes the whole poor little rich kid route and sorry, I have little sympathy. Then the big thing happens at the end and honestly...I don't think it was the shock of a ending that the summary promised. There were some good things in it that were discussed. There is a character who actually calls out how privileged they all are. But...good discussion does not always mean good book.
Basically, there wasn't anything wrong with this, other then being boring, it was just not nearly as mind blowing as everyone kept telling me. Once again, I was a victim of overhype. This is why I want the overhype machine to stop. Or at least not get as ridiculous as it has been in recent years.
WHO SHOULD READ: E. Lockhart fans, realistic fiction fans, family drama fans
MY RATING: Three out of Five sighs

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Book Review: Cocaine Blues

TITLE: Cocaine Blues
Book 1 in the Phryne Fisher series
AUTHOR: Kerry Greenwood
PUBLISHED: 1989 (2007 in the US)
CATEGORY: Adult Fiction
GENRE: Historical Mystery
PREMISE: A lady in the 1920s takes up a case when she's abroad in Australia.
MY REVIEW: This series came to my attention quite by accident. See, I'd gotten myself hooked on the Miss Fisher Murder Mysteries series on Netflix about a month or so ago. Literally, I watched the first two seasons in about two weeks and loved every unashamed historical costume drama minute of it. If you have Netflix, seriously give it a look. It's fabulous. The minute I learned the series was based on a book series, well, I had to give said book series a look.
This is...quite different from the show. I expected this. When bringing things to TV/Movies hollywood always seems to feel the need to change things despite the fact that people liked said things just fine (can you tell I'm still bitter over Percy Jackson? Probably). In the case of the TV show, those changes didn't hurt it any. Really, the only main thing that is different is the character of Dot. In the books, she's not the really straight-laced Catholic girl she is in the TV show. I actually quite like this Dot, personally. She's not as naive. I bet TV Hughs (who doesn't seem to be in the books) would like this Dot.
While I maybe am not quite as obsessed with the books as I am with the TV show, this was still as fun. It had the lovable Phryne who was just as whip-smart as her TV counter-part, and it had a sly wit about it that I've come to associate with Aussie books. All in all, it was a fun read. I'll probably look into the rest, if only to compare the rest to their episode. I'm nerdy like that.
WHO SHOULD READ: cozy mystery fans, historical mystery fans, Miss Fisher Mystery fans, Miss Marple fans
MY RATING: Four out of Five Lady Detectives

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Wednesday Weekly Bookish News

Some News:

First off, it's National Library Week this week. Go celebrate by visiting your library which is sure to have some activities going on. Mine is having a library book sale. ;rubs hands in anticipation;

 Bailey's Women Prize Shortlist: Here's the shortlist of books nominated for the Bailey's Women Prize.

ALA: Top Ten 2014 most challenged material: Here are the most challenged things of 2014. Because people still think banning works. Most of these aren't a shock. But I am amused that Saga was challenged for being Anti-family. Saga is a graphic novel sci-fi series about a pair of star-crossed aliens falling in love and having a baby and getting hunted down and risking everything to protect their baby. Yet...it's anti-family? Oh book banners, your ill-logic knows no bounds.

Amazon and HarperCollins reach deal: Amazon and HarperCollins are friends again. Looks like we won't get a dragged out legal fight. So put away your popcorn.

Some book announcements: Patti Smith is writing another memoir called M Train

Books to Movie: Child 44 by Tom Rob Smith is a thriller that will be out in theaters on Friday

Books to TV: Daredevil graphic novel series TV show is now up on Netflix. Go and watch. It's awesome.
There is possibly going to be a TV adaptation of Truman Capote's In Cold Blood. Its rights were sold to TWC for TV. So, we'll see what happens.

Major Books Released this week: All the Rage by Courtney Summers
The Dispossessed 3: The Wondrous and the Wicked by Page Morgan

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Book Review: Dearest

TITLE: Dearest
Book 3 in the Woodcutter series
AUTHOR: Alethea Kontis
PUBLISHED: February 3rd, 2015
GENRE: Fantasy/Retelling-mash up
PREMISE: This series continues with a mash up of The Wild Swans and The Goose Girl.
MY REVIEW: I don't really have anything more to add about this series that I haven't already said about the other two books. It's still a delight to read. It's still a clever weaving of different fairy tales in a humorous way.
There hasn't been a dip in quality. This was the wonderful fun I've come to expect from this series. If you've read the first two books, Enchanted and Hero, then this is basically more of the same. If you haven't read this series, go check it out now. Feel free to come back and squee with me.
WHO SHOULD READ: fans of Enchanted and Hero, Lunar Chronicles fans, Once Upon a Time fans
MY RATING: Four out of Five swans

Monday, April 13, 2015

Book Review: Americanah

TITLE: Americanah
AUTHOR: Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
GENRE: Realistic Fiction/drama
PREMISE: A blogger who writes about race in America goes back to her home country of Nigeria and encounters her old flame.
MY REVIEW: A book like Americanah is an odd sort of book to review. It's not what I would call a commercial sort of read. This is a very thinking type of book. It is literally designed to make you think. I personally love books like that, but I also have to be in the mood for them and know they aren't to everyone's taste.
If you're the type to go into a book for plot/story...this might be a tough book to get into. Plot wise it wanders and is very slow. The characters are also all complicated. The gems of this are really the topics it brings up and it's examination of American culture and race. The blog posts in it are especially on point and I was pretty much going preach during all of it. It brought up issues I myself was slightly aware of but never really thought of, such as the issues between black Americans and black Africans. Like I said, it's a very thinking kind of book.
So...I don't know. If you like thinking books then I absolutely recommend this one. If you just read for entertainment purposes (which is nothing wrong!) then you might be bored with it. If you're interested in racial issues and don't mind slow stories then I say go for it. Especially if you've read and loved Adichie's stuff.
WHO SHOULD READ: fans of Half a Yellow Sun, those interested in racial issues, those interested in stories dealing with Nigeria, literature fans
MY RATING: Four out of Five on point blog posts

Sunday, April 12, 2015

Thematic Sunday: Books About Assistants

So this week we have Administrative Professionals Day coming our way. I hope you at least acknowledge your assistant's hard work on this day. Trust me, they don't get paid enough. In honor of that, here are some books across the genres about assistants/secretaries/anyone who has a job where they have to help important people out and don't get enough recognition for doing so.

1) The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger

Going for the obvious one first. If you've seen the fabulous movie staring Meryl Streep and Anne Hathaway, please be warned: it was very different from the book. Still good, because Streep, Hathaway, and Blunt. But different.

2) Beautiful Bastard series by Christina Lauren

Obligatory office romance read. Never read this one myself but it is popular.

3) Who Took My Pen...Again? Secrets From Dynamic Executive Assistants by Joan Burge, Nancy Fraze, and Jasmine Freeman

Non-fiction that I may or may not have just put on here for the awesome title alone. A book written by assistants, for assistants.

4) Upstairs at the White House: My life With The First Ladies by J. B. West

Okay, this one is a stretch on my part. This guy was an usher at the White House, not an assistant. But ushers at the white house do a lot of things that assistants would do in normal places so I say it counts.

5) Maggie Hope Mystery 1: Mr. Churchill's Secretary by Susan Elia Macneal

First in a historical mystery series, this book follows a young woman who starts as a typist but eventually finds intrigue and mystery everywhere.

6) Body of Evidence series by Christopher Golden

Awesome mystery series about a college assistant to her county's M.E. who helps solve murders.
Note: I don't think this series is being widely printed anymore. You'll likely only find it in used book shops or libraries. If you find it, pick it up, it's awesome, I swear.

7) Madam Secretary A Memoir by Madeleine Albright

There are secretaries and then there are SECRETARIES. Secretary of State is one of the big ones. So I have to include this memoir by the awesome Madeleine Albright

8) Blonde Ops by Charlotte Bennardo and Natalie Zaman

Fun little YA romp about a girl who becomes an assistant to a fashion magazine and discovers intrigue and mystery.

9) The Magician's Assistant by Ann Patchett

Magician's Assistants totally count. They have to help out magicians with their tricks and trust them not to cut them in half after all. This one is about a woman who's been a magician's assistant for her husband for years up until his death, when she learns he's been keeping many secrets from her.

10) Cirque du Freak series by Darren Shan

A kid becomes a assistant to a vampire after he discovers a dark world in a local circus. Assistant to a vampire totally counts.

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Book Review: Ensnared

TITLE: Ensnared
Book 3 in the Splintered Trilogy
AUTHOR: A. G. Howard
PUBLISHED: January 2015
GENRE: Re-imagining/fantasy
PREMISE: Alyssa goes back to Wonderland to find Jeb and Morpheus and take down Queen Red once and for all.
MY REVIEW; And so my favorite crackish like re-imagining of Alice and Wonderland comes to a close. It's always a bit sad when a favorite ends but it has to happen sometime. Luckily this one went out with a bang and not a whimper.
Every story line was neatly tied up and taken care of. There were revelations and even a relatively satisfactory solving of the love triangle that didn't try to villify either guy. I say relatively because I personally feel like this could have been a situation where we could have had OT3. I mean hell, Morpheus even accuses Jeb of having a thing for him too! But no, we have to keep it all hetero normative and single couple only. Never mind that she loves both of them, and they both love her, and there's attraction to each other on their parts. Nope, can't have OT3 at all. Sigh. One day guys, I swear, one day we will have a YA series that does OT3. It's coming any day now, I tell you.
But other then that personal disappointment, this was a satisfying end to a overall satisfying trilogy. If you're a fan of Alice and Wonderland and don't mind twisty tales where the main character isn't perfect, then absolutely read this trilogy.
WHO SHOULD READ: fans of the first 2 books, Alice in Wonderland fans, retelling fans
MY RATING: Four out of Five OT3s that could have been

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Wednesday Weekly: Bookish News

Welcome to first of what I hope will be many weekly updates on bookish news. I'll be doing various stories here from controversies, to big news on releases, to cool things people are doing in the book world.

Here are some things happening for the week of 4/5:

Some of you Sci-Fi/Fantasy fans may know about some of the mess of this year's Hugo Awards. For those that don't, here are a few links to explain it and the awful Sad Puppies campaign (yes, they really call themselves Sad Puppies):

Book Riot: The Broken Hugo Awards
Black Gate: Sad Puppies and Super Puppies: The 2015 Hugo Train Wreck
i09: The Hugo Awards Were Always Political. But Now They're Only Political

There's a new Maya Angelou stamp out with a awesome quote on it. Sadly, that awesome quote is not in fact from Maya Angelou. AWKWARD:

Bustle article about stamp

The 2014 VIDA count is in. Surprise: women actually made some progress this year. No surprise: it was mostly just white women making the progress this year. Sigh.

Bustle article about VIDA count

So you don't feel totally depressed about the state of the book world right now, turns out NYC is doing a cool thing and adding books to city shelters for the homeless:

Daily News: NYC adding books to shelters

Major Books out this week: Miracle at Augusta by James Patterson and Peter de Jonge
Rebel Belle 2: Miss Mayhem by Rachel Hawkins
Sekret series 2: Skandal by Lindsay Smith
The Queen of Bright and Shiny Things by Ann Aguirre
Simon VS the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Dandelion Dynasty 1: The Grace of Kings by Ken Liu
William Shakespeare's The Phantom Menace graphic novel

Books on TV: Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel started its mini-series on PBS this past week
Nina Dobrev has apparently left the Vampire Diaries which leaves question about whether or not Vampire Diaries will be coming back next season.
Game of Thrones season 5 will be starting this Sunday. So all you people who have HBO, please recap for those of us that don't.

Books as Movies: The Longest Ride by Nicholas Sparks will be released in theaters on the 10th.

Book Review: Gretel and the Case of the Missing Frog Prints

TITLE: Gretel and the Case of the Missing Frog Prints
Book 1 in the Brothers Grimm Mystery series
AUTHOR: P. J. Brackston
PUBLISHED: January 15th in the US
GENRE: Fantasy, Mystery
PREMISE: Gretel and Hans are all grown up now and Gretel has a mystery solving business.
MY REVIEW: I wanted to read this one the minute I heard the idea. A grown up Gretel becoming a detective? Awesome, right? Well....yes and no. There is a certain charm to this series and Gretel is awesome. I adore amateur sleuth tales and this has that in spades.
It's just...a little too stuck in the cozy mystery formula for my taste. Literally everyone BUT Gretel is incompetent and I'm not fond of when mystery series do that. Newsflash, authors, your main character can be awesome without doing your best to make the other characters all look like idiots. I also can't help but notice that aside from one or two minor characters who don't really do anything, Gretel is the only major female in the book. Yeah...not fond of that either.
I do like most of this new series. The twists on fairy tales are rather clever (I love what the author does with Peter from Peter and the Wolf), and there are some pretty hilarious moments here and there. It just...wasn't really what I call a must read and I can't say it's great because there are definitely some issues here. With some polishing, this series could be awesome. It's just not quite there yet.
WHO SHOULD READ: fairy-tale mash-up fans, cozy mystery fans
MY RATING: Three and a half out of Five grown-up fairy tale characters

Monday, April 6, 2015

Reading Through the Classics: Flowers in the Attic

TITLE: Flowers in the Attic
Book 1 in the Dollanganger series
AUTHOR: V.C. Andrews
GENRE: Realistic Fiction/Drama
PREMISE: A group of children gets locked in the attic while their mother grovels to their rich grandfather for an inheritance.
MY THOUGHTS: First, I can see all you book snobs about ready to ream me for calling this a classic. But I'm sorry: it is. It has been out over thirty years now. It has stayed popular and in the public eye in all that time. So much so that Lifetime just recently re-did a movie of it (and are apparently doing the rest of the series as well). Like it or not, classic does not just mean "has literary merit". It can mean has lasting popularity and influence and this novel, good or not, has endured to become a modern classic. We need to get away from this idea that classics can only refer to things written over a hundred years ago by dead white guys.
I am actually familiar with Andrews work. During high school I gobbled up all those mini-series she released in the nineties. Orphans, Wildflowers, Shooting Stars, I read them all. But for some reason, I never quite got to this one. I think the incest scared me off. But frankly, the incest was the least disturbing part in this book. I find it strange that no one worries as much about the severe psychological and physical abuse that the grandmother and mother put these children through.
Yes, this book is pulpy. Yes, it's mostly family saga drama. I'm not going to sit here and pretend it's the best novel ever written, but there's something addicting about it. I do see why millions of people got hooked on it.

Rest of the series for those who want to read the rest:
Petals in the Wind
If There Be Thorns
Seeds of Yesterday
Garden of Shadows

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Book Review: Does My Head Look Big in This?

TITLE: Does My Head Look Big in This?
AUTHOR: Randa Abdel-Fattah
PUBLISHED: 2005 (2007 in the US)
GENRE: Realistic Fiction
PREMISE: A Muslim girl in Australia decides to wear the hijab full-time and the consequences she faces from society are...interesting.
MY REVIEW: Look, full disclosure: I am a white cis woman. I will never have to wrestle with the things that the main character has to wrestle with in this book, so I do honestly not know if any of it is accurate. Heck, I'm not even from Australia, so I don't know if the stuff there is accurate. Though I do know from Aussies on tumblr, that the racism over there and anti-Muslim rhetoric is just as bad as it is here in the US.
It felt on point to me, I guess I can say. Some of the issues talked about here are some I have heard discussed in many circles. I do think that occasionally, the book went a little over-the-top to make its point, but that is YA's way at times. I did also tire of the teen slang which dated it quite a bit. It certainly doesn't diminish the book's overall point about how wearing the hijab is a person's own choice and we shouldn't treat them differently or act like they're being oppressed if they decide to wear it.
The story overall...is a bit all over the place. I think the author has a bit too many ideas going on at once. What mostly makes this book is the things it discusses about society and the little racist micro-agressions that we can do without even realizing it.
WHO SHOULD READ: realistic fiction fans, those interested
MY RATING: Four out of Five sassy Aussies

Friday, April 3, 2015

Book Review: The Bones of the Holy

TITLE: The Bones of the Holy
Book 5 in the Gilda Joyce series
AUTHOR: Jennifer Allison
CATEGORY: Middle-Grade/Childrens
GENRE: Mystery/Paranormal
PREMISE Gilda's mom meets a man whom the children have never met and whom may or may not be a murderer.
MY REVIEW: Somehow I completely missed the fact that there was a Gilda Joyce book after The Dead Drop. Total fan fail on my part. Sadly, it looks like this is the last one as there has been none since this book.
If you've read the first four Gilda books, you already know what to expect with this series. Gilda is back in form and is her usual fun, sassy self. This time the mystery is a bit more personal as it involves her mother. We also get confirmation of paranormal activity and a nice southern flair as it's down in Savannah, Georgia.
All in all, it's what I've come to expect in a Gilda Joyce book. I don't know if there'll be more in this series, but if not, this was a fine ending to it.
WHO SHOULD READ: Gilda Joyce fans, Nancy Drew fans, paranormal mystery fans
MY RATING: Four out of Five sassy girl sleuths

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Book Review: I Am Malala

TITLE: I Am Malala
AUTHOR: Malala Yousafzai with help from Christina Lamb
CATEGORY: Non-Fiction
GENRE: Biography/Memoir
PREMISE: Autobiography of an activist in Pakistan who got shot by the Taliban for speaking up about girls education.
MY REVIEW: So I continue my non-fiction exploration with a book I've been meaning to read for a rather long time now. I didn't read this persay, I did the audiobook. Yes, I've taken the plunge and have gotten the overdrive app and am now in the wonderful wide world of audiobooks. I've already listened to three in two weeks. This format pleases me and is especially great for big huge clunker books. I may use it to get classics out of the way.
Reviewing biographies is a strange new experience for me because I feel as if I'm also kind of reviewing her life. But I'm not going to do that. I'm going to review the book itself. The book itself is damn good. I admit, mostly it was interesting to me because of the info about Pakistan and the culture and way of life in Pakistan. Beyond the news, I don't know much about this country other then they get a really raw deal government/military wise. This also gave much info and enlightenment over what led up to her shooting. Honestly my only issues are that it's slightly disorganized. One minute it's talking about a news report then bam, there's a story about her father, then bam, it's back to her life again. It got difficult to keep track at times. The info was all relevant and very interesting. It was just jarring going back and forth like that.
Other then the organization issue, this was a very well done book. I actually think I learned more about Pakistan in this book then I did in school and the news combined. Which, when you consider our relations with the country, is kind of sad.
WHO SHOULD READ: biography fans, those interested/familiar with her story, if you want to know a little bit about Pakistan
MY RATING: Four and a half out of Five inspiring teenagers making me feel lazy

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Looking Ahead: April 2015

Here are some awesome looking April books on my radar that I hope to read eventually:

TITLE: Rebel Belle 2: Miss Mayhem
AUTHOR: Rachel Hawkins

Why: Rebel Belle was one of my favorites of last year. I can't wait to get my hands on the sequel.

TITLE: Sekret Book 2: Skandal
AUTHOR: Lindsay Smith
RELEASE: April 7th

Why: Another hopefully awesome sequel to a new series from last year.

TITLE: Dispossessed 3: The Wondrous and the Wicked
AUTHOR: Page Morgan
RELEASE DATE: April 14th

Why: Last in this vastly underrated trilogy.

TITLE: Prisoner of Night and Fog 2: Conspiracy of Blood and Smoke
AUTHOR: Anne Blankman
RELEASE DATE: April 21rst

Why: Prisoner of Night and Fog was awesome, can't wait for the sequel.

TITLE: Becoming Jinn Book 1: Becoming Jinn
AUTHOR: Lori Goldstein
RELEASE DATE: April 21rst

Why: New series about genies that looks possibly cool.

TITLE: God Help the Child
AUTHOR: Toni Morrison
RELEASE DATE: April 21rst

Why: It's Toni Morrison. That's enough to get excited for this book.

AUTHOR: Sharon Cameron
RELEASE DATE: April 28th

Why: I love Cameron's Dark Unwinding books and this looks just as imaginative and fun.

TITLE: The Girl at Midnight Book 1: The Girl at Midnight
AUTHOR: Melissa Grey
RELEASE DATE: April 28th

Why: Urban fantasy that's being described as City of Bones meets Shadow and Bone.

TITLE: An Ember in the Ashes
AUTHOR: Sabaa Tahir
RELEASE DATE: April 28th

Why: Fantasy series based on Rome? Can I get a hell yes? Also, awesome cover is awesome.