Sunday, December 11, 2011

In My Mailbox (21)

Suspension- May 31, 1883, 3:55 p.m. Twenty thousand men, women, and children, their
faces shining in the late afternoon sun, are strolling the Eighth
Wonder of the World. The Brooklyn Bridge is open just a week, its
promenade a magnet for the teeming masses of New York and Brooklyn. An
engineering marvel of transcending beauty, the bridge is simply
breathtaking.In precisely five minutes, it will fall.Seven
desperate men, former Confederate soldiers turned saboteurs, have
labored for years to destroy the bridge, which they saw as a symbol of
hated Yankee supremacy.Sergeant Detective Tom Braddock is one
step behind the conspirators. Working through a series of murderous
dead-ends, Braddock has dogged the seven men from the cables of the
bridge to the shadowy alleys of the Lower East Side and the back streets
of Richmond, Virginia. Slowly, he has slowly drawn closer to the
unthinkable truth, a truth that none can accept...

The Singer of All Songs- Calwyn has never been beyond the high ice-wall that guards the sisters
of Antaris from the world of Tremaris. She knows only the rounds of her
life as a novice ice priestess, tending her bees, singing her ice
chantments, and dreaming. But then Calwyn befriends Darrow, a
mysterious Outlander who appears inside the Wall and warns of an
approaching danger. To help Darrow, to see the world, and perhaps to
save it, Calwyn will leave the safety of the Wall for a journey with a
man she barely knows--and an adventure as beautiful and dangerous as the
music of chantment itself.

A Banquet for Hungry Ghosts- According to Chinese tradition, those who die hungry or unjustly come back to haunt the living. Some are appeased with food. But not all
ghosts are successfully mollified. In this chilling collection of
stories,Ying Chang Compestine takes readers on a journey through time
and across different parts of China. From the building of the GreatWall
in 200 BCE to themodern day of iPods, hungry ghosts continue to torment
those who wronged them.

Odds are Good- Beloved for his hilarious and unexpectedly moving novels, Bruce Coville
is also a master of the short story. These two collections, in one
volume for the first time, feature eighteen tales of unusual breadth and
emotional depth. This omnibus is a perfect introduction to Bruce
Coville's magic for the uninitiated.

Oddest of All- Fans of Bruce Coville’s wonderfully weird storytelling will be thrilled
to know that the expert of odd is back with a new collection of nine
curious and thought-provoking tales. From stories about a girl
who learns the horrifying secrets about what’s really at the
bottom of a murky, desolate pond, a strange chemical factory causing
mutations in frogs, and a Halloween mask that becomes a gruesome clue in
the disappearance of a child, the odd adventures in this new
collection are filled with terrifying and ghoulish details. In the
eerie, surreal tradition of Edgar Allan Poe, these reveries are sure
to linger in the minds of readers.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

A Brief History of Montmaray by Michelle Cooper

Set on a fictional island kingdom off the coast of Spain, orphaned Sophia and her sister and cousin are impoverished royalty trying to patch together an existence under the negligent care of a batty housekeeper and the insane royal king. Their tiny kingdom can't stay separate from the issues of the world though as WWII looms and Germans are even seen on their island. Part coming of age, part gothic adventure, Sophia is forced to grow up whether she feels ready or not.

Genre: coming of age; historical

Rating: 4/5

This book reminded me a lot of I Capture the Castle. There's an otherworldly quality to it with royals who are more poor cousins than royals based on their lack of funds and a castle mouldering around them. Sophia is a sweet girl, isolated and in awe of her cousin, but who has normal hopes and dreams. She and her family are forced by circumstances to make hard decisions about what to do when it comes to their kingdom and there's a lot of the old "abandoned youth left to fend for themselves" trope that you don't see much except for in older British novels. It's a very readable book though and you wish the best for Sophia and her family as they are displaced and starting on a new phase in their lives by the end of the book.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

In My Mailbox (20)

A Brief History of Montmaray- Sophie Fitzosborne lives in a crumbling castle in the tiny island kingdom of Montmaray with her eccentric and impoverished royal family. When she receives a journal for her sixteenth birthday, Sophie decides to chronicle day-to-day life on the island. But this is 1936, and the news that trickles in from the mainland reveals a world on the brink of war. The politics of Europe seem far away from their remote island—until two German officers land a boat on Montmaray. And then suddenly politics become very personal indeed.

Heretic- Already a seasoned veteran of King Edward's army, young Thomas of Hookton possesses the fearlessness of a born leader and an uncanny prowess with the longbow. Now, at the head of a small but able band of soldiers, he has been dispatched to capture the castle of Astarac. But more than duty to his liege has brought him to Gascony, home of his forebears and the hated black knight who brutally slew Thomas's father. It is also the last place where the Holy Grail was reported seen. Here, also, a beautiful and innocent, if not pious, woman is to be burned as a heretic. Saving the lady, Genevieve, from her dread fate will brand Thomas an infidel, forcing them to flee together across a landscape of blood and fire. And what looms ahead is a battle to the death that could ultimately shape the future of Christendom.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

The Christopher Killer by Alane Ferguson

Cameryn is the daughter of the town coroner and is keen on following in her father's footsteps. Unfortunately on her second time out with her father the body they find is that of someone Cameryn knows. She's the latest victim of a serial killer who leaves Christopher medals on his victims. Cammie is determined to find the killer of her friend, but added to the case itself is the fact that her mother has entered back into her life through the connection to Justin, a deputy who Cammie may have developing feelings for. She has to use her scientific knowledge to try to solve the case before she becomes the next victim.

Genre: mystery

Rating: 4/5

A pretty smart forensic mystery for teenagers, Ferguson doesn't shy away from the nastiness of death, yet speaks of it in a clinical way that gets the point across. Cameryn is a feisty girl, but I do find it a bit hard to believe that she'd be allowed to help her father as much as she does. There's also the issue that he's smarter than everyone around her, which is also a bit unbelievable. Also slightly odd is her relationship with deputy Justin, who we find is 21, so not out of the realm of attraction for a 17 year old, but still the fact that he has an official job being so young is unbelievable and slightly jarring in the read.

I liked the book though, on the forensic level. It was the first mystery for teens that I'd read that had the Kathy Reiches feel to it. That's a hard thing to do with a YA protagonist, but Ferguson works it as best as she can.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Gates by John Connolly

Samuel Johnson, a very interesting 11 year old, was just trying to show initiative by trick-or-treating a few days early. What he ends up doing is witnessing his neighbors accidentally opening a portal to Hell. Fortunately it's not a very big portal, unfortunately it's about to be one if the denizens of Satan have their way. So it's up to Samuel, his dog, a few friends, and one very bored demon to stop the end of the world.

Genre: humor; supernatural

Rating: 4.5/5

This book reminded me as nothing so much as a slightly lesser version of Good Omens. It's charmingly funny in its own way as Samuel and various other members of the community deal with the demon invasion happening. We find out that Nurd the Scourge of the Five Deities is a demon with a fondness for fast cars. We find that you can take out a demon (at least a lesser one) with a cricket bat. The one fault I found with the book is that Connolly tries to argue for science, but that intrinsically goes against the fact that all the plot of his book revolves around something supernatural. While he tries to blend them, their arguments of theory versus faith are at odds. To me he can't make the major plot of his book about demons, then try to brush aside religion. To me it's a flaw in logic that kept sticking out.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

In My Mailbox (19)

Rot & Ruin- In the zombie-infested, post-apocalyptic America where Benny Imura lives, every teenager must find a job by the time they turn fifteen or get their rations cut in half. Benny doesn't want to apprentice as a zombie hunter with his boring older brother Tom, but he has no choice. He expects a tedious job whacking zoms for cash, but what he gets is a vocation that will teach him what it means to be human.

Blood Red Road- Saba has spent her whole life in Silverlake, a dried-up wasteland ravaged by constant sandstorms. The Wrecker civilization has long been destroyed, leaving only landfills for Saba and her family to scavenge from. That’s fine by her, as long as her beloved twin brother, Lugh, is around. But when a monster sandstorm arrives bearing four cloaked horsemen, Saba’s world is shattered. Lugh is captured, and Saba embarks on a quest to get him back.

Suddenly thrown into the lawless, ugly reality of the world outside of desolate Silverlake, Saba discovers she is a fierce fighter, an unbeatable survivor, and a cunning opponent—and she has the power to take down a corrupt society from the inside. Teamed up with a handsome daredevil named Jack and a gang of girl revolutionaries called the Free Hawks, Saba stages a showdown that will change the course of her own civilization.

Ashes- An electromagnetic pulse flashes across the sky, destroying every electronic device, wiping out every computerized system, and killing billions.
Alex hiked into the woods to say good-bye to her dead parents and her personal demons. Now desperate to find out what happened after the pulse crushes her to the ground, Alex meets up with Tom—a young soldier—and Ellie, a girl whose grandfather was killed by the EMP.

For this improvised family and the others who are spared, it’s now a question of who can be trusted and who is no longer human.

Gardens of the Moon- The Malazan Empire simmers with discontent, bled dry by interminable warfare, bitter infighting and bloody confrontations with ancient and implacable sorcerers. Even the imperial legions, long inured to the bloodshed, yearn for some respite. Yet Empress Laseen's rule remains absolute, enforced by her dread Claw assassins.

For Sergeant Whiskeyjack and his squad of Bridgeburners, and for Tattersail, their lone surviving mage, the aftermath of the siege of Pale should have been a time to mourn the many dead. But Darujhistan, last of the Free Cities, yet holds out. It is to this ancient citadel that Laseen turns her predatory gaze.

However, the Empire is not alone in this great game. Sinister, shadowbound forces are gathering as the gods themselves prepare to play their hand . . .

The Age of Ra- An alternate history of the world where the Egyptian gods have defeated all others and have carved up the planet between themselves. Only a band of Freedom Fighters and their enigmatic leader can free the Earth from their divine tyranny.

The Age of Odin- Gideon Dixon was a good solider but bad at everything else. Now the British Army doesn't want him any more. So when he hears about the Valhalla Project it seems like a dream come true. They're recruiting from service personnel for execellent pay with no questions asked to take part in unspecified combat operations. The last thing Gideon expects is to finding himself fighting alongside the gods of the ancient Norse pantheon. The world is in the grip of one of the worst winters it has ever known, and Ragnarok-the fabled final conflict of the Sagas-is looming.

Best Served Cold- War may be hell, but for Monza Murcatto, a solider of considerable fortune; it's a damn good way of making money too. Her victories have made her popular - a shade too popular for her employer's taste. Betrayed and left for dead, Murcatto's reward is a broken body and a burning hunger for vengeance.

Whatever the cost, seven men must die.

This Dark Endeavor- Victor and Konrad are the twin brothers Frankenstein. They are nearly inseparable. Growing up, their lives are filled with imaginary adventures...until the day their adventures turn all too real.

They stumble upon The Dark Library, and secret books of alchemy and ancient remedies are discovered. Father forbids that they ever enter the room again, but this only peaks Victor's curiosity more. When Konrad falls gravely ill, Victor is not be satisfied with the various doctors his parents have called in to help. He is drawn back to The Dark Library where he uncovers an ancient formula for the Elixir of Life. Elizabeth, Henry, and Victor immediately set out to find assistance in a man who was once known for his alchemical works to help create the formula.

Determination and the unthinkable outcome of losing his brother spur Victor on in the quest for the three ingredients that will save Konrads life. After scaling the highest trees in the Strumwald, diving into the deepest lake caves, and sacrificing one’s own body part, the three fearless friends risk their lives to save another.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

In My Mailbox (18)

Dead Iron -In steam age America, men, monsters, machines, and magic battle for the same scrap of earth and sky. In this chaos, bounty hunter Cedar Hunt rides, cursed by lycanthropy and carrying the guilt of his brother's death. Then he's offered hope that his brother may yet survive. All he has to do is find the Holder: a powerful device created by mad devisers-and now in the hands of an ancient Strange who was banished to walk this Earth.

The Doomsday Vault- In a clockwork Brittania, Alice's prospects are slim. At 21, her age and her unladylike interest in automatons have sealed her fate as an undesirable marriage prospect. But a devastating plague sends Alice off in a direction beyond the pale-towards a clandestine organization, mad inventors, life-altering secrets, and into the arms of an intrepid fiddle-playing airship pilot.

The Iron Duke- After the Iron Duke freed England from Horde control, he instantly became a national hero. Now Rhys Trahaearn has built a merchant empire on the power-and fear-of his name. And when a dead body is dropped from an airship onto his doorstep, bringing Detective Inspector Mina Wentworth into his dangerous world, he intends to make her his next possession.
But when Mina uncovers the victim's identity, she stumbles upon a conspiracy that threatens the lives of everyone in England. To save them, Mina and Rhys must race across zombie-infested wastelands and treacherous oceans-and Mina discovers the danger is not only to her countrymen, as she finds herself tempted to give up everything to the Iron Duke.

The Heroes- They say Black Dow's killed more men than winter, and clawed his way to the throne of the North up a hill of skulls. The King of the Union, ever a jealous neighbor, is not about to stand smiling by while he claws his way any higher. The orders have been given and the armies are toiling through the northern mud. Thousands of men are converging on a forgotten ring of stones, on a worthless hill, in an unimportant valley, and they've brought a lot of sharpened metal with them.

Twelve- The voordalak--creature of legend, the tales of which have terrified Russian children for generations. But for Captain Aleksei Ivanovich Danilov--a child of more enlightened times--it is a legend that has long been forgotten. Besides, in the autumn of 1812, he faces a more tangible enemy: the Grande Armee of Napoleon Bonaparte. Unnerved by the fact that so few can accomplish so much, Aleksei remembers those childhood stories of the voordalak. And as he comes to understand the true, horrific nature of these twelve strangers, he wonders at the nightmare they've unleashed in their midst....

Zombies: Encounters With the Hungry Undead- From a master of zombie fiction and a founding father of “splatterpunk” comes a mind-bending anthology of 32 new and classic stories from both renowned writers and rising stars

Classics Mutilated- Monster Lit meets Remix Culture in IDW's all-new, all-original story collection by top talents from horror, science fiction, and dark fantasy scenes. IDW's first foray into genre prose takes the formula of "literary classic/historic figure + supernatural element" and drives a stake through its heart with fourteen brand-new stories, all written specifically for this collection, that transform the so-called Monster Lit movement in ways the mainstream could never imagine.

The Poison Eaters- From the inimitable Holly Black, a collection of twelve fantasy short stories—two of which are unique to this collection. Devoted fans will be delighted to discover that several of the stories use characters and settings from her Modern Faerie Tale novels. Included in the anthology are tales involving faeries, werewolves, vampires, ghosts, and all sorts of weird and wonderful and creepy creatures—there’s even a glimpse of a unicorn.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Airhead by Meg Cabot

Emerson is a typical teenage girl who crushes on her best guy friend who doesn't seem to know she's a breathing female and love video games. She has no time for fashion or girly things, which proves to be a problem when a terrible accident ends up with her brain being placed into a teenager super model's body. Now she suddenly has to care about fashion and celebrity and her former best friend doesn't know she still exists. Emerson starts to gain a new respect for how hard being famous is, but she also is baffled by the superficialness of everything she has to do now.

Genre: contemporary; fantasy

Rating: 4/5

I honestly like Meg Cabot. She's a good author and I've never read something from her that I didn't at least enjoy. This round is the same trope of a normal girl being thrown into a fantastic situation that Cabot tends to use a lot, this time with a girl suddenly being a super model. Emerson is a feisty independent girl, so being jammed into a body that is just worshipped basically for being a body is very unsettling for her. She realizes that some parts of fame are very nice and having guys fall all over her is fun, but not being taken seriously and having everyone try to run her life is not. There's also Christopher, the boy she was in love with when she was just Emerson and who has no interest in her new body.

It's a fairly smart book for dealing with a fish out of water scenario. Emerson is believably upset that no one told her she was in a new body and she's slowly starting to appreciate some of Nikki's old friends who are actually nice, if shallow. The most annoying part is the bevy of boys that Emerson now has to choose from, which makes her love for Christopher sometimes seem a little flippant.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Gothic! edited by Deborah Noyes

Ten stories from well known authors all in the tradition of dark stories, some with black humor and all with a clinging sense of dust and decay. There are houses with minds of their own, vampires that no one believes are vampires, serial killers who won't stay dead, and witches performing various rites of passage.

Genre: short story; gothic; supernatural

Rating: 4.5/5

An excellent collection of short stories from everyone from Vivian Vande Velde to Neil Gaiman. Gaiman's contribution "Forbidden Brides of the Faceless Slaves in the Nameless House of the Night of Dread Desire" is particularly good (and actually the most lighthearted of the book). Velde has maybe the most unsettling in "Morgan Roehmar's Boys". Gregory Maguire wins Hardest-Story-to-Figure-Out-What's-Happening-In with "The Prank", but then that's generally my feeling about his writing. On the whole it's a good collection. I only mark it down points for having a predictable entry or two, but it was a very good YA short story collection.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Slayed by Amanda Marrone

Daphne Van Helsing hates her life as a vampire slayer. Her parents won't hear about quiting the life and when she finally finds a nice boy in Tyler Harker, he's off limits because of family history. When strange things go down on their current job, Daphne finds herself saddled with a former child star who really wants to be a vampire hunter and won't take no for an answer. But this particular job has more than normal vampires and Daphne may need all the help she can get.

Genre: supernatural

Rating: 3/5

This book was mainly disappointing because it COULD have been much better. There were some concepts that hadn't been used before, but just like with Marrone's other writing I've read, she spends too much time on unimportant parts and skims over the actual action. We have countless pages of Daphne whining about not getting a prom, but very little of actual vampire slaying. The resolution is so quickly wrapped up, I had a hard time figuring out what was going on.

So what could have possibly been something more fun, ended up being a run of the mill vampire story light on the vampires. Those with short attention spans may like this book as it was one of the fastest reads I've had in forever, but it was nothing special.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

In My Mailbox (17)

After satellite going out leaving me dangling both with Grimm and not being able to watch Once Upon a Time and Walking Dead (curse you, and it's a Daryl help you people making me miss my weekly dose of Norman Reedus) I went out and bought some books, or I wouldn't have had anything new this week. So I'll sit here with my books, waiting for iTunes to get the Walking Dead episode up so I can at least watch some Norman on my ipod.


The Replacement- Switched out at birth, Mackie is something not quite human and is slowly being killed by our world. When he befriends a girl whose baby sister goes missing, he descends back into the underworld he came from to find her and possibly save himself.


The Water Wars- With a world where fresh water is quickly becoming non-existant, a boy claims to know a secret about the government and their connection to the water. When he goes missing, a group decides they have to find him as their only hope, if the government doesn't find him first.


Darkness Falling- When the earth becomes blanketed with darkness, a town tries to figure out how to survive, especially when people begin disappearing and some of them come back completely changed.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Turtle Beach by Blanche d'Alpuget

Judith is an Australian journalist sent to cover the refugee crisis situation in Malaysia in 1979. To get access to the refugee camps, she tentatively befriends Minou, a part Chinese wife of a diplomat who offends all the ladies of the political inner circle that she comes across by being as crass as possible. Judith is also dealing with her failing marriage and crosses paths with Kanan, an Indian who she is attracted to and who wants to bring her to some sort of liberated state. All of this slowly progresses to its tragic outcome as Minou waits for her family to show up on the shores on the turtle beach.

Genre: historical; world historical fiction

Rating: 4/5

Notes: Malaysia: World Historical Fiction

An interesting book. I initially thought it was set in an earlier time period or I probably would have skipped on it. There was a lot of what I consider "awards pandering" in it where nothing really happens, but it's talked about a lot. I've always considered that someone trying to write an "important" novel. Usually it involves casual shocking talk about sex, people musing about the failings of life, someone speculating on religion, and general malaise. This book was no different. I could have stood without a lot of the important languishing in the inner moral decay of the characters. I was more interested in what Minou was really trying to do. She was a less than likable character, but she was sympathetic, unlike a lot of the characters who just seem to swan around commenting on stuff.

The book was sometimes hard to follow who was doing what, but the depiction of Malaysia was interesting, if not really flattering. The refugee situation is also something I knew nothing about and it really did seem to be a tragedy. Malaysia was a clash of cultures and religions and the end result was something not particularly pretty a lot of the time. An interesting book, though not as important as I think it would have liked to be.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

In My Mailbox (16)


Huge haul this week because I started buying my supply of World Historical Fiction challenge books. I've found a copy of the reference book World Historical Fiction from some years back and I intend to take a time traveling world tour through it.

From Booksfree:

100 Mistakes That Changed History- Blunders that led to world changing out come.

Airhead- Tomboy Em ends up in a bizarre accident that ends her up in the body of super model Nikki Howard

Majix- Serious teen witch Susan attempts to navigate through high school unscathed.

From Amazon:

Turtle Beach- In 1979, a female Australian reporter is caught in the cultural clash surrounding refugees from Malaysia

Hermitage Among the Clouds- In 14th century Vietnam, Amazing Jewel pursues peace after her father defends the Viets against the Mongols

The Singapore Grip- Members of a British family in Singapore in the 1930s realize too late that they aren't invincible as the Japanese invade

King Rat- A man becomes the unofficial ruler of a prison camp in WWII as he breeds prison rats for food

Eagle Station- Air Force pilots protect Eagle Station's radar in 1968 in Vietnam and wait for rescue

Slow Dance on the Killing Ground- Special Forces in the Vietnam War get rid of undesirable factions of all kinds

The Angkor Massacre- As the revolution of the Khmer begins, a group of different people become involved with Frenchman Lara

Jasmine Nights- Justin, living with his eccentric aunts outside Bangkok in 1963 while his parents work secretly for the US government, learns about American ways from his friend Virgil

The Cambodia File- When Pol Pot's regime takes over Cambodia in 1975, Than Kim barely survives the ensuing chaos

The Scent of the Gods- Su Yen has grown up as an orphan who is baffled about the differences among the people in her home as Singapore becomes a nation

Copilli- Prince Copilli, Aztec warrior, ultimately sacrifices himself for his people

From the school library:

Rise of a Hero- Three young people struggle against the Hrum that have overtaken the kingdom of Farsala

Fire Dragon- A Chinese immigrant and his family at the turn of the century struggle to get by in San Francisco

Master Skylark- A young boy with a beautiful voice is taken away from Stratford-on-Avon by a theatrical group, but more than anything he wishes to be back home with his family

Bright Candles- The experiences of a sixteen-year-old Danish boy during the German occupation of his country in World War II.

Ranger of '76- A young boy gets involved in the American Revolution

The Faraway Lurs- Tells the story of Heather, a girl of the Tree People, who falls in love with Wolf Stone, the son of the chieftain of the Sun People.

Campion Towers- Penitence Hervey, visiting her dead mother's family in England, is drawn into the conflict between Cavaliers and Roundheads, but finds love in the process.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Follow Friday (October 28)

Q. If you could have dinner with your favorite book character, who would you eat with and what would you serve?

I would invite Peeta from The Hunger Games over and we would only have the finest baked goods. Maybe he could teach me how to bake considering I'm awful. I could make a cake that wouldn't actually collapse or stick to the pan. Complex carbohydrates are my kryptonite.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

I Marched with Hannibal by Hans Baumann

Two children hear the story of Hannibal's attack on Rome from an elderly elephant driver. He tells of Suru, his loyal elephant who was the last elephant survivor of the campaign. He travels with the Carthaginians based on the belief that Rome was responsible for the destruction of his home city, yet while he rides along, he begins to question the blind hatred that both sides have towards each other and whether Hannibal is really the great leader that he thinks he is.

Genre: historical, throwback

Rating: 4/5

Notes: #8 of YA Historical Fiction Challenge

Yet another throw back. This one involves Hannibal's march over the Alps. Historically, this tends to get mentioned as an incredible feat that Hannibal did without any losses. In reality it was incredibly unsuccessful for the elephants and a spectacular waste of men driven by a man who hated Rome as much as Rome hated Carthage. This story doesn't shy away from the ruthless aspects of either empire. And the story mainly concerns itself with the elephants rather than the technical aspect of war. Suru is as much a character as anyone else in the novel and the human drama of surviving takes on a much more important tone than what Hannibal is actually trying to accomplish.

There is a nice parallel between what Hannibal is doing and what he criticizes his enemies for doing. In the end, he's no different from then and he causes just as much destruction, a cycle of hate that eventually ends in Carthage being completely destroyed.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Fall of a Kingdom by Hilari Bell

The kingdom of Farsala has never been conquered and the ruling class arrogantly assumes they will never be touched. But a totally new threat confronts the empire in the form of the Hrum, an empire determined to possess anything in their path. Suddenly nothing seems certain and the lives of an upper class, pampered girl, an illegitimate son of a general, and a maimed peasant all cross paths. Farsala as a kingdom has finally met an enemy it doesn't know how to defeat and now everyone needs to decide what they fight for.

Genre: fantasy

Rating: 5/5

The two kingdoms in this book have very definite parallels to Persia and Rome and neither side are shown to be flawless. Kavi has legitimate issues with Farsala as their ruling class is the reason he's maimed. Jiaan just wants to make his father proud even though he's not officially recognized as his son. Sorya also competes for her father's love against the prized legitimate heir and against her distant, cold mother. All of them are flawed characters with major faults, but they are understandable in their actions and they are characters you are willing to invest in.

The plot itself is on an epic scale that many much larger novels like Game of Thrones have tried. Only this one is for those with a shorter attention span. Younger readers would probably be willing to finish this type of epic without getting bogged down. There are plenty of questions asked, such as whether the devil you know in a ruling class is better than the one you don't or not. And then there's the question of survival itself. An excellent book all together.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Royalty's Strangest Characters by Geoff Tibballs

A rollicking review of the strangest, insanest, meanest royalty in history. From obscure to well known and ancient to modern, royalty is shown as the strange creature it often is.

Genre: non-fiction; history

Rating: 4.5/5

On sheer entertainment value, this book was great. The writer is very funny in spots and suddenly royalty becomes fascinating. The problem is that there really isn't a lot of bibliography to know where he got his information and a lot of what he used was apocryphal. This book is also rare as my ability to only find a picture that tiny attests. It's a great read though and makes me want to investigate some of these figures more.

She-Devils by Anne McDuff

A detailed account of some of the most notorious female murderers in recent history. Only serial killers will do for this book and though they are rare, when women do go bad they are terrifying.

Genre: non-fiction

Rating: 4.5/5

First off, the hand on that cover is so weird. I don't know if it's the attempt at nailpolish or what, but it looks strange. Anyhow, for true crime lovers this is a pretty good find. Several of the chapters are very disturbing in what they reveal about what the killer did and I wouldn't recommend it to anything other than adult readers, but it was very readable even though the chapters were long. The author seemed to have done their research fairly well, so I don't doubt most of what was written was accurate. Disturbing, but accurate.

In My Mailbox (15)


From the school library:

Picture Perfect- Ian's friend Teddy has disappeared, but Ian is still seeing Teddy in his dreams and hearing voices and can't remember exactly what he did the morning Teddy disappeared.

Naughts and Crosses- In a racist dystopian society, "Cross" Sephy falls in love with "Naught" Callum leading them down a dangerous path when an uprising tries to overthrow the system.

I Was a Teenage Fairy- A fairy named Mab helps Barbie overcome an abusive past and deal with her future. But is Mab even real?

From Amazon:

Turtle Beach- Journalist Judith is thrown into a personal crisis as she goes to Malaysia to investigate the international refugee situation.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Follow Friday (October 21)

Q.What superhero is your alter-ego?

Minus the psychotic tendencies, I'd have to say Deadpool. I have a similar sense of humor. Maybe I don't find the exact same things funny, but my delivery is very similar and if I were a superhero I'd be breaking the fourth wall constantly.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Thwonk by Joan Bauer

AJ is an aspiring photographer with love issues. She always tends to pick unsuitable boys and Peter is no different as he already has a girlfriend and AJ's friend keeps warning her is completely vain. Then AJ runs into a cupid ready to grant her every wish. Of course AJ wishes for Peter to love her and suddenly he is completely and embarrassingly in love with AJ. Sometimes what you think you want is not necessarily what you need, as AJ begins to learn the hard way.

Genre: humor; contemporary

Rating: 4/5

This was a cute book, short and fairly funny. The actuallity of having a boyfriend who is sickeningly in love with you with no real basis is amusing, yet you feel like AJ gets what she deserves. Everyone warns her that she repeatedly falls head over heels for boys who have no substance, yet she disregards every single person and careens down the path of heartbreak. It's hard to sympathize with her too much when she repeatedly crashes and burns.

The major issue I had with the book is that AJ seemed too young in her flighty mindset to be a senior in high school who had gone through several boyfriends. She seems smart enough, but we're asked to believe that she's literally gone through about 10 guys without pinpointing her problem of being all concerned with looks. AJ is just unbelievably stupid about some things, and that was sort of jarring. The book is funny though and the speaking voices are entertaining and almost Gilmore Girl- like. It's worth overlooking a few character flaws.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

In My Mailbox (14)


From the school library:

Master Rosalind- A girl in Shakespeare's time disguises herself as a boy so she can play female roles on stage.

From Wal-Mart:

Matched- Cassia is willing to allow the Society to make all the choices for everyone until one day she sees that their choice for mate for her is not what her microchip says it should be, and if that mistake happened, suddenly the possibilities are endless.

Z: Zombie Stories- Short stories about teenagers during the coming zombie apocalypse.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Raised by Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Bryn is a human living in a werewolf world after the death of her parents and her subsequent adoption by a pack. She can't figure out why the pack alpha is so concerned about keeping her from Chase, a boy who was attacked and turned into a werewolf by a rabid werewolf. When she finally does talk to him, she realizes the pack has been keeping secrets from her and that the werewolf she thought was dead isn't. She also uncovers a strange ability of her own that suddenly pits her against not only the rabid werewolf, but every other alpha in America.

Genre: supernatural, fantasy

Rating: 5/5

This is, simply put, the best werewolf book I've ever read. The title initially enough to throw me off. It's sort of a cutesy, trite title for a book that's as good as this one is. This book manages to weave it's own mythology in a way that doesn't overlap with anything I've read before. Werewolves aren't portrayed as necessarily good or bad, just feral. While Bryn tries to follow the rules of being a werewolf without actually being one. The levels of emotion in the book are something you don't come across in a lot of YA novels, fantasy especially. The book is hard to put down mainly because there are several layers going on. There's a believable love story that isn't really a love story. There's the mystery of the rabid. There's the mystery of what the werewolf Senate is trying to do in dealing with the rabid. There's the mystery of just what powers Callum actually has. And Bryn is written in a believable voice. She's alternately angry and overly curious, but also does follow the rules to a degree.

This book is literally the best werewolf novel I've ever read and I hope the author either continues with the characters or writes more fantasy.

Follow Friday (October 14)


Q: If you could have characters from a book meet and form an epic storyline with characters from a TV series, which characters would you choose and why?

I would want the characters from Haven in an epic cross with the characters from the Darkest Powers series. Haven the show is all about a town where strange things happen, and the addition of the characters with strange powers from Armstrong's series would work wonderfully.

Nice and Mean by Jessica Leader

Marina is a catty 8th grader who likes to be number one among her friends and hates dealing with the less cool people at her school. Sachi is a well behaved student who never gets in trouble and always follows all the rules. The two are forced to work together on a video project with disastrous results as Marina tries to take over the project and gets into big trouble when she decides to make fun of some of her friends in it. Suddenly the video project becomes a catalyst for Marina to make herself kinder and Sachi to start standing up for herself.

Genre: contemporary

Rating: 4/5

This was actually a tween book, which I had never really read before. This one wasn't bad. A little sacchriney, but Marina really is rather a brat and her issues with her frienemies isn't really resolved completely at the end, much like in real life. The girl she gets into trouble with is no angel and is probably as bad as Marina in her own way, but it's Marina who learns her lesson.

Sachi is possibly too nice for a middle schooler, but her feelings of unfairness about how controlling her parents are of her is accessible to younger readers. Both girls learn a few things about how to treat friends and what is involved in being a trendsetter.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Cossacks by B. Bartos-Hoppner

Mitya wants something more in his life than being trapped in the small Russian village he lives in. When Yermak, the great Cossack leader shows up in the village, he follows him for his chance to be something more than a poor trapper. What Mitya finds is that he is now a part of the first conquest of Siberia, a land cruel and wealthy. He finds a brotherhood in the crude band of Cossacks, but he never finds any joy in the killing and fighting that they do. As he begins to question the cycle of revenge and violence that take place between the Cossacks and the Tartars that they are fighting, Yermak's group is pushed to its limit in one of the most forbidding places on earth.

Genre: historical, throwback

Rating: 4/5

Throwback rating: 5/5

Notes: #7 of YA Historical Fiction Challenge

Again, historical fiction that is older doesn't have as much of a problem holding up under scrutiny most of the time. This book is the same. The most noticable thing might be the sort of stiff language the book uses, but there's also the fact that this book was originally written in German and translated, which may account for some of the stiffness. It also made it harder to connect to the characters because of the formality. Mitya is the only one you really feel any connection to, and he's sort of kept at arm's length because of the rigid writing. What makes the book worthwhile to me is the fact that it was written about an obscure historical subject. I've never seen anything fictional about the Cossacks, much less about the original invasion of Siberia. This is a very very strange subject for a YA novel to be written about, but I suddenly want an updated YA novel on the subject. For a history major, this was interesting and showed insight into a culture that most don't know much about. I honestly felt like someone could turn this into a great historical movie, as the novel was a fictionalized version of actual events. This was a strange topic, but so fascinating, I wish someone would expand on it.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

In My Mailbox (13)


Again not much this week, but a couple to add to the Throwback category.

From school library:

I Marched With Hannibal- A brother and sister help an old man dig for treasure as he tells them about how he was an elephant boy for Hannibal's army when he was young.

Frozen Fire- Dusty gets a mysterious call from a boy who tells her he's dying. As she tries to find him and help him, she believes he may be connected to the disappearance of her brother.

Sons of the Steppe- Story of the youngest grandsons of Genghis Khan and how their paths diverged.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Follow Friday (October 7)

Q. If you could pick one character in a book, movie or television show to swap places with, who would it be?

Caroline from The Vampire Diaries. Not only is she pretty and has become fairly nice on the show, but now she's a rather powerful vampire who has a lovely, supportive werewolf boyfriend who has gone from being extremely hateful to very sweet with her. She's got daddy issues, but I find her father such a shifty judgmental douche that he's not an issue.


Chloe from The Nine Lives of Chloe King. Superpowers and two wonderful guys who would do anything for her. Also a great mother who supports her in just about everything.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

American Gothic by Robert Bloch

Serial killer G. Gordon Gregg has set up shop in Chicago at the turn of the century World's Fair. He seems untouchable as he murders women for their money and kills anyone who could possibly reveal his secret. But then he crosses paths with a journalist who sees through his facade and won't let up. Crystal risks death in her quest to find out Gregg's murderous secrets and she may not be able to unravel them in time to save her life.

Genre: thriller, historical

Rating: 4/5

Throwback rating: 5/5

This is a fictional retelling of the H.H. Holmes murder castle cases, something that was handled so masterfully in Devil in the White City, anything else is going to pale in comparison. Throwback wise, the book doesn't have a problem because it was already set at the turn of the century. There's probably not going to be too much problem with throwback historical novels because of that unless old fashioned attitudes start showing up. This one doesn't suffer from that too much though. Crystal does have to be saved, but she's very proactive in bringing Gregg down and is quite liberated. And if she has to be saved, so does her boss.

The main problem is that the characters are very one dimensional and there seemed like a lot of build up for a climax that didn't cover very much. Part of Devil in the White City's appeal is the relentless grind that builds until both the fair and the serial killings reach their zenith. This book isn't long enough or detailed enough to do so. It's because it's a fiction of something that actually happened, and what actually happened was so much more horrific, the fiction can't compare.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Jaws by Peter Benchley

The town of Amity relies on the business of summer tourists coming to their public beaches. Without the rich tourists, the town dies. When a gigantic great white shark shows up on the coast and begins to pick off swimmers, the town is thrown into a moral dilemma of whether to close the beaches to protect the people or keep them open to have the town survive. Police chief Martin Brody finds himself at odds with the towns people and at odds with the hot shot oceanographer who has come to study the shark. The only answer seems to be to kill it, but how do you kill a creature that no one thought could grow so large and who might be an act of God?

Genre: thriller, throw-back

Rating: 4/5

Holds up to time: 3/5

I've started a new category of book reading I'm going to call "throw-backs", or books that are pretty old, but still available at my school library. I'm not doing this to bash on my library, but see how well certain books hold up to time to a modern reader. Some of these books are so old I'm having trouble finding cover art.

The book itself is considered of interest mainly because of the classic movie. There are a number of differences. First off, the book makes the shark the most interesting character. Brody and the other humans running around are fairly cardboard cut out, but the shark is something else entirely. I wouldn't say you root for him, but you're fascinated by him. He's a mindless eating machine who seems to not want to play be the rules. And there really does seem to be some sense of divine retribution to him. The towns people have made their living off of the "summer people" who come to their town and are more than a little willing to bend the truth, shade the details, and inevitably sacrifice some of them up in the interest of keeping the rest of them coming back. Maybe it's fitting that the shark appears to ruin the town in the end. The more Hooper or Quint try to understand "the fish", the less he seems to follow the mold and they both ultimately die for their arrogance.

So often I think the shark is called "Jaws", but the only thing he's ever really referred to is "the fish". Even his death is one of something that isn't really defeated, but is just at the end up his mission. He dies when everyone who didn't respect the rules of survival are dead. The book does hold up in the department of the shark working. He's still terrifying. Him ripping boats to pieces is still disturbing. The bloody deaths still have impact mainly because the shark isn't shown as evil, just doing what he does. The book doesn't hold up in the fact that there are drug references and plenty of 70s ambiance. There's also some casual racism that I don't think was part of the story. So this is a patchy throwback read that still has some interest.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Why Do Men Have Nipples? by Mark Leyner and Billy Goldberg

A plethora of strange medical questions that you've always wanted to ask your doctor, but never had the nerve to. Like why do you get an ice cream headache? Or what are goosebumps? Or can you get high licking a toad?

Genre: nonfiction

Rating: 3/5

While this book answers some interesting questions, it was the format of it that got it knocked down so far. The "conversations" between the authors between entries was impossible for me to understand since it seemed like rambling and the intros to the chapters really weren't funny. The medical explanations were nice though and generally answered questions that we've all wondered about. It just seems like the book could have been set up in either a more interesting manner, or in a funnier one. As it stands, it seems like they were going for humor and couldn't really figure out how to do it, which just made things rather confusing and took away from some of the interest of the book. Especially when some of the entries were quite clinical and a bit dry.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

In My Mailbox (12)


The school librarian and I were talking about how it's a shame that we can't make current cover jackets for old library books. There's nothing wrong with the plot of the book, but a student will never pick it up based on its horrible, or in the case of some of the old industrial backed school print books, non existant cover art. The last four books on my list I hardly even picked up because they have no cover art and no blurbs on them anywhere to tell you the plot. I know for older school libraries or ones that don't have as much money, it seems like it would be beneficial to have a way to make old, but still readable books, more appealing looking.

From the school library:

The Pact of the Wolves: Bianca tries to unravel the mystery of her boarding school after she hears rumors of witchcraft and a mysterious society follows her.

Forgotten Fire: Vahan lives his life as a wealthy Armenian in Turkey at the beginning of WWI until some of his family starts disappearing and the horror of the Armenian genocide that was perpetuated moves into full swing.

Pretty Dead: Charlotte is a vampire who suddenly starts to feel human emotions against the back drop of Los Angeles wildfires.

American Gothic: A fictionalized account of H.H. Holmes, a female reporter is drawn to the serial killing physician she has begun to investigate.

Jaws: A shark is stalking the beach town of Amity and the police chief takes it upon himself to help kill the destructive creature.

The Cossacks: Fourteen-year-old Mitya leaves his home to join the Cossack chieftain and adventurer Yermak in his campaign across the Urals to take Siberia from the Tartars.

Frankenstein Unbound: Joe Bodenland finds himself sucked through a timeslip that throws him into a world inhabited by Frankenstein's monster; a world that may not be real as he's also able to interact with Mary Shelley.

Friday, September 30, 2011

Follow Friday (September 30)

Q. What book that hasn't been turned into a movie (yet) would you most like to see make it to the big screen, and who would you like cast as your favorite character?

I would love to see Beautiful Creatures turned into a movie. It stands a good chance of probably actually getting itself made.

Emily Browning

Zach Roerig

Michael Fassbender

Michael Trevino

Amanda Seyfried

Max Irons

Monica Bellucci

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Persistence of Memory by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes

Erin is a schizophrenic who has long dealt with a violent personality called Shevaun. Institutionalized most of her life, Erin just wants to start fitting in to normal life and get better. But it turns out Shevaun is real and she is linked together with Erin through their minds. And she's not happy about it. She and her lover Adjila are determined to sever her connection to Erin, even if that means killing her. But Erin has made some friends of the shapeshifter variety who are determined to protect her. That is if Erin is willing to believe them and not continue to keep insisting everything is just part of her schizophrenia.

Genre: supernatural

Rating: 3.5/5

Once again I had trouble with not being able to figure out what Rhodes was talking about sometimes. She's a very concise writer, which may not be a problem except for the fact that she seems to have a whole world built in her head for her characters, but doesn't explain it the whole way, which often left me confused as to what was happening. This book WAS better as a stand alone then All Just Glass. The lack of details on why Shevaun had so many split personalities was the confusing part of this one. Or the back story on why Erin didn't know she had special powers. Or how Adjila was involved.

The other issue I have is that the covers of these books are never atttractive. You'd think they could get the author some better cover art. Erin wasn't a bad character, but her insistance that she was crazy rather than believing everyong around her got old after a while. If was probably a realistic response, but an annoying one, none the less. Atwater-Rhodes is a good author for those students who may have trouble reading longer books. Her writing is much shorter and she gets to the point, but that doesn't always make it less confusing.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

All Just Glass by Amelia Atwater-Rhodes

Sarah Vida has been turned into a vampire, a mortal sin to someone from her vampire hunting family. Her sister Adia has been sent to hunt her down with the help of their fellow vampire hunters. Yet as the hunt goes on, things start to seem not so clear cut to Adia. Her sister doesn't seem like a mindless monster and the vampires that turned her actually seem fairly reasonable. But it's too late as their mother has set off an ancient blood ritual that has now pit the witches and vampires at war. Adia also starts to realize that her vampire hunting family is hiding more than a few secrets.

Genre: supernatural

Rating: 3.5/5

I probably have a skewed rating of this book. As I was reading I kept thinking "this feels like I'm missing a huge chunk of information". Atwater-Rhodes just sort of plowed along like I should know the back stories of different characters and understand randomly thrown out characters. I kept thinking it felt like the book should be part of a series, but when I picked it up from the library, there was nothing on the book that indicated it was part of a series or if it was, where it even fell in that series. It wasn't until I read the author information in the back that I found out this IS part of a series and not a stand alone book. Yet I couldn't have told that from the book itself other than I felt like I'd started watching a movie in the middle.

The book itself was interesting in the plot department, but I kept having trouble keeping Khristopher and Nikolas apart or figuring out how Sarah actually got turned into a vampire. Or what the deal with Christine was. It's like I could figure out what was going on with the current plot, but when they kept throwing things in they lost me. If this was a series that the BOOK HAD DOCUMENTED ON THE COVER I would have been okay with that. But considering I had to go on a scavenger hunt just to find that this was part of a series, in my mind this book should be able to stand alone and it doesn't really well.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

In My Mailbox (12)


From the school library:

The Awakening- Having escaped from Lyle House, Chloe and her supernaturally gifted friends are on the run from scientists, guards, and Chloe's treacherous aunt. The group is trying to find the one adult who can help them and sort out how to deal with each other, Simon's diabetes, Derek's transformations, and Tori's bitchiness.

Go and Come Back- Alicia is a young Indian from the Amazon whose tribe is subjected to two "old lady" anthropologists. Her community wants nothing to do with the women as they are arrogant and stupid and Alicia decides that it's her duty to set them right.

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian- Arnold is a bright Spokane Indian who decides to go to a more exclusive, mostly white school. He soon finds himself an outcast in his community on the reservation as a result and a curiosity to the kids at his new school. He's faced with even more problems when his family life begins to fall apart.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Ashes of Roses by Mary Jane Auch

Rose and her family have come from Ireland in search of a better life. Things get off to a bad start though when her younger brother is not allowed in the country and her family is split up again. Convincing her mother she needs to stay, Rose and one of her sisters continue on in America trying to make a living for themselves. After struggling to figure out how to live in their new country, Rose and her sister befriend a kind Jewish girl heavily involved in the union who gets Rose a job at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory. Baffled as to her friend's dedication to the union, Rose tries to find her own spirit until tragedy strikes.

Genre: historical

Rating: 4/5

Notes: #6 for the YA Historical Fiction Challenge

I managed to read this book in about a day mainly because it was a fast read. It was interesting from the perspective of looking into immigrant behavior from the early 1900s. The unions are generally difficult for me to relate to teenagers, so Auch does a good job in stressing their importance. The main fault I had with the book was some things just didn't seem believable. I'm not sure if it's just because I don't know the details of whether families really did leave teenage children in America or not, but some things just seemed like a stretch. I also wasn't the biggest fan of the use of dialect in the writing, but that's more a personal pet peeve of mine.

The history seemed very accurate and the story itself was interesting. It's a good addition to any library trying to encourage reading of historical fiction, though it's only going to appeal to girls and the cover art leaves something to be desired.

Friday, September 23, 2011

Follow Friday (September 23)

Q. Do you have a favorite series that you read over and over again? Tell us a bit about it and why you keep on revisiting it?

I've never really read a whole series more than once other than the Chronicles of Narnia. I've read that series a couple of times mainly because I was really young when I first read them and then the movies came out so I wanted to read them again. I've read Voyage of the Dawn Treader several times just because I like that one in particular. Who doesn't like Reepicheep?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Summoning by Kelley Armstrong

Chloe is a normal spoiled but neglected rich girl until she suddenly starts seeing ghosts and gets herself shipped off to a home for troubled teens. Chloe slowly comes to realize her condition is not medical, but that she really can see ghosts and soon realizes that there's something strange about the other teens at the group home as well. Meeting the handsome Simon and his hostile brother Derek, she starts uncovering secrets about Lyle House that have terrifying implications about her and her powers and those of her friends. Suddenly escape seems to be the only option.

Genre: supernatural

Rating: 4.5/5

I've speculated with my best friend about how when a person is presented with two options for a love interest, it is always possible to tell who is going to be chosen in the end. I still hold that in the male love interest department, whoever the author describes fully and emotionally first and who ever has a decent story line is the ONE. Based on that assumption, I'm proud to say I haven't been wrong yet. This leads me to saying that I've never honestly liked a love triangle mainly because I've ALWAYS seen the deck stacked in the favor of one of the men.

I bring this up because there are two boys presented for Chloe to like. One is handsome, nice and the boy Chloe likes. The other is hostile, terrible looking, and initially starts out fighting with Chloe. My money is already on her ending up with the second boy. Simon is a passive, one dimensional character. Derek has already shown himself to be complicated, smart, and very aggressive. He's going to win in the end. My money is already down on that.

The book itself is well written supernatural fiction. Of course there are witches and werewolves and the traditional supernatural beings, but Armstrong tries to take a fresh spin on them. There's an overwhelming sense of urgency as the teenagers are always in peril whether they know it or not. Chloe can be sort of dense seeming sometimes, but she's a believable character. May the thing that stands out is that the kids seem to be in a no win situation. They are so out numbered and out maneuvered, their situation is desperate. And Chloe's powers are terrifying. She can literally raise people from the dead and it's not something fun to watch.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

In My Mailbox (11)

Hello to all the new people following me! I try to follow back as much as I can, but sometimes I forget who I have or haven't followed.


From the school library:

Audrey, Wait- Little did Audrey know that dumping her band boyfriend would lead to her becoming the subject of his hit song and target of the paparazzi.

Fall of a Kingdom- The country of Farsala has always been peaceful until the invasion of a powerful new force and forcing several unconnected young people to join together in freeing their country.

From Booksfree rental:

Early to Death, Early to Rise- Madison has got her hands full as a dark timekeeper responsible for keeping reapers in line and thwart a smorgasbord of shady characters.

Why Do Men Have Nipples?- All the questions you'd like to ask a doctor but don't want to be looked at like a crazy for asking.

Nice and Mean- Two girls, one nice and one mean, have to team up for a video project, revealing the ins and outs of clothing when it comes to peer pressure and fitting in.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Follow Friday (September 16)

Q. It's that pesky magic book fairy again! She has another wish: What imaginary book world would you like to make a reality?

There's something about the world of Howl's Moving Castle that I've always liked. There's a blend of modern, some undefined historical peasant era, and magic. There's danger and threat going on, but it also seems like fun. A lot of Dianne Wynn Jones' worlds I wouldn't mind living in.