Review: Beauty by Robin McKinley

Beauty by Robin McKinleyBeauty
Robin McKinley
Open Road Media
Published on November 8, 2014 (Originally published October 25, 1978)

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When Beauty’s family falls on reduced circumstances, she, her father, and two sisters move to a remote village rumored to be near an enchanted castle. Beauty and her sisters face their new lives bravely, learning to do chores and care for their new home. One night, after a long journey, their father returns home with a magical rose and a chilling story. He has met the Beast and ruler of the castle and now owes a debt: either his own life or the life of one of his daughters. Ever … Continue reading

Top Ten Books from 2017

Top Ten Books from 2017

Top Ten Books from 2017

Here are some of my favorite books that came out this year, that have been reviewed here by Kasey or me:

The Lost Girl of Astor Street by Stephanie Morrill– February 7th, 2017

Stephanie Morrill’s latest book is a mystery set in Chicago during the Roaring 20s. It features a strong heroine and a swoon-worthy detective, along with several unexpected twists. Kasey reviewed this book back in March, and said it was a must read for historical fiction and mystery lovers alike. After reading it for myself, I definitely would agree!

The Illusionist’s Apprentice by Kristy Cambron– March 7th, 2017

The Illusionist’s Apprentice is another historical fiction/mystery novel set in … Continue reading

Review: The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-GarciaThe Beautiful Ones
Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Thomas Dunne Books
Published October 24th, 2017

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About The Beautiful Ones

In a world of etiquette and polite masks, no one is who they seem to be.

Antonina Beaulieu is in the glittering city of Loisail for her first Grand Season, where she will attend balls and mingle among high society. Under the tutelage of the beautiful but cold Valérie Beaulieu, she hopes to find a suitable husband. However, the haphazard manifestations of Nina’s telekinetic powers make her the subject of malicious gossip.

Yet dazzling telekinetic performer and outsider Hector Auvray sees Nina’s powers as a gift, and he teaches her how to hone and control them. As … Continue reading

Review: In a Perfect World by Trish Doller

In a Perfect World by Trish DollerIn a Perfect World
Trish Doller
Simon Pulse
Published on May 23, 2017

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About In a Perfect World
Caroline Kelly is excited to be spending her summer vacation working at the local amusement park with her best friend, exploring weird Ohio with her boyfriend, and attending soccer camp with the hope she’ll be her team’s captain in the fall.

But when Caroline’s mother is hired to open an eye clinic in Cairo, Egypt, Caroline’s plans are upended. Caroline is now expected to spend her summer and her senior year in a foreign country, away from her friends, her home, and everything she’s ever known.

Continue reading

Review: Ungifted by Gordon Korman

Ungifted by Gordon KormanUngifted
Gordon Korman
Balzer + Bray
Published on August 21, 2012

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About Ungifted
The word gifted has never been applied to a kid like Donovan Curtis. It’s usually more like Don’t try this at home. So when the troublemaker pulls a major prank at his middle school, he thinks he’s finally gone too far. But thanks to a mix-up by one of the administrators, instead of getting in trouble, Donovan is sent to the Academy of Scholastic Distinction (ASD), a special program for gifted and talented students.

It wasn’t exactly what Donovan had intended, but there couldn’t be a more perfect hideout for someone like him. That … Continue reading

Review: Once Was Lost by Sara Zarr

Once Was Lost by Sara ZarrOnce Was Lost
Sara Zarr
Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Published on October 1, 2009

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About Once Was Lost
Samara Taylor used to believe in miracles. But her mother is in rehab, and her father seems more interested in his congregation than his family. And when a young girl in her small town is kidnapped, her already-worn thread of faith begins to unravel.

Samara Taylor used to believe in miracles. She used to believe in a lot of things. As a pastor’s kid, it’s hard not to buy in to the idea of the perfect family, a loving God, and amazing grace. … Continue reading

Review: Elsie Mae Has Something to Say by Nancy Cavanaugh

Elsie May Has Something to Say by Nancy CavanaughElsie Mae Has Something to Say
Nancy Cavanaugh
Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Published on September 5, 2017

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About Elsie Mae Has Something to Say
Elsie Mae is determined to save her beloved Okefenokee Swamp, but is she willing to accept the unexpected?

Elsie Mae has long treasured summers with her grandparents in the Okefenokee Swamp, so she is devastated to hear that a shipping company plans to build a canal right through it. What will that mean for the people and animals that call the swamp home?

So she writes a letter directly to President Franklin Roosevelt himself and sets off to enjoy what may … Continue reading

Review: The List by Patricia Forde

The List by Patricia FordeThe List
Patricia Forde
Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Published August 1, 2017

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About The List
In the city of Ark, speech is constrained to five hundred sanctioned words. Speak outside the approved lexicon and face banishment. The exceptions are the Wordsmith and his apprentice Letta, the keepers and archivists of all language in their post-apocalyptic, neo-medieval world.

On the death of her master, Letta is suddenly promoted to Wordsmith, charged with collecting and saving words. But when she uncovers a sinister plan to suppress language and rob Ark’s citizens of their power of speech, she realizes that it’s up to her to save not only words, … Continue reading

Review: Solo by Kwame Alexander

Solo by Kwame AlexanderSolo
Kwame Alexander
Blink – Zondervan
Published August 1, 2017

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About Solo
Solo, a YA novel in poetic verse, tells the story of seventeen-year-old Blade Morrison, whose life is bombarded with scathing tabloids and a father struggling with just about every addiction under the sun—including a desperate desire to make a comeback. Haunted by memories of his mother and his family’s ruin, Blade’s only hope is in the forbidden love of his girlfriend. But when he discovers a deeply protected family secret, Blade sets out on a journey across the globe that will change everything he thought to be true.

My Review
Even though … Continue reading

Review: What Goes Up by Katie Kennedy

What Goes Up by Katie KennedyWhat Goes Up
Katie Kennedy
Bloomsbury USA Children’s
Published July 18, 2017

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About What Goes Up
Rosa and Eddie are among hundreds of teens applying to NASA’s mysterious Multi-World Agency. After rounds of crazy-competitive testing they are appointed to Team 3, along with an alternate, just in case Eddie screws up (as everyone expects he will). What they don’t expect is that aliens will arrive from another dimension, and look just like us. And no one could even imagine that Team 3 would be the only hope of saving our world from their Earth-destroying plans. The teens steal the spacecraft (it would be … Continue reading

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