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Monday, May 27, 2013

Book #47 Read in 2013
Hidden by Helen Frost (YA)

This is a young adult verse novel.  When she was eight, Wren was hiding in the backseat when her mother's car was carjacked.  The thief did not know that Wren was in the car when he took it.  When he gets home, Wren hides in the garage until she can escape safely.  The thief's young daughter knows Wren is in the garage and leaves out food and drink for her.  Her name is Darra.  Darra's father is arrested and sent to prison.  Years later, the two girls meet again at summer camp.  They keep their history secret from the other campers.  But eventually, the girls confront their shared past and discuss it.  Will they come out as friends?

This was a good, quick read.  The verse format is well done enough to create complex characters and an interesting plot.  This is a testament to Frost's writing talent.  Wren and Darra are interesting characters; they are both strong girls who are survivors.  I enjoyed this book and would recommend it.

Sunday, May 26, 2013

Dying to Know You (YA)

Book #46 Read in 2013
Dying to Know You by Aidan Chambers (YA)

Karl asks a local writer to help him communicate with his girlfriend, who has ordered him to answer her sheet of questions in grammatically correct writing.  Karl has dyslexia and feels unsure about his writing and since the writer is one of his girlfriend's favorite authors, he thought that this may be a better way of answering her questions.  The two men begin a friendship and begin to help and learn from each other.  Both find in the other something that will fill the gap that has been in their lives.

This was a good, quick read.  I enjoyed the thoughts of writing and books but I really love the two main characters and the relationship they developed.  I enjoyed this book.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The Boleyn King

Book #45 Read in 2013
The Boleyn King by Laura Andersen

This was a great historical fiction read.  I love reading about the Tudors.  This book focused more on William as King, but also had his sister Elizabeth at the forefront.  In this book, William will soon be of age to take over the throne and he is beginning to really play the political chess game of what country to go to war against and what woman would be most beneficial as a wife.  

I enjoyed the writing style of this book and would recommend it, especially to fans of Phillipa Gregory.  These historical figures were brought to life in this book and were larger than life.  The whole way life was lived at that time was fascinating to read about, especially when it came to the role of women.

I received this book from the Amazon Vine program in exchange for a review.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Planet Middle School (YA)

Book #44 Read in 2013
Planet Middle School (YA) by Nikki Grimes

This is a young adult verse novel telling the story of Joylin, a tomboy who is slowly finding her more feminine side.  She is trying to figure out how to balance her love and skill of basketball with the emotions she is beginning to feel about some boys she knows.  This book, while a very quick read, has depth to it--it tells of how desperate her younger brother is for her father's attention--he is an artist, not an athlete and that is not held in the same regard by their father.  This was a good read for middle school girls.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

The Good Luck Girls of Shipwreck Lane

Book #43 Read in 2013
The Good Luck Girls of Shipwreck Lane by Kelly Harms

A contest is being held where the winner would be given a dream home.  The winner's name is Janine Brown.  The only problem?  There were two Janine Browns who entered the drawing.  Janey, was entered into the contest by her Aunt Midge, is a shy woman who loves to cook.  Nean is a down-on-her-luck sort of con artist who sees a way out if she wins this home.  Both arrive to the dream house.  Janey is the true winner and she and her Aunt Midge decide to let Nean stay for a while.  After that, their lives take a very different turn from their normal way of life.

This book was a good read.  Janey and Nean were interesting characters, though I did want to slap Nean several times throughout the book.  Aunt Midge was quite the character; she reminded me of Grandma Mazur from the Stephanie Plum books.  This book was a mix of culinary tidbits, romance and a look at life.  

I received a copy of this book from BookBrowse in exchange for a review.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The Program (YA)

Book #42 Read in 2013
The Program (YA) by Suzanne Young

An epidemic is spreading--suicide among teenagers and "the Program" is the cure.  Sloane's brother Brady commits suicide.  This places Sloane and her boyfriend/Brady's best friend James on a watch list by the Program.  If they are placed in the Program, all of their memories, good and bad, will be wiped cleaned and then the "disease" will be removed from the brains, preventing their suicide.  But is this truly the right thing to do?  To make it that they have no knowledge of who they are or their feelings for each other?  Sloane is not sure and she strives to hang on to her memories.

This book was a great read.  There was a lot of action and twists and turns.  The characters were well written and interesting, especially Sloane, James and Realm.  There was a romantic element to the book that was interesting but not overpowering.  I enjoyed this book a lot.

I received a copy of this book in exchange for a review from the Amazon Vine program.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

Gone Girl

Book #41 Read in 2013
Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn

I do not think I have ever read a book that had as main characters such unlikable people as this book did; Nick and Amy are nasty.  That being said, this book was like a train wreck and I could not look away; I had to keep reading to find out what happened.  On their fifth wedding anniversary, Amy goes missing.  Shortly thereafter, the police and the media are looking at Nick as the person who made Amy disappear.  He had cheated on her, emotionally withdrawn from her and, according to Amy's found diary, physically abused her at times.  But did Nick really kill her?

This book had tons of twists and turns to keep readers engaged.  I was rooting for both Nick and Amy to get their just desserts.  This was a good mystery and I recommend it.  It seems to be one of those books that people either love or hate; I was more on the love side.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Every Day (YA)

Book #40 Read in 2013
Every Day (YA) by David Levithan

Every day "A" wakes up in someone else's body.  He can access their memories and set up some ones for them to remember the next day, but he never knows what body he will inhabit next.  He takes over Justin's body one day and falls in love with Justin's girlfriend Rhiannon.  A continues to see her, no matter what body he is in, and eventually tells her the truth of his life, or lack thereof.  Rhiannon has no way of knowing what he will look like the next day.  She wants to be with A but does not know how.

This is a fantasy read that has a romantic aspect to it.  I enjoyed this book.  Each day was interesting to read about and I was rooting for A and Rhiannon to find a way to be together for good.  These characters were ones that I cared about quickly.  I recommend it.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

April reads

My April reads:

1.  Skinned (YA) 3.5/5  library book  1st in series
2.  The Comfort of Lies (5/5)
3.  Starting Now (5/5)
4.  Reconstructing Amelia (5/5)
5.  Quarantine:  The Loners (YA) 5/5  1st in series
6.  The Clover House (4/5)
7.  Tapestry of Fortunes (4.5/5)
8.  Arclight (YA)  4.5/5
9.  The Tao of Martha (5/5)

Year to date:  39 books read