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Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Diana: Her True Story


Book #68 Read in 2017
Diana:  Her True Story

Twenty years after her death, Diana, Princess of Wales, still captivates readers with her tales of being an outside in the royal family and definitely in her marriage.  This book has an insider's perspective of how Diana really felt as she went through her royal life.  A good read, I borrowed this book from the public library.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

To Stay Alive


Book #67 Read in 2017
To Stay Alive by Skila Brown

This is a verse novel about the infamous Donner party.  I do not think younger readers will stay engaged in this book to get to the cannibalism part (over 220 pages into the book).  This book details that hardship of their travels, both physically and mentally.  It was an ok read which I borrowed from the school library.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Morningstar


Book # 66 Read in 2017
Morningstar:  Growing Up with Books by Ann Hood

This is a book for a lover of books.  Hood talks about the role books and reading played in her life while growing up.  She was considered odd by her family because of her love for reading.  This is a good, quick read.  I borrowed it from the public library.

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Final Girls


Book #65 Read in 2017
Final Girls by Riley Sager

This is my pick for best thriller so far this year. Quincy is a "final girl", the lone survivor of a killing spree at a cottage.  Her college friends were butchered.  She is not the lone final girl though...there are Lisa and Sam....both lone survivors of a similar horrific event.  Quincy has tried to move on with her life but then Lisa commits suicide and Sam comes to visit Quincy.  Will her life be turned upside down more than it already is?  This book has great twists and turns which will keep readers guessing until the end.  I borrowed this book from the public library.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Allegedly


Book #64 Read in 2017
Allegedly by Tiffany D. Jackson

This is a gritty, realistic fiction young adult novel.  Mary is in a group home, after years in a juvenile detention center or "baby jail".  Allegedly, Mary killed an infant that her mother was babysitting.  But did she?  Her mother is not exactly mother-of-the year material.  Mary wants to get an education, go to college and form some sort of life for herself but will that really be possible?  High school  and adult readers will be drawn to this book.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Bang


Book #63 Read in 2017
Bang by Barry Lyga

When he was four years old, Sebastian picked up his father's unattended handgun and shot and killed his infant sister.  That haunts Sebastian, now a teenager, and his parents.  The parents split up and Sebastian lives with his mother, hardly ever seeing his father.   Though not named in the press, all of his hometown knows what he did.  He has one friend until Aneesa moves into the neighborhood.  She does not know his past so Sebastian can have a "clean" relationship with someone new.  Sebastian has thoughts of suicide as a way to stop his pain.  This is a powerful read.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Caraval


Book #62 Read in 2017
Caraval by Stephanie Garber

This is the first book in a young adult fantasy series.  Scarlett and Donnatella have an abusive father.  Scarlett is engaged to marry a Count she has never met.  But she really wants to attend Caraval--a festival of games and trickery.   She repeatedly writes the man in charge, Legend, for tickets to the event.  She and Tella end up there, with help from a young man Julian, but will they make it out of the game with their lives?  This book had a good mix of action, romance and intrigue.  I received a copy of this book from Amazon Vine in exchange for a honest review.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Reading with Patrick


Book #61 Read in 2017
Reading with Patrick by Michelle Kuo

Kuo taught English for two years in the Delta at an alternative school were the students went after being kicked out of their regular schools.  She wanted to make a difference in their lives.  Patrick was one of her students who was a leader in the class and was a relatively quiet kid.  A few years after she left the area, Patrick murders a man from the neighborhood and the author begins to visit him in prison.  To keep his mind engaged, she begins giving him homework, brining him books and reading with him.  The pair's connection is evident and is what every teacher hopes to have with a student.  Teachers should check this book out; I borrowed the book from the public library.

Monday, August 7, 2017

The Complete Chi's Sweet Home Part 1


Book #60 Read in 2017
The Complete Chi's Sweet Home Part 1 by Konami Kanata

I do not really read manga but if it is about a cute cat looking for his forever home, I am game.  This was a cute read and encompassed a few volumes in a collection with more apparently to come.  Chi is found by a family as a kitten and they keep him even though they are not allowed to have pets in their apartment.  They go through many pains to keep him a secret from their landlord.  What will happen if they are caught with Chi in their place?  Kitty hijinks fill this book and readers will get a kick out of Chi.  I borrowed this book from the school library.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Lilac Girls


Book #59 Read in 2017
Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly

This is my book pick of the year.  It is incredible--powerful, captivating and heartbreaking.  Set in World War 2, this book is told in three viewpoints--Kasia; Caroline and Herta.  Kasia is a Polish prisoner of war at the only all-female concentration camp; Caroline is in New York working to send relief overseas and Herta is the only female doctor in the all-female concentration camp, doing horrible things to the prisoners.  This book details "the Rabbits", the female prisoners who were violated by horrible operations and experimental medical procedures.  But overall, this shows the strength of women.  Even more powerful at the end is the author's note, describing how these women were either real or based on real women.  This book was extremely well-written and I will keep an eye out for the author's future books (this is her debut, amazing!)

Thursday, August 3, 2017

The Marriage Lie


Book #58 Read in 2017
The Marriage Lie by Kimberly Belle

In the first few chapters of the book, we meet Iris and her husband Will.  They have a happy marriage and have recently begun trying to get pregnant.  Will is on his way to an IT conference in Florida.  Or is he?  A plane heading to Seattle crashes and Will's name appears on the passenger list.  Why was he heading to Seattle?  Why did he lie to Iris about going to Florida?  What else was he hiding?  Iris begins to look into her husband and realizes she may not have known anything about the man she married.  This was a good read, with twists and turns to the very end.  Readers will be kept engaged and guessing.  I highly recommend.  I borrowed this book from the public library.