Monday, July 11, 2016

Book Review - The Rithmatist - Brandon Sanderson

The Rithmatist - Brandon Sanderson
The Rithmatist (Rithmatist, #1)
More than anything, Joel wants to be a Rithmatist.  Rithmatist have the power to infuse life into two-dimensional figures known as Chalklings.  Rithmatists are humanity's only defense against the Wild Chalklings.  Having nearly overrun the territory of Nebrask, the Wild Chalklings now threaten all of the American Isles.

As the son of a lowly chalkmaker at Armedius Academy, Joel can only watch as Rithmatist students learn the magical art that he would do anything to practice.  Then students start disapperaint--kidnapped from their rooms at night, leaving trails of blood.  Assigned to help the professor who is investigating the crimes, Joel and his friend Melody find themselves on the trail of an unexpected discoery--one that will change Rithmatics--and their world--forever.

4/5 stars (really liked it)
I have not read many books by Brandon Sanderson but my husband has and he recommended this book to my 12 year old son.  After he read I and raved about it I read it too and loved it.  Joel is so likeable and I feel so bad for him.  His father, the Chalkmaker died and so it is just him and his mother living on campus.  All the professors and staff have known him all his life.  His mother is working non-stop cleaning the school.  Joel has a hard time finding friends and any he does make are not very nice to him.  But Joel is very intelligent and he uses that in this book.  The ending although I had guessed some of it really wanted me to read the next one, which isn't out yet.  I never would have thought a story about chalk drawings would be so compelling.  

Book Review: If I Was Your Girl - Meredith Russo

If I Was Your Girl
Amanda Hardy is the new girl in school in Lambertville, Tennessee.  Like any other girl, all she wants is to make friends and fit in.  But Amanda is keeping a secret.  There's a reason why she transferred schools for her senior year, and why she's determined not to get too close to anyone.

And then she meets Grant Everett.  Grant is unlike anyone she's ever met--open, honest, kind--and Amanda can't help but start to let him into her life.  As they spend more time together, she finds herself yearning to share with Grant everything about herself...including her past.  But she's terrified that once she tells Grant the truth, he won't be able to see past it.

Because the secret that Amanda's been keeping?  It's that she used to be Andrew.

3/5 stars (liked it)
I felt so bad for Amanda and the way she was treated her whole life.  It started with her parents, teachers and classmates.  All because she didn't fit society's ideal of what a boy should dress like, act like and be like.  Andrew was always Amanda on the inside.  Not only did she have that to deal with but she also felt responsible for her parent's divorce.  I know this was fictional story but it was based on the author's own personal experience and I'm glad she got to write these down to let people that don't know much about the subject understand it a little more.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Book Review: The Last Star - Rick Yancey

The Last Star (The 5th Wave, #3)
The enemy is Other.  The enemy is us.

They're down here, they're up there, they're nowhere.  They want the Earth, they want us to have it.  They came to wipe us out, they came to save us.

But beneath these riddles lies one truth:  Cassie has been betrayed. So has Ringer, Zombie, Nugget.  And all 7.5 billion people who used to live on our planet.  Betrayed first by the Others, and now by ourselves.

In these last days, Earth's remaining survivors will need to decide what's more important: saving themselves...or saving what makes us human.

3/5 stars (liked it)
So I was expecting more from this book.  Although I am satisfied with the ending and I'm glad Rick Yancey ended it how he did.  There was still more I wish would have happened.  The ending is both sad and happy.  I would love to see a follow up book to see where the characters that survived are doing in this apocalyptic world.

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

Book Review: The Raven King - Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven King (The Raven Cycle, #4)
Nothing living is safe.  Nothing dead is to be trusted.

For years, Gansey has been on a quest to find a lost king.  One by one, he's drawn others into this quest:  Ronan, who steals from dreams; Adam, whose life is no longer his own; Noah, whose life is no longer a lie; and Blue, who loves Gansey...and is certain she is destined to kill him.

Now the endgame has begun.  Dreams and nightmares are converging.  Love and loss are inseparable.  And the quest refuses to be pinned to a path.

2/5 stars (it was ok)
I wanted to give up on this series but I figured since it was the last book I wanted to know what happened.  Adam is my favorite character and I wish that there was a book just about him.  The ending was not surprising.  I liked the epilogue.

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Book Review: Nick & Tesla's Solar-Powered Showdown - Bob Pflugfelder & Steve Hockensmith

Nick and Tesla's Solar-Powered Showdown: A Mystery with Sun-Powered Gadgets You Can Build Yourself
Super-smart kid inventors Nick and Tesla Hold have outsmarted crooks, spies, and kidnappers, but now it's time to crack their biggest mystery yet: where the heck are their parents?  With the help of their eccentric Uncle Newt, the twins trace the clues to their missing Mom and Dad, scientists working on solar-power research for a clandestine government project.  They'll need all their wits, along with an assortment of homemade gadgets, to outsmart the criminal mastermind who's trying to turn solar power into a secret weapon.  Featuring instructions for building and using five awesome solar-powered contraptions--a hot dog cooker, alarm bell, listening device, model car, and nighttime LED signal cannon--this sixth installment is sure to please budding scientists and sleuthers alike.

4/5 stars (really liked it)
I received this free copy to review on my blog.

My almost 12-year old son read this book before me.  We have read all the books in the series and both love them.  He said that he really liked this one and thought it was the last one since it kind of wraps things up.  He now wants to get some cans of Pringles and make the hot dog cooker.

I also liked this book and it did feel like it would be the last book in the series.  I wish there was an epilogue at the end to see where Nick & Tesla are maybe a few months later.  I loved that Uncle Newt was more involved in the adventure and not just a background character.  I kind of would love to see a series with just Uncle Newt and what he was like as a kid as well as his brother (Nick & Tesla's father).  Overall this is a really fun series to read for any age.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Book Review: Midnight Bites - Rachel Caine

Midnight Bites: Stories of the Morganville Vampires
WELCOME TO MORGANVILLE.
YOU'LL NEVER WANT TO LEAVE.

By day, Morganville, Texas, is just a typical college town.  By night, the vampires emerge and take control...

In a town where it's not safe to be out after dark, student Claire Danvers and her friends have had their fair share of thrills.  But Morganville still has a few secrets left to tell.

Now, in this collection, you can venture down the town's strange streets, revisit all the tales you've come to love, and experience six new stories featuring your favorite Morganville residents--both human and vampire...

4/5 stars (really liked it)
Wow, loved the stories.  Especially ones involving Myrnin, since he's my favorite and it was fun to see his past a little more.  Really enjoyed the story with Myrnin and Shane.  Eve is always a favorite.  I really liked that some of these stories took place after the series ended, which gave us a glimpse on where everyone is at after the series ended.


Tuesday, May 10, 2016

Book Review: Demigods & Magicians - Rick Riordan

Demigods & Magicians: Percy and Annabeth Meet the Kanes
Magic, monsters, and mayhem abound when Percy Jackson and Annabeth Chase meet Carter and Sadie Kane for the first time.  Weird creatures are appearing in unexpected places, and the demigods and magicians have to team up to take them down.  As they battle with Celestial Bronze and glowing hieroglyphs, the four heroes find that they have a lot in common--and more power than they ever thought possible.  But will their combined forces be enough to foil an ancient enemy who is mixing Greek and Egyptian incantations for an evil purpose?  

4/5 stars (really liked it)
This book consists of three short stories.  In the first story, Percy and Carter find themselves chasing the same monster.  They fight eachother and then work together.  Although they don't reveal much about eachother they decide to keep their eyes open.  In the second story, Annabeth and Sadie find themselves chasing the same monster.  Their encounter goes smoother than Percy's and Carter.  Especially since Percy told Annabeth about his encounter with an Egyptian Magician.  Annabeth and Sadie work well together.  In the third story all four heroes are chasing a bad guy and working well together, combining Greek and Egyptian magic to defeat a super foe.  Three great stories and I can't wait to read more crossover stories.




Wednesday, May 04, 2016

Book Review: The Beast - J.R. Ward

The Beast (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #14)
Nothing is as it used to be for the Black Dagger Brotherhood.  After avoiding war with the Shadows, alliances have shifted and lines have been drawn.  The slayers of the Lessening Society are stronger than ever, preying on human weakness to acquire more money, more weapons, more power.  But as the Brotherhood readies for an all-out attack on them, one of their own fights a battle within himself...

For Rhage, the Brother with the biggest appetites, but also the biggest heart, life was supposed to be perfect--or at the very least, perfectly enjoyable.  Mary, his beloved shellan, is by his side and his King and his brothers are thriving.  But Rhage can't understand--or control--the panic and insecurity that plague him...

And that terrifies him--as well as distances him from his mate.  After suffering mortal injury in battle, Rhague must reassess his priorities--and the answer, when it comes to him, rocks his world...and Mary's.  But Mary is on a journey of her own, one that will either bring them closer together or cause a split that neither will recover from...

4/5 stars (really liked it)
This seemed more like earlier books in the series.  In this book we follow Rhage and Mary and their "happily ever after".  Also in this book is Layla and her pregnancy.  I figured out the ending from the beginning.  There are little tidbits we learn.  Such as a little bit about Xcor.  Also we are introduced to a human woman, Jo and we really don't learn her connection until the end.  Overall a good book.  I like how J.R. Ward ties the Brotherhood Books to the Black Dagger Legacy.