Jackaby's story is told from the point of view of Abigail Rook, a young and educated English girl. who decided to leave school in search for an educatJackaby's story is told from the point of view of Abigail Rook, a young and educated English girl. who decided to leave school in search for an education through archeological digs. Her father is a palentologist but recommended that she finish her schooling and find a husband to care for her. Instead, Abigail absconded with her tuition money to join an archeological dig which went bankrupt. Abigail then decided to try her luck in America where she meets young Jackaby, a self proclaimed detective with the ability to find and see supernatural creatures.
Jackaby is young, arrogant, disturbingly observant - much like a young American Sherlock Holmes dedicated to reason and science which he uses to explain illusions and supernatural phenomena. Rook is funny, spirited, and equally observant; she's an excellent foil for Jackaby and a valuable assistant. "Jackaby sees things more extraordinary still, the things that no one else sees. But Rook - Rook notices mailboxes and wastebaskets and . . . and people. One who can see the ordinary is extraordinary indeed." So, Rook is hired as Jackaby's assistant.
As a Sherlock Holmes type character, Jackaby does get a lot of teasing from Abigail Rook, Chief Inspector Marlowe, and the people that he encounters. While Jackaby does get respect, the ribbing he suffers adds to the fun.
The murder mystery that makes up Jackaby's main case comes with a strange map, a banshee, goblins, and other supernatural creatures. Still, the detective skills used to find and interpret the clues are based in reason.
ISBN-10: 1616203536 - Hardcover $16.95 Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers (September 16, 2014), 304 pages. Review copy courtesy of the publisher and NetGalley....more
It's been a long time since I've read a holiday romance, but I'm a big fan of the old Christmas stories. I hadn't realized how much My True Love GaveIt's been a long time since I've read a holiday romance, but I'm a big fan of the old Christmas stories. I hadn't realized how much My True Love Gave To Me was a collection of love stories of sorts, but this made it possible for me to approach the stories with a blank slate.
I'd read some YA in the past and have read works by some of the featured authors (Holly Black, Ally Carter, Matt De La Pena, Gayle Forman, Jenny Han, David Leviathan, Laini Taylor and Rainbow Rowell) and quite a few were new to me (Kelly Link, Myra McEntire, Stephanie Perkins, Kiersten White). I loved that this collection introduced me to new authors and took me to very different ideas of holiday stories.
The collection gives us a wide range of holiday stories but the characters are all the age of college students or new graduates. While there's a mix of backgrounds, races, sexual preferences, the people that we read about all share a certain mix of disappointment and wonder. The stories themselves left me remembering the excitement and joy of finding someone that I wanted to stay up all night with, wanted to explore the town with, someone who made things new.
I'm keeping these stories for myself but I might get this book for a college aged niece. It's a good book to share with friends, if your friends enjoy YA and/or love stories....more
Twelve-year old Maisie Hitchins lives at 31 Albion Street, London, in a boarding house run by her grandmother. Though Holly Webb doesn't specify thatTwelve-year old Maisie Hitchins lives at 31 Albion Street, London, in a boarding house run by her grandmother. Though Holly Webb doesn't specify that they live during the Victorian era, people rely on horses and carriages to get around and snack on aniseed balls, lavender lace, and sugared violets. Maisie's smart, curious, and dreams of being a detective, like her hero Detective Gilbert Carrington (who is much like Shelock Holmes).
When Maisie comes across a nearly drowned puppy in a sack, she undertakes to find the perpetrator of the deed. Her beloved puppy makes off with George, the butcher's delivery boy's sausages, and Maisie feels responsible when George loses his job. Though George was fired when he was found with a "marked" sixpence and not because of the sausages, Maisie resolves not to rest until the true culprit is found.
Maisie is helped by two lodgers with unusual expertise. Disguises, acting, careful detective work and her new puppy help Maisie solve the puzzles. This first detective adventure with Maisie Hitchins is funny and sure to appeal to young mystery lovers....more
Funny, sensitive, and somehow emotionally spot on, Amy Shearn's The Mermaid of Brooklyn kept me reading late into the night.
I confess that part of myFunny, sensitive, and somehow emotionally spot on, Amy Shearn's The Mermaid of Brooklyn kept me reading late into the night.
I confess that part of my fascination came from the way that she captured South Slope/Park Slope so well. I feel as though Jenny Lipkin might live right around the corner from me on Seventh Avenue. But it's Jenny and her voice that makes The Mermaid of Brooklyn stand out. She's smart, been out of the work place for a while throughout the recession and the early years of childrearing, frighteningly observant and deeply sympathetic. A fun read!...more
The Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing delivers a hilarious and moving story of three generations of an Indian (South Asian) family. Mira Jacob delivers cThe Sleepwalker's Guide to Dancing delivers a hilarious and moving story of three generations of an Indian (South Asian) family. Mira Jacob delivers complex characters, nuanced relationships, and an engrossing story.
The book opens with Amina Eapen, single professional photographer working on weddings and celebrations, learns from her mother Kamala that her brain surgeon father Thomas has been acting strange. Thomas has apparently been seeing and speaking to dead family members and seems even more distracted than usual. Amina finds replacement photographers for her assignments and leaves her comfortable life for what she expected would be one week.
But as Amina learns more details of her parents' changed behavior, she finds that she's unable to return to her old job and life - at least until things normalize. Her close family friend, a.k.a. "cousin" Dimples, is a go-getter, beautiful and works at an art gallery. Dimples is used to getting her way and has no qualms about taking advantage of Amina. But even in her most manipulative, Dimples is still a sympathetic character.
Throughout the novel, even the most difficult and temperamental characters are easy to sympathize with and to love. Mira Jacob gives us a beautiful and sympathetic immigrant story from multiple points of view: the perspective of the parents left behind in the homeland who long for their successful doctor son Thomas to return and the resentful and overlooked younger brother who lives with the widowed mother in the family home, the successful Thomas who has decided to make a home in Albuquerque with his Indian wife Kamala and their young children, the brilliant children who adjust, with differing degrees of success, to their lives in their privileged part of America....more
I hadn't read Michael Sears' earlier Jason Stafford novel and you needn't have had done so to lose yourself completely in Mortal Bonds.
Jason StaffordI hadn't read Michael Sears' earlier Jason Stafford novel and you needn't have had done so to lose yourself completely in Mortal Bonds.
Jason Stafford is a quant/financial genius who made a killing on Wall Street. Unfortunately, some of his money was well earned but a significant part of it came from securities fraud. After a stint in jail, he's worked to rehabilitate himself and his reputation. He's worked with the FBI and the SEC to help identify financial fraud in the past and he hires out his talents to the private sector. Corporations will call on him to find if money is being diverted and where it might be, how to prevent fraud, etc. Jason gets a call and a helicopter ride to a meeting with the matriarch of a Madoff like family. The family is publicly scorned and is the subject of civil suits, death threats and an extensive investigation by the SEC and FBI. Jason's asked to find roughly $1B which has gone missing ostensibly for the family to return to the government to rehabilitate the family name and to allow them to keep their investment business in play. His compensation will be a consulting fee of $1M per year for the rest of his life as well as an upfront payment of a reasonable sum (that will not draw the attention of Jason's creditors).
Jason's uniquely suited for the task as his skills and his network allow him to gather and evaluate information in ways not available to government investigators. So we follow him to opulent rooms in secret clubs in Manhattan, the offices of big money, to the homes of longtime and loyal employees, to private banks in Switzerland and to unexpected danger.
Fascinatingly complex, Mortal Bonds is one of the best financial thrillers I've read in a long time. ...more