Alexa Daley has always been curious, and gotten into trouble because of it. But when her old friend, and the founder of life as they know it, suddenly...moreAlexa Daley has always been curious, and gotten into trouble because of it. But when her old friend, and the founder of life as they know it, suddenly dies, Alexa finds herself in an ever-growing web of trouble she isn’t sure how to deal with.
Alone with Warvold at the time of his death, there are those who suspect Alexa of knowing some secret. But all she really has are questions. Why did Warvold tell her that story about the blind men? What does it mean? What’s really outside the city walls?
Little does she know that the answers to those questions will only bring more confusion, as her adventures take her beneath her home and out into the wild, where the animals are waiting to inform her of further impending danger to life as she knows it.
Interesting take on how our actions can have unexpected consequences, including giving us the opposite of the outcome we’d intended.(less)
This is another one of those books where I really liked the story, and wanted to know what happened, but sometimes felt the writing got in the way. So...moreThis is another one of those books where I really liked the story, and wanted to know what happened, but sometimes felt the writing got in the way. Sometimes I could just read along, and sometimes I felt like I was stumbling over the story. Sometimes I just wanted to get to the end, other times I couldn't wait to see what happened next. I'm hopeful that the writing will progress as the series goes along.(less)
Reason Cansino has been magic her whole life, but she’s only know magic was real for 8 days. In that time she’s moved into Sydney to live with her evi...moreReason Cansino has been magic her whole life, but she’s only know magic was real for 8 days. In that time she’s moved into Sydney to live with her evil grandmother, her mother’s been committed to a “Loony Bin,” and she’s stepped through a door only to wind up on the other side of the world, in New York City.
And if that’s not bad enough, she gets taken in by stories, only to end up in the clutches of her evil Grandfather, who’s worse than her Grandmother, who has to come through the door after her to save her.
Once back on the other side, in Sydney, there’s a lot to think about. Like how magic means insanity or dying young. Whether to accept lessons from a woman she doesn’t trust. The desire to find a way to change things, so that magic doesn’t have to be a curse. But it seems there’s no time for any of that, as the door begins to take on a life of its own, warping, making horrible noises, spitting out weird little creatures who attack the inhabitants of the house, and eventually, sucking Reason straight through.
Back in New York, Reason is the only one who can actually see what’s happening to the door. Which is an impossibly old, and very magic, man, is trying to get through. But she doesn’t know why, or whose side he’s on. With the help of Jay-Tee’s non-magical brother Danny, she investigates on her side, while Jay-Tee, Tom and her Grandmother, Esmerelda, investigate and keep watch on the door from theirs.
Who is this strange half-phantom, half-man? How can he be so old and yet so strong? How can he be related to Reason, Esmerelda, and her Grandfather too? What is the magic he’s given each of them? Will it help Reason to find a way to save them all?(less)
Stormchaser, the second book of the series, tells the tale of a great Sky Ship voyage as the screw, including young Twig, chases after a Great Storm i...moreStormchaser, the second book of the series, tells the tale of a great Sky Ship voyage as the screw, including young Twig, chases after a Great Storm in the hopes of bringing back the ever-sacred Stormphrax for the sacred city of Sanctaphrax.(less)
Furiously seeking to deal with the latest turn of events in her now chaotic life, Emma has become the protector of her Kingdom. Closing in on her 16th...moreFuriously seeking to deal with the latest turn of events in her now chaotic life, Emma has become the protector of her Kingdom. Closing in on her 16th birthday, and the family curse, she desperately hopes to find a cure, but everywhere she turns finds nothing. Pitting her wicked relations against one another, she is able to draw from them information to help her find what she needs. And so she and Eadric find themselves traveling back in time. And while she was told not to meddle, of course she does, causing this book to nealy keep me up at night--not from reading, but from worry about how in the world she was going to get out of this. However, interference had no impact on the final results of things, the curse was still cast, and Emma now had the answer she was looking for, though little hope of bringing it to life, but with enough determination to make just about anything possible(less)
The wait is over, and another begun. Like its predecessors before it, Eclipse will please, and leave readers wanting more.
Picking up with life in Fork...moreThe wait is over, and another begun. Like its predecessors before it, Eclipse will please, and leave readers wanting more.
Picking up with life in Forks racing towards graduation, Bella is under house arrest, she and Jacob still aren’t speaking, Charlie is barely tolerating Edward, who himself is more polite than Bella thinks Charlie deserves, and her plans to become a vampire are solid as ever. If only that were the end of the list of worries.
There’s still Victoria, forever hunting Bella to avenge her mate’s death. And the Volturi, displeased with a human knowing their secret. And, after winning her freedom, and going to see Jake, Jake and Edwards’ mutual dislike. Edward, of course, is the first to get a grip. And in Bella, the werewolves and the vampires find common ground. After a break-in at her house, Jake and Edward realize Bella, and everyone else involved, would be better protected if the sides worked together. For a long time, that leaves Jacob on his own, largely lacking in sleep, but he won’t hear of not doing his part.
Then there’s the matter of the murders in Seattle. Eventually, the Cullens suspect vampires. Newborns. An area with which Jasper has a great deal of experience.
A plan begins to form, and after some more insightful thought on Bella’s part, changes, as the plot thickens. For her part, she can’t stand any of it. Knowing that her friends are putting themselves in danger for her. Regardless of their claims that it will all work out, she can’t relax. And after hearing in detail what newborns can do, she starts to worry after herself, and what she’ll become when she changes. Whether she’ll still be herself.
A lot of big questions get asked, and answered, in this installment of the series, which is sure to please. For my part, I’m now eagerly, and rather impatiently, awaiting Breaking Dawn.(less)
Clary Fray's first hint that she might be different comes when a normal night out at the club turns into anything but; after following a cute blue-hai...moreClary Fray's first hint that she might be different comes when a normal night out at the club turns into anything but; after following a cute blue-haired boy and three others into a store room, finding herself in the midst of a wholly unexpected scene, she's left to grapple with the encounter on her own, upon realizing that neither her best friend nor the bouncer can see what she sees.
Not soon after her mother is suddenly and unexpectedly trying to get Clary out of town, and when Clary storms off in a huff, taking off with Simon for a night out, little does she know from that moment on, nothing will be the same.(less)
Leven Thumps has lived a very dull, unsatisfying, loveless life. He's often wished for his lot to change. But he never could have imagined just how mu...moreLeven Thumps has lived a very dull, unsatisfying, loveless life. He's often wished for his lot to change. But he never could have imagined just how much change was in store for him. From the blue-eyed Clover, to the fateful arrival of the wild-looking Winter, and their even more fateful meetup with Geth, Leven suddenly finds himself wondering how the fate of the world can possibly be up to him.
Never a dull moment, loads of laughs, and a great cast of characters make this book a must read. I wish I had bought the entire series in one fell swoop. (Or at least, all the books currently on the shelf, at any rate.) I can't wait to see what's next for Leven and his gang.(less)
After seeing a trailer for this movie recently, and then stumbling across my copies of the series in VT, I decided to re-read them.
This story is centr...moreAfter seeing a trailer for this movie recently, and then stumbling across my copies of the series in VT, I decided to re-read them.
This story is central to Lyra Belacqua, a child without family, left in the care of Oxford College. While the college does its best to educate her, Lyra more greatly enjoys running amok with her best friend Roger, who works in the kitchens. But her curiosity and hankering to know are what lead everything into being.
Having snuck into a room she’s not meant to be in, she gets trapped, and while hiding in a closet sees a plot to poison her uncle unfold. She then warns her Uncle without thinking, and after filling him in, is left hidden to spy on the upcoming meeting. The meeting, of course, leaves her all the more curious, especially about Dust.
Then come the Gobblers, child thieves, stealing children from their families all around England, and finally coming to Oxford, where they get their hands both on Roger, and a gyptian boy Lyra knew. Lyra has little time to mourn, as she herself is about to go away, newly made assistant to the beautiful Mrs. Coulter.
Not long into her new life, Lyra grows increasingly disturbed, both by Mrs. Coulter, and her daemon, the evil golden monkey, who can roam too far from his mistress. In the end, she runs away, meeting up again with the gyptians, who hide her and keep her safe, as they know even more about her and the big picture and the gobblers than she herself does.
And so begins Lyra’s Quest to save Roger, and all the captured children, and her father, as she comes to learn Lord Asriel to be.(less)
This might be the best in the series yet. Action packed, quick-paced, shifting viewpoints and parallel stories--I hardly put it down!
We begin with Art...moreThis might be the best in the series yet. Action packed, quick-paced, shifting viewpoints and parallel stories--I hardly put it down!
We begin with Arthur desperately trying to get home, after Wednesday's adventures, only to find that he can't get through the Front Door. As it turns out, this happens to be the least of his problems. Reluctantly he sets off back into the house with his ever-growing staff to hold a meeting.
Not long into said meeting, his earthly friend Leaf is sent back home to try to deal with the troubles at hand there, and Arthur, upon finishing his orange juice, comes to find himself drafted into Sir Thursday's army. As all Denizens of the house must do a century of service sometimes in their lives, there's nothing to be done in terms of stopping him going. Which turns out to be a blessing and a curse.
As a mortal still, Arthur can be easily wounded or killed. But as Sir Thursday is the next Trustee he must take on, being that much closer could prove helpful. He can seek the next key and part four of the will from the inside while his friends search from the outside.
Things get more complicated still, when upon arriving for training Arthur finds himself subjected to the same washing between the ears that all Piper's children get, as it is assumed he is one himself. Therefore he forgets who he is and what he's meant to be doing. Luckily, he fights well and makes it through battle, and eventually recovers his memory. Although as he is now headed straight for the center of the Army's world, he's not entirely thrilled with the revelation.
The army attacking the house is like none ever witnessed before, and the battles are being won mostly due to the fact that Tectonic Strategy moves portions of the enemy far away every sundown, splitting its forces. When the plates of the maze stop moving, the real trouble begins.
Arthur finds himself not only face-to-face with Sir Thursday, but promoted to his Second Lieutenant for the special mission he's taking on to destroy the spike which has defeated his maze. On this mission they learn the truth of the war, who is leading the enemy, and the perils of his presence. Sir Thursday attempts to escape, only to be caught by Arthur, who confronts him on arrival back at Headquarters. He has been told by part four of the will that anger is the only way to distract Sir Thursday, and only when he is sufficiently distracted can the will break itself free of him. So it is that Arthur comes to claim the fourth key, and frees the will.
Back at home Leaf has had her hands full on her own adventure; in the end both sides end well, if slightly worse for the wear. And Arthur is beginning to realize that his hope of remaining human will not last--the Morrow Days will not rest, and without using the Keys' powers he cannot defeat them. As this battle has wound its way into Friday, on his world, there is likely to be no rest between missions yet again.(less)
The second installment in the Keys to the Kingdom series, Grim Tuesday picks up right where Mister Monday left off, mere hours after Arthur has return...moreThe second installment in the Keys to the Kingdom series, Grim Tuesday picks up right where Mister Monday left off, mere hours after Arthur has returned home for what he thought would be a five or six-year break. Unfortunately, time in his realm does not equate to time in the House. To top it all off, the phone call warning him of mischief afoot gets cut off, leaving him only half in the know.
When mysterious men appear across the street with a Sold sign, and his father receives a call that he owes his record company millions, it becomes quickly clear that something has to be done, and it won't happen in his realm. With a little luck and help from Leaf and Suzy Blue, Arthur finds his way back into the House, but comes out where he did not expect--right at the heart of Grim Tuesday's domain.
The sense of urgency in this race against time is much greater, as greater things are now at stake. The next key, the entire state of affairs of Arthur's entire family back home, the life of the House. Can Arthur save it in time?(less)
I was happy to find that Chamber of Secrets was the same awesome book I remembered it to be the second time around.
After languishing at home all summe...moreI was happy to find that Chamber of Secrets was the same awesome book I remembered it to be the second time around.
After languishing at home all summer with no word from any of his friends, Harry receives a visit from Dobby the House Elf, which lands him in a heap of trouble, but answers the question about his lack of letters. (Dobby stole them all.) Luckily, not long into his incarceration, the Weasley brothers show up with a magical rescue. Just barely making his escape, Harry spends the rest of summer delighted at the Burrow, with the Weasley family.
His bad luck continues, however, when he and Ron fail to make the train to Hogwarts. After crashing into the barrier to their platform, rather than disappearing through it, Harry and Ron make a hasty retreat from all the attention they've attracted, and decide their only course of action is to take the bewitched family car and follow the train to school. Said bewitched car happens to have a few flaws though, like a faulty invisibility switch. So not only is there the issue of crash landing in the whomping willow, there's the front page of the paper informing their teachers that they were spotted along the way.
Sure that this means expulsion, Harry and Ron can't imagine feeling any lower, and are overjoyed to find out they won't be expelled after all---though they've used their last strike.
All these mishaps prove an apt beginning to the year, which doesn't get better, and for Harry often gets only worse.
First, there's the entirely inept and arrogant Lockhart, new Defense Against the Dark Arts teacher, who seems convinced that Harry is out for fame, and accosts him at every turn with unwelcome advice. The arrival of new first year Colin Creevey does nothing to help, as he's snapping pictures of Harry every chance he gets, to send home to his father.
During the year's first Quidditch match, a bewitched bludger has it in for Harry, finally succeeds in getting him, breaking his arm. He still manages to catch the snitch and win the game, but his happiness is quickly subdued as Lockhart removes all the bones from his arm while attempting to mend the broken one.
On and on it goes. During a dueling class, Harry calls of a snake that's about to attack a classmate, and learns the hard way that he can speak a language he didn't even know about. A language that's caused most of the school to think he's evil. The Heir of Slytherin mentioned in a message left on the wall the night the attacks at school started.
Eventually, things calm down, and it seems the bad times are over. People slowly start to come around. Then another attack happens, followed by a disappearance. Dumbledore is gone, Hagrid's locked up, there's talk of closing the school, and only Harry and Ron have any idea how to solve the mystery.
The boy who spurred generations to read is finally leaving us behind. Having just re-read the entire series, this may have hit me harder than most. At...moreThe boy who spurred generations to read is finally leaving us behind. Having just re-read the entire series, this may have hit me harder than most. At least, such is my hope, as I find myself disconcertingly depressed after finishing the story at 1 in the morning, and am filled with trepidation for all those kids who are going to plow through this book because it's Harry Potter.
The movie, I think, will be insane. As for the book, it's hard to know what to say. Partly literally, partly as I don't want to spoil anything for anyone.
I've heard opinions that a large portion of the book could probably have been left out, but I found that the story fit together quite well, with itself, and with the rest of the books. Granted, I wanted to beat it up on occasion, and spent a fair amount of time yelling at it, as had the person who read it before me. But it was, in the end, a great book.
There were some things I might have liked to see slightly more resolved, but I imagine it can't be easy to resolve a large portion of your life sweet and concisely. In the end, I imagine most fans will be happy with the outcome. So long as they survive the getting to it.
It's a quick, though difficult, read. The lulls in the action are quickly replaced with more action than one might want. This is definitely war. And it isn't friendly. I think I'll leave it at this: as I was told, no matter what you're expecting, you're going to be surprised.(less)