I love this series. This particular book did not blow me away, but I gave it 5 stars for still being a solid, enjoyable read.
Jacky gets roped into div...moreI love this series. This particular book did not blow me away, but I gave it 5 stars for still being a solid, enjoyable read.
Jacky gets roped into diving for sunken treasure, while fending off a Spanish ship and dealing with pirates. Does that make it sound more exciting than it is, or does it explain why nothing much seemed to happen?
One problem I have with it is the number of characters. As the series goes on, we get more and more, and it's really hard for me to tell one sailor or soldier from the next. I have trouble even keeping track of the ones I do know quite well and particularly like. Dr. Sebastian ended up on the other ship somehow, when I was sure he was still with Jacky on hers.
Not being overly familiar with history, royal navy history in particular, and not being extensively read in the genre, I'm sure I'm missing a few things. But I did catch on to Dr. Sebastian early on (in an earlier book) and appreciated his inclusion. So it does make me wonder who else is drawn from other sources that I'm not catching on to.(less)
Well, it was good in that there were a lot of deaf characters. More than two! It takes place in the 50's and we get a glimpse of how it was harder to...moreWell, it was good in that there were a lot of deaf characters. More than two! It takes place in the 50's and we get a glimpse of how it was harder to be a deaf person if you were also black. Not that the main character is black, of course. She's a white hearing girl.
And the main character is most of the problem with this book. She does some really uncaring, unthinking, wrong things and I have trouble understanding why she's doing them when she's doing them. She sneaks into a tenant's locked rock to rummage through and steal the woman's dead husband's clothes so she can pull a prank on her sister. And instead finds love letters from some other guy and takes one of those! And that's not the only wrong thing she does, but it's the one that rubbed me completely the wrong way. Skip Sunday school? Fine. Hum during church? I don't care. But violating someone's privacy like that? For no good reason?
Almost wish the book had been about her father rather than her. He's a deaf minister who travels around all over the place to preach and minister in deaf churches all over the state and out of it.(less)
I think the idea of The Company is really cool. Time travel! Immortals! Though I do have a question about time paradoxes. If you can't change recorded...moreI think the idea of The Company is really cool. Time travel! Immortals! Though I do have a question about time paradoxes. If you can't change recorded history, no matter how hard you try, fine. But now it's set up so a lot more of history is being recorded than ever before, right? Isn't that causing problems?
I liked it and I'll definitely read more of the series. Though I do hope it has a conclusion of some sort since the author's in ill health.
My one problem with it is that there's this introduction that explains the backstory, which is fascinating, but then kind of took away from the joy of discovery. You're no longer learning things along with the main character, because you already know more than she does up until a certain point.
Yet.. well, here's a paradox on its own.. the main character can do things that we didn't know she could do. Just, out of nowhere, she's doing some new Immortal trick that we the reader weren't aware she could do.
So I wanted to know no more than the main character. Yet I also did want to know _as much as_ the main character.
I enjoyed this book better than In the Garden of Iden. It's about a hundred years later and we're now in North America. It's funny and it's good and I...moreI enjoyed this book better than In the Garden of Iden. It's about a hundred years later and we're now in North America. It's funny and it's good and I look forward to reading more in this series.
And I would totally write more, but there's a screaming, crying kid making it hard to think. (No, NOT mine.)(less)
I'm not a fan of biographies and this certainly hasn't swayed me. Found this in the children's room, but it seems rather dull and sort of packed (not...moreI'm not a fan of biographies and this certainly hasn't swayed me. Found this in the children's room, but it seems rather dull and sort of packed (not quite dense, but packed) to me.
It's told sort of like a third person close point of view story, which just strikes me a little weird. (As I said, not a biography reader.) I guess I expected 'just the facts', even if it did tell a chronological story.
Gallaudet grows up, has a couple jobs, becomes a minister of some sort, heads to the UK to learn how to teach the deaf. Is denied, so goes to France instead. And he and Clerc come back and get the first school for the deaf opened in America. And American Sign Language is born.
I felt I would get more and more efficiently from a Wikipedia entry, but I kept reading to find out about his lung ailment. Were we going to get a diagnosis? Was he going to be cured? Was he going to die young because of it? I never did get much closure on that. Was it 'just' asthma, or was it something else?
A couple things I found questionable. The author describes the sign for 'home' like the modern sign for home, which is not even the first sign for home I learned about 15 years ago. But another sign did seem older and perhaps correct.
There are a number of words used that make the deaf seem like poor souls needing to be saved or enlightened or something. I can't say that's not consistent with the times, but it might give the modern reader the wrong impression. She also used both 'deaf-mute' and 'hearing impaired'. Considering the end brings things up to the present (of 1980-whatever when this was published), she left quite a few things out that I felt she could've said.
So, overall. Meh. I learned things, but not in a particularly enjoyable way.(less)
Not the easiest manga to get into. Unless you really like Japanese history, maybe. There were a lot of politics and terms I wasn't familiar with. The...moreNot the easiest manga to get into. Unless you really like Japanese history, maybe. There were a lot of politics and terms I wasn't familiar with. The translator made an odd choice in not translating a few things, like 'oni'. And that was one of the words I actually knew!
So, from what I can gather, a girl signs up with this group of samurai, disguised as a boy of course, to revenge the deaths of her father and brother. And that sounds sort of cool and all, but in sharp contrast to the history and politics and what-the-heck-is-going-on-ness, the tone's a little manic. I can't get a handle on everyone's personality, because they're often drunk or being silly.
I have one more volume that I borrowed from ILL, and the others aren't available. So I'll probably read that and then stop. Unless it gets really good.
Oh yea, and there's an attempted rape, an attempted gay rape (only of course she's not really a boy). And, y'know, those are always fun. :P(less)
I feel like I'm following what's going on a _little_ better, but there's too many characters for me to easily keep track of. And I still don't underst...moreI feel like I'm following what's going on a _little_ better, but there's too many characters for me to easily keep track of. And I still don't understand all the politics going on. So the main character comes face-to-face with the guy who killed her father and brother. And doesn't kill him, because she knows he knocked a woman up. And said woman is counting on him and the unborn baby is counting on him, yadda yadda.
Well, she later regrets not killing him.
And there's angst. And stuff. And visits to brothels.
I can't say it's bad for what it is. But I don't think it's for me. (less)
The premise is good. A smart girl in the early 1900's who basically lives in a London museum. She can sense curses and knows a lot about Egyptian ones...moreThe premise is good. A smart girl in the early 1900's who basically lives in a London museum. She can sense curses and knows a lot about Egyptian ones in particular. And she gets caught up with secret societies and whatnot. And accidentally transfers a curse into her cat.
But it had trouble holding my interest, because most of the time, I simply didn't care about what was going on. Oh, she's sneaking around. Oh, she's being followed. Blah blah blah.
It's possible I would've liked it more if I was younger. But likely I would've been even more bored, as I would've known fewer of the words being used. I would've known less about Egypt and less about England and less about 190-whenever it was.
The one thing I will say is that the author's evocation of Egypt made me want, just for a moment, to go visit.
Hatshepsut is an Eyptian princess who eventually became pharaoh. This children's book is pretty packed with information about her and about Egypt and...moreHatshepsut is an Eyptian princess who eventually became pharaoh. This children's book is pretty packed with information about her and about Egypt and ancient Egyptian life.
Do people really enjoy reading things with interludes and sidebars? Because I always find it rather annoying, especially when they're plentiful. I guess I'm more of a linear reader.
On top of that, it wasn't strictly chronological. Especially as there was a timeline running along the bottom of the pages. If you read everything on a particular page, you might be spoiled for something coming up in the main text a little later on. The timeline has her well-dead, while the main text is still talking about stuff she did as pharaoh.
But apart from the frustrating format, there's some interesting, cool stuff in here. I know more about ancient Egypt than I did before.
Though I wish we knew her years more accurately. At one point it says she's 30 when she becomes regent, and reined for 22 years (as pharaoh only, or including both her pharaoh and regent years?) And then when she died, she's anywhere from 35 to 55 years old. That a lot of conflictingness and vagueness. Adding to my frustration.
The book also says 'king' a lot, when I would've preferred 'pharaoh'.
(Goodreads is showing me a Target ad I can't get rid of. This is a change I disapprove of!!)
So this is a children's book about girl pirates. Arr!
It co...more(Goodreads is showing me a Target ad I can't get rid of. This is a change I disapprove of!!)
So this is a children's book about girl pirates. Arr!
It covers a good span in time. I think from the 16th century right up until the 19th (maybe the 20th?). Some of the pirates are in the Americas, some are around England, and there's one in India and a couple in China. So there's a fairly good range of pirates in here.
What I liked was at the start of telling us about a pirate, there'd be a map, showing their range. From Boston to Cuba for example. It helped me get a sense of their location. Especially in parts of the world that I can't picture in my head.
Despite being a children's book, this isn't a book I could read in one sitting. I'd read one or two entries and then stop for the day. It's kind of dense, information-wise. That's what happens when you try to cover one pirate's life in about 3 pages.
I did learn things, certainly. In a general sense, I discovered there were more female pirates than I would've thought. And the range of piracy is broader than what might traditionally come to mind. Some of them dressed as men at times, or all the time. Others didn't. Some got into piracy because of their fathers, or their husbands. Some, likely just because they felt like it. I didn't hear any tales of female pirates becoming pirates because their mothers were. (Though at least one son in here did.)
Overall, a good overview of female pirates. And a good jumping-off place for picking one or two you want to know more about.
It even mentioned how you'd go to the bathroom on a ship and how a woman might be able to hide her female attributes relatively easily. More easily than you'd think, given they're all living on this small ship together.
The info in the back on shipboard life -- food, pirate punishments -- is worth the price of admission by itself.(less)
9/11 fiction. What a way to start the new year. As the author himself says, I think it's important that there be stories about 9/11, that let not only...more9/11 fiction. What a way to start the new year. As the author himself says, I think it's important that there be stories about 9/11, that let not only younger people who don't remember it or don't remember it well know what it was like, but to help the rest of us who weren't in NYC understand what it was like.
This tells the story of 3 NYC teens, 2 in HS and one just in college, and how they experienced 9/11 and how it affected them. If you're at all familiar with Levithan, it'll come as no surprise that two of the characters are gay.
I hate to use the words 'moving' or 'touching', but when one of the characters goes to give blood, feeling it's at least something he can do, and then encounters trouble filling out the form, it's like.. I finally grasped how unfair and stupid and hurtful policies like that are.
Yet it's definitely not a book designed to bash you over the head about gay rights, because Levithan had every opportunity to have one of the gay characters consider, however briefly, joining the army to fight back against the terrorists. Many people did feel that way. And yet he doesn't touch that subject at all.
I also hate to say 'this is a book that should be taught in schools'. So instead I'll say 'this is a book that should be read in schools and discussed in schools'. Which is much the same thing, but not.(less)
I had an impulse to read Adirondack stuff. This is one of the few semi-interesting things to turn up in our library catalog.
I've never read an America...moreI had an impulse to read Adirondack stuff. This is one of the few semi-interesting things to turn up in our library catalog.
I've never read an American Girl book before. I can't say I'm too thrilled with it, but it wasn't _bad_ really. And it was interesting to get a look at the Adirondacks of the past, I guess.
Samantha and like.. newly adopted sisters or something.. go visit her grandmother and her new husband at a lake house. And I think it's like the late 1800s or early 1900s. And mysterious things happen. And will her grandmother sell the place?(less)