* Fabulous opening chapter - will grab the kids (and adults) attention right away * The banter between Angela and Hans is delightful *The Good Stuff
* Fabulous opening chapter - will grab the kids (and adults) attention right away * The banter between Angela and Hans is delightful * Angela is a fantastic heroine - feisty and brave, yet compassionate and hilarious * Hans is a perfect companion for Angela and they work so well together * Wonderful adventure story full of nasty villians and wacky secondary characters * Lots of scary and gross bits will attract the middle school boy reader * Young kids save the day -- kids eat that sorta thing up * Humor and scary stuff - what's not to like * The secondary characters are just as well written as the main characters * Has a fairy tale, quest feel to it with a hint of Peter Nimble thrown in * Good messages of friendship and forgiveness
The Not So Good Stuff
* Some of the more complicated language may turn off the more reluctant reader which would be a shame
"Tonight, the raging wind had promised a shipwreck- two or three, God willing - so Knobbe had scrambled down the steep cliff path to the beach, hoping to plunder the bodies of the drowned."
"Don't play your baby tricks on me," Knobbe warned. "Your sort are all alike. Sneaky,little schemers, out to make a fellow weak."
"Angela rolled her eyes at Hans: a hermit speaking in riddles was as irritating in real life as it was in storybooks."
"Shush. Who knows the future. Do the best you can and never regret a kindness. To live a coward is not to live at all."
Who Should/Shouldn't Read
* I would say for the stronger middle school reader due to more sophisticated language * Not for the sensitive reader as there are some scary bits * Adults will enjoy just as much
I picked this up at the 2012 OLA Superconference and my copy is signed...more
Jake's Review: I really liked the illustrations and the way the book looks like it is journal. I think the book is more suited for an older boy who liJake's Review: I really liked the illustrations and the way the book looks like it is journal. I think the book is more suited for an older boy who likes girls, because I thinks girls are gross. I think it's cool that he gets to go to comic book stores all the time. The book is funny but I think mom thought it was funnier because she kept snorting while reading it. I didn't like the bullies because they were really mean and they took advantage of Danny and stole stuff. I would like to read more books like this but with less stuff about liking icky girls. Jake's Rating: 8/10
Mom's Review: I really enjoyed this one. I actually think I liked it better than Jake did. It made me laugh my head off (again proud of myself for not using colorful language when reviewing kids books) on many occasions. The book really comes off like it was written by a 12 year old boy (impressive since it is written by a women) and I think will really resonate with the intended audience. I love these types of books and wish they had them when my hubby was growing up, than he might have actually have learned to like books. These are great for reluctant readers and those growing out of chapter books but not quite ready for novels. The illustrations add a lot to the story without being too distracting. Moral of book done in a brilliant non mushy way so that kids don't realize they are being taught something. I loved on the Loser List where the one boy is put on the list just because he is Canadian --hmm still sensitive Americans about us sending you packing in 1812 -- just joking guys you know I love you. I also liked the set up of the book so it looks like it is being written in a notebook. I usually don't do quotes when I am doing Mom and Me Mondays -- but I just had to share this one with you
"In comics, you find a world that's wild and weird, but where the rules are very clear - unlike middle school. Superman knows he can't mess with Kryptonite. My school is weird too, but there's no rule book. You just have to stumble through, hoping you're not committing some crime you were unaware of - wearing the wrong sneakers, say, or liking bluegrass music."
Thank you so much for helping me through a painfully long wait for the Go Bus (Have had Melanoma so standing in the hot sun for over an hourDear Tina
Thank you so much for helping me through a painfully long wait for the Go Bus (Have had Melanoma so standing in the hot sun for over an hour is the definition of hell) After laughing my ass off for over an hour I barely even noticed the bus was late. While reading I was impressed with how you seem to be just a down to earth, intelligent, honest and extremely funny women. (either that or you are just extremely talented at faking it) Your chapter on breastfeeding was beautifully written and really hit the nail on the head and expressed how I felt. I totally snorted out loud when you mentioned the "tit nazis" as I also had similar experiences with those horrendous women, who I had nicknamed "breast nazi's." (Hmm, I think I came up with it first, can I sue you or something -- I really could use some new floors) You also wonderfully expressed my feelings about the battle between working moms and stay at home moms with your quote "I think we should be kind to one another about it, I think we should agree to blame the children." Honestly, it isn't our place to judge, lets just support each other and work together to raise the next generation. A happy mother is a good mother in my opinion, and I believe your child will not end up like so many children of celebrities because you love what you do and because of your values and beliefs.
Now down to the real reason I have now become your fan -- you don't drive. Now I have a retaliation for every time someone mentions my lack of a drivers license. Now I can just say -- hey Tina Fey doesn't drive and look how cool she is.
I have to be honest I have never seen an episode of 30 Rock but you can bet your ass after reading your "memoir" that I will be picking up a full set of the DVD's this weekend.
Thanks from your newest fan Jen
PS to be honest I have never seen you on Saturday Night Live either -- but I did enjoy Date Night
4.5 Dewey's (Took off a half a dewey because I totally wanted the book to be longer, since I was enjoying it so much)...more
The dialogue between the characters had me laughing my ass off on so many occasions - almost every chapter of each book in fact Kick asThe Good Stuff
The dialogue between the characters had me laughing my ass off on so many occasions - almost every chapter of each book in fact Kick ass heroines who don't expect or need a boy to save them Many Whedon references - which as you know is very close to my geeky heart Extremely fast paced and NEVER boring Vampires don't sparkle or go all emo Parents are not stupid or jerks -- and we know that is a big deal in YA fiction -- see authors it can be done Author is Canadian Delightful secondary characters that you are slowly introduced to and given just enough about them that you want to know more -- and maybe have a whole book about - cough cough Mom and Dad Drake -- cough cough lets have a story about kick ass parents Unique take on vampire mythology Lucy is a truly awesome character and I want more of her -- her quips constantly make me giggle Good messages about true friendship and acceptance without being all mushy or condescending Enough all ready just go buy the book most of you will thank me
The Not So Good Stuff
This 3 stories in one book idea sounds great -- but so thick it was hard to read - man I have weak wrists People stared on the bus when I snorted out loud with laughter Got extremely confused with the 3 organizations having such similar names and same with all the characters with names starting with H -- OK -- that is probably just because I am brain dead right now and come on I had to find something relevant to put in this section
"Where are the stun --ooon. Shiny." Hearts at Stake
"And the patchwork skirt I thought I'd lost last year, twisted under a storage box covered in stickers. Yes, even little girls with vampire lineage have a sticker phase." Hearts at Stake
“Very possibly this was the night my white-knight complex, as Solange put it, would get me killed. Someone had better write a poem about it. It was only fair.” Blood Feud
“How did you know it wasn't really me?" "Are you kidding? Your eyeballs could be on fire and you wouldn't bat your lashes at me like that.” Blood Feud
"I winced. Vampire mothers had unfair advantages." Out for Blood
"Oh, I'm sorry," Chloe snapped from the backseat. "Did I hurt your knuckles with my face?" Out for Blood
Who Should/Shouldn't Read
Fans of Jennifer Estep, Kelley Armstrong, Meg Cabot and Kiersten White will enjoy Fans of anything Whedon will get tons of chuckles and will love this author
I borrowed this from Tasha and didn't have to review it here -- but I like to share what can I say ...more
* Unique and charming story from a new, but extremely gifted novelist - trust me this will be on some award winning lists this year *The Good Stuff
* Unique and charming story from a new, but extremely gifted novelist - trust me this will be on some award winning lists this year * Breathtakingly real characters, these are so richly developed and so very real * Powerfully emotional, teared up a few times, so sad and so hopeful at the same time * Complex and conflicted real life emotional portrayal of children of immigrant parents * The relationship between Vaclav and his mother is beautiful and so honest. I really enjoyed the parts of the story that come from her point of view, it gives the story even more depth and understanding * Traumatic scene written very sensitively * Vaclav is just a beautiful character but also very real and enabling * Dryly funny at times * Love the imagination of the young Lena and Vaclav * Wise observations of love, friendship and family - warts and all
The Not so Good Stuff
* A little slow at times and it was a tough one for me to get into a first, but glad I persevered * Have a sudden urge for Borscht and I don't like Borscht
"IT is not safe, for Vaclav, out in the world, with his eyes open to everything and his heart beating right on his sleeve, with his dreams in his hands, ready to show and tell."
"Rasia thought that this Houdini person probably drove his mother to an early grave, worrying her with all his death-defying feats and doing Chinese water torture, and was not someone Vaclav should be so interested in. But Vaclav wanted to hear a story about a little boy who came to America and became a big, brave, magical man, and this she understood."
"Watching him, you would think that he changed his clothes, maybe into a tuxedo with tails, but you would look and be surprised that he is still wearing the same jeans and T-shirt."
What I Learned
* Some interesting facts about magic, magicians and Coney Island
Who should/shouldn't read
* This is not for those who need a quick paced storyline * For those who like something just a little different and real
I received this from Random House in exchange for an honest review -- Thanks Jess you were right on!...more
A truly delightful and sensitively done middle grade novel. August is a fabulous and likeable character that you learn so much from and he really makeA truly delightful and sensitively done middle grade novel. August is a fabulous and likeable character that you learn so much from and he really makes you think on how you treat others that are just a little bit different. Story is realistic and painfully raw and honest. Nothing ever feels forced and while the author is showing you that you have to look through the physical to see the person beneath, it is never done in a preachy way. You will laugh and cry at the same time. Oh yeah just an FYI, there is a death of a pet, but it is perfectly done (I am a wee bit sensitive with deaths of children and animals -- I know I know, I am such a wimp, but I wanted to warn others like me). It is a tough read at time, as the way Auggie is treated at times is horrendous. I really enjoyed the chapters told from the other characters point of view, as it really rounded out the story. The chapters from his sisters point of view, really grabbed me. As a mom of a special needs child, it made me think about how I treat his little brother. I loved the central message of the story as well as some of the little life messages that we should take away from the story. This is an almost absolutely perfect novel, I just felt the speech by Mr Tushman at graduation was a little over the top and cheesy (I was rolling my eyes), but that is my only real complaint aboout the book.
"“I think there should be a rule that everyone in the world should get a standing ovation at least once in their lives.”
“It's like people you see sometimes, and you can't imagine what it would be like to be that person, whether it's somebody in a wheelchair or somebody who can't talk. Only, I know that I'm that person to other people, maybe to every single person in that whole auditorium. To me, though, I'm just me. An ordinary kid.”
But hey, if they want to give me a medal for being me, that's okay. I'll take it. I didn't destroy a Death Star or anything like that, but I did just get through the fifth grade. And that's not easy, even if you're not me.”
R.J. Palacio “You don't need your eyes to love right? You just feel it inside you” ...more
* There is a wide variety of choices with three very different chefs * Tracy Moore's forward makes you feel like you are in for a wildThe Good Stuff
* There is a wide variety of choices with three very different chefs * Tracy Moore's forward makes you feel like you are in for a wild ride and you can tell she really does enjoy the boys and their food * Enjoyed the little introduction into each recipe. It's a very nice added touch and makes it actually enjoyable to read each recipe. You even read the recipes that you probably won't make * I personally found Michael and Jason's recipes to be more to my liking -- but that is just a personal preference. * Favorite section was Chapter 7 (Meat Market). There is a Beef Wellington recipe that reminds me of when I worked at the Banff Springs Hotel * The Best Recipe hands down is the Michael's Oliver & Bonacini Cafe Grill Mushroom Soup. I've tried Mushroom Soup (My fav) from Vancouver to Cavendish and this is the most flavorful (Jen's note: I concur and I got to have it at Zuma and it is the best I have ever tasted) We actually made it and Jen said it tasted almost as good as when she had it at Luma * Ingredients are very accessible at your local grocer and can be found at most times of the year which makes the book much more useful in my eyes * Good book for parties and even for everyday cooking for the person willing to add a little zing to their meal (Jen's note: read as only when Jeff cooks and not when I cook) * There is a Sticky Toffee Pudding with Butter Rum Sauce that I have yet to make, but I will very soon (Jen's Note: Yes, yes you should -- hmm isn't Mother's Day this weekend?) * Jen also liked all the pretty pictures of food and as a typical anal Librarian - she said the index rocked
The Not so Good Stuff
* Didn't like Massimo's recipes as much, but that has more to do with the ingredients being ones that I just don't like
Smoked Salmon, Goat Cheese, and Asparagus Quiche (Jen's Fav) Oliver & Bonacini Cafe Grill Mushroom Soup (Jeff's Fav) Sticky Toffee Pudding with Butter-rum Sauce (Which Jeff better be making me for Mother's Day) Prosciutto and Mushroom Beef Wellington
We bought a lot of mushrooms that weekend Looks pretty close
Doesn't look as pretty - but it tastes damn good 4.5 Dewey's
Jen received a copy of this (Signed to me) when she attended the Indigo Tweet Up at Luma hosted by some guy she calls Captain Awesome from Indigo...more
* I love Jann, she is so delightfully honest and hilariously funny -- and so very accessible, you will feel like you are just shootingThe Good Stuff
* I love Jann, she is so delightfully honest and hilariously funny -- and so very accessible, you will feel like you are just shooting the shit with one of your pals while reading it * She talks about things that we all felt while growing up but didn't always have the honesty to talk out loud about * The paragraph when she talks about God and wonders if he had a Penis made me laugh so hard coffee came out my nose * Never lays blame or talks mean spiritedly about anyone * The love for her family is so real and loving * I really enjoyed how she describes her passion for music and for the written word * Self deprecating sense of humour * In the paperback copy I received for review - my pal Lavender Lines is quoted! * Honestly she is just a straight forward down to earth fun and wise broad that I would love to hang out with * Enjoyed the commentary on her parents taste in music - yup my mom and dad loved Nana Mouskouri and Roger Whittaker too -- and I hated that crap as much as she did (My brother and I used to take their albums and play Frisbee with them) * I totally agree with her description of brussel sprouts as tasting like dog farts and copper pennies!
The Not So Good Stuff
* Sorry Jann if I ever see you out in public I am going to give you a big hug & talk to you like we are old friends * Might not want to read out in public because you will be laughing so hard * The last chapter sort of ends abruptly - I can understand why, but still its a little jarring
"In a womb? My dear mother said it was nothing short of agony. I have given her the odd sympathy card on my birthday. It seems fitting, somehow. The card simply reads, "I am sorry about your vagina. Love, Jann."
"You find out early on that life is not based on a system of punishment and reward. Bad people often get ahead and good people can will die of cancer. There is no sense to be made of any of it. You just have to get up and deal with the day."
"M yidea of pigs has never been the same. Charlotte's Web has never held much water with me. You can forget Babe as well. Pigs are vicious killers with no regard for a child's young life. I am lucky to be alive. Yes,I am dramatic."
"All of the other singers that my parents owned on vinyl seemed to me to have one foot in the grave. Roger Whittaker whistled, for crying out loud, and Nana Mouskouri had big, thick, black glasses. Only old people wore glasses. Only old people whistled. My shop teacher whistled and wore bifocals, that's how I knew the singers on my parents' records were ancient. I was grateful to finally be exposed to artists with whom I had something in common- first and foremost among which was being alive."
Who Should/Shouldn't Read
* If you are a fan of Arden's music, you will love this book * If you are Canadian -- and most importantly a self deprecating Canadian women (Is there any other such Cdn women) you will frickin love this book
I received this from Random House in exchange for an honest review...more
As usual Jennifer writes a fantastic story that has you hooked from the very first paragraph and doesn't let you go until the very lastThe Good Stuff
As usual Jennifer writes a fantastic story that has you hooked from the very first paragraph and doesn't let you go until the very last sentence Tons of Estep's trademark quirky humour laced with fun pop culture references (Bonus points for mentions of Buffy, Xena and Karma Girl) Intriguing storyline with plenty of twists and turns Love Gwen and her Grandmother - Estep always writes kick ass heroines Logan is hot - he's up there with Finn in my bad boy book boyfriends Yummy sounding food - had to make the Pumpkin Cream Cheese Roll she mentions, drooled every-time she mentioned it Great dialogue with tons of witty and snarky comments SPOILER - Love the developing relationship between Gwen and Daphne Dying to read the next book in the series coming out at the end of November Need to get a job at the Library - what a creative and funky sounding library (but the Librarian is a jerk -- how about a hip fun Librarian named maybe either Rayment or Porter who has some kick ass skills & snappy comebacks)
The Not So Good Stuff
I totally took off points for the character of Nickamedes the Librarian since he is an uptight jerk Librarian (and we know how I feel about negative librarian references LOL) Some repetitive mentions of plot points - Estep is definitely doing less of this, but I do still notice (I think its because I am sensitive to this - I get the point don't knock me over the head with it) This actually might be helpful to more reluctant readers - just a heads up
"So far, Professor Metis had been pretty vague about what exactly the chaos was, and I hadn't exactly been paying rapt attention to all the mumbo-jumbo magic stuff. But I was guessing it involved death, destruction and blah, blah, blah. I'd much rather read the comic books that I had stashed in the bottom of my messenger bag. At least they had some basis in reality. Genetic mutations could totally happen."
"At least, that's what Nickamedes, the head librarian, claimed. I just thought he liked the free slave labor and bossing me around."
"I wouldn't say hate, exactly. You're kind of like fungus, Gwen. After a while, you just start growing on people." "So I'm mold. Wonderful. So why don't you just scrub me off and go sit with your Valkyrie friends like usual?"
4.5 Dewey's (Only cuz I'm picky about stereotypical Library characters)
I borrowed this from Natasha, since I haven't yet recieved the copy that I pre-ordered (must get off my ass and rectify that)
Jennifer's books always make me hungry, usually for something Pumpkin related - so in honor I have made a Pumpkin Cheesecake Roll - hopefully yours tastes as good as Grandma's
Grandma's Pumpkin Cream Cheese Roll (From Grandma's Desserts)
3/4 cup flour 1/2 tsp. baking powder 1/2 tsp. baking soda 1/2 tsp. cinnamon 1/2 tsp. ground cloves 1/4 tsp. salt 3 eggs 1 cup sugar 2/3 cup pumpkin Filling 8 oz. cream cheese, softened 1 cup powdered sugar 6 tbsp butter, softened 1 tsp. vanilla
Preheat oven to 375. Using a jelly roll pan, line with parchment paper. Get a clean kitchen towel and sprinkle liberally with powdered sugar.Beat eggs and sugar in large mixer until thick. Add flour, soda, powder, cinnamon, cloves and salt. Continue mixing until all ingredients are combined. Pour evenly into pan. It will be very thin. Bake for 13 to 15 minutes, use a toothpick to make sure it is done.
Turn cake onto powdered sugar towel. Carefully peel off paper. Roll up cake in towel, starting with the narrow end. Cool on wire rack. For best results, cool for at least 3 hours.
Beat cream cheese, butter, powdered sugar and vanilla until smooth.Carefully unroll the cake and remove the towel. Take spoonfuls of the cream cheese mixture and place them on the cake.It makes it easier to spread, and doesn't tear the cake. Spread evenly across the cake, making sure to get to the edge. Roll cake back up the way it was originally rolled. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Place in fridge for at least one hour.
A truly remarkable and epic adventure story Once I started reading, I just couldn't put it down - it is just one of those amazing booksThe Good Stuff
A truly remarkable and epic adventure story Once I started reading, I just couldn't put it down - it is just one of those amazing books that readers of all ages will enjoy Most of the Characters are realistic and intriguing - no one dimensional characters in this One of my favorite protagonists to date. I wanted to adopt Sage I loved him so much. He's a smart ass and would totally fit in with my boys and husband The author is a gifted storyteller which to me is far more exceptional than a so called "good writer". She takes you into a world and makes you believe that it is real and that you are part of it -- that is talent my friends I was talking so excitedly about it to Jake, that he actually asked if he could read it -- makes me a happy mommy when he does that Lots of danger, intrigue, red herrings and so much more -- sort of Game of Thrones without the gratuitous nudity and violence (and so far no dragons) You know what I am not doing this book justice, go out and buy it - trust me you will enjoy
The Not So Good Stuff
It was so engrossing I didn't want to put it down - and hello I am a Mom, I got stuff to do - ok, whose kidding who -- totally ignored the house work so I could finish the book and let Jesse watch 3 episodes of Caillou so I could keep reading (yes I am a bad mommy) These trilogies are killing me -- I have to wait so long in between books and I'm old, the memory isn't what it used to be -- that and I am impatient
"Errol's gentle manners were not reflected in his bathing assistance. It surprised me how much dirt came of the second time. While he busied himself with a brush on the bottom of my feet, I looked at my fingernails. "I don't remember them ever being this color," I said then yanked my feet away. "That tickles. Are you finished yet? I don't like having a man help me with my bath."
Errol grinned. "Shall I have a women sent in?"
I laughed and told Errol I wouldn't need anyone's help for my future baths. "Obviously, Master Connor has a different standard of clean than the orphanage did. Now that I know you want the entire body washed, I'll make the necessary adjustments."
"I made a face and thrust my sword at him, but he parried it. "Not bad," Mott said. "But be bolder. Prince Jaron was known for that."
"Sounds like he's dead. So whatever boldness was with a sword, it obviously didn't save him."
"Don't give up, Sage, and don't give in to him. Please. A lot of us are watching you, and we need to see it's possible to win."
Who Should/Shouldn't Read
FYI Nieces and Nephews I am getting you all a copy for Christmas Perfect for both young and old readers (10 + as there is some violence but not overly graphic) Male and Female readers will enjoy equally
I received this from Scholastic in exchange for an honest review - thanks Nikole, this one was truly spectacular...more
Mini Book Review: Every-time I open up one of Kelley's books I stand in awe of her brilliant storytelling ability. She is truly gifted, once you startMini Book Review: Every-time I open up one of Kelley's books I stand in awe of her brilliant storytelling ability. She is truly gifted, once you start reading, you do not want to put down. Even if you don't like the characters (One of her short stories, I hated the heroine, but the story was so good had to finish) you will still be enthralled by her tale. This story is no exception! Chloe irritated me at times, but as the story progressed I found myself feeling for her. Obviously Kelley is gifted at character development as well. The story is extremely fast paced and intriguing. I was hooked from the first paragraph and the cliffhanger ending left me wanting more -- thank goodness Helen lent me next book in series because I cracked it open right away. I like her secondary characters and look forward to the deepening of their back stories in future books. Great beginning to the series and I look forward to reading the next one (Ok I am already 3/4 through the Awakening and I don't want to put it down either) Highly recommend especially if you have never read Kelley before. My only complaint (and we have all heard it before for ALL of my YA book review) is 99% of the adults are incompetent jerks!
I bought this at Forster's Book Garden in Bolton at Kelley Armstrong signing...more
Charming and honest Hilarious and self deprecating The bit about how he got out of Vietnam is very honest and you really can feel hisThe Good Stuff
Charming and honest Hilarious and self deprecating The bit about how he got out of Vietnam is very honest and you really can feel his shame about what he did - honest and powerful Loved how he talked about his Dad and his faults but never laid blame and owns up to his own mistakes Fascinating information about the theatre scene during the sixties and seventies Great background information on some now famous stars Never gossipy, tacky or lurid, although some real life actors are very thinly disguised (hmm Cliff Robertson) Impressed with his writing style, sort of like he is talking to you Loved how he talked about how lucky he was to have had the contacts and the luck he did. Comes right out that he got his breaks it due to nepotism - very frankly done There better be a second book because I am very interested in his stories about his tv and film career
The Not so Good Stuff
Hoping there is going to be a second memoir that explores his later life and career. Slightly disappointed that there is very little about his movie and TV career, as this is how I was introduced to his talent (his portrayal of Roberta in The World According to Garp is brilliant and on Dexter he creeped the s**t out of me he was so good) Some of it comes across as a little theatrical pretentious but he's up front about that and it is something that is prevalent in most actors, so not really a bad thing, just more of an FYI
"All of this urgent artistic activity took place before I was ten. Years later, big sister Robin told me that she'd found it all insufferably pretentious. Looking back, I have to agree. But at the time, and for many years later, I was deadly serious."
"Adults never entirely forget that they are watching actors pretend. You can certainly have an impact on them. You can surprise them, move them, shock them, and make them laugh. But you're not fooling them for a moment. Adults always sit in the theatre with the smug, unwavering knowledge that they are watching a calculated piece of fiction. Not so children."
"Before he went to sleep, Dad thanked me for the story as if I had given him a treasured gift. But he'd given me a gift, too. It was the gift of a father's love.:
Who should/shouldn't read
Fabulous for fans of Lithgow and his stage work Theatre buffs will also enjoy Those who were looking forward to more tales of his TV and movie career, will be a wee bit disappointed
I received this from HarperCollins in exchange for an honest review- Thanks guys, now I am totally counting down the days to his signing -- hope not to gush too much when I meet him -- hmm wonder what cookies I am going to make for him...more
Jake's Review: It's kinda cute, but I don't get why mom liked it so much -- must be a mom thing or something. The pictures are really funny and the stJake's Review: It's kinda cute, but I don't get why mom liked it so much -- must be a mom thing or something. The pictures are really funny and the story is easy to read but I think girls would like it better. (Mom's note: yup my little sexist pig) I really liked the dog! Jake's Rating: 7/10
Mom's Review: The story was so sweet and childlike it made me smile and tear up at the same time. I could just read this story over and over -- just so damn beautiful. I want to move in with this family -- oh no, wait a minute -way too many kids, I would never get any reading done. The illustrations were a little difficult to get used to at first, but after a few pages I started to enjoy them. I think they just bothered my eyes a little as they have a bit of a blurry feeling to them but it really does work with the story. The detail in the illustrations are hilarious and quirky and I really enjoyed them - they had a very realistic look to them in terms of the messiness of the house, etc. A pure delight go get yourself a copy and make sure your libraries have a copy too. This is a perfect bedtime story -- well it would be if your toddler liked bedtime stories (sniff sniff) Mom's Rating: 9.75/10...more
* I wish I had the words to express how wonderful this book is. I will be honest if Simon and Schuster hadn't sent it to me for review,The Good Stuff
* I wish I had the words to express how wonderful this book is. I will be honest if Simon and Schuster hadn't sent it to me for review, I probably wouldn't have picked it up and let me tell you that would have been a shame. This book is haunting and sad but yet so full of hope and of the resilience of the human spirit * Beautiful raw and honest story and just so god-damned emotional to read * Exceptionally real and strong female characters * History written so it comes alive and you learn so much without feeling like you are getting a history lesson * The faults/flaws of the characters are not hidden and you see how they change and grow over the course of the story * Emotionally raw by the end of the story and had to go hug my children before I could go to bed * Obviously thoroughly researched and you feel the authors passion for the subject matter as it never comes across as dull * I would be shocked if this doesn't get made into a movie or a mini series * Further Reading at the end of the book is appreciated for those like me who will want to find out more of the history * Very wise and thought provoking * A wonderful book for various discussions about faith, forgiveness, compassion, woman's rights etc * Why are you still reading my review -- get thee to a book store now and buy it -- hello what are you waiting for
The Not so Good Stuff
* Could have been perfect with a some stronger editing. There is some obvious repetition that should have been caught and it would have made it a truly brilliant novel. * I was forced to stay up till a 1am to finish this and the last 15 pages or so I could barely read with the tears falling down. Alice you owe me some coffee and Kleenex & an apology to my kids for mommy being cranky from lack of sleep
"Try as she might to keep him a child, Shirah's son was already straining to be a man. She called out cautions, but Adir hurried to the garrison, determined to be among the men he admired. When the wind is so strong that we women know we will choke on the rising dust if we fail to tie our scarves across our faces, boys will always ignore the elements and race through storm clouds, dreaming of glory. Even a witch can't stop her son from becoming a warrior. There is no spell great enough for that."
"It was sometimes easier to be with a stranger from whom nothing was expected and to whom nothing was granted in return."
"They embraced the feminine aspect of God, the Dwelling. the deep place where inspiration abided, for in the written words of God, compassion and knowledge were always female."
"The desire for Jerusalem was a fire that could not be quenched. There was a spark inside the holiest of holy places that made people want to possess it, and what men yearn for they often destroy."
What I Learned
* Man it really sucked to be a women in ancient times, we are so lucky in this day and age to be treated, for the most part, as the equals that we are (still so far to go) * Now I really already know this, but lets just put this out again -- the persecution of Jews over and over again just completely baffles me. They truly are one of the most formidable, strong and resilient race the world has ever seen. * Tons of fascinating information about 70-75 CE
Who should/shouldn't read
* Will be buying a copy for my niece, sister and sister in laws for Christmas because I don't want to lend them MY copy and risk the chance of one of them --- "misplacing it" LOL * Those who enjoy a nice light read, would probably not want to pick one up. It is quite intense and detailed * Thinking those of Roman descent might be a little put off * A must have for public libraries
I received this from Simon and Schuster in exchange for an honest review -- thank you for once again breaking me out of my comfort zone and introducing me to something so spectacular...more
Another wild and wacky tale of the delightfully dysfunctional, yet totally loveable, Spellman family Would love to take mamma SpellmanThe Good Stuff
Another wild and wacky tale of the delightfully dysfunctional, yet totally loveable, Spellman family Would love to take mamma Spellman to some of Jake's parent teachers meeting - she totally rocks Love how Izzy refers to potential dates as Ex-Boyfriend #? Don't really have to read the first book in order to understand the plot, it will help and you will love it, but you won't be totally lost if you don't Gives you a synopsis of the first book without too much repetition for those who have read it already Love the relationships between all of the charcters - especially between Izzy, Rae and Henry The dialogues are hilarious -- FYI you will snort out loud - do not drink while reading - it could get messy The transcripts are a fabulous quirky idea The appendix is a perfect addition Even reading the acknowledgments is fun Looking forward to reading the next installment of the series -- they are totally addictive to read
The Not So Good Stuff
Her writing style might throw off some, story jumps around a lot, so you gotta be paying attention Distracts me from getting work done, since I want to keep reading
"Background: When my sister was eight years old, my brother, in the interest of explaining his legal career to Rae, taught her how to negotiate. It was a lesson he and the rest of us would soon regret. Rae took from this lesson that everything - from simple acts of grooming to household chores to homework - could be negotiated to her end."
"I pinched Rae really hard on her arm, which lately is code for "whatever you're doing, stop doing it."
"Rae took the money and headed for the door. In my family, if one loses a negotiation, we like to pretend that we have won.
"I would have given you thirty," I said
"I would have done it for five," Rae replied."
Who Should/Shouldn't Read
Definitely for those who enjoy reading books about quirky families Hardcore readers of mystery or PI style books might now enjoy Readers who just enjoy something a little different, this is for you If you just need a good laugh -- this will do it Obviously for fans of the first book - but you don't have to read it first
I received this from Simon and Schuster in Exchange for an Honest Review & I'm bringing you the REALLY good cookies at OLA for introducing me to these books...more