“This dream ended when I realized they expect you to have actual artistic talent in order to be an illustrator,” Kiersten told Cracking the Cover. “So picky! But books have always been my passion and I knew I wanted to be involved with their creation in one way or another.”
Fast forward a couple of years and Kiersten’s passion has turned into YA gold. She’s the author of the popular Paranormalcy trilogy — “Paranormalcy,” “Supernaturally” and “Endlessly” — about a paranormal butt-kicking teenager named Evie. This February “Mind Games,” a psychological thriller about two sisters (Fia and Annie) determined to protect each other — no matter the cost, was released.
Kiersten says she writes for young readers because the stories are more compelling and immediate than books for adults. “Those are the stories that I am the most interested in exploring — the ones that ask who am I? Who will I be? What do I want to do with the future that is very quickly opening up in front of me?” read more...more
I’ve always loved books that tell the history behind things, that explain elements in smaller snippets yet still go intoreview via Cracking the Cover
I’ve always loved books that tell the history behind things, that explain elements in smaller snippets yet still go into detail. So I was excited when I received a copy of “Mathematics: An Illustrated History of Numbers.”
The coffee-table book is more than 100 pages and features various illustrations, pictures, charts and graphics. Following an introduction, it’s divided into four sections based on time/advances: prehistory to the middle ages; the renaissance and the age of enlightenment; ne numbers, new theories; and modern mathematics. A section on “great mathematicians” is also included.
An added bonus is a 12-page removable timeline that features key moments in culture, world events, science and invention, and mathematics dating from 4000 B.C. to today. On the other side of the timeline: all sorts of mathematical enigmas (games, paradoxes, primes, problems, etc.) and a chart of mathematical symbols.
“Mathematics: An Illustrated History of Numbers” isn’t the type of book you read cover to cover — unless you’re a true math geek, of course — rather, it’s best paged through, stopping at your areas of personal interest. Though some of the topics may at first appear over your head, the authors have made them accessible. The writing is well done and there’s not too much jargon to wade through.
Bottom line: Not only is this book interesting, it’s fun, too.
“Skinny” is sad, happy, frustrating and rewarding. It’s also engrossing. Ever is a likable character that I immediately felt drawn to. I’ve never weighed that much, but I could easily identify with her insecurities, her hopes and her dreams.
“Skinny” isn’t the first book about an overweight teen, nor will it be the last. What makes it work is the sincerity in which it was written. There are no easy fixes and there are a lot of other emotional issues that need to be worked through.
Author Donna Cooner underwent gastric bypass surgery herself. She says surgery was a positive experience but not a magic wand. Donna understands negative thoughts come in all shapes and sizes — too fat, too tall, too ugly, too stupid. It’s because of that understanding and honesty that “Skinny” works so well. It’s a beautiful book of growth and personal development that’s well-worth your time....more
I wasn’t expecting much from “Edenbrooke.” I thought it would be an easy, clean read featuring girls in pretty dresses at balls and handsome men on horseback. And it does have all those things, but it also has much more.
What I wasn’t expecting was strong character development and a unique quality story. Though it is a romance set in the 19th century, “Edenbrooke” isn’t a homage or copycat. The story is original and the characters likeable.
Julianne Donaldson’s prose is smooth and accessible and her pacing is exceptional. I never once felt as if the story were lagging or rushing through a scene.
“Edenbrooke” is not perfect. There are a few happy coincidences and expected plot turns, but nothing that’s grossly out of tune.
And for those of you wondering about the book’s appropriateness for teens — “Edenbrooke” is squeaky clean. In fact its much cleaner as far as language and sexual content than most of the books on the YA market. It’s not a difficult read and plays perfectly to a teenager’s romantic sensibilities.
“Edenbrooke” is a happy surprise. It’s a great option to curl up with on a snowy afternoon....more
I love books that I go into thinking I know what will happen only to find out I was completely wrong. “Shadowlands” is one such book. Though I did figure out some of the plot elements later in the book, I found myself completely surprised by others.
“Shadowlands’” opening chapters are dark and terrifying. Nell’s calculating manner and Rory’s amazing fight and strength will left me breathless and completely off guard. Within one page, I was hooked.
“Shadowlands” ends abruptly with a revelation worth reading your way to — don’t skip to the end, it will ruin it for you. The book stands alone. However, it’s the first of a planned trilogy, which has me wondering where author Kate Brian will go from here. If the next two novels are even close to this one, we’ll be in for intensely satisfying reads....more
“Reached” is the culmination of years of work, and it shows. The writing is tight and the storyline believable. Ally’s prose is easily accessible and flows effortlessly from page to page.
What really makes “Reached” work is Ally’s willingness to change — once again, the physical and mental landscape in which her story unfolds provides surprises.
Cassia and Ky return from the vast Outer Provinces to confined cities. These are new locations that provide new challenges and freshen the overall feel of the trilogy.
The best change is one Ally has used before — adding another voice to the mix. “Matched” was told by Cassia. In “Crossed,” Ky joined the mix. Now, with the completion of the series, readers get to see inside Xander’s head. This trio of voices serves to build complexities within complexities, making for a more interesting and overall entertaining read.
“Reached” is like an ice cream sundae, smooth and crunchy layers harmoniously combining to create a memorable experience you won’t soon forget....more