The River Way Home by Mary E. Dawson is a classic! This wonderful book combines adventure, history, companionship, action, and most of all honor. TheThe River Way Home by Mary E. Dawson is a classic! This wonderful book combines adventure, history, companionship, action, and most of all honor. The story of Queenie, Billy, and the Chief is one all readers, young and old alike, will devour and love. While intended for a YA audience, The River Way Home proved to be a book I loved, and I’m not quite in the YA age range!
What I liked best: I loved the characters. Queenie, Billy, and Chief are characters I came to love, respect, and root for. Their adventurous spirit and devotion to the land, animals, and each other is fantastic. I also loved the historical aspect of this book. I am a big history buff, and the way Ms. Dawson incorporated Florida history into this tale really put it over the top for me. It is a wonderful story that will make readers aware of the history of this region of the great state of Florida.
What missed a bit: If I had to pinpoint one thing, I can only comment on the cover. I personally love the cover. I think the image conveys the message of the untamed Florida terrain at an intoxicating time of day (don’t you just love that sun?). However, it is my belief that a cover that featured the Queen, the Cowboy, and the Chief might very well appeal to more YA readers. I believe this book is so good that I want it in the hands of as many readers as possible.
Overall: Fantastic! This is really like no other YA book I’ve ever read. The adventures the children take feel like they last a lifetime. I remember the long summer days of my childhood, and I can understand how the three days of adventure shaped these children. I really enjoyed the historical information included at the end of the book. It was really fascinating to read about the real-life inspirations for each character, as well as more about the actual history of the area. I loved this book. I would recommend it to all readers of every age. I would also love to see it featured in the classroom and at libraries.
***I received a free book from the author in exchange for an honest review** ...more
A great book! I loved the detective aspect of this story. Everyone who knows me knows I am a huge fan of Encyclopedia Brown. Anything that involves slA great book! I loved the detective aspect of this story. Everyone who knows me knows I am a huge fan of Encyclopedia Brown. Anything that involves sleuthing and detecting is right up my alley. I truly enjoyed the way the crew (Mike, Maddie, Tyler, Bree, and Nic) worked together to look for the lost dog. The scene where Mike had to pretend to be a dog while they figured out potential escape routes was classic. I really enjoyed the fact that they decided to form The Pet Shop Society. A special note to the great logo (see the top of the book cover). An honorable mention is the fact that a dog was involved; I’m a dog lover! I thought it was perfect for young readers (and older ones like me). I am so happy to have read and found a great new mystery series. The fact that the book (and subsequent series) involves both boys and girls is genius. I believe this makes it perfect for both boy and girl readers alike. I feel like there is a shortage of good mystery books for young readers so this is really great to see. I recommend this book to young readers as well as school/library story time. I can’t wait for the next one!
**I received a free book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review**...more
Johnny Nothing is a really, really good book. I have to caution that it probably is not for little children. This book will certainly appeal to pre-teJohnny Nothing is a really, really good book. I have to caution that it probably is not for little children. This book will certainly appeal to pre-teens and YA audiences. I loved that the book was told from a narrative point of view. It is my experience that a narrative point of view is tough to pull of, but Mr. Probert does it flawlessly. This book is funny! I mean funny. The humor is one of the reasons I feel as though younger children might not enjoy it as much. It is very tongue-in-cheek and dark at times as well. I know I laughed quite loudly many times throughout. There is no doubt adults (such as myself) will enjoy this book as well.
Johnny Nothing brings to mind Kurt Vonnegut. The feel, humor, and content of this book would very much fit into many Kurt Vonnegut novels. I am, of course, a huge Vonnegut fan, and I truly enjoyed Johnny Nothing. If there is anything I would have liked to seen it would have been a bit more of character development of Johnny Nothing. While he was the main character, I felt as though I didn’t know him all to well. I know this is nit-picking a little bit, but I did feel as though Johnny himself had more to give this reader. I know one thing for absolute certain; I will be looking forward to reading more books by Ian Probert.
**I received a free book from the author in exchange for an honest review** ...more
I loved the rhyme. I always enjoyed reading Dr. Seuss to my daughter, and the rhyme in this book was nearly as enjoyable. It is a joy to read books thI loved the rhyme. I always enjoyed reading Dr. Seuss to my daughter, and the rhyme in this book was nearly as enjoyable. It is a joy to read books that the rhythm becomes part of the story, and The Girl Who Drank the Moon did not disappoint. I really liked this book. I think the cute illustrations, excellent rhyme and rhythm, and fun story will appeal to parents and children alike. It is not only a fun book, but an educational one as well. It is sure to spark questions and subsequent discussions about the moon and our world around us. I am really looking forward to reading more books by Mr. Dee.
**I received a free book from the author in exchange for an honest review.**...more
I must confess to be a huge fan of Val and Sam, and I was delighted to read about their adventures. I loved this book. It contained the usual Val andI must confess to be a huge fan of Val and Sam, and I was delighted to read about their adventures. I loved this book. It contained the usual Val and Sam behavior and excitement, but I felt it had another dimension. I truly loved the character Kendra. The narrative point of view allowed me to get inside Kendra's head. I really enjoyed seeing her struggle with the world as she had known it versus the world she believed might exist. Her wide-eyed curiosity was endearing. I really, really enjoyed her selfless acts and loyalty. I won't reveal my favorite part about her because it would be a spoiler, but suffice it to say, I felt really good at the conclusion of this book.
While I loved Val and Sam as youngsters, this book proves that the girls are just as much fun a little more grown up. The twists put on this modern day fairy tale are enjoyable and compelling. I recommend this book to readers of all ages, but I think young female readers will absolutely love this book. I am off to get the next Val and Sam adventure, and I suggest you do the same as soon as you finish Soaring up to the Clouds.
I am a lover of history, and this historical fiction book fit the bill. I loved the plot and detail in the story. Of course, I loved the story itselfI am a lover of history, and this historical fiction book fit the bill. I loved the plot and detail in the story. Of course, I loved the story itself as well. It is a story the deserves telling. Ms. Mahurin is one of my favorites for shining the light on injustices and the fight against them (see the Persecution of Mildred Dunlap). The dialogue was fantastic. I love the description of a character (whom I will not name for fear of a spoiler) as "a character of questionable repute". The vivid descriptions served the story as well.
What I liked best: I love the fight for justice. The strength necessary and tribulations endured by Emile Zola make me question how I would react if placed in a similar situation. I can hope that I would act the same, but I'm not certain that I would. In either case I loved reading this story, and turned page after page to find out the outcome.
I would recommend this book to any and all readers. The fight against injustice and prejudice can be applied to any era and appreciated by all. It is a wonderful tale that will stir emotions inside you and provoke many internal debates. You will be happy you read it, I assure you. ...more
Novus is a great book. I have read Crystal's children's books, and I jumped at the chance to read her YA work. In Novus, Ms. Marcos has done a wonderfNovus is a great book. I have read Crystal's children's books, and I jumped at the chance to read her YA work. In Novus, Ms. Marcos has done a wonderful job at world building. I think one of the toughest things for authors writing dystopian type novels is world building. Bringing the reader into a new world with foreign values, places, and surroundings is quite difficult to pull off. Ms. Marcos does it masterfully in Novus. From the very beginning the reader is engulfed in Cayden's world and the circumstances he must face.
I was also really impressed with the way Ms. Marcos' writing gave us such insight into the main character's (Cayden) past and feelings. An example is the line: "Thank you...I gasped the words I had used before but rarely meant." With this one sentence we are aware of the isolated, lonely existence Cayden has endure up to this point in his life. This really made me feel as though I knew the characters well.
Ms. Marcos' world building and writing combined with the page turning excitement made for a tale I couldn't wait to keep reading. I am excited to read more, and will certainly be in line for her next book.
One thing that I did find a bit difficult to get used to, however, was the formal speech of the Cresecrens. At first I kept feeling as though their formal speech didn't match the situation at hand, but Ms. Marcos to a good job of subtlety reminding us throughout the book that this is how Cresecrens speak.
I would recommend this book for readers of all ages. It has all the components one might be looking for in a book. With the stunning success of similar novels such as The Hunger Games and Divergent, I believe this book will find it's place right next to these on your book shelf.
*I received a free book from the publisher for an honest review* ...more
I loved this book. Admittedly, I am probably not Ms. Carroll's target audience, but I still loved reading it. I did not read the first book so I was uI loved this book. Admittedly, I am probably not Ms. Carroll's target audience, but I still loved reading it. I did not read the first book so I was uncertain as to how Bertha was introduced. I had my own opinion about that, and I wasn't far off the mark. The thing that appealed to me, and most certainly will to all readers, is the lessons taught (and learned). I recently left a career that I had been in for nearly 18 years. It was tough for me to do; to start over. I probably should have done this at least two years ago. I learned so much through that process, and I was thrilled to find many of those same life's lessons present in Becoming Bertha. The lessons and delivery of said lessons in Becoming Bertha are universal. All genders, occupations, social classes, and ages will benefit from, and enjoy, reading this book. Thanks to Ms. Carroll for writing this book. It could not have come at a better time for me.
What I liked best: I must share my very favorite line: "When you are reading you're able to take on the persona of the character you're reading about, you are them." -Bertha
Truer words have never been spoken! I, for one, enjoyed becoming Bertha as I read this wonderful book....more
I love Frankie! I love his demeanor, his style, and most of all his detective skills. The fact that he dons a fedora and uses a magnifying glass is suI love Frankie! I love his demeanor, his style, and most of all his detective skills. The fact that he dons a fedora and uses a magnifying glass is superb! On a more specific level, I truly loved the opening two lines to this book: "Frankie slammed the paper onto the kitchen table. He grabbed Sherlock's leash and bounded out the door and down the rickety front stairs." This line creates both action and intrigue. I was hooked. What did the paper reveal? Why did Frankie leave in such a rush? I had to know. Great job by Ms. Grasso on hooking the reader out of the gate.
A great book! Once again I was captured by the intrigue, humor, and excitement of a Frankie Dupont story. The word play used by the author was really clever and entertaining (see Simon on the first page of chapter 16). The dialogue was extremely well done too. I was great and realistic. I especially loved the set up at the end of chapter nine. Does Frankie really know who is behind the orchard plot, or is he chasing the proverbial red herring? All in all, Frankie Dupont and The Lemon Festival Fiasco is a wonderfully entertaining book that both young readers and adults will enjoy. I, for one, can't wait to see what mystery Mr. Dupont unravels next!...more
Heidi Ruby Miller has created a fantastic world in Ambasadora: Marked by Light. I loved Sara Mendoza (Ms. Miller has a penchant for creating great femHeidi Ruby Miller has created a fantastic world in Ambasadora: Marked by Light. I loved Sara Mendoza (Ms. Miller has a penchant for creating great female leads). The depth of this character as well as the world she lives in had me turning page after page. I was reacquainted with some former characters I enjoyed from Ms. Miller's book Greenshift. Sara is a strong, vulnerable lead character that had me from the start. I kept planning on setting the book down at the end of the next chapter, but the suspense wouldn't allow me to do so. Whether you like sci-fi, fantasy, romance, action, intrigue, or mystery you'll find it in Ambasadora: Marked by Light. I was absolutely amazed (and blown away for lack of a more sophisticated word) by the world Ms. Miller created. The time, research, and attention to detail needed to create such a world must be mind boggling. I am certainly grateful she did. Now that I have finished Amabasadora: Marked by Light (and Greenshift) I am off to the store to look for another book by Heidi Ruby Miller, and I suggest you do the same. You won't be sorry!
What I liked most: I loved Sean and Sara's adventure in the Underground. The relationship between them cemented, and the suspense seemed to rise to a feverish pitch.
Great book! This is a must read for all ages. As a dog lover I think this should be at the top of every dog lover’s list. I have to mention that I reaGreat book! This is a must read for all ages. As a dog lover I think this should be at the top of every dog lover’s list. I have to mention that I really enjoyed the fact that Burny referred to Norm as “his boy”. I would love to get in the mind of dogs, and I bet this is exactly how they feel. I also really loved the way the book was broken up into short adventures. This is a wonderful way to keep a young readers attention all the while understanding that they may read in fits and starts. This is just a great book. The only thing I’m sorry about is that it took me so long to read it! I can’t wait to read the next one.
Disclaimer: I received a free book from the authors in exchange for an honest review....more
This is just a fantastic book for anyone interested in getting into the design business. It gives great real-world examples along with images that reaThis is just a fantastic book for anyone interested in getting into the design business. It gives great real-world examples along with images that really get to the heart of the matter. I would recommend this book especially for high school guidance and career counselors. If you feel as though a career in design might be for you this is a must read!
Disclaimer: I received a free copy from the author in exchange for an honest review. ...more
I really liked this book.This type of mystery is right up my alley. The descriptions are fantastic. I also loved the way Julie was able to incorporateI really liked this book.This type of mystery is right up my alley. The descriptions are fantastic. I also loved the way Julie was able to incorporate the boy detective concept into modern times. Frankie's use of his smart phone and finger print scanner fit right in with his use of the good, old-fashioned magnifying glass. Well done! I also really liked the fact that Frankie kept referencing his dad's thoughts; this really lends credibility to both his skills and expertise. I recommend this book to readers of all ages.
I received a free book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review....more