Froi of the Exiles by Melinda Marchetta (3/13/2012)
The Princess of Trelian by Michelle Knudsen (4/10/2012)
Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers (4/3/2012)
The Drowned Cities by Paolo Baciqalupi (5/1/2012)
The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan (Fall 2012)
I Hunt Killers by Barry Lyga (4/3/2012)
The Crimson Crown by Cinda Williams Chima (Fall 2012)
Bink and Gollie: Two for One by Kate DiCamillo (6/12/2012)
Summer of the Gypsy Moths by Sara Pennypacker (5/2012)
I’d also like to include the fourth book in the Monstrumologist series by Rick Yancey but I didn’t hear of a title and I’m not even sure it will get a 2012 pub date. Regardless, I’m VERY excited about it!
Look up at the Plaza Regent, Blink, in the shivery morning light. Count the floors – take your pick (p 3).
Blink lives on the street. He sneaks into hotels and steals food from the room service trays. One morning, while scrounging, something weird happens inside a hotel room. A crash… then a thump, padded by silence. Three rough-looking men leaving with another. A Suit. They ditch the room key, which Blink uses to enter the room and a world of weird. He takes the wallet containing a wad of cash and a picture of a beautiful girl. Perhaps foolishly, he takes the smart phone.
Caution can’t forgive herself for murdering her brother, Spencer. She’s sentenced herself to death by magic. Merlin, a dealer and thug, is her executioner. She’s living out a death sentence, until she takes Merlin’s stash and runs. Confident he will find her and finally kill her, she believes she is getting what she deserves.
Their stories converge as Blink attempts to unravel the mysterious crime he witnessed that shivery morning and Caution runs from her abuse boyfriend.
The suspense starts immediately and lets up only enough for the two characters to have brief flashbacks, explaining the circumstances that led to their current dire state. The language is mostly lyrical, with a fine cadance and only a few missteps with over-expounded storytelling or cliché lines such as, “Anyway, the only law on your side right about now is the law of survival” (p 63).
On occassion the convoluted plot had me skeptical but I was invested in the characters. So I suspended by disbelief and went along for the ride. I’m glad I did.
I just happened across a book that I want to read and it just happens to be Wednesday. Thanks to Breaking the Spine for hosting WoW!
A dark and provocative novel from the author of The Secret Year
Ryan spends most of his time alone at the local waterfall because it’s the only thing that makes him feel alive. He’s sixteen, post-suicidal, and trying to figure out what to do with himself after a stint in a mental hospital. Then Nicki barges into his world, brimming with life and energy, and asking questions about Ryan’s depression that no one else has ever been brave enough – or cared enough – to ask. Ryan isn’t sure why he trusts Nicki with his darkest secrets, but that trust turns out to be the catalyst that he desperately needs to start living again. Jennifer R. Hubbard has created a riveting story about a difficult but important subject.
Viking Children’s |ISBN 9780670013906 | 272 pages | 19 Jan 2012 | 14 – AND UP years
Confessions of a Bookaholic is hosting a Ten Ten event! Today, a look back at the top ten boyfriends/girlfriends of 2011. I’m going to take this to mean characters I couldn’t help but fall in love with… and not necessarily romantic love. But I came away very connected to the character, forgetting he is not real. Because that’s great stuff people.
Stark McClellan (aka Stick) of Stick by Andrew Smith: I suppose it’s only logical the protagonist in my favorite book of 2011 is the one I cared for the most.
Petyr Baelish, aka Littlefinger of A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin: Petyr steals the show… and I’m not even sure he’s mentioned in Dragons! He’s a cunning, devious man and I can’t help but love him. He plays the game like a master.
Jon Snow of A Dance with Dragons by George R.R. Martin: Being played by the very fine Kit Harington certainly helps, but Jon Snow’s compassionate nature, skill with the sword, and underdog status is enough. He’s a lover and a fighter and he better be back for The Winds of Winter.
Will of The Ranger’s Apprentice: The Emporer of Nihon-Ja by Jon Flanagan: I just adore this archer who bumbles a marriage proposal to his girl, Alyss, at the conclusion of this excellent series.
Horace of The Ranger’s Apprentice: The Emporer of Nihon-Ja by Jon Flanagan: The perfect counter point for Will. Just so straightforward and honest.
Peeta of Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins: This poor dude got the shaft. I know Katniss is one tough woman but Peeta is totally dedicated and he just seems to get the short end here, even though, technically, he gets the girl. Again, it helps that he is going to be played by the adorable Josh Hutcherson.
Douglas Swieteck of Okay For Now by Gary Schmidt: I worry about this kid’s future and he isn’t real!
Han Alister of The Gray Wolf Throne by Cinda Williams Chima: Yum.
Travis of Bluefish by Pat Schmatz: Just a great character and my heart went with him all the while.
Xavier of A Long, Long Sleep by Anna Sheenan: Another character that proves to be a great man and he really got the shaft!
My all time favorites (and one isn’t even human!): Marcus Flutie (Megan McCafferty), Gen (Megan Whalen Turner), Bartimaeus (Jonathan Stroud), Brigan (Kristin Cashore), and Syaoran (CLAMP).
Confessions of a Bookaholic is hosting a Top 10 of 2011 event. Today, a look back at the top ten book covers of 2011. It is because of their covers (at least in part) that I read these books. Obviously, some these appeal to my feminine sensibilities! Click on the picture to go to my review of the book.
Confessions of a Bookaholic is hosting a Top 10 of 2011 event. Today, a look back at the top ten books I’ve read in 2011. These are the books that I find myself revisiting months after I’ve read them. I find myself rereading bits of them and pondering them. I find myself sharing them with strangers! That’s good stuff.
Stick by Andrew Smith: I was enthralled by this book. Completely. I read it in one sitting. (Read my review of Stick.)
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern: The story bends and overlaps and stretches until you have lost your sense of direction just as a circus patron feels skewed upon entering one of the circus tents. But this topsy-turvy feeling is fleeting because what you find inside these black and white pages has captivated you. (Read my review of The Night Circus.)
The Isle of Blood by Rick Yancey: Yancey, once again, delivers a riveting story full of horror, suspense, and excellent character development, as well as an exploration of the human psyche. (Read my review of The Isle of Blood.)
Grandpa Green by Lane Smith: A gorgeously illustrated, clever, humourous, multigenerational, sparsely worded but perfectly paced and poignant picture book. (Read my review of Grandpa Green.)
Hound Dog True by Linda Urban: A slender book that tackles mother/daughter relationships, bullying, early adolescent worries, the art of story through writing/drawing, and (a hint of) romance with elegance and brevity. (Read my review of Hound Dog True.)
A Song of Fire and Ice – A Dance with Dragons by George R. R. Martin: It’s a race to the dragons in this lengthy but thrilling tome. (Read my review of A Dance with Dragons.)
Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys: Gripping from the outset and fluid in its telling, I couldn’t put this one down. (read my review of Between Shades of Gray.)
Okay for Now by Gary Schmidt: Layered and subtle with excellent writing and a realistic, fresh protagonist. (Read my review of Okay for Now.)
Blue Chameleon by Emily Gravett: With her trademark sparsity and gorgeous illustrations, Gravett has created another picture book with depth and humor. (Read my review of Blue Chameleon.)
Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. Those folks like lists and so do I. This week, it’s the Top Ten Books I Want To Give As Gifts (and to who). I am taking a rather abstract approach to the “who” part of this TTT. I’m not going to name names but rather, give you a general idea. I also linked to my reviews below.
The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern : Give to someone who appreciated Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norell by Suzanna Clarke. I loved it!
Women Work and the Art of Savoir Faire by Mareille Guiliano : Every professional female should read this.
Good Boss, Bad Boss by Robert Sutton : Give to all library directors.
Grandpa Green by Lane Smith: Give this to your dad (or grandpa)… I have a copy for my dad ready to go for Christmas.
Between Shades of Gray by Ruta Sepetys : For anyone who has read and enjoyed Number the Stars and other emotionally moving, well-written war-time novels.
The Boss Baby as Himself by Marla Frazee : The perfect gift for a new parent.
The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy : One of my favorite classics. It is perfect for fans of the latest Three Musketeers movie because it’s clever and action packed.
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte : My favorite book. I would give a copy to everyone if I could.
Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai : Give this National Book Award winner to a any girl who has had to move to a completely new place. For a boy, go with All the Broken Pieces by Ann E. Burg.
Percy Jackson and the Olympians, The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan : Give to a 4th/5th/6th grade teacher because it is the perfect read-aloud.
Since the Ramsey’s left their Barstow backwater on Route 66 in January, Belle had become graver and the adjustment period showed no signs of lifting (p 8).
In the early hours of morning in quaint Encinitas, California, Darlene is making love to her semi-conscious husband, Lance, when their ten-year-old daughter Belle walks in the room. Frightened by what she sees and already unhappy about the family’s recent move, Belle becomes even more distant from her mother. She clings to her stay-at-home father, a former weather-man turned caregiver who reflects on his role as father in flashbacks to his own childhood.
Eager to have another child, Lance and Darlene struggle to connect emotionally when getting physical. It doesn’t help that Lance has been engaging in frequent tantric sex with Wren, the wife of Darlene’s business partner nor that Darlene has been flirting with Alec, the aforementioned business partner and cuckold.
With a dry sort of humor, this novel moves ahead quickly, propelled by a sense of doom by fire foreshadowed at the start. While it lags in some areas, all comes to a head at the conclusion when everyone seems hell-bent on either sacking or disparaging Lance, the househusband who’s good at the house bit but lousy as a husband.
No one likes to think their spouse is fornicating or flirting with someone else. But let’s be realistic. It happens. A lot more often than your comfortable with, I’m sure. And I appreciated the blunt and sometimes humourous nature with which the issue was handled, though some of the dialog seemed like prepared campaign speeches. A unique book with a distinct feel.