Saturday, January 13, 2018

Me on This Week's Book Week (291)

This Week's Book Week is rather similar to Stacking the Shelves hosted by Tynga's Reviews only with far more rambling and a less witty title. ;)

Reviews going up this week will feature  The True Queen by Sarah Fine (Friday). Sorry about the lack of Tuesday's review, everyone. Feeling sick then feeling weird means not a lot of reading done. :)

Lumberjanes: The Moon is Up by Mariko Tamaki & Brooklyn Allen (e-galley from Amulet Books through NetGalley)
The True Queen by Sarah Fine (borrowed from the library)
This Mortal Coil by Emily Suvada (borrowed from the library)

Friday, January 12, 2018

Me on The Door in the Alley

Title: The Door in the Alley
Author: Adrienne Kress
Release Date: April 25, 2017
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers (Random House imprint)

Knock once if you can find it but only members are allowed inside. This is one of those stories that start with a pig in a teeny hat. It's not the one you're thinking about. (This story is way better than that one.) This pig-in-a-teeny-hat story starts when a very uninquisitive boy stumbles upon a very mysterious society. After that, there is danger and adventure; there are missing persons, hired thugs, a hidden box, a lost map, and famous explorers; and there is a girl looking for help that only uninquisitive boys can offer.

The Door in the Alley is humourous and exciting, a journey It's a curious mystery surrounding a secret society and their mission to explore, and a small group that was once cast out.

Sebastian is a very smart young man. He's studious, logical, and loves to have everything planned out. Because logic is the way to go. But then a little pig in a teeny hat wanders into his life and he discovers The Explorers Society. And it unnerves him in a way. It makes him want to know more, know what they explore and what lies beyond their front door. Even though it doesn't quite make sense to him. Logically. Evie is a lonely young girl. Orphaned because of a terrible accident, she's left without anyone to care about her, to love her and support her. She just wants somewhere to belong. One night, after a sudden attack and narrow escape, she's given a letter and sent to a place that might be able to help her. A place called The Explorers Society. It's there she's ignored, there she meets Sebastian, and there she learns she might still have family somewhere. And so the two of them join together to uncover their whereabouts, but they're not the only ones looking.

This was part adventure, part puzzle-solving, and part kids figuring out the world around them. I found myself laughing so much, at the introduction of the pig in the teeny hat, at so many things Sebastian discovers while tidying the inside of the Society building. It reminded me of books like Chasing Vermeer and The Shadow Cipher but faster paced and a little more light-hearted. I would definitely recommend this to those looking for adventurous middle grade books like the ones previously mentioned.

(I borrowed an e-book copy of this title from the library.)

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Me on Waiting on Wednesday (361)

Waiting on Wednesday is a bunch of weekly fun hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine. :)

Title: Defy the Worlds
Author: Claudia Gray
Release Date: April 3, 2018
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (Hachette Book Group imprint)

From Goodreads:

Noemi Vidal has returned to her planet, Genesis, as an outsider. Ostracized for refusing to sacrifice Abel, the galaxy's most advanced mechanical man, she dreams of traveling through the stars one more time. And when a deadly plague arrives on Genesis, Noemi gets her chance. As the only soldier to have ever left the planet, it will be up to her to save its people...if only she wasn't flying right into a trap.

Abel, now fully aware of his soul and captaining his own ship, never thought he'd get to see Noemi again, not when the entire universe stands between them. But when his creator, Burton Mansfield, delivers news of Noemi's capture, Abel must go to her, no matter the cost.

In a race against time, Abel and Noemi band together to stop Mansfield once and for all. The depraved scientist has engineered a way to achieve immortality, but that technology comes with perils of its own. Abel and Noemi are about to discover a secret that could save Genesis and Earth...or destroy them all.

I read Defy the Stars last year and love it. It was the right kind of deep space race against time sci-fi I was looking for. It was tense and complicated in the right places.

Tuesday, January 9, 2018

Me on Shadow Weaver

Title: Shadow Weaver
Author: MarcyKate Connolly
Release Date: January 2, 2018
Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwocky

Emmeline has grown up with a gift. Since the time she was a baby she has been able to control shadows. And her only friend and companion is her own shadow, Dar. Disaster strikes when a noble family visits their home and offers to take Emmeline away and cure her of magic. Desperate not to lose her shadows, she turns to Dar who proposes a deal: Dar will change the noble's mind, if Emmeline will help her become flesh as she once was. Emmeline agrees but the next morning the man in charge is in a coma and all that the witness saw was a long shadow with no one nearby to cast it. Scared to face punishment, Emmeline and Dar run away. With the noble's guards on her trail, Emmeline's only hope of clearing her name is to escape capture and perform the ritual that will set Dar free. But Emmeline's not sure she can trust Dar anymore, and it's hard to keep secrets from someone who can never leave your side.

Shadow Weaver is a twisty tale of friendship, of truths and lies, of magic and secrets.

Emmeline is a lonely girl. Because of her shadow magic, her ability to control and shape the shadows around her, there are a lot of people who avoid her. Fear her. As she wants to be liked by them, she's told she doesn't need them by her own shadow named Dar. Dar has always been with Emmeline, she'll protect Emmeline and keep them together. They need each other. But then someone comes to Emmeline's house talking about a cure, about separating her from her magic, and Dar pushes her to leave. Then comes a journey away from home and towards possibly learning the truth about Dar, about why she's not exactly like the other shadows. About why she speaks of freeing herself from Emmeline.

It's slightly similar to the author's previous middle grade books, mysterious and magical but set in a wholly new fantasy land. This felt slightly eerier, though. A little more darker and dangerous, a little more duplicitous. There was a time or two when I found Emmeline rather naive when it came to Dar's insistence and bizarre requests, but that was on me. Looking at Emmeline, at a lonely girl who's only ever had one consistent person in her life that cared about her and played with her, when that person was Dar, why wouldn't Emmeline trust her more than other people? I would recommend this to middle grade readers who are looking for more fantasy stories.

(I received an advance copy of this title from Raincoast Books.)

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Me on This Week's Book Week (290)

This Week's Book Week is rather similar to Stacking the Shelves hosted by Tynga's Reviews only with far more rambling and a less witty title. ;)

Hello! One good thing about this winter is that it hasn't been as snowy or depressing as it was last year.

I keep thinking I'm missing out on a bunch of books coming out this year, so everyone comment with what you're looking forward to. I think my reading's gone down over the past few years and I'm not sure why, if it's because I've missed out on books or because there aren't as many coming out that interests me anymore.

It's middle grade week next week! Reviews going up will feature Shadow Weaver by MarcyKate Connolly (Tuesday) and Warrior Genius by Michael Dante DiMartino (Friday). :)
Before the Devil Breaks You by Libba Bray (e-book borrowed from the library)