Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Me on Waiting on Wednesday (298)

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

Title: Caraval
Author: Stephanie Garber
Release Date: January 31, 2017
Publisher: Flatiron Books (Macmillan imprint)

From Goodreads:

Before you enter the world of Caraval, you must remember that it’s all a game . . .

Scarlett has never left the tiny island where she and her beloved sister, Tella, live with their ruthless father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval, the legendary, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show, are over.

Then, Scarlett’s long-dreamt of invitation to Caraval finally arrives. So, Tella enlists a mysterious sailor’s help to whisk Scarlett away to this year’s show. But as soon as the trio arrives, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. But she nonetheless soon becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic with her sister, with Legend, and with the other players in the game. And whether Caraval is real or not, she must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over, a dangerous domino effect of consequences is set off, and her sister disappears forever.

Once The Night Circus was named as a comp title, I was sold. I love The Night Circus, the impossibility and the whimsy and the seriousness of it all, so I'm really excited to read this. :)

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Me on Like a River Glorious

Title: Like a Rover Glorious
Author: Rae Carson
Release Date: September 27, 2016
Publisher: Greenwillow Books (HarperCollins imprint)

After a harrowing journey across the country, Leah Westfall and her friends have finally arrived in California and are ready to make their fortunes in the Gold Rush. Lee has a special advantage over the other new arrivals in California—she has the ability to sense gold, a secret known only by her best friend Jefferson and her murdering uncle Hiram. Lee and her friends have the chance to be the most prosperous settlers in California, but Hiram hasn't given up trying to control Lee and her power. Sabotage and kidnapping are the least of what he'll do to make sure Lee is his own. His mine is the deepest and darkest in the territory, and there Lee learns the full extent of her magical gift, the worst of her uncle, and the true strength of her friendships. To save everyone, she vows to destroy her uncle and the empire he is building—even at the cost of her own freedom.

Like a River Glorious is the continuing tale of a young woman looking for a new home, a place that her and her friends can call their own. But the dark things in her past won't let her go.

Lee is a strong young woman. She's determined, she's tough. She's full of compassion. She's desperate for a home of her own, a place to call her own where she can live in peace and relative comfort with those who've made it to California with her. She's looking to feel safe for the first time in ages, which is hard when she knows her uncle is looking for her. Searching for her, wanting to use her witchy gold-finding ability for himself. Caught up in his business, in his desperate search for gold and power, Lee must stay calm and wait if she wants to survive. If she wants to make it out alive and not alone.

This book isn't for the faint of heart. After all the running and hiding Lee did in the previous book, after the hope she had for a future of her own and away from her uncle, it's hard to stomach what Hiram does to Lee in this book. The kidnapping. The emotional abuse, the physical abuse. What he makes Lee witness. The disgust he has for the Native Americans and the Chinese labourers. The horrible living and working conditions they suffer through. This is a book full of sorrow and oppression, of hunger and suffering and hatred. Of the cost of freedom, the desperation for it. Of greed and obsession.

After reading the first book, I was interested in where this would go. If Lee would ever find a new home. If any of the people she met on the wagon train would tough it out in California with her or if they would turn around and leave. If she'd be able to carve out as much a place of her own as possible, as much as the law would allow an unmarried young woman, or if more men would show up looking to control her. And then her uncle showed up. I'm curious as to how the third book will go, knowing it's a trilogy, knowing how this book ended.

(I downloaded an e-galley of this book from HarperCollins through Edelweiss.)

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Me on This Week's Book Week (225)

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! It's raining again! There was a pretty good downpour the other day. It was like heavy-duty movie rain, like when you know they've just got a sprinkler going off up in the air.

So I've been doing that thing that happens almost every fall, which is cramming in reviews of books that're coming out in September and October. SO MANY BOOKS. Ones I have for review or ones I bought or borrowed from the library and want to review. And then I feel like I've scheduled too much, or that I'm not reading enough, but then I sit down to read and I'm just not feeling it. I'm hoping I've settled into a good reading rhythm. But I did just go on a borrowing spree on the library's e-book site. Ooooooooops. ;)

Reviews going up in the coming week will feature Like a River Glorious by Rae Carson (Tuesday) and A Little Taste of Poison by R.J. Anderson (Friday). :)
Bought/borrowed/received:
Timekeeper by Tara Sim (e-galley from Skyhorse Publishing through NetGalley)
The Swan Riders by Erin Bow (borrowed from the library)
Every Hidden Thing by Kenneth Oppel (borrowed from the library)
Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard (borrowed from the library)
Truthwitch by Susan Dennard (borrowed from the library)
Seven Tears at High Tide by C.B. Lee (borrowed from the library)

Friday, September 23, 2016

Blog tour: Vassa in the Night

Hello! Welcome to the blog tour for Sarah Porter's Vassa in the Night! Many thanks to Raincoast Books for setting up the tour and sending an advance copy. This is definitely not your average story, not your average fairy tale retelling. Today on the tour, you'll find an excerpt of Vassa in the Night. Enjoy!

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Me on Enter a Glossy Web

Title: Enter a Glossy Web
Author: McKenna Rhea Ruebush
Release Date: September 27, 2016
Publisher: Christy Ottaviano Books (Macmillan imprint)

Twelve-year-old George has no idea what to expect when she's sent to stay with eccentric relatives following the disappearance of her brother. Soon after her arrival, she learns that Uncle Constantine has been kidnapped. George sets off to recover him and is joined by two orphaned boys along the way and Cavendish, a talking map. Together they visit magical worlds full of monsters, witches, and dragons as they attempt to find Constantine--the Timekeeper--a man of great significance. If he's not rescued, events will cease to happen at their designated times, disrupting the unfolding of the universe. Can this ragtag crew save the future before being outwitted by evil captors?

Enter a Glossy Web is an exciting adventure full to the brim with magic, discovery, impossibility, and danger. Time is running out, and George and the boys have to hurry if they're going to save the universe.

George is a smart girl, a thoughtful girl. A lonely girl. After her brother's disappearance, she can't lose anyone close to her again. She keeps count, but even then, her uncle goes missing on a work trip and her aunt is kidnapped. She's been given an impossible quest, rooted in the fantastical bedtime stories her uncle told her during a meteor shower, and she follows it, determined to save the family members taken from her. But she doesn't want to remember what happened before, in Istanbul. Her companions, the young boys named Caleb and Mikal, are a curious pair. Their story, the beginning that they share with George, is a sad one, and soon they help her solving puzzles and searching for keys. But they also have things they don't want to talk about. They have secrets, they have fears, and they don't want to confront them.

How charming was this book! It reminded me of the impossible magic of childhood, of playing pretend and stories filled with magical creatures and different worlds. Of fantasy stories of children saying the day and adults helping them instead of hindering them. So many supportive adult characters! This was such a joy to read, so much fun to read. I loved reading about George, Caleb, and Mikal wandering through different worlds like the Land of Dreamers and The Children's Republic as they searched for the keys that would help save the worlds. A must-read for middle grade fans, for fans of fantasy worlds and adventure and wonder.

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