Review: Coraline, by Neil Gaiman

April 30, 2015 § 6 Comments

Neil Gaiman has such a huge following among adults, teens, and children that it’s embarrassing to admit that I have never read his work.  – Well, I read Fortunately, the Milk.  But somehow I don’t think that counts.

I decided to fix that; I need to be a little familiar with Gaiman’s work and form my own opinion of it.  So this month I downloaded the audiobook version of Coraline, his best-known work for children.  The audiobook I chose is narrated by the author himself.  I’m glad I read Coraline this way, because Gaiman turned out to be an excellent narrator.

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Review: El Deafo, by Cece Bell

April 14, 2015 § 3 Comments

El Deafo by Cece BellI get so excited when a child tells me he is learning to read.  Part of my enthusiasm is simply that selfish, natural excitement that occurs when someone is trying something I love.  Another part of my excitement is purely for the child’s sake – how many worlds are open to him now!  It’s one of the most valuable aspects of a book, that ability to give the reader a window onto a new world: sometimes a “real” world, sometimes a “fantasy” world, but always a new one.  The best books are usually the ones that give the reader a panoramic – and at the same time in-depth – view, or a view from a completely new angle.  This Side of Home was one of those books for meEl Deafo is another.

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Review: Ms. Rapscott’s Girls, by Elise Primavera

April 9, 2015 § Leave a comment

Ms Rapscott's Girls by Elise PrimaveraMs. Rapscott has founded the Great Rapscott School for the Daughters of Busy Parents in her lighthouse on a deliciously stormy shore, and now she watches the skies for the arrival of her first five pupils.  Her pupils are delivered in boxes, of course, because they are the daughters of the Busiest Parents in the World, who certainly have no time to deliver them personally.  Each of the first four boxes contains a rumpled, grumpy little girl, but the fifth – alas, Dahlia Thistle’s parents were too busy to seal the box properly, and she has been Lost.  Thankfully, Ms. Rapscott has many adventures planned for her students, which include very determinedly Not Finding Dahlia Thistle.

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Review: The Boundless, by Kenneth Oppel

April 6, 2015 § 2 Comments

The Boundless, by Kenneth Oppel

I expected The Boundless (by Kenneth Oppel) to be a completely different kind of story.  I was expecting more Hitchcock/Christie vibes, more mystery.  The premise says nothing about sasquatch and muskeg hags, circus acts and magic.

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Review: This Side of Home, by Renee Watson

April 2, 2015 § 3 Comments

Here is a video review!  I find I prefer writing reviews to talking them.  But I thought I’d mix things up a little today.

Click to see my Goodreads review and content advisory.

Click to see this book on Amazon.

What books have you read lately that presented you with new perspective(s)? 

Review: Dove Arising, by Karen Bao

March 30, 2015 § Leave a comment

Dove Arising, by Karen BaoDove Arising, by Karen Bao, is set on a lunar colony: one of six bases established by the world’s scientific community when they and their families fled to the moon to escape the growing danger of war and pollution on Earth.  As you might expect, the colony is a dystopia: the citizens’ life is riddled with restrictions, and they live in fear of the militia, whom they call the Beaters, and under threat of attack from Earth’s remaining superpowers.  Fifteen-year-0ld Phaet Theta is at the top of her class and has big, peaceful plans for her future – until her mother is suddenly taken ill and quarantined, and Phaet and her younger siblings are in danger of having to move to the Shelter.  In desperation, Phaet decides to begin her required time in the militia two years early, hoping to place high in the training evaluations and earn the money to pay her mother’s hospital bills and support her siblings.  She is soon caught up in fierce, even deadly competition with dozens of older and more capable trainees.  Worse, she soon learns that her mother’s quarantine is not what it seemed, and she and her family are in danger.

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Review: Danny the Champion of the World, by Roald Dahl

March 18, 2015 § 1 Comment

Danny the Champion of the World - and tea.It’s still true: I’ve never met a Roald Dahl book I didn’t love.

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