Saturday, April 29, 2017

What's Your Status? 4/29/17


Check back each weekend to find out what's been keeping the Larks busy all week. Is Spring as hectic for everyone else as it is for the Larks?

Reading Lark's Review Status:

Reading Lark's Post Status:

Friday, April 28, 2017

Book Review: The Mermaid's Daughter

The Mermaid's Daughter
By: Ann Claycomb
Published By: William Morrow
Publication Date: March 7, 2017
Page Count: 448
Source: ARC Kindly Provided by Publisher via Edelweiss
Adult - Fantasy, Fairy Tale Inspired

Fairy Tale Inspired novels seem to be cropping up all over the place in YA literature right now, but this is the first one I can recall reading recently that combines fairy tale inspiration with adult fiction. As a child, I loved the Disney version of The Little Mermaid was a personal favorite. I would watch it over and over again while imagining that I was a mermaid just like Ariel. While Disney added the happy ending and sanitized the original Hans Christian Andersen version quite a bit, I didn't realize how dark the source material truly was until I was much older. Learning about the original didn't lessen my fond childhood memories of Ariel and Eric, but it did make me crave learning more about the source material and researching mermaid lore.

The Shopping Lark #252


Each Friday, Reading Lark is going to feature some new releases each week to help give you some ideas of what to buy next. This is not an exhaustive list of this week's releases - just some novels that caught our eye. Feel free to share what books you're excited about that came out this week in our comments section.

YA Releases for the week of 4/24 - 4/30:






Thursday, April 27, 2017

Book Review: How Dare the Sun Rise

How Dare The Sun Rise
Published By: Katherine Tegen Books
Publication Date: May 16, 2017
Page Count: 304
Source: ARC Kindly Provided by Publisher via Edelweiss
Young Adult - Memoir

This was a powerful memoir, but a difficult one to read. Sandra Uwiringiyimana is a young woman who grew up in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. War was a constant worry for her and her family; they were often displaced as fighting broke out. Things were even worse for Sandra's family as they came from a tribe that faced severe persecution in Congo. While Sandra's life in Africa, has many happy memories associated with it, it also holds some of her deepest pain.

The book begins in happier times when Sandra recalls playing with her pet monkey, laughing with her little sister, and getting into trouble with one of her older brothers. She describes life in her village and remarks on how much she loves attending school. Sandra's family is unique in the fact that they value education for females in a society that does not always see this as good use of time for girls. Many girls learn the basics and then begin to train for their lives as wives and mothers. Sandra's parents want their children to have options in life beyond becoming a spouse. I admired Sandra's parents and the way they operated their home and managed their large family. My heart also broke for them when Sandra's oldest brother, Heritage, was kidnapped and forced to fight in the army. Sandra's father refuses to rest until his son is returned home which will eventually happen, but Heritage will be plagued by his time as a young soldier and fitting into life with his family will take time.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

Magic Lamp Sunday 4/23/17

We discovered this feature at Ya-Aholic, where it ran on Fridays. It sounded like a fun addition to our lineup, but fits better here on Sundays. It's based on the basic Magic Lamp = 3 wishes idea. Since there are so many of us, though, we're just taking one wish each per week. 

If we had a Magic Lamp, we'd wish:  

Paula: I wish William Shakespeare a very happy 453rd birthday. :)

Nicole: I wish I could go back to university. Inspired by When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon.

Andrea: I wish for world peace. Inspired by How Dare the Sun Rise by Sandra Uwiringiyimana with Abigail Pesta.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Book Review: A Week in Winter

A Week in Winter
Published By: Orion
Publication Date: October 2012
Page Count: 464
Source: Library
Adult - Fiction

A Week in Winter is one of the Binchy novels that is told in a series of vignettes with various characters who are all tied together by their time at Stone House, an inn on the west coast of Ireland. These seem to be more of the norm for her in the later years of her writing career. While I miss the sweeping historical novels, I have come to love these new connected stories as well. They are intensely character driven and I love losing myself in the Irish setting.

The story begins by telling about Chicky Starr, a native of the small town of Stoneybridge. As a young woman, she fell in love with the wrong sort of man and moved to New York City. Eventually, she moves back home and decides to open Stone House. Ultimately, this is her story and focuses on her success as an entrepreneur, but it's through her business that many people find answers and solace. I enjoyed getting to know this smart and vivacious woman who cares deeply for her family, her inn, and strives to give her guests the best possible experience. I longed for a trip to Stone House the entire time I was reading this novel. 

The Shopping Lark #251


Each Friday, Reading Lark is going to feature some new releases each week to help give you some ideas of what to buy next. This is not an exhaustive list of this week's releases - just some novels that caught our eye. Feel free to share what books you're excited about that came out this week in our comments section.

YA Releases for the week of 4/17 - 4/23:


Thursday, April 20, 2017

Book Review: The Girl Who Knew Too Much

The Girl Who Knew Too Much
Published By: Berkley Books
Publication Date: May 9, 2017
Page Count: 352
Source: ARC Kindly Provided by Publisher
Adult - Historical Fiction

Mystery and romance - my favorite combination! Amanda Quick's most recent book is filled with both. Set in the 1930's Hollywood era, Irene flees one mystery on the East coast and lands in LA, stumbling upon yet another mystery. The problem that caused her to run ended up following her West. Irene sometimes doesn't know if the events that occur are due to her current situation, or possibly because of why she fled. 

 Oliver, a former magician turned hotel proprietor to the rich and famous, steps in to help with damage control. He forms a bond with Irene and together they try to solve the murder that occurred at his hotel. However, he is also hiding secrets from his past. 

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Waiting On Wednesday: Someone Else's Summer


Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine where she spotlights upcoming releases.

This week I am waiting on:
Someone Else's Summer
By: Rachel Bateman
Publisher: Running Press Teens

30285632

I get to start this one in a couple of days, and I am so excited! This book will be a great way to kick off the beach read season. Epic road trip? Sleepy Iowa town? This is right up my alley.
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