Saturday, February 18, 2017

What's Your Status? 2/18/17

Check back each Saturday to find out what's been keeping the Larks busy all week. 

Reading Lark's Review Status:

Reading Lark's Post Status:

Friday, February 17, 2017

Book Review: Wintersong

Published By: Thomas Dunne
Publication Date: February 7, 2017
Page Count: 448
Source: ARC Kindly Provided by Publisher via NetGalley
Young Adult/New Adult - Fantasy

I love retellings, but this was one I have been excited about for months. I wasn't familiar with the lore surrounding the Goblin King, so I started doing some research into the folklore. I know that I should be well versed in this because of the movie, Labyrinth, but I must admit I have never seen more than the first twenty minutes of that movie. It terrified me as a kid for some reason. Interesting enough, I learned in my interview with S. Jae-Jones for the Wintersong blog tour that she was inspired to learn about the Goblin King lore because of David Bowie's role in Labyrinth. While I try to summon up the courage to put my irrational childhood fear to rest, I kept my mind occupied with Jae-Jones' interpretation of the fabled king of the underground.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday: Spindle Fire

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. . . 

Spindle Fire
By: Lexa Hillyer
Publisher: HarperCollins
Release Date: April 11, 2017

It all started with the burning of the spindles.
It all started with a curse...

Half sisters Isabelle and Aurora are polar opposites: Isabelle is the king's headstrong illegitimate daughter, whose sight was tithed by faeries; Aurora, beautiful and sheltered, was tithed her sense of touch and her voice on the same day. Despite their differences, the sisters have always been extremely close.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Book Review: Valentine

By: Jodi McAlister
Published By: Penguin Teen Australia
Publication Date: February 1st, 2017
Page Count: 395
Source: Purchased by reviewer
Audience: Young Adult - Fantasy

Happy Valentine's Day! I couldn't think of a more appropriate title to review today than Valentine, a new, Australian fantasy novel set in rural New South Wales.

Four friends all born on the same day - Valentine's Day. Well, friends might be stretching it a bit for some of them. Pearl and Marie are friends, for sure. And Pearl is madly in love with Cardy. But she can't stand Finn Blacklin. So she's not at all pleased when it's announced that they're both school captains. But school politics and petty squabbles fade into insignificance when people start going missing.

One of these four teenagers isn't human. One is the Valentine, a fairy changeling swapped at birth with a human baby. And now the fairies want him or her back. With the Seelie and Unseelie Courts fighting to find the Valentine first, Pearl and Finn are forced to work together to save their friends, and themselves.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Book Review: The Careful Undressing of Love

The Careful Undressing of Love
Published By: Dutton Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: January 31, 2017
Page Count: 288
Source: ARC Received from Publisher at YA Day at Little Shop of Stories
Audience: Young Adult - Magical Realism

Lorna lives in Brooklyn in 2008, but its not the same 2008 we all know. 9/11 never happened in this revised history, but rather a bombing in Time Square ripped the world apart. To honor the victims, one of which was Lorna's Dad, the people have a moment of silence every Tuesday morning at 10:11 am. The preservation of this tradition is both a comfort and a curse for Lorna. It seems she can never outrun her tragedy. To make matters worse, Lorna's name and face is known throughout the US as school children and adults learn the names and stories of those who have lost love ones in tragedy. I have always thought learning about the victims and families is more valuable than knowing about the killer, but Lorna makes it clear that obscurity isn't always a bad thing. Lorna wants to be a normal teenager who hangs out with her friends, falls in love, and pursues her dreams, but her life is far more complicated that she would like.

Friday, February 10, 2017

Book Review: Caught in the Revolution

Caught in the Revolution
Published By: St. Martin's Press
Publication Date: February 7, 2017
Page Count: 464
Source: ARC Kindly Provided by Publisher
Adult - History, Nonfiction

Many books explore what life was like at the time of the Russian Revolution, but Caught in the Revolution, by Helen Rappaport is the first that I’ve read to tell the story from the perspective of foreigners living in Petrograd (now St. Petersburg) in 1917. My knowledge of the Russian Revolution is pretty basic, so I appreciated the detail that went into this book. I learned that there was a short period of peace in Petrograd just after Tsar Nicholas II abdicated; I had always assumed that once the unrest began it snowballed from there. I was also struck by the author’s description of Russians wandering the streets of Petrograd destroying evidence of things “imperial” on both signs and buildings. Apparently there was some confusion between the oppressive Russian Imperial eagle and the American eagle symbolizing freedom. Some of the foreign residents of the city were bummed that they didn’t get to keep an imperial eagle souvenir! 

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Book Review: The Radius of Us

The Radius of Us
Published By: St. Martin's Griffin
Publication Date: January 17, 2017
Page Count: 304
Source: Kindly Provided by Publisher
Young Adult - Contemporary

The Radius of Us is a wonderful book that deals with numerous social issues - anxiety, assault, gangs, violence, immigration, and race. And at the heart of this novel is romance. 

 Gretchen is an 18 year old who was assaulted after work one evening. Since then, she has had anxiety, panic attacks, and is almost unable to leave her house. Her parents had her try a number of unconventional therapies, but nothing seemed to help very much. Gretchen has a boyfriend, Adam, who is away at college. And her best friend is Bree, who has been supportive and by her side through it all. 

Monday, February 6, 2017

Cover Crazy: One Blood Ruby

The purpose of Cover Crazy is to feature a cover each week for us  to admire its beauty. I really like this idea since there are so many great covers out there! Cover Crazy is a meme that was started by The Book Worms.

This week I'm featuring

One Blood Ruby by Melissa Marr

This gorgeous cover is perfect for this book. The characters in the book are absolutely beautiful, and just as deadly. The flower featured on this cover is breathtaking, and just hints a the potential danger with the blood red crystals at the center.
My favorite feature, however, is the hand-painted title. The artistry of hand-lettering is perfectly symbolic of the patient, deliberate nature of these characters.

Leave us a comment and share your thoughts on this cover.

Sunday, February 5, 2017

Magic Lamp Sunday 2/5/17

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 that people in positions of power never abused it. Inspired by Long May She Reign by Rhiannon Thomas.

Andrea: I wish  that I owned an inn in Bavaria. Inspired by Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones.
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