Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Book Review: Fear the Drowning Deep

Fear the Drowning Deep
Published By: Sky Pony Press
Publication Date: October 11, 2016
Page Count: 304
Source: ARC Kindly Provided by Publisher via Edelweiss
Audience: Young Adult - Historical Fantasy

I love a good historical fiction novel, but I adore it when an author can combine history with some element of fantasy. Sarah Glenn Marsh has crafted a tale set on the Isle of Man, a setting which evokes magic and myth all on its own, but she puts a spin on things that may or may not include witches, sea monsters, and ancient lore.

For starters, I have to admit that I know very little about the Isle of Man. I always assumed it was part of England or Ireland, but reading this prompted me to do a little research. I discovered its a self governing entity with close ties to Great Britain located in the Irish Sea between the countries of England and Ireland. I suppose my original assumption was fairly geographically correct, but my ignorance made me want to know more. The island is fascinating. I knew nothing of the Manx culture, the island's history, or the folklore surrounding this unique place. I, yet again, have a new travel item for my bucket list. The images online showcase beauty and rugged terrain. It appears to visit the locales from the book would truly be like stepping into the past. Marsh does a gorgeous job of bringing this setting to life. 

Teaser Tuesday: This Is Our Story & Frost Like Night

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly feature, hosted by Jenn at Books and a Beat.

The girl surprised me, though. I didn't expect that. Not at all. It won't hurt to keep an eye on her. The last thing we need is someone poking their nose in where it doesn't belong.

~ This Is Our Story by Ashley Elston, Kindle Location 1472-1476 (ARC)

Oana forces a broken smile. "We look at you like this because we are sorry, Meira. We are so sorry. You deserve a better life than this."

~ Frost Like Night (Snow Like Ashes #3) by Sara Raasch, pg. 64

Monday, October 24, 2016

Book Review: Gemina (Illuminae Files #2)

Gemina (Illuminae Files #2)
By: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Published by: Allen & Unwin (Aus) Knopf (US)
Release date: October 26th (Aus), 2016
Genre: YA Sci Fi
672 pages
Source: Purchased by reviewer

After the wonderful Illuminae, which I raved about in the above linked review, Gemina has been on my must read list all year. It is both a sequel and a companion novel to Illuminae. The characters in Illuminae have been trying to contact Heimdall Station to tell them of the attack the planet Kerenza suffered, and to ask for help. Heimdall haven't responded. In Gemina, we find out why.

Like Illuminae, Gemina is a dossier, a collection of chat logs, radio transmission and video transcripts, journal entries and photographs. The journal entries are new, and are provided by the very talented Marie Lu, who gets an illustration credit. But while the Illuminae report was created for the head of a corporation, Gemina is a trial record.

Picking up five minutes after Illuminae ends, we are introduced to Hanna Donnelly, who is arranging to meet her Dust dealer, Niklas Malikov. Nik is a bit of a shady character - he's been to prison, he's a drug dealer, and he's a member of an organised crime family. Hanna is the Commander's daughter and has the reputation for being a bit of a princess, but she also trains daily in the Station's dojo, and her dad's idea of family fun is playing war strategy games.

Cover Crazy: Riverkeep

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 feature that was started by The Book Worms.

This cover has a lot going on, but I love it. The artwork is fabulous and almost looks as if it was done in chalk. I am particularly fond of the image of the boat and sea monster tentacle in the upper right corner. I love trying to mull over how all of these images could be connected. I also love the fonts used for the title and author's name.

What are your thoughts on this cover?

Sunday, October 23, 2016

Magic Lamp Sunday 10/23/16

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 it wasn't possible for anyone to profit when people are at war. Inspired by Metaltown by Kristen Simmons.

Aimee: I wish I could visit alternate timelines. Inspired by All Our Wrong Todays by Elan Mastai.

Andrea: I wish that I could visit the Isle of Man - inspired by Fear the Drowning Deep by Sarah Glenn Marsh.

Friday, October 21, 2016

Book Review: Metaltown

By: Kristen Simmons
Published by: Tor Teen
Release date: September 20, 2016
Genre: YA dystopian
380 pages
Source: hard copy kindly provided by publisher

I like YA dystopians because they both remind me of my humble upbringing, and make me thankful that though my childhood posed obstacles that had to be overcome, it was easy compared to what it could have been. Metaltown certainly reminded me of both.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Book Review: What Are The Chances?

What Are The Chances? (Britannia Beach #2)
Published By: Harper Impulse
Publication Date: August 26, 2016
Page Count: 256
Buy it at Amazon or Barnes & Noble
Source: Purchased by Reviewer
Audience: Young Adult - Contemporary

Derian (aka Deri)'s senior year has come and gone in this installment. After spending time in Europe, Deri is home at her beloved inn in Britannia Beach. The inn has already been sold, but her grandfather is helping the new owners transition into their new role before he officially retires and moves off the premises. Deri is still sad about the sale of the inn, but she has come to terms with her grandfather's choice. She realizes that he can't run the inn forever and he should be able to enjoy his retirement. 

Waiting on Wednesday: Nowhere Near You

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:
Nowhere Near You
By: Leah Thomas
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Release Date: February 7th 2017

I really enjoyed Because You'll Never Meet Me, a sci fi about two boys, writing to each other, who can never meet because of their particular abilities. I can't wait to find out what's next for Ollie and Moritz, and I do hope they find a way to meet each other.

Ollie and Moritz might never meet, but their friendship knows no bounds. Their letters carry on as Ollie embarks on his first road trip away from the woods--no easy feat for a boy allergic to electricity--and Moritz decides which new school would best suit an eyeless boy who prefers to be alone.

Along the way they meet other teens like them, other products of strange science who lead seemingly normal lives in ways Ollie and Moritz never imagined possible: A boy who jokes about his atypical skeleton; an aspiring actress who hides a strange deformity; a track star whose abnormal heart propels her to victory. Suddenly the future feels wide open for two former hermits. But even as Ollie and Moritz dare to enjoy life, they can't escape their past, which threatens to destroy any progress they've made. Can these boys ever find their place in a world that might never understand them?

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

Book Review: Women Heroes of World War II - The Pacific Theater

Women Heroes of World War II - The Pacific Theater
Published By: Chicago Review Press
Publication Date: October 1, 2016
Page Count: 272
Source: ARC Kindly Provided by Publisher
Young Adult - Nonfiction, History

Women Heroes of World War II – the Pacific Theater is a collection for young adults of brief sketches of the wartime contributions of fifteen extraordinary women. They include reporters, spies, nurses, guerillas, photographers, and survivors. I chose to review this book because most of the contributions of women to history were conspicuously absent from my history textbooks as I was growing up. I can’t say for certain, but I expect this is still largely the case, and Atwood’s book Women Heroes of World War II – the Pacific Theater definitely helps fill that gap. 
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