Teaser Tuesday

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Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by A Daily Rhythm where anyone can play along.

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Today’s Teaser Tuesday sentences were extracted from Sarah McCoy’s historical fiction, The Mapmaker’s Children. I’m very happy with what I’ve read so far, so here is a little teaser:

“Mr. George be a man of forgiveness, mercy, and tolerance. I know he preaches them things to the white folk in New Charlestown, but do other towns hear them parts of the Gospel? Sho’ don’t seem like it.”

“My pa, long time ‘go, told me God gave animals a different kind of vision from us peoples. They ain’t got as many colors in their heads, so they ain’t confused as easily…”

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Review: The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon

The Bone Season

The year is 2059. Nineteen-year-old Paige Mahoney is working in the criminal underworld of Scion London, based at Seven Dials, employed by a man named Jaxon Hall. Her job: to scout for information by breaking into people’s minds. For Paige is a dreamwalker, a clairvoyant and, in the world of Scion, she commits treason simply by breathing.

It is raining the day her life changes for ever. Attacked, drugged and kidnapped, Paige is transported to Oxford – a city kept secret for two hundred years, controlled by a powerful, otherworldly race. Paige is assigned to Warden, a Rephaite with mysterious motives. He is her master. Her trainer. Her natural enemy. But if Paige wants to regain her freedom she must allow herself to be nurtured in this prison where she is meant to die.

First I’d like to apologize for how long it took me to post this review. I finished reading this book a few weeks ago, but I was out of the country with limited internet access. The Bone Season was one of the books I’d been meaning to read since it was first released in 2013. Samantha Shannon is a prodigy for sure. I couldn’t even start to imagine coming up with these many ideas for a book at the tender age of twenty-two, much less sign a fabulous book deal to write a seven-book series.

The Bone Season is book one of the series and it does not disappoint. Wow, was all that was coming out of my mouth when I finished this book. I truly loved it. I liked Paige, the heroine, and Warden. The characters were complex and well-developed. This is a four hundred and fifty-page book that reads like it’s two hundred pages. It’s a real page-turner. I thought the descriptions of the fights and the action scenes were really well described.

The one complaint I have about the book was the fact that Shannon created this entire new vocabulary, and to understand it you have to consult the glossary at the back of the book. That was something that got pretty tiresome after a while, and the sole reason I’m not rating this book five stars. I’m definitely looking forward to the sequel.

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Book Details:

Title:The Bone Season /Author:Samantha Shannon/Genre:YA/Paranormal/ ISBN:9781620401392/Publisher:Bloomsbury USA/Rating: 4-Stars/Read:June, 2015.

Teaser Tuesday

TeaserTuesdays-ADailyRhythm3

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by A Daily Rhythm where anyone can play along.

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Today’s Teaser Tuesday sentence was extracted from Nathan Filer’s The Shock of the Fall. The premise of this book has really sparked my interest. I’m not a mental health or behavior nurse, but I’m really interested in this book. The review will come soon. For now just a teaser.

“Inside my head is a story. I hoped if I told it, it might make more sense to me. It’s hard to explain, but if I could only remember everything, If I could write my thoughts on sheets of paper, something to hold with my hands then–I don’t know. Nothing probably. Like I say, it’s hard to explain.”

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Review: The Truth According to Us by Annie Barrows

the truth

In the summer of 1938, Layla Beck’s father, a United States senator, cuts off her allowance and demands that she find employment on the Federal Writers’ Project, a New Deal jobs program. Within days, Layla finds herself far from her accustomed social whirl, assigned to cover the history of the remote mill town of Macedonia, West Virginia, and destined, in her own opinion, to go completely mad with boredom. However, once she secures a room in the home of the unconventional Romeyn family, she is completely drawn into their complex world and soon discovers that the truth of the town is deeply entangled in the thorny past of the Romeyn dynasty.

At the Romeyn house, twelve-year-old Willa is desperate to learn everything in her quest to acquire her favorite virtues—ferocity and devotion—a search that leads her into a thicket of mysteries, including the questionable business with which her charismatic father is always occupied and the reason her adored aunt Jottie never married. Layla’s arrival strikes a match to the family veneer, bringing to light buried secrets that will tell a different tale about the Romeyns, and the invisible threads linking them to the heart of Macedonia’s history. As Willa peels back the layers of her family’s past, and Layla delves deeper into town legend, everyone involved is transformed—and their personal histories completely rewritten.

The Truth According to Us is Annie Barrows debut novel. Written in an epistolary format, and alternating between twelve-year-old Willa and her aunt Jottie Romeyn’s point of view and thoughts on Layla Beck. Layla moves in with the Romeyn family after her father sends her off to work at the Federal Writers’ Project.

This novel is one of those books that as you read you can almost listen to the southern accent in the dialogues. The descriptions of the fictitious town of Macedonia really transports you to this quaint little southern town. The characters in this story are extremely colorful and funny. The book, however, was a little bit of a slow read for my taste, but overall a great read.

I’d like to thank NetGalley for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

3 star

Book Details:

Title:The Truth According to Us /Author:Annie Barrows/Genre:Fiction/ ISBN:9780385342940/Publisher:The Dial Press/Rating: 3-Stars/Read:June, 2015.

Teaser Tuesday

TeaserTuesdays-ADailyRhythm3

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by A Daily Rhythm where anyone can play along.

The Bone Season

Today’s Teaser Tuesday sentences were extracted from the book The Bone Season. I had been meaning to read this novel since it first came out in 2013, and just never got around doing it. I remember all the hype surrounding this book and the fact that the author, Samantha Shannon, was only twenty-one years old when she wrote this debut novel. I’m really liking it so far, and I’ll be posting a review soon.

“…I didn’t like the thought of sleeping out here–not with this many spirits in the air. There were more of them now, and it was getting colder. I stripped off my wet boots and socks, put them out to dry besides the flame, and zipped myself into the sleeping bag. It wasn’t warm, even with my jacket and gilet, but it was better than nothing.

Warden tapped his fingers on his knee, staring into the darkness. His eyes were two live coals, alert for danger. I turned over and looked up at the moon. How dark the world looked. How dark, and how cold.”

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The Beautiful Bloggers Award

I’m so happy to have received another award. I’d like to thank Ajoobacats Blog for nominating my blog for The Beautiful Bloggers Award. I really enjoy and appreciate receiving awards. Since starting this blog in April 2015, I have been truly blessed with a wonderful community of book bloggers and have come to know many new blogs out there. I think this is a great incentive to maintain and make new friends in the blogging community.

beautiful award

The Rules
Link to the blogger who took the time to nominate you. List seven random things about yourself. Nominate seven creative, beautiful bloggers. Notify the amazing people that you nominated for the award.

You can find seven random things about me on a previous post for The Liebster Award.

My Seven Nominees

Thank you! 🙂

Review: Lichgates (The Grimoire Saga #1) by S.M. Boyce

lichgates

When Kara Magari uncovers a secret door in the middle of the forest, she discovers (and trips through) a portal to a hidden world full of terrifying things: Ourea. She just wants to go home, but the natives have other plans for her…

Kara is a teenager who one day decides to go for a hike in the woods and encounters a secret door, or lichgate, in the middle of the forest. This lichgate is a portal that takes her to the land of Ourea, an underground world of unique races, monsters and magical creatures.

I want to start by pointing out what I liked about this book. Fantasy books are probably the genre that requires the greatest amount of creativity, and in that part Boyce did a fantastic job. She spent a significant amount of time creating an entire world full of mythical and magical creatures, dragons, shape-shifters, portals and demons.

What I did not like about this book was that it felt a little too long and redundant. I understand that being the first book in a saga there will be a lot of introduction to characters and descriptions. Unfortunately, at times, the transition was choppy. The character of Kara, the protagonist, the heroine, is rather dull and a bit too naive. I didn’t really empathize with her at all. The other character in the book is Braeden Drakonin, a dark prince with a dark secret and who doesn’t get along with his dad–the big evil king. I was hoping for more romance than just the platonic thing that went on between Kara and Braeden. Maybe that will be developed in other books. Overall, Ourea is a complicated world. It is full of details, and kingdoms and species, and although the author did an excellent job at creating this mythical land the rest of the story did not feel well developed.

Lichgates is book one of the Grimoire Saga, and I’m hoping that more of the actual story and characters will be developed in future books. I’m not giving up on this series, and I’m looking forward to book number two.

I’d like to thank Story Cartel for providing me with a free copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

3 star

Book Details:

Title:Lichgates /Author:S.M.Boyce/Genre:Fantasy/YA / ISBN:9781939997067/Publisher:Acorn Valley Press/Rating: 3-Stars/Read:June, 2015.

Review: The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins

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The Moonstone, a priceless Indian diamond which had been brought to England as spoils of war, is given to Rachel Verrinder on her eighteenth birthday. That very night, the stone is stolen. Suspicion then falls on a hunchbacked housemaid, on Rachel’s cousin Franklin Blake, on a troupe of mysterious Indian jugglers, and on Rachel herself. The phlegmatic Sergeant Cuff is called in, and with the help of Betteredge, the Robinson Crusoe-reading loquacious steward, the mystery of the missing stone is ingeniously solved.

The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins is considered to be the first detective novel in the English Language. And being a huge fan of detective stories I had long wanted to read it, but had never gotten around doing it. So a couple of months ago I joined The Classics Club Challenge and added this book to my list.

What I absolutely loved about this novel, and perhaps the reason it’s considered a classic, is how well Collins developed the plot. The twists, the suspects, the idea of the super detective who comes in to save the day–all of this pretty much from scratch, no template or recipe to follow. The language, naturally, gives it away. This novel was first published in 1868, and the fact that he wrote it as an epistolary novel (written as a series of documents, such as letters or diary entries) made it much easier to read. It changed the pace of the book and kept it interesting.

This novel should be required reading for fans of detective novels. It is almost impossible to think of books by Agatha Christie, P.D. James, or even Arthur Conan Doyle without referring to The Moonstone. Great read!

5 star

Book Details:

Title: The Moonstone/Author: Wilkie Collins/Genre: Fiction/Crime / ISBN:9781593083229/Publisher:Barnes & Noble Classics/Rating: 5-Stars/Read: May, 2015.

The Martian by Andy Weir–Audiobook Review

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Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won’t have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain old “human error” are much more likely to kill him first. But Mark isn’t ready to give up yet…

WOW! Lots of buzz surrounding this book and I’m telling you it is definitely worth it. I listened to this book as an audiobook and I’m thrilled that I did it. The narration on this book is absolutely perfect. It really helped with the boring, more technical (math equations) parts of the book and the narrator’s voice really matched Mark Watney’s sarcastic personality.

Mark Watney is such a great character! If he were real he would be a really awesome dude. His determination to stay alive no matter what, his fantastic sense of humor, his courage and ingenuity made this book. I loved the writing and the dialogues. Mark is a potty-mouth, but hey, you’d be too if you were stranded in Mars. I have several quotes that I find precious from this book. My favorites are the funny ones. I also can’t ever look at a potato the same way again. The nerd in me was just astounded at all the experiments Watney came up with. And I just loved how he kept on going, even when things didn’t turn-out right.

“Yes, of course duct tape works in a near-vacuum. Duct tape works anywhere. Duct tape is magic and should be worshiped!”

“Things didn’t go exactly as planned, but I’m not dead, so it’s a win.


This book is the best audiobook I’ve listened to so far. I know this is a great story to experience regardless of the format you choose, but this audio version rocks.

5 star

Audiobook Details:

Unabridged: (10hours and 53min)/Author:Andy Weir/Narration:R.C. Bray/Release date: 03-22-13/ Publisher: Podium Publishing/Rating: 5-Stars

Review: The Mine by John A. Heldt

The Mine

In May 2000, Joel Smith is a cocky, adventurous young man who sees the world as his playground. But when the college senior, days from graduation, enters an abandoned Montana mine, he discovers the price of reckless curiosity. He emerges in May 1941 with a cell phone he can’t use, money he can’t spend, and little but his wits to guide his way. 

Who does not love the concept of time travel? The chance to go back in time and maybe meet famous historical figures, or see our parents when they were little. I’ve been a huge fan of time travel stories since I first read The Time Machine by H.G. Wells, and I still have very fond memories of my childhood, and watching Back to The Future.

The Mine is a time-travel novel, but unlike many novels of the same genre this story is also a beautiful love story. Joel Smith is a cocky twenty-something guy who walks into a mine and comes out in 1941. Joel is flawed, but a well-written character. The historical descriptions of America in the age of swing dancing really transports you to that period in time. My favorite character in this book is Ginny–witty and funny she is such a delight, and as you start reading the story you’ll know why she is so special. I have to say that half-way through the book I thought I had the story figured out, and I was very happy with how surprised I was at the end of the book. This story does not disappoint. I had a great time reading it. This is book one of the Northwest Passage series. Looking forward to the next ones.

I received this book for free from the author in exchange for my honest review.

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Book Details:

Title: The Mine/Author: John A. Heldt/Genre: Historical Fiction/Romance / ASIN:B0078S9B6G/Publisher: Self-Published/Rating: 4-Stars/Read: May, 2015.