Audiobook reviews, Fiction, Fiction Reviews, Reviews

Audiobook Review of BellWether by Connie Willis

BellwetherRating: 4 of 5 Stars
Pages: 247
Published: 1997

Connie Willis somehow connects RomComs and Sci-Fi, and I love it. She takes the most random topics, like in Bellwether where we have fads, flock mentality, sheep, and scientists.

The Summary, taken from Goodreads:

Pop culture, chaos theory and matters of the heart collide in this unique novella from the Hugo and Nebula winning author of Doomsday Book.

Sandra Foster studies fads and their meanings for the HiTek corporation. Bennet O’Reilly works with monkey group behavior and chaos theory for the same company. When the two are thrust together due to a misdelivered package and a run of seemingly bad luck, they find a joint project in a flock of sheep. But series of setbacks and disappointments arise before they are able to find answers to their questions.

Connie Willis is one of my favorite SciFi writers. Her protagonists are generally female, and authentic which is so rare in science fiction. I whole heartily recommend Bellwether to those you are not sure they like SciFi or just like light SciFi.

Buy from Amazon($7.99), here.

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Audiobook reviews, Fiction, Fiction Reviews, Non-Fiction Reviews, Reviews, Young Adult books, Young Adult Reveiws

Upcoming Reviews

I have a couple of upcoming reviews for audio books and print books.

BellwetherBellwether by Connie Willis

Genre: SciFi

My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking

Quiet: The Powerful of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain

Genre: Non-Fiction

My Rating: 4 of 5 Stars

A Madness So Discreet

A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis

Genre: YA Historical Fiction

My Rating: 3 of 5 Stars

Fiction, Fiction Reviews, Reviews, Series Reviews, Young Adult books, Young Adult Reveiws

Review: Manners and Mutiny by Gail Carriger

Manners & Mutiny (Finishing School)Manners & Mutiny (Finishing School, #4)

My Rating: 4 Stars of 5
Amazon’s Rating: 4.5
Pages: 352

The final book of the Finishing series by Gail Carriger is packed full of excitement, fluttering eyelashes, and deadly acquaintances.

Sophronia is an young lady of good graces, as far as appearances go, but appearances are deceiving.

Taken from Goodreads,

If one must flirt…flirt with danger.
Lessons in the art of espionage aboard Mademoiselle Geraldine’s floating dirigible have become tedious without Sophronia’s sootie Soap nearby. She would rather thwart dastardly Picklemen, yet her concerns about their wicked intentions are ignored.

Who can she trust? Royal werewolf dewan? Stylish vampire Lord Akeldama? Only one thing is certain: a large-scale plot is under way. Sophronia must be ready to save her friends, her school, and all of London from disaster.

If you’ve been following this series, the final book is fun and a satisfying close. There is even an epilogue that helps put some of the “I wonder what happen to…” questions to rest. All in all, I would recommend this series to anyone who enjoys steampunk, Victorian easy reads.

Buy from Amazon ($10.97), here.

Book Lists, Fiction, To-Read List, Upcoming reads, Young Adult books

New Releases: Mid Summer 2017

 

Summer is here and so are some of my eagerly awaited books! Below are a few of the books I have been watching (and waiting) for a while.

The CowsRelease Date: April 6, 2017

Dawn O’Porter is one of my favorite YA authors. Her characters and stories are real and not pithy like some other contemporary novels. O’Porter’s novels generally follow female protagonists and their friendship with other girls. A true coming of age story as seen from a young girl, some what of a rarity in any genre. The Goodreads summary:

COW n. /ka?/
A piece of meat; born to breed; past its sell-by-date; one of the herd.

Women don’t have to fall into a stereotype.

The Cows is a powerful novel about three women. In all the noise of modern life, each needs to find their own voice.

It’s about friendship and being female.
It’s bold and brilliant.
It’s searingly perceptive.
It’s about never following the herd.
And everyone is going to be talking about it.

Buy from Amazon ($15.02), here.

You Don't Have to Say You Love Me: A Memoir

Release Date: June 13, 2017

The author of The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian packs punch with this memoir about his relationship with his mother. The Goodreads summary:

When his mother passed away at the age of 78, Sherman Alexie responded the only way he knew how: he wrote. The result is this stunning memoir. Featuring 78 poems, 78 essays and intimate family photographs, Alexie shares raw, angry, funny, profane, tender memories of a childhood few can imagine–growing up dirt-poor on an Indian reservation, one of four children raised by alcoholic parents. Throughout, a portrait emerges of his mother as a beautiful, mercurial, abusive, intelligent, complicated woman. You Don’t Have To Say You Love Me is a powerful account of a complicated relationship, an unflinching and unforgettable remembrance.

Buy from Amazon( 17.98), here.

Hunger: A Memoir of (My) BodyRelease Date: June 13, 2017

Roxane Gay is quickly becoming one of our most crucial voices. Her witty, raw writings in Bad Feminist is what first introduced me to Gay, and I have been a fan ever since. As someone who has never been the ‘normal’ body size (re I’ve always been a healthy weight or a little more), I look forward to reading this one.

Goodreads summary:

In her phenomenally popular essays and long-running Tumblr blog, Roxane Gay has written with intimacy and sensitivity about food and body, using her own emotional and psychological struggles as a means of exploring our shared anxieties over pleasure, consumption, appearance, and health. As a woman who describes her own body as “wildly undisciplined,” Roxane understands the tension between desire and denial, between self-comfort and self-care. In Hunger, she explores her own past—including the devastating act of violence that acted as a turning point in her young life—and brings readers along on her journey to understand and ultimately save herself.

With the bracing candor, vulnerability, and power that have made her one of the most admired writers of her generation, Roxane explores what it means to learn to take care of yourself: how to feed your hungers for delicious and satisfying food, a smaller and safer body, and a body that can love and be loved—in a time when the bigger you are, the smaller your world becomes.

Buy from Amazon($15.46) , here.

What books are you looking forward to this summer? Let me know in the comments below! Or better yet, have you read any of the above? What did you think?

Fiction, Fiction Reviews, Reviews, Series Reviews, Young Adult books, Young Adult Reveiws

Review: Waistcoats and Weaponry by Gail Carriger

Waistcoats & Weaponry (Finishing School, #3)London. Supernaturals. Petticoats. Bladed Fans. Espionage. That’s all it took for me to be interested in this series, and book Three, Waistcoats & Weaponry does not disappoint.

Sophronia is back at finishing school (a.k.a. Espionage School) and is faced with a whole new set of problems. Add to a young teen girl trying to save the British Empire, annoying boys are vying for her affections. Sophronia doesn’t let this stop her, fluttering eyelashes or no.

Need more depth? As summarized on Goodreads:

Sophronia continues her second year at finishing school in style—with a steel-bladed fan secreted in the folds of her ball gown, of course. Such a fashionable choice of weapon comes in handy when Sophronia, her best friend Dimity, sweet sootie Soap, and the charming Lord Felix Mersey stowaway on a train to return their classmate Sidheag to her werewolf pack in Scotland.

No one suspected what—or who—they would find aboard that suspiciously empty train. Sophronia uncovers a plot that threatens to throw all of London into chaos and she must decide where her loyalties lie, once and for all.

Check out the Finishing School series on Amazon.

More Books in the Series:

Etiquette & Espionage (Finishing School, #1)Curtsies & Conspiracies (Finishing School, #2)Manners & Mutiny (Finishing School, #4)

(Links are affiliate links for Amazon.)

Fiction, Fiction Reviews, Reviews, Series Reviews

Ben Aaronovitch’s Rivers of London series

Rivers of London (Peter Grant, #1)Moon Over Soho (Peter Grant, #2)

****4 Stars out of 5

The Rivers of London series by Ben Aaronovitch is a series I have wanted to read since 2012, when I was studying in London. As you can see from the cover, Diana Gabaldon pitched it as grown-up Harry Potter. I mean, come on. How could I not love this series?

I started reading this series a couple of months ago, and yes, I love it. It is not Harry Potter by any means, but that’s okay. The main character, Peter Grant, is a young police constable, who by happenstance of meeting a ghost, is appointed an apprentice to a magician investigator. There are vampires, and river spirits, ghosts, and of course magic, all this fantasy is mixed in a very believable depiction of the London Metropolitan Police.

This is a light read series, of course. It is intriguing and the main character is very likeable. Peter is a POC, which is refreshing, and the novels do mention that fact in ways other than just character descriptions.

All in all, if you like Urban fantasy, I would recommend this series. So far, I have only read the first two novels, Midnight Riot (Rivers of London-UK name) and Moon over Soho, but I will continue with the series.

Fiction, Fiction Reviews, Reviews, Young Adult books, Young Adult Reveiws

Review: Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

Carry On

“Carry on, Carry on, as if nothing really matters…”-Bohemian Rhapsody, Queendownload3.5 out of 5 Stars

This book was a lot better than I thought. I’m apprehensive to reading things that are basically promo items for other books (cough, Fangirl, coughcough) or continuations of other series. I just don’t like them. I was also kind of confused because it is listed as a Fantasy novel, and I like Rowell for her Romance, but it turns out this is in fact another YA Romance, but because the main character is male, it is listed as fantasy. This is no fault of Rowell, simply the way publishing world works.

Summary from Goodreads:

Simon Snow just wants to relax and savor his last year at the Watford School of Magicks, but no one will let him. His girlfriend broke up with him, his best friend is a pest, and his mentor keeps trying to hide him away in the mountains where maybe he’ll be safe. Simon can’t even enjoy the fact that his roommate and longtime nemesis is missing, because he can’t stop worrying about the evil git. Plus there are ghosts. And vampires. And actual evil things trying to shut Simon down. When you’re the most powerful magician the world has ever known, you never get to relax and savor anything.

Carry On is a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story — but far, far more monsters.

It’s interesting to see an entire magical world built in one book. This book was supposed to the final book in a Middle Grade/YA Fantasy series, a la Harry Potter. This was well done. I just felt like some of the cliches that are often criticized in YA Fantasy were over looked here.

I get that this was supposed to be a companion novel, but it is still a novel. Some of the plot devices used were just…predictable and I feel like if it had been an honest to god attempt at a fantasy novel, it would never had made it past some unpaid literary agent intern’s slush pile.

The characters are what pulled this story through. Rowell is very good at characters and character development, but the relationship in this novel was just too forced. It was like, ‘well everyone knows it is going to happen because of Fangirl, so I don’t have to put forth much effort’.

So, I like it, but I didn’t love it. I saw every plot point coming from miles away, and the romance I love Rowell for was not entirely there. I will continue to read everything she writes though.

Fiction, Fiction Reviews, What I'm reading now..., Young Adult books

What I’m Reading Now…

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I’m currently reading Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke. I’ve read Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea by the same author and while it wasn’t mind blowingly great, it was enjoyable. I expect more from this novel. So far, I’m about half way through and am really into it.

Plus, the cover is gorgeous.

Fiction Reviews, Netgalley/ARCs, Reviews, Young Adult books, Young Adult Reveiws

Review:”Kissing Ted Callahan and Other Guys” by Amy Spalding

*This title was provided free of charge by the publishers through Netgalley in return for an honest review. 
3 of 5 stars ★★★☆☆

Pub. Date: April 7, 2015
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

You want a cute, light read about a girl who’s spunky, awkward, and out for love or something like it and is willing to chronicling it with her guy best friend, then look no further. This book is similar in tone and feel to Louise Rennison’s books (albeit not as funny)and if there’s ever a movie version, our MC Riley could easily be played by Emma Stone. If you’re going to the beach and need a light read or feeling down and need a pick me up, this will meet your criteria. Here’s the summary via Goodreads:

Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist meets Easy A in this hilariously realistic story of sneaking out, making out, and playing in a band.

After catching their bandmates in a compromising position, sixteen-year-old Los Angelenos Riley and Reid become painfully aware of the romance missing from their own lives. And so a pact is formed: they’ll both try to make something happen with their respective crushes and document the experiences in a shared notebook.

While Reid struggles with the moral dilemma of adopting a dog to win over someone’s heart, Riley tries to make progress with Ted Callahan, who she’s been obsessed with forever-His floppy hair! His undeniable intelligence! But suddenly cute guys are popping up everywhere. How did she never notice them before?! With their love lives going from 0 to 60 in the blink of an eye, Riley and Reid realize the results of their pact may be more than they bargained for.

It’s super cute. Stephanie Perkins and Courtney Summers are mentioned in the acknowledgements. This is not a deep book or anything that will make you think. It’s basically “New Girl” in book form. What else do you need? Read this book and feel better about life.

Fiction, Fiction Reviews, Netgalley/ARCs, Reviews, Series Reviews, Updates, Young Adult books, Young Adult Reveiws

Update: What I Read in March…

update2015

March was a slow month for me. I read most of my To-Read list, but not all of it. April will be a better month. In March I read:

Mini Review: “The Last Flight of Poxl West” by Daniel Torday

Review: “Legend” by Marie Lu

Review: “All the Light We Cannot See” by Anthony Doerr

Review: “Afterworlds” by Scott Westerfeld

Review: “Making History” by Stephen Fry

ICYMI: All the above titles are links to reviews.

Review: Denton Little’s Deathdate (Review coming in April)