Monday, March 28, 2011

Latest Reads--and do you have any suggestions for me to read?

Bumped by Megan McCafferty

Twin girls, one lives in a modern society that all people over the age of 18 are sterile so now teen pregnancies and the girls to carry these babies are prized, paid and sought out.  The other lives in a cloistered society where teen girls are married young to produce more children.  They are pledged young by their families and are kept in a subordinate role. 

Interesting controversy.  The author did do a good job of showing the cons of both society.  Did feel like an automatic setup for “book two”.  That often bothers me.  I am a little tired of “this is a series and you are going to love it and read all the books” formula.  Definitely a high school book due to the controversial topics covered. It had pretty good flow except for the issues I have already pointed out.

The Many Faces of George Washington by Carla Kilough McClafferty

Loved this book but I am a science geek at heart.  This book publishes the work done at Mt. Vernon, to give a more accurate picture of our First President.  Through research of both paintings and sculptures to the remaining personal physical artifacts of his teeth the author and photographer have help put  “flesh” on an often wrong picture of George Washington’s appearance.  Really enjoyed the science and care taken in the recreations.  The photographs were awesome.

What are you so Grumpy about? By Tom Lichtenheld

Funny, funny, kids love this book and so did I.  Gives laughter and realism to the reasons kids are grumpy and a way to get out of it.  Illustrations were great and make the story. 

Virals by Kathy Reichs

In this intelligent sci-fi mystery for teens the story builds in a great way.  Our heroine.  Her mother’s recent death has Tori now living with a father she never knew.  Taking place largely off the Carolina coast on an island devoted to research Tori and her friends get involved in saving a dog and solving a mystery that has drastic effects on their future.  I really like how the story developed in a natural progression with out the rush I sometimes feel many young adult novels have.

Finally, if you have found me in the blogosphere please feel free to post comments and let me know about more great books to read. 

Friday, March 18, 2011

Comment on Saint Paddy's Day and other fun seasonal events

It has been very hard this Saint Paddy's Day (aka St. Patrick's Day) to find any fun books to read to the "wee folk".  I have found collections of stories for the older ones but no good ones for, as I have just mentioned, the "wee folk".  It does seem to be a dilemma relegated to "seasonal" literature.  It would be a great place for publishers to focus an attack to print good books with seasonal themes.  Some it would be relatively easy to do by focusing on a folktale around the subject and enlisting the aid of a good illustrator.  Till then I will have to rely on the folktales themselves and a good Iris brogue or whatever other dialect I have in my repertoire.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Cloudette by Tom Lichtenheld--short review

Got this as a galley review print. At first I wasn't impressed with this book but then I read it to a class of kindergarteners.  They loved it.  They loved the pictures.  They loved the story.  It is a simple story of a small cloud that wants to do something big.  It also touches lightly on what clouds do for us.  So go with the kindergarteners opinion.  :)  Read the book!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Human .4

Finished Human .4 by Mike A. Lancaster.  It was another galley print. I think this one is meant to be scary.  Perhaps for preteens it is.  The story had an interesting plot line.  The human race is being upgraded. Kyle Straker and a few others have missed the upgrade.  Told from recorded diaries (recorded on old audio tapes), Kyle tells the story of his and others existence. It moved quickly but I really didn't get pulled into the story.  A lot of holes in the story and places of missed information.  I felt like it had a "hurried up" ending. I gave it a C+ rating in my shelfari review.  It could be a good boy book. Perhaps a 5th or 6th grade audience would love it. I would like to hear from anyone else who read this book and what they thought.  Still working on what to read next.  As always there is a pile by my bed, one in my backpack and several sitting on the old iPad waiting for a verdict. :)  Happy readings.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

What I just read

Just finished reading the galleys of the following:

Enclave by Ann Agguire
Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier
Pearl in the Sand by Tessa Afshar

With Enclave, I hated the cover that was on my paper edition although the hardback edition looks great!  I almost didn't read it just because of the cover.  I was lucky enough to have an audio recording of the first 2 chapters of the book and that got me hooked to read more. Although I did like this book as much as other dystopian literature it is worth the read.  I did not love this book like the "Hunger Game" Series.  Still gave me nightmares--but it doesn't take much to do that. :)

Ruby Red---AWESOME! Really, nice surprise and something new.  Sorta a "Time Traveler's Wife" for teens.  Anxious to see the next installment in English.  A favorite in this genre.

Pearl in the Sand a step out of my normal genre I read.  Although I do read a lot of historical fiction I generally don't pick up Christian fiction.  I will be looking for more by this author.  She has made Biblical characters very real and enjoyable to read.

Still reading:
A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park

I love the way Linda Sue Park writes.  I predict this one has some awards coming its way.  Again not a normal genre I would read but it was so good.  Historical/realistic fiction on Sudan. very timely after the new elections there.  Just from what little I have read, I would recommend it!

That is the latest.  Hope to keep this up.  If you cross my blog about books or ramblings about books please feel free to respond.  Happy reading!