Tuesday, July 30, 2013

The Song of the Quarkbeast by Jasper Fforde

This companion to The Last Dragonslayer by Jasper Fforde did not disappoint. As you may remember my favorite part about the first book was the marvelous, magnificent, completely magical quarkbeast.

In The Song of the Quarkbeast, Jennifer Strange is back managing Kazaam! the group of wizards for hire. This was a fanciful and entertain addition and I can't wait for more. Kazaam! has been challenged by the competing wizard firm to see who can complete repairing a bridge first. All of the favorite characters reprise their rolls, including the villanous King Snood. I love the accolades associated with each character--it really add something to the story. I also loved the larger roll of the Transient Moose.

In particular, this book spent quite a bit of time discussing the mating rituals, existence of and much more regarding magical creatures...especially the quarkbeast. I still want pictures!

Friday, July 19, 2013

The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider

I was hooked on this story from the end of the first chapter. Ezra had it all: popularity, girlfriend, student government and scholarship winning athletic skills. That is until he was the victim of a hit and run with an injured knee and wrist and no longer any hope of playing sports.

Feeling like he no longer belonged with his old friends (or his cheating girlfriend) and trying to hide the extent of his injuries, Ezra becomes a bit of a loner. Then the new girl, Cassidy, helps him reconnect with his childhood friend Toby. They join the debate team and learn that "those who rule the school" don't know everything or have a monopoly on fun.

This is a story of growing up long after you thought you already had--of finding yourself and becoming that person above all else. It is also a story of romance, heartbreak and friendship. Five stars and I can't wait to get it for my library.

ARC received from publisher at BEA.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Two Boys Kissing by David Levithan

Weaving together the story of five teenage boys--each experiencing, or not experiencing, love in their own ways, Two Boys Kissing is a beautiful and poetic work well worth the read.

I believe Goodreads describes it best:

"New York Times bestselling author David Levithan tells the based-on-true-events story of Harry and Craig, two 17-year-olds who are about to take part in a 32-hour marathon of kissing to set a new Guinness World Record—all of which is narrated by a Greek Chorus of the generation of gay men lost to AIDS."

And it was this description of the Greek Chorus that really helped me to understand the flow and narration of the book. I was completely engrossed and routing for all of the characters. I wish more books were like this one and I suspect it will be a serious contender for YALSA's Stonewall Book Award. 

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Gorgeous by Paul Rudnick

I love the tagline for this book: "Inner beauty wants out."

When Becky's mom passes away, she calls a mysterious number she finds among her mothers belongings. A man named Tom Kelly (the most famous designer of, well, everything) answers the phone and flies Becky to New York. There she learns of her mother's glamorous past and is made the offer of a lifetime. Tom Kelly will use three dresses to transform her into the "most beautiful woman in the world."

Skeptical but with nothing to lose, Becky goes along with the plan and quickly becomes gorgeous, famous and has the world at her doorstep.

Gorgeous was a page turner. I couldn't put it down and I am sure I won't be the only one. I am not going to say this book was perfect and the language certainly isn't for young readers, but this book will definitely be very very popular.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Doon by Carey Corp

I love musicals, so when I heard there was a book based on Brigadoon, I had to read it. For those of you who don't know, Brigadoon is fantasy village that exists in our world for only one day every hundred years before disappearing again into the mist.

Doon by Carey Corp and Lorie Langdon brings this story into the 21 century. Veronica and Mackenna are spending the summer after senior year in Scottland, right next to the Brig' o Doon (Doon Bridge).

Prior to this trip, Veronica had been seeing a Scottish hottie--one that no one else could see. She is sure this mystery man exists in the mythical world all the locals are talking about, making her want to try and cross the Brig' o Doon more than anything. Which of course she and Mackenna do.

I enjoyed this book, but I found it a little slow and predictable. Laced with a plethora of musical references, this book will hit its target audience of theater goers. And for other fantasy lovers who can gloss over these references, I am sure they will delight in this story as well.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

The Rules for Disappearing

How many of you are automatically curious when you hear the words Witness Protection Program. I know I am. And I certainly can't imagine giving up all of my friends, my extended family, my awesome job, my home and my name. But that is what people in the witness protection program do. And what about your pets? That is what I am really curious about. Do you have to leave them behind, or do they get relocated with you? I can't imagine that they do.

The Rules for Disappearing by Ashley Elston follows the story of one girl who is now in her sixth placement--and yes, she has had 6 identities too. Her whole family has been moving, because of some unknown event her father witnessed. And it has been hard for all of them. Her mother can't stop drinking, her sister barely talks, and her father, once an accountant with a prestigious company now works in a factory.

Megan (her most recent name) has decided it is easier for her not to make any friends, to be as distant as possible from everyone in her new life. Only Ethan Landry won't let that happen.

Suspenseful,enticing and a bit romantic--this book is sure to capture reader's attentions. Highly recommended. 

Also, there is going to be a book 2.