31. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: NonFiction, Tammy · Tags: , ,

The Shakespeare Thefts: In Search of the First Folios by Eric Rasmussen, 212 pages, read by Tammy, on 10/30/2012

The author relates his life long search for the First Folios of Shakespeare. The first collection of Shakespeare’s plays published after his death. He shares the history of different copies of the Folio and in some cases can only share the search and known characteristics of still missing copies.

31. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Memoirs, Tracy

One for the Books by Joe Queenan, 244 pages, read by Tracy, on 10/31/2012

People read books for a lot of different reasons. Joe Queenan feels most people do it to escape from reality. In this book he reveals to the reader why books are so important to him and why he usually doesn’t read books that people give him. Also that he is usually in the middle of reading over 20 books that he may not finish in several years. I may start 2 or 3 and put them down for a day or two but if I don’t like it I won’t finish it. Joe didn’t get a drivers license til his 50’s mostly because he likes to read in a bus, train, or plane. I can relate to a lot of his musings because reading is like breathing to me. You just have to do it!

30. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Thriller/Suspense, Tracy

Persuader by Lee Child, 465 pages, read by Tracy, on 10/30/2012

I started reading these Reacher books out of curiosity and found that I’m really enjoying them. This one is no exception, plenty of action and an exciting ending. A bad guy from the past passes Reacher on the street but doesn’t recognize him. Jack does and traces him only to find the Feds are after him also. He gladly helps take him down. Lee Child seems to have a thing about weapons. You always learn a lot about them and how much damage they can do. Fortunately his character uses them to get rid of bad guys.

29. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Angie, Apocalyptic, Fiction, Teen Books

Dead and Gone by Jonathan Maberry, 84 pages, read by Angie, on 10/29/2012

Dead and Gone is a little ebook novella set between Dust and Decay and Flesh and Blood. In it we meet Riot aka Sister Margaret. She is running away from the Church of Night zealots who want to return her to their life. Along the way she fights zombies and tries not to starve in the desert. Then she meets Jolt and Gummi Bear. They are survivors with a different mentality…they don’t kill. They see the world and survival as a game to be played and enjoyed.

It was nice to meet new characters in the Rot & Ruin of the world. Riot was interesting in a very damaged sort of way. Not sure what I think of Jolt and Gummi…they are interesting and fun characters but their philosophy just seems strange in the world they are living in. I am sure we will find out more about the Church of Night as they cause trouble for Benny and the gang (which I am sure they will). Can’t wait to read the next installment.

29. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Angie, Fantasy, Fiction, Paranormal

Hounded by Kevin Hearne, 289 pages, read by Angie, on 10/28/2012

Atticus is the last Druid; he might look 21 but he is actually 2100 years old. He is living in Arizona and running an occult book store. He is surrounded by colorful characters like his lawyers, a team of werewolves and a vampire; and his neighbor Mrs. MacDonagh who likes whiskey and hates the Bris; and his dog Oberon, obsessed with French poodles and able to talk to Atticus. Atticus’s world isn’t all that safe at the moment though. He stole a sword from a god long ago and that god wants it back. Then there is the coven of witches who may or may not be working against him.

I really enjoy these kinds of books. They are light reads but really keep your attention. Atticus is a fun character who has not let his 21 centuries bring him down. He fits in with modern life and has a wicked sense of humor. I really enjoyed the fact that as a Druid his magic comes from the Earth — it is not really flashy or anything but a quieter magic that can still do some damage. And I loved getting all the info on the Celtic gods. There were lots of them running around in this book and while I might not be able to pronounce all the Irish words I liked that it was a different pantheon from most books. But really two characters stole the show in this book. Mrs. MacDonagh was a hoot! I loved every scene she was in and the fact that she drank whiskey before church and didn’t blink when Atticus killed someone in front of her. She is a tough old broad and I loved her. But the real star of this book was the Irish wolfhound Oberon. You could tell that he was truly Atticus’s best friend and their relationship and interactions was great. I loved that he wanted to be Genghis Khan and had an obsession with French poodles. I also loved his commentary on the other characters in the book.

This is a great start to a series and I will definitely check out the others.

29. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Angie, Children's Books, Fantasy, Fiction

The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan, 608 pages, read by Angie, on 10/28/2012

Mark of Athena picks up right where Son of Neptune left off. Our group from Camp Halfblood lands in New Rome and scares the pants off them. But a group of seven must go on the quest to Old Rome to close the Doors of the Dead. Percy and Annabeth are finally reunited and they join Piper, Jason, Leo, Hazel and Frank on their quest. Of course like all quests this one does not start well and keeps going down hill. The group has to battle the Romans, sea monsters and Hercules not to mention those that have kidnapped Nico and are working for Gaea. The group has to close the Doors of Death but Annabeth has her own mission. She must follow the Mark of Athena and find the statue stolen from the Parthenon.

This was an action packed episode in the Heroes of Olympus story. I love that our heroes are now united in the battle (somewhat) and working together for the good of them all. This story is told from the perspective of four of our heroes (Percy, Annabeth, Hazel and Leo); together they offer a well-rounded perspective of the tale. This was an awesome adventure and I can’t wait for the next one.

29. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Angie, Children's Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fiction · Tags:

11 Birthdays by Wendy Mass, 267 pages, read by Angie, on 10/27/2012

Amanda and Leo are born on the same day and they always celebrate their birthdays together. They are best friends until their 10th birthday when Leo says some hurtful things about Amanda. They don’t speak for an entire year. Then comes their 11 birthdays; their first birthday apart. Suddenly they are reliving that day over and over again. They have to figure out why and how to fix it.

I really enjoyed this book. The characters are well developed and great. I think Wendy Mass really knows 11 year olds because these guys seem pretty accurate to me. I listened to the audiobook and the narrator was great. I really enjoyed how Amanda changed the day each time she relived it and the consequences of doing so.

29. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Angie, Fantasy, Fiction, Teen Books

The Crown of Embers by Rae Carson, 410 pages, read by Angie, on 10/27/2012

Oh how I love this series! Elisa is queen but is being pushed from every angle. Her advisers are working against her it seems and she is not as strong as she should be. Her only strength comes from Hector, her royal guard, and her maids Xemina and Mara. She must travel to the south to find the source of magic in her world. But it is a dangerous journey and they are perused along the way. But Elisa believes that finding the source of the magic will help her connect with her godstone and rule like she is supposed to.

I love all the political intrigue and court politics that Carson brings into these books. She expertly weaves it into the plot and the adventure. I love the relationship that develops between Elisa and Hector. It is sweet and heart-wrenching and makes you cheer for them. I loved the ending as well…not because of what happened but because of Elisa’s reaction to it. She is finally the kind of queen she needs to be and the kind of queen who will save her land. Can’t wait for the next book.

29. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Nikki, Science Fiction, Teen Books

Insurgent by Veronica Roth, 592 pages, read by Nikki, on 10/28/2012

The sequel to Divergent, Insurgent continues right where Divergent left off. I enjoyed Insurgent more mostly because it was a lot more suspenseful! I felt on edge the entire time I was reading it. The only thing I did not enjoy about this book was some of Tris’s fears. Mostly fears that she obtained while in the Divergent book. I wished so badly that she would just overcome those like she was doing with everything else. It was difficult for me to deal with somebody that was smart and fearless and selfless. But I think that’s what kept me on edge the whole time. Not knowing what she was going to decide to do next.

29. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Nikki, Science Fiction, Teen Books

Free Four by Veronica Roth, 16 pages, read by Nikki, on 10/20/2012

This short book retells chapter 13 from Divergent in Tobias’s perspective. It’s always nice to read some of these books in the mans perspective but they are always to short to be satisfying. Sigh…

29. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Nikki, Science Fiction, Teen Books

Divergent by Veronica Roth, 576 pages, read by Nikki, on 10/19/2012

This book is much to complicated to summarize for me. So I’m going to give you a short summary from our catalog: In a future Chicago, sixteen-year-old Beatrice Prior must choose among five predetermined factions to define her identity for the rest of her life, a decision made more difficult when she discovers that she is an anomaly who does not fit into any one group, and that the society she lives in is not perfect after all.

This book is a lot like the Hunger Games. Which is why I loved it. Suspense, plus a little gore, plus romance. It was a perfect combination. Although I would have like a little more romance, it was still satisfying. Although some parts of this book were difficult for me to visualize in my head it was exciting all the way through anyway.

29. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Andrea, Contemporary Fiction, Romance, Teen Books

Dash & Lily's Book of Dares by Rachel Cohn & David Levithan, 260 pages, read by Andrea, on 10/28/2012

“I’ve left some clues for you.
If you want them, turn the page.
If you don’t, put the book back on the shelf, please.”

Dash finds a red Moleskin notebook amongst the bookshelves in his favorite bookstore with that on the first page. Deciding to continue, he is led on a mini series of dares within the bookstore and eventually around all of New York City. Lily (the original owner of the notebook) and Dash begin a humorous tradeoff within the pages of the red Moleskin. From quirky dares to shared dreams, they begin a sort of romantic relationship without even having met one another. However, one question remains: will they be able to connect face-to-face? This was written in the style of Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, the last book I read by the duo. However, I thought this one flowed better and worked better as a story because, like the book (Dash’s section was written by Levithan and Lily’s section was written by Cohn) the notebook was was passed back and forth as well. Neither one knew what the other was doing – the book only explained why Lily wrote what she did and Dash’s response to her entry and vice versa. In Nick and Norah, the book would repeat itself by explaining the same situation but in the eyes of Nick and in the eyes of Norah. Storyline was pretty much the same but it was more exciting than Nick and Norah’s story. I think this book should have been turned into a movie before Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist.

26. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Literary Fiction, Tracy

The Road to Grace by Richard Paul Evans, 233 pages, read by Tracy, on 10/24/2012

This is the third book in The Walk series. Alan Christoffersen has lost everything important in his life. His wife dies and when his business goes under he loses all his possessions. In the first book he decides to walk from Seattle to Key West Florida. I enjoyed most of the first two books because of the places he walks through and the people he meets along the way. In this book he makes it to St. Louis. Unfortunately Alan is starting to experience physical problems. He suffers from dizziness and passes out several times by the side of the road. The first time a driver stops and gives him a ride to the hospital. They run tests and the man offers to let him recover at his home. When he feels better he continues and stops in Hannibal Missouri to do some touring. I enjoyed this part since it’s a place I want to see someday. When he gets dizzy again he wakes up in another hospital with some bad news. The books are well written and fun at times but I don’t think I will continue since the ending to this one is sad.

25. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Angie, Children's Books, Contemporary Fiction, Fiction

In Front of God and Everybody by K.D. McCrite, 298 pages, read by Angie, on 10/23/2012

April Grace is a country girl from the Ozarks and proud of it. She lets her new neighbors know what she thinks of them from the beginning even if she does get in trouble for it. The St. Jameses are from California and snooty; they have bought a run down place down the road from April Grace’s family. The place is in such bad shape that April’s parents invite Isabel and Ian to move in with them until it is habitable. Cultures clash between the St. Jameses and the Reillys and hilarity ensues. But through it all the Reillys (at least mom and dad) handle the situation with grace and kindness; they are an example to their daughters and their neighbors. The St. Jameses are not the only new additions to the neighborhood. Grandma has a new beau; Jeffrey Rance is a hard-of-hearing Texan who looks to sweep Grandma off her feet and clear out her pocketbook. It is up to April to find the evidence to prove her dislike of Mr. Rance right.

Being from the Ozarks, I enjoy books that show good honest country people and don’t make fun of them for being hicks or hillbillies. In this book it is the citified St. Jameses who come off looking bad and the Reillys with their simpler ways and good living who shine. April Grace is funny and sarcastic and honest and really enjoyable to read. I loved how involved her parents were in their children’s lives and what good examples they were for April and Myra. They are definitely part of the lead by example school of parenting. This is a great book with a great lesson on treating others with kindness.

25. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Cats, Fiction, Tammy · Tags:

The Unadulterated Cat by Terry Pratchett, 96 pages, read by Tammy, on 10/24/2012

Author of the Discworld series Terry Pratchett writes about cats and how to tell if your pet or neighborhood cat is a “real” cat. He humorously writes a history of cats, tips on how to relate to cats and why a “real” cat is the best kind of cat to have a round. With humorous illustrations by Gray Jolliff.

September is a twelve-year-old girl who lives in Omaha, NE. Her life was full of ordinary things until her father was shipped overseas to fight the war and her mother goes to work in a factory. Everything for September changes one day when the Green Wind blows through next to her kitchen window and invites her to take a ride to Fairyland with him on his flying leopard. It is at that moment the adventure begins. From a Marid named Saturday to an evil Marquess, September meets several memorable (and oftentimes loveable) characters throughout Fairyland during her journey to retrieve a special sword for the Marquess. A lovely tale full of wit and whimsy, The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making was a delight to read all the way to the last page. It had just enough at the end for me not to get discouraged about the wait for the next one (sadly I’m number 2 on the waiting list) but left enough of a cliffhanger that I’m curious about September’s next journey.

25. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Tammy · Tags:

World of Poo by Terry Pratchett, 113 pages, read by Tammy, on 10/23/2012

A bedtime story of a character in Pratchett’s Discworld series becomes a real book that you can pretend you are reading along with Captain Vimes as he reads it to young Sam. I’ll leave it to your better judgment if you want to read it to your kids or not. They might decide that they want a collection like the main character in the story.

From the Discworld book, Snuff, “A charming tale for people of all ages (but especially for young Sam Vimes) from the pen of Miss Felicity Beedle, Discworld’s premier children’s author.

‘Vimes’ prompt arrival got a nod of approval from Sybil, who gingerly handed him a new book to read to Young Sam. Vimes looked at the cover. The title was The World of Poo. When his wife was out of eyeshot he carefully leafed through it. Well, okay, you had to accept that the world had moved on and these days fairy stories were probably not going to be about twinkly little things with wings. As he turned page after page, it dawned on him that whoever had written this book, they certainly knew what would make kids like Young Sam laugh until they were nearly sick. The bit about sailing down the river almost made him smile. But interspersed with the scatology was actually quite interesting stuff about septic tanks and dunnakin divers and gongfermors and how dog muck helped make the very best leather, and other things that you never thought you would need to know, but once heard somehow lodged in your mind.”

24. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Science Fiction, Tammy · Tags: ,

So You Created a Wormhole: The Time Traveler's Guide to Time Travel by Phil Hornshaw and Nick Hurwitch, 326 pages, read by Tammy, on 10/23/2012

A quirky guide to time travel including how to build your own time machine, skills you need for different time periods like dragon fighting and knowing the symptoms of the black plague and what to do to avoid time paradoxes.

References several science fiction movie characters, tv shows and books related to time travel in any way. Speaks very reverently of Dr. Emmett Brown and his time traveling Delorian. Did I mention this is found in the humor section of non-fiction at the library?


23. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Andrea, Dystopia, Fiction, Teen Books

Insurgent (Divergent #2) by Veronica Roth, 525 pages, read by Andrea, on 10/19/2012

Tris Prior is back and life is just as bad as it was in the last book for her. Her life as a new Dauntless initiate has been turned upside down from the battle between the seemingly innocent Abnegation and the rogue Erudite/Dauntless army led by the evil Jeanine (leader of the Erudites). Her parents and good friend are dead and it seems Tobias is barely speaking to her. From the second book, it is clear that the Abnegation used to have something secret that the Erudite didn’t want any faction to know. Abnegation, being the selfless types they are, believed it was the people’s right within each faction to know what was being kept secret for so long. Whatever the secret is has Erudite all bothered and willing to kill innocent people just to make sure it is destroyed. Sadly, it ended with another cliffhanger and has left me wanting more information about why the four factions were started in the first place and how important the Divergent, which is what Tris is, are to all four factions and possibly all of humanity. Here’s to waiting for Fall 2013.

22. October 2012 · Comments Off · Categories: Janet, Mystery

Plum Island by Nelson DeMille, 511 pages, read by Janet, on 10/21/2012

Wounded dectives are not always allowed to sit around comfortably and recouperate.  John Corey was pulled into a murder-treasure theft situation by knowing the right people – those who were murdered.  Luckily some of his friends taught him about manuvering a boat in Long Island Sound and about the animal disease research site at Plum Island (before they were killed because of their knowledge).  In this story one learns a lot about the way a dective’s mind works, helping to sort out facts from feeliings and put them in a logical order that points the direction of the crime.  it is also very interesting to learn about things that may have happened to Captain Kidd’s treasure.