06. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Apocolyptic, Brian, Fiction, How To's, NonFiction · Tags:

Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks, read by Brian, on 06/04/2013

If you are a hardcore zombie fan, this book is for you.  Max Brooks wrote the popular World War Z, where the world had to fight off zombies to survive.  He takes a fiction/nonfiction look on what to do to survive such attack and the other humans still hanging around.  You learn how the living undead move and survive, the best way to fight depending on where you live, what the best weapon is to use and many more things.

zombie

06. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Brian, Fiction, Graphic Novel

Love & Rockets New Stories #5 by Hernandez, Gilbert & Hernandez, Jaime, read by Brian, on 06/05/2013

The graphic novel series, Love & Rockets debuted thirty years ago and the stories are just as fresh today as they were back then. The stories are engaging, thrilling, sexy, fun and usually all at the same time. If you haven’t read any of these stories, highly recommend you do so soon.

love

06. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Classics, Fairy Tales and Folklore, Fiction, Short Stories, Tammy · Tags:

Shen of the Sea: Chinese Stories for Children by Arthur Bowie Chrisman, read by Tammy, on 05/29/2013

This collection of Chinese folktales made for a fun read. You can almost hear the voice of the storyteller telling the stories around a campfire or more appropriately a father or mother telling their children’s these fables and tales at bedtime that their own parent told them. The stories cover a wide range of characters from peasants to princesses and kings. There are some morality tales as well with the man character being someone who is not too bright or who is lazy or stubborn. Some of the tales are similar to the fairytales including some dragons making an appearance.

Winner of the Newbery Award Winner 1926.shen

06. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Classics, Fiction, Historical Fiction, Tammy · Tags: , ,

The Dark Frigate by Charles Boardman Hawes, read by Tammy, on 05/19/2013

This tale of adventure on the high seas is a rousing tale for teens. Set in 17th century England our young hero, orphan Philip Marsham must flee London in fear for his life. His father was a sailor so he decides to head to the sea. He signs on the “Rose of Devon” a dark frigate bound for Newfoundland. The story does take some time to get “underway” and into the action as we follow Philip on his walk to the sea, but he does meet some of his fellow shipmates along the way. Once aboard ship the story picks up. If the reader is unfamiliar with nautical terms he may need to look up some of the words to really be able to picture what is happening on the ship.

Philip soon wins his captain’s regard and is enjoying his new life when the ship is seized by buccaneers. With the bloody battles, murderous pirates and our brave hero this is a story for any reader in search of seafaring adventure.

Newbery Award Winner in the 3rd year of the award’s history in 1924.dark frigate

06. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Classics, Fiction, Historical Fiction, Tammy · Tags:

Young Fu of the Upper Yangtze by Elizabeth Foreman Lewis, read by Tammy, on 05/31/2013

Thirteen year-old Young Fu and his mother must move away from their farm in central China after his father dies and move to the city of Chungking (now spelled Chongqing. Young Fu and his mother have never been to the city before. While he is full of excitement and looking for adventure she is afraid of all the strange customs of the city and the foreigners who live there. Young Fu is apprenticed to Tang, a master coppersmith. The book is set in the 1920s a turbulent time for China it is after the fall of the Imperial government and factions are vying for power.

Chinese traditions are introduced to the reader through the eyes of Young Fu including crooked streets to catch and confuse evil spirits, payment of debt on New Year’s Day, the debate over whether a priest should be called or a doctor for a sick family member. The reader travels with Young Fu as he grows up and goes from apprentice to journeyman, or an experience craftsman. The book is told by stories of events that happen to Young Fu and usually there is some new experience or knowledge that he gains though sometimes it is by making costly mistakes.

Overall an enjoyable look at a troubled time in China’s history and the lessons one needs to learn as they grow from boy to man which won the Newbery Award for children’s literature in 1933. young fu

05. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Fiction, Leslie · Tags:

The Unwanteds by Lisa McMann, read by Leslie, on 05/19/2013

The Unwanteds (Unwanteds, #1)

In a society that purges thirteen-year-olds who are creative, identical twins Aaron and Alex are separated, one to attend University while the other, supposedly Eliminated, finds himself in a wondrous place where youths hone their abilities and learn magic.

Someone touts it as “Hunger Games meets Harry Potter” on the cover, not really, in my opinion.  Yes, it has a magic element, a kindly, older mentor, and several sneaky boys.  Yes, there is a point where children are weeded out of their society and sent to what they think is their death.  However, I didn’t really find it to be a meshing of the two stories.  Another book that I don’t think I want to read the sequel to, it was a fine story, but beyond that, it doesn’t really pique my interest.  Kids may find it very fascinating, though.

Pie

05. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Children's Books, Fiction, Leslie, Mystery · Tags:

Pie by Sarah Weeks, read by Leslie, on 05/17/2013

Pie

After the death of Polly Portman, whose award-winning pies put the town of Ipswitch, Pennsylvania, on the map in the 1950s, her devoted niece Alice and Alice’s friend Charlie investigate who is going to extremes to find Aunt Polly’s secret pie crust recipe. Includes fourteen pie recipes.

A cute little mystery, a good book to get started on the genre if you’re young.  I did enjoy reading it, even if I did have the culprit figured out fairly early!  And I’ve got to admit that I want to try some of those recipes, they looked scrumptious.

05. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Leslie, Teen Books

The Madness Underneath by Maureen Johnson, read by Leslie, on 05/14/2013

The Madness Underneath (Shades of London, #2)

When madness stalks the streets of London, no one is safe…

There’s a creepy new terror haunting modern-day London.
Fresh from defeating a Jack the Ripper killer, Rory must put her new-found hunting skills to the test before all hell breaks loose…

But enemies are not always who you expect them to be and crazy times call for crazy solutions. A thrilling teen mystery.

The second in the Shades of London series, I found I enjoyed this one as much as the first.  I wasn’t happy that they killed off a major character, just as Rory was finding him, but I’m sure the author has some sort of ghost love storyline in mind for the future.  A good read, even if you aren’t a teen.

05. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Apocolyptic, Fiction, Leslie, Teen Books · Tags:

Legend by Marie Lu, read by Leslie, on 05/07/2013

Legend (Legend, #1)

In a dark future, when North America has split into two warring nations, fifteen-year-olds Day, a famous criminal, and prodigy June, the brilliant soldier hired to capture him, discover that they have a common enemy.

If you liked Hunger Games, you may enjoy this book.  What interests me is finding out what created the split in the nation, which is not really addressed in this book, hopefully in a future book.  I think the mystery of who, what and why are done very well and just enough is answered to create the need to read more.

05. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Leslie, Teen Books · Tags:

Michael Vey The Prisoner of Cell 25 by Richard Paul Evans, read by Leslie, on 05/04/2013

The Prisoner of Cell 25 (Michael Vey, #1)

To everyone at Meridian High School, fourteen-year-old Michael Vey is nothing special, just the kid who has Tourette’s syndrome. But in truth, Michael is extremely special–he has electric powers. Michael thinks he is unique until he discovers that a cheerleader named Taylor has the same mysterious powers. With the help of Michael’s friend, Ostin, the three of them set out to discover how Michael and Taylor ended up with their abilities, and their investigation soon brings them to the attention of a powerful group who wants to control the electric teens–and through them, the world.

Another teen angst but this time with super powers book.  I enjoyed it but don’t know that I will read any of the sequels.  Isn’t this what we all would wish for, if we are the student who is bullied every day at school, to have a secret super power?  In this case, a few teens that have acquired electrical powers, of different scope, who can either take over the world or become it’s savior.  Teens will enjoy the fantasy involved but as I said, I doubt I’ll read the sequel.

05. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: History, Kim · Tags:

Divided Memory: The Nazi Past in the Two Germanys by Jeffrey Herf, read by Kim, on 06/05/2013

There is a lot of dry information in this book, but  if you want to get a feel for how West and East Germany handled the difficulties that presented themselves in the decades after surrendering in WWII, especially how they dealt with the memory of the Holocaust and their relationship with the Jewish faction of the population, it is very interesting and very meaningful especially to the amateur Holocaust scholar.

05. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Jane, Thriller/Suspense

Don't Scream by Wendy Corsi Straub, read by Jane, on 05/09/2013

The “New York Times” bestselling author of “She Loves Me Not” delivers her most terrifying thriller yet–a chilling tale of four women who share a sinful secret that haunts them with deadly vengeance.

05. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Historical Fiction, Pamela, Thriller/Suspense

Best Kept Secret by Jeffrey Archer, read by Pamela, on 05/28/2013

Jeffrey Archer continues his beloved Clifton Chronicle series as Harry and Emma finally begin building a happy life – but a dangerous family enemy is about to resurface.

Best Kept Secret opens a moment after the end of The Sins of the Father, with the resolution of the trial and the triumphant marriage of Harry Clifton and Elizabeth Barrington, finally uniting their family. Harry, now a bestselling novelist, Emma, their son Sebastian, and orphaned Jessica make a new life for themselves, but all is not as happy and secure as it could be. Emma’s brother, Giles, is engaged to a woman who may be more interested in Barrington’s fortune and title than in a long and happy marriage. And Sebastian, though he is bright, isn’t quite the hard worker that his father was at school, and finds a hard time resisting the temptations that his somewhat unsavory friends provide.

It all comes to a head when a new villain is uncovered, a face from the past with grudges against both Harry and Giles – Fisher, who tortured Harry at school and later took credit for Giles’ heroics during the war. Fisher teams up with Giles’ now ex-wife to wreak havoc on Giles’ latest election as well as meddle with affairs inside Barringtons, while Harry and Emma must deal with a new scheme that Sebastian has unwittingly fallen into with a supposed friend. The drama continues for Harry Clifton and his family, bringing this mesmerizing saga into the 1960s.

04. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Brian, Fantasy, Fiction, Horror · Tags:

Fall of Night by Rachel Caine, read by Brian, on 06/04/2013

Fall of Night is the fourteenth book in the Morganville Vampire series.  This is the first book that takes place out of Morganville.  Why? Morganville is ruled by vampires and no one leaves Morganville without permission from the vamps.  Claire the main character of the story is has permission to leave and attend college at MIT.  Claire will be working with a professor and former resident of Morganville to a machine that can slow down a vampires attack.  Most of the main characters are back for a thrill ride that doesn’t stop until the last page.

caine

04. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Angie, Children's Books, Fiction, Graphic Novel · Tags: , , ,

Scary Godmother by Jill Thompson, read by Angie, on 06/03/2013

Scary Godmother is a wonderful graphic novel all about Halloween. In the first story Hannah meets her Scary Godmother on her very first Halloween outing. She learns that monsters aren’t that scary and can be your friends and she develops a deep appreciation and love for Halloween and everything that goes along with it. I adored the illustrations of this book. I thought they definitely enhanced the text and were really the story of the book. Scary Godmother is a fantastic character. I loved the chapter where she got the boo flu and Hannah had to get everything ready for Halloween. Each chapter is its own story but they all go together very well. My only quibble, and it is a minor one, is that the chapters represent five Halloweens but Hannah doesn’t really appear to age at all. Other than that I think the stories are delightful.

04. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Jessica, Romance

The Forever Of Ella and Micha by Jessica Sorensen, read by Jessica, on 06/03/2013

Ella is back at school, trying to focus on her future and forget the darkness of her past. Still, her ongoing family drama is making it harder and harder to get through the days. All she really wants is Micha, but no way will she let her problems get in the way of his dreams.

Micha is busy touring the country with his band, seemingly getting everything he’s ever wanted. But deep down he knows something is missing. Being away from Ella is harder than he expected. And while he longs to have her with him, he won’t ask her to leave college just to be at his side.

When Ella and Micha are together, anything seems possible . . . but lately those shared moments aren’t so easy to find. When a new tragedy shakes their already fragile world, one of them will make a dramatic choice that could break them apart forever .

03. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Brian, Fiction, Teen Books

Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia, read by Brian, on 06/03/2013

Beautiful Creatures is an award winning teen book that has been made into a major motion picture. Lena Duchannes moves to the small town of Gatlin to live her uncle.  Lena is special, she has powers and she is trying hard to control her powers.  You see, Lena is 15 and when she becomes 16 she will be “claimed” for either the side of good or the side of bad.  Ethan Wate is a6304335 lifer in Gatlin and wants to do nothing else but to move far far way from his home town.  Ethan has dreams every night of girl and when he meets Lena he realizes she is that girl.  This is a love story which has good characters, fantasy and a cool library.

 

03. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Brian, Fantasy, Fiction, Graphic Novel

House of Mystery Vol 7 Conception by Matthew Sturges, read by Brian, on 06/02/2013

House of Mystery: Conception, is vol 7 of an 8 part series.  I have not read any of the other graphic novels in the series, so the story was a little confusing. The series centers around a house and it’s different interior styles which throws the inhabitants into mysteries.  Along with a main story and several side stories.

house

03. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Apocolyptic, Brian, Fantasy, Fiction, Food, Horror · Tags:

Apocaylpse Cow by Michael Logan, read by Brian, on 06/01/2013

Do you want to stop eating meat?  Read Apocalypse Cow and your meat eating days will be in the past.  The setting starts out at a slaughter house outside of Great Britain.  A cow dies and then comes back to life to attack the owner of the establishment.  Without warning all the cows start attacking the humans.  A special group of men are sent  to take care of the problem.  The only issue, a cow gets away starting and an epidemic of animals turning into zombies begins.  This book could have been called, “Revenge of the Animals”, as the human population [Great Britain area] starts to head towards extinction.

cow

03. June 2013 · Comments Off · Categories: Fiction, Madeline, Mystery

Breaking Silence by Linda Castillo, read by Madeline, on 05/30/2013

When Solly and Rachel Slabaugh, along with Solly’s brother Abel, are found dead in a hog pit, Chief of Police Kate Burkholder investigates the gruesome scene. Once again teaming up with Agent John Tomasetti, Kate reveals that the death may not have been accidental, but one of the most horrific hate crimes ever to befall the Amish community of Painter’s Creek.