Six-year-old Annie’s world is shattered when she is forced to carry a horrible secret: Under the pretense of reading to her, an older boy molests her, threatening her if she ever tells. Only when her mother pries out the secret is Annie released from her horror and isolation. Slowly she begins to heal, and before the summer is over, she even learns to swim.
This year, as in other years, Lily has planned a spectacular summer in Rockaway, in her family’s cozy house on stilts over the Atlantic Ocean. But by the summer of 1944, World War II has changed almost everyone’s life. Lily’s best friend, Margaret, and her family have moved to a wartime factory town, and worse, much worse, Lily’s father is on his way overseas to the war.
There’s no one else Lily’s age in Rockaway until Albert comes, a refugee from Hungary, a boy with a secret sewn into his coat. Albert has lost most of his family in the war; he’s been through things Lily can’t imagine. But when they join together to rescue and care for a kitten, they begin a special friendship. For Lily and Albert have their own secrets to share: they both have told lies, and Lily has told a lie that may cost Albert his life.
Just before summer begins, 13-year-old Ali finds an odd photograph in the attic. She knows the two children in it are her mother, Claire, and her aunt Dulcie. But who’s the third person, the one who’s been torn out of the picture?
Ali figures she’ll find out while she’s vacationing in Maine with Dulcie and her four-year-old daughter, Emma, in the house where Ali’s mother’s family used to spend summers. All hopes for relaxation are quashed shortly after their arrival, though, when the girls meet Sissy, a kid who’s mean and spiteful and a bad influence on Emma.
Strangest of all, Sissy keeps talking about a girl named Teresa who drowned under mysterious circumstances back when Claire and Dulcie were kids, and whose body was never found. At first Ali thinks Sissy’s just trying to scare her with a ghost story, but soon she discovers the real reason why Sissy is so angry. . . . Mary Downing Hahn is at her chilling best in this new supernatural tale that’s certain to send shivers down her readers’ spines.
Lost in a River of Grass is in the tradition of survival stories like Hatchet or On My Side of the Mountain, where the young protagonist finds herself as she struggles to survive in an unforgiving wilderness. In this case, the setting is the Everglades, and Sarah, the 13-year-old narrator, sneaks away from an overnight school field trip for what was supposed to be a quick airboat ride with Andy, a boy who lives in the preserve. Naturally, disaster strikes and they’re forced to walk out of the Everglades (they’ve got a knife, a small amount of Gatorade and some suspicious Spam). The author also skillfully layers in a story about overcoming prejudice. Sarah is black and Andy is the son of a Confederate-flag waving self-described redneck.
He was busy reading the drugstore bulletin board when Madigan first saw him. He sure was good looking! His hair was dark and he had a full beard with a mustache that curled up on the ends and hid his mouth, just as his silver sunglasses hid his eyes. Then he walked right up to the soda fountain where Madigan and her friend Angie were sipping cherry Cokes, and asked for directions to Madigan’s house! Now the handsome “mystery man” is renting a room in her very own home — and Madigan is about to take some dangerous risks to find who he is.
Wednesdays in the Tower picks up after the events of Tuesdays at the Castle. Celie finds an egg in a new tower of the castle, which when it hatches turns out to be a griffin. Rufus, the griffin, imprints on Celie and the Castle obviously only wants Celie to take care of it. While Celie is trying to raise a griffin and find out everything she can about the history of griffins in Castle Glower, the Castle is busy making changes. Instead of just changing on Tuesdays and because of the needs of the inhabitants, the Castle starts bringing in more and more new rooms. A prickly wizard is also poking around the Castle and seems to know more than what he should.
I love this series, but if there is one thing I can’t stand it is a cliffhanger. And this book ends on a doozy! I literally exclaimed (insert appropriate words here!) out loud when I realized I had reached the end of the book and there was no resolution. You have a love a castle that has a mind of its own and is magical. I really enjoyed the fact that we learn more about the Castle’s history and what brought it to Sleyne. I thoroughly enjoy this series and would recommend it to anyone.
I received a copy of this book from Netgalley.com.
For fans of Fifty Shades of Grey and Bared to You comes the second novel in the erotic, fast-paced trilogy that started with Release Me. This sexy, emotionally charged romance continues the story of Damien Stark, the powerful multimillionaire who’s never had to take “no” for an answer, and Nikki Fairchild, the Southern belle who only says “yes” on her own terms.
For Damien, our obsession is a game. For me, it is fiercely, blindingly, real.
Damien Stark’s need is palpable—his need for pleasure, his need for control, his need for me. Beautiful and brilliant yet tortured at his core, he is in every way my match.
I have agreed to be his alone, and now I want him to be fully mine. I want us to possess each other beyond the sweetest edge of our ecstasy, into the deepest desires of our souls. To let the fire that burns between us consume us both.
But there are dark places within Damien that not even our wildest passion can touch. I yearn to know his secrets, yearn for him to surrender to me as I have surrendered to him. But our troubled pasts will either bind us close . . . or shatter us completely.
This is a very interesting diary by a thirteen year old girl (Catherine Hall), living on a farm in New Hampshire during the 1830′s. Her mother died of fever so she is taking care of her younger sister, Mary Martha, and her father, Charles. She goes to the little one-room school in the winter and has one friend, Cassie, who doesn’t live too far away to visit. There is an uprising of black slaves in the south, so when she lost her school book one day and it had a message in it when returned a few days later, she guessed who had taken it. Being winter, the message asked for food and something to keep the person warm. She took one of her mother’s old quilts, wrapped it around some food, and left it in the woods so her dad wouldn’t see it. It did dissapear. Her father remarried and it took awhile to get used to her new mother and brother, but all worked out well. The difference in life style and communities then, compared to now is quite unique.
This is a delightful story of a boy who escaped the killer who murdered his parents when he was just a toddler. He managed to crawl up the hill from his parents’ home to a graveyard. The spirits there felt sorry for him and took him in, sheltering him from the killer, who was convinced to leave and forget his reasons for being there. One couple took over as his parents, providing a snug home for him in the forsaken funeral chapel and a half-way person brought him food and clothing and watched over him when he was big enough to leave the graveyard. Several of the spirits (who appeared real to Bod) taught him math, reading, and understand others. Not knowing his name, they named him Nobody and called him “Bod”. He also learned how to fade into invisibility, go through walls, and see in the dark. Eventually he began to mature and the killer returned for him. By this time Bod was very aware of how to use his powers. I had no ideas before this story how helpful the graveyard souls could be!
Benson is excited to be escaping foster care and joining the Maxfield Academy. But when he gets there his excitement quickly disappears. He is dropped off at the doors after traveling through two fences to get to the school. Immediately he is warned not to trust some of the students and he finds out why when he has his orientation. Turns out there are no teachers, groundkeepers, cafeteria workers, administrators or really any adults at the school. It is run by three gangs, who joined together because of some serious violence in the past. The Society runs the admin, medical and security portion of the school; Havoc takes care of food service and grounds; Variant are the janitors. Of course Benson joins the Variant group. He is determined to escape this strange school even if everyone else seems content to follow the rules and keep their heads down. Because of course if you break the rules you get detention which apparently means death. Benson keeps pushing and one night he finds out one of the schools big secrets which changes everything. Now he must force the others to realize what is going on and try to get out of there.
The premise of this book is really interesting. Very much a Lord of the Flies mentality. Unfortunately the execution is a little sloppy and filled with holes. Benson isn’t the most likable character in the world. I like that he kept questioning the system, but he continued to do it at the expense of others. He had really no regard for those around him or for the history of the school. He had been there a day and was already trying to escape and within a couple of weeks he is starting a gang war. I really wish the author would have spent a little more time filling in the holes of this story. The entire school system just screamed questions with no answers. And then you had the big mystery/plot twist….What!??!? There was no explanation for that and the ending was horrible. It basically forces you to read the next book in the hopes that it will answer your questions. I literally was left trying to figure out what just happened, which is not a good thing when you have just finished the book. Even with all the problems, this book was fun in parts and a very fast read.
Scottish Play Doe (Scott) moves to the town of Goodco with his mom. He meets Erno and Emily who’s foster father Mr. Wilson also works for Goodco. Erno and Emily are given tests by Mr. Wilson that they think of as fun games, but in reality are tests for Goodco. Goodco is an evil cereal company who does tests on children, steals magic from mythical creatures, and wants to rule the world. Scott starts seeing the mythical creatures around him after Mick, a clericaun/leprechaun, tries to steal his backpack. Mr. Wilson disappears and Erno, Emily and Scott go on the run from Goodco with Biggs (Erno and Emily’s nanny and a bigfoot). They have to figure out what Goodco is up to and survive.
I loved Adam Rex’s The True Meaning of Smekday. I thought it was hilarious and genius. So I was a little disappointed in Cold Cereal. It was interesting and funny, but it was a little disjointed and strange. I really enjoyed the kids and their story. I didn’t even mind all the mythical creatures like Mick and Harvey, but Goodco was a little much for me. It was kind of funny how unnatural their cereals were (Burlap Krisps anyone) and the fact that they used magic to make everything. I think it lost me when the secret society came into play and then Merlin and the Lady of the Lake arrived. At that point it went from over the top to completely ridiculous.
A delightful tale – Kit travels to Puritan New England from Barbedos, after her grandfather dies. She must learn to adjust to new strict norms, but befriends an older Quaker woman (believed to be a witch) who lives out by Blackbird Pond.
I wish the book had more of an epilogue, I’m tempted to write one myself.
The One and Only Ivan, Mighty Silverback is the main attraction at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade, conveniently located off I-95. He has lived at the mall in his “domain” for many, many years. He is content with his life with Stella, the old elephant, Bob, the stray dog that sleeps on his tummy, and George and Julia, who clean the mall. Their keeper Mack is not content however. The mall is losing money and no one is coming to visit anymore. So Mack gets Ruby, a baby elephant, to attract more attention. Stella and Ruby are not content in their cage and soon Stella dies. Ivan makes a promise to her that he will save Ruby, but how is a gorilla supposed to do that?
I usually don’t like books written from an animal’s perspective, but there was something about Ivan that really worked. His voice seemed so much his own and not a person speaking for a gorilla. I loved everything about Ivan, especially his relationships with the others. I really enjoyed how Ivan thought about the problem of Ruby and came up with a solution all on his own. Very inventive! This is one of the few Newberrys in recent years that I have really and truly loved. It was definitely worthy of the medal.
I don’t remember if I ever read this award winning children’s book but it does explain a few things about the disappearance of items in your home. How many times have you misplaced something and found it in a completely different spot? Have you walked down your hallway and felt a warm spot? Does your elderly aunt talk to herself? You may have a family of Borrowers in your house. They are harmless and are in danger of being seen by “a human bean”. Arrietty is the young daughter of the Clock family, they live under the clock, and she is seen by a young boy. He is a nice bean but the adults in the house are not. Arrietty wants to live outdoors where she can run and enjoy the flowers. She may get her wish.
Every time I read a Jack Reacher book I can’t wait to start another one. This one is no exception. In this book the town of Bolton South Dakota has the advantage of a new prison which brings jobs and money to the area. On visiting day the hotels and cafes are busy. Unfortunately it is used in a plan to steal a lot of meth stored in an abandoned underground storage unit built by the Air Force during the Cold War. Jack hitched a ride on a tour bus that breaks down near Bolton. So he is right in the thick of it with winter weather below zero. It’s another page turner.
I’ve never eaten any truffles, probably couldn’t afford to, so this book was interesting since the main subject is truffles. The main character, Bruno chief of Police, finds a friend murdered who is a truffle cultivator and seller. Bruno asks: “Do you see truffles as a motive for murder?” Apparently they are worth a lot of money to French restaurants. Bruno is again looking out for his fellow villagers when the local mill closes and leaves workers jobless just before Christmas. Could this be another motive?
Why were people warned to not go on Superstition Mountain? Was there really a lost gold mine there? Whose skulls were lined up on the ledge? Simon, Henry, and Jack couldn’t pass up the temptation to explore and had a very exciting adventure. Looking for historical information in the library introduced them to a new neighbor, Delilah, who also wanted to explore. Unfortunately, she had an accident on the mountain, which led to finding a hidden canyon and another mystery. This was an exciting book that was hard to put down (even as an aging adult).