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Sunday, July 22, 2018

Stacking The Shelves and Sunday Post


This meme is hosted by Tynga over at Team Tynga's Reviews, which she describes as follows:

"Stacking The Shelves is all about the books we are adding to our shelves each week, sharing with you our excitement for our newest titles and maybe have you discover a new book in the process!"



Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news~ A post to recap the past week on your blog and showcase books and things we have received. Share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead. See rules here: Sunday Post Meme

The weatherman keeps threatening that rain is coming, and then we can hear thunder and then...nada! We desperately need some rain. My flowers are bone dry. I watered my little evergreen trees that I planted two years ago with the garden hose, and they drank up the water as fast as it came out of the hose!

Waking up to 20 degrees with humidex of 26 degrees. We are expecting a high of 26 degrees with a humidex of 32 degrees. I'll be doing more of this: 


Is anyone out there participating in the #24in48 read-a-thon? You can still join. This is Day 2.


SYNC is over :(  The lovely people at SYNC YA and many publishers have been gifting us with audiobooks all summer long. I'm so sad to see it come to an end, as I always am. I wish it was all summer! I am very thankful for the 26 audiobooks that I downloaded and will be listening to them. There's still time to download the last pair. You have until Thursday at 7:00 a.m. EST. Once you download them, you can listen at your leisure and they are yours to keep forever!

Here is some info on this week's offerings:

Our final week of the 2018 SYNC season brings a couple of special audiobook treats. Both are likely to surprise you and offer good reminders that, when we’re open to making discoveries, both adventure and insight are going to follow.

Thanks to author Elizabeth Fama , we are pleased to provide listeners with the 2013 Odyssey Honor winning Macmillan Audio MONSTROUS BEAUTY, performed by the late great Katherine Kellgren. When man and mermaid meet, the adventures aren’t confined to their own lives. The story here crosses centuries, as well as species, with Kellgren giving each character a distinct voice and the plot every ounce of awesome surprise listeners can bear. The author of this teen novel discovered her own joy of audiobooks when she heard the narrator’s performance and now does much of her own personal reading by ear. Katherine Kellgren recorded more than 250 audiobooks, many with high teen appeal, before her untimely death earlier this year. Put on your headphones and discover love and death, and their fierce echo in the ocean's powers, with the author and narrator who bring them all to life for listeners.

Paired here is another surprise. Did you know that Sir Arthur Conan Doyle wrote science fiction as well as his famous Sherlock Holmes mysteries? In THE LOST WORLD, narrated for Naxos AudioBooks by Glen McCready, we travel to an Amazon River-like part of the world where dinosaurs still roam. Doyle uses his own (1912) knowledge of science and competing theories of paleontology, as well as his knack for creating credible and absorbing characters, to make this listening experience seem almost believable. McCready’s narration fits the style of Doyle’s time; that authenticity offers the opportunity to do some time travel while listening.

Download your final pair of 2018 SYNC titles this week and let us know throughout the coming months which of the 26 audiobooks has come to mean the most to you as a listener. As we start building a collection for 2019, we'll share that information with you here. Thanks for listening!

Happy SYNC season to all! Now download this 13th pair and start listening! Go HERE.

by Elizabeth Fama

The Lost World
by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
(Professor Challenger, Book #1)


I bought this Daily Deal from Audible this week:

Sharkman
by Dean Koontz


Recap: Last Week On The Blog



Can't-Wait Wednesday: A Curse So Dark and Lonely





What books have you added to your shelves this week? If you are also participating in either of these memes, please leave me the link to your blog post in the comments so that I can come and drool over all your goodies!

Friday, July 20, 2018

High Summer #Readathon - Mid Event Check-in #HSreadathon


This is my Mid-Event Check-in for the High Summer Read-a-Thon hosted by Michelle @ Seasons of Reading.

My reading has gone really well so far! I have finished nine books:

Some Girls Bite
by Chloe Neill
(Chicagoland Vampires, Book #1)
3 stars

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal
by Christopher Moore
2 stars

by Kathryn Lasky
(Guardians of Ga'Hoole, Book #3)
[read-aloud to my daughter]
3 stars

by Josh Malerman
4 stars

Devil to Pay
by Jeaniene Frost
(Night Huntress, Book #3.5)
[review to follow]

by Cynthia Hand
(Unearthly, Book #3)
[review to follow]

The Cabin at the End of the World
by Paul Tremblay
[review to follow]

Zero Day
by Ezekiel Boone
(The Hatching, Book #3)
[review to follow]

by Richard Paul Evans
#ChristmasInJuly
[review to follow]


Of those, my favourite so far was Boundless by Cynthia Hand. The Unearthly series was amazing, and I have a bit of a book hangover! If you love YA Fantasy/Paranormal, I highly recommend the series. The biggest disappointment was Lamb by Christopher Moore. I'm a huge Moore fan, and this one just didn't click with me. That was followed by a close second, The Cabin at the End of the World by Paul Tremblay. For a book that is touted as a "heart-palpitating novel of psychological suspense," it was anything but!


I'm currently reading:

Starry Night
by Debbie Macomber

A Man Called Ove
by Fredrik Backman

by Joel Osteen

by Erin Hunter
(Warriors, Book #5)
[read-aloud to my daughter]

edited by Miriam Matejova

by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend


Next up on my TBR:
by Kenneth Oppel

by Debbie Macomber

#Audiobook #Review: 4 out of 5 stars for Unbury Carol by Josh Malerman @JoshMalerman @BOTLibrary

TITLE: Unbury Carol
AUTHOR: Josh Malerman
NARRATOR: Dan John Miller
PUBLISHER: Books on Tape
PUBLICATION DATE: April 10, 2018
FORMAT: Unabridged audiobook
LENGTH: 10 hrs and 49 mins
GENRE: Horror, Fantasy, Western
ASIN: B077BKJMQ1
Carol Evers is a woman with a dark secret. She has died many times . . . but her many deaths are not final: They are comas, a waking slumber indistinguishable from death, each lasting days.

Only two people know of Carol’s eerie condition. One is her husband, Dwight, who married Carol for her fortune, and—when she lapses into another coma—plots to seize it by proclaiming her dead and quickly burying her . . . alive. The other is her lost love, the infamous outlaw James Moxie. When word of Carol’s dreadful fate reaches him, Moxie rides the Trail again to save his beloved from an early, unnatural grave.

And all the while, awake and aware, Carol fights to free herself from the crippling darkness that binds her—summoning her own fierce will to survive. As the players in this drama of life and death fight to decide her fate, Carol must in the end battle to save herself.

MY REVIEW:

This is going to reveal something about my age, but do you remember the 1988 movie The Serpent and the Rainbow? The movie, in part, is about how a Haitian voodoo priest gave medicinal herbs to a victim so that the heartbeat could be virtually undetectable and the victim was then buried alive. That movie scared the dickens out of me! When I read the synopsis of this book, it reminded me of that movie so I just had to read it.

Carol Evers is a 38-year-old woman with an unusual condition that causes her to lapse into comas at the drop of a hat, kind of like narcolepsy but worse because her heartbeat is not detectable. When Carol's best friend John dies who was the only other person aware of her condition, she implores her husband Dwight to let the maid Farrah in on her secret just in case that something were to happen to him. She didn't want to be accidentally buried alive! Unbeknownst to her, this is exactly what Dwight wants because he wants to be rid of her. 

Carol's comas often occur at times of great emotional distress, so it is not a surprise that it happens after John's death. It occurs when Carol is with Farrah but, unfortunately, before she has a chance to let her in on her secret. Farrah, of course, thinks that Carol is dead. Dwight sets the wheels in motion to have Carol buried as soon as possible because the longest that she's ever been in one of her states is two days. Little does Dwight know that Carol's ex-lover, James Moxie, also knows Carol's secret. When word is sent to James that Carol has died, he sends a return message that Carol is not dead and that he is on the way. It's a race against time, for Dwight to bury Carol before she wakes and for James to get there in time to stop Dwight before it's too late.

This book was just as creepy as I had hoped! Carol can hear and see everything going on around her, and just the thought that she knows that her husband is going to bury her alive just makes me shudder. The book is fast-paced and made my heart race in fear for Carol, whose condition is literally my worst nightmare! Dwight as the smarmy villain made me feel ill, who clearly had been biding his time. I'm not normally a fan of westerns, but Malerman's choice of setting for this book worked. I loved the atmosphere he created!

This author is new to me, but I already have his Bird Box waiting to be listened to. 

Dan John Miller is also new to me, and his narration was fantastic! I definitely will be looking for more of his narrations. His pace and inflections were perfect. Here is a sample of the narration:



MY RATING:
4 stars!! It was really good, and you should put it on your TBR if you enjoy horror.

This book qualifies as:

Thursday, July 19, 2018

#Book #Review: 3 out of 5 stars for The Rescue by Kathryn Lasky @KathrynLasky1 @Scholastic @scholasticCDA

TITLE: The Rescue
SERIES: Guardians of Ga'Hoole, Book #3
AUTHOR: Kathryn Lasky
PUBLISHER: Scholastic, Inc.
PUBLICATION DATE: January 1, 2004 (first published 2003)
FORMAT: Paperback
LENGTH: 198 pages
GENRE: Young Adult, Fantasy
ISBN: 9780439405591
Ever since Soren was kidnapped and taken to the St. Aegolius School for Orphaned Owls, he has longed to see his sister, Eglantine, again. Now Eglantine is back in Soren's life, but she's been through an ordeal too terrible for words. And Ezylryb, Soren's mentor, has disappeared. Deep within Soren's gizzard, something more powerful than knowledge tells him there's a connection between these mysterious events.

In order to rescue Ezylryb, Soren must embark upon a perilous quest. It will bring him face-to-face with a force more dangerous than anything the rulers of St. Aggie's could have devised-and a truth that threatens to destroy the owl kingdom.

MY REVIEW:

This is the third book in the Guardians of Ga'Hoole series, which I'm reading aloud to my younger daughter.

This is my favourite book in the series so far, because it's all about finding Ezelryb who is one of my favourite characters! He has been missing now for two months. Soren and the gang (Gylfie, Twilight and Digger) want to find out more about Metal Beak and learn that there is a rogue blacksmith who Soren suspects made Metal Beak's mask. They fly out on a secret mission to find her, and the gang not only learns more about Metal Beak but also Ezelryb.

I loved the ending, but my heart just broke for Soren. This series is getting better with each book. We are continuing on with the fourth book in the series, The Siege.

MY RATING:

3 stars!! It was good, and I enjoyed it!

This book qualifies as:

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

#Book #Review: 2 out of 5 stars for Lamb by Christopher Moore @HarperPerennial

TITLE: Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal
PUBLISHER: Harper Perennial
PUBLICATION DATE: May 25, 2004 (first published 2002)
FORMAT: Paperback
LENGTH: 444 pages
GENRE: Humor
ISBN: 9780380813810
The birth of Jesus has been well chronicled, as have his glorious teachings, acts, and divine sacrifice after his thirtieth birthday. But no one knows about the early life of the Son of God, the missing years—except Biff, the Messiah's best bud, who has been resurrected to tell the story in the divinely hilarious yet heartfelt work "reminiscent of Vonnegut and Douglas Adams" (Philadelphia Inquirer).

Verily, the story Biff has to tell is a miraculous one, filled with remarkable journeys, magic, healings, kung fu, corpse reanimations, demons, and hot babes. Even the considerable wiles and devotion of the Savior's pal may not be enough to divert Joshua from his tragic destiny. But there's no one who loves Josh more—except maybe "Maggie," Mary of Magdala—and Biff isn't about to let his extraordinary pal suffer and ascend without a fight.

MY REVIEW:

Let me start off by saying that I love Christopher Moore! His zany humor makes me laugh, and his books are so unique that I keep reading them. I don't know why, but this one just didn't work for me.

Raziel, an angel, is ordered to return to Earth to get a new story for the Bible. Little is known about Jesus' life from the time he was a child until he became the Messiah, so God wants the new Gospel to be written by Levi (otherwise known as Biff) who was Jesus' (referred to as Joshua in the book) childhood friend. Raziel resurrects Biff from the dead, and he takes him to a modern-day hotel where he can write his story. He is also given the Gift of Tongues so that he can understand all languages and knows the words for everything.

Biff's story is quite a creative one! I have to hand props to Moore for that. One example is how Biff claimed that it was he who hung Judas from the tree and that Judas never committed suicide. That part I thought was actually kind of cool and how Moore laid out the backstory to make that seem plausible. Because Joshua/Jesus knew that he was supposed to remain pure, he bought prostitutes for Biff and had him explain to him everything that was going on so that he could understand why it was sinful. Parts like that were funny and this is the type of off-beat humor that I expect from Moore. However, the majority of the book was very "meh" and I felt like I was just slogging my way through it. I just wasn't feeling it. 

Nevertheless, I'm still a Moore fan and will continue to read his books! If you've never read Moore or any satire, I recommend A Dirty Job which is one of my favourites.

MY RATING:

2 stars!! Meh, it was just "okay."

This book qualifies as:

Can't-Wait Wednesday: A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer @BrigidKemmerer @bloomsburykids

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Tessa @ Wishful Endings to spotlight and talk about the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they're books that have yet to be released as well. It's based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine. Find out more here.


Here is this week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selection:

AUTHOR: Brigid Kemmerer
PUBLISHER: Bloomsbury YA
EXPECTED PUBLICATION DATE: January 29, 2019
FORMAT: Hardcover
LENGTH: 496 pages
GENRE: Young Adult, Fantasy, Retellings
ISBN: 9781681195087
In a lush, contemporary fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast, Brigid Kemmerer gives readers another compulsively readable romance perfect for fans of Marissa Meyer.

Fall in love, break the curse.

It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.

Nothing has ever been easy for Harper Lacy. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, she learned to be tough enough to survive. But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she's instead somehow sucked into Rhen's cursed world.

Break the curse, save the kingdom.

A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn't know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what's at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.

I love retellings, and I was so excited when I saw this one! I love the cover! This author is new to me, but I have her Elemental series on my TBR.


What are you waiting on? Please leave a comment in the section below. If you participate in this meme, please leave a link so I can visit your blog!

Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Summer TBR Wipeout: Update Post #1 @candidcover


This is my Update Post #1 for the Summer TBR Wipeout hosted by The Candid Cover.

Week of July 15th: Update post #1- Tell us how your reading has been going so far. What books have you read? Were they enjoyable? What’s next on your TBR? Etc.

My reading has gone really well so far! I have finished eight books:

Some Girls Bite
by Chloe Neill
(Chicagoland Vampires, Book #1)

Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ's Childhood Pal
by Christopher Moore

by Kathryn Lasky
(Guardians of Ga'Hoole, Book #3)
[read-aloud to my daughter]

by Josh Malerman

Devil to Pay
by Jeaniene Frost
(Night Huntress, Book #3.5)

by Cynthia Hand
(Unearthly, Book #3)

The Cabin at the End of the World
by Paul Tremblay

Zero Day
by Ezekiel Boone
(The Hatching, Book #3)


Of those, my favourite so far was Boundless by Cynthia Hand. The Unearthly series was amazing, and I have a bit of a book hangover! If you love YA Fantasy/Paranormal, I highly recommend the series. The biggest disappointment was Lamb by Christopher Moore. I'm a huge Moore fan, and this one just didn't click with me. That was followed by a close second, The Cabin at the End of the World by Paul Tremblay. For a book that is touted as a "heart-palpitating novel of psychological suspense," it was anything but!


I'm currently reading:

Starry Night
by Debbie Macomber
[for COYER's Christmas In July Read-a-Thon]

Promise Me
by Richard Paul Evans
[for COYER's Christmas In July Read-a-Thon]

by Joel Osteen

by Erin Hunter
(Warriors, Book #5)
[read-aloud to my daughter]

edited by Miriam Matejova

by Dr. Henry Cloud and Dr. John Townsend


Next up on my TBR:
by Kenneth Oppel

by Debbie Macomber
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