Spider’s Revenge by Jennifer Estep

Spiders revenge.jpgSpider’s Revenge by Jennifer Estep

Hey Readers!

Happy International Literacy Day! You know I love my obscure holidays, but this one has been around for a while in 1966 the UNESCO center founded International Literacy Day to help spread the word about an international crisis, illiteracy. Thomas Jefferson said, “An educated citizenry is a vital requisite for our survival as a free people.” I take this quote to heart in all my efforts, whether they be here with this blog, in my community with my non-profit, or even at work and home. This year UNESCO’s theme for International Literacy Day is creating a culture of literacy. Continue reading

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Out of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper

Out-of-my-mind.jpgOut of My Mind by Sharon M. Draper

Hey Readers!

I have a confession. I almost always judge my books by their covers. I’ll admit it, I’m bad about my book choices. So often, I will pick a book strictly by its cover, or even just their titles. Cute cat on the cover? Sounds Lame, I won’t touch it. Kick butt female fighter, most definitely. I do the same thing with wine, and records sometimes, too. Occasionally, this works out in my favor, or at least works well enough. Others, I learn a lesson: cute doesn’t always equal quality. The same can be said for people and this week’s read speaks exactly to that message. When I first read the title, “Out of My Mind,” I thought this book was about a crazy person, or someone who feels like they’re going crazy. In my defense, I enjoy books about brains gone wrong. I find them fascinating, and they open me to very diverse experiences. I wasn’t wrong with this book.

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The Poisoner’s Handbook by Deborah Blum

Poisoner's Handbook CoverThe Poisoner’s Handbook by Deborah Blum

Hey readers!

Sex, drugs and rock and roll, characterizes the 20th century, but the dangers of this crazy life was nothing compared to the boozy, fast life of the roaring twenties. Or so I learned in my most recent read by Deborah Blum, The Poisoner’s Handbook. I borrowed this book from my mother, and I’d been eyeing it for quite some time. When her and my stepfather would fight, she would casually read the book in front of him, or leave it on her bedside table. She used to joke that she was brushing up for if he didn’t fix his attitude, or whatever it was they were bickering about at any given time. I picked it up now because it fit the Popsugar reading challenge: a book about death. Deborah Blum is a non-fiction writer of some notoriety. She’s won a Pulitzer Prize and is a professor of science journalism at the University of Wisconsin. She also co-edited A Field Guide for Science Writers. When it comes to non-fiction writing, scientific writing, and writing about death, she definitely knows what she is doing. Continue reading

Heartless by Marissa Meyer

Heartless by Marissa Meyer

Hey Readers!

Do you ever just get into an author and want to devour everything they’ve ever written? My husband does that, but I’m a bit more flighty with my reading. I have few loyalties, aside from Tamora Pierce and J.K.Rowling. That’s not to say I won’t run through a series, I finished all of the True Blood series in a summer including that last two books. But normally, I will read a book and then move on to another trying to complete my challenge. It annoys my husband greatly. He loves to read straight through an author’s entire body of work. In fact, I just got him hooked on Tamora Pierce Tortall universe, which he is about a third of the way through now. He started two weeks ago. After I finished reading the Lunar Chronicles I was hungry to read more by Marissa Meyer. Heartless is her take on wonderland’s own Queen of Hearts. This was a fantastic retelling and I love the trend of investigating fairy tales and redressing villains. It really speaks to my personal motto that every villain is the hero of their own story.

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Morality for Beautiful Girls by Alexander McCall Smith

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Morality for Beautiful Girls by Alexander McCall Smith

Hey Readers!

Beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder in Morality for Beautiful Girls by Alexander McCall Smith, this weeks book in review, and when the eye belongs to a private investigator it’s sure to be an honest assessment. I picked this book to fit the PopSugar Reading Challenge category of a story set in a fascinating place. I have traveled to Africa many times, but never to Botswana, which has a rich culture and fascinating history. This is the third novel in Alexander McCall Scott’s series The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency, which is a fiction mystery series. The Series was also turned into a BBC radio drama, which is the first time I’ve ever heard of that before. I happened to have this book on my shelf, but I’m not sure where or when I picked it up originally. As I was reading this book, I realized I had read it before. I remembered some portions much better than I remembered others however, so I decided to continue through it and I was pleasantly satisfied again. Continue reading

The Magician by Michael Scott

The Magician: The Secrets of The Immortal Nicholas Flamel by Michael Scott

Hey Readers!

Immortals, Magicians, and animated gargoyles, Oh My! This week we are reviewing The Magician by Michael Scott. I chose this book to fit my 2018 Popsugar reading challenge category, the next book in a series you’ve started. I read the first book in this series, The Alchemist, many years ago, and simply never made my way back to the next book. Based on the title and the cover, and a bit of past experience, I can expect a teen fantasy book that focuses on mythology and the occult. The cover of this book includes alchemical symbols, the astrological symbol of Aries, the Greek war god, and a symbol often associated with the Illuminati. This book jumps right in with a brief diary entry by the title character, which serves to refresh the reader’s memory of events that passed in the first book. This was a super juicy read, full of intrigue, drama, and danger. Continue reading

Wicked by Gregory MaGuire

Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West By Gregory Maguire

Hey Readers!!

I finally finished a book I’ve been wanting to read for years, Wicked by Gregory Maguire. I have wanted to read this book since I realized there was a musical, which made it a perfect fit for my 2018 Pop Sugar reading challenge category: a book made into a musical. I already have this book on my bookshelf from when I borrowed it from my mother many years ago. I dove in shortly before my vacation to Florida this spring, and let it keep me up late each night during my vacation. What’s better than a reading vacation? Continue reading