Monday, June 30, 2014

I review a lot for NetGalley as well as Library Journal and School Library Journal, professionally.I also pick up the occasional book on Book Bub and Book Shout.  The shocker is I also read a lot of hard cover books from the library.(I actually work at the public library as my day job. These compilation posts are just some of my reading that I have written reviews on. They are on varied topics and varied genres and some non-fiction tossed in for fun. All these books can be found on the regular book sites such as Amazon, B&N etc. if I tickle your fancy and you want to find out more.

Air Plants: The Curious World of Tillandsias
Zenaida Sengo

This is a beautiful book! The author covers all aspects of these beautiful plants from what they are to how to grow them, to how to care for them and how to arrange them artfully. The photography is spectacular! The artful arranging and display of the plants is marvelous. I knew nothing about these types of plants and now I want a house full of them. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who has an interest in these plants. The book is obviously created by people who love these plants.
The book is enchanting even if you never grow any of these exquisite plants.

The City by Dean Koontz
I loved the first few Odd Thomas books and then they got dark, too supernatural in a bad way.I tried to read "Innocence" , one of his latest,  but it felt like a bad script edit of Beauty and the Beast, the TV show. I thought I might try this one but the subject matter didn't really grab me and that would be totally my fault - not Mr. Koontz. This is a human story told as if oral history about the life of a young piano prodigy that is changed by the city he lives in. Pearl ,the supernatural personification of the city cares for her people but ... this was a little odd.The book includes haiku and the background of the music in his world is mesmerizing. I just couldn't get into the story. Sorry.

Friday, June 27, 2014

A Few June Titles

Creature of Moonlight by Rebecca Hahn
Lyrical and beautifully written, this is a charming fantasy. The heroine is a strong character and holds her own as choices are presented to her as she comes of age. The story is similar  in writing to a beautiful fairy tale in the telling. The action is slowly evolved in beautifully descriptive prose that draws the reader along.There is a mesmerizing story of Marni the strange young woman who lives with her grandfather, the king who wants her dead and a mysterious forest that grows closer around them each night. There are magical creatures in the forest and girls from the nearby village seem to disappear into the forest and never return. The story is wonderful and will appeal to teens and adults as well. I truly enjoyed this beautiful book.

The Judgement Stone  by Robert Liparulo
This is the 2nd installment in this series. (The 13th Tribe was the first.) This is wonderful thought-provoking Christian fiction. The books are exciting thrillers. In the first book you meet the Tribe , a group of people who were among the group of Israelites that were worshiping the golden calf when Moses brought down the Ten Commandments and were punished with immortality. Their goal in life is to punish sinners in hopes of gaining forgiveness from God. In The Judgement Stone we meet a more ruthless and cruel group of immortals, known as the Clan, who are angry with God and want to do any action that will hurt God. The main characters are a reformed immortal, Jagger , who follow neither group but tries to live a normal life with his wife and child. Jagger is a security chief on an archaeological site  where a stone is found. The stone , believed to be a fragment of the original Ten Commandments tablet has special powers. When  holding the stone the holder is able to visually see the spiritual world - he can see angels and demons and peoples connections to God through their prayers. The Clan attacks the monastery at the archaeological dig and steals the stone. With the stone in their possession they will be able to find those closest to God and destroy them. Jagger and Owen pursue them in an effort to retrieve the stone. While they are gone, the Tribe attack the monastery to kidnap Jagger's wife in hopes that she can lead them to redemption.
This is a fast paced book with a lot of action. I truly enjoyed both books and highly recommend them to teens and adults alike. I hope he will continue this series as the characters are engaging and the plots excellent.

How to Knit  by Leslie Ann Bestor

 This book is a wealth of knitting information with clear instructions and wonderfully clear illustrations. Any adult who can follow instructions should be able to learn to knit.  The author describes each step of the process thoroughly. There are some very basic patterns included in the last chapters. I was disappointed that there are no photographs of projects or of needles , yarn or equipment. The drawings are excellent and cover the necessary subject matter.
 I was taught to knit when I was 12 and still remember the basics. I was hoping to be inspired to try to learn again. This book does include detailed instructions that I believe will help me or a brand new knitter learn the basics of the craft.

More titles to come....