Book Review: Daughter of Smoke & Bone by: Laini Taylor

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“It is a condition of monsters that they do not perceive themselves as such. The dragon, you know, hunkered in the village devouring maidens, heard the townsfolk cry ‘Monster!’ and looked behind him” – Daughter of Smoke & Bone, Laini Taylor

Initial Thoughts: I admit that I tend to chose a book based on its cover. With so many books to choose from out there, the best book cover tends to draw me in first before I would even consider picking it up. On the cover of this novel Daughter of Smoke & Bone was a picture of a girl in a mask. For some odd reason, I adore masks (I even have a mask collection), and so, without reading the synopsis, I dived in.costume-2092602_1920

Around the world, black hand prints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grows dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherworldly war” Goodreads

The Review

As I had said, I did not know what this book was about. I have been doing this a lot lately, choosing books based on their cover, or at random. It is much more fun that way. If I would have known what the book was about, I probably wouldn’t have been interested. I do not usually like books about angels. I find them very dull and boring. Oh great, a good looking guy with wings with a heart of – well – an angel. Yawn. In this case, the author completely flipped the idea of angels and their angelic nature completely on its head. Without any spoilers, I can tell you that you will be surprised and very intrigued.

The story begins with Karou, a young art student studying in Prague who can’t get rid of  Continue reading

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Book Review: Persephone’s Orchard by: Molly Ringle

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It had to unleash some invisible magic, he thought; Hades and Persephone, joining together again within these black and holy stone walls, for the first time in millennia. As they indulged in enjoying one another, how could they not be reactivating some power within the Earth itself? Surely they were at least bringing autumn storm clouds rolling and thundering over the Mediterranean.

Initial thoughts: I was browsing through the sale section of the Kobo store where I came acropomegranate-open-196800_1920ss Persephone’s Orchard. It was less than $2 and so I quickly bought the book. One thing you should know about me, I love reading retellings of the Persephone & Hades myth. Out of every retelling out there, this is one story that I can’t get enough of. So far, my favorite Hades & Persephone retelling is the Abandon series by Meg Cabot.

Summary

The Greek gods never actually existed. Did they? Sophie Darrow finds she was wrong about that assumption when she’s pulled into the spirit realm, complete with an Underworld, on her first day at college. Adrian, the mysterious young man who brought her there, simply wants her to taste a pomegranate.

Soon, though she returns to her regular life, her mind begins exploding with dreams and memories of ancient times; of a love between two Greeks named Persephone and Hades. But lethal danger has always surrounded the immortals, and now that she’s tainted with the Underworld’s magic, that danger is drawing closer to Sophie.” Goodreads

The Review

After reading quite a few retellings of the Persephone & Hades myth, Persephone’s Orchard is a good retelling. Although I have read a better retelling (the Abandon series by Meg Cabot), this one is a close second.

Sophie Darrow is just an ordinary girl trying to adjust to her new life as a university student. Then suddenly, she is whisked away to the spirit realm where she meets the mysterious Continue reading

Book Review: The Music Shop by: Rachel Joyce

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vinyl-2786526_1920Initial thoughts: I won an advanced copy of this book from the Goodreads giveaway. This was my first time reading a novel by Rachel Joyce. After finishing The Music Shop, I discovered her novel The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry, which is definitely on my to read list.

Plot Summary

It’s 1988. The CD has arrived. Sales of the shiny new disks are soaring on high streets in cities across the England. Meanwhile, down a dead-end street, Frank’s music shop stands small and brightly lit, jam-packed with records of every kind. It attracts the lonely, the sleepless, the adrift. There is room for everyone. Frank has a gift for finding his customers the music they need.
Into this shop arrives Ilse Brauchmann–practical, brave, well-heeled. Frank falls for this curious woman who always dresses in green. But Ilse’s reasons for visiting the shop are not what they seem.
Frank’s passion for Ilse seems as misguided as his determination to save vinyl. How can a man so in tune with other people’s needs be so incapable of helping himself? And what will it take to show he loves her? – Goodreads

About the book
Title: The Music Shop
Author: Rachel Joyce
Series: N/A
Expected Publication: November 7, 2017
Genres & Subjects: fiction, contemporary, music

The Review

Music is a part of my everyday life. I hear music in the mall or at the grocery store, I listen to music on my IPod, or my computer. Music is everywhere! It is rare that I ever stop and consider how music makes me feel. In a fleeting instant, I might sing along or tap my foot. I never stopped and considered what it is like to create music. Or how each element in a song, including silence, creates an atmospheric portrait of what the song is about.

Rachel Joyce’s The Music Shop made me stop and consider the beauty behind music as if I were taking a music appreciation class.  Continue reading

Book Review: The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone By: Adele Griffin

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I love that I never know who I’m going to meet next in New York. Sometimes I imagine all these millions of kids who have come here like jeweled doorknobs marked “turn me.” It’s an Alice-in-Wonderland kind of city” –The Unfinished Life of Addison Stone, Adele Griffin

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Summary

Addison Stone, gifted artist, sensational celebrity, daughter, friend, lover, and student, suddenly dies under mysterious circumstances. Her short unfinished life leaves puzzling questions to everyone around her. Was she murdered? If so, why? In this shocking biography, the voices of Addison’s loved ones piece together the fragmented image of Addison Stone from her early childhood to her untimely death.

Continue reading

A Bookius Wormius Glassius, Queen Elizabeth I, and a Crush

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Poster Advertising Vinolia Otto Soap for theFor whatever reason, ever since I was a kid, I had many strange eclectic interests. For instance, when I was eight-years-old, I became obsessed with the Titanic. I would memorize a bunch of random facts about the Titanic – facts that were of no use to anyone and made me seem weirder than I am. Instead of drawing ponies and flowers, I drew pictures of thetitanic_wreck_bow Titanic and placed them proudly on my fridge. Wasn’t I a charmer?

As a child, Continue reading