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Showing posts from March, 2010

58. Skin by Mo Hayder

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Skin by Mo Hayder (US) - (Canada)
Jack Caffery Thriller, #4

Pages: 380 pages
Ages: 18+
Finished: Mar. 29, 2010
First Published: 2009 UK (Jan. 2010 US, Apr. 2010 Can)
Publisher: Harper Collins
Genre: thriller
Rating: 4/5

First sentence:

Human skin is an organ.

Acquired: Received a copy from the publisher.

Reason for Reading: Next in the series and Mo Hayder is my favourite author in the world! (at the moment)

Summary: A suicide is found and everything points to case closed, though the ex-husband does show concern that things don't seem right. When another suicide with the same MO shows up Jack Caffery asks to be put on the case as he has found some connections between the two. At the same time celebrity rich girl, Misty Kitson, has simply vanished and police diver Flea Marley has been called in to search a few lakes and a quarry. Flea and Jack do not work together in this novel, they are off on their own this time. Jack's case takes him to a very strange human being and a sick prolific…

57. Jason's Gold by Will Hobbs

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Jason's Gold by Will Hobbs (US) - (Canada)

Pages: 221 pages
Ages: 11+
Finished: Mar. 29, 2010
First Published: 1999
Publisher: Harper Collins
Genre: YA, historical fiction, adventure
Rating: 4.5/5

First sentence:

When the story broke on the streets of New York, it took off like a wildfire on a windy day.

Acquired: Borrowed a copy from my local library.

Reason for Reading: Read aloud to my son as part of our history curriculum.

Summary: Fifteen-year-old Jason Hawthorn is on the other side of the country when he hears of the Klondike Gold Rush. The only adventurous one in the family he high tails it back to Seattle to convince his older brothers to stake him with their inheritance so he can go North. When he arrives home, he's astounded to find that his brothers were one of the first to leave for the Klondike and they left him a letter saying they had added his inheritance to complete their outfit and have made him a complete partner. With only $10 in his pocket Jason follows …

Monday: Books in the Mail

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Another busy week for my mailbox. This time I have a few review copies, even more wins and a bookmooch.

First the Review Copies:

From Harper Collins Canada:

The city of San Francisco is being stalked by a huge shaved vampyre cat named Chet, and only I, Abby Normal, emergency backup mistress of the Greater Bay Area night, and my manga-haired love monkey, Foo Dog, stand between the ravenous monster and a bloody massacre of the general public.

Whoa. And this is a love story? Yup. 'Cept there's no whining. See, while some lovers were born to run, Jody and Tommy were born to bite. Well, reborn, that is, now that they're vampires. Good thing theirs is an undying love, since their Goth Girl Friday, Abby Normal, imprisoned them in a bronze statue.

Abby wants to be a bloodsucking fiend, too, but right now she's really busy with other stuff, like breaking in a pair of red vinyl thigh-high Skankenstein® platform boots and wrangling her Ph.D.-candidate boyfriend, Steve (the love monke…

Contest: And the Winner Is ....

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Using random.org to choose a winner, the lucky winner of Saving CeeCee Honeycutt by Beth Hoffman is .......


amanda18228
Congratulations! I'll be sending you an email shortly.

My review of this wonderful book can be read here.


NOTE - Since this is Holy Week and then I will be going away for the month of April my next contest will run in May.

56. Irredeemable Vol. 2 by Mark Waid

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Irredeemable Vol. 2 by Mark Waid. Art by Peter Krause (US) - (Canada)
Irredeemable series

Pages: 112 pages
Ages: 15+
Finished: Mar. 27, 2010
First Published: Mar. 23, 2010
Publisher: Boom! Studios
Genre: Graphic novel, Super heroes
Rating: 5/5

First sentence:

Do I have everyone's attention?

Acquired: Received a review copy from Harper Collins Canada.

Reason for Reading: Next in the series.

Comments: I am hooked on this series that centres around the mightiest superhero who suddenly turns to the dark side and becomes the most evil super villain. We start out by meeting the last living member of The Plutonium's former superhero group, The Volt and a flashback to his joining of the group. This book heavily focuses on the group members as they regroup, try to locate The Plutonium and figure a way to bring him down. The dynamics between them and the individual personalities all take shape. There is also tension in a personal situation. The group does track down Plutonium's lair but one…

Turn Your Lights ON for Earth Hour at 8:30 pm!!

Join me and countless others in not joining the fear-mongering!

http://www.nationalpost.com/opinion/story.html?id=2732774

55. House Rules by Jodi Picoult

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House Rules by Jodi Picoult (US) - (Canada)

Pages: 532 pages
Ages: 18 +
Finished: Mar. 26, 2010
First Published: Mar. 2, 2010
Publisher: Atria Books
Genre: realistic fiction, mystery
Rating: 2/5

First sentence:

Everywhere I look, there are signs of a struggle.



Acquired: Received a review copy from Simon & Schuster Canada.

Reason for Reading: I have Asperger's. My son is autistic. I have never read a Jodi Picoult book before as they have never interested me but when I heard the topic of this one was Asperger's I obviously just had to read it.

Comments: As a person with Asperger's I am dismayed with Picoult's portrayal of an adult with Asperger's Syndrome. Picoult starts off by showing us all the sources she has used for her research but once one starts reading it is obvious she is so full of research she doesn't know what to do with it. She has taken every possible symptom of both Asperger's and autism (which are two different diagnoses) and put them all into th…

54. Laurie and Company by Eleanor Frances Lattimore

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Laurie and Company by Eleanor Frances Lattimore (US)OUT OF PRINT

Pages: 128 pages
Ages: 7+
Finished: Mar. 25, 2010
First Published: 1962
Publisher: William Morrow & Company
Genre: children, realistic fiction
Rating: 3.5/5

First sentence:

Laurie was a little girl who had to learn how to amuse herself.

Acquired: Borrowed a copy via Inter-Library Loan.

Reason for Reading: Lattimore is one of my favourite childhood authors and there is not a lot about her or her books available on line. One of my long term goals is to review every book she wrote.

Summary: Laurie's mother was widowed when she was just baby and they live in a beautiful yellow house out on the edge of the city where there are no children her age to play with so Laurie spends her time amusing herself. Her mother is a seamstress, a dressmaker, working from home to support the two of them. Of course, it helps that they are renting the house from Laurie's great Aunt Augusta. We see the determined busy life of a single moth…

Marvel Adventures Superheroes: Invisible Woman

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Marvel Adventures Super HeroesIssue 19
Featuring Invisible Woman
by Paul Tobin
March 2010

First sentence:

So, here we are.

Acquired: My son has a subscription.

Reason for Reading: I didn't have anything to post today so I needed to read something really quick last night and I grabbed the next issue of this comic.

Comments: Now that The Avengers have named themselves in the last volume, Ironman decides they need a headquarters so he brings the group to the high tech subterranean HQ that he has had designed for them with a specially made room for each member. As they are checking the place out they are infiltrated by Plant Man, but turns out he's not after them. This time he's come for their help because he says The Silver Surfer has gone crazy and is chasing him all over the place trying to kill him and causing all sorts of damage. The Avengers find themselves battling against The Silver Surfer while they try to figure out what has happened to him.

So, this was a fun issue. I al…

53. You Suck by Christopher Moore

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You Suck by Christopher Moore (Canada) - (US)
A Love Story, Book 2

Pages: 328 pages
Ages: 18+
Finished: Mar. 21, 2010
First Published: 2007
Publisher: William Morrow (read 20% online)
Genre: humour
Rating: 4/5

First sentence:

"You b*tch, you killed me! You suck!"

Acquired: Borrowed a copy via Inter-Library Loan.

Reason for Reading: Next in the series and in preparation for the new book that just came out today in the series, "Bite Me".

Summary: This book picks up right where book one, Bloodsucking Fiends, leaves off. Not too much of a plot going on here or maybe small bits of many plots going on. Jody and Tommy are exploring their new relationship. The Animals have all joined together with a blue-dyed Las Vegas hooker who decides to become their leader and wants them to capture Tommy. Tommy has his own minion, a cute goth girl who calls him Lord Flood and Jody, The Countess, and unfortunately Elijah, who was taken care of in book one, has escaped and is out to get them all…

Monday: Books in the Mail

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Pretty busy week for my old mailbox once again. Might be time to oil the hinges! All review books except one that I won in a publisher's contest.

For Review:

From First Second Books:

In OLYMPIANS, O'Connor draws from primary documents to reconstruct and retell classic Greek myths. But these stories aren't sedate, scholarly works. They're action-packed, fast-paced, high-drama adventures, with monsters, romance, and not a few huge explosions. O'Connor's vibrant, kinetic art brings ancient tales to undeniable life, in a perfect fusion of super-hero aesthetics and ancient Greek mythology.

Volume 1 of OLYMPIANS, ZEUS: King OF THE GODS, introduces readers to the ruler of the Olympian Pantheon, telling his story from his boyhood to his ascendance to supreme power.



Greek Gods as you’ve never seen them before!

The strong, larger-than-life heroes of the Olympians can summon lightning, control the sea, turn invisible, or transform themselves into any animal they choose. Sup…

52. City of Spies by Susasn Kim

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City of Spies by Susan Kim & Laurence Klavan. Artwork by Pascal Dizin (Canada) - (US)


Pages: 172 pages
Ages: 11+
Finished: Mar. 20, 2010
First Published:Apr. 27, 2010
Publisher: First Second
Genre: children, graphic novel
Rating: 4/5

First sentence:

Wind holding steady ... Standing by to begin descent ...



Acquired: Received a review copy the publisher.

Reason for Reading: The old-style drawings, and superhero story set in WWII intrigued me.

Summary: It is 1942, Evelyn's mother has died, her father is a busy man with better things to do than look after a child, so she now lives with her rich Bohemian partying artist aunt who hasn't a clue about children. Evelyn spends her spare time drawing comics about Zirconium Man and his sidekick Scooter who fight against Nazis and a black ooze-like monster. But in real life Evelyn meets the building janitor's son Tony and they find themselves on the track of real liveNazi spies in their own neighbourhood.

Comment: Wonderful story that brings …

51. Dragonbreath: Attack of the Ninja Frogs

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Dragonbreath: Attack of the Ninja Frogs by Ursula Vernon (Canada) - (US)
Dragonbreath series, Book 2


Pages: 206 pages
Ages: 8+
Finished: Mar. 19, 2010
First Published: Feb. 4, 2010
Publisher: Dial Books
Genre: children, fantasy, action, comics hybrid
Rating: 4/5

First sentence:


Feudal Japan. Lord Dragonbreath , Ruler of an Ancient Samurai Clan, addresses his troops on the eve of battle.

Acquired: Received a review copy from Penguin Group Canada.

Reason for Reading: Read aloud to my 9yo ds over the March Break.

Summary: Danny has his mind full of imaginary samurai scenarios and watches ninja movies every night because of his current Japanese warfare obsession. Plus ninjas are cool! Then a Japanese exchange student comes to school for a while, Suki Salamander, and Wendell falls a bit in love with her which makes Danny nauseated. Until he finds out that frog ninjas are trying to kidnap Suki. So the three take off to visit Danny's great-grandfather, an expert in the field, who will b…

50. Never Look Away by Linwood Barclay

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Never Look Away by Linwood Barclay (Canada) - (US)


Pages: 415 pages
Ages: 18+
Finished: Mar. 18, 2010
First Published: Mar. 2, 2010
Publisher: Doubleday Canada
Genre: thriller, mystery
Rating: 4/5

First sentence:

"I'm scared," Ethan said.

Acquired: Received a review copy from Random House Canada.

Reason for Reading: I always read Barclay's newest novels.

Summary: Jan and David Harwood are going to spend their day with 4-year old Ethan at the new Five Mountains theme park. After a few typical miss-starts when you plan anything involving the kids they finally all get inside and David gets in line to buy ice cream cones. As he heads back Jan is running toward him, Ethan is gone, the stroller is gone, she was just tying her shoelace and then it was gone. Panic set in. David sends Jan to the gates to watch everyone leaving while he takes off running down the path. With joyous relief he finds the stroller with little Ethan asleep, no worse for wear, but is that man running away f…

49. Biomega Vol. 1

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Biomega Vol. 1 by Tsutomu Nihei (Canada) - (US)


Pages: 220 pages
Ages: 18+
Finished: Mar. 17, 2010
First Published: Feb. 2, 2010
Publisher: Viz Media
Genre: manga, science fiction, horror
Rating: 3.5/5

First sentence:

3005 A.D. Mankind successfully completes its first manned flight to mars in seven centuries.

Acquired: Received a review copy from Simon & Schuster Canada.

Reason for Reading: Apocalypse? Virus? Zombies? How could I *not* want to read it?

Summary: I've never done this before but I think for this one time the publisher's summary will do a much better job than I can in describing the plot.

Zoichi Kanoe plunges into the depths of 9JO--an island city in the middle of the Pacific Ocean--in search of Eon Green, a girl with the power to transmute the N5S virus. He's not the only one looking for her, though... Agents of the Public Health Service's Compulsory Execution Unit are also in hot pursuit. Zoichi and his transhuman allies have no time to waste; the countdown to t…

48. Tegami Bachi Vol. 2

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The Letter to Jiggy Pepper by Hiroyuki Asada (Canada) - (US)
Tegami Bachi: Letter Bee, Volume 2


Pages: 191 pages
Ages: 13+
Finished: Mar. 15, 2010
First Published: Mar. 2, 2010
Publisher: Viz Media
Genre: manga, science fiction, fantasy
Rating: 4/5

First sentence:

If goodbye makes you so sad ...
... I will stay by your side, Lag.

Acquired: Received a review copy from Simon & Schuster Canada.

Reason for Reading: Next in the series.

Summary: Lag is on his way to the National Postal Service where he must take his final interview and test to become a Letter Bee. Niche is accompanying him and insisting on being his Dingo which every Letter Bee must have. Niche is perfect to help in protecting Lag and helping him fight as she has amazing hair which is made of golden swords. They stop at a small town just outside the final bridge and meet Nelli, a friendly boy, that is until he steals Lags crossing pass and then they find out the sad story of Kyrie, the last town before the bridge, which has been n…

47. Love's Shadow by Ada Leverson

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Love's Shadow by Ada Leverson (Canada) - (US)
Little Ottleys Trilogy, Book 1


Pages: 225 pages
Ages: 18+
Finished: Mar. 15, 2010
First Published: 1908 (US pb Bloomsbury Group edition Mar. 2010)
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Genre: romantic comedy
Rating: 5/5

First sentence:

"There's only one thing I must really implore you, Edith," said Bruce anxiously, " Don't make me late at the office!"

Acquired: Received a review copy from Penguin Group Canada.

Reason for Reading: I'm reading all the Bloomsbury Group books.

Summary: This is Edith Ottley's story, though I wouldn't call her the main character. Though it is through Edith that all the characters can be traced back (as in the six degrees of Kevin Bacon). Edith and Bruce Ottley are a young married couple with a two year old son. Bruce is hard to describe without making him sound like a chauvinistic brute. He is also a hypochondriac and would rather not work and be served upon day and night. This is Bruce's…

Monday: Books in the Mail

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Last week was a doozy! So I'll get straight to the books.

For Review:

From LibraryThing's Early Reviewers:

A heartbreaking history of prejudice, family ties, and the loss of innocence.When twelve-year-old Titus Sullivan decides to run away to join his Uncle Amos and older brother, Lem, he finds an alien and exciting world in Oil Springs, the first Canadian oil boomtown of the 19th century.

The Enniskillen swamp is slick with oil, and it takes enterprising folk to plumb its depths. The adventurers who work there are a tough lot of individuals. In this hard world, Titus becomes friends with a young black boy, the child of slaves who came to Canada on the Underground Railroad. When tragedy strikes in the form of a race riot, Titus's loyalties are tested as he struggles to deal with the terrible fallout.

Though the characters are fictitious, the novel is based on a race riot that occurred in Oil Springs, Ontario, on March 20, 1863. Grease Town is historical fiction at its finest.…

46. Fables: War and Pieces

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War and Pieces by Bill Willingham (Canada) - (US)
Fables series, Vol. 11


Pages: 179 pages
Ages: 18+
Finished: Mar. 13, 2010
First Published: 2008
Publisher: Vertigo
Genre: graphic novel, fairy tales, fantasy
Rating: 5/5

First sentence:

Mr. Blue? Mr. Blue?

Acquired: Borrowed a copy via Inter Library Loan.

Reason for Reading: Next in the series.

Comments: This is a fabulous edition! A culmination of the overall plot to date that is very satisfying. The book starts of with an issue devoted mostly to the farm and the relationship between Blue and Red but also sets the stage both on the farm and back at Fabletown for the preparations before the war. Next up is a two-parter devoted solely to Cindy on a special op. which was seriously fun. We've seen her in action before but only in small doses, this dedicated storyline has made her one of my favourite characters. Finally, the book finishes with the 4 titular issues "War and Pieces" where the final battle and ultimate war that all prev…

45. The Brontes Went to Woolworths by Rachel Ferguson

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The Brontes Went to Woolworths by Rachel Ferguson (Canada) - (US)


Pages: 188 pages
Ages: 18+
Finished: Mar. 13, 2010
First Published: 1931 (2010 US pb March Bloomsbury Group edition)
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Genre: British farce, fiction
Rating: 4/5

First sentence:

How I loathe that kind of novel which is about a lot of sisters.
Acquired: Received a review copy from Penguin Group Canada.

Reason for Reading: I've heard much praising of this book over the years. And lamenting as it seems it was a Virago Classic at one time but went out of print. I've always wanted to read it since I enjoy early 20th century literature.

Summary: The Carnes, three daughters and a mother since the father died, are not a well-to-do family but they get by and do employ a governess for the youngest, while the two elder are both in their early twenties. Katrine is an aspiring actress attending Dramatic School and Deirdre is a working journalist who works on her book at home. The family has invented a whole passe…

The Secret Three by Mildred Myrick

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The Secret Three by Mildred Myrick. Drawings by Arnold Lobel ~ OUT OF PRINT
An I CAN READ Book

Pages: 64 pages
Ages: 6+
Finished: Mar. 12, 2010
First Published: 1963
Publisher: Harper & Row
Genre: children, easy reader
Rating: 3.5/5

First sentence:

Mark came to stay with Billy at the beach.
Acquired: Bought and own a vintage copy. Quite proud of our copy as it is hardcover but not a library binding and besides rubbed and bumped corners is in Fine condition.

Reason for Reading: The ds read aloud to me for his reader.

Summary: The story of two boys who find a message in a bottle from another boy who must come from the Lighthouse island. So they send a message back with a secret code embedded and so the messages continue until eventually the three boys meet, set up a secret club, and end the summer with a camp out on the island.

Comments: An enjoyable story with plenty going on to appeal to boys: messages in bottles and exploring the beach, secret codes and secret clubs, exploring the lighthouse…