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Showing posts from September, 2016

The Kept Woman by Karin Slaughter

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The Kept Woman by Karin Slaughter
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Hardcover, 461 pages
Published September 20th 2016 by William Morrow
Source: egalley via edelweiss

Will Trent (#8)

Absolutely brilliant. Karin Slaughter keeps this series fresh and exciting. A page-turning read with a huge twist in the middle. This is a great book for fans as the case is personal and the whole book is about the main characters we've come to love and hate.



Going Wild by Lisa McMann

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Going Wild by Lisa McMann
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Hardcover, 384 pages
Published September 27th 2016 by HarperCollins
Source: egalley via edelweiss

Going Wild (#1)


The latest book by Lisa McMann aimed at her youngest audience yet. Suitable approximately for the grade 4-6 age group this is a superhero story combined with mystery and intrigue. The children in the book are twelve and in Grade 6, though this is not mentioned too often and one can start to think they are a little older until we are reminded. There is also a picture every couple of chapters or so. The book started off a little slow for me because I hadn't realised it was going to be for this younger audience. I've read McMann's other books for teens and middle graders. However, once I got into the story and accepted what it was I became involved in it and ended up liking it very much. The children are interesting characters and the story is fun and exciting. This first book in a new series gathers speed until it …

Double You by Shane Peacock

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Double You by Shane Peacock
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Paperback, 256 pages
Published October 1st 2014 by Orca Books
Source: Local library

Seven: The Sequel


I really enjoyed "The Seven Series" and this is my first book in the follow up "Sequel" series. Shane Peacock is one of my favourite Canadian YA authors and this book was no exception. I enjoyed it even more than the first book, "The Last Message". Shane writes a lot of mysteries and this is his first spy thriller in which he has excelled. This book concerns the one American cousin of the seven boys. He was the black sheep in the first book but now he's discovered his true self since those events. This is an action-packed spy story with a James Bond theme and centres around the famous British literary spies Fleming, Greene, Le Carre, etc. It also features the story of the famous Canadian spy, The Man They Called Intrepid, William Stephenson. A roller coaster ride of a book that even includes a Bond gi…

In Such Good Company: Eleven Years of Laughter, Mayhem, and Fun in the Sandbox by Carol Burnett

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In Such Good Company: Eleven Years of Laughter, Mayhem, and Fun in the Sandbox by Carol Burnett
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Hardcover, 288 pages
Published September 13th 2016 by Crown Archetype
Source: Received a print edition from Penguin Random House Canada


If you grew up watching The Carol Burnett Show you'll love this walk down memory lane. Carol takes us behind the scenes and talks about the experiences she had doing the show. She tells about the regulars: Vicki, Tim, Harvey and Lyle. She goes on to reminisce about many, many guest stars. She talks about the sketches and musical numbers, the mistakes, the bloopers, and even includes scripts for some of the movie take-offs they did. There is no cohesive narrative but rather the book is a series of vignettes grouped by subject. I saw the show in syndication which only aired the comedy sketches so I found those parts more interesting than the info on the musical numbers. But I just loved all the stories about the guests which includ…

Thrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mew'd by Alan Bradley

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Thrice the Brinded Cat Hath Mew'd by Alan Bradley
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Hardcover, 400 pages
Published September 20th 2016 by Doubleday Canada
Source: received print review copy from Penguin Random House Canada

Flavia de Luce (#8)


I'll state upfront that while I love this series this book was not one of the better ones for me. It's all totally quaint and I love Flavia's attitude. She had some great lines of dialogue! But the mystery wasn't very exciting. Halfway through I thought it was the most boring in the series I had ever read; there's only one murder. In the middle, though, things started to get interesting as a tangled web started to unravel. The culprit was totally a surprise for me and I'd never have guessed who it turned out to be. Probably my least favourite in the series but good enough that I read it quickly and enjoyed the familiar characters.



The Cold Embrace: Weird Stories by Women edited by S.T. Joshi

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The Cold Embrace: Weird Stories by Women edited by S.T. Joshi
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Paperback, 288 pages
Published May 18th 2016 by Dover Publications
Source: egalley via netgalley

This is an uneven collection of a few excellent stories and a number of ones that just didn't work for me. The tales told well are strong enough to bring my average rating of the collection to a solid three. My main complaint would be that many of the stories were only barely what one could call "weird" and nothing that really made me shudder. It was a fresh collection for me, though, with only two I had read before and Charlotte Perkins Gilman's "The Yellow Wallpaper" is the highlight of the collection. The end of the book is a collection of brief biographies of all the authors. I prefer this type of material to be placed as an introduction to the story making it more relevant to the material. This volume had no editor intros before the stories.


Introduction by S.T. Joshi - Es…

Monstrous Progeny: A History of the Frankenstein Narratives by Lester D. Friedman & Allison B. Kavey

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Monstrous Progeny: A History of the Frankenstein Narratives by Lester D. Friedman & Allison B. Kavey
My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

Paperback, 256 pages
Published August 1st 2016 by Rutgers University Press
Source: egalley via edelweiss

This didn't turn out to be exactly what I had expected but I did end up enjoying what it actually was. This is an academic volume for those interested in film studies or literature criticism. Or like myself, Frankenstein aficionados. The last couple of years I have re-read Shelley's Frankenstein and read some books on the author, the book and the pop culture becoming a very minor expert :-) This book starts off with a few chapters of academic literary criticism and study of the book, it's themes, and the author. Then it briefly examines pre-1930s Frankenstein culture such as plays and literary references. Then a meaty portion of the book study's first Universal's 1930s/40s Frankenstein movie canon and then 1960/70s Hammer Films' …

The Talisman by Stephen King and Peter Straub

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The Talisman by Stephen King and Peter Straub
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

Mass Market Paperback, 770 pages
Published March 15th 1987 by Berkley
First published November 8th 1984

Jack Sawyer (#1)


Officially the worst book I've read by King as I continue to reread his books in chronological order. First, while I do distinctly remember owning this book when it came out, I had absolutely no recollection of the story whatsoever and now I understand why as it is so forgettable. This book needs to loose 400 or so pages to make it a decent YA fantasy. The book is indeed very adolescent, coming mostly from a 12-year-old's perspective there is hardly anything in the majority of the book to offend anyone. I'm surprised at how cliched the story is. Jack finds out there is an alternate world. His mother is dying in this world and the Queen, who is his mother's twinner, is dying in the other. He has been chosen to be the one who must travel west across the country to find the talisman wh…

Stephen King's The Body: Bookmarked by Aaron Burch

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Stephen King's The Body: Bookmarked by Aaron Burch
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Paperback, 176 pages
Published August 9th 2016 by Ig Publishing
Source: egalley via edelweiss


This was ok. The author is a creative writing professor and the movie "Stand by Me" had a great effect on him. The courses he teaches always centre around the coming-of-age theme and he uses King's "The Body" for study. The book talks a lot about nostalgia with the author turning it into a part memoir of his own coming-of-age. He examines some scenes in the movie and the book also comparing the two. I just found it to be more about the author, Aaron Burch, who I really am not interested in knowing about his personal life. The book being short held my attention long enough to finish it. BTW, "Stand By Me" is also one of my all time favourites which I've watched many more times than I've read "The Body". Each I read and saw first the years of publication.



The Pinkaboos #1&2: Bitterly and the Giant Problem & Belladonna and the Nightmare Academy by Laura & Jake Gosselin

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The Pinkaboos: Bitterly and the Giant Problem by Laura & Jake Gosselin
Illus. Billy Kelly
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Paperback, 96 pages
Published September 6th 2016 by Andrews McMeel Publishing
Source: egalley via Netgalley

The Pinkaboos (#1)


This is a lot of fun! I have a certain affection for books aimed at the 7-11 age group when they are well-written, The Pinkaboos is a fun series about a school for frights. Each fright will one day find their little girl and from then on they must protect her in dreams. Bitterly is the first to get a little girl, whose fear is giants. Bitterly learns how to teach her girl, Molly, to turn the tables on the giant and scare him! Belladonna if having her own problem with a school bully when she becomes the next student to get a little girl. And then the book leaves us hanging onto a cliff edge waiting for book 2. The art is an adorable mixture of gloom, goth and shades of bright pink! Loved it!





The Pinkaboos: Belladonna and the Nightmare Academy by L…