Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Spinning Starlight by R. C. Lewis


“The Wild Swans” fairy tale is given a science fiction spin with a few less brothers than in the original, (8 instead of 11), but the same plot sketch- -a sister must rescue her brothers from an evil woman, without speaking. Rather than being turned into swans, the brothers are trapped in worm hole like conduits that their people use for traveling, to help stabilize the network.

Liddi is the youngest in the family and loved by all her brothers. She’ll inherit the majority of the family company when she comes of age, and is used to the life of celebrity- the one where everyone but family uses you to get further up in society; the one where no one sees Liddi for who she is, rather, only what she can do for their social status. Liddi feels the pressure of being the heir and spends a lot of time worrying about how she’ll never measure up to her brothers. When she is taken to a new planet, through one of those conduits, she is unrecognized and can finally let go of some of her insecurities and be creative, an especially useful talkent without her voice. I loved Liddi’s vid-cam monologues that she had going on in her head. The entertainment news is very vacuous; much like some of ours is today.

This is a nice addition to a library where retold fairy tales are popular.  Stitching Snow is another one by this author.  

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

The Devil You Know by Trish Doller

When a book by Ms. Doller comes across my desk, I read it. She does such an amazing job capturing characters. I can hear her character’s voices in my head, I always know who is “talking” and what kind of person they are.  

Arcadia, Cadie to her friends, is my kind of girl.  She’s smart, responsible, kind to her little brother, and ready for an adventure. She’s finally ready to let her hair down and be a kid again.  She’s been taking care of her little brother, and Dad, since her mother died a few years ago.  I love her thought processes and the way she is trying to find her way back into her own sense of self. She is aware of her choices, recognizes her strengths and weaknesses, and knows when she’s getting in over her head.  She goes with the two cousins she just met (!) on a road trip for the weekend, leaving her cares behind, only to get caught up in more drama than she planned.  Cadie just graduated, so I wouldn’t recommend this for younger teens, as the activities are definitely more advanced.

Favorite quotes:

“I hate that my present is rubbing up against my past.” Pg. 44

“I’ve ensnared myself in my own stupid, imaginary drama.” Pg. 45 

“Poach?” My eyebrows practically climb up into my hairline. “Seriously? Like I’m an endangered white rhino instead of a person? Pretty sure I’m capable of choosing for myself, instead of waiting around for you guys to decide who gets me. So that’s not what you meant by poach, right?” Pg.55 

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Falls the Shadow by Stefanie Gaither

Goodreads blurb:
When Cate Benson was a kid, her sister, Violet, died. Two hours after the funeral, Cate’s family picked up Violet’s replacement. Like nothing had happened. Because Cate’s parents are among those who decided to give their children a sort of immortality—by cloning them at birth—which means this new Violet has the same smile. The same perfect face. Thanks to advancements in mind-uploading technology, she even has all of the same memories as the girl she replaced.

She also might have murdered the most popular girl in school.

At least, that’s what the paparazzi and the anti-cloning protesters want everyone to think: that clones are violent, unpredictable monsters. Cate is used to hearing all that. She’s used to defending her sister, too. But Violet has vanished, and when Cate sets out to find her, she ends up in the line of fire instead. Because Cate is getting dangerously close to secrets that will rock the foundation of everything she thought was true.

Falls the Shadow is an action filled clone book.  I think with the popularity of clones (Orphan Black, anyone?) this will move fairly well at my library.  It has a cool sister relationship that gives the story line a little much needed depth.  The romance was a little much for me, in that I didn’t feel like there was much chance for a real build.  It’s just “Oh yeah, he’s always been there, and says he always will be. So I guess I should believe him.”  I did like this one better than The Haven, because there was more science and world building, so I felt like I knew more about what was happening.  

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

There will come a time by Carrie Arcos


Mark is a twin, his sister Grace died in a car accident while driving with Mark, leaving him mourning and feeling guilty for surviving. Hanna, Grace’s best friend, finds a list of five things to do in Grace’s purse after the accident.  Hanna and Mark decide to do the things as a way to remember, honor Grace, and say goodbye. It’s hard for Mark to deal with when Hanna seems to keep bringing other people into the activities they had planned.  He doesn’t want to share this last bit of his sister with anyone.  There is some potential romance between Hanna and Mark, that also clouds Marks feelings and desires.  How he deals with those things makes this story wonderfully compelling.  Ms. Arcos does a remarkable job of realistically portraying grief in it’s many forms.  

This was one of my favorite reads from the summer. I don't normally like "bucket lists." yet I liked this one.