Friday, August 31, 2018

The Prince and the Pooch

Image result for The prince and the pooch coverFrom Goodreads:    When Joe gets a chance to prove himself as coach and discovers that it is not as easy as it seems, Wishbone is reminded of the tale in which a poor boy trades places with the crown prince of England, each one believing that the other has the easier life.

My Thoughts:

-    Gnome and I both loved this one. It was fun to imagine Wishbone as both Edward and Tom. 

-    This was a really fun introduction to The Prince and The Pauper. It is my favorite Mark Twain book, so I'm glad Gnome liked it and is interested in the story.

-    Gnome laughed several times, especially when Wishbone helped Joe with coaching. 

Thursday, August 30, 2018

The Bitter Kingdom

The Bitter Kingdom (Fire and Thorns, #3)Goodreads Synopsis:    The champion must not waver.
The champion must not fear.
The gate of darkness closes.

Elisa is a fugitive.

Her enemies have stolen the man she loves, and they await her at the gate of darkness. Her country is on the brink of civil war, with her own soldiers ordered to kill her on sight.

Her Royal Majesty, Queen Lucero-Elisa né Riqueza de Vega, bearer of the Godstone, will lead her three loyal companions deep into the enemy's kingdom, a land of ice and snow and brutal magic, to rescue Hector and win back her throne. Her power grows with every step, and the shocking secrets she will uncover on this, her final journey, could change the course of history.

But that is not all. She has a larger destiny. She must become the champion the world has been waiting for.

Even of those who hate her most.

My Thoughts:

-    This was a perfect ending to a great series.

-    Elisa's journey was incredible. I loved her character growth. I can't say enough about it.

-    I loved all the other characters too. I liked that we got to see Cosme again, and I was excited that we finally got to see Alodia.

-    I liked Elisa and Hector's relationship a lot, but I was a little bugged about Hector's overprotectiveness. Elisa became so powerful in this book, and Hector still thought she needed him to protect her. I understand that he always wanted to be by her side, but she was far from the helpless girl she was in the first book. 

-    I loved seeing the different countries from Carson's world. The world building was great! I felt so immersed.

-    I highly recommend this trilogy to all fantasy and YA lovers!

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past

The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past (Zelda, #9)Goodreads Synopsis:    A terrible tragedy befalls Link's family and friends when the traitorous Agahnim launches a plot to seize the Triforce and unleash a terrible evil on the world. To bring justice to Agahnim, Link needs the Master Sword and sets off on a quest to find it. Link's journey may also help him discover what happened to his parents, and while Agahnim's minions and traps are dangerous, this link to the past may be even more challenging!

My Thoughts:

-    This story should have been stretched over a couple volumes. It rushed a lot.

-    I want more details about Ghanti's history. She was the most interesting character.

-    This was not my favorite Link and Zelda design. The artwork was okay, but I like other character designs better.

-    There was part of the book that was telling and not showing, which was really weird for a graphic novel. I understand that they were trying to get through a bunch of dungeon stuff, but still.

-    I feel like the story was misnamed. It should have been a A Link to Dark and Light or A Link to Two Worlds.

-    Is Ganon's true form a pig? He is usually in pig form when I see him, but I know he has a gerudo form sometimes too. 

Previous Books in the Series:

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - Part 1 (Zelda, #1) The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - Part 2 (Zelda, #2) The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask (Zelda, #3)
The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons (Zelda, #4) The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages (Zelda, #5) The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords - Part 1 (Zelda, #6)
The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords - Part 2 (Zelda, #7) The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap (Zelda, #8)

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Lair of Dreams

Lair of Dreams (The Diviners, #2)Goodreads Synopsis:    The longing of dreams draws the dead, and this city holds many dreams.

After a supernatural showdown with a serial killer, Evie O’Neill has outed herself as a Diviner. With her uncanny ability to read people’s secrets, she’s become a media darling, earning the title “America’s Sweetheart Seer.” Everyone’s in love with the city’s newest It Girl…everyone except the other Diviners.

Piano-playing Henry DuBois and Chinatown resident Ling Chan are two Diviners struggling to keep their powers a secret—for they can walk in dreams. And while Evie is living the high life, victims of a mysterious sleeping sickness are turning up across New York City.

As Henry searches for a lost love and Ling strives to succeed in a world that shuns her, a malevolent force infects their dreams. And at the edges of it all lurks a man in a stovepipe hat who has plans that extend farther than anyone can guess…As the sickness spreads, can the Diviners descend into the dreamworld to save the city?

In this heart-stopping sequel to The Diviners, Printz Award-winning and New York Times bestselling author Libba Bray takes readers deeper into the mystical underbelly of New York City.

My Thoughts:

-    I thought the first book was creepy. This book takes creepy up a notch. It was fun though. While I was creeped out at night and sometimes afraid to sleep, I enjoyed the ride.

-    I love the story, but the book is really long. I don't know what parts could be cut out though. There is a lot of good stuff happening, but the book is too long.

-    The ending is one heck of a thrill ride! I loved it!

-    I loved how Libba addressed the segregation and racism in America in the 20s. She wasn't pushing a message and didn't call it out, she just told the honest truth from a Chinese girl's perspective and a black boy's perspective. Thank you!

-    I liked that I got to know different characters and their backgrounds in this book. In the first book, it focused on Evie and a couple other characters, and this book was more for Henry and Ling. I liked that different characters got to shine. 

-    I can't say enough about the setting. Libba really outdid herself. I felt so immersed in New York in the 20s. I loved it. I love all the finery, jazz, and jargon. It's so much fun. 

Previous Book in The Diviners' Trilogy:

The Diviners (The Diviners, #1)

Monday, August 27, 2018

The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap

The Legend of Zelda: The Minish Cap (Zelda, #8)Goodreads Says:    On the day of the Picori Festival, Link and Princess Zelda go to watch the sword-fighting tournament. The winner is a strange man named Vaati, who has come to claim the Light Force which is sealed within the Bound Chest. When the Light Force turns up missing, Vaati turns Princess Zelda to stone! To save his friend, Link needs the power of the Picori Blade, but only a certain master swordsmith can reforge it. Can Link find the pieces of the broken sword before Vaati does?

My Thoughts:

-    This was a really fun story, and I kinda want to play the game now.

-    I loved the whole idea of the Picoris. They were so cute and fun.

-    I liked the cap's story, and I liked Vaati's story. The story as a whole was thought out and well presented, and the characters were all likeable and good.  

Previous Books in the Series:

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - Part 1 (Zelda, #1) The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - Part 2 (Zelda, #2) The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask (Zelda, #3)
The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons (Zelda, #4) The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages (Zelda, #5) The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords - Part 1 (Zelda, #6)
The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords - Part 2 (Zelda, #7)

Friday, August 24, 2018

Kiss of the Spindle

Kiss of the Spindle (Steampunk Proper Romance #2)From Goodreads:    A steampunk Sleeping Beauty story from the author of Beauty and the Clockwork Beast.

Doctor Isla Cooper is cursed. Literally. Each night, at the stroke of midnight she falls into a death-like sleep from which she cannot be awakened for six hours. To make it worse, the curse has an expiration date—after a year, it becomes permanent. And the year is almost up.

In a desperate attempt to find Malette—the witch who cursed her—Isla blackmails her way onto Daniel Pickett's private airship bound for the Caribbean, only to discover she's traveling with three illegal shapeshifters and the despicable Nigel Crowe, a government official determined to hunt down and exterminate every shapeshifter in England. Isla and Daniel must work together to keep the identities of the shapeshifters hidden while coming to terms with their own hidden secrets, and their blossoming attraction to each other.

Filled with suspense, intrigue, and plenty of romance, Kiss of the Spindle is steampunk Sleeping Beauty story. It is a race against the clock as Isla and Daniel try to hunt down the elusive Malette before Isla's death-like sleep becomes permanent.

My Thoughts:

-    The romance completely took over everything in this book, and it wasn't a good romance either. It was ridiculous. I don't remember rolling my eyes so many times during a book. 

-    I know this is a romance novel, and the romance should be a main focus, but it was just too much. I wanted more about the shifters and other things.

-    Isla was not a new character. Daniel pretty much fell in love with his sister. Yes, Isla is EXACTLY the same person as Lucy from Beauty and the Clockwork Beast.

-    I didn't care for Daniel very much. His emotions were everywhere. 

-    I wish the story had stuck with steampunk and science. All the magic and dragon stuff at the end stretched it a bit too far for me. 

Thursday, August 23, 2018

The Optimist's Guide to Letting Go

The Optimist's Guide to Letting GoGoodreads Synopsis:    Three generations. Seven days. One big secret. The author of The Coincidence of Coconut Cake unfolds a mother-daughter story told by three women whose time to reckon with a life-altering secret is running out.

Gina Zoberski wants to make it through one day without her fastidious mother, Lorraine, cataloguing all her faults, and her sullen teenage daughter, May, snubbing her. Too bad there’s no chance of that. Her relentlessly sunny disposition annoys them both, no matter how hard she tries. Instead, Gina finds order and comfort in obsessive list-making and her work at Grilled G’s, the gourmet grilled cheese food truck built by her late husband.

But when Lorraine suffers a sudden stroke, Gina stumbles upon a family secret Lorraine's kept hidden for forty years. In the face of her mother’s failing health and her daughter’s rebellion, this optimist might find that piecing together the truth is the push she needs to let go...

My Thoughts:

-    Reichert has written another lovely story. This one was different from her other books. It wasn't the warm and tender romance, but it was still a heart warming story full of love.

-    I love how the author incorporates food into her books. She makes common foods sound SO amazing! I want brownies and grilled cheese!

-    I liked that Reichert wrote something a little different. It was mostly sad, but it ended on a happy and hopeful note. 

-    I loved how each section had a chapter from each character. I liked getting the different generations' perspective. I also liked the flashbacks from Lorraine and Gina.

-    I loved Lorraine's and Gina's stories. I love how they met their husbands and how similar their stories were.

-    This is one of those stories that become the go to cozy books. 

-    I'm so glad I discovered this author last year, and I hope she keeps writing! 

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords - Part 2

The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords - Part 2 (Zelda, #7)From Goodreads:    The green, red and blue Links reach Death Mountain, where they challenge Shadow Link and Violet Link in battle. Then, inside the Fire Temple they learn a terrible secret about the Dark World and the evil power behind Vaati. To defeat this great enemy, the different colored Links must find a way to become one again in order to harness the power of the Four Sword!

My Thoughts:

-    Part 2 has more of a story than Part 1.

-    I liked how each Link overcame their specific weakness.

-    I didn't know Tingle was in multiple Zelda games! He is the worst character!

Previous Books in the Series:

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - Part 1 (Zelda, #1) The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - Part 2 (Zelda, #2) The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask (Zelda, #3)
The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons (Zelda, #4) The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages (Zelda, #5) The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords - Part 1 (Zelda, #6)

The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords - Part 1

The Legend of Zelda: Four Swords - Part 1 (Zelda, #6)From Goodreads:    Link, now a Hylian Knight, serves Princess Zelda at Hyrule Castle. When Shadow Link kidnaps Princess Zelda, Link once again must prepare himself to defeat the forces of evil. To do so, he needs the legendary Four Sword, but getting it means releasing and then battling the ancient evil power Vaati. The Four Sword also splits Link into four different versions of himself, and these new Links aren't team players! Rescuing Zelda, beating Vaati, and getting his wild alter-egos under control isn't going to be easy!

My Thoughts:

-    I haven't played Four Swords either, and I don't think I will.

-    Thank goodness the artists gave each Link different eyes, so I could tell the difference between the four Links. They call each other different colors, but the manga is in black and white, so the eyes were the only thing I could really go on.

-    This series is for a younger audience. Gnome really enjoys them, but they are a bit juvenile for me.

-    One Link is plenty! Having four Links was a little annoying. 

-    I read this a couple weeks go, and I don't remember much of the story, which is not a good thing. All I remember is the Links arguing. 

Previous Books in the Series:

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - Part 1 (Zelda, #1) The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - Part 2 (Zelda, #2) The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask (Zelda, #3)
The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons (Zelda, #4) The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages (Zelda, #5)

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Bout of Books Progress

grab button for Bout of Books

Day 1
August 20

Books Read:    0
Pages Read:    182
Total Books Read:    0
Total Pages Read:    182
My Thoughts:    Although it was the first day of school, I managed to read a fair amount!

Day 2
August 21

Books Read:    0
Pages Read:    100
Total Books Read:    0
Total Pages Read:    282
My Thoughts:    Crazy that I read exactly 100 pages. Nice! I wanted to read more, but life happened.

Day 3
August 22

Books Read:    0
Pages Read:    119
Total Books Read:    0
Total Pages Read:    401
My Thoughts:    I haven't been able to read as much as I want, but at least I'm getting 100 pages a day.

Day 4
August 23

Books Read:    0
Pages Read:    105
Total Books Read:    0
Total Pages Read:    506
My Thoughts:    Well, this hasn't been my best Bout of Books week, but at least I'm getting some reading in. There are still a few more days left! 

Monday, August 20, 2018

The Invaders

The Invaders (Brotherband Chronicles, #2)Goodreads Synopsis:    The adventure continues in the Ranger's Apprentice companion trilogy!

Hal and the Herons have done the impossible. This group of outsiders has beaten out the strongest, most skilled young warriors in all of Skandia to win the Brotherband competition. But their celebration comes to an abrupt end when the Skandians' most sacred artifact, the Andomal, is stolen--and the Herons are to blame.

To find redemption they must track down the thief Zavac and recover the Andomal. But that means traversing stormy seas, surviving a bitter winter, and battling a group of deadly pirates willing to protect their prize at all costs. Even Brotherband training and the help of Skandia's greatest warrior may not be enough to ensure that Hal and his friends return home with the Andomal--or their lives.

My Thoughts:

-    I love this author! He is an amazing storyteller. I get so immersed in his world, and I get so attached to his characters. I'll never get tired of his books. 

-    I loved how each boy grew and overcame their individual weaknesses. I loved seeing them come together stronger team. The trust and friendship are so great!

-    I enjoyed getting to know Thorn better. His story is very intriguing. 

-    I liked the new characters, especially Lydia. She is a formidable character, and I hope she doesn't cause too much trouble in the Brotherband.

-    It was so fun to see Hal put a plan of attack into motion. I loved the battle to take back the town.

-    I can't say enough about this series or the this author. I love it!

Previous book in the Brotherband Chronicles:

The Outcasts (Brotherband Chronicles, #1)

Bout of Books Goals

grab button for Bout of Books

It is Bout of Books week! Woo!
I'm excited to get started!

Here is my book lineup:
Before the Devil Breaks You (The Diviners, #3) The White Stag
Slaves of Socorro (Brotherband Chronicles, #4) Anne of Green Gables: A Graphic Novel

I hope I can finish all these!
Good luck everyone!

Friday, August 17, 2018


DogsFrom Goodreads:    Since the wolf first snuck into the caves of our ancestors to take warmth from the fire, dogs have been man’s constant companion. Dogs, multi-award-winning photographer Tim Flach’s stunning follow-up to the critically acclaimed Equus, delves deep into the psyche of this enduring bond with Canis familiaris to present an exquisite study of “man’s best friend.”

From specimens on show at Crufts and Westminster to shelter dogs lovingly rescued by volunteers; from the grace and agility of racing greyhounds to adored domestic companions; from Afghan hounds to Hungarian komondors to Chinese crested, the images featured in Dogs promise to deliver one of the most appealing, popular, and exciting photographic tributes to dogs ever published. 

My Thoughts:

-    I'm a dog lover! My dad and siblings are dog people. I'm making my girls dog lovers too. 

-    Gnome and I enjoyed this book. It had AMAZING photographs of various dogs. We laughed and oohed and aahed. It was fun. The baby even enjoyed the pictures.

-    We also enjoyed learning about the different breeds and dogs in the book. I liked getting the background stories of the dogs being photographed. 

-    I wish my library had more Tim Flach books. This was fun. 

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Caddie Woodlawn

Caddie WoodlawnGoodreads Synopsis:    Caddie Woodlawn is a real adventurer. She'd rather hunt than sew and plow than bake, and tries to beat her brother's dares every chance she gets. Caddie is friends with Indians, who scare most of the neighbors -- neighbors who, like her mother and sisters, don't understand her at all.
Caddie is brave, and her story is special because it's based on the life and memories of Carol Ryrie Brink's grandmother, the real Caddie Woodlawn. Her spirit and sense of fun have made this book a classic that readers have taken to their hearts for more than seventy years.

My Thoughts:
-    Hooray for a Newbery book that I enjoyed!! 
-    Caddie is a fun character. I liked her tenacity and selfless kindness. She was down to earth and all around likeable. 
-    The story reminded me of Little House on the Prairie. I would definitely recommend this if your a Laura Ingalls Wilder fan.
-    I really liked the cast of characters. I liked each of them for different reasons. I loved the dogs.
-    I liked how the book addressed the relationship between the settlers and the Native Americans. The settlers were afraid for no reason. I liked that the two groups of people were able to share the same area and not get in each others' way, but I also love that Caddie made friends with Indian John.
-    I know I read this when I was in middle school, but I could only remember a couple things, so I'm glad I was able to read it again. 

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages

The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Ages (Zelda, #5)From Goodreads:    After defeating the evil General Onox in Holodrum, Link returns to Hyrule. One day, Impa, Princess Zelda's attendant, asks Link to accompany her into the forest to find Nayru, the Oracle of Ages. But Veran, the evil Sorceress of Shadows, has possessed Impa in order to deceive Link. Veran then possesses Nayru and travels back to the past to kill one of Link's ancestors so that Link will never be born! Link once again battles across time to save Hyrule - and himself!

My Thoughts:

-    Most of the story is like a bad cartoon, but the ending is decent.

-    Why can't we get a Link that is like Raven? He was SO cool, and he was all dark and mysterious. I want a Link like that.

-    I think these mangas are geared towards kids, and I wish they were more YA or something. Zelda fans range in varying ages, and I wish these appealed to a wider audience. 

Previous Books in the Series:

The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - Part 1 (Zelda, #1) The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time - Part 2 (Zelda, #2) The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask (Zelda, #3)
The Legend of Zelda: Oracle of Seasons (Zelda, #4)