Classic Readalong Discussion: Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH

Classic Readalong Discussion: Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH

Today’s readalong discussion is Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH! Are you ready to have your heart warmed by a valiant young mouse? To swoon over a dashing rat captain of the guard?  (Yes, you read that correctly.) We all loved this month’s book, so let’s dive right in. As always, while we’re always hoping that our discussions will encourage new readers to pick up these books, we do discuss specific spoilers in each story.   Wendy: I’m very fond of extraordinarily handsome rats. :D Layla: I first read this in junior high school (and still have my copy today, boo-yeah!). I remember avoiding Frisby for awhile because I was really into fantasy novels and thought the cover / title were unappealing. Boy howdy was I wrong. I loved this book as a kid and I still love it now; it has officially withstood the test of time for… Read more »

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Princess Decomposia and Count Spatula: blog tour

Princess Decomposia and Count Spatula: blog tour

If you’re a reader of this blog or follow me on Instagram or Twitter, you’re probably aware that I am pretty serious about my food. If I’m not chattering on about books, I’m bombarding you with cake photos, right? So I was delighted to be asked to participate in the blog tour for Princess Decomposia and Count Spatula, a new graphic novel about a princess of the underworld who gets more than she bargained for when she hires a new cook–who happens to be a vampire–for her father’s castle. I quite enjoyed the humorous tone of the story, which is aptly described as “gothy-cute sensibility” and a “very sweet and mildly spooky tale.” It’s a fun one to read with kids, who will enjoy the Princess’ dilemmas and the appealing artwork. This blog tour is especially fun because the author is sharing unique illustrations and recipes with each stop! Ours… Read more »

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Red Queen: Review

Red Queen: Review

I am sad to say that Red Queen is yet another bland and wholly unexceptional entry in YA fantasy. What starts out with potential is ultimately unable to fulfill the promise of its premise. Here you have the story of a common girl, Mare, a Red, who finds herself in a position to make an actual impact against the brutal oppression of the supernaturally powered Silvers, and yet the story is one long slog fest of tired trope after another. The writing is competent, yet far from stunning. But it was the convenience of the plot that first got my hackles raised. In the space of a single day Mare: is selected from obscurity to get a job serving in the castle after a chance run in with one of the princes (he is obviously instantly enamored of her) is sent out to serve the most important families in the… Read more »

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The Mime Order: Review + Giveaway

The Mime Order: Review + Giveaway

Well, this one took me completely by surprise. I had enjoyed The Bone Season, but with reservations, considering how long it took me to really understand the incredible world Samantha Shannon has built for us. It took me very little time at all, however, to disappear into the pages of this second installment of the genre bending series. At once futuristic and Victorian, The Mime Order is a fantastical, dystopian, paranormal murder mystery, and I couldn’t get enough of it. This a lush and opulent storyworld, one that unfolds in intricate detail and rewards the reader for their patience. It is perfect for character readers and for anyone who would love a series that offers a “crash course” in the nuances of its world (like me! I am one of those people!). Reading this, and even though it is third person, I felt like I was walking with Paige through… Read more »

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The Walls Around Us: Review

The Walls Around Us: Review

I’m torn on this one, you guys. There were many things I liked about Nova Ren Suma’s The Walls Around Us: the prose style is gorgeous, and I was much more interested than I expected to be in a story about killer ballerinas. On the other hand, I saw the twists coming from a mile away (rare for me!), but dammit, I was still so interested in this book up until the last twenty-five pages or so. The basic premise of The Walls Around Us: Amber’s in a juvenile detention center, Violet’s off to Julliard. These are our novel’s two narrators. Both their stories are bound together by their relationship to Ori – a promising young ballerina who is sent to the same juvenile detention center after allegedly murdering two rival ballerinas. As readers, we never get Ori’s story directly, but are asked to piece it together from Amber and Violet’s accounts. (This… Read more »

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Talon: Review

Talon: Review

I didn’t know I needed a book about dragons masquerading as humans until I found one. Talon is about a world where the remaining dragons hide in plain sight in human form in order to stay alive and a girl who wants more for her life than what has been laid out for her. Although I had some issues with it, I liked the interesting characters, their relationships with each others, and the dragon culture. The book follows multiple perspectives, but the main character is Ember. She and her twin brother, Dante, have been moved to a small beach town for the summer by Talon so they can learn to blend in with normal human teenagers. For Ember, this is her one, brief period of time where she can have fun and do whatever she wants before the next stage of her mysterious training begins and she is officially locked into… Read more »

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Make Your Own Book-Inspired Tattoos + Free Winner’s Trilogy download

Make Your Own Book-Inspired Tattoos + Free Winner’s Trilogy download

Today we have a special Valentine’s week treat for you! We’re pretty big fans of temporary tattoos here at The Midnight Garden, so why not make your own and wear your favorite book quote? There aren’t nearly enough YA book products out there, and this is an easy and inexpensive way to get exactly what you want. Today I’m sharing a tutorial for creating your own temporary tattoos using quotes from a favorite book, in this case, the lovely, torturous The Winner’s Crime by Marie Rutkoski–so perfect and swooningly romantic for this week! This DIY project is super easy to do, and they make fun little gifts for your favorite reader, too. You could even make a little tattoo kit for someone using designs you printed–pack them up into a little glassine envelope with a printed label and they’ll be such a nice present. Make Your Own Book-Inspired Tattoos! Supplies:… Read more »

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