Posts Categorized: 2014

The Scorpion Rules: Review + Erin Bow dinner + giveaway

The Scorpion Rules: Review + Erin Bow dinner + giveaway

You get two for the price of one today–Layla has a review of The Scorpion Rules for you, and Wendy has a giveaway + recap of the Erin Bow event she attended awhile back! Review: I enjoyed the hell out of this book. I have been in the middle of a fairly severe reading slump (and am also reading nonstop for my dissertation, so you know, take that into account, too) and The Scorpion Rules is one of the few books that have successfully broken through the haze of grumpiness I’ve been in for the last few months. But The Scorpion Rules really worked for me. From what I can tell, though, it seems like it’s been a fairly divisive read – you’ll either love it or you’ll hate it. Luckily for me, I am firmly on Team Scorpion Rules (and Team Talis!). If you like dark humor, morally ambiguous AIs,… Read more »

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Lies We Tell Ourselves: Review

Lies We Tell Ourselves: Review

Hey hey, guess what I just read? Lies We Tell Ourselves! A really great book that came out last year that I should have read immediately upon its release! Why? Because it’s an interracial lesbian romance set in the South during the desegregation of Virginia’s public school system. (You had me at lesbian romance.) Anyway, while it is not without its problems, Robin Talley’s Lies We Tell Ourselves is a really strong debut novel. I read it in one sitting, and it is a testament to the book’s excellence that I really enjoyed it despite having to endure a massive airport delay. (I wasn’t even bothered! I just wanted to sit down again so I could keep. reading. the book.) I wanted to review it because (1) if you haven’t read it, you should read it and (2) man, I have all the feelings about this one, and I want to… 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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Zodiac: Review

Zodiac: Review

Zodiac is the first in a science fiction series that centers around a galaxy where every planet takes after, both in name and its populations’ core values and personality, the different signs of the zodiac. Sounds cool, right? I was intrigued by the premise both because it seemed ripe for lots of cool world-building (and also anything centered around astrological signs is awesome). Unfortunately, Zodiac suffered from too much exposition and flat characters. The plot of Zodiac centers around there being a thirteenth sign that has returned to destroy the rest of the signs. After one of these attacks decimates most of Cancer’s population, including its Guardian, the person who protects and  leads the planet, our main character, Rho, is chosen to be her successor. Rho is the only person who believes Ophiuchus, the thirteenth sign is to blame. She goes across the galaxy with her advisor and an envoy from Libra to… Read more »

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The Queen of the Tearling: Review

The Queen of the Tearling: Review

Have you read The Queen of the Tearling yet? If not: stop what you are doing immediately; do not pass Go; do not collect $200. Just go read The Queen of the Tearling. You will not regret it. I’m really bummed that I didn’t read it sooner. (And didn’t read it soon enough to count it among my 2014 favorites, because it definitely is, you guys.) It’s the sort of novel I’m predisposed to like because it features all of the following: lost princesses, a kingdom in turmoil, a tiny bit of romance, and ladies being badasses. And the underlying message is “this is why books are important, you guys.” So, this is all to say: if you like any of all of these things, please go read The Queen of the Tearling, and then join me in biting my nails, squealing like a ten year-old, and making grabby hands for… Read more »

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The Midnight Garden’s Favorite Books of 2014

The Midnight Garden’s Favorite Books of 2014

If you’ve been paying attention to year-end Best of Young Adult Fiction lists, it’s interesting to note how many contemporary books wind up taking home the biggest prizes. Where’s the love for science fiction and fantasy? It’s a little baffling–and frustrating–that these genres remain largely unappreciated outside of the book community until some sort of crossover/commercial appeal suddenly deems them worthy of attention. While we’re certainly fans of well-written realistic fiction, we do think these kinds of results are a good reminder of why book blogs continue to be valuable resources for prolific readers. So regardless of genre, if you’re a reviewer, please continue to champion the books you love to fellow booklovers, and try to do your best with people who might not otherwise give YA a chance. There’s an incredible amount of challenging and moving young adult literature outside of the few that are recognized by mainstream media… Read more »

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Classic Readalong Discussion: Little Women

Classic Readalong Discussion: Little Women

It’s our very last classics discussion of the year! And what a long book it was, my GOODNESS. Thank you to everyone who read it with us–it’s been so fun chatting with everyone on Twitter, and we look forward to a lively discussion with you below as well! IT’S ALSO RECKONING TIME. Below you’ll find directions on how you may prove you completed/participated in the challenge this year. We have two giveaways, plus a little thing for some additional participants.     Kim: Okay, due to my most inconveniently timed illness I was only able to make it halfway through this book. Terrible! But I have been long familiar with the story ever since I saw the 1994 film adaptation as a wee one. (Also my first ever introduction to Little Women was this anime I had as a kid. It it very dear to teeny tiny Kim’s heart )… Read more »

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