A Brief Review: A Monster Calls

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness, Siobhan Dowd (Conception)
Rating: 4 Stars
Series: Standalone
Length: 206 Pages
Purchase: [Amazon] | [Barnes & Noble]

Synopsis:
At seven minutes past midnight, thirteen-year-old Conor wakes to find a monster outside his bedroom window. But it isn’t the monster Conor’s been expecting– he’s been expecting the one from his nightmare, the nightmare he’s had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments. The monster in his backyard is different. It’s ancient. And wild. And it wants something from Conor. Something terrible and dangerous. It wants the truth. From the final idea of award-winning author Siobhan Dowd– whose premature death from cancer prevented her from writing it herself– Patrick Ness has spun a haunting and darkly funny novel of mischief, loss, and monsters both real and imagined.

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Graphic Novel Review: Hotel Dare

Hotel Dare by Terry Blas, Claudia Aguirre (Illustrations)
Rating: 4 Stars
Series: Standalone
Length: 144 Pages
Purchase: [Amazon] | [Barnes & Noble]

Synopsis:
It’s not your typical family vacation when Olive, and her adopted siblings Darwin and Charlotte find themselves falling into other worlds as they explore Grandma Lupé’s strange hotel.

OPEN THE DOOR. ADVENTURE AWAITS.

Olive and her adopted siblings Charlotte and Darwin are spending the summer with their estranged grandma at her creepy hotel and it’s all work and no play. They’re stuck inside doing boring chores but they soon stumble upon an incredible secret… Behind each room door of the hotel lies a portal to a different strange and mysterious place. The simple turn of a knob transports them to a distant magical world filled with space pirates. Behind the next door are bearded wizards. Down the hall is a doorway to a cotton-candied kingdom. But once the doors are opened, worlds start colliding, and only one family can save them before they tear themselves apart.

Written by Terry Blas (The Amazing World of Gumball) and illustrated by the talented Claudia Aguirre (Kim & Kim), this world-hopping fantasy tale breaks down the door to imagination and dares you to embrace the idea that family is everything.

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Graphic Novel Review: Mooncakes

Mooncakes by Suzanne Walker, Wendy Xu (Artist)
Rating: 5 Stars
Series:  Standalone
Length: 259 Pages
Purchase: [Amazon] | [Barnes & Noble]

ARC provided by the publisher via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review.

Synopsis:
A story of love and demons, family and witchcraft.

Nova Huang knows more about magic than your average teen witch. She works at her grandmothers’ bookshop, where she helps them loan out spell books and investigate any supernatural occurrences in their New England town.

One fateful night, she follows reports of a white wolf into the woods, and she comes across the unexpected: her childhood crush, Tam Lang, battling a horse demon in the woods. As a werewolf, Tam has been wandering from place to place for years, unable to call any town home.

Pursued by dark forces eager to claim the magic of wolves and out of options, Tam turns to Nova for help. Their latent feelings are rekindled against the backdrop of witchcraft, untested magic, occult rituals, and family ties both new and old in this enchanting tale of self-discovery.

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Book Review: Dragon Curse

Dragon Curse by Lisa McMann
Rating: 5 Stars
Series:  The Unwanteds Quests, #4
Length: 432 Pages
Purchase: [Amazon] | [Barnes & Noble]

Synopsis:
At last, after harrowing battles and devastating losses, the three Stowe siblings are reunited. Back in Artime, however, their joy at finding one another is short lived. Fifer loses her leadership position and struggles to find her place and purpose, while Thisbe is relentless in her determination to return to the land of the dragons and help Rohan rescue the other black-eyed children. Aaron fails to ward off increasing opposition from a resentful Frieda Stubbs and the dissenters, leading to a shocking and dangerous turn.

Meanwhile the Revinir pursues Thisbe and Drock all the way to the seven islands, putting the people of Artimé in peril. To save them, Thisbe makes an unthinkable sacrifice that leaves Fifer, Aaron, and the others to face political eruption and destruction in the formerly peaceful magical world.

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September Recap – Crash and Burn

 

NMRL

WHAT. HAPPENED.
I don’t even think ever I failed at this level before. I only read just 1 book for the entire month of October. I can’t even remember what happened. Was I busy the beginning of the month? Was I putting more effort in the blog rather than reading? I know there was some days where I opted to make posts rather than reading. I guess I just did not realize the trade off was going to be this. Well, hopefully this month, I’ll do better.

Read:

Dragon Curse (The Unwanteds Quests, #4)

Dragon Curse by Lisa McMann – ★★★★★

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Book Review: City of Ghosts

City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab
Rating: 4 Stars
Series: Cassidy Blake, #1
Length: 272 Pages
Purchase: [Amazon] | [Barnes & Noble]

Synopsis:
Cassidy Blake’s parents are The Inspecters, a (somewhat inept) ghost-hunting team. But Cass herself can REALLY see ghosts. In fact, her best friend, Jacob, just happens to be one.

When The Inspecters head to ultra-haunted Edinburgh, Scotland, for their new TV show, Cass—and Jacob—come along. In Scotland, Cass is surrounded by ghosts, not all of them friendly. Then she meets Lara, a girl who can also see the dead. But Lara tells Cassidy that as an In-betweener, their job is to send ghosts permanently beyond the Veil. Cass isn’t sure about her new mission, but she does know the sinister Red Raven haunting the city doesn’t belong in her world. Cassidy’s powers will draw her into an epic fight that stretches through the worlds of the living and the dead, in order to save herself.

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Book Review: You Asked For Perfect

You Asked For Perfect by Laura Silverman
Rating: 4 Stars
Series: Standalone
Length: 288 Pages
Purchase: [Amazon] | [Barnes & Noble]

Synopsis:
Senior Ariel Stone is the perfect college applicant: first chair violin, dedicated community volunteer, and expected valedictorian. He works hard – really hard – to make his life look effortless. A failed Calculus quiz is not part of that plan. Not when he’s number one. Not when his peers can smell weakness like a freshman’s body spray.

Figuring a few all-nighters will preserve his class rank, Ariel throws himself into studying. His friends will understand if he skips a few plans, and he can sleep when he graduates. Except Ariel’s grade continues to slide. Reluctantly, he gets a tutor. Amir and Ariel have never gotten along, but Amir excels in Calculus, and Ariel is out of options.

Ariel may not like Calc, but he might like Amir. Except adding a new relationship to his long list of commitments may just push him past his limit.

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Book Review: The Rise of Kyoshi

The Rise of Kyoshi by F.C. Yee
Rating: 4 Stars
Series: The Kyoshi Novels, #1
Length: 442 Pages
Purchase: [Amazon] | [Barnes & Noble]

Synopsis:
F. C. Yee’s The Rise of Kyoshi delves into the story of Kyoshi, the Earth Kingdom–born Avatar. The longest-living Avatar in this beloved world’s history, Kyoshi established the brave and respected Kyoshi Warriors, but also founded the secretive Dai Li, which led to the corruption, decline, and fall of her own nation. The first of two novels based on Kyoshi, The Rise of Kyoshi maps her journey from a girl of humble origins to the merciless pursuer of justice who is still feared and admired centuries after she became the Avatar.

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Book Review: The Okay Witch

The Okay Witch by Emma Steinkellner
Rating: 5 Stars
Series: Standalone
Length: 272Pages
Purchase: [Amazon] | [Barnes & Noble]

ARC provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Synopsis:
Magic is harder than it looks.

Thirteen-year-old Moth Hush loves all things witchy. But she’s about to discover that witches aren’t just the stuff of movies, books, and spooky stories. When some eighth-grade bullies try to ruin her Halloween, something really strange happens. It turns out that Founder’s Bluff, Massachusetts, has a centuries-old history of witch drama. And, surprise: Moth’s family is at the center of it all! When Moth’s new powers show up, things get totally out-of-control. She meets a talking cat, falls into an enchanted diary, and unlocks a hidden witch world. Secrets surface from generations past as Moth unravels the complicated legacy at the heart of her town, her family, and herself.

In this spellbinding graphic novel debut, Emma Steinkellner spins a story packed with humor and heart about the weird and wonderful adventures of a witch-in-progress.

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Book Review: Spin the Dawn

Spin the Dawn by Elizabeth Lim
Rating: 5 Stars
Series: The Blood of Stars, #1
Length: 385 Pages
Purchase: [Amazon] | [Barnes & Noble]

Synopsis:
Maia Tamarin dreams of becoming the greatest tailor in the land, but as a girl, the best she can hope for is to marry well. When a royal messenger summons her ailing father, once a tailor of renown, to court, Maia poses as a boy and takes his place. She knows her life is forfeit if her secret is discovered, but she’ll take that risk to achieve her dream and save her family from ruin. There’s just one catch: Maia is one of twelve tailors vying for the job.

Backstabbing and lies run rampant as the tailors compete in challenges to prove their artistry and skill. Maia’s task is further complicated when she draws the attention of the court magician, Edan, whose piercing eyes seem to see straight through her disguise.

And nothing could have prepared her for the final challenge: to sew three magic gowns for the emperor’s reluctant bride-to-be, from the laughter of the sun, the tears of the moon, and the blood of stars. With this impossible task before her, she embarks on a journey to the far reaches of the kingdom, seeking the sun, the moon, and the stars, and finding more than she ever could have imagined.

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