Wednesday, December 7, 2016

The Girl at Midnight

cover_imageTITLE: The Girl at Midnight
AUTHOR: Melissa Grey
PUBLISHER: Delacourt Press
GENRE: Fantasy
SERIES: The Girl At Midnight #1
APPROPRIATE AGE: grades 8-12 

SUMMARY: When the Ala, a magical, feathered being, caught Echo trying to pick her pocket as a child, she didn't see a homeless orphan, she saw hope. But now Echo is stuck in the middle of a war between the Avicen that she considers family and the dragon-like Drakharin. Only by teaming up with the Dragon Prince to find the Firebird can Echo finally end this centuries-old war.  
FAVORITE QUOTE: "The young always think they're invincible, right until the moment they learn otherwise. Usually the hard way." (Grey, )

WHAT I LIKED: I love the idea of a secret world full of magical creatures taking place right in the world of New York City (or should I say under it). The story starts out with the Ala visiting the New York City Public Library after hours with sunglasses and a scarf to cover her head of feathers. It makes you wonder how often magical people are hiding among us.

WHAT I DIDN'T LIKE: There is so much backstory to this book that I feel like it barely skims the surface. I really think this book series needs a prequel. I would LOVE to hear Rose's story. 

READALIKES: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

SERIES UPDATE: Book 2: The Shadow Hour, Book 3: The Savage Dawn will release July 11, 2017

BOOK TRAILER: official book trailer not available at the time this blog was published

Friday, December 2, 2016

Ink and Ashes

cover_imageTITLE: Ink and Ashes
AUTHOR: Valynne E. Maetani
PAGES: 386 pages
GENRE: Adventure, Mystery

SUMMARY: Claire Takata is your typical high school girl, she loves playing soccer, and hanging out with her brothers and best friends. But all that changes when she comes across a strange letter from her deceased father to her step father. Claire begins to question her father's death and her entire family's future. Digging deeper, she finds only secrets and lies from her mother and stepfather. But what happens when she digs too deep and finds that her father belonged to the yukuza, the Japanese mafia. Has she uncovered a secret that was better left buried? Has she put the rest of her family in danger? 

WHAT I LIKED: This book definitely kept me on my toes. I don't normally read mysteries because I can always figure out the ending too early. However, this book definitely throws you for a couple of loops before finally finding the actual culprit. 

WHAT I DIDN'T LIKE: Throughout the book Claire gets into a lot of trouble: things are stolen from her locker, eye balls are left wrapped like a present in her backpack, she's run off the road, and someone almost bombs her house. I seriously just wanted to shake the girl and say "Call the police! Tell your parents!" Its like any scary movie you watch, "Don't run up the stairs!" 

READALIKES: How to Disappear by Ann Redisch Stampler

BOOK TRAILER: not the official Book Trailer, but a pretty good one as far as being created by a student. Credit: Tobie Cattarin