Tuesday, March 31, 2015

January & February 2015 Reading

The hard part of springtime for me is the prep which goes into the homeschool conferences I vend. Numbers and business detail absorb much of my time, and not much writing gets done, including my blogging. However, the good news is that I’m often piling through books during this time too, trying to catch up on the latest releases. So here’s a glimpse of what I’ve been consuming of late:

Series: #1 in untitled series
Author: Bryan Davis
Genre: Rhyming children’s picture book

Synopsis: A young boy wrestles with his bed—literally—when it’s time to sleep.
Review: The rhythm and rhyme of this story is a bit stiff and even awkward at times, but the humor of a young child struggling with bedtime will endear this story to many kids.

Girl in the Gatehouse
Series: Stand alone novel
Author: Julie Klassen
Genre: Adult historical romance (Regency)

Synopsis: Dogged by scandal, a hopeful novelist retreats to an old gatehouse and catches the eye of the captain leasing the estate.
Review: Rich in historical detail, this vivid story provides colorful characters and a delightful plot. Especially pleasing for those who are Jane Austen fans.

The Tide of Unmaking
Series: The Berinfell Prophecies #3
Authors: Wayne Thomas Batson & Christopher Hopper
Genre: Teen fantasy / alternate reality
Synopsis: Seven eleven lords must an evil army before two worlds blink out of existence.
Review: An open-ended conclusion to the trilogy, The Tide of Unmaking, though not a favorite book of mine, will be mostly satisfying to the reader. On other notes, it contains a slightly higher-than-normal amount of violence, and the spiritual thread is somewhat forced.

Brentwood’s Ward
Series: Bow Street Runners #1
Author: Michelle Griep
Genre: Adult historical romantic suspense

Synopsis: A member of the early London police force gets more than he bargained for when he’s hired to protect an heiress hunting for a husband.
Review: Larger-than-life characters mix with a plot full of intrigue and humor in this novel. Great for the Austen romantic who doesn’t mind a pinch of mystery thrown in.

Knox’s Irregulars
Series: Stand alone
Author: J. Wesley Bush
Genre: Adult Sci-fi (space opera?)

Synopsis: A sudden invasion places a reluctant solider in charge of an underground militia.
Review: This is definitely a military story targeted for adults with its very strong violence content, which is more graphic than most Christian novels. However, the violence fits the story with its high tension, rapid-firing plot, and this may make it a good read for men who like the military thriller-styled book.

Season of Wonder
Series: Remnants #1
Author: Lisa T. Bergren
Genre: YA Dystopia

Synopsis: Supernaturally gifted teens seek the rest of their prophesied group under the eyes of a government who wants them dead.
Review: Not my favorite as far as dystopias go, but this novel (which is very reminiscent of Bergren’s adult series, The Gifted) still offer plenty with an intriguing mix of the supernatural and the dystopic.

Series: Alaskan Courage #5
Author: Dani Pettrey
Genre: Adult Romantic Suspense

Synopsis: A dog trainer races to locate her kidnapped cousin before her uncle reaches the end of the Iditerod.
Review: An entertaining mix of romance and suspense with the fun interactions of a tight-knit family, very similar to Dee Henderson’s O’Malley series.

A Plague of Unicorns
Series: Stand alone
Author: Jane Yolen
Genre: Midgrade fairytale

Synopsis: A boy full of questions is sent to an abbey plagued by unicorns
Review: A light but fun fairytale-styled story.

Storm Siren
Series: Storm Siren Trilogy #1
Author: Mary Weber
Genre: YA Fantasy

Synopsis: A teen gifted with the ability to control the weather is trained for war.
Review: A dark-edged fantasy dealing with some heavy topics. It has some strong writing which draws deeply from the collective imagination of the sci-fi/fantasy world. I hope to post of full review of this complex novel later in April.

Now your turn: With which books have you kicked off 2015? 

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