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review 2018-08-12 15:39
All Summer Long - Hope Larson

Austin and Bina have been inseparable friends since they were in diapers. The summer going into the eighth grade everything changes. Austin is headed for soccer camp and Bina has no idea how she is going to fill those, quite suddenly, boring days of summer. This is a coming of age type journey of self-discovery and Bina stretches out of her comfort zone to new experiences and new friendships. She learns to deal with her changing relationship with Austin now that they growing up and she finds a world that is just a little bit bigger than she had been expecting.


Somehow or another I have been inundated with graphic novels this summer. My son, a budding graphic artist, of course, insists that they are as legitimate literature as any book could be. After this book and the others that have found their way to me, I have to agree. While I might have avoided All Summer Long, given its format, I actually found it quite easy to read and the story is perfect for middle school teens. The art perfectly captures the feeling of a 13-year-old's summer of change

Source: ireadwhatyouwrite.wordpress.com/2018/08/03/graphic-novels-and-growing-pains
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review 2018-07-02 17:59
All Summer Long
All Summer Long - Hope Larson
Over one summer, Bina’s world totally changes. She liked her predictable world and she was feeling left out as everyone around her moved and she stood still. Her best friend went to camp without her and without him, she was lost. Bina tries to find things to entertain her, to make her days eventful, but things just weren’t the same.
I liked how this graphic novel dealt with friendships, both long-term and potential ones. Bina wanted to find some new connections but where exactly would they come from? What she really needed was to find some that would be beneficial for her. As Bina’s best friend found another means to spend his summer, she was lost as to what this meant, exactly. Where did that leave her? What happened to their relationship? Did she matter anymore? Communication and emotions were addressed in this novel, both great subjects that are usually difficult at this age. There were highs and lows in this topic and it all depended upon who you were, where you were and what you were doing.
The only issue I have with this novel is that I felt at times the language didn’t flow right for me. It felt choppy at times. I liked the ending, I thought that it was an indirect way of solving one of the issues. I think some readers will be able to see themselves in this novel which is a positive thing.


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review 2018-06-30 15:34
The Devil In The White City
The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair that Changed America - Tony Goldwyn,Erik Larson

I'm not going to spend much time describing The Devil In The White City by Erik Larson. This book came out in 2003 and there are thousands of reviews out there about it. Generally it's an in depth look at the 1893 Chicago World's Fair. This book gets into the making of the fair what happened during the fair and how the fair influenced America. It also follows a serial killer who used the fair to take advantage of victims. 


This is a fascinating book and it reads like two books in one. The story of the fair and the story of the serial killer are told in alternating chapters. Devil In The White City examines the mind of a notorious serial killer. What I found fascinating was how he came across as charming to so many people but behind the scenes people close to him were never seen again. He had multiple wives and took out insurance policies on people who he killed and then collected the money. It's amazing to me how someone who proves he has no soul can get so many people to trust him.


At first I felt that the story of the serial killer was much more interesting then the fair but as I kept reading I found the story of the fair being more interesting. The amount of effort and money that went into the fair was astronomical. More than 7 people died in the creation of the fair and the creators also had to put up with storms damaging the buildings, union workers striking and finally low attendance as the U.S. started to go through a depression as several large banks failed. 


Another thing I liked in this book was the descriptions of Chicago at the turn of the century. The city was growing in leaps and bounds but many people were poor and unable to support themselves. As the city's first skyscrapers were changing the city's skyline the Chicago stockyards were making the whole city smell like poop and the threat of cholera was always present. 


You could describe the period of Chicago's history that this book covers as The Best Of Times and The worst of Times. This is a great example of what life was like right before the turn of the century and how different life was. If you love history this book is a must read.

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review 2018-06-15 18:14
Book Review: The Devil in the White City
The Devil in the White City: Murder, Magic, and Madness at the Fair That Changed America - Erik Larson

Book: The Devil in the White City


Author: Erik Larson


Genre: Non-Fiction/Historical/True Crime


Summary: Bringing Chicago circa 1893 to vivid life, Erik Larson's spellbinding bestseller intertwines the true tale of two men - the brilliant architect behind the legendary 1893 World's Fair, striving to secure America's place in the world; and the cunning serial killer who used the fair to lure his victims to their death. Combining meticulous research with nail-biting storytelling, Erik Larson has crafted a narrative with all the wonder of newly discovered history and the thrills of the best fiction. - Vintage Books, 2003.


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text 2018-02-27 07:03
Blog Tour - Forbidden Lyrics


We are thrilled to be bringing you Jodie Larson's FORBIDDEN LYRICS, the third standalone in her Lightning Strikes rockstar series. Fans of contemporary romance are not going to want to miss this one--be sure to grab your copy today!





Falling in love with your best friend's sister is never a good idea. Getting caught kissing her, that's even worse. I watched Lizzie Donovan grow up - from pigtails and scraped knees to pouty lips and lush curves. It wasn't until one night nine years ago in the front seat of her car, with her lips on mine, that I realized what I was feeling was far more than friendship. Of course, I felt her brother's wicked left hook shortly after. One promise was all it took to push her away. Not anymore. This is my chance. I have three months to convince her that she's the song in my heart and we're more than just forbidden lyrics.


Add FORBIDDEN LYRICS to your Goodreads shelf here!


Grab your copy of FORBIDDEN LYRICS on Amazon today!






Read an excerpt from FORBIDDEN LYRICS:


The house lights dim, leaving the whole place practically in darkness. A hush falls over the crowd as if the lack of light was in control of their voices. Pretty sure we’re the only table that knows what’s about to happen.


The steady beat of a drum, counting out a punishing rhythm break through the silence. A bass guitar joins in, followed closely by two more guitars. It’s a pattern I’ve heard all my life. Each instrument getting its turn to take the spotlight before coming together as a whole.


A spotlight cuts through the darkness and every girl in the room loses their mind before rushing the stage. Flashes from cell phones compete against the swirling lights illuminating the dance floor. The four of them stand there, perfectly comfortable in their surroundings, taking command of the area. Kade winds at the girls in front while Myles struts his stuff along the right side of the stage. You can barely see Pax’s head above the drum set, but every once in a while, you sneak a glimpse of his smile.


But that’s not what I’m focusing on. No, I’m drawn to the one standing off to the side, keeping a constant rhythm and not drawing as much attention to himself. Damn. If I thought Breck looked good sitting on a bar stool, he looks a million times better with a spotlight shining directly on him.





Don't miss the other LIGHTNING STRIKES books!





No one should have their life planned out at the age of three. Yet that’s exactly what happened to Adrienne Carmichael. Paving the way as the “piano prodigy” was all her parents wanted…Only she didn’t. All she wished for was to be normal, to be a regular teenager and everything that came with it—including the decisions that would shape her life. Wish granted. Ten years later, scarred and broken, she knows that being alone isn’t everything she imagined. The piano is finally everything, except nobody will ever hear her play again. All that changes when a sexy-as-sin rock god blows into her life. Tall and tattooed with jet-black hair and a dangerous bad boy smile…he’s every girl’s fantasy. To her, he's a distraction, yet Kade Evans is everything she shouldn't want. Instinct tells her to run, but she can’t get him out of her mind. But may, just maybe he can be the one to pull her from the shadows before the darkness swallows her…for good.








I love women.

And it’s easy to see why. Being the lead guitarist for the country’s hottest band, Lightning Strikes, has them practically jumping into my bed and walking out the door just as quick. Which is perfect for me. Emotions complicate things, and I don’t do complicated.

Not anymore.

Sure, I was in love once, and it was great. Then it was gone. That’s when I vowed never again. Life is better without empty, broken promises.

After five years of hard work, sacrifices, and determination, everything I’ve ever wanted is in my grasp: a successful career, touring city after city and being accountable to no one.

Then she starts appearing in the crowds. The girl I once loved, and who walked away.

Only, Tatum Mitchell wasn’t just any girl; she was my girl.

Will she be the wedge that drives the last part of my heart away, or will she break down the walls I’ve built. We’re connected through the lyrics of our heart and the notes of our past, but is that enough?







Jodie Larson is a wife and mother to four beautiful girls, making their home in northern Minnesota along the shore of Lake Superior. When she isn't running around to various activities or working her regular job, you can find her sitting in her favorite spot reading her new favorite book or camped out somewhere quiet trying to write her next manuscript. She's addicted to reading (just ask her kids or husband) and loves talking books even more so with her friends. She's also a lover of all things romance and happily ever afters, whether in movies or in books, as shown in her extensive collection of both.



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