Suzi Eszterhas is a wildlife photographer on the Masai Mara Preserve in Kenya. Suzi is asked if she would like to foster an serval kitten that was brought in by a tourist group after a fire. Suzi readily accepts and takes on the additional role of wildlife rehabilitator to Moto, the serval. As Moto's adopted mother, Suzi must learn how to care for Moto and teach him how to be a serval in the wild, just like Moto's real mom would have done so he can go back to the wild once more.
[I received a copy through NetGalley, in exchange for an honest review.]
One of my favourite themes being in here, I still enjoyed the story for that aspect, but I admit that otherwise, I didn’t enjoy this book as much as I expected to.
While it definitely deals with cool concepts (the aloof, badass grandpa; the robots; the mysterious men wanting Alex’s just as mysterious robot; their magic, both awesome and gruesome), plot-wise the story was also completely over the place. In a way, it reminded me precisely of the way I envisioned stories myself when I was a young reader: “Something mysterious! A bully! School woes! Something else happens! Grandpa arrives! Mum is not happy with him! Something else happens! Let’s run away!” And so on. So perhaps this would appeal to a 10-year old audience? I’m not entirely sure either. (To be clear, it’s not the fast pace itself I found problematic—such a pace can be very powerful indeed—but the disjointed way in which it was handled.)
“Monstrous Devices” also contains a very specific pet peeve of mine, a.k.a “I’m not telling you anything because for some reason, I think it will protect you, yet I completely fail to see that it actually endangers you more.” I don’t know why this trope is so prevalent. Just talk to your kids, people, they’re not stupid, and if you think it’s OK to take them traipsing all over Europe while pursued by murderous robots, then why not equip them to deal with it better, hm? (And as a result, the reader is none the wiser either. Having a few things left open at the end, for the next volume or two, is cool; having too many is not.)
Conclusion: 2.5/5. Cool themes, and this will probably work for part of the intended audience at least, but not so much for me.
Wasn't expecting to finish the book like I did, so abruptly, but it happened.
Such a fun mystery of sorts. The legend of a lizard man.
Would you believe it?
Join the RBI on the mission to find out if lizard man is real. Fun and adventure along the way, with some interesting facts here and there.
Great for young minds to have fun reading and learning! Some parts of the story are real, where the facts come in, and oviously the tale itself is fiction. Growing up on Ripley's Believe It Or Not, this book was fun, real or not!
Definitely one I would have my child read! After myself though.
Okay BL followers, it is time for my reading destiny to be shaped by your hands.
Please go wash them first.
The poll will close at 12pm CST (6pm Greenwhich time for int'l readers) on Wednesday.
Now here are your choices!
A. 1666: Plague, War, and Hellfire by Rebecca Rideal (Nonfiction)
1666 was a watershed year for England. An outbreak of the Great Plague, the eruption of the second Dutch War, and the devastating Great Fire of London all struck the country in rapid succession and with devastating repercussions.
B. The Children's Blizzard by David Laskin (Nonfiction)
The gripping story of an epic prairie snowstorm that killed hundreds of newly arrived settlers and cast a shadow on the promise of the American frontier...In telling the story of this meteorological catastrophe, the deadliest blizzard ever to hit the prairie states, David Laskin has produced a masterful portrait of a tragic crucible in the settlement of the American heartland.
C. Kosovo: War and Revenge by Tim Judah (Nonfiction)
An account of how Kosovo became the crucible of one of the 20th-century's most poisonous ethnic conflicts. Written by a seasoned journalist who witnessed the Balkan conflagration and its aftermath, it presents an analysis of the origins of the Serb-Albanian conflict, the course of the battle, the issues and personalities, and options for the future.
D. Dreamland: The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic by Sam Quinones (Nonfiction)
In fascinating detail, Sam Quinones chronicles how, over the past 15 years, enterprising sugar cane farmers in a small county on the west coast of Mexico created a unique distribution system that brought black tar heroin—the cheapest, most addictive form of the opiate, 2 to 3 times purer than its white powder cousin—to the veins of people across the United States. Communities where heroin had never been seen before—from Charlotte, NC and Huntington, WVA, to Salt Lake City and Portland, OR—were overrun with it. Local police and residents were stunned. How could heroin, long considered a drug found only in the dense, urban environments along the East Coast, and trafficked into the United States by enormous Colombian drug cartels, be so incredibly ubiquitous in the American heartland? Who was bringing it here, and perhaps more importantly, why were so many townspeople suddenly eager for the comparatively cheap high it offered?