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review 2019-04-29 08:09
Rose Daughter by Robin McKinley
Rose Daughter - Robin McKinley

This is a retelling of Beauty and the Beast.  The human characters were beautifully written and the story enjoyable.  However, the rose-gardening sections got a bit tedious and the Beast was a bit dull.  I like roses and gardening, but not that much.  Using manure from a unicorn was definately an interesting (and amusing) use of unicorns.


I much preferred the retellings by T. Kingfisher (Bryony and Roses) and Melanie Karsak (Beauty and Beastly).

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review 2018-07-13 04:00
Absolutely painful and gorgeous
Deerskin - Robin McKinley

It is lovely, and it is terrible and... hell, how do you even start to address something like being raped by your own father, let alone cope, accept, heal, move on. McKinley takes a good stab at it, and it's beautiful and wounding at the same time, and feels pretty much like abrading in a way.


I'm not making much sense, but I'm still riding the "just finished" wave of feelings. I thought it was an excellent book that I'd like to own, but likely will never re-read, or would feel too comfortable recommending. Yet, by all tbr's I swear, I do not regret reading it.


And if anyone feels I should've put a spoiler tag, they can go screw themselves. This is not the type of themes to be treading into unawares.

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review 2017-04-02 23:08
The Blue Sword
The Blue Sword - Robin McKinley

This book is one of my favorite tales. The heroine is a woman named Harry Crewe, an orphan, that comes to live near her brother in the desert country of Damar. Her life is quiet and ordinary until she is kidnapped by Corlath, the Hill King, who takes her deep into the desert to the land of his people. She is alone surrounded by people who do not speak her language and she has no idea why she was kidnapped being herself to be truly ordinary and dull. However, everything happens for a reason and Corlath has Harry trained in the arts of fighting and war until she can pass for any of the Hillfolk. Why have her trained? Why kidnap her at all? What is all this leading to? What is in store for Harry?

I won't give away the reasons or ending but I encourage you to read it for yourself if you have not already. Robin McKinley truly brings this wonderful world alive and you find yourself getting lost and never wanting to come back.  This Newbery Honor book is perfect for older grades. It would be a good book to get the students curious and involved in heavier topics. This unit study would have to come with a twist though and I would make it more about diversity and what would they do about living in a foreign country where no one spoke their language. 

Reading Level: 4th grade and up

LEX 1030L

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review 2017-04-02 16:40
Sunshine - Robin McKinley

What I can only assume is a superb April Fools joke by the book gods, my first themed book for April Singles turned out to be an actual Non-series book (if you aren't as obsessed with my life as I am, usually during this theme I laugh, groan, and joke how all the books I pick for this turn out to be actually in a series). What is wrong with this you ask? There is no way on earth this should be a contained to one freaking book story. 


Don't believe me? Imagine if you will, if Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning had been a standalone. Don't just shrug and move on, GO THERE. Because I have been to that bellow to the book gods place thanks to this book.


This reminded me a lot of Moning's series, incredible created universe, first person pov from heroine who is young and not aware of her own power, plethora of characters who could be good or evil, a dark mysterious intriguing dude, and a will they or won't they. Oh, and there's Mel. Who is Mel you ask? He's our heroine's boyfriend, who is sweet, sexy, and affable. I know there is more to his story because of the clues we are given but I'll never really know, because STANDALONE.


If this reminded me of Darkfever so much, why only 2.5 stars? It has the addictive reading quality but oh boy is our first person pov heroine into rambling. She goes off on tangents, which sometimes have observational little life nuggets but mostly make you want to skim. There's also a feeling of being dizzily just dropped into the world and I spent most the beginning trying to understand who and what story the author was telling.


If you want your vampire stories a little darker, the vampires in this world definitely not of the sparkle quality and something a little off the beaten path, this would be a good pick. Just be prepared to gird your loins at how rambling the heroine can get. Also, did I mention the whole no series thing? 'Cause seriously, you'll probably live at least 2.4% of your life always wishing you could know if Pat is evil, who the Goddess of Evil truly is, and if Mel is Sunshine's Tree.


This story is magical but DARK magic because it will leave you feeling like you're in a straight jacket bouncing off padded walls crying and screaming to book gods about how you "Just need to know if Sunshine and Constantine bang!!"   

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review 2016-10-31 00:00
Beauty - Robin McKinley When I read this book as a teenager, I was completely enchanted. Now, ahem years later, I was equally so.
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