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Search tags: Tom-Leveen
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review 2017-09-17 02:44
Sick - Tom Leveen

One more book for Halloween Bingo!  This is obviously for "The Dead Will Walk" square when it is called. 


High school is a place where many kids feel like they just don't fit in. That is definitely true for Brian and his friends, a collection of misfits who decided to skip a few classes they day of the school pep rally. They get back to school just in time for stagecraft class, and for a deadly virus to take hold of their school. A strange sickness has rapidly spread, something that gives people a drawn, wasted look and develops crusty scales, oh- and it gives the infected person a taste for human bone. Ground zero is the pep rally, but the theatre building is farther away and able to be protected. It's too bad that Brian's sister and ex-girlfriend decided to go to the pep-rally, now Brian has to find a way to get the girls out of the zombie infested hallways as well as the stagecraft class.


This is a very fast-paced young adult zombie outbreak story that does not skip on the gore and held me in suspense. Centered in a high school with high schoolers as the only uninfected people left, I was really interested to see how high school dynamics would go into play. Especially since this high school was overcrowded, had a lot of racial tension and general intolerance of anyone who is different. Luckily, this group of survivors is centered in the theatre, where different is the norm. When any differences are brought up, they manage to be quickly resolved or changed in the minds of the teenagers for the benefit of survival. I was really interested in the virus itself and I got a little bit of information on it through Brian's mom, who was on the first response team. I did want to find out if there was a cure and how it began. The book really just focused on the outbreak itself and how this small group of highschoolers was able to survive. There were some very awesome moments of zombie smackdowns and creative weaponry, but there was no resolve after the teens were rescued from the school.


This book was received for free in return for an honest review.


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review 2017-07-01 23:19
Just lovely
Spawn #274 - Todd McFarlane,Tom Leveen,Szymon Kudranski,Ashley Wood

Soul Crusher is the new character in this, determined to avenge Cyan Fitzgerald's kidnapping even after she's been safely returned to her home.   Soul Crusher has a point, in that he wants to save other kids from what she's been through, but he becomes a hypocrite when he is willing to endanger other lives to save kids in the future - possibly.   He's right, that a kidnapper might try again - but he can't really be certain.   


Then again, this comic highlights the willful ignorance and blindness of a true fanatic, and makes Soul Crusher a truly frightening character.   I'm definitely into the one-on-one aspect of Spawn versus Soul Crusher, too.   


Beautiful art, and attention grabbing story.   I'm so glad I got back into Spawn!

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review 2016-01-06 00:00
Shackled - Tom Leveen This is a short read and I appreciated it, but it's not one of my favourite pieces of young adult fiction. I found myself wanting the story to resolve even faster than it did, which made certain sections read slower than others. I also didn't care for the romantic aspect of the story, but I don't care for most romance aspects in any stories.

I will say that I appreciate that the author avoided going into clinical detail of the main character's mental health issues and the descriptions stayed in the realm of how someone who has a mental health issue would describe it.
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review 2015-10-28 00:59
Shackled - Tom Leveen

This novel was unique in that I found its pacing was different from other novels in this genre for this age level. I didn’t find the typical rollercoaster emotional swings or the lull in the text that sometimes drags you along as the author sets up the next exciting scene but rather this novel clips along at a consistent pace, keeping me engaged and entertained. I liked this change of pace and I think that other young readers will too as they will be able to engage themselves more into the reading, not lose interest and I feel that they will be able to retain more of what they read. Pelly misses her best friend and she feels alone, the afternoon of Tara abduction will live forever on her mind.   Even after six years, there have been no answers and Pelly can’t handle the loss.   Her job at The Hole was a step toward normalcy and her co-worker was trying to make her transition smoother. It was a normal day at work, Pelly was dealing with her panic attacks and she knew it would just take a bit of time for her to get herself back under control. A customer walked in, a man with a girl in tow. That encounter ignites a fuse in Pelly, the similarities between that teen and Tara was astonishing and Pelly is sure that Tara has returned with her abductor. Alerting the authorities, the questions are now on the table: did Pelly really hear a plea of help from the teen, is this teen really Tara or was this pair a father and daughter out for the day? Pelly doesn’t believe the police are moving fast enough on the case so enlisting the help of her friend at work David; she begins her own investigative work. Pelly is a teen, she thinks like a teen and I enjoyed her approach and her rational thinking as she went about trying to solve the case. She was troubled by the past yet she was determined to put forth an effort and she’s no expert. There is something between Pelly and David, it subtle, it’s innocent and they don’t know it’s happening until it is there. It’s a great novel that did not disappoint.       

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review 2014-11-02 22:01
Most interesting when deviating from Shakespeare...
Juliet's Nurse: A Novel - Lois Leveen

Full review. What I loved most about this novel was Leveen's sensitive look at the emotional implications of being a wetnurse.  Angelica has just lost her child when she's given infant Juliet; it's no wonder she fell in love with the needy infant she nurtured.  But that relationship is fraught, for Angelica is not Juliet's mother, and her connection with the child she loves is dependent on whether her employers still value her.


The first half of the novel is devoted to this, which surprised me but was the best part of the novel.  Once the story shifted into Shakespeare's tragedy, the story was less gripping -- of course the nurse is stricken and sad, and of course she's devoted -- and since we know what's going to happen to Juliet, it was just about sitting back and letting the bus drive.


As a look at medieval life for a domestic, this was really fascinating. Shakespeare loyalists shouldn't mind this imagining, and those who might be unfamiliar with Romeo & Juliet will be able to enjoy the story just fine.

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