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review 2019-01-20 18:16
Do you need this book? Goodness yes!
Pete The Cat: I Love My White Shoes - Eric Litwin,James Dean

I worked at  a preschool and this book was my students' absolute favorite book. We had the c.d. and listened along while reading the book. This book is on a DRA reading level of 18, and can be read to students from kindergarten to second grade. It can be used with curriculum to teach colors or adjectives. This book is so cute, and I love the illustrations. It is a must have for teaching younger grade levels.

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review 2019-01-19 17:51
Book Review: Hidden Agenda
Hidden Agenda - Christy Barritt

Title: Hidden Agenda
Author: Christy Barritt
Series: Smuggler’s Cove, #2
Format: ebook
Length: 552 pages (iPhone)
Rating: 3 stars


Trusting the wrong person had gotten his father killed. CIA agent Ed Carter isn't about to repeat the mistake. Pulling a gun on nurse Bailey Williams may not have been the smartest idea, but the beautiful caretaker is Ed's only suspect in the murder. Problem is, her vulnerable brown eyes claim innocence and set off his protective instincts. The spark between them is undeniable, but Bailey could never trust her life—or her heart—to a man who thinks her guilty. But when the real killer returns and threatens not just her but her family, Bailey must place her faith in the only man who can keep them from being silenced forever…


Favourite character: Bailey
Least favourite character: N/A


Mini-review: See, I knew I was right to give this author another chance. In the last book (Desperate Measures), I gave 1 star because the main character annoyed the heck out of me if I’m completely honest. I think she used the fight or flight term for these two because Samantha is flight while Bailey is fight. I loved Bailey, she was feisty but also scared, which fit because it’s real.


Bailey Williams - Emma Stone
Ed Carter - Finn Wittrock

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review 2019-01-19 04:46
Must Love Movie Star (The Alaska Sunrise Romances, #9) by Melissa Storm
Must Love Movie Star - Melissa Storm



Life is not like the movies. In the real world happy endings are not easily acquired, they're hard work. Storm takes readers behind the glitter with her special brand of heartache and heartwarming. Must Love Movie Star is one woman's determination to flip the script and learn to exist outside the fantasy. Jo is an ace when it comes to remembering her lines, but following her heart is a different matter. When her next film challenges her survival instincts on and off the set, she finds a hero in Dan. Dan is just what she needs to help her find her voice outside of the Hollywood glitz, but can their ordinary love survive the celebrity of her life? Love is an adventure worth taking with Melissa Storm at the wheel.

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review 2019-01-19 04:03
Give the Dark My Love by Beth Revis - audiobook
Give the Dark My Love - Beth Revis

I was super excited to read a book about a magical healer facing a plague – even if they call alchemy ‘science’ in this book, it’s totally magic – and this one definitely delivered.


It’s about a girl called Nedra (narrated beautifully by Mhairi Morrison with a lovely soft Scottish accent) from a small northern village who manages to get a scholarship to a medical school in the big city of an island colony ruled over by a young Emperor. An incurable plague has been ravaging the population and making its way towards Nedra’s village. She’s dedicating the next year of her life to finding a cure, and must adjust to a very different life in the school, having left her family (including a twin sister) behind.


I really enjoyed this story. It delivered as promised a dark fantasy where Nedra must confront the reality of illness and death, how illness tears families apart, and the sacrifices Nedra must make to become the as-promised necromancer we see in the opening pages. I liked seeing Nedra study and make friends with Grey, the other point of view, a fellow student who has gone into alchemy for possibly less-than-honourable reasons. Grey has just kind of fallen into alchemy because he comes from a rich family, and I guess this is why his narrator,Bruce Mann, used such a pompous sounding voice I found really annoying to deliver his narration. I thought Grey was an OK character – he certainly wasn’t perfect and I liked that, sometimes seeming almost coward-like in his unwillingness to rock the boat from his high level of privilege. I also thought his romance with Nedra was lacking in chemistry.


But honestly, I really did enjoy Give the Dark My Love. I loved seeing how Nedra interacted with the other characters and how she came to the conclusion to use necromancy, which was punishable by death, and there’s only two things that reduce this from a 5 star read to a 4 star read for me.


One is that Nedra is just so insufferably good, and everyone around her are shits. Nedra is literally the only medical student to care about the plague. She’s a bleeding heart, so stuffed full of selfless good intentions it practically leaks out of her orifices. This is juxtaposed by the fact that literally no one else gives a shit. None of the other students volunteer at the hospital, not even her love interest. None of the other students are into medicine to help others, but for selfish reasons, like advancing in politics or making a good wage. I liked Nedra, but I hate this aspect. I think the story could have had a whole other element added if there was at least one other student who volunteered – then Nedra could discover him or her at the hospital, they could become friends and study together so Nedra’s not such an outsider and Nelly No Friends, maybe they could explore necromancy together and something goes tragically wrong and the friend is unfortunately killed. But no, it’s just reinforced that Nedra is literally the only one who cares, the only one who is selfless and works herself to exhaustion with her caring and selfless acts.


The other factor reducing this from a 5 star read is that the particular magi that Nedra uses, medicinal alchemy, is basically magical anaesthetic. Using a crucible and a rat (warning to anyone sensitive to animal cruelty) she can siphon off the pain from her patient, and transfer it to the rat through herself. Considering Nedra experiences amputations through this magic, the descriptions of what the pain actually felt like were really lacking. For most of the book it was simply something like ‘pain roared through me’ but couldn’t describe anything more than that, and honestly I found it a little disappointing, especially in something touted as a ‘dark fantasy’, and especially considering what comes later.


Apart from these issues, I really enjoyed the audiobook of Give the Dark My Love and I’m really looking forward to what Nedra has in store in Book 2.

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review 2019-01-17 23:11
Pete the Cat: I Love My White Shoes
Pete The Cat: I Love My White Shoes - Eric Litwin,James Dean

Pete the Cat is a fun book for children to explore colors, repetition, prediction, or Cause and Effect. Pete the Cat is walking along in his white shoes when he steps into piles of strawberries, blueberries, mud, and water. Each time that Pete steps into a pile of something it dyes his white shoes a different color before stepping into water and it washing his shoes clean- but then his shoes are wet! Does Pete let this bother him? "Goodness No!" A fun activity that could engage students following this story is having students color a pair of white shoes. They have to indicate what they "stepped in" to make their shoes turn the color they colored them. But it cannot be something that Pete stepped in. For example, I could color a pair of shoes purple and say that I stepped in grapes. You could also have the buckets of things Pete stepped in and then have students match them to the color that his shoes on little cards turned to introduce cause and effect. 

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