So much fun! That was the first coherent thought that raced through my brain as I crossed the finish line of The Door in the Alley. Everyone knows that I love a good middle grade book. Coincidentally, my favorite type of middle grade book though, is the kind that doesn't talk down to its readers. The kind that is smart, funny, and filled with adventure. That, my friends, is exactly what The Door in the Alley is. It is a wonderful ride!
Our story begins with Sebastian, a studious and mild mannered boy who loves to stick to the rules. So, of course, when his path is crossed by a pig in a teeny hat, he's not sure what to make of it. When that same pig then leads him into an adventure that he never expected, that's where things really take off! I loved watching poor Sebastian, with his rigid ideas of the way the world worked, suddenly thrown into the madness that was The Explorer's Society. His personality was the perfect contrast to such an imaginative place, and looking at this new world through his eyes was fascinating.
Then Evie entered the picture, and things got even more exciting. Imagine finding out that you've actually been part of a grand cover up your entire life. That you've always felt that you were ignored, and are now the most important person in the story! That's exactly what happened to Evie, and I warmed to her instantly. She's the type of character who I love, because she isn't quite sure of herself and yet does what needs to be done anyway.
Oh, and the adventure! If you have a young reader (or, like me, are just a young reader at heart) who loves books like A Series of Unfortunate Events, this is the book for you. It's funny, a bit worrisome at times, and full to the brim with courageousness and growth. Both Evie and Sebastian, although completely different in personalities, were absolute perfection in this story. You'll giggle, you'll gasp, and you'll love every minute of it. Pick this up! It's well worth your time. Meanwhile I'll be sitting here, eagerly awaiting their next adventure.
Krissie dreamed about being a June bride and Krissie got what she wanted. Kelsey had met Krissie one year ago. Kelsey had a notebook that deleted all the things she needed to do in every aspect of her life from running the Barton Farm - a living history museum to raising her six year old son Hayden. Kelsey had learned in the last three months planning Krissie’s wedding that it was always better to collect herself before she responded. Benji was Kelsey’s assistant and he told Krissie all would be fine at her wedding and there would be Civil War reenactors and even Abe Lincoln. Kelsey was surprised when Benji said that Kelsey could meet him tomorrow. Krissie was marrying Kelsey’s ex husband. Other than raising her son, saving Barton Farm and all that it could teach people about the past Kelsey’s life mission. Laura’s theory was Krissy stole Kelsey’s ex husband Eddie now she was after Kelsey’s life work. Eddie had an affair with a married woman when he was with Kelsey. Kelsey’s best friend and farm employee within was Laura. Laura was always dramatic. Eddie had hired Krissie as a physical therapist at his P T practice and then they started dating. Krissie was eight years younger than Eddie and as far as Kelsey was concerned Krissie could have Eddie. Kelsey tries to figure people out. There had been murders on the farm grounds and Kelsey almost lost the farm and her son over them. Kelsey’s boyfriend was Chase . Kelsey’s mom died when she was a teen. Kelsey was the director of the farm and had been for the last four years. Someone had signed a directive to the gardener and signed Kelsey’s name and she wasn’t happy about it.
I just couldn’t connect with this story.It did also drag for me. It also didn’t really hold my attention, I am sure others will love this. This story just wasn’t for me.
Sometimes what isn't said can be every bit as damning as what is.
- Chapter 7
Basically, this is a mystery thriller. Jay Porter is a smart guy who never got out of his small town. He had a great girl and had a baby with her, but his drug-addicted brother (Chris) always seems to cause him problems. He is now living alone and his former girlfriend and his 2-year old son live with a new guy. When Chris is arrested, Jay gets him released and realizes that there are dangerous lies and secrets in his town. Jay thought Chris was just being paranoid, but when the violence escalates, Jay realizes the danger is real.
I liked this book. Jay is a good guy and wants to do the right thing for his son, but he keeps getting in his own way. Sarcasm helps him get through difficulties, along with his close friends. He wants to do the right thing and find a way to help his brother, but it isn't always clear. The secret wasn't clear to me until near the end, but I have a feeling more related secrets still exist that weren't revealed in the book. I guess I would have to read more of the Jay Porter series to find out, but... I'm sorry Book, I'm just not that into you.
An interesting note, the author, Joe Clifford was a homeless junkie before he became a successful writer. His firsthand knowledge gives an interesting perspective into the lives of homeless drug addicts. The details are amazing but brutal and raw.
I read this book for the Fantasyland 6 space - book with a winter scene on the cover. The book has 202 pages, so that will add $3.00 to my bank.
On to my next roll...