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review 2018-07-05 04:28
Lies by TM Logan -- no more netgalley for me
Lies: The Gripping Psychological Thriller That Will Take Your Breath Away - T. M. Logan

Thank you to St. Martin's Press and T.M. Logan for the chance to read LIES in exchange for this honest review.

Note to married people: if your spouse can't listen to you for the length of a meal without scrolling around and posting on Facebook/Goodreads/Twitter/etc constantly, you need a marriage counselor. If you don't heed this warning, you may find life increasingly unpleasant. 

Such is the life of our pal Joe Lynch, who stumbles his way through this book like a lost puppy, all snarls and grins, deciding to protect people who haven't asked for his protection, then getting angry when things don't go as he has decided life should go.

Unfortunately, I figured out by location 202 (4% into the book) who one of the culprits was and at 24%, I'd seen the entire plot without wanting or meaning to do so. The writing drops hefty clues that are actually spoilers. By the end I was irritated with our narrator and had the uncharitable thought that he deserved to be preyed on because he constantly did exactly the opposite of what any reasonable adult would do (and the opposite of what every authority figure -- his lawyer, police, random strangers...) tell him to do.

The second irritation (shown by constant notes that got less detailed as the book grinded on repetitively) were plot holes. I felt like the ending had been predetermined and the rest of the book was shunted in to make that ending fit, no matter how far from realistic we had to go to get there.

The payoff or "lesson" in all of this are gems like:

Trusting people is hard.

and

...it's not the photographing and sharing and broadcasting that makes something what it is. it's the doing. The being. The experience of it.



Needless to say, I found very little mystery and far fewer thrills. The mystery for me started to revolve around how long it would take for this fool to stumble into the guaranteed safe landing he was headed for -- because that's the kind of book this is. I wouldn't have finished it if I'd payed for a copy, and I would have probably returned it to the library none the poorer for having missed this one. 

Not my cuppa.

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review 2018-07-01 23:01
The City & The City - Why is Miéville ignored by some literary circles?
The City & the City - China Miéville

This book... oh dear. It's quite good and it's very hard to explain. What starts off seeming like a noir-ish crime novel or police procedural opens up and allows the reader to sort of play with what's happening in the reality of the story. Two city-states, somewhere in Europe, live within each other. Citizens from one are not allowed to "see" the citizens from the other - even if they're on the same street! It's not like Berlin used to be. There's no wall, just a map and laws and a history of strife between the two cities.

 

So is it fantasy, or is it a meditation on our current cities, where we go around "unseeing" all sorts of things? Miéville leaves this question wide open for the reader. I started to think about all of the ways we divide ourselves in our cities and how the entire novel could be a metaphor for things like race, class, religion, politics, you name it. Everywhere in real life, there are places some people go and places other people don't. There are things we see - even celebrate - and other things we pretend not to see, and put out of mind almost automatically. We're very good at dividing ourselves up in so many ways. Citizens in one city know not to tread on "the other city." 

 

The book takes us into a mystery about the cities themselves, all while continuing along the crime narrative. It's sort of brilliant, and very different from any other book I've read before. It's fantastical, but it could be quite realistic. I have to wonder, once again, why some authors (Miéville, Neil Gaiman, even Stephen King) are not even considered in these lists of "important" books. King appears sometimes, but far too often I think these writers tend  to be shunted off into "genre writing" and hence considered simply not worthy of being noted by certain publications and literary circles. I'd love someone to tell me why this book is somehow less inventive/important than Thomas Hardy's 8th or 10th book? (Not just Hardy - I'm thinking now of those lists of books that have changed or disrupted the novel's form or literary prizes that always seem to go to the same people or if they go to a newcomer, we're told it's because the book is somehow inventive. I've read the most recent Pulitzer. I liked it, but it wasn't more inventive than this one.) When I read a book like this one, all I see is invention and imagination and certainly breaking the usual laws of novels.

 

I've tried to read The City & The City before and was distracted by work and life. I'm thrilled I finally found the right time for me and this book because it is fantastic - in every sense of the word.

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review 2018-03-31 23:12
Detective Nosegoode and the Music Box Mystery
Detective Nosegoode and the Music Box Mystery - Marian Orłoń
This was an entertaining children’s novel about a retired detective and his dog. Detective Nosegoode was enjoying his retirement when Mr. Blossom, the clockmaker decides that he needs the assistant of the detective to solve the mystery of who broke into his shop and stole a music box that he was fixing for a local resident. The detective takes the assignment and immediately gets to work investigating the scene, finding quite a few clues with his dog, Cody. I liked how optimist the detective was about helping the clockmaker solve this mystery the minute that he took on the case.
 
Cody is not your typical dog. Detective Nosegoode realized one day while he was talking to Cody that Cody could communicate with him. Now, Cody and the detective talk to each other daily and they have quite a special relationship. I enjoyed how the detective and his dog discussed different parts of the investigation and how they examined each suspect that they had. With a great flow, the story moves quickly as the pair begins to investigate each suspect they have. I liked how there were a variety of good suspects under investigation and how the pair formed their own opinion of them.
 
As I read, I wished that this novel would have had some illustrations as I felt it would have added to my enjoyment. It was only after finishing this novel, that I read that this novel does have illustrations and that my Kindle copy did not have any which was a shame. I would have loved to see them. That is the only issue I had with this novel, the lack of illustrations on my copy. If they are like the cover, I really did miss out. I felt that this was a well-crafted mystery, a story that is worth reading and I’m looking forward to reading more of this series in the future.
 
I received a copy of this novel from NetGalley and Pushkin Press in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for sending me this copy.

 

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review 2018-02-11 14:08
First in a great series
Tackling Death - Bud Craig

This murder mystery kicks off a series of three books that form the SALFORD MURDERS trilogy, also available in paperback.

 

Gus Keane's boss is murdered and when he falls under suspicion he takes it upon himself to find the killer.

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review 2018-01-27 05:18
MYSTERY OF THE GOLDEN TEMPLE (Pack-n-Go Girls Adventures - Thailand #1)
Mystery of the Golden Temple (Pack-n-Go Girls Adventures - Thailand 1) - Lisa Travis,Adam Turner,Janelle Diller

A 2018 MULTICULTURAL CHILDREN'S BOOK DAY BOOK REVIEW. THANKS TO REBECCA FLANSBURG, PROJECT MANAGER/MCCBD, VALERIE BUDAYR, MIA WENJEN, AND ALL THE MCCBD 2018 CO-HOSTS. SPECIAL THANKS TO LINDA TRAVIS, WHO SENT ME A PAPERBACK COPY OF THE BOOK TO REVIEW.

 

Mystery of the Golden Temple (Pack-n-Go Girls Adventures - Thailand #1)

 Linda Travis (Author),                   

 Adam Turner (Illustrator)

Paperback, 118 pages
Published June 17th 2014 by WorldTrek Publishing
ISBN  1936376091 (ISBN13: 9781936376094)
 
 ****I received this book from the Author for Multicultural Children's Book Day (January 27th, 2018). ****
 An enjoyable book. The main character is a girl, Nona May, and she uses some of her Thai language throughout the book which is really cool to see and read. She and her American friend, Jess, solve a mystery about a special family treasure. Lots of action, lots of fun through the book. The writing is simple; but that allows the eagerness and determination of the girls to be the focal point in solving the mystery. Linda Travis wrote her girls as strong, active, spunky, and tenacious. I would definitely recommend this book and series to girls.
 
 
 A 2017 Literary Classics Gold – Best Series – Young Reader
2017 Moonbeam Children’s Book Award Silver - Best Chapter Book Series
A 2014 Moonbeam Children’s Book Award Winner - Best Chapter Book Series 
 
 About the Author: Linda Travis
"Lisa Travis dreamed of faraway places ever since she was a little girl who explored National Geographic magazines every month. Looking for ways to discover the world, Lisa studied at the University of Freiburg in Germany, traveled the USA in a Volkswagon camper, and lived and worked in South Korea. She currently finds ways to pack and go by creating global executive leadership programs that take her to cool places like Guangzhou, Hong Kong, Brussels, Copenhagen, and Prague. Her experiences around the world inspired her to create Pack-n-Go Girls. Lisa lives, bikes, and skis in Colorado with her husband, two kids, and two dogs." http://www.packngogirls.com Twitter-packngogirls , https://www.goodreads.com/lisa_travis 
 
About the Illustrater: Adam Turner
Adam Turner is an illustrator, living in Surprise, Arizona with his wife and daughter. He has been illustrating commercially for almost 30 years and has been creating dot to dots for about 10 of those years.
 

Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2017 (1/27/18) is in its 5 th year and was founded by Valarie Budayr from Jump Into A Book and Mia Wenjen from PragmaticMom. Our mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in home and school bookshelves while also working diligently to get more of these types of books into the hands of young readers, parents and educators.

 

Current Sponsors:  MCBD 2018 is honored to have some amazing Sponsors on board.

 

2018 MCBD Medallion Sponsors
HONORARY: Children’s Book Council, Junior Library Guild
PLATINUM: Scholastic Book Clubs
GOLD: Audrey Press, Candlewick Press, Loving Lion Books, Second Story Press, Star Bright
Books, Worldwide Buddies
SILVER: Capstone Publishing, Author Charlotte Riggle, Child’s Play USA, KidLit TV, Pack-n-Go Girls, Plum Street Press
BRONZE: Barefoot Books, Carole P. Roman, Charlesbridge Publishing, Dr. Crystal
Bowe, Gokul! World, Green Kids Club, Gwen Jackson, Jacqueline Woodson, Juan J. Guerra, Language Lizard, Lee & Low Books, RhymeTime Storybooks, Sanya Whittaker Gragg,TimTimTom Books, WaterBrook & Multnomah, Wisdom Tales Press

 

2018 Author Sponsors

 


Honorary Author Sponsors: Author/Illustrator Aram Kim and Author/Illustrator Juana Medina, Author Janet Balletta, Author Susan Bernardo, Author Carmen Bernier-Grand, Author Tasheba Berry-McLaren and Space2Launch, Bollywood Groove Books, Author Anne Broyles, AuthorKathleen Burkinshaw, Author Eugenia Chu, Author Lesa Cline-Ransome, Author Medeia Cohan
and Shade 7 Publishing, Desi Babies, Author Dani Dixon and Tumble Creek Press, Author Judy Dodge Cummings, Author D.G. Driver, Author Nicole Fenner and Sister Girl Publishing, Debbi Michiko Florence, Author Josh Funk, Author Maria Gianferrari, Author Daphnie Glenn, Globe Smart Kids, Author Kimberly Gordon Biddle, Author Quentin Holmes, Author Esther Iverem, Jennifer Joseph: Alphabet Oddities, Author Kizzie Jones, Author Faith L Justice , Author P.J. LaRue and MysticPrincesses.com, Author Karen Leggett Abouraya, Author Sylvia Liu, Author Sherri Maret, Author Melissa Martin Ph.D., Author Lesli Mitchell, Pinky Mukhi and We Are One, Author Miranda Paul, Author Carlotta Penn, Real Dads Read, Greg Ransom, Author Sandra L. Richards, RealMVPKids Author Andrea Scott, Alva Sachs and Three Wishes
Publishing, Shelly Bean the Sports Queen, Author Sarah Stevenson, Author Gayle H. Swift Author Elsa Takaoka, Author Christine Taylor-Butler, Nicholette Thomas and  MFL Publishing Author Andrea Y. Wang, Author Jane Whittingham Author Natasha Yim

 

 

We’d like to also give a shout-out to MCBD’s impressive CoHost Team who not only hosts thebook review link-up on celebration day, but who also works tirelessly to spread the word of this event. View our CoHosts HERE.

 

TWITTER PARTY Sponsored by Scholastic Book Clubs: MCBD’s super-popular (and
crazy-fun) annual Twitter Party will be held 1/27/18 at 9:00pm.
Join the conversation and win one of 12-5 book bundles and one Grand Prize Book Bundle (12 books) that will be given away at the party!

 

http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/twitter-party- great-conversations- fun-prizes-
chance-readyourworld- 1-27- 18/

 

Free Multicultural Books for Teachers: http://bit.ly/1kGZrta

 

Free Empathy Classroom Kit for Homeschoolers, Organizations, Librarians and
Educators: http://multiculturalchildrensbookday.com/teacher-classroom- empathy-kit/
Hashtag: Don’t forget to connect with us on social media and be sure and look for/use our
official hashtag #ReadYourWorld.

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