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text 2017-04-08 07:31
Reading progress update: I've read 134 out of 528 pages.
The Bane Chronicles - Cassandra Clare,Sarah Rees Brennan,Maureen Johnson

I tend to not be too fond of bind ups. Maybe because I feel when I finish one story, it's over & I can close the book and move on to the next (at least, I think that's how my mind see's it), so, I tend to get a bit bored with bind ups fairly quickly. Chances are, I will read this book and eventually pick up another to read when I need a break from this one. Just to have something a little new to read/listen to.

 

As always, when it comes to Cassandra Clare books, I need to have an audio to go with it because many times, her stories are drawn out and, I don't know what it is, there is just something about her books that I just can't seem to stay focused on, although I do like them and her characters. I think it's more her characters than it is the actual stories. Maybe? I don't know.

 

I do like Magnus, but I think my favorite "side character" is Simon. So, I can't wait to get to those novellas/bind up. I read this one first because (1)I just wanted to make sure I got it out the way (2)I wasn't quite sure if there would be spoilers in the Shadowhunters Academy Novellas (I don't think there are, but I wanted to make sure and be on the "safe side") :-)

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review 2017-04-06 17:18
The Book With No Pictures
The Book with No Pictures - B.J. Novak

Grade Level: Pre-K-K

Lexile Level: 380L

This book is hilarious! It has no pictures but the reader has to say some very funny words. It also has some encouraging words for the students about how great they are and how they can do anything they set their mind to. I would read this book to my class if we had any free time, just to read something silly to have a few minutes of fun.

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review 2017-03-30 04:48
The Book With No Pictures
The Book with No Pictures - B.J. Novak

The Book With No Pictures is a fun, expressive story (with no pictures, of course). The point of this book is the tone in which it is read. B.J. Novak, the author, reads this story to young children with such enthusiasm and they are completely in awe and entertained.

 

I would read this story with kindergartners, first or second graders. It would be really awesome to have Novak read it to the whole school, but assuming this would not be easy to do, I would read this story to my class; then, during stations, in the reading center, I would have this book out for students to practice fluency and enthusiasm by reading this story to each other. I would even use this book as a reward for my students to go and read to another class.

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text 2017-02-17 15:27
7 Great Fantasy/Urban Fantasy Series
Storm Front - Jim Butcher
Something from the Nightside - Simon R. Green
The Gates (Samuel Johnson, #1) - John Connolly
The Rook - Daniel O'Malley
Moving Pictures - Terry Pratchett
The Name of the Wind (Kingkiller Chronicle, #1) - Patrick Rothfuss
On a Pale Horse - Piers Anthony

At this point, it is no surprise to anyone that I am a fantasy fan, specifically urban fantasy. I like magic, monsters, adventures, etc. I also like revisiting characters and worlds, which means I'm definitely a series guy. I like a good standalone, mind you, but they are rarely as immersive as a long-running series.These are a few of my faves, and why. I am excluding the ones I discovered last year, as I've already discussed them elsewhere.

 

1. Storm Front - Jim Butcher  The Dresden Files - Jim Butcher

 

First Book: Storm Front (2000), ongoing

 

One of my all-time favorites, this series follows Harry Dresden, a professional wizard based in Chicago. It starts out as basically a PI series with magic, but dives much deeper into the lore starting with book 3, Grave Peril. Fast, funny, and exciting, this is the big daddy of modern UF, hitting #1 on the NY Times list a few times. There are 15 books in the series thus far, plus various shorts, novellas, and comics.

 

2. Something from the Nightside - Simon R. Green   The Nightside series - Simon R. Green

 

First book: Something From The Nightside (2003), completed

 

This series takes place in the titular Nightside and follows John Taylor, PI, ne'er-do-well

and prophesied heir to the Nightside, as he solves crimes, learns about his birthright, and challenges the Powers That Be. The writing can be a bit repetitive, and there are a couple lesser books among the twelve (thirteen including a collection, which is fun but inessential), but some of the characters are just flat awesome, especially Walker and "Shotgun" Suzie Shooter. Can get a bit gruesome, but the humor is always spot on.

 

3. The Gates (Samuel Johnson, #1) - John Connolly  Samuel Johnson series - John Connolly

 

First book: The Gates (2009), completed.

 

A very funny combination of demonology and theoretical physics, intended for YA readers. A great trilogy about a young boy whose town is frequently treatened with demonic takeover. I'm not usually a YA guy, but this just flat rocks.

 

4. The Rook - Daniel O'Malley  Checquy series - Daniel O'Malley

 

First book: The Rook (2012), ongoing.

 

Another fun UF series, this one told, thus far, from exclusively female perspectives. There are many people in the world born with strange abilities and, in the UK, it is up to the Checquy to handle them. Very funny, often gory, and occasionally thought-provoking. As the second book, Stiletto, mostly abandons the lead from the first book in favor of two new characters, it will be interesting to see what happens in book 3.

 

5. Moving Pictures - Terry Pratchett  Discworld - Terry Pratchett

 

First book: Color of Magic (1983), completed.

 

Confession time: I've only read six or so of these books and feel no pressig need to complete the series. I will read more of them, and happily, but am in npo rush, nor do I feel any need to read them in any particular order. There are about forty books in various subseries, plus various addenda, and, while there is continuity, flitting around has worked fine for me thus far.

 

6. The Name of the Wind (Kingkiller Chronicle, #1) - Patrick Rothfuss  Kingkiller Chronicles - Patrick Rothfuss

 

First book: The Name of The Wind (2007), ongoing.

 

An epic fantasy in the traditional vein, with great characters, beautiful writing, and interesting magic systems. This series follows Kvothe first as a student, then on various adventures. Stories within stories, an unreliable narrator, a school story, this is as interesting structurally as narratively. Am desperately anxious for book three.

 

7. On a Pale Horse - Piers Anthony  Incarnations of Immortality - Piers Anthony

 

First book: On a Pale Horse (1983), completed.

 

Both the worst-written and most structurally ambitious of all these series. this deals with mere mortals who, in various ways, become incarnations of various concepts, such as Death, Time, War, etc. Originally intended as a quintet, then extended to eight books. I never bothered with the last three books because the first five tell a complete story. Said story is not told sequentially, as the books take place at around the same times. Instead, we get the same occurrences from different perspectives, slowly deepening context, and a growing sense of the underlying conflict. The writing isn't particularly strong, but the ambition is laudable.

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