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review 2020-04-01 16:41
Agnes Moor’s Wild Knight
Agnes Moor's Wild Knight - Alyssa Cole

I Picked Up This Book Because: Palate cleanser

The Characters:

Agens Moor:
Gareth MacAllister:

The Story:

The Random Thoughts:

The Score Card:


4 Stars
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review 2019-11-17 03:11
Misc Children's Books Part 1
Be Bold! Be Brave! Chiquitos: 11 Latinas Who Made US History - Naibe Reynoso,Jone Leal
The Little Horse - Luke Helmer
Mosque - David Macaulay
Aesop's Fables Box Set 1 - Reading Eggs
Mama's Daycare - Swapan Debnath,Ngozi Edema
The Perfect Potty Zoo: The Funniest ABC ... The Perfect Potty Zoo: The Funniest ABC Book (Potty Training Book, Rhyming Book for Kids 2-5 Years Old, Toddler Book, potty training books for toddlers, potty book) - Agnes Green,Zhanna Mendel
The Big Splash - Ed Ouano
Arial the Chef - Mary Nhin,Jelena Stupar
It's Not Easy Being a Unicorn - Beatriz Rare
Kaulele The White Fairy Tern - Carleigh Vollbrecht

With the exception of Mosque, I picked these up for free.


Mosque is good, and if you have read the author's other books, it is like those.


Be Brave! Be Bold! is actually pretty good and is about famous Latinias.  While I know the book is intended for a young audience, there could have been a bit more in the bios about the women at the end.


The Little Horse is a Christian story about a horse who was present at Christ's birth.  It is actually one of the better ones.  It reminded me of Nestor the Long Eared Christmas Donkey or the Little Drummer Boy Christmas shows.


The Aesop Box Set  contains a few fables, but the illustrations are good.  It's nice.


Mama Daycare is a sweet book that presents the fear of going to school for the first time in a different way.  It was cute.


The Perfect Potty Book is extactly as advertised.


Arial Chef - not the best, but the bits at the end about how to make Sushi were nice.


Big Splash - good if you like Dinos


It's Not Easy Being Unicorn and Kaulele the Fairy Tern are the best two.  Wonderful story about unicorn that you can see being adapted by Pixar.  Interesting story about a bird.

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review 2019-10-31 08:06
The Dark Heart: A True Story of Greed, Murder, and an Unlikely Investigator
The Dark Heart: A True Story of Greed, Murder, and an Unlikely Investigator - Joakim Palmkvist,Agnes Broomé

This is an okay true crime book that was probably better in the author’s native language, but a less-than-perfect translation can’t be blamed for some of the problems I had with it.


The beginning is a disorganized mess. It ping-pongs from subject to subject, covering everything from how the victim’s grandfather made the family fortune to the life story of the volunteer who helped crack the case, and a lot of the details the reader is bombarded with don’t feel even a little bit relevant. When the city of Zurich is mentioned, the author even pauses to note the year it was founded. And ye gods, the repetition! This book did not need to be over 300 pages long.


Speaking of the author, his intrusions in the beginning are frequent and sometimes condescending (unless he was trying for humor, maybe?). A man is missing. His daughter Sara doesn’t report it for several days. Those she discussed the matter with told her to wait and see if he showed up. She’s behaving oddly, not like a missing person’s relative usually behaves, like she doesn’t think her father’s coming back. The missing man didn’t get along with the daughter’s boyfriend, Martin, and they’d recently had a fight over money and property. A month later, the missing man’s other daughter call the police because she thinks something’s fishy and the police aren’t doing enough. The author lays all this out (in bullet points), and then says:

In a crime novel, this would have been enough to secure the convictions of both Martin Törnblad and Sara Lundblad.

No. No it wouldn’t. What terrible crime novels are you reading? That’s barely enough to pique an amateur sleuth’s interest in the laziest of cozies. A little later on, the author says:

Anyone who thinks the police can throw together an investigation team comprising interviewers, technicians, detectives, and administrators in an afternoon and launch a murder investigation based on a missing-person report, just to be on the safe side, has spent too much time watching TV.

Again, what terrible crime dramas are you watching?


The organization gets better (and the author intrusions decrease) toward the middle of the book, but it could have been half the length if it had refrained from detouring and covering the same ground multiple times.


(Read for Halloween Bingo Truly Terrifying Square)


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review 2019-10-21 07:16
Agnes Grey by Anne Brontë
Agnes Grey - Angeline Goreau,Anne Brontë

TITLE:  Agnes Grey


AUTHOR:  Anne Brontë



                                 [First Published 1847]



Agnes Grey is the touching story of a young girl who decides to enter the world as a governess, but whose bright illusions of acceptance, freedom and friendship are gradually destroyed.

Drawing on her own experience, Anne Brontë charts the development of gentle Agnes and sympathetically depicts the harsh treatment she receives along the way. Leaving her idyllic home and close-knit family, Agnes arrives at the Bloomfield’s residence, inside whose walls reign cruelty and neglect. Although faced with tyrannical children and over-indulgent parents, the generosity of spirit and warm candour learnt from her own family never desert her. Agnes also remains firm in the Murray household, where she is used by the two disdainful young daughters for their own deceitful ends and where her chances of happiness are almost spoiled for her.
A deeply moving account, Agnes Grey seriously discusses the contempt and inhumanity shown towards the poor though educated woman of the Victorian age, whose only resource was to become a governess.




Agnes Grey draws on Anne Brontë's experiences as a governess.  Anne wanted to write a novel that showed the many difficulties, indignities, and discriminations a governess faces while carrying her duties - with the purpose of reform in mind.  The novel is also something of a study of human behaviour and society, as well as relationships.  The families who Agnes works for make "The Addams Family" look tame and perfectly normal.  The plot is straight forward and the writing not too long-winded and verbose.  The prose is acutally quite beautiful.  This book comes across as quiet and peaceful without melodrama, but it still somehow draws the reader in.  Also, unlike many novels written in this time period, Agnes does not wait around for a man to marry her and "save" her.  She is capable of being independant and making her own decisions. 


This Penguin Classics edition has additional material including a chronology, an introduction (which deals with Brontë family dynamics and reviewer criticism), a bibliographical notice of Ellis and Acton Bell, notes and further reading.

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review 2019-06-17 13:24
Book Review: Happy People Read and Drink Coffee
Happy People Read and Drink Coffee - Agnès Martin-Lugand

Book: Happy People Read and Drink Coffee


Author: Agnes Martin-Lugand


Genre: Fiction/Grief/Romance


Summary: Diane seems to have the perfect life. She is a wife, a mother, and the owner of Happy People Read and Drink Coffee, a cozy literary cafe in Paris. But when she suddenly loses her beloved husband and daughter in a car accident, the world as she knows it instantly vanishes. Trapped and haunted by her memories, Diane retreats from friends and family, unable and unwilling to move forward. But one year later, Diane shocks her loved ones with her surprising decision to move to a small town on the Irish coast. Finally determined to rebuild her life, Diane's new home is all quiet and comfort - until she meets Edward, the attractive yet taciturn Irish photographer who lives next door. Abrasive and unwelcoming, Edward resents Diane's intrusion into his life of solitude. Diane wants nothing more than to heal in peace, but her neighbor's gruff manner provokes her. Can their standoff bear the weight of an undeniable attraction? At once heartbreaking and uplifting, Diane's story is deeply felt, reminding us that love remembered is love enduring. - Weinstein Books, 2016


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