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review 2017-08-31 00:12
The Address by Fiona Davis
The Address: A Novel - Fiona Davis

A special thank you to Penguin Random House First to Read and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Fiona Davis' novel takes readers to the historic Dakota—the famous home of John Lennon from 1973 to his murder outside the building in 1980. The story opens in England with Sara Smythe, a head housekeeper at an elegant hotel. She is offered a job by Theodore Camden after she saves one of his children from falling out a window. Wanting a better life, she accepts the job which is to be the managerette of the Dakota, an upscale apartment building in New York City.

Fast forward to 1985 New York City, where Bailey Camden has just completed a stint in rehab and is trying to get her life back on track. She is hired by her cousin, Melinda, to redecorate her apartment in the Dakota, and is hopeful that this opportunity will relaunch her career. Davis joins the two storylines with the Dakota when Bailey finds Sara's belongings in a trunk in the basement of the decrepit building.

As a reader, the best parts of the story were in the past. Even though the 80s are by far my favourite decade, um hello, best music ever, I simply couldn't connect with Bailey and just wanted to stay with Sara. Davis fell victim of the duelling storylines and I feel of late that this style has been done too much and as an avid reader, this type of narrative is old hat.

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review 2017-08-20 17:57
The Sun has Set
Molten Dusk - Karissa Laurel

Oh how I loved this series. I giggled with joy when I received each new one and a sad sigh when each ended. The first two books left my hanging bruised and worried for the characters this last book wrapped it all up wonderfully. If you are just starting the series you are lucky, no waiting/nail chewing/hair pulling they are all published !
Solina is at the end of the rope, possibly. The end of the world for humans rests on her shoulders. Oh the stress, it pushes her to make snap decisions and dangerous choices. She must hunt the great beast, Skoll, deal with betrayals, truths that hurt and her own heart, and so much more. Everything except the kitchen sink is thrown at her. It's a good thing this isn't the young naive Solina we first met in book 1, she has leaned her lessons well.
Thorn, sexy thunderous and sexy, opps already said that didn't I ? The norse thunder god is all he should be and more. He is an all powerful man who can step back and let the woman roar without feeling threatened. Woot Woot a man I can cheer for.
The bad wicked villains are rotten, nasty and perfectly evil. There was no switching personalities to sweet misunderstood bad guy which I appreciated. Sometimes a bad guy just needs to be a bad guy.
I only had one complaint, gripe, unfulfilled need, more. I wanted, oh I needed another chapter. The ending wrapped up so fast and skipped some detailing I wanted explored. I had to ask myself and a friend did they _____ ? My voyeuristic side was unsatisfied. My inner perv just can't stay down some times.
So, I bet you are wondering where the sneak peeks/spoilers are ? I'm not giving anything away, as you can see, deal with it and read the book for your answers. Okay I'll give something up, it was so good. ;D

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text 2017-08-17 09:08
DNF: Beasts Made of Night
Beasts Made of Night - Tochi Onyebuchi

I received a copy from Penguin First to Read.

 

I used some of my points to secure a copy of this one. I was quite looking forward to it. While it's not bad, at 187 pages, I've come to the point where I just don't care anymore. The concept is quite fascinating. In this Nigerian inspired fantasy, the hero Taj is an Aki, a Sin Eater. The Royal Family of the fictional city of Kos are supposed to be pure and free of sin, sin comes in the form of Sin Beasts which the Aki consume and absorb into their skin in the form of tattoos. Interesting enough.

 

But there was something off about the plot and the execution of the story. I can't say I felt particularly attached to any of the characters. The world building was interesting enough but the writing was kind of flat. And the plot seemed to jump from one thing to the next. There was a barely there romance that felt way too insta-lovey for my liking. He meets with a princess once or twice and then he's fascinated with her. Understandable, but again, there was something that just wasn't there to make it work for me.

 

It's getting to the point where I'm not looking forward to finishing, and as I said early, I'm bored with and don't care enough to find out how its end. There is definite potential in the writing and as I said the world building was interesting and quite unique. While this book was not for me I would certainly be interested in seeing more from this author.

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text 2017-08-15 17:51
Looks interesting ...
Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain - Maryanne Wolf

An older book but new to me (Barnes and Noble Readouts mention reminded me).  Synopsis from publisher page for Proust and the Squid: The Story and Science of the Reading Brain:

 

"Human beings were never born to read," writes Tufts University cognitive neuroscientist and child development expert Maryanne Wolf. Reading is a human invention that reflects how the brain rearranges itself to learn something new. In this ambitious, provocative book, Wolf chronicles the remarkable journey of the reading brain not only over the past five thousand years, since writing began, but also over the course of a single child's life, showing in the process why children with dyslexia have reading difficulties and singular gifts.

 

Lively, erudite, and rich with examples, Proust and the Squid asserts that the brain that examined the tiny clay tablets of the Sumerians was a very different brain from the one that is immersed in today's technology-driven literacy. The potential transformations in this changed reading brain, Wolf argues, have profound implications for every child and for the intellectual development of our species.

 

Critical Praise :

 

“[Maryanne Wolf] displays extraordinary passion and perceptiveness concerning the reading brain, its miraculous achievements and tragic dysfunctions.” — BookForum

 

“Everything Wolf says makes sense....She clearly knows her stuff.” — Washington Post Book World

 

“Brilliant and eye-opening.” — Albany Times Union

 

“...intriguing...” — New Scientist

 

“Fascinating....Wolf restores our awe of the human brain.” — Associated Press

 

“[Wolf’s] conversational style, reflective comments and insights from work with children...create a narrative flow and bright tone.” — Minneapolis Star Tribune

 

“The squid of Wolf’s title represents the neurobiological approach to the study of reading....Given the panic that takes hold of humanists when the decline of reading is discussed, her cold-blooded perspective is opportune.” — The New Yorker

 

“A book worth talking about.” — U.S. News & World Report

 

“Enjoyable....Wolf, with remarkable agility in a relatively compact book (intended for both aficionados and the uninitiated), transitions seamlessly between disciplines as diverse as linguistics, neuroscience, cognitive psychology, and archeology, among others. Her voice comes through clearly; she is fascinated by reading and shares that energy.” — New England Journal of Medicine

 

“Wolf’s alarm about the spread of semi- literacy among the young is obviously justified, and her book provokes thought about it as only reading can.” — Sunday Times (London)

 

“This humane and fascinating book...is a paean to what Proust, über-reader, called ‘that fruitful miracle of a communication in the midst of solitude,’ to all that has been and can be achieved for individuals and for mankind through literacy.” — The Evening Standard (London)

 

“Blindingly fascinating...detailed and scholarly....There’s a lot of difficult material in here. But it’s worth the effort....For people interested in language, this is a must. You’ll find yourself focusing on words in new ways. Read it slowly--it will take time to sink in.” — The Sunday Telegraph

 

“Proust and the Squid is an inspiring celebration of the science of reading....Wolf’s insights are fascinating....Proust and the Squid has much to offer on this important--perhaps the most important--subject” — The Guardian (London)

Source: www.harpercollins.com/9780062010636/proust-and-the-squid
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text 2017-08-12 21:32
Reading progress update: I've read 23%.
Molten Dusk - Karissa Laurel

Oh Thor, I would have showered with you. Val , mmm this could get very interesting

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