Thursday, March 21, 2013

Renegade by Amy Carol Reeves: A Review

Renegade by Amy Carol Reeves: A Review

I could not make it through this book fast enough.  That might sound like a good thing but I was actually looking forward to not having to read it anymore.  I loved the first book in the series, Ripper, and was really looking forward to this one but it was a major let down.  The character chemistry wasn’t there; the author seemed to be searching for the story herself.  It felt like she was just throwing things together and hoping it would make it work.  It did not.  I did feel sorry for the Lamia but felt that more could have been done with her.   There’s not much more I can say about this one other than, don’t waste your time.  2 stars if that.

Moonset by Scott Tracey: A Librarian’s Review

Moonset is a modern fantasy novel set in a universe similar to that of Harry Potter.  There are witches and wizards, but the normal humans aren’t allowed to know about them.  There are spells, spell books, and wizard/witch cops.  There are children who are somewhat revered because their families were murdered.  This time, the murdered family members may have deserved it.  Moonset is the name of a coven, or group of witches, that turned to the dark side years before and caused death and destruction on a huge scale in the world of the magic users.  Some of them had children who were innocent of their behavior.  These children are what the book is about.  They are still their own coven, these children and are wards of the state in a way, except the ‘state’ is that of the wizarding world.  These children are taught only rudimentary magic, things they can’t use to harm others, or defend themselves, and are basically watched their entire lives.   The only upside to this is they are given whatever they want within reason.  They have the clothes and material items they want, just not their freedom.  They are hated by most of those who knew their parents and left alone most places.  This brings out the worst in some of them and causes problems.  This time their move is deliberate, although they don’t know that until later.  A warlock that should have died with their parents has shown up again and is causing problems.  He is claiming that he only needs one of these children to unleash darkness over the world.    The authorities decide to use the children as bait, which of course doesn’t work well. 

Moonset was an interesting and quick read, but not really anything spectacular.  While it had a few original ideas, most of it has been done before, many times and better.  This would be an additional purchase for a public library.  3 stars tops.

Friday, March 1, 2013


I  wanted to remind everyone who reads my blog that most of the titles I review are found in my library at The Chattanooga Public Library, and probably also at your local library.  I'll bet that if you see a review that makes you really want to read the book, you can request it and your library will gladly get it for you.  We are making lots of changes in the library world today but don't worry we aren't going away!  Those hypocrites who say "libraries are dead" well they are talking about the old libraries, the ones that are only made of stuffy old books.  What they forget is that libraries, like people, evolve.  Libraries change to fit the needs of the public they serve.  So, next time you hear someone say "libraries are dead" just know that they are mistaken! Viva La Libraries!

Friday, February 15, 2013

The Ruining by Anna Collomore : A review

*** Spoiler Alert
The Ruining is a psychological thriller with some mystery and romance thrown in.  The main character Annie takes a job in San Francisco as a Nanny and find out that it’s not what it’s cracked up to be.   She tries to go to school and thinks this is the best opportunity in the world but it ends up being disastrous.  The woman who hires her is psychotic and manipulative.  She is very controlling and drives Annie insane.  Annie ends up locked in a mental institution.  This was a great read.  Annie was a strong character who just wanted to do what was right but she was young, naive and able to be taken advantage of easily.  This is a good example of how easily an abuser can take control and ruin someone’s life without them even realizing what’s going on because it happens so gradually that by the time they get an inkling of what’s happening it’s too late.  I felt so sorry for the children in this story, being a mom, my heart hurt every time the little girl was left alone or hurting.  All in all, a great read.  4 stars.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Maggot Moon by Sally Gardner, Reviewed

Maggot Moon is an alternate history of the world.  It is well written, and heartbreaking.  The characters are strong and realistic.   In Maggot Moon, those who do not agree with the current regime, are sick, make the wrong people mad, don’t do what they are told, or for just about any other reason are put into slums and starved.  Some are immediately put to death.  Others are beaten and starved until they wish they were dead.   The location of the novel is never mentioned, so it could be any place.  It mentions the current leader of the country but only briefly.  The name of that leader is never given.    The government is requiring scientists in Maggot Moon to put a fake moon landing on TV to intimidate the rest of the world.  In the minds of the characters, if those in power are able to pull off this great hoax, the rest of the world will give up and stop fighting, thinking that this country is so much more advanced than them.   In Maggot Moon, there has never been a moon landing, from what I can tell, it is set sometime in the 50’s.   The story follows a boy who is handicapped named Standish Treadwell.  Instead of giving him up at birth, his parents kept him and later pay for that mistake.  He grows up with his grandfather and they try not to anger those in charge, but don’t usually succeed.  Standish ends up being the hero of the story and one of the bravest characters I’ve ever read about.  The end is sad but hopeful. 

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Hysteria by Megan Miranda, a review

Loved this one!  There were a few confusing parts, but all in all it was very good.  Hysteria is about a 16 year old girl who killed her boyfriend.  You don’t really find out the whole story until the end so I’m not going to go into details here.  She was acquitted of murder by claiming it was self-defense.    The main character Mallory is haunted by the events of that night and by the deceased boyfriend’s mother who seems to have been driven insane by the murder/death of her son.   Mallory is sent to a prep school to get away from the problems she’s encountering at home but she feels like everyone has given up on her and thinks she’s terrible.  The school ends up being almost as bad, but at least she finds a friend.  Mallory ends up having nightmares at night that leave marks on her, and she can’t sleep without a sleeping aid so she takes sleeping pills every night.  The first night she is at the new school she dreams of her dead boyfriend, as usual but this time she feels something grab her shoulder.  The next morning when she wakes there are red marks there.  Someone breaks into her room a couple of times and she just generally has a bad time at school, and then there’s another murder, and it’s someone Mallory despises.  Did she murder again?  You’ll have to read the book to find out!  4 stars.