Book Review: My Lady Jane

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My Lady Jane by coauthors Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton and Jodi Meadows

Page Count: 512 (hardcover)

Published: June 7, 2016

I read a lot of books. Some of them I really enjoy, some of them I have to kind of drag myself through for one reason or another. Other books literally consume me from start to finish and I find myself gushing to people about them any chance I can get and I get a little foot stampy until they promise me they will read them. My Lady Jane was one of those books. You may think you know the tragically short story of Lady Jane Grey, but I promise you this book will surprise and delight.

5 Signs This Is a 5 Star Read

  1. It took me only a handful of days to read it despite it’s 500+ page count. I’d say on the whole it takes me about 2 weeks to read a 250-300 page book and I finished this one in about a week.
  2. I read it when I probably should have been reading my book club’s pick for the month. It was so good I couldn’t help myself once I’d peeked inside. It definitely turned me into a book junkie staying up way past my bedtime so I could finish just one more chapter. This was one of those books with so many funny lines and OMG moments that necessitated waking up my sleeping husband so I could dish on what had just happened. I’m sure he loved that.
  3. When I first got the book (through OwlCrate) I stood in the kitchen pouring over every inch of the dust jacket and squealing with delight. Most of my favorite books seem to have those 8 million little details lurking around the outside of the book, letting you know that the author and publisher was just as giddy about the book as you are about to be.
  4. I need a good character to root for and this book gave me at least five of them along with two relationships to ship. I was a little bit concerned after reading the first few chapters because I genuinely loved Jane, Edward and Gifford and I really wanted them to all have a happy ending but wasn’t sure how that was possible. Even the fact that some of the people involved occasionally turn into horses and other less than kissable creatures didn’t deter me rooting for them from page 1 to 512 and I wasn’t disappointed.
  5. There are a lot of elements to this story that sound a little absurd when you say them out loud but when you put them all together magic happens. Fiances turn into horses sometimes. Girls are basically old maids by sixteen and sometimes get married to people they have never met. The book starts out as a historical fiction novel, then goes kind of science fantasy, then goes completely off the rails but somehow ends up back in historical fiction territory as long as you ignore all the middle bits. Everyone manages to fall in love with the right person by the end and the moral of the story seems to be listen to your heart and all your problems will  go away. But despite a really crazy premise and a lot of characters to get to know, it all totally comes together and works and you do the rooting and by the end of it you kind of wish it were a true story. Horses and all.

Have you read this one yet? What did you think?

What’s the last 5 star book you fell in love with?

The Mid Year Book Tag 2016

I’m stealing this book tag from Mom’s Radius because I just got back into town after a long vacation and my brain is too fragged to think of something extraordinary to write about. A mid year review seemed like just the ticket. Steal in kind if you are feeling the same need.

1. Best Book You’ve Read So Far In 2016

Winter41VgvI2digL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_ by Marissa Meyer – This was such a satisfying end to an amazing series that seriously took over my life for awhile! I think Meyer did an amazing job of weaving all these tales together into one cohesive plot that never disappointed. This book felt like the fireworks finale that it should be with #allthefeels all over the place. Every moment you were waiting for finally happens and Meyer only tries to break your heart eleventy billion times so it’s all good.

2. Best Sequel You’ve Read So Far In 2016

26074213The Last Little Blue Envelope by Maureen Johnson– I was surprised to find that I actually enjoyed this book more than the first one. Something in the writing felt fresher and tighter and it probably helps that I’d grown accustomed to the cast of characters. I also really loved Oliver – probably more than I’d liked Keith in book one.

3. New Release You Haven’t Read Yet But Want To

615s-d3gm7L._SY346_Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by JK Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany – The internet kind of exploded when this title came out (hell, it exploded when it was first whispered about) and the reviews have been mixed. My husband wrote it off immediately after realizing it’s the written screenplay and not in novel form, and I’ve heard some reviews that it just isn’t up to Rowling par. But… I’m so jonsing for a Potter fix that I’m likely to read it anyway, I’m just waiting for the right moment / price.

4. Most Anticipated Release For The Second Half Of The Year

heartlessHonestly there are a few, but I think Heartless by Marissa Meyer is probably at the top of my list because I’m still riding the Lunar Chronicles wave, you know? November is feeling so far away. I’m also looking forward to books by Amy Schumer and Anna Kendrick.

5. Biggest Disappointment

13449693I thought I was going to love The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater a lot more than I did. This was probably an instance of hype ruining a good thing, I might have had lower expectations if the bookstagram universe weren’t loving it so hard. Something about the book just never let me settle into it desp

ite being intrigued by the premise.

6. Biggest Surprise

18770398I read a murder mystery horror story of sorts and loved it.  Night Film by Marisha Pessl is such a departure from the types of books I normally read and there were definitely times I thought, “This book is too dark for me, I should walk away,” but because it was a book club pick, I soldiered on and I’m glad I did. Somewhere around the middle the plot really picks up and the last 150 pages I read in basically one day. I found the overall story to be really fascinating and the pictures and clippings were a nice touch. I was kind of disappointed that the google play app at least doesn’t seem to exist anymore. Unless Cordova got to it.

7. Favorite New Author

18079710Richelle Mead is a recent new fave. I read The Vampire Academy in like two sittings despite having seen the movie like a year ago. This is unheard of guys. Seeing the movie before reading the book is a rookie move that never works in my favor but I could not put it down! I also really enjoyed reading books by Kathleen Ernst, Maureen Johnson and Heather Cocks this year.

8. Newest Fictional Crush

Dimitri from The Vampire Academy is definitely up there and certainly qualifies as most recent.

9. Newest Favorite Character

22840421I’m reading My Lady Jane by coauthors Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows right now and I love Jane and Edward and really everyone. It’s such a funny book and so cleverly written. It’s kind of historical fiction but the original premise has been entirely turned on its head to the point of being unrecognizable in all the best ways.

10. Book That Made You Cry

I’m honestly not sure. I feel like I must have cried at some point reading several but I don’t remember any specific scenes. Likely contenders include The Royal We by Heather Cocks, Winter by Marissa Meyer or maybe Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld because Pride and Prejudice always gets to me.

11. Book That Made You Happy

41C+ffCh5dL._SX329_BO1,204,203,200_Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling because she is so funny, she always makes me laugh. I think I liked this book even more than the original. It was funny, informative, dishy and inspiring jut like Mindy. I’m a sucker for these celeb memoir humor books but this one was really, really good.

12. Favorite Book To Movie Adaptation You Saw This Year

26067879I saw Me Before You by Jojo Moyes and it was allllllllll the things. Talk about making a girl ugly cry, the plot is just heart breaking but the casting was brilliant and everybody was on point. Of course when you bring the Mother of Dragons onto your set, you know it’s going to be good.

13. Favorite Review/Post You’ve Done This Year

booksuggestionstweenI wrote a list of book suggestions for your reluctant tween reader and I enjoyed it so much that I wrote another list of book suggestions for 10 year old boys. Being a huge book nerd who worked in a book store for several years and spends an inordinate amount of time talking about books and recommending books to friends, these posts were kind of an excuse to just delve into my recommendations and keep digging without worrying that my friend is going to implode trying to retain all the suggestions.

14. Most Beautiful Book You’ve Bought So Far This Year

51MIi4p2YyL._SX418_BO1,204,203,200_I’ve indulged in some beautiful hardcovers this year like Eligible, The Girls or Rich and Pretty, but the Illustrated Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone is just stunning and continues to be stunning page after page after page. It really enhances the read aloud quality of the book as well.

15. Books You NEED To Read By The End Of 2016

I still haven’t read The Girls or Rich and Pretty because you know, so many books so little time. I’d also really like to read After You, the sequel by Jojo Moyes and of course the other eleven hundred books on my bookshelves upstairs (not to mention my kindle). I’m going to refrain from making a thorough list because it will give me a migraine but really I just want to dig into my stacks a little more and thin the herd.

What is the best book you have read so far this year?

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Ten Reasons I Love Rainbow Rowell

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every Tuesday they post a new Top Ten list prompt. This week’s prompt is… Ten Reasons you love “X”.

I wasn’t sure which author to base my top ten list off of so I started this post by trying to write ten things I loved about several authors like Jane Austen and Jasper Fforde and then I got to Rainbow Rowell and the list started to come more naturally and I knew I could get to ten things easily. Once I started reading old interviews with her, my list far exceeded ten things.

Rowell has quickly became a trusted entity for me. I have loved all the books I’ve read of hers to the point where I don’t even question whether or not to read her books now. They are Must Reads by default. Here are ten reasons why:

  1. She understands the heart of socially anxious girls everywhere. AKA me. Her characters are just the right amount of broken in a way that makes them feel real and easy to relate to and root for.
  2. She fangirls all over the place just like the rest of us. “I’ve always been a very fannish person. When I like something, I usually love it, and when I love something, I CAN’T GET ENOUGH.
  3. My fave novel of hers, Fangirl, was originally a Nanowrimo project! I love that this massively successful author has experienced the joys and frustrations of National Novel Writing Month just like the rest of us and actually made something amazing with it.
  4. Her take on YA literature: “A lot of people look at something popular, and they’re dismissive of it because they don’t understand it. If you think YA is simple, you probably haven’t read a lot of it. But YA is not a genre. It’s just this really loosely defined category of books. If YA had always been this popular category, a lot of books we think of as classics would be YA. The Catcher in the Rye? Without question.”
  5. Her response to the question of whether or not Eleanor is actually fat is just perfection. I couldn’t decide on a single quote to share – just go read her whole response.
  6. Nostalgia reigns supreme in Rowell’s novels. Each of her books seems to single out a generation and a pinpoint in one’s coming of age and she captures the essence of those times spectacularly.
  7. She’s a champion for so called “girlish interests”: I think anything that predominantly women like is discounted, and anything that teenage girls like is absolutely reviled. It’s the lowest of the low. If teenage girls like something, everyone feels like they can — and maybe should — hate it, even the girls themselves.
  8. Her Instagram feed looks like everyone else’s Instagram feed. Rowell actually seems like she manages to be a real person even in spite of her fame. Like you could go out for frozen yogurt or watch a Star Wars marathon with her.
  9. This quote: “I don’t think ideas are as clean and separate as we think they are. Everything is derivative in a way. What you write is often a reaction or a response to the things you’ve read.”
  10. She wrote fictional fanfiction within a novel that became so good that it ended up getting its own novel. I think this makes her a rockstar.

OK so let’s take a vote? What’s your favorite Rainbow Rowell book?

What author would you share ten favorite things about?

 

7 Summer Reads I Loved

Today’s prompt for the May Instagram challenge I’ve been doing was favorite summer read which resulted in me perusing my reading lists from the past 7 years and coming up with seven favorite titles that I read during the summer months of those years. Which was a super use of my time, I’m sure.

These were the winners of that search, the cream of the summer crop top:

Yes Please by Amy Poehler

20910157I read this last summer and like everyone else in the world, I loved every minute of it. Poehler is a tremendously talented, incredibly funny woman who is also a great writer with good stories to tell. Whether you are in it for the Parks and Rec / SNL scoops or her witty view on womanhood and motherhood, this one will deliver and then some.

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

15749186I was just talking about this book to a mother at school pick up today when her teenage granddaughter ran over with it excitedly and I squealed with delight:

OhmygodIlovedthatbook!!!!

Jenny Han is all the things and I loved this story and Lara Jean. This is the feel good YA love story that you can ignore the world with while your kids are in swim class.

Paper Towns by John Green

6442769What’s summer without a book about going on a road trip with friends, honestly? Follow slightly nerdy Quentin on his search for his missing crush / next door neighbor the summer before he starts college. And if you like John Green (of The Fault in Our Stars Fame), I’d also recommend An Abundance of Katherines which is actually my favorite John Green novel – but I read it in March so it technically didn’t qualify for a “summer read” of mine. YOU could totally read it in the summer though.

Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple

15790857My book club read this a couple of years ago and much squealing and gushing occurred. This is kind of a mystery story but not really and it’s written in mostly emails and memos and letters but it doesn’t feel trite like those kind of books sometimes to and it’s a story about an upper middle class family in Washington state and their eccentric neighbors and the stuff that happens in suburbia but you haven’t already basically read this story twelve times, I promise. This one was really good and definitely pushes the limits of the genres it falls into until it slowly turns into something better than you were expecting.

The Selection by Kiera Cass

10507293If you haven’t already heard of this series, I’m impressed because the internet is kind of losing it’s mind over it right now with the recent release of the last book in the series. Start where it all began with this book and soon you’ll be able to get all jumping up and down excited, too. I seriously fell down the rabbit hole with this series which is kind of like The Hunger Games meets The Bachelor and somehow that isn’t annoying or dumb. This series is a perfect summer read – both intense and filled with adventure and intrigue but with lighter fluffy moments like first dates and ballgowns. (bonus: the kindle edition is only $4.99 right now)

Sweet Life by Mia King

2873085I read this one about six years ago and, folks, it doesn’t get much more summery than this. How about a story about a momma who moves her family to Hawaii to try to save her marriage and reconnect with her daughter? I love Mia King’s writing because she is so real and honest in her story telling and she creates characters that you understand, truly. It’s a make you laugh, make you cry kind of story and there are even some yummy recipes to try!

Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen

2599655Here’s another oldie but goodie – I read this one right around the time that my daughter was born (during my twelve minutes of free time, I guess) and loved it. It has a vibe that is very Practical Magic but the story definitely stands up on its own. It’s about the Waverley family and their walled garden that mysteriously blooms year round. It centers around the two Waverley sisters and their somewhat tumultuous relationship. And of course there is a love story.

What are some of your favorite summer reads?

What books are you hoping to read this summer?

Top 10: Bookworm Delights

This week’s Top 10 Tuesday theme is bookworm delights – things that make your little bookworm heart warm up and sing. Let’s squeal and say, “me, too!” together okay?

  1. Perusing the older antique book section at my local used book store. There are the really pricey leather bound volumes behind glass but also just little books in older bindings, with the pages kind of starting to yellow and the cover art that brings you full on nostalgia and some of the titles are infamous ones you know and love and others you have never heard of before but they make you feel kind of small to think about how a couple dozen years ago these books were new and beautiful to someone.
  2. Bookish references to other books in the book you are reading. When the protagonist mentions one of your favorite books off hand or when the plot of the book is clearly (or subtly) taking cues from classic literature. I love finding Darcy types in modern books.
  3. New bookmarks! I love a gorgeous wooden bookmark or handy point to a specific line bookmarks, cheap bookmarks offered for free at the register or perusing the carousel of bookmarks in the check out lane at Barnes & Noble.
  4. Etsy shops that sell jewelry and coffee mugs and candles and tea based off books.  So that I never have to stop thinking about books.
  5. The point in a book where you won’t be putting it back down until it’s done. Where you go from being able to read a chapter a night to being absolutely resigned to the fact that you’ll be staying up all night until you finish because you are at that part now.
  6. roryThat bookish smell. The scent that puts you at ease the second you walk into a bookstore. Your heart beat slows down to a purr as you walk up and down the aisles, touching the books just because you have to touch them. Because obviously they won’t know that you are one of them unless you run a hand across the spine or flip the pages .
  7. When the movie gets the casting just right. This is like a unicorn phenomenon. It’s rare. You’ll usually be disappointed or if you are lucky you will be completely neutral about them. But sometimes it’s like the character literally comes to life – sometimes the casting is so good that the character actually gets better than they were inside your head.
  8. When you start to think that you are probably destined to be BFFS with the author. You laugh at all their jokes, you like them on Facebook and follow them on Instagram and you sometimes wish you were reading the book while skyping with them so you could let them know your thoughts immediately about certain lines and plot developments because you tried telling your husband and he just stared at you and said something about it being three AM and he was sleeping.
  9. When you finish an amazing book by a new to you author and find out that they’ve written like a dozen other books. Bonus points if the kindle version of one of them is magically on sale that day.
  10. When that mom at the school playground references a book you love in a way that only other  fans would pick up on. “You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you for saying that!!!” There is nothing better than finding a new person you can let your geek flag fly around.

What would be on your list?

toptentuesday
Check out The Broke and The Bookish for more Top Ten lists!

10 Funny Picture Books for Kids

I’m linking up for another Top Ten Tuesday which is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every Tuesday they post a new prompt. This week’s prompt is… Ten Books To Make You Laugh. I’m stealing Kate’s idea of listing 10 funny picture books because after my suggestions for tween girls and 10 year old boys, picture books seems like a natural progression. And being a mother to a six year old and ten year old, I have read a LOT of picture books. Here are some of our favorites:

  1. 415zyRA-22L._SX400_BO1,204,203,200_The Book with No Pictures by B.J. Novak should be breaking the rules because as the name suggests, there are no pictures. But for picture book style reading where you are curled up with your kiddo for story time, this one can’t be beat and it’s so funny that your face might turn blue and you might spit on someone. And you have the added delight of reading a picture book by that guy from The Office so you know it’s funny stuff.
  2. 51BI6F3MRlLDon’t Let The Pigeon Drive The Bus by Mo Willems and pretty much anything else by Mo Willems to be honest. His Elephant and Piggy series was another big favorite around here and is a fantastic series for early readers. This book is the classic you must read title though and makes for a fantastic read aloud.
  3. 5984611Tickle Monster by Josie Bissett is guaranteed to make your kids laugh because it comes with built in prompts to tickle your children and more importantly the build up of threatening to tickle which in my experience makes kids laugh even more.
  4. 41ZYeUkW0wL._SX396_BO1,204,203,200_Olivia by Ian Falconer is an oldie but a goodie that always makes me laugh. I love the illustrations and Olivia’s antics. Her expressions and reactions to things are great. Any of the books in the series are great but if you haven’t read any of the books yet, obviously start at the beginning.
  5. 61yGpMELl4L._SX356_BO1,204,203,200_Eloise by Kay Thompson is kind of the natural progression after mentioning Olivia. If you like Olivia, you are going to love Eloise. She’ll make you wish you could live at the Plaza Hotel and have a pet named Skipperdee. Also your own children will likely seem tame by comparison so bonus points. If not, I’m sorry.
  6. 616-hr5kSqL._SX388_BO1,204,203,200_The True Story of the Three Little Pigs by Jon Scieszka is another long time favorite that both my kids loved. I love any book that takes a well known story and turns it on its head and this one is a prime example. And honestly Scieszka can do no wrong in my eyes.
  7. 61g8cli07XL._SX425_BO1,204,203,200_The Monster At The End of This Book by Jon Stone is a picture book that I read as a kid and had full nostalgia reading to my kids. This is iconically funny stuff and amazingly fun to read out loud. If you haven’t read this one yet, you are in for a treat.
  8. 51qqiOXCo2L._SX431_BO1,204,203,200_If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Numeroff is one of my daughter’s favorites right now. She has a big collection of these books and thinks they are pretty much the funniest thing ever. Honestly I’m not sure I’ve ever met a kid who didn’t love reading or listening to this story.
  9. 51DE6fFNKLL._SX454_BO1,204,203,200_I Am Absolutely Too Small For School by Lauren Child is one of many books in the Charlie and Lola series. I love these books – funny and fantastic illustrations with excellent attention to all the little details which I think is super important for picture books where kids will pore over them multiple times. I especially like this series for kids who have a bigger sibling – they’ll definitely be able to relate to Lola.
  10. 51K6FH6+E4L._SY454_BO1,204,203,200_We’re Going On A Bear Hunt by Michael Rosen and Helen Oxenbury is one of the books that I buy just about every new mother. It’s one of our all time favorite read alouds and perhaps more quietly funny than laugh out loud funny – it definitely deserves a place on this list.

What books would be on your list?

toptentuesday
Check out The Broke and The Bookish for more Top Ten lists!

 

WAYRW: The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend

What Are You Reading Wednesdays is a weekly meme hosted by It’s A Reading Thing.

Here’s how you play: Open the book you are currently reading to page 34 (or 34% in your ebook) and answer these three questions:

The Questions are:

  1. What’s the name of your current read?
  2. Go to page 34 in your book or 34% in your eBook and share a complete sentence. (or two!)
  3. Would you like to live in the world that exists within your book? Why or why not?

Now for my answers this week…

My book club is discussing The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald at the end of the month. I’m about halfway through it right now – it was kind of slow going to start but the further into it I get, the more invested in the story I become. Here’s a quote from page 34:

25573977“The only thing there seemed to be an abundance of was corn. At that time of year, the end of August, it towered around them in enormous fields. The bright sunlight transformed these fields into a swirling sea of gold and green that dazzled Sara, blazing in her eyes until Broken Wheel appeared almost as a relief. ”

This book’s universe pretty much is my universe in the sense that it’s not science fiction or fantasy. Do I want to live in a very small town in Iowa that is clearly suffering financially and is filled with largely reluctant readers? No probably not. We’ll see what Broken Wheel looks like by the end of the book though. Maybe Sara will end up doing them some good.

What are you reading?

10 Book Suggestions: For 10 year old boys

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday prompt from The Broke and the Bookish was to make your own Top 10 Must Reads For… your choice. Awhile back I wrote a post suggesting books for the reluctant tween reader. I had a lot of fun with that and have been meaning to write more posts like it so today I’m tackling a new list of suggestions – books for 10 year old boys (though honestly, your daughters will probably love these books, too) – based off the reading habits of my own ten year old boy.

He is a voracious reader and would probably have his own list of ten to add to this but I’m sticking to books that I have also read that I thought were excellent and can vouch for. Some are more complex than others – I tried to give you a varied list so that you can find something for your ten year olds regardless of reading level. And there aren’t any Diary of Middle School Zombies in Underpants here. You’re welcome.

  1. gregor the overlander by suzanne collinsMy son’s favorite: I couldn’t start this list with anything except my son’s self proclaimed favorite book ever. Gregor the Overlander by Suzanne Collins (yes, that Suzanne Collins) was probably the first book that made him cry – the first book that he came to me somewhat distraught over because a beloved character was clearly in real danger (but ended up being ok). This series captured his heart and consumed his mind and he’d insist that your ten year old read it immediately.
  2. 3980My favorite: One of my favorite books growing up was From The Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankeweiler by E.L. Konigsburg. This was a hide under the covers with a flashlight book and I still think of it today. My son read this in school this year and also really loved it so I can vouch for modern day kids still enjoying it. Read it together and dream of running away to live in the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
  3. Harry Potter Illustrated Book 1The Modern Classic: I shouldn’t have to tell you to read Harry Potter but if your son hasn’t read the books yet, this is a good time to dive into the series. At ten, the boys are nearly the same age as Harry who turns 11 in the first book, so the characters will be easy to relate to. This book series is coming of age meets magic and fantasy and adventure and should really be required reading.
  4. 65645The Old Classic: Another book my son read this year in school is The Lion, The Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis. (They actually read The Magician’s Nephew first which comes first chronologically but was published later. I personally think you could start with either.) He loved both books just like the rest of the world. Filled with fantasy and adventure and childhood antics, this one is a classic for a reason.
  5. 78411A shorter pick: If these are all feeling too literary or stuffy or just too long, I recommend The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket. These books are both short and sweet and hilarious. These are a great introduction to a reluctant reader that are likely to turn your kids into avid readers. And if they like this, there are at least twelve more books to enjoy not including Snicket’s other books outside of the series.
  6. 83369For your budding brainiac: Be sure to check out The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart which is like Hogwarts for Geniuses. If your son likes brain teasers and has ever felt like he doesn’t fit in – or even if he does – he’ll enjoy this book. It’s another series that’s excellent from beginning to end. You’ll want to read this one with him, it’s that good.
  7. 16131058The surprising hit series by that kid from GleeI was so pleasantly surprised by The Land of Stories by Chris Coelfer. I was not expecting much but it was excellent. I really loved his re-imaginings of various fairy tale characters and the story as a whole. My son loved this one and is eager to read the follow up stories in the series.
  8. 394363The Slightly Less Well Known Fantasy Series: The Golden Compass by Phillip Pullman was excellent and despite having a terrible movie made for it it’s managed to stay somewhat under the radar. This one has gotten passed around most of the family and loved by all. It has such rich imagination and fantastical adventures. This is one to pass on to your kid when they loved all the other fantasy books I’ve already mentioned. It’s slightly lofty in writing style so maybe don’t start with this one if they aren’t already voracious readers. Instead I’d recommend trying…
  9. 769483For When You Can’t Get Enough Harry Potter: Magyk by Angie Sage and the rest of the books in the series are fantastic. There are definitely some similarities to Harry Potter but in my opinion the series holds up well on its own and has a unique premise. It also boasts six more books in the series which is awesome. I think series books are excellent for readers this age because it keeps them reading, reading, reading and gives them an obvious next title to check out.
  10. 30119For when they don’t want to read a whole book: Allow me to be the 1 millionth person to recommend Shel Silverstein to your reluctant readers. Where The Sidewalk Ends takes everything your kid thinks he knows about poetry and turns it on it’s head. Hysterical, silly and easy to read for ten minutes here and there. If he doesn’t already know about these books, it’s time to change that. Silverstein has more than one collection of poetry but this one is probably his best.

What books am I forgetting?

Share your favorite recommendations for this age range in the comments section!

toptentuesday
Check out The Broke and The Bookish for more Top Ten lists!

WAYRW: 13 Little Blue Envelopes

What Are You Reading Wednesdays is a weekly meme hosted by It’s A Reading Thing.

Here’s how you play: Open the book you are currently reading to page 34 (or 34% in your ebook) and answer these three questions:

The Questions are:

  1. What’s the name of your current read?
  2. Go to page 34 in your book or 34% in your eBook and share a complete sentence. (or two!)
  3. Would you like to live in the world that exists within your book? Why or why not?

Now for my answers this week…

7796279I’m reading 13 Little Blue Envelopes by Maureen Johnson. Here’s a quote from 34%:

It looked like he was reaching for David, but at the last moment, he turned, took Ginny’s face in his hands, and kissed her. It wasn’t a tender, slow, “your lips are like delicate flower petals” kiss. More like a “thank -you” kiss. Or even a “good game!” kiss.

I have no desire to be an awkward teenager again, but I would not pass up a whirlwind trip to Europe, vague envelopes and all. I’ll pass on the thank-you kiss though.

What are you reading right now?

Top 10 Tuesday: Spring TBR List

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly link up hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every Tuesday they post a new prompt for a bookish Top 10 List. This week’s prompt is… Ten Books on my Spring TBR pile.

Since I’m trying to focus on reading books that I already own, I decided to look through my books and find a handful of books that I’m most looking forward to reading. My little nightstand shelf (made by my handy hubby) definitely didn’t reflect that list so I remedied that situation before taking the picture above.

The books that made the cut are:

  1. The Woman Who Died a Lot (Book 7 of Thursday Next series) by Jasper Fforde : a bookish fantasy series set in an alternate universe Britain.
  2. I Regret Nothing by Jen Lancaster : one of the latest memoirs by Jen Lancaster whom I adore in all things.
  3. Landline by Rainbow Rowell : I still haven’t read this one which is absurd because I love everything she writes. After this, I’ll need to read Carry On.
  4. Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson (aka The Bloggess) : another memoir by one of my favorite bloggers. She’s got a morbid sense of humor but I love her so much.
  5. Stars Above (last book of The Lunar Chronicles) by Marissa Meyer : Have you noticed I’m obsessed?
  6. Atlantia by Ally Condie : I really liked her Matched series and this book about mermaid sisters has me super intrigued.
  7. The Status of All Things by Liz Fenton& Lisa Steinke : about a woman who discovers she can change her fate through online status updates
  8. The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han : so far I love everything I’ve read of hers so I’m looking forward to this sweet romance series.

Most of these titles are books by authors that I love so there isn’t a lot of branching out or unfamiliar faces. It’s also largely comprised of my usual genre suspects: celeb memoirs / blogger memoirs ; YA sweet romances / YA fantasy stories ; Contemporary Novels by Brilliant Women. Some are from a series I’m avidly following, some are stand alone novels. All look ridiculously good.

Two other books I anticipate reading (since that was only 8 titles and I can math sometimes):

  1. 25573977The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend by Katarina Bivald : My book club will be discussing this title in April. I don’t own a copy (yet) so I wasn’t able to photograph it but I’m looking forward to reading and discussing this one. It’s compared to The Guernsey Literary and Potatoe Peel Pie Society which our group read and loved. This one sounds like it will be all about traveling to a new place and the people you encounter mixed with a healthy love of books and bookish people. Basically my kind of book.
  2. 18113513Balancing it All by Candace Cameron Bure : I’m on a celeb memoir kick that has been going on for you know seven or eight years now? But I’m a little bit picky. I want them to be funny or well written and preferably by someone I already love and admire. I downloaded this one onto my kindle recently when it was on sale which was exciting with Fuller House coming out recently as well (possibly the reason for the sale). I think all girls love DJ Tanner but I also love Candace in these cheesy Christmas movies she always seems to be starring in and the fact that she has time for all that while raising a family and seeming like a normal person? I look forward to reading about how she does in fact balance it all.

What books are on your TBR list right now?