7.14.2018

Gork, The Teenage Dragon by Gabe Hudson {Book Review}

Teenage dragons all over the place! #books #dragons
{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of Gork, the Teenage Dragon free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

PTH Rating:



Gork, the Teenage Dragon by Gabe Hudson seemed to hit a few of my "must read" categories. (1) It's set on a school campus - the WarWings Military Academy of Planet Conquering. (2) It involves dragons. (3) The blurb says its for fans of Harry Potter and The Hitchhikers's Guide to the Galaxy. That's all me.

Having read this novel, I can certainly see the comparison to The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, particularly the tone. Gork has the name whimsical and often nonsensical view of the world, with a dash of humor and satire thrown in. But HP? Nope. The only connecting thread there is the fact that the novel is set on a campus (in this case, a campus where being evil and terrible is a minimum requirement).

Unfortunately, my enjoyment of this novel was curtailed by numerous and repetitive info dumps, combined with tangents that resulted in a very slow moving plot. I can only assume the repetition was done on purpose as a writing device, but hearing the same information repeated using the same words and phrases grated on me.

So, while this book has a super cool 80's retro cover, it just wasn't for me.

7.09.2018

Waste of Space by Gina Damico {Book Review}

Waste of Space by Gina Damico has a hilarious premise - 10 teenagers are sent into space for a reality TV show. The novel is full of humor, satire, and situational comedy that made me laugh out loud. #books #scifi #realitytv
{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of Waste of Space free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

PTH Rating: 




Waste of Space by Gina Damico has a hilarious premise - 10 teenagers are sent into space for a reality TV show. The novel is full of humor, satire, and situational comedy that made me laugh out loud.

So why the three stars? The concept could only carry the book so far. At a certain point, the humor and satire were noticeably absent as the story took a turn. Because the characters had been mostly there to deliver jokes up until that point, they weren't fully enough developed to support the new plot twists.

With that being said, I have to admit to reading this novel in one day! It is comprised mostly of transcripts and emails, which are a quick read.

7.08.2018

The Silvers Series by Daniel Price {Book Review}

The Silvers Series by Daniel Price is set in an alternate universe after the world as we know it ends. However, the setting is really just a backdrop for a plot-driven story that is nerve wracking, full of non-stop action, and reads like a movie. #books #reading #scifi #sciencefiction
{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of Song of the Orphans free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

I feel like I found a hidden gem with Daniel Price's The Silvers series. It begins with The Flight of the Silvers and continues in The Song of the Orphans. Oh, the joy of finding a great new series . . .  followed by the despair that the third book has not been published yet. It has a title, but no expected publication date, so consider yourself warned!

This series is set in an alternate universe after the world as we know it ends. (I, frankly, don't pay much attention to the logic of such things, but the novels do include a great deal of discussion on why/how the alternate realities exist.) However, the setting is really just a backdrop for a plot-driven story that is nerve wracking, full of non-stop action, and reads like a movie.

We follow a cast of characters who are in a "fish out of water" situation while struggling to understand how to navigate the alternate world they find themselves in. They may never have been friends back home, but here they are instantly bonded and have only each other to rely on. We are included in their confusion and are taken along for the journey of figuring out the underlying reason for their predicament.

When I hopped over to look at the Goodreads and Amazon reviews, I learned that I am not alone in my love for this novel! The ratings there are outstanding and I'm happy to add another positive review to the heap. Now if only that third book would come out anytime soon....

5.28.2018

Song of the Current by by Sarah Tolcser {Book Review}

{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of Song of the Current free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

The Book:

Song of the Current by Sarah Tolcser

Pub Date:

June 2017

PTH Rating:



Review:

My kids went to bed waaaaay too late last night because I HAD to finish Song of the Current by Sarah Tolcser. I had to find out what happened to Caro, a young woman who was plucked out of her simple life on a river and into some serious adventure.

Song of the Current was a bit slow to start, but I soon figured out that Caro was a serious badass. This isn't some story where a girl is searching for a boy to solve all her problems. Caro loves her life, complicated as it can be, and the only missing piece is that she is not sure where her fate will take her. She was sure she knew her path, but life isn't working out that way.

The writing is engaging, the dialogue is witty and funny, and the story is completely engaging. I am eagerly awaiting the second book in the series. Fair warning - the end of this book is a bit racy, so this isn't a YA book that I'd hand to my middle grade reader.

5.26.2018

Golden Hill by Francis Spufford {Book Review}

Golden Hill by Francis Spufford is alternatively hilarious and heartbreaking. This story of New York City before it was a city will suck you right in! #books
{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of Golden Hill free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

The Book:

Golden Hill by Francis Spufford

Published:

June 2016

PTH Rating:



Review:

Golden Hill by Francis Spufford is alternatively hilarious and heartbreaking. This story of New York City before it was a city will suck you right in! We follow the story of William Smith as he steps off a ship from the old world onto Manhattan island. He is a man of mystery who charms his way into the hearts of New York's inhabitants almost against their will.

We learn about Smith bit by bit as he struggles to make sense of the town of New York. Throughout it all, the reader is left wondering why Smith is there, whether there is any sense to his actions, and whether he could b any more charming. 

A few of my favorite lines from Golden Hill, which is written in the style of the period:

>“For what soul, to whom the world still is relatively new, does not feel the sensible excitement, the faster breath of expansion of hope, where every alley may yet contain an adventure, every door be back'd by danger, or by pleasure, or by bliss?”

>“When the winter takes hold we all huddle in each other's pockets.”

>“He laid his white right hand tidily atop his white left hand, on the tabletop. Smith smiled appreciatively, but still declined to come out to play. Septimus tapped the toe of his shoe on the floor. Tap-tap-tap: a foot tutting.”

As you can see, this book is full of wit, but also a whole bunch of sentimentality that hit me right in the feels. I highly recommend it to any fan of historical fiction, especially someone who enjoys a little bit of quirkiness in their novels.

4.08.2018

The Space Between the Stars by Ann Corlett {Book Review}

The Space Between the Stars is set in what is left of a post-apocalyptic universe.
{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of The Space Between the Stars free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

PTH Rating:


Review

I was all set up to adore this book because I am a complete sucker for a post-apocalyptic story. In Ann Corlett's The Space Between the Stars, humanity has moved out into the universe, but a virus reduces the universe's population to just a few survivors on each inhabited planet. 

But where this novel lost me was all the other stuff. Our protagonist, Jamie, is extraordinarily petty in the face of the near-destruction of humanity. Entire passages are spent in what feels like an emotional/psychological check ins with all the characters, whether major or minor.

What I did love was the sweeping adventure of the story and the portions that focused on the state of the world when its population is decimated. It is always interesting to see how people would cope and cobble together a new world. 

3.28.2018

The Little French Bistro by Nina George {Book Review}

The Little French Bistro tells the story of Marianne Messaman, who starts the novel by trying to kill herself in Paris. I warned you it was melancholy! The novel tell the story from there and I don't want to spoil anything, but it involves.... a Little French Bistro. #books #bookreviews
{Many thanks to the publisher for sending me an eARC of The Little French Bistro free of charge. If you click through the affiliate links in this post, any purchase you make supports this site.}

PTH Rating: 



I was a fan of The Little Paris Bookshop and its interminable love of all things bookish, but Nina George's latest book, The Little French Bistro just didn't hit the mark for me. I found it melancholy, then treacly, then insta-lovey.

The Little French Bistro tells the story of Marianne Messaman, who starts the novel by trying to kill herself in Paris. I warned you it was melancholy! The novel tell the story from there and I don't want to spoil anything, but it involves.... a Little French Bistro.

You know what I did adore about this book though? The food! Also, the clear love and admiration of the Breton culture made me want to hop on a plane and visit the region.

I also appreciated truly a story with a female protagonist who was later in life, but still swayed by an invitation for love and happiness. If you like your stories more on the sappy side and all tied up in a bow at the end, this one is for you!