Keys to the Sun…by Marcel Feldmar

Posted February 19, 2017 by thebookr in Books, Reviews / 0 Comments
Keys to the Sun…by Marcel Feldmar

‘Keys to the Sun’ tells the adventures of two brothers, Lucas and Parker Chase. They are in New Orléans to visit a family friend ‘Aunt Ruby’. While there they and a new friend, Nicole(Cole), find a map that leads them on a treasure hunt around the French Quarter. What I loved   I loved the idea of a hidden map that gives clues to a hidden treasure. I also loved that the story incorporated a lot of New Orléans history. An example of this is the haunting story of the casket girls who arrived in the city with casket trunks and then promptly disappeared. I found the prose well done and easy to read. I did also love the characters of Cole, Parker, and Lucas and I loved brother’s interaction with each other.   What Left Me Wanting More   First off, this book read like a middle-grade novel but with there were a few words that would be inappropriate for this target age. The clues  and the treasure hunt around the city left me often confused. The descriptions of the layout of ‘Twilight Oaks’ was very intricate and really didn’t add much to the story. I  also didn’t understand how the kids figured out […]

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The You I’ve Never Known…by Ellen Hopkins-Blog Tour

Posted February 2, 2017 by thebookr in Book Tours, Books, Reviews / 6 Comments
The You I’ve Never Known…by Ellen Hopkins-Blog Tour

  ‘The You I’ve Never Known’ follows two girls Ariel and Maya. Both begin the story struggling to deal with dysfunctional living situations. Ariel’s father moves them from place to place never staying in one spot long. He tells Ariel that her mother left the family and that she doesn’t want anything to do with her. Maya has an abusive mother who keeps strict tabs on her. She later flees from her mother into anther bad situation.   I was super excited when I found out that I would be part of the ‘The You I’ve Never Known’ blog tour. I have heard so many wonderful things about Ellen Hopkins books. Even though I have several of her books on my TBR shelf, I had yet to read one before now. I was in for an amazing surprise. This book is beautifully written. Since part of  this novel is written in verse form (as are all of Ellen Hopkins books),at first I wasn’t sure if the story would come together for me.  Wow, did come together beautifully. This book was so engrossing, I literally could not put it down.   I loved both the characters of Ariel and Maya. Both characters […]

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Teach Me to Forget..by Erica M. Chapman

Posted February 1, 2017 by thebookr in Books, Reviews / 2 Comments
Teach Me to Forget..by Erica M. Chapman

‘Teach Me to Forget’, follows Ellery, a high school student who was recently involved in a car crash. That car crash fatally kills her little sister, Tate. After the accident Ellery suffers from deep depression. This depression leads her to constantly think about suicide. After one of her suicide attempts, she tries to return the gun to her local k-mart. Once there she is detained by the store security guard who happens to be a boy from one of her classes.   What I Loved… ‘Teach Me to Forget’ really gets inside Ellery’s head and demonstrates how painful and powerful both grief and depression can be. The story slowly (through flashbacks) tells the story of Ellery’s relationship with her sister. The story also tells what loosing Tate did to both Ellery and her family. I did love the characters of Colter and Janie.  I also thought the romance element between Colter and Ellery was  both sweet and realistic.     What Left Me Wanting More… I really did not like Ellery very much. She seemed totally obsessed with her own pain and didn’t seem to notice anything that was going on around her. I didn’t really understand why Colter and her other friends would want to hang around her. I also would have liked to […]

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Between Two Skies…by Joanne O’Sullivan

Posted January 25, 2017 by thebookr in Books, Reviews / 0 Comments
Between Two Skies…by Joanne O’Sullivan

‘Between Two Skies’ is the story of Evangeline. She loves her Mamére (grandmother), her small Louisiana town, and being out on the water. This novel highlights her family’s  pain and struggles after Hurricane Katrina hits their small Louisiana town.   A Brief History of the Cajuns The history of the Cajun people is central to the theme of ‘Between Two Skies’. For that reason, I would like to briefly review their history . I think most of us know that a sizable part of the population of southern Louisiana are Cajun. We all know that Cajun’s are of French descent and have their own food,culture,and even language. Even though the Louisiana Purchase and the French and Indian War are touched upon in American history classes, I don’t think most of us know what that has to do with how the Cajuns got to Louisiana. Back in 1750 the English, France, and Spanish had all laid claim to parts of North America. The French colonies were collectively called ‘New France’.  The part of history that I think is not generally well-known is that at this point ‘New France’ occupied a large area of eastern Canada and what is now the central part of the U.S. Like the English, […]

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Where I Can See You…by Larry D. Sweazy

Posted January 13, 2017 by thebookr in Books, Reviews / 0 Comments
Where I Can See You…by Larry D. Sweazy

Detective Hud Matthews moves from Detroit back to his hometown in Indiana. He is hired by the local police chief to work as one of the town’s three detectives. A series of murders begin soon after he begins the job.   What I loved… I really liked the characters, especially Hud. I loved that he was deeply flawed while still being a great detective. Many of Hud’s faults seemed to revolve around the disappearance of his mother, which made sense to me.  I also loved the characters of Burke and Goldie. They were very ‘rough around the edges’ and had interesting back stories.   The scenery of the story was beautiful. The descriptions of the Indiana summer resort   painted vivid pictures in my mind. I could envision the crumbling cottages and rusting ferris wheel. I found Gee’s old shop to be especially interesting and more than just a little creepy.   What left me wanting more.. The identity of the murderer was well done. I can usually spot the murderer in a book right away but this one surprised me .I was,however, confused as to the motivation of the murders. The motive just didn’t come together for me. I also didn’t totally understand the revelation of the details […]

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A Bittrer Pill to Swallow…by Tiffany Gholar

Posted December 30, 2016 by thebookr in Books, Reviews / 0 Comments
A Bittrer Pill to Swallow…by Tiffany Gholar

‘A Bitter Pill to Swallow’s’ storyline addresses a seldom discussed topic. The mental health of teens in America.  The story has four very different points of view. All work or live in a treatment facility for teens with mental health issues. The first POV  is that of ,Janina, a teen who is artistically talented but struggles with self-esteem and social anxiety issues. The second POV is that of Devante. He is an academically gifted teen who witnesses the murder of his girlfriend and struggles with the depression that follows. The third POV is that of Gail. She is a physician who has had family issues and now wishes to change her specialty to psychiatry. The last POV is that of Dr. Lutkin, a psychiatrist and the director of the facility. He has his own skeletons in his closet.   What I Loved   I really loved the freshness of the subject matter. I loved that this novel focused on  an important topic (treatment of young adult mental health). This sadly seems to be an underrepresented topic in YA. Although I have read some YA novels where mental health is part of the storyline, treatment was not the central dialogue . This story did have […]

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Passenger…by Alexandra Bracken

Posted December 13, 2016 by thebookr in Books, Reviews / 0 Comments
Passenger…by Alexandra Bracken

This book centers on Etta, a 17-year-old violin prodigy. During one of her performances, she is thrust back in time to the eighteenth century.I have heard mixed reviews about this novel but based on the  synopsis I decided to give it a chance. Also,the cover, wow. What I Loved. I will start by saying I love time travel books. I pink puffy heart love them. Ever since  I saw ‘Somewhere in Time’ as a kid I have been obsessed with time travel.  I found the locations very interesting (a ship during the American Revolution, Paris in the ninth century, war-time London, Cambodia, the middle east in the fifteenth century). I also did like Nicholas as a character. What I didn’t love Where do I start? This book was so much work to read. I had to literally push myself to pick it up. The story was that incredibly slow. The first half had very little action in it. It was filled with information dumps. The second part picked up a bit but was still super slow. Also, except for maybe Nicholas, I really didn’t connect with the characters at all. Etta was not a typical teenager and she came across […]

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And Everyday the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer by Fredrik Backman

Posted December 3, 2016 by thebookr in Books, Reviews / 0 Comments
And Everyday the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer by Fredrik Backman

‘We lived an extraordinary ordinary life’   ‘And Everyday the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer’ is a novella about the love one man has for his son, grandson, and wife. The man is slowly slipping into a state of memory loss. His greatest fear is that he will soon not remember any of his most beloved memories. In a letter to the reader at the beginning of the story, Backman states,’This is a story about memories and letting go. It’s a love letter and a slow farewell between a man and his grandson, and between a dad and his boy.’ He also explains that writing this story was a type of therapy for him as he too has experience with a loved one with memory loss. As I began to read this story, I soon realized that this is both a similar and different type of story to Backman’s other works. It is similar in that it portrays an older person and their relationships. It is different in that the story line is not as straight forward as other Backman’s works. The story is told through the perspective of the grandfather who is sinking deeper into dementia. It switches […]

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Aftermath…by Clara Kensie

Posted November 15, 2016 by thebookr in Book Tours, Books, Giveaways, Reviews / 2 Comments
Aftermath…by Clara Kensie

Each second of my four years, two months, and seven days in the attic dragged on forever, and nothing ever changed. We don’t have a Dream Book anymore. But we don’t need one. ‘Aftermath’ is a young adult novel about Charlotte. She is kidnapped from a football game when she is eleven and is held in her kidnapper’s attic for over four years. She survives by imagining that her twin sister, mother, and father are leading a wonderful life without her. She imagines that her twin sister is living everything ‘double’ for Charlotte.  Her kidnapper has a stroke and falls down falls down the stairs. The EMT’s then find Charlotte in a cage in the attic. When Charlotte is released, she is reunited with her family but soon finds out that they have not been leading the life that Charlotte dreamed. I really liked the premise of this novel. As the name implies the story focuses less on Charlotte’s captivity and more on the damage that it caused Charlotte and her family. I liked how Charlotte’s state of mine is explored through her warped thinking and her small habits (such as taking the stuffing out of the stuffed bears everyone gives her). This […]

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