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What’s up next?

So I have another couple of YA reads on tap over the next week or two.   Here they are:


The sequel to Ashes a really great dystopian/zombie read.  I want to read this before I forget the premise of the first book. 🙂



This one is on the current Lone Star list for TLA.  I like the cover and anything resurrecting the sinister tale of Jack the Ripper.  I hope it lives up to my expectations…


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The Scorpio Races and The World’s Strongest Librarian

index     wolrds strongest

These are the last two books I read.  The Scorpio Races I read after I finished with The Raven Boys- I was hoping it would be as good, but was a little disappointed.  I enjoyed it, but the story was not as compelling for me.  I posted about this on my Shelfair page too, so you may read the review there-

The next book I read as the first in my Dewey challenge for 2013.  I hope to read one book from each of the 100 divisions in the Dewey Decimal system.  I started with this one because it was a graduation gift from a friend, it was about a librarian, and the call number is 020.92.  While this was not the best or most compelling memoir I have ever read, it was an easy read and mostly enjoyable.  My biggest complaint was that the story seemed a little disjointed and sporadic.  The best part of the book was Mr. Hanagarne’s description of his struggles with Tourette’s Syndrome.  You may find another review on my Shelfari page at the same link as above.

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Ashes by Ilsa J. Bick


I finished reading Ashes by Ilsa J. Bick- another entry in the dystopian/disaster/zombie arena. At first I was not sure about the book, one of the main characters, Ellie, an 8-year-old girl who has lost her whole family, speaks with a voice wise beyond her years. I found this distracting enough that I thought I might abandon the book, but then the action kicked in and almost never stopped.

This book is written with urgency and non-stop momentum. From the head piercing burst of something that kills most people under 65 to the very last scene which finds our protagonist Alex running for her life again, Bick slams her foot down on the accelerator and hardly lets up.

Now I have to read the second book in the trilogy, Shadows, and can’t wait for the third due out in the Fall- Monsters. If you have not yet read this book, I recommend you do. By the way, it is also on the current Texas Tayshas recommended list for teens and in this case, I agree.

I’m now onto another 2013 Tayshas: The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater.

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Bad Monkey- Carl Hiaasen


I finished Bad Monkey by Carl Hiaasen a couple of days ago.  I really liked it.  Great summer read.  Hiaasen just has a way with the quirky mystery and I enjoy reading his brand of Florida-set story.

In this one, Andrew Yancey has gotten himself busted down to restaurant inspector from Miami detective after a few unfortunate choices.  After coming into possession of a severed arm, Yancey figures he might score a few points with his former boss if he can solve the mystery of who the arm belongs to and why someone might want him dead.

Throw in a suspicious, grieving widow, an attractive ME, and mysterious circumstances that stretch from the Florida Keys to the Bahamas- oh and the bad monkey- and you’ve got the makings of a laugh-out-loud, Hiaasen-brand mystery.  Great to take on vacation!

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The Fault in Our Stars- Part 2


So I finished this yesterday.  It was sad, and moving, and funny, and uniquely John Green-ish.  You know how some authors just have a certain tone, well he has one.  For an author who writes stand alone books, this can in some ways be good for the reader because there is still a rhythm for the reader to find and fall in step with.  That may sound crazy, but I swear it’s there in every John Green book I’ve read.

Back to my original point of this post- did I like it?  Yup!  It’s obvious that Green has upped his game.  I think his writing style is becoming smoother and more nuanced, but I mean that in a totally non-snobbish literary criticism way!  He’s better at his craft and it shows in the end product.

Do I recommend this book?  Yes- especially to those who like thoughtful, funny, more-character-study over action, and yes, sad books.  My 17-year-old daughter LOVED the book, although Looking for Alaska is still her fave Green book.  I enjoyed reading it and look forward to the next John Green project.

BTW, John is a very funny person and you might want to check our his YouTube channel Mental Floss which contains all sorts of posts busting myths and holding forth on all sorts of wide-ranging and varied topics.  Also on YouTube is the channel John started with his brother Hank called the VlogBrothers- also very funny!  So come on you Nerdfighters DFTBA!!

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The Fault in Our Stars


I started John Green’s new one yesterday. I’m only about 40 or 50 pages in and I know already that I will really like this book. However, I am also dreading the end. I know someone must bite it, right? I’ve had a couple of people tell me- be ready with tissues and don’t finish it in public! Yikes!

I’m not really a “sad story” kind of person. I don’t like sad movies, I won’t watch TV shows that are too serious or depressing, and I’m not into the Ellen Hopkins books, if you know what I mean. So I am a little anxious about this read, but I will finish it. I’m hoping there is enough humor and hope to make it worth my while.
I’ll let you know once I’m done.

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Sofia on couch June

So, things have been a little busy for the last month and a half or so…  I graduated with my MLS in May (yay!!), finished up work the first week of June, adopted a 3-month-old puppy the second week of June, and was offered and accepted a job as a Youth Services Librarian the third week of June- which I will start the second week of July.  Whew!! (Why the Whew!!? See above photo!)

I’m also trying to read, read, and read some more!  You can follow me on Shelfari here:

So far I’ve read The Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor, two-thirds of the His Fair Assassins trilogy by Robin LaFevers, Bad Monkey by Carl Hiaasen, and I just started The Fault in Our Stars by John Green and a couple of books on training puppies!

I’m also planning on Doing the Dewey for the rest of the calendar year.  If you are not familiar with the Dewey Challenge, it’s just a personal goal to read books from all divisions of the Dewey Decimal System- it’s up to you how much you divide the numeric system.  I am doing it by 100s, but you could do it by 50s, 20s, 10s, 5s, however detailed and challenged you’d like to be.  I figured since I’m starting halfway through the calendar year, I would cut myself a little slack and start my first Dewey challenge at the broadest level.  The first book I plan on reading is The World’s Strongest Librarian by Josh Hanagarne, Dewey #020.92.  (More on this in a later post.)

So I hope you all find some extra time to read this summer!  Maybe it will be pure fluff and fun, maybe it will be informative reading for SAT tests, ACT tests, or puppy training!  But whatever kind of reading you are doing is good reading!

Talk to you soon!

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June 29, 2013 · 11:33 am