Monday, December 13, 2010

In the Arms of Mr Darcy -- Krista's Guest Review

Hi folks! Once again my friend Krista has written a wonderful review! She shares a bit in my Darcy obsessions so here it goes!!

"In the Arms of Mr Darcy" - By Sharon Lathan

Delightful. That word runs through my mind every time I pick up a book in this series by Sharon Lathan. In this 4th outing, it felt a lot like just spending some time with the Darcy family and their friends/relatives. Not a lot of high stakes drama --- just some pleasant time with them for the most part. I loved the way Ms. Lathan treated the blossoming of Georgiana and Kitty. I've always wanted to learn more about Colonel Fitzwilliam and hoped for a good match for him. I actually would have liked some more time on his story. I see the 5th book in the series will up the excitement factor and feature the return of Wickham! Bring it on.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Have Yourself A Darcy Christmas!

Seeing as how I love all things Darcy, I could not wait to read this!!!! 
Curled up under the covers on a cold, gray and windy day, I started with one of my favorite soundtracks (Pride & and Prejudice....Jean-Yves Thibaduet) and my new Darcy Christmas book.....sigh.....I am so glad I decided not to wait until it was closer to Christmas. As I started the first story "Mr Darcy's Christmas Carol" by Carolyn Eberhart, I was hooked!!!! I have always loved the B&W version of A Christmas Carol (with Alastair Sim) and in the place of Ebeneezer I put the handsome and dashing Mr. Darcy and went on the midnight journey with him.....a very cozy entertaining look at one of literature's most beloved characters with a Christmas twist!
After a quick break and a freshly poured cup of hot coffee I was once again enraptured with the Darcy's. Amanda Grange pours me into the world of the Darcy's and Bingleys in the second story "Christmas Present". We get a charming little look into the lives of our Pride & Prejudice characters as they all celebrate Christmas together with the Bingley family. To end the story with a tiny Darcy bundle was wonderful!
Settling in further, well into the evening now, I enter the breathless world of my favorite couple with Sharon Lathan's "A Darcy Christmas" I traveled from Christmas to Christmas with these two passionate lovers, I looked into the world of the Darcy's with breathlessness.....tears.....happiness.....and all around satisfaction. I loved how Miss Lathan took us across the years with the Darcy's and looking at their Holidays spent with one another and how they grew as a couple and a family. 
Much applause to these three wonderful authors for creating such a wonderful book! I believe Miss Austen would have loved this! 
I have now officially added this book to my books that I read every holiday season....A new tradition is born....Thank you ladies!

Just Some Thoughts

Wow, it's been a while since I posted and I apologize to the handful of people who follow my little cozy blog here. Sorry about that but work and life has been quite demanding but hopefully I am back on top of things for a while. 
I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving! Mine was quaint and uneventful and that was WONDERFUL!
I am so ready for the holiday season! I have already read my first holiday book and I will be reviewing that on here later.....I must warn you all though that I am veering away from YA for a while. I still love my YA books but I just need something different. Every once in a while I get on a spurt where I cannot get enough of one author. This time (again) it is Jane Austen! I am a HUGE fan of Pride and Prejudice and when gobbling up all I can in literature I also watch the movies
Oh Mr. Darcy.........sigh........

So as it is, my following book reviews will reflect my current phase for the next few weeks! Happy Holidays everyone and please feel free to share your own book reviews in comments and such!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Cool Contest!!!!! Great Giveaways!

Click on over to Mystical Lit Lounge for a great contest with cool prizes!!!!

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Thoughts followed by Mockingjay Review

Hello everyone....well I've been quite lazy on the blogging front but hopefully I can stay up to date now that I am back on track! It's been quite a couple of months for books if I must say.....I have been meaning to post a review of Mockingjay for a while but as I said before I have been quite lazy....I was going to write this review myself but I felt that I could not do it I asked a friend of mine to write one as she is very witty and full of wonderful things to thank you Heather for the wonderful review and I will follow it with some thoughts of my own.....(spoilers!)

The final installment of Suzanne Collins' The Hunger Games trilogy does not disappoint.  Collins creates realistic yet extraordinary characters, and from the first book, I was hooked.  I am a fan of dystopian fiction in general, and I think the series is one of the better examples of this genre.  It makes you think as much as 1984 or Brave New World, but the intensity of the characters and the challenges they must face give it a little something extra. 

The series' heroine, Katniss Everdeen, has demonstrated courage, integrity, and a heck of a lot of spirit from the beginning.  Mockingjay sees her character grow even more as she really slips into the role of a leader in the rebellion as well as tackles some of her personal issues.

In The Hunger Games and Catching Fire, good and evil were fairly clearly defined.  Mockingjay seems to progress through more of a gray area of morality, and the reader really has no choice but to reflect on this.  Who exactly are the good guys?  How much can you ultimately justify for the sake of your cause?  Surprises are also a more common occurrence in Mockingjay.  Whenever I thought I knew where the story was headed, Collins would throw something out of left field, making the reading experience even more exciting.

Finally, I wanted to respond to some of the concern about the violence in the book.  Yes violence is a prevalent theme in the trilogy.  A lot of the characters (many of them children or teens) are killed in horrible ways, and Collins does not hesitate to describe this in detail.  However, try to imagine the series without these scenes.  It would become virtually meaningless.  One of the reasons The Hunger Games trilogy is so powerful is that it forces readers to examine the effects of war and oppression, and the violence is necessary to drive these points home.  That said, parents have every right to decide whether these books are appropriate for their children. 

As with any book, one could quibble over a few plot points here and there, but all in all, Mockingjay was a terrific end to a terrific series.  Collins always leaves the reader wondering what's next, and at the last page, we can finally exhale and close the book with a feeling of satisfaction.

Great Review!!!! 
(my thoughts)
When I finished the book I was not sure exactly what to feel...I reread a few things and thought I wasn't pleased at all.....however...after wonderful insights from friends and reevaluating things I realized that I understood the ending more than was pleased with it. Don't get me wrong...Miss Collins writes's just that things didn't go my way and I was a bit pouty about it. After thinking it over for a while I do feel that Gale could have had a better ending but he went his own way as Katniss went hers. I loved this series and it is one of my favorites I have ever read. I hope to see a movie in the future but hope the writers stay as true to the story as they possibly can.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Krista's Haunted Review

Time for another guest review! My friend Krista and I are HUGE fans of Jessica Verday's "The Hollow" and we have been on the edge of our seats and biting our nails for a whole year waiting for "The Haunted"! It has finally arrived and Krista gobbled this one up quickly! 
 Thank you Krista for a great review!! I still might write my review too when I am done with this one!

Synopsis from
An impossible truth. An impossible love.
After a summer spent reclaiming her sanity and trying to forget the boy she fell in love with--the boy who must not exist, cannot exist, because she knows that he is dead--Abbey returns to Sleepy Hollow, ready to leave the ghosts of her past behind. She throws herself into her schoolwork, her perfume-making, and her friendship with Ben, her cute and funny lab partner, who just might be her ticket to getting over Caspian once and for all.
But Abbey can never get over Caspian, and Caspian has no choice but to return to her side, for Caspian is a Shade, and Abbey is his destiny. They are tied not only to each other, but also to the town of Sleepy Hollow, and to the famous legend that binds their fates--a legend whose dark truths they are only beginning to guess....
Krista's Review

In most cases 2nd novels for me are usually a big disappointment. I fall in love with the first book in a new series, but when the next book comes out, it just isn't as exciting as the first. The Haunted proved me wrong. Abbey and Caspian's relationship (how will this work?), the Legend of Sleepy Hollow, delving deeper into Abbey's perfume making hobby, new questions raised, and being introduced to new characters (and revisiting the returning ones) guaranteed I was sucked into this book just like the first one. I tried to make this book last (I really did) but I was totally weak here. Absolutely no willpower whatsoever. I am absolutely hooked -- I really want to know where this story is going to take me and I hope that I will not have to wait another whole year to find out!! 
This title DEFINITELY qualifies for a double bookworm seal of approval!!!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Censorship in 2010!!

This is a post that I put on Facebook but feel so passionately about that I must put it on my blog too!

So recently I read that author Ellen Hopkins has been uninvited from the Humble Texas Teen Lit Fest. I also read that the "uninvite" had originated by a LIBRARIAN!!!  It's such a sad thing that such censorship still exists today. I grew up being surrounded by books...(thanks to my wonderful Mother)....being as how my mother was brought up in a very traditional and strict environment, she could have very well kept my sisters and brother and me from reading a lot of things. However, we had such a rich environment with literature everywhere and always had something good to read at our disposal. We also had many trips to the library....I sigh as I type this because of the comfy memories I have of my lifelong love affair with books. This love affair continues with me today, hence my job and passions in life.
Miss Hopkins has written such riveting titles as Burned, Crank, Impulse and many more. She brings to the forefront real topics that teens face today. These titles show the journey of teens from different angles and the agony and dispair that sometimes accompany situations in life. Bravo to Miss Hopkins!!!! Bravo to educating our children from their own point of view!!!!!
As a result of these amazing stories a Humble Texas librarian feels its her duty to just make a mention that Miss Hopkins shouldn't be exposing our children to such "horrors" to Superintendent Guy Sconzo and voila! (without ever reading her titles) Mister Superintendent has (lets just say it) BANNED her from coming to the Teen Lit Fest! Ummm what is a teen lit fest of you cannot celebrate the freedom of reading correctly!!!!???? In support of Miss Hopkins four other authors have pulled themselves out of the teen lit fest in Humble....BRAVO to you: Melissa De La Cruz, Pete Hautman, Matt de la Pena and Tara Lynn Childs for making a stand against censorship!!!!!
I'm so disgusted with this I almost don't even know what to say!? I do know this.....I wonder how many of these "advocates" ever sit and talk to their teens about the subjects they ban them from many of these "advocates" speak to their teens as if they are people instead of their little trophies....that's right I said it TROPHIES!!!!
Ellen Hopkins has written a manifesto that now is the manifesto for Banned Books Week.....I hope she doesn't mind but I also adopt this as my personal manifesto when referring to those rightwingers who assume to know what is best for everyone and what is right! Screw you Humble Texas and screw you people who have the audacity to think for our teens and not let them think and learn for themselves!!!!! For those of you who haven't seen it yet here is Miss Hopkins' Manifesto:

To you zealots and bigots and false patriots
who live in fear of discourse.You screamers and banners and burners
who would force books off shelves in your brand name of greater good.
You say you’re afraid for children,innocents ripe for corruption
by perversion or sorcery on the page.
   But sticks and stones do break bones, and ignorance is no armor.
You do not speak for me,and will not deny my kids magic
in favor of miracles.
You say you’re afraid for America,the red, white and blue corroded
by terrorists, socialists, the sexually confused.
But we are a vast quilt of patchwork cultures and multi-gendered identities.
You cannot speak for those whose ancestors braved
different seas.You say you’re afraid for God,the living word eroded by Muhammed
and Darwin and Magdalene. But the omnipotent sculptor of heavenand earth designed intelligence.
Surely you dare not speak for the father, who opens
his arms to all.
A word to the unwise.Torch every book. Char every page.
Burn every word to ash. Ideas are incombustible.
And therein lies your real fear.
Manifesto— Ellen Hopkins, bestselling author of Crank and newly published Tricks

Thursday, August 26, 2010

"What if fairy tale magic really existed?"

The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman
(synopsis from
 Elizabeth has a new job at an unusual library— a lending library of objects, not books. In a secret room in the basement lies the Grimm Collection. That's where the librarians lock away powerful items straight out of the Brothers Grimm fairy tales: seven-league boots, a table that produces a feast at the blink of an eye, Snow White's stepmother's sinister mirror that talks in riddles.
When the magical objects start to disappear, Elizabeth embarks on a dangerous quest to catch the thief before she can be accused of the crime—or captured by the thief.
Polly Shulman has created a contemporary fantasy with a fascinating setting and premise, starring an ordinary girl whose after-school job is far from ordinary— and leads to a world of excitement, romance and magical intrigue.
My Review
 I love fairy tales. When I was a little girl, it was in fairy tales that I found my escapism in the pages. I loved visiting these created worlds and getting lost in them. As an adult my love of fairy tales has stayed with me. When I came across this title I was so so excited. 
Our adventure begins with the ordinary and of course presses the limits to reach the extraordinary! Miss Shulman captured the true essence of the classic fairy tales and brought them into our modern day world. I found it so charming that she took our world and created a wonderful magical little place that is existing alongside it!  I once again found myself being transported to the place where mirrors speak in riddles and where the impossible is an everyday accomplishment. I definitely will be reading this engaging little story again and again. I encourage those of you who have not read it to make it a family read. Read it out loud (in the spirit of great storytelling) and enjoy this whirlwind adventure with the whole family!

As a new feature on my blog I will give those titles that I highly recommend a bookworm seal of approval. This title is my first!                                                  

                                                               Bookworm Approved

Monday, August 9, 2010

And the raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door; And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon's that is dreaming, And the lamp-light o'er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor; And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor Shall be lifted - nevermore! — from "The Raven" by Edgar Allan Poe

Guest Review from Krista

(synopsis from

Cheerleader Isobel Lanley is horrified when she is paired with Varen Nethers for an English project, which is due—so unfair—on the day of the rival game. Cold and aloof, sardonic and sharp-tongued, Varen makes it clear he’d rather not have anything to do with her either. But when Isobel discovers strange writing in his journal, she can’t help but give this enigmatic boy with the piercing eyes another look.
Soon, Isobel finds herself making excuses to be with Varen. Steadily pulled away from her friends and her possessive boyfriend, Isobel ventures deeper and deeper into the dream world Varen has created through the pages of his notebook, a realm where the terrifying stories of Edgar Allan Poe come to life.
As her world begins to unravel around her, Isobel discovers that dreams, like words, hold more power than she ever imagined, and that the most frightening realities are those of the mind. Now she must find a way to reach Varen before he is consumed by the shadows of his own nightmares.
His life depends on it.
 Krista's Review
I was fortunate enough to have an ARC of this book to read. Nevermore really delivers a little something different. I liked the way the author handled the relationship between two total opposites coming together - cheerleader and goth. Bringing in elements from Edgar Allan Poe's poems, tales, and real life really added to this story. These elements prompted me to pull out my copies of Poe's works to explore more -- any book that can inspire further reading? Fantastic. The only downside to this novel was being left hanging at the end on a lot of things. I understand wanting to keep the reader guessing, but this one really leaves you on the edge of a cliff. 

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Revisiting the Annex

Annexed By Sharon Dogar
(Synopsis from

Everyone knows about Anne Frank and her life hidden in the secret annex – but what about the boy who was also trapped there with her?

In this powerful and gripping novel, Sharon Dogar explores what this might have been like from Peter’s point of view. What was it like to be forced into hiding with Anne Frank, first to hate her and then to find yourself falling in love with her? Especially with your parents and her parents all watching almost everything you do together. To know you’re being written about in Anne’s diary, day after day? What’s it like to start questioning your religion, wondering why simply being Jewish inspires such hatred and persecution? Or to just sit and wait and watch while others die, and wish you were fighting.

As Peter and Anne become closer and closer in their confined quarters, how can they make sense of what they see happening around them?

Anne’s diary ends on August 4, 1944, but Peter’s story takes us on, beyond their betrayal and into the Nazi death camps. He details with accuracy, clarity and compassion the reality of day to day survival in Auschwitz – and ultimately the horrific fates of the Annex’s occupants.

(my review)

When I was 13 my mother told me the story of Anne Frank and I was intrigued. I read the book and by the end of it I knew that a piece of who I was would always reside in the annex with Anne in her diary. Never in my imagination did I ever wonder about the story from Peter's point of view. I knew all along that these other people were there with her but she brought them to life in her diary entries. Even though "Annexed" is a work of fiction, Miss Dogar has once again drawn me into the annex. This time we live Peter's side of the story. I have to say that Miss Dogar has evoked the feeling of a male mirror image of Anne's diary. Peter takes us through his fears, his loss, his growing affections for Anne, and the cramped sheltered day to day life in the annex. I never expected the way this book ended though. I was Peter, feeling his dying thoughts, remember his slowly fading memories, walking his death march and living his horrific life in the death camp.  Through the eyes of a teenager, we are once again reminded of the atrocities that occurred during the Holocaust. Though this book, of course, has a very very sad and tragic ending, Miss Dogar has definitely constructed a compelling piece of literature. This will definitely ALWAYS be at the top of my recommends list. 

This title is due for release in October 2010

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Happy Birthday Harry Potter

Those of you who know me, know that I am the ultimate Harry Potter fan. It began long ago on a comfy emerald green rocking fall weather, sitting at the open window,  legs curled up underneath me with thick fuzzy socks on, and the precious first book in my hands. I never thought the journey would lead me to here. The boy wizard took me with him to start on his adventures that day and I've never been the same since. My eyes opened up to a whole new world and my imagination was expanded tenfold. As I begin re-reading the Harry Potter series every fall (in tribute to when I first began reading it), I explore new places and find new nooks and cranny's to crawl into as I take the adventure once again. Much of my personality reflects my love of this magical world and I wouldn't have it any other way. Thank you J.K. Rowling for the most awesome adventure of my life in literature. I hope that many generations after ours continue to love the series and hold it in the status that this generation does today! Happy Birthday Harry Potter and Happy Birthday J.K. Rowling. 
Michelle (who still waits patiently for the owl with my Hogwarts letter)

Weekend Guest Review

Raised By Wolves by Jennifer Lynn Barnes synopsis:
Adopted by the Alpha of a werewolf pack after a rogue wolf brutally killed her parents right before her eyes, fifteen-year-old Bryn knows only pack life, and the rigid social hierarchy that controls it.  That doesn't mean that she's averse to breaking a rule or two. 

But when her curiosity gets the better of her and she discovers Chase, a new teen locked in a cage in her guardian's basement, and witnesses him turn into a wolf before her eyes, the horrific memories of her parents' murders return. Bryn becomes obsessed with getting her questions answered, and Chase is the only one who can provide the information she needs.

But in her drive to find the truth, will Bryn push too far beyond the constraints of the pack, forcing her to leave behind her friends, her family, and the identity that she's shaped?


Bryn is a young human girl living among werewolves. The pack's Alpha, the mysterious Callum, raised Brynn after her family was brutally murdered by a rogue werewolf. While growing up has not been easy so far, Bryn is a fighter. When a young werewolf named Chase arrives on the scene Bryn and Chase are drawn to each other. Brynn's friends Devon and Lake are strong and interesting characters and I am eager to learn more about them. While I was reading this book it reminded me of Patricia Briggs's Mercy Thompson series. I hope anyone reading this would know this is a compliment. I do not mean to imply that the story was copied in any way, but Bryn's strong character felt like a younger version of Mercy to me. I think this is a great series starter and am looking forward to the next installment.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Guest Review

I recently have asked a few of my bookseller friends to give me some reviews to post on my blog. Thanks Krista for a great review!
Synopsis from
"In Maggie Stiefvater's Shiver, Grace and Sam found each other. Now, in Linger, they must fight to be together. For Grace, this means defying her parents and keeping a very dangerous secret about her own well-being. For Sam, this means grappling with his werewolf past . . . and figuring out a way to survive into the future. Add into the mix a new wolf named Cole, whose own past has the potential to destroy the whole pack. And Isabelle, who already lost her brother to the wolves . . . and is nonetheless drawn to Cole.
At turns harrowing and euphoric, Linger is a spellbinding love story that explores both sides of love - the light and the dark, the warm and the cold - in a way you will never forget."

As Sam and Grace's story continues the readers are given a chance to experience Sam's life as he deals with his new life as all human (and the reader hopes this is the case), and the relationship between Sam and Grace. Grace's parents are a little more involved this time around (which is a total turnaround from Shiver). There is also a new character introduced -- Cole. Cole is a damaged soul looking for escape. It was enjoyable learning more about Isabel. I liked this book, but I have to say it did not capture my imagination the way Shiver did. I felt like I was simply marking time during parts of this book. I really didn't  feel that the plot moved forward very much. I also have to say that Sam's reactions whenever Grace was not feeling well seemed really odd to me. Overall I liked the book and will buy the next one in the series, but I just was not spellbound this time around.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

What's On Your TBR List?

I haven't blogged in a while because, to be quite honest, I am so backed up on my reading! I have piles and piles that are to be read and I keep getting more books! Thanks to generous mailings from publishers I do have some titles that have been added to the top of the pile. Right now I am in the middle of "Crusade" by Nancy Holder and Debbie Viguie. So far it is AMAZING and I cannot put it down! Next is BEAUTIFUL DARKNESS!!!! That's right BEAUTIFUL DARKNESS PEOPLE!!!!! My fingers are just itching to get into that one but as we all know patience is a virtue! So expect some reviews to be coming soon!
Mockingjay is just 36 days away!!! (August 24th!!) August 31st is a HUGE day for YA....The Haunted by Jessica Verday is being released AND the first in Cassandra Clare's Infernal Devices Trilogy...CLOCKWORK ANGEL!!!!! What a way to ease into the fall season! Hope the rest of the summer is great for everyone and keep checking in...some reviews are on the way!!!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Clockwork Angel ARC Giveaway!

Really cool little blog I ran across is running a contest for an ARC of Clockwork Angel!!! I wish you all the best of luck!!


Well let me say, it wasn't a great turnout for my contest but that is ok with me!! I am excited about sharing my books!

Donellys is my first winner!!! Congratulations! The 24 hour rule is not going to apply for this contest because there were only two entries...and since there were only two entries Schuyler you are a winner too!! Both of you email me your info and I will send the goods out!! Thanks for participating and look for reviews on different upcoming titles soon!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010


Lately I have posted links to many other contests, and now have been inspired to have my own! I have this beautiful ARC of Guardian of the Gate by Michelle Zink (sequel to her amazing title Prophecy of the Sisters)  and would love to share with someone!

Here is how it works: 
+ 1 pt. for following this blog
+1 point for following me on Twitter @me_chelle0731
+ 2 for mentioning this contest on Twitter 
+5 for mentioning this contest on Facebook
+20 points for adding up all your points and leaving it in the comments section 
(make sure to leave on links in your comment)
and last but not least 
+ 10 points for Commenting and telling me what YA title you are most excited for that is coming out this summer and why~
CONTEST ENDS ON JULY 10th @ 10 pm 
I will post the winner on this blog on July 12th @ 5pm 
you will have 24hrs to email : mechelle54 (at) gmail (dot) com 
after that I will choose another winner

Thursday, July 1, 2010

The Dark Divine by Bree Despain: Official Book Trailer

Crazy Summer Of Giveaways!!!!!

Ok it seems as if I have only been blogging about giveaways so far this summer....well it's because I have!!! seems my fellow bloggers are holding contests like crazy! Anyway here is another blogger to be aware of that is having some crazy contests!!

and here is a link to another one from the same blogger!!

Good Luck!!!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Hey there all you Mortal Instruments fans....this new blog I follow has an awesome contest!!! Check it out and tell them I referred you!!!!! 


Good luck!!!!

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Beautiful Darkness!!!!!!!

Yes I have another contest to blog about, but this one is incredibly AWESOME!!!! I normally don't rate the books I read. As a matter of fact, I never do. However last year I (through one of the amazing authors of this book) came across a copy of Beautiful Creatures. I have told everyone and still do that it was the BEST book I read all of last year! Now a fellow blogger has had the wonderful opportunity to give away an ARC of the sequel! Check out this wonderful blog and enter the contest!


Thursday, June 24, 2010

Another Great Contest!

Tera Lynn Childs has a great contest on her blog that you should check out! She is the author of the YA titles "Oh My Gods" and "Goddess Boot Camp" and the newly released title "Forgive My Fins"! Good Luck!!!!
Here is the link to the contest:

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Another Great Giveaway!!

Hello there!! Michelle Zink author of Prophecy of the Sisters and the upcoming Guardian of the Gate is running an amazing contest!! Here is the link and good luck!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Clockwork Angel Contest!!!

Check out this great new contest for Clockwork Angel! The first in Cassandra Clare's Infernal Devices Trilogy!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

"Eyes Peer From the Undergrowth..."

 Open the book, walk through the page, and never look back....that is how I felt when beginning this book. Mr. Gaiman has exquisitely taken us on a journey to safely pass through a fairytale. Mr. Vess (illustrator) has manifested this world for us to journey through as the pages flip past us. Before we know it, we are safely home...or safely making a home....or safely resting.....
I love this book....Fairy tales sparked my love for literature when I was very young. Left with the tattered page books that were hand-me-downs from my older siblings, my imagination was the only thing to take me on my travels. In the finely crafted picture book by Neil Gaiman and illustrated by Charles Vess the "fairy tale world" is brought to life and made for us to enjoy as never before. For young and old alike this title is perfect for storytimes for groups of children or for a cozy storytime between parent and child. I recommend this title to book lovers everywhere.

Saturday, June 12, 2010 darkness.....

Jekel Loves Hyde by Beth Fantaskey

With a title like Jekel Loves Hyde, how could I resist. In knowing the classic by Robert Louis Stevenson, what could possibly happen to give us a modern day YA title??? Well...Beth Fantaskey has made a quirky little concoction of her own in this title!
Tristan Hyde = Foreigner with a "darkside"
Jill Jekel = Good girl suffering a great family tragedy

The story takes place at Jill's father's funeral. He was murdered viciously and 
Jill is left with so many questions. At the very beginning of the story in steps Tristan Hyde with his dark brooding nature and tender comforting arms. Is there a connection other than the coincidence of their names, that Jill and Tristan share? That is definitely for the reader to find out. 
I  can say that I was on my seat from beginning to end. I was wrapped in the darkness of what Jill and Tristan were encountering and yet was savoring the twist that the characters took. This author doesn't just have great character development but she turns them inside and creates a new character within the same character! I have recommended this title to so many people already and hope to definitely see more from this exquisitely talented author!

Thursday, June 10, 2010


Hi everyone! It's been a while but I have a contest to let you in on. I have included a link to mystical lit lounge's website! Check it out and enter! 

Also check out the podcast on itunes...just search "mystical lit lounge" and listen!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Can a thief really be a hero?

The Thief and the Beanstalk by P.W. Catanese

Does this title have a familiar ring to it? From the first page I knew I was hooked. Mr. Catanese takes us back to the old familiar tale of Jack and his magic beanstalk.
Our story starts out with a new face, Nick, who much like Jack was a very poor individual not knowing where his next meal was coming from. Nick who was orphaned due to a plague that took his parents, is wandering the land just trying to survive. As we start the story we also see a band of thieves wandering the countryside in search of wealth and glory. All of our characters know a tale of a man named Jack who lives off far "North and West" of here. This man Jack is very wealthy in a white fortress that is impenetrable. His wealth is "said" to have come from a magical place that he went to after planting magic beans and growing a magical beanstalk.
We find in the band of thieves a most gruesome character named Finch. Finch on the exterior is a handsome man who maybe doesn't look like he belongs with these ruffians. However when Nick encounters Finch in the middle of an abandoned farm, one look into the terrifying look of his eyes and Nick knew that the exterior man did not match the monster within.
Finch has plan to find this "Jack fellow" and steal all his riches. They find Jack's pearly white fortress and only Nick can get in by climbing the vines that are crawling up the fortress walls.
After some hearty meals and a change of clothing, Nick is ready.
He climbs into Jack's fortress and finds a curious room. A room filled with paintings that are almost telling us a story....a story of a young boy in a magical world...filled with giants, and hens that lay golden eggs.....
and as he is looking...Nick is caught! by none other than Jack himself! Jack a now old man has some heavy burdens he has been carrying around for years....was Jack the hero of his story? Did he kill the giant? Find out for yourself! Jack gives Nick some beans (much like the ones Jack was given in trade for his cow) and see what happens when Nick climbs the beanstalk this time....will Nick make it back to our world??????

This enchanting story should be shared with many! I absolutely loved reading it and revisiting not only an old friend but my childhood as well...I recommend this one to readers of all ages....