Belles – book review

June 24, 2019

The Belles Belles #1 by Dhonielle Clayton (Audio edition) Fantasy Science Fiction * * * Stars (Pretty good) The Belles are a group of women who have special powers to enhance the appearance of normal people (who typically have grey skin and red eyes). Depending on how powerful a Belle is, she can use her arcana to color skin, hair and eyes, do body shaping, even alter bone structure. Some…

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My Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life – book review

June 11, 2019

My Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life by Rachel Cohn Realistic Fiction * * * Stars (Pretty good) Elle Zoellner is gobsmacked when her Japanese father, with whom she has never had any contact, suddenly informs her that he is bringing her to live with him in Tokyo, Japan. Her mother was incarcerated (drugs) not long ago, and Elle has been living in foster homes, so her transition to the wealth…

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How (Not) to Ask a Boy to Prom – book review

May 30, 2019

How (Not) to Ask a Boy to Prom by S.J. Goslee Funny LGBTQ Realistic Fiction Romance * * * * Stars (Great!) Nolan Grant’s family loves him like crazy, but his slightly older sister takes her sisterly responsibilities a little too seriously and intensely sometimes. She wants to make sure Nolan is adequately prepared for life – particularly life after she goes away to college and can’t be there for…

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Benefits of Being an Octopus – book review

May 30, 2019

The Benefits of Being an Octopus by Ann Braden Realistic Fiction * * * * Stars (Great!) Zoey is in 7th grade and she tries to keep a low profile because other kids have opinions about her that she can’t do anything about. She’s poor, she’s moved around a lot (when her family wasn’t living out of her mom’s car), sometimes she doesn’t have enough to eat or clean clothes…

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Miscalculations of Lightning Girl – book review

May 24, 2019

The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl by Stacy McAnulty Realistic Fiction * * * * Stars (Great!) Lucy Callahan is a math savant. She acquired her “superpowers” after being struck by lightning and suddenly developed an affinity with and for numbers. There were some negative side effects, though – she also has some obsessive-compulsive tendencies and a fear of germs that other people often perceive as weird or freakish. Raised by…

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Marcus Vega Doesn’t Speak Spanish – book review

May 6, 2019

Marcus Vega Doesn’t Speak Spanish by Pablo Cartaya Realistic Fiction Tween * * * * Stars (Great!) Marcus Vega is an enterprising 14-year-old, who looks much older than his actual age (6 feet tall, 180 lbs, mustache). To help his single-parent mom out with bills and emergencies, he runs a number of different businesses – charging kids at school for littering or using their cell phones (both against school rules),…

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By Night – book review

March 21, 2019

By Night  vol. 1 by John Allison Comics Science Fiction Supernatural * * * * Stars (Great!) Jane and Heather go way back, but haven’t seen each other since they graduated from college. Now they’re both back in their hometown, Spectrum, where exactly nothing happens ever. Heather has a great idea that’s sure to be fun – the Charleswood Estate, abandoned for years, has officially run out of money to…

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Forbidden Orchid – book review

March 19, 2019

The Forbidden Orchid by Sharon Biggs Waller Adventure Historical Fiction Romance Suspense Thriller * * * * Stars (Great!) Elodie Buchanan is the eldest of 10 daughters in a family that’s being torn apart by her plant collector father’s continued absence. Unspeakable things happened to him on his last trip to China and he remains haunted and broken in his apartment at Kew gardens. When his employer threatens to take…

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New Kid – book review

March 19, 2019

New Kid by Jerry Craft Graphic Novel Realistic Fiction Tween * * * * * Stars (Amazing!) Because seventh grader Jordan Banks’ parents want the best education for their son, he ends up attending Riverdale Academy Day School instead of art school (but you get to see lots of his artwork/comics here!). It’s a wealthy, fancy pants place far from his neighborhood. At first Jordan doesn’t think he’s going to…

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Prince and the Dressmaker – book review

February 21, 2019

The Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang Graphic Novel Young Adult Fiction * * * * Stars (Great!) Frances is a young seamstress who finds a position as the Prince’s “dressmaker” when one of her designs – very risqué – debuts at a ball held in his honor. Prince Sebastian loves her ideas and wants her to make eye-catching, traffic-stopping gowns for him when he dresses up as Lady…

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