Friday, February 12, 2016

Book Review: Into the Dim

Into the Dim
Published By: HMH Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: March 1, 2016
Page Count: 432
Source: ARC Kindly Provided by Publisher via NetGalley
Audience: Young Adult - Historical Fantasy 

I should start this review with full disclosure. I was most attracted to this novel because it was blurbed by Diana Gabaldon and marketing materials claimed it was Outlander for teens. Once I moved past this, I found myself intrigued by the book summary and decided to give this a go when I received an ARC. I should probably go ahead and further disclose that aside from some scenes in Scotland, a hot guy, and time travel, the Outlander comparision never solidified for me.

Into the Dim begins when our heroine, Hope Walton, is reeling from the unexpected death of her mother. She's been left with her father who can't quite comprehend his wife is gone, but finds comfort in the arms of the local librarian. To make matters worse, Hope's feeling of being a fish out of water in her small southern town is only made worse by her grandmother's condescending attitude about Hope being adopted. I wanted to reach into the novel and throttle the grandmother; she is horrible to poor Hope. To cope with her loss, her father decides to send Hope to Scotland for the summer to visit with her reclusive aunt who is the last link Hope has to her mother. Hope is less than thrilled, but her alternative is spending the summer with dear old grandma, so she boards a plane to cross the pond.

The Shopping Lark #205

Each Friday, Reading Lark is going to feature some new releases each week to help give you some ideas of what to buy next. This is not an exhaustive list of this week's releases - just some novels that caught our eye. Feel free to share what books you're excited about that came out this week in our comments section.

YA Releases for the week of 2/8-2/14:

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Book Review: Harriet Wolf's Seventh Book of Wonders

Harriet Wolf's Seventh Book of Wonders 
Published By: Little, Brown and Company 
Publication Date: August 18, 2015
Page Count: 352
Source: Kindly Provided by Publisher
Audience: Adult - Historical Fiction

Harriet Wolf’s Seventh Book of Wonders is about family, love, and loss through four generations of the Wolf family. Eleanor is the daughter of the late Harriet Wolf, a famous writer-recluse. Eleanor’s daughter Ruth, who ran away at age sixteen, made a promise to Tifton, Eleanor’s other daughter, that she would one day return to rescue Tifton. When Ruth learns that Eleanor has had a heart attack, she comes back home to fulfill her promise. The story of their family is told from the viewpoints of these four women. 

Waiting on Wednesday: What I Saw

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine where she spotlights upcoming releases.

This week I am waiting on:
What I Saw
By: Beck Nicholas
Publisher: Harlequin Teen Aus

It's released in Australia at the end of February, but US and UK readers should stay tuned for an announcement.

A school dance. Someone goes down after a king hit. Someone lied about what happened. Someone else saw the whole thing, but coming forward will have massive consequences. One weekend that will change all their lives.

One punch will shatter a town. But is anyone ready for the consequences of telling the truth? A stunning new YA novel about the complicated romance between a girl with everything on the line and a boy with nothing to lose following a king hit incident that leaves the high school golden boy in a coma, from the author of FAKE.

Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Book Review: The Fifth Wave

The 5th Wave
Published By: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: May 2013
Page Count: 457
Source: Library - Audiobook
Audience: Young Adult - Dystopian, Science Fiction

So you loved The Hunger Games and are disappointed in the other YA dystopian/end-of-the-world novels you’ve tried? The Fifth Wave, by Rick Yancey, is the book you’re looking for. 

Aliens have decided they want our planet, and they’re taking it from us one wave at a time. They started with a massive electromagnetic pulse that killed our electrical technology. The aliens followed it with earthquakes and tsunamis. Then came the pestilence. The fourth wave began when the aliens began inserting themselves into human bodies, and now no one can be trusted. Unluckily, Cassie has survived the first four waves of attack. Survival means being alone, but her only reason to go on is to rescue her little brother, Sam. 

Teaser Tuesday: Into The Dim

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly feature, hosted by MizB of A Daily Rhythm.

"They're beautiful," I said, turning to Bran. "I've never seen eagles before."

A pulse of quicksilver hit when his gaze dropped to my mouth.

"Yes," he said. "They bond right out of the nest, you know. And stay by each other's side until one them dies. The other usually succumbs soon after. Grief, they say."

~ Into the Dim by Janet B. Taylor, Kindle Location 1357 (ARC)

Monday, February 8, 2016

Book Review: Pip Bartlett's Guide to Magical Creatures

Pip Bartlett's Guide to Magical Creatures
By: Jackson Pearce and Maggie Stiefvater
Published by: Scholastic Press
Release date: April 28, 2015
Genre: MG fantasy
192 pages
Source: purchased by reviewer

When Maggie Stiefvater visited Kansas City in the fall of 2013 to promote The Dream Thieves, she let readers take Sharpies to her car. I knew that she and Jackson Pearce had a friendly rivalry, so I wrote on Maggie's car, "Jackson Pearce wishes she was here!" Little did I know that the two were collaborating on a project, and that this book would be published a year and a half later.

I don't read a lot of Middle Grades, but when I do, I always find it refreshing to go back to the innocent, clean lines of the genre. Sometimes it's nice to take a break from the drama of YA, reading about friends who truly only want friendship from one another, and adults who are reliable and logical.

Cover Crazy: Tell the Wind and Fire

The purpose of Cover Crazy is to feature a cover each week for us to admire its beauty. I really like this idea since there are so many great covers out there! Cover Crazy is a feature that was started by The Book Worms.

I like the darkness of the cover which draws the eyes to the lights of the city. The cover evokes feelings of magic and power. I also like that the only color pop comes in on the word fire. I also love the reflection of the lights on the water; it makes it seem as if the city has two sides - one that is easily  seen and a secret side.

What are your thoughts on this cover?

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Magic Lamp Sunday 2/7/16

We discovered this feature at Ya-Aholic, where it ran on Fridays. It sounded like a fun addition to our lineup, but fits better here on Sundays. It's based on the basic Magic Lamp = 3 wishes idea. Since there are so many of us, though, we're just taking one wish each per week. 

If we had a Magic Lamp, we'd wish:  

Paula: I wish I could spend a few nights in the king's castle. Inspired by The Great Hunt by Wendy Higgins.

Nicole: I wish that I was staying on the Ritz in Paris. Inspired by Ten Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray.

Andrea: I wish that I could visit Scotland and stay in a huge house like the one Hope's family owns in Into the Dim by Janet B. Taylor.
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