Dec 31, 2017

Building the Book Pile #265

Welcome to Building the Book Pile!  A Weekly meme inspired by Stacking the Shelves

Hello Readers, Bloggers, and Awesome people! 

Hello wonderful readers, as you can tell I have been slacking on the blogging front again - and I was doing SO good... the Holidays are so busy and I have had a lot of family time. It was all great but I missed you all.

For Christmas we went to my mom's in PA and drive through a nasty sleet storm to get there. When we got home there was 1/2 inch of ice under about 6 inches of snow in the driveway and we are still working on cleaning it up :/. 
We visited my dad's too and made dinner for the family and had a fun night of games and now finally I am really back at home and getting ready for the new year. My mom was AWESOME and got me three gorgeous fountain pens and a bullet journal and I am going to be setting that up with my New Years Resolutions and trying to stick with it for real this year. I really need to get in shape, so that is the plan. I mostly want to try not to be winded all the time lol.

How were your holidays? Do you have New Years goals? Let me know how you are going to hold to them!
Share with me in the comments below!

  Giveaways  on Cover2CoverBlog!
None right now.

Coming up on the Blog

Happy 2018
...and other things if I can get some reviews done...

No Books Received this Week

Have you missed anything lately?

Comment and leave me a link to your Round-up/ STS/ Weekly...anything, post and I will happily stop by and say hello!
Happy Reading!

Dec 27, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday: The Forgotten Book by Mecthild Glaser

The Forgotten Book
The Forgotten Book by Mecthild Glaser
Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Publication Date: January 2, 2018

Why I Am Waiting:
I am a huge fan of enchanted books, libraries etc so this caught my eye - interested to learn more about it, sounds like it will have some good character growth.

Dec 25, 2017

Merry Christmas 2017 from Cover2CoverBlog

🎄🎄🎄🎄Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!🎄🎄🎄🎄
From Steph (aka Gorelenore) at Cover2CoverBlog 

Hope that your holiday is filled with love and happiness!

Dec 22, 2017

Recent Reads: Hack and Whack by Francesca Simon

Source: From Librarything Early Reviewers Program and Faber Faber in exchange for an honest review. This in no way alters my opinion or review.

Hack and WhackHack and Whack by Francesca Simon
Publisher: Faber Faber
Publication Date:  October 5, 2017

Format:  Hardback



Goodreads Synopsis: 
Hack and Whack - two angelic looking Viking toddler twins - are on the attack! As they go marauding around their village, upsetting the apple carts, little do they know there is a force far more powerful than they: their mum! The story ends on the terrible two being plunged into a cold bath!

Gloriously funny, slapstick, fast paced action from the queen of funny.
Little kid Vikings are an adorable concept for a book and I really enjoyed this one. Hack and Whack don't want to go to bed so they are running around the town causing chaos everywhere in their path. 

I thought that the story was fun. The action is right from the start and will keep listeners to the story entertained and engaged. Most of the text has a but of rhyming and it was overall an adorably short read just right for a bedtime troublemaker.

Dec 21, 2017

Recent Reads: The Girl Who Saved Christmas by Matt Haig

Source: From Netgalley and Random House in exchange for an honest review. This in no way alters my opinion or review.

The Girl Who Saved Christmas
The Girl Who Saved Christmas by Matt Haig

Series: Christmas #2
Publisher:  Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers 
Publication Date:  October 31, 2017

Format:  Ebook



 Goodreads Synopsis: 
From the bestselling author of A Boy Called Christmas comes a hilarious and heartwarming holiday tale for fans of Roald Dahl and Charles Dickens's A Christmas Carol that imagines the story of the first child to ever receive a Christmas present.

"Matt Haig has an empathy for the human condition, the light and the dark of it, and he uses the full palette to build his excellent stories." --Neil Gaiman, Newbery-winning author of The Graveyard Book

Amelia Wishart was the first child ever to receive a Christmas present. It was her Christmas spirit that gave Santa the extra boost of magic he needed to make his first trip around the world. But now Amelia is in trouble.

When her mother falls ill, she is sent to the workhouse to toil under cruel Mr. Creeper. For a whole year, Amelia scrubs the floors and eats watery gruel, without a whiff of kindness to keep her going. It's not long before her hope begins to drain away.

Meanwhile, up at the North Pole, magic levels dip dangerously low as Christmas approaches, and Santa knows that something is gravely wrong. With the help of his trusty reindeer, a curious cat, and Charles Dickens, he sets out to find Amelia, the only girl who might be able to save Christmas. But first Amelia must learn to believe again. . . .

Last year for the HoHoHo Readathon I had the pleasure of picking up Matt Haig's A Boy Called Christmas - it was a magical book and a wonderful way to start the holiday season. This follow up was just as magical and inspiring this holiday season. If you have not read A Boy Called Christmas, I highly recommend doing so before you read this book. The Girl Who Saved Christmas has a lot of references and characters from the first book.

In this new book you get multiple points of view, the girl - Amelia and then Santa and some of the elves as well. Amelia is the first person to receive a Christmas present ever and her hope is so strong that it helps Santa journey to deliver the presents all over the world. The hope strengthens the magic that he needs. This year though, Amelia has lost her hope in the magic of Christmas and Santa and Santa has to do something about it.

Like the last in the series, this book was so magical and full of love and the merry spirit of the holidays - I loved everything about it. Amelia was a sad but real character and Santa is his jolly self even in times of trouble, it was both realistic and uplifting. I really like the world that Haig has built for the holiday cheer and really liked the addition of Amelia into the story. The ending lit up my day and if you are looking for a sweet holiday read, I highly recommend these books.

Dec 20, 2017

Building the Book Pile: #264 (Late edition)

Welcome to Building the Book Pile!  A Weekly meme inspired by Stacking the Shelves

Hello Readers, Bloggers, and Awesome people! 

And it's Wednesday and I completely forgot to do my Sunday post... that's the holidays I guess! 

My hubs got promotion at work and this past weekend was his first full weekend at home in a long time and I am very excited about it. We ran a bunch of errands, did some Christmas shopping and hung out together all weekend. Friday we even had a date night (OooOooOooOOhhh fancy), we went to my work Holiday Party and then watched a movie at home, it was fun. Friday is supposed to be Date Night now :).

I finished a bunch of knitting commissions this week and have finally started reading again, I feel like I have been in a slump but really I think I am just being lazy... no shame though.

How was your week? Anything fun going on? Share with me in the comments!

  Giveaways  on Cover2CoverBlog!
None right now.

Coming up on the Blog

Discussion: Local Library Love
Recent Reads: Santa's Countdown to Christmas by Kim Thompson (MG) -3 stars
Building the Book Pile: Late Edition
Recent Reads: The Girl Who Saved Christmas by Matt Haig (MG/YA) 
Recent Reads: Hack and Whack by Francesca Simon (Youth)

Books Received this Week

Hack and Whack by Francesca Simon

Have you missed anything lately?

Comment and leave me a link to your Round-up/ STS/ Weekly...anything, post and I will happily stop by and say hello!
Happy Reading!

Dec 19, 2017

Recent Reads: Santa's Coutndown to Christmas by Kim Thompson

Source: From Netgalley and Crackboom! Books in exchange for an honest review. This in no way alters my opinion or review.

Santa's Countdown to Christmas: 24 Days of StoriesSanta's Countdown to Christmas by Kim Thompson
Publisher: Crackboom! Books
Publication Date:  October 2, 2017

Format: Ebook



Goodreads Synopsis: 
Help little ones be patient until Christmas with this storytelling twist on the timeless Advent tradition. Each day, starting December 1st and counting down to Christmas Eve, children can read a story that recounts how Santa and Ms. Claus, the elves and the reindeer get ready for the big night ahead, from Santa's initial fitness test (will he make it through the chimney this year?) to a behind-the-scenes look at Santa's toy factory. A book that captures all the excitement and the magic of the holiday season. 

Yay Holiday Books! This is a great idea for a holiday book. It takes the advent calendar we all love so much and is a book version. Each day/night you have a bit more to read about how Santa prepares for his journey around the world.

What I liked about this book was the advent calendar feel - I didn't read it like that but thought it was a really good idea for parents and kids reading together each night. However, some of the days were very short excerpts which was a little sad.

The sections have illustrations as well, of what Santa and his elves are up to and overall I thought this was a very creative book for the holiday season.

Dec 18, 2017

Discussion: Local Library Love

Today is a Discussion Day here at Cover2CoverBlog. I am trying to start these a little more since they seem fun :) I hope you enjoy and if you have any topic suggestions let me know in the comments.
Today's Topic
I love my local library, I don't go often, and they are pretty small but I love everything about a library, so today I wanted to talk about it a little.

When I lived in Northern Virginia I had a library card and went almost every weekend - my husband was working and I had days to myself to search the never ending shelves for great reads, and I had the whole giant NoVA library system at my finger tips... there were a lot of books! 

But when I first moved to Vermont, I didn't think to seek out my local library, we were still getting settled and deciding on where we wanted to buy a house. Once we did we were unpacking, fixing things, settling, and you know - the snow. So the idea of library time fell to the sidelines for a bit and I work for a college and they have a pretty good selection (more on that later) and it just didn't occur to me to see out a more local library.

I live in VT but work in NH, so I on my way to and from work I pass about 3 NH libraries. "My" library is actually in the opposite direction from just about everything and it is in a tiny town next to mine, so I don't get over there too much. So it took a while before I realized where it was, and that while not near anything on my to-do list it was within driving distance and I needed to be a part of it...

This is it...
(Image borrowed from the Library's website)
Isn't it wonderfully cute and quaint? 

It is pretty much an older home and the various rooms are different sections of books. The main floor when you walk in has a foyer of informational stuff about the town and a place to buy used books to help out. There is an office area for the librarians and the main room is mostly Adult Fiction/ Non-Fiction and a few computers for public use. Then the basement is the best place - it is all Young Adult, Middle Grade, and youth books! They have the whole basement. There are toys for young kids and a table for activities and some beanbags to relax and read in. It is rare that I hang out, but if I was a teen I would be there A LOT! There is also an upstairs and there is some more Fiction overflow and then a room for genealogy research, mostly files from what I can tell, I have only walked up there once.

SO MUCH love for this place. Along with the books here and the online catalog that Vermont has, the library also rents out DVDs, so occasionally I grab something I have seen before but that isn't available on Netflix. I really like this aspect too.

Aside from this library, like I mentioned, I have the college library. While mostly books used for academia, there are actually a lot of fiction classics, graphic novels, and books that I never thought they would have - so if you have access to a college library it is a great thing to check online. When your local library doesn't have what you are looking for, see if the college one does AND many colleges operate on a consortium, so they link to OTHER college libraries and will ship books to your institution for you to check out.

Do you use your local library? 
What do you love about it?

Dec 15, 2017

Recent Reads: The Lighthouse Santa by Sara Hoagland Hunter

The Lighthouse SantaThe Lighthouse Santa by Sara Hoagland Hunter
Publisher: Flying Dog
Publication Date:  September 13,2011

Format:  Hardback
Source: Free from a Work Wellness Event



Goodreads Synopsis: 
For Kate, life at the Great Point Lighthouse on Nantucket Island can be exciting, full of stormy seas and even shipwrecks. But it can also be lonely, with only her mother, father, and brother Sam to keep her company. Now it's Christmas Eve, and Kate waits in her lighthouse as a blizzard threatens to ruin this most special day. For as long as she can remember, the Lighthouse Santa has dropped presents from his airplane for all the lighthouse keepers' children. But will his plane make it through hurricane winds and blinding snow? Sam says it is impossible, but Kate has been keeping a secret Christmas wish all year long, and she will not give up hope.
Based on the Christmas flights of Edward Rowe Snow, hero to lighthouse children for almost fifty years, The Lighthouse Santa has all the elements of a true Christmas classic: light, love, wonder, and the power of one child's faith to shine through darkness. From the midst of the howling storm to her own soaring flight with the Lighthouse Santa, Kate must cling to her father's promise that -Nothing is impossible on Christmas Eve in a lighthouse.-
In their first collaboration since the success of their award-winning picture book The Unbreakable Code, author Sara Hoagland Hunter and illustrator Julia Miner once again shed light on a little-known episode of history.
Free books for the win and I obviously couldn't turn down a holiday book. The Lighthouse Santa is about a family that operates a lighthouse and Santa comes every year to deliver their Christmas gifts by plane. This year there is a nasty storm and the little girl is concerned that the Santa won't make it. The story is very fun and it is even cooler knowing that it is based on something that actually used to happen.

The illustrations are beautiful pastel-esq drawings that embrace the weather and the theme really well. I enjoyed it very much but don't want to give away too much plot. I recommend a read to all who love the holidays though.

Dec 14, 2017

Blog Tour: Review- Bianca the Brave Frail and Delicate Princess by Meg Dendler

Source: From the Author for review for Blog Tour. This in no way alters my opinion or review.

Bianca: The Brave Frail and Delicate Princess
Bianca: The Brave Frail and Delicate Princess by Meg Dendler

Publisher: Serenity Mountain Publishing
Publication Date:  December 1, 2017

Format:  Ebook

About the Book
Princess Bianca had never set foot outside the castle walls. Not once in her over-protected, pink, fluffy life. But when a dragon was spotted in the land and fear spread that the monster had conquered the king and his brave knights, Bianca realized that it was her duty to protect her kingdom. She will have to prove that she can be braver and stronger than anyone believed because the threat outside the protection of her castle tower was more dangerous and magical than she ever imagined possible, except in a fairy tale.


Bianca the Brave Frail and Delicate Princess is about a young princess who has been locked up in a castle all her life. Not for some fairy tale reason but because she was born very weak and her father, the king, is very overprotective of her. When her father leaves to fight off a dragon in the kingdom and doesn't return in a timely manner, Bianca decides that she is going to go out and fight the dragon for him. She leaves the castle and starts off on an adventure.

I really enjoy Meg Dendler's stories, she has a wonderful way of immediately getting the readers attention. I was interested in how Bianca makes her own way and how she experiences the outside world. I actually would have liked more of her experiences being outside of the castle but overall the story was well-paced.

Bianca was easily likable and didn't have a completely woe-is-me attitude which was refreshing.I loved her interactions with the other characters and animals throughout the story. She was a good main character to follow along with.

I really enjoyed the whole story. It ended a little abruptly but I thought it was a lot of fun.

About the Author
Meg Dendler has considered herself a writer since she won a picture book contest
in 5th grade and entertained her classmates with ongoing sequels for the rest of the year. Beginning serious work as a freelancer in the ‘90s while teaching elementary and middle school, Meg has over 100 articles in print, including interviews with Kirk Douglas, Sylvester Stallone, and Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. She has won contests with her short stories and poetry, along with multiple international awards for her best-selling “Cats in the Mirror” alien rescue cat children’s book series. At the Corner of Magnetic and Main is her first adult novel, but it won’t be her last. Meg also works as an editor for Pen-L Publishing and gives talks around her area about writing, publishing, and editing.
Meg and her family (including four cats and her dog, Max) live in Arkansas.

Find the Author

Other books by the author:

Best-Selling and Award-Winning Author of the Cats in the Mirror Series:
Why Kimba Saved The World - Cover2CoverBlog Review
Vacation Hiro - Cover2CoverBlog Review
Miss Fatty Cat's Revenge - Cover2CoverBlog Review
Slinky Steps Out
And the companion books:
Max's Wild Night - Cover2CoverBlog Review
Dottie's Daring Day 

Dec 13, 2017

Recent Reads: In Real Life by Cory Doctoow and Jen Wang

In Real LifeIn Real Life by Cory Doctorow and Jen Wang
Publisher: First Second
Publication Date:  October 14, 2014

Format:  Paperback
Source: Borrowed from the Library



Goodreads Synopsis: 
Anda loves Coarsegold Online, the massively-multiplayer role-playing game where she spends most of her free time. It's a place where she can be a leader, a fighter, a hero. It's a place where she can meet people from all over the world, and make friends.

But things become a lot more complicated when Anda befriends a gold farmer--a poor Chinese kid whose avatar in the game illegally collects valuable objects and then sells them to players from developed countries with money to burn. This behavior is strictly against the rules in Coarsegold, but Anda soon comes to realize that questions of right and wrong are a lot less straightforward when a real person's real livelihood is at stake.

From acclaimed teen author (Little Brother, For the Win) and Boing Boing editor Cory Doctorow and Koko Be Good creator Jen Wang, In Real Life is a perceptive and high-stakes look at adolescence, gaming, poverty, and culture clash.
I have heard about this graphic novel for a while now and maybe the reason it keeps popping up for me is because I am a female gamer. If you have been around my reviews and blog a bit, you might have realized that I, on occasion, play some World of Warcraft (not well). I love it. It is another escape much like reading for me. 

Anywho... this book is about a teen that gets invited to play an online game. Once she is in the thick of it, she is recruited for missions which involve her killing other players. On the one side, the book is about gaming, and some of it is even about gaming as a female - but not too much. A good amount of it is about how real life can be very different from 'in game' life. Anda wants to help but finds herself very removed because it is an online game.

I enjoyed this book because it was about gaming but I felt that it had a lot of messages that it tried to get into and some didn't really make it out alive. The real world versus in game thing came through, and the economic differences came through, but the feminist gamer didn't really and I think that the intro to this book explained it all out way too much. If you want a graphic novel to say something, have it say it though the graphic - they can stand alone if they are good enough.