Jun 29, 2018

Monthly Re-Cap: June 2018



Hello Readers, Bloggers, and Awesome people! 


Woo it is summer! This month was surprisingly busy even though work slowed down. My sister graduated from high school and I loved seeing her so excited. My bestie's b-day is TODAY (Happy Birthday Haley!).


We also went camping for a few days - it was so good to get away but the ride home was a bit of a mess. A friends motorcycle decided to break so we had to backtrack to get a Uhaul to get it home and then the hubs had to ride about 2 hours in the cold rain to get home because of the setback. Luckily everyone made if home safely and it was a good trip overall! 
I started writing for a local website (still book related) this month, got new glasses, and I got a great amount of reading done too.  How was your month?

 
         


~~Books I Read in June~~
              
The Austere Academy (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #5)  The Ersatz Elevator (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #6)  Short or tall doesn't matter at all: A story about being different and what's important in life (Mindful Mia Book 1)  Part Of The Rainbow: An Inspiring Tale About Diversity, Acceptance and Love (Children's book Ages 3-8): A story about learning to accept our own unique the differences between us (Mindful Mia)  Tomorrow is near but today is here: Experiencing what's now and here will assist with managing your fear (Mindful Mia Book 2)  The Vile Village (A Series of Unfortunate Events, #7)  Thief of Happy Endings  36322141  Skooter Girl  Dinner for Dinos: Gulp, Guzzle, Chomp, Chew  A Valentine for Frankenstein  TwoSpells  Dive Smack  Lady Mechanika, Vol. 5: Clockwork Assassin

How did I do on my June TBR?
I didn't do spectacular this month but I still read a lot. I had 2 books that I did not get to BUT essentially I replaced a library book read with DiveSmack for a tour so that is ok in my book... (pun intended!)

    ~~Links to Some Reviews~~

    The Austere Academy by Lemony Snicket (MG)- 3 stars
    The Ersatz Elevator by Lemony Snicket (MG)- 5 stars
    The Thief of Happy Endings by Kristen Chandler (YA) - 4 stars
    Short or Tall that Doesn't Matter At All by Asaf Rozanes (Youth)- 3 stars
    Part of the Rainbow by Asaf Rozanes (Youth) - 4 stars
    Tomorrow is Near but Today is Here by Asaf Rozanes (Youth)-4 stars
    The Vile Village  by Lemony Snicket (MG) -5 stars
     TwoSpells by Mark Morrison (YA) - 3.5 stars
    Divesmack by Demetra Brodsky (YA) -  4 stars
    The Old Man by Sarah and Claude Dubois (Youth) -5 stars



    ~~Reviews Up This Month From Previous Re-Caps~~
    Helm of Darkness by A.P.Mobley (YA)-4 stars
    Buni: Happiness is a State of Mind (Adult, GN) -5 stars
    Fox and Racoon by Lesley-Anne Green (Youth) -4 stars
    Pop! by Jason Carter Eaton (Youth) -4 stars


    Reviews still on their way to you:
     Coming soon in 2018 ...

    Lady Mechanika: Clockwork Assassin (Volume 4) by Joe Benitez (GN, Adult)
    Skooter Girl by Danielle Mac (YA, GN)
    Dinner for Dinos by Ben Whitehouse (Youth)
    Chilly da Vinci by Jarrett Rutland (Youth) 
    The House of Lost and Found by Martin Widmark (Youth) 
    A Valentine for Frankenstein by Leslie Kimmelman (Youth)
    A Fall Ball for All by Jamie Swanson (Youth)

    Jun 28, 2018

    Recent Reads: The Old Man by Sarah V. and Claude Dubois


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



    36322141The Old Man by Sarah V & Claude Dubois
    Publisher: Gecko Press
    Publication Date:  April 1, 2018



    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27405327-pop-manga-coloring-book?from_search=true  https://www.amazon.com/Pop-Manga-Coloring-Book-Beautiful/dp/0399578471?ie=UTF8&SubscriptionId=1MGPYB6YW3HWK55XCGG2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0399578471&linkCode=as2&redirect=true&ref_=x_gr_w_bb&tag=x_gr_w_bb-20

    Format:  Hardback

    Rating:


     



    Goodreads Synopsis: 
    Day breaks over the town. Wake up, everybody! It’s time to go to school. It’s time for the old man to get up, too. The night was icy and he’s hungry. His name? He no longer knows…
    This is the story of a person with no job, no family, no home—a nobody, who can’t even remember his name. But his day changes when he is noticed by a child.
    Drawn in soft, watercolour pencil, this is an important story for our times. This gentle, compelling book will appeal to children’s sense of justice and to every reader’s compassion. For the old man, too, it’s time to get up. Hey, it’s Crocket! Crocket’s hungry, too
    Review: 
    The Old Man is a heartwarming tale about how the littlest of things can change your day, your happiness and even your life for a bit. The book is mostly watercolor images with some brief text. You follow a little girl getting ready for her day, but most of the day you follow a homeless man and his struggles. The book is very well done and I think it will and can be a good teaching too. Sometimes explaining harsh realities can be tough for parents and this book lends a hand to start the subject. 

    The images were very loose and sketchy and really added to the dusty dirty emotion and situation of the sad older man, I really thought this was a delightful little book for one that covered such a sad topic.

    Jun 27, 2018

    Blog Tour, Review w/ Giveaway! Dive Smack by Demetra Brodsky


    About the Book
    Theo Mackey only remembers one thing for certain about the fire that destroyed his home: he lit the match.

    Sure, it was an accident. But the blaze killed his mom and set his dad on a path to self-destruction. Everything else about that fateful night is full of gaping holes in Theo’s mind, for good reason. Maybe it’s better that way. As captain of the Ellis Hollow Diving Team, with straight A's and solid friends, he's only one semester away from securing a scholarship, and leaving his past behind.

    But when a family history project gets assigned at school, new memories come rushing to the surface, memories that make him question what he really knows about his family, the night of the fire, and if he can trust anyone—including himself.

    A 2018 JUNIOR LIBRARY GUILD SELECTION



    DiveSmack was completely not what I expected and in such wonderful ways. This thriller is about a boy who has lost his parents and is trying to get through his teenage life. He is a star on the diving team and the book centers around his love for diving, but also his struggles reflecting on his deceased parents. 

    Theo is a spectacular main character, the author put so much work into making him real that the reader is invested in his journey every step of the way. He has likes and dislikes and read struggle and emotions throughout the whole book. It set the stage for the crazy, exhilarating ride that came out of the plot.

    This book had me all over the place - I had no idea where it was going to lead and that is ac accomplishment on the authors part. There is a lot of focus on Theo's life in the beginning, we learn about him and his family and the accidents, and his diving life and this gently pushes us into more serious stuff. Theo feels like he is starting to lose his mind slowly as memories come back to him from his PTSD over the accident his mother died in and he is trying to seek help, although it is not going as planned. 

    Overall this book was very well written and the way the story built itself up was a lot of fun to read. It kept my attention the whole way through and that ending?! Oh my gosh it was SO epic and good, it is not what I expected and the build up was perfect. 

    If you are looking for a Young Adult psychological thriller this is a great one!


    Praise for DIVE SMACK
    "A tense psychological drama with a voice that pulls you in and a twist you won't see coming, Dive Smack is an instant Hitchcockian classic!" —Gretchen McNeil, author of Ten

    "A twisty, witty thriller readers will love puzzling through to the very end. A visceral, delightful debut." —Carrie Mesrobian, author of William C. Morris award finalist Sex & Violence

    "This riveting debut will plunge readers into an accelerating coil of twists and turns as if in free fall, plummeting them from a precipice as they cling to the dwindling hope of safe entry into the mysterious darkness below." —S.A. Bodeen, author of The Compound

    "Brodsky’s debut combines an engaging school story, filled with best friend shenanigans, first love, and a fascinating look at competitive diving, with a tense psychological mystery." —Booklist

    "In an impressive debut, Brodsky injects her teen drama with ambiguity, and a subtle hint of paranormal phenomena, leaving readers to guess at what’s really going on. Strong characters and a compelling mystery make this a real page-turner." —Publishers Weekly

    "A taut thriller with a twist ending that will blow your mind." —Kim Liggett, Bram Stoker Award-Winning Author of The Last Harvest

    "Complex, thrilling, and with a pitch-perfect narrative voice, Dive Smack will leave you on the edge of your seat and unable to put this one down." —C. Desir, author of Bleed Like Me
    "Heartbreaking, human and heroic, Dive Smack is a Perfect 10!" —Karen LaFace, 1992 USA Olympic Springboard Diver

    “A taut roller coaster of a thriller chock full of dark family secrets, twisty lies, and finally, the redeeming power of truth.” —Michelle Zink, author of This Wicked Game




    About the Author:

    Demetra Brodsky is an award-winning graphic designer & art director turned writer. She has a B.F.A. from The Massachusetts College of Art and Design and lives in Southern California with her family of four and two lovable rescue dogs where she is always trying to make more time for the beach. Dive Smack is dedicated to Pumpkin, the monarch butterfly she once saved from the brink of death. Once you read the book, you'll understand why.

    PHOTO CONTENT FROM DEMETRA BRODSKY

    Find the Author

     



    Giveaway is open to International.
    Must be 13+ to Enter
    5 Winners will receive a Copy of DIVE SMACK by Demetra Brodsky.

      a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Jun 26, 2018

    Recent Reads: TwoSpells by Mark Morrison

    Source: From the Author in exchange for an honest review. This in no way alters my opinion or review.

    TwoSpellsTwoSpells By Mark Morrison
    Publisher: Createspace
    Publication Date:  February 23, 2018



    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27405327-pop-manga-coloring-book?from_search=true  https://www.amazon.com/Pop-Manga-Coloring-Book-Beautiful/dp/0399578471?ie=UTF8&SubscriptionId=1MGPYB6YW3HWK55XCGG2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0399578471&linkCode=as2&redirect=true&ref_=x_gr_w_bb&tag=x_gr_w_bb-20

    Format:  Ebook

    Rating:


     




    Goodreads Synopsis: 
    Sarah and her twin brother Jon are heirs to an ancient magical realm and its most valuable treasure, an enchanted library. The library endows readers with the supernatural means of crossing into the uncharted inner-sanctum of the second dimension, inhabited with peculiar and sometimes perilous creatures.

    The children are emboldened with a wondrous mystical gift that no other being has ever possessed. But fate intervenes and triggers a disastrous inter-dimensional war that disrupts the fabric of time and space spanning multiple universes, tearing destiny a new and savage pathway.

    The two must rescue their world from a phantom hybrid alien race controlled by a demented dark-wizard, Jeremy Sermack. They will either assimilate or be exterminated.

    Will they be the saviors the prophets spoke of, or will they retreat to the perceived safety of their distant homeland?
    Review: 
    My husband laughs at me whenever I tell him I am reading a book about magic and kids and fighting evil, apparently I have a 'type'. This book is in that genre, a nice magical fantasy with good versus evil. 

    In this young adult fantasy, we follow Sarah and Jon who learn that they are part of a magical race and one of the wonders of their new world is TwoSpells. TwoSpells is a massive library full or every book available and because it is a magical library the kids can get into the books and watch the stories unfold from inside. 

    There were a lot of pieces to this book - the twins discovering their heritage, a plague in the library, the library itself, then a wizard who wants to become a god. It was a good book and there was a lot of action but that is a lot to tackle in one book and I felt that things were sometimes just glanced over and many things are left until next time (even though I thought this was a stand-alone).

    Sarah and Jon are thirteen and Sarah acts way more mature than her brother - and at times I found it hard to believe that he was acting his age. I have younger brothers (3 of them) and so I have some idea of how 13 year olds could act - Jon is close but at some points felt very young. I wanted more character development with the kids overall, there was a lot to take in learning that their family is magical and their only reactions were along the lines of 'oh cool', no questioning why mom kept it from them or things that I think some teens would be very interested and upset to find out.

    Overall it was an action-packed fantasy with a lot of promise for a series. I loved the library and hope that it gets a lot more focus in future stories.

    Jun 25, 2018

    Blog Blast w/ Giveaway! TwoSpells by Mark Morrison


    About the Book
    Sarah and her twin brother Jon are heirs to an ancient magical realm and its most valuable treasure, an enchanted library. The library endows readers with the supernatural means of crossing into the uncharted inner-sanctum of the second dimension, inhabited with peculiar and sometimes perilous creatures.

    The children are emboldened with a wondrous mystical gift that no other being has ever possessed. But fate intervenes and triggers a disastrous inter-dimensional war that disrupts the fabric of time and space spanning multiple universes, tearing destiny a new and savage pathway.

    The two must rescue their world from a phantom hybrid alien race controlled by a demented dark-wizard, Jeremy Sermack. They will either assimilate or be exterminated.

    Will they be the saviors the prophets spoke of, or will they retreat to the perceived safety of their distant homeland?



    https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/27405327-pop-manga-coloring-book?from_search=true  https://www.amazon.com/Pop-Manga-Coloring-Book-Beautiful/dp/0399578471?ie=UTF8&SubscriptionId=1MGPYB6YW3HWK55XCGG2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=0399578471&linkCode=as2&redirect=true&ref_=x_gr_w_bb&tag=x_gr_w_bb-20

    About the Author
    Mark Morrison was born number seven of eight children in a small town in Ohio. His family moved to Florida where he grew up, met an incredible woman, got married and raised four fantastic children, three boys and a girl.

    Many years later, an empty nest left him to his true calling, storytelling. His first remarkable story is about a heroine whose courage and unrestrained personality—like his daughter’s—breathes passion and fervor into this adrenaline-packed story.





    Giveaway is open to International. | Must be 13+ to Enter
    ENDS: JULY 20, 2018

    1 Winner will receive a Signed Copy of TWOSPELLS by Mark Morrison.  
    - 1 Winner will receive an E-Copy of TWOSPELLS by Mark Morrison.

    Jun 24, 2018

    Building the Book Pile #259

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

    Hello Readers, Bloggers, and Awesome people! 

    Hello from past Stephanie... While you are reading this, I am probably on my way home from camping and too exhausted to even think about blogging. So I figured I would pre-prep this post and then later in the week share the camping fun-time stories.

    I worked two days this past week and they were long ones, but I got a LOT done before leaving and that was great! On Monday, the hubs and I were good townspeople and went to a forum about the Town Plan. On Tuesday, we had dinner with my bestie at Denny's (I LOOOOOVE Denny's) for a pre-birthday night and then on Wednesday we had a day to finish up store runs and packing and get Rolo's nails clipped (he doesn't let me do them - suck a pain) and then we had dinner with friends. It was a busy week before riding off to Maine. I am in the van full of stuff and the boys are on their bikes... next time I will be too (fingers crossed).

    Share about your week with me in the comments below!
     

      Giveaways  on Cover2CoverBlog!

    https://2.bp.blogspot.com/-edfoyIdK_iY/WyZ0o6Ys01I/AAAAAAAAGn4/9Zu8Jg3iz8IisMkJw1oCsR39G4utFIsDwCLcBGAs/s1600/DarkWaterBlitzBanner.png  ttps://cover2coverblog.blogspot.com/2018/06/blog-blast-w-giveaway-girl-with-more.html    http://cover2coverblog.blogspot.com/2018/06/blog-blast-guest-post-and-giveaway-boy.html

    Coming up on the Blog


    Blog Blast w/ Giveaway!  Twospells by Mark Morrison (MG)
    Recent Reads: Twospells by Mark Morrison (MG)
    Blog Tour w/ Review: Divesmack by Demetra Brodsky (YA)
    Recent Reads: The Old Man by Sarah and Claude Dubois (Youth) 
    Recent Reads: Skooter Girl by Danielle Mac (YA, GN)
    Monthly Re-Cap: June 2018

    Books Received this Week

    Lady Mechanika, Vol. 4: Clockwork Assassin 
           
    Lady Mechanika Vol. 4: The Clockwork Assassin by Joe Benitez and M.M. Chen from Netgalley and Diamond Book Distributors for review.

    Have you missed anything lately?

    Happy Reading!