Aug 31, 2018

Monthly Re-Cap: August 2018



Hello Readers, Bloggers, and Awesome people! 


Yay! It is almost Autumn!!!! I am getting so excited for cooler weather and all the fun fall activities and delicious treats! But we are here to talk about August - WOO! August was a mess but also great. 

Some Greats: We had a visit from family, the World of Warcraft expansion is OUT!, we had a wonderful day kayaking with friends, we had a brewery tour day, AND the Renaissance fair was early this year (we normally go in Sept). 

Some Bummers: We had a pet pass away, and that was very sad but expected. Timmy, our beardie, had a long life and being in Vermont it was surprising he lasted this long (temp control up here is a beast). I overburdened myself with reviews and tours and had to quarantine myself for days to get books read and because of that I haven't been able to PLAY the expansion of my game....

In other news, I bought the book for my first class 😳, this is getting more real - I go back on October 1st so still a month to get my sh** together.


~~Books I Read in August~~

Everywhere You Want to Be  The Phantom Tower  Barsk: The Elephants' Graveyard (Barsk, #1)  The Moons of Barsk (Barsk, #2) 
Goldilocks and the Infinite Bears: A Pie Comics Collection  Harley & Ivy Meet Betty & Veronica  Luke and Lottie. It's Halloween! 
The Mystery Boxes (Explorer, #1)
How did I do on my August TBR
I finished 2/3 but noted two more for tours - which were the Barsk books, so really 4/5... lol which is pretty good!
    ~~Links to Some Reviews~~

    Everywhere You Want to Be by Christina June (YA) - 4 stars
    The Phantom Tower by Keir Graff (MG) - 4 stars
    Barsk: The Elephants' Graveyard by Lawrence Schoen (Adult) - 4 stars
    The Moons of Barsk by Lawrence Schoen (Adult)  - 4 stars
    Goldilocks and the Infinite Bears by John McNamee (GN, Adult) - 5 stars 
    The Mystery Boxes (Explorer #1) - not reviewed, 3 stars



    ~~Reviews Up This Month From Previous Re-Caps~~
    The Carnivorous Carnival (#9) by Lemony Snicket (MG)- 5 stars
    Sheets by Brenna Thummler (MG, GN) -4 stars 
     The Steves by Morag Hood (Youth)- 3 stars
    A Fall Ball for All by Jamie Swanson (Youth) -4 stars


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

    Harley and Ivy Meet Betty and Veronica (#1-6) by Paul Dini (Adult, GN)
    Anna at the Art Museum by Hasel Hutchings (Youth) 
    The House of Lost and Found by Martin Widmark (Youth) 
    Luke and Lottie: It's Halloween! by Ruthe Wielockx (Youth) 
    Chilly da Vinci by Jarrett Rutland (Youth)
    A Valentine for Frankenstein by Leslie Kimmelman (Youth)

    Aug 30, 2018

    Early Reader Review: A Fall Ball for All by Jaime Swenson

    Source: From Netgalley and Lerner Publishing Group in exchange for an honest review. This in no way alters my opinion or review.

    A Fall Ball for All
    A Fall Ball for All by Jamie Swenson

    Publisher: Millbrook Press
    Publication Date:  September 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: Ebook

    Rating:


     



    Goodreads Synopsis: 
    On the verge of winter, the autumn wind issues an invitation: "Come one, come all to the annual windfall ball!" Join all the animals in this beautifully illustrated rhyming picture book as they gather for the autumn wind's harvest in preparation for the long winter.
    Review: 
    This was an adorable book about autumn and the animals preparing for winter. In this gorgeously illustrated book, animals receive invitations in the leaves to come to the ball, there they will have a party before winter and celebrate together while gathering food from windfall. 

    The book is super cute, the animals are all kind and helpful and the right colors and rhyming scheme make this a perfect children's book for fall. It could be used to talk to kids about animals and their prep for winter, or naming the different types of animals and fruits that they are able to gather. Reading this one together would be a great in any household with younger children.

    Aug 28, 2018

    Recent Reads: Goldilocks and the Infinite Bears by John McNamee

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

    Goldilocks and the Infinite Bears: A Pie Comics CollectionGoldilocks and the Infinite Bears by John McNamee
    Series: A Pie Comics Collection
    Publisher:  Lion Forge
    Publication Date:  August 14, 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: 
    Pie Comics began as a college comic strip way back is the mid '00s, when flip phones roamed the earth. But it wasn't until a shoulder injury forced John to simplify his drawing style and improvise the comics instead of actually sitting down and writing them that Pie Comics became the beloved strip it is today! This collection showcases some of the funniest and most trenchant of Onion writer John McNamee's online comic strips, found at piecomic.tumblr.com.
    Review: 
    This is a graphic novel for adult audiences - even though it looks like it could be for kids. It is full of one-twp pages comic strips about various things like fairy tales retold, pop culture, and overall culture. It is really funny and very quick to read through. A few of these comics I have seen online and it was great to see them all together as a collection. I think this would make for a great coffee table book or if you are really into sarcasm and macabre things - just a book for your overall collection. 

    The comics deal with death, religion, social norms and plays on the fairy tales that point out just how skewed they were/are. It is a great one to pick up and flip through. 

     

    Aug 27, 2018

    Early Reader Review: The Steves by Morag Hood

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

    The Steves by Morag Hood
    The Steves
    Publisher: Sourcebooks Jabberwokcy
    Publication Date:  September 4, 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: 
    When puffin Steve meets puffin Steve, neither can believe it. Surely one of them must be the first Steve, the best Steve, the Stevest of Steves...But is a name really worth fighting over?
    Review: 
    Two puffins named Steve, what could go wrong? Well they both think that they are the best and first Steve... so a lot actually goes wrong.

    The book is so bright and the images are pretty simple but it is a cute book that will hold a youngsters attention. The book is easy to read and you can flip to the next page pretty quickly. 

    The Steves are funny, they keep trying to outdo one another until they end up saying some pretty mean things. After realizing that they can both be Steve, everything seems ok again. For readers that are a little older, this will be a simple book to use as a teaching tool - you don't always need to outdo people, sometimes sharing something is just fine the way it is.

    Aug 26, 2018

    Building the Book Pile #268

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

    Hello Readers, Bloggers, and Awesome people! 


    I have already written this post once and it disappeared ... technology lately has hated me. Oh well hopefully the tech bugs will be friendly again this week.


    Last week was busy with work and cleaning, I worked long days to have Friday off and I played some World of Warcraft and cleaned and did laundry (which never ends). I also prepped for Renaissance Faire. Yesterday we woke up super early and went to the Faire, we had a fun time. I got a turkey leg, which to be honest is WHY I go (LOL) I guess also because I get to be whatever I want there and it is normal :) SO AHOY!!!! I go as a pirate, so does the hubs.


    Today we have errands to run, but first the hubs went to the track to see the bikes go around a bit. I am here with the pets doing some cleaning/ computer things before we have to run all over the place.


    How was your week?

    If you enjoy the blog and want to share some love and caffeine, you can buy me a coffee via Ko-fi



    Share about your week with me in the comments below!
     

      Giveaways  on Cover2CoverBlog!

    Everywhere You Want to Be  http://cover2coverblog.blogspot.com/2018/08/blog-blast-w-giveaway-ruin-of-stars-by.html
    http://cover2coverblog.blogspot.com/2018/08/blog-tour-review-and-giveaway-moons-of.html

    Coming up on the Blog

    Early Reader Review: The Steves by Morag Hood (Youth)
    Recent Reads: Goldilocks and the Infinite Bears by John McNamee (GN)
    Early Reader Review: A Fall Ball for All by Jamie Swenson (Youth)
    Monthly Re-Cap: August 2018

    Books Received this Week

    Uncharted  Goldilocks and the Infinite Bears: A Pie Comics Collection


    For Review:
    Uncharted by Erin Cashman from a publicist for review - forgot to add this a few weeks back.

    Goldilocks and the Infinite Bears by John McNamee - from Netgalley and  Lion Forge for review

       
    Have you missed anything lately?

    Week of August 19 - August 26


    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!

    Aug 24, 2018

    Early Reader Review: Sheets by Brenna Thummler

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

    Sheets by Brenna Thummler
    Sheets
    Publisher: Lion Forge
    Publication Date:  August 28th, 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: 
    Marjorie Glatt feels like a ghost. A practical thirteen year old in charge of the family laundry business, her daily routine features unforgiving customers, unbearable P.E. classes, and the fastidious Mr. Saubertuck who is committed to destroying everything she’s worked for.

    Wendell is a ghost. A boy who lost his life much too young, his daily routine features ineffective death therapy, a sheet-dependent identity, and a dangerous need to seek purpose in the forbidden human world.

    When their worlds collide, Marjorie is confronted by unexplainable disasters as Wendell transforms Glatt’s Laundry into his midnight playground, appearing as a mere sheet during the day. While Wendell attempts to create a new afterlife for himself, he unknowingly sabotages the life that Marjorie is struggling to maintain.

    Sheets illustrates the determination of a young girl to fight, even when all parts of her world seem to be conspiring against her. It proves that second chances are possible whether life feels over or life is over. But above all, it is a story of the forgiveness and unlikely friendship that can only transpire inside a haunted laundromat.
     
    Review: 
    Sheets is a young adult/middle grade graphic novel about a girl who helps run her family's laundry business.  Sadly, it was her mothers passion and she is now gone, leaving Marjorie to pick up the pieces while her dad isolates in order to mourn the passing of his wife. 

    This graphic novel had a lot of deep moments - it was sad and the struggle is evident watching Marjorie try to run the family's livelihood while being a young teen.  Making this a bit lighter in content is the ghosts. In the story there is a young ghost who is having trouble admitting that he died. In this world not only do ghosts exist but they wear sheets.

    Marjorie and Wendell slowly learn to help one another and the ending of the story is very sweet. I think a graphic novel is a great way to tackle these hard subjects - sometimes limited text and dialogue and images are the way to go and this story does that very well.

    Aug 23, 2018

    Blog Tour: Review and Giveaway! - The Moons of Barsk by Lawrence Schoen



    About the Book

    Years after the events of Barsk: The Elephants' Graveyard, the lonely young outcast and physically-challenged Fant, Pizlo, is now a teenager. He still believes he hears voices from the planet’s moons, imparting secret knowledge to him alone. And so embarks on a dangerous voyage to learn the truth behind the messages. His quest will catapult him offworld for second time is his short life, and reveal things the galaxy isn’t yet ready to know.

    Elsewhere, Barsk's Senator Jorl, who can speak with the dead, navigates galactic politics as Barsk's unwelcome representative, and digs even deeper into the past than ever before to discover new truths of his own. 


    Buy the Book


    Praise for THE ELEPHANTS' GRAVEYARD

    "Weird, wise, and worldly, Barsk: The Elephants' Graveyard is a triumph.” —Robert J. Sawyer, Hugo Award-winning author of Red Planet Blues

    “The second you encounter the arboreal uplifted elephants who speak with the dead, you know you're reading a work of singular imaginative power. It's a delight from beginning to end.” —Walter Jon Williams, Nebula Award-winning author of the Metropolitan series

    “A captivating, heartwarming story in a unique and fantastic world... as rich and mysterious as Dune.” —James L. Cambias, author of A Darkling Sea

    “A heartfelt and wonderfully weird book: a space opera about kindness and memory.” —Max Gladstone, author of the Craft Sequence

    “A masterful, onion-layered tale of pariahdom, treachery, and genocide that ultimately reveals the true deathlessness of hope and love.” —Charles E. Gannon, author of Fire With Fire

    “Combines excellent characters and a fascinating world. What really makes it work is how he deftly weaves together startling SFnal ideas with character-based intrigue. You'll really care for these characters, even as you find them believably alien. I found it a compulsive page-turner and immensely enjoyable.” —Karl Schroeder, author of Lockstep

    “Powerful. Grand in scope, yet deeply intimate. Schoen gives anthropomorphism some serious spirituality. It got inside my head in the way that only an exciting new idea can.” —Howard Tayler, Hugo Award-winning creator of Schlock Mercenary


    The Moons of Barsk Review
    Rating:


    Review: 

    I am not a huge science fiction fan, most of the time it takes me a while to get into it and then I get very lost in space so to speak. I received books 1 and 2 of the Barsk series for this blog tour with very little time to actually get them read at a pace in which I could really drink them in, but even with a speed read I thought that they were very good and even myself - the non-Sci Fi fan got into them. The Moons of Barsk, book 2 in the series picks up many years after the initial event in book 1.  If you have not read Barsk: The Elephants' Graveyard, I highly recommend doing so before jumping into this book - it has a lot of set up that you will need in order to follow along.  

    (So if you need it, a review of book 1 is below this one)
    In book 2, Pizlo is now a teen with some powers of his own, and Jorl is still a senator but has a family now as well. Schoen does a wonderful job picking up where he left off in the first book, going back to the exploration of the lost island/ Death island that the Fant slip away to when their time is about to come. The beginning of this book even pulled me in much stronger than the last one did. The world building throughout the series is pretty amazing and I found it easy to settle in and dive into this new world as if I had been there. 
    The plot again follows the future of the Fant and how they will survive being an oppressed people in the Alliance - but it was a weird plot because only a handful of the Fant on the world of Barsk seem to even care that something might extinguish them. One would think that if this issue was really that large that more of the Fant would be worried, but the author does not showcase that bit.

    Otherwise though, the tension and conflict was very balanced and the overall drive was good. I felt for the characters and wanted various parties to succeed and found others that I wanted to smack - and for me that makes a good read.

    I think that Sci Fi fans will really appreciate this series; it was a lot to take in for a non- Sci Fi reader but even still it was a very good story and I enjoyed it I just wish I had more time to really delve into the details.


    Barsk: The Elephants' Graveyard Review
    Rating:


    Aug 22, 2018

    Blog Blast w/ Giveaway: Ruin of Stars by Linsey Miller


    About the Book


    As Opal, Sal finally has the power, prestige, and most importantly the ability to hunt the lords who killed their family. But Sal has to figure out who the culprits are before putting them down. Which means trying to ignore the fact that Elise is being kept a virtual prisoner, and that the queen may have ulterior motives.

    And the tales coming out of north are baffling. Talk of dark spirits, missing children, and magic abound. As Sal heads north toward their ruined homeland and the lords who destroyed everything, they learn secrets and truths that can't be ignored.



    Praise for MASK OF SHADOWS

    "An intriguing world and a fantastically compelling main character make for a can't-miss debut. Miller's Mask of Shadows will make you glad you're not an assassin―and even gladder Sal is." ―Kiersten White, New York Times bestelling author of And I Darken and Now I Rise

    "Compelling and relatable characters, a fascinating world with dangerous magic, and a dash of political intrigue: Mask of Shadows completely delivered. Fantasy fans will love this book." ―Jodi Meadows, New York Times bestselling coauthor of My Lady Jane

    Praise for Mask of Shadows: "Miller's gritty, lightning-paced debut features a rough-and-tumble yet movingly vulnerable protagonist: Sal is uncompromising in their convictions, and doesn't hesitate to kill when necessary but wishes to be more than just a weapon of vengeance. A complex but intriguing start to this planned duology." ―Publishers Weekly
    Praise for Mask of Shadows: "This is a memorable, sharply written character. While readers who identify on the GLBTQ spectrum may be easy fans as Miller handles Sal's identity with aplomb, that's certainly not the only point of note here; the impressive, intricate world building, tense action, and fierce competitors are equally strong." ―The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

    Praise for Mask of Shadows: "Gory, well-plotted, suspenseful on every page, and poised for the sequel." ―Kirkus

    Praise for Mask of Shadows: "This fantasy's gender-fluid protagonist, Sal Leon, makes Miller's book worth picking up for diversity's sake alone. Her treatment of the gender issue is most notable in that it isn't really an issue... Violent and action-packed, this offering by first-time novelist Miller will circulate." ―School Library Journal

    "Sal's strong-willed personality and rich emotions create a protagonist who continues to shine" ―Booklist

    "Sal is intriguing and their genderfluidity adds depth to their personality. The narrative deals with issues of mystery, self-identity, and revenge. The ending provides a sense of closure, while leaving the door ajar for further adventures." ―VOYA Magazine


    About the Author



    Originally from Arkansas, Linsey Miller has previously worked as a crime lab intern, neuroscience lab assistant, and pharmacy technician. She is currently an MFA candidate represented by Rachel Brooks of Bookends Literary. Her debut novel MASK OF SHADOWS is the first in a fantasy duology out now (8/29/17) from Sourcebooks Fire. The sequel RUIN OF STARS is coming out August of 2018. She can be found writing about science and magic anywhere there is coffee.


    Find the Author




    Giveaway is open to International. | Must be 13+ to Enter

    1 Winner will receive a signed pre-order of RUIN OF STARS by Linsey Miller
    1 Winner will receive a $25.00 Amazon/PayPal Gift Card.
    Ends: September 11, 2018



      a Rafflecopter giveaway

    Aug 21, 2018

    Blog Tour: Guest Post - Choosing Books For Your Kids by Fiona Ingram




    Fiona Ingram’s

    WOW! WOMEN ON WRITING TOUR
    OF
    The Temple of the Crystal Timekeeper

    About the Book

    A plane crash! Lost in the jungle! Hunted by their old enemy, will Adam, Justin, and Kim survive long enough to find the Third Stone of Power? With only a young boy, Tukum, as their guide, the kids make their way through the dense and dangerous jungle to find the lost city of stone gods, where the Stone of Power might be located. River rafting on a crocodile-infested river and evading predators are just part of this hazardous task. Of course, their old adversary Dr. Khalid is close behind as the kids press on. But he is not the worst of their problems. This time Adam will clash with a terrible enemy who adopts the persona of an evil Aztec god, Tezcatlipoca, and is keen to revive the ancient tradition of human sacrifice. Adam, Justin, and Tukum must play a dreadful ball game of life and death and maybe survive. Will they emerge alive from the jungle? Will Dr. Khalid find the third Stone of Power before they do?

    Print Length: 318 Pages
    Genre: Middle Grade Fiction, Adventure
    Publisher: Bublish, Incorporated (November 2017)
    ISBN: 978-1946229465

    The Temple of the Crystal Timekeeper is available to purchase on Amazon.com. 


    Choosing Books for Your Kids by Fiona Ingram 
     
    Choosing books wisely for a child is important because young children are impressionable. If your child is familiar with reading and books from an early age, they will probably grow up with an interest in books, and a respect for reading. What many parents don’t realize is that enjoyment of reading is not automatic; it is learned by association. When a parent reads with a child, that feeling of togetherness, that special time, creates in the child a sense of enjoyment that they then associate with reading, and thus as they grow up, reading is associated with pleasure. This will create a solid foundation in their literacy and education skills and possibly even influence their life and career choices.
    Children usually begin to read around the ages of four to six. A child may even begin earlier, especially if the parent has formed a habit of bedtime reading with the child.
    However, many parents may not know how to choose age appropriate books for their child. Good bookshops will be able to advise, and don’t forget to tap into the experience of your local librarian. Publishers of children’s books generally have excellent resources on their web sites to advise parents on suitability of titles. Choose books for your child around their age, interests, and the type of books they have already read and enjoyed. As they get older, let them make their own choices and start to formulate their own opinions. Make reading exciting by exploring great stories together from an early age!
    Ages 0-5 (Preschool)
    In this age group, children need interesting stimulation and colorful visuals to promote vision and identification with objects, people, and animals. Board books, fabric books, pop-up books, and picture books are loads of fun to share with Mom and Dad. Examples: Slippers, Sunny Days & Starry Nights, and Leon the Lizard.
    Ages 7-9 (Chapter)
    Chapter books are the next step for this age group. Chapters are usually short with exciting story lines, and the beginnings of more complex character and plot development. Parents can also encourage their children to think beyond the story by asking the child’s opinion of the characters’ actions and choices. Children can also retell the story to the parent in their own words. In this way, parents can track their child’s development of logic, memory, and comprehension skills. Illustrations will help the child appreciate and remember the story. Examples: The Spiderwick Chronicles, The Witches, Hero.
    Ages 10+ (Middle grade+)
    Now children begin to enjoy more complex themes and character developments, as well as elements in the characters to which they can relate. They like characters that are children solving problems, or children with problems, and start to form a moral, ethical, and emotional picture of the world. They will also begin to make their own reading choices. Your child will love reading if books capture the child’s attention. Examples: Diary of a Wimpy Kid, Harry Potter, Percy Jackson.
    Problematic Themes
    Sexuality and violence are worrying themes. The older the child the more independent they will be regarding book choices. From teen and YA years, choices will be up to the individual. By then the child’s upbringing and moral training will help them make their own decisions. Concerned parents should watch what their teen is reading but remain open to discussing controversial issues. Popular teen/YA choices include The Hunger Games, Inheritance Cycle, and the Twilight series.
    Publishing houses categorize book lists on their web sites. A local librarian can also advise on appropriate choices if a parent is concerned. Most children read up so allow your child to select a more advanced book than usual for their age group. Above all, let your child explore and find the books that they love!
    About the Author
    Fiona Ingram is a children’s author, but up until a few years ago, she was a journalist and editor. Something rather unexpected sparked her new career as an author—a family trip to Egypt with her mother and two young nephews. They had a great time and she thought she’d write them a short story as a different kind of souvenir…. Well, one book and a planned book series later, she had changed careers. She has now published Book 3 (The Temple of the Crystal Timekeeper) in her middle grade adventure series Chronicles of the Stone, with many awards for the first book, The Secret of the Sacred Scarab, and a few for Book 2, The Search for the Stone of Excalibur, and one already for Book 3! She also teaches online novel writing for aspiring authors and she finds that very satisfying. Relaxation time finds her enjoying something creative or artistic, music, books, theatre or ballet. She loves doing research for her book series. Fiona loves animals and has written two animal rescue stories. She has two adorable (naughty) little dogs called Chloe and Pumpkin, and a beautiful black cat called Bertie.

    Find the Author

    Aug 20, 2018

    Blog Tour: Review - The Phantom Tower by Keir Graff


    The Phantom Tour by Keir Graff
    Publisher: Penguin Young Readers
    Publication Date:  August 21, 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:  Paperback ARC
     

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



    About the Book:
    Twin brothers discover their new home is also a portal--for an hour a day--to a parallel dimension in this rollicking middle-grade adventure, perfect for fans of The Mysterious Benedict Society.

    Colm and Mal are twins so identical their own mom can't tell them apart, but they're different in just about every other way. Mal's a pragmatist while Colm's a dreamer, and they bicker and battle constantly. Neither brother is excited to be moving to Chicago for a fresh start with their mom just after their dad's death. But nothing cures homesickness like intrigue--and their new home, Brunhild Tower, has plenty of it: mysterious elderly neighbors who warn against wandering the building at midday, strange sounds in the walls, and an elevator missing a button for the thirteenth floor.

    One day, that button appears--and when the doors open on the missing floor, the boys are greeted by the strangest puzzle yet: a twin building that is stuck in time and bustling with activity. All of Brunhild Tower's former residents live on in this phantom tower, where the rules of the real world don't apply. But when the brothers and their newfound friends discover they're all trapped by an ancient curse, they must band together to set everyone free before it's too late.
     


    Rating:
    Review: 
    The Phantom Tower follows two boys that have been having it pretty rough lately - their dad passed away and their mom is depressed and now they have to move to an all new city. In a creepy old apartment building they find that there is no 13th floor, which is pretty common but one afternoon a button for the non-existent floor appears and they are whisked off to a different plane. They see ghosts and a lot of them and they learn that if you aren't back on the elevator in time, you can be stuck there overnight. 

    The boys have soon realize that there is more to it than just a mysteriously appearing floor but a whole building that twins their own and an old curse that needs to be broken.

    This was an enjoyable read, I like the twin apartment buildings and the depth of the story to create the Phantom tower, and I really liked a lot of the auxiliary characters as well. I didn't have too much love or connection to the boys though. I was invested enough to enjoy the book but there wasn't a lot of character growth until the very very end. I think the book overall was a very cool recreation of a ghost story and I liked the way the ghost behaved in the tale - not too spooky.

    The book had a lot of talk about death, acceptance and forgiveness and I think those are good discussion points in a Middle Grade read. So if you are looking for an interesting story with some ghosts and a good amount of mystery involved this is a great one to pick up. It can be a page-turner at times so be prepared to be swept up.


    About the Author:  
    Keir Graff is the author of The Matchstick CastleThe Other Felix, and a handful of books for grown-ups. When he's not making things up, he works as the executive editor of Booklist at the American Library Association. He lives in Chicago with his wife Marya and his sons Felix and Cosmo--in a building that looks exactly like Brunhild Tower.







    BLOG TOUR STOPS!
    WEEK ONE
    August 13 – Book Princess Reviews – Q&A
    August 14 – Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers – Review
    August 15 – AEB Book Reviews – Review
    August 16 – A to Z Book Reviews – Review + AGP: You have two twins in your story. They have different personalities. Do you relate more to one than the other one?

    WEEK TWO
    August 20 – Cover2Cover – Review *you are here*
    August 21 – YA Book Nerd – Listicle
    August 22 – Book Fidelity – Review + Creative Instagram Picture
    August 23 – The Reading Corner for All – Review + Creative Instagram Picture
    August 24 – Good Choice Reading – Creative Instagram Picture