Book Review: Sherlock Holmes: The Hound of the Baskervilles Graphic Novel

Book Title: Sherlock Holmes: The Hound of the Baskervilles Graphic Novel
Adapted by: John Green

“”Footprints.”
“A man’s or a woman’s?”
Dr. Mortimer looked strangely at us for an instant, and his voice sank almost to a whisper as he answered: “Mr Holmes, they were the footprints of s gigantic hound!””
The Hound of the Baskervilles
by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

Final Verdict: An interesting take on the classic story, but ultimately failing to make a connection with the audience.

For the full review, click the name of the book.

Book Review: The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 1: The Faust Act

Book Title: The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 1: The Faust Act
Author: Kieron Gillen
Artist: Jamie Mckelvie

“It’s not that I’m afraid my parents wouldn’t approve. I’m afraid they would. I want this to be all mine. Amaterasu’s only been around for a couple of weeks. How many of these girls have even seen her?”
Laura in The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 1: The Faust Act by Kieron Gillen and Jamie Mckelvie

Final Verdict: A beautiful comic with a plot you may not always follow, but is intriguing and leaving you wanting to know what happens next.

For the full review, click the name of the book.

Book Review: Dangerous Dreams

Book Title: Dangerous Dream
Author: Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

The rest of us had to make our own destiny.
Lena and I knew that better than anyone. Ridley and Link, they still had to learn it the hard way.
I guess that’s sort of where this whole story begins.
Ethan from Dangerous Dream by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Final Verdict: Not bad, but not nearly enough to tempt me back to this series.

For the full review, click the book title.

Book Review: Gone (Gone #1)

Book Title: Gone (Gone #1)
Author: Michael Grant

“Sam had a DVD in his hand. He said, ‘Yesterday I sent Edilio to the power plant to get two things. First, a cache of automatic weapons from the guardhouse.’
‘Machine guns?’
‘Yeah. Not just for us to have, but to make sure the other side doesn’t get them.’
‘Now we have an arms race,’ Astrid said.
Her tone seemed to irritate Sam. ‘You want me to leave them for Caine?’
‘I wasn’t criticizing, just… you know. Ninth graders with machine guns; it’s hard to make that a happy story.’
Sam relented. He even grinned. ‘Yeah. The phrase ‘ninth graders with machine guns’ isn’t exactly followed by ‘have a nice day’.’”
Gone by Michael Grant

Final Verdict: An interesting sci-fi book that will appeal to teenagers/adults and men/women alike.

For the full review, click the name of the book.

Book Review: Murder Mysteries

Book Title: Murder Mysteries
Author: Neil Gaiman
Artist: P. Craig Russell

“I am Raguel, who is the Vengeance of the Lord. I serve the Name [God] directly. It is my mission to discover the nature of this deed, and to take the Name’s vengeance on those responsible. My questions are to be answered.”
Raguel in Murder Mysteries by Neil Gaiman and P. Craig Russell

Final Verdict: A fascinating quick read with some Neil Gaiman twists and darkness!

For the full review, click the name of the book.

Random News: American Gods, Pierce Brown, and Literacy and Scotch

Hello Lovely Readers,

Thank you for those of you who helped us celebrate our 1 Year of blogging on Monday, and my birthday yesterday! I thought I would end this week with some neat news articles and one really sweet advert for whiskey (but really about literacy and teaching old dogs new tricks!).

The first exciting news has to do with the book American Gods by Neil Gaiman. There has been a lot of talk over the past year about the possibility of HBO producing a series based on the book. However, in November it was announced that the plan had been shelved by HBO. Luckily, Gaiman just announced that a company called Freemantle will produce a series based on the book (read the article here). It is unclear as of right now when exactly this would be released or which channel would carry it, but it is forward progress. Also exciting is that the company RED has picked up Anansi Boys to make a mini series for the BBC. So there should be some good Gaiman shows soon!

Over on Buzzfeed there is an interesting article on new author Pierce Brown, who just released Red Rising. You can read the article here. It looks at who Brown is, and touches on how he got to where he is. I am excited to begin reading his book soon (just have a couple library books I have to finish first), and it was neat to see a little more about him. It also sounds like there is already talk of a movie, and there are very high expectations for this book/series. I wish Brown luck.

The last find is probably the one that touched my heart the most, which is impressive as it is actually a whiskey commercial. However, check out the really sweet video below, and if you cry easy have a tissue handy!

Until next time,

Book Review: Broken Angels (Eve of Light, Book 1)

Book Title: Broken Angels (Eve of Light, Book 1)
Author: Harambee K. Grey-Sun

“”I’m not your lover,” Darryl said as the woman’s eyes slowly rose from his chest to meet his. His irises faded from their usual shade of violet and gradually brightened approaching the color of wisteria. “I’m more like an angel”.
His corneas twinkled, and the air around his body filled with suspended particles, looking like not-quite-clear raindrops, each of them smaller than a thumbtack.
The drops multiplied. After an uncertain number of them appeared, they moved, scurrying until gathered into two crescent shapes that hovered just above and behind his shoulders. Before T. could say anything, the crescents unfolded, cascading down and down in waves of intangible watery light. When it was all over, two large, radiant wings featuring various shades of violet extended from Darryl’s back…
…“Like all angels,” he said, “I am essentially a messenger.” He extended his hand to her. “I can give you something better than sex, something that can erase all false notions of love from your pretty-pretty head.””

Darryl, Broken Angels by Harambee K. Grey-Sun

Final Verdict: Unless you are a philosophy nut, I wouldn’t recommend this book. I won’t be reading the next book.

For the full review, click the book title.

Book Review: The Reluctant Reaper (The Reluctant Reaper #1)

Book Title: The Reluctant Reaper
Author: Gina X. Grant

“Dead or alive or somewhere in between, I could still kick a guy in the brimstones. Dante dropped to the ground, clutching what was probably his crotch under that stupid Snuggie he’d no doubt bought from a late-night infomercial.” Kirsty, The Reluctant Reaper by Gina X. Grant

Final Verdict: The Reluctant Reaper is okay; not awe inspiring brilliance or excruciating torture.

For the full review, click the book title.

Random News: Neil Gaiman on Libraries, Literacy, and Imagination

Hello lovely Readers,

Having just seen the awesome Neil Gaiman (and taken a photo with his wife, Amanda Palmer), when I saw this article I couldn’t not share! The piece is called, “Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming.” You can read the full article by clicking on the article title. The topic is one that is very close to my heart. I am a very frequent library patron to several libraries (in at least 2 countries), and strongly believe that children should be encouraged to read anything and suffer through very little censorship.

In the article Gaiman talks about how important literacy is for our future. There are apparently links between illiteracy rates and future criminality (I haven’t checked his sources, so I cannot confirm this). There is also the scary fact that in England the older generation is more literate than the young one, which is not a good sign.  He also talks about how fiction and reading for pleasure helps with imagination, literacy, and empathy. While it was difficult, I picked a couple quotes from the article that really spoke to me, although honestly I was highlighting every word! Please make sure you read the whole essay!

“There are no bad authors for children, that children like and want to read and seek out, because every child is different. They can find the stories they need to, and they bring themselves to stories. A hackneyed, worn-out idea isn’t hackneyed and worn out to them. This is the first time the child has encountered it. Do not discourage children from reading because you feel they are reading the wrong thing.”

“Fiction can show you a different world. It can take you somewhere you’ve never been. Once you’ve visited other worlds, like those who ate fairy fruit, you can never be entirely content with the world that you grew up in. Discontent is a good thing: discontented people can modify and improve their worlds, leave them better, leave them different.”

“And while we must tell our readers true things and give them weapons and give them armour and pass on whatever wisdom we have gleaned from our short stay on this green world, we have an obligation not to preach, not to lecture, not to force predigested morals and messages down our readers’ throats like adult birds feeding their babies pre-masticated maggots; and we have an obligation never, ever, under any circumstances, to write anything for children that we would not want to read ourselves.”

Until next time,

 

Book Review: Beautiful Chaos

Book Title: Beautiful Chaos
Author: Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

The Mortal world is in a state of beautiful chaos and destruction, which will lead to an exquisite end.
Sarafine in Beautiful Chaos by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

Final Verdict: The best in the series, with a more coherent plot and less mopey teenagers. The trick is making it to this book.

For the full review, click the book title.