Support your Library- via BookRiot

My library has taken to their Facebook page with fierce determination to educate the public in light of recent political events. Offering resources to combat fake new and better understand American history in context. I am proud to be a patron and hope you take the time to explore what your library has to offer! Click the link to see how to best support yours.

Read voraciously.

When the dictionary comes to the rescue- via Buzzfeed

“But we will say this: Anyone who spends their life sifting through how language is used also has to sift through history, and how words have been used at various points to harm, erase, or exclude. Our job is to tease language out from spin, politicking, rhetoric, and apologetics, and tell the truth about what a word means.”

Check out how one dictionary revamped its online presence in light of recent political events and quickly reminded us that it is a source of timely truth and knowledge.

Thoughts?

Read voraciously.

Book Review: The Most Dangerous Place On Earth by Lindsey Lee Johnson

Intention was one thing; it was the smallest decisions that made any difference.

The Most Dangerous Place On Earth by Lindsey Lee Johnson is a poignant and solidly written examination of the private lives of a group of entitled, unaware teenagers and eager teachers at a wealthy, suburban high school. It begins with a group of seemingly perfect middle school kids as they begin to set the ranks within their group- who is in and who is out. A note and the bullying of the boy that wrote it highlights the quantity of and effect of cyber-bullying that many kids endure.

From then on, Tristan spent his lunch periods outside, walking the edge of the schoolyard where asphalt crumbled into marshland. He kept his head bowed, and when he came back inside, his ankles were purpled with mud. Nobody bullied him at school. Nobody minded him at all. And every afternoon, Cally and Abigail watched from Abigail’s bedroom as the Facebook posts continued, flashing onto the computer screen at an inexorable pace, gleeful, hateful, now from people they didn’t even know. Sometimes Tristan wrote back, defending himself angrily or desperately, but each comment he posted only renewed the energy of the attacks.

Johnson writes with finesse as she charts the tearing down of a person in such a vulnerable stage of life. These opening scenes provide a back-drop, and possibly a cause, for what occurs throughout the rest of these teenager’s adolescence.

Turning to his left, he saw the red-orange spires of the Golden Gate Bridge, like masts of an enormous ship, like skyscrapers of an alien nation, like ladders to the sky. His heart beat frantically in his ears. Yet for the first time in a long time, he felt like he could breathe.

Bouncing between perspectives we learn more about those involved in this initial encounter and how their lives progressed. We learn, also, just how vulnerable each one of them is in their own right. Personal accounts flesh out the depth of each character while the contrasting viewpoint from one earnest, young teacher proves the degree to which these teenage characters will go to hide their undesirable emotions and characteristics.

And she’d realized there was something worse than being ignored; there was being a target.

Each narrative blossoms with emotional depth and unexpected weakness.  A raw examination of the truth behind the lives of teenagers today. Though admittedly the focus is on upper middle class, white narratives, the problems faced are real. Johnson appears to put much of her personal story onto the page and her work shines as a result. The Most Dangerous Place On Earth is a young adult crossover that deserves a special place on your shelf.

There was only the decision to get up. There was only standing and brushing herself off, only turning and hiking back to her friends whose hoots and laughter carried through the trees, to her friends who were flawed but, yes, living; there was only digging through her bag for the last remnants of high school, throwing them into the fire. As the flames ate the papers to curling black, she knew there was only this, and whatever moment would come after, only Calista Broderick going on and trying, like everyone, to live in this beautiful world.

Read voraciously.

Thoughts?

Intrigued? Buy the book here:

The Most Dangerous Place on Earth
by Dan Hampton
Hardcover
Powells.com

A review copy of this title was provided by Random House via Netgalley.

Preview: My Netgalley TBR 

Just a quick peek at my Netgalley shelf! Four great books to carry me through this month. I can’t wait to start them!

I have four reviews to write this weekend as well so I’m going to be busy. Here’s a look at what’s to come:

The Hundred Lies of Lizzie Lovett by Chelsea Sedoti

Nine Folds Make A Paper Swan by Ruth Gilligan

The Most Dangerous Place On Earth by Lindsey Lee Johnson

The Girl Before by JP Delaney

Read voraciously.

Books to watch for this month- via BookRiot

We are well into February and there are some great books publishing this month, click the link to see the list.

Have any of these made your TBR?

Read voraciously.

Life Review: Absence explained+upcoming review preview

The lovely flowers I bought today, my half finished iced coffee and a smattering of personal and review book I feel I will NEVER get to read.

Hi all.

I thought I would step waaaay outside my normal format to give you some insight into my sporadic posting of late. Basically I was rolling along at a nice, steady pace and then WHOMP… dead end, inspiration lost. I’ve been slowly working back into reviewing  (let’s not kid ourselves, I’ve still  been reading) but I feel like a sputtering engine. I’m sure every blogger has been through this so I’m here to say “Me too. I’m with you!” Bear with me everyone! I promise that I will soon get back into my usual flow. Here is a small preview of the titles I hope to review though the end of September and early October:

The Underground Railroad by Colson Whitehead

Woman in the Shadows by Jane Thynne

The Ballroom by Anna Hope

Only Daughter by Anna Snoekstra

Small Great Things by Jodi Picoult 

Hag-seed by Margaret Atwood

I would love to hear your personal stories of how you overcame reviewers block (that’s a thing right?)! All tips, magic spells, positive thoughts and what not are much appreciated 🙂

Read voraciously. 

Book Review: Don’t You Cry by Mary Kubica

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But still. I should have known right away that something wasn’t right.

Quinn is swept up in a spiraling whirl wind of fear and self-doubt when she discovers her roommate, Esther, missing- the window left open to the fire escape below and the curtains fluttering in the breeze. At first Quinn doesn’t believe anything is amiss but as she digs deeper into Esther’s private life she discovers things that cause her to wonder who her roommate and closest friend is and whether she ever really knew her at all.

Maybe Esther isn’t transparent, after all. Not a pane of glass but rather a toy kaleidoscope, the kind with intricate mosaics and patterns that change every time you so much as turn the edge.

Alex is a smart young man forced to abandon a bright future to care for his alcoholic father. Working as a dishwasher at the local diner, Alex’s only companion is a reclusive, agoraphobic older women to whom he delivers take-out lunches to on occasion. It is no surprise that he is captivated by a young, mysterious and uniquely beautiful girl who  begins to frequent the diner. As he slowly begins a friendship with this new girl, whom he refers to as Pearl, he begins to learn a little about her past though she largely remains an enigma.

Alternating between Quinn’s and Alex’s stories, Don’t You Cry steadily builds to a suspenseful convergence where everyone’s secrets are revealed.

It’s all just fun and games until somebody gets hurt. Isn’t that how the saying goes?

Read voraciously.

Thoughts?

Intrigued? Buy the book here:

 

A review copy of this title was provided by Harlequin MIRA via Netgalley.