“The Ice Dragon” by George R.R. Martin, illus. by Luis Royo

The Ice DragonWhy did I read this book? Because by January 26 I was one book away from having read 5 books in the month and my competitive side kicked in and pushed me to grab something quick so I could round out the month with 5 books. Who am I competing with, you ask. Well, I have no idea. But that Goodreads reading goal I had set for myself at the beginning of the year sure niggles me.

Quick summary:

George R.R. Martin’s Ice Dragon is an illustrated children’s book set in an imaginary world about a young girl’s friendship with a legendary creature. It’s a bildungsroman since we follow the protagonist, Adara, as she interacts with the fabled Ice Dragon throughout her life.

Adara was born during one of the fiercest winters in her land and is considered a winter child both because of when she was born as well as her constitution. She is withdrawn, keeps to herself, and hardly exhibits any warmth toward others. Even her skin is cool to the touch. There is conflict between Adara’s country and the land in the north. As Adara gets older, the tension increases between the two lands and the war draws closer to Adara’s village. But with the help of the Ice Dragon, Adara just might be able to stop the war’s progression.

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Childhood Book Tag

It’s time for another book tag, a fun break from reviews and discussions and such. I was tagged for this by the awesome Orang-utan Librarian. Check her out!

The tag was created by RiverMoose-Reads. By the way, these blog names make me want to get a cool blog name with an animal in the title, like “Panda Tumbles with Books.” I love pandas!

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“Warren the 13th and the All-Seeing Eye” by Tania del Rio, illus. by Will Staehle

Warren the 13th and The All-Seeing Eye

The ARC cover.

Quick summary:

Warren the 13th and the All-Seeing Eye is an illustrated middle-grade novel about a 12-year-old orphan, Warren, who maintains his family’s hotel. The hotel fell into disrepair since Warren’s lazy uncle Rupert took over after Warren the 12th died. Despite its dilapidated state, Warren takes pride in the hotel and tries his hardest to improve its condition. But his attempts are thwarted by his evil Aunt Anaconda who rips the hotel apart as she searches for the All-Seeing Eye, rumored to be hidden somewhere in the hotel.

Soon the hotel is overrun with guests who are also interested in finding the All-Seeing Eye and it’s all Warren can do to keep the hotel together as the guests rip it apart in their search. Knowing that his aunt wants the All-Seeing Eye for nefarious means, Warren joins the search with his friends hoping to locate it before his aunt does.

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“Taran Wanderer” by Lloyd Alexander

Taran Wanderer

The evil wizard reminded me of Voldemort in many ways.

Another adventure in the Chronicles of Prydain series. This time, Taran embarks on a quest to discover who he is and where he’s from.

Quick summary:

This installment picks up shortly after The Castle of Llyr. Eilonwy is still on the Isle of Mona learning to be a lady but Taran is back at Caer Dallben. He misses Eilonwy and wants to be worthy of her hand so he begins to inquire about his origins. He first sets out for the Marshes of Morva because who better to tell him who he is if not Orddu, Orwen, and Orgoch.

But lack of a fair trade leaves Taran more puzzled about his origins than before. The witches try to help by telling him of another way he can get the answers he wants. Apparently, there is a magic mirror in the Free Commots, a land in where people govern themselves, that could possibly give Taran the answers he seeks. Taran and Gurgi set off for the magic mirror and have several adventures along the way. They traverse King Smoit’s land for some time, where they find Fflewddur, who decides to accompany them on their quest since he’s not yet ready to return to his own lands. While in King Smoit’s kingdom, Taran helps him resolve a grievance between two troublesome lords that almost lead to war. Taran’s show of wisdom makes King Smoit respect him even more.

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Exploring My Bookshelves: Thinking of the Future

Exploring My Bookshelves is a weekly meme created by Addlepates and Book Nerds.

First, you post a picture of your bookshelf (preferably literal but e-shelves work too):

I’m continuing with the format of my last Exploring My Bookshelves post and will only show the shelf I’ll discuss in this post. I’m currently tidying my bookshelf so stay tuned for an update to the untidiness.

for the kids shelf

Second, you get something about your shelf to write about (favorite cover, favorite author, book you most recently bought, etc.):

For May 22nd: books you want to keep for your kids (or have kept for you kids)

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“The Castle of Llyr” by Lloyd Alexander

The Castle of Llyr

Of the books I’ve read so far in this series, this is the first cover I like.

The army of the dead has been defeated and the black cauldron destroyed so what’s left to be done? Send Eilonwy to learn how to be a lady, of course. And so another adventure in The Chronicles of Prydain begins.

“I want to be recognized!” Eilonwy cried. “I want to be me!”

Quick summary:

Eilonwy is not rotten, but she’s no lady either. She seems to have become a bit of tomboy so the enchanter Dallben sends her off to the Isle of Mona to be refined by Queen Teleria, though Eilonwy doesn’t see why refinement is needed. Taran and Gurgi accompany her on her journey overseas on the clumsy Prince Rhun’s ship.

The journey was horrible for Taran. Not only was he battling his feelings about Eilonwy’s leaving, but he often found himself at the receiving end of the prince’s clumsiness, which became more of a nuisance once they reached their destination. After being introduced to the king and queen, Taran and Gurgi are reunited with Fflewddur Fflam, who got bored of being king and went back to being a bard, for the time. He also meets Gwydion, who has disguised himself as a shoemaker while he inquires of Achren of the Spiral Castle, who’s still at large and a danger to Eilonwy.

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