It’s crazy how far behind I am on reading and reviewing. My plan was to be caught up by now but so much is happening that I’m unable to. It’s a hard time for everyone and I just wish more people would take this coronavirus thing seriously.
Anyway, here I have the last book I read last year — Tamora Pierce’s The Realms of the Gods. I read it as part of my plan to reread all Pierce’s books I enjoyed when I was a kid. I’ve been going through them slowly and have been surprised by my reaction to some of them, like this one.
The Immortals, book 4
During a dire battle against the fearsome Skinners, Daine and her mage teacher, Numair, are swept into the Divine Realms. Although they are happy to be alive, they are not where they want to be. They are desperately needed back home where their old enemy, Ozorne, and his army of strange creatures are waging war against Tortall.
Either this book or In the Hand of the Goddess was the first book I read by Tamora Pierce. So many years have passed since that day that I can no longer remember, but I recall that I loved Pierce’s Song of the Lioness and Immortals books and would reread them often. Now that I’m revisiting them years later, I find that I still enjoy them despite their shortcomings in certain areas.
The Immortals, book 3
Daine must confront a powerful leader in this third book of the Immortals series, featuring an updated cover for longtime fans and fresh converts alike, and including an all-new afterword from Tamora Pierce.
When Daine is sent to Carthak as part of a Tortallan peace delegation, she finds herself in the middle of a sticky political situation. She doesn’t like the Carthaki practice of keeping slaves, but it’s not her place to say anything—she’s only there to heal the emperor’s birds. Her worries only expand once she learns that her own power has grown in a dark and mysterious way.
This was a sweet story and a fun read. I heard of it from Book Riot’s All the Books podcast and decided to try it because Liberty said it’s like The Parent Trap and I loved that movie (both the original with Hayley Mills and the remake with Lindsey Lohan).
When Bett Devlin learns that her dad is conspiring with his new boyfriend to send her and his boyfriend’s daughter to summer camp, she reaches out to the boyfriend’s daughter, Avery Bloom, so that they can devise a plan to thwart their fathers’ intention.
The fathers are single gay dads who met at a conference and started to date. They’d like their daughters to get along, so they conspire to send them to the same summer camp; but Bett and Avery have other plans and instead vow NOT to be friends and definitely not let their dads date each other. But nothing goes as planned.
I could feel reading fatigue coming on after 900+ pages of Stephen King’s The Stand, so I searched my bookshelves for something simple and fun. I grabbed Tamora Pierce’s Wolf-Speaker, the second in her YA fantasy series the Immortals.
Pierce’s books are quick reads and were among my favorites when I was a teen. Similar to my plan for Stephen King’s books, I intend to read all of Pierce’s novels based in Tortall, and Wolf-Speaker was the next one due for a read.
The Immortals, book 2
When Daine is summoned to help a pack of wolves — dear friends from her old village — she and Numair travel to Dunlath Valley to answer the call. But when they arrive, Daine is shocked to learn that it’s not only animals whose lives are threatened; people are in danger, too.
Things didn’t go according to plan. The plan was to post Halloween-themed book tags in the last few days leading up to Halloween, on which I’d post this Halloween book tag. But though my Halloween began in a spectacular fashion (which, unfortunately, I can’t share the details of), I was so exhausted the night before that I was unable to draft this post. That exhaustion continued through Halloween, so I spent most of the day sleeping, unable to watch any of the scary movies I’d planned to see.
But the day after Halloween is just as good for this tag, so tuck in for Halloween Creatures 2.0.
And here are two more book tags to celebrate the coming of Halloween. I’m so excited for the holiday though I’m doing nothing special for it and will most likely be working the night away. I just love the vibe of the holiday: the costumes, the candy, the spookiness, the scary movies. When I get a chance, I’ll do a little research into Halloween. I don’t know much about it, but I have heard some stories that make me think it has a dark beginning.
Creepy house on the corner of the street: Book with a creepy cover
Daughters Unto Devils by Amy Lukavics
I have no idea what this book is about, but I think it’s YA horror. The cover creeps me out and makes me think it’s about possession. I got it in a YA quarterly book box couple years ago but I gave it away without reading it. It’s not my sort of thing.
We have a few more days to go before Halloween arrives and to celebrate, I decided to do these two Stranger Things book tags I found. Stranger Things is a paranormal TV show on Netflix about a group kids trying to protect their new friend while trying to find out the cause of the weird occurrences in their town. It’s such an intriguing story, and the kids’ friendship and the setting makes me nostalgic for ’90s movies like The Sandlot and Little Rascals.
If you’d like to watch a show that fits the Halloween theme but isn’t scary, I recommend Stranger Things. The atmosphere of the show makes it perfect for Halloween: dark tones, foggy, creepy vibes, escaped patients from covert government facilities…. It also makes me think of X-Files. It’s a good story and will immediately grab your attention.
It’s book tag week here on Zezee with Books in honor of Halloween. Today I’m featuring the BuzzFeed Unsolved Book Tag, which I found on Wonderless Reviews.
This tag was the first I’d heard of BuzzFeed Unsolved, which is a TV show on YouTube that explores things such as the paranormal occurrences and unsolved crime. The tag was created by booktuber Sarah from the YA Room who’s a fan of the show.
Shaniac: A book you don’t think is deserving of its hype
The Stand by Stephen King
Maybe it’s too early for me to say this since I’m only about 300 pages in and the book has over a thousand pages, BUT I’ve yet to see what’s so great about this book and at 300 pages in I expected to be blown away in some way already. Instead I’m trying to be patient as I wade through all the ramblings and tangents. It’s annoying because it seems with each new character POV, and there are many character POVs, the story feels like it’s starting all over again. I don’t feel as if I’m in the groove of the story; I feel as if I’m stuck at the beginning. It’s frustrating.
The best thing for me to do when stressed is return to a favorite novel, preferably one that’s a quick, fun read that’s sure to make me momentarily forget my troubles. That need led me to reread these two novels a couple days ago. It’s been years since I’d read them, but I still enjoy them.
These two seem an unlikely pair, but they share several similarities. They are both YA novels that target readers on the cusp of adolescence. I usually think of Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson & the Olympian novels as middle-grade reads, but I think The Battle of the Labyrinth is where the books start to lean more heavily toward YA because Percy Jackson is now a 14-year-old but still trying to protect his friends and survive until his supposedly fateful 16th birthday. Tamora Pierce’s Wild Magic, the first of her Immortals novels, is YA fantasy and has content that is more mature than what’s presented in The Battle of the Labyrinth, but the protagonist is a 13-year-old girl who has lost her family and is seeking a new home while learning to accept who she is.
I immensely enjoyed reading both books and while reading them, both filled me with nostalgia for when I first encountered them. I first read The Battle of the Labyrinth when I was in college. That’s when I learned of the Percy Jackson series, got hooked, and marathon-read them. I did the same when I discovered Tamora Pierce’s books in middle school. Until I reread Wild Magic, I was convinced that the Song of the Lioness books were my introduction to Tamora Pierce. But now I believe I first encountered Pierce through the Immortals books, with the third book, Emperor Mage, to be exact, before I hopped to the Song of the Lioness series.
But no matter how I discovered them or who their target audience is, I’m glad that I’m able to return to them now and still be entertained by them.
A dazzling debut novel—at once a charming romance and a moving coming-of-age story—about what happens when a fourteen-year old boy pretends to seduce a girl to steal a copy of Playboy but then discovers she is his computer-loving soulmate.
Billy Marvin’s first love was a computer. Then he met Mary Zelinsky.
Do you remember your first love?
The Impossible Fortress begins with a magazine…The year is 1987 and Playboy has just published scandalous photographs of Vanna White, from the popular TV game show Wheel of Fortune. For three teenage boys—Billy, Alf, and Clark—who are desperately uneducated in the ways of women, the magazine is somewhat of a Holy Grail: priceless beyond measure and impossible to attain. So, they hatch a plan to steal it. (Goodreads)