Monthly Archives: September 2014

Introductions by C.L. Stone

Introductions by C.L. Stone is the first in the Academy: Ghost Bird series. Sang is a loner, abused by her mother, ignored by her father. She meets a boy from down the street when his dog knocks her over and for some reason, instead of going home, she spends the night at the boy’s house. The next morning she meets two of the boy’s friends and goes with them to the mall where a man hits on her and, for some reason, the boys go ballistic and apparently totally beat the man (never to be seen again) up. The next day she meets another boy (and, of course, they are all super hot) and goes swimming with him (which prompts him to say she’s not like other girls because girls don’t swim or something like that). Of course he turns out to be best friends with the three from the previous day. For who knows what reason, the boys decide to buy Sang a iPhone so they can keep in contact with her at all times. Within a day she’s met the remaining three boys in the group. And then it’s time to register for classes (picked by the boys so she’ll be with at least one of them at all times of course!) at the high school – a school that a big deal has been made over it being public school. When Sang meets two teachers, the boys’ connection – The Academy – is made somewhat clear. Or, really, not clear at all. And then, after all 10 main characters have been properly introduced, it is time for the second (of a planned 20+) book.

Oh, boy. Where to start? The book wasn’t horrible. Parts held my attention. But the whole time this little voice in the back of my head was screaming, “What the heck? Are you insane? Am I supposed to believe any of this at all?” The writing was pretty atrocious. Typos, places where it had clearly been edited but wrong words or bits of sentences were left behind in the process, missing words or words repeated, sentence fragments, descriptions that just made me roll my eyes, etc. I get that Sang’s parents isolated Sang and all, but she did go to school where they lived before so it was puzzling why someone being nice to her was so foreign to her and why simply brushing up against someone would cause her to blush and get all excited. Did she never have a single friend prior to getting knocked over by the dog? Did she never accidentally touch someone in her old school? In her entire life? It just didn’t make sense. Also, that these seven boys would be so into her instantly upon laying eyes on her was weird. They acted like she was their best friend and they had known her only hours. Usually I think that the premise of a book could have been well done by someone who was a better writer, but in the case of Introductions, I really don’t think so.

2 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2014: 104
Pages Read in 2014: 19,574
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Filed under Realistic Fiction, Young Adult

Nursing a Grudge by Diana Orgain

Kate is catching up with her friend Jill over lunch when they are interrupted by a call alerting Jill that her boyfriend Perry fell while hiking. Then Jill is being followed by a man in a skull cap and Melanie, Perry’s sister, is attacked by a man of a similar build. But never fear! Kate is a new-mommy PI-in-training. She takes the case, making tons of mistakes in the process, and eventually figures it all out right at the very end of the book.

Nursing A Grudge by Diana Orgain is pretty funny and completely unbelievable. The nursing mother gimmick mostly just annoyed me. The amount of time she is away from her four month old – but constantly thinking it’s about feeding time – is completely unrealistic. The book could have used a good copy editor. There were many mistakes (typos that Word wouldn’t underline because they were other words, missing words, repeated words). All in all, though, Nursing A Grudge is enjoyable as a quick, not much brain power required read.

3 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2014: 101
Pages Read in 2014: 19,139
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Filed under Realistic Fiction

Let it Go by Chris Williams

A 17 year old boy made some very bad choices one Friday night in February 2007. He got drunk and then drove his SUV resulting in a high speed crash with the Williams family. The mother, Michelle and her unborn baby, as well as two of the four children, Anna and Ben, were killed instantly. Another boy, Sam, was critically injured. In a moment, Chris Williams’s world changed completely with the loss of half of his family. And, yet, he chose to immediately forgive the young man who caused the accident.

Let It Go by Chris Williams is part memoir, part motivational, and part religious. He truly learned, painfully, how to apply the power of the atonement not just for repentance, but for forgiveness. The book is well written and relatively short so it reads fast. Reading it really makes you want to be a better person and learn from the lessons the author shares.

5 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2014: 100
Pages Read in 2014: 18,897
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Filed under Memoir, Religious

Enna Burning by Shannon Hale

Enna Burning by Shannon Hale is the second in the Bayern series. In this one, Enna’s brother Leifer, and then Enna, learn fire-speaking. In the midst of war with Tira, Leifer burns himself out and Enna nearly does. Meanwhile, wind-speech threatens to overwhelm Isi. Throughout the story, Enna learns about herself and grows and changes a lot.

The book is split into four parts. It could have ended after the third part, but the fourth is the sweetest. Typical Shannon Hale, the writing is flowery and conjures up beautiful images through her words. My favorite thing about Enna Burning is how it highlights the importance of unconditional friends. This book is excellent for tweens on up to adults!

5 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2014: 99
Pages Read in 2014: 18,737
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Filed under Fantasy, Middle Grades

Eyewall by HW “Buzz” Bernard

Everyone is expecting Janet to be a category 1 hurricane hitting South Carolina somewhere. One meteorologist at The Natural Environment Network, however, is sure it will be a category 5 coming ashore at St. Simons Island, Georgia. Eyewall by HW “Buzz” Bernard is three stories all interrelated. One of the meteorologist who loses his job for going against orders to warn people on air about the hurricane’s strength and danger. One of the crew on the Air Force hurricane hunter tasked with going through the eyewall of Janet to get readings on what they think is a mild hurricane. And one of a family vacationing on St. Simons Island with a runaway daughter somewhere on the island.

I enjoyed this book a lot. It was a bit confusing at first because so many important characters were introduced so fast due to the rotating parts about each of the three groups of people. The author way overused similes and did a lot telling rather than showing in his writing. He also could have used a better editor. There were quite a few spelling errors or incorrect words used scattered throughout the book. Even with these problems, Eyewall really sucked me in and, especially for the last third, I could barely put it down. I really wanted to know how it was going to end.

4 (out of 5) Stars

Books Read in 2014: 98
Pages Read in 2014: 18,389
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Filed under Thriller