The Game by Terry Schott

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Well hello there faithful followers! Long time no see!! Sorry about my disappearing act and man is there news!

Book Expo America is in 44 days!! (SQUEEE!)

AND… Kiera Kass’s third novel, The One, is coming out in 22 DAYS!!! (IT’S THE FINAL COUNTDOWN!!! OMG!!! I CAN’T EVEN HOLD MYSELF STILL!!!!!)

And now, on to the review!!

During the first pages of The Game, by terry Schott, Zach, the hero of the story, is dying. He describes dying and then suddenly wakes up, and is in the body of a 17 year old.  The explanation, Zach lives in a world called Tygon, where at a young age children are put into  “the Game”.  The Game is a real life simulation that takes place on the actual Earth.  Whenever you go into the Game as you live your life you acquire credits, which once you turn 18 can be turned into cash.  The only thing you can buy with credits until you are 18 are more plays in the Game, power-ups, and other such things in which to help you in life.

Zach is one of the lucky players, he started as an orphan, a nobody, when all of the sudden he rockets to the fast track on a Game play that puts him in one of the top positions.  Due to this he is picked up by a patron, and not just any patron, he is picked up by Brandon Strayne, the maker of the Game.

Zach, however, is 17 and is turning 18 in a few weeks, and he has two choices, he could play it safe and retire in a really good position, or he could risk it all and retire in the number one spot, a feat that has only happened 11 other times in the 30 years of the Game.  Will Zach make the cut, what will the 30th anniversary of the game hold, and is it possible that the mainframe, the computer that controls it all, is becoming self aware?  You’ll have to read The Game by Terry Schott to find out!

I really LOVED THIS BOOK!!!! It’s like the movie Inception coupled with the Hunger Games series, add to that a sweet romance ala the Notebook… It’s like a SMORE!!! with all that warm marshmallow chocolate gooeyness surrounded by a crunchy graham cracker crust.  Can you tell I’m hungry…

SNACK TIME!

Izzy :Z

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Because THEY said so or what your parents might say...

Because THEY said so or what your parents might say…

 

Because they said so (what your parents might say): Nothing much, just a little bit of blood, some not too graphic deaths, and a light and innocent romantic lean… an exciting adventure of a book overall.

Starry Nights

Starry Nights by Daisy Whitney

Starry Nights by Daisy Whitney

“Starry Nights” is a really wonderful book by author Daisy Whitney, to be published by Bloomsbury USA in September of this year… this is one of those galley copies I was lucky enough to get my hot mitts on at Book Expo America!

Named for the Van Gogh painting, “Starry Nights” takes readers through Paris, France on an adventure full of romance and mystery and drama (and a healthy dose of accurate art history, too!).

I have been to Paris and some of the locations mentioned and reading the detailed artistry describing this city of lights took me right back there!  I could almost SMELL the cinnamon and spice from the crepes at the red awninged street stand.

Julien is a guide in the Musee d’Orsay, (a real museum in Paris, France…)… he also happens to be the son of the art curator.  Julien’s dream is to become a famous artist but describes his art as mediocre at best.  Almost every night he goes to the art museum to look it over and to explore, and every night the art comes alive.

He dances with the Degas.

Degas

Pets the cat from Manet’s Olympia…

Manet's Cat

and slowly and helplessly falls I love with the girl from what might look like Renoir’s Young Girl in the Garden.

Renoir's Young Girl Seated in a Garden

But when all of a sudden all of the Renoirs and other famous ancient paintings start to fade, Julien is forced to realize that this thing he does in the museum is not all together okay, and that his love for the girl in the garden, Clio, is putting the paintings on edge.

This book was A M A Z I N G!!!!  The writing is rich and detailed, its imagery art in itself.  It is not an EASY, QUICK read, but it is an AWESOME one!  Like a really good meal you want to savor and at the same exact time, gobble down like a hungry thing!  If there was any title higher than a keeper shelf, this book would be on it!!!!  Really just amazing!

Daisy Whitney does a wonderful job expressing Julien’s feelings as he falls for a girl that only he can see, and his struggle to find out who he really is….. outside of the paintings!  I have already read this book 3 times in a week and I still can’t quite take in all of the details!!! SK-WEEEEE!!!! I just LOVE books like this!!!

Come September, just in time for start of school, you just MUST get your own copy!  Seriously.  Like… really.

In the meantime, Daisy Whitney has a blog that has some info on her stuff ( like her other books… The Mockingbirds and its sequel The Rivals… which I plan to devour hoard  read super soon) AND if you Facebook, you can “like” her author site there!

Izzy :Z

Because THEY said so or what your parents might say...

Because THEY said so or what your parents might say…

Kissing, a single fistfight, mentions of lustiness, nothing really horrible or scarring.

It has some wonderful history lessons inside of it and references to well know and NOT SO well known pieces of art, and lots of mentions of actual landmarks… (google them all!)

I would say a mature 11 and up.

Marie Antoinette Serial Killer

by Katie Alender.

So, the title aside, this book really wasn’t all that bloody.  If you want the long summery it was a fast paced mystery/ murder/ romance/ YA drama novel.  The short summery…. one word…….  AWESOME!!!!!!!

The author Katie Alender creates a wonderful hook when she starts the book off with a (none too graphic) murder.

Enter, Collette…  a girl with quite a few secrets.  She keeps secrets from her two uber popular, status-crazed friends, (like how she isn’t rich like them).  She also keeps secrets from her mom, like how her dad offered for her to come and live in his penthouse in New York.

She also has an annoying little brother who loves to play pranks on her.  Today he has decided to hide her suitcase, packed full of everything that she needs for her trip, the day before she leaves!!!  The issue for Collette, a girl afraid of the dark and enclosed spaces, is that her brother has decided to put her suitcase in their… basement…. the dank…. dark… small… basement.  But today, Collette is determined to face her fears.  As Collette braves their basement, pulling her stuffed suitcase out of its clutches, she sees a box on top of her suitcase with the name of her father’s grandmother, her grandmother, and her father.  Curiosity takes place of fear as she hurries out with the box and her suitcase, and goes up to her room to root through the contents of the mystery box.

Inside she finds mementos like flyers from nightclubs, cocktail napkins from restaurants, and ticket stubs from Broadway plays….. nothing particularly   interesting.  But just as she is about to put the box down she sees a flat jewelry case.  Inside the luxurious case she finds a GORGEOUS silver medallion, circular with the shape of a flower with 6 spiky petals and a key in the middle.

She knows her father’s side of the family came from France, is it possible that her family has a secret history?  Could she be….. descended from royalty?!?!?!?!

Using wonderful fully developed characters, and eventful plot twists and knots, Alender spins a wild, fastpaced, got you by the seat of your pants, can’t put it down murder mystery, complete with accurate historical basis, and some lesser known facts.  I hope that you enjoy this book as much as I did!!!! Keeper shelf for sure!!

Izzy

:Z

Because THEY said so or what your parents might say...

Because THEY said so or what your parents might say…

Because they said so (what your parents would say).  As the title suggests, this story does have several murders, though not put in horrible detail I would just suggest reader discretion.  Some smoochy stuff and cursing, but nothing we school kids haven’t heard on the bus.

The Song of the Quarkbeast or what I read at soccer camp last week…

The Song of the Quarkbeast (Chronicles of Kazam book #2)
by Jasper Fforde
published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

The Song of the Quarkbeast: The Chronicles of Kazam Book Two

The Song of the Quarkbeast: The Chronicles of Kazam Book Two

Last week I was at soccer camp.  It was pretty intense, but I still found time to sneak in a few books.

On my way out the door, I grabbed two books off of the top of my BEA pyramid, the first, Jasper Fforde’s The Song of the Quarkbeast.

SONG is the second in the Kazam series, and I have to be honest… the first two chapters were pretty slow going for me.

It is COMPLETELY possible that I was just so EXHAUSTED from all of the running and dribbling and shooting and heading and running and um… RUNNING that ANYTHING would have been slow going, but it’s only fair to say that it was.  If I had been at home and had access to my marvelous BEA pyramid, I might have put SONG aside for another in the stack.  THANK GOSH I wasn’t at HOME and THANK GOSH I DIDN’T put it aside because I would have been so totally WRONG!

By the end of the third chapter, I was roped into this magical saga. Really great snarky funny humor and mystery runs all over the pages!  Mr. Fforde does seem to go a little too far, maybe, into detail with the poking fun and silliness, but on the whole, I am SO GLAD I didn’t put it down because I would have missed some clever writing.

The book takes place in and alternate modern universe where all electronics are run on magic and due to the sudden loss in magic all electronic devices have tuned into useless pieces of equipment. Currently there are 2 magic companies, iMagic, and Kazam. Kazam’s assistant manager is named Jennifer Strange, she is a foundling, or an orphan, and the most organized person at Kazam, as well as the most sarcastic (the manager is currently floating around in the universe appearing randomly).  She is basically the agent and the scheduler of the magical deeds that need to be preformed.

One day she gets a call from a client asking her to find a ring for this client’s client. They want the nice people at Kazam to help and find a ring that has been lost for some time. Kazam, thinking that something is fishy, ups the cost to 5,000 Moolah coins for the job (FYI “moolah coins” are the form of currency in this book).

After some minor hiccups and an unfortunate incident where the assistant assistant manager, Tiger, almost gets stuck down a well and squeezed into jelly, they begin to unravel the mystery of the ring and to discover that just MAYBE someone or someTHING doesn’t WANT them to succeed.

Though I don’t know that this book would be one for the keeper shelf,  it would be a fun book club read, or a summer adventure read.   It was really very good and I would recommend it for ages 12 and up.  The book did peak my interest and tickle my sarcastic funny bone enough that I will TOTALLY hunt down the first in the series and wait with twitchy fingers for the next (predicted to be out in early 2014).
READ ON!

Izzy
:Z

OH!

Because THEY said so or what your parents might say...

Because THEY said so or what your parents might say…

Nada, Zilch, nothing remotely horrifying.