Recovery from my bionic upgrade (aka knee replacement) is taking longer than expected, so I'm still offline. Hoping to be back soon, so please send good vibes and happy thoughts my way! more details

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

The Darkest Part of the Forest book review

The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly BlackThe Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

**ARC received from the publisher**

Children can have a cruel, absolute sense of justice. Children can kill a monster and feel quite proud of themselves. A girl can look at her brother and believe they’re destined to be a knight and a bard who battle evil. She can believe she’s found the thing she’s been made for.

Hazel lives with her brother, Ben, in the strange town of Fairfold where humans and fae exist side by side. The faeries’ seemingly harmless magic attracts tourists, but Hazel knows how dangerous they can be, and she knows how to stop them. Or she did, once.

At the center of it all, there is a glass coffin in the woods. It rests right on the ground and in it sleeps a boy with horns on his head and ears as pointed as knives. Hazel and Ben were both in love with him as children. The boy has slept there for generations, never waking.

Until one day, he does… (Goodreads)

My Thoughts:

One of the things that I really loved about this story is that Hazel is the hero. She wants to be a knight, fighting monsters and saving her town, rather than waiting passively for a Prince Charming to come and save the day. I love a good, strong female lead and Hazel fits the bill perfectly!

Hazel and her brother are raised by inattentive parents, left to their own devices much too often and getting into more trouble than was healthy. But if they weren't neglected, they wouldn't have had so many childhood adventures! The jury's still out though on whether or not that was a good thing.

Having unwisely made a deal with the fae when she was younger, things go from bad to worse for Hazel when the mysterious horned boy disappears from his glass coffin in the woods.

So many questions! Who is the horned boy? Where did Hazel's childhood sword disappear to? Who is leaving her cryptic messages? And when will the Alderking finally make Hazel pay up?

Really enjoyed this story! Holly is an incredibly talented writer who gives us great characters, an interesting plot, and a nice twist to the ending that I wasn't expecting. Well worth reading!

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

November Wrap Up

library-6

Trying to get back into the swing of things, so thought this wrap-up might help.

Books read

In order to meet my Goodreads goal of 100 books, I need to read 8.33 books per month. No way will I make my goal because of the huge reading slump these past four months, but pleasantly surprised that I've managed to read 7 books:

  1. Redeemed by PC Cast & Kristin Cast
  2. A Vision of Fire by Gillian Anderson & Jeff Rovin
  3. Captive by Aimee Carter
  4. Brazen by Kelley Armstrong
  5. When by Victoria Laurie
  6. Grave Mercy by Robin LaFevers
  7. Superheroes Anonymous by Lexis Dunn

Commenting

Another month of no blog hopping. Getting back into blogging is harder than expected. I miss it, but can't seem to muster the energy. Think I need to set myself some small goals as crossing items off a list seems to motivate me. Maybe start with visiting 1-2 blogs a day to get me back in the mood?

Overall

Recovery from my knee replacement has been slow. I flunked out of physical therapy after 4 months because there was nothing else they could do for me. Should be depressing, but I found it funny. I mean, who flunks out of PT? And at least they didn't keep taking my money, knowing that they couldn't help me.

I have a torture device knee brace I wear 3 times a day for 30 minute sessions to slowly straighten my leg, plus a huge list of exercises that's supposed to help. Doctor reminded me (yet again) that while most people recover quickly, my journey will take longer because I was in such bad shape to begin with. This is one time I really wish I was average! ha!

Am slowly but surely recovering my love of reading, which is a good sign! Still spending way too much time on Facebook and watching bad TV, but I'm getting there. I've been to the bookstore a few times and just being surrounded by books is therapeutic in and of itself.

Here's to a better December, and a rocking 2015!

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Thanksgiving!
May your turkeys be moist and your
desserts plentiful.


Happy Thanksgiving!
Me after dinner. Every. Single. Year.


















Monday, November 24, 2014

Grave Mercy book review

Grave Mercy by Robin LaFeversGrave Mercy by Robin LaFevers

*eBook received from the publisher via NetGalley*

Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts--and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others. (Goodreads)

My Thoughts:

This book and I started off on the wrong foot, as there is a map and cast of characters listed at the beginning. This happens to be one of my reading pet peeves, as I don't like having to plow through a cast of characters that I haven't even met yet! It also makes me suspicious that the author feels the need to list the characters, as if the reader will be confused otherwise. Thankfully, this was not the case!

Once I started reading, the story really drew me in! Ismae has been treated horribly her entire life because she is "marked" by the god of death, with scars from her mother's failed attempt to expel her from the womb. Unloved and unwanted, Ismae is rescued from her new brute of a husband and taken to an isolated convent. A convent full of assassin nuns! How cool is that?

Quickly taking to her new life, Ismae discovers that she is immune to poison and is assigned to the Poisons Mistress. She isn't as successful in all of her studies (history and womanly arts are kind of boring), but she does well enough to be sent on her first assignment. And it's a success! Her second assignment doesn't go as smoothly and the Abbess receives a complaint about Ismae. This complaint leads to her third and most challenging assignment, undercover at the royal court.

Most of the story deals with her undercover assignment in the court of the young Duchess Anne of Brittany.  Using Anne's half-brother Gavriel Duval as part of her cover, she tries to figure out who is plotting against the duchess. All while dealing with her growing feelings for Duval.

To be honest, most historical fiction isn't to my liking and I get bored with all the double-crosses and schemes. Thankfully there wasn't too much court intrigue in this one and it easily held my interest.

All in all a very satisfying read! The author has come up with a very interesting premise - assassin nuns! And I loved seeing Ismae explore her gifts and become more confident in her duties as Death's Handmaiden. Looking forward to reading the rest of the series, as I really like these characters!

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