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Wednesday, May 13, 2015

REVIEW: The President's Shadow, by Brad Meltzer

Book 3 of The Culper Ring Series

A severed arm, found buried in the White House Rose Garden.

A lethal message with terrible consequences for the Presidency.

And a hidden secret in one family's past that will have repercussions for the entire nation.

I'm not sure I can be objective in this review. You see, I seriously seriously  "heart" Brad Meltzer and everything he writes or does with History Channel.

This book is actually the 3rd in the Culper Ring Series. There's a lot of history (George Washington formed the Culper Ring) mixed in to this modern day mystery. The book stands alone, despite being very tied to the series. You don't "hurt" for not having all the details of the back stories, but you'll likely find yourself hunting down books 1 and 2 to get them. 

Meltzer paints pictures. You can't help but vividly imagine locations and scenes. Character development (which I tend to find tricky for most authors) is really well done. Not only are they described in such a way that you can easily visualize and build in your own mind precisely that person--mannerisms, psychological profiles, even speech patterns. I tend to "hear" voices in my head as I read, and there is a distinct voice for each major player in this story line.

In a YA collection, this book might fill a very specific niche (mystery loving future-archivist/librarian sorts) or it might fit a wide-range (mystery lovers, stories with ties to history, people who just enjoy a good story and get invested in characters). It's worth the read, and so are the first 2 books in the series.

**This title will be available June 16, 2015.

Book 1 of The Culper Ring Series
Book 2 of The Culper Ring Series

What do you think??

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this ebook galley from Grand Central Publishing through the netGalley publisher/reader connection program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

REVIEW: Another Day, by David Levithan


 Every day is the same for Rhiannon. She has accepted her life, convinced herself that she deserves her distant, temperamental boyfriend, Justin, even established guidelines by which to live: Don’t be too needy. Avoid upsetting him. Never get your hopes up.

Until the morning everything changes. Justin seems to see her, to want to be with her for the first time, and they share a perfect day—a perfect day Justin doesn’t remember the next morning. Confused, depressed, and desperate for another day as great as that one, Rhiannon starts questioning everything. Then, one day, a stranger tells her that the Justin she spent that day with, the one who made her feel like a real person . . . wasn’t Justin at all.


After reading Every Day, I just didn't think there needed to be more to the story. I liked A, I liked his story, I liked that we were left "up in the air," just as A is every day. I don't think we need closure, because in a life like A's, I'm not sure there's any to be had.

That being said, I enjoyed Rhiannon's point of view regarding their "relationship." I liked the juxtaposition of A's life and how it rubbed against and generally caused turmoil in Rhiannon's. When all you knew was A's POV, it wasn't possible to understand, really, how his constant "make overs" affected someone else.

Again, there was some melodramatic stuff (typical of any teenager) and a bit too much waxing philosophic, but the story holds itself together well. It was important in this story to show Rhiannon's life away from A, and the affect his unplanned entrance into it had on her even when he wasn't around.

There are some life lessons in there and some general "human" lessons, but I won't go into those. This book can flesh out the story for those needing that (though not continue it, per say), or introduce a reader to this world (and send them running for a copy of Every Day.)

Another Day is a companion to David Levithan's novel Every Day. It's a companion book, not a sequel. This book isn't continuing the story, it's telling Rhiannon's side of it, and if you'll recall, A met Rhiannon one day and stayed in touch with someone for the very first time.


What do you think??

Disclosure of Material Connection: I purchased this book for my own enjoyment. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own.

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