Children of Blood and Bone – Toni Adeyemi
Fantasy, young adult, magic, fiction.
It has been a long time since the maji had their magic. The magic was taken away by the rulers of Orisha and there is no hope of the magic ever returning. Until one day, in Zelie’s village she is approached by a girl with a scroll claiming it can bring back magic. She introduces herself as Amari, she is on the run from where she witnessed her father kill someone over the magic. Zelie and her brother, Tzain, under Mama Agba’s vision go try to bring back magic to the maji people along with Amari. Amari’s father instructs her brother Inan to stop them from bringing back magic. This becomes a race against time to bring magic back.
This was so fun to read and I simply loved the book from the first sentence to the last. I never had read any young adult fantasy novels that were this interesting. The pacing is excellent and there are multiple points of views that enrich the storytelling experience. I couldn’t stop reading this book and it took me two days to read due to how rather large this novel is. The characters are so unique and perfect to the plot. The idea of Zelie going and getting magic back to her people as well as learning about her identity was phenomenal and beautifully put together. There is a lot of world building along the way and such beautiful descriptions. I would love to reread this and possibly continue the series soon. I highly recommend going to a nearby bookstore, snatching this book, and reading it.
Howl’s Moving Castle – Dianna Wynne Jones
Fantasy, childrens, fiction.
Sophie inherits the Hat Shop as she is the eldest in her family. A woman looking for a hat comes into her shop, Sophie tries to be helpful, but the woman irritates her by saying something rude to her. Sophie retaliates and instantly regrets it when the woman reveals that she is The Witch of the Waste. The Witch of the Waste turns Sophie into an old woman. Sophie leaves and has to find Howl to help her reverse the spell. She meets Calcifer who knows of the curse and wants Sophie to help him break his curse. Howl confronts her about what she’s doing and he doesnt mind her as long as she doesn’t kill the spiders. Meanwhile, during her stay, she does upkeep of the castle, despite Howl’s grumblings. She also has to face Howl’s heartless ways in order to break the spell that was placed onto her.
I really loved and enjoyed this book. I watched the movie and loved the movie as well. The magic and fantasy was so moderate and exciting. I can’t believe I missed this book as a child and never bothered to pick it up. Now as an adult, I appreciate this as a pure form of fantasy. The simplicity makes this magical and appreciate simple fantasy. Sometimes I find myself overwhelmed with so many elements with young adult and adult fantasy novels. This really is a breath of fresh air. I love the interactions between Calcifer and Sophie, they both remind me of an old couple bickering and fighting. I have to say Calcifer is my favorite character because he is straight up chaotic energy and sarcastic. I do recommend to go get this book to read immediately and possibly go watch the movie. Both are great and magical.
The Prince and the Pauper – Mark Twain
Classics, children’s literature, fiction.
Tom is a poor man and the Prince is royalty. One day, these two meet and decide to switch clothes as well as their lives. Tom being now a Prince and the Prince being a peasant. Each of them learns a new aspect of life that neither had known prior to the switch. They had gotten away with the switch due to their similar facial features and such. Later they switched back to their own individual lives and life continued on.
I had read this novel as a child and was intrigued by the idea of two people switching lives to help understand each other’s circumstances. A learning experience with a hands-on perspective. I was obsessed with this barbie movie called The Princess and the Pauper that was inspired by the Mark Twain idea but with some variances. I don’t know why I was obsessed with this book when I was a kid, but some mysteries are left as a mystery for a reason. I do have to say I do like this novel though. I had to reread it for sure and had to do a book review as well.
The School for Good and Evil: One True King, Book #6 – Soman Chainani
School, good, evil, Camelot, children, fiction.
There is an imposter trying to lay claim for Camelot and to proclaimed One True King with his captor, Sophie who is to be the queen. Agatha and Tedros have to figure out the tests that will prove that Tedros is the rightful heir to the throne. Once they both found out the three tests, both of them must face the challenges that lay ahead. The first test and second tests were grueling, revealing to Tedros his father’s life, and the sinister plot to lay claim to the throne through lies and deception. The third and final test reveals the conspiracy as well as the One True King.
I had waited a long time for this to come out and knew that the previous book wasn’t the final one. I’m saddened that this is the final book but glad it is. I was satisfied by the ending of this novel. The whole journey of this series had its ups and downs. I had laughed and cried through all books that are written by Soman Chainani. This series is perfect for all ages, young or old. There are so many messages for the reader to find and learn. There is good news that this book series will be adapted into a motion picture which I am so excited to know about and looking forward to watching when it comes out as well as do a review of whether the motion picture is absolutely faithful to the book or not. I know it will most likely will be faithful but still can’t wait to see these characters come to life besides my imagination. I do recommend this novel series to be read by all.
Ender’s Game – Orson Scott Card
Wars, military, training, children, Science fiction.
Ender lives in a world where being a Third born child is frowned upon, but he is still treated like everyone else, including having a monitor installed. These monitors keep track of families discreetly. Graff was interested in Ender and decided to test Ender to see if he is proven to be a worthy leader. After the test, Ender had his monitor removed. Graff comes to make an offer to Ender, either come join or be a burden on the family. Ender considers the future and decides to go with Graff to go receive training to become a leader. Graff was given permission to do what ever he sees fit into molding Ender. No matter the cost. Ender endures the trainings and was placed right into war. Ender won’t be able to cope with what he was molded to do.
I sort of liked this book. The book was slow for me, but it quickly picked up the pace. A lot of science fiction but mostly focused on space travel and space wars. I had some trouble coming to terms with the whole idea of children being trained but logically makes sense. I felt bad for Ender because children shouldn’t have to feel like they are a burden. There are more books in this series that I might read in the future. I would have to most likely reread this novel before reading the rest of the series but right now this is what’s accessible due to the corona virus pandemic. Not saying that I felt forced reading this novel. I saved this book and the rest of the series for a “rainy” day. Overall, if one is into science fiction that’s focused on wars and military, this is up that alley.
Kingdom Keepers 2: Disney at Dawn –
Disney, Disney World, children,
Just as Finn and the other teens
thought that after rescuing Disney World and the saved the world, they can
relax a little. When Chernabog/Lucifer doesn’t appear on the celebration float.
The park attendant, Wayne, tells them the evil returned into a new form. This
brings on panic and the five teenagers urge to fight the evil from overtaking
the park and the world. Everything is at stake, once again.
As I had finished the first book, I
immediately began this sequel to the novel and fell more in love with the idea
of teenagers fighting Disney villains and saving the world from evil. I simply
couldn’t stop reading this novel and eventually finished the novel in no time.
I do recommend the first book of this series and this one as well.
Kingdom Keepers 1: Disney After Dark –
Disney, Disney World, children,
There is a darkness that threatens both
the Disney World park and the world. An old park attendant, Wayne, warns Finn
of this news and warns him to gather the other teenagers in this fight. At
first, Finn thought that the encounter was false and only a dream, but the
truth revealed and Finn wants to act immediately. Finn gathers four other
teenagers must use certain technology to go up against Disney Villains as well
as witches. This is all good versus evil to save the park and the world. Finn
and the other teenagers must save the world.
I had grabbed this children’s novel
while at California Adventure because the idea of being trapped at a theme park
battling Disney Villains had deeply intrigued me. I did not care that this
novel was short or meant for a younger (children) audience. I enjoyed reading
this so much that I couldn’t put the book down. Later I found out this was a
continuing series and I intend on reading the rest soon. I recommend this novel
for sure for anyone young at heart and are a Disney fanatic.
The School for Good and Evil: A World Without Princes
– Soman Chainani
Children fiction, young adult fiction, adventure,
In the second installment of School for Good and Evil,
finally the two girls Agatha and Sophie are home. Famous for their fight in the
last book, fame got to their heads. Suddenly things have changed, princes don’t
exist anymore. Neither are princesses. It’s an all-out war between boys and
girls. Everything is now a mess and must be rectified before more terrible
I really thought this book is interesting and it was a
pleasure to read. Simply an incredible page turner It made me laugh, cry, and
cringe I am a huge fan of this book series and I highly recommend for everyone
to try this out. Despite the novel being a children’s book, it is something
everyone can read. It is well written, and I simply had fallen in love with the
first book, now having to hunt down more novels in this series. I honestly
would reread this one maybe a few more times.
Big Little Lies – Liane Moriarty
Parents, children, murder mystery, gossip, scandals, fiction, thriller, domestic violence victim, single mother.
A new and single mother, Jane moves into this town
hoping to find herself a permanent home for her and her son. Jane meets two
other mothers, Madeline and Celeste. An incident happened at the kindergarten
orientation and Renata, one of the big shot mothers, is blaming Jane’s son,
Ziggy for hurting her Amabella. Ziggy never did harm Amabella but it’s a
showdown between Jane and Renata. This scandal is only the beginning when a
trivia night ends with a murder. A mix of alcohol and scandalous gossip tend to
reveal truths and nothing good happens in the end. A murder resulting from too
much alcohol, domestic violence, and a case of post traumatic stress disorder.
I loved this novel and the author is perfect. The plot
line was perfectly written, and intricate truths revealed here and there made
the novel juicer. I simply couldn’t stop reading. The only issue I had was with
the parents who decided to be self-righteous, prudent, and gossip spreaders. It
did add some drama, but I didn’t like that element. I loved the fact Jane
decided to become a single mother rather than give up. The strength and the
extent she went for her child was beautiful and how she was accepted for it was
incredible. This novel sent many messages that a lot of parents should take
note such as listen to all the children when it comes to bullying and deal with
it appropriately. Don’t single out anyone because that is bullying.
What Alice Forgot – Liane Moriarty
Fiction, memory loss, amnesiacs, memory, divorce, domestic, life change, children, family, drama
After a nasty fall at a spin class,
Alice Love had forgotten an entire decade of her life. Meaning she only
remembers marrying Nick and becoming pregnant. She already has three kids and
getting a divorce. Shocking! Alice is trying to navigate with her amnesia and
getting reacquainted with her life. It isn’t easy for Alice to try to grasp why
she is going through a divorce and is apart of the parent club at her
children’s school. Her own children help Alice put the pieces together as well
as understand the whole divorce as well as introduce themselves to Alice. As
time progresses, Alice slowly remembers what happened in the past ten years of
her life. A best friend died. An affair happened with her best friend’s husband
with another woman. Even all the gossip with the parents at the elementary
school. An incident occurred with Alice and Nick’s child and they reminisce the
past. Nick offers to give their marriage another chance. Even their children
want them to get back together too. At an event, all Alice’s forgotten memories
come flooding back. Things go back to normality.
This book was incredible and was so
addicting, a real page turner. I was sort of expecting that amnesia would be
the issue and it would resolve through the narrative. Anyways I thoroughly enjoyed
the book, it made me laugh and cry a little. It was a very different genre of
book that I ever had read and becoming a fan of this author for her intricate
writing and storytelling. Moriarty struck me in places and told the story
perfectly as well as made me ponder about life in general. Life can happen at
any moment, just got to adapt for the time being and hope for regularity