Thursday, August 28, 2014

The Body in the Woods

The Body in the Woods
A Point Last Seen Mystery
by April Henry
Hardcover, 263 pages
Published June 17th 2014 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR)

I received an ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

The three main characters are all quite unique, yet they have a certain dynamic that makes them interesting and even entertaining to read about. Ruby's obsession with patterns, especially in a crime setting make her a little hard to be friends with. Nick has his own obsession with living up to the memory of his Iraqi-war-hero of a dad. Then there's Alexis, who's only real obsession is keeping her mother's condition a secret from everyone. As new volunteers with Portland's Search and Rescue, they are kind of thrown together. When they respond to a search for an autistic man, they find a body instead. For a variety of personal reasons, they have a hard time just sitting back and letting the police track down the murderer. As they uncover evidence will the detective in charge listen to them or will it be a case of "The Boy (or girl) Who Cried Wolf"?
A fun, and clean, young adult murder mystery series with engaging and likeable characters.

The Dream Thieves

The Dream Thieves
by Maggie Stiefvater

Hardcover, 439 pages
Published September 17th 2013 by Scholastic Press

I don't think I have ever felt such a discrepancy between how much I liked the first and second books of a series. I don't know if the difference was that I read the print copy of the first and listened to the audio of this one. I stuck with it though, which is saying something as I really didn't like it. I am not sure I would have stuck with a print copy. I feel like I was on some bizarre drug-induced trip while listening to it - it was that random and scattered. Or maybe if I had been tripping I would have enjoyed it better?! I have said it a million times and I am going to say it again - if movies, video games, comic books, and TV shows all need ratings - why not books? That way the reader (or parent of the reader) might have an idea of what they are getting into before it starts. This book had an excessive amount of bad words - words that aren't allowed in a PG-13 movie so why so abundant in a teen book? I don't remember that being a problem in the first book, though I tend to be able to ignore it more easily when printed as opposed to being constantly voiced aloud through my earbuds. The characters frequently were taking drugs and other adult situations were mentioned. Up until this point I have loved everything by Stiefvater. I don't know if I will be back for any more of this series.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

A Coming of Age

A Coming of Age
by Timothy Zahn

Mass Market Paperback, 294 pages
Published July 1st 1986 by Baen Books (first published 1984) 
I received a free copy via NetGalley

First, I want to talk covers. I was super excited when I saw this available on NetGalley as I 
thought it was a new book from Zahn. I had no idea it was a reissue of an earlier book.
 The above cover is for the Kindle edition. Then as I was telling my husband about it, 
he said he had a paperback of it and it had this cover:
That image is from Goodreads, sorry it is blurry. But I really didn't like this cover either. Then I noticed this cover on Goodreads and I think I like it best of all three.
Now here is a summary of the story from Goodreads:
The first colonists to reach Tigris thought they had found Eden... but the planet had a horrifying effect on their children. Babies born there developed frightening telekinetic powers at the age of five. No one could control them -- and as the changelings grew and became aware of their abilities they initiated a bloodbath of chaos and violence that nearly destroyed the planet.

Two centuries after the Lost Generation, Tigrins have learned to cope with their strange planet and its effects. But a new threat is rising. In secret a medical researcher is experimenting with the TK ability. His guinea pigs are stolen children; his object, to extend their powers past adolescence and into adulthood. If he succeeds, Tigris faces disintegration.

I can't really add much to it as it has been quite awhile since I read it. I did enjoy it and think teens today will appreciate the story. However a better cover would do wonders to sell it.