{book} castle juliet

Castle Juliet: A Fantasy By Brandon Berntson* Self-published, 2013. There are a few editions. Alice and Jacky-boy are ten years old and the best of friends. For a year they embark on fantastic adventures, most born from Jack’s relentless imagination. As each season draws to a close, another one opens, revealing its own timeless magic…

{book} a new(er) Flavia de Luce

As Chimney Sweepers Come to Dust A Flavia de Luce Novel, book 7 By Alan Bradley ARC via NetGalley w/ gratitude to Delacorte Press* Release Date January 6, 2015. “Hard on the heels of the return of her mother’s body from the frozen reaches of the Himalayas, Flavia, for her indiscretions, is banished from her…

{picture/book} rules of summer

Rules of Summer by Shaun Tan. Arthur A. Levine (Scholastic) 2013.  “Never break the rules. Especially, if you don’t understand them.”–back cover copy. Rules of Summer, in its most simplified description, is about two brothers’ summer adventures. The story is told by Shaun Tan so there is the surreal and the incredible wordless impact of…

{book} the colorless

When Tsukuru first hears Haida’s recording of Franz Liszt’s ‘Le mal du pays,’ from the Years of Pilgrimage suite ‘Year 1: Switzerland,” it is described as “a quiet, sorrowful piece that began with a slow, memorable theme played out as single notes, then proceeded into a series of tranquil variations” (68). Tsukuru asks Haida about…

{comic} brand spanking new, except not.

Battling Boy by Paul Pope First Second 2013. One of the things I like about superhero comics is their ability to both maintain continuity and prove regenerative. Need to reboot a character or story? Will do. Has the essence of the hero and their story really changed? No. Even so, it is still hard to break into…

{book} once begun

Silence Once Begun by Jesse Ball Pantheon Books, 2014. 232 pages “The following work of fiction is partially based on fact.” Over the course of several months, eight people vanish from their homes in the same Japanese town, a single playing card found on each door. Known as the “Narito Disappearances,” the crime has authorities baffled—until a…

{book} guests of city/city

a guest post: [w/ a bit of editing]: thank you, Natalya… ~~~~~~~~~ Imagine a world where instead of visiting a city within a city, you visit another peculiar place: a city that is its own country. It’s a 2-week process to get your visa—2 weeks of testing and intense learning where they tell you that…

{book} the power & in just one body (of work)

Of note: my writing about an excellent short story collection equates to a long post. But I do give you a few paragraphs (up to the asterisks) before ~brief remarks on each of the stories. The Thing Around Your Neck : a collection of short stories by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Alfred A Knopf, 2009. Hardcover,…

{book} ruby’s magic madness

Ruby Lu, Brave and True by Lenore Look illustrated by Anne Wilsdorf Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2004. Hardcover, 105 pages incl. “Ruby’s Fantastic Glossary and Pronunciation Guide” Library borrow. Ages 6-10. Most days the best thing about being Ruby is everything. Like when she’s the star of her own backyard magic show [“Ruby’s Magic…

{comic} questions

Who is AC? by Hope Larson, illustrated by Tintin Pantoja. Atheneum Books for Young Readers, 2013. hardcover, 176 pages. 12 & up. borrowed from the Library because you know I am a big fan of Hope Larson’s work. “Meet Lin, a formerly average teenage girl whose cell phone zaps her with magical powers. But just as…

{book} of all possible worlds…

The Best of All Possible Worlds by Karen Lord Ballantine Books|Del Rey, 2013. hardcover, 303 pages. Library borrow. A proud and reserved alien society finds its homeland destroyed in an unprovoked act of aggression, and the survivors have no choice but to reach out to the indigenous humanoids of their adopted world, to whom they…

{book} cello girls

Rooftoppers by Katherine Rundell w/ illustrations by Terry Fan Simon & Schuster, 2013. Hardcover, 277 pages. newly owned, juvenile fiction (8-12). ‘On the morning of its first birthday, a baby was found floating in a cello case in the middle of the English Channel.’ Sophie may have survived a shipwreck as a baby, but her…