Source: Library

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Sci-Fi Review: Robot Uprisings

September 13, 2017 Uncategorized 2

Sci-Fi Review: Robot UprisingsTitle: Robot Uprisings
Author: Daniel H. Wilson, John Joseph Adams, Julianna Baggott, Alastair Reynolds, Alan Dean Foster, Ian McDonald, Robin Wasserman, John McCarthy, Seanan McGuire, Nnedi Okorafor, Scott Sigler, Charles Yu, Anna North, Genevieve Valentine, Hugh Howey, Ernest Cline, Cory Doctorow, Jeff Abbott
Source: Library
Links: Indiebound |Goodreads
Rating: three-stars

Summary: There were some awesome ideas in this collection, but many of the stories felt under-developed or incomplete.

I don’t read a lot of sci-fi any more, but it’s one of the genres I read the most in high school and I still often love it when I pick it up. So, even though short stories aren’t always my thing, I thought there couldn’t be much better than a collection all about robot uprisings. I also recognized the names of a number of authors in the collection, including Nnedi Okorafor, Ernest Cline, and Cory Doctorow.  Read more »

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Graphic Nonfiction Review: Persepolis

September 11, 2017 Uncategorized 5

Graphic Nonfiction Review: PersepolisTitle: Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood (Persepolis, #1)
Author: Marjane Satrapi, Mattias Ripa
Source: Library
Links: Indiebound |Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

Summary: The images made it easier to learn from this story and made it more moving, but it was disappointingly short.

Persepolis is Marjane Satrapi’s memoir of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. In powerful black-and-white comic strip images, Satrapi tells the story of her life in Tehran from ages six to fourteen, years that saw the overthrow of the Shah’s regime, the triumph of the Islamic Revolution, and the devastating effects of war with Iraq. The intelligent and outspoken only child of committed Marxists and the great-granddaughter of one of Iran’s last emperors, Marjane bears witness to a childhood uniquely entwined with the history of her country.” (source) Read more »

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Fun Fiction Review: Shades of Milk and Honey

September 6, 2017 Uncategorized 3

Fun Fiction Review: Shades of Milk and HoneyTitle: Shades of Milk and Honey (Glamourist Histories, #1)
Author: Mary Robinette Kowal
Source: Library
Links: Indiebound |Goodreads
Rating: three-stars

Summary: I enjoyed the idea behind this book and the hints of Austen, but there wasn’t much depth or originality.

Billed as Jane Austen plus magic, I could resist picking this book up. As in Austen, the characters’ main concerns focus on society and especially marriage arrangements. Unfortunately for our main character Jane, although she is skilled in the womanly magic of glamour, her younger sister’s beauty attracts all the attention. Her sister lacks Jane’s good sense though and so it will fall to Jane to use her magic to protect her sister from less than honorable suitors. And in doing so, she just might find her perfect match as well. Read more »

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Diversity Challenge Review: Still Alice

August 23, 2017 Uncategorized 5

Diversity Challenge Review: Still AliceTitle: Still Alice
Author: Lisa Genova
Source: Library
Links: Indiebound |Goodreads
Rating: five-stars

Summary: I loved this book because it felt incredibly real, from the depiction of life in academia to the characters’ emotions –  even the petty ones.

“Alice Howland, happily married with three grown children and a house on the Cape, is a celebrated Harvard professor at the height of her career when she notices a forgetfulness creeping into her life. As confusion starts to cloud her thinking and her memory begins to fail her, she receives a devastating diagnosis: early onset Alzheimer’s disease. Fiercely independent, Alice struggles to maintain her lifestyle and live in the moment, even as her sense of self is being stripped away.” (source) Read more »

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Cozy Mystery Review: The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency

August 21, 2017 Uncategorized 9

Cozy Mystery Review: The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective AgencyTitle: The No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency (No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, #1)
Author: Alexander McCall Smith
Source: Library
Links: Indiebound |Goodreads
Rating: three-stars

Summary: An interesting story with a great protagonist, but disjointed and without opportunity for the reader to solve the mysteries.

When Precious Ramotswe inherits enough money to start a business, she decides to take the risk of starting Botswana’s first ladies’ detective agency. She’s pleasantly surprised when people immediately start asking for her help. Using her observational skills and knowledge of the area, she is able to solve all kinds of cases, from finding missing loved ones to foiling con men. Read more »

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Nonfiction Review: All the Rave

August 16, 2017 Uncategorized 0

Nonfiction Review: All the RaveTitle: All the Rave : The Rise and Fall of Shawn Fanning's Napster
Author: Joseph Menn
Source: Library
Links: Indiebound |Goodreads
Rating: two-stars

Summary: A potentially interesting story told in a dry and problematic way.

This is the story of seventeen-year-old Shawn Fanning’s creation of the program that would become Napster and the disastrous company formed around it. From the beginning, Shawn’s huckster uncle assured himself a large stake in the company. His subsequent mismanagement made it even harder for the company to deal with technical and legal challenges. This account reveals the private, internal power struggles that accompanied the very public legal battle between Napster and the music industry. Read more »

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Romance Review: The Duchess War

July 26, 2017 Uncategorized 6

Romance Review: The Duchess WarTitle: The Duchess War (Brothers Sinister, #1)
Author: Courtney Milan
Source: Library
Links: Indiebound |Goodreads
Rating: five-stars

Summary: This was wonderful! It was lots of fun, had extremely lovable characters, and no troubling tropes.

“Miss Minerva Lane is a quiet, bespectacled wallflower, and she wants to keep it that way. After all, the last time she was the center of attention, it ended badly–so badly that she changed her name to escape her scandalous past. Wallflowers may not be the prettiest of blooms, but at least they don’t get trampled. So when a handsome duke comes to town, the last thing she wants is his attention. But that is precisely what she gets. Because Robert Blaisdell, the Duke of Clermont, is not fooled. When Minnie figures out what he’s up to, he realizes there is more to her than her spectacles and her quiet ways. And he’s determined to lay her every secret bare before she can discover his. But this time, one shy miss may prove to be more than his match…” (source) Read more »

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Nonfiction Review: Better Than Before

July 10, 2017 Uncategorized 4

Nonfiction Review: Better Than BeforeTitle: Better Than Before: Mastering the Habits of Our Everyday Lives
Author: Gretchen Rubin
Source: Library
Links: Indiebound |Goodreads
Rating: three-stars

Summary: I didn’t think this was nearly as good as The Happiness Project but I do think it has lots of useful suggestions for anyone trying to make change their habits.

Gretchen Reuben’s Happiness Project is actually the book that inspired me to start blogging, so I’m surprised it’s taken me so long to pick up any of her other books. Better Than Before is a book about how we can intentionally form habits to make our lives easier. It includes 21 different habit-forming strategies, sometimes back by research and always demonstrated with interesting anecdotes from Gretchen, her family and friends, and her readers. Read more »

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Is the First Book You Read By An Author Always the Best? A Review and Some Stats

June 27, 2017 Uncategorized 6

Is the First Book You Read By An Author Always the Best? A Review and Some StatsTitle: The Inexplicable Logic of My Life
Author: Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Source: Library
Links: Indiebound |Goodreads
Rating: four-stars

Summary: I really enjoyed this book, but it didn’t quite live up to the emotional punch of Ari and Dante.

“Everything is about to change. Until this moment, Sal has always been certain of his place with his adoptive gay father and their loving Mexican-American family. But now his own history unexpectedly haunts him, and life-altering events force him and his best friend, Samantha, to confront issues of faith, loss, and grief. Suddenly Sal is throwing punches, questioning everything, and discovering that he no longer knows who he really is—but if Sal’s not who he thought he was, who is he?” (source) Read more »

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