Sunday, January 31, 2010

Review: Summer Blowout

Summer Blowout by Claire Cook
3.75 stars

Reasons for reading: caught my eye in the booksale; I later realized I'd enjoyed her Life's a Beach a few years ago

Synopsis: "Bella Shaughnessy is addicted to lipstick with names like My Chihuahua Bites and Kiss My Lips-an occupational hazard, since she works at Salon de Paolo, her family-run beauty salon, along with her four half-brothers and sisters. The owner is her father, Lucky Shaughnessy, a gregarious, three-times divorced charmer with Donald Trump hair who is obsessed with all things Italian. After Bella's own marriage flames out spectacularly when her half-sister runs off with her husband, Bella decides she has seen enough of the damage love can do. She makes a vow: no more men. But then Bella meets a cute entrepreneur, and despite their bickering, they can't seem to stay away from each other. A small, well-tressed dog also finds her way into Bella's life, and her heart, and she decides to chance that, too. When the whole clan heads to Atlanta for a big Southern wedding, sparks fly - in a summer blowout no one will ever forget."

First line: "Lipstick is my drug of choice."

Line I totally agree with! "You can tell a lot about a hotel by its bath products."

My thoughts: At first I thought all of the makeup references were going to force me to stop reading. The lipstick name thing is really cute, but Bella describes every person she comes across in terms of what foundation shade they'd wear. That got old. But I'm glad I kept on, as this was a pretty funny and entertaining book.

At first I also thought it was going to be another of those chick lit "Mama mia/faith and begorrah - I come from a huge Italian/Irish family!" things. Tired of those. But Cook twists it by making it an Irish family that wishes it was Italian! All of the kids have very Italian first names to go with their Shaughnessy surname. This is because their much-married father traveled to Italy with his first wife (Bella's mother) and fell in love with it. His attempts at speaking Italian and forcing his family to pretend they are are rather a hoot. And the family's intervention about his Trump hairstyle is worth the price of admission.

Bella comes off as a bit weird and quick-tempered, but in an endearing way. Sean Ryan the entrepreneur is a nice love interest and while I'm not always into the cutesy dog thing, Precious the identity-hidden Chihuahua adds some fun moments. Sean Ryan helps Bella develop a line of personalized beauty kits that, I have to say, I wish I could send away for! I need the help.

The verdict: A fun read and I think I'll be reading her next book, The Wildwater Walking Club.

A great post on the value of libraries

I liked Sassymonkey's post on how much money the library saved her last year that I had to put up a link to it! Click here for a look at what the library can do for you!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Unsung YA Heroes

I'm a bit late, but Kelly is very kindly letting me enter. Basically YA-philes are spreading the word about YA books people might have missed.

Details are here!

I used her LibraryThing model, all of these books are shared with me by less than 500 members.

Love, Cajun Style by Diane Les Becquets
Oooo, this book is steamy! The setting of a Louisiana summer as well as the longing and lust that settle over the town as they seem to fall prey to the same mischief that strikes the characters in the local theatre's production of A Midsummer Night's Dream.

Dramarama by E. Lockhart
I lurve E. Lockhart because she's funny and fabulous and this book has both in spades. Two Midwestern teens (a straight girl and a gay guy) long to get out of their boring Midwestern lives. They get the chance with a whole summer of musical theatre at drama camp. Get your jazz hands ready, people!

My Cup Runneth Over by Cherry Whytock
A slightly younger and much sweeter Georgia Nicolson, Angelica Cookson Potts feels fat and inadequate next to her former model mother. But with the help of her super best friends, she finds that she's really talented in areas like fashion and cooking. I love that her family lives so near to Harrod's that it's basically their 7-11 (I'm envious!) and the book is sprinkled with cute drawings from Angelica's diary. I can also totally relate to those running-over cups at a young age, if you know what I mean.

Scrambled Eggs at Midnight by Brad Barkley and Heather Hepler
My husband and I go to the Minnesota Renaissance Festival almost every year, so I was bound to have a soft spot for this one. Calliope's been following her "wench" mother around to Renaissance Faires for years and hasn't seen her father in ages. Eliot's dad got religion a few years ago and moved him and his mom to a tiny town to set up a Christian fat camp. When these two meet, it's love at first sight, but of course their parents disapprove for different reasons. It's a lovely, poignant, amusing story. My original review of this ended with "Jousters, fireworks, recipes, love, sadness, paddleboats....this book has it all!"

Enthusiasm by Polly Shulman
I'm a sucker for Pride and Prejudice-alikes! Julie's best friend Ashleigh is an Enthusiast. When she gets into something, she's into it. Both girls love Jane Austen and so Julie goes all the way, having them wear vintage gowns to a "ball" at a local boys' school to find themselves some young gentlemen. Witty exchanges, misunderstandings, love triangles, and True Love ensue.

The Minister's Daughter by Julie Hearn
An illegitimate pregnancy brings a Puritan minister's cunning daughter and a merrybegot (born on May Morning, she and her healer grandmother still believe in the old ways and in the fairy folk). Years later the lies come out at the Salem witch trials. It's like an even more dramatic version of The Crucible!

Review: Heart and Soul

Heart and Soul by Maeve Binchy
3.5 stars

Reasons for reading: snagged it out of the booksale; I like Maeve Binchy

From the publisher: "With the warmth, humor, and compassion we have come to expect, Maeve Binchy tells a story of doctors and staff, patients, family, and friends at a heart clinic in a community caught between the old Ireland and the new. Dr. Clara Casey agrees to take on the seemingly thankless task of establishing a clinic with little funding—for a year. With her own plate full—two troublesome grown daughters and a needy ex-husband—she is still able to gather a wonderfully diverse and dedicated staff. And before long she has done the impossible, made the clinic a success and a aprt of the community. Now Clara must decide whether or not to stay."

First line: "Some projects take forever to get off the ground."

My thoughts: Binchy's books all refer back to previous ones, it seems. While you don't have to have read them, I think it helps. I still haven't read Quentins and it keeps coming up and up. And this one has many references to Nights of Rain and Stars and Evening Class, so I was glad to have read both.

Reviews of Binchy always seem to mention things like warmth and coziness and this book has a fair bit of it, with just enough bite from a very mean-spirited old woman and a couple of bitchy 20-something daughters. There are the usual multiple, intersecting stories which all come together in the end, mostly happily. And I was glad to find that I enjoyed most of the characters much more than I did in the previous Binchy book I read, Tara Road. I wish I knew many more people like shy, kind Dr. Declan and Ania, the Polish immigrant willing to be a friend to all and to cheerfully work as many jobs as she can get to help her mother back in Poland, who she believes she has shamed. There's feisty, pretty, but baggage-laden Fiona from Rain and Stars and Nora Dunne, who made Evening Class the wonderful read it was. Clara Casey grows on your after a bit of prickliness. And teenage caterer-wannabe twins Simon and Maud are endearing yet a bit bizarre. There are love affairs, breakups, deaths, journeys to and from Greece, and, unexpectedly, a very strange plot by an unstable woman to trap a priest into marriage, which was rather a highlight.

The verdict: I'm relieved to have enjoyed this book after a rough patch with Tara Road. I can see why she's so enduringly popular and I really must read Quentins.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

10 in '10 Teen Chick Lit Challenge

I'm a bit late with this one, but how could I resist? It's pink, it's my fave type of YA's made for me!

Here's my list, but it's subject to change!

1. The Cupcake Queen by Heather Hepler
2. The Espressologist by Kristina Springer
3. Viola in Reel Life by Adriana Trigiani
4. The Treasure Map of Boys by E. Lockhart
5. The Dark Divine by Bree Despain
6. Don't Judge a Girl by her Cover by Ally Carter
7. Hearts at Stake by Alyxandra Harvey
8. Gamer Girl by Mari Mancusi
9. How Not to be Popular by Jennifer Ziegler
10. Scarlett Fever by Maureen Johnson

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Review: Splendor

Splendor: a Luxe novel by Anna Godbersen
3.75 stars

Reasons for reading: I've really enjoyed the series; Young Adult Challenge

Description: "As spring turns into summer, Elizabeth relishes her new role as a young wife, while her sister, Diana, searches for adventure abroad. But when a surprising clue about their father's death comes to light, the Holland girls wonder at what cost a life of splendor comes.
Carolina Broad, society's newest darling, fans a flame from her past, oblivious to how it might burn her future. Penelope Schoonmaker is finally Manhattan royalty—but when a real prince visits the city, she covets a title that comes with a crown. Her husband, Henry, bravely went to war, only to discover that his father's rule extends well beyond New York's shores and that fighting for love may prove a losing battle. In the dramatic conclusion to the bestselling Luxe series, New York's most dazzling socialites chase dreams, cling to promises, and tempt fate. As society watches what will become of the city's oldest families and newest fortunes, one question remains: Will its stars fade away or will they shine ever brighter?"

First line: "Fifty years ago, every American girl wanted to be a European princess."

My thoughts: I didn't realize this was the last book in the series until I was almost finished. Prior to that I was thinking, "This series is getting to the point where it's gone on too long...." But happily this isn't going to be a series that lingers on past its sell-by date. I found it pretty darn hard to believe that Diana, spunky as she is, had managed to chase Henry around the country and all the way to Cuba, and manage to find (non-prostitutional) work there. So that part didn't grab me. And, of course, all kinds of things get in their way once again. There was some seriously creepy soap-opera-esque stuff with vastly pregnant Elizabeth. And annoying bitch Carolina Broad was a big focus. (I'm a bit harsh on her, she grew on me a bit by the end.) The ending seemed fairly rushed, with happy endings for some, non-endings for others, and not enough of a come-uppence for evil Penelope.

But overall, it was still an enjoyable read. The series was a good (if fluffy) look at how New York society started to include the nouveau riche as well as the grand old names changed and how people started being able to make their own fortunes and change their fates. I'd read another series by Godbersen, though I hope her next series has covers that are just as sumptuous - I've loved those dresses!!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Review: The Missing Ink

The Missing Ink by Karen E. Olson
3.5 stars

Reasons for reading: I wanted to read a book set in Vegas on our trip there

Synopsis: "Brett Kavanaugh is a tattoo artist and owner of an elite tattoo parlor in Las Vegas. When a girl makes an appointment for a tattoo of the name of her fiancé embedded in a heart, Brett takes the job but the girl never shows. The next thing Brett knows, the police are looking for her client, and the name she wanted on the tattoo isn't her fiancé's..."

First line: "I've made grown men cry."

My thoughts: I like Brett as a protagonist much better than I did Annie Seymour in Olson's Sacred Cows. She's still got some edge, but she's more likeable. The tattoo shop setting was very cool, too.

It was really neat to read this book while visiting Vegas over Christmas. One of my favourite lines compared the length of traffic lights on the Strip to James Cameron's Titanic - something we found to be true whether we were walking, in a cab, or driving. And her descriptions of Vegas, such as where things are are accurate, too - for example, while I was in the Venetian, I could imagine her shop, The Painted Lady, in the Grand Canal Shops. And there's other great cheesy Vegas stuff, like all-Elvis karaoke!

The mystery is a pretty good one, lots of twists and turns and bodies turning up. I'm looking forward to the next book in the series.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Review: Zombie Blondes

Zombie Blondes by Brian James
3 stars

Reasons for reading: the cover; Z book for the Four Month Challenge

Description: "From the moment Hannah Sanders arrived in town, she felt there was something wrong. A lot of houses were for sale, and the town seemed infected by an unearthly quiet. And then, on Hannah’s first day of classes, she ran into a group of cheerleaders—the most popular girls in school. The odd thing was that they were nearly identical in appearance: blonde, beautiful, and deathly pale. But Hannah wants desperately to fit in—regardless of what her friend Lukas is telling her: if she doesn’t watch her back, she’s going to be blonde and popular and dead—just like all the other zombies in this town. . . . "

First line: "There aren't any rules to running away from your problems."

My thoughts: This wasn't a bad contribution to the burgeoning YA zombie genre. It definitely reminded me of a teen horror flick - quite a slow buildup, teen angst (Hannah's father constantly moves them from town to town because he can't keep a job, so she longs to have friends and fit in), teen girl in the house alone, missed clues that something is very wrong, and then a gory climax. There's not really an explanation of how Maplecrest turned into a town full of zombies, which would have been welcome, although I suppose it's not strictly necessary. This book is as much about Hannah's life of moving constantly, not fitting in, and her relationship with her father as it is about zombies. I much preferred the lighter-hearted Zombie Queen of Newbery High, but if you're looking for a darker take on them or if you really hate cheerleaders, this is worth a read.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Review: Empire of Ivory

Empire of Ivory (Temeraire, book 4) by Naomi Novik
4.5 stars

Reasons for reading: this series is addictive; second book for the Colourful Reading Challenge

Synopsis: "Tragedy has struck His Majesty’s Aerial Corps, whose magnificent fleet of fighting dragons and their human captains valiantly defend England’s shores against the encroaching armies of Napoleon Bonaparte. An epidemic of unknown origin and no known cure is decimating the noble dragons’ ranks–forcing the hopelessly stricken into quarantine. Now only Temeraire and a pack of newly recruited dragons remain uninfected–and stand as the only means of an airborne defense against France’s ever bolder sorties. Bonaparte’s dragons are already harrowing Britain’s ships at sea. Only one recourse remains: Temeraire and his captain, Will Laurence, must take wing to Africa, whose shores may hold the cure to the mysterious and deadly contagion. On this mission there is no time to waste, and no telling what lies in store beyond the horizon or for those left behind to wait, hope, and hold the line."

My thoughts: Another great book in this series! I usually get bored of a series after the second or third one because it starts to be the same book, but Temeraire is always going to new places and getting into new scrapes. I honestly can't imagine how he and Laurence will get out of them, it's very exciting! :-) In this book, Laurence and Temeraire discover why they were the only ones available to help Prussia against Napoleon in the previous book - all of the dragons in England are ill or dead. they have to take off to Africa, which is even more foreign than China, their previous location. I found it quite interesting to read about Africa during the 18th century, particularly as the slave trade is still flourishing and Laurence feels strongly about abolition.

As always, Novik fits the dragons into her alternate history world seamlessly. I like the way the dragons are treated differently in each country, since I'm sure that would be the case, everyone would adjust differently. They're revered in China, treated as a step above livestock in Britain, and believed to be the reincarnated ancestors of the tribespeople in Africa. And they all have their own personalities. We see more of Iskierka in this book, and the bratty little fire-breather has personality to spare!

The verdict: Another great installment plus the biggest cliffhanger so far in the series!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Review: The Other Queen

The Other Queen by Philippa Gregory
3 stars

Reasons for reading: I've enjoyed her other books; Person's Title book for the What's in a Name? Challenge

From the description: "Biographers often neglect the captive years of Mary Queen of Scots, who trusted Queen Elizabeth's promise of sanctuary when she fled from rebels in Scotland and then found herself imprisoned as the "guest" of George Talbot, Earl of Shrewsbury and his indomitable wife, Bess of Hardwick. The newly married couple welcome the doomed queen into their home, certain that serving as her hosts and jailors will bring them an advantage in the cutthroat world of the Elizabethan court. To their horror, they find that the task will bankrupt them, and as their home becomes the epicenter of intrigue and rebellion against Elizabeth, their loyalty to each other and to their sovereign comes into question. If Mary succeeded in seducing the Earl, or if the great spy master William Cecil linked them to the growing conspiracy to free Mary from her illegal imprisonment, they will all face the headsman."

First line: "Every woman should marry for her own advantage since her husband will represent her, as visible as her front door, for the rest of his life."

My thoughts: This one just didn't have the page-turning appeal of the Boleyn books for me. It was interesting to learn about Mary, Queen of Scots and Bess of Hardwick (whom I hadn't heard of before) and Gregory always does a fine job of portraying the period, her research and love of the subject is obvious. But the book is very repetitive. It's told in alternating short chapters from the perspectives of George, Bess, and Mary, but a lot of it is just repeating that George is honourable, his family has served the crown for generations and he loves Queen Mary; Bess is the Protestant daughter of a poor widow and has had to claw her way to wealth through 4 husbands and Mary's imprisonment is bankrupting her; and Mary is a young, beautiful Catholic queen three times over who must be free. And then there's a lot of to-ing and fro-ing between several dank castles as the Hardwicks are ordered to move Mary to "keep her safe," that is, keep her imprisoned and away from her supporters. There are a couple of big buildups to either the Northern lords or the Spanish saving her, but they fail. The book is probably quite realistic in that way - a lot of waiting in between frenzied moments of activity and panic. But it doesn't make for riveting fiction.

I just turned 35 and it was very depressing to hear 35-year-old Elizabeth being described as old and almost barren!! She comes off badly - vain, skinflinty, cruel, and a victim of her trusted advisor Cecil's paranoia over foreigners and Catholics. Not that Mary looks much better - bankrupting the only person looking out for her, not trustworthy, and as vain as Elizabeth (though with more reason, at least at the beginning of the book). I'm still thinking one day I'd like to read a comprehensive biography of Elizabeth, I do find her quite amazing, and maybe I'll learn more about Mary, too. This book wasn't a bad introduction to her, but I could've used a story with less repetition and more action.

Review: Black Powder War

Black Powder War (Temeraire, book 3) by Naomi Novik

4.25 stars

Reason for reading: love the series!

Description: "After their fateful adventure in China, Capt. Will Laurence of His Majesty’s Aerial Corps and his extraordinary dragon, Temeraire, are waylaid by a mysterious envoy bearing urgent new orders from Britain. Three valuable dragon eggs have been purchased from the Ottoman Empire, and Laurence and Temeraire must detour to Istanbul to escort the precious cargo back to England. Time is of the essence if the eggs are to be borne home before hatching.Yet disaster threatens the mission at every turn–thanks to the diabolical machinations of the Chinese dragon Lien, who blames Temeraire for her master’s death and vows to ally herself with Napoleon and take vengeance. Then, faced with shattering betrayal in an unexpected place, Laurence, Temeraire, and their squad must launch a daring offensive. But what chance do they have against the massed forces of Bonaparte’s implacable army?"

My thoughts: I've read some reviews that call this book in the series pointless and other negative things, and I suppose it's not the best of the bunch, but even less than the best in this series is still a great read! Maybe if I knew more about the Napoleonic Wars I would have enjoyed it that extra quarter of a star? There were some rather long descriptions of the battles and a lot of flying and landing and eating cows. A band of feral dragons that Temeraire manages to semi-rein in both help and hinder Laurence and his crew. And having to protect the dragon eggs (and the fiery little fire-breather that hatches along the way and names herself Iskierka, thank you very much) added extra excitement. This one is maybe a bit of a bridge book, setting us up for the next installment.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Review: Little White Lies

Little White Lies: a novel of love and good intentions by Gemma Townley
3 stars

Reasons for reading: first book for the Colourful Reading Challenge; snapped it up from the library booksale

Description: "What's one little white lie? Okay, so it isn’t that little. It’s kind of a whopper. It’s just that when Natalie Raglan ups and quits her job at a Bath advertising firm, breaks up with her loser-ish boyfriend, and moves–to London! Things don’t quite turn out the way she planned. Having made the brave move to the Big City, the lifelong country mouse finds that living chic is still a long way off. Even Cressida, the girl who used to rent her tiny flat, still gets more phone calls and mail there than Nat does. Come to think of it, Cressida Langdon’s life looks pretty appealing–especially when an invitation to the posh, exclusive Soho House club arrives, addressed to Cressida.

Before she really knows what she’s done, Nat has opened Cressida’s mail . . . and taken up her life. Soon Nat’s dating a gorgeous investment banker named Simon, giving “reiki healing sessions,” wearing wonderful clothes, and partying with the A-list at Soho House. But the best part really is Simon. He’s everything Nat has ever wanted. The problem is he thinks she’s someone else. And as her life and her lies begin to spiral out of control, Nat can’t help but wonder: Will she be exposed as a liar and a fake–or be saved from ruin by simply claiming good intentions. . . "

First lines: "Let me ask you a question. A theoretical one, if you’ll bear with me. Would you ever open someone else’s mail? No? Of course not, I knew that."

My thoughts: This was a good, fluffy read. Definitely typical Brit chick lit, you see the happy ending miles away, but Natalie is likeable and if the lies-upon-lies get a bit tiring after a while, she really does mean well. And I did feel for her, being lonely in the big city where nothing has turned out like she'd hoped. She's not vicious in her lies, she just wants her life to come together and the harder she tries, the worse it gets. And really, who hasn't imagined having a more glamorous life?

There are all the usual stock chick lit elements - the bitch boss, the jerk ex-boyfriend, the fashion references, the misunderstandings that almost come between the heroine and her would-be beloved, and, of course, the utterly happy ending. But it's a cute story with some funny scenes (the way Natalie gets out of having to do a reiki session is a hoot) and a quick read, so if you're in the mood for something light, this could be the one for you.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Review: Full of Grace

Full of Grace by Dorothea Benton Frank
2.5 stars

Reasons for reading: I've enjoyed her other books; snagged it out of the book sale at the library; "Read a book and write a review" for the Four Month Challenge

From the publisher: "Hilton Head, South Carolina. Retirement heaven — at least it's supposed to be, but for Big Al and Connie, the move from New Jersey to this southern paradise has been fraught with just a few complications. Especially for their daughter, Grace...Her family insists on Maria Graziella... That might have been okay in New Jersey but now it's just plain silly and Grace at thirty-one is, horror of horrors, still unmarried. No wonder her family drives her crazy. Well, that and the fact that she's living with the man she would marry if they both weren't so commitment phobic. Michael is a doctor and a scientist and Grace has a good idea that he's also an atheist. Over the years, Grace has become a bit ambivalent about her faith but her family is as old-fashioned Italian as they get. The stage is set for a major showdown that might just change Grace's outlook on life, family, and the new South."

First line: "Until I met Grace Russo, I did not know that my Lacoste shirts did not have to be dry-cleaned."

My thoughts: I wanted to like this more than I did. I was actually thinking about not finishing it, but I needed something to read in the tub. I think it might resonate more with a person who had grown up in a Catholic family - religion plays a huge role in the story. Grace's family is very devout, so much so that they refuse to acknowledge her boyfriend, Michael, because they're living in sin and because he does stem-cell research. They don't manage to get their supposedly Christian selves together until he loses his mother and is facing a health crisis. And Grace and Michael's love for each other is lovely and presented well, but I don't really get their refusal to get married. Her family is by turns very annoying, occasionally funny, and fairly loving, though her father and grandmother's treatment of her mother is dreadful and only explained (rather lamely, I thought) at the end. Grace's religiously zealous, constantly knitting, bossy grandmother Nonna is good for some comic relief, but she's very over-the-top and her treatment of her daughter is awful.

As always, Frank does a good job of portraying South Carolina, particularly Charleston in this case, especially it's culinary scene. It didn't give me much of a feel for Hilton Head, where I haven't been. And Grace has an awesome job, basically a travel agent for rich people seeking exciting vacations, so that was fun and enviable to read about. But I hate stories about cancer and I'm ambivalent enough myself about religion to really be interested in reading about it. And...well, it requires some suspension of disbelief, near the end, in my opinion, although if I had the faith I'm suggesting the recommended audience have, maybe it wouldn't.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Colourful Reading Challenge

Colourful Reading Challenge

Hosted by Rebecca. Click the image for all the details, but basically it's nine books with nine colours in the titles.

Here's my list:
1. Empire of Ivory by Naomi Novik
2. The Key to the Golden Firebird by Maureen Johnson

Books read in 2009

I read 104 books in 2009. Not as many as last year's 120, but not too shabby. Here they are, mainly for my reference.

Adult Books

The Winter Rose

Storm Front

Out Stealing Horses


Murder With Puffins

The Case of the Missing Books

The Sealed Letter

Dishing With the Kitchen Virgin

Sugar Daddy

By Bread Alone

Belong to Me

The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox

Queen of the Road

Mystic River

Certain Girls

Glitter Baby

17. Spa Wars

Grounds for Murder

19. The Boleyn Inheritance

20. The Lust Lizard of Melancholy Cove

Last Night at the Lobster

22. Fool Moon

23. Grave Peril

24. Summer Knight

The House at Riverton

26. The Secret Lives of Saints

The Almost Archer Sisters

Tara Road

Three Can Keep a Secret

The Help

31. Very Valentine

The Chili Queen

Secret Keepers

Casino Royale

Sundays at Tiffany's

Dave Barry's Book of Bad Songs

The Beach House

The Good Fairies of New York

39. His Majesty's Dragon

40. Love and Other Natural Disasters

41. Secret Lives of the Kudzu Debutantes

The Fixer Upper

Sacred Cows

44. Throne of Jade

Triple Play

46. Rogue Angel: Destiny

A Short History of Women

48. California Demon

And Then There Were None

50. This Charming Man

Vodka Neat

Love Among the Chickens

53. Such a Pretty Fat

Homer & Langley

The Crime Writer

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies

57. The Lies of Locke Lamora

Crowning Glory of Calla Lily Ponder

59. Addled

Beautiful People

61. The Missing Ink by Karen E. Olson

62. High Stakes by Erin McCarthy

Children's and Young Adult Books

Emily of New Moon

2. Black Beauty

3. The Book of Three

4. The Hoboken Chicken Emergency

5. Beauty

6. The Last Dragon

7. Pants on Fire

8. Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Envy: a Luxe novel

10. Reading the Bones

11. How to Ditch Your Fairy

Death by Bikini

13. Among the Hidden


15. How I Live Now

16. Pretties

17. Slam

18. School Spirit

The Maze of Bones

20. The City of Ember

21. Masquerade: a Blue Bloods novel

22. The People of Sparks

Jars of Glass

24. A Wrinkle in Time

25. Millions

26. The Graveyard Book

27. Bewitching Season

28. The Teashop Girls

Confessions of Triple Shot Betty

30. Zombie Queen of Newbury High

31. Peace, Love, and Baby Ducks

32. The Penderwicks on Gardam Street

33. Graceling

34. Are These My Basoomas...

Suck It Up

Along for the Ride

37. Rilla of Ingleside

38. City of Bones

39. Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane

40. Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac

41. The Dead and the Gone

42. Paper Towns