book · review

A Million Worlds With You

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A Million Worlds with You (Firebird)
Author: Claudia Gray
Series: Firebird #3 end
Publisher: HarperTeen
Genre: sci-fi, teen, multiverse
ISBN-13: 978-0062279026

Firebird ending

Marguerite faces a grim future, the Universe where she is evil has plans end other Universes. I cannot believe that this is the end, it seemed like yesterday that I have started reading A Thousand Pieces of You. Now I am saying good bye, time sure flies. Special thanks to my library for keeping all three books, I actually ordered this one in via them.

After finding out the ‘dastardly’ plans of Evil Mom and Dad, and realizing how far the Evil Marguerite is willing to go to please her parents, our heroine dashes off to prevent more disasters. It seemed hopeless, because Evil had a head start, and was determined to kill all of her, just out of spite.

Not only Marguerite had to stop her evil-self from wrecking havoc, she had to find a way to stop the madness. I will admit that the story is well crafted from the beginning. But I had hoped for an ending that did not feel rushed, it did by the way. Jumping from one Universe to another, it was fun seeing how different one Universe differs to another, purely by decision.

That is what this story is based upon, the multiverse. The belief that each major decision (not what you had for lunch) branches out into a different verse. Such as your mom and dad decided to get married, or if cockroaches decided to rule the world. I digress, but Firebird series is wonderfully unique in that way, utilizing a scientific theory to craft this beautiful romance story.

Litte Gripe

While I love how it ends, it was the process that made me a little … annoyed. In the end of everything, all the pain that Evil inflicted on different universes’ Marguerite, her ending is a little anticlimactic. Yes, I know that it is not the worse possible scenario, and I do feel sorry for her. But Evil is the ultimate villain, you can’t get any worse than making all the other ‘yous’ commit suicide. If she could fall off a cliff, that is ideal…

As the pages move nearer toward the end, the story rushes more and more. The focus becomes to the relationship between Marguerite and Paul, which is fine except there is a love triangle somewhere?

Verdict

I cannot complain, nor that I will. A Million Worlds With You is a romantic book in a teenage kind of way, how love can trump a lot of things. In the end, I wish that it wasn’t such an easy way out. Some struggling depicts growth, and having your growth taken away from your back is cheating.

Have you read it, what d0 you think?

My Kids aren’t happy that their mom reads too much

 

Our mommy reads to much! #bookstagram #babieswithbooks

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book · review

Diadem of Death Review

Image from Netgalley

Diadem of Death
Author: B. R. Myers
Series: The Nefertari Hughes Mystery Series #2
Genre: mystery, history, YA
Publisher: Blue Moon Publishers
Publish Date: 25 April 2017
ISBN: 9781988279503

Diadem of Death is like a cool tomb raider game

Except it is not Tomb Raider at all, Nefertari accompanies her father to the place that took her mother. Leaving behind her boyfriend Zach, their relationship up in the air due to her commitment and his. Fortunately, she has her friends with her in this trip. In continuance from the first book : Asp of Ascension, Terry and her dad travels to Egypt in search of Cleopatra’s tomb.

But what awaits them was more than a promise to complete her mother’s work. A mishap in the airport was a stroke of luck, particularly when the plane that they were supposed to be on sunk into the bottom of the ocean. Terry, her dad and friends Maude and Finn (or Fitz? I can’t remember his name).

Soon, their adventures lead to more curses being released and more question than answers. As the guardian of the Asp, Terry has an affinity to all things Cleopatra. The story twists and turns, and somehow makes you question who is her real ally, aside from the pair of sidekicks.

Verdict

The ending was quite romantic, for me. You can guess who the villain is, the chase is fun though. For a YA mystery, this is a good story. Diadem of Death carries more puzzle solving than mystery. I am glad that Terry did not venture into a triangular relationship, very mature. It has excitement, intrigue and a lot of running around.

Diadem of Death features a lot of dying, a few cool puzzles and a mystery that surrounds Cleopatra's… Click To Tweet

Since no one really found where Cleopatra and Mark Anthony was buried, so this was quite a good theory and a good place to end a chase. How do you wear a diadem? I am not sure, but here is one I found while perusing Amazon (yes affiliated). Ravenclaw’s Diadem, ain’t it pretty?

 

Diadem of Ravenclaw

book · interview

Interview & Giveaway : From Ant to Eagle Author Interview

From Ant to Eagle

Review here

Playing Ten Questions with Alex Lyttle.

Alex is the author of From Ant to Eagle, he is also a pediatrician and father of three children. How he manages to fit it all in twenty four hours I will never know, unless he stole Hermione’s time turner from Hogwarts …

If you do not want to read the review, just know that From Ant to Eagle is a tear- jerking book that focuses on sibling love.

1. What made you decide to write this book in the point of view of a sibling?

Having grown up with a younger brother that I tormented (yes, I’m the terrible older brother that invented the levels system), I wanted to write a story that showed the dynamic love-hate relationship of brothers. I also wanted to write from the perspective of a child whose sibling was diagnosed with cancer having seen firsthand how these children can be lost in the shuffle of treatment. I wanted to remind people that cancer (and other illnesses) affect everyone and that it is important to be mindful that no one is overlooked.

2. Did you run into problems while writing?

Of course! I run into problems with everything. I am a pediatrician who can’t get his 1-year-old to sleep through the night, and a husband who can’t remember his anniversary. There was no chance I was going to write a whole novel without any hitches. At first, my biggest problem was that I couldn’t write. Honestly, I am not a gifted writer by any means. But I worked at it and I got better – at least I think I did. I also had problems with the plot. I received feedback that it was “too sad” and should be changed. I rewrote it but ended up changing it back. If it is too sad for some readers, I apologize, but the truth is children suffer like Sammy and Cal every day. Opening people’s eyes to these struggles may help them empathize.

(PS, for all it’s worth, I don’t remember my anniversary either)

3. You said that From Ant to Eagle was a cathartic experience, did it help you?

Yes and no. I am happy I wrote the story so that others can read it and have insight into what some children are going through. Has it helped me feel less sad about my experiences working on the oncology wards? No. But in truth, I hope it never does.

4. How do you find time to write while working?

Caffeine and neglectful parenting. No, I’m joking. I don’t drink caffeine (not because I think it’s bad for me but because it does terrible things to my stomach) and I am a very hands-on parent. I find time to write because I love it. There’s no secret beyond that. If I have a free evening or a few hours between patients, I write. I rarely watch TV and when I do I feel anxious that I am not writing. That’s all there is to it.

5. Any hopes for another book?

Hopes for another book? Yes. Any time soon? Unlikely. I thought about writing a novel where a boy goes to a school called Horsewarts and learns magic, but it turns out that is similar to someone else’s book. And since I’m not allowed to plagiarize the entire Harry Potter series, I have decided to write a middle grade book about a girl who learns she is destined to save the entire planet. I’ve written the first draft but it likely won’t be publisher-ready for another year or two. I have also begun writing a novel that is similar to From Ant To Eagle (ie. medically related) but will likely take me even longer to finish.

6. Did you base the characters on a particular patient? Or did you draw from many?

Elements of the characters are based on real people but no one character is drawn directly from a single person. Characteristics were taken from friends, family members, myself and yes, patients, but there is no character that is directly taken from one person. Of all the characters, Oliver was most closely based on a single patient, however, even he has fictional elements.

7. Why that particular type of cancer? Was it because it was common?

I chose AML (Acute Myeloid Leukemia) because it is a common cancer yet not as favorable of a prognosis as ALL (Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia). In truth, the disease was not very relevant. I just began writing and that was the diagnosis I chose. What was important to me was showing how the sibling was affected and the love between brothers. There are hundreds of diseases that Sammy could have been diagnosed with and the story would not have changed.

8. Was the ending entirely fictional, or was there some truth in it?

The story is completely fictional. While I had the unfortunate experience of seeing children who had lost a brother or sister, Sammy and Cal were not based on one particular patient and the story is therefore exactly that, a story. Though I can say for certain, this story and ones very similar have played out hundreds of times around the world and in that respect, it is the truth.

9. How long did it take you to complete the book?

Seven years and I wasn’t in Tibet (lame joke alert!). It took this long for a number of reasons: One, I was learning to write, two, I was still in my medical training and three, my children have very lengthy bedtimes. “One more book Daddy?” …. fine…

10. If this was a movie, any playlist or actors you want to appear in your adaptation?

That’s a tough question because I don’t watch a lot of TV. Jacob Tremblay would be a good fit for Cal since he’s the right age, Canadian and did a fantastic job with Room. At least he’d have the accent correct, eh? As for the others, I can’t think of anyone specific and besides, I’d like them to use unknown actors and give them the chance to create a name for themselves. I like rooting for the underdogs. Hence, being a Blue Jays fan.

Giveaway

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book · review

From Ant to Eagle : Book Review

From Ant to EagleAuthor: Alex Lyttle
Publisher: Central Avenue Publishing
Genre: Young adult, death and dying
ISBN-13: 978-1771681117

I received the ARC in exchange for a fair review. Special thanks to the author

From Ant To Eagle caught my eye with this

My name is Calvin Sinclair, I’m eleven years old and I have a confession… I killed my brother.

A million questions, only one way to find out. I admit that I was curious, but wouldn’t you be too? I was more than happy to say yes, because that mean answers. The cover looks cute too, it shows a childlike quality to it. The story might not be directly aimed at young adults, but I feel that some older kids might be able to relate.

Written as first person narrative, we see things through the eyes of Calvin Sinclair. Eleven years old, moved from city to a small town for ‘the air’. Calvin’s only friend was his six-year-old brother Sammy, who worships the older sibling. Their relationship was close, and that is where the title comes from. From Ant to Eagle is a series of ranks that Calvin made up, so he could get Sammy to do whatever he wants.

Eager to rank Eagle like his older brother, Sammy would obey orders. But when Calvin found a new friend: Aleta Alvarado, Sammy struggles to find footing in this new dynamic. It was not long after Calvin side lined his brother that things began to change.

The story is touching, even though the plot is straightforward. Seeing through the eyes of an eleven year old is not a complicated endeavor, but his pain and fears might make you cry. Calvin’s world changes with a word, and soon he realizes that he is not the only person who has to adjust to change.

From Ant to Eagle is a story about the pain of a brother, a reminder to treasure our loved ones always,… Click To Tweet

Verdict

Rarely I read books that touches a child’s pain. We often read about adults dealing with pain and loss, but not as often in point of view as kids. After reading the author’s profile, I appreciate this book even more. It would have been painful to witness all the struggles and still  have to experience loss. From Ant to Eagle is a book you should share with children, because it is a reminder not to do things that we regret. Actions and words cannot be undone, and the only thing left will be regret.

book · review

Asp of Ascension Book Review

Asp of Ascension
Author: B. R. Myers
Series: A Nerfertari Hughes Mystery 1
Genre: Mystery, young adult
Publisher: Fierce Ink Books
ISBN-13: 978-1927746622

Asp of Ascension may be a deadly curse

The cover reminds me of Nancy Drew back when I was a kid, even though it is not the prettiest cover, it does bring back the good times. Let’s be honest, this is not the worst cover that I have ever seen, but I will confess it is the cover and title that did me in.

Unlike Nancy Drew, Nefertari “Terry” Hughes has a confidence issue, she had experienced a devastating accident that killed her mother and left her disabled. Terry was keen to survive high school with her three mantras, but trouble seems to find her quite frequently.

She was put in High School as her father worked in the museum, getting ready for the unveiling of a sarcophagus that her mother died looking for it. Curses surround the artifact, and soon her father was found unconscious. It became obvious that Terry has to find the artifact that had went missing a long time ago. The Asp of Ascension was stolen, but no one seem to know how it got out. The mystery is added with her father’s sudden ailment, and Terry was encouraged to find it.

Together with her friends, will Terry be able to find out what happened to Cleopatra’s asp? And will she survive high school like she was so keen to? For those who love a good history lesson, this one focuses on Cleopatra’s life as a Queen and a woman of power. To make things interesting, this story has some paranormal theme to it, making it more interesting and cementing Terry’s story as a series.

Verdict

Asp of Ascension is a YA mystery, following a formula that works well throughout the ages Click To Tweet

Asp of Ascension uses Egyptian and Roman history, Nefertari is obviously the correct candidate for the story. She is the daughter of two archaeologists, hence has good background knowledge about the theme. I admire her observation skills, and Terry’s ability to think on her feet.

This is a great series for Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys fan, gosh I cannot remember the last time I read the series!