MADreads

A review of Vicious by Victoria Schwab

I don't know about you, but when a book begins with a scene involving an ex-con digging up a grave, it draws me in pretty quickly. In fact, everything about Vicious, the first adult novel by Victoria Schwab (I'm a big fan of two of her teen books, The Archived and The Unbound, and I can't wait for the third book in the trilogy!) ...read more

Reviewed by Kylee on
January 29, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Prune by Gabrielle Hamilton

This is a stunning variation on a cook's memoir and excellent companion to Blood, Bones, and Butter written by the same author. The reader is offered 567 pages of recipes and notes from author, chef and owner of the restaurant Prune to her staff. The photographs are exquisite and the book layout mimics a staff notebook (Note to Gabrielle Hamilton: Is this the Prune staff ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
January 28, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Siege Winter by Arianna Franklin

I couldn’t have been more excited when I learned there was a new book coming out by Ariana Franklin. I had been in mourning since hearing of Diana Norman’s death in 2011, as I had so loved her historical mystery series written under her pen name featuring the 12th century medical examiner Adelia Aguilar that began with Mistress of the Art of Death. There had been some rumors of a manuscript but as time passed with no further news I moved on. So, of course when I spotted her name ...read more

Reviewed by Liz - Alicia Ashman on
January 27, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Going Places by Peter Reynolds

Each kid in class competes in the annual Going Places contest. Rafael is so excited that when the teacher asks who’d like to get their go-cart kit, he’s the first to raise his hand. But she tells the rest of his jealous classmates not to worry, she’s got enough kits for everyone in class… and they are all exactly the same. As soon as he can, Rafael reads the detailed instructions and starts putting together his go-cart. Maya, his classmate and next-door neighbor, hasn’t even started working on ...read more

Reviewed by Tina - Central on
January 23, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Biography by Neil Patrick Harris

Who doesn’t love Neil Patrick Harris? Okay, those who raised their hands, go sit in the corner and think about what you’ve done wrong in life. For the rest of you, boy, do I have a treat for you… It’s Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Autobiography!! Not your ordinary, everyday autobiography -- which, I have to say, is not my normal thing. Someone talking about ...read more

Reviewed by Tina - Central on
January 22, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver

Prodigal Summer isn’t Kingsolver’s latest, but I was interested in a summer read as a vacation from a cold Wisconsin winter, and it really worked. For anyone who’s already a Kingsolver fan, this book follows her usual welcome pattern with compelling narrative intertwined so expertly with political and environmental commentary that it’s difficult to tease the two apart. In Prodigal Summer we meet a solitary mountain-top park ranger with dueling passions that threaten her ...read more

Reviewed by Carra on
January 21, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion & the Fall of Imperial Russia by Candace Fleming

Even though Tsar Nicholas II of Russia abdicated the throne, he and his family, along with their maid and family dog were executed in July of 1918 after living under house arrest for an extended period of time.  Fleming details the events that led up to that horrible day.  The excesses of the royal family and the great poverty endured by millions of Russian citizens brought about a revolution and unfortunately the Romanov family paid the price.   Fleming gives a very ...read more

Reviewed by Lesley K on
January 16, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Screwdrivered by Alice Clayton

Viv Franklin hardly knows what to think when she receives word that her reclusive aunt has left her with a Victorian mansion high on the cliffs above the Pacific. A successful software designer, Viv has happily settled into a life with her chrome-and-black-leather Philadelphia apartment, her overactive but loving family and above all, her obsession with bodice ripper romances. Nonetheless, the house in Mendocino has its charms—even if the stately Victorian she remembers, complete with stables ...read more

Reviewed by Katie H. on
January 13, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Tomboy: A Graphic Memoir by Liz Prince

Liz Prince was a tomboy when she was a kid and it was not easy for her. Boys and girls alternately picked on her or ostracized her. Adults didn't know what to make of her and there were a lot of rules that made things tough for her, like a school requirement that boys wear shirts and ties and girls wear dresses on certain school days.  This autobiographical graphic novel shares her story. It's a really important one. But it got me thinking about tomboys. I am wondering if today's world is ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
January 12, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Hooray For Hat by Brian Won

When Elephant wakes up on the wrong side of the bed one morning, he is in no mood to hear his doorbell ring.  But after stomping down the stairs, he is surprised by a beribboned box on his doorstep.  Inside he discovers a tower of hats.  “HOORAY FOR HAT!”  Then Elephant goes off to show his friends who each have their own case of the grumps, and who each cheer for the hat Elephant offers them.  With minimal text and deceptively simple yet fully expressive illustrations ...read more

Reviewed by Karen on
January 9, 2015 | 0 comments
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