MADreads

A review of Darth Vader and Son by Jeffrey Brown

Oh, this book is cute and covers a lot of territory. It's a Star Wars book, it's a parenting book, it's a parody and it's a graphic novel. What if Darth Vader was a "normal" dad and spent his time making scrambled eggs and bacon for a four-year-old Luke Skywalker? Why, Luke would refuse to eat them and Dad Darth would pour him a bowl of C-3POs cereal instead!  This little book puts a twist on intergalactic parenting (albeit with a kinder, gentler Dark Lord than we are used to) and how it ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
June 22, 2012 | 0 comments
Biography Suggestions Though much is mentioned about beach reads or guilty pleasures for summer reading, a lot of readers like to learn even as they relax. If you're one of those people and you enjoy biographies, you should take a look at Booklist's Top 10 BiographiesBarack Obama: The Story by David ...read more

Reviewed by Kathy K. - Central on
June 20, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of The Girl in the Park by Mariah Fredericks

The shy girl who secretly has a beautiful singing voice isn't that unusual in kids/teen literature. In fact I just read another such book, Zip by Ellie Rollins (very good btw - though not out yet). It's a trope I don't mind, but what I appreciated in Ms. Fredericks mystery is that her protagonist, Rain, has good reason to feel insecure. Rain was born with a cleft palate and though her physical appearance has long since been changed and speech therapy has helped, Rain has learned the ...read more

Reviewed by Jane J on
June 19, 2012 | 0 comments
Avengers Movie Poster
Graphic Reading Suggestions This is a great time to be a comic book geek. Each summer, there are more and more movies that revolve around characters that began their fictional lives in the 'funny books'. With graphic novels now becoming much more popular with people of all ages (both geeks and non-geeks), now is a great time to pick one up and try it out!   I have listed ten graphic novels that have inspired, at least in part, an adaptation for either television or the movie screen. In addition, I have also given a ...read more

Reviewed by Kris - Pinney on
June 18, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of Drawing from Memory by Allen Say

"Artists are lazy and scruffy people--they are not respectable," says young Allen's father. Well, father didn't necessarily know best; Allen Say grew up to win the prestigious Caldecott medal for his book, Grandfather's Journey, and is now the beloved author and illustrator of many books including Tea with ...read more

Reviewed by Abby on
June 15, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of Becoming Queen Victoria: The Tragic Death of Princess Charlotte and the Unexpected Rise of Britain’s Greatest Monarch by Kate Williams

Okay, so I’m something of a royal watcher. The recent crop of royals are all very entertaining and such (Princess Kate is a gift from God as far as fashion editors are concerned), but for the really interesting stuff, I’ve recently discovered that the Regency period—best known to avid readers as the background to Jane Austen’s novels—is something of a golden era for royal bad behavior. The offspring of George III, the long-reigning and increasingly mad king, produced an astonishing fifty-six ...read more

Reviewed by Katie H. on
June 14, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of Bringing up Bébé: One American Mother Discovers the Wisdom of French Parenting by Pamela Druckerman

I was very gung-ho on reading parenting books before I actually became a parent. I enjoyed reading them and gathering tips and ideas for how I would one day raise my own children. Now that I am actually responsible for guiding a real, live, human being into becoming a happy, healthy and productive member of society, the parenting books have gone the way of my completely unused birth plan. You can dream and think and plan, but in reality, life may go in a different direction and you gotta roll ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
June 12, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of The Vanishers by Heidi Julavits

If you're at all interested in vampire history, I highly recommend the History Channel special Vampire SecretsBesides being very informative, the "historical" reenactments are hilarious, especially the ones about Countess Elizabeth Bathory. The part of the program that really stands out to me, though, is a section about psychic vampires. As the History Channel tells us, there are people out there who ...read more

Reviewed by Kylee on
June 11, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of Jefferson's Sons by Kimberly Bradley

Kimberly Bradley, along with almost everyone else who has researched the topic, believe that Thomas Jefferson, former president of the United States and the author of the Declaration of Independence, fathered seven children with one of his slaves, Sally Hemings, after his wife Martha past away. The names, ages, and the work that the children did are historically documented, but their feelings and conversations are not. With painstaking detail, Bradley writes the story of what it might have ...read more

Reviewed by Lesley K on
June 8, 2012 | 0 comments
A review of Below Stairs: The Classic Kitchen Maid’s Memoir That Inspired Upstairs, Downstairs and Downton Abbey by Margaret Powell

If you are one of the many Americans in thrall to the recent PBS miniseries/soap opera “Downton Abbey” (and judging by the hold list, there are a lot of you), then you owe it to yourself to add Margaret Powell to the list of must-read authors. Powell’s memoir Below Stairs, recounting her experience as a kitchen maid in 1920s London, was, if the blurbs from Julian Fellows and somewhat absurd subtitle assert, the basis for all the lovely dirt on the lives of the many serving the ...read more

Reviewed by Katie H. on
June 7, 2012 | 0 comments
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