Safe Dog Stories I’m a sucker for dogs. I love the memories of my first dog that I lost to cancer in the spring of 2013. I love our hound mix who barks way too much. I love our new dog even as she wraps her paws around my shoulders and smears her tongue all over my face and neck for “hugs and kisses.”  But whenever I read a dog book, I know I have to brace myself for the inevitable ending of the book in which the wonderful dog I have gotten to know on paper dies. It’s easy to come up with a list of dog more

Reviewed by Karen on
March 10, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of In Real Life by Cory Doctorow

This is a sensitive graphic novel about the implications of online economics specifically related to gaming. Many of the massively-multiplayer online role playing games (MMORPGs) like World of Warcraft and Minecraft incorporate resource mining. This can be for anything from gems to tools to people. The main character of this book, Anda, plays a game called Coarsegold Online and discovers that one of her gamer friends is illegally mining gold. This changes the way Anda plays and her overall more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
March 9, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Sparky! by Jenny Offill

A bird? A bunny? A trained seal? A young girl wants the perfect pet . . . however, her mother says no to all of these ideas. In fact, she says no to any pet that needs to be “walked or bathed or fed”. What’s a girl to do? Do research, find a pet that fits those criteria, and mail order one – of course! In Sparky! by Jenny Offill (Schwartz & Wade Books, 2014) the mail ordered pet turns out to be a sloth. A hang-from-the-tree, do-not-much-of-anything, except-if-it’s-really-really-slowly, kind more

Reviewed by Tracy on
March 6, 2015 | 0 comments
Domestic Thrillers Gone Girl was a huge success, both as a book and a movie, and that success means one thing. It means that publishers have become determined to find that next breakout hit. And that push has spawned a sub-genre. Let's call them Domestic Thrillers. The underlying theme to the genre is the knowledge that everyone has secrets (big and small) and that sometimes what you don't know about the person who is closest to you might get you killed. A book that's been getting a lot of buzz more

Reviewed by Jane J on
March 5, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Sea Creatures by Susanna Daniel

Sea Creatures is a story of escape, but from what, we’re not sure at first. It is clear that there are demons lurking in the life of Georgia and her recent move to a houseboat in Miami with her husband and son. That her husband is a chronic parasomniac and her toddler son an unexplained mute are the first clues. With recurring imagery from the sea and its mysterious denizens, we dive deeper, alongside Georgia to shed light on long-buried darkness, and an uncharted route back to more

Reviewed by Carra on
March 4, 2015 | 0 comments
New Mysteries For a number of years now I'm been sharing a list of mysteries, both new characters and old. Here is my spring 2015 list. (I've already got a few titles for my summer list.) I have read the first one on the list (see my review) and am looking forward to reading rest on the list. Which character are looking forward to reconnecting with? Are there any new mysteries that you would recommend? more

Reviewed by Kathy K. - Central on
March 3, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Pioneer Girl: The Annotated Autobiography of Laura Ingalls Wilder edited by Pamela Smith Hill

It is not every day that a beloved author, dead for sixty years, hits the bestseller list with an entirely new memoir. Yet that is the case with Laura Ingalls Wilder, whose long-unpublished work Pioneer Girl gets its full due in a brand new edition curated by Wilder scholar Pamela Smith Hill. Wilder’s Little House books, based on her family’s pioneering experiences in Wisconsin, Kansas, Minnesota and South Dakota, became central in children’s literature canon, inspired a hit more

Reviewed by Katie H. on
March 2, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of The Scandalous Sisterhood of Prickwillow Place by Julie Berry

What are seven young ladies to do when the headmistress and her brother abruptly falls over dead during dinner? They don't want to go back to their homes and there may be a killer amongst them. The solution: bury the corpses in the garden and dress up one of the students as their headmistress. The mystery thickens as the young ladies, each with her own unique characteristic,  tries to keep up this farce and deal with meddling neighbors, a lovestruck admiral, long-lost relatives, and more

Reviewed by Jody on
February 27, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen

The reader is transported to Bascom, North Carolina, nine years after we left the Waverley sisters and their magical gifts in Sarah Addison Allen's Garden Spells.  Claire Waverley has left her successful catering business behind to start Waverley's Candies and has married Tyler, the artist from next door. They are parents to nine-year-old Mariah and it's yet to be determined if Mariah has a "Waverley gift." Wild more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
February 26, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Open Mic: Riffs on Life Between Cultures in Ten Voices by Mitali Perkins

Reviewed by Ali Khan of The Simpson Street Free Press When confronting problems regarding race and ethnicity, many attempt to challenge stereotypes with protests, heated discussions, and even aggression. While these options may be effective, Open Mic: Riffs on Life Between Cultures in Ten Voices, edited by Mitali Perkins, uses a different tactic against racial prejudices—humor.Open Mic is not the average teen novel. Rather than share the perspective of just one author, it more

Reviewed by Jesse on
February 24, 2015 | 1 comment
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