Category Archives: Book Reviews

What Am I Reading? Allegedly by Tiffany D. Jackson

 

Allegedly by Tiffany D. Jackson
Hardcover, 387 pages
Published January 24th 2017 by Katherine Tegen Books

allegedly

When she was nine years old Mary B. Addison killed a baby. Allegedly. The infant died while in the care of Mary’s mother. Mary never said she killed, but  the media filled in all the blanks. Mary spent six years in “baby jail” and at the age of sixteen moved into a group home. Here she is abused and tormented by the other residents and the adults turn a blind eye. Her only solace is Ted. When Mary gets pregnant she realizes that in order to protect her new and growing family she has to set the record straight. The odds are stacked against her, but she is smart and determined. Hopefully that will be enough.

This debut novel is so heartbreaking. I just started listening to the audiobook today and am about half way finished. I will definitely be watching for more books by Tiffany Jackson!

Happy Reading

~Megan

 

 

 

Mondays with Megan-The Force Awakens Soon!

Is everyone refreshed after a long weekend? I worked Friday and Sunday, but I still had a fantastic weekend. Thanksgiving was spent in Columbus with a small gathering of family. We listened to Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire on the drive there and back. We also took a little field trip to The Gates of Hell. It super creepy! The pic on the right is me, my nephew and my cousin. That is pretty much as far as we got into the dark, echoing tunnel.

Saturday was spent lounging around reading and continuing my Star Wars marathon.

This was my first time seeing Episodes II and III and I was pleasantly surprised by how much I like them. My 10 year old nephew LOVED them! Hopefully we will squeeze Episodes IV-VI before the new movie comes out.

mondays

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Teach Mentor Texts.

Finished: 

  • The Fate of Ten by Pittacus Lore-♥♥♥♥♥. The epic alien invasion begins…and ends on a giant cliffhanger, as usual.
  • This is Your Life, Harriet Chance by Jonathan Evison-♥♥♥♥
  • Dr. Mütter’s Marvels by Cristin O’Keefe Apotwicz-♥♥♥♥. I seem to gravitate towards strange or gruesome nonfiction and this one certainly fits the bill. Dr. Mütter was a pioneering American surgeon who revolutionized the science of surgery. Fans of the show The Knick will want to check this one out! Also, I now have to add The Mütter Museum in Philadelphia to my list of weird places to visit!
  • Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris-♥♥♥♥. I first read this collection of stories years ago, so I was delighted to discover the edition I selected to listen to had six new stories! Santaland Diaries is just as funny as I remember and I have found a new favorite in 6 to 8 Black Men, a story about Christmas traditions in Holland. For the reader who dislikes the schmaltzy Christmas stories. These are sardonic and hilarious.
  • Winter by Marissa Meyer-♥♥♥♥♥. The Lunar Chronicles has come to an end. WHY?!? After 800+ pages, I am still not ready for it to be over. A perfect ending to a favorite series.

Current Audio:

Currently Reading:

Currently Obsessed With:

jessica

Happy Reading!

~Megan

 

Mondays with Megan-Mockingjay, Part 2-11/23/15

Happy Monday! I had a weekend full of films and fun. On Saturday my brother and nephew came over and we watched Star Wars Episode 1: Phantom Menace. We are working our way through the series to prepare for the new release in December. Despite having seen Episodes 4-6 many times, I have never seen 1-3. Yesterday I saw Mockingjay Part 2 with my sister and her boyfriend’s thirteen-year-old daughter. I really love Jennifer Lawrence as Katniss and very much enjoyed the final movie. The thirteen-year-old also liked it, but could not get over the fact that a stranger would give their baby to Katniss. So of course I had to do some research! The babies at the end of the movie are Jennifer Lawrence’s nephews. Seeing the film series end kind of made me want to reread the books. We’ll see!

mondays

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is brought to you by Teach Mentor Texts.

Finished: In the two weeks since I last wrote a Monday post I have accomplished so little that I can actually easily include all of my finished books here.

bizaar wytches straw king career of evil azkaban string diaries

  • Bazaar of Bad Dreams by Stephen King-♥♥♥♥. This collection of short stories features both brand new and previously published works. As with most collections of stories some shine and some are merely fine. The real treat here is that the author introduces each story and explains how or why he came to write it.
  • Wytches by Scott Snyder-♥♥♥♥. You thought you knew everything about witches? Forget what Disney has to say, these crones are terrifying! The evil lurks just under the surface and watches through the trees. This was a fantastic opening volume and the art work is simply stunning. Over and over I marveled at how intriguing and gorgeous the hideous images were.
  • The Straw King (Dorothy Must Die #0.5) by Danielle Page-♥♥♥♥. In this fifth prequel novella readers learn more about the Scarecrow. All he ever wanted was a brain, but he soon discovers that knowledge may not be enough to protect his throne from an invading army. Another fun addition to the Dorothy Must Die family.
  • Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith-♥♥♥♥♥. The third book in the Cormoran Strike series is now my favorite. Someone from Cormoran’s past is targeting Robin and the agency, driving away business and putting both PIs in danger. Can Cormoran figure out who it is before it’s too late?
  • The Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling-♥♥♥♥♥. Still a favorite, 5-star read. I am loving rereading these books while my nephews discover them for the first time. On to Goblet of Fire!
  • The String Diaries by Stephen Lloyd Jones-♥♥♥♥♥. Hannah and her family are on the run from a centuries old monster; a Hungarian shapeshifter bent on revenge. Told from three points of view, the story unravels at a break-neck pace, sucking readers in and constantly confusing them with the monster’s identity. This is the first book in ages that has kept me up long past bedtime! Absolutely loved it!

Current Audio:

fate of ten 14

  • The Fate of Ten by Pittacus Lore. Admittedly this is not the best series ever written, but I kind of need to know how things end. Also, they are just kind of fun!
  • 14 by Peter Clines. I am still not sure why I requested this one from another library, but so far, I am glad I did. It’s like The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson (minus angry spirits) meets Lost and then gets turned into an episode of Scooby Doo. Again, quite fun.

Currently Reading:

goblet of fire winter passenger

Happy Reading!

~Megan

Mondays With Megan-New Games For After School Programs! 11/9/15

Hello Friends! Happy Monday. It was really hard to drag myself in to work today, but after a lot of coffee and morning shopping trip I can’t wait show the teens all the things I bought them. First I bought myself a little organizing tool (I totally splurged for the neon markers).

calendarThis week there is at least on teen program every single day. Some days there are two!

Today in the Teen Room you can play Exploding Kittens! I love The Oatmeal web comics and this card game does not disappoint. Also, it’s really fun to say that we will have exploding kittens in the teen room. I also grabbed Bananagrams and Yahtzee! I am ready for cold weather afternoons.

mondays

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Teach Mentor Text, be sure to stop by and see what others are reading!

Finished:

babayaga myster of hollow places crayons eye of zoltar borden

  • Baba Yaga’s Assistant by Marika McCoola-♥♥♥♥. The famously fearsome witch, Baba Yaga is looking for an assistant in this fantastic debut graphic novel. Masha learned all about magic from her beloved grandmother. When her grandmother dies and her father brings home a girlfriend, Masha feels lost in the world. Seeking a place to fit in, she enters the woods in search of Baba Yaga. Is she clever enough match wits with the old witch and her magic house?
  • The Mystery of Hollow Places by Rebecca Podos-♥♥♥. Imogene and her father have been a team since her mother left them when she was a baby. When Imogene is seventeen her father, once a forensic pathologist and now a well-known writer of medical mysteries, disappears, she decides to apply everything she has learned from his books and track him down. Her search leads her to answers to questions she has asked her whole life. This debut is a quiet but engaging story. The mystery is more of a puzzle and it is the vehicle for a great deal of personal reflection and discussion of mental illness.
  • The Day the Crayons Came Home by Drew Daywalt-♥♥♥♥♥. I’m not sure I really need to say anything about this one. It’s adorable.
  • The Eye of Zoltar by Jasper Fforde-♥♥♥♥♥. This third installment of The Chronicles of Kazam is my favorite. Jennifer Strange has new task: find the legendary magical item known as The Eye of Zoltar and babysit the spoiled princess of the Kingdom of Snodd. The quest is dangerous with a fatality rating of 50%, but lives depend on her success. This under appreciated series has it all-magic, adventure, humor, and dragons. I can’t recommend this series enough.
  • The Borden Murders: Lizzie Borden and the Trail of the Century by Sarah Miller-♥♥♥♥♥. I devoured my advance reader copy of this book over the weekend. I love nonfiction that reads like a suspense novel, and this book certainly delivers. Miller offers a well-researched narrative of the investigation of the murders of Lizzie Borden’s parents. I realized that I actually knew very little about what was known as the trail of the century. Grisly and compelling. I can’t wait to add this to my collection and recommend it to my teens!

Current Audio:

me before you bazaar

Currently Reading:

wytches azkaban shallow

Happy Reading!

~Megan

Mondays with Megan-It’s Monday! What Are You

Happy Monday! I spent all of last week in lovely Cincinnati, Ohio attending the Ohio Library Council Conference and Expo. I am still trying to digest all the great information I picked up…and catch up on all the normal stuff I missed here at the library, so this check in will be short and sweet. I read some books. I listened to some books. I binged all of The Mindy Project. I am excited Supernatural season 10 dropped on Netflix. My friend got to meet Rainbow Rowell and she got me a signed copy of Carry On! That’s a pretty good week, if you ask me!

mondays

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Teach Mentor Texts.

Finished:

1250042151.01._SX142_SY224_SCLZZZZZZZ_ stand off alex0399160302.01._SX142_SY224_SCLZZZZZZZ_

  • Alias Hook by Lisa Jensen-♥♥♥♥. This is a reimagining of the Peter Pan story, told from Hook’s point of view. Forget everything you thought knew about Neverland and Peter’s band of Lost Boys! This is a magical and fantastical adventure!
  • Stand Off  by Andrew Smith-♥♥♥♥. This sequel to Winger starts with a new school year, Ryan Dean West’s senior year. In addition to having a claustrophobic 12-year old as a roommate, Ryan Dean struggles with the emotional aftermath of losing his best friend. This book did not engage me in the way Winger did, but I am not the target audience. Ryan Dean has an amazing teen voice and coping with anxiety is an important topic. A welcomed sequel.
  • Alex + Ada, vol. 3 by Sarah Vaughn-♥♥♥♥. The story arc that began with volumes 1 and 2 comes to a surprising conclusion. Fear and hatred of sentient robots is rising and Alex and Ada are in increasing danger. The events in this volume took me by surprise and I am intrigued to see where the story goes.
  • Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys-♥♥♥♥♥. As WWII draws to an end thousands of refugees look to escape East Prussia. The luxury ship Wilhelm Gustloff offers the promise of freedom. Among the refugees are Florian, Emilia, and Joana are among the crowd. They are all strangers and they all have secrets, but working together they may survive. This book is due out in February and you will want to grab it up the second you see it. Ruta Septys delivers another devastating work of historical fiction. Powerful and heartbreaking, she once again brings light to lesser known atrocities of WWII.

Current Audio:

martian

I am almost finished with The Martian and I am currently between audiobooks on my phone. I can’t decide what I am in mood for right now.

Currently Reading:

This rarely happens, but today I get to pick all new books to read! I need to pick a print book and an e-book. I have so many choices my head is spinning! I think I am going to start with these:

sword of summer revenge

Happy Reading!

~Megan

Mondays with Megan-Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon & Cybils Awards-10/5/15

Happy Monday! It’s a gorgeous day here in Cleveland and I have the day off. Lucky me! I have gotten my reading groove back and have read and listened to some great books this week. But first, a couple of bits of news. First, it’s time for another Dewey’s 24-Hour Readathon! I missed the spring readathon because I was meeting my new nephew in April, but I am all registered for the October 17th event. You can sign up too! The second bit of news is that I was selected to be a judge for the Cybils Awards again. This time around I will be a Round 2 YA Speculative Fiction. There is still time to nominate titles, so head on over to the Cybil site if you are interested.

mondays

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Teach Mentor Texts. 

Finished:

wee free 1607066084.01._SX142_SY224_SCLZZZZZZZ_ 0785192271.01._SX142_SY224_SCLZZZZZZZ_ lockwood 1632152584.01._SX142_SY224_SCLZZZZZZZ_ 0062242911.01._SX142_SY224_SCLZZZZZZZ_

Wee Free Men by Terry Pratchett and Manhattan Project, vol. 1 by Jonathan Hickman were both recommended to me by patrons-♥♥♥

The others were all amazing! I am really loving the Ms. Marvel series and Lockwood & Co has taken an interesting turn. Walk the Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson is the first book in a new trilogy. Who new westerns could be so awesome? ♥♥♥♥♥ to all four!

Current Audio:

1250042151.01._SX142_SY224_SCLZZZZZZZ_ martian

Currently Reading:

stand off 0399160302.01._SX142_SY224_SCLZZZZZZZ_ tonight 76562dce2467fab5977787852674141414d6741

On Deck:

0545448689.01._SX142_SY224_SCLZZZZZZZ_ 1444764624.01._SX142_SY224_SCLZZZZZZZ_ saga

I am off to enjoy my day off!

Happy Reading!

~Megan

It’s a Wonderful Death by Sarah J. Schmitt 10/1/15

death

It’s a Wonderful Death by Sarah J. Schmitt
October 6, 2015
Sky Pony Press
Hardcover, 320 pages

What it’s about:

Seventeen-year-old RJ is at the top of her game. She is the Queen Bee and used to getting her way, even if she has to bully others to get it. So imagine her fury when a Grim Reaper accidentally collects her soul! She refuses to believe she is dead and her protests and tantrums  cause quite the problem in the Afterlife. Everyone agrees that a mistake has been made, but no one can agree on how to set things right. A special tribunal is called composed of three angels, including one who has his eye on Death Himself’s job. Now RJ has a choice. She can wait in limbo until her regularly scheduled death or she can relive three moments in her life. Each do-over is an opportunity to prove that she has a future worth saving. She obviously chooses door number 2. How hard can it be? Especially since she will have three souls to guide her through each of her tasks. The reality is, it is so hard! Will RJ succeed in her quest for mortality? Will it even be worth it? And what is the deal with Saint Peter’s cornhole obsession?

Why you might like it:

Do you love a strong-willed, snarky bully who’s been brought down a notch? RJ is your girl! She is seemingly beyond redemption and it’s kind of a little satisfying to watch her squirm as she relives three of her lowest moments on earth. But hey! We’re not mean girls, so it’s also pretty awesome so watch RJ’s journey. Maybe she isn’t so bad after all. Everyone makes mistakes, right? Are you looking for a laugh? Death Himself, a Hawaiian shirt wearing surfer is pretty funny. But wait! There’s more! Are you looking for a thought-provoking, feel-good story? Look no further than It’s a Wonderful Death. The message is clear: you matter, even if you don’t know it and it’s never to late to think about the choices you make.

Want more like this? Try these:

Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin, Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver, and If I Stay by Gayle Forman.

Happy Reading!

~Megan

P.S. Thanks to Sky Pony Press for a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review.