Thursday, September 27, 2012

Latest Review: Tell the Wolves I'm Home

Goodreads Summary:
In this striking literary debut, Carol Rifka Brunt unfolds a moving story of love, grief, and renewal as two lonely people become the unlikeliest of friends and find that sometimes you don’t know you’ve lost someone until you’ve found them.

1987. There’s only one person who has ever truly understood fourteen-year-old June Elbus, and that’s her uncle, the renowned painter Finn Weiss. Shy at school and distant from her older sister, June can only be herself in Finn’s company; he is her godfather, confidant, and best friend. So when he dies, far too young, of a mysterious illness her mother can barely speak about, June’s world is turned upside down. But Finn’s death brings a surprise acquaintance into June’s life—someone who will help her to heal, and to question what she thinks she knows about Finn, her family, and even her own heart.

An emotionally charged coming-of-age novel, Tell the Wolves I’m Home is a tender story of love lost and found, an unforgettable portrait of the way compassion can make us whole again.

My Thoughts:
Why doesn't this book have more hype surrounding it??  I thought it was fantastic!  One of my IRL reader friends always accuses me of recommending books that make her cry...and, welp, this one is no exception.  I definitely had red-rimmed eyes after finishing Tell the Wolves I'm Home.  I guess I just like stories and characters that can invoke a wide range of emotions.

I loved looking at the story through June's lens.  Her attention to detail and creative imaginings reminded me of myself at a young age.  I really liked that June's insecurities stemmed from her perceived inability to understand her relationships rather than perceived physical or character flaws.  It was a refreshing way to portray self-doubt.

Tell the Wolves I'm Home is one of those soul-feeding novels - definitely on my short list of my top books read in 2012!  Get thee to the library/bookstore and read this book!  You won't be sorry.

Quote I Like:
 "I don't know.  None of those things should have mattered, but I guess they did.  I guess they were like water.  Soft and harmless until enough time went by.  Then all of a sudden you found yourself with the Grand Canyon on your hands." -- pg. 36

Soundtrack Recommendation: 
While I read this, I was listening to Philip Glass' Glassworks album.  If I were to get specific...I particularly envision the song "Opening" for large portions of the story and for the scenes in the woods I hear "Islands."

Also, there's several references to music throughout the novel that should bear mentioning and would perhaps make great accompaniment to your reading experience:
  • Mozart's Requiem
  • classical guitar music (for the bits with Toby)
  • Late 80's hits like "New Years Day" by U2
5/5 Stars!!

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Aaand the winner is.....

Thanks to all my loyal followers for waiting out my break!  As chosen by Rafflecopter the lucky winner of the "I'm Back!" Follower Appreciation Giveaway is:

Congrats to Melissa, and thanks to everyone for participating!  Be sure to enter my upcoming giveaways!

Glitter Text Generator -

Monday, September 24, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday: Unfinished Series

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, this week's topic: Top Ten Unfinished Series

1. The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss - luuuurve this series!  The only reason it remains unfinished is because I'm waiting for the final book to be published!

2.  The Unladylike Adventures of Kat Stephenson by Stephanie Burgis - I read and loved the first book in this series but still haven't moved on to Renegade Magic yet.  It's definitely high on the TBR though!

3.  The Divergent Trilogy by Veronica Roth - I decided to wait for the third book to come out, and just read the whole series at once (I've only read the first book so far).

4.  The Thursday Next Series by Jasper Fforde -gotta love a bookish sci-fi time travel series!

5.  The Parasol Protectorate Series by Gail Carriger

6.  The Queen's Thief Series by Megan Whalen Turner

7.  Phedre's Trilogy by Jacqueline Carey

8.  The Inheritance Trilogy by N. K. Jemisin

9.  The Dublin Murder Squad Series by Tana French

10. The Outlander Series by Diana Gabaldon - don't hate me people!  I liked the first book but really didn't dig the I stopped reading :(

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Review: A Girl Worth Ten Coppers

Goodreads Summary:
Seer, healer, goddess, slave–she is all these things and more.

Yim is a young woman suddenly cast into slavery, a gifted seer with a shocking secret–and a great destiny. Honus is a Sarf, a warrior dedicated to the service of the compassionate goddess Karm. A Sarf’s sole purpose is to serve a holy person called a Bearer. But Honus’ s Bearer has been killed by the minions of an evil god known only as the Devourer. Masterless and needing someone to bear his pack, Honus purchases Yim for the price of ten coppers–and their fates are forever entwined.

My thoughts:
Um, so lemme tell you guys something...I have seriously been spoiled by some awesome fantasy reading lately (Rothfuss, Carey, Nemisin, etc).  Thus, my fantasy expectations can be a bit high.  That being said, this was a really delightful start to a fantasy trilogy - helloo adventure, romance, and more! 

I enjoyed Yim's strength of character and that she was still able to harbor plenty of doubt without being annoying (I loathe it when characters doubt themselves at EVERY single point throughout a book).  I also really enjoyed the creepy, despondent setting of this world.  It was very vividly drawn which made the presence of evil felt through every point in the story. 

I originally happened upon this book from a recommendation from the lovely blog The Allure of Books - fantasy fans, you should definitely keep this blog on your radar!  Was this one of my top fave of all time fantasy books...well, no.  Buuut, was it a solid fantasy entry?  Absolutely.  In fact, I was inspired to go get the sequel from the library right away!

Bottom line:  If you're looking for a quick, fun, fantasy read - A Woman Worth Ten Coppers is just the ticket!

3.5/5 Stars

Monday, September 17, 2012

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

Hosted by Sheila at Book Journey.  We share books that we've read over the past week and those we hope to read this week. 
Last Week:
Last week I finished A Girl Worth Ten Coppers by Morgan Howell which was a great start to a short fantasy trilogy!

This Week:
I have two highly praised debut books from the library: Tell the Wolves I'm Home by Carol Rifka Brunt and Alif the Unseen by G. Willow Wilson (which is getting compared to novels by some of my fave authors).  Plus, I'm still making slow progress with Lonesome Dove. 

What are you folks reading? 

Friday, September 14, 2012

The "I'm Back!" Giveaway

As promised, I'm hosting a giveaway celebrating my loyal followers who stuck around after my lengthy break!

This giveaway will last for a week and is open internationally!  The books that are up for grabs are ones that I really want to read - so I'm gonna be jealous of the winner :)

The Art of Fielding by Chad Harbach

Silver Sparrow by Tayari Jones

Tell the Wolves I'm Home by Carol Rifka Brunt

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Waiting on Wednesday

"Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted at Breaking the Spine, that showcases upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week, I'm doing the happy dance for The Ashford Affair by Lauren Willig!  First off, it's by Lauren Willig who is the author of the fun Pink Carnation series.  Secondly, it has been described as Downton Abbey meets Out of cool is that??

Goodreads Summary:
New York Times bestselling author Lauren Willig "spins a web of lust, power and loss" (Kate Alcott) that is by turns epic and intimate, transporting and page-turning

As a lawyer in a large Manhattan firm, just shy of making partner, Clementine Evans has finally achieved almost everything she’s been working towards—but now she’s not sure it’s enough. Her long hours have led to a broken engagement and, suddenly single at thirty-four, she feels her messy life crumbling around her. But when the family gathers for her grandmother Addie’s ninety-ninth birthday, a relative lets slip hints about a long-buried family secret, leading Clemmie on a journey into the past that could change everything. . . .

What follows is a potent story that spans generations and continents, bringing an Out of Africa feel to a Downton Abbey cast of unforgettable characters. From the inner circles of WWI-era British society to the skyscrapers of Manhattan and the red-dirt hills of Kenya, the never-told secrets of a woman and a family unfurl.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Make Me Think

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, this week's topic: Top Ten Books That Made Me Think.

1.  Ishmael by Daniel Quinn - I know many complain that it is didactic but I still really enjoyed this novel.

2.  We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver - this story provokes a lot of difficult questions and is a great book club choice.

3.  Franny and Zooey by J. D. Salinger (I need to re-read this sucker!)

4.  The Sparrow by Mary Doria Russell - religion and interplanetary travel...what a head trip!

5.  1984 by George Orwell - gotta question authority every once in awhile :)

6.  Caucasia by Danzy Senna - really delves into issues of race and identity (highly recommended).

7.  The Stranger by Albert Camus - gotta love some existentialist lit!

8.  The Giver by Lois Lowry - one of the quintessential dystopian novels

9.  The Leftovers by Tom Perrotta - how would you behave if "the Rapture" or something eerily similar happened and you were left behind? 

10.  Narcissus and Goldmund by Hermann Hesse - great book!  Makes you contemplate the transitory essence of life as well as brings up the point/counterpoint between religious adherence vs. partaking in worldly vices.  This same theme is brought up in Hesse's Siddhartha which is also a fantastic and thought-provoking novel.
Narcissus and Goldmund

Monday, September 10, 2012

Get ready for the return of NPLB!

Sorry my hiatus was so long folks!  I actually had some really upsetting family stuff going on, so that delayed my return a bit more.  Anyways, on a happier topic, I've still been lurking on all my fave blogs and can't wait to get back into the swing of things!