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Graceling (The Seven Kingdoms, #1) 


Genre: Young Adult/ Fantasy

Rating: StarStarStarStar(out of 5)


Really good book for a debut novel. The characters are likable, and deep enough to make the story interesting. I do think Kristin tried to push too many actions into this one book though. Katsa’s search for herself, her love story with Po, a kidnapping, and the King of Leck. It’s just WAY too many topics for one book. BUT, Kristin is a gifted writer and her prose is remarkable – especially for a debut novel. I’ll be seeking out more by this author.


The Book Thief


Genre: Young Adult/ Historical Fiction

Rating: StarStarStar(out of 5)


I’m really struggling to review this book. I didn’t love it. A big indicator of a book that’s affected or interested me on a deeper level is if I find myself thinking about the book or the characters in every day life….while I’m doing laundry or working or whatever. This book didn’t do that. If I wasn’t reading it, I wasn’t thinking about it.
BUT… did make my cry at the end. Which usually hints at some level of involvement in the lives of the characters.
I think what it comes down to is a rather large influx of knowledge about Nazi Germany and the Holocaust when I was in school. I had a few teachers who spent A LOT of time on this tragic time in history. So when I went to read this book….I just felt like it was history class again. There wasn’t a new twist on what happened, or told from a different or unique point of view.
So there it is. The longest non-review in history. I think I would recommend this book, but I would absolutely give these warnings/advice: If you want a short or quick read, this isn’t it. If you want a happy story, this isn’t it. If you are immensely interested and involved in the history of Nazi Germany and the Holocaust.. you should read this book. Acknowledging that this is a Young Adult book, if a reader in your household falls into that category and is learning about Nazi Germany in school, I think this would be a great supplemental to the textbooks and would encourage those individuals to read it.


The Giver


Genre: Young Adult/ Dystopian

Rating: StarStar(out of 5)


Apparently amongst my friends this book is a pretty standard read in 7th/8th grade – but I never read it in school! I usually really enjoy dystopian society novels, and I did REALLY enjoy the layout of this society. It was very unique, in my opinion.
What I didn’t like….and what led me to a low-starred review, was the relationship between The Giver and The Receiver. It had a lot of potential but I feel like the experience was rushed. There needed to be more detail there so you could really get linked to the relationship the two of them had. I also really disliked the ending. It was vague – even for a dystopian ending – and extremely unsatisfying. Blech.


Lament: The Faerie Queen’s Deception


Genre: Young Adult/ Fantasy

Rating: StarStarStar(out of 5)


I guess I didn’t realize this was a Maggie Stiefvater book until after I bought it. I read her "Wolves of Mercy Falls" series and disliked it. Character development was shallow, and at no point did I feel an allegiance to any of the main characters.
Same with this book. Shallow main character development. I will admit she did her homework on the Fairy Folk, and those aspects were enjoyable. But this small Virginia town with all these musical prodigies named after Irish folk was a little much to swallow. Some of the sub-story lines also lacked fulfillment and engagement that you get with a more seasoned author.
All in all a great story idea, and not a bad read, but I think it’s held back by the author’s own writing development.

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