The Wise Man’s Fear

Hi Guys,

Let me start this one off by saying, I busted my ass to finish this book! It was an e-book loan from my library and when I got it, I was already in the middle of another book. I figured no big deal, the loan is for 21 days–plenty of time. So 10 days out I picked up the book expecting 500 pages max and did the mental equivalent of a jaw drop when I saw that it was 1000 pages! But I did it! Is it nerdy that I felt super accomplished? Well I did. Yay me!

The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss is book two of The Kingkiller Chronicle and day two of Kvothe’s tale. We pick up this self told narrative with more of Kvothe’s antics at The University. Ambrose is still a jerk, money is still an ever present issue and good intentions often go awry. On top of all this, Kvothe is still infatuated with the mysterious Denna, he must maintain his studies, and he is still desperate to find information on the Amyr, the Chandrian, and the death of his parents.

Soon Kvothe is forced to take a leave of absence from The University and he travels the land building his reputation as he goes. Saving kings, rescuing maidens, stopping bandits, training with legendary mercenaries and travelling to the fae realms… all in a days work for the great Kvothe.

In this tale we follow a legend in the making, told by the legend himself… A legend in hiding. A legend lost.

If your followers of mine, you may know that I wasn’t the biggest fan of The Name of the Wind. I enjoyed the world building and the characters but the story felt a little fractured to me. This was not the case with The Wise Man’s Fear. The story was much more cohesive, there were fewer interludes and Kvothe became ever so much more dynamic and playful. This was truly an entertaining read.

There were parts of this book I just loved. There was a sense a humor and wit injected into the story that lightened the darkness and sense of foreboding found throughout. As much as Kvothe has gone through, he is still a teen going through all the things teens deal with… you know in a “medieval” world of monsters and magic. At one point he is poisoned, loses all inhibition and sense of right and wrong and it is just hilarious.

The musical influence, the music as part of ones being also hit me more in this book. I was saying to the person who recommended the book to me that I would love to listen to the audio book to see how the musical elements were handled. The audio book could be great in this vein, if the opportunity were taken.

My only critic with this one was that it was seriously long. Each chapter in Kvothe’s life was written like it was it’s own book, each with the five stages of storytelling: exposition, rising action, climax, falling action and resolution. This isn’t necessarily a bad thing but it does make for an emotional roller coaster.

Overall, this was an entertaining read and I am glad I picked it up. It gets 4.5 stars from me. Okay Rothfuss, bring on book three… no really book three, don’t keep a new fan waiting.

That’s all for now!

-M-

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Books Are Smashing!!!

Hey Guys!

Throughout the month of December and early January my library system is throwing a bunch of superhero, comic themed programs in the hopes of promoting our first Library Con, which is being held the end of January. We are putting up posters, doing displays and just trying to do a lot of fun tie-ins.

My library is doing a super hero party over winter break but I had some time the other day and thought I’d put up a new super hero themed bulletin board.

Books Are Smashing!!!

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Please tell me you all get the Hulk reference!

This was super easy to do. I drew some bricks on my red background. Cut out some black cracks to make it look like my Hulk hand was punching through the wall and ta-da! The colors are a little funky, the light above the board went out as I was doing the display.

I was also irrationally happy to be able to use one of my new black boarders. I finally got a whole box of different color boarder rolls, so now I don’t have to create my own misshaped ones.

Let me know what you think!

That’s all for now!

-M-

The Golden Specific

Hi Guys,

Boy was it a busy weekend. Decorating, tree hunting… all that fun stuff. Between all of that I was able to finish listening to the second book in The Mapmakers Trilogy.

The Golden Specific by S.E. Grove picks back up a few months after Sophia, Theo and Shadrack return to Boston from their adventures in the Baldlands. Sophia is more determined then ever to figure out what happened to her parents but she feels lost and alone. Theo has been traveling with friends and Shadrack has been given an important and time consuming position within parliament.

After several dead-ends Sophia has finally found a clue but it is Ages away and she finds herself alone on a ship, with no allies and only a name on a map to guide her. Meanwhile in Boston, Shadrack and Miles are arrested for murder and Theo must face an old enemy in order to clear their names. Will Theo uncover enough clues to solve this mystery? Will Sophia be able to find a lost age and the path to her parents? And will this strange family of misfits and allies find each other again?

Gosh this book is complicated for juvenile fiction. I mean it’s really interesting and this world Grove has created is so complex and creative but it has so many moving parts that you really have to pay attention. The Golden Specific and maybe the whole series in general, is a prime example of a book written for children but made for adults/teens. There’s just so much to this book that I am not sure the targeted audience would get.

One thing I did enjoy was the characters Sophia draws to her. Sophia is like a magnet, attracting diverse, complex, but ultimately good people her way. I love all of the side characters in this series. If this were a YA book there would be about a million novellas from the various character point of views.

Ultimately, this was an interesting read and I am intrigued to see what happens in the last book. I don’t know if it would be my go to recommendation for a 6th grader but I wouldn’t discourage them from reading it either. Worth a read but this one only gets three stars from me.

That’s all for now!

-M-

School of the Dead

Hi Guys,

I’d been waiting for the new Avi book to come out and apparently is snuck onto the shelves without me knowing!

School of the Dead by Avi is a mystery/scifi, middle school read set in modern day San Francisco. Everyone has that one uncle who is just a little strange, for Tony Gilbert it’s his “Weird Uncle Charlie.” Needing a place to stay, the aging Uncle Charlie moves in with Tony and his parents. Tony soon forges a bond with his odd uncle–who is interested in all things supernatural–and the two become very close.

When Uncle Charlie passes away, Tony is so upset that he starts seeing his uncle everywhere! A thumbs up at the bus stop, a smile of encouragement at school, etc. With the inheritance Uncle Charlie left for Tony’s schooling, the family picks up and moves from Connecticut to San Francisco. Tony even starts at a new school, the same one his uncle went to when he was a boy.

This posh new school has weird rules and a sketchy history. Soon Tony is seeing ghosts, solving mysteries and fighting for his life! Who can Tony trust when no one and nothing is what it seems?

I’m not going to lie, there are books that get me giddy or make me laugh but very rarely does a book actually make me anxious. I was nervous for Tony while reading this book! I wasn’t sure what was going to happen or where the book was leading. I actually had that, someone is watching you, feeling. And it’s a middle school book! Now, I will admit, I don’t read a lot of mysteries but still, I am a grown woman and this book succeeded in giving me the heebie jeebies. Well done Avi. Well done.

On top of the mystery and ghosts, there were some very relatable aspects to this book that I think would resonate with a middle school audience: a death in the family, starting a new school, making friends, being different, even bullying if you want to make the ghosts out to be bullies.

My only criticism of this book was how quickly it ended. It built and built and built, but there wasn’t really a come down–it just ended. I mean I was satisfied with the ending but I would have liked a few pages of, now that we’re not in peril any more… I guess that’s what the imagination is for.

Overall, I was very satisfied with this book. There were twists in this that I wasn’t expecting and it had a good pace for the audience. A good read for boys and girls. This one gets 4 stars from me.

That’s all for now!

-M-

Reading Makes You Bright!

Hey Guys,

Another fun little display for you all. 20161130_205721

This was a pretty simple one. I just cut out some squiggly lines and different color light bulbs. I have a TON of extra light bulbs. Totally over estimated the number I needed. Hopefully, I can use them somewhere else.

Finished it off with my text: Reading Makes You BRIGHT and called it a day!

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Enjoy!

That’s all for now!

-M-

Winter Display

Hi Guys,

It’s new display time at the library!

I tend to change the four windows into the children’s room seasonally and occasionally for some special holiday displays. I figured it was time to get a winter display up there.

First thing I did was pick out some bookish puns– Reading in a winter wonderland… & Chill out with a good book!

 

Then I made some simple trees, using green triangles and then I laminated everything.

Finally, I made my snowflakes. I took fishing line and 20161128_112411threaded them through different sized cotton balls. You have to thread them through and then do a loop back through or else the cotton will move on the lines. I made twenty total, five for each window.

This is like the worst lit area of the library and it looks so much better in person then in these pictures. I really need to convince them to get some spot lights!

And that’s about it! Came out pretty good if I do say so myself.

Ejoy!

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That’s all for now!

-M-

Stiletto

Hi Guys,

This past weekend, I finished the intimidatingly large StilettoStiletto is a sequel to The Rook and a part of The Checquy Files. I loved the supernatural awesomeness of The Rook and the snarky sass of Myfanwy, so I thought I’d give the sequel a go.

Stiletto by Daniel O’Malley picks up a few months after The Rook ended. The Checquy are still as secretive as ever, fighting supernatural threats and keeping the British Isle safe. Now, on top of fighting mind altering gloop and crystal impaling hobos, the Checquy are working to broker an alliance with their longtime enemies: the Grafters.

A delegation of Grafters have arrived in London and are working to shore up a shaky peace but decades of fear and hatred are difficult to overcome. As part of the delegation the stylish, dedicated and slightly broken, Odette enters the scene and trouble isn’t far behind. Odette is a magnet for trouble and is soon saddled with a minder: Felicity.

Felicity is a Pawn and your typical Checquy employee. She was raised at the Estate to be a good soldier and a useful entity of the Checquy. She was also raised to hate and fear the Graters. But prejudices change when lives are at risk and pressure forges bonds.

Attempting to ruin the merger is a small group of rebel Grafters: the Antagonists. Will Myfanwy, Odette and Felicity be able to put a stop to the Antagonist threat? Or will these three women find themselves in the midst of international scandal and at the top of several hit lists?

Again, this book is so up my ally it is like it was made for me. I felt exactly the same way with The Rook. Monsters, a cornucopia of supernatural awesomeness, relationship building and strong, witty female characters all set in England. Yup. My. Kind. Of. Book. And yet… WHERE IS MYFANWY!!!

loved Myfanwy in the first book. I didn’t love all of the letters to herself but amnesia ridden, wing-it, fly by the seat of her pants, kick ass Myfanwy of The Rook was such a great character and I was honestly looking forward to getting more of her. But she was (estimating here) in less then 15% of the book and the narrator of even less! Why O’Malley, why?! I mean, yes, Felicity and Odette were both strong, witty characters in their own ways but I wanted Myfanwy!–imagine a child stomping tiny feet in pouty frustration.

The book was good. Just like with the first one, there was a bit too much history but all of the present day scenes were awesome. The resolution was a bit out of left field and abrupt but the book was already almost 600 pages, it had to end sometime.

The world O’Malley recreates is a world that makes you go “what if.” What if all the stories were real? What if there is a secret organization out there, keeping us safe from our nightmares? It’s fun to think about. This one gets 3.5 from me. It was great but I just couldn’t get over the lack of Myfanwy.

Please write more Checquy Files!

That’s all for now!

-M-