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Dark Matter by Blake Crouch

Review:

Dark Matter: A Novel - Blake Crouch

Audience: Adult

Format: Physical/Owned

 

 

I love Thursday nights.

– first sentence

 

Such an ordinary opening line for an extraordinary story. Jason (a college professor), his wife (Daniela), and their teenage son Charlie spend Thursday nights together, making dinner, eating, and talking. Until the Thursday when Jason goes to meet his friend at a bar and is abducted on the way home. He wakes up in a world he doesn’t know. He is confused and wondering which world is real and which is the dream/crazy place he made up in his brain. The truth is even crazier and trying to wrap my mind about it almost broke my brain.

 

I was fascinated by the story and trying to figure out how Crouch was going to resolve the main problem of getting Jason back to his wife. Every time Jason stepped out of the box, I was thinking, “no – go back in, it isn’t safe!” But he kept going out into worlds that obviously weren’t his. I especially loved that Crouch didn’t shy away from the last problem that kept Jason from being happy – I didn’t even think about it until it happened, but then it made perfect sense.

 

Another highly recommended Crouch novel!

 

I read this for Booklikes-opoly Beach Week 10 (author’s last name begins with one of the letters in BEACH). At 342 pages, it is worth $3.00.

 

Original post:
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The Bicycle Spy – audiobook

Review:

Bicycle Spy - Yona Zeldis McDonough

Audience: Middle Grade

Format: Audiobook/Library Copy

 

 

A gust of wind cut across Marcel’s face as he cycled furiously down the street.

– first sentence

 

Marcel lives in German-occupied France in 1942. He is obsessed with cycling and with the Tour de France (which has been canceled for the past two years). But he soon discovers two secrets that make the race seem unimportant. First, his parents are part of the revolution and second, his friend Delphine is actually Jewish. Riding his bike, Marcel carries messages for the resistance hidden in the bread his parents bake. When he discovers Delphine and her family are in danger, he will risk his life to save them.

 

This is an imaginative historical adventure. Marcel uses his cycling to help him get through his fear and both Marcel and Delphine are authentic and likable characters. The story is enriched by the historical background and details of the story. 

 

Overall, this is a well-written, sensitive read that children in grades 4-8 will enjoy. It encourages children to stand up for others and for what they believe in. It would make an excellent addition to a World War II curriculum.

Original post:
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Greetings from Witness Protection – Audiobook

Review:

Greetings from Witness Protection! - Jake Burt

Audience: Middle Grade

Format: Audiobook/Library

 

I’m working on making a world.

– first sentence

 

Nicki has been living in a foster center since her grandmother died. One day, the FBI suddenly shows up to ask for her help. They want her for a new program in witness protection called Project Family. The idea is to add a child to the family in WITSEC to make them harder to find. Nicki is to become Charlotte Trevor, part of a family that includes a father, mother, and younger brother. The mother testified against the members of her family who just so happen to be part of the Italian mob. Charlotte (Nicki) and the rest of the Trevor family need to play their roles perfectly so that the Cercatore family doesn’t find them.

 

I listened to the audio version which I borrowed from my public library and the narrator did a fantastic job. She sounded exactly like a snarky teenage girl. Nicki (Charlotte) struggles with kleptomania and when she gets scared, she tends to steal things (her hands are very fast). Nicki is a clever, strong girl who knows how to take care of herself, but during the course of the book, she realizes how much she needs people to confide in. I knew the bad guys would eventually find them, and I had an idea of how Charlotte would stop them, but some of the details were a bit unexpected.

 

I think kids will enjoy this story and relate to the way the characters feel like they don’t fit in. The Trevor family faces homework issues, bullying, sibling squabbles, and other typical situations that kids will understand. The story is engaging and Nicki (Charlotte) makes a great kid hero.

 

This book is nominated for a Sunshine State award for grades 6-8. I am trying to read as many as I can again this year.

Original post:
readingismyescape.booklikes.com/post/1899533/greetings-from-witness-protection-audiobook

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Booklikes-opoly 6/9 roll

 

Current Bank: $25.00 + $5.00 for passing GO

 

I finished my second book, so on to the next roll:

 

 

Moving 6 spaces takes me past GO to space #3 – School’s Out for Summer

 

    

 

Then, since I rolled doubles,  I roll again:

 

 

Moving 8 spaces takes me to space #10 – Beach Week

 

 

 

So, I passed GO which means I collect $5.00.

 

I’m still holding the Robot & the Scottie dog cards:

          

 

I’m reading Dark Matter by Blake Crouch for space #10 – Beach Week and Homeroom Diaries by James Patterson for space #3 – School’s Out for Summer.

 

 

 

 

Original post:
readingismyescape.booklikes.com/post/1899499/booklikes-opoly-6-9-roll

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Seven Days in May

Review:

Seven Days in May: A Novel - Kim Izzo

Audience: Adult

Format: Paperback/Owned

 

It was half past nine in the morning when Sydney stepped out of the taxi wearing her most drab topcoat.

– first sentence

 

This is a romantic historical fiction novel that follows two sets of people during the first World War. The plot involving Sydney & Brooke (New York heiresses) and Brooke’s fiancee Edward (a future lord who happens to be in significant debt) is all unlikely romantic triangle.  They are traveling across the Atlantic on the Lusitania for Brooke & Edward’s wedding. The other plot takes place in London where Isabel has found a job working with the codebreakers. Isabel & Sydney are both trying to fight for women’s rights and against stereotypes in their own ways. The climactic event is the sinking of the Lusitania by a German submarine.

 

The historical details and the fact that the author’s great-grandfather was Walter Dawson, a passenger who was on the Lusitania, made this novel interesting. But I wasn’t terribly invested in the characters or what happened to them. The part of the story where the Lusitania was sinking and passengers were struggling to survive was the most heartbreaking part of the book and also the most engaging. 

 

I read this for Booklikes-opoly space #34 – When? – a book that is time travel or historical fiction.

Original post:
readingismyescape.booklikes.com/post/1899486/seven-days-in-may

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The Forgetting by Sharon Cameron

Review:

The Forgetting - Sharon  Cameron

Audience: Young Adult

Format: Hardcover/Owned

 

 

I am going to be flogged, and I don’t know why I’m so surprised about it.

– first sentence

 

Nadia lives in Canaan, a city that is enclosed by white stone walls; a city whose residents periodically forget everything and everyone. No one knows why the Forgetting occurs every twelve years, but the people all keep journals to remind them of the important things after they forget. Nadia didn’t forget and she is the only one. She doesn’t know why, but she is determined to find out and help prevent the Forgetting. This is why she frequently breaks curfew and crosses over the walls (even though it is forbidden). As Nadia discovers the truth about Canaan, its people, and the Forgetting, she also faces danger and manages to fall in love.

 

I was surprised by some of the twists, but I kind of figured other ones out. Regardless, I thoroughly enjoyed this book.

 

This is an excellent story, highly recommended to fantasy fans and anyone who enjoys young adult books.

Original post:
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A Dark Inheritance by Chris d’Lacey

Review:

A Dark Inheritance (Unicorne Files #1) - Chris d'Lacey, Raphael Corkhill

Audience: Middle Grade

Format: Audiobook/Library Copy

 

 

It was the day Mom took the coast road to school.

– first sentence

 

Michael discovered his unusual ability quite by accident when he saved a dog wandering near the edge of a cliff. He isn’t sure exactly what happened, but somehow he moved across the field in the blink of an eye. Soon afterward, he met Amadeus Klimt, head of the UNICORNE Society (UNexplained Incidents, Cryptic Occurrences, Relative Nontemporal Events) and Chantelle who also works for UNICORNE and keeps an eye on him. Amadeus gave Michael a mission – to find out about the dog and if he succeeds, he may eventually be able to find his father…

 

I enjoyed this book and I’m looking forward to the sequel.

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