Saturday, November 23, 2019

Graphic Novel Review of To Build a Fire by Christophe Chaboute

Read for: Graphic Novel Challenge/ Borrowed Books

Synopsis: "From the “master of black and white” artwork (Paste Magazine) and the bestselling illustrator-storyteller of Park Bench and Alone comes a starkly beautiful graphic novel adaptation of Jack London’s most famous short story.

Discover the beloved author of White Fang and The Call of the Wild, Jack London’s renowned short story “To Build a Fire” in a new and evocative way from master artist Christophe Chabout√©. With his signature “stunning black-and-white art” (Publishers Weekly), Chabout√© illustrates London’s gripping story of man versus nature in the harsh and unforgiving Yukon that has enthralled readers for over a century."

My Review: When I picked this book up at the library, I had no idea it was a retelling of a Jack London story I had never heard of, but I did pick it up because I love the previous graphic novels I have read by Chaboute. While the middle of a heat wave in summer may not have been the most atmospheric time to read this one, it did still give me some seriously chilly vibes. I loved the monochromatic art style and the way the story was converted to this new format. I do really want to read the original work now.

My Rating: I really enjoyed this Graphic Novel, the art style suited the story perfectly. I enjoyed it so much I have begun searching out a copy of my own.  I give it a rating of Four Paws and a Stump Wag!

Friday, November 22, 2019

Early Reader Bedtime Story: I am Thankful by Suzy Capozzi & Illustrated by Eren Unten

Read for Early Reader Challenge

Synopsis: "It’s Thanksgiving Day, and there’s a lot to be done before turkey time! I Am Thankful follows a young boy through his busy holiday adventures, from running in the turkey trot to helping his family bake pies. Even though the weather might ruin the annual family football game, the jam-packed day proves there’s never a shortage of things to be thankful for. In this first installment of the Positive Power series, kids will learn the affirmation “I am thankful” through a delightful story of food, family, and fun. And it includes 2 sheets of stickers!"

My Review: I picked this book up for a quick read for Munchkin during the busy rush of the holidays. It was long enough for him to feel like he was accomplishing something. It is a great Level 2 book for those who aren't as confident of readers, it has large print and a lot of sight words and repetition. It also has a great story and message about being thankful for things like family and friends and time together as opposed to things during the Thanksgiving season and beyond. Our edition also came with some really nice quality stickers, which Munchkin loved.

My Rating: This was a good book to get Munchkin thinking about what he is thankful for in a season of I wants.  The illustrations are simple yet beautiful and it was a great easy read.  We give it a rating of Four Paws!

Good Night! Sweet Dreams!

Thursday, November 21, 2019

TBR Thursday (7)

So I stumbled upon this feature at Purple People Readers (I am totally in love with the blog name LOL) and was originally created by Kimberly Faye Reads.

As you may know, I like so many other book lovers out there am struggling with a towering TBR.  I have been currently working on narrowing it down a little. But I thought I would also bring that idea to my blog, where you can get a bit of a say in what stays on my TBR and what books it may be time to let go.

So let me know, should I keep it on my TBR, prioritize it, or let it go.  Have you read it? Let me know your thoughts on . . .

Title: The Lies of Locke Lamora
Author: Scott Lynch
Series: Gentleman Bastards Series, Book 1 of  7 (but only up to 3 has been published)
Genre: Fantasy
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Length: 722 pages
Average Rating on Goodreads: 4.30 Stars
Time on TBR: Since September 10, 2018
Synopsis: "The Thorn of Camorr is said to be an unbeatable swordsman, a master thief, a ghost that walks through walls. Half the city believes him to be a legendary champion of the poor. The other half believe him to be a foolish myth. Nobody has it quite right.

Slightly built, unlucky in love, and barely competent with a sword, Locke Lamora is, much to his annoyance, the fabled Thorn. He certainly didn't invite the rumors that swirl around his exploits, which are actually confidence games of the most intricate sort. And while Locke does indeed steal from the rich (who else, pray tell, would be worth stealing from?), the poor never see a penny of it. All of Locke's gains are strictly for himself and his tight-knit band of thieves, the Gentlemen Bastards.
Locke and company are con artists in an age where con artistry, as we understand it, is a new and unknown style of crime. The less attention anyone pays to them, the better! But a deadly mystery has begun to haunt the ancient city of Camorr, and a clandestine war is threatening to tear the city's underworld, the only home the Gentlemen Bastards have ever known, to bloody shreds. Caught up in a murderous game, Locke and his friends will find both their loyalty and their ingenuity tested to the breaking point as they struggle to stay alive... "

Everyone I come across who has read this series absolutely loves it, so I broke down and picked up the first two books used last year.  Now as time passes by, I have found my interest in reading it waning.  I don't have a great track record with heist type books and this, from what I understand, is along those lines. It also contains a lot of unreliable characters, which I am fine with sometimes. 

Have you read this book? Is it worth the chunky tomes and the excruciating wait between releases?

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

Release Day: Bread Bags & Bullies: Surviving the 80s by Steven Manchester

I am so excited to tell all of you about Steven Manchester's newest book! I am not posting as part of any blog tour or because I have received a complimentary copy of this book, but just simply because I love his books.  I haven't had a chance to read this one yet but from the sounds of it, there is going to be a lot of nostalgic feelings and it will be a perfect book to read over the Christmas season. So a bit about the book . . .

Synopsis: "It’s the winter of 1984. Twelve-year old Herbie and his two brothers—Wally and Cockroach—are enjoying the mayhem of winter break when a late Nor’easter blows through New England, trapping their quirky family in the house. The power goes out and playing Space Invaders to AC DC’s Back in Black album is suddenly silenced—forcing them to use their twisted imaginations in beating back the boredom. At a time when the brothers must overcome one fear after the next, they learn that courage is the one character trait that guarantees all others.

This hysterical coming-of-age tale is jam-packed with enough nostalgia to satisfy anyone who grew up in the ‘80s or at least had the good fortune to travel through them."

About the Author: Steven Manchester is the author of the #1 bestsellers, Twelve Months and The Rockin' Chair. He is also the author of the award-winning novel, Goodnight, Brian, as well as the critically-acclaimed novel, Pressed Pennies, A Christmas Wish (Kindle exclusive), Wilbur Avenue (novella), Just in Time (novella), The Thursday Night Club (novella, released November 2014) and Gooseberry Island (novel, released January 2015). His work has appeared on NBC's Today Show, CBS's The Early Show, CNN's American Morning and BET's Nightly News. Three of Steven's short stories were selected "101 Best" for Chicken Soup for the Soul series. When not spending time with his beautiful wife, Paula, or their four children, this Massachusetts author is promoting his works or writing. 

Bread Bags & Bullies is out in the world today so you can now pick up your own copy in print or digital format from Amazon or request it at your local library or independent bookstore!

Monday, November 18, 2019

Monday Reading List

It is Monday again, and time to update with what I read last week, what I am currently reading and what to look forward to next week.

Reviews Posted Last Week:
Links will take you to my review

The Sandcastle Empire by Kayla Olson
In November by Cynthia Rylant (Bedtime Story)

 Books Finished Last Week:
Reviews will be posted at a later date

Let it Snow
I am Thankful

Currently Reading:
Valor by John Gwynne - Print/Audio - on page 478 of 680
The Guinevere Deception by Kiersten White - Ebook/Print - on page 178 of 352
Nocturnal by Wilder Poetry - Print - on page 35 of 88

Pages Read/ Time Listened
547:40 Hours Listened (None listened this week)
30,558 Pages Read (304 this week)

Books Added to Shelves Recently: TBR
Year One
Girl Who Drank the Moon
King of Scars
Dactyl Hill Squad
The Darkdeep
Lord of the Fading Lands
Shadow of Doubt
Gates of Stone
A Conspiracy of Truths
Vortex Visions
Through the White Wood
Descendant of the Crane
Dark Harmony
The Sea Queen
The Mountain of Kept Memory
Misfits of Avalon Vol. 1
Misfits of Avalon Vol. 2
The Sea King
Ride Hard
Ride Rough
Ride Wild
Force of Attraction
Primal Force
Rival Forces
A Rogue by Any Other Name
A Scot in the Dark
The Day of the Duchess
The Pirate Bride
Man Made Boy
Dear Santa
An Endless Christmas
Christmas Magic
Falling Softly
Christmas Town
The Christmas Star
We Hunt the Flame
Dreaming the Bear
Ghostly Tales from the Lost Summer of 1816
Storm and Fury
Honeybees and Frenemies
Master & Apprentice
The Chosen
The Readers of Broken Wheel Recommend
Mortal Engines
Evvie Drake Starts Over
Merciful Crow
The Bridge Kingdom
A Crash of Fate
Black Spire
The Testaments
The Warrior Moon
Klaus Vol. 2
Molly and the Cat Cafe
Plum Crazy Vol. 2
Plum Crazy Vol. 3
Plum Crazy Vol. 4
A Walk One Winter Night
Loving My Actual Christmas
The White Christmas Inn
There Will Come a Darkness
Shadow Frost
How to Love a Duke in 10 Days
How to Catch a Wicked Viscount
Three Days on a Train
Destiny of the Wolf
Leave the Lights On
Marshmallows and Mistletoe
Cocoa & Carols
The Prince's Son
At Last
The Last Huntsman
Forgotten Love
Mae's Cafe
Within the Captain's Hold
Elusive Dreams
Christmas & Cannolis
Fated Mates
Take My Breath Away
Stolen by the Viking
Destroyed by Magic
Abducted by Magic
Rise Like a Goddess
Out Like a Goddess
Finding Her Dragons
Freeing Her Dragons
When the Lady Lies
The Guinevere Deception
You Can Thank Me Later


What a busy week last week! Between basketball and work and craft bazaar and birthdays and family events, I didn't feel like I even had a chance to breathe! Even though it doesn't look like I got much reading done this week, I really did. I am so glad I finally picked up Valor but boy is it a chunky book. I had hoped to read 2 books for Tome Topple but I am definitely not going to be able to accomplish that this time around.  I will be working on finishing some requested reviews later this week and some more Advent Reads books.  I am enjoying so many of these holiday books, normally I really make sure I have a variety of books for Advent Reads but you are all going to get mostly romance and Hallmark movie sweetness this year!