Tuesday, July 16, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: Auto-Buy Authors

This week's topic is Auto-Buy Authors and oh, boy do I have a lot. There are too many to name. And they fall into three categories: 1. For Me. 2. For the Library 3. For Both. Luckily working at the library allows to so much freedom when it comes to buying books. I'm going to talk about picture book illustrators and authors today.

10 Picture Book Authors and Illustrators:

Ryan T Higgins
Peter H Reynolds
Vashti Harrison
Kate Messner
Ame Dyckman
Lauren Castillo
Amy Hest
Josh Funk
Susan Verde
LeUyen Pham

Monday, July 15, 2019

Graphic Novel Review: Bloom


Ari wants to move to the city with his band to see if they can make it. His father won't let him leave the family bakery. It's struggling and he needs Ari's help. Ari hates working at the bakery. He's desperate to find someone to take his place so he can live out his dream. Ari finds Hector who loves baking. But the more time he spends with Hector the more he doesn't want to leave.

My Thoughts: I loved this graphic novel - for the romance and for the bakery. I loved watching Hector and Ari develop a friendship and then something more. I loved their moments in the bakery. I love how they worked together. 

Reading Recommendation: Read this one if you liked Check, Please.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

On Your Radar: Truly Madly Royally (26)

Title: Truly Madly Royally 
Author: Debbie Rigaud
Publisher: Scholastic
Release Date: July 30, 2019

Truly Madly RoyallyWhy It Should Be On Your Radar:
* Summer Romance
* A Prince
* Zora's after school program
* The kids in the after school program
* Taking college classes in high school
* Taco Tuesdays
* Banter between Zora and the Prince
* Men in Black
* Being True to Yourself
* Interracial Couple
* Stolen Moments on Campus
* Meghan Markle inspired

** I adore royal romances, so this was a must read for me. And it was everything I wanted it to be.

Cover Thoughts: Amazing. Captured the feel of the book completely

Library Recommendation: A must have for school and public libraries.

Friday, July 12, 2019

Review: Call It What You Want To

Call It What You WantWhen Maegan and Rob are forced to pair up for a school assignment, both of them wish they could back out. Both of them are social outcasts - Maegan because she was caught cheating on the SATs and Rob because his father's a criminal. Many people think he helped his father steal money - or at the very least he knew about it.

With nothing left to lose, they start talking. And it helps. But they both still have secrets, secrets that could ruin this delicate friendship.

My Thoughts: I love all her books, and this one was hard to put down. I loved seeing a relationship bloom between the cop's daughter and the criminal's son. I liked unraveling the family secrets. I loved how Maegan and her sister became close - how they broke down the walls of secrets. My heart broke for both Maegan and Rob and for all they were going through. I loved Owen. I'd love to see him in a future book as the main character. I really liked the big question of this book - the question about mistakes and doing some wrong for the right reasons. 

Cover Thoughts: Cute
Source: ARC sent for review
Library Recommendation: Grab this one for your library. 

Thursday, July 11, 2019

Blog Tour: Milady

She was the greatest nemesis of d'Artagnan and the Three Musketeers--but Milady de Winter was so much more than just a villain in their swashbuckling adventures.
I've gone by many names though you know me as Milady de Winter: Villainess, seductress, a secondary player in The Three Musketeers story.

But we all know history was written by men, and they so often get things wrong.

So before you cast judgment, let me tell you of how a girl from the countryside became the most feared woman in all of Europe. A target for antipathy, a name whispered in fear or loathing.

I don't need you to like me. I just need to be free.

It's finally time I tell my own story. The truth isn't tidy or convenient, but it's certainly more interesting. - Summary from the publisher

My Thoughts: Confession: I've never read The Three Musketeers and now I think I might have to. I like the idea of taking a villain and sharing his/her/their story. I enjoyed learning how Milady because skilled at seducing men, manipulating people, and her thought process. Sure she made terrible choices with terrible consequences, but the people around her served her terribly too. She's cunning and clever and not a damsel in distress. She's willing to take matters into her own hands and make the hard choices. A very interesting read.

Cover Thoughts: Gorgeous
Source: Book sent for review

Wednesday, July 10, 2019

Picture Book Review: Elbert

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Elbert is a curious bear, but he's supposed to march with everyone else. His curiosity makes it impossible for him. He leaves to explore the world - hoping that his questions will finally be answered and he can come home and conform.

A fantastic picture book for those always asking about the world. Why? Why? Why? Elbert is different. He questions everything. The illustrations are great and the message is sweet.  A wonderful picture book to share together.

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: Book Characters I'd Like to Befriend

This week's topic is Book Characters I'd Like to Befriend - and while we all have our favorites, here are book characters that I'd love to be friends with - from books I've read this year. 

The Good Ones by Jenn McKinlay
I want to be part of the secret society - and also hang out at the romance bookstore 

Another One Bites the Crust by Ellie Alexander
Jules from the bakeshop mystery series - not to solve the murder, but to hang out in the bakery

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
The snark would keep me laughing so hard with this group of friends

The Queen's Secret by Jessica Day George
I'd like to be part of the Queen's lady spies

The Lovely and the Lost by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
I'd like to be part of the rescue team
Some Like It Scandalous by Maya Rodale
I'd love to be friends with Daisy and her secret society of ladies

The Rest of the Story by Sarah Dessen
I'd love to be friends with all the cousins

The Secret Cookie Club by Martha Freeman
I'd love to be part of a friend group that bakes each other cookies!

Just One of the Groomsmen by Cindi Madsen
I love this group of friends - who love football and playing poker and just hanging out together.

Truly Madly Royally by Debbie Rigaud
I love Zora and her big heart. I'd love to be her friend.

Monday, July 8, 2019

Review: Courting Darkness

Courting Darkness (Courting Darkness Duology, #1)
* First in a duology following the Grave Mercy trilogy *
Sybella has always been the darkest of Death’s daughters, trained at the convent of Saint Mortain to serve as his justice. But she has a new mission now. In a desperate bid to keep her two youngest sisters safe from the family that nearly destroyed them all, she agrees to accompany the duchess to France, where they quickly find themselves surrounded by enemies. Their one ray of hope is Sybella’s fellow novitiates, disguised and hidden deep in the French court years ago by the convent—provided Sybella can find them.

Genevieve has been undercover for so many years, she struggles to remember who she is or what she’s supposed to be fighting for. Her only solace is a hidden prisoner who appears all but forgotten by his guards. When tragedy strikes, she has no choice but to take matters into her own hands—even if it means ignoring the long awaited orders from the convent.

As Sybella and Gen’s paths draw ever closer, the fate of everything they hold sacred rests on a knife’s edge. Will they find each other in time, or will their worlds collide, destroying everything they care about? - summary from the publisher

My Thoughts: I have been waiting for this book since it was announced - because I Loved the trilogy. And I so enjoyed this book. I loved being back in this world and with these characters. I loved watching the Duchess try to find her footing in the new household while maintaining her independence. I loved watching Sybella verbally battle with the Regent. I liked Sybella's moments with her sisters and how she tried so hard to protect them. I enjoyed getting to know Genevieve. I'm curious to see where her storyline will lead. With so much danger and plot twists, I couldn't put this book down. I can't wait to see what happens next! 

Cover Thoughts: It's lovely, but I do prefer the old covers
Source: ARC sent for review
Library Recommendations: A must have for your YA collection.

Saturday, July 6, 2019

If You Like: Movies and Book Recommendations

I'm doing a new twist today on my If You Like Posts. Instead of more book recommendations, I'm pairing up books and movies. Hope you like it.

Truly Madly Royally by Debbie Rigaud


Friday, July 5, 2019

Graphic Novel Review: Click


Olivia's excited to hear about the talent show her 5th grade class is putting on - until she discovers that all of her groups of friends have come up with their own ideas. No one asked her to be part of a group. Suddenly being friends with everyone seems a lot har
der when you don't have a best friend. Luckily Oliva's aunt has an idea that might solve her problem.
My Thoughts: I really enjoyed this graphic novel. I loved Olivia and felt terrible for her when she felt left out. I loved the solution and how everything worked out for her. I enjoyed her family - from their support to their playfulness with each other. Fun story and great illustrations. Looking forward to Camp.

Cover Thoughts: Great - love the spotlight
Source: My library
Library Recommendation: A must have for your school and public libraries - perfect for fans of Raina Telgemeier

Thursday, July 4, 2019

Happy Treason Day

Go out and make some good trouble: volunteer, donate to a campaign, do something that makes the world a better place.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Picture Book Review: Charlotte the Scientist Finds a Cure

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The animals of the forest are sick - and Charlotte's determined to help figure out the cause. But when the other scientists don't take her seriously, she begins to work on her own.

A second book in the Charlotte the Scientist series, which goes through the scientific method. Charlotte doesn't give him, she's determined to uncover the mystery. And she does. An empowering feminist stem story about a scientist who refused to back down.

A must have book for your school and public libraries. 

Tuesday, July 2, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: Childhood Favorites

This week's topic is Childhood Favorites. I've already talked about several books I loved from my childhood - here's a Top Ten Post and here's my Reading History but there are some books (of course) that I haven't talked about - so here they are.



 So many fond memories of these books:
All for Fall
B is for Betsy
Miss Nelson is Missing
Pooh's School House
Cranberry Christmas
Little Women
Story of Holly and Ivy
Runaway Sleigh Ride

Monday, July 1, 2019

Review: Live and Let Pie

Live and Let Pie (A Bakeshop Mystery, #9)

* Book 9 in the Bakeshop Mystery series *

Jules is still struggling with the renovations for her new addition to the bakery when she witnesses two girls discover an old skull at the lake. This discovery opens a cold missing persons case form the 1960s. The case has connection with several older folks in town - one of which is murdered.

Now Jules can't rest until she helps uncover the truth. The town's gossiping about the victim's plot of land and which group he was going to sell it too. With multiple groups wanting the land, the suspect pool is large. Can Jules help the town once again?
My Thoughts: Another enjoyable read in this mouth-watering series. I loved learning more about the renovation, the town's history, and plans for the future. I'm so curious as to what comes next for Jules and her family. There were some very sweet moments in this book - with Jules and the Professor. I liked the additions to the Torte team. So looking forward to the next book in the series! 

Cover Thoughts: Delicious
Source: My Library
Library Recommendation: If you don't have this series already in you're mystery section, you and your patrons are missing out!

Up Next: A holiday one!

A Cup of Holiday Fear (A Bakeshop Mystery, #10)

Friday, June 28, 2019

Review: Secret Cookie Club

The Secret Cookie Club

The four girls at summer camp don't get along until one night their counselor gets special permission for them to bake cookies together. They have so much fun making cookies and throughout the rest of the summer.

On the last day of camp, they're sad to leave one another. But they promise they will each mail off cookies to their new friends. Cookies that might make their troubles disappear...
My Thoughts: A sweet friendship story that's filled with drama and cookies. The book follows each other four girls as they each had trouble with friends, family, or school. A little note from a friend goes a long way. I loved how different the girls were from each other, but how they grew to become friends. I'm so looking forward to the next book in this series. And of course, I wanted to bake cookies and eat them after reading this one! 

Cover Thoughts:
Source: My library
Library Recommendation: Grab this one for your school and public libraries

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Review: Match Me if You Can

Match Me If You Can

Mia's friend Robyn has matchmaking skills, but she refuses to set Mia up with Vince. She knows they are not right for each other. But Mia refuses to believe that. She sneaks an email from Robyn's address to her crush.

Vince asks Mia out, causing a whole lot of problems in a domino effect:
Robyn finds out and becomes mad at Mia.
Robyn had another boy in mind for Mia.
That other boy is causing Mia to rethink everything...
My Thoughts: I enjoyed this book even though the bonds of friendship weren't as strong as I wanted them to be. Romance and high school is so hard. I really liked the newspaper and photography aspects of the story. I really liked the dates. As the reader, you can tell who's perfect for each other, even when the characters haven't figured it out yet. A strong debut that leaves me looking forward to Tiana Smith's next book.

Cover Thoughts: Cute
Source: My Library
Library Recommendation: Grab this one for your school and public libraries.

Wednesday, June 26, 2019

Picture Book Review: Madeline Finn and the Shelter Dog


When Madeline Finn visits the shelter with her librarian friend, she sees dogs in need of love. Since she just got  a puppy herself, she can't adopt a dog. Maybe she can help the dogs find their forever home.

A wonderful story that tugged at my heartstrings and made me hug my two rescued pups. It's a story ripped form the headlines where kids go into shelters and read to the animals. It's a sweet wonderful message to share with wonderful illustrations. I can't wait to read more Madeline Finn books.

The only thing I wished for - was an afterwards to talk about how the reader can help.

Library Recommendations: Grab this one for your school and public libraries.

Tuesday, June 25, 2019

Top Ten Tuesday: Summer TBR

This week's topic is summer TBR - normally I have a huge list for this one, but we just did the 2nd half of the year and I added another romance list. So, this list is going to be for those BEA books that I picked up and can't wait to read, but also have to read this summer because they will be in our prize packs for the summer reading finale in August. Sometimes, it's nice having a deadline for reading...

Bruce's Big Fun Day (World of Reading Level 1)HopeThe Paris ProjectThe Library of Lost ThingsSwipe Right for Murder
GutsMooncakesStargazingSunny Rolls the DiceAli Cross

Monday, June 24, 2019

Review: Good Enough

Good Enough

Riley's just been admitted to a recovery center for teens with eating disorders. Riley doesn't think she needs to be there. She certainly hates being told when to eat and how much to eat. If she eats too much, she'll gain weight. Gaining weight will make her slower in track. She can't afford to be slower. Riley does hate that everyone's mad at her. No one understands.
My Thoughts: It's hard to say I really liked this book because of the subject matter, but wow, was this book powerful. I didn't want to put it down. I loved how the book was Riley's journal and she detailed her moments in the recovery center - both the good and the bad. It was fascinating to read about her thought process and her understanding of events. I didn't like Riley's parents, but I did love her sister. 

The message about being good enough strikes a chord. We all have flaws; we all wish we were better at something. I'm so guilty of this. I need to be better at owning my skills and using them to the best of my ability. 

Jen Petro-Roy didn't pull any punches, because eat disorders aren't cured, they're managed. But the book ends with hope. 

Clearly this is an important topic that needs to be discussed openly. Our society values ideals that aren't realistic and are harmful, especially for girls and women. The author's note and resources will help readers. 

Cover Thoughts: Not a huge fan, but I understand it better after reading
Source: My Library
Library Recommendation: A must have for both school and public libraries

Saturday, June 22, 2019

Pride Picture Book: Sewing the Rainbow

Sewing the Rainbow: The Story of Gilbert Baker and the Rainbow Flag

Gilbert Baker was born to sparkle, but his parents didn't understand him. He wanted to surround himself with a world filled with color and joy. As an adult, he created the world he imagined. And he spread that job - especially with the rainbow flag he and his friends created together. 

A really great introduction to Pride Month for several reasons. I love how happy he was when he could become himself and how he worked to spread that joy. A reader's note follows the story that gives a little bit more explanation.