29 December 2010

Arch Enemy

The final book in The Looking Glass Wars Trilogy.

The Heart Crystal is slow to repair itself in the aftermath of WILMA's destruction.  Arch, king of Borderland, sees this as the perfect opportunity to place a King on Wonderland's throne rather than some silly female.  With the House of Clubs fighting against Alyss, she is assaulted on all sides, and without her imagination she must resort to desperate measures.  First being locked up in one of the imagination coops of the Club family, to escape, to making an alliance with Redd, Alyss must cross boundaries and learn to trust herself.  Even when she finds herself stranded on Earth, with the help of faith, love, and trust, Alyss will rise and release the Everqueen.

Genre: Fantasy
Grade Level: 7-12
Pages: 370

This series has really brought to life a classic.  A powerful story of the power of imagination, whether for good or ill, imagination and the life it brings to all of us is worth fighting for!

More Art From the Books:
Bibwit, Alyss's tutor (and according to the books, Lewis Carroll's inspiration for the White Rabbit)

The Blue Caterpillar, the Oracles of Wonderland.  Oracles come in a multitude of colors in the book, but Blue is the one that appears to Alyss.
Spade Soldier

Diamond Soldier

Heart Soldier


Club Soldier
Dodge Anders, the love of Alyss Heart's life

Millinery, training center for Wonderland's elite bodygaurd/soldier force.  Where Hatter Madigen learned his skills.

26 December 2010

Seeing Redd

Seeing Redd is the second book in the Looking Glass Trilogy.

It has only been a couple of months since Alyss's nasty Aunt threw herself into the Heart Crystal.  Through the imagination of an artist on "earth", she has been reborn into reality and is determined to return to Wonderland and take back what she believes was taken from her.  She meets many exWonderlanders in the real world, people displaced and determined to follow the wicked queen.  Her assault on Wonderland is fast and destructive.  Alyss must court loss to ensure what victory can be achieved when Redd is in your world.

Genre: Fantasy
Grade Level: 7-12

Alyss and Dodge run through the Everlasting Forest

The Cat.  Nine lives in which to kill all he can and do Redd's bidding.

Redd Heart.  She makes that "bloody Red Queen" look like a creme puff.

22 December 2010

The Looking Glass Wars

 Book 1 in The Looking Glass Wars Series.

In Wonderland imagination becomes reality.  For 7 year old Alyss, imagining is like breathing.  Then her wicked Aunt Redd storms the castle, killing her mother, and forcing Alyss to flee Wonderland for the world up above.  In Oxford, England, imagination is poison.  The world soon stamps it out of Alyss, and the only way to live, is to imagine it all away.  That is until her Aunt Redd comes for her again.  Forced back into Wonderland, Alyss must rediscover the girl she was, and find the confidence to imagine a better world for Wonderland.

Artfully written.  It's a wonderful addition to a time old classic.

Genre: Fantasy
Grade Level: 5-9
Pages: 358

Some more visuals from the book.

Redd's Card Soldiers

Hatter Madigan--Think Mad Hatter with a whole lot of knives.

Queen Alyss Heart, all grown up.



19 December 2010

The Ring of Solomon

Bartimaeus is a djinni of sarcastic tongue and annoying conscience.  Solomon holds a ring of immense power.  To his court has come many magicians, who historically have been more interested in killing one another than coming together, but fear of the ring does bring them together.  Together is not how they would like to stay.  Through the scheming of on particularly nasty magician, Khaba, Sheba is threatened in Solomon's name.  The Queen of Sheba gives to Asmira the task of killing Solomon and getting the ring.  Asmira through her devotion to the Queen, sets out in her task.  When Asmira and Bartimaeus's lives meet, the story really gets exciting.  Will slaves rise against their masters? Will Jerusalem still stand?  Will Solomon awake?

This is a great story and a wonderful addition to the Bartimeaus trilogy. 

Genre: Fantasy
Grade Level: 10 + (I place this one higher, because the author uses footnotes throughout the storyline. It's a great addition to the whole story, but may be harder for younger readers to follow)
Pages: 398

14 December 2010

Reckless

"Once upon a time, there was a boy who set out to learn the meaning of fear."
When their father disappeared, it destroyed Jacob and Will's whole world.  Jacob in his recklessness, discovers a magic mirror and the world beyond. He runs away from his fear into a far more savage world, and manages to protect it for 12 years, until Will follows him through.  One mistake, that would define a journey of brother love and the what the pain of loss and fear can do to someone.  Will is turning to stone, and Jacob must find the cure.  It will cost him pain, remembrance, love, life, but no matter what it costs, Jacob will save his brother.

Genre: Fantasy
Grade Level: 3-7
Pages: 394

12 December 2010

The Heroes of Olympus: The Lost Hero, Book 1

From the author of Percy Jackson!!

Percy Jackson is missing. . .
Jason wakes up on a bus, holding hands with a lovely girl, and absolutely no idea who he is.  Leo and Piper say they are his best friends. They arrive at the Grand Canyon with the class, only to be attacked by storm spirits.  Rescue comes, and off to Campy Half-Blood they go.  Jason feels nothing but anxiety.  Who is he? Where did he come from?  Why does he think in Roman instead of Greek?  Why does Chiron claim he should be dead?  The Camp learns that a greater evil is stirring, Gaea.  Hera/Juno has been captured and her essence is being used to give rise again to the giant king, Porphyrion.  The GREAT prophecy is beginning, and seven must unite.  Three are found in Jason, Piper, and Leo and together they go on a quest to rescue Hera.  Jason is a bridge and Piper the key to the other four. . .

Looking forward to this series continuing!!

Genre:  Mythology Fantasy
Grade Level: 4-9
Pages: 557

09 December 2010

The First Christmas

\Considering the time of year I thought this was a good choice for my nonfiction book this month. Along with my goal of a certain amount of pages a year, I thought it would be nice to read at least one nonfiction book a month.  I am aware that doing so is going to significantly impact the amount I actually read in pages, because it simply takes me forever to read a nonfiction book.  It takes far more concentration on my part to read and with four kids yelling at me all the time, that is indeed a challenge. 

Borg and Crossan look at the birth stories of Jesus from the New Testament to get to the heart of what these stories mean mainly from the prospective of when they were written, but they do go into what it means for present day Christians and also for the future.  It is very obvious that the authors are Christian.  They search for the "TRUTH" while acknowledging that the stories are not "FACT."  They point out that as post-enlightenment creatures, it is difficult for peoples today to see the difference in those two words.  Too many believe that if it isn't fact than it is not true, so even among Christians if you say the story of Christ's birth is not factually correct in the Bible then they take that to mean it can't be true.  I do not agree with the idea that Christ is the only way to enlightenment, but I can really appreciate the fact that truth can be truth without fact.  A story can be truth, it can bring about a change in us that makes us better people; it can even teach faith facts without being historically fact. 

Genre: Religious Non Fiction
Grade Level:  Adult
Pages: 258

01 December 2010

The High King's Tomb

Book 3 in the Green Rider Series.

As all of Sacoridia prepares for the threat without, the threat within grows strong.  Second Empire seeks the means to destroy the wall; a book of an ancient mage.  Karigan and Fergal head out on a "normal" message errand, to gather information.  However, when the two inevitable merge, Karigan must again face death and learn to Ride. 

I've really enjoyed this series so far.  This was by far my favorite.  With each book Britain only gets better.  I thoroughly look forward to reading the newest installment to be released in 2011.

Genre:  Fantasy
Grade Level: 9-12
Pages: 643

November Books 2010

Of Numbers and Stars: The Story of Hypatia    32
Author: D. Anne Love                                         

Remember Little Bighorn: Indians, Soldiers, and Scouts Tell Their Stories     61
Author: Paul Robert Walker

Cat and Rat     32
Author: Ed Young

Silver Dragon Codex     240
Gold Dragon Codex     245
Author:  R.D. Henham

Ranger's Apprentice: Halt's Peril; Book 9     386
Author: John Flanagan

The Last Apprentice: Rise of the Huntress; Book 7     436
Author: Joseph Delany

Under the Banner of Heaven: A Story of Violent Faith     399
Author: Jon Krakauer

The Chronicles of the Imaginarium Geographica: The Dragon's Apprentice; Book 5     376
Author: James A. Owen

Green Rider     450
First Rider's Call; Book 2     639
Author: Kristin Britain

Captain Underpants and the Perilous Plot of Professor Poopypants     153
Author: Dav Pilkey

November 2010 Total:     3,449
2010 Total:     44,439

***As always, if you have any questions regarding anything I've read, just give me a holler.  And you are always welcome to leave suggestions.  Happy Reading.