Tag Archives: mystery

Book Review: The Sign of (the) Four by Arthur Conan Doyle

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The Sign of the Four by Arthur Conan Doyle Recommended Ages: 12+ The second book of the Sherlock Holmes canon was first published in 1890 under the five-word title The Sign of the Four. Since then, it has often been republished under the four-word title The Sign of Four. The confusion actually originates in the book itself, in which both phrases are used interchangeably. Although Holmes did not really become a hit until Conan Doyle ... Read More »

Book Review: A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle

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A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle Recommended Ages: 12+ When detective fiction was still in its infancy, in the year 1887, this novel first appeared in an issue of Beeton’s Christmas Annual. Just imagine: it was the first anyone had ever heard of Sherlock Holmes! Then a young physician, just starting to stretch his literary muscles, Arthur Conan Doyle here created a character who has become one of the most enduring figures in ... Read More »

The Life and Lies of Albus Dumbledore

Since the beginning of time (and by time, I mean Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone), I’ve always thought of Dumbledore as not only wise beyond his many, many… many… years, but as someone who was in a sense “ethically and morally superior”. He was the Wizard who could do no wrong; he was a role model, in particular to Harry, and as Headmaster of Hogwarts I had assumed a certain level of credibility attached to his name, at least to some degree. But as we continued to read on through the books and as the final pieces of the story fell into their rightful place, I found myself feeling a bit unsure of exactly where Dumbledore stood in my lineup of favorites. I mean, who was Dumbledore, really? Read More »

Welcome to the Restricted Section

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Books have always been a huge focal point in the Harry Potter series, and this is something that I both love and attribute to J.K. Rowling’s love of them herself. Throughout the series, we’re introduced to a number of different types of books and constantly reminded of their importance; from the book that almost ate Neville (think Prisoner of Azkaban, Care of Magical Creatures class) to Tom Riddle’s Diary to Severus’ copy of Advanced Potion-Making (Half-blood Prince) to even the Tale of Three Brothers, we are truly shown the importance of books and the information they hold. That being said, there’s one set of books that I think has been purposefully left a mystery; and that is the Restricted Section. Read More »

Book Review: Necromancing the Stone by Lish McBride

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Necromancing the Stone by Lish McBride Recommended Ages: 14+ In this sequel to Hold Me Closer, Necromancer, college dropout, ex-fry cook, late-blooming necromancer Sam LaCroix begins to make sense of his long hidden powers, his network of strange and dangerous allies, his steamy relationship with the Alpha female of a werewolf pack, and the huge fortune left to him by the villain he recently vanquished. But he’d better hurry. More challenges are coming at him, ... Read More »

Book Review: Fat Vampire by Adam Rex

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Fat Vampire: A Never Coming of Age Story by Adam Rex Recommended Ages: 14+ From the author of The True Meaning of Smekday comes this lyrical, funny story about a fifteen-year-old loser who has just started trying to lose weight when someone bites him, and he becomes a vampire. Forever fat and fifteen in Philadelphia would be depressing enough. But when Doug Lee tries to take control of his unlife, tries to mold himself into ... Read More »

Book Review: The Crimson Crown by Cinda Williams Chima

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The Crimson Crown by Cinda Williams Chima Recommended Ages: 14+ Book Four of the Seven Realms series brings Han Alister, Raisa, and the Queendom of the Fells to the crisis of their age. And—just think of it—their age is scarcely eighteen! Readers around that age will be especially thrilled by the political intrigues, the deadly dangers, the perplexing mysteries, and the turbulent romance that swirl around these two main characters. He is a former street ... Read More »

Book Review: Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta

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Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta Recommended Ages: 14+ The Australian author of Jellicoe Road has dealt with many issues facing today’s young adults: loneliness, depression, grief, single pregnancy, suicide, racism, family and school problems galore. Then she turned toward writing YA fantasy, and the “Lumatere Chronicles” is the result. In this first book of the trilogy, we are introduced to a gripping, romantic fantasy about sexy young people riding horses, sailing ships, and ... Read More »

Book Review: Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan

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Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan Recommended Ages: 14+ Book 1 of “The Lynburn Legacy” introduces us to Kami Glass, a teenaged girl of mixed Japanese and English ancestry who lives in the Cotswolds village of Sorry-in-the-Vale. Since she was a baby, Kami has had an imaginary friend named Jared who talks to her in her head, telling her all about his make-believe life in America. Even into high school she continues to converse with this ... Read More »

Book Review: Blameless by Gail Carriger

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Blameless by Gail Carriger Recommended Ages: 16+ In Book 3 of “The Parasol Protectorate,” Lady Maccon, a.k.a. La Diva Tarabotti, is forced to flee England by the scandal of her pregnancy, which no one seems to believe could be the result of her marital relations with Lord Maccon, Alpha werewolf of the Woolsey Pack. Seriously, nobody can find any precedent for a werewolf reproducing except via bite. And though His Lordship is good at that, ... Read More »