Review! Spy School Goes South

Author: Stuart Gibbs

352 Pages

Published by: Simon Schuster Books for Young Readers

Summary:

Thirteen-year-old Ben Ripley has been caught in the snares of SPYDER more than once and knows well enough to be suspicious of anything that seems too good to be true—despite needing special tutoring in advanced survival techniques. So when Murray Hill finally breaks his silence with an offer to hand over the SPYDER elite, Ben knows that there must be something going on. But his hesitation doesn’t stop the assignment.

The Mission: Follow Murray Hill to an undisclosed location with no one else but Erica Hale to identify SPYDER leadership. Once found, contact the CIA to sweep in and finish the job. DO NOT CONTACT SPYDER DIRECTLY.

However, as Ben suspected, nothing goes as planned, and what should be an easy mission quickly turns deadly. Now, Ben and Erica will have to face rogue agents, trained killers, and even very hungry crocodiles in a race against the clock to find out what SPYDER is up to this time—and thwart their evil plans.

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Reading Update February 2019

I have not been very good at keeping up with posts on this website lately. I have all sorts of reason prepared, but frankly they are all just excuses.

So I decided to write a small update on what I’ve been reading recently.

I started reading The Killing Game by Iris Johansen and The Magic Misfits by Neil Patrick Harris. Two surprisingly different books. The only reason I started The Killing Game is because it was recommended to me by a friend’s mother, who is an avid reader. I’m not very far in the story, only about two chapters in, but so far it’s interesting. I am having a little bit of trouble keeping up with the characters and which character is talking during some of the dialogue, but overall I am sort of following the story line. To be honest, I thought the book would hook me in more by now (like The Cinderella Murder) but I’m sure eventually I’ll get into it (at least I’m hoping).

Honestly, The Magic Misfits caught my eye when it first came out due to it’s title, colorful cover, and interesting book summary. Then I realized that it was written by Neil Patrick Harris and I got even more excited. Neil Patrick Harris is hilarious so I was betting his book would be just as funny. When I first started reading it I kept looking for his voice within the text, but I just couldn’t find it. At first I was disappointed, but now I’m just enjoying the story. So far I like it and I’m excited to see where it goes.

There is a third book that I’m slowly trying to make my way through. It’s called The Truth Cookie. Admittedly, I don’t like this book at all. I think it’s boring and I don’t like Lulu. But it’s not too long and I don’t want to judge it without finishing it, so I’m determined to make my way through it.

Review! The Wurst is Yet to Come (Bed and Breakfast Mysteries #27)

Author: Mary Daheim

304 Pages

Published by: HarperLuxe on July 3, 2012

Summary (from amazon.com):

The charming Hillside Manor is the perfect B&B for a few days of R&R. Okay, so it also features the occasional corpse or two. But is a small body count really any reason for the state to yank Judith McMonigle Flynn’s innkeeper’s license? Exhausted from answering the nosy critics from the state B&B association, Judith needs a change of scenery. Volunteering to help out at the State B&B booth during Oktoberfest is just the opportunity she’s looking for. But before the beer begins flowing, Judith finds a dead body.

Unfortunately, Judith’s reputation has preceded her, and the local police chief wants her help. So Judith hits on a brilliant idea: Her cousin Renie will pose as the sleuth. Now, what could possibly go wrong?

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Review! The Mystery of the Painted Dragon (Sinclair Mysteries #3)

Author: Katherine Woodfine

339 Pages

Published by: Egmont Books Ltd on 09 February 2017

Summary (goodreads.com):

When a priceless painting is stolen, our dauntless heroines Sophie and Lil find themselves faced with forgery, trickery and deceit on all sides!

Be amazed as the brave duo pit their wits against this perilous puzzle! Marvel at their cunning plan to unmask the villain and prove themselves detectives to be reckoned with – no matter what dangers lie ahead . . .

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Review! Sleeping Giants (The Themis Files #1)

Author: Sylvain Neuvel

336 Pages

Published by: Del Rey on April 26, 2016

Summary (from amazon.com):

A girl named Rose is riding her new bike near her home in Deadwood, South Dakota, when she falls through the earth. She wakes up at the bottom of a square hole, its walls glowing with intricate carvings. But the firemen who come to save her peer down upon something even stranger: a little girl in the palm of a giant metal hand.

Seventeen years later, the mystery of the bizarre artifact remains unsolved—its origins, architects, and purpose unknown. Its carbon dating defies belief; military reports are redacted; theories are floated, then rejected.

But some can never stop searching for answers.

Rose Franklin is now a highly trained physicist leading a top secret team to crack the hand’s code. And along with her colleagues, she is being interviewed by a nameless interrogator whose power and purview are as enigmatic as the provenance of the relic. What’s clear is that Rose and her compatriots are on the edge of unraveling history’s most perplexing discovery—and figuring out what it portends for humanity. But once the pieces of the puzzle are in place, will the result prove to be an instrument of lasting peace or a weapon of mass destruction?
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Review! Wilma Tenderfoot and the Case of the Frozen Heart (Wilma Tenderfoot #1)

Author: Emma Kennedy

335 Pages–Ages 8-12

Published by: Dial Books by 15 September 2011

Summary (goodreads.com):

Wilma Tenderfoot, a tiny, brash, and determined ten-year-old orphan, dreams of becoming a worldfamous detective so she can find out who her parents are. Wilma discovers that her new next-door neighbor is the renowned detective Theodore P. Goodman, and he has a new case. Wilma is set on becoming Mr. Goodman’s apprentice, so with the help of her beagle, Pickle, she makes deductions, follows leads, and scouts out suspects. She’s sure she’ll win the famous detective over and crack the case, as soon as Pickle stops eating the clues.

With wicked humor, dastardly villains, red herrings, and a setting that would make Sherlock Holmes proud, this mystery is just like Wilma-funny, feisty, cheeky, and charming.

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Review! Howard Wallace PI (Howard Wallace #1)

Author: Casey Lyall

272 Pages–Ages 8-12

Published by: Sterling Children’s Books on 06 September 2016

Summary (goodreads.com):

“What’s with the get-up? Is that the company uniform or something?”
“This? All P.I.s wear a trench coat.”
“Dude, that’s a brown bathrobe.”
I shrugged and straightened out my sleeves. “First rule of private investigation, Ivy: work with what you’ve got.”

Twelve-year-old Howard Wallace lives by his list of rules of private investigation. He knows more than anyone how to work with what he’s got: a bathrobe for a trench coat, a makeshift office behind the school equipment shed, and not much else—least of all, friends. So when a hot case of blackmail lands on his desk, he’s ready to take it on himself . . . until the new kid, Ivy Mason, convinces him to take her on as a junior partner. As they banter through stakeouts and narrow down their list of suspects, Howard starts to wonder if having Ivy as a sidekick—and a friend—is such a bad thing after all.

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Review! Love, Ish

Author: Karen Rivers

288 Pages–Ages 9-13

Published by: Algonquin Young Readers on 14 March 2017

Summary (goodreads.com):

Things Mischa “Ish” Love will miss when she goes to Mars: lying on the living room floor watching TV, ice cream, her parrot Buzz Aldrin. Things Ish Love will not miss when she goes to Mars: mosquitoes, heat waves, missing her former best friend Tig.

Ish is convinced that she’ll be one of the first settlers on Mars. She’s applied to—and been rejected from—the Mars Now project forty-seven times, but the mission won’t leave for ten years and Ish hasn’t given up hope. She also hasn’t given up hope that Tig will be her best friend again (not that she’d ever admit that to anyone, least of all herself). When Ish collapses on the first day of seventh grade, she gets a diagnosis that threatens all her future plans. As Ish fights cancer, she dreams in vivid detail about the Martian adventures she’s always known she’d have—and makes unexpected discoveries about love, fate, and her place in the vast universe.

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Review! The Ugly Princess and the Wise Fool

Author:  Margaret Gray, Randy Cecil (Illustartor)

176 Pages–5-10 years

Published by: Henry Holt and Co. on 01 October 2002

Summary (goodreads.com):

“A very long time ago, when all the countries you’ve ever heard of were in different places on the map, a princess was born who was not beautiful. She wasn’t even remotely pretty, and the whole kingdom was in deep shock about it.”

Princess Rose doesn’t get any prettier as she grows up, but the kingdom does get over its shock. Everyone adores the skinny, buck-toothed princess, and she doesn’t mind her appearance—until the handsomest prince in the world comes looking for a bride. Despite warnings from her seafaring fairy godmother and a wise fool named Jasper, reckless Rose wishes for beauty. She gets her wish, and the prince, but finds neither is as nice as she had expected.

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Summer 2018 Ending Thoughts

The summer officially ends in 2 days, on September 22, 2018 so I decided to post my Summer 2018 ending summary.

I ended up not being able to finish my 20 books this summer. The original list was:

  1. The Wurst is Yet to Come
  2. Engaging Father Christmas
  3. Pippi Longstocking
  4. Children of the Lamp: The Blue Djinn of Babylon
  5. The Genius Files: Never Say Genius
  6. Wilma Tenderfoot: The Case of the Frozen Hearts
  7. It’s Raining Cupcakes
  8. Murder on the Links
  9. Class Dismissed
  10. The Sinclair Mysteries: The Painted Dragon
  11. Draw Blood
  12. Blood Dawn
  13. Airman
  14. The Book Scavenger: The Alcatraz Escape
  15. BOB
  16. Fairy Tale Reform School: Charmed
  17. Fairy Tale Reform School: Tricked
  18. Fairy Tale Reform School: Switched
  19. Descendants: Rise of the Isle of the Lost
  20. Archie Greene and the Magician’s Secret

I only managed to finish 11 of these books. That’s not to say I didn’t read 20 books, there were just a couple I read that weren’t originally on this list.

Oh, and my plan to clear out my bookshelf totally backfired. I ended up going to my library’s summer sale where I bought like 4 books. Then my local used bookshop ended up having their end of the summer sale which was buy one get one free on everything! As you can imagine, I bought so so so SO many books. So now I had to clear out some space just to store all these new books.

The other books I ended up reading this summer were:

  1. Hermes and the Horse with Wings (Heroes in Training #13)
  2. Chocolate Fever
  3. Perseus and the Monstrous Medusa (Heroes in Training #12)
  4. Wild Card (Dresden Files Graphic Novels #6)
  5. Dionysus and the Land of Beasts (Heroes in Training #14)
  6. Samantha and the Missing Pearls (American Girls Short Stories #17)
  7. Samantha’s Short Story Collection
  8. I am Mordred
  9. The Report Card
  10. Posted
  11. The Arctic Incident (Artemis Fowl #2)
  12. Murder in Retrospect (Hercule Poirot #25)
  13. Sage and the Journey to Wishworld (Star Darlings #1)
  14. The Princess Imposter
  15. Restart
  16. Schooled
  17. Sugar and Spice (Confectionery Yours #3)
  18. Flipped

So, while I didn’t finish all of the 20 books I initially set out to read I ended up reading 29 books! Which, overall, is more than my initial goal of 20. So I’ll take this as a half way win.

In the end I didn’t really meet my goals, but I still think it was a fun try anyway.