Tag Archives: magical realism

Book Title:
The November Girl
Book Author:
Lydia Kang
Page Count:
340
Publishing Date:
November 7th, 2017
Publisher:
Entangled Teen
Date Read:
November 11th, 2017
Source:
I received a copy from the publisher - Thank you!

Synopsis

I am Anda, and the lake is my mother. I am the November storms that terrify sailors and sink ships. With their deaths, I keep my little island on Lake Superior alive.

Hector has come here to hide from his family until he turns eighteen. Isle Royale is shut down for the winter, and there's no one here but me. And now him.

Hector is running from the violence in his life, but violence runs through my veins. I should send him away, to keep him safe. But I'm half human, too, and Hector makes me want to listen to my foolish, half-human heart. And if I do, I can't protect him from the storms coming for us.

My Review

When a copy of The November Girl showed up in my mailbox, I was pretty excited.  I had fallen in love with the beautiful blue cover and the synopsis was really intriguing to me, so I was really excited to … Continue reading

4 stars
3 Comments
Book Title:
Spellbook of the Lost and Found
Book Author:
Moïra Fowley-Doyle
Page Count:
368
Publishing Date:
October 20th, 2017
Publisher:
Kathy Dawson Books
Date Read:
August 22nd, 2017
Source:
I received a copy from the publisher - Thank you!

Synopsis

If you’re not careful, you can spend your whole life looking for what you’ve lost.

One stormy summer in a small Irish town, things begin to disappear. It starts with trivial stuff—hair clips, house keys, socks—but soon it escalates to bigger things: a memory, a heart, a classmate.

Olive can tell that her best friend, Rose, is different all of a sudden. Rose isn’t talking, and Olive starts to worry she’s losing her. Then diary pages written by someone named Laurel begin to appear all over town. And Olive meets three mysterious strangers: Ivy, Hazel, and her twin brother, Rowan, secretly squatting in an abandoned housing development. The trio are wild and alluring, but they seem lost too—and like Rose, they’re holding tightly to painful secrets.

When a tattered handwritten spellbook falls into the lives of these six teenagers, it changes everything. The spellbook is full of charms to conjure back that which has been lost, and it lists a part for each of them to play in the calling. It might be their best chance to set everything back to rights, but only if they’re willing to pay the price.

My Review

“If you don’t get lost, you’ll never be found.” Spellbook of the Lost and Found is one of those books that I honestly didn’t expect to find myself enjoying nearly as much as I did.  I tend to stay away … Continue reading

4.5 stars
2 Comments
Book Tour
Book Title:
Gray Wolf Island
Book Author:
Tracey Neithercott
Page Count:
336
Publishing Date:
October 10th, 2017
Publisher:
Knopf Books for Young Readers
Date Read:
October 19th, 2017
Source:
eARC from publisher via NetGalley - Thank you!

Synopsis

Right before Sadie died, she begged her sister, Ruby, to do the one thing she could never do herself: Find the treasure on Gray Wolf Island.

With just a mysterious treasure map as a guide, Ruby reluctantly allows some friends to join her on the hunt, each of whom is touched by magic: a boy allegedly born to a virgin, a girl who never sleeps, a boy who can foresee his own death, and a boy with deep ties to the island. Each of them is also keeping a secret—something they’ll have to reveal in order to reach the treasure.

As the secrets come to light, Ruby will have to decide: Can she make peace with her friends’ troubled pasts and continue to trust them? Can she forgive herself for doing the unspeakable? Deep in the wilderness of Gray Wolf Island, Ruby’s choices will determine if they make it out with the treasure—or merely with their lives.

From debut author Tracey Neithercott comes a darkly compelling tale of profound friendship, adventure, and finding the strength to tell the truth.

My Review

I went in to Gray Wolf Island not knowing too much of what it was about – I mean, I read the synopsis and all, but this was months and months ago, so when I started reading it, I didn’t … Continue reading

2 Comments
Book Title:
Immaculate
Book Author:
Katelyn Detweiler
Publishing Date:
May 26th, 2015
Publisher:
Viking Books for Young Readers
Date Read:
October 26th, 2016
Source:
Purchased

Synopsis

“Even if everyone thought I was lying, why couldn’t they just leave me alone? I hadn’t asked for any of them to believe me. I hadn’t asked for them to worship me.

I hadn’t asked them for anything.”

Mina is top of her class, girlfriend to the most ambitious guy in school, able to reason and study her way through anything. But when she finds herself pregnant—despite having never had sex—her orderly world collapses. Almost nobody believes Mina’s claims of virginity. Her father assumes that her boyfriend is responsible; her boyfriend thinks she must have cheated on him. As news of Mina’s story spreads, there are those who brand her a liar. There are those who brand her a heretic. And there are those who believe that miracles are possible—and that Mina’s unborn child could be the greatest miracle of all.

My Review

I read this book ages ago, so why haven’t I reviewed it yet?  It kind of got lost in my “to-review” pile, and I just kept pushing back a review for it.  But I realized that I need to get … Continue reading

4 stars
4 Comments
Book Title:
The Book Jumper
Book Author:
Mechthild Gläser
Publishing Date:
January 3rd, 2017
Publisher:
Feiwel & Friends
Date Read:
December 29th, 2016
Source:
ARC from publisher - Thank you!

Synopsis

Amy Lennox doesn't know quite what to expect when she and her mother pick up and leave Germany for Scotland, heading to her mother's childhood home of Lennox House on the island of Stormsay.

Amy's grandmother, Lady Mairead, insists that Amy must read while she resides at Lennox House―but not in the usual way. It turns out that Amy is a book jumper, able to leap into a story and interact with the world inside. As thrilling as Amy's new power is, it also brings danger: someone is stealing from the books she visits, and that person may be after her life. Teaming up with fellow book jumper Will, Amy vows to get to the bottom of the thefts―at whatever cost.

My Review

As far as book covers go, this one is probably one of my absolute favorites.  I am so in love with everything about this cover – it’s so magical and swirly and beautiful! Cover aside, let me just say that … Continue reading

4 stars
12 Comments
Book Title:
Still Life with Tornado
Book Author:
A. S. King
Publishing Date:
October 11th, 2016
Publisher:
Dutton Books for Young Readers
Date Read:
October 9th, 2016
Source:
I received an ARC from the publisher - Thank you!

Synopsis

“I am sixteen years old. I am a human being.”

Actually Sarah is several human beings. At once. And only one of them is sixteen. Her parents insist she’s a gifted artist with a bright future, but now she can’t draw a thing, not even her own hand. Meanwhile, there’s a ten-year-old Sarah with a filthy mouth, a bad sunburn, and a clear memory of the family vacation in Mexico that ruined everything. She’s a ray of sunshine compared to twenty-three-year-old Sarah, who has snazzy highlights and a bad attitude. And then there’s forty-year-old Sarah (makes good queso dip, doesn’t wear a bra, really wants sixteen-year-old Sarah to tell the truth about her art teacher). They’re all wandering Philadelphia—along with a homeless artist allegedly named Earl—and they’re all worried about Sarah’s future.

But Sarah’s future isn’t the problem. The present is where she might be having an existential crisis. Or maybe all those other Sarahs are trying to wake her up before she’s lost forever in the tornado of violence and denial that is her parents’ marriage.

“I am a human being. I am sixteen years old. That should be enough.”

My Review

Before I start this review, I want to point out that it does deal with emotional and physical abuse, so since this could be a trigger warning for some, I wanted to mention it.  It has the potential to be … Continue reading

4 stars
3 Comments
Book Title:
When the Moon Was Ours
Book Author:
Anna-Marie McLemore
Publishing Date:
October 4th, 2016
Publisher:
Thomas Dunne
Date Read:
September 28th, 2016
Source:
I received a copy from the publisher - Thank you!

Synopsis

Longlisted for the 2016 National Book Award for Young People's Literature Anna-Marie McLemore’s debut novel The Weight of Feathers was greeted with rave reviews, a YALSA Morris Award nomination, and spots on multiple “Best YA Novels” lists. Now, McLemore delivers a second stunning and utterly romantic novel, again tinged with magic.

To everyone who knows them, best friends Miel and Sam are as strange as they are inseparable. Roses grow out of Miel’s wrist, and rumors say that she spilled out of a water tower when she was five. Sam is known for the moons he paints and hangs in the trees and for how little anyone knows about his life before he and his mother moved to town. But as odd as everyone considers Miel and Sam, even they stay away from the Bonner girls, four beautiful sisters rumored to be witches. Now they want the roses that grow from Miel’s skin, convinced that their scent can make anyone fall in love. And they’re willing to use every secret Miel has fought to protect to make sure she gives them up.

Atmospheric, dynamic, and packed with gorgeous prose, When the Moon was Ours is another winner from this talented author.

My Review

When I first read The Weight of Feathers, I was captivated by the magic and beauty that was contained within its pages.  At that point, I hadn’t really read many novels with magical realism and such descriptive passages, and characters … Continue reading

5 stars
9 Comments
Book Title:
Spark
Book Author:
Holly Schindler
Publishing Date:
May 17th, 2016
Publisher:
HarperTeen
Date Read:
May 12th, 2016
Source:
eARC from publisher via Edelweiss

Synopsis

Acclaimed author Holly Schindler writes a compelling contemporary tale with a dash of magic. The theater comes to life in this story of family ties, fate, love, and one girl’s quest to rewrite history.

The local Avery Theater was just a run-down building to Quin—until her mother told her about the tragic love that played out on the theater’s stage many years ago. Quin is convinced it’s the perfect story to re-create for her drama class. And when she does, the Avery begins to magically regain its former splendor, clearly setting the stage for her classmates Dylan and Cass to relive the romance from a time before. Quin can see the spark between them, but it’s up to her to make sure her friends—and the Avery—can both be saved this time around.

My Review

“‘There is real, undeniable magic in this world – all around us.’” I haven’t read a lot of books that deal with theater or performing arts, but the ones that I do read I tend to like.  They’re always different … Continue reading

3.5 stars
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Book Title:
A Fierce and Subtle Poison
Book Author:
Samantha Mabry
Publishing Date:
April 12th, 2016
Publisher:
Algonquin Young Readers
Date Read:
April 5th, 2016
Source:
I received a copy from the publisher - Thank you!

Synopsis

Everyone knows the legends about the cursed girl--Isabel, the one the señoras whisper about. They say she has green skin and grass for hair, and she feeds on the poisonous plants that fill her family’s Caribbean island garden. Some say she can grant wishes; some say her touch can kill.

Seventeen-year-old Lucas lives on the mainland most of the year but spends summers with his hotel-developer father in Puerto Rico. He’s grown up hearing stories about the cursed girl, and he wants to believe in Isabel and her magic. When letters from Isabel begin mysteriously appearing in his room the same day his new girlfriend disappears, Lucas turns to Isabel for answers--and finds himself lured into her strange and enchanted world. But time is running out for the girl filled with poison, and the more entangled Lucas becomes with Isabel, the less certain he is of escaping with his own life.

My Review

A Fierce and Subtle Poison is one of those rare books that is as beautiful and captivating as you imagine it will be, based on that gorgeous cover.  Once you pick this book up, it’s going to draw you in, … Continue reading

4.5 stars
5 Comments