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Forever by Maggie Stiefvater (audio)

Source: Public Library
Audiobook, 10 CDs
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Forever by Maggie Stiefvater — narrated by Dan Bittner, Pierce Cravens, Emma Galvin, Jenna Lamia, and Maggie Stiefvater — is stunning in its twists and turns, its big reveals, and its ever-poetic language that takes readers into boundary wood.  In this third book in the Mercy Falls series, Sam and Grace are again separated by circumstances, and even when they can be together, there are things that separate them, leaving each waiting in anticipation for the other — for their connection to be rekindled.  Their connection, however, is so strong that it transcends species and is a testament to love, loyalty, and family.

Sam looks to Grace as his center, and she often helps him overcome his indecision, but when Grace is in danger, he’s forced to make his own choices, forced to grow up into the man he is.  Beck is no longer there as a buffer, and Cole may be older and more focused on saving the pack, but he is not who the wolves will follow.  Sam has to make a sacrifice he didn’t think he could make again, but when he decides to do it, he is all in.  Isabelle and Cole’s budding relationship, meanwhile, is filled with obstacles, including both characters’ personal baggage.

Forever by Maggie Stiefvater — narrated by Dan Bittner, Pierce Cravens, Emma Galvin, Jenna Lamia, and Maggie Stiefvater — is part of a highly imaginative series of books about werewolves in Mercy Falls.  These characters are forced to grow up too soon, but even as they want to cling to their childhood freedoms, they know that their lives are forever changed once they make the leap into adulthood.  These characters are bound to make a lasting impression on readers, and Mercy Falls will be missed when it’s over.

Other Reviews:

About the Author:

New York Times bestselling author of The Shiver Trilogy, The Raven Cycle, and The Scorpio Races. Artist. Driver of things with wheels. Avid reader.  All of Maggie Stiefvater’s life decisions have been based around her inability to be gainfully employed. Talking to yourself, staring into space, and coming to work in your pajamas are frowned upon when you’re a waitress, calligraphy instructor, or technical editor (all of which she’s tried), but are highly prized traits in novelists and artists. She’s made her living as one or the other since she was 22. She now lives an eccentric life in the middle of nowhere, Virginia.

The Night Before Christmas: A Brick Story by Clement C. Moore, illustrated by Amanda Brack

Source: Sky Pony Press
Hardcover, 32 pgs.
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The Night Before Christmas: A Brick Story by Clement C. Moore, illustrated by Amanda Brack, follows the traditional story of the clatter on the roof and the calls to the reindeer.  What makes this story different is the use of bricks (also known as Lego pieces) to illustrate the story.  The pieces are well placed and resemble the elements of the story, and the scenes are augmented with felt stockings and other non-brick items.  These elements help provide readers with a more realistic feel.

Our favorite parts of the story were of course the rhyming lines that tell the story, but also the sugarplums dancing in the heads of the children and the flying reindeer.  My daughter and I had a conversation about Santa Claus’ other name, St. Nicholas, and what coursers were and why the word was used in the story.  We’re already having conversations about language usage and choice, though I’m not sure she understands it completely.  One tiny quibble is the fact that the smoke from Santa’s pipe does not look like a wreath above his head as it says in the story, but I’m sure that would be difficult to reproduce.

The Night Before Christmas: A Brick Story by Clement C. Moore, illustrated by Amanda Brack, is a cute book for those modern kids familiar with these plastic bricks used to build scenes.  Maybe some readers would take what they saw in the book and create their own Santa and Christmas scenes.

About the Author:

Clement Clarke Moore, (July 15, 1779 – July 10, 1863), is best known as the credited author of A Visit From St. Nicholas (more commonly known today as Twas the Night Before Christmas). Clement C. Moore was more famous in his own day as a professor of Oriental and Greek literature at Columbia College (now Columbia University) and at General Theological Seminary, who compiled a two volume Hebrew dictionary. He was the only son of Benjamin Moore, a president of Columbia College and bishop of the Episcopal Diocese of New York, and his wife Charity Clarke. Clement Clarke Moore was a graduate of Columbia College (1798), where he earned both his B.A. and his M.A.. He was made professor of Biblical learning in the General Theological Seminary in New York (1821), a post that he held until 1850.

Locke & Key: Alpha & Omega Vol. 6 by Joe Hill, illustrated by Gabriel Rodríguez

Source: Public Library
Paperback, 192 pgs.
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Locke & Key: Alpha and Omega Vol. 6 by Joe Hill, illustrated by Gabriel Rodríguez, is where all the dark forces come alive at the same time, and the Locke family is even more distant from one another.  Tyler is trying to forget the darkness and move on, while Bode is still not himself and Kinsey has started to fit in at school and wants to join in.  Their mother has stopped drinking and seems to be more sober in her thinking and parenting, while uncle Duncan is still trying to be a guiding force for the kids who have had to deal with the death of their father and more.  The illustrations continue in the same style in this volume as in most of the other volumes, and bring to life Joe Hill’s story in a way that is both gruesome and terrifying.

The dark lady has all the keys she needs to unleash her demon brethren on the world, but her plans have changed, as she’s seen how powerful family can be.  She wants to create her own, make a family of demons beholden to only her.  Of course, there is still a place for slaves in this new kingdom.  Kinsey, Tyler, and Bode are up against all the darkness behind the black door, and they must outsmart the dark lady if they hope to win.

Locke & Key: Alpha and Omega Vol. 6 by Joe Hill, illustrated by Gabriel Rodríguez, is a wonderful conclusion to this series of graphic novels.  The tug of war between good and evil is frightening, especially when readers realize that the fate of goodness is in the hands of teenagers.  Overall, Hill has created a series of graphic novels that will keep readers entertained, horrified, and guessing about whether good will win out.  Rodríguez is a talented artist, and his artistry is on full display in these novels.

Other Reviews:

About the Author:

Joseph Hillstrom King is an American writer of fiction, writing under the pen name of Joe Hill.  Hill is the the second child of authors Stephen King and Tabitha King. His younger brother Owen King is also a writer. He has three children.

Hill’s first book, the limited edition collection 20th Century Ghosts published in 2005 by PS Publishing, showcases fourteen of his short stories and won the Bram Stoker Award for Best Fiction Collection, together with the British Fantasy Award for Best Collection and Best Short Story for “Best New Horror”. In October 2007, Hill’s mainstream US and UK publishers reprinted 20th Century Ghosts, without the extras published in the 2005 slipcased versions, but including one new story.

About the Illustrator:

Architect, artist and illustrator. He started his career with myth based illustrations for card games, and then jumped into the world of professional comics working with IDW Publishing. In addition to his current work in Locke & Key, his collaborations with IDW include Clive Barker’s The Great and Secret Show, Beowulf, George Romero’s Land Of The Dead, as well as several CSI comics and some covers for Angel and Transformers.

Locke & Key: Clockworks Vol. 5 by Joe Hill, illustrated by Gabriel Rodríguez

Source: Public Library
Paperback, 159 pgs.
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Locke & Key: Clockworks Vol. 5 by Joe Hill, illustrated by Gabriel Rodríguez, is a whirlwind adventure into the past as the Locke family discovers the timeshift key for the grandfather clock in the house.  This key enables them to go back to 1775 to find out what happened to their ancestors in colonial Massachusetts during the British occupation of Lovecraft, which was not an integral part of the revolution.  The presence of the British in this area signifies a search for an advantage in the war, though it is not really expanded upon.  The Locke children learn the source of the keys and how the demons cam to live in Lovecraft and make their way into the well house.  But there has always been magic here, with or without the discovery of the black door.

The illustration in this volume is consistent with the tale, in which the time shifts to 1775 have a old-world feel compared to the present day.  Hill has a great backstory reveal in this volume, and the Locke kids are up against something that even their father did not fully understand.  There is more death and mayhem in this one, and there is a disturbing image of a possessed goat that left an impression even on me.

Locke & Key: Clockworks Vol. 5 by Joe Hill, illustrated by Gabriel Rodríguez, provides a backstory on the ancestors and the Locke children’s father, and it’s good to see that these characters are evolving amid all the horror, death, and mayhem created by the demon and the misuse of the keys.  Even their mother has stopped her destructive behavior, but it is clear that there is more devastation to come.

Other Reviews:

About the Author:

Joseph Hillstrom King is an American writer of fiction, writing under the pen name of Joe Hill.  Hill is the the second child of authors Stephen King and Tabitha King. His younger brother Owen King is also a writer. He has three children.

Hill’s first book, the limited edition collection 20th Century Ghosts published in 2005 by PS Publishing, showcases fourteen of his short stories and won the Bram Stoker Award for Best Fiction Collection, together with the British Fantasy Award for Best Collection and Best Short Story for “Best New Horror”. In October 2007, Hill’s mainstream US and UK publishers reprinted 20th Century Ghosts, without the extras published in the 2005 slipcased versions, but including one new story.

About the Illustrator:

Architect, artist and illustrator. He started his career with myth based illustrations for card games, and then jumped into the world of professional comics working with IDW Publishing. In addition to his current work in Locke & Key, his collaborations with IDW include Clive Barker’s The Great and Secret Show, Beowulf, George Romero’s Land Of The Dead, as well as several CSI comics and some covers for Angel and Transformers.

Locke & Key: Keys to the Kingdom Vol. 4 by Joe Hill, illustrated by Gabriel Rodríguez

Source: Public Library
Hardcover, 152 pgs.
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Locke & Key: Keys to the Kingdom Vol. 4 by Joe Hill, illustrated by Gabriel Rodríguez, is a crazy mishmash of events that flash forward and back, which is less effective than the narration in previous books.  It’s almost as though the author wanted to tell too many events in one graphic novel.  The graphics in this one also are all over the place, transforming from a cartoonish quality at the beginning to the normal style and then to a more gritty military style found in comic books.

The Locke family is about to meet the threats of the dark lady head on in this book, and there are lasting consequences for this segment of the battle.  The keys to the kingdom are at stake, and while the family may feel like they are making progress, she’s always a few steps ahead of them.  Kinsey is still without fear, and some of her decision-making becomes very skewed as a result, while Tyler is battling his own guilt and the betrayal of two people he trusted.  Bode, meanwhile, continues to play with objects he doesn’t fully understand.

Locke & Key: Keys to the Kingdom Vol. 4 by Joe Hill, illustrated by Gabriel Rodríguez, has some great battles in it, and the characters are forced to face not only the dark lady’s advances, but the effects of the keys.  These keys were hidden for a reason, and uncovering them and using them may not have been the best idea.

Other Reviews:

About the Author:

Joseph Hillstrom King is an American writer of fiction, writing under the pen name of Joe Hill.  Hill is the the second child of authors Stephen King and Tabitha King. His younger brother Owen King is also a writer. He has three children.

Hill’s first book, the limited edition collection 20th Century Ghosts published in 2005 by PS Publishing, showcases fourteen of his short stories and won the Bram Stoker Award for Best Fiction Collection, together with the British Fantasy Award for Best Collection and Best Short Story for “Best New Horror”. In October 2007, Hill’s mainstream US and UK publishers reprinted 20th Century Ghosts, without the extras published in the 2005 slipcased versions, but including one new story.

About the Illustrator:

Architect, artist and illustrator. He started his career with myth based illustrations for card games, and then jumped into the world of professional comics working with IDW Publishing. In addition to his current work in Locke & Key, his collaborations with IDW include Clive Barker’s The Great and Secret Show, Beowulf, George Romero’s Land Of The Dead, as well as several CSI comics and some covers for Angel and Transformers.

Tough Cookie by Kate Louise, illustrated by Grace Sandford

Source: Sky Pony Press
Hardcover, 32 pgs.
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Tough Cookie by Kate Louise, illustrated by Grace Sandford, is a great little book for the holidays, especially if your family does any baking or holiday preparations.  We love making Gingerbread men in this house, or should I say Gingerbread snowmen.  But in this tale, if you forget the ginger, you’re in big trouble.

This gingerbread man is upset that he cannot be sold on the bakery shelves with his other friends — he’s missing the most important ingredient, ginger.  He feels left out, and what happens when you feel left out as a kid?  You often act out to get attention.  He teases the other cookies, makes messes, chases cats, and generally wreaks havoc in the bakery.  He has a good time while he makes messes, but what he’s missing is companionship.  When the baker tells him that he has to leave, the gingerbread man has to make a big decision about his behavior.  My daughter’s favorite parts were with the sprinkles and the gumdrops.

Tough Cookie by Kate Louise, illustrated by Grace Sandford, is adorable, and the illustrations are brightly colored, like candy, and have fun expressions ranging from surprise to dismay.  The illustrator and author work well together in this book to create a fun, messy, lesson about good behavior, learning to fit in, and being a good helper in the kitchen.

About the Author:

Kate Louise is picture book author of THE UPSIDE-DOWN FISH, PIERRE THE FRENCH BULLDOG RECYCLES, and TOUGH COOKIE. She lives in the UK with her family, her partner, and a cocker spaniel called Freddie. She graduated from university with a first class degree in Fine Art Painting. It was during this course that Kate rediscovered her love of reading, prompting her to try a new creative angle and experiment with writing. Kate is also member and co-creator of an online group of published writers and illustrators called Author Allsorts. And she writes YA as Kate Ormand. Kate is represented by Isabel Atherton at Creative Authors Ltd.

The Difference Engine by William Gibson and Bruce Sterling (audio)

Source: Audible
Audiobook, 14+ hours
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The Difference Engine by William Gibson and Bruce Sterling, narrated by Simon Vance, was our November book club selection and is a steampunk alternate history set in 1855 in England.  Vance is a wonderful narrator as always, so there were no issues in that regard.  The novel seeks to explore the political and societal implications of when Charles Babbage succeeds in building an analytical computer, the Difference Engine, creating a barely recognizable world in which technological advancements are ubiquitous and enabling Britain to become more powerful and the United States to become more fragmented than unified.  However, as the water and the air become more polluted, the wealthy are able to flee outside of London, while the laborers are stuck in the city with the soot and pollution.  The anger this engenders, causes the laborers to become revolutionaries, rising up and calling for anarchy.

Intelligence agencies, difference engines (computers) and secrecy abound in this topsy-turvy world, but on audio, some of the intricacies are lost.  A lot of the narration is spent on describing clothes, surroundings, some of the machines, and mundane actions, like opening containers and whether people are wearing gloves.

Among the minutiae, a mystery about computer punch cards emerges, and everyone seems to want them.  Paleontologist Mallory is the only interesting character, but his segment in the plot ends and the final third of the novel plods along once again.  At least he lasted longer than the other interesting character, Sybil Gerard.  While some believe the cards can be used to place bets and win big, it is clear that’s a red herring.  The tug-of-war between the luddites and the ruling class that espouses the benefits of technology and advancement is often lost in the narration, which takes on several iterations — the only clue that the narrator is an outside observer.

The Difference Engine by William Gibson and Bruce Sterling, narrated by Simon Vance, is convoluted  and mysterious to its own detriment.  Overall, while readers may enjoy Vance as a narrator, this book might get a better reception in print.  However, this particular novel also has a number of confusing plot lines that intersect haphazardly, almost as if the writers were trying to confuse the reader.  Unfortunately, at some point readers may give up caring about uncovering it.  This is an overly stylized novel aimed at a sliver of readers, with a very masculine tone and vaunted scientific jargon and theories.

What the Book Club Thought:

We all agreed that the plot didn’t take up much of the book, and that the mystery reveal at the end was kind of a let down, especially given all that had happened to obtain the punch cards.  Some of the characters were disliked, the choice of a paleontologist was an odd one for some, and a few of us skimmed or did not finish the book.  Those of us who did finish the book thought that it had been more of a world-building exercise.  Moreover, some of the things that happened in the background are things that some of us would have rather had in the main parts of the story.  Overall, none of us really cared for any of the characters too much and thought that the book was wordy at best.

About the Authors:

William Ford Gibson is an American-Canadian speculative fiction novelist and essayist who has been called the “noir prophet” of the cyberpunk subgenre.

Bruce Sterling is an American science fiction author who is best known for his novels and his work on the Mirrorshades anthology. This work helped to define the cyberpunk genre.

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater (audio)

Source: Public Library
Audiobook, 10 CDs
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The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater, narrated by Will Patton, is a dark tale of supernatural forces, love, sacrifice, and transformation.  Blue Sargent cannot “see” like her mother and aunts can, but she can help them in their work.  She’s lived a cloistered life under the dark cloud of a premonition that her kiss would lead to the death of her true love, whom she has yet to meet.  The Raven Boys are considered the bad boys of the town, and Blue is expected to steer clear of them, but with all things forbidden, destiny cannot be avoided.

Gansey, Noah, Adam, and Ronan have been thrust together by a mission, but this mission has long-term consequences for them all, and Blue and her family.  Blue struggles to understand these boys and their role in the supernatural happenings that have happened in their town.  Her presence among the boys increases the tension between them, as Gansey represents privelege — a privilege that Adam resents.  Ronan is the wild card who never follows rules, and Noah is the sounding board, the quiet observer, whose secret is only going to break them emotionally.

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater, narrated by Will Patton, is thrilling opening book to this series.  While readers are introduced to a surreal and strange world, it quickly becomes addictive.  The Raven Boys are mostly sympathetic, but they also have dark edges, and Blue is likely in for a long ride with them — one that will be dangerous.

Other Reviews:

About the Author:

New York Times bestselling author of The Shiver Trilogy, The Raven Cycle, and The Scorpio Races. Artist. Driver of things with wheels. Avid reader.  All of Maggie Stiefvater’s life decisions have been based around her inability to be gainfully employed. Talking to yourself, staring into space, and coming to work in your pajamas are frowned upon when you’re a waitress, calligraphy instructor, or technical editor (all of which she’s tried), but are highly prized traits in novelists and artists. She’s made her living as one or the other since she was 22. She now lives an eccentric life in the middle of nowhere, Virginia with her charmingly straight-la

Happy Birthday, Cupcake! by Terry Border

Source: I’d Rather Be at the Beach
Hardcover, 32 pgs.
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Happy Birthday, Cupcake! by Terry Border, which is for ages 5-8 and which my daughter received from Vicki, is a cute little picture book.  Kids have cupcakes for their own birthday parties, but what kind of birthday party would a cupcake have?  Cupcakes, muffins, and other food stuffs would have a tough time in certain party situations, and the photos are amusing.  Cupcakes and others with little bendable metal arms, and during a limbo, a cupcake could lose her frosting.

Cupcake and her friend muffin are contemplating carious birthday party adventures, and each time muffin brings up the reasons why certain parties might not be a good idea.   The puns are entertaining for adults as well, but its the visual fun that will keep younger readers engaged, along with the rhymes.  These photos are fantastic little art pieces that are whimsical and endearing.

Happy Birthday, Cupcake! by Terry Border was a great little book for my daughter to practice the sight words she’s learning in preschool.  My daughter loved the end of the book, but I loved the limbo party best.  We had a great time giggling and pointing out some great party fun and silly moments.

About the Author:

Terry Border has spent the vast majority of his life in the Indianapolis, Indiana area. He graduated from Ball State University with a B.S. in Fine Art Photography in 1988. Then, because he wanted to be practical and not be an artist (he is from Indiana after all), he worked as a commercial photographer for many years.  In 2006 he started what he calls his Bent Objects project, mainly because all the other blog names were already taken. Basically, the project concerns adding wire to ordinary objects to help pose them as living characters, usually telling a story, and then photographing them.

Mr. Border has two books containing collections of his Bent Objects published by Running Press, and is now working on a children’s book for Philomel (a footprint of Penguin Publishing). He has a contract with Universal Publishing to make 2013, and 2014 wall calendars, and supplies American Greetings with various greeting card images. There are also, supposedly,  several Bent Objects jigsaw puzzles for sale somewhere in the world, but he has never actually seen one in person.

Longbourn’s Songbird by Beau North

Source: Meryton Press
ebook, 300 pgs.
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Longbourn’s Songbird by Beau North, set in post-WWII America, touches upon the Deep South’s continued segregation, and the desire to maintain the old ways where women are concerned even though they stepped up in may cases to fill men’s jobs when they were away at war.  North has created a complex novel through which Will Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet have very different lives and expectations.  Lizzie has locked her heart away after her time away at school in Charleston, while Darcy has struggled to keep his own passions in check as he builds his textile empire.  North has focused less on the class expectations and differences, and more on the societal changes and the implications of those changes on the Deep South.

Lizzie is as strong-willed and teasing as ever, and Darcy is as mysterious and aloof, bumbling around in society. However, dark secrets lay beneath Mr. Collins piousness, Charlotte’s practical nature, and Bingley’s ever-sunny disposition.  North goes deeper into these characters motivations, pulling out the truth behind the facade.

While there were things that seemed a little out of place — maybe just by a few years — they did not detract from the story.  Lizzie is a songstress with a captivating voice, and Darcy is at a disadvantage and is captured in her nest before either realizes how things have changed between them.  But North knows how to keep readers interested by blowing up the Austen world, rearranging it satisfactorily, and making it her own.  Longbourn’s Songbird by Beau North is a wonderful addition to the Austen world, but it’s also much more than that.  It delves into the issues of segregation, women’s place in society, the rights of minorities, and post-traumatic stress disorder that accompanies so many soldiers home from war.

About the Author:

Beau North is a native southerner who now calls Portland, Oregon home with her husband and two cats. She attended the University of South Carolina where she began a lifelong obsession with English Literature. In her spare time, Beau is the brains behind Rhymes With Nerdy, an internet collective focused on pop culture. This is her first novel.  You can connect with Beau on Twitter, Facebook, or via http://beaunorth.merytonpress.com. If you’ve enjoyed this book, we welcome your fair and honest review on Goodreads and Amazon.

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Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances by Neil Gaiman

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Source: TLC Book Tours
Paperback, 368 pgs.
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Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances by Neil Gaiman is a fanciful collection of short stories in a variety of forms, including those that use letters, poetry, and stories within stories. In the introduction, Gaiman explains what he means by trigger warnings and subsequently explains the seeds that began the stories and the thought processes behind them.  Readers who like surprises may want to skip the explanations and head right into the stories, because on their own, you can see how trigger warnings might be necessary for some readers.

“I’m thinking rather about those images or words or ideas that drop like trapdoors beneath us, throwing us out of our safe, sane world into a place much more dark and less welcoming. … And what we learn about ourselves in those moments, where the trigger has been squeezed, is this: the past is not dead.” (pg. XV)

Stories in the collection are twisted, have dark shadows that play at the edges, and will have readers contemplating what on earth they’ve just read.  “A Calendar of Tales” was a fun experiment conducted with the help of Twitter in which statements from strangers spawned ideas for stories, and these tales are spontaneous and captivating with images that references the months of the tales.  Readers will love the tone used by Gaiman, who builds little mysteries one word at a time.  Gaiman has chosen his formats and language very carefully — sucking readers in quickly and astonishing them by the end.  However, one story — The Truth Is a Cave in the Black Mountains, previously reviewed here — that makes an appearance in this collection may be better read in its illustrated format — it’s so much richer.  But one of the creepiest and unsettling stories in the collection is “Click-Clack Rattlebag” in which a young boy asks for a scary, but not too scary story before bed from his babysitter.  The story that’s told is not what the babysitter or the reader expects, and it will have readers looking very closely about the shadows at the edges of the room.

Trigger Warning: Short Fictions and Disturbances by Neil Gaiman was a satisfactory collection and while the theme seems to be the inescapable past, many of these fanciful stories also seek answers to what happens when you begin forgetting or when the future you expected does not come to pass.

Other Reviews:

The Truth Is a Cave in the Black Mountains

About the Author:

Neil Gaiman is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of more than twenty books, and is the recipient of numerous literary honors. Originally from England, he now lives in America.

Find out more about Neil at his website, find all his books at his online bookstore, and follow him on Facebook, tumblr, and his blog.

Linger by Maggie Stiefvater (audio)

Source: Public Library
Audiobook, 9 CDs
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Linger by Maggie Stiefvater, narrated by Jenna Lamia and David Ledoux, is the second book in the Wolves of Mercy Falls series.  Grace and Sam have courted disaster in the previous volume and have been reunited here, but Isabelle continues to seek out danger — the danger that comes with the new wolf, Cole, who is a very troubled young man trying to escape his past.  Even as Sam achieves a reprieve from the curse, it has its claws in others.

Grace finds that she’s not feeling well, but she fears telling anyone for her own fears will become reality.  As she struggles to hold onto herself, her health, and Sam, her parents are putting their foot down finally, grounding her and forbidding her from seeing Sam.  Sam is struggling with his new lease on life, and he still has to reconcile who he has become and what that means for the rest of his life.  Cole, the newest of the wolves, is happy to escape his past life, and while he’s enjoying his anonymity, his secrets threaten to expose all of the wolves hiding in the woods.

Jenna Lamia is a fantastic narrator for the female characters, and David Ledoux provides just the right amount of calm for Sam and the angst of Cole.  He also has to sing some lines, and does well. Linger by Maggie Stiefvater, narrated by Jenna Lamia and David Ledoux, is a solid second book in this series, and while there are moments where the teenage love drama is a bit over the top, the story is well drawn and the characters face some life-changing decisions.

Other Reviews:

Shiver

About the Author:

New York Times bestselling author of The Shiver Trilogy, The Raven Cycle, and The Scorpio Races. Artist. Driver of things with wheels. Avid reader.  All of Maggie Stiefvater’s life decisions have been based around her inability to be gainfully employed. Talking to yourself, staring into space, and coming to work in your pajamas are frowned upon when you’re a waitress, calligraphy instructor, or technical editor (all of which she’s tried), but are highly prized traits in novelists and artists. She’s made her living as one or the other since she was 22. She now lives an eccentric life in the middle of nowhere, Virginia with her charmingly straight-laced husband, two kids, two neurotic dogs, and a 1973 Camaro named Loki.