Monday, January 15, 2018

So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish

So Long, and Thanks for All the Fish is by Douglas Adams. The fourth book in the classic science fiction series: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. Arthur Dent finds himself back on Earth, which wasn't destroyed after all, only all the dolphins are gone. While trying to find answers he meets a girl who also remembers the destruction of the planet. He and Fenchurch (his girlfriend) seek for answers and ultimately, with Zaphod and Marvin, discover "God's Final Message to His Creation." The plot is weak, but fans should enjoy it.

Ratings: 9th grade - 6 out of 10.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Smoke

Smoke is by Dan Vyleta. A strange work of fantasy with an interesting premise. Set in Victorian England where sin results in visible smoke, naturally the aristocracy don't smoke. Thomas and Charlie, both members of the elite class, become friends at boarding school. Together with Livia, an aristocrat whose family is involved in strange experiments with Smoke, the boys learn the true nature of Smoke and become involved in a battle between rival political factions.

Ratings: 10th grade - 7 out of 10.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

The Obsidian Chamber

The Obsidian Chamber is by Douglas Preston and Lincoln Child. The sixteenth installment in the Pendergast series. Pendergast is believed to be dead, but is he? Constance returns to Riverside Drive, only to find Diogenes (who was also thought to be dead) waiting there for her. Proctor observes Constance being kidnapped by Diogenes and sets out to rescue her, and finds himself across the world and in danger. Another fascinating novel in this series, complete with all the usual twists and turns - fans won't be disappointed.

Ratings: Adult - 9 out of 10 - P (profanity) - V (violence) - AC (mature thematic content).

Life, the Universe, and Everything

Life, the Universe, and Everything is by Douglas Adams. The third book in the classic science fiction series that began with The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. It is up to Arthur Dent and his pals to save the universe again; this time from a group of robots who have been created by the populace of the planet Krikkit who desire the destruction of all other species. Fans of the series will enjoy the craziness of this installment as well.

Ratings: 9th grade - 8 out of 10.

Sunday, January 7, 2018

The Library at Mount Char

The Library at Mount Char is by Scott Hawkins. One of the most violent books I have ever read. Once started I didn't expect to finish, but then found I couldn't stop reading. Carolyn and her "family" live in a vast library, adopted and forced to study various disciplines by a man they call Father - who might be a god. He is terribly cruel (this is a vast understatement actually) and Carolyn slowly begins to put a plan in place to get rid of him; for her plan to be successful she recruits the aid of a human burglar named Steve. The story flashes back and forth in time, slowly revealing both Steve's and Carolyn's past. Warning: there is extreme violence in this book, as well as a great deal of profanity. If you've got a trigger of any kind, it's in this book! The story however, is engaging and totally addictive.

Ratings: Adult - 8 out of 10 - P (profanity) - V (violence) - AC (mature thematic content).

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Picnic at Hanging Rock

Picnic at Hanging Rock is by Joan Lindsay. An Australian classic, this is a wonderful piece of historical fiction. Set in Australia in 1900, it is the story of a group of young ladies from a girl's school who decide on a Valentine's Day picnic at Hanging Rock. Three of the girls and a teacher wander off to explore and are never seen again. A beautifully written book, but if you are expecting an answer to the mystery you won't get one. It was interesting to read a book considered a classic in another country. It's been compared to Rebecca, and I certainly see the resemblance.

Ratings: 11th grade - 9 out of 10.

Wrath of the Bloodeye

Wrath of the Bloodeye is by Joseph Delaney. The fifth book in The Last Apprentice fantasy series. Now that the Fiend has been released into the world, the Spook sends Tom to his former apprentice for a sixth month period designed to "toughen him up." When Arkwight is captured by Bloodeye, a water witch who is also the daughter of the Fiend, Tom must risk everything he cares about and trust someone he has no reason to trust to save his friends, and himself. Fans of the series will be thrilled with this installment.

Ratings: 8th grade - 8 out of 10 - V (violence).