Tag Archives: ya

SciFi Book Review: The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl: Squirrel Meets World

The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl: Squirrel Meets World by Shannon Hale & Dean Hale

Synopsis:
WHO RUNS THE WORLD? SQUIRRELS! Fourteen-year-old Doreen Green moved from sunny California to the suburbs of New Jersey. She must start at a new school, make new friends, and continue to hide her tail. Yep, Doreen has the powers of . . . a squirrel! After failing at several attempts to find her new BFF, Doreen feels lonely and trapped, liked a caged animal. Then one day Doreen uses her extraordinary powers to stop a group of troublemakers from causing mischief in the neighborhood, and her whole life changes. Everyone at school is talking about it! Doreen contemplates becoming a full-fledged Super Hero. And thus, Squirrel Girl is born! She saves cats from trees, keeps the sidewalks clean, and dissuades vandalism. All is well until a real-life Super Villain steps out of the shadows and declares Squirrel Girl his archenemy. Can Doreen balance being a teenager and a Super Hero? Or will she go . . . NUTS?

Review:
Doreen is a sweet and naive girl, just trying to make some new friends in her new school. But besides her different personality, she also hides a big secret – she has a big, bushy tail and can talk to squirrels. I’m a big fan of the comics, so I couldn’t wait to check out this novel.

Squirrel Meets World is a quirky and fun book, very similar to the comics – even including comments at the bottom of every page. The plot is very predictable, but it is written for a younger audience. And it only reinforces how sweet and innocent Squirrel Girl is. My favorite parts were when she messaged various Avengers as well as Rocket Raccoon for advice. The humor makes this series standout. Fans of all ages will enjoy this fun-filled adventure.

SciFi Book Review: Assassin’s Creed: Last Descendants

Assassin’s Creed: Last Descendants by Matthew J Kirby

Synopsis:
Nothing in Owen’s life has been right since his father died in prison, accused of a crime Owen is certain he didn’t commit. Monroe, the IT guy at school, might finally bring Owen the means to clear his father’s name by letting him use an Animus-a device that lets users explore genetic memories buried within their own DNA. During a simulation, Owen comes uncovers the existence of a powerful relic long considered a legend-the Trident of Eden. Now two secret organizations will stop at nothing to take possession of this artifact-the Brotherhood of Assassins and the Templar Order. It becomes clear the only way to save himself is to find the Trident first.

Under the guidance of Monroe, Owen and a group of other teenagers go into a memory they all share within their DNA: the 1863 Draft Riots in New York City. Owen and his companions will find themselves tested on the violent streets of New York, and their experiences in the past will have far-reaching consequences in the present.

Review:
After his father is imprisoned, Owen and his mother moved in with his grandparents – who constantly remind him of his father’s failure. But Owen has always believed in his father innocence. So, when he has a chance to use an Animus, he jumps at the chance in order to find out the truth of the past.

Last Descendants is the first in a young adult series by Matthew J Kirby. I’m not a gamer, but I know the series from books and the movie. I’m also a fan of the author’s other novels, so I was excited to check out this novel. I really enjoyed the characters – the teens were diverse and engaging. And the sub-story during 1863 was even more exciting and action-packed. The climactic ending leaves of on a cliffhanger that makes me eager to pick up the next in the series. Teens and adult fans of Assassin’s Creed will enjoy this fun, new series from a talented writer.

SciFi Book Review: The X-Files Origins: Agent of Chaos

The X-Files Origins: Agent of Chaos by Kami Garcia

Synopsis:
How did Fox Mulder become a believer?

In the spring of 1979, seventeen-year-old Fox Mulder has bigger problems than applying for college. Five years ago, his younger sister disappeared from their home and was never heard from again. Mulder blames himself, and his mother blames his father, who has retreated into his top-secret work for the State Department. In Fox’s senior year, his dad has moved him to Washington, DC―away from his friends on Martha’s Vineyard.

While Mulder doesn’t mind the fresh start and not being known as “that kid with the missing sister,” he’s still obsessed with finding Samantha. So when a local boy turns up dead and another child is abducted, Mulder can’t stop himself from getting involved. Could there be a link to his sister’s case? As he uncovers the truth, Mulder and his friends find themselves on the trail of a serial killer.

Sucked into a world where conspiracies, the occult, and madness overlap, Fox Mulder starts to believe.

Review:
Fox Mulder is haunted by the memory of his sister’s abduction – right in his presence. So, when he notices a small clue on a missing child, it puts him on a mission to find a child abductor.

Agent of Chaos is a fantastic murder mystery. The characters are vibrant and funny – and the story is suspenseful and exciting. The synopsis leads you to believe that events in this story are what makes Mulder a believer. But the events in this story don’t really lead him to becoming a believer – I feel like that happened back when his sister was abducted. Mulder is extremely observant and brilliant – which makes him a great detective. I enjoyed this Origin story even more than the Scully novel. I can’t get enough of the X-Files, and this early story is a great addition for fans.

SciFi Book Review: The X-Files Origins: Devil’s Advocate

The X-Files Origins: Devil’s Advocate by Jonathan Maberry

Synopsis:
How did Dana Scully become a skeptic?

In the spring of 1979, fifteen-year-old Dana Scully has bigger problems than being the new girl in school. Dana has always had dreams. Sometimes they’ve even come true. Until now, she tried to write this off as coincidence. But ever since her father’s military career moved the family across the country to Craiger, Maryland, the dreams have been more like visions. Vivid, disturbing, and haunted by a shadowy figure who may be an angel . . . or the devil.

When a classmate who recently died in a car accident appears before Dana, her wounds look anything but accidental. Compelled by a force she can’t name, Dana uncovers even more suspicious deaths―and must face the danger­ous knowledge that evil is real.

But when a betrayal of faith makes her question everything, she begins to put her faith in being a skeptic.

Review:
After a girl’s death turns out to be just the latest of several recent teen deaths in Dana’s new town, Dana’s troubling dreams begin to blend in with her reality. Dana and her sister seek the help from a local mystic shop owner and her friends. Meanwhile, mysterious men are secretly watching Scully.

As an X-Files fan, I couldn’t wait to read these origin stories. Dana and her sister are young teens who put faith in the mystic arts, mostly because of Dana’s dreams. This was a fun and suspenseful murder mystery with plenty of the supernatural. Yet a big (fairly predictable) twist leads Dana down the path of skepticism. I thoroughly enjoyed the characters and the creepy plot. X-Files fans, both teens and adults alike, should check out these new stories. There are some great nods to the show with a nostalgic feel that didn’t disappoint.

Melissa Landers’ STARFALL Blog Tour

Hi, booklovers!

I’m author Melissa Landers, and I’m so excited to launch STARFALL, the second and final book in my Starflight duology! This story picks up shortly after the first book ends, but now Cassia and Kane are the main characters, with Doran, Solara, and the rest of the Banshee crew pitching in to help take down an intergalactic mafia. (You know, just an ordinary day in space.) And while saying goodbye to characters is never easy, I think I gave the crew a proper sendoff with plenty of humor, heart, and action. I hope you love STARFALL as much as I do!

Haven’t read the first book? You’re in luck, because for a limited time, Starflight is on sale for 99 cents in all e-formats. Now you can binge read the entire duology in one sitting!

STARFLIGHT (book 1)

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2jmEOqA
Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/2kjs57n
Book Depository (free international shipping): http://bit.ly/1OoN2WD
Indie Bound: http://bit.ly/1IIMPx7

STARFALL (book 2)

Amazon: http://amzn.to/2jmNsW2
Barnes & Noble: http://bit.ly/2ddKuih
Book Depository: http://bit.ly/2k98EvN
Indie Bound: http://bit.ly/2dhMLry

To celebrate my book birthday, I’m offering one lucky winner a Starflight duology swag pack, complete with bookmarks and two signed mini posters! The giveaway is open internationally. Due to sweepstakes laws, entrants must be 18 years or older to participate.

Best of luck, and happy reading!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Melissa Landers is a former teacher who left the classroom to pursue other worlds. A proud sci-fi geek, she isn’t afraid to wear her Princess Leia costume in public—just ask her husband and three kids. She lives outside Cincinnati in the small town of Loveland, “Sweetheart of Ohio.” For more information or just to say hello, visit www.melissa-landers.com.

Book Spotlight and Giveaway: LAST DAY ON MARS

Last Day on Mars by Kevin Emerson

About the Book:
It is Earth Year 2213—but, of course, there is no Earth anymore. Not since it was burned to a cinder by the sun, which has mysteriously begun the process of going supernova far sooner than anyone expected.
The human race has fled to Mars, but this was only a temporary solution while preparing for a second trip: a 150-year journey to Aaru-5, a distant star, humanity’s best guess at a good spot for a new home.

Liam Saunders-Chang is one of the last humans left on Mars. The son of two scientists who have been racing against time to create technology to ensure humanity’s survival, Liam, along with his friend Phoebe, will be on the last starliner to depart before Mars, like Earth before it, is destroyed.

Or so he thinks. Because before the last day on Mars is over, Liam and Phoebe will make a series of profound discoveries about the nature of time and space and find out that the human race is just one of many in the universe locked in a dangerous struggle for survival. Kevin Emerson has written the first book in an ambitious space epic—a powerful, emotional, pulse-pounding story of the final days of humanity’s first home beyond Earth, and the desperate search for another.

To be published on February 14, 2017 by Walden Pond Press, an imprint of HarperCollins.

About the Author:
Kevin Emerson is the author of The Fellowship for Alien Detection as well as the Exile series, the Atlanteans series, the Oliver Nocturne series, and Carlos is Gonna Get It. He is also an acclaimed musician who has recorded songs for both children and adults. A former K-8 science teacher, Kevin lives with his family in Seattle. Visit him online at www.kevinemerson.net

_______________
Courtesy of Walden Pond Press, I have a copy of Last Day on Mars by Kevin Emerson for one (1) lucky winner!

Contest is open to US residents only. No PO Boxes please. To enter, just fill out the form below. Contest ends February 24. I’ll draw a name on February 25, and notify winner via email.

ENTER DAILY TO INCREASE YOUR CHANCE OF WINNING!

Good luck!

Continue reading Book Spotlight and Giveaway: LAST DAY ON MARS

Received in January

The following are the books, movies, television shows, etc. I received in January for review and/or giveaways:

Blu Ray/DVD:
The Accountant Blu-Ray

Mystery Box:
TeeBlox
Bam Box

Ace:
Ninth City Burning by J. Patrick Black

Amazon / 47 North:
The Man of Legends by Kenneth Johnson

BBC Books:
Doctor Who: The Pirate Planet by Douglas Adams

Del Rey:
Sleeping Giants by Sylvain Neuvel
A Conversation in Blood by Paul S. Kemp
Gilded Cage by Vic James

Disney Hyperion / Marvel:
The Unbeatable Squirrel Girl: Squirrel Meets World by Shannon Hale
Rocket and Groot: Keep on Truckin’! by Tom Angleberger

Gallery Press:
The Devil Crept In by Ania Ahlborn

GP Putnam’s Sons:
The Wanderers by Meg Howrey

Harper Voyager:
Heartstone by Elle Katharine White

Macmillan Teen / Imprint:
The X-Files Origins: Devil’s Advocate by Jonathan Maberry
The X-Files Origins: Agent of Chaos by Kami Garcia

Penguin Teen / Putnam / Viking:
Nemesis by Brendan Reichs
The Metropolitans by Carol Goodman

Pocket Books:
Star Trek: The Next Generation: Headlong Flight by Dayton Ward

Pyr:
Nebula Awards Showcase 2017 by Julie E. Czerneda
Department Zero> by Paul Crilley

Random House Children’s / Crown / Delacorte Press:
The Dragon’s Price by Bethany Wiggins
The Murderer’s Ape by Jakob Wegelius

Scholastic:
Enchanted Pony Academy: All That Glitters by Lisa Ann Scott
The Width of the World by David Baldacci
Wrath of the Storm by Jennifer A. Nielsen
Boy X by Dan Smith
Star Wars: Backstories: Darth Vader: Sith Lord by Jason Fry
Umberland by Wendy Spinale

Shadow Mountain:
Dragonwatch by Brandon Mull

Simon & Schuster Children’s / Aladdin:
Valkyrie: The Runaway by Kate O’Hearn

St. Martins / Thomas Dunne:
Three Years with the Rat by Jay Hosking

Titan Books:
Off Rock by Kieran Shea

Tor:
Death’s Mistress: Sister of Darkness by Terry Goodkind
The Collapsing Empire by John Scalzi
The Skill of Our Hands by Steven Brust and Skyler White
The Guns Above by Robyn Bennis

Tor Teen:
To Catch a Killer by Sheryl Scarborough

Fantasy Book Review: Ranger’s Apprentice: The Early Years: The Battle of Hackham Heath

Ranger’s Apprentice: The Early Years: The Battle of Hackham Heath by John Flanagan

Synopsis:
When the former Baron Morgarath escaped to avoid punishment for treason, an uneasy peace fell on Araluen. But Morgarath, now in hiding, is already planning his next move, recruiting an army of savage, overpowering beasts known as Wargals. Newly crowned King Duncan knows he must assemble his troops for battle.

To find out the full extent of Morgarath’s plan of attack, Halt prepares for a seemingly impossible task–climbing the deadly cliffs of the Mountains of Rain and Night and venturing deep into enemy territory to spy. After all, the winner of this war could be determined by one wrong move.

At the Battle of Hackham Heath, the fate of a Kingdom will be decided. This origin story of how Halt came to be Araluen’s most famous Ranger – and how war will decide the future of the next generation – will thrill Ranger’s Apprentice fans and new readers alike.

Review:
While Halt ventures into enemy territory to scout, Crowley is tasked with getting the Queen to safety as she delivers her baby. Morgarath is amassing an army of Wargals that threaten the kingdom.

The Battle of Hackham Heath is the second installment in the Ranger’s Apprentice: The Early Years prequel series. The Ranger’s Apprentice series is an incredible, epic series that I’m happy to see continue in these prequels. Halt and the rest of these established characters are intriguing – and the stories are always engaging. This installment is well-paced with plenty of suspense and intrigue. Events build to the big battle as the name suggests. And the Rangers play a big role as the invading horde approaches. I can’t get enough of this series. This latest installment is another enjoyable story, and the next can’t come soon enough.