Unknown9: Genesis – Book Review

Unknown 9: Genesis: Book One of the Genesis Trilogy by Layton Green

Synopsis:
Strange hallucinations have plagued PhD student Andie Robertson throughout her life. After years of consulting doctors, she decided the visions were a glitch in her own mind—until her mentor, the famous physicist Dr. James Corwin, is murdered in Italy, and Andie finds a stack of ink drawings in his office that bear a remarkable resemblance to her hallucinations.

Shocked, Andie digs deeper and learns that Dr. Corwin developed a device that might shed light on the very nature of reality. She is even more stunned to discover that her mother, an academic who disappeared when Andie was a young girl, might also be involved.

Determined to find answers, Andie follows a trail of clues placed by Dr. Corwin, for reasons unknown, in museums and cultural sites around the world, highlighting human achievement as well as a tapestry of secret knowledge woven into the threads of history.

Yet Andie is not the only one searching. Powerful forces know of her mentor’s invention, including a mysterious elite society that spans borders and will stop at nothing to find the device. Now a target herself, Andie and a disgraced journalist embark on a perilous journey that might hold the key to a new frontier of knowledge—and which also promises to unlock the doors of her past.

Review:
Andie is left with a cryptic message from her mentor and father-figure that leads her on a globe-trotting adventure.

Unknown 9: Genesis is told from several points of view, though it’s easy to catch up an follow the vastly different characters. This first installment in the series is a pulse-pounding thriller. The origins of the secret society following Andie is told from flashbacks throughout the novel, as well as a mysterious scientific breakthrough.

This is a fast-paced and exciting novel. With fun clues to follow and danger always lingering, I found it hard to put down. It’s difficult to trust anyone Andie comes into contact with. And there are several surprises along the way. I’m eager to learn more about the science elements as well as secret societies in the next installment.

Tristan Strong Destroys the World – Book Giveaway!

Courtesy of Rick Riordan Presents, I have a copy of Tristan Strong Destroys the World by Kwame Mbalia for one lucky winner!

Contest is open to US residents only. No PO Boxes please. To enter, just fill out the form below. Contest ends October 9. I’ll draw a name on October 10, and notify winner via email.

ENTER DAILY TO INCREASE YOUR CHANCE OF WINNING!

Good luck!

Read moreTristan Strong Destroys the World – Book Giveaway!

Brightly Woven – Book Review

Brightly Woven: The Graphic Novel by Alexandra Bracken (Author), Leigh Dragoon (Author), Kit Seaton (Illustrator)

Synopsis:
Extraordinary things just don’t happen to fourteen-year-old Sydelle Mirabil, a talented weaver who dreams about life outside of her tiny village. But that all changes when a mysterious young wizard named Wayland North appears and asks for Sydelle’s help. He’s got a shocking secret that could stop a war between kingdoms-if he can reach the capital with the news in time. North needs a navigator who can mend his magical cloaks, and Sydelle is perfect for the job.

As Sydelle and North race against the clock to deliver their message, they must contend with unusually wild weather and a dark wizard who will do anything to stop them. But the sudden earthquakes and freak snowstorms may not be a coincidence. As Sydelle discovers more about North’s past and her own strange abilities, she realizes that the fate of the kingdom may rest in her fingertips.

Review:
This is a graphic novel, adapted from a full-length, YA fantasy novel. It had to have been hard to whittle down, but it really works as a graphic novel. In fact, it’s beautiful and feels like a story made to be told with pictures. There are lush colors and Sydelle’s creations and dreams were some of my favorite things about this book.

The story is engaging and exciting as well. And I loved the characters of Sydelle and Wayland. This inspired, middle grade, fantasy combines magic and art in a wonderful way.

The Lost Wonderland Diaries – Book Review

The Lost Wonderland Diaries by J. Scott Savage

Synopsis:
Lewis Carroll created a curious and fantastical world in his classic book Alice in Wonderland, but he secretly recorded the true story of his actual travels to Wonderland in four journals which have been lost to the world…until now.

Celia and Tyrus discover the legendary Lost Diaries of Wonderland and fall into a portal that pulls them into the same fantasy world as the White Rabbit and the Mad Hatter. However, Wonderland has vastly changed. A darkness has settled over the land, and some creatures and characters that Tyrus remembers from the book have been transformed into angry monsters.

Celia and Tyrus make their way through this unpredictable and dangerous land, helped by familiar friends including the Cheshire Cat and a new character, Sylvan, a young rabbit. Together, they desperately work to solve puzzles and riddles, looking for a way out of Wonderland. But the danger increases when the Queen of Hearts begins hunting them. Believing the two young visitors hold the key to opening multiple portals to multiple worlds, she will stop at nothing to capture them.

It’s up to Celia and Tyrus to save Wonderland and the real world. It’s a race against time before they are trapped in Wonderland forever.

Review:
Celia has dyslexia, and has a gift for numbers. Tyrus loves reading more than anything. They may seem like an odd pair, but their strengths and uniqueness makes them a great team – especially when they are suddenly pulled into Wonderland. Celia’s ancestor wrote about Wonderland, and it seems she had more in common with him than she ever knew.

The two children team up with a young rabbit to help stop whatever has been attacking the creatures of Wonderland. Along the way, they meet a lot of familiar characters who all seem a bit different than what they’ve read about.

The Lost Wonderland Diaries is the first in an inspired new fantasy series based on Lewis Carroll’s works. I have to admit, I’m not a fan of Alice in Wonderland, but the premise intrigued me. I’m so glad I went ahead and read it. It’s so much more than a world of silly characters. It’s a story about discovering who you are and being proud of it. Yet their adventure in Wonderland is still full of wonder, puzzles, danger, and mystery. Fairy tale fans of all ages will enjoy this fantastic new novel.

The Space Between Worlds – Book Giveaway!

Courtesy of Del Rey, I have a copy of The Space Between Worlds by Micaiah Johnson for one lucky winner!

Contest is open to US residents only. No PO Boxes please. To enter, just fill out the form below. Contest ends September 25. I’ll draw a name on September 26, and notify winner via email.

ENTER DAILY TO INCREASE YOUR CHANCE OF WINNING!

Good luck!

Read moreThe Space Between Worlds – Book Giveaway!

Received in August

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

Caezik SF & Fantasy:
Salamis by Harry Turtledove

Del Rey:
Ink & Sigil by Kevin Hearne
Star Wars: Thrawn Ascendancy (Book I: Chaos Rising) by Timothy Zahn
The Space Between Worlds by Micaiah Johnson

Disney Hyperion:
The Shadow Crosser by J.C. Cervantes

Gallery Books / Skybound Books:
The First Sister by Linden A. Lewis

Saga Press:
The Vanished Queen by Lisbeth Campbell
The Year’s Best Science Fiction Vol. 1 by Jonathan Strahan

Subterranean Press:
Take a Look at the Five and Ten by Connie Willis
A Question of Navigation by Kevin Hearne

Tor:
The Echo Wife by Sarah Gailey

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