#Review: Penryn & the End of Days Trilogy #paranormal #YA

Goodreads

Title:  Angelfall

Series: Penryn & the End of Days #1

Author: Susan Ee

Genre: Paranormal, YA

Pages: 288

Reading Level: Teen

Content: PG-13 (adult situations and content, violence, some gore, doom, mature themes)

So the fact that I’m really into the whole angels and demons thing really helped me get passed my issues with YA fiction and really appreciate this story, which in many ways reads like a Dystopia. Penryan is, typically, nothing special to look at and small, but when she encounters a wounded angel, everything changes. Those who took the angel down have taken her younger sister. Her crazy mother, who may not be as crazy as we all think, remains hidden in the shadows, unable to offer aid. The simple human girl, Penryan, and the beautiful wounded angel, Raffe, must team up in order to survive.

I hope my tone doesn’t exude sarcasm. Despite my personal misdealings with YA fiction, this is a really good story. It even caught me off guard a few times, throwing in an element of terror I hadn’t expected and truly appreciated.  The whole idea of angel fall takes on a new meaning at the end of the story when a twist is thrown at you. Raffe kinda gets what he’s been after this whole time, but it’s a greater curse than he could have imagined … but then there’s still Penryan, the human girl who can wield his sword.

I have to read the next book.

This is definitely geared towards teen readers, but anyone who appreciates dark themes and or a non-religious take on angels and demons will enjoy this story.

I give this book a 4.

This review has been posted to GoodReads.

If you’d like to obtain a Kindle copy of this book, try this link: Amazon

Get a print copy with free international shipping at this link: Book Depository.

Goodreads

Title:  World After

Series: Penryn & the End of Days #2

Author: Susan Ee

Genre: Paranormal, YA

Pages: 320

Reading Level: Teen

Content: PG-13 (adult situations and content, violence, gore, doom, mature and dark themes)

Unlike most, I liked this one more than the first.

Yes, the pace of this book is slower, but that’s part of why I like it. We actually get to take some time to understand certain characters and connect more with Penryn. The only thing I wish there would have been more of this book was Raffe, but I accept the substitution of mother and sister. In the first book we really didn’t get to know Pen’s family and in this book we do. I like that.

In book one, I feel like we got to see inside the world of the angels, but in book two we get the see the human ‘world after’ the arrival of the angels much better. Plus, there are layers to the story of why the angels are really here and figuring that out is important.

Even though Pen keeps reminding us that she’s just a teenager, we all know her youth and innocents are gone. By the end of this book, I think she finally realizes it too. And for all those who want action in their books, let me just point out that in book one Pen picked up the angel sword and in book two she actually uses it. Yaaasss!

Family gets the spotlight in this book and romance is put on the back burner, but not too far away.

End of Days, here I come.

I give this book a 5.

This review has been posted to GoodReads.

If you’d like to obtain a Kindle copy of this book, try this link: Amazon

Get a print copy with free international shipping at this link: Book Depository.

Goodreads

Title:  End of Days

Series: Penryn & the End of Days #3

Author: Susan Ee

Genre: Paranormal, YA

Pages: 344

Reading Level: Teen

Content: PG-13 (adult situations and content, violence, gore, doom, sensuality, mature and dark themes)

I sigh with relief at the finale of this series. It’s everything I wanted.

Pen and Raffe are united, and the kick-butt team they’ve been from the start. They are still battling against the world, and in some ways each other, but they never stop fighting. She is humanity and he is angel-kind. At some point they will have to choose “us” or “them” and the suspense is almost unbearable, especially since their relationship finally gets a bit physical. There’s really no turning back from that, and yet, they still have choices to make.

Poor Paige seems to be destined to suffer, but perhaps her destiny is more than pain. As I read this book, I kept wondering if the price of her life and her destiny was worth the cost. It’s not an easy question to answer, but rather or not I’d be willing to pay it, her mom would surely make sure her baby has what she needs. I really like that crazy lady, but wouldn’t want to be on her bad side.

The scene where the people realize their own injustices and accept their true humanity- it really gets to me.

Meeting the Watchers was nice. I almost felt sorry for Beliel, almost, but his role was critical to the whole struggle.

I thought the final battle would last longer, but I’m kinda glad it didn’t. The doctor ended up saving lives after all.

Oh and Pooky Bear. He’s so confused by the end, but remains safe in Penryn’s hands. Perhaps, that’s where he belongs now. Not a white lace and church bells happy ending, but a happy ending humanity can live with.

Man, was this a good series!

I give this book a 5.

This review has been posted to GoodReads.

If you’d like to obtain a Kindle copy of this book, try this link: Amazon

Get a print copy with free international shipping at this link: Book Depository.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords

#Review: The Time Keeper #fiction #book

Goodreads

Title:  The Time Keeper

Author: Mitch Albom

Genre: Inspirational Fiction, Time Travel

Pages: 224

Reading Level: Teen, Adult

Content: PG (adult situations and content)

This book was sweet. A fan of time travel stories, this take on the legend of Father Time takes you in a direction you wouldn’t expect. This story is less about time travel and more about man’s understanding of time and how we use it to define every moment of our existence. It all begins with the first man who dares to count the hours of the day and what happens when his desire to control time costs him what he thinks he loves more than anything else.

This story is told in two parts and the second of these parts is broken down into three points of view. Don’t let me confuse you. Basically, you have the story of how it all began and then you have the story of how it all ends as told from the point of view of: Father Time, a teenage girl, and a rich old man. The story is just as complex and fascinating as it sounds. You’ll definitely walk away from this story giving much thought to how you spend the moments of your life.

I won’t pretend that many of the aspects of the girl and old man’s life weren’t a bit cliché, but it worked well for the overall narrative. I don’t think this is a story you need to spend too much time thinking about. Once everything is cleared away and the story is concluded, the meaning and message behind it all is clear.

This is not a YA read, but I’d definitely recommend it to some young readers as well as many adults. It’s a short read too.

I listened to this book and it was a bargain buy on CD (glad I still have one of those in my car).

I give this book a 4.

This review has been posted to GoodReads.

If you’d like a Kindle copy of this book, try this link: Amazon.

Get a print copy with free international shipping at this link: Book Depository.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords

#Review: Has Anyone Seen My Brain? #timetravel #kidlit #book

Goodreads

Title: Has Anyone Seen My Brain?

Author: Dan Nimak

Genre: Science Fiction, Time Travel

Pages: 150

Reading Level: Children, Teen

Content: PG (mild action, suspense, adult situations, mischief)

This was a delightful and surprising story. The premise enticed me from the start but seeing how it all unfolded was entertaining. It’s a very touching story with a coming-of-age significance and a “It’s a Wonderful Life” impact. When I started the story, it seemed all too simple, but it became pleasantly complex soon enough.

I do feel that this is best for a much younger reader. I think there is a certain level of enjoyment lost that, unfortunately is only inferred, once full maturity and the truths of life have set in. If I’d read this as a 10 – 13-year-old, I think it would have blown my mind. There were some issues that seemed juvenile, but then it is a story for and about kids. Still, overall it’s a very sophisticated and clever story.

There were a few sci-fi elements involving invisibility, space travel, and time travel that I wish had been better explained, but that’s only because I tend to overthink things.

This was an enjoyable read. I’m recommending it to all my teacher friends who like sci-fi and any preteens I think might like it.

Disclaimer: I received a complimentary copy of this ebook in exchange for my honest opinion, which has in no way affected the rating of this piece.

I give this book a 4.

This review has been posted to GoodReads.

If you’d like a Kindle copy of this book, try this link: Amazon.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords

#Review: The Mongoliad: Book Two #historical #fiction

Goodreads

 Title:  The Mongoliad: Book Two

Series: Foreworld #2

Author: Multiple

Genre: Historical Fiction

Pages: 464

Reading Level: Adult

Content: R (language, violence, espionage, oppression, some gore)

While I did like this story, I liked the first one better. This is a good follow-up to the first story, but things get a little out of hand with this sequel. The Shield Brethren are still trying to stop the Mongol horde, but now there are so many factions involved in this power struggle, it’s tough to decide who you’re rooting for and what exactly is going on.

I complained in my last review that the book ended with a cliffhanger, which I find I’m further annoyed that the book didn’t start there. Yes, it eventually picks up where the first book left off, but by the time it does, you can’t really remember what happened to get them there in the first place. I’m not a super-fast reader, but I realized that I had to slow down and really pay attention to be able to keep up with what was happening. For the casual reader, this may be a turn-off, but I accepted the challenge and was glad I stuck with it.

As with my last review, I really do think the story is amazing. The mixing of fact and fiction is a blur, the story, once you understand what’s happening, feels so real. I have enjoyed the introduction of more female characters, but to be honest, if they introduce anymore characters in the next book, I may not be able to follow along.

I’d recommend this book for hardcore historical fiction readers and readers who really get into the whole Renaissance thing… This is not a light read, but still enjoyable.

I give this book a 3.

See my review of The Mongoliad Book One here.

This review has been posted to GoodReads.

If you’d like a Kindle copy of this book, try this link: Amazon

Get a print copy with free international shipping at this link: Book Depository.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post. If you like it let me know and share it with others. See you next time, Toi Thomas. #thetoiboxofwords

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Neil Gaiman Spotlight, Blog Tour, and #Giveaway!

Dog Eared Publicity is pleased to bring you Neil Gaiman’s AMERICAN GODS, ANANSI BOYS, STARDUST and NEVERWHERE  virtual book tour November 7 – December 2!

Due to a series of unfortunate events, I am unable to post a review for American Gods today. I promise, as soon as I’m able I will. For those interested, here are the reviews I posted some time ago for Stardust and Good Omens. I hope you enjoy them…

And for today, I give you a special spotlight of the man who needs no introduction, author Neil Gaiman.

neil-gaiman-ap
Neil Gaiman is the New York Times bestselling author of the novels Neverwhere, Stardust, American Gods, Coraline, Anansi Boys, The Graveyard Book, Good Omens (with Terry Pratchett), The Ocean at the End of the Lane, and The Truth Is a Cave in the Black Mountains; the Sandman series of graphic novels; and the story collections Smoke and MirrorsFragile Things, and Trigger Warning. He is the winner of numerous literary honors, including the Hugo, Bram Stoker, and World Fantasy awards, and the Newbery and Carnegie Medals. Originally from England, he now lives in the United States. He is Professor in the Arts at Bard College.Visit his website at http://www.neilgaiman.com

Twitter | Facebook

And now, the books. Oooo, so pretty. 😀

What I’m currently anticipating.



Title: American Gods
Author: Neil Gaiman

Release Date: August 16, 2016
Publisher: William Morrow
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Format: Ebook/Paperback/Hardcover
Newly updated and expanded with the author’s preferred text. A modern masterpiece from the multiple-award-winning master of innovative fiction, Neil Gaiman.

First published in 2001, American Gods became an instant classic, lauded for its brilliant synthesis of “mystery, satire, sex, horror, and poetic prose” (Washington Post) and as a modern phantasmagoria that “distills the essence of America” (Seattle Post-Intelligencer). It is the story of Shadow—released from prison just days after his wife and best friend are killed in an accident—who gets recruited to be bodyguard, driver, and errand boy for the enigmatic trickster, Mr. Wednesday. So begins Shadow’s dark and strange road trip, one that introduces him to a host of eccentric characters whose fates are mysteriously intertwined with his own. For, beneath the placid surface of everyday life, a storm is brewing—an epic war for the very soul of America—and Shadow is standing squarely in its path.
“Pointed, occasionally comic, often scary, consistently moving and provocative….American Gods is strewn with secrets and magical visions.”—USA Today


“Original, engrossing, and endlessly inventive.”—George R. R. Martin

 

barnes-and-noble

 

Next on the TBR list.



Title: Anansi Boys
Author: Neil Gaiman

Release Date: October 25, 2016
Publisher: William Morrow
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Format: Ebook/Paperback/Hardcover
In this #1 New York Times bestseller, Neil Gaiman returns to the territory of his masterpiece, American Gods, to once again probe the dark recesses of the soul.
God is dead. Meet the kids.

Fat Charlie Nancy’s normal life ended the moment his father dropped dead on a Florida karaoke stage. Charlie didn’t know his dad was a god. And he never knew he had a brother. Now brother Spider is on his doorstep—about to make Fat Charlie’s life more interesting . . . and a lot more dangerous.


“Thrilling, spooky, and wondrous.”Denver Post

“Awesomely inventive.… When you take the free-fall plunge into a Neil Gaiman book, anything can happen and anything invariably does.”

Entertainment Weekly

“Delightful, funny and affecting…. A tall tale to end all tall tales.”

Washington Post Book World

 

barnes-and-noble

Read it, Enjoyed it! 😉



Title: Stardust
Author: Neil Gaiman

Release Date: September 27, 2016
Publisher: William Morrow
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Format: Ebook/Paperback/Hardcover

Now a major motion picture—this charming fairy tale by the #1 New York Timesbestselling author, weaves a magical story set long ago in the tiny English village of Wall, a place where things are not quite what they seem.
Go and catch a falling star . . .

Tristran Thorn promises to bring back a fallen star for his beloved, the hauntingly beautiful Victoria Forester—and crosses the wall that divides his English country town from another, more dangerous world of lords and witches, all of them in search of the star. Rich with adventure and magic, Stardust is one of master storyteller Neil Gaiman’s most beloved tales.
“Eminently readable—a charming piece of work.”
Washington Post Book World



“Beautiful, memorable . . . A book full of marvels.”
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

barnes-and-noble

 

Excited about this one.



Title: Neverwhere
Author: Neil Gaiman

Release Date: November 29, 2016
Publisher: William Morrow
Genre: Sci-Fi/Fantasy
Format: Ebook/Paperback/Hardcover
National BestsellerSelected as one of NPR’s Top 100 Science Fiction and Fantasy Books of All TimeThe #1 New York Times bestselling author’s ultimate edition of his wildly successful first novel featuring his “preferred text”—and including his new Neverwhere tale, “How the Marquis Got His Coat Back.”

Richard Mayhew is a young man with a good heart and an ordinary life, which is changed forever when he stops to help a girl he finds bleeding on a London sidewalk. His small act of kindness propels him into a world he never dreamed existed. There are people who fall through the cracks, and Richard has become one of them. And he must learn to survive in this city of shadows and darkness, monsters and saints, murderers and angels, if he is ever to return to the London that he knew.“A fantastic story that is both the stuff of dreams and nightmares” (San Diego Union-Tribune), Neil Gaiman’s first solo novel has become a touchstone of urban fantasy, and a perennial favorite of readers everywhere.“Delightful … inventively horrific.”

USA Today

 

barnes-and-noble

 

William Morrow is giving away a (5) sets of American Gods, Anansi Boys, Neverwhere and Stardust!

Terms & Conditions:
  • By entering the giveaway, you are confirming you are at least 18 years old.
  • Five winners will be chosen via Rafflecopter to receive one set of all 4 books
  • This giveaway ends midnight December 2.
  • Winner will be contacted via email on December 3.
  • Winner has 48 hours to reply.
Good luck everyone!

ENTER TO WIN!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Follow the tour here:

 Monday, November 7 – American Gods reviewed at The Toibox of Words 🙁
Tuesday, November 8 – Stardust featured at Zach’s YA Reviews
Wednesday, November 9 – American Gods reviewed at Bound 4 Escape
Thursday, November 10 – Neverwhere reviewed at BookStopCorner
Friday, November 11 – Neverwhere reviewed at Dreaming Big
________
 Monday, November 14 – American Gods featured at Waiting on Sunday to Drown
American Gods featured at I Smell Sheep
Stardust reviewed at Reading Reality
Neverwhere reviewed at 100 Pages a Day
Neverwhere reviewed at Svetlana Reads and Views
Tuesday, November 15 – American Gods reviewed at Hopelessly Devoted Bibiophile
Anansi Boys reviewed at Dreaming Big
Wednesday, November 16 – American Gods reviewed at Satisfaction for Insatiable Readers
Stardust reviewed at Bound 4 Escape
Neverwhere reviewed at Alexia’s Books and Such
Thursday, November 17 – American Gods reviewed at Fascinating Quest
Friday, November 18 – American Gods reviewed at ABookGeek
________
 Monday, November 21 – Stardust reviewed at Laura’s Interests
Stardust featured at I Smell Sheep
Anansi Boys reviewed at Chapter by Chapter
Neverwhere reviewed at Cover2Cover
Neverwhere reviewed at RhiReading
Tuesday, November 22 – American Gods reviewed at Zach’s YA Reviews
Anansi Boys reviewed at Bound 4 Escape
Anansi Boys reviewed at Svetlana Reads and Views
Wednesday, November 23 – Stardust reviewed at Dreaming Big
Thursday, November 24 – Stardust reviewed at Fascinating Quest
Neverwhere reviewed at Laura’s Interests
Friday, November 25 – Stardust reviewed at RhiReading
________
Monday, November 28 – American Gods reviewed at Bookish Things and More
Stardust reviewed at Cover2Cover
Anansi Boys reviewed at Deal Sharing Aunt
Tuesday, November 29 – Stardust reviewed at 100 Pages a Day
Stardust reviewed at Freda’s Voice
Stardust reviewed at Svetlana’s Reads and Views
Neverwhere reviewed at A Room Without Books is Empty
Neverwhere reviewed at Live Love Books Blog
Neverwhere reviewed at Deal Sharing Aunt
Wednesday, November 30 – American Gods reviewed at Dreaming Big
American Gods reviewed at RhiReading
Stardust reviewed at A Room Without Books is Empty
Anansi Boys reviewed at Fascinating Quest
Neverwhere reviewed at Bound 4 Escape
Anansi Boys reviewed at Live Love Books Blog
Thursday, December 1 – American Gods reviewed at Live Love Books Blog
American Gods reviewed at A Room Without Books is Empty
Anansi Boys reviewed at Cheryl’s Book Nook
Anansi Boys featured at RhiReading
Neverwhere reviewed at Worth Getting In Bed For
American Gods reviewed at Deal Sharing Aunt
Stardust reviewed at Live Love Books
Friday, December 2 – American Gods reviewed at Cover to Cover
American Gods reviewed at Svetlana’s Reads and Views
Stardust featured at Romantic Reads and Such
Neverwhere reviewed at Fascinating Quest
________