Kevin's Points of Interest
The Apprentice Witch by James Nicol
In this finely-written, creative middle grade novel, we learn about the trials, troubles and triumphs of a not-quite-all-the-way-there witch. Or, as I suppose we could call her, The Apprentice Witch. The main character Arianwyn (beautiful name, by the way), though strong in magic and from a long line of witches, is unable to pass her witch evaluation on fir...
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Song of Solomon and The Catcher in the Rye
Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger Yep, I just came out of a deep dive into two heavy classics. I recently gave Song of Solomon to my wife as a gift because we once saw an article in a magazine where someone said he “envied anyone who hasn’t read Song of Solomon yet because he wished he could have that feeling agai...
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The Explorers: The Door in the Alley by Adrienne Kress
This is an excellent book for eager reading middle grade boys or girls. Kids will find a familiar plot line but they will be wowed by the many unique elements and the fun characters. Sebastian, the lead, is a very orderly, studious, habitual kid whose carefully organized existence is threatened when he discovers--yes--a door in an alley near his home. Throu...
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Blood Rose Rebellion by Rosalyn Eves
Blood Rose Rebellion has a couple of really great aspects. However, there were also a few things I didn’t enjoy, so I did have to force myself a little to push through the middle of the novel (I refuse to DNF a book). Ultimately, I was pleased to have finished. This is because most of the cool aspects rise to life at the end and I do think these highly ima...
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To Series or Not To Series?
Featuring: The Gunslinger, The Dark Tower Book 1 by Stephen King Gregor the Overlander, Book 1 in the Underland Chronicles by Suzanne Collins Writing a trilogy, or a longer series, is obviously a big boon for an author. You get a long contract (I presume), built-in recognition of characters and plot, a chance to expand on a consistent idea--rather than com...
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The Republic of Thieves by Scott Lynch
The third book in the Gentleman Bastards series, this one sits just about even with “Red Seas Under Red Skies” and slightly under “Lies of Locke Lamora” in my rankings. The writing is deep, thoughtful, gloriously complex, and excellently executed. Mr. Lynch’s characters are fabulously made and the world he’s created is immersive and mesmerizing. ...
My Write-Up on the other Locke Lamora books
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The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
It took me almost two months to read this incredible book, and I thoroughly enjoyed every moment. This is significant because I read a lot--probably at least an hour a day--and this book clocks in at just over 1100 pages, so it takes a commitment. Just like the story itself is an epic quest, reading it is as well. I enjoyed it so much that about two weeks ag...
My Review of The Name of the Wind
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Actually…It’s a Stop Motion Animation
Highlights from the story "Actually..." which is in our new children's short story collection: "Actually...It's a Short Story Collection" Available NOW on Amazon!
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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts 1 & 2 by J.K. Rowling, et al
It’s good, and I’m glad I read it, but I don’t think you need to rush out to grab this book and drop everything to read it immediately. If you are a massive HP fan, or you know a massive HP fan, then that person will definitely want to read this script. Our daughter definitely falls into the massive HP fan category, and--like me-- she’s happy to have...
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All Our Wrong Todays by Elan Mastai
All Our Wrong Todays is excellent. It’s a time travel book that doesn’t assault your brain with difficult to follow science, yet it is still well-thought out, intelligent, and challenging. Mr. Mastai has a truly fresh, creative, plausible idea for the way the actual time travel happens in his story, and I found it fascinating. I truly appreciate an autho...
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Interview With The Vampire by Anne Rice
We just finished October...and I really dig I read Interview With The Vampire and have been listening to the audiobook of Bram Stoker’s "Dracula". Both are excellent and both are making me VERY excited to re-watch their magnificent movie versions. IWTV is a wonderful book. It’s slow, descriptive, eloquent, beautiful, exciting, spooky, tho...
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Ghosts by Raina Telgemeier
Graphic Novels are quite popular in our house these days. Recently we’ve acquired the GN versions of “A Wrinkle in Time” by Madeleine L’Engle and “Hollow City” by Ransom Riggs, the second book in the “Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children” series. Both are excellent. Also, I’ve recently read and reviewed the GN version of “The Gra...
My review of El Deafo by Cece Bell
My review of The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman
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The Tourist by Robert Dickinson
Quite simply, I just didn’t get this book. As you will see in other Amazon reviews, the things in the book are interesting--two intersecting plot lines, one in first person and one in second; a time travel “mystery”; a current 21st century society struggling to deal with the impact travelers from the 25th century future have on their lives. However, i...
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Red Seas Under Red Skies by Scott Lynch
The sequel to The Lies of Locke Lamora, and equally as amazing! I highly recommend Red Seas Under Red Skies for epic fantasy book lovers. To read more background on the series, check out my write-up on LoLL by clicking the link below. As for RSURS, look forward to more thievery, schemes, double-crosses, triple-crosses, mysterious assassins, exceptionally da...
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Lucy & Andy Neanderthal - Jeffrey Brown
We are fans of Mr. Brown from his Jedi Academy series and the superbly creative and funny Vader and Son book, so I was excited to receive an advance reader’s copy of Lucy & Andy Neanderthal. I knew our 10 y/o bookworm would love it, and she absolutely did. She especially enjoyed the entertaining tasks and troubles faced by the kids in the book and she’s ...
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Every Day and Another Day by David Levithan
For a short while, I was a member of a “featured book club” through the Strand bookstore in NYC. I received three books from the club, I think, before canceling. The ones I got were fine, but I realized I’d rather read what I want to read, rather than what the bookstore thought was important. It’s worth mentioning that the copies they shipped me were...
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This IS the Rabbit hOle, but it’s also just a small piece of the Rabbit hOle
I had a fantastic time volunteering with the Rabbit hOle during the immersive storybook experience for The Incredible Painting of Felix Clousseau. In the beginning, I helped a bit with the paper mache and it was always fascinating to make layers with paste and brown paper--then come back the next and see how the amazingly creative folks on the team turned th...
The Rabbit hOle Indiegogo Page
"The Incredible Painting of Felix Clousseau" book on Amazon, a fun addition to your picture book library
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The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch
I came upon this book after I’d read a positive review of it from Mr. Patrick Rothfuss, the writer of The Name of the Wind, a book I read recently and LOVED. I knew about LoLL (the abbreviation I shall use for convenience) but I only decided to snap it up immediately once I saw Rothfuss’s thoughts. As I imagined it would be, LoLL was excellent and I’l...
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Kabungo by Rolli
We were all looking forward to the arrival of Kabungo from Amazon and it’s become a quick favorite in our home. Our 9.5 yr old bookworm read it first and loved it. She found Beverly to be a great character since she was so cool (almost) all the time and was such a good friend to Kabungo. And our daughter liked the little cave girl herself for being funny, ...
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El Deafo by Cece Bell
I was truly surprised, educated, and impressed by this book. From reading the back cover, I knew El Deafo was about a young, deaf, school-aged girl who is of course finding life a bit more complicated than most. But it’s so much more--it’s about growing up, being yourself, finding acceptance, making friends, being confused, getting into trouble, getting ...
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Dead Wake by Erik Larson
Devil in the White City, also by Mr. Larson, is one of my favorite books. And I’ve read and thoroughly enjoyed his novel Thunderstruck. Dead Wake was excellent as well, and I highly recommend all three books. This write-up is about the latter, however, so let’s get sailing. Dead Wake connects the curious dots in a series of random, seemingly unrelated e...
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The Goosebumps Series by R.L. Stine
Halloween is a favorite holiday around our house. It runs a very close second to Christmas. We all get excited about decorating the house with creepy, spidery stuff and our kids take every opportunity to wear as many different costumes as possible. This past Halloween, Oct. of 2015, we kicked it up a notch with a special event - The Goosebumps Movie! We all...
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The Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett
Perhaps this book should have been called “The Limitlessness of Imagination” or “The Never Ending Depths of Creativity”. Either of these would have accurately described the writing, because while crafting this story, Mr. Pratchett must have been constantly thinking, “Where’s the wildest, craziest, most off the wall, most whimsical place I can now...
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Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson
This is a superhero book . . . that’s not another superhero book. The story has loads of amazing action, cool characters, sweet gadgets, outstanding writing, basically everything you’d want from a superhero book. However, again, this isn’t that. Well, it is, but it isn’t. In the futuristic world of Steelheart, the USA is full of regular people and s...
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The Graveyard Book (Graphic Novel Version) Vols 1 & 2
This is a fabulous book with a unique, mesmerizing story and surreal, wonderful artwork. The Graveyard Book graphic novels bring so many creative people together to illustrate Mr. Gaiman’s tale of a young boy called Nobody “Bod” Owens, who grows up under the care and supervision of the ghostly inhabitants of an old, spooky cemetery. I recently read the...
The Graveyard Book (text-only version)
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