Balthazar Fabuloso in the Lair of the Humbugs | Blog Tour

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five stars

Guys, this is my first ever blog tour and I am uber pumped about it. Why? Not only are blog tours super fun, but this is also for a middle-grade novel and WHO DOESN’T LOVE MIDDLE GRADE? (Seriously, middle-grade is the best.)

Let’s dive a little deeper shall we . . .

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Review | Jackaby

Jackaby by William Ritterfive stars
As one friend recently mentioned — William Ritter writes like that guy who always has a good story up his sleeve. Jackaby is one of those great stories. It is an adventure to be had and a mystery worth investigating. Whimsical and alluring, Ritter takes you on a journey through the unexplained with investigator, R.F. Jackaby, and his newly arrived assistant detective, Abigail Rook.  When a gruesome string of murders happen in New Fiddleham, Jackaby is second on the case, right behind the New Fiddleham police department, who refuse to believe in the strange and paranormal happenings surrounding the town. With help from good-looking detective, Charlie Cane, can Jackaby and Abigail stop the paranormal creature wreaking havoc on New Fiddleham?

The Good

If you’ve seen Jackaby floating around the inter-sphere you have most likely seen it compared to Doctor Who or SherlockJackaby
Holmes. Those comparisons are not far off. The characters that Ritter creates are phenomenal. No stone is left un-turned with his character development. Jackaby is an adventure of his own. He is a delightfully intriguing character whose style choices are questionable and he never shies away from the unusual. The paranormal is his forte and he takes pride in his keen observations. Abigail isn’t your typical YA heroine. She’s bold and adventurous, yet she is shy and subtle. She strives for a life of equality, but doesn’t throw away her girlish charms. Some days she prefers pants and other days she prefers skirts — she’s three-dimensional that way. (Bravo, Ritter!)

The subtle jokes that are mentioned throughout, make this book. Ogden the frog and Douglas the duck are highlight characters that add a comedic air. Jackaby is downright hilarious and I adore Abby’s slight wit.

The Not-So-Good

Honestly, it’s hard for me to write the not-so-good, because I love this book! I would say it is a bit juvenile at times, but I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone under the age of 12. The murder scenes can be a bit gruesome, which would make 11 year old me have nightmares.

Overview

This book is a 5 and with good reason. It’s quirky, yet serious when it needs to be. It’s a book that will keep you reading, and by the end you will be anxiously awaiting book number two of the series, Beastly Bones. If you are a fan of Doctor Who, mysteries, humor, or gassy frogs, Jackaby is a book for you.

Purchase: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository 

Jackaby by William Ritter
Algonquin Young Readers
304 Pages
September 16, 2014
$16.95

Best of July Reads

IMG_1674I have failed you all. I can barely write this sentence but…I only read one book this whole month. WHAT? HOW? WHY? I don’t know. I just…don’t know. Things happen and I blame North Carolina. I’m halfway through about 4 books right now, so July is going to be one bookish month.

The book I did actually finish (and loved, BTW) was Ana of California. Which it happens to be release day for this wonderful read, so be sure to pick it up.

Moving on.

This month brings lots of summer book fun. We have big books, small books, we have new books, old books, we have sequels, we have picture books. So. many. books! So my top six favs for July? Well…

1. Go Set A Watchman (To Kill A Mockingbird #2) by Harper Lee

24817626I wouldn’t be a very good blogger/bookstagrammer/reader/and overall person if I didn’t mention this right away. It’s totally not a YA, but it is HARPER LEE. (And it will probably most definitely be the biggest book of the year!) 

Originally written in the mid-1950s, Go Set a Watchman was the novel Harper Lee first submitted to her publishers before To Kill a Mockingbird. Assumed to have been lost, the manuscript was discovered in late 2014.

Go Set a Watchman features many of the characters from To Kill a Mockingbird some twenty years later. Returning home to Maycomb to visit her father, Jean Louise Finch—Scout—struggles with issues both personal and political, involving Atticus, society, and the small Alabama town that shaped her.

Exploring how the characters from To Kill a Mockingbird are adjusting to the turbulent events transforming mid-1950s America, Go Set a Watchman casts a fascinating new light on Harper Lee’s enduring classic. Moving, funny and compelling, it stands as a magnificent novel in its own right

On Sale: July 14th
HarperCollins
Pre-order: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository

2. Paperweight by Meg Haston

23361172I’m already embracing the feels as I read the synopsis. The preface reminds me a bit of Emma from Red Band Society–anyone else think this? Definitely adding this to my TBR pile this month…and buying a box (or two) of tissues to go with.

Seventeen-year-old Stevie is trapped. In her life. In her body. And now in an eating-disorder treatment center on the dusty outskirts of the New Mexico desert.

Life in the center is regimented and intrusive, a nightmare come true. Nurses and therapists watch Stevie at mealtime, accompany her to the bathroom, and challenge her to eat the foods she’s worked so hard to avoid.

Her dad has signed her up for sixty days of treatment. But what no one knows is that Stevie doesn’t plan to stay that long. There are only twenty-seven days until the anniversary of her brother Josh’s death—the death she caused. And if Stevie gets her way, there are only twenty-seven days until she too will end her life.

In this emotionally haunting and beautifully written young adult debut, Meg Haston delves into the devastating impact of trauma and loss, while posing the question: Why are some consumed by their illness while others embark on a path toward recovery?

On Sale: July 7th
HarperTeen
Pre-order: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository

 3. Ink and Bone (Great Library #1) by Rachel Caine 

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Okay, first things first–this book is about a LIBRARY. That information alone should be enough to make you want a first class ticket on the Ink and Bone train. (At least it did for me.) Plus, the cover is gorgeous. It’s like it is secretly calling out to me, begging me to open its precious pages. 

In an exhilarating new series, New York Times bestselling author Rachel Caine rewrites history, creating a dangerous world where the Great Library of Alexandria has survived the test of time.…

Ruthless and supremely powerful, the Great Library is now a presence in every major city, governing the flow of knowledge to the masses. Alchemy allows the Library to deliver the content of the greatest works of history instantly—but the personal ownership of books is expressly forbidden.

Jess Brightwell believes in the value of the Library, but the majority of his knowledge comes from illegal books obtained by his family, who are involved in the thriving black market. Jess has been sent to be his family’s spy, but his loyalties are tested in the final months of his training to enter the Library’s service.

When he inadvertently commits heresy by creating a device that could change the world, Jess discovers that those who control the Great Library believe that knowledge is more valuable than any human life—and soon both heretics and books will burn.…

On Sale: July 7th
NAL
Pre-order: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository

4. Pretending to Be Erica by Michelle Painchaud

23281811Does this book remind anyone else of Pawn by Aimee Carter? That was my first thought after reading the synopsis. However, Pretending to Be Erica sounds edgier and mysterious–less dystopian–which holds my interest.

Seventeen-year-old Violet’s entire life has revolved around one thing: becoming Erica Silverman, an heiress kidnapped at age five and never seen again. Violet’s father, the best con man in Las Vegas, has a plan, chilling in its very specific precision. Violet shares a blood type with Erica; soon, thanks to surgery and blackmail, she has the same face, body, and DNA. She knows every detail of the Silvermans’ lives, as well as the PTSD she will have to fake around them. And then, when the time is right, she “reappears”—Erica Silverman, brought home by some kind of miracle. But she is also Violet, and she has a job: Stay long enough to steal the Silverman Painting, an Old Master legendary in the Vegas crime world. Walking a razor’s edge, calculating every decision, not sure sometimes who she is or what she is doing it for, Violet is an unforgettable heroine, and Pretending to be Erica is a killer debut.

On Sale: July 21st 
Viking Books for Young Readers
Pre-order: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository

5. Model Misfit (Geek Girl #2) by Holly Smale

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Yes, you lucky, lucky UK’ers, I know that this has been out for years. However, we USA’ers haven’t had the pleasure of walking into a bookshop and picking up this beauty. I’m so excited for this sequel and squeeling with delight that it has finally crossed the pond! If you haven’t check out my review of Geek Girl #1 here

“My name is Harriet Manners, and I am still a geek.”

Harriet knows that modelling won’t transform you. She knows that being as uniquely odd as a polar bear isn’t necessarily a bad thing (even in a rainforest). And that the average person eats a ton of food a year, though her pregnant stepmother is doing her best to beat this.

What Harriet doesn’t know is where she’s going to fit in once the new baby arrives.

With summer plans ruined, modelling in Japan seems the perfect chance to get as far away from home as possible. But nothing can prepare Harriet for the craziness of Tokyo, her competitive model flatmates and her errant grandmother’s ‘chaperoning’. Or seeing gorgeous Nick everywhere she goes.

Because, this time, Harriet knows what a broken heart feels like.

Can geek girl find her place on the other side of the world or is Harriet lost for good?

On Sale: July 21st
HarperTeen
Pre-order: Amazon US | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository 

6. The Heart of Betrayal (The Remnant Chronicles #2) by Mary E. Pearson 

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If you have yet to read The Kiss of Deception, now is the time. The sequel to this highly acclaimed novel is up for grabs this month and reviewers are raving. 

Held captive in the barbarian kingdom of Venda, Lia and Rafe have little chance of escape. Desperate to save her life, Lia’s erstwhile assassin, Kaden, has told the Vendan Komizar that she has the gift, and the Komizar’s interest in Lia is greater than anyone could have foreseen.

Meanwhile, nothing is straightforward: there’s Rafe, who lied to Lia, but has sacrificed his freedom to protect her; Kaden, who meant to assassinate her but has now saved her life; and the Vendans, whom Lia always believed to be barbarians. Now that she lives amongst them, however, she realizes that may be far from the truth. Wrestling with her upbringing, her gift, and her sense of self, Lia must make powerful choices that will affect her country… and her own destiny.

On Sale: July 7th
Henry Holt and Co.
Pre-order: Amazon US | Amazon UK | Barnes and Noble | Book Depository

Which ones will make it on your July TBR pile? 

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All opinions are my own and are not sponsored or affiliated with any company or organization.

Review | The Walls Around Us

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five stars

Lyrically written and hauntingly captivating this ghost story will imprison you until the end. Nova Ren Suma’s storytelling is as graceful and disturbing as the ballerinas she writes of. The Walls Around Us is a strange novel full of twists and bends and the essence of the novel is brilliant.

Centered around three teenage girls, this book offers more drama than a cheer-leading squad. Stacked with troubled pasts, Ori, Amber, and Violet share their story of traumatic incidents that wreck their lives one August.

This is a story about innocence, guilt, friendship, and how life is sometimes the ultimate arbitrator. The Walls Around Us is labeled for Young Readers, but friends do not be fooled, this a book for all.

For full synopsis, click here.


All opinions are my own and are not endorsed or affiliated with any company or organization.