Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Double Crossed

Double Crossed ( A Spies and Thieves Story)
By Ally Carter

I was so excited to find this e book short story for free on Amazon. This story brings together the thieves from The Heist Society Novels and the Spies from The Gallagher girl series. It wasn't a long story but it was a fun read. I need to read more of the Gallagher books so I know those characters better.

This story takes place at a party which is taken over by criminals determined to still something valuable.   What they don't realize is that Hale (professional con man) and Macey (Gallagher girl spy) are at that very party and they are determined to stop it.  Go download it... it's free and definitely worth the read. Just click on the picture of the book above and it will take you right to the link on Amazon.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Perfect Scoundrels

Perfect Scoundrels (A Heist Society Novel)
by Ally Carter

 I really love this series of books. They are so fun to read and I enjoy trying to figure out how they are going to complete their heist.

This book was just as good as the last two I read. This continues the adventures of Kat in the world of thievery. I like that the job is never quite what it seems. I spend the entire time trying to figure out what they did or didn't mean to happen. I even figured out parts of the con ahead of time which made me feel smart.  Of course it wasnt until the very end but I still it was before the full truth came out. that counts right? ;).

This is such a fun read and a really great choice for a clean and entertaining read for teenagers. I highly recommend this series.

Here are the links for the first two books, in case you are interested in starting from the very beginning:


And here are my reviews of these two books-  Heist Society,  Uncommon Criminals


Thursday, July 25, 2013

The Rescue

Guardians of Ga'hoole, Book 3 : The Rescue
by Kathryn Lasky

I completed book 3 in this series. This book was even faster to read but it also didn't feel like as much happened and didn't keep my interest as well. At one point I felt kind of lost. Not that I didn't understand what was happening. I just felt like one moment they were searching for the truth and the next they had figured it out, with out a good explanation of how they figured it out.

Spoiler: They found the evil birds base abandoned and bags of flecks missing and from that they figured out just what they were up to. I was confused why the missing bags gave away their evil plot when they could have easily just taken them with them when they found a new base. I don't know it's a kids book so I probably should read in it to much...

Anyway, it was interesting and I liked learning about some of the older owls and snakes' pasts. I'm sure I'll read the next one but hopefully it gets more interesting again.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Full Tilt

Full Tilt
By Neal Shusterman

I always enjoy Neal Shusterman's books so when I saw this one I decided to give it a try. He sure does come up with some unique stories.

This one is about an evil Carnival that traps kids souls inside. A young man goes inside to try and rescue his brother but he must survive 7 rides in order to get back out.

This was a quick and interesting read. I like how his books aren't simple boy goes in and rescues brother. There are always complications and internal struggles that his characters must face. It really makes you think about what people go through in traumatic and stressful situations.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Reading club

We are participating in the Libraries summer reading club. It is a good way to get my boys to read more.

We checked out some new books this week.

The Donut Chef
by Bob Staake

This is a story about two chefs who compete to have the best donuts. Their recipes get crazier and crazier until one little girl can't find the donut she wants, glazed.

The Best Time of Day
by Eileen Spinelli

This was a really cute story about a farm. It tells the best time of day for all the people and critters who live there. The Pictures are great and it was fun to read.

My No. No. No Day!
By Rebecca Patterson

I got this book because we have been having a lot of these kind of days at our house. It was good for the boys to see that everyone has bad days sometimes but it doesn't have to be everyday.

Nora's Ark
by Eileen Spinelli

This was another cute story about a little girl who on a raining day pretends to build an ark in her backyard. I thought it was a cute way to remember about Noah's Ark and the ending was really sweet.

Thank You. Miss Doover
by Robin Pulver

I thought this story was pretty funny. My boys didn't get it, at all. It tells the story of a boy who is trying to learn how to write thank you notes. I thought it was a cute way to introduce how to properly write a thank you note but maybe my kids need to be older to really get the humor.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

The Journey

Guardians of Ga'Hoole book 2: The Journey
By Kathryn Lasky

Another day potty training, another book finished. :)

This continues the story right where it left off in the first book. The story continues to be interesting, even if it was a little slow in the middle. At least these books are short so even when it gets slow it picks back up again pretty quickly. Of course it ended right when it got to be the most interesting and leaving some questions unanswered so now I have to continue reading the series if I want to know what becomes of the owls. So far I am liking this series.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Library Time

We've made some new friends and explored our fabulous local library. It is so big and the boys love going to story time. This week they had a puppet show all about dinosaurs. Every week we get together with friends so the kids can play and pick out some new books.

Here are a few we we picked this last week.

The World Champion of Staying Awake
By Sean Taylor and Jimmy Liao

This feels like it describes my kids! Anyone else struggle with bed time!? Ugh... I hate it sometimes. This is a cute story about a little girl who gets her three dolls to go to sleep. I thought this was great concept and the boys thought it was fun.

Big Plans
by Bob Shea

I honestly didn't get this story. The kid goes on and on about his big plans but we never find out what they are. The boys did like this book so maybe it is a kid thing... and I liked the pictures so that's something.

Whoo! Whoo! Goes the Train
by Anne Rockwell

Remember when my oldest was little and loved trains... oh they grow up to fast! Anyway, this would have been the perfect book for him. Really great for littles who love trains and making sounds. I thought it was fun. This book is perfect for 2-3 year olds.

Earth to Clunk
by Pam Smallcomb

This was by far my favorite book we checked out from the library. I loved the pictures and the story and the boys thought it was funny too. Win-win. This is a really cute story about a boy who gets an Alien pen-pal but is not happy about it. He keeps sending him things he does think he would his sister, in hopes that the Alien will stop writing back. It was a great little story.

Monday, July 15, 2013

The Capture

Guardians of Ga'Hoole Book 1: The Capture
By Kathryn Lasky

I started this book the other day. I am attempting to Potty train my youngest and needed something to do while we were "stuck" at home. It took me a few hours to finish this book... if only my son was potty trained that quickly!

At first I wasn't sure if I was going to like this book. It took me a couple chapters to really get interested in it but eventually I did. I think I especially liked reading about the different owls because I have worked with so many of the different types that they talk about in the book. That made it really easy for me to picture them and imagine what they were like.

This was an interesting story and unique concept. I am definitely interested in how the series turns out... it looks like there are a lot of books in this series.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

The Rithmatist

The Rithmatist
By Brandon Sanderson

I am already a huge fan of Brandon Sanderson after reading the Mistborn series. I was excited to learn that he had written a young adult fantasy and put all the other books on my TBR list to the side so I could read it right away.

I have absolutely nothing negative to say about this book! Brandon Sanderson is a exceptional story teller. His books are well developed, the characters feel realistic and the story is always fascinating. This book was no exception.

A loved the steampunk feel of this book. I have read others in that genre but this one has been by far the best use of it. I also enjoyed learning about Rithmatist and chalklings. It was an intriguing new type of magic involving chalk drawings. Really creative and made for a great story.

This was a really quick read. It only took me two days but that might be because I didn't want to put it down. I really liked the characters and I can't wait to see how they develop later.

The ending was wide open so I know there must be more coming in the future. I can't wait to read them even if it will be a while before the next one comes out.

Sunday, July 7, 2013

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas

The Boy in the Striped Pajamas
By John Boyne

I knew this would be a sad story before I started it. What story about World War 2 and the Jewish Holocaust isn't? I prepared myself for it. I thought that it would be an interesting look at subject from a young boy's perspective. But I really didn't enjoy this book.

I found it hard to believe that a 9 year old would be quite as naive as he was. That he could be living at Auschwitz, where his father was in charge of the camp, and have no clue what was truly happening there. And the ending was just too depressing( I know it is about a terrible subject but still...) and not really believable to me.

After reading this book I have no desire to ever see this movie, ever. I also have no desire to read this or give this book to my children to read. I know that the back says that this isn't a book for nine year olds but it is certainly written more like a children's book then an adult novel. So I don't really know what to call it. If you want your kids to learn more about the Holocaust have them read The Diary of Anne Frank, I liked that story much better.

It was a very quick, easy read. And the idea of it was interesting. I just didn't enjoy it that much.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Out of Sight, Out of Time

Out of Sight, Out of Time
By Ally Carter

 When I picked up this book I did not realize that it was the fifth book in a series of books about the Gallagher Girls. The Gallagher Girls are a group of friends who go to a private school for girls where they are taught how to be spies.

I decided that I would give the book I try even though I hadn't read the other four books, with the hope that not knowing what happened in the those books wouldn't keep me from enjoying this story.

I thought that this was a really fun, quick and entertaining read. I still like her Heist Society series better but I really enjoyed this book too. This is really a great, clean book for the teen crowd. I think I would have loved reading about these smart, talented, successful girls when I was in my early teens.

Although I had no problem following the story  with out knowing about their past adventures, there is part of me that would have loved to have more insight into their relationship. Certain interactions and situations would have probably been more significant to me with that knowledge.

I will definitely have to go back and read those first four books... My interest has been peaked!

I am really enjoying this author's writing. Her books are such clean fun. I love that because that is not always so easy to find these days. Plus they are so quick an easy to read. There is something to be said about being able to pick up a book and just escape from the world for a little bit.