Sunday, April 1, 2018

Wrapped Up: A Review

*Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book in exchange of my honest opinion*

Wrapped Up (Vol. 1)
David Scheidt (Author) 
    Scott McMahan (Illustrator) 

lease Date: May 1st, 2018
Publisher: Lion Forge Comics
Genre: Books > Children's Books > Comics & Graphic Novels > Humorous
Print Length: 160 pages
Age Level: 9-12 yrs old
    Format Read: Digital ARC via Netgalley
Rating: ★★★

"Milo is just your average twelve-year-old kid. He lives next-door to an ex-con wizard. He's got a sad single dad, a stepdad who is basically Indiana Jones, and a Goth stepsister. And he's the only "normal" person in a wacky, crazy world in which the hits just keep on coming. Evil (but super cute) cats? Check. A babysitter who's younger than him and also an incompetent witch? Check. Chocolate cows grazing in his living room? That too.

Milo would really love to be left alone to skateboard and eat pizza, his two main life goals, but circumstances are constantly, hilariously, absurdly against him."

Wednesday, March 28, 2018

Trains: Photography of A. Aubrey Bodine

Trains: Photography of A. Aubrey Bodine
By: Jennifer B. Bodine

Release Date: April 28, 2018  Pre-Order Today!
Publisher: Schiffer
Genre: Books > Art & Photography > Vehicle Pictorials > Trains
Print Length: 128 pages
Age Level: Any
Format Read: Digital ARC via Edelweiss+
Rating: ★★★★

A. Aubrey Bodine, newspaper photographer, pictorialist, modernist, and documentarian, was a Baltimore Sun feature photographer from 1924-1970. This book is his archive of train photographs chronicling mid-twentieth-century rail transportation and the people working on the railroad. Bodine's images of steam and diesel locomotives document an era passed. Herein contains award-winning pictures, currently popular pictures, historically interesting pictures, and pictures unseen until this volume. These images demonstrate Bodine's pictorialist and modernist photographic eye for trains and railroads in motion and at rest. Bodine published four books, wrote articles, judged photographic Salons, won awards from all over the world, lectured across northeast America, and held down a full-time job at a major metropolitan newspaper. This is the fourth Bodine picture book assembled by his daughter, Jennifer. Their previous collaborations are Bodine's Chesapeake Bay Country, Bodine's City, and Bodine's Industry.

Monday, February 12, 2018

Lumberjanes: Volume 1

Lumberjanes (Volume 1)
Noelle Stevenson & Grace Ellis (Authors)
Brook Allen (Illustrator)
Publisher: Boom!- Boom! Box (Apr 1, 2015)
Genre: Comics & Graphic Novels > Graphic Novels
Print Length: 128
Age Level: Grade 5 & up
Format Read: Kindle & ComiXology
Rating: ★★★

What's to Love: Lumberjanes is the hit series from the BOOM! Box imprint that features five rad ladies who fight monster baddies with the power of friendship! Written by Noelle Stevenson (Nimona, Adventure Time) and newcomer Grace Ellis, and illustrated by Brooke Allen (A Home for Mr. Easter), this new series has taken comics by storm and placed on many Best-of-the-Year lists, including Comics Alliance, Entertainment Weekly, and Comic Book Resources.

What It Is: At Miss Qiunzella Thiskwin Penniquiqul Thistle Crumpet's Camp for Hardcore Lady Types, things are not what they seem. Three-eyed foxes. Secret caves. Anagrams! Luckily, Jo, April, Mal, Molly, and Ripley are five rad, butt-kicking best pals determined to have an awesome summer together...and they're not gonna let a magical quest or an array of supernatural critters get in their way! The mystery keeps getting bigger, and it all begins here. Presented as the Lumberjanes Field Manual featuring a cover gallery and early character designs by Noelle Stevenson and Brooke Allen. Collects issues #1-4. 

Monday, February 5, 2018

The Burn List: Another Fav. by Jennifer Dawson

The Burn List
(by: Jennifer Dawson)

Publication Date: December 11, 2017
Publisher: Amazon Digital Services LLC
Genre: Books > Romance > Contemporary
Print Length: 168 pages
Age Level: 18+
Format Read: Kindle version
Rating: ★★★★

After spending my thirtieth birthday with my parents, and drowning my sorrows in a bottle of tequila and splash of margarita mix, I know something has to change. All I want is a little excitement, one chance to go wild before I settle back into my regularly scheduled life. Fueled by liquid courage, I set about giving myself the perfect gift, my bad-boy neighbor, firefighter Lukas Marlow.

Sure, I like an intoxicated girl looking to turn her fantasies into reality as much as the next man, but this is sweet little Abby Simmons and on the do-not-touch list. Since I’m a nice guy and refuse to take advantage of her, I offer a compromise to her unexpected offer. Sleep it off, and if she hasn’t changed her mind in the light of day, I’ll fulfill all her dirty desires. Seemed reasonable, I mean, she’s such a good girl it’s not like she’ll ever take me on it.

My plan is perfect... until right about the time she emails me her sexual to-do list.

**Please note: This book has been previously published under my original pen name, Julia Devlin. It has been edited and updated, but the general story has remained unchanged.**

Thursday, February 1, 2018

Top 5 Reads of 2017

I will admit that 2017 was a horrible year for me blogging wise. However, I found that I was able to get back into reading full force. It was also the first year that I actually met my Goodreads Reading Challenge Goal (52/50). I read some amazing books, as well as some not go good ones. As it usually goes. In this post I figured I'd take the time to share with you my top 5 reads of the year. So let's jump right into it...

Friday, January 26, 2018

Pestilence: Volume 1

*I received a digital ARC of this book via Netgalley in exchange for my personal review*

PestilenceVolume 1

Release Date: February 20, 2018
Publisher: Aftershock Comics
Genre: Comics & Graphic Novels > Graphic Novels > Horror
Print Length: 144 pages
Age Level: 18+
Format read: Digital ARC

"It is the late 14th Century, and a Great Pestilence—the “Black Death”— is sweeping across Europe, killing over 100 million people. BUT, what if history as we know it was a lie? What if, in reality, this was no straightforward plague, but the FIRST non-recorded Zombie Infestation of man? Ex-Crusader Roderick Helms and his fellow “black ops” agents the Church, Fiat Lux, must seek out the cause of this undead outbreak and vanquish it before mankind ceases to exist!"

Wednesday, January 24, 2018

I am Malala: a review

I am Malala:
How One Girl Stood Up for Education
and Changed the World

Author: Malala Yousafzai  w/ Patricia McCormick
Genre: Children's Books > Biographies > Women
Release Date: August 19, 2014
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Print Length: 232 pages
Age Level: Grade 6 & up
Format read: Young Readers Edition - Audiobook

"I Am Malala. This is my story.

Malala Yousafzai was only ten years old when the Taliban took control of her region. They said music was a crime. They said women weren't allowed to go to the market. They said girls couldn't go to school.

Raised in a once-peaceful area of Pakistan transformed by terrorism, Malala was taught to stand up for what she believes. So she fought for her right to be educated. And on October 9, 2012, she nearly lost her life for the cause: She was shot point-blank while riding the bus on her way home from school.

No one expected her to survive.

Now Malala is an international symbol of peaceful protest and the youngest ever Nobel Peace Prize winner. In this Young Readers Edition of her bestselling memoir, which has been reimagined specifically for a younger audience and includes exclusive photos and material, we hear firsthand the remarkable story of a girl who knew from a young age that she wanted to change the world -- and did.

Malala's powerful story will open your eyes to another world and will make you believe in hope, truth, miracles and the possibility that one person -- one young person -- can inspire change in her community and beyond."
I went into this book knowing very little about Malala Yousafzai. I knew that she was targeted because of her stance on women's education but that was the extent of my knowledge. So I pretty much went into this book not knowing what to expect & with very little backstory. What I ended up finding was a book about an amazing girl who is, by far, one of the most inspiring people I have ever learned about.

If anyone is interested in reading this book, I highly recommend listening to the audiobook version. The way the narrator reads Malala's words makes the readers experience even more enjoyable. I found myself laughing over the antics between Malala & her brothers. And not only is Malala very intelligent, she is also hilarious. I found her sense of humor to be a breath of fresh air among the weighty subject of the Taliban's control & destruction.

I definitely recommend this book to anyone who is interested in real-life events, memoirs, inspirational women, or anyone just looking to read a story of hope & truth.

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Saturday, January 20, 2018

Drawing Cute with Katie Cook: a review

*I received a digital ARC of this book via Netgalley in exchange for my personal review*

Drawing Cute with Katie Cook
200+ Lessons for Drawing Super Adorable Stuff

Genre: Art & Photography > Drawing > Cartooning
Release Date: February 14, 2018
Publisher: IMPACT
Print Length: 128 pages
Age Level: All ages
Format read: Digital ARC

Fun fact: A lot of animals are shaped like potatoes.
Another fun fact: Potatoes are easy to draw.
Another another fun fact: If you can draw a potato, you can draw animals.

Master of cute Katie Cook teaches you how to draw everything adorable in her first tutorial book with quick and easy-to-follow step-by-step lessons. All you need is a pencil and paper...or a napkin or a wall, depending on how confident you are in your drawing ability. Learn how to turn curvy blobs, shapes and squiggles into more than 200 different things, including fuzzy animals, cute food and inanimate objects like yarns balls, luggage and a toaster. Add nubbins, swishy bits, and little smiley faces to anything and everything to transform it into something really, really cute.
  • How to draw lots of cats: fluffy cats, non-fluffy cats, cats in boxes, Polaroids of cats on refrigerators*
  • How to draw food like ketchup delivery sticks, spicy dragon claws and tiny broccoli trees
  • Perfect for doodling during class or in meetings
For fans of drawing turkeys from hand outlines (gobble, gobble) or Ed Emberley's super simple drawing instruction books that use shapes, letters and even thumbprints as starting points, Drawing Cute with Katie Cook is a must-own adorable drawing manual, complete with Doctor Who references, fun facts and bad puns.

"If you know how to draw a potato, the art world is an open door." --Katie Cook

* Don’t worry, there are lots of dog drawings, too!

Monday, January 15, 2018

Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire

Series: Wayward Children (Book 1)
Print Length: 174 Pages
Publisher: (April 5, 2016)
Literature & Fiction > Contemporary Fiction > Fantasy
Format Read: Audiobook via Overlook
Eleanor West's Home for Wayward Children
No Solicitations
No Visitors
No Quests
Children have always disappeared under the right conditions; slipping through the shadows under a bed or at the back of a wardrobe, tumbling down rabbit holes and into old wells, and emerging somewhere... else.
But magical lands have little need for used-up miracle children.
Nancy tumbled once, but now she's back. The things she's experienced... they change a person. The children under Miss West's care understand all too well. And each of them is seeking a way back to their own fantasy world.
But Nancy's arrival marks a change at the Home. There's a darkness just around each corner, and when tragedy strikes, it's up to Nancy and her new-found schoolmates to get to the heart of things.
No matter the cost.

Saturday, January 13, 2018

Kim Reaper Vol 1: Grim Beginnings

*I received a copy of this book via Netgalley in exchange for my honest review*
Series: Kim Reaper (Book 1)
Print Length: 112 Pages
Publisher: Oni Press (March 13, 2018)
Graphic Novels > Gay & Lesbian
Format Read: ARC in e-book form
Part-Time Grim Reaper. Full-Time Cutie!

Like most university students, Kim works a part-time job to make ends meet. Unlike most university students, Kim's job is pretty cool: she's a grim reaper, tasked with guiding souls into the afterlife.

Like most university students, Becka has a super intense crush. Unlike most university students, Becka's crush is on a beautiful gothic angel that frequents the underworld. Of course, she doesn't know that.

Unaware of the ghoulish drama she's about to step into, Becka finally gathers up the courage to ask Kim on a date! But when she falls into a ghostly portal and interrupts Kim at her job, she sets off a chain of events that will pit the two of them against angry cat-dads, vengeful zombies, and perhaps even the underworld itself. But if they work together, they just might make it... and maybe even get a smooch in the bargain.