Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer

fowlGenre: middle-grade fantasy

Stats: Audio runs 6′ 7″, Published 2004, book

Blurb: (Goodreads) Twelve-year-old Artemis Fowl is a millionaire, a genius—and, above all, a criminal mastermind. But even Artemis doesn’t know what he’s taken on when he kidnaps a fairy, Captain Holly Short of the LEPrecon Unit. These aren’t the fairies of bedtime stories—they’re dangerous! Full of unexpected twists and turns, Artemis Fowl is a riveting, magical adventure.

What I liked: I thoroughly enjoyed the repartee between characters. Colfer isn’t afraid to use puns, language and quips that some kids might not get, but make it entertaining for those who do (as well as adults like me who are reading/listening to his books). The underworld fantasy world is very rich and well thought out. This always makes me wonder how much a author has mapped out future books in a series when he/she starts the first book. The characters are very real, especially when you’re listening to their different voices from the wonderful  Nathaniel Parker.

What I didn’t like: Colfer takes a lot of liberties with the mythical creatures in his story: fairies, dwarfs, elves and last but not leas leprechauns of the LEP-recon squad. Some of it is very inventive, some of it is just over the top, but I guess it’s written for middle-grade readers so I can see why he did it, in part. I personally like stories that play off the known myths a little more closely.

Side note: As it says in the blurb, Artemis is a criminal, from a family of Irish criminals. no less. I think it is interesting that the book publishers picked up a story that has a criminal as the main protagonist. He’s a genius, yes, but still a criminal. I wonder how many times it got rejected before it was picked up just for this reason. It’s also interesting that the name Artemis is from a female Greek God. Granted, it sounds like a boys name to me too, but Colfer must have known kids would find this out. Maybe he didn’t care.

Rating: 4/5
I am listening to the second one already.

Published in: on October 20, 2014 at 11:26pm10  Leave a Comment  
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Photo Phriday – Falling

Christine Keleny:

Nice, Daniel!
Nice poem
Nice photo

Originally posted on Dan Frugalberg:

image
As summer yields to autumn’s light,
With golden hues, these playful kites.
Dancing, prancing, grace in flight,
The falling leaves, a last goodnight.
~ D.F.

View original

Published in: on October 17, 2014 at 11:26pm10  Leave a Comment  
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Now that’s a quote!

cake

 

I got the cake image from dailymail.co.uk

Published in: on October 16, 2014 at 11:26pm10  Comments (4)  
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Old Tune Tuesday

It is dreary and wet hear so this song seemed appropriate.

Published in: on October 14, 2014 at 11:26pm10  Comments (3)  
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The Wait is Over! “Never Turn Back” is Never Turning Back!

Christine Keleny:

I would recommend this book to anyone who likes historical fiction. I know the writer and this interesting story is based off what happened to her Finnish Grandmother before, during and after WWii. plus if you read further down, Lorna’s got a wonder gift for you!

Originally posted on Lorna's Voice:

Yeah, I'm that happy. Hope you will be, too!

Yeah, I’m that happy. Hope you will be, too!

I’ve been talking about this novel for a long time.

The wait is finally over.

The Kindle version of Never Turn Back is available NOW.

Yes, you heard me. NOW.

If you want to know a bit about the book, check out the new page I put up on this blog dedicated to the book.

Hover your cursor over the picture of the book on the side bar, and you’ll be linked to the Amazon page.

Aren’t I quite the slick marketer?

Now the hard part begins (at least for me). Marketing the book while I’m getting ready to move across the country.

Marketing is hard enough for a highly sensitive person like me. Add the stress of a move, and, well, I’m about as glued together as runny oatmeal.

Ever feel like this? Then you know how I feel.

Ever feel like this? Then you know how I feel.

View original 443 more words

Published in: on October 13, 2014 at 11:26pm10  Comments (1)  

The Lincoln Myth by Steve Berry

I haven’t read anything by Steve Berry and I thought I had heard of him, so I wanted to give him a try with his new book. It’s #9 in the Cotton Malone series.

berry coverGenre: Thriller (?)

Stats: 429 pages for a book, 12 discs for audio – narrator Scott Brick. I listened to the audio version.

Blurb: (Goodreads) A Cotton Malone adventure involving a flaw in the United States Constitution, a mystery about Abraham Lincoln, and a political issue that’s as explosive as it is timely—not only in Malone’s world, but in ours.
 
September 1861: All is not as it seems. With these cryptic words, a shocking secret passed down from president to president comes to rest in the hands of Abraham Lincoln. And as the first bloody clashes of the Civil War unfold, Lincoln alone must decide how best to use this volatile knowledge: save thousands of American lives, or keep the young nation from being torn apart forever?

The present: In Utah, the fabled remains of Mormon pioneers whose nineteenth-century expedition across the desert met with a murderous end have been uncovered. In Washington, D.C., the official investigation of an international entrepreneur, an elder in the Mormon church, has sparked a political battle between the White House and a powerful United States senator. In Denmark, a Justice Department agent, missing in action, has fallen into the hands of a dangerous zealot—a man driven by divine visions to make a prophet’s words reality. And in a matter of a few short hours, Cotton Malone has gone from quietly selling books at his shop in Denmark to dodging bullets in a high-speed boat chase.

All it takes is a phone call from his former boss in Washington, and suddenly the ex-agent is racing to rescue an informant carrying critical intelligence. It’s just the kind of perilous business that Malone has been trying to leave behind, ever since he retired from the Justice Department. But once he draws enemy blood, Malone is plunged into a deadly conflict—a constitutional war secretly set in motion more than two hundred years ago by America’s Founding Fathers.

From the streets of Copenhagen to the catacombs of Salzburg to the rugged mountains of Utah, the grim specter of the Civil War looms as a dangerous conspiracy gathers power. Malone risks life, liberty, and his greatest love in a race for the truth about Abraham Lincoln—while the fate of the United States of America hangs in the balance

What I didn’t like: It was a bit slow – lots of reading from letters or pretend text from the past or present books or letters. If you aren’t interested in history: our nations history,  Latter Day Saints history, you probably won’t enjoy this much. I haven’t read any of Berry’s other Malone stories but I’m guessing their are a bit more fast paced than this one was.  The prologue is supposed to be enlightening and get you interested – it was also slow and just confused me. This confusion gets cleared up later on in the book, but still, not a great beginning. You know how it’s going to turn out so there isn’t a lot of mystery to the story plot.

What I liked: Cotton Malone is a good character and I like how Berry leaves the solution to his love interest in the air – my guess for another book. I’m a history buff so all the explanations didn’t bother me. The writing is good even if the plot’s a bit unbelievable. The narrator, Scott Brick, does a wonderful job.

Rating: 3/5

I’ll probably try one if Berry’s earlier books. The earlier books in a series tend to be the better stories.

Published in: on October 12, 2014 at 11:26pm10  Comments (1)  
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Photo Phriday

It’s fall here in Wisconsin, so I had to share a fall photo. Betty Davidson supplied me with another lovely picture she took  (my guess in Minnesota somewhere since that is where she lives), so I thought I’d share it. Most of those ducks in the picture are coots. Coots always remind me of fall. I grew up on a lake in Madison, WI and every fall duck that normally wouldn’t be there would grace us with their presence. Coots aren’t anything special to look at, they are all black with whitish beaks, but they make a very nice beep, beep, beep sound. And when there is a large group of them, like in this picture, the sound is quite loud.Betty Davidson, coots on the lake

Published in: on October 10, 2014 at 11:26pm10  Comments (5)  
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You’re off to see the Wizard!

On this day in 1899, L. Frank Baum finished writing his beloved story – The Emerald City, AKA – The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. It was published in May of 1900. It was illustrated by W. W. Denslow. It was made into a musical in 1902 and the movie that Judy Garland and crew made famous in 1939. I’ve never read the book. I should check it out sometime. Lyman (which is what the L. stands for) was born in Chittenango, New York in 1856 and died in Los Angles, California in 1919. He was quite the prolific writer, having written 55 novels in total, plus four “lost” novels, 83 short stories, over 200 poems, an unknown number of scripts,

from dvdsreleasedates.com

from dvdsreleasedates.com

 

Published in: on October 10, 2014 at 11:26am10  Comments (2)  
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Photo Phriday

Had to take a picture of the remainder of the sunflowers. They were wonderful this year!

sunflower 2014

Published in: on September 26, 2014 at 11:26pm09  Comments (6)  
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Still Life by Louise Penny

still lifeA good friend gave me this book. I had not read any Louise Penny but I probably will read more.

Genre: Murder mystery, 293 pages of very small type (my paperback edition), published in 2007, 1st Armand Gamache mystery

Blurb: (Goodreads) Chief Inspector Armand Gamache of the Sûreté du Québec and his team of investigators are called in to the scene of a suspicious death in a rural village south of Montréal and yet a world away. Jane Neal, a long-time resident of Three Pines, has been found dead in the woods. The locals are certain it’s a tragic hunting accident and nothing more but Gamache smells something foul this holiday season…and is soon certain that Jane died at the hands of someone much more sinister than a careless bowhunter.

With this award-winning first novel, Louise Penny introduces an engaging hero in Inspector Gamache, who commands his forces—and this series—with power, ingenuity, and charm.

What I liked: It was a good story; good characters, good plot, different subplots (subplots that had very little to do with the story but added to character development), and I couldn’t guess who done it! It was interesting to read about life in small town, Canada. Similar to small town Wisconsin as far as I could tell.

What I didn’t like: I always have a hard time reading stories from other countries that use in apostrophe with dialogue (Canada, Australia, maybe the UK too, I’m not sure). It’s a minor annoyance but sometimes (especially with the small type I was reading, it was hard to see when someone was talking.  The other thing that was just a bit hard to swallow was how everyone saw themselves or others in town in the “still life” painting the dead character did. If the painting is as busy as it sounds (it’s a scene of parade), then I highly doubt people could pick themselves out of a crowd.

Rating: 4/5

Published in: on September 21, 2014 at 11:26pm09  Comments (1)  
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