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JenBookDen

Jennifer | Book Den

A book blogging mom who loves to read, run, and watch TV. All at the same time.

Currently reading

Wayward
Blake Crouch
The Winter Family: A Novel
Clifford Jackman

Honor's Knight

Honor's Knight - Rachel Bach Honor's Knight is the second book in the Paradox trilogy by Rachel Bach.

The entire time I was reading Honor's Knight all I could think was Holy shit I love this book. I'm devastated there is only one book left in the series. If you haven't read Fortune's Pawn, I cannot recommend enough that you jump on to this trilogy.

You can read my review of Fortune's Pawn here.

I mentioned in my review of Fortune's Pawn that it was more of a "space fantasy" than a science fiction novel. Honor's Knight can definitely be classified more as science fiction but this is an awesome thing. I'm loving the way this trilogy is progressing.

The Paradox series centers around Devi Morris - a totally badass mercenary chick on track to join an elite league of armored fighters. It's difficult to review Honor's Knight without spoiling the first book so I'm just going to say I loved this second book even more than the first. And I really loved the first.

There's so much action and mystery, so many twists and turns, and such awesome characters. There's also no cliffhanger at the end of this one! Just an intense longing for more... I highly, highly recommend this series.

Snowblind

Snowblind - Christopher Golden I was highly anticipating reading Snowblind this year. I've been a fan of Christopher Golden for a long time, and it has been a while since he's released a new horror book. When I heard Snowblind was going to be released, I immediately placed it on my must read list.

I absolutely loved the ominous build up in the beginning of Snowblind. A blizzard is blowing in to a small town in New England, and something is waiting out in the snow. It reminded me of Stephen King's The Mist. You know some bad shit is happening, but you don't know exactly what is out there.

Once all of the foreboding came to a head and we started seeing the horrors of the blizzard, the timeline jumped ahead 12 years. The real story of Snowblind lies in what happened 12 years after the original events, but the jump in time forced the middle to lag for me. I spent most of Snowblind longing for the awesome that got left behind.

Even though the end of Snowblind didn't live up to the promise of the beginning, it was still a good snow thriller. If you are looking for a book to give you the snow creeps, Snowblind will definitely fit that bill. I'm glad I read it on one of the only almost snowy days we had here this winter. If I ever find myself out in real snow, this book is certain to be on my mind.

The Twelve-Fingered Boy

The Twelve-Fingered Boy - John Hornor Jacobs Why did I read The Twelve-Fingered Boy?

I'm a fan of John Hornor Jacobs. His debut novel Southern Gods blew me away. (You can check out my review of Southern Gods here.) The Twelve-Fingered Boy is Jacobs's first YA novel, and it sounded like an awesome read.

The Strengths

I have a strong affection for coming of age stories, and I don't find myself reading male POV YA books very often. The Twelve-Fingered Boy was able to fill that spot in my heart and make me a very happy reader.

I love the friendship between Shreve and Jack. This is something I look forward to reading more of in the rest of the series.

Superpowers! Can a YA fantasy get better than the main characters having special abilities? I'm not sure that it can for me. If you love books like the Lorien Legacies (I Am Number Four, etc.) then you should check out The Twelve-Fingered Boy as well.

I'm very happy to report The Twelve-Fingered Boy is a full story. I bitch A LOT about series books not giving a full story in each volume. I firmly believe that any and every book should be able to stand on its own. Even though there is a larger story arch and questions left unanswered, The Twelve-Fingered Boy is completely capable of standing on its own.

The design of the physical book is fantastic. I'm very blessed to have a hard copy. It's a great read so I certainly recommend downloading the ebook if that is your thing, but bibliophiles, keep in mind this is a stunning book.




The front and back matter are printed on dark paper.


The Weakness

When the big baddie Mr. Quincrux forcibly enters Shreve's mind (not a spoiler/in the book blurb), Shreve has a very strong reaction to how he's been violated. I was uncomfortable with the extent to which Shreve was equating this violation especially given the fact that Shreve goes on to do the exact same thing to others.

Would I recommend The Twelve-Fingered Boy to others?

Yes! It was a really great read. The Shibboleth comes out in March so I will definitely be reading that one soon as well.

3:59

3:59 - Gretchen McNeil Holy plot holes, Batman! 2.5 stars.

Steelheart

Steelheart - Brandon Sanderson 25%

I tried really hard to care. The truth is... if I don't care about any of the characters, I have trouble caring about anything at all.

Fortune's Pawn

Fortune's Pawn - Rachel Bach If you are like me and you spend most of your year pining for the next badass book chick to enter your life, FORTUNE'S PAWN.

Devi is a mercenary who wants to become a Devestator for the King. In order to gain enough qualified experience in a short amount of time she takes a job on a notoriously active ship called The Glorious Fool. As promised, Devi faces a lot of action, but she also stumbles upon secrets she was never meant to discover.

Devi is such an awesome character. She has an ambitious goal that keeps her driven to consistently level up her badassery. Her job is dangerous so she makes it a point to live her life. She doesn't always make the best decisions, but I love her.

Another thing Devi has going for her on top of her mercenary skills is her armored suit. I had no idea how badly I could want a suit of armor until I read Fortune's Pawn. Devi's suit and her guns are practically characters themselves. Devi spent two years' salary on her suit, and it is awesome. Her weapons have their own names which totally solidifies their status with me. I was just as worried about the fate of her suit and weapons as the fate of the real characters.

There's a huge romance element in Fortune's Pawn. It's a bit insta-love, but there are so many layers, secrets, and OMGs to the romance and all of the characters in Fortune's Pawn, I can almost overlook the insta-love.

The only thing I'm going to bitch and moan about is the ending. Fortune's Pawn is the first book of the Paradox trilogy and it is no exception to the series trend of leaving the reader abso-fucking-lutely hanging at the end. A huge saving grace is Orbit is publishing these books pretty much back to back with only two months in between each release so we won't have to wait long for more Paradox.

The last thing I want to say is you do not need to be a reader of science fiction to enjoy Fortune's Pawn. A lot of folks are making strong comparisons to Urban Fantasy even though Fortune's Pawn is set in space. Maybe we can call this a Space Fantasy? If you love strong characters and a lot of action, Fortune's Pawn is a really great read.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire  - J.K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré Reread

This book really does rival Prisoner of Azkaban for the best of Harry Potter. My God. The feels...

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban  - J.K. Rowling, Mary GrandPré Reread

Whom the Gods Would Destroy

Whom the Gods Would Destroy - Brian Hodge @ 50%. That's a valiant effort.

Heart of a Snowman

Heart of a Snowman - Eugene Yelchin, Eugene Yelchin OK, part of this book is really weird, but part of it is really awesome. It starts out with a boy building a snowman with help from his sister. It seems like an average enough read until... a flying saucer shaped like snowman sucks the snowman and the boy up into the vessel... So weird. But THEN we go on a journey that reveals the true heart of a snowman, and overall it ended on an awesome note.

My kids had a LOT of questions through this weird adventure. I definitely recommend it as a good Christmas read.

Crow Boy

Crow Boy - Taro Yashima I read this to my kids during banned book week. This book actually spawned a lot of really great discussion about bullying; I just didn't like the book itself much. I wasn't a fan of the artwork, the print was teeny tiny, the story was very odd... If it weren't for the stuff that got the book banned in the first place and the great discussion it provoked from my kids, it probably would have been a one star read for me.

Corduroy

Corduroy - Don Freeman This is a really sweet story of a department store teddy bear who finds a home and a friend.

The House in the Night

The House in the Night - Susan Marie Swanson, Beth Krommes This was a much bigger hit with me than it was with my kids. They were desperate to know why everything was so dark. Me, I loved the illustrations, and I enjoyed the story. The 4 stars are for me; the kids could take it or leave it.

Clifford The Champion

Clifford The Champion - Norman Bridwell This book is cute. My kids had a good time guessing whether Clifford could do each trick or not.

In the Night Kitchen

In the Night Kitchen - Maurice Sendak I read this to my kids for banned books week. They absolutely loved it. In the Night Kitchen is frequently banned because the little boy is - completely - naked, but that's what my boys loved most about it. They giggled a lot about how completely naked he was, but it really brought them into the story. My kids were dying to know if Mickey was dreaming or did the events really happen. It prompted a great discussion.

Around the World! (Dora the Explorer Series)

Around the World! (Dora the Explorer Series) - Suzanne D. Nimm, Ron Zalme, Valerie Walsh This is my least favorite Dora book we have read. There are too many issues for me to name them all. My biggest complaints are this is definitely not an early reader book and it doesn't stay true to basic Dora rules (too many swipers and backpack has like 4-5 items that they need instead of one). It's not an awful book, but out of the many, many Dora books we have read, this is the bottom of the likes list.