Posted in backlog reviews, Recommendations, Reviews

Baseball and Salty Snacks: A Summer Adventure

Summary

Much Ado About Baseball by [Rajani LaRocca]

If you loved Midsummer Mayhem you’ll love this companion novel about the salty side and sports-based side to Lady Titania and Lord Oberon’s summer wager where baseball plays an important part.

Twelve-year-old Trish can solve tough math problems and throw a mean fastball. But because of her mom’s new job, she’s now facing a summer trying to make friends all over again in a new town. That isn’t an easy thing to do, and her mom is too busy to notice how miserable she is.

But at her first baseball practice, Trish realizes one of her teammates is Ben, the sixth-grade math prodigy she beat in the spring Math Puzzler Championships. Everyone around them seems to think that with their math talent and love of baseball, it’s only logical that Trish and Ben become friends, but Ben makes it clear he still hasn’t gotten over that loss and can’t stand her. To make matters worse, their team can’t win a single game. But then they meet Rob, an older kid who smacks home runs without breaking a sweat. Rob tells them about his family’s store, which sells unusual snacks that will make them better ballplayers. Trish is dubious, but she’s willing to try almost anything to help the team.

When a mysterious booklet of math puzzles claiming to reveal the “ultimate answer” arrives in her mailbox, Trish and Ben start to get closer and solve the puzzles together. Ben starts getting hits, and their team becomes unstoppable. Trish is happy to keep riding the wave of good luck . . . until they get to a puzzle they can’t solve, with tragic consequences. Can they find the answer to this ultimate puzzle, or will they strike out when it counts the most?

Review

I’ve been waiting for this book since I finished Midsummer Mayhem came out. I LOVED Midsummer Mayhem and I loved this book as well, I thought I couldn’t find a protagonist as interesting after Mimi since I’m a baker myself. But Trish and Ben stole my heart along with their teammates and the entry of the faries and Lord Oberon was especially well done. I especially loved how the faries responded to the ‘mistakes’ in Midsummer Nights Dream. Oh, and Ben’s dog was a sweetheart. Overall, I wasn’t sure that Midsummer Mayhem could be followed up but I’m glad I was wrong. This book is charming and the character development is on point and the story leaves the characters better than it found them. 5/5

I love most anything Rajani LaRocca touches, so more of this, please.

Amazon: Much Ado About Baseball

Posted in new releases

Heroine on a Mission

Here are a few select titles coming out tomorrow that I thought you might find interesting these books are filled with different girls doing things to save the place they love. Each heroine is working on something different but her journey is important.

Hope Springs

This heroine is out to find a home a when she finds one save the town she loves.

Eleven-year-old Jubilee Johnson is an expert at three things: crafting, moving, and avoiding goodbyes. On the search for the “perfect place,” she and her Nan live by their Number One Relocation Rule — just the two of them is all they need. But Jubilee’s starting to feel like just two is a little too close to alone.

Desperate to settle down, Jubilee plans their next move, Hope Springs, Texas — home of her TV crafting idol, Arletta Paisley. Here she meets a girl set on winning the local fishing tournament and a boy who says exactly the right thing by hardly speaking at all. Soon, Jubilee wonders if Hope Springs might just be the place to call home.

But when the town is threatened by a mega-chain superstore fronted by Arletta Paisley, Jubilee is faced with skipping town yet again or standing up to her biggest bully yet. With the help of her new friends and the one person she never thought she’d need — her Momma — will Jubilee find a way to save the town she’s come to love and convince Nan that it’s finally time to settle down?

Amazon: Hope Springs

Ghost Girl

Ghost Girl by [Ally Malinenko]

This heroine has to embrace her differences and save her town from something spooky!

Zee Puckett loves ghost stories. She just never expected to be living one.

It all starts with a dark and stormy night. When the skies clear, everything is different. People are missing. There’s a creepy new principal who seems to know everyone’s darkest dreams. And Zee is seeing frightening things: large, scary dogs that talk and maybe even . . . a ghost.

When she tells her classmates, only her best friend Elijah believes her. Worse, mean girl Nellie gives Zee a cruel nickname: Ghost Girl.

But whatever the storm washed up isn’t going away. Everyone’s most selfish wishes start coming true in creepy ways.

To fight for what’s right, Zee will have to embrace what makes her different and what makes her Ghost Girl. And all three of them—Zee, Elijah, and Nellie—will have to work together if they want to give their ghost story a happy ending.

Amazon: Ghost Girl

The Renegade Reporters

The Renegade Reporters by [Elissa Brent Weissman]

These heroine and her friends have to get to the bottom of a mystery of why they are being watched.

Ash and her friends are reporters. They were ready to lead their school news show, The News at Nine, sponsored by Van Ness Media, when an unfortunate incident involving a dancing teacher, an irresponsibly reported story, and a viral video got them kicked off the crew. So Ash, Maya, and Brielle decide to start their own news show, The Underground News. And soon they stumble on a big lead: Van Ness Media, the educational company that provides their school’s software, has been gathering data from all the kids at school. Their drawings, their journals, even their movements are being recorded and cataloged by Van Ness Media. But why? Ash and her friends are determined to learn the truth and report it.

Amazon: The Renegade Reporters

Check out all these books coming out tomorrow! And enjoy their adventures.

Posted in Royal Readathon, Trope-ical Readathon

Efficient First Week

So apparently this new month and these readathons have made me me more efficient when it comes to reading. I don’t know the last time I finished four books in a week. If I keep this up I may actually get back on track for my 100 books this year. I’m also finishing prompts for both my Readathons. For @RoyalReadathon I just finished my Olaf book, or book under 250 prompt with The Tea Dragon Tapestry. For my Mushu, or book with a dragon, I read The Dragon Egg Princess, and for my Chip book, which was a middle grade book, I read, The Sun will Come Out

For the Trope-ical Readathon those books filled in the book with fire on the cover prompt, the new kid in town prompt and since one of them was a graphic novel it didn’t count for prompts for that readathon. Overall, this week has been very efficient in terms of reading, I’ve finally found the rhythm I think I’ve been missing in my book slump lately so I’m going to try to keep that up that pace so I can get back on track to read my hundred books a year, basically I just need to keep an ebook in my hand all day every day for the rest of the year. Or maybe two, we’ll see how many I can hold lol.

The other thing I’ve been working on is building my character for D&D I’m playing with a DM from my rock camp and some new friends. I’m really enjoying to story building which makes me think I should get back to working on my novels. I also need to pay more attention to this blog, I’m way behind on reviews. Basically all the drama over the summer, I want to put in the re-view mirror and embrace fall as a growing season.

Here is to hoping next week manifests more of that goal.

Posted in Reviews

Creepy Thriller: The Companion Review

The words "The Companion" on a cream colored background along with a silver old fashioned spoon that has sewing pins in it. In small print it says "The lies pile up and then they bury you."

Summary:

In this creepy thriller everyone thinks that protagonist Margot is lucky. The other orphans say Margot is lucky.
 
Lucky to be the only one to survive the horrible accident that killed her family.
 
Lucky to have her own room because she wakes up screaming every night from horrible nightmares she can’t escape.
 
And finally, lucky to be chosen by a prestigious family to live at their remote country estate.
 
But it wasn’t luck that made the Suttons rescue Margot from her bleak existence at the group home.  Margot was handpicked to be a companion to their silent, mysterious daughter, Agatha. At first, helping with Agatha–and getting to know her handsome younger brother–seems much better than the group home. But soon, the isolated house begins playing tricks on Margot’s mind, making her question everything she believes about the Suttons . . . and herself.  And her luck may not be what it seems as things turn dark at the Sutton estate.

Review

This gets major thriller points, the book is long and the author paces it well, so every time you think something is going to get the characters it seems like will but it doesn’t leading to more tension. The Sutton estate is creepy as soon as we are introduced to it, it’s got haunted house written all over from the moment Margot steps in. What’s something about the family isn’t right, rigid and old fashioned Laura is a puzzle Margot can’t figure out but doesn’t want to cross.

And at first Margot thinks that Agatha the girl she’s going to companion is almost creepy at first, and is simply catatonic, things become more complicated when Agatha begins to show in small ways that she’s aware and she’s trying hard to tell Margot something but what, when Margot meets the other sibling Barrett they soon grow close and begin to uncover family mysteries that go deeper than either of them expected. Things that maybe shouldn’t be disturbed, family secrets that could shake up everything about life at Sutton Hall.

Margot worries soon that things are getting much too serious for her and it might be time for her to leave, even if that means going to the State Intuition, but she may not be given the the chance as she may have inadvertently fallen into a web of secrets and danger she might not be able to escape.

This book was great the pacing was on point and the character development even of characters who weren’t able to speak, was excellent. Also you find yourself questioning the narrator just as much as she questions herself. This is a five out of five and I hope I find more spooky reads like this.

Amazon: The Companion