Monday, March 25, 2013

Finn Finnegan Book Review

Darby Karchut creates an exciting new world by mixing modern day  with Irish Folklore in this middle grade adventure.  Karchut is an award winning-writer and local Colorado author.

Finn Finnegan is about a thirteen year old who is half human, half Tuatha De Danaan.  Tuatha De Danaan is an ancient warrior race of mythical beings from Ireland.  At age thirteen it is customary for them to train with an older De Dannan and learn to fight and use their ancient skills passed down from generation to generation.  They are at war with the Amandán, which are goblins that can morph into objects or people for a short period of time.  Unfortunately they can only injure Amadán and therefore only slow them down.  The only weapon that can kill an Amadán is the Gideon Spear, and it’s been lost for a very long time.

Karchut nails the perspective of a young teen becoming a warrior, with all its ups and downs.   This is a fantastic middle grade book for any young  boy.  It’s a clean novel which is something I always appreciate.  I also appreciate the history and Irish Folklore. I give this book 5 out of 5 donuts.

Finn Finnegan is available at Amazon:

And Barnes & Noble:

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Fault In Our Stars Book Review

The Fault in our Stars is a young adult novel about two teenagers in who meet in a cancer support group.  It’s a story about love, friendship, books and cancer.

Hazel had thyroid cancer that spread to her lungs, but she has been able to manage her tumors with a miracle drug.  Augustus is a teenager who is wise beyond his years.  He had “a touch of osteocarcinoma” three years ago and is currently in remission.  Hazel and Gus become friends and they decide to read each other’s favorite books.  Her favorite is, An Imperial Affair, and it’s about a kid who has cancer.  The book ends mid-sentence, which haunts Hazel.  She figures that the character died, or was too sick to continue to write, but she wonders what happened to the other characters in the book.  She’s written tons of letters to the author, who has since moved to Amsterdam, and has never gotten a response.  When Augustus reads An Imperial Affair he is left with the same haunting questions.  Together they decide to get to the bottom of the book, which serves as a distraction and bonds them together.

The characters were so well developed that there were times I had to remind myself this was a fiction novel.  It’s happy, it’s sad, it’s honest.  Technically this is a young adult novel, but I would recommend it to anyone over the age of 16.  It’s a very touching book and I give it 5 out of 5 donuts.  

The Fault In Our Stars is available at Amazon:

And Barnes & Noble:

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

The Cupcake Queen Book Review

The cupcake queen is about a 13 year old named Penny whose parents have just separated.  Her mom moves them 300 miles to her hometown in Hog's Hollows.  She spends the entire summer working at her mother’s new bakery, The Cupcake Queen.  Convinced her parents are going to work it out she and her mom are moving back to Manhattan before school starts she decides to hide out and doesn't meet a single person except the delivery people at the bakery.  Much to her dismay summer comes and goes and she must attend school in Hog's Hollows.  She gets on the wrong side of the popular girl, Charity and is bullied Charity and her friends.  She finds a friend and ally in a hipster named Tally. They become close because they can both relate coming from broke homes.

This book touches on some real issues, bullying, divorce, and boys and it's done in a clean way.  There aren’t any cuss words in The Cupcake Queen.  Heather Helper nails the perspective of a child going through divorce.  You can sense Penny’s frustration because no one is being up front with her.  You can feel her sadness from being pulled away from her dad and old life, and you see how scared she is of being forced to pick a parent.  Her descriptions in this book are spot on, not too wordy and you also get a clear picture in your mind. 

Overall this was a very well written and descriptive book.  Frankly, I would have given it 4.5 or 5 donuts if the ending hadn’t been so abrupt.  There is so much build up with the pageant but you never actually get to read about what happened.  She simply tells you the results.  I had the same issue with the float.  Parts of it were described in great detail but there was never an actual sentence explaining what it was other than ‘random objects.’  It almost felt like those parts were once there but ultimately edited out of the book leaving the reader scratching their head.  For that reason I give this book 3.5 out of 5 donuts.

*The Cupcake Queen is a monthly read for Cupcake Lover's Group on Goodreads.  Of COURSE I'm part of a group called Cupcake Lovers. lol

The Cupcake Queen is available at Amazon:

And Barnes and Noble:

Monday, March 4, 2013

Grave Secrets Book Review

Grave Secrets is an Adult Paranormal masterpiece by Sherry D. Ficklin.  It’s the second book in the Palmetto Moon series. If you haven’t read Born of Blood, Palmetto Moon #1 then stop what you’re doing and download it right now.

Sophie is contracted by her childhood friend to investigate a missing pregnant woman who has gone missing.  She’s also busy with conclave business, dealing with Devon and finding Melanie’s remaining family.   While trying to keep a balance with work and family she finds her life becoming complicated when she realizes she still has feelings for her ex-fiancé turned business partner Caleb. 

While investigating the disappearance of Katy, the pregnant woman, she gets a little too close to a ghost and her life changes in ways that are unimaginable.  Katy’s love life, family life and overall safety are in jeopardy.

This was a fantastic follow up to Born of Blood.  It’s one of those books where you find yourself trying to put the book down and can’t.  The descriptions are fantastic, the characters are strong and likeable and the plot gets even deeper. Download this book, carve out a few hours in your day and enjoy Grave Secrets.  I give this book 5 out of 5 donuts. 

It's only $3.99, here are the links:


Barnes & Nobel: