Review: The Merciful Crow by Margaret Owen

As a mom of a very strong girl, who doesn’t like to read, I try to find books that I think she would like. It’s my job, ya know? When I requested this book I wasn’t sure what it was even about. I’ve a cover snob, so that’s what caught my eye. And let me tell you, I am so glad it did.

The moment I finished reading I sat back and smiled. Huge. I’ve been very picky with my YA selections this year. But let me tell you, they’ve been very good selections. This one has just been added to my Teen Rec list. The concept of this story was so unique, and from the very first sentence I was sucked in.

Fie is a part of the Crow caste, which are undertakers and mercy killers. Like I said, unique. When she unknowingly helped the prince and his body double fake their own deaths, she must help them complete their mission or else face an almost certain death. Crows are treated so badly, even though they’re so important. Fie isn’t happy about this new mission because as the saying goes, “No good deed goes unpunished,” nothing turns out the way she hoped. This isn’t your typical fantasy where the girl is the strongest and most powerful and the boys are along for the ride. While she is strong, it’s not overly so. Everyone has their place in this book and it was perfect.

The dynamic between Prince Jasimir, Hawk Tavin and Fie was just wonderful. Snarky attitudes lead to friendships which leads to so much more. They hope for a change in their world and will do anything for it. I loved watching them work together for the greater good. They had to look beyond just themselves and things of the generations to come. I couldn’t stop reading. Margaret Owen has created this wonderful story that keeps you flipping pages till you forget the world around you.

I am now dying for the next book. This leaves you happy but wanting more. They haven’t quite finished their true mission. If you have a teen in your life, or you’re a huge fan of YA books, then I highly recommend you grab this book.

~Melpomene

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Review: Home for Erring and Outcast Girls by Julie Kibler

I enjoyed this story for several reasons. The setting, central Texas, is familiar to me. It’s historical fiction, which is always a favorite. And it’s about something I wasn’t familiar with, homes designed to help wayward females get their lives back on track. The author holds nothing back as she describes the hardships of the era. No glossing over things that are unpleasant. The story follows the lives of a couple of main characters, tracing their paths over a period of several years. Children born, children lost, friends and family gained and forgotten. It was a little drawn out in parts and occasionally had me wondering where the story was going. Still, it was an interesting read! 

~Thalia

Buy It Now: Home for Erring and Outcast Girls

Review: The Secret Letter by Debbie Rix

Trust me when I say, this one does come together at the end. There’s a lot going on, and a long cast of characters to keep straight.

There’s young Magda in Germany, struggling and rebelling against the war. And there’s young Imogene in Europe, trying to concentrate on school while bombs fall all around her. And we have downed English pilots and Nazi officers. Oh and don’t forget the past and present narrative.

But yes, it’s worth it.

~Thalia

Buy It Now: The Secret Letter

Review: Crisis in the Red Zone by Richard Preston

Years ago, when I first read The Hot Zone, I thought it was the scariest thing I’d ever read. The author’s newest book on the continuing Ebola crisis earns a spot right next to that one.

Most of us probably don’t think about Ebola and other level 4 viruses very often. Why would we, after all? We are safely ensconced in our little cocooned worlds, far removed from these diseases. But we’re really not. One sick person undetected on an airline, going into a semi major city, still undetected, and before you know it there’s a full blown epidemic right at your door.

Sure, it got kinda scary several years ago when there were a few cases in the US. But they were quickly contained so all is well, right? Not really…

Read it, and be very concerned…

~Thalia

Buy It Now: Crisis in the Red Zone

Quick review: War(The Four Horseman #2) by Laura Thalassa

If there were 6 stars, I’d give them to War.

I don’t know how many pages there are but each of them is action packed. So much happened and the % was barely creeping along. I never even noticed! That’s the sign of a great book.

I was sucked in from the beginning and I couldn’t put it down. Was War a bad dude? Yes and no, but you can’t help but love and understand him. He was just doing his job. Miriam was so good with him though. I loved her. She was strong and firm and never gave up. She wanted better for our world and was willing to go toe to toe with him to get it.

Who knew post apocalyptic stories could be so sexy? I mean, the world has crumbled and yet it still turns. Love still happens.

Gah!! I love these books and I can’t wait for the next one!

~Melpomene

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Review: The Red Ribbon by Lucy Adlington

Looking for your next can’t-put-it-down book? If historical fiction’s your thing, this one from Lucy Adlington is perfect.

Presenting yet another take on WWII fiction, this tale takes us into the world of a young seamstress caught up in a Nazi concentration camp. It has tragedy and triumph, hope and despair, friendship and loneliness.

Fans of WWII era stories, grab this five-star read!

~Thalia

Buy It Now: The Red Ribbon

Review: The Poppy Field by Deborah Carr

I’m a huge fan of historical fiction, especially stories set in the WWII era. I do believe, however, this may be my first WWI era book. And it’s a good one!

Two women, both nurses, both dealing with loss and change. Their stories, although 100 years apart, connect through a series of letters left behind in an old farmhouse.

Beautiful story, well-written, and a unique perspective.

~Thalia

Buy It Now: The Poppy Field