Codes for Reviews

First Initial (Overall Rating):
E = Exceptional
VG = Very Good
G = Good
F = Fair
NR = Not Recommended

Second Initital (Reading Level):
A = Average Reading Level
E = Easy
M = Mature

“The views expressed are of individuals and do not necessarily reflect the views of their respective institutions.”

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Shadow and Bone

VG/A  Bardugo, Leigh.  Shadow and Bone.  Henry Holt, 2012.  358p.  9780805094596.  $17.99.

Alina and Mal have known each other since they were children together in the Duke’s orphanage. On a military excursion through the dark Shadow Fold to get to the sea, everyone is surprised to discover that Alina has special powers. She is a Grisha, part of a community of people with special abilities under the leadership of the Darkling. At once Alina is sent away from Mal so that she can perfect her magic, because only she has the ability to destroy the Shadow Fold. But the Darkling’s motives may be much darker than he lets on. Fans of fantasy and the paranormal will love the start of this new series by debut author, Leigh Bardugo. Loren Spector, LAPL, Felipe de Neve

False Memory

G/A  Krokos, Dan.  False Memory.  Hyperion, 2012.  336p.  978-1-4231-4976-7. $17.99.

When Miranda wakes up on a park bench she has no memory. Then she meets Peter. He explains that they along with 2 others are “Roses,” special teens with psychic abilities. When they discover that their lives are in danger they set out to right the situation and figure out who they really are. Although the story is a little confusing at parts, it comes together at the end. Teens interested in action and/or science fiction with a bioengineering edge will definitely enjoy it. The sequel is due out in August 2013. Loren Spector, LAPL, Felipe de Neve

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin, Bk 1)

Adult/YA Fiction

G/A.  LaFevers, Robin. Grave Mercy. Houghton Mifflin, 2012. 549p. 978-0-547-62834-9. $17.99.

At the convent of St. Mortain, seventeen-year-old Ismae is trained as a highly skilled assassin in weaponry and poisons, as well as the feminine arts, in order to serve as a handmaiden of death.  St. Mortain, the god of Death, has also blessed her with powerful gifts.  She sets off on a mission at the court of Anne, Duchess of Brittany.  Anne’s court is filled with intrigue and political machinations and Anne’s own life is being threatened. Ismae poses as Gavriel Duval’s mistress, Anne’s handsome brother, but instead finds herself slowly falling in love with him.  When she is called upon to fulfill her vows, she finds herself at odds with her own desires.  Ismae must uncover the plot against Anne before it is too late.

-C. Campos, Angeles Mesa Branch Library, LAPL

Born Wicked: The Cahill Chronicles Book 1

High School Fiction

G/A. Spotswood, Jessica. Born Wicked: The Cahill Witch Chronicles, Book 1. Putnam’s Sons, 2012. 336p. 978-0-399-25745-2. $17.99.

Cate’s mother dies, making her promise to take care of her two younger sisters.  Cate and her sisters are harboring a terrible secret—they are witches and if they are found out by the Brotherhood, they will be sent to an asylum, to a prison to do hard labor, or be put to death.  In six months, Cate must come to a decision, either to marry or to join the Sisterhood. She must announce her decision at her upcoming Intention Ceremony or else the Brotherhood will choose for her.  Her best friend from childhood, Paul, returns to court her, but Cate’s attention is fixated on Finn Belastra, the new gardener.  Her mother’s diary also reveals that she and her sisters may very well be the sisters of a prophecy predicted to bring great power back to the witches, but also usher in a new time of terror.  Cate is faced with heavy decisions. Will she choose between her two suitors or join the ranks of the Sisterhood?  How will she ever find the means to save everyone she loves? 
-C. Campos, Angeles Mesa Branch Library, LAPL

The Queen's Lady

 High School Fiction

G/A. Edwards, Eve. The Queen’s Lady. Delacorte Press, 2012. 313p. 978-0-385-74091-3. $17.99.

After the death of her husband, Lady Jane Rievaulx finds herself as lady-in-waiting to Queen Elizabeth I.  She is still in love with James Lacey, brother of the Earl of Dorset, who returns to court to join Walter Raleigh’s New World expedition.  At first, he refuses to have anything to do with her, convinced that she spurned his brother for a wealthier suitor.  He doesn’t realize that she ended the engagement knowing that Will’s heart already belonged to another woman.  James is still in love with Jane, but he has no means to support them, and so James sets sail with Walter Raleigh in order to seek his fortune.  Although a young widow, Jane finds herself at the mercy of her father and brother who are forcing her into a second marriage.  At the same time, Jane is constantly hounded by her stepsons for the inheritance left to her by her late husband.  With James away on his voyage, he can do nothing to save her from an ill-fated marriage.  Set against the backdrop of Elizabethan England, The Queen’s Lady is sure to attract historical romance fans.  
-C.Campos, Angeles Mesa Branch Library, LAPL