Tuesday, January 17, 2017

The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko: A Novel

The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko: A Novel
author: Scott Stambach
name: Wayne
average rating: 3.80
book published: 2016
rating: 4
read at: 2017/01/17
date added: 2017/01/17
shelves: young-adult
review:
'The Invisible Life of Ivan: Isaenko: A Novel' by Scott Stambach introduces an unusual narrator and a set of unfair and tragic circumstances. I quite liked Ivan.

Ivan is 17 and lives in the Mazyr Hospital for Gravely Ill Children in Belarus. He is a lifelong resident of the home and a prisoner in his own deformed body. His mind is keen and he observes and catalogues the things he sees around him. From an American doctor who brings him baseballs to his fellow residents to the nurses that work at the home, both cruel and kind. He is well read and incredibly cynical. Ivan sees many other patients come and go, but one day a girl named Polina shows up.

The story feels predictable in a lot of ways, but that doesn't make it any less poignant. Ivan is likeable and mean at the same time. He suffers more than he should because of who he is and the reactions that his sharp tongue causes. Ivan and Polina seem like pretty unlikely friends at first, but their relationship feels natural enough. My favorite character is Nurse Natalya who treats Ivan like a real person, and has all the compassion to go along with it. It's not a perfect book by any means, but I enjoyed reading it.

I received a review copy of this ebook from St. Martin's Press and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for allowing me to review this ebook.


via Wayne's bookshelf: read http://ift.tt/2j7FeN7

Monday, January 16, 2017

Wolfie and Fly

Wolfie and Fly
author: Cary Fagan
name: Wayne
average rating: 4.57
book published:
rating: 5
read at: 2017/01/16
date added: 2017/01/16
shelves: children-s
review:
'Wolfie and Fly' by Cary Fagan with illustrations by Zoe Si is a chapter book for young readers with lots of imagination and a couple really likeable main characters.

Renata Wolfman is a very imaginative young lady. She is also quite content to play all by herself. Her parents would like her to make friends with the next door neighbor Livingston Flott, but Renata would rather not. One day, when she is left alone, she decides to build a submarine out of a large cardboard box. Livingston shows up because he is looking for his brother's baseball, and it went under Renata's house. Before long, and thanks to a lot of imagination, he is going on an adventure with her under the sea in their new submarine. Renata is reluctant, but realizes that having someone else along just makes the journey more fun, even if Livingston has to write and sing songs along the way. They even use the nicknames for each other that people use for them at school. She is Wolfie, or Lone Wolf, because she likes being alone at recess. He is Fly because he buzzes around annoys people.

These characters were fun. I loved their imaginative play. I liked how they became friends, even though they don't seem to have much in common. I liked the illustrations too. This took me back to the days when I could take my own cardboard box on trips into outer space. I think young readers will love these two.

I received a review copy of this ebook from Tundra Books, Penguin Random House Canada, and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for allowing me to review this ebook.


via Wayne's bookshelf: read http://ift.tt/2jZdheR

Klaus

Klaus
author: Grant Morrison
name: Wayne
average rating: 3.94
book published:
rating: 4
read at: 2017/01/16
date added: 2017/01/16
shelves: graphic-novels
review:
'Klaus' by Grant Morrison with art by Dan Mora is a reimagining of the Santa Claus legend for the superhero age. Consider it "Santa Claus: Year One."

In a snowy ancient city ruled by a cruel Baron, he determines that all the toys should go to his bratty son, who only breaks things. Ex-inhabitant, and soldier, Klaus decides that the children need something in their lives, so with the help of unseen beings in the forest and his wolf Lilli, he sets out to deliver toys to the town. Meanwhile, the Baron is making the men of the city dig deeper and deeper in the mines. He is also hiding something evil in the mines that Klaus will have to battle.

As you can see on the cover, this is a Klaus with a sword and weapons. His muscular arms are the size of tree trunks. He leaps agilely from roof to roof like a character in Assassin's Creed. He battles soldiers and bests them. And yet, the Santa Claus we know and love is here. My favorite scene is when he breaks forth into his signature laugh. I had a great time reading this.


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Muirwood: The Lost Abbey Graphic Novel

Muirwood: The Lost Abbey Graphic Novel
author: Jeff Wheeler
name: Wayne
average rating: 3.30
book published: 2015
rating: 3
read at: 2015/08/30
date added: 2017/01/16
shelves: graphic-novels
review:
'Muirwood: The Lost Abbey' is the first issue of a five issue Kindle serial. My review copy was only the first issue, so at 20+ pages, there isn't a lot to review without revealing spoilers.

Lady Marciana Soliven, aka Maia, is living in exile and locked inside a room when her father, the king, commands her to come see him. Apparently, he's learned something about his daughter and needs her to commit to a dangerous quest. The book then spends it's time with Maia debating the pros and cons of accepting the quest, but with 4 more issues due, we can already guess what her answer will be because 4 issues of Maia staring at the walls of her forced exile would be pretty unexciting.

The cover art is really good. The internal art is less so. Sometimes review copies have rough art or lower quality, so I'm hoping that's what happened here. There were definitely panels I liked better than others art-wise. The writing is not bad and the series is a tie-in with a series of novels.

I received a review copy of this single issue comic from Jet City Comics and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for allowing me to review this first issue.


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The Graveyard Book

The Graveyard Book
author: Neil Gaiman
name: Wayne
average rating: 4.10
book published: 2008
rating: 5
read at:
date added: 2017/01/16
shelves: young-adult, children-s
review:



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Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell
author: Susanna Clarke
name: Wayne
average rating: 3.77
book published: 2004
rating: 4
read at:
date added: 2017/01/16
shelves:
review:



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Stardust

Stardust
author: Neil Gaiman
name: Wayne
average rating: 4.07
book published: 1999
rating: 5
read at:
date added: 2017/01/16
shelves:
review:



via Wayne's bookshelf: read http://ift.tt/2j0WIe4