At the best of times, I have trouble remembering the plots of fantasy books. During the last month, when I had a tendency to have trouble concentrating, to lose notes, and to touch my computer so infrequently that I had to dust it, the condition got even worse. I did enjoy all of these books and will be buying them. Hopefully, now that my Dental Iliad and Odyssey is over, I will be better at reporting details of fantasy from now on!
Healey, Christopher. The Hero's Guide to Being an Outlaw.
April 29th 2014
by Walden Pond Press
Hooray! I wish that books wouldn't come out in late April, when I am not able to get a copy or check it out because all books are due so soon, but I guess it's better than coming out August 29, when I can order them but they don't come by the time school opens. I have to get another copy of the first book, too.
That said, I was struck with horrible Fantasy Amnesia. Triggered by a large cast of characters, ever changing setting, and over 500 pages, I can't give a good synopsis. I read it; I loved it; I can't tell you what it's about. You need a copy right now because it's hysterically funny and full of swashbuckling adventure, but we'll go with the publisher's description today and look forward to the fourth book!
"The League of Princes
returns in the hilariously epic conclusion to the hit series that began
with Christopher Healy's The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom, which
the Los Angeles Times called "one of the more clever, hilariously
successful incarnations of the current literary rage to rip apart and
rewrite fairy tales."
Prince Liam. Prince Frederic. Prince
Duncan. Prince Gustav. You think you know those guys pretty well by now,
don't you? Well, think again. Posters plastered across the thirteen
kingdoms are saying that Briar Rose has been murdered—and the four
Princes Charming are the prime suspects. Now they're on the run in a
desperate attempt to clear their names. Along the way, however, they
discover that Briar's murder is just one part of a nefarious plot to
take control of all thirteen kingdoms—a plot that will lead to the
doorstep of an eerily familiar fortress for a final showdown with an
eerily familiar enemy."
Delaney, Joseph. Fury of the Seventh Son
April 15th 2014
by Greenwillow Books
This was utterly fantastic, and the only disappointing thing about it isn't that disappointing-- it didn't really END. I can see more books in a second series, with Tom as the Spook. I still think that come December, this will be the really hot book we all need ten copies of, since the movie is out in February.
"The thirteenth—and final—book in the internationally best-selling fantasy adventure series that inspired the forthcoming major motion picture Seventh Son. Finally, Tom Ward, the spook's last apprentice, will confront the Fiend for the last time.
Tom Ward has battled boggarts, ghasts, witches, dark gods, and the most terrifying creatures to roam the earth. He's allied with the witch assassin Grimalkin, with a powerful boggart, and with Alice . . . the young witch who is also his true love. And he has kept one step ahead of the Fiend, the most evil being in the world. Now, he will vanquish the Fiend once and for all. But it will require a terrible sacrifice: not everyone Tom cares about will survive the final battle.
Wexler, Django. The Forbidden Library.
April 15th 2014
by Kathy Dawson Books
E ARC from Netgalley.com
This book kept me turning the (digital) pages more than I expected that it would. Alice was intriguing, the library enthralling, and the twists and turns unexpected. My only complaint is that unlike Shulmann's The Grimm Legacy, this book didn't make me want to work in or visit the library. It seemed a bit dark and unpleasant, but my readers like darker and more unpleasant things than I like, so I can see this being a popular middle grade choice.
"Alice always thought fairy tales had happy endings. That--along with everything else--changed the day she met her first fairy
When Alice's father goes down in a shipwreck, she is sent to live with
her uncle Geryon--an uncle she's never heard of and knows nothing about.
He lives in an enormous manor with a massive library that is off-limits
to Alice. But then she meets a talking cat. And even for a
rule-follower, when a talking cat sneaks you into a forbidden library
and introduces you to an arrogant boy who dares you to open a book, it's
hard to resist. Especially if you're a reader to begin with. Soon Alice
finds herself INSIDE the book, and the only way out is to defeat the
creature imprisoned within.
It seems her uncle is more than he says he is. But then so is Alice."
Downey, Jen Swann. The Ninja Librarians and the Accidental Keyhand.
April 15th 2014
by Sourcebooks Jabberwocky
Charlotte at Charlotte's Library called this "a zesty romp of a read that I thoroughly enjoyed; really truly thoroughly enjoyed." Believe her, and read her very thorough review. The library was certainly MUCH more pleasant than The Forbidden Library, but I just got bogged down by all of the descriptions that made this such a fascinating read for Charlotte. I strongly suspect that the pain medication caused me to vastly preferred the Sparkle Spa books by Jill Santopolo.
Just not myself quite yet.
Jones, Diana Wynne and Ursula. The Islands of Chaldea
April 22nd 2014
by Greenwillow Books
I feel the worst about not comprehending this one. I've loved so many of Jones' books, and this is the last one we have from her. How lovely that her sister was able to finish it up. Maybe it was the cat; I'm not a cat person. Anyway, I'm sure that Charlotte, my go-to person for middle grade fantasy, will have a review posted of this very soon.
"Aileen comes from a
long line of magic makers, and her Aunt Beck is the most powerful
magician on Skarr. But Aileen's magic has yet to reveal itself, even
though she is old enough and it should have, by now. When Aileen is sent
over the sea on a mission for the King, she worries that she'll be
useless and in the way. A powerful (but mostly invisible) cat changes
all of that-and with every obstacle Aileen faces, she becomes stronger
and more confident, until her magic blooms. This stand-alone novel, by
the beloved and acclaimed author of such classic fantasy novels as
Howl's Moving Castle and the Chrestomanci books, will be welcomed by
fans old and new."