News

News: If I could, I'd tie my hair up in dreds and live the life of adventure from the high seas to the mountain peaks, gathering gold and jewels and tales of mystery and action :) but for now, I'll just have to do with writing about these things as if they were truly real.

--12 December 2017 --

Quote: Words are pale shadows of forgotten names. As names have power, words have power. Words can light fires in the minds of men. Words can wring tears from the hardest of hearts. --Patrick Rothfuss, The Name of the Wind

The Fellowship

February 13, 2018

Sifted City Hero {A Poem}


18.02.13 - Sifted City Hero
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Ashed words filter down, flecked and smoldering from flame
Flitting, floating, flatly coming to rest against pale skin. 
Here I stand in the wreckage, the ruin --
Distempered skyline drips oil and fire on the billowy aftermath.
Sheet-like gray as a cold counter, 
Careless and loveless, like a necrotic old woman
Hacking up laughter at the street corner,
Bluish and greenish, salivating at every word dripping
Slipping from the maw of men. 

They cradled you, tempered you with metal and stone;
They plundered you, deep and dark and dismal
They curved their sickled fingers around the outline 
Of your cityscape and you cracked and crumbled.

Red red, red as the blood from the corner of your lips,
Pulse pulse, pulsed out and pulsed away. 
I am standing here, watching you stumble, fall, flicker
You can't stand under the crush of the sky
As it glares down, glittering anger and greed. 
But I will stand for you. 
I will hold you as you crumble, crash and break. 
I won't leave you as you disappear into the soil
To mix with earth and stardust. 
You won't be alone through this end. 

Here I stand, staring at the ripped ethereal inverted globe
Reflecting the chaos and culture of a dying world.
Shifting smoke and smelted gold,
Sticking, slipping, seething eastward. 

Here I stand, last guardian of the rift between realities - 
Battleworn, rusted, regulated war-child. 
Here I cling to my weapons, leathered long and daggered,
Rising up I surge through mud and blood and refuse, 
They cling to my body, curving possessively, 
But called by gravity, they resist momentarily
Before slinking homeward. 
And I stand, heavy-booted, heel-toeing up and out. 

You'll watch me suffer, climb and stand 
Conquer pit and beast, stand. 
Conquer wrath and rage, stand.
I stand, and I demand my land returned, 
And I will stand and stand in stalwart patience,
Ripping heart and teeth from enemy lies,
Till I have returned this city to rest. 

Forbid me passage: may you fear. 
I come to cleanse and heal and clear.




Inspired by Until We Have Faces by Red (album), N8Bennett's discussion of superheros, and red eyeshadow.

Signed with a dystopic breeze, 
Squeaks.

January 2, 2018

Wandering with No Where in Mind - {A Poem}


Carpeted, dew-heavy and spring-up the forest floor hushed wandering steps
And I walk secret ways in silence, listening to the fluted glow of the wind
As it whistles its charm through the treetops.
Soft, silky branched spruces and firs, thickly scented of pine 
All clean and crisp and sweet with notes sharply invigorating
Like nape of neck under mountain stream, all north-bound icicles 
Shooting stars and puffs of crystal-snow blown down from the pole.
In these enchanted woods, the thrush sings throatily, its pot-bellied body
Awake with life and haunting, wood-winded ee-oh-lay.
It trespasses, and the deer knows the lost look in those jewel-beaded eyes. 

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I traipse, No Where in mind
I won't content myself, till I reach that distant land. 
Sing me the song of the regal redwoods
The forest queens and kings that set back shoulders in royal rouge. 
And when snowfall shapes their stalwart roots, 
Draping strength and season in sheets of white, 
I'll linger lengthwise, in frozen bloom
~

~
Till the mountains arise and the sun buckles down, 
Spending more than a moment to golden one crown. 
In the spring-fevered life-raising hurdle of March, 
Where the jack-rabbits thunder on soil thickly parched. 
I will wait till the buttercups lift weary heads
And prod soil left and right from their jumbling beds. 
Only then will my glittering gaze come un-vacant 
Staring up at the sea-foam of clouds beyond ancient.
I suppose in those moments, I'll see what I feel
All the thawing of winter in bud-bearing zeal. 
And the rosehips and woodchips and buttery fragrance 
That waft by on breezed-cloaks of selky wood-agents
Then I'll turn my gaze northwards to lands of my home
With a heart heavy burdened to break from the loam
And my feet will up-stumble from these knotted knees
Between shackles of lavender buzzing with bees
And the graven earth trembling all with this might
Will release from her clasp the entombed, seeking flight. 
Though we totter and tumble and gracelessly fall down
We'll gather our strength up in fist; we will not drown. 
We'll hurdle our selves out of apathy, lucid
To breathe in the mist of the dreams that were muted. 
And standing, we'll find that the strength was not ours
But was drawn beyond sun, beyond moon, beyond stars
Which was somehow translated to liven our bones
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And we walk not in might, but by grace, to our homes.

Come you gentlemen, ladies, to hear of these tales
To seek for a muse to inspire your travails
That your walking will not lead to dungeons or doom
But to fields ripe for picking, of cotton in bloom. 
Beware the old forest, it's lively in state
But it sings of a song that can make a heart wait 
Until all of the joy that you once had is leached
To the soil, for it yearns and it oft seeks you breached. 
Like a ship on the shore, all upturned and devoured
By the crashing of waves upon jagged rock, scoured. 
It is ancient in beauty, this forest - its dark -
But beware, oh beware, lest you sell it your heart.

I must go to my task of expelling my air, 
Breathing in, shunting out, all this grievous affair,
But I leave you with thoughts of my own to consider, 
Reader - take this to heart, let it sink and grow bigger
For I spin you a story from gold dust I own 
Which I found in my pockets and grew out of stone. 
It is dreadful, most dreadful, to deem you would think
That this story's a fable for hearth, home, and drink. 
So I dab now my quill on the paper to blot 
All the stains of my past which have yet to be wrought
Into colourful tree-trunks and way-signs and markers
That steer away friends from the traps in their harbours. 

Let these words be but few for a warning most dire, 
Leave your fancies behind, lest you sink in this mire. 


-----
Signed with ambergris,
Squeaks.

December 30, 2017

{A Review} - The Plastic Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg

I practically screeched for joy when I got an email from Netgalley saying that my ARC request was accepted for The Plastic Magician (in return for an honest review). Charlie N. Holmberg is one of my favourite authors, and the first book I read by her was The Paper Magician, so to see her continue one of my all time favourite series was a huge thing for me :) 



Alvie Brechenmacher has arrived in London to begin her training in Polymaking---the magical discipline of bespelling plastic. Polymaking is the newest form of magic, and in a field where there is so much left to learn, every Polymaker dreams of making the next big discovery.  
Even though she is only an apprentice, Alvie is an inventor at heart, and she is determined to make as many discoveries---in as short a time frame---as she can. Luckily for her, she's studying under the world-renowned magician Marion Praff, who is just as dedicated as Alvie is. 
Alvie's enthusiasm reinvigorates her mentor's work, and together they create a device that could forever change Polymaking---and the world. But when a rival learns of their plans, he conspires to steal their invention and take the credit for it himself.  
To thwart him, Alvie will need to think one step ahead. For in the high-stakes world of magical discovery, not everyone plays fair...     {excerpt from Goodreads}

Where The Paper Magician was delicate and dainty and easily likened to an origami rose, The Plastic Magician arises from the ashes to belch smoke and oil at us in a whimsical tottering of chaotic artistry. The rules of magic from the first three books remain, but now we're splattered into the fresh field of polymaking with the rare plastic magicians. Given the recent discovery of polymaking (compared to the older fields of the folders, pyres, smelters, etc), the rules of magic governing plastic material are yet to be fully unveiled, and the scientific border between known and unknown is a frontier of fast-paced and dangerous discoveries. Here we meet Alvie Brechenmacher, a newly declared polymerist, and her famous mentor Mg Marion Praff. Together they embark on a journey to find something new...but will they and their hard work survive the evil machinations of a mysterious villain intent on destroying everything? You'll have to read the book to find out :)

  • Goodies: Steampunk vibes (yess). Polymakers and folders. Women's trousers in the late Victorian era <3. Clutziness. Non-stereotypical female protagonist (<3 <3 <3). Unique magical rules. Villainous villains. Grumpy butlers. Actual references to the true scientific process (i.e. abstracts & paper publications & conferences). Practical medical application.
  • Character Development: (4/5) Alvie showed the most development and change over the book, as to be expected of the lead character. I was hoping Mg. Praff would show a little change alongside several other individuals (whom you'll discover quite darling if you read the book), but they were somewhat static. However, my understanding is that this is the first of several more books (?yes please?!) so I'm only taking 1 point off because I'm certain there will be more gloriousness to come!
  • Content Snatchery: (5/5) Exceptional. I was snatched from the start (that sounds cringy right? sorry, too late). Alvie is a girl after my own heart. While Ceony (from The Paper Magician) is the girl I wish I could be, Alvie is probably the girl I actually am. She's clumsy, a little nervous but otherwise bold and brave. She knows she lacks the feminine wiles other girls typically have, but that makes her more dear to my heart. Needless to say, it was refreshing to read a story from what appears to be late-Victorian or early 1900s, where social boundaries are toed very strongly. While I admit I was able to predict most of the plot twists, it was still a very exciting read.
  • Boring Parts: (minimal to non-existant) Charlie doesn't dilly-dally on telling us about the floral wallpaper when there's other business to discuss. She wrote deeply and beautifully about the unique magic of her world and I didn't find myself bored one iota. Not to mention the overall plot was tied to a very practical problem that, to this very day in our current world, needs to be solved. I loved her ingenious and magical approach to it.
  • Romance: (some kissy scenes) ... but they aren't awkward or poorly placed. The romance develops slowly and doesn't come across as overly dominant to the plot. Therefore, I am a happy gooseling.
  • My eyes are sweating: (1/5) I think, in this case, it would be more along the lines of, my-fingers-are-about-to-snap-the-edges-of-my-kindle-off :P While there were some endearing moments, I didn't shed any tears (who knows what the future holds); however, there were some anxiety-inducing scenes that resolved (thankfully) and so let that be a forewarning as you read :) 

Overall, I truly adored Alvie and Mg. Praff, Bennet and the rest of the characters. They work really well together, and the rise and fall of tension was perfectly honed to the story arc. I applaud Charlie on another gorgeous tale that I'm adding to my list of favourites :) Not to mention my science-buried self truly was thankful for an accurate representation of the discovery process in the world of research. I almost cried tears of joy (okay, I exaggerate, but I was thrilled). Highly recommend, dear readers - go devour everything she's ever written <3

{Rating} - 5/5 Stars

Now, if this review has won your heart over and you're totally convinced you need to read the series, I do highly recommend you start with The Paper Magician, which I've linked to Amazon, but given that this is a review for The Plastic Magician, the main pre-order links for it are listed below :) It will be released on May 15th, 2018!!




----

Now just a few things about Charlie, because she's amazing and I can't help myself. So first, cakes...she makes delightful looking cakes and she even wrote a book about baking and cakery stuff (that also included stabby scenes and icing and was purely fantastic --> see Magic Bitter, Magic Sweet). She owns a huge number of fancy frames for glasses, and (in my opinion) is a very fashionable individual. Brandon Sanderson apparently knows her quite well, and while I've seen his books plastered over every store in town, I still regretfully must inform you I have yet to read one...

And last but not least, she's a supremely talented writer (heck guys, Disney optioned the rights of her Paper Magician Trilogy....). I truly love that she shares her gift with us :) because we need more beautiful stories like hers in this world <3

Go follow her on Twitter :)

Here are links to Charlie's social media places in case you want to dig on your own for more about this magical author:

Twitter  ||  Official Website  ||  Facebook  ||  Pinterest  ||  Instagram


-----

Signed with frosted sugar cookies,

Squeaks.

December 13, 2017

Flimsy Fancy - {A Poem}

A poem, of sorts, for my lovely readers...

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fierce as a dragon pup
sly as a white-tailed fox
sleek as a porpoise
flighty as a fairy tern

faithful emotional frequently fidgety
frosty eyed fumbling for fair-feat'ed folly
flimsy and filmy and far-too-fast blundered
billowing backwards in bucketed breezes
bunching together in towering thunder
thinking it thoroughly through till all tipsy
tipsy and tottering trundling topward
tip-top and tip-toe till taffy-hilled hollows 
hiccup and hillock and heretofore harbour
harbringer hallowed and happy in hollow
hill-folk all heat-soaked and silly with splendor
splashing and sploshing and spilling all silky
swish-swashing sideways through sunken sand slipping
sliding and swirling and sweeping self southwards
softly silently sleepily swooning
swiping till shrunken all scorned to the distance
dallying dancing in drill-wardened doom
dusky and dazy and dreamily deeming
dashing young marmots
will dance
through
the moon



Signed by a pygmy shrew, 

Squeaks.

December 12, 2017

{A Review} - Book of Fire by Michelle Kenney

I have a review for you folks today. I should have done this months ago, but I've been dreadfully busy. What with bandying around various topics related to musculature and human anatomy with my undergraduate students and abstaining my reckless hand from printing out my scientific manuscripts, dipping them in whiskey, and lightning them on fire (I can daydream, right?). 

To keep everybody happy and avoid rippling the water too much with my sudden reappearance, I offer you a delightful 8tracks mix of glorious Celtic songs made by ladyebelmont (I have no idea who said Lady is but her mix is fantastic). Have a listen (or three hundred) and go slay your work/school/laundrypile :) 




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I received an ecopy of the Book of Fire by Michelle Kenney for free from HQ Digital via Netgalley in return for an honest review. This story falls under the following categories: fantasy, fiction, science fiction, post-apocalyptic, and includes references to Roman mythology and gladiator culture. 

The synopsis taken from the book reads as follows: 

Life outside the domes is not possible. At least that's what Insiders are told.
Twins Eli and Talia shouldn't exist. They're Outsiders. Their home is a secret. Their lives are a secret. Arafel is a secret. An unexpected forest raid forces Talia into a desperate mission to rescue her family while protecting the sacred Book of Arafel from those who would use it as a weapon. As Talia and her lifelong friend Max enter the dome, she makes some unexpected discoveries and an ally - in the form of rugged Insider August - that will change the course of her life for ever. She'll stop at nothing to save her family but will she sacrifice her heart in the process? The Fire Sermon meets Gladiator in this brilliant YA debut. 

I was ready for a great science fiction, post-apocalyptic read, so I was thrilled when I received this book. Reading the synopsis gave me slight concern, however, as any author describing their male protagonist as "rugged" or their female protagonist as potentially "sacrificing her heart" makes me think it's going to be a slinky kind of romance. Readers, I am not into slinky romances (take note). Thankfully, that was not the case - there was romance, but didn't take center stage, and therefore I enjoyed the book far more than I anticipated after reading the synopsis. 

It is a little misleading though - there is very little written about Eli, Max, or the Book of Arafel. The majority of the tale follows Talia (female protagonist) and her interactions with various individuals both outside and inside the dome. I do have to say, Michelle did a fine job of introducing us to the unique culture of Arafel and its people, before sweeping us away into a sterilized (or not so sterilized) world. Arafel fascinated me and I wanted to read much more about the land outside the dome, but we never get more than a tantalizing taste. I suppose I should be happy to hear there is a second book on the way! 

With that being said, let's break it down through my list before I give too much away. 
  • Goodies: Fantastic action scenes (fight scenes, running scenes, etc etc). Roman mythology. Mythical beasts 😮. August (male protagonist *swoon*). Unique world development (including names, weapons, tech). Genetics. Close calls. Did I mention amazing action scenes??! 😮 Mystery chambers.
     
  • Character Development: (2/5) Okay, so the only reason I'm giving this a 2 out of 5 for character development is because the only one showing any semblance of changing throughout the entire story is Talia. I really expected August, the villain, and some of the supporting cast to develop as well and they really didn't. It was a little disappointing because by the end of it, I could predict what each character would do (and they subsequently did it) because they were following a generic action plot. August was delightful though (and dashing) so I'll stop poking him, but really the development could have been far better.
     
  • Content Snatchery: (3/5) I was debating whether I should give it a 4 or a 3 and had to settle for a 3 simply because the introduction to the story was slow and awkward to my eyes. It seemed to me as if Michelle's writing voice significantly improved over the tale; if I had a say in the matter, I would suggest a thorough re-write of the introduction to ensure it matches the end voice. However, I won't hassle too much here because oh my gosh were her action scenes on point. I loved them very much and expect that in book 2 they'll be even better! So, if you're picking this book up, give it a while to grow on you (because if you like sci-fi you should enjoy this one).
     
  • Boring Parts: (minimal) As mentioned above, Book of Fire has great action scenes. They were appropriately spaced apart. Its almost as if the reader rides the wave of one scene straight to the next, and the lull is perfect before the action hits again. This does make the story a little predictable and you can kind of expect when something "shocking" is going to happen, but it certainly isn't a boring read!
     
  • Romance: (yes but it was awesome) As expected, Talia and August will indeed experience the stereotypical flame throughout the story. I initially expected it to be a tacky romance with awkward and lecherous scenes interspersed between the action to keep the readership engaged (and I hate that folks). However, it was not like that at all, much to my glee. There were moments of tackiness, but I actually didn't mind the romance going on here because it never truly took center stage away from the main plot. Also, August (assuming he shows some development in book 2 and isn't such a hulking, handsome chess piece) was a dear and I didn't mind that he kept showing up to banter with Talia. It kind of reminded me a little of Divergent's Tris and Four (but I don't think August is as witty as Four....yet...who knows how he'll develop - I'd like to see more of him).
     
  • My eyes are sweating: (3/5) There were some tear-worthy scenes, but surprisingly for me, the ones that got me the most involved little animals </3 I love adorable baby fluffy animals in books, and any time they are put in danger my eyes sweat with fear (gosh, that was an awful visual, haha). I really hope these fluffy little littles will make a debut in book 2 because WE NEED MORE FLUFFY CUTE THINGS IN LIFE. I need more fluffy cute things. [This is reminding me that I really need to change my fish's tank water today... poor thing, I'm such a negligent parent]

All in all, I quite enjoyed Book of Fire. It wasn't perfect, but it was unique and I love reading a unique tale that isn't some dramatic fanfiction-esque spin off of a different book. The synopsis got it right by saying this darling can be compared to Gladiator; I'd also like to suggest it is along the same vein as Divergent and (on a lesser scale - simply because of the mythology) The Percy Jackson series 😃 Do I recommend it? Yes! If you like sci-fi and post-apocalyptic stuff with some epic creatures and romance then this might just be a book for you! 


{Rating} - 3/5 stars

Interested in purchasing a copy of this book? See the following links for more details! 


Goodreads     Amazon     Barns & Nobles     Indigo     Harper Collins

Want to find out more about Michelle Kenney, the author of this unique novel? Check out her social media below :) 


Twitter     Facebook     Wordpress
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I'm in a rather piratey/viking warlord sort of mood at the moment. Perhaps I'll have to do a spin off on that over Christmas break :) and yes, I am taking a good long Christmas break this year. My brain can't handle any more that it already is...or it'll melt into the floor and crawl away from me at mock-chicken *wipes brow*. Heave ho, here we go.


Signed with rainfire,

Squeaks.

November 15, 2017

{A Review} - The History of Bees by Maja Lunde

I received an ecopy of this novel from Simon & Schuster Canada via Netgalley in return for an honest review. To be completely honest, I actually thought I was receiving a historical book on the history of bees... I should have read the description closer 😛 Nevertheless, after I got over my initial disappointment regarding the fact that it was indeed not a historical report but rather historical/realistic fiction, the story really grew on me.
We journey alongside three character stories; each individual is connected to the world of beekeeping in some manner. The Goodreads description nicely sums up the three viewpoints: 
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England, 1852. William is a biologist and seed merchant, who sets out to build a new type of beehive one that will give both him and his children honor and fame.
United States, 2007. George is a beekeeper fighting an uphill battle against modern farming, but hopes that his son can be their salvation.
China, 2098. Tao hand paints pollen onto the fruit trees now that the bees have long since disappeared. When Tao's young son is taken away by the authorities after a tragic accident, she sets out on a grueling journey to find out what happened to him.


It didn't take long for me to get drawn in to the story and the character arcs proved to be far more riveting than I was initially expecting. It's been a while since I've read a good novel that doesn't fall under the genre of sci-fi or fantasy, but I didn't regret picking up The History of Bees. Let's get in to the breakdown of how I felt overall about this novel. 

  • Goodies: Realism. Tragedy. Multicultural. Mental health. Multi-generational. Science!
  • Character Development: (5/5) The thing I love most about the genre of fictional realism is that the character development is impeccably good. 
  • Content Snatchery: (2/5) The start was rough, so I wasn't vortexed into the plot initially...however, it does pick up, so hold on and you'll be glad you stayed 😃 Particularly for me, I loved Tao's story arc, but I also really loved the latter third of William's arc as well (because -- SCIENCE; I have a soft spot for well-depicted science in fiction).
  • Boring Parts: (a few) I think most books have one or two spots; for me, the introduction was really rough to get into, but Tao's story helps keep the momentum up, so it does get better over time.
      
  • Romance: (yeah kinda awkward...)  There were several scenes that I wish weren't included... yes I can see the author was aiming for realism and depicting the characters' lives as life-like as possible, but I think a few things were added that we could have done without. Because of these scenes, I would not recommend this book for youth.
  • My eyes are sweating: (4/5) I think each reader will have a different reaction, but for me the storyline following Tao was so well written and crushingly heartbreaking *holds back tears*. 



All in all, I quite enjoyed the book (minus a few parts). Would I recommend it to a friend or a stranger? Probably not (unless I knew they were particularly interested in realistic fiction and beekeeping). Was it a good read? Yes, but again, not quite my cup of tea. Nevertheless, taking a couple steps back from my own personal likes and dislikes, I'd have to rate it a solid 3 out of 5 stars. It was well written, captivating, and otherwise a great piece of literature. 


{Rating} - 3/5 stars


Signed with honey, 

Squeaks.

P.S. Briefest life update, dear readers -- I am, indeed, alive. Although...I feel as if life is a horse and I the unhappy rider having been rudely unseated to the embrace of the grimy earth and thereafter dragged behind on the seat of my pants with my legs wrapped up the in reins. I would write you more often, but my hands have been furiously tied to the scientific manuscripts that anxiously demand my attention. It's something like being a mother of paper children that squall angrily behind my back unless I'm soothing them with edits and other fearsome word-hackery, spoon-feeding bites of prepositions and glittery adjectives. *wipes brow* In the mean time, I've fallen hopelessly behind on the number of books I've been asked to review, and so those must come first before anything else I might wish to publish on this darling little blog of mine. 

September 21, 2017

BLOG TOUR: {A Review + Interview} -- Wanted: A Superhero to Save the World

Readers of every type (including potatoes - we love your superb seventh-level starchiness, welcome welcome), I am thrilled to present my contribution to Bryan Davis' Superhero Blog Tour! My pen-name is Mackenzie Lockhart (I usually just go by Squeaks though); here you'll find my book review of Wanted: A Superhero to Save the World plus a character interview of the marvelous Samantha Hertz. Are you ready to be further inundated into a world of super-strength, villains, and alliterating geniuses? You are? I'm glad you said so! Let's dive in!! 

About the Book
Eddie Hertz is smart, real smart. He has to be. What other twelve-year- old patrols the streets of Nirvana alone, hoping to foil the schemes of the evil Mephisto? Since Eddie is small for his age, he trusts in his Batman-style gadgets belt and acrobatic skills as well as lots of experience, like knowing how to swing across dark alleys without being seen. Eddie has a dream, to become like Damocles, Nirvana’s great superhero. To make that dream come true, Eddie invented a device that is supposed to give him superpowers, but using it on himself is dangerous, maybe even fatal. He doesn’t have the nerve to try it. When Mephisto unleashes an earthquake machine on the city, Eddie gets a surprising teammate — his quirky eight-year- old sister, Samantha, who comes up with an unexpected way to help Eddie in the frantic battle to prevent the biggest earthquake of all.

Since Damocles has lost his ability to help in physical form, Eddie and Samantha are the only hope for Nirvana and the world. 

{My Review}

I have always loved Bryan Davis' writing ever since I found (and promptly fell in love with) Dragons in Our Midst. He has a way with words that really brings a world alive. I admit I was a little apprehensive about Wanted at first, as it's written to cater to 8-12 year olds (middle grade readers). Now I know, kids books are great, but sometimes we get spoiled with all the rich fantasy worlds and agonizing plot twists of young adult and adult fiction and tend to turn up our noses at the kids genre. However, I'd like to politely remind you that C.S. Lewis' Narnia series was written for kids... and so was Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi...and those were fantastic. SO! That being said, having jumped into Wanted expecting full-blown Davis' awesomeness, I was not disappointed one inch.

Eddie and Sam Hertz make a delightful sibling team. I really love reading books with strong sibling pairs, so this one hits top of the list. The chapters were action packed and full of information, puns, and wit. I would definitely recommend this to kids (and adults - trust me, you'll like it too). The theme, while superhero based, resonated with his previous publication of Dragons in Our Midst (I honestly need a better name for this because I want to refer to all 12 books, not just the 4 in that series).

Alongside Eddie and his sister, we'll be introduced to deadly army tanks, a young inventor, a slew of scientific terminology and big words (which had me seriously thrilled), alliteration (!!! awesome, astounding, and altogether amazing!! #abaddonthrowback), and intriguing side-kicks. There will be explosions, danger, poisonous critters, and superhero transformations. Will you join the adventure and watch the battle between Damocles and the hideous Mephisto? What on earth could happen next to the crumbling city of Nirvana?

I can see this book being a big hit for girls, boys, men, and women alike. It's wholesome, hilarious, and fast-paced. There's no romance, no swearing, and no sinister hidden subtext. If I were to reference it to other young-people hits, I'd have to say it's a little like reading a Rick Riordan Percy Jackson novel but far more wholesome (the humour and content differs quite vastly).

Altogether, let's do a break down...
  • Goodies: Alliterating geniuses (oh my goodness I love this character so much!) | puns galore | a side-kick kitty | Princess Queenie | Dragon in Our Midst vibes | tunnels | (un)natural disasters | awkward family reunions | traps | did I mention alliterating geniuses???!?!?! 
  • Character Development: (3/5) I give props that this is a series, so I'm hoping to see more development and growth in the next installment! I love the scenes near the end that talk about family (I won't give anything away here...go read it for yourself!). 
  • Content Snatchery: (5/5) Super fast-paced, lots of action, lots of destruction and flinging of deadly weaponry, etc etc. The snatchery was unbelievably on point! 
  • Boring Parts: (0, zero) Like I said, it was a super fun read - no boring parts that I could find. 
  • Romance: (0, zero) NONE! I am loudly rejoicing. I hate it when books get side-tracked by a slobbery snogging setup. It ruins the mood in the middle of the action. This is a 100% no-romance book and I adore it. 
  • My eyes are sweating: (1/5) Mostly I was too busy hyperventilating about my favourite alliterating fellow that I didn't have time to let my eyes well up. However, the end of the book was so beautifully written that I may have lost a couple crystals to the sleeve of my sweater... maybe.... *looks away quickly* 


SO THERE YOU HAVE IT!! I now pronounce my verdict*....

{My Rating: 5/5}  

*I am very much hoping for further alliteration & puns in book 2... I am totally hooked... mostly because of the alliteration... but yes, I truly loved this book...
#alliterationfangirl

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{Character Interview: Samantha Hertz}


Samantha Hertz is 8 years old. She is perky and quirky to the max. She loves a TV cartoon show called Princess Queenie and wants to emulate her hero. She also adores her brother, Eddie, in her own odd way.



Samantha is sitting by herself at a table, a plate filled with a hamburger, two hot dogs, and three slices of pizza in front of her.

Mackenzie: Hello, Samantha. Thank you for coming to this interview. Is it all right if I call you Sam?

Samantha: Sure, but my real name is Princess Queenie Unicorn Iris Ponyrider Buttercup Olive Lover Rosey Is Posey. (She takes a bite from one of the hot dogs.)

Mackenzie: All right … Sam. What can you tell me about yourself?

Samantha (swallows her bite and smiles): Well, I’m eight years old. I have brown hair and hazel eyes. I have an older brother named Eddie. My mom works as a waitress at Magruder’s. I like to watch the Princess Queenie show. And I’m a superhero.

Mackenzie: A superhero? Very intriguing. What sort of super powers do you have?

Samantha: Um … did I say I’m a superhero?

Mackenzie: Yes, I’m pretty sure you did.

Samantha (takes a bite of pizza and stares silently):

Mackenzie: Okie dokie *clears throat*. Next question. Sam, when you heard that you and Eddie had to face the evil Mephisto without help from Damocles, what was your first thought?

Samantha (swallows): My first thought? That I was hungry. Do you want to know what I thought after that?

Mackenzie: Sure.

Samantha: I thought about what Princess Queenie would do. She would use her super powers to fight evil by sprinkling fairy dust so she could fly to the villain and drop rotten eggs on him.

Mackenzie: Ah! So you can fly!

Samantha: Nope. I said that’s what Princess Queenie would do.

Mackenzie: Do you have fairy dust?

Samantha: No. I don’t have rotten eggs either.

Mackenzie: Rats. Alright, so then… what would you do?

Samantha: Well, what Eddie and I did do was to go to meet Mephisto on the roof of the Stellar building, but he surprised us by showing up on a glowing eagle, and then he lowered a barefooted guy from a helicopter who had his hands tied, but the hologram machine’s battery ran out, and then … (She takes another bite of pizza.)

Mackenzie: And then what??

Samantha (chews for a moment, then swallows): I think I’m not supposed to tell you. Eddie said I shouldn’t make the story spoil.

Mackenzie: Oh! *chuckles* You mean you shouldn’t spoil the story.

Samantha: Isn’t that what I said?

Mackenzie: Yes…yes, of course. One last question. Who is the biggest superhero in your life? Princess Queenie? Damocles? A certain alliterating genius??

Samantha: None of those. It’s my brother, Eddie.

Mackenzie: Aww – that’s very sweet; why your brother?

Samantha: Because he always looks out for me no matter how bad things get for him. He saved my life lots of times. And, most of all, because he loves me. He’s the best brother anyone could ask for.

Mackenzie: That’s beautiful, Sam. Thank you so much for doing this interview! Well, there you have it folks, Samantha Hertz (aka. Princess Queenie Unicorn Iris Ponyrider Buttercup Olive Lover Rosey Is Posey) from Wanted: A Superhero to Save the World. I hope you have the opportunity to read the rest of the story!


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{Thursday Tour Stops & Contests}

Alright you guys, we've almost come to a wrap up for this post! If you're interested in participating in the contests to potentially win some fantastic stuff, you'll need to go check out Bryan Davis' original post on the matter here (and you'll find plenty of links to other blogs participating in the tour as well): clicky click this to go to the tour kick-off.

Today, you'll find others posting some excellent information on the blog tour and further details on this new series. Goodies include a book spotlight, write-ups on Bryan Davis, an author interview, and more book reviews! Please do check them out:



There are two contests you can enter - I've linked them both below. 

{1 - First Giveaway}
Prizes: a choice of any of Bryan Davis' books (!!!!) + a Wanted: A Superhero to Save the World t-shirt + bookmark

a Rafflecopter giveaway


{2 - Grand Prize}
Prizes: all of the swag from the First Giveaway + a complete set of any Bryan Davis book series OR a $50 Amazon gift card || you have to do some work to win this one; to enter the giveaway you need to give the sum of all the numbers in the tour blog posts (go click that link for the tour kick-off to see a complete list of contributing blogs)
Thanks for joining in the fun! I hope you'll pop back in the future :)

Signed with pie, 
Squeaks.
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