SCHOOL FOR PSYCHICS by K.C.ARCHER

School for Psychics (School for Psychics, #1)

Book One.

An entrancing new series starring a funny, impulsive, and sometimes self-congratulatory young woman who discovers she has psychic abilities—and then must decide whether she will use her skills for good or…not.

Teddy Cannon isn’t your typical twenty-something woman. She’s resourceful. She’s bright. She’s scrappy. She can also read people with uncanny precision. What she doesn’t realize: she’s actually psychic.

When a series of bad decisions leads Teddy to a run-in with the police, a mysterious stranger intervenes. He invites her to apply to the School for Psychics, a facility hidden off the coast of San Francisco where students are trained like Delta Force operatives: it’s competitive, cutthroat, and highly secretive. They’ll learn telepathy, telekinesis, investigative skills, and SWAT tactics. And if students survive their training, they go on to serve at the highest levels of government, using their skills to protect America, and the world.

In class, Teddy befriends Lucas, a rebel without a cause who can start and manipulate fire; Jillian, a hipster who can mediate communication between animals and humans; and Molly, a hacker who can apprehend the emotional state of another individual. But just as Teddy feels like she’s found where she might belong, strange things begin to happen: break-ins, missing students, and more. It leads Teddy to accept a dangerous mission that will ultimately cause her to question everything—her teachers, her friends, her family, and even herself.

While a lot of readers are calling this a fantasy YA book, I’m not sure that is the correct genre for this book.

Most of the characters are twenty-somethings and all have some type of special ability. Being a huge fan of the X Men, it felt a lot like that. A special school full of young adults learning to control their gifts and learn to use them in a productive way. In other words, working for the government.

There have been rumors for years that the government has experimented with using telekinetic powers and more to their advantage. While this can be a positive thing, you just know that some nut job is going to abuse the power.

Teddy is sarcastic and definitely her own person. Adopted, she has never known who or what she really is. It’s only through dreams that she receives messages and hints of them.The question is what happened to them and why is there so much secrecy?

I personally enjoyed the story and am glad to see that there will be more.

NetGalley/SimonSchuster  April 03, 2018

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MORE THAN TRUE: The Wisdom of Fairy Tales by Robert Bly

More Than True: The Wisdom of Fairy Tales

National Book Award-winning poet and author of the internationally best-selling Iron John, Robert Bly revisits a selection of fairy tales and examines how these enduring narratives capture the essence of human nature.

Few forms of storytelling have greater power to captivate the human mind than fairy tales, but where do these tales originate from, and what do they mean? Celebrated poet and bestselling author Robert Bly has been asking these questions throughout his career. Here Bly looks at six tales that have stood the test of time and have captivated the poet for decades, from “The Six Swans” to “The Frog Prince.” Drawing on his own creative genius, and the work of a range of thinkers from Kierkegaard and Yeats to Freud and Jung, Bly turns these stories over in his mind to bring new meaning and illumination to these timeless tales.

Along with illustrations of each story, the book features some of Bly’s unpublished poetry, which peppers his lyric prose and offers a look inside the mind of an American master of letters in the twilight of his singular career.

Robert Bly takes us on a journey through six fairy tales. Shining a light on the tales themselves and why they are still popular and relevant. Each tale is taken apart, studied and viewed through the eyes of not only Bly but several great thinkers.

These fairy tales are timeless. And magic and Bly always give us something to delve deeper into and discover a new meaning to them.

As always, it is my pleasure to read Mr. Bly.

Netgalley/ March 27th 2018 by Henry Holt and Co.

The MERRY SPINSTER~TALES of EVERYDAY HORROR BY MALLORY ORTBERG

The Merry Spinster: Tales of Everyday Horror

From Mallory Ortberg comes a collection of darkly mischievous stories based on classic fairy tales. Adapted from her beloved “Children’s Stories Made Horrific” series, “The Merry Spinster” takes up the trademark wit that endeared Ortberg to readers of both The Toast and her best-selling debut Texts From Jane Eyre. The feature become among the most popular on the site, with each entry bringing in tens of thousands of views, as the stories proved a perfect vehicle for Ortberg’s eye for deconstruction and destabilization. Sinister and inviting, familiar and alien all at the same time, The Merry Spinster updates traditional children’s stories and fairy tales with elements of psychological horror, emotional clarity, and a keen sense of feminist mischief.

Readers of The Toast will instantly recognize Ortberg’s boisterous good humor and uber-nerd swagger: those new to Ortberg’s oeuvre will delight in her unique spin on fiction, where something a bit mischievous and unsettling is always at work just beneath the surface.

Unfalteringly faithful to its beloved source material, The Merry Spinster also illuminates the unsuspected, and frequently, alarming emotional complexities at play in the stories we tell ourselves, and each other, as we tuck ourselves in for the night.

Bed time will never be the same.

Mallory brings us a collection of short tales based on fairy tales, with a twist!

I really enjoy her writing style. It’s almost as if she is having so much fun writing that her joy spills all over the page!

If you are expecting some lovely version of your favorite fairy tale, that would be a mistake. There is nothing pretty and Disney about her version. It’s horror, pure and simple.

The innocent Velveteen Rabbit? Never again will I look at that book the same! Mallory puts her unique spin on her versions, both feminist and queer (her words). And as horrified as I was starting with The Little Mermaid, I still laughed until I cried and enjoyed every moment.

Check out her writing and see if you get hooked!

Well Done!    Netgalley/Holt Paperbacks   March 13, 2018

Image result for mallory ortberg

Daughters of the Storm by Kim Wilkins

Blood and Gold #1

Daughters of the Storm (Blood and Gold, #1)

Five very different sisters team up against their stepbrother to save their kingdom in this Norse-flavored fantasy epic–the start of a new series in the tradition of Naomi Novik, Peter V. Brett, and Robin Hobb.

FIVE ROYAL SISTERS. ONE CROWN.

They are the daughters of a king. Though they share the same royal blood, they could not be more different. Bluebell is a proud warrior, stronger than any man and with an ironclad heart to match. Rose’s heart is all too passionate: She is the queen of a neighboring kingdom, who is risking everything for a forbidden love. The twins: vain Ivy, who lives for admiration, and zealous Willow, who lives for the gods. And Ash, who is discovering a dangerous talent for magic that might be a gift–or a curse.

But when their father is stricken by a mysterious ailment, they must come together on a desperate journey to save him and prevent their treacherous stepbrother from seizing the throne. Their mission: find the powerful witch who can cure the king. But to succeed on their quest, they must overcome their differences, and hope that the secrets they hide from one another and the world are never brought to light. Because if this royal family breaks, it could destroy the kingdom.

Five daughters. One Kingdom. Bluebell is a warrior. She strikes fear into the heart of those she meets on and off the battle field and does not suffer fools lightly. I imagined her as Xena. Everything is cut and dried for her. It’s right or it’s wrong based on how it affects the Kingdom and her father. Eventually she will rule.

Rose has been married off to the King of another area that assures peace for both countries. But her heart is with the man she couldn’t have. And her daughter may be his also. She is tender-hearted but can get the job done if need be.

Ash has been hidden away for years studying to become a counselor, but when she is called home when her father becomes ill, she finds herself surrounded with magic and knows she has to leave.

Willow has lived with her Uncle and comes home to find her ill father. She has taken up the faith of another God and is obsessed with it and the voices in her head. She has no loyalty to anyone including her sisters.

Ivy is the flighty, boy crazy one. She has no problem stealing your boyfriend or her sister’s husband. But she gets neither.

Now they must work together to get their father to safety and to find the undermagician who can make him well again. All the while their step-brother is planning on killing Bluebell and taking the throne with his mother as Queen. I did not care for his character. Shallow and calculating, he kills with no care and yet cares tenderly for a blind child.

This is the first book in the series and I found it to be quite entertaining. A new fantasy series in which all of them are just discovering who they are and what they are.

Ms. Wilkins has created smart, conflicted and addictive characters here. I can’t wait for the next one!

Netgalley/Del Ray  Release March 06, 2018

 

The Philosopher’s Flight by Tom Miller

The Philosopher's Flight

A thrilling debut from ER doctor turned novelist Tom Miller, The Philosopher’s Flight is an epic historical fantasy set in a World-War-I-era America where magic and science have blended into a single extraordinary art. “Like his characters, Tom Miller casts a spell.” (Matthew Pearl, author of The Dante Club and The Last Bookaneer)

Eighteen-year-old Robert Weekes is a practitioner of empirical philosophy—an arcane, female-dominated branch of science used to summon the wind, shape clouds of smoke, heal the injured, and even fly. Though he dreams of fighting in the Great War as the first male in the elite US Sigilry Corps Rescue and Evacuation Service—a team of flying medics—Robert is resigned to mixing batches of philosophical chemicals and keeping the books for the family business in rural Montana, where his mother, a former soldier and vigilante, aids the locals.

When a deadly accident puts his philosophical abilities to the test, Robert rises to the occasion and wins a scholarship to study at Radcliffe College, an all-women’s school. At Radcliffe, Robert hones his skills and strives to win the respect of his classmates, a host of formidable, unruly women.

Robert falls hard for Danielle Hardin, a disillusioned young war hero turned political radical. However, Danielle’s activism and Robert’s recklessness attract the attention of the same fanatical anti-philosophical group that Robert’s mother fought years before. With their lives in mounting danger, Robert and Danielle band together with a team of unlikely heroes to fight for Robert’s place among the next generation of empirical philosophers—and for philosophy’s very survival against the men who would destroy it.

In the tradition of Lev Grossman and Deborah Harkness, Tom Miller writes with unrivaled imagination, ambition, and humor. The Philosopher’s Flight is both a fantastical reimagining of American history and a beautifully composed coming-of-age tale for anyone who has ever felt like an outsider.

This fantastical tale is well written, but I just could not grab a connection to it. The words are inventions and why so many?

It was difficult for me to suspend belief and jump into this fantasy world when I had no idea what some of the words meant and they sure were not in the dictionary!

However I can see how it would appeal to hardcore, world building, fantasy lovers.

Netgalley/SimonandSchuster  February 13, 2018

 

Booked For The Weekend!

Gods of Howl Mountain, award-winning author Taylor Brown explores a world of folk healers, whiskey-runners, and dark family secrets in the high country of 1950s North Carolina.

Lucy Kerr’s riveting second Stillwater General Mystery,No One Can Know.

My name is Mary Seymour and I am the daughter of one queen and the niece of another.”

The #1 New York Times bestselling author and master of the psychological thriller makes all the right moves in this new novel of spellbinding suspense.

Although the sun is shining brightly this morning, it is still in the 30’s so I have these books to keep me warm this weekend. The first Saturday we have had off together in 3 years! So of course the sun is making a promise she can’t keep. If it’s going to be cold the sun shouldn’t advertise warmth!

xx Patricia   Grab a book and a cup!

The Best of My 2017 Awards!

It’s true. Today is your last reading day of the year! Have you met your Goodreads Challenge? All caught up on your Netgalley Reviews? Happy to say yes, I am. And following are some but by no means all of the best in their genres.

Best Debut Fiction:   Jennifer Irwin for A Dress The Color of The Sky. A book about addictions and breaking cycles. Movie rights have already been grabbed by Reese Witherspoon! I admire Jennifer so much for her work ethic and her writing skills!

A Dress the Color of the Sky

Best Historical Fiction: Katherine Arden for the follow-up to her award-winning The Bear and The Nightingale, The Girl in the Tower which was just as brilliant as the first book!

The Girl in the Tower (Winternight Trilogy, #2)

Best Thriller: Karin Slaughter with The Good Daughter. Two girls are forced into the woods at gunpoint. One runs for her life. One is left behind.

The Good Daughter

Best Suspense Thriller: J.T.Ellison with Lie to Me. This was such a web of lies and deceit, you won’t unravel it until the spider is ready to jump!

Lie to Me

Best Crime Thriller:  Don Winslow with The Force. Another brilliant contribution by a favorite author! No one does crime like Winslow!

The Force

Best Horror Crime: J.D.Barker with The Fourth Monkey! Fans of the movie Se7en meets The Silence of the Lambs in this dark and twisting novel from the author Jeffery Deaver called, A talented writer with a delightfully devious mind.”

 

The Fourth Monkey (A 4MK Thriller, #1)

Best Cozy Mystery: A Cajun Christmas Killing by Ellen Byron

A Cajun Christmas Killing (Cajun Country Mystery #3)

Best Non-Fiction: Helene Cooper with Madame President.The harrowing, but triumphant story of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, leader of the Liberian women’s movement, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, and the first democratically elected female president in African history.

Madame President: The Extraordinary Journey of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf

Best Mystery: Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker

Emma in the Night

Best Cookbook:  The Beach House Cookbook by Mary Kay Andrews

The Beach House Cookbook

Best General Fiction: Sing, Unburied, Sing by Jesmyn Ward who blew my mind with this book set in my Mississippi town.

Sing, Unburied, Sing

There could be hundreds more of the over 200 I read this year, but all of these I have read more than once, so that says a lot when you have a TBR list as long as mine.

What were your Best Reads of the Year?

So 2017 all I can say to you is Good bye!