REVIEW: Uprooted by Naomi Novik

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

REVIEW: Uprooted by Naomi NovikUprooted by Naomi Novik
Published: Del Rey (2015), eARC, 448pg
Genre: Adventure, Fantasy, Fiction, Romance
From: NetGalley
four-half-starsfour-half-starsfour-half-starsfour-half-starsfour-half-stars

Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted Wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life.

Her people rely on the cold, driven wizard known only as the Dragon to keep its powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as falling to the Wood.

The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows—everyone knows—that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia, all the things Agnieszka isn’t, and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her.

But Agnieszka fears the wrong things. For when the Dragon comes, it is not Kasia he will choose.
Get it: Amazon | Goodreads

I’ve been excited for Uprooted for nearly a year now, ever since I found a sampler at ALA Annual last June. I’d already read and loved Naomi Novik’s Temeraire series, and I was very excited to see what she’d do with a non-Napoleonic setting and more overtly classical fairy tale influences.

NN has done the writerly equivalent of took a level in badass with Uprooted. It is heaps of fun (although not in a funny ha-ha way) and I sincerely hope a bunch of you go out and get it soon so we can talk about it together. And then…

Recently: Peripheral People

I, too, have seen and loved Taylor Swift’s new music video, Bad Blood. Such a fun video!


Winner: The Crimson Curse as best super spy name.


This past week was the Bout of Books, which went pretty well for me! I ended up reading five books, four of which were comics. I got a little sidetracked on Friday when my shiny new computer showed up1 and all I wanted to do was transfer files and set up preferences and whatnot. But I’m happy with what I read and I had fun doing BoB! You can check out my tracking post here.

Today was the first day of my school’s Scholastic book fair! Everyone was so excited and they loved the book selection, and I can’t wait to see what happens the rest of the week. A book fair is a great way to end to school year, especially since it gives me a chance to talk to students about summer reading possibilities. And then…

Bout of Books 13: the tracking post

BoB13It’s Bout of Books time! I’ll be updating this post throughout the week with tracking stats, reading notes, and other fun things.

Monday, May 11th
Currently reading: Lady Knight by LJ Baker
Books finished: None (yet)
# of pages read: 53
Notes: It’s my mom’s birthday today, so I spent most of it (when not at work) at Disneyland! Not a lot of opportunities for reading, as it turns out. And then…

Currently reading: Lady Knight

lady knight I had major book hangover after finishing Uprooted last week and it’s only just now that I’m getting over it with help from LJ Baker’s Lady Knight. It’s a medieval-ish fantasy romance with a charming widow and an emotionally constipated female knight! Rhiannon (the knight) is more into chivalry and honor than anyone ever, which leads to a lot of scenes where she’s super courtly and polite while Eleanor (the widow) tries to make her smile with witticisms. They’re so cute!

It’s also got a plot besides the romance, involving Rhiannon’s politically aspirational cousin who’s a priestess of the Goddess and also a Chessmaster, as far as I can tell. She’s trying to start a holy war so she can…do something. I may have accidentally skipped over that part to get to more romantic shenanigans, idk.

My second current read is A College of Magics by Caroline Stevermer. Actually, it’s a reread, though I’ve forgotten so much about it that it’s almost as if I’m reading it for the first time again. Definitely remember being disappointed that the magical college part isn’t actually all that long or important– more character development and plot happenings occur once the protag leaves college, something like 100 pages into the book. Oh well.

Tomorrow is the first day of Bout of Books 13, so I’m hoping to finish one of these and add it to my BoB list!

What are you reading this weekend?

Bout of Books 13

BoB13 I’ve been meaning to participate in one of the Bout of Books readathons for ages now, but somehow I always JUST miss it. I’m getting in on this Bout, though, thanks to bloggy friend Vasilly who posted about it a few days ago. This is my official sign-up post, yay!

Official BoB blurb:

The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, May 11th and runs through Sunday, May 17th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 13 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team

My goal is to finish one book a day, or two if they’re tiny kids books. I’ve got a bunch of TBR books loaded onto my Kindle and even more paper books staring at me from my TBR bookcase, so I’ve got plenty to read.

Have any of you done a BoB before? Got any tips for me, maybe?

REVIEW: Good Eggs by Phoebe Potts

REVIEW: Good Eggs by Phoebe PottsGood Eggs by Phoebe Potts
Published: Harper Collins (2010), eBook, 272pg
Genre: Graphic Novel, Memoir, Non-Fiction
From: Scribd

three-starsthree-starsthree-stars

In the tradition of the acclaimed graphic memoirs Fun Home and Persepolis comes a funny, insightful, and deeply moving book about learning to appreciate what we have when we can't seem to get what we want.For Phoebe Potts, the path to maternal fulfillment has not been easy. All her friends seem to get pregnant, but she can't conceive for all her trying. As Phoebe and her husband, Jeff, navigate the emotionally and physically fraught world of fertility experts, she takes stock of what matters in the rest of her life and reflects on the winding journey to her true calling as an artist. From her days as an amateur union organizer in Texas to her spiral into paralyzing depression in Mexico; from her soul-shrinking, all-for-the-benefits stint as an administrative assistant at a fancy university in Cambridge to her flirtation with rabbinical school, Phoebe illuminates the bumpy road to vocational and personal contentment. Her wonderful, hilarious, and utterly original drawings capture the truly good eggs—an unforgettably nutty mother; a devoted husband; a team of therapists, hairdressers, and landladies; friends; and a sidekick housecat—that together expand the definition of what really makes a family.
Get it: Amazon | Goodreads

Going by the cover and the title, this seems like it’s about food and breakfast and happy breakfast foods. Well, it’s not. It’s not even particularly happy! It’s actually about babies and trying to make babies and parenthood and all the frustrations therein.

Good Eggs is a memoir about the author’s journey towards getting pregnant (with some other stuff mixed in). Turns out her eggs actually aren’t so good, and she and her husband spend a lot of time, money, and emotional effort coming to terms with that. It’s a painfully truthful story and I admire PP for telling it.

I actually have little interest in stories about people trying to have babies, but I ended up reading the whole thing anyway because it was so well-written. And I really liked the art! It’s a kind of cute and happy style, which seems like it’d be super disparate with the story. But it’s not– it ended up emphasizing the personal-ness of Good Eggs instead and it worked out very well.

Read: March 1, 2015