Review: Code Name Verity

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13047090Title: Code Name Verity

Author: Elizabeth Wein

Series: Code Name Verity Series

Publisher: Egmont Press

Publish Date: February 6th, 2012

Genres: Historical Fiction, World War II, Young Adult

Two young women become unlikely best friends during WWII, until one is captured by the Gestapo. Only in wartime could a stalwart lass from Manchester rub shoulders with a Scottish aristocrat, one a pilot, the other a special operations executive. Yet whenever their paths cross, they complement each other perfectly and before long become devoted to each other.

But then a vital mission goes wrong, and one of the friends has to bail out of a faulty plane over France. She is captured by the Gestapo and becomes a prisoner of war. The story begins in “Verity’s” own words, as she writes her account for her captors. Truth or lies? Honour or betrayal? Everything they’ve ever believed in is put to the test…

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DNFing Books: the Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

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DNFing_Books
I’m impressively stubborn, sometimes to a fault, yet I prefer to prioritize my mental sanity above forcing myself to read a book from start to finish that blatantly isn’t working for me.  While I’m by no means a liberal DNF-er, I average approximately 1-2 books per year that I permanently set aside without completing them.  When I first started blogging, my brain absolutely refused to accept the concept of not reading a novel in its entirety.  Needless to say, I had several excruciatingly painful reads in which I miserably limped along until the very last page and then promptly dove headfirst into a reading slump.  As my TBR pile started to grow exponentially, I gradually recognized that I would not be struck dead by a bolt of lightning if I elected to set a book aside in favor for a higher priority or more promising read.  In hindsight, this was one of my most important realizations with respect to my growth as a reader.

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Review: Elixir

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Book Review13047090Title: Elixir

Author: Ted Galdi

Series: none

Publisher: Self Published

Publish Date: January 1st, 2014

Genres: Fiction, Adult

Meet 14-year-old Sean Malone. He has an IQ above 200, a full-ride scholarship to one of the country’s top universities, and more than one million dollars from his winning streak on Jeopardy. However, Sean wishes he could just be normal.

But his life is anything but normal. The US government manipulates him, using him as a codebreaker in pursuit of a drug lord and killing innocent people along the way.

For reasons related to his personal security, Sean finds himself in Rome, building a new life under a new name, abandoning academics, and hiding his genius from everyone. When he’s 18 he falls in love. The thrills begin again when he learns that his girlfriend is critically ill and it’s up to him to use his intellect to find a cure, a battle pitting him against a multi-billion-dollar pharmaceutical company and the demons of his past.

Elixir is a story about identity, secrets, and above all, love.

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Discussion: Mid-Series Cover Changes (+ why publishers have a death wish)

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Discussion

Personality-wise, I’m an extremely OCD person: everything has its place, including publishers who feel the need to change book covers partway through a series (aka, a special spot in hell).  Why must they destroy my bookshelf aesthetic and force me into purchasing duplicate copies of previous installments, just so the covers and spines match?

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eReader Comparison

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eReaders have become widely popular over the past decade and are now a staple for most bookworms.  If you’re currently in the market for an eReader, it’s often challenging to gauge which device will be best suited to your needs and preferences – should you get a Kindle?  Something with E-ink technology?  A touchscreen?  A tablet with additional capabilities?   Wifi and 3G?

I’ve gone through quite a few eReaders myself throughout the years (I seem to be particularly brutal on them…or I’ve just had exquisitely bad luck), and I’ve consequently had the opportunity to experiment with a variety of features and designs.   While I am in no way a technological expert, I figured it couldn’t hurt to share my experiences, likes, dislikes, etc., imparting information I wish I had known prior to purchasing these devices.

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Discussion: Annual Reading Goals – the Good, the Bad, & the Ugly

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Discussion

Whether you’re a member of Goodreads, or other book-related websites and organizations, there’s a pretty good chance you’ve been asked or have come across various features that allow you to set reading goals each year.  These goals can vary significantly,  ranging from the highly specific “I want to read __ books in 2016” to something as general as “I want to read more historical fiction.”

But these goals, do they do more harm than good?  Instead of prompting us to read with increasing frequency, do they actually discourage us from the pastime?

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Discussion: Literature in the American School System

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Discussion

According to a variety of sources and international reports, American students are falling increasingly behind their international counterpoints with respect to education in the fields of math, science, and reading/writing (rhetoric).  Why is there such a disparity between children growing up in different countries?  Can this be attributed to each nation’s implemented school system?  Or even the modern generation’s increasingly prevalent fascination with gleaning a large amount of information in the shortest allotment of time?

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