Tag Archives: Alice Hoffman

Over-Booked [21] – A Book Haul Post

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Welcome to Over-Booked, my twice-monthly book haul post! I’m linking up with Stacking the Shelves over at Tynga’s Reviews and The Sunday Post at the Caffeinated Book Reviewer. Check out their links and you can see other book hauls! I’m trying to stay away from Edelweiss and NetGalley, or at least if I stalk those sites, I’m trying to only request books I REALLY want to read. So just a few books this week:

The physical pile:

over booked 3-21

Those Above by Daniel Polansky. Purchased from The Book Depository. Thank God for TBD, where one can find UK editions of books that have not yet been released in the U.S.! This is one I’ve read some glowing reviews for, and immediately knew I needed my own copy. Right away.

Nightbird by Alice Hoffman. Right after I finished reading my NetGalley copy, I received a physical ARC in the mail. I’m actually giving this copy away! If you live in the US, you can enter by emailing me at booksbonesbuffy (at) att (dot) net. Simply put “NIGHTBIRD” in the subject line and include your name and mailing address. Ends on March 22!

Bitter Sixteen by Stefan Mohamed. This isn’t up on Goodreads for some reason, so the link goes to the publisher’s page. Another awesome-looking book from Salt Publishing! It’s got a superhero vibe to it, which I love. I’ll be reading this and also interviewing the author next month.

Big thanks to Salt Publishing and Wendy Lamb Books!

From NetGalley/Edelweiss:

Hidden Huntress (The Malediction Trilogy #2) by Danielle L. Jensen. One of two Angry Robot titles that I’m dying to read, and both are second books in their respective series.

Unseemly Science (The Fall of the Gas-Lit Empire #2) by Rod Duncan. My second Angry Robot title this week. I cannot wait to get back into Duncan’s steampunk, cross-dressing world!

When We Were Animals by Joshua Gaylord. I just discovered this book, which comes out next month, and I immediately searched for it and found it on NetGalley. It was clearly written just for me:-D

Big thanks to Angry Robot and Mulholland Books!

Next week is SO BUSY here on the blog…you do not want to miss some new giveaways and author interviews that came up suddenly! Here’s what’s coming up the week of March 23:

Monday: Review & Giveaway: Duplicity by N.K. Traver

Tuesday: Interview with Daryl Gregory, author of Harrison Squared + giveaway!

Thursday: Interview with Damien Angelica Walters, author of Sing Me Your Scars + giveaway!

…and more!

That’s it for me. Tell me about your book haul this week:-D

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Luminous & Magical: NIGHTBIRD by Alice Hoffman – Review

Nightbird by Alice Hoffman
Genre: Middle grade fantasy
Publisher: Wendy Lamb Books/Random House Kids
Release date: March 10 2015
Source: eARC via NetGalley/Physical ARC
Pages: 208

Keep reading for a giveaway at the end!

The nitty-gritty: A sweet and magical story, perfect for readers ten and up.

When you set out to find the answers to your questions, you have to be prepared to be surprised by what you discover.

I’ve had the pleasure of reading several of Hoffman’s young adult stories—including Aquamarine, Green Angel and Indigo—and so I was curious to read her latest, which is being marketed to a slightly younger crowd, but still maintains Hoffman’s trademark magic realism. Her adult books often deal with gritty themes like abuse and death, and even her YA stories contain subjects that can be tricky for young people, like the death of a parent. But this time around, Hoffman has left out the heavy storylines and focused on something that may be closer to a ten-to-twelve year old’s experience: trying to make friends when you feel as if your life is completely abnormal.

Twig Fowler lives in an old farmhouse in Sidwell, MA with her older brother James and her mother, where they keep to themselves and tend to their large apple orchard. Ever since Twig’s mother brought them here from New York, she’s discouraged Twig from making friends or letting people into their lives. Twig’s brother, you see, is…different. He was born with wings, and he’s resigned himself to a life locked away in his house in order to keep their family secret safe.

Until the day new neighbors move in next door. Sixteen-year-old Agate and twelve-year-old Julia are everything Twig’s mom doesn’t like, but Twig is determined to make a new friend, and she and Julia click immediately. And as for James, once he gets a glimpse of the lovely Agate, he realizes how unhappy his life has been, and he begins to sneak out at night to meet with her. Meanwhile, a mysterious winged “monster” has been spotted in the woods, and random items in town start to go missing. Cryptic spray-painted messages begin to appear around town, along with a drawing of a blue monster.

Twig and Julia discover a centuries-old spell that was cast on the men in Twig’s family—hence, James’ wings—and together they decide to find a way to break the spell for good.  It’s a magical summer indeed as the girls gather ingredients to break the spell and solve the mystery of the monster in the woods.

No one brings magic to life like Alice Hoffman. Reading this book took me back to my own childhood, when I actually believed in magic, and even though I’m way beyond the age group this book is written for, I got chills—the good kind!—while reading this story. Hoffman is a genius at using symbolism and recurring themes that tie everything together. And yes, she does tend to use the same imagery over and over in her books, but having read a great many of them over the years, I have come to find this comforting. In Nightbird, Hoffman uses bees, flowers, herbs, apples, feathers, and owls over and over again to cast a spell over the reader. If you’ve read Alice Hoffman before, you know exactly what I’m talking about. (And if you haven’t, you really should:-D)

Twig’s mom bakes pies and sells them in town, her own secret recipe using a very special apple called the Pink that grows in the orchard behind their house. Like many of Hoffman’s story elements, these pies are transforming and practically magic themselves, so delicious are they. I also loved the saw-whet owls that live in the woods, owls that James sometimes rescues and nurses back to health. When James goes flying at night, the owls he’s made friends with fly with him. Such a lovely and simple story element, but one that feels magical like everything else about this book.

Because this is for younger readers, Twig, James, Julia and Agate steal the show. Hoffman avoids turning adults into bad guys in this story, which I was grateful for. Several of the adult characters turned out to be favorites of mine, including Twig’s mother, a flawed woman with a terrible secret (her son James, who can never be seen in public); and Mr. Rose, the mysterious journalist who comes to town and helps Twig solve her mysteries.

I would have to call this a “kinder, gentler” Alice Hoffman story, which is perfect for ages ten and up. Nothing really terrible happens in the book, although there are plenty of mysteries to solve and a few tense moments that will have pre-teens on the edge of their seats. But as an adult reader, I clearly saw everything that was coming. Nothing surprised me about the plot, and I easily predicted every twist and turn.

But Nightbird is a simply delightful tale, full of Hoffman’s special brand of luminous and magical writing. Young readers will identify with Twig’s and James’ loneliness and their desire to make friends and be part of the world. I have not seen the finished hardcover version of this book, but I suspect it will be a lovely gem, with color illustrations and even colored ink, if the ARC is anything to go by. As with everything I’ve read by Alice Hoffman, Nightbird is highly recommended.

Big thanks to the publisher for supplying a review copy!

Final Rating: 9/10

Find the book:

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What’s On My Plate – March 2015

On My Plate

Wow this year is going fast already! I know February was a short month, but come on! How can it be March already?? This month I have really overextended myself, as you’ll see by the huge pile of review books I have on tap. Not sure how this is all going to pan out, but I’ll do my best:-D Here’s what I’m planning for March:

For Review:

Nightbird by Alice Hoffman. This short middle grade novel is Hoffman’s first, and because I love her fantasies for young adults, I can’t wait to read this one.

We All Looked Up by Tommy Wallach. I’m looking forward to checking out this debut, which is getting lots of attention.

Dark Star by Oliver Langmead. This will be my second book from small UK press Unsung Stories, and I’m quite looking forward to it. Plus, pretty cover!

Throne of Darkness by Douglas Nicholas. This is the third book in Nicholas’ fantasy series, and even though I didn’t read book #2, the publicist assures me that this reads as a stand-alone.

Flex by Ferrett Steinmetz. Yay, Angry Robot is back! This is my first AR title I’ll be reading since their hiatus, and I hear it’s really good.

Harrison Squared by Daryl Gregory. I was (happily!) just approved for this title on NetGalley, and I also just found out that the character of Harrison is based on a character in Gregory’s book We Are All Completely Fine, which I just purchased! Super excited to read both books. (Note: I just finished We Are all Completely Fine and WOW. Loved it! I’m looking forward even more to Harrison Squared.)

Broken Skies by Theresa Kay. The author kindly sent me a digital review copy, and I’ve been seeing lots of great reviews on Goodreads.

Sing Me Your Scars by Damien Angelica Walters. This is a collection of short stories and one of Apex Books’ “Apex Voices” authors. I love discovering new authors from Apex!

Strangers by David Moody. I accepted this review book on the recommendation of Wayne Simmons, an author I adore. Sorry it’s taking me so long to get to it, Wayne!

Blog Tours:

Oh boy, lots of blog tours this month, I think I’ll take a break from them in April! In any case, I’m beyond excited for my stop on the A Darker Shade of Magic tour, which is tomorrow! Stop by for an international giveaway of a copy of the book and a signed poster!

I’ll be on the Unchained Memory tour on March 9th. I’m trying out a new small press for this one, INK’d Press, and I’ll be reading the book very soon.

Lastly, my stop on the Vostok tour is March 31. I’m taking a chance on this new-to-me publisher/author, so stay tuned for my review, and hopefully a giveaway of the book.

Giveaways:

My monthly book review giveaway starts on the 15th, so check back soon! As usual, this giveaway is INTERNATIONAL, and one winner will receive a book that I reviewed during the month of February.

I’m participating in the annual Spring Cleaning Giveaway Hop (which used to be called “Clear Your Shelf Giveaway Hop”) which starts on the 20th. I had great fun last year with this hop, giving away a secret box of books. Don’t worry, I’ll leave you some clues as to what’s in the box! Due to shipping costs, this giveaway must be U.S. only.

And that’s what’s on my plate this month! Let me know what you’re up to:-D

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Over-Booked [18] – A Book Haul Post

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Welcome to Over-Booked, my version of the book haul post, where I share my latest book acquisitions with you! I usually do an Over-Booked post every other week. I’m linking up with Stacking the Shelves at Tynga’s Reviews and The Sunday Post at The Caffeinated Book Reviewer.

I got some surprise books in the mail from the always generous Tor Books, a few digital review books, and I’m happy to say, only one purchased book! Here are my latest and greatest:

Physical books:

Over booked 2-7

The Eterna Files by Leanna Renee Hieber. I had some nice surprises in the mail from Tor this past week, and this was one of them. I really like the sound of this book, which takes place during the time of Queen Victoria.

Karen Memory by Elizabeth Bear. I had requested an ARC of this book, and was thrilled when a finished copy showed up. I’ve read nothing but glowing reviews for this one, and can’t wait to get started!

Finn Fancy Necromancy by Randy Henderson. Another Tor surprise, I’m curious to see what this book is all about. Has anyone read it yet? I originally thought it was middle grade, because that title and cover!

Big thanks to Tor Books for the review copies!

Gideon by Alex Gordon. I bought this at Barnes & Noble while I was waiting for my California Pizza Kitchen order to be ready, ha ha. I’ve had this on my wish list and since it’s out in paperback, I wanted to pick up a copy.

Notice how all these neutral colored covers go together??

Digital review books:

Broken Skies by Theresa Kay. I received a copy from the author, thanks Theresa! I’ll be diving into this YA science fiction story next month.

Unchained Memory by Donna S. Frelick. I’m very careful about selecting books from publishers I’m not familiar with, but I’m intrigued by this title from small press INK’d.

Sing Me Your Scars by Damien Angelica Walters. I just accepted this book of short stories for review from Apex Books, and I’m looking forward to reading them. Big thanks to Lesley!

Sweet by Emmy Laybourne. Terror on a cruise ship? Yes! Sign me up:-)

Nightbird by Alice Hoffman. I was excited to see this YA on NetGalley. Alice Hoffman, in addition to writing extraordinary magic realism for adults, has also written a bunch of YA fantasies. This Hoffman’s first book for the middle grade crowd, and it’s sure to have her magical touch.

Thank you Macmillan and Wendy Lamb Books!

That’s my book haul this week! What’s yours?

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Midwinter’s Eve Giveaway Hop! Win One of My Favorite Books of 2014

MidwinterI’m happy to be participating in the Midwinter’s Eve Giveaway Hop, hosted by Bookhounds & I Am a Reader! Don’t forget to check out all the other blogs on the hop below. For my giveaway, since it’s the end of the year and I’ve been sharing my “best of 2014″ lists with you, one international winner will get to select one of my favorite books of the year. You can choose from the six books below (three are adult and three are young adult):

Young Adult picks:

100 Sideways Miles by Andrew Smith

The Falconer by Elizabeth May

Stolen Songbird by Danielle L. Jensen

Adult picks:

The Martian by Andy Weir

The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey

The Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman

Do you like the way I chose books with covers that look beautiful together? Yes, I planned that! You can click on the titles if you’d like to read my reviews. Please fill out the Rafflecopter below to enter, and don’t forget to HOP to the next blog for another chance to win something!

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Check out all the other blogs on the hop:

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Tammy’s Top Ten Adult Books of 2014

Best of 2014 button copy

It’s that time of year, time to make all sorts of “best of” lists! I love making lists anyway, but when I get to look back over a year’s worth of reading and rave about the books that really stood out for me, that’s got to be my favorite sort of list-making. This week I’m highlighting my top ten Adult books of the year, and next Tuesday I’ll be listing my top ten Young Adult books, so don’t forget to stop back next week. I really tried to cut one of these out, but in the end, I just couldn’t choose. So yes, I have eleven books on this Top Ten list:-) So, here they are, my Top Ten Eleven Adult Books of 2014! (in no particular order)

most beautifully written white

Station Eleven

1. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel. I guess if I have to pick my absolute number 1 favorite book this year, I’d pick this one. Station Eleven was a gorgeous and emotional surprise, and I’m so glad to have read it. I’m dying to see what Emily St. John Mandel writes next, because she is on my auto-buy list for sure. Read my review here.

best storytelling

Broken Monsters

2. Broken Monsters by Lauren Beukes. I’m thrilled to have a new favorite author! I can’t wait to catch up on Beukes’ backlist, because she is so good. This thriller kept me on the edge of my seat, but better yet, the author delved deep into the lives of her characters. Highly recommended! Read my review here.

best new series

Red Rising

3. Red Rising (Red Rising #1) by Pierce Brown. I read this nearly a year ago, but it still lingers in my memory. Brown’s kick-off to his series was kick-ass, full of bloody action, sex and bold world-building. The second in the series, Golden Son, comes out next month, and I can’t wait to read it. Read my review here.

scariest future 2014 copy

Annihilation

4. Annihilation (Southern Reach #1) by Jeff VanderMeer. Here’s another great start to a series. I loved the eeriness of VanderMeer’s futuristic world, told through the clinical eyes of a biologist. I have the next two books close at hand, ready to read when I get the chance! Read my review here.

best characters 2014

The Girl with All the Gifts

5. The Girl with All the Gifts by M.R. Carey. This was a big surprise, since I tried not to pay attention to other reviews before I read it. If you think you’ve read all the zombie stories out there, you haven’t until you’ve read this one. Read my review here.

creative magic

California Bones

6. California Bones (Daniel Blackland #1) by Greg Van Eekhout. This was an unsolicited surprise from Tor Books, and boy am I glad I picked it up! I love urban fantasy anyway, but this book did new things with the genre and blew me away. Read my review here.

Best world building 2014

City of Stairs

7. City of Stairs by Robert Jackson Bennett. Bloggers raved about this book, and with good reason. Bennett gives us a unique world, an exciting plot, and well-developed characters, all of which are ingredients for a truly successful story! Read my review here.

most entertaining

The Martian

8. The Martian by Andy Weir. It’s hard to find a story with only one main character that can keep you riveted for nearly 400 pages, but Weir manages to do just that. The Martian proves that science can be fun, in the form of a character who laughs in the face of danger. Read my review here.

best series ending 2014

Endsinger9. Endsinger (Lotus War #3) by Jay Kristoff. Jay’s Lotus War series was a bleak, dangerous, wonderful, joyous, and heartbreaking opus, and I was sad to see it end. But it went out with a bang. This is one series where each book is just as good as the next. (And yes, I consider these books adult, simply because of the way they are priced.) Read my review here.

best female characters

Full Fathom Five

10. Full Fathom Five (Craft Sequence #3) by Max Gladstone. Max’s books keep getting better and better, and this time he goes all out with the grrrl power! Unique worlds, intricately drawn characters, and plenty of action, if you haven’t started this series, what are you waiting for? Read my review here.

best historical

The Museum of Extraordinary Things

11. The Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman. Hoffman sets her story in New York in the early twentieth century, uses actual historical events to frame it, and adds her characteristic magic realism and wonderfully unique characters to make it come to life. Read my review here.

And because it’s hard to stop at ten (or eleven), here are my honorable mentions, all books I adored as well: The Boy Who Drew Monsters by Keith Donohue; The Heart Does Not Grow Back by Fred Venturini; The Bullet-Catcher’s Daughter by Rod Duncan; The Ophelia Prophecy by Sharon Lynn Fisher; Horrorstör by Grady Hendrix; Through the Woods by Emily Carroll; The Line by J.D. Horn; and The Rabbit Back Literature Society by Pasi Ilmari Jääskeläinen.

So there they are… Let me know if you’ve read any of these, and link me up to your top ten post! I’ve linked up with The Broke and the Bookishso don’t forget to check out other bloggers’ top ten faves of the year:-)

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Tammy’s Top Ten Books So Far – 2014

Top Ten Tuesday 2014 copy

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Wow, it’s been a while since I’ve done a TTT, but this is one week I couldn’t pass up. We’re nearly half-way through the year (can you believe it?) and already I’m having trouble narrowing down my favorite reads of the year up to this point. But these ten books really stand out, and so I give you my Top Ten favorite books so far this year (listed in no particular order):

The Falconer by Elizabeth May. Just yes. Please give me the next book NOW.

Unhinged by A.G. Howard. Um, yeah. These books are so awesome. I want Ensnared NOW too!

The Line by J.D. Horn. Book two is out now and I’ll be starting it soon (I’m a little behind schedule). Just awesome, folks.

Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge. Weird, gorgeous, shocking. Read it!

Red Rising by Pierce Brown. I have no words for just how in love with this book I am. (Well, I wrote a review, so I guess I do have some words…)

The Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman. Full of rich history and gorgeous writing, another winner from Alice Hoffman.

Stolen Songbird by Danielle L. Jensen. Truly wonderful and I do need book two NOW. Somebody. Find it for me. (Oh, it’s not out yet? Damn.)

The Savages by Matt Whyman. I just read this and WOW. Love Matt’s writing and this was so much fun to read!

The Merciless by Danielle Vega. Terrifying, horrific, gruesome, unputdownable. Just go get a copy, people!

The Rabbit Back Literature Society by Pasi Ilmari Jääskeläinen. This odd, strange and beautifully written book came from one of my favorite small publishers, Pushkin Press.

So there you have it. I am not looking forward to picking my top ten at the end of the year, because this was hard enough! I’d love to hear your top ten faves so far!

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Book Review Giveaway – Win One of the Books I Reviewed in February!

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February was a very slow month for me, and by slow, I mean I didn’t get through very many books! However, I had some amazing five-star reads, and I’m happy to give you the chance to win one of them—as well as one of the other books I read this past month. My favorites of the month? Red Rising and The Museum of Extraordinary Things. I also read the surprisingly well-developed novella Poison Dance, a prequel to the upcoming Midnight Thief. As a bonus, the winner will also receive an e-book of Poison Dance, in addition to your choice of one of the other books, provided you have an e-reader. 

This giveaway is international, as long as The Book Depository ships to your country. (please check if you’re not certain!) You can also spread the word about the giveaway and add the giveaway button to your sidebar:

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<div align="center"><a href="http://wp.me/p1GQyK-3lO" title="Books, Bones & Buffy" target="_blank"><img src="http://booksbonesbuffy.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/book-review-giveaway-button-feb-225.jpg" alt="Books, Bones & Buffy" style="border:none;" /></a></div>

Here are the books I reviewed last month. I’d love to know if you’ve read these books! Giveaway will end on March 20th. Clicking on the titles will take you to my review of the book. Good luck!

Red Rising  The Museum of Extraordinary Things  Poison Dance

Hang Wire  Black Dog  Alienated

five stars Red Rising by Pierce Brown

five starsThe Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman

five stars Poison Dance by Livia Blackburne

four stars Hang Wire by Adam Christopher

four stars Black Dog by Rachel Neumeier

 three starsAlienated by Melissa Landers

Ready to enter? Simply click on the Rafflecopter button below:

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History & Mystery: THE MUSEUM OF EXTRAORDINARY THINGS by Alice Hoffman – Review

The Museum 3D

The Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman
Genre: Adult Historical Fiction
Publisher: Scribner
Release date: February 18 2014
Source: e-ARC via Edelweiss
Pages: 384

five stars

The nitty-gritty: A magical history of Brooklyn, filled with mysteries and monsters, written in Alice Hoffman’s incomparable style.

It was hard to believe that the teeming streets of lower Manhattan were less than a day’s walk from what was still a sort of wilderness. The wild tulip trees were two hundred feet tall. There were said to be bear here, come down from the Palisades in the winter, crossing the Hudson when it froze, along with wild turkeys, fox, muskrats, and deer. I thought of the forests of the Ukraine, where cuckoos sung in the trees and owls glided through the dark. My father and I had stopped to make camp for several nights on our travels. I was only a small child, but it was there, listening to the voice of the forest, that I had lost the ability to sleep.

Alice Hoffman used to be one of my favorite authors before I started blogging. I’ve read many of her books (although not all—she’s written over thirty!), but as book bloggers know, once you start accepting books for review, many of your favorite authors fall by the wayside. But when this one came up on Edelweiss, I knew it was time to make time for Hoffman again. And I’m so glad I did. Reading The Museum of Extraordinary Things was like a balm on my soul. Hoffman’s familiar writing style is so comforting, and even though this book lacked the magic realism that she’s known for, I found myself loving every word.

The story takes place in Brooklyn, New York in the year 1911, but flashes back to the early lives of the two main characters, as we get to know more about their family histories. Coralie is eighteen and has been part of her father’s Museum of Extraordinary Things as a sideshow attraction for nearly half her life. She is the “human mermaid,” forced to wear a fake mermaid tale and swim in a tank of water for hours a day. At night, Coralie practices swimming in the freezing Hudson River in order to increase her lung capacity, while dreaming of an easier life that doesn’t include being exploited by her strict father.

Parallel to Coralie’s story we meet Eddie, a refugee from the Ukraine who has become adept at taking journalistic photographs of crime scenes. When Eddie is hired by a stranger to find a missing girl named Hannah, Eddie’s and Coralie’s lives become linked through a series of events. As Hoffman reveals bit by bit what happened to Hannah, the paths of Eddie and Coralie slowly come together, before the mystery is solved.

Hoffman has clearly done tons of research for her book. One of my favorite things about the story was the amount of historical detail she wove into the narrative. Clearly 1911 was a great year for story fodder, because a lot of horrific (but interesting!) things take place. Focusing her writer’s lens on Brooklyn, and in particular on Coney Island, the author includes such historic events as the tragic Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire, the opening (and closing!) of the ambitious amusement park Dreamland, and the battle of the International Ladies’ Garment Workers’ Union to secure safe working conditions for girls and women in factories. Let’s just say I learned a lot reading this book! You can tell that Hoffman loves New York and is passionate about the dangers young factory workers faced near the turn of the century. Some of her descriptions of the city are so detailed, it’s almost as if she herself had stepped back in time to take notes.

If you’re looking for a fast-paced book, however, you need to keep looking. And this is not a criticism by any means. One of Hoffman’s skills is her ability to develop her plot and characters slowly in such a way that the reader never gets bored, but instead savors each discovery, knowing that the mystery will eventually be revealed.

The story construction was hard to get used to at first, I’ll admit. Each chapter focuses on either Coralie or Eddie, and switches back and forth between the two. The first part of the chapter is told in first person, as the character tells us about his or her past, and the second part switches to third person and takes place in the present. This jumping around confused me at first, but once I understood what the author was doing, it all made sense.

Museum UK

Check out the cool UK cover!

Hoffman is brilliant at introducing small details, and then pulling them through the story. For example, when Eddie is a boy working as a tailor in a factory, he steals an expensive pocket watch from the factory owner’s son. This watch pops up again and again during Eddie’s story, as he struggles with the idea of whether or not to return it. Hoffman is such a seasoned writer (she’s been writing books for over forty years!) that it’s no surprise that nothing in this story is random. Every item, every detail, and every character is there for a reason.

As with most of Hoffman’s novels, romance eventually blooms between Coralie and Eddie, but it’s agonizingly slow (until they actually meet—then it almost feels like instalove!) and things don’t go quite the way you expect them to. The author often writes about love and how it can be found in the most unexpected of places, and this novel is no exception.

There are so many things to discover in this book, and I’ve barely scratched the surface with this review. Simply put, The Museum of Extraordinary Things was a treat to read. It made me happy—despite the unhappy moments—and I am anxiously awaiting Hoffman’s next book. Don’t miss this one!

And here are several other Alice Hoffman books I highly recommend:

Big thanks to the publisher for supplying a review copy. The above quote was taken from an uncorrected proof and may differ in the final book.

Don’t forget to stop back here in the beginning of March to enter my February Review Giveaway, where you will have a chance to win a copy of one of the books I reviewed this month, including this one!

Find The Museum of Extraordinary Things here:
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What’s On My Plate – February 2014

On My Plate

Happy February, everyone! Already the year feels as if it’s zooming by. I didn’t get to all the books I wanted to last month, which bums me out a bit. I’m trying to stay on schedule with my review pile as much as I can, but it looks like I’ll have some catch-up to do in February. BUT I did read my “Just For Me” book, Scarlet, which is one of my goals this year: to read a just-for-me book each month. Let’s see if I can keep it going all year! So here’s what’s on my plate this month:

For Review from NetGalley:

Red Rising

Carousel Sun by Sharon Lee. This is the second in a series, so I need to read book one first. I’m afraid this one may end up being pushed to next month, but we’ll see.

Black Dog by Rachel Neumeier. I’m starting this today, and I’ve already got an interview scheduled with Rachel for this coming Tuesday (see blog tours below!) Rachel is the nicest person, and I’m looking forward to getting into her book.

Lady Thief by A.C. Gaughen. Book two after Scarlet! I’m so excited to get back into her wonderful world and characters.

The Museum of Extraordinary Things by Alice Hoffman. Dying to read a new Alice Hoffman book! If you love subtle fantastical fiction, and you haven’t read anything by Hoffman, I’m begging you to pick something up. Ask me for a recommendation! (there are so many!)

Moth and Spark by Anne Leonard. I was just approved for this, and I hadn’t realized how soon it was being published. So this wasn’t on my February radar. But I’ve read some good reviews and will definitely try to get it read this month.

The Book of the Crowman by Joseph D’Lacey. I really enjoyed the first book of this series, and I’ll be interviewing Joseph this month too!

Red Rising by Pierce Brown. This is out already, I believe, so I’m a little behind. But I have an extra ARC I’ll be giving away when I post my review, so stay tuned!

For review from Author/Publisher:

Poison Dance  Maze

Poison Dance by Livia Blackburne. This novella that precedes Midnight Thief was sent to me by the author. It’s out now, and I’m going to read it this month for sure, especially since it’s short.

Maze by J.M. McDermott. This is from Apex Publications, one of my favorite small publishers! It’s short, so I’m sure I can squeeze it in. I’ve heard it’s…strange.

Just For Me Book:

vampire empire

Vampire Empire Book One: The Greyfriar by Clay Griffith & Susan Griffith. I’ve been trying to read this book for two years! I’m finally going to do it. I’ve heard nothing but amazing things about this series. Let me know if you’ve read it!

Blog Tours/Author Interviews:

It’s a big month for author interviews! Rachel Neumeier, Adam Christopher and Joseph D’Lacey will all be making guest appearances, so make sure you’re subscribed to this blog so you don’t miss any of them!

Giveaways/Blog Hops:

The Share the Love Giveaway Hop is going on now! Click the link to see all the fabulous authors I’m highlighting, and the books you can choose from if you win!

Also, I interviewed debut author J.D. Horn, and he has offered two signed copies of The Line, his amazing book about witches in Savannah! And, the giveaway is international, so don’t forget to enter! It ends soon (Feb. 7th) so hurry!

I’ll also be starting my monthly Book Review Giveaway soon, hopefully tomorrow (I’m so behind schedule right now). I read some amazing books in January, so you won’t want to miss the chance to win one.

Well, I guess that’s enough to pile on this month, right? Have you read any of these? I’d love to know your thoughts so I can, um, prepare myself!

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