Wednesday, June 21, 2017

The Invention of Air: A Story of Science, Faith, Revolution, and The Birth of America


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Today's post is on The Invention of Air: A Story of Science, Faith, Revolution, and The Birth of America by Steven Johnson. It is 254 pages long and is published by Riverhead Books. The cover is red with cut outs that have different pictures in them. The intended reader is someone who is interested in natural history, scientific history, and history itself. There is no foul language, no sex, and no violence in this book. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- The Invention of Air is a story of sweeping historical transformation, of genius and friendship, violence and world-changing ideas, that boldly recasts our understanding of the most significant events in our history.
It centers on the story of Joseph Priestley—scientist and minister, protégé of Benjamin Franklin, friend of Thomas Jefferson—an eighteenth-century radical thinker who played key roles in the invention of ecosystem science, the discovery of oxygen, the founding of the Unitarian church, and the intellectual development of the United States. Priestley represented a unique synthesis: by the 1780s, he had established himself as one of the world's most celebrated scientists, most prominent religious figures, and most outspoken political thinkers. Yet he would also have become one of the most hated men in all of his native England. When an angry mob burned down his house in Birmingham, Priestley and his family set sail for Pennsylvania.
In the nascent United States, Priestley hoped to find the freedom to bridge the disciplines that had governed his life, to find a quiet lab and a receptive pulpit. Once he arrived, as a result of his close relationships with the Founding Fathers—Jefferson credited Priestley as the man who prevented him from abandoning Christianity—Priestley found himself at the center of what would go down as one of the seminal debates in American history. And as Johnson brilliant charts, Priestley exerted profound if little-known influence on the shape and course of this great experiment in nation-building.

Review- Another interesting Johnson book about stuff I knew nothing about. Johnson follows Priestly from his childhood into the last minutes of his life and we get to see some very interesting things with him. Priestly gave so much to modern science that I had no idea about but even as I read it I was horrified by some of the experiments that he did but the only reason we can be horrified by the experiments if because he did them and discovered what exactly he was doing. Add in some of the most famous people of his time and you have a who's who is the 1700's. Johnson helps the modern reader to understand the hows and the whys of Priestley's time and how important it was that he be born at that time and in that place because if he was just a little off in either he would not have been the scientist he was. Very enjoyable and an excellent read. 

I give this book a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this book from my local library.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Otomen volume 11


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Today's post is on Otomen volume 11 by Aya Kanno. It is the eleventh in her Otomen series. It is 200 pages long and is publishes by Shojo Beat. As this is the tenth volume in this series, you need to have read the first nine volumes to understand the story. The cover is pink with Hajime Tonomine looking at the reader as he does a girl's makeup. The intended reader is someone who likes shojo manga, humor, and love stories. There is no foul language, no sex, and no violence in this manga. The story is told from third person close of the main character with moments of the other characters added in for plot development. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- Asuka engages in a battle with Suzaki Oji to see who will get the most Valentine's Day chocolates! As Oji seduces girls left and right into giving him chocolates, Asuka wonders one thing--who will Ryo give her chocolates to?

Review- We finish with teacher obsessed with everyone acting like they are from the Warring States period by him learning the true samurai spirit, which is of course Asuka's otomen ways. Then we get into the Valentine battle. Ryo is the only girl who is immune to Oji's pheromone's. That makes Oji question everything and now he on the hunt for true love only. Because nothing is working Asuka's mother has come back to try and get everyone in line. Asuka is really stressed out in this volume because it is becoming harder and harder for him to have any place that is safe for him to be himself. But him and Ryo are going strong and I'm pulling for Asuka to make it out as himself.

I give this volume a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I bought this manga with my own money. 

Friday, June 16, 2017

The Family Plot


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Today's post is on The Family Plot by Cherie Priest. It is 365 pages long and is published by TOR. The cover is dusk with a see through girl in the center. The intended reader is someone who likes haunted house stories, ghost stories, and southern Gothic at its best. There is foul language, no sex, and mild violence in this book. The story is told from the third person close of the main character Dahlia. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the dust jacket- music City Salvage is a family operation, owned and operated by Chuck Dutton: master stripper of doomed historic properties, and expert seller of all things old and crusty. But business is lean and times are tight, so he's thrilled when the aged and esteemed Augusta Withrow appears in his office, bearing an Offer he really ought to refuse. She has a massive family estate to unload- lock, stock, and barrel. For a check and a handshake, it's all his.
It's a big check. it's a firm handshake. And it's enough of a gold mine that he assigns his daughter Dahlia to personally oversee the project.
Dahlia preps a couple of trucks, takes a small crew, and they caravan down to Chattanooga, Tennessee, where the ancient Withrow house is waiting- and so is a barn, a carriage house, and a small, overgrown cemetery that Augusta Withrow left out of the paperwork.
Augusta Withrow left out of lot of things.
The property is in unusually great shape for a condemned building. It's empty but it isn't abandoned. Something in the Withrow mansion is angry and lost. This is its last chance to raise hell before the house is gone forever, and there's still plenty of room in the strange little family plot.

Review- Priest makes the haunted house story new again. We get creepy shadows, flickering lights, and rainstorms that never seem to end. We get a fittingly mysterious end. Priest does it all and makes it all work wonderfully. Dahlia is a smart and sympathetic heroine. She is recovering from a bad divorce, where she lost the house that she loved, and hates to tear down the Withrow home. But the ghosts in the house soon make that must more palatable. Add in some interesting side character, both with and without flesh, Dahlia has quite a ride on her hands. With some well placed scared for both Dahlia and reader, we have an excellent book to read on a stormy night; but read it with the windows closed.

I give this book s Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I borrowed this book from my local library.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Otomen volume 10


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Today's post is on Otomen volume 10 by Aya Kanno. It is the ninth in her Otomen series. It is 208 pages long and is publishes by Shojo Beat. As this is the tenth volume in this series, you need to have read the first nine volumes to understand the story. The cover is grey with Juta looking at the reader with Love Chick in the background. The intended reader is someone who likes shojo manga, humor, and love stories. There is no foul language, no sex, and very mild violence in this manga. The story is told from third person close of the main character with moments of the other characters added in for plot development. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- A potion at school causes all the guys to act manly and all the girls to act feminine! Suddenly, Asuka loses interest in all the girly hobbies he loves, and Ryo is working at a bakery? can anything break the spell they're under and turn them back to normal?

Review- We finish the story with the female teacher who wants to make Asuka and Ryo break up because Asuka is Asuka and not a jerk who treats his girlfriend badly. She discovers Asuka's otomen nature but because Asuka helped her overcome her self-acceptance issue she is going to keep it a secret. So continuing with make people be gender types plot in this volume we have a mad scientist who wants to be seen as a genius. So he makes a potion and tricks everyone with hypnosis. But because only the person can change themselves of course it does not stay. The last story is everyone cosplaying as feudal Japan. I am really enjoying this story arc because of the emphasis on self-acceptance. More romance and cuteness Ahead!

I give this volume a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I bought this manga with my own money.

Friday, June 9, 2017

Sparrow Hill Road


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Today's post is on Sparrow Hill Road by Seanan McGuire. It is the first in her Ghost Stories. It is 312 pages long and is published by DAW. The cover is a sunset scene with a girl on a classic car but as you look down you see that the girl is fading out. The intended reader is someone who likes ghost stories and heroines who just won't die. There is mild foul language, mild sex, and violence in this novel. The story is told from the first person close of the main character. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- Rose Marshall died in 1952 in Buckley Township, Michigan, run off the road by a man named Bobby Cross—a man who had sold his soul to live forever, and intended to use her death to pay the price of his immortality. Trouble was, he didn’t ask Rose what she thought of the idea.
It’s been more than sixty years since that night, and she’s still sixteen, and she’s still running.
They have names for her all over the country: the Girl in the Diner. The Phantom Prom Date. The Girl in the Green Silk Gown. Mostly she just goes by “Rose,” a hitchhiking ghost girl with her thumb out and her eyes fixed on the horizon, trying to outrace a man who never sleeps, never stops, and never gives up on the idea of claiming what’s his. She’s the angel of the overpass, she’s the darling of the truck stops, and she’s going to figure out a way to win her freedom. After all, it’s not like it can kill her.
You can’t kill what’s already dead.


Review-This is my second favorite thing from McGuire that I have read. World building is one of McGuire's strong points as a writer but she pulls out all the stops for this novel. Rose is on the run from the man who killed her but she also is trying to discover how she can stop him forever. We travel with Rose at different times and doing different things; from saving innocents from the man who killed her to helping new ghosts decide if they want to move on or not. We get some very interesting characters in this world of roads and ghost and magic. I hope that McGiure does more in this world because there is just so much to see and do here!

I give this novel a Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I stole this book from my spouse's TBR pile.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

The Road to Jonestown: Jim Jones and Peoples Temple


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Today's post is on The Road to Jonestown: Jim Jones and Peoples Temple by





Monday, June 5, 2017

Otomen volume 9


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Today's post is on Otomen volume 9 by Aya Kanno. It is the ninth in her Otomen series. It is 200 pages long and is publishes by Shojo Beat. As this is the ninth volume in this series, you need to have read the first eight volumes to understand the story. The cover a dark blue has Asuka holding a wooden sword and is looking at the reader with flowers blooming in the background. The intended reader is someone who likes shojo manga, humor, and love stories. There is no foul language, no sex, and very mild violence in this manga. The story is told from third person close of the main character with moments of the other characters added in for plot development. There Be Spoilers Ahead.

From the back of the book- An anti-otomen campaign takes over the school! Asuka's cousin and campaign enforcer Kasuga Masamune starts hunting down boys who have even an ounce of girly traits in them--and his first target is...?!

Review- This whole volume is about a single story line. We get to see why Asuk'a cousin is going all out against him and all otomen. He misgendered Asuka when they were children and get his heart broken because of it.  Juta is being targeted because his story line notebook is discovered. But with some quick work by his friends and manga mentor, he is saved but just barely. But Ryo has come under the attention of one of the teacher's who only wants to ruin boys and men. She had her heart broken by a selfish boy and now she lives to manipulate the boys she teaches. But Asuka only has eyes for Ryo and makes the teacher angry. She is now planning his downfall. But will true love win over gender expectations or will Asuka fall before the campaign? 

I give this volume at Five out of Five stars. I get nothing for my review and I bought this manga with my own money. 

Friday, June 2, 2017

Captain Marvel, Volume 1; Higher, Further, Faster, More


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Today's post is on Captain Marvel, Volume 1; Higher, Further, Faster, More by