Reading Becoming Lady Washington, one feels a little like Elizabeth Bennet in Pride and Prejudice (published 1813) when she first sets eyes on Mr. Darcy’s palatial home and vast landholdings. Martha’s lifestyle on her first husband’s estate and then at Mount Vernon was similarly luxurious.
The development of Cassandra Clare’s characters, no matter what series or book is always exquisite. Emma and Julian both have unique qualities and Julian family, the Blackthorns, as a family are always enjoyable to read about and as a whole, the book presents the concept and sense of family fantastically.
The action moves at a pulse quickening pace, our hero’s journey peppered with witty asides and lively character driven observations. Frank has a special talent for describing rooms from a connoisseur contractor’s POV. It helps that Lutz did some carpentry in his younger days.
Pablo Neruda once wrote: “If nothing saves us from death, at least love should save us from life.” In A Long Petal of the Sea, Isabel Allende’s characters are saved from despair by love, friendship and the satisfaction of helping others. Is she suggesting that history repeats itself and that a democracy with social justice and economic equality is an impossible dream? I think not.
Set in Nazi Germany during World War II, The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas takes the reader on a journey through the eyes of a young, ignorant boy. This story filled me with sadness, but also made me laugh out loud. I would recommend this book for both boys and girls aged 12 to 15 years of age.
Gatza’s collection of short stories highlight important ideas such as connecting with family members, living the fullest life, challenging how to think beyond the obvious, and learning how to handle grief. Each of these lessons are truly important for both children and adults alike. What connects each of these stories, however, is the ability to experience each day with someone that readers care about whether that be a family member, a parent, a friend, or a sibling.
Million Dollar Red provides great insight into the point of view of a child who survives childhood traumas to finally make a sustainable life for herself. It would be a great book to be read in community work-focused classrooms for those who seek to be trauma-informed as they make a difference with today’s youth.
In addition to writing a solid storyline for her Trilogy of Remembrance, she also demonstrates a rather thorough background in the visual arts and gracefully weaves that important historical stance into her story in a most mature and sophisticated manner. These are novels that will please a broad audience – those who love romance novels and those who want to explore the universal discussion of what is art at this particular time in history.
I would highly, highly encourage you to read the previous books in the Shadowhunter Chronicles. Ghosts of Shadow Market had me in hysterics, tears and laughter all at once. I found it to be absolute perfection. For this book, and for all of the other Shadowhunter novels, I think the best suited age group would be 14+. I believe the time you read certain books or series influences your opinion and I delved into the fantasy world of Shadowhunters, demons and Downworlders at perhaps the perfect time.
The relationship, particularly those between our main characters – Will, Tessa and Jem – strengthens and grows even more through the course of Clockwork Princess, with the conclusion of this book to be one of the best I’ve read. The final scenes and chapters of this book were truly astonishing and absolutely wonderful.