Bookworms will rule the world...After we finish one more chapter!

Saturday, January 14, 2017

The Storyteller by Jodi Picoult

The Storyteller
Release Date: February 26th, 2013
Publisher: Atria
Genre: Fiction
Pages: 460 Pages
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased
Reason: Personal Interest


Sage Singer befriends an old man who's particularly beloved in her community. Josef Weber is everyone's favorite retired teacher and Little League coach. They strike up a friendship at the bakery where Sage works. One day he asks Sage for a favor: to kill him. Shocked, Sage refuses... and then he confesses his darkest secret—he deserves to die, because he was a Nazi SS guard. Complicating the matter? Sage's grandmother is a Holocaust survivor.
What do you do when evil lives next door? Can someone who's committed a truly heinous act ever atone for it with subsequent good behavior? Should you offer forgiveness to someone if you aren't the party who was wronged? And most of all—if Sage even considers his request—is it murder, or justice?

“Sometimes, all it takes to become human again is someone who can see you that way, no matter how you present on the surface.” 

It is no secret here at The Crazy Bookworm that I LOVE  Jodi Picoult. She is one of my 'auto-buy' authors, meaning I will buy anything she writes without even have a clue what the book is about. I find that she can craft the most diverse characters and the stories she pens are known to etch their way into my heart forever. 

The Storyteller was no exception. As a history buff, I have always had a...fascination(for lack of a better word) with WW2. I find that there are still so many untold stories that are being unearthed everyday. Picoult introduces us to Sage Singer, a night shift baker that is currently in a grief support group; grieving over the loss of her mother.  It is at this support group where she meets Josef Weber, a kind, gentle 95 year old man grieving the loss of his wife. Sage and Josef begin an unlikely friendship. Josef, enjoying Sage's company and baking, and Sage, enjoying having a friend, period. Someone that she can be herself completely with. As the premise details, Josef then asks Sage for a favour, to help him die, and with this, a story unfolds. A story that once told, you can never be the person you were before you the story began. This story will alter you. Will change your opinions, your view on the world and will leave you with more questions than answers. As a reader, it will have you going over so many questions in your own mind. What would you do?

One thing I adore about Picoult's writing is her delivery. She presents her novels(most of the time) in multiple perspective, but does it in such a way that every single character has a strong, independent voice. No character blends into the other. The simple trick of changing the font for each character adds to this, and makes for an easier reading experience. Who knew that a font type could suit a character!

I have to say, Josef immediately earned a special place in my heart. Yes, as you'll read, there will be moments where you may question me. But as I said, this novel will make you question your own opinions, and you won't be able to help asking yourself: "What would I do?". I formed my opinion of Josef on who he is today, even after his story was told. Complicated isn't even a big enough word to describe it!

It is hard to find words to describe how I felt while reading this book. I have to say that it is one of my favourites by Jodi Picoult, but one of the hardest to read. Jodi Picoult never lacks in research when it comes to crafting her novels, and you can tell that she went above and beyond for this novel. The characters may be fictional but I'm certain this novel is loaded with truth. I believe the story that she told is the story of many survivors and non-survivors of that time.

Another outstanding novel! The Storyteller will leave it's mark on you forever!

"I do believe in people. In their strength to help each other, and to thrive in spite of the odds."


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Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Unmentionable by Therese Oneill

Unmentionable: The Victorian Lady's Guide to Sex, Marriage, and Manners
Release Date: November 24th, 2016
Publisher: Little Brown
Genre: Non-Fiction Humour
Pages: 307 Pages
Format: Arc
Source: From the publisher
Reason: For review
Find the Author: Website
Buy the Book: Amazon CA | Amazon

Have you ever wished you could live in an earlier, more romantic era? 
Ladies, welcome to the 19th century, where there's arsenic in your face cream, a pot of cold pee sits under your bed, and all of your underwear is crotchless. (Why? Shush, dear. A lady doesn't question.) 
UNMENTIONABLE is your hilarious, illustrated, scandalously honest (yet never crass) guide to the secrets of Victorian womanhood, giving you detailed advice on: 
~ What to wear ~ Where to relieve yourself ~ How to conceal your loathsome addiction to menstruating ~ What to expect on your wedding night ~ How to be the perfect Victorian wife ~ Why masturbating will kill you ~ And more
Irresistibly charming, laugh-out-loud funny, and featuring nearly 200 images from Victorian publications, UNMENTIONABLE will inspire a whole new level of respect for Elizabeth Bennett, Scarlet O'Hara, Jane Eyre, and all of our great, great grandmothers. 
(And it just might leave you feeling ecstatically grateful to live in an age of pants, super absorbency tampons, epidurals, anti-depressants, and not-dying-of-the-syphilis-your-husband-brought-home.) 
As part of my New Years resolutions, I am wanting to do more things outside of my comfort zone, and that includes what I read! I don't normally read non-fiction, although I own plenty! When I got approached to review Unmentionable, it sounds like the perfect way to dive into 2017!

Unmentionable was absolutely historical, laugh-out-loud funny! There were many times that I was dog-earring pages for my Fiance to read because he appreciates good humour while also learning something at the same time. Or while out for lunch with girlfriends pulling tidbits of knowledge for some unconventional table talk!

Therese Oneill does a spectacular job at delivering the cringe-worthy truth of what life was like for woman in the 19th century. She paints a very thorough picture of that era. The good, the bad, the ugly and very smelly! Oneill adds so much wit and charm to the novel that it makes it for a very easy and entertaining read!

If you love to laugh or are a fan of the Victorian era than Unmentionable is for you!

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Casted!

Casted! is a new feature here at The Crazy Bookworm that will feature sporadically, but likely once a month. It is where we take our favourite reads, can be old or new, and conjure up our dream cast!

I would love it for you to join in with me! Either commenting your dream cast or making your own post. If you make your own post, be sure to link it in the comment so I can come check it out :)

Casted!

Looking for Alaska

Okay, I know I am biting off a lot here. This book is pretty epic, and it would take some fine actors to live up to these parts. Here is who I would cast for Looking for Alaska.

Looking for Alaska
About the Book: 
Before. Miles “Pudge” Halter is done with his safe life at home. His whole life has been one big non-event, and his obsession with famous last words has only made him crave “the Great Perhaps” even more (Francois Rabelais, poet). He heads off to the sometimes crazy and anything-but-boring world of Culver Creek Boarding School, and his life becomes the opposite of safe. Because down the hall is Alaska Young. The gorgeous, clever, funny, sexy, self-destructive, screwed up, and utterly fascinating Alaska Young. She is an event unto herself. She pulls Pudge into her world, launches him into the Great Perhaps, and steals his heart. Then. . . . 
After. Nothing is ever the same.

Miles Halter(Pudge) played by Nat Wolff
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When I saw Nat Wolff in The Fault in Our Stars I knew he would play the perfect "Pudge"! 

Alaska Young played by Cara Delevingne
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I know she stared in Greens'  Papertowns but let's admit it, she would rock the part of the wild Alaska Young. 

The Colonel played by Miles Teller
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I LOVE Miles Teller and I think he would easily adapt to playing this character!

There you have it! Who would you cast for Looking for Alaska?


Sunday, December 18, 2016

The Silence of Six by E.C. Meyers

The Silence of Six
Release Date: May 31st, 2016
Publisher: Adaptive Books
Genre: Young Adult | Science Fiction
Pages: 368 Pages
Series: SOS #1
Source: From publisher
Reason: For Review
Find the Author: Website
Buy the Book: Amazon CA | Amazon

WHAT IS THE SILENCE OF SIX, AND WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO ABOUT IT? 
These are the last words uttered by 17-year-old Max Stein s best friend Evan just moments before he kills himself after hacking into the live-streaming Presidential debate at their high school. Haunted by the unforgettable image of Evan s death, Max's entire world is upended as he suddenly finds himself the target of a corporate-government witch-hunt. Fearing for his life and fighting for his own innocence, Max goes on the run with no one to trust and too many unanswered questions. Max must dust off his own hacking skills and maneuver through the dangerous labyrinth of underground hacktivist networks, ever-shifting alliances and virtual identities all the while hoping to find the truth behind the Silence of Six before it s too late."

To be completely honest, I had no idea what to expect with The Silence of the Six. Books like this are usually out of my comfort zone, but when this book was toted for fans of Mr. Robot, that sealed the deal for me!

If there was any book that could turn a reader into trying something new, it would be The Silence of the Six. This book blew away any doubt I had far out of the water! I devoured this book almost in one sitting. You simply cannot(even if you wanted to) put it down! The author, E.C. Meyers, pulls you in immediately with his incredible world building and character crafting. You'll plunge into the cyber world and it will make you think, more than once, about your online presence. The Science of Six is falling into the Science Fiction category, but it will please readers of any genre. If you like a heart-pounding and mind-bending story than this novel is for you!

Yes, this novel surrounds the world of computer hacking, but it also takes you on a heartening ride between the characters' relationships.  It's a face-paced thriller that packs a lot of punch, but it also comes with a lot of heart and soul.

The Silence of Six is a sit-on-the-edge-of-your-seat adventure that will keep you entertained from the moment you first open the book until the very last time your close it. The Silence of Six turned out to me one of my favourite reads of 2016. Talk about going out with a bang!





Monday, December 5, 2016

Two by Two by Nicholas Sparks

Two By Two
Release Date: October 4th, 2016
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Genre: Fiction
Pages: 485 Pages
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased
Reason: Personal interest
Find the Author: Website

At 32, Russell Green has it all: a stunning wife, a lovable six year-old daughter, a successful career as an advertising executive and an expansive home in Charlotte. He is living the dream, and his marriage to the bewitching Vivian is the center of that. But underneath the shiny surface of this perfect existence, fault lines are beginning to appear...and no one is more surprised than Russ when he finds every aspect of the life he took for granted turned upside down. In a matter of months, Russ finds himself without a job or wife, caring for his young daughter while struggling to adapt to a new and baffling reality. Throwing himself into the wilderness of single parenting, Russ embarks on a journey at once terrifying and rewarding—one that will test his abilities and his emotional resources beyond anything he ever imagined.
“Guilt, in other words, isn’t always wasted. It can keep us from making the same mistake twice.”  

Oh Mr. Sparks, you do it to me every time! Should I not have learned my lesson by now when it comes to reading Sparks' books in public? Or do I just not care anymore when it comes to strangers seeing me sob over a book? Hmm...

In true Nicholas Sparks fashion, Two by Two is a love story, but it is not your typical Sparks tale. Two by Two tells us the story of a father and his profound love for his daughter, London. But, it also shares with us the spectacular love between siblings, parents and their children, lovers and friends. Nicholas Sparks displays multiple expressions of love in this heart-warming and yes, at times, heart-wrenching novel.

While reading Two by Two you will be taken on a roller coaster of emotions. You will experience rage, anger and heavy sadness; but you'll also experience humour, joy and immense love. At the heart of all of this is one of the most lively characters I have ever come across. She'll remind you to marvel the little things in life. She'll teach you about gratitude. She'll remind you that sometimes it's okay to eat the damn Lucky Charms and to have the pizza for dinner! And this marvelous character comes in the tiny package of a 5 year old little girl named London. Although just 5 years old, this little girl is wise beyond her years! It was such a pleasure to grow with London and to be on this short journey with her.

Two by Two is an astounding story about love, resilience, courage and growth. It may be fictitious in it's characters and premise, but you will walk away having learned a true life lesson: That love is always louder, and love will always prevail.


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Dogs and Their People by Barkpost




Not only am I crazy about books, but I am also crazy about animals and a HUGE dog lover. I am the proud mama of 2 fur-babies(would happily have another but the fiance has "put his foot down"...whatever!).  When the amazing folks at Penguin Random House e-mailed me about this book, I knew not only was it the perfect book for me, but it would be the perfect book for you OR for the dog lovers in your life.

Dogs and Their People is a beautiful little package that is jam-packed with hilarious and heartwarming stories, anecdotes, photos and insights. It captures the true and extraordinary bond that humans share with their pets and vice versa. 

From Putnam: "this book isn’t just about the dogs; it’s about celebrating the crazy, consuming, unconditional love we feel for them. It’s about the songs you’ve made up for them, the hugs you’ve given them on bad days, and all the outfits that—let’s be honest—you forced them into. It’s about the lightness they’ve brought to our lives just by being there—and having smushy faces. We hear you, dog people; this one is for you."

Just in time for the holiday season, Dogs and Their People is the ideal, fool-proof gift for that special someone in your life! Grab your copy today!


Thanks to the generous people at Penguin Random House/Putnam, The Crazy Bookworm has 1 copy to giveaway to US readers. 

Giveaway
Prize: 1 Copy of Dogs and Their People
Open to: USA Only
To enter: Fill out Rafflecopter
Ends: December 6th, 2016 at 11:59pm



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Thursday, October 27, 2016

And the Trees Crept In by Dawn Kurtagich

And the Trees Crept In
Release date: September 6th, 2016
Publisher: Little Brown for Young Readers
Genre: Young Adult
Pages: 352 Pages
Format: ARC
Source: From publisher
Reason: For review
Find the Author: Website

Stay away from the woods…
When Silla and Nori arrive at their aunt’s home, it’s immediately clear that the manor is cursed. The endless creaking of the house at night and the eerie stillness of the woods surrounding them would be enough of a sign, but there are secrets too—questions that Silla can’t ignore: Why does it seem that, ever since they arrived, the trees have been creeping closer? Who is the beautiful boy who’s appeared from the woods? And who is the tall man with no eyes who Nori plays with in the basement at night… a man no one else can see?

“Rotting in your skin
rotting in your mind
you are rotting in this house
in this house you'll die.”  

Dawn Kurtagich, like the Trees in Python, sucked me in with The Dead House. When I learned that she would be releasing another spine-tingling tale, I couldn't wait to get my roots hands on it!

And the Trees Crept In will keep you up all hours of the night; both from not being able to put the book down and from being too spooked to sleep! Author, Dawn Kurtagich definitely won me with her eerie tale The Dead House but she definitely amped up the creep factor with this one! 

We are immediately plunged in the woods when Silla and Nori are escaping from their father's abuse. Hoping to find refuge at their Aunt Cath's manor, La Baume, or also (fittingly) called the "blood manor". Cath was such a whimsical character. There is a quirkiness to her that will make you fall in love with her instantly. She is wacky and wild, and her character comes alive and leaps off the pages! She reminded me of a cross between Nanny McPhee and Miss Peregrine. 

Silla is such a strong and complex character. There are many layers to her that unfold throughout the entirety of the novel. I adored her and the fierce love she had for her sister, Nori. Nori is another fantastic character. It was obvious the author crafted Nori with so much care! Nori deals with her own difficulties that I'll leave for you to discover for yourself, but Kurtagich did an outstanding job at delivering her dialogue. 

And the Trees Crept In is not penned like your average novel. Like the "blood manor", it is filled with nooks, cranny's and hallways that have all kinds of shadows and darkness lurking within them. It is a mind-bender and it will take you on one haunting adventure! 

With Halloween right around the corner, what better way to spend it than reading And the Trees Crept In...that's if you're not too scared...
 

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