Shades of Earth Book Review

Shades of Earth by Beth Revis

In this third and final installment of Beth Revis’ riveting sci-fi adventure, Amy and Elder are finally landing on Centauri Earth, having left the Godspeed behind. The new colonists soon realize though that the monsters they were warned of are real and that they may not be the only intelligent life on Centauri Earth. When their people start to be systematically picked off, Amy and Elder must unravel a mystery that may stretch all the way to Sol-Earth.

In a genre where post-apocolyptic novels have stepped in and called themselves science fiction, it is always exciting to find a true sci-fi with spaceships, space travel, and alien worlds. Beth Revis does not pull any of the stops or slow down any of the action in this final installment of her trilogy. There are plenty of deaths, explosions, monsters, and mystery to appease any audrenaline junkie.

Despite my love of this book, I am afraid that the characters did fall a little short for me. Although the plot rolled along at a pace that kept me breathless and wanting more, Amy and Elder’s budding romance felt forced and Amy’s flirtations with the military man Chris, was completely unbelievable. Amy’s wishy washy attitude towards Elder and her parents were sometimes understandable and at other times it defied logic.

That said, I think this is a lovely trilogy to add to my bookshelf and despite a characterization flaw, I found the book to be dead exciting with an interesting mystery that was fun to uncover.

A Year in Review 2012

Books That Made Me Laugh Out Loud:
Chloe and the Lion by Mac Barnett
Let's Go For a Drive by Mo Willems
The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy
Forgive Me I Meant To Do It by Gail Carson Levine

New-To-Me Series That On One Hand I'm Glad To Have Found, But On The Other, I'm Seriously Horrified That I'd Missed Out On Until Now:
Beka Cooper Terrier by Tamora Pierce 
City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

Sequel Happiness:
My Bonny Light Horseman by L.A. Meyer
A Million Suns by Beth Revis
Rapture of the Deep by L.A. Meyer
The Wake of the Loreilee Lee by L.A. Meyer
A Hero for WondLa by Tony DiTerlizzi
Horten's Incredible Illusions by Lissa Evans

Book That Made Me Crave Food:
Tyler Makes Pancakes by Tyler Florence & Craig Frazier

Most Enjoyable Bad Book:

Forgettable Plot Saved By a Fresh, Honest Voice: 
Ungifted by Gordon Korman

Book(s) I Was Most Surprised By:
Virtuosity by Jessica Martinez
Flip by Martyn Bedford 
Liar & Spy by Rebecca Stead

Made of Pure Awesome:
Page by Paige by Laura Lee Gulledge
The False Prince by Jennifer Nielsen
Seraphina by Rachel Hartman
The Theory of Everything by J.J. Johnson

Best Book Hidden Under the Worst Cover:
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

More Adorable Than Sparkling Puppies:
The Hero's Guide to Saving Your Kingdom by Christopher Healy

YA Book Most Likely to be Loved By Adults More Than Actual YAs:
Wonder by R.J. Palacio

Biggest Disappointment: 
Aliens on a Rampage by Clete Barrett
The Kill Order by James Dashner

Books that Invoked Irrationally Violent Emotions in me:
UnWholly by Neal Shusterman
Beneath a Meth Moon by Jaqueline Woodson

Books I Loved For Their Imperfect Heroines:
The False Prince by Jennifer Nielsen

Best Book For Wimpy Kid Lovers:
Middle School Get Me Outta Here by James Patterson

Best Vampire Book For Twilight-Haters:
On the Day I Died by Candace Fleming
The Diviners by Libba Bray

Favorite Roadtrip Book:
Every Day by David Leviathan

Best Action/Adventure Book:
Chomp by Carl Hiassen

Books that were weird just to be weird:
Oddfellow's Orphanage by Emily Winfield Martin
A Confusion of Princes by Garth Niz
The Other Normals by Ned Vizzini

Sci-fi's that made me think there is still a future for this genre (future, get it):
A Million Suns by Beth Revis
Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer
The Search For WondLa by Tony DiTerlizzi

Books I lent out to people multiple times:
The Maze in the Heart of the Castle by  Dorothy Gilman
The Thief by Megan Whalen Turner

Worst Book of the Year:
The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
The Land of Storied: The Wishing Well by Chris Colfer

Have a question about this list. Wonder why I loved or hated a book? Leave a comment...let's discus

You'll Like it Here (Everybody Does) Book Review

You'll Like It Here (Everybody Does) by Ruth White

Meggie Blue and her family, consisting her brother David, mother, and Gramps are refugees from another world, living on Earth. But when one of the earthlings catches sight of the families' electric blue hair, a genetic trait of the Chromian species, the Blues are forced to flee, escaping in their space ship. The ship, having followed their instructions to take them somewhere where English is the native tongue and they will be safe, drops them off in Fashion City. From the outside everything appears to be perfect. No disease, no homelessness, no starvation. The Fathers take care of everyone. But the longer they live there, the Blues begin to realize that this parallel Earth may not be as perfect as all the residents say it is.

I shall begin my new round of blogging with a book review for a book I absolutely loved. If there was ever a way for a child, or for that matter an adult, to comprehend the way North Koreans live then it is in this book. Fashion City is part of a closed society, carefully brainwashed for obedience, able to spout government propaganda without thought, and careful to never step out of line. The people live in constant fear, yet they manage to find music, and love, art and color. Nothing can quench the human spirit.

Meggie and David are both very interesting characters, Meggie for her kindness and adaptability and David for his seeming perfection. Yet, Meggie and David would not be nearly so interesting without a wonderful cast of characters. There is the wise and artistic Gramps, their dutiful and intelligent mother, and all the people of Fashion City like Elvis Presley, Gil and his family, and Meggie's best friend Kitty. 

It is rare to find a science fiction book for middle grade readers, and even rarer to find one with a parallel earth, and even rarer to find one that makes such a big statement and yet doesn't feel didactic.

I think many young readers will be easily caught up in this Twilight Zone kind of novel.

A Blogger's Wedding

Ahh, my dear readers, I know you have been wondering what in the world happened to that cool girl who runs that amazing children's book blog. Maybe you haven't been thinking that, but I shall tell you nonetheless. I went and got myself married. Normally, I wouldn't share personal pictures except that in true bibliophile fashion our wedding was book themed. Our centerpieces were books, the wedding favors were handmaid bookmarks, the guest book used library cards, and my bouquet was made with book pages. Now, that I have gotten back into the regular rhythm of life, I will now be returning to my regular scheduled blogging. Expect many reviews in the weeks to come because despite all those wedding preparations, I still managed to read quite a few books.