Let it go | Middle Grade and the Boleyn bride.


This time I will be highlighting three books I read for review, but I don’t have enough to say about them to review them separately. The first book is a MG book about an orphan and a fairy tale book he receives from his grandfather. The second is also a MG about a store filled with powerful items and a boy and girl who need to save the Emporium. The last book is an adult book about one of my favorite time periods: The Tudors.
18635002M.P. Kozlowsky – The Dyverille tale. Publication: April 22nd 2014 by Walden Pond Press. (Netgalley)
Vince Elgin is an orphan, having lost his mother and his father in a fire when he was young, but beyond that, his life hasn't been much of a fairy tale. With only a senile grandfather he barely knows to call family, Vince was remanded to a group home, where he spun fantastical stories, dreaming of the possibility that his father, whose body was never found, might one day return for him. But it's been a long time since the fire, a long time since Vince has told himself a story worth believing in. That's when a letter arrives, telling Vince his grandfather has passed away. Vince cannot explain it, but he's convinced that if his father is somehow still alive, he'll find him at the funeral. He strikes out for his grandfather's small hometown of Dyerville carrying only one thing with him: his grandfather's journal. The journal tells a story that could not possibly be true, a story of his grandfather's young life involving witches, giants, magical books, and evil spirits. But as Vince reads on and gets closer to Dyerville, fact and fiction begin to intertwine, and Vince finds that his very real adventure may have more in common with his grandfather's than he ever could have known.
FINISHED: 2 stars.Vince is an orphan, but he believes his father is still alive. So when he receives a book from his grandfather, he decides to run away from the orphanage in search for his father. We read the story on his journey and it's one filled with magical creatures and exciting situations.I was a little confused by this book and the meaning of the story. I liked to read about the adventures in the storybook, but I didn’t get the ending. I wish it had a simpler solution, because it’s a children's book after all.. So I might be very stupid for not getting it, but I was underwhelmed by the wrap-up.

Pierdomenico Baccalario – Suitcase of stars. Published: January 1st 2014 by Stone Arch Books. 18183598(Netgalley)
Have you heard of Cinderella’s glass slipper? What about Sinbad the Sailor’s Flying Carpet? In this world, there are many magical items—but only one place where they’re safe: the Enchanted Emporium. For centuries, seven families have competed for ownership of the Emporium—and some of them are willing to do whatever it takes to get their hands on the powerful items housed within. Only Aiby Lily and her friend Finley have what it takes to stop the Emporium from falling into the wrong hands.
FINISHED: 3 stars.It was cute. The illustrations were pretty and the short chapters make this a wonderful bed time story :) I definitely think children will love this! It's fun, adventurous and exciting, with mystery and magic. We have this boy who is punished for skipping school. We have this girl who returns to her old village to re-open a store filled with magical items. Together, they are the only two who can protect their city from the evil that wants to destroy it. By being clever and brave, they show that it doesn't matter how old you are. You can still be a hero. I love that message. Trusting yourself and trusting others is a good thing to tell. Not to forget the fact that the main characters are adorable! Aiby wears these goofy clothes and I found her very charming.

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Brandy Purdy – The Boleyn Bride. Published: February 25th 2014 by Kensington (Netgalley)
At sixteen, Elizabeth Howard envisions a glorious life for herself as lady-in-waiting to the future queen, Catherine of Aragon. But when she is forced to marry Thomas Boleyn, a wealthy commoner, Elizabeth is left to stagnate in the countryside while her detested husband pursues his ambitions. There, she raises golden girl Mary, moody George, and ugly duckling Anne—while staving off boredom with a string of admirers. Until Henry VIII takes the throne.. When Thomas finally brings his highborn wife to London, Elizabeth indulges in lavish diversions and dalliances—and catches the lusty king's eye. But those who enjoy Henry's fickle favor must also guard against his wrath. For while her husband's machinations bring Elizabeth and her children to the pinnacle of power, the distance to the scaffold is but a short one—and the Boleyn family's fortune may be turning.
FINISHED: 2 stars.I didn't connect with the story, because Elizabeth tells the story almost like an interview. I didn't feel it added something special/unique to define itself from other Tudors books. I also had a hard time with her as a character. Vain, arrogant and always busy with unimportant things, I found it hard to believe her sadness when she loses her two children. She always looked down on Anne, 'the ugly Duckling who couldn't be her daughter.' It doesn't go well with me if you love your other two children more than the other; and she isn't even ashamed about it. The only big worry in her life was her beauty. She didn't like being pregnant, because it spoiled her youth and pretty looks. I can understand that being pregnant and losing so many children isn't pleasant, but I don't have to hear it every page! And being jealous of your own 'ugly duckling' because she turned into a 'beautiful swan' is just disgusting. She is mad at her husband, Thomas, because he sentences his children to their death, but she isn't blameless herself. The only thing I liked was seeing the story between Henry and Anne through someone else's eyes, but it's a shame it was such an unlikable POV.



29 comments

  1. I love the cover for The Enchanted Emporium! I might pick it up to read to my niece. I was reading the synopsis out loud and she squealed once she haired "Cinderella's glass slipper." :P

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    1. Haha, that was my reaction too :') I'm almost ashamed, haha.

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  2. I really like the idea of this post Melanie, I don't tend to review books which I DNF that often, but it's always great to find out why a certain book didn't work out for you. I think I would have a tough time sticking with The Boleyn Bride, Elizabeth sounds like an awful character!

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  3. It's great to give books a little bit of attention this way. Suitcase of Stars has a great cover and it sounds like a lovely read for children.

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  4. The Enchanted Emporium drew me in right away and I couldn't resist requesting it myself but after that I kind of lost interest in it >.< I'm glad to see you enjoyed it enough to give it a 3-stars, I'll have to give it a chance soon!! I'd never seen The Dyervielle Tale though but if I had I'm sure I would have wanted to read it - but since you didn't connect with the story enough and found it confusing - I don't think you're stupid - I'll pass on it! Thanks for sharing your thoughts Mell ^^

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  5. This is a great idea, Mel. Some books just leave me at a loss for words (in the worst way), so a partial review is called for. These books aren't really my cup of tea, but good on you, for sticking through them.

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  6. It's such a treat to go back and read nice MG books from a more mature perspective I think! These were lovely mini reviews, Mel <3 and OMG I am such a die-hard Tudors enthusiast too >.< Really too bad that The Boleyn Bride turned out like that :( I would've totally dived at that book, haha! The last name Howard.. Elizabeth must be the aunt of Catherine Howard then, who later married Henry too? Since Anne and Catherine were cousins I think? Anyway, I really enjoyed reading this post ^_^ Thanks for sharing, Mel!

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  7. All of those covers are really pretty! The two middle grade ones sound pretty good! I'll keep them in mind for when I'm in the mood for a simpler story! Great idea with the mini reviews, by the way! :)

    -Emily @ Books & Cleverness

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  8. You did a great job picking the title for this feature - so perfect! All of these books sound great - too bad they disappointed you! I don't read as much MG though so I probably wouldn't have picked that up, but The Boleyn Bride looked really interesting but I would be turned off by an unlikable narrator too.

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    1. That's what I thought too. I'm happy how it fits the feature :D

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  9. Amazing post Mel :D I love the new feature, hih. So awesome. But aw. I'm so sorry you didn't finish these books :\ The MG covers looks SO GORGEOUS. Ack. But amazing reviews. <3 Thank you for sharing :)

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  10. I love the name of this feature, lol. The Boleyn Bride sounds interesting, so it's a shame that it wasn't very good. Elizabeth sounds really unlikable. I don't usually read too much middle grade, so I don't think I'll be picking either of the other two books up. Great post :)

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  11. Suitcase of Stars looks so cute! I love sweet and magical MG stories. Sad that you didn't really enjoy the other two.

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  12. The Dyerville Tales has such an intriguing message so it's a pity that it failed to deliver the message clearly :/

    Suitcase of Stars sounds SO ADORABLE THOUGH! :D I want to read it as a bedtime story now .-.

    The Boleyn Bride does not sound like something I'd like. The MC sounds so horrible .-.

    Lovely reviews, Mel!! :)

    Rashika @ The Social Potato

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  13. I've not heard of any of these, but they don't really sound like my kind of books. Better luck next time and I love the new post :)

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  14. Enchanted Emporium sounds awesome! It makes me SORT of think of The Black Book of Secrets by F.E. Higgins. I think I might need to give it a try at some point! I read MG once on awhile, when the mood strikes me, and I especially like the quirky stuff. :D

    The Dyerville Tales - bummer on the fact the ending was confusing! Not good for a book that's not meant for adults Yikes!

    April @ My Shelf Confessions

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    1. I'm sometimes also really in the mood for something easy and I like how most MG's don't have romance.

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  15. I am really disappointed to hear that the Dyerville Tales didn't impress you more - I had considered making that one of this years MG reads but mmmm I rather trust your opinion where this is concerned and I don't like untidy endings.

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  16. I enjoyed your short reviews Mel, The Suitcase of Stars sounds really intriguing and I'm glad you enjoyed it. Too bad the Dyerville Tales ended up going your head, especially for it being a children's books! Oops! Great short reviews :)

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  17. Mel, again, such a great post!! and ooh I love seeing illustrations in books! I'm glad Suitcase of Stars was a cute read! Great mini reviews, Mel! :D
    - Farah @MajiBookshelf

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  18. Suitcase of Stars sounds adorable! And I love the message. :) I'm sorry you didn't like The Dyerville Tales and The Boleyn Bride as much. It's so hard to read a book from the perspective of a character you don't like, so it's a shame the potential of the story was wasted. Great reviews Mel!

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  19. I love your idea! I do not DNF books often, either, but I know it happens.
    So sad to hear you didn't enjoy Enchanted Emporium, it sounds good.
    Anyway, good luck next time!
    Lis @ The reader lines

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  20. I don't read much MG but The Boleyn Bride sounds like something I might have picked up. But if you didn't like Elizabeth, I probably won't either.

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