Posted in Reviews, Reviews by Lindsay

Songs of Love and War by Santa Montefiore @SimonSchusterCA #BookBloggers #askthetravelingsistersaboutourreads #askusaboutourbook

Songs of Love and War

Songs of Love and War by Santa Montefiore

Lindsay’s review

A charming historical fiction tale set in the early 1900s in Ireland and England. The story follows three young women whose connection weaves thick and thin throughout several years and many life-changing situations. One of the best aspects of this novel is that it largely revolves around an old family castle in the countryside in Ireland. There is love, loss and death. There are ghosts, love triangles and hidden secrets. All of these ingredients add up to one enticing tale that kept me curious to the end. 

While I enjoyed this generational saga, it did feel quite lengthy. My attention did waver in and out as far as feeling truly connected to the characters and storyline. It almost felt as though there was one too many storylines involved that made the novel spread a little too far. 

Thank you to NetGalley, Simon & Schuster Canada and Santa Montefiore for providing me with an ARC to read and review!

Have you read this one? Want to read it? Drop us a comment! We would love to hear from you!

Posted in Reviews, Reviews by Lindsay

Lindsay’s Review: An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen @StMartinsPress @greerkh @sarahpekkanen #BookBloggers #askthetravelingsistersaboutourreads #askusaboutourbook

After our Traveling Sister Group read and all the great reviews for An Anonymous Girl Lindsay decided to request it and read it. We still wanted to share her thoughts with all of you!

Lindsay’s review
An Anonymous Girl

An Anonymous Girl by Greer Hendricks

A gripping and thrilling page-turner!

Struggling to make her rent payments, Jessica Farris, finds herself involved in a well-paying psychology study revolving around ethics and morality. The compensation is too good to pass up. Upon attending the first study meeting and completing the initial questionnaire, Jess is offered the opportunity to proceed further into the depths of the examination with the mysterious Dr. Shields. Tension builds as Jess begins to feel paranoia and anxiety about her involvement and she begins to question what Dr. Shields objectives truly are.

This was extremely well written! I was glued to these pages, devouring every single word with curious and hungry eyes. The pace, flow and narration were excellent! Told in alternating chapters between Jess and Dr. Shields, I felt the urge to read ‘just one more chapter’ from start to finish – I simply couldn’t get enough of this unique and mysterious story. The characters were well developed and each one kept me curious as to their true intentions throughout the novel. 

After the intensity of the storyline build up, the ending was a bit of a let-down for me. It didn’t fit with the excellence of the rest of the book, which took away one star. I still would highly recommend this novel as it kept me highly intrigued and guessing all the way through. 

Thank you to NetGalley and St. Martin’s Press for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Posted in Reviews by Lindsay, Storytime Saturday

Ninja Camp by Sue Fliess & Illustrated by Jen Taylor @HBGCanada @SueFliess #travelingsistersread #BookBloggers

STORYTIME SATURDAY WITH LINDSAY AND THE KIDS: CHILDREN’S BOOK REVIEWS

Benjamin reading & loving Ninja Camp by Sue Fliess, Jen Taylor (Illustrator)
Lindsay’s Review

A fun, action-packed children’s book!

My three-year-old son, Benjamin, was thrilled when I opened my book mail to uncover this exciting story.   Through rhyming dialogue from the Ninja Master and silly scenarios scattered among the pages, this children’s book invites kids to learn the skills and secrets of how to become a ninja warrior. The pages are filled with beautiful, bright-coloured pictures which kept my children intrigued from start to finish.  Benjamin’s favourite part was the training for the ninja moves.   It’s a super cute and highly entertaining journey that I thoroughly enjoyed reading with my children.  My five-year-old daughter loved it too, so it is great for girls and boys.

Thank you to Hachette Book Group for gifting me a physical copy to read and review!

EXPECTED PUBLISHING DATE: JANUARY 8, 2019

Goodreads Book Blurb:

Pack your bags and grab your gear: you’re going to Ninja Camp! Listen closely to the ninja master, who will teach you everything you need to know to become a ninja warrior-but it won’t be easy. You’ll have to be sly and swift, strong and speedy, and only then will you become a Ninja of the Night!

This fun and energetic book will delight and entertain kids and parents alike with its clever, rhyming verse and action-packed depictions of the coolest camp around. For fans of Ninja Red Riding Hood who are looking for a lesson in teamwork and cool stealth skills.

Have you read this one? Want to read it? Drop us a comment! We would love to hear from you!
Posted in Reviews, Reviews by Lindsay

Review by Lindsay: The Shadow Girl by Misty Mount @MistyAMount

The Shadow GirlThe Shadow Girl by Misty Mount

 

Spellbinding.  Haunting. Eye-opening.  Unforgettable. Brilliant.

This novel follows thirteen-year-old Zylia, a shy and lonely girl who is searching for her purpose in life.   Zylia has a large family with loving parents, yet often feels alone and ignored amidst the chaos of life at home with her five siblings.  At school, she feels as if she is constantly in the way and often invisible.

There were times I questioned if the plot was real or fantasy which is usually a turn-off for me.  However, the supernatural elements were presented in such a gradual and soft manner that it flowed beautifully and kept me curious and mesmerized from start to finish.

The characters in this novel got to my heart!   They were real, relatable and deeply affecting. I enjoyed exploring the family dynamic between Zylia, her siblings, her parents, grandmother and classmates.   Each character brought a new layer of intrigue and development to the plot.

The atmosphere is thick, vivid and engrossing which truly enhances the evocative storyline.   Many scenes had me reminiscing about my high school years in comparison to Zylia’s. The themes introduced in this story are deeply contemplative and thought-provoking.   Zylia is a truly unique main character who I adored, was fully invested in and loved rooting for. She will remain on my mind long after I have finished writing this review.

A big thank you to the extremely talented author, Misty Mount, for providing me with a copy of this beautiful novel in exchange for an honest review!  It was a true pleasure to read.

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Have you read this one?  Want to read it?  Drop us a comment!  We would love to hear from you!

Posted in Reviews, Reviews by Lindsay

The Rain Watcher by Tatiana De Rosnay *Review by Lindsay * @tatianaderosnay @StMartinsPress #BookReview #BookBloggers

The Rain Watcher by Tatiana de Rosnay

Web_L149-2_blonde_blue-eyesFrom the first page of this story, I felt as if I was transported into the rain-drenched city of Paris, France. The pitter-pattering of the rain against windows, the splashing through endless puddles, the droplets of rain dripping from umbrellas, the constant measure of the waters’ rise. I was entranced by the intensity and beauty of the atmosphere of this novel. The scenes felt so real and vivid that my imagination didn’t have to do much work at all.

This novel follows Linden Malegarde, famous photographer and youngest son of the Malegarde family. He is meeting his parents, sister, and niece in Paris to celebrate his father’s seventieth birthday. While in Paris, a natural disaster strikes, causing extreme flooding and devastation.

Told with exquisitely beautiful writing, Tatiana de Rosnay, captures a family gathering full of love, angst, fear, secrets and uncertainty. Each character adds a deeper layer of intrigue to the family dynamic. This novel has an intense sense of sadness and melancholy but is deeply touching and emotional. I highly recommend this book, but warn readers to pick it up only when ready for a slower, emotional journey.

A big thank you to NetGalley, St. Martin’s Press and Tatiana de Rosnay for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest reviewimg_6527

Have you read this one?  Adding it to your TBR list?  Drop us a comment!  We would love to hear from you!

Posted in Reviews, Reviews by Lindsay, Traveling Sisters Reads

The Finishing School by Joanna Goodman @joannagoodman @HarperCollinsCa #travelingsistersread #BookBloggers

The Finishing School by Joanna Goodman

Web_L353-3_blonde_blue eyesLindsay’s review

Gripping.  Shocking. Haunting.  Suspenseful.

I read Joanna Goodman’s latest novel, The Home For Unwanted Girls, in August and absolutely adored it.   When I was presented with the opportunity to go to a reading by Canadian author  Joanna Goodman (tomorrow evening – can’t wait!!!), I decided to pick up her previous book to get in ‘full fan mode’.   

This story follows Kersti Kuusk, a published Canadian author who spent her high school years on scholarship at the prestigious and wealthy Lycee Internationale school in Switzerland.  Kersti’s last year of school at the Lycee ended with her best friend, Cressida, falling from a fourth-story balcony causing complete devastation among staff and students. Cressida’s fall is determined to be an accident and the investigation is quickly closed.   Twenty years after leaving the Lycee, Kersti is invited back to be a guest speaker at the school’s 100th anniversary.  Thoughts of returning to the school spark new cause for Kersti to reexamine exactly what happened to Cressida.   Was it a suicide attempt? Was it an accident? Was she pushed? Kersti cannot let her mind rest until she finds some answers.

This novel turned out to be nothing like I expected.  This story has so many layers, some of them delving into dark and disturbing territory.  The intricate plot unfolds through two timelines, Kersti’s high school years at the Lycee and present day.   I enjoyed the way the story evolved – each chapter added a new detail or twist, interweaving characters and providing hidden links from past to present.  

There were a few aspects of the present day storyline that I thought were unnecessary.  At times it felt as if there was a bit too much going on and less might have been more. However, everything came together seamlessly in the end, leaving me satisfied and looking forward to more from this author.

Web_L365-3_brunette_green-eyesBrenda’s review

The Finishing School is a compelling, fast-paced story filled with suspense that explores friendship, love, desire, betrayal and dangerous secrets that had me flying through the pages. The story starts off simple and the suspense increased as I turned those pages. It takes a bit of an odd turn with one storyline that left me feeling a bit uneasy and I wasn’t sure how I felt about that. Talking it over with Lindsay we agreed it was odd however it certainly added some conversation to our discussion. It is interesting when an author can add something to the story that really gets you talking about it and Joanna Goodman does a great job here with that.

I loved the setting here with the Lycee Internationale Suisse finishing school and found it compelling as we get a look into the elite, and privilege and the length taken to keep that status untouched. The walls hold a decade mystery and the secrets, lies, and deceit are perfectly paced and revealed right up to that unexpected ending. The ending was darker than we expected and that left us with more to discuss.

Now even though I read this one with just Lindsay due to timing, it would make for a good group discussion.  We highly recommend for group reads.

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Have you read this one?  Want to read this one?  Drop us a comment!  We would love to hear from you