Toxic Planet, by David Ratté

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

isbn: 9780759529281

This book, which is a collection of one page short stories and gags, is visually stunning and totally hilarious. The art style is fresh and sharp and the work that has to be done by physical acting (since everyone is wearing a gas mask) is really well done. Although some of the strips are more disjointed than others, together they make a lovely portrait of a world gone totally gross.


Bad Science, by Ben Goldacre

isbn: 9780007284870

This book is not yet available in Canada, which is a shame since I so rarely have excellent non-fiction books to recommend to customers. This is an awesome book about the failings of typical medical reporting and the quacks people have to deal with when it comes to demystifying health care. It can be such a scary and misunderstood topic, and he makes it all make sense. Goldacre is funny, friendly and clever, and really shows how important it is to understand what you are reading before you turn it into front page news.

If you are not in England right now and you want a taste of it, try his blog, which is a reprinting of his
column from The Guardian.


The Magicians and Mrs Quent, by Galen Beckett

Thursday, July 23, 2009

isbn: 9780553589825

This book was tons of fun. Part Jane Eyre, part Sense and Sensibility, part The Turning of the Screw, part soft core fantasy, all fabulous. The world created is fabulous, with bustling cities, superstitious little villages, feral woods older than time, magicians who can lock and unlock dangerous puzzles, illusionist who run theaters of ill repute, and to top it all off, the days are not always the same length. Sometimes longer, sometimes shorter, the rhythm of the book is rushed or slowed as the days go by. I really enjoyed the device, which made for extra spooky bits and a world where taking a nap and then having a second supper is okay.

My only complaint is that the title totally gives away that she is marrying Mr Quent and not the dashing young man from the beginning of the novel. Oh well. I am ridiculously looking forward to the next one, which is still unannounced as far as I know.


Monster by A. Lee Martinez

Sunday, May 17, 2009

isbn: 9780316041263

I have looked at his book Too Many Curses before, and thought it sounded kinda cool, so when this appeared in the store I decided to borrow it (one of the perks of working in a bookstore is that you get to borrow the hardcover books, as long as you don't damage them). I ended up reading it in a quick afternoon and it wasn't bad at all. The opening scene is incredibly strong, the buildup is pretty good and the descriptions of the monsters and of the battles is super fun. There is a lovely bit in the middle where we learn what bonding with the universe is like. The main character, Monster, is fun; he changes colours everytime he wakes up, and different colours give him different powers (he flies when he is goldenrod, shoots beams from his eyes when he is peach, can heal when he is turquoise). Too bad he can't choose what colour he will be in the morning. The end, though, is a bit like finding out the only ice cream left at the dessert buffet bar is lemon sorbet. It's still nice, but it's not triple chocolate fudge.


Lack of updates.

I have been madly re-reading things I adore, recently, and therefore have not felt the need to repost the same reviews over and over. Sorry guys! Things I have re-enjoyed recently:

- All my Stephen Leacock
- Fancies and Goodnights by John Collier
- Karma Girl by Jennifer Esteep
- Zombie Survival Guide by Max Brooks

A few things I have started but not yet finished (and may never get through)
- Summoning by Armstrong
- Greywalker by ...
- Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke (holy shit that book is long! Excellent, but a brick!)

Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, by Jane Austen and Seth Grahame-Smith

Sunday, April 5, 2009

isbn: 978-1594743344

I have been waiting for this book for months and have not been disappointed! I fully admit to having a degree in English Lit and having never read any Jane Austen before today. I have seen the A&E 6 hour version of Pride and Prejudice more times than I dare to recall, and yet picking up the book always made me sleepy and I put it down... That is until they added zombies! The story is all still there, the major plot twists and the language and the letters back and forth, but there are muskets and tales of training in China and legions upon legions of the undead. I devoured it in two days, and I almost want to read the original to see what exactly was changed. Almost. Not quite. As far as horror goes, it has more romantic bits than it does gory ones, although my gore tolerance is quite high. I am also kind of upset that it was not any sexier than it was. I am apparently spoiled by all the historical romances (which I have not read but am now thinking I may have to) where they wear bodices that serve no other purpose but to be ripped off... by the decomposing hands of zombies! Ha ha, snort.

Can you believe is sold out? We also hand sold about 6 in as many hours the first day we got it at work. Woot!


The Wonderful O by James Thurber

Friday, March 20, 2009

isbn: 978-1590173091

This book reminds me of Ella Minnow Pea, which was way more fun for me. I wish this book had been about 50 pages shorter, which is sad since it was only 80 pages long. If I am confused about the plot and I am 24... I loved the playfulness with words and the lesson at the end, but where the hell does the castle come from?


Throw Out Fifty Things, by Gail Blanke

Thursday, March 5, 2009

isbn: 978-0446505796

I saw a favourable review of this on Bookgasm and spotted it at work. It is a very short book and only took a few hours to read. She has really simple rules and interesting anecdotes which make throwing out things make sense. What have I thrown out? Some Christmas rubbish, 6 pairs of shoes (which only count as one thing according to the rules). bits of clothes and three feather boas from three halloweens ago. Ok, so I am not doing so great. Oh well.


The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie, Alan Bradley

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

isbn: 9780385665827

I managed to nab an advanced copy of this mystery (you will have to wait til February 10th to read it!) and am so glad I did! Flavia is one of my favourite characters ever, an adorable 11 year old chemist who poisons her sister's lipstick with poison ivy in order to make serious observations (alright, a bit of revenge in there too) and who just happens to find a body in her house's cucumber patch. Like you do. She is clever and fun and different. She is the kind of character I want to take out to coffee - although I would keep a close eye on my cup at all times. I devoured this book and cannot wait to sell it to people!