My Latest Reads

Trema's bookshelf: read

Gathering Blue
Sickened: The Memoir of a Munchausen by Proxy Childhood
The Giver
Child of Grace
The Silent Girl: A Novel
The One Who Waits for Me
Flesh and Blood So Cheap: The Triangle Fire and Its Legacy
The Blind in Darkness
Haunted Kids: True Ghost Stories (Haunted Kids)
Like the Willow Tree: The Diary of Lydia Amelia Pierce, Portland, Maine, 1918

Trema's favorite books »

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Review: Heart of Evil( Krewe of Hunters #2)

Heart of Evil
by Heather Graham

Quote: " I believe that there are spirits here, spirits of the past, of happiness and of trauma. But if we have ghosts, they're here to guard us, to watch over us. There's nothing evil at this plantation." ~ pg. 279

Started: September 17, 2012
Finished: September 23, 2012
436 pages/ hardcover, Large print edition

From the cover:
Donegal Plantation is known for its captivating atmosphere, haunting legends... and now a corpse swinging from a marble angel in its cemetery. A corpse discovered in nearly the same situation as that of Marshall Donegal, the patriarch killed just before the Civil War. Desperate for help traditional criminologists can't provide, Ashley Donegal turns to an elite team of paranormal investigators who blend hard forensics with rare intuition. Among them is Jake Mallory, a gifted New Orleans musician with a talent that stretches beyond the realm of the physical, and with a few dark ghosts of his own.

My Review:
This is the second book in what I am discovering to be a great series! I love that the first book forms the team, the Krewe of Hunters. Now each book is a new story, a new crime they must solve using logic and intuition. The team has a bond and you see them growing and the characters developing evermore.
I love anything to do with American history so these books have a bonus for me.
 The story takes you on "flashbacks" or into the minds of those long dead, showing you how they saw things.
Heart of Evil  is about an murder on the Donegal Plantation that uncovers a much darker secret and raises a lot of unfinished business. Several families and a lot of bad blood, a mystery over 150 years old and all the lives it affects. I'll definitely be reading through the rest of this series and see what becomes of the Krewe of Hunters!
*5 stars*

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Review: Phantom Evil (Krewe of Hunters #1)

Phantom Evil
by Heather Graham

Quote: " You have the ability to find all the answers- if you let yourself do so." ~ Mama Matisse pg. 113

Started: Sept. 11, 2012
Finished: Sept. 17, 2012
493 pages/hardcover, large print edition

From the cover:
A secret government unit is formed under the oversight of Adam Harrison, famed paranormal investigator. The six members he's gathered know a little of the other-worldly; each has honed a psychic talent of their own. The case: In a historic mansion in New Orlean's French Quarter, a senator's wife falls to her death from a balcony. Most think she jumped, distraught over the loss of her young son. Some say she was pushed. And yet others believe she was beckoned by the ghostly spirits that inhabit the house- once the site of a serial killer's grisly work.

My Review:
this is the first book in the Krewe of Hunters series. I had actually read #5 without knowing it was a serious. So for me this was a sort of back-tracking to the beginning.
I am so glad I did. The book shows how the team or "hunters" are formed. How each member has something special to contribute to the group. I love that it shows so much diversity and a somewhat realistic view of how they work together despite their individual backgrounds or beliefs. They pull together for the greater good and to help others. 
It's also mainly about politics and the behind-the-scenes type stuff. Great book before a big election(although it is fiction).
This book did have a few unexpected twists which made for a great mystery. I am currently on #2 and will continue to read and review this series.
Great new story-line for me to become obsessed with!
*5 stars*

Monday, September 17, 2012

Review: The Glass Castle

The Glass Castle
by Jeannette Walls

Quote: "It's good we raised you young' uns to be tough, Because this is not a house for the faint of heart."~ Dad(Rex Walls) pg. 150

Started: Sept. 5, 2012
Finished: Sept. 11, 2012
288 pages/paperback

From the cover:
The Glass Castle is a remarkable memoir of resilience and redemption, and a revelatory look into a family at once deeply dysfunctional and uniquely vibrant. When sober, Jeannette's brilliant and charismatic father captured his children's imagination, teaching them physics, geology, and how to embrace life fearlessly. But when he drank, he was dishonest and destructive. Her mother was a free spirit who abhorred the idea of domesticity and didn't want the responsibility of raising a family.
 The Walls children learned to take care of themselves. They fed, clothed, and protected one another, and eventually found their way to New York. Their parents followed them, choosing to be homeless even as their children prospered.
 The Glass Castle is truly astonishing-a memoir permeated by the intense love of a peculiar but loyal family.

My Review:
Wow! This is definitely one of those OMG books! This is going to be hard to review. There is so much to this book, and more because it is a memoir, non-fiction, no faking, the real deal! Wow!
I have always been intrigued to learn real stories about real people. I am fascinated with learning about other people, places, times. Also, being a parent myself I love reading about people's childhoods. What they perceive their parents done right or wrong. As a parent what did they feel was the right choice at the time and so forth. 
This book would be the "What NOT to do" as a parent handbook!
Seriously, some of the things these children went through(hunger, poor living conditions, criminal activity, injuries untreated, sexual abuse...) that were ALL well known by BOTH parents! These things were brushed off or even laughed at as "learning experiences" that would "toughen them up" while running out of money for booze, cigarettes or art supplies were major issues. To me it was a classic case of book smart, intelligent people who have absolutely NO common sense or the mental ability to deal with any "real life" situations.
I have heard so many people's reviews about how RoseMary(Mom) was raised by a distant, rough around the edges, fearless mother who seems to have taught her daughter(however unintentional) to be a free-spirited, make your own rules up as you go kind of parent. Well, I think that is pure BS! I did read Half Broke Horses and I never got any clue as to that type of parenting. RoseMary(and Rex) were two of the most selfish people I have ever heard of. They had SO many chances, opportunities, ways of making a much better, easier life for themselves and their children who had no choice in the matter. Yet, they CHOSE to live in poverty, involve themselves and their children in criminal activity and let them be exposed to so many things no human, let alone a child should ever have to face. For what? All because they wanted to be greedy, make their own rules, and defy laws and society and how they felt society viewed and judged them. To prove a point to who? America, civilized people, their parents....
I will call this book sad, tragic even, but I have absolutely NO pity for RoseMary or Rex Walls.
*5 stars* for an amazing story written with complete honesty and heart

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Review: Those Across The River

Those Across The River
by Christopher Buehlman

Quote: "Mother wasn't to talk about her family to me. And she didn't. But when I got to college, i started digging it up for myself."~ Frank pg. 90

Started: Aug: 29, 2012
Finished: Sept. 5, 2012
357 pages/hardcover

From the cover:
Haunted by memories of the Great War, failed academic Frank Nichols and his wife, Eudora, have arrived in the sleepy Georgia town of Whitbrow, where Frank hopes to write a history of his family's old estate-the Savoyard Plantation-and the horrors that occurred there. At first, the quaint, rural ways of their new neighbors seem to be everything they wanted. But under the facade of summer socials and small-town charm, there is an unspoken dread that the townsfolk have lived with for generations. A presence that demands sacrifice. 
 It comes from the shadowy woods across the river, where the ruins of the Savoyard Plantation still stand. Where a long-smoldering debt of blood has never been forgotten...
 Where it has been waiting for Frank Nichols.

My Review:
I loved almost everything about this book. It was such a wonderful suspenseful, mysterious book based on old rituals and revenge. It is set in the south, Georgia, where traditions and superstitions run high and deep. Coming from the north you never know how to take things or how true they can be. Sometimes there are things happening all around you whether you believe in them or not. When you are face to face with them and believing is still a question you are unsure of the answer to, it makes for a terrifying experience! 
I definitely loved this book, but will give only *4stars* due to so much profanity! I think Buehlman had #1 characters and detail of their personalities and reactions to situations without the unneeded swearing throughout the entire book.(major turn-off). Also, warning to some. There is some detailed sexual experiences between the characters. For some this is also a "TMI" story. I personally enjoyed those "scenes". It did help develop the characters for me and added a little "heat" to a chilling story!

Review: The Hunt for the Seventh

The Hunt for the Seventh
by Christine Morton-Shaw

Quote: "This one, he sees her. This one, he knows where her name, it is written down. All of the children's names, six names in total, they are written in the church." ~ Henry aka Einstein pg. 63

Started: Aug. 23, 2012
Finished: Aug. 27, 2012
273 pages/ paperback

From the cover:

A haunted mansion.
Six dead children.
A garden of statues.
With every step he takes around the carefully manicured grounds of Minerva Hall, Jim is haunted by the ghosts of children, long dead, whom no one else can see. Urging him to "find the Seventh," the children leave him cryptic clues pointing to a devastating ancient prophecy that only he can stop from being fulfilled.
If Jim doesn't figure out the clues, innocent people will die. But how can Jim find the answers while the dangers of the Hall grow ever more threatening? And even if he can, the real question is- is Jim already too late?

My Review:
This was a great little MG book. It has just enough mystery and "scare" factor to be enjoyed by any middle school reader. The main character is an eleven-year-old who has recently lost his mother. Now his father, sister and himself are starting over. New home, job, school, friends and life. The changes they experience are not what any of them had in mind. This is not what Jim had imagined when he dreamed of more adventure and excitement in what had become a dull, routine life of  feeling alone and overlooked. I give it *4 stars*

Review: Miss Peregrine's Home For Peculiar Children

Miss Peregrine's 
Home For 
Peculiar Children
by Ransom Riggs

Quote: " I bet there's a lot of things about this place she wouldn't like you to know." ~ Enoch pg. 214

Started: Aug.18, 2012
Finished: August, 22, 2012
348 pages/ hardcover

From the cover: 
It all waits to be discovered in Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, an unforgettable novel that mixes fiction and photography in a thrilling reading experience. As our story opens, a horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear the Miss Peregrine's children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow- impossible though it seems- they may still be alive. A spine-tingling fantasy illustrated with haunting vintage photography, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children will delight adults, teens, and anyone who relishes an adventure in the shadows.

My Review:
this was a neat little book with vintage photos to go along. It was very different from anything I have read in quite awhile. Sort of like a fairy tale with photos for adults or YA. although it still left quite a bit of room for your own imagination to fill in the blanks. Each character has their own "talent". Some much more unimaginable than others. The story had a good amount of mystery and suspense throughout. Which I enjoyed. I kept questioning whether what Jacob had heard and was now seeing really were his imagination or were they real as his grandfather had tried to tell him. I also enjoyed the "loop" or time traveling aspect. it was a great way to explain the past through new eyes in Jacob. I gave this book * 4 stars*. well written and very entertaining!


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