This documentary about the 2010 Deepwater Horizon drilling rig explosion and oil spill disaster in the Gulf of Mexico includes conversations, interviews, and court proceedings – dramatized by a full cast in front of a studio audience.
Sophie didn’t intend to ride out the hurricane on their Outer Banks island, especially with the guy who broke her heart by vanishing only to reappear recently – but they do want to survive! I recommended Meet the Skyhere last month (no spoilers!)
What’s your scariest humans against Mother Nature story?
Djinn of order and of chaos battle in the human world that is home to neither in this adventurous tale, while family loyalties are tested, and a young woman receives an unsought gift that can break boundaries if it doesn’t fracture her first.
Through the Name Giver, ifrits can come from their world to help humans defend theirs from the ravaging Shayateen whose dark night of slaughter left only three survivors hidden in an entire city.
But when the Name Giver is compromised in the now-repopulated city of Noor, its ifrit Emir and human maharajah face a greater peril.
How does the Fire of ifrit Ghazala come to human survivor Fatima who never knew her?
Can the Emir help Fatima navigate this unknown convergence?
What lurks in the opulent halls of the reluctant maharajah’s palace?
Each time the muezzin’s call sounds over her beloved city of a thousand nations, Fatima prays for their safety, yet again…
Happy book birthday to this extraordinary tale of magic, relationships, and the importance of being seen.
What’s in your name? **kmm
Book info: The Candle and the Flame / Nafiza Azad. Scholastic Press, 2019. [author interview] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
Today is Free Comic Book Day, so find your nearest participating comics store here and get there fast, before the excellent selection of free comic books runs out!
It’s also Star Wars Day – a good opportunity to point you to another volume in Ian Doescher’s Shakespearean retellings of the Star Wars movies… read ye now the Tragedy of the Sith’s Revenge (movie episode three).
Yes, our valiant Chewbacca appears in this volume (farewell too soon, actor Peter Mayhew), as do many characters good and evil from the episodes in this series before and after this one:
And as I wrote in 2015:
Why speak just now of this most-worthy tome,
Why note it not upon its natal day?
Mark well today’s harmonious date, kind one,
And may the Force be with us all, I pray!
Book info: William Shakespeare’s Tragedy of the Sith’s Revenge (Star Wars Part the Third) / Ian Doescher. Quirk Books, 2015. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
Born during a partial eclipse, Sophie sees Memories of her late mother… that never happened. Same birthday as Sophie, DJ sketches his stepdad… whom he’s never met. Luke knows a solar eclipse specialist, perfect source for their group project…but Mr. Scot is a mystery himself.
All three middle-schoolers have lost someone dear to them, want life to be the way it was before. This is more than just deja vu.
Some people say that parallel universes draw closer during eclipses, like the one they’ll see next week. Some say that special places have unexplained energies and the barriers between worlds are thinner. Maybe the old Donway Shallows mill outside town is one of those places…
Their last project before school’s out for summer is almost complete… will whatever happens during the eclipse fill the holes in their lives? Could they truly cross over into a universe where Sophie’s mom is alive, DJ lives with his stepdad, and Luke’s sister was never in that car wreck? But what would this universe be like if they left it?
Chance threw them together for this project, granting them a opportunity for friendship in their small town with long memories about family problems.
Clever foster kid, small-time con artist & hacker, ideal CIA recruit!
The early-training scheme that landed a Black teen from Atlanta in a small Ukrainian town trying to stop a ruthless arms dealer didn’t go well.
So here he is at a new school with a new identity and new friends…but not the only one who isn’t operating under their true name or allegiance!
How do you know who to trust? **kmm
Book info: Prettyboy Must Die / Kimberly Reid. Tor Teen, 2018. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
My book talk: Now undercover at a prestigious Colorado boarding school, Jake is haunted by his first failure as a CIA operative when a candid photo of the 16 year old African American goes viral and the bad guys arrive, more than ready to kill!
Former foster kid Jake has a new identity as Pete for his senior year at Carlisle (double-crossed Ukrainian arms dealers are more than mean), keeping tabs on the kids of diplomats, high-ranking military, and super-scientists – plus his housemate Bunk who lived underground with his dad till last year.
No coincidence that armed hostiles invade Carlisle the morning after that photo hits social media or that the Ukranian hacker has attacked super-secret projects near Denver or that Jake is the only one who can save his classmates and national security!
Someone inside the school let the hostiles in – why?
Mysterious packages arrived recently – for which international student?
The bad guys say that “Prettyboy must die” but Jake is determined to keep everyone at Carlisle alive!
They’ve endured a year without Jim, their graduation without his snarky brilliance, their pre-college summer without the play he was writing, a season and another without their spark, without Beatrice’s boyfriend.
Her friends keep calling, but Beatrice stays in her parents’ Rhode Island house, until the anniversary of Jim’s death finally pulls her to the seaside mansion where they spent so many weekends with their friends away from the private school where he was found dead.
When a stranger at the door tells the group that time has stuck in a loop for them until they agree on a difficult, terrifying, terrible choice, Beatrice knows they must go back to the scene of Jim’s death and puzzle out how (and why) he really died.
Not a mere nightmare they can wake up from – if they don’t make a unanimous decision, they’ll all be trapped in the Neverworld Wake forever!
A psychological thriller and YA debut by the author of Special Topics in Calamity Physics.
What mystery would invisible-you go back to solve?
Book info: Neverworld Wake / Marisha Pessl. Delacorte Press, 2018. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
Matt would be a basketball standout, Best friend Tabby would know that he loved her, and the accident would never have happened.
But life isn’t scripted, and Matt has to somehow get through his junior year without redheaded, Nerds-fanatic Tabby right next door or being called up to the varsity basketball team…
How do you react when life goes off-script? **kmm
Book info: A Short History of the Girl Next Door / Jared Reck. Alfred A. Knopf Books, hardcover 2017, Ember paperback 2018. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
From nice house to shabby apartment, apartment to terrible foster homes, foster care to luxury hotel?!
Elle is stunned when ‘Uncle’ Masa arrives at her latest foster home (showers allowed once a week) with her new passport and an invitation from her biological father in Japan – happy 16th birthday after all.
Being so obviously hafu (half-Japanese) and gaijin (foreigner) is no big deal at her prestigious new school attended by kids of diplomats and business people from all over the world, but utterly scandalous to Elle’s new grandmother (no wonder Kenji was forbidden to marry her Native American/ African American mom).
Book info: My Almost Flawless Tokyo Dream Life / Rachel Cohn. Disney Book Group, 2018. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy from the library; cover image courtesy of the publisher.
My book talk: Swept from foster care in Maryland to a Tokyo highrise, sixteen-year-old Elle must figure out where she fits in her biological father’s family and the social order at an elite international school.
Once the painkillers hooked Mom after that car wreck, drugs took their house, Elle’s security, and put Mom in jail.
When her never-seen dad offers Elle a home in Japan with him, she’s wary but goes along – to an amazing apartment in his skyscraper hotel with 24-hour room service…and his displeased mother and sister nearby.
Elle has to work hard at school to catch up, wondering why fellow swimmer Ryuu is shunned by the popular Ex-Brat crowd who inexplicably adopted her.
Will she always see her father by appointment only? Can her new grandmother accept Elle’s mixed-race maternal heritage? What happens if things don’t work out with her family in Tokyo?
As Elle and Ryuu get to know each other at swim practice, some Ex-Brats go beyond pushy, and business pressures are affecting her dad, badly.
Evacuation means leaving the place. Mandatory means that it must be done. She knows this, he doesn’t even care.
After the accident, her sister’s rehab was long and arduous, her dad abandoned them, and Sophie concentrated on helping mom with their stables and preparing to become a veterinarian.
Then Finn walked back into her life like he’d never stood her up at the dance, like he didn’t remember how close they had been before, like he hadn’t disappeared without a trace, without even a phone call…
And now the hurricane grows more powerful than predicted as the teens are stuck on the barrier island, trying to stay alive!
Go back to coastal North Carolina with the author of The Thing With Feathers, which I recommended here.
Checked your emergency preparedness skills and supplies lately? **kmm
Book info: Meet the Sky / McCall Hoyle. Blink YA, 2018. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
My book talk: As a ferocious hurricane approaches North Carolina, Sophie is stranded on her Outer Banks island with Finn, guaranteed to break her heart again, if they survive the storm.
Did Mom and Mere and the horses get to the mainland safely?
What brought Finn back to the island?
Surfing during a hurricane evacuation is just like class clown Finn, delaying their journey through the increasing wind to safety.
Too close to the shore, Sophie and Finn fight through lancing rain and wind-borne debris to find shelter. Too late?
How much of your freedom would you sacrifice for safety? **kmm
Book info: The Dark Intercept (Dark Intercept, book 1) / Julia Keller. Tor Teen, hardcover 2017, paperback 2018. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.
My book talk: As the all-encompassing Intercept collects every emotion from each human, sixteen-year-old Violet uncovers a rebellion on New Earth and must decide which side is telling the truth about its powers.
Violet’s father founded New Earth a generation ago, ensuring that the best and brightest escaped there from the disease and destruction on Old Earth.
Now the Intercept can monitor everyone on both Earths, crime is down everywhere, yet policeman Danny (brother of the Intercept inventor) insists on returning often to patrol Old Earth – is he looking for something?
As cameras monitor the safety of people on missions down to Old Earth, Violet sees the dire poverty there – why does New Earth only allow a few immigrations up every year?
Rumors swirl about a way to bypass the Intercept, to keep thoughts and emotions out of the New Earth government computers – what are the Rebels of Light planning?
Violet and Danny find themselves together more and more, but what the Intercept can record, the Intercept can repeat…
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