Tag Archive | war

MYTHOLOGY CLASS for fighting Philippine monsters! by Arnold Arre (Graphic Novel review)

book cover of The Mythology Class: Where Philippine Legends Become Reality, by Arnold Arre. Published by Tuttle Publishing | recommended on BooksYALove.com

“All of you are worthy to join her quest. We need you!” said the ghost lady in their dreams.

Friends at University of the Philippines get an invitation to join a mythology class meeting off-campus, and their teachers are time travelers from the past!

Nicole’s thesis about the myth of Bathala’s creation of the worlds – human and mystical – was slammed by her professors, but now she learns it’s true.

Now enkantos have been released into our world, some benign and others incredibly evil.

A perilous transfer has gone wrong, and the most dangerous foul-mouthed enkantos are gathering beneath the largest shopping mall in Manila to begin their reign of terror!

It’s up to these students to learn how to fight and capture all kapres to be returned to their spirit world – by spear and arrow, dance and music, knowing when to challenge and when to flee.

Lane’s telepathic skills get just a little better, Nicole is amazed by legendary Kubin’s emergence from myth into now as a young warrior, and Gina allows herself to be convinced by a tiny kapre that it should stay right here.

A super-concert at the mall? Uh-oh…

Throughout all the training and chases and battles, Rey and Misha keep quarreling, each hoping the other will apologize so they can get back together.

Arre introduced the Mythology Class characters in 1999, later collecting all issues into this omnibus edition; Tuttle Publishing has brought the full 2014 version across the Pacific for the first time.

What mythological being would you be brave enough to meet?
**kmm

Book info: The Mythology Class: Where Philippine Legends Become Reality / Arnold Arre. Tuttle Publishing, 2022. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

Dare she travel ROAD OF THE LOST into lands of fae? by Nafiza Azad (YA book review)

book cover of Road of the Lost, by Nafiza Azad. Published by Margaret K. McElderry Books | recommended on BooksYALove.com

Helping a girl trapped as a stone statue cracks Croi’s glamour, making the brownie visible to courtiers in the human palace!

The 17 year old flees back to her guardian’s home in the Wilde Forest, and the Hag gives her two books about the fae – why?

Croi, who isn’t a brownie after all, cannot resist the summoning spell taking her away from the Forest to the Otherworld of fae and dryad and pixie.

With the other half of herself now awakened (and talking so much in her mind), Croi won’t be completely alone. Perhaps she’ll meet the young man Iriel who invades her dreams as he searches for the Forever King’s descendants.

As she travels in strange lands whose magick is dwindling, Croi meets a dryad with a desperate request, a catkin seeking his kidnapped brothers, a fire princess leading a rebel army, and a pixie with attitude.

Who sent Croi to the Wilde Forest as a child?
Why is this summoning spell calling her into the Otherworld?
What is Iriel’s part in all this?

Many want the high fae Robber Queen to lose her power over the Otherworld at the upcoming Saol ceremony – the battle is on!

By the author of The Candle and the Wind, recommended here.

Which being of legend would you want to meet?
**kmm

Book info: Road of the Lost / Nafiza Azad. Margaret K. McElderry Books, 2022. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

Lessons for life, to read with your ears! (audiobook recommendations)

This week of AudioSYNC summer, we visit the past for timeless life lessons.

You can download either or both audiobooks into your Sora shelf by Wednesday 17 May 2023 – free!

Learn more about starting your free Sora account and the entire AudioSYNC season here.

Now, on to this week’s selections, as we are taught by history.

CD cover of The Republic, by Plato, translated by Benjamin Jowett, read by Leighton Pugh. Published by Naxos

The Republic (free Sora download 5/12-17/23)
by Plato, Benjamin Jowett [Trans.] | Read by Leighton Pugh
Published by Naxos Audiobooks

The famous “Allegory of the Cave” is among the musings of Socrates on education, justice, and politics that Plato recounts in this influential work.

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/206993/the-republic-by–plato-benjamin-jowett-trans-read-by-leighton-pugh/

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CD cover of The School That Escaped the Nazis: The True Story of the Schoolteacher Who Defied Hitler, 
by Deborah Cadbury, read by Julie Teal. Published by Hachette Audio

The School That Escaped the Nazis: The True Story of the Schoolteacher Who Defied Hitler (free Sora download 5/12-17/23)
by Deborah Cadbury | Read by Julie Teal
Published by Hachette Audio

In the early 1930s, principal Anna Essinger was dismayed by the Nazis’ increasing power and decided to move her entire school and its students from Germany to England. Despite challenges and peril, “Tante Anna” saved many children who otherwise would have been imprisoned or worse.

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/216509/the-school-that-escaped-the-nazis-by-deborah-cadbury-read-by-julie-teal/

What other stories from history do you recommend?
**kmm

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W is for wonderful AudioSYNC summer – reading with your ears starts NOW! #A2Z

Once again, audiobook publishers have teamed up to give us two FREE professionally produced titles through AudioSYNC every week for a summer of great listening, starting today!

Each theme-related pair of audiobooks will be available for one week (Thursday-Wednesday) so I will alert you about new titles for all 13 weeks.

You’ll need to download the free Sora reading app (instructions and sign-up link here) if you don’t already use it with your school or library.

It’s all free, and once you save either or both weekly selections to your Sora shelf, you can read them with your ears whenever you like – no expiration dates.

AudioSYNC summer begins now, with these two titles about the Freedom to Know:

CD cover of TOP SECRET: The Battle for the Pentagon Papers. Published by L.A. Theatre Works | recommended on BooksYALove.com

TOP SECRET: The Battle for the Pentagon Papers (free Sora download 4/27-5/3/23)
by Geoffrey Cowan, Leroy Aarons | Read by John Heard, Susan Sullivan, James Gleason, and a Full Cast
Published by L.A. Theatre Works

Dramatization of the Washington Post’s publication of the secret Pentagon Papers during the Vietnam War and pushback from the Nixon White House – recorded with a live audience.
https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/38585/top-secret-by-geoffrey-cowan-leroy-aarons-read-by-john-heard-susan-sullivan/

CD cover of YOU CAN'T SAY THAT! Writers for Young People Talk about Censorship, Free Expression, and the Stories They Have to Tell. Published by Brilliance Audio / Candlewick | recommended on BooksYALove.com

YOU CAN’T SAY THAT! Writers for Young People Talk about Censorship, Free Expression, and the Stories They Have to Tell (free Sora download 4/27-5/3/23)
by Leonard S. Marcus [Ed.] | Read by Tom Parks, Roxanne Hernandez, Arthur Morey, Janet Metzger, Thom Rivera, Susan Dalian
Published by Brilliance Audio / Candlewick

A noteworthy collection of YA authors share their experiences of their books being challenged for ‘controversial issues’ – Matt de la Peña, Robie H. Harris, Susan Kuklin, David Levithan, Meg Medina, Lesléa Newman, Katherine Paterson, Dav Pilkey, Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell, Sonya Sones, R. L. Stine, and Angie Thomas.

I recommended the 2021 print book earlier on BooksYALove.com here

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/198953/you-cant-say-that!-by-leonard-s-marcus-ed-read-by-tom-parks-roxanne-hernandez/

How many audiobooks do you read in a year?
**kmm

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K is Kyr battling in space for vengeance and SOME DESPERATE GLORY, by Emily Tesh (YA book review) #A2Z

book cover of Some Desperate Glory, by Emily Tesh. Published by Tordotcom | recommended on BooksYALove.com

“While we live, the enemy shall fear us.”

They’re the last true humans, hidden in a hollow asteroid, living on scant food, training for vengeance after Earth was obliterated by the alien Majo.

Genetically-enhanced Kyr expects the other teen girls to train for combat with her focused ferocity, so they’ll be placed on a battleship instead of being trapped in the nursery as breeding stock.

Only her brother Mags is a stronger warrior, yet he is sent on a suicide mission to a planet of Majo-cooperating humans, and the Commander assigns Kyr to her worst nightmare.

Desperate to save Mags and herself, Kyr enlists the help of his tech-savvy friend and crush Avi to escape their fates by using the recently-captured Majo ship and its alien pilot Yiso.

Away they flee, to the same planet that their big sister defected to, the planet that the supreme Majo leader will soon visit…coincidence?

The history relentlessly drilled into Kyr gets a reboot, a shadow engine of subreality makes their toughest training sims seem like babies’ play, and the young people have only a short time to help Yiso keep things from getting worse.

And then time twists… and twists…

Who’s the hero here?
How can anyone gay survive in a society where reproduction is paramount?
What other ways could Kyr’s life have turned out?

In the future, as now, different views of the same events bring conflict as well as opportunities for peace.

What “fact” of history learned in childhood have you unlearned?
**kmm

Book info: Some Desperate Glory / Emily Tesh. Tordotcom, 2023. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

Searching for THE LOST RYU, dragon of his memory, by Emi Watanabe Cohen (YA book review)

book cover of The Lost Ryu, by Emi Watanabe Cohen. Published by Levine Querido | recommended on BooksYALove.com

Kohei still dreams of being three years old at the last dragon parade, holding his smiling grandfather’s hand as huge winged Western dragons flew overhead and sinuous Japanese ryu dragons strode along Osaka’s streets at the end of World War II.

His maternal grandfather was so angry about Kohei’s father dying soon afterward that he made the boy take his mother’s family name – maybe Ojiisan would be happy if he had a big dragon again, bigger than ryu Yuharu who rides on Kohei’s shoulder.

Isolde moves in downstairs, with her Japanese-American mom, Polish-American dad, and winged dragon Cheshire (very small, Kohei is so disappointed) – imagine starting middle school in a new country and language!

When Ojiisan is suddenly hospitalized, Kohei decides that he must bring a ryu to him. Isolde never knew her grandparents who died in concentration camps in the United States and Poland during the War, so she wants to help.

Venturing into Papa’s study, Kohei finds details about how ryu are hatched, so he and Isolde travel to the faraway New Ryugyu-jo where their dragons will help bring a special ryu into the world.

When the biggest ryu Kohei has ever seen snatches the baby ryu, of course he has to follow and save her!

His memories shift like a kaleidoscope as Kohei learns more about his father’s and grandfather’s pasts.

How far, how far will we go to bring comfort to those we love?
**kmm

Book info: The Lost Ryu / Emi Watanabe Cohen. Levine Querido, 2022. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

Here? Now? THE SECRET BATTLE OF EVAN PAO starts at school! by Wendy Wan-Long Shang (MG book review)

book cover of The Secret Battle of Evan Pao / Wendy Wan-Long Shang.  Published by Scholastic Press | recommended on BooksYALove.com

Bad enough that they have to move across the country to get away from Dad’s financial scams, but in this little Virginia town stuck in its Civil War history, their Chinese family does stand out, even though their uncle has lived here a while.

Evan hopes that sixth grade will be okay, but the class bully lives across the street from their tiny rental house. Brady calls Covid-19 “the China virus” and asks if Evan will bring it to Battlefield Elementary School. Evan can sense that he really believes that – yikes!

Luckily, most kids in his class are nice, including Max who’s assigned as Evan’s buddy and explains Battlefield Day, Mrs. Norwood’s favorite activity, where everyone becomes a Civil War character in costume for an outside learning experience.

Each student in class brings in a family heirloom from the Civil War, except Evan, so Mrs. Norwood suggests that he choose a behind-the-scenes role, like scribe (boring). Evan’s sister says there were no Chinese in the American Civil War, but a little research shows that she’s wrong!

So while Brady can portray his noted sharpshooter ancestor, Evan can be a Chinese soldier in the Army of the Potomac – Mrs. Norwood’s final Battlefield Day before retiring should be quite memorable!

Other things in town are rumbling, like discussions on removing the Confederate soldier statue in front of the courthouse and the cute stray dog that Uncle and Evan find (maybe Mom will change her mind about ‘no dogs’!) and someone shooting at Evan’s house!

Evan tells most of the story, with chapters by his sister Celeste and friend Max, even Julia and Brady from his class providing additional viewpoints.

What’s something that’s “always been this way” about your town that you would change?
**kmm

Book info: The Secret Battle of Evan Pao / Wendy Wan-Long Shang. Scholastic Press, 2022. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

Magic & music together are forbidden – should SOFI AND THE BONE SONG change that? by Adrienne Tooley (YA book review)

book cover of Sofi and the Bone Song, by Adrienne Tooley. Published by  Margaret K. McElderry Books / Simon & Schuster | recommended on BooksYALove.com

Winter won’t go away,
talent isn’t always rewarded,
what else will Sofi endure? (don’t ask…)

After years of obsessive practicing, long-motherless 16 year old Sofi’s perfect performance is upstaged by an untutored young woman who didn’t even bring a lute to the Guild audition, yet wins apprenticeship to the ruling lute Musik, Sofi’s own father.

Lara didn’t use a Paper to perform, or all would have seen the spell inked into her skin – music is the only craft forbidden to use the Paper spells sold by the king.

When Sofi’s father suddenly dies, Lara must immediately qualify to be the lute Musik by traveling through the country and performing specific complex songs in certain towns – songs that Sofi knows and Lara doesn’t.

Away the two young women go with the Musik’s lute made of bones, through their ever-winter land, knowing that some Musiks of the Guild want Lara to succeed, but if she fails, perhaps Sofi has a chance at her life’s dream.

Why did the seasons stop changing when they were babies?
Is Lara using illegal magic to learn this complicated music so fast?
Will the malfunctioning Papers sold to neighboring kingdoms lead to war?

Rivalry becomes companionship and so much more, as Lara and Sofi begin to truly understand the magic of their musical gifts and their growing bond with one another.

What instrument would you play if magically given the skill?
**kmm

Book info: Sofi and the Bone Song / Adrienne Tooley. Margaret K. McElderry Books / Simon & Schuster, 2022. [author site] [publisher site] Review copy and cover image courtesy of the publisher.

Your front-row seat to excitement with dramatic audiobooks – free!

We’re at the halfway point of this summer’s SYNC season – have you set up your free SORA shelf yet? Find out more in the SYNC FAQs.

The free download time for each thematic pair of professionally produced audiobooks is Thursday through Wednesday. If you miss that window, check your local public library or independent bookstore for highlighted titles.

Big thanks to participating audiobook publishers who give us 99 years to listen to these great adventures and true stories through SORA.

And now, the curtain rises – it’s time for present and future drama with two full-cast recordings of stage plays!

CD cover of Paradise, by Laura Maria Censabella | Read by Medalion Rahimi, Jeff Marlow. Published by L.A. Theatre Works | recommended on BooksYALove.com

Paradise (free Sora download 6/9-15/2022)
by Laura Maria Censabella | Directed by Anna Lyse Erikson | Read by Medalion Rahimi, Jeff Marlow
Published by L.A. Theatre Works

A shy, brilliant Muslim student challenges her high school science teacher with a mysterious past to help design a scientifically accurate experiment to measure the effects of love on teenagers’ minds and bodies.

Questions of faith, science, trust, and culture affect their search for answers and for truth. Listen to a conversation with the director at https://soundcloud.com/latheatreworks/paradise-bonus-content-a-conversation-with-laura-maria-censabella.

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/206957/paradise-by-laura-maria-censabella-read-by-medalion-rahimi-jeff-marlow/

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CD cover of Tangent Knights 1: Caprice of Fate, by Christopher L. Bennett | Read by Richard Rohan, Elaine Yuko Qualter, Bianca Bryan, and a Full Cast. Published by Graphic Audio | recommended on BooksYALove.com

Tangent Knights 1: Caprice of Fate (free Sora download 6/9-15/2022)
by Christopher L. Bennett | Read by Richard Rohan, Elaine Yuko Qualter, Bianca Bryan, and a Full Cast
Published by Graphic Audio

In 2046, New Avalon’s all-pervasive technology is controlled by one woman. When advanced nanotech armor invades her own daughter Cory, Herrera tries to control Cory and make her into a hero against tangent parallel Earths.

But this fan of Japanese tokusatu fighting games has her own ideas about being a superhero. As Caprice, she and peacekeeper Tangent Knights will fight against cyborgs brought from other dimensions by her mother! (first in a series) Check out the audio trailer at https://youtu.be/O7jygJ5qDl0.

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/203852/tangent-knights-1-caprice-of-fate-by-christopher-l-bennett-read-by-richard-rohan-elaine-yuko-qualter/

What play would you like to hear as an audiobook?
**kmm

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Politically charged choices – history to read with your ears! (audiobooks)

Thursday means it’s time for a new pair of free audiobooks from Audiofile SYNC. Use the simple registration steps here, then download two audiobooks into your Sora shelf free every week (Thursday-Wednesday) through the summer.

Once you download either or both of these history-related audiobooks to your Sora shelf online, you have 99 years to listen to them.

If you miss these or any other AudioSYNC featured titles, check your local public library or independent bookstore.

Making choices means living with the consequences, especially when it’s political! This week, two shorter audiobooks with big impact:

CD cover of A Brief History of Fascist Lies, by Federico Finchelstein | Read by Edoardo Ballerini. Published by Post Hypnotic Press | recommended on BooksYALove.com

A Brief History of Fascist Lies (free Sora download 19-25 May 2022)
by Federico Finchelstein | Read by Edoardo Ballerini
Published by Post Hypnotic Press

From Hitler and Mussolini to Peron and Trump, lies have been the weapon of choice for fascist and populist political leaders during the past century.

This short audiobook by a noted Argentinian historian examines the connections between fascism and lying – can the former succeed without the latter?

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/190749/a-brief-history-of-fascist-lies-by-federico-finchelstein-read-by-edoardo-ballerini/

curving lines divider from http://www.clipartpanda.com/clipart_images/mondays-throughout-the-day-17164159
CD cover of No-No Boy, by Ken Narasaki | Read by Kurt Kanazawa, Emily Kuroda, John Miyasaki, Ken Narasaki, Sharon Omi, Joy Osmanski, Sab Shimono, Greg Watanabe, Paul Yen. Published by L.A. Theatre Works | recommended on BooksYALove.com

No-No Boy (free Sora download 19-25 May 2022)
by Ken Narasaki | Read by Kurt Kanazawa, Emily Kuroda, John Miyasaki, Ken Narasaki, Sharon Omi, Joy Osmanski, Sab Shimono, Greg Watanabe, Paul Yen
Published by L.A. Theatre Works

During World War II, a Japanese-American man refuses to make a loyalty oath to the US or to serve in its armed forces, instead staying in internment camps and prison for years.

When he finally returns to Seattle, he is shunned by the Japanese-American community, the girl he loves has married someone else, and his mother believes that Japan has won the war.

This full-cast performance shows a full range of emotions as the man wonders about finding hope while living with the choices he has made.

https://www.audiofilemagazine.com/reviews/read/200997/no-no-boy-by-ken-narasaki-read-by-kurt-kanazawa-emily-kuroda/

What other historical events would you like to read with your ears as AudioSYNC summer audiobooks?
**kmm

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