Origami 101
August 29th, 2018 by diane92345

Using just four simple shapes, Origami 101 teaches makers to create 43 different figures from a simple penguin to a human being.

I love the simplicity of Origami 101. Everything is clearly explained. The use of a glow to indicate which part of the paper is moving when folding is brilliant. The step-by-step instructions and the slow increasing of the reader’s skills when following the order of projects within the book ensure everyone’s origami success. 4 stars!

Thanks to the publisher, Quarry, and NetGalley for a copy.

Posted in Non-fiction Tagged with: , ,

August 23rd, 2018 by diane92345

Sancia is a master thief. She lives in Foundryside, a slum outside the four ruling merchant houses in the town of Tevanne. In Foundryside, scribing is used to make objects do the will of the scribner.

When we first meet Sancia, she is using a complicated plan to break into a safe at the well-guarded Tevanne waterfront. She has a special skill of feeling the emotions and particularly the flaws of inanimate and animate objects simply by touching them. This is a great gift for a thief as walls can tell her where their handholds are and safes can tell her their combinations.  However, it is a problem in real life.  Sancia has to keep her entire body covered so she isn’t receiving the emanations constantly.  The more she uses her gift, the more her head aches. When she returns triumphantly with her booty, she is curious what is in the box she has stolen.  What she finds is Clef, a key with a big personality.

Foundryside has fantastic worldbuilding. No one would want to live in Foundryside, but a quick visit is fun. The mood is playful. The setting is imaginative. Sancia is a great character who readers will love. I love a good genre mash-up and this combines a fantasy world with a thief’s tale. It seems like a combination of Ocean’s Eleven with Les Miserables (if you can picture that!) The fact that the rich are fat and evil while the poor are struggling with just survival seems fitting for our times. Overall, if you liked Artemis by Andy Weir, you will probably enjoy this book too. 4 stars!

Thanks to Crown Publishing and NetGalley for an advanced copy.

Posted in Fantasy Tagged with:

August 22nd, 2018 by diane92345

Great for fans of kooky science fiction, Heartbreaker is definitely not for most readers. However, if you are looking for something different, you will love this book as much as I do.

Pony Darlene was born and raised in a cult. Her mother has run off and her dad’s nickname is the Heavy. What does a fifteen-year-old need to do to score a boyfriend and eventual husband in this cult? And why does the territory draw blood regularly from all the females?

Wow, the world building here is awesome incorporating Warren Jeff’s FLDS with the weird physics of Stranger Things. I hate to say more because it is a much better read if you don’t know even the basic plot. However, if you are ready for something different, this is it.

I’m happy that a major publisher, Random House, took on such a difficult book to categorize. I can’t even say whether this is science fiction, fantasy, paranormal, horror or literary fiction. Judging by the early reviews, you will either hate or love Heartbreaker. Personally, I loved it. 5 stars!

Thanks to the publisher, Random House, and NetGalley for an advanced copy.

Posted in Mystery & Thrillers Tagged with: ,

Other Woman
August 21st, 2018 by diane92345

The Other Woman is a twisty family thriller that throws some surprising deviations into the usual plot.

Emily loves Adam. However, she is not thrilled with his mother, Pammie. Pammie seems to be purposefully throwing roadblocks in Emily’s way. Adam’s younger brother, James, tries and fails to help. Who is the mysterious Rebecca? A former girlfriend of Adam, who Pammie still pines for?

The Other Woman follows a common mother-in-law from hell plotline for at least the first half of the book. To be honest, if I wasn’t reviewing it, I would have put it down at 25% in. But I’m very glad I didn’t. The rollercoaster conclusion alone is worth the time it takes to read the book. Overall, it is a breathtaking read that will make a great movie. 4 stars!

Thanks to the publisher, Minotaur Books, and NetGalley for an advanced copy.

Posted in Mystery & Thrillers Tagged with:

Where are We Heading
August 20th, 2018 by diane92345

Humans have an obvious impact on the things they create. In Where are we Heading?, the author postulates that the things created also impact humans—and not always in a positive way.

The author uses the creation of the spinning wheel and its subsequent industrial machine replacement to illustrate the impact of things on humanity. The spinning wheel allowed the poor to create not only clothes for their families but also items to sell to fund other basic necessities. Once industrial machines appeared, individuals couldn’t compete with their speed or consistent quality. This forced many people to move to cities and deplorable working conditions. Eventually, labor unions and environmental laws forced the factories to move to more business friendly, and poorer, countries overseas. The book also looks at more modern creations like gasoline and electric cars.

There is much to be learned within this book and definitely much to think about. Be warned, it reads like a textbook, which I’m sure it is destined to be. The author has never met a term that he hasn’t stopped to define—even relatively common ones such as “thing”. If you are fine with that, I think you will enjoy Where are we Heading? but for most readers, I will give it 3 stars.

Thanks to the publisher, Yale University Press, and NetGalley for an advanced copy.

Posted in Non-fiction Tagged with: ,