Book review: Strange the Dreamer and Muse of Nightmares

I have a new favorite author. Laini Taylor writes YA fantasy novels of unexpected magic, detailed characterization, romance, and adventure. Strange the Dreamer and its sequel, Muse of Nightmares, are her most recent, and I am hooked. If you like soaring, imaginative epics grounded in realistic, complex emotion, you will be too. In Strange the […]

Book review: The Adventures of Joy Sun Bear: The Blue Amber of Sumatra

I am honored once again to review a kidlit book for Multicultural Children’s Book Day. This year, I received a charming, early-middle-grade book from Joy Sun Bear, an organization that provides “global education for kids and classrooms.” Co-written by Blanca Carranza and John Lee, with illustrations by John Lee, The Adventures of Joy Sun Bear: The Blue Amber […]

New Year reading resolutions

Russia’s in the news, the bogeyman (bogeycountry?) from my childhood, only then it was “Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall” from a president staunchly opposed to Russian policies and interference (not that he was a peach, either). So here at the beginning of 2019, and after thoroughly enjoying Katherine Arden’s Russian-set The Bear and the Nightingale, I […]

Book review: 3 grown-up fairytales

Just right for long, dark nights before the fire (real or electric), these three fairytales for adults kept me reading past my bedtime. Beautiful language, strange and mysterious happenings, and a sense of magic link The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden, Melmoth by Sarah Perry, and Damsel by Elana K. Arnold. But be […]

Book & a Bite: The Cabinet of Curiosities & Pumpkin-Oat Mini Muffins

Looking for some tricks and treats? Check out The Cabinet of Curiosities: 36 Tales Brief & Sinister by Stefan Bachmann, Katherine Catmull, Claire Legrand, and Emma Trevayne for some spooky short stories, perfect for staying up way past bedtime. While you’re up, snack on Pumpkin-Oat Mini Muffins (recipe below): nothing scary there, they’re gluten-free! Ostensibly […]