Book Review: L’Ami d’Enfance de Maigret

L'Ami d'Enfance de Maigret (French Edition)L’Ami d’Enfance de Maigret by Georges Simenon
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I had to look up a fair number of words, which made me feel a bit like a little bit like a kid trying to read a grown-up book. Still, I was able to get through this fairly quickly, and it was an entertaining read.

Book source: Free Library of Philadelphia

View all my reviews

Book Review: The Call (The Magnificent Twelve, #1)

The Call (The Magnificent Twelve, #1)The Call by Michael Grant
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Disclosure: I won this book from the publisher through a GoodReads giveaway.

The Call is the first book in a series about Mack and the Magnificent Twelve. Mack is twelve years old, and the first of the Magnificent Twelve.

He’s an ordinary kid with an extraordinary number of phobias. His life changes when he meets a three-thousand-year-old man named Grimluk who tells him that he must find the 11 other members of the Magnificent Twelve and save the world from the Pale Queen and her daughter Ereskigal, or Risky.

Grimluk was one of the first Magnificent Twelve: a group of twelve-year-olds who fought the Pale Queen and managed to imprison her. He was given the task of preparing for when the Pale Queen returns.

While I wouldn’t call this book one of my favorites, it has an entertainingly breezy style. The book is full of references to pop culture and the here and now: cell phones, iPhones, Yoda, Wal-Mart, Iron Man… The list goes on, and at first, it was a bit disconcerting. That said, I must admit that I particularly enjoyed the references to the Lord of the Rings. Stefan, for example, is the “one bully to rule them all….” I also wonder if the Pale Queen is a nod to C.S. Lewis.

The book alternates between narrating what happens to Mack and Stefan, a bully whose life Mac saves, and the flashbacks to when Grimluk’s was twelve. The Grimluk chapters are amusing, but I felt like they interrupted the story too much.

Also sprinkled throughout the book are notes from the Golem that is sent to replace Mack. (Remarkably, most people don’t seem to notice that Mack has been replaced, but they seemed to barely notice when the real Mack was there anyway.) The Golem’s notes are one of the best parts of the book, in my opinion.

All in all, this was an entertaining book, but I probably won’t read the sequel.

View all my reviews

Book Review: Guilty Pleasures

Guilty Pleasures (Anita Blake, Vampire Hunter, #1)Guilty Pleasures by Laurell K. Hamilton
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I wouldn’t say this book was unpleasant to read, but it wasn’t that hard to put down, either. I was disappointed that the main character, a vampire slayer named Anita Blake, didn’t figure things out faster. It seemed like there were certain clues that she should have put together more quickly. I also am not crazy about the style of narration: first person told by a “tough-as-nails” vampire slayer.

Book source: Free Library of Philadelphia

View all my reviews >>