My Review of Mickey and Willie by Allen Barra

I received a copy of this book through the Blogging For Books program in exchange for an honest review.  Mickey and Willie is about Mickey Mantle and Willie Mays.  They were both baseball players in the 1950s.  The book shows how similar their lives were and chronicles their careers and friendship.  It started off a bit slow, but it picked up from there. At 425 pages, it’s a good sized book. It took me about two days to read.

It was interesting, even though I’m not really a baseball fan.  I like that Mickey and Willie were able to be friends despite the fact that the racial issues of the time could’ve prevented that.  Both of them were heroes to many, including my mom, but they had their flaws.  That part of the book was depressing.  I felt bad for both of them.  Mickey got death threats for not joining the Army, even though he wasn’t physically able to do so, and Willie had to deal with prejudice.

Barra compares their stats from then and now before discussing who he thinks was the better player.  I didn’t really have an opinion on that part.  As interesting as the book was to me, I think it would be much more interesting to actual baseball fans.  I would recommend this book to baseball fans everywhere.

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Review of Keeping You A Secret by Julie Anne Peters

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Keeping You A Secret is a coming of age/coming out story about a girl named Holland who has a lot on her plate. On top of a full class schedule she’s also student body president and a member of the swim team while working part time at a children’s center. She has two best friends, Leah and Kirstin and dates a nice guy named Seth.

Her home life is kind of a mess since her mom got remarried and she had to move her room to the cellar so her room could be a nursery.  She also has to share the cellar room with her new step-sister, Faith.  To make things even more stressful, her mom keeps pushing her to apply to college after college. She feels like she has no control over her life and refers to herself as “predictable.” Everything changes when she meets, and falls for, a girl named CeCe.

I liked seeing Holland become more aware of herself and her feelings and I think it was done very realistically.  Not everyone is thrilled about her decision and her life is turned upside down. I felt bad for her because of how cruel people can be. Having been through that myself, I know it’s not easy. In the end, she figures out who her real friends are and starts trying to make a future for herself.

This book made me feel so many emotions: happiness, sadness, disappointment, hope, sympathy, etc.  I would recommend it to anyone, especially high schoolers, who are dealing with coming out or who are already out and friends of glbtqi teens.

Review of A Field Guide to the Urban Hipster by Josh Aiello

I found this book at a thrift shop and thought it would be entertaining, which is was.  It’s a satirical book, but it’s pretty well researched. The author states in his Author’s Note that it’s a result of “several lonely months embroiled in online research.” It paid off.

The book describes different “Hipsters” that you might encounter in the world. They’re grouped into ten major categories and each one has at least two sub categories. Each description includes an illustration, where they can be found, and their clothing, mating and music habits.  Some of them are actually pretty accurate, even if they’re based on stereotypes.

I only gave the book 3 stars because I got kind of bored by the time I reached the ninth category.

If you like humor books or books about different types of people, you’d probably like it.

Review of Embarrassing True Stories by Oliver Gaspirtz

I received a digital copy from the author in exchange for a review.

Embarrassing True Stories is a collection of stories by anonymous people and comics by Gaspirtz. This book is pretty funny.  A lot of the stories have to do with various bodily fluids, so if that bothers you, you might not like this.  There are also quite a few that are about sex and there is some swearing.  The book had a few grammatical errors, but it wasn’t a huge issue.

I don’t really have a favorite, but a few of them made me laugh out loud.  The comics are funny too.  I like the one with the clown and the vultures.  This was a quick, fun read.

I’d recommend this to anyone who likes funny stories and comics. 

If you’d like to purchase this book, you can do so here: http://www.amazon.com/Embarrassing-True-Stories-Cartoons-Gaspirtz-ebook/dp/B00JVCSDGG/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1402679292&sr=1-1&keywords=Embarrassing+true+stories+gaspirtz

Review of Of Pirates and Werewolves by Isaiah T. Silkwood

I was given a free copy of this book by the publishing company in exchange for an honest review. That has no effect on my review.

The book is about two different groups of pirates who are trying to get to an island to find treasure.  There’s Fish Eye and his crew of two, and Captain Harshley with a crew of about seventy. This sounds like a typical pirate story, until you add in werewolves and some other enemies.

The story is pretty slow moving, but the action really picks up in the last third of the book.  It leaves off on a cliffhanger and I wanted to know what happened next. The e-book had the first two chapter of the next book and it seems like that one will be even better.

Even though it’s a slow moving story, the characters are great. The point of view switches between a bunch f different people within both crews, but it’s very well done and I never had to double check to find out who was talking.  Fish Eye is a good character because he wants to provide a stable life for his first mate, Wokey the Shrimp, but always seems to have some kind of mishap. It’s kind of amusing really.

I’d recommend this for fans of adventure stories and/or pirates.  The book will be released in July of this year (aka next month).

Review of Destined by P.C. and Kristin Cast (House of Night #9)

I liked this book much better than the last one.  Zoey and her friends are still fighting Neferet, but they gain a new ally and I think she’ll be a great help to them. Three new characters are introduced and another character is killed. I was kind of sad about it.

I like that Aurox tries to think for himself, even though he’s evil, and that Thanantos knows the truth about what happened on Grandma Redbird’s farm. Zoey’s Grandma has been one of my favorite characters for the whole series. I’m interested in the new fledgling’s gift and I want to see how it’ll play into the storyline. I need to get the next 2 books in the series before the last one comes out.

I like that the characters were a bit nicer to Aphrodite in this one. I actually kind of like her character.  Her visions have been very helpful.  It was odd that Shaunee and Erin had a fight, but I like Shaunee better on her own. She’s nicer and less annoying.  Kalona is still around and he seems like he’s trying to be a better person. I don’t trust him though.

If you liked the rest of the series, you’ll like this one.

Review of Struck By Lightning by Chris Colfer

I don’t exactly agree with the main character’s actions, or his opinion of goths, but I liked him.  I actually laughed out loud a few times.  I like that he second-guessed himself and had some remorse about what he was doing.  It showed that he really does have a heart and a conscience, despite his claims that he doesn’t. I found myself rooting for him and I really hoped that his plan would work.  It’s neat that the literary magazine is included in the book. Nicholas’ poem was my favorite.

I really loved his relationship with his grandmother because I’m also close with my gramma.  His mother is a mess though.  She’s easily the worst character in the book and she won’t be winning any Mother of the Year awards anytime soon.

The book is a pretty quick read (It only took me a day to read it.)  I wasn’t sure what to expect because the author plays Kurt on Glee.  I had actually gone to the library t get a different book, which they didn’t have, but I’m really happy that I got this one.  After reading the book, I definitely want to see the movie and I’ve already added it to my queue on Netflix.