Account Login Canada Toll-Free: 1.800.561.1833 SK Toll-Free: 1.877.506.7456 Contact & Locations

What Goes Up by Katie Kennedy (from a Two Thumbs Up reviewer)

by McNally Robinson - Saturday, Aug 05, 2017 at 9:25pm

Rosa and Eddie are two competitors looking for a spot on team 3 for the Interworlds Agency. The competion brings up 200 teenagers for the most difficult thing they have ever witnessed. Competitors quickly get eliminated and the new trainees for team 3 are Rosa, Eddie, and boys named Trevor and Brad. These trainees have no clue what unpredictable situations could happen and they're barely prepared when the most devastating emergency happened. Suddenly team 3 has been sent out into the great unknown. No one knows whar will happen. Follow the trainees in What Goes Up as they embark on the most amazing, but scary, adventures they have ever had.

What Goes Up is a fascinating book with exciting pages filled with an amazing storyline and unique characters. It depicts a near-future scene and describes space and astronomy in a whole new angle.

- Daniel, a Two Thumbs Up reviewer

Categories: Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Two Thumbs Up

I Have No Secrets by Penny Joelson (from a Two Thumbs Up reviewer)

by McNally Robinson - Thursday, Aug 03, 2017 at 5:44pm

Jemma has a terrible secret that's eating her up: there's been a murder and she knows who did it. She knows because he told her. And she can't tell anyone. Fourteen-year-old Jemma has severe cerebral palsy. Unable to communicate or move, she relies on her family and carer for everything. She has a sharp brain and inquisitive nature, and knows all sorts of things about everybody else. But when she is confronted with this terrible secret, she is powerless to do anything. But that might be about to change...

I Have No Secrets was an amazing book! Jemma, the main character, had severe cerebral palsy and was quadriplegic, but even with her disabilities she found a way to live life happily. I thought it was an amazing book and I would give it a rating of 10/10. I suggest this book to teenagers who like inspiring but suspencful books!

- Elia, a Two Thumbs Up reviewer

Categories: Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Two Thumbs Up

Fireblood by Elly Blake (from a Two Thumbs Up reviewer)

by McNally Robinson - Wednesday, Aug 02, 2017 at 3:48pm

Against all odds, Ruby has defeated the villainous Frost King and melted his powerful throne. But the bloodthirsty Minax that was trapped inside is now haunting her kingdom. The answers to its demise may lie to the south in Sudesia, the land of the Firebloods, and a country that holds the secrets to Ruby's powers and past.  Despite warnings from her beloved Arcus, Ruby accompanies a roguish Fireblood named Kai to Sudesia, where she must master her control of fire in a series of trials to gain the trust of the suspicious Fireblood queen. Only then can she hope to access the knowledge that could defeat the rampaging Minax. How can Ruby decide whom to trust? The fate of both kingdoms is now in her hands.

Fireblood was just as entertaining, if not more, than the first novel in its series. Frostblood is filled with cold-hearted beings in the Frost Court, while Fireblood contains hot tempers in the Fireblood capital. It was pretty good for a sequel. Sometimes, I find that the author loses touch with her characters and alters their personality and impulses unintentionally when continuing on a plot, but thats not the case for this book. Ruby is just as loyal, snarky and badass as she was before. It was nice to see that nothing changed.

While keeping up with the roles of her past characters like Arcas and Brother Thistle, Elly Blake also threw in some new noteworthy people. Kai, for instance, is probably one of my new favourite characters. He's always sarcastic and makes a lot of jokes, but he can be serious at times and it shows just how deep he is. He has a major role in this novel and I don't see it as anything other than a good thing. I'd 100% recommend this novel (after reading Frostblood of course), and I'd rate it as an 8/10.

- Lauren, a Two Thumbs Up reviewer

Fireblood will be available September 12.

Categories: Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Two Thumbs Up

The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell (from a Two Thumbs Up reviewer)

by McNally Robinson - Monday, Jul 31, 2017 at 4:36pm

In modern day New York, magic is all but extinct. The remaining few who have an affinity for magic—the Mageus—live in the shadows, hiding who they are. Any Mageus who enters Manhattan becomes trapped by the Brink, a dark energy barrier that confines them to the island. Crossing it means losing their power. Esta is a talented thief, and she’s been raised to steal magical artifacts from the sinister Order that created the Brink. Esta can pilfer from the past, collecting these artifacts before the Order even realizes she’s there. And all of Esta’s training has been for one final job: traveling back to 1902 to steal an ancient book containing the secrets of the Order before the Magician can destroy it and doom the Mageus to a hopeless future.

The Last Magician had a slow start but it picked up right away. I think it was slow just because I didn't really understand where the plot would take me yet. And the beginning confused me a little too, because of the back and forth between different time periods. I didn't realize Dolph's time was when Esta was going to travel to. It was smooth sailing from then though, as soon as the puzzle pieces fit together. The idea for the novel was clearly well developed. I loved how the plot lines intertwined and left me almost completely shocked and numb. Every new development felt like an exciting surprise and I honestly couldn't wait to read more. And it helped that Esta was a complete badass. She was witty, smart and daring, and clearly a feminist. It was funny and interesting to see how she interacted with Harte Darrigan. It's like she always had the upper hand and knew how to get underneath his skin. Her backstory was just as depressing as Darrigan's, and it really suited the thief she would later become.

Meanwhile, Harte Darrigan was just a product of many betrayals. He acted the way he did because of how people treated him as he grew up, and because he knew just how cruel people could be. To me he was just a misunderstood and broken man who did what he could to survive. I loved reading about the metaphorical masks he wore when he was surrounded by people he couldn't trust. He played the people around him and put on one of the best performances I've read about in ages. And speaking of manipulators, Dolph was definitely one of the most dynamic and complex characters that you meet. He had so many different sides to him: the busy, all-knowing boss, the caring gentleman, the power-hungry beast and the loyal friend. Just like Darrigan, he wore each expression and attitude like a mask that could be swapped out at any moment, depending on who he was with. The time period Lisa Maxwell picked was perfect as well. I liked that the book depicted all of the different gangs and their turf's. It truly felt like I was in the 1900's with Esta from the way the characters dressed, to the transportation, to the clubs and the views on women. It was different from other novels I've read, where the authors pick the same old settings. It was quite refreshing.

The only thing I didn't particularly like about The Last Magician is the ending. I know the author had to leave some questions unanswered and put out an idea what the sequel will be about, but I'd actually much rather have this be a standalone. The concept and idea was only enough to be one long book for me. I believe it would have been a bit better if Lisa Maxwell had tied up all the loose-ends and altered the ending. Of course, I'm still going to read the sequel. I just don't see how she's going to be able to write another full book on this. Other than that, the novel was beautifully written and I'm still excited to see where Esta goes from here in the next book!

- Lauren, a Two Thumbs Up reviewer

Categories: Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Two Thumbs Up

Spellbook of the Lost and Found by Moira Fowley-Doyle (from a Two Thumbs Up reviewer)

by McNally Robinson - Saturday, Jul 29, 2017 at 7:50pm

$23.99 Add to Cart

One summer night, Olive and her best friend, Rose, begin to lose things. It starts with simple items like jewelry, but soon it's clear that Rose has lost something bigger, something she won't talk about. Then diary pages written by a girl named Laurel begin to appear all over town. And Olive meets three mysterious strangers: Ivy, Hazel, and her twin brother, Rowan, secretly squatting in an abandoned housing estate. The trio are wild and alluring, but they seem lost too—and like Rose, they're holding tight to painful secrets. When they discover the spellbook, it changes everything. It's full of hand-inked charms to conjure back things that have been lost. And it just might be their chance to find what they each need to set everything back to rights. Unless it's leading them toward things that were never meant to be found...

This combination of mystery and magical realism is perfect for those who wish to get lost in its world. You just have to read it to experience it yourself. The writing is haunting and addictive. The setting, is quite atmospheric, even creepy. The book is told from three perspectives, they seem unrelated at first but the further you go, the more you will start to notice the intricate connection between the three. The transition between each POV felt seamless, and each is engaging in their own way too. Olive, Hazel and Laurel's story are not without purposes, I found myself enjoying all of their POVs equally.  Magical realism can be a hit or miss for me and what's unfortunate is that this book misses me by quite a bit. I loved the mystery, but I was expecting to "find" more answers than "lose" myself in what this book has to offer. If that makes sense. On a positive note, the book has some pretty good representation of sexuality and female friendship. Olive and her friend Rose are both bisexual while Hazel identifies as lesbian. The mystery does seem to take center stage though, as there is less development opportunity for our characters and their relationships. It, however doesn't take away how quirky, individually unique and down to earth each of them is. I lived for the drama parts.

All in all, just go experience this book for yourself. It wasn't bad for me, but it also wasn't awe-worthy. In the end I can tell that the book is trying to convey some very important message, but since its execution felt flat, I didn't find it to be super inspiring. Now I'm just rambling... so definitely give this book a try if the premiere interests you. 3.5/5 Stars.

- Phuong, a Two Thumbs Up reviewer

Spellbook of the Lost and Found will be available August 8.

Categories: Saskatoon, Winnipeg, Two Thumbs Up
< Newer  - 1 ...  3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 ... 192 -   Earlier >