Mini Reviews – Shiver, Flavia de Luce, Wonderstruck

January 31, 2012 Audio Books, Book Reviews, Books 12

I have a few books I either don’t really have a lot to say about or I’ve almost forgotten everything about, so I thought I’d jump on the mini-review train.

Shiver by Maggie Steifvater
Read by Jenna Lamia and David LeDoux

Grace and Sam have just met for the first time after knowing each other for 6 years. That sounds odd, doesn’t it? Grace has been fascinated by Sam, ever since the wolf attack that almost killed her, but she never knew he was Sam. Sam saved her and has watched over her ever since. As a wolf. Sam. Is. A. Werewolf.

This reread brought to the forefront the many problems with this book. The first time I read it, I was so enamored with the romance, that I missed a few things. I do remember being extremely annoyed at the absent parents, this read-through made me hate that even more. There were a few plot problems, things glossed over or forgotten, etc. Yet the characters of Grace and Sam and their romance are compelling enough to make me go onto the the next book in the series-the main reason for my rereading. I’ll be reading on soon.

The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley
Read by Jayne Entwhistle

Surely you know what this one is about by now. Flavia de Luce, precocious little poison aficionado and amateur sleuth, sets out of solve the mystery of a postage stamp, a dead bird, and her father’s odd behavior. I love the…absolute Britishness of this book. And I loved Flavia! Flavia is completely adorable, when she’s not being slightly infuriating, and Jayne Entwhistle’s reading is a delight. I’ve been meaning to get on with this series for awhile now; I don’t know what’s holding me back. Perhaps I will make it my next listen on my iPod?

Wonderstruck by Brian Selznick

If Brian Selznick captured my heart with The Invention of Hugo Cabret, he broke it – in the best possible way – with Wonderstruck. Oh my goodness, but this is a truly beautiful, moving, gorgeous book.

Selznick employs a device I’m not sure I’ve ever seen in literature. He tells two stories, alternating between Rose and Ben, using words for Ben and illustration for Rose. Considering Ben is partially deaf, and Rose is completely deaf, it gave the telling of their stories a trueness that I found fascinating. And, considering Rose’s story takes place about 50 years earlier than Ben’s, it really helped me to see Rose as she was then and how different her world was from Ben’s. Plus, with Rose being completely deaf, I think it was a unique way to tell her story, given that her world is the images around her-not the sounds.

The art, as always, is completely enchanting. I can’t wait to see what Selznick comes up with next.

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12 Responses to “Mini Reviews – Shiver, Flavia de Luce, Wonderstruck”

  1. Marg

    I am just reading this Flavia de Luce book in print. For the first couple of chapters I was a bit concerned that I wasn’t going to love it, but I am pretty sure I am there now!

    I also started Shiver a while ago now but put it down to read something else. Must get back to it!

    • Heather

      Marg, it took me at least 3 tries to read this first Flavia. I finally had to turn to audio, where it all came together for me. Those first few chapters…well, it takes a lot of getting used to Flavia. lol

      Yes, you must finish Shiver. I'd love to hear your opinion of it.

  2. Kristen M.

    The wonderful thing about Flavia is that she's less infuriating with each book. I don't know if I've gotten used to her or if she's just growing into her pathological personality. Either way, I love the series!
    And I can't wait to read Wonderstruck.

    • Heather

      That is awesome to hear! I loved Flavia, but yes, she is completely infuriating. That's a love/hate kind of characteristic for me. lol

    • Heather

      I'm glad to hear that Patty! I am really leaning toward the next Flavia, after I finish my current audiobook.

    • Heather

      Thank you kindly. I hope you do, especially Wonderstruck. I'm 100% certain you will adore it.

  3. Kailana

    I read Shiver a few years ago and then never read on in the series. I have finished her other one, though. I found I liked the fairies better than the werewolves. I also have only read the first Flavia de Luce book. Another series I need to get back around to! And, I loved Wonderstruck!

    • Heather

      I totally forgot about Lament and Ballad! I've only read Lament, which I enjoyed. I need to get back to that series too. *sigh* There are just too many series that need finishing.

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