BookClique

Here we will post our musings on a wide variety of titles. You can comment on our posts and find the titles in our catalog.

Red Sister by Mark Lawrence

25895524“It is important, when killing a nun, to ensure that you bring an army of sufficient size. For Sister Thorn of the Sweet Mercy convent Lano Tacsis brought two hundred men.” This is the opening line for Red Sister, by Mark Lawrence, and that one sentence alone gives you a very good idea of the type of tale you are beginning. The story is about Nona, who is saved by the Abbess of Sweet Mercy convent, just before Nona is to be hanged for murder. Nona is nine years old. And therein lies a mystery: how did a nine year old find herself under the shadow of the hangman’s noose? Nona’s story unfolds as she is taken to the Sweet Mercy convent and begins training to be a nun alongside many other girls her age. The nuns live in a dangerous world and Nona, in particular, has made enemies. As Nona learns the skills to be a warrior nun, we learn how she came to be charged with murder in the first place. This is a coming-of-age story as Nona grows and becomes the person she was meant to be. Most of the story takes place at the convent, with its school-like atmosphere. The book reads like a cross between a Harry Potter book and a Wolverine movie. And Nona, in spite of her unusual childhood, upbringing, and her talent for violence, is likeable, kind, and loyal to a fault. The book was a joy to read, and I’m very happy to know that Red Sister is the first book of what will be a trilogy of books. If you like action, drama, and violence set in a fresh, finely crafted fantasy world, then this is the book for you.

Annette G.


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Summer of Blood: England’s First Revolution By Dan Jones

summer of bloodIn June 1381, the people of England, reeling from the ravages of the Black Death and protesting against an unfair Poll Tax and serfdom in general, marched on London  in the first mass uprising in Western society.   After several days of looting, murder and destruction, they believed they had achieved their goals, only to have the tables turned on them by then 14-year-old king Richard II.  Though the revolt was ultimately suppressed and its leaders executed, it was the beginning of the end for the English feudal system, which had vanished entirely by the mid-fifteenth century.  It has also proven a popular literary subject in the centuries since.

The event has been widely studied by academics, but author Jones puts the reader in the center of the action with his mesmerizing account.  Summer of Blood: England’s First Revolution joins the author’s collection of other works on English history, including The Plantagenets, The Wars of the Roses, Magna Carta, and the newly-published The Templars.

Alison M.


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The Redemption of Callie and Kayden by Jessica Sorensen

redemptionJessica Sorensen is known as one of the founding authors for the new genre, New Adult. She doesn’t disappoint in this college age novel, but be forewarned that there are themes of abuse.

Main characters, Callie and Kayden seem to live completely different lives. Callie has been the “freak” for the last 4+ years while Kayden has been the star of the football team. But through a series of events that unfold, we learn that they aren’t so different after all and both are harboring harmful and tragic secrets from the world. The freedom of college allows the both of them to spread their wings and escape the confines of their secrets if only for a little while and the innocent “freak” and football star learn to be more than they once were. With a cast of characters that are both innocently real and heartbreakingly honest and loving, this book and it’s author has become one of my own all time favorites. What will happen when Callie and Kayden decide that enough is enough and the world needs to know? Will they find redemption in each other or in telling their secrets?

The Redemption of Callie and Kayden is the second book in Sorensen’s Coincidence series.

Brittany R.


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Police at the Station and They Don’t Look Friendly by Adrian McKinty

police at the stationI should never have been nervous to read Adrian McKinty’s latest Police at the Station and They Don’t Look Friendly.  The reason I was hesitant was because in McKinty’s last Detective Duffy book, Duffy became seriously involved with a woman named Beth and they had a baby.  In general, in novels and TV shows, I like detectives to be very competent but single and married to the job (or they can be involved with someone if the job comes first).  A lot of times once a significant other is introduced everything goes downhill and everything starts being about the relationship which is not what I want to see or read.  Luckily for me, McKinty pays short attention to the relationship – yeah, Duffy loves her and the kid and would do anything for them blah blah blah but the book is still about a murder and how Duffy and his team start tying it to something that happened 20 years ago that was all but covered up.  I love the way McKinty writes – describing Duffy roughing up a suspect he says he “flung him into the aluminum walls of his house, aluminum that if it had somehow become sentient would no doubt have relished the action, having been in a previous incarnation the panels of a fighter plane…”  Fantastic action when the IRA comes calling to kill him and his family at 3 in the morning – shady Protestant neighbor with an M249 definitely has his back.  So his girl and the baby get bundles off to her parents out of harm’s way, he publicizes that he is moving on to other cases and secretly keeps digging.  His girl starts looking at places for them to move to in Scotland because she is tired of violent Northern Ireland.  I’m hoping that Duffy will tell her to hit the bricks (he can see the kid on weekends) or she is killed in the next installment – he can’t leave Northern Ireland!  Love, love, love this series!
Stacy W.


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How to Be a Supervillain by Michael Fry

SupervillainVictor Spoil has one major problem, he’s not bad enough. His parents are supers, supervillains to be exact. The Spoil Sports. Poor Victor has tried being bad: running with scissors (fail! doesn’t everyone wear a helmet?), not eating his peas (fail! just think of all the vitamin k AND fiber), not washing behind his ears (fail! it just felt wrong). After many attempts (“go to your room and don’t come out until your dessert is all gone!”) and tutors, Victor discovers that his parents have arranged for him to be the apprentice to The Smear. What is a twelve-year-old who hates messes to do with a supervillain who super power is to make messes? And, did you know that super battles are staged like wrestling?!?! So begins Victor’s journey with many twists and turns.
How to Be a Supervillain by Michael Fry was so fun to read and is written with many pictures to enhance the story (in the style of Big Nate or Diary of a Wimpy Kid)! I had more than one request to know what I was laughing about and ended up reading multiple sections out loud. Look forward to meeting many supers, both heroes and villains. Professor Tuba, Catman Fu, Lasso Girl, Pollinator and more…

Polly R.


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Voyager by Diana Gabaldon

voyagerThe saga between Claire and Jamie continues in the third book of the Outlander series. Throughout the story, the reader learns what happened to Jamie Fraser after the battle of Culloden. Between living in a cave and being thrown into prison, Jamie still holds Claire in his heart. We also follow Claire as she searches for what happened after the battle of Culloden and has memories of what life was like after she came back through the stones. Eventually, Claire and Jamie reunite and their many adventures begin again as they discover their deep, abiding love for each other after twenty years.

I had a hard time summarizing Voyager without giving too much away. There is so much happening in the story, but it doesn’t seem overwhelming to the reader. I found myself unable to put the book down once I started reading it because I wanted to know what happened in the twenty years of Jamie and Claire being apart. And then I couldn’t put it down once they found each other again. It was a heart wrenching and, yet, fun read. My obsession continues…

Richelle B.


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Leviathan Wakes by James S. A. Corey

LeviathanIn the Star Trek and Star Wars universes, humanity has reached the stars. In James S. A. Corey’s Expanse universe, humans have only reached as far as the other planetary bodies and asteroids in our own solar system. James Holden is working on an ice mining ship out in the asteroid belt when his ship comes across another ship in distress. The Scopuli is abandoned, and clearly the crew have come to a bad end. James Holden and crew discover evidence on the ship that may lead to war. Before they can figure out what to do with the evidence, conflict finds them and the situation escalates to dangerous levels.

At the same time, on the asteroid Ceres, Detective Miller is searching for a missing girl named Julie. Political and trade tensions are mounting on Ceres, and then Ceres hears about the trouble with the Scopuli. Violence erupts as the threat of war becomes more of a certainty. But who is starting the war, and who are the parties in conflict? Is Mars behind it all, or Earth? Or perhaps the Outer Planet revolutionaries, a group that wants to be free of both Earth and Mars, are to blame. Detective Miller soon finds that his hunt for a missing girl ties him to the investigation to figure out what happened to the Scopuli. When Holden and Miller meet, they start on a course of inquiry which may change the fate of humanity throughout the solar system.

While this is considered a “space opera” title, it is not a Star Wars or Star Trek novel. Rather, this story has deep political undertones that drive the plot along. James Holden and Detective Miller play a role in a larger drama playing out across the solar system. The story was a little slow to build for me, but once it got going, I very much enjoyed it. Leviathan Wakes, and the rest of the Expanse series books form the bases of the TV series, The Expanse, currently in its third season on the Syfy Channel.

Annette G.


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Firstlife by Gena Showalter

firstlifeIn Firstlife, death is simply another beginning. Before you die, you must decide which realm you’re going to take when the end of your firstlife comes, Troika or Myriad. Tenley “Ten” Lockwood refuses to be forced to decide. If she doesn’t choose the right realm, her parents risk losing everything. In an effort to save their way of life, they send Ten to Prynne Asylum in the hopes that the director there can coerce her, using whatever means necessary to choose the “right” side. This book is jam-packed with action, risk, romance, and adventure. Two battling sides, families split apart, and frienemies you can’t help but both hate and love. I certainly recommend it for any young adult in need of a little book pick-me-up.

Brittany R.


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Only Daughter by Anna Snoekstra

Only daughterIn Anna Snoekstra’s Only Daughter a spoiled rich girl who is estranged from her family after causing them multiple problems decides to assume the identity of a missing girl who looks just like her.  She comes to this decision because she is tired of constant partying and picking up guys in bars so that she’ll have somewhere to lay her head at night plus she has now started having to shoplift for food.  When she is caught shoplifting her next meal, that’s when she starts crying and says that she is Rebecca Winter, who was abducted over 10 years ago.  She’s not really thinking, she just wants to get off the street and live a nice middle class life with parents, a warm house, and food on the table for a while.  But can she really fool Rebecca’s family and her best friend?  The original detectives?  What about things like DNA?  What if her real family sees her on the news and recognizes her?  And finally, who knows if Rebecca’s family is the nice family that they portray themselves to be?  You never know what goes on behind closed doors.  I sped through this book because it was hard to put down plus I had just finished a 700 plus page behemoth that was fairly boring.  Only Daughter was just what I needed!

Stacy W.


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Ruined by Amy Tintera

ruinedI have to admit I am a fan of women who are powerful in any of the fictional books I read. Ruined by Amy Tintera is another prime example of a heroine named Em that is powerful, skillful, and mischievous at times. Em’s home world has been damaged by war and her parents were killed and her Ruined sister is missing. Ruined in Em’s home world are highly revered, however in the rest of the surrounding kingdoms they are feared due to their magical powers. Em has a plan that will save her sister as well as enact revenge up the enemy’s kingdom. Her ingenious idea was to infiltrate the enemy and pretend to be the prince’s betrothed Mary. At first her plan is going well to kill the enemy but as the book goes on her feelings start to change. Will it be enough of a change of feelings to save her sister and the rest of the Ruined?

Jolene L.


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Tippecanoe County Public Library * 627 South Street * Lafayette, IN * 47901 * 765 429-0100