An empowering collection of stories centered on, created by, and honing in on women and nonbinary folks from all walks of life and backgrounds who have made a difference for women throughout the world.
I loved this collection for its message, of course, but also for its diversity in artist renderings', stories, and sense of joyful empowerment.
Art styles: ★★★★★
Wonderful Women of the World is a new spin on an old form of female sharing and empowerment. When Wonder Woman came onto the comic book scene, there was a feature created by trailblazer Alice Marble from the years 1943 to 1954. It featured this very concept--short biographies and art highlighting real women and real stories, and how they were currently changing the world.
Now it's 2021, our nonbinary friends have a seat at the table, and we're learning about the voices that changing the shape of our world today in meaningful ways.
I absolutely loved this collection. There are some famous faces in here--Beyonce, Serena Williams, Malala Yousafzai, and Ruth Bader Ginsberg, to name a few—but the women and nonbinaries behind the curtain are also famous trailblazers in their own right. This collection is edited by the lovely Laurie Halse Anderson herself, and features art and stories from a large group of content creators. Some of my already-favorited authors included Melissa Marr (my Fae queen!), Marieke Nijkamp, and Kami Garcia.
A powerful collection of diverse art, stories, and voices. Recommended for all!
Many thanks to DC Comics for my copy in exchange for an honest review.
Another adventure with Skunk and Badger?? We are blessed. This one took everything I loved about the first adventure and made it bigger and better. I love this adorable series.
Writing style: ★★★★★
This is the second adventure with Skunk and Badger. If you're new to the series, check out this one first!
As a grown woman with no kids, I guess I'm an odd age demographic for this series, but let me tell you something: I absolutely loved this book. When people say "oh, this is perfect for ALL AGES!" sometimes what they mean is, it's perfect for kids but not dumb for adults to sit through. Well, Skunk and Badger's adventures in Egg Marks the Spot are truly for all ages. I loved this story and had no issues with it as an adult. The perfect, relaxing read to enjoy with a cozy cup of tea.
In Egg Marks the Spot, Badger and Skunk are doing just fine as roommates in Aunt Lula's brownstone. Skunk's latest obsession is obtaining the book review portion of the "New Yak Times" (I love the references, guys, I LOVE them) and Badger is doing Important Rock Work in his rock room.
But then, Skunk finds out that his previous neighbor, G. Hedgehog, is back in town and wants to steal his pages of the "New Yak Times Book Review" from him to "resume their previous arrangement." Skunk cannot stand for this - he must leave town for the week to get his mind off of this tragedy.
So Skunk proposes a camping trip with Badger. Badger is all for this plan, as he loves exploring and looking for more rocks for Rock Science. In fact, it will give Badger the ability to look for a replacement agate for his collection. Several years ago, his precious agate was taken by his cousin, Fisher, never to be returned!
So with Skunk avoiding G. Hedgehog and Badger avoiding thoughts of his stealing cousin, they set off into the woods. With some chickens, of course. (See the first book to get the low-down on the chickens.)
But there's something special in the woods this time... and Badger and Skunk are not going to believe it!
There, that's it. I'm not going to tell you anymore. Read it for yourself and love it! I know I did.
Thank you to Algonquin Young Readers for my copy in exchange for an honest review.
This really worked for me, mainly because I’ve already ready the books it’s based on, but still. If you're ALSO obsessed with this era of history, then check this out! Another book to add to the canon of fiction and nonfiction centered on Chicago, the World’s Fair, and H.H. Holmes.
1890s Chicago. The World's Fair. All the glitz and glamour in the world focused on the Windy City...and yet something darker lurks the in streets beneath.
Women are disappearing. They're never seen again. And too many signs point to the Castle, a new hotel built near the grounds of the Fair.
Zuretta's sister, Ruby, left their small Utah town to escape to the wilds of Chicago to find a better life. When Ruby's weekly letters stop arriving, Zuretta knows something has happened. She goes to Chicago to investigate.
Once in the city, Zuretta realizes that Ruby is not the only girl lost in Chicago...not by a long shot. And the men of the police force and the famous Pinkerton detective agency have bigger fish to fry than helping one country bumpkin find her naïve sister.
When all signs point to the Castle hotel, Zuretta decides that she needs to infiltrate it from within. She becomes the Castle's new maid, under the watchful eye of the young owner... Henry Holmes.
The Castle's winding, nonsensical architecture entraps Zuretta while the screams in the walls haunt her nights. What's going on at the Castle, and just who, exactly, is behind it all?
Zuretta's going to find out—and hopefully escape with her life.
Ok so right off the bat, this is another one of those books that I think is either going to really, REALLY work for people... or be a huge miss.
It's a huge YES from me, but I think a lot of my enjoyment came from knowing way more about this story's real-life historical roots. If you've already read Erik Larson's Devil in the White City, then you're extremely primed to like this one too as The Perfect Place to Die is a "perfect" (couldn't resist that pun) young adult fictional companion to that story.
However, if you've NOT read any of the supporting works (Devil in the White City, fictional renditions like Kerri Maniscalco's Capturing the Devil, etc.) then you're left with the main plot itself, which does have some quirks/weaknesses as it attempts to follow the historical accuracies. It's not the most dramatic of stories, and it's also not the most complex—but again, it's because it's following the historical blueprint.
An interesting one for sure. I enjoyed the read and will definitely recommend it to the right audience.
Many thanks to the publisher for my copy in exchange for an honest review.
Becket's back with her "Beautiful Alerts" and charming life in the country with this latest installment focused on pets...as well as a poignant message on expectations.
Enjoyment: ★★★ 1/2
All Pets Allowed is the second book in the Blackberry Farm series, but in good middle grade fashion it's a easy entry point for new readers looking for an adventure.
Having just read the first book, The Becket List, in preparation for this read I found this second book to be a charming upgrade from the first novel—with lots of continued goodness as well as fresh looks at some of the characters and plot.
Becket is a treat to follow. Her enthusiasm and near-eternal positivity are honestly surprising to me as a jaded, pessimistic adult—but that's not Becket's problem, that's on me! I loved being reminded of the optimism and resilience of children. It's an amazing thing.
Overall, I really enjoyed Becket's second journey with her twin brother, Nicolas, and their adventures and unexpected speed bumps on the road toward pet ownership and facing expectations.
As Becket would say, a "Beautiful Alert" for this beautiful story!
Thank you so much to the publisher for my copy in exchange for an honest review.
Amy Imogene Reads
Just someone looking for her own door into Wonderland.