About This Blog

This blog was started as a place to post book reviews. The books reviewed here will be mixed. Science Fiction, Fantasy, Romance, General Fiction, NonFiction and more. Both positve and negative reviews will be posted, as well as reviews for books written for all ages and all reading levels.

Many of the books reviewed here are ones that I have purchased for my own reading pleasure. Some, I receive free in exchange for reviews. Beginning in December, 2009 you will know which are the free ones if you read the final paragraph of my reviews.

Also of note: I choose what I will read, attempting to avoid the books on which I would end up writing a negative review... but I have been known to make mistakes. Thus you see some one and two star reviews here. Since I don't enjoy writing negative reviews, I only write them if the review was promised, or if the book was so exceedingly bad, I just had to say so. Regardless of the percentage of positive to negative reviews on this blog, I give my honest opinion each and every time, and have never received financial compensation for posting my reviews.

Note that, except for fair use portions quoted from some of the books reviewed, all copyright in the content of the reviews belongs to Lady Dragoness.

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Secrets Revealed

Deep Secret
By Diana Wynne Jones
Hardcover: 383 pages
Publisher: Tor Books (March 1999)
Rated 4 stars of 5 possible

Rupert Venables is the Junior Magid assigned to Earth and also to the planets of the Koyrfonic Empire. When the Emperor dies without a known heir, Rupert begins his investigation and attempts to find the heir, whom Rupert knows must be there somewhere... Then, to complicate matters, Rupert's senior dies and appoints Rupert the senior, which, of course means that Rupert needs to leave the Koyrfonic empire and search Earth for a suitable magid to fill his old position.

The intense and sometimes humorous tale of Rupert's adventures - and mis-adventures - appeals to fantasy lovers, both young and old. The setting of the story in an alternate England adds a layer of charm to the story, even though the envelope of suspension of disbelief is pushed a bit far in some places. Readers deeply engrossed in the story likely won't notice the unbelievability too much.

Recommended for readers age 10 and up who are looking for a page-turning, fun to read adventure.

This review was simultaneously published on Amazon.com, Dragonviews, LibraryThing and YABooks Central.com.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Flights of Fancy

The Pirate Princess And Other Fairy Tales
By Neil Philip
Hardcover, 88 pages
Arthur A. Levine Books (2005)
Rated 5 stars of 5 possible

The characters of these seven fairy tales by Rabbi Nahman of Bratslav are dreamers, darers, doers, questers, finders, keepers, sages, seekers. Their stories will remind you of every fairy tale you've ever known, though they are like none you've ever read before: fascinating adventures folded with deep spiritual meaning, vividly rendered by storyteller Neil Philip and illustrated by artist Mark Weber.*

These little-known stories will appeal to the young and young-at-heart of all ages from the read-to-me set all the way up to adults who enjoy a flight of fancy from time to time. The book is generously illustrated, with color pictures on nearly every page; in fact, some pictures take an entire page all to themselves, yet care was taken to see that the pictures enhance the stories.

The typeface is large and easy to read, with generous spacing between the lines of text. In all, this is a quality production that would be a wonderful gift for the children on your Christmas giving list, perhaps even one that will be cherished by the whole family.

This review has been simultaneously published on Amazon.com, Dragonviews, LibraryThing and YABooks Central.com.

*Book description taken from front flap and copyright of same belongs to author of book.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

A Magical Adventure

Pasha and the Lost Mountain   
by Gary Webster
T.C.C (The Children's Collective)
Kindle format: 304 kb
Paperback: 222 pages
Publisher: Fullproof Publishing Inc (June 26, 2009)
Rated 4 stars of 5 possible.

Pasha and the Lost Mountain is a magical tale about the adventures of two children and their dogs. The ancient plot of good against evil is depicted in a new series of books aimed at young adults who like a little fantasy in their reading material. This fun and fanciful page-turner appeals to all ages.

While some readers may not appreciate some of the humor in this highly readable novel, the majority of readers will probably like the action and adventure the protagonists experience while on their missions. This author, in his debut novel, has created some lovable and realistic characters.

Recommended for readers of fantasy and fiction ages 10 and up.

This review is simultaneously published on Amazon.com, Dragonviews, and LibraryThing.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Sequel Crashes

The Widows of Eastwick
John Updike
Paperback 308 pages
Afred Knopf. NEW YORK (2008)
Rated 3 stars of 5 possible

The Widows of Eastwick is a direct sequel to The Witches of Eastwick, which was published some 20 years before.  Not only a long time between books in a series, but the author went round-about instead of making this an interesting story.

The first half of the book drags on forever, with too much description, very little action or dialogue, and almost nothing of interest for the first 100-150 pages. Near the middle of the book, it gets better - for awhile. Near the end, it becomes more like the beginning of the book, but still more interesting than the very slow start.

Not recommended... unless you're a fan of the author with a *must have* imperitive for all of his books. For most people, this one would be better passed by.

This review is simultaneously published on Library Thing, Dragonviews and Amazon.com

Saturday, September 5, 2009

Sweet Comfort

The Sugar Queen
By Sarah Addison Allen
Hardcover: 288 pages
Publisher: Bantam (May 20, 2008)
Rated 5 stars of 5 possible

Sweet and bidible, yet shy twenty-seven-year-old Josey Cirrini lives with and cares for her aging mother. Though Josey has outgrown her devilish childhood pranks, everyone remembers the unlikeable child she was and will not let Josey forget that part of herself. To compensate for having no friends and comfort herself, Josey eats all manner of sweets and reads romance novels while hiding in her secret closet each night.

Sarah Addison Allen weaves a spell-binding tale of romance and mystery that will keep you on the edge of your seat and turning page after page to find out just how much Josey doesn't know about the father she idolizes, even though he passed from her life when she was still very young. We also discover why Josey's overbearing and quite unpleasant mother is so bitter.

While being somewhat predictable, The Sugar Queen is a fresh look at romance with a small dose of mystery thrown in and generously laced with humor and compassion. This book is eminently readable and not too sticky sweet despite it's constant references to sugary treats in the names of every chapter as well as in several points throughout the text. Recommended for romance readers as well as those looking for something different.

This review is simultaneously published on Amazon.com, Dragonviews, and Library Thing