Thursday, September 29, 2011

Maureen Johnson - The Name of the Star Launch Party

"How many of you have always dreamed of being killed by Jack The Ripper?"  The host/organizer of The Name of the Star Launch Party asked us as we waited for Maureen Johnson to appear.  Maybe I haven't necessarily dreamed of being killed by him, but I sure have always been intrigued by the famous historical killer.  So, when I saw that Books of Wonder was hosting this event, I had to go. 

Photo by Rachel Scroggins.
Maureen was the keynote speaker at the Book Blogger Convention in 2010 and had the audience roaring with laughter.  Her launch party was no different. She articulates her feelings and observations with a large dose of humour.  Her first words to her (very) large audience were "Holy crap there are a lot of you."  She went on to detail how she thought of the story.  When she was in London conducting research for 13 Little Blue Envelopes, her guide kept mentioning hauntings and ghosts.  In Maureen's mind, if everything was really haunted in England, the government would have a system with paperwork to handle all the ghosts.  She thought, "What if Jack The Ripper was a ghost?  That might be really bad."   

Photo by Rachel Scroggins.
Maureen discovered that not much is truly known about Jack The Ripper and most of what we know was made up by the media in order to sell newspapers. Johnson noted, "Sensationalism of media hasn't changed."  The actual file that Scotland Yard has for the Whitechapel murders is quite small.  Files were stolen on Jack The Ripper or they had gotten rid of them.  A lot of what is actually known today is conjecture and it is not known how many people he really killed.  Maureen posed the question, "Why are people so fascinated with murders that took place over 100 years ago?"  That would take up a whole other post for me to personally answer.  What about you?

Maureen then showed us her YA Saves t-shirts and mentioned the notorious woman who wrote an article in the Wall Street Journal against YA. "If you're here," Maureen said "you're a punk."  I'm sure that statement has elevated her to hero status in many eyes.  To get your own YA Saves t-shirt, visit (Don't Forget To Be Awesome).  100% of the proceeds of the sale of these shirts go to Reading is Fundamental.  The evening ended with t-shirt giveaways, signing books, cupcakes and wine. 

I'm giving away one signed copy of The Name of the Star by Maureen Johnson.

Please fill out the Rafflectopter form below.
Extra entries are optional.

This contest is open internationally.
See my contest policy HERE.

Please note: This is my first time utilizing Rafflecopter, so please bear with me!

Good Luck!

Monday, September 26, 2011

Dark Places.

Title/Author: Dark Places by Gillian Flynn.

Genre: Dark Fiction/Crime Fiction/Thriller.

Publisher: Three Rivers Press.

Source: Purchased.

Favorite character: Libby Day.

Favorite quote:

All in all: Powerful, dark and engrossing.

Synopsis: When Libby Day's mother and two older sisters were slaughtered in the family's Kansas farmhouse, it was seven-year-old Libby's testimony that sent her 15-year-old brother, Ben, to prison for life. Desperate for cash 24 years later, Libby reluctantly agrees to meet members of the Kill Club, true crime enthusiasts who bicker over famous cases. She's shocked to learn most of them believe Ben is innocent and the real killer is still on the loose. Though initially interested only in making a quick buck hocking family memorabilia, Libby is soon drawn into the club's pseudo-investigation, and begins to question what exactly she saw—or didn't see—the night of the tragedy. Flynn fluidly moves between cynical present-day Libby and the hours leading up to the murders through the eyes of her family members. When the truth emerges, it's so twisted that even the most astute readers won't have predicted

My Thoughts: Oh my God. OhmyGodOhmyGodOhmyGod. Wait, I already said that when I finished Flynn’s first novel Sharp Objects.

Well, I’m saying it again. Flynn has written another mesmerizing novel. Maybe “written” is too tame. She has created a world, brought characters to life and crafted a story with an intricate scenario.

The narrative switches from main character Libby Day’s voice in the present to third person pov from Patti (the mother of the Day family) and Ben (who was convicted) leading up to the murder of the Day family twenty four years ago. The events finally crash into each other exposing truth, secrets and lies in a stunning revelation. The plot is filled with details that circle around to serve the story and keep it moving forward. While reading Dark Places, I didn’t realize at the time that a certain plot point or detail was a clue that would fit in later. At the end, it felt like I had traversed a maze and picked up pieces of a puzzle along the way.

Libby Day is an honest, damaged character (physically and mentally) who never received the best tools for coping with the tragedy she endured. She is not someone you might trust or be particularly drawn to in real life, as self pity and guilt aren’t the most positive qualities and make an unflattering combination. However, her character flaws stem from her vulnerability and she quickly endeared me to her with her honesty and tenaciousness. She hatches a plan in order to make income that quickly becomes a search for the truth. I really have to say all the characters are believable and jump off the page. They are your neighbors, the woman in the grocery store, people you see on the news. Even the most outrageous characters are so real and I think part of it is because their inappropriate and even crazy behavior is seen through others. There is no attempt to get into their head, there is just observations. Everyone is simply fascinating.

The writing is strong, significant, powerful, dark and engrossing. Flynn fits the scenes to the story’s mood and makes the world a dreary, depressing landscape yet at the same time the words themselves and how they fit together are lovely and rhythmical. The words flow making an easy read out of a dark, disturbing story.

Dark Places took hold of me and held me until I finished it. I don’t think it’s a story I will ever forget. I urge you to read this. It is something very special.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Frightful Fall Read-a-Thon: October 3-9, 2011.

I stumbled onto this awesome sight today called Castle Macabre.  It's a horror blog brought to you by Michele at  The True Book Addict.  Two blogs?  Wow, that is very impressive.  So, I'm not only looking forward to this read-a-thon, but I'm looking forward to visiting this blog frequently to satisfy my never ending horror addiction.

For complete rules on how to sign up for the Frightful Fall Read-a-Thon, click HERE.

Frightful Fall Reviewers Challenge - October 1-31, 2011.

Aw Yeah!  More Halloween goodness!   I am so excited to join the Frightful Fall Reviewers Challenge this October.  This chilling challenge is brought to you by Haunted OrchidFiction State of Mind and Castle Macabre.

Basically, to participate you just need to read spooky books and link up your reviews!  Right up my alley!   For complete rules please go HERE.

Happy Birthday Stephen King!

Dear Mr. King,

I just wanted to wish you a very Happy Birthday and many more.

Thank you for scaring me for over half my life. We’ve had some good times over the years and I really appreciate your writing, unique stories, and ability to pull me into what is happening to your characters.

It’s really hard for me to feel that spine tingling creepiness in the bottom of my soul, but you have managed to do it several times. Remember when I read Christine? I rooted for Arnie at first, and then he just became frightening. Well I guess it wasn’t really his fault. I know he was possessed. Oh and how ‘bout when I read IT? That was truly freaky. I will never forget the scene when Bev was in the bathroom and the blood kept coming up the sink or when she visited her childhood home and I realized that the old woman who supposedly lived there was really Pennywise. Oh my gosh and what about when I read Pet Semetery?! That was the book that really scared me. Me! Me who never gets scared! And, I was reading it in my dorm room on the third floor! Tons of people above me, tons of people below me, but I was scared and certain some undead creature was going to find its way into my room.

And remember how obsessed I became over The Stand? I totally love that book and I have to admit I had a huge crush on Nick Andros! I really wanted to re-write some scenes and put myself in as his love interest. Remember how you worded things to make me think one thing was going to happen when it was something else entirely? You are very clever like that. And then when the unedited version of The Stand came out, I felt like it was my birthday! I was so excited because I could get more of that world.

I apologize for all those times I got mad at you when you killed off someone I really liked. But I felt genuine sorrow for the characters that I lost and I went into mourning a little bit.  I was very attached to so many people that you introduced me to.  I knew I could pick up the book again and they would come to life once more though, so that helped a little.

I don’t want to embarrass you, but remember all the times I shook my head in awe when I read On Writing? I just couldn’t believe all the insightful advice and revelations that you shared without being pretentious about it. Thank you for being so real and for sharing your thoughts, your faults and your demons. Remember how you talked about writing with the door closed and writing with the door open? I totally got that! And even your technical writing advice was helpful!

Remember when you read Bag of Bones to me?  That was really fun.  I liked knowing that the story was read as the writer envisioned and it made me feel that you really care about me as your reader...because you took the time to read it to me!  Does that make sense?  Anyway, I think you did a really great job with the narration and I've been looking for more of your stories that you've recorded yourself.

Wow, I've read so many of your books!  It's like we're totally bff's, don't you think?  I thought about what kind of cake you'd like and I came up with a few choices that I feel would be more appropo than a typical buttercream.  Just let me know which one you like best and I'll start baking.

I really do wish you a very Happy Birthday and look forward to being entertained, mesmerized and scared by what you have going on in your imagination for many years to come.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Top 10 Tuesday - Top 10 Books I Feel As Though Everyone Has Read But Me.

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme created and hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. Please click HERE for rules and to view their Top 10 for this week.

Wow, I think I could go on forever with this list and with each book I think of, I feel guilty.  It's one reason why I came up with my Dusty Volumes Challenge.  Maybe this topic should be a challenge in itself.  Here is my list, in no particular order.

1. City of Bones by Cassandra Clare.  I read the first 10 pages and then put it down for some reason.  I need to get back to finish this before the movie comes out.

2. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson.  I really do want to get to this!

3.  Any book by H.P. Lovecraft.  Yes Horror fans, I'm hanging my head in *utter* shame.  I don't know why I haven't gotten to these yet, I just haven't.  I really have no reasonable excuse.  In fact, I was thinking of a Lovecraft Challenge.

4. The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson. I just picked this up at Borders so I hope to get to it for the upcoming Halloween season. 

5. I Am Legend and Hell House by Richard Matheson.  Scary...must read...!

6. Dune by Frank Herbert. I grew up in a house of avid science fiction readers.  Me, not so much. 

7. The Turn of the Screw by Henry James.  The movie with Debra Carr is one of my favorites and I want to see if I like the book as well.

8. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte and Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte.  I feel so incredibly lame for never reading these!.  Maybe I should try to get to them by the end of the year.

9. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins.  Everyone says this is so good and I'm sure I would enjoy it.  I just don't think I would pick this up, especially in favor of any of the books above.

10. Eclipse and Breaking Dawn by Stephanie Myer.  Yeah...never gonna happen.

Are you surprised, shocked or appalled by any of the books on my list?  Which ones should I try to get to first?  Hopefully, within a few months this list will get smaller!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Blood Rights.

Title/Author: Blood Rights by Kristen Painter. 

Genre: PNF/UF. 

Publisher: Orbit.

Source: BEA.

Favorite character: Chrysabelle.

Favorite quote: n/a.

All in all: An interesting twist of vampire mythology.

SynopsisThe lacy gold mapped her entire body. A finely-wrought filigree of stars, vines, flowers, butterflies, ancient symbols and words ran from her feet, up her legs, over her narrow waist, spanned her chest and finished down her arms to the tips of her fingers.

Born into a life of secrets and service, Chrysabelle’s body bears the telltale marks of a comarré—a special race of humans bred to feed vampire nobility. When her patron is murdered, she becomes the prime suspect, which sends her running into the mortal world…and into the arms of Malkolm, an outcast vampire cursed to kill every being from whom he drinks.
Now Chrysabelle and Malkolm must work together to stop a plot to merge the mortal and supernatural worlds. If they fail, a chaos unlike anything anyone has ever seen will threaten to

My Thoughts: Blood Rights takes place in the not too distant future and jumps full force in a secret world of Vampires and their comarres (lifetime companions who provide them with blood). What I liked most about this book is the unique details within the story.  The reason the comarre exist and their role in the vampire world.  The gold thread sewn into comarre skin and the details behind it. The physical differences between a comarre and an ordinary human.

The book was a pretty fast read for me and I enjoyed the overall story, tone and the writing.  The concept of the book is interesting and contains several plot twists that I actually didn't see coming.  The author didn't need to re-build an entire world, but only sprinkle in some interesting nuances.  I wasn't lost as there were really only a few things mentioned that let the reader know the setting isn't exactly present day.  Some people may not like this, but I also thought that the different viewpoints within the chapters, made the story move. 

There were some scenes that felt a bit forced and a bit cliche for me.  But let's face it, there are several cliched scenes in a lot of books of this genre and fans still love them.  It only took a few chapters to realize that Blood Rights has heavy romance elements that, for me, reminded me more of that genre than a straight UF or PNF.

To be honest, I feel the story is stronger than the characters.  It's not that I disliked them, I just didn't love them. I personally felt that Chrysabelle had the strongest connection for me.  She is physically and emotionally strong.  She knows what she needs to do and takes steps to reach her goal.  Mal, the "tortured" male protagonist "with a past," is less convincing for me, but I still enjoyed him as a foil and love interest for Chrysabelle.  I thought that Tatiana could have really been an interesting character as the main female vampire antagonist.  However, the hints to her past where she shows vulnerability is glossed over.  I would have liked to have been able to delve deeper with her.

Also, there is a large plot point that either I totally missed or it just wasn't explained.  ***SPOILER ALERT: First of all Mal got Chrysabelle's Blood Rights, but I still don't understand how.  It was actually another vampire who did the transfusion and stuck the needle in.  So how did Mal end up with her rights?  Was it because they were in Mal's home when it happened?  :END SPOILER ALERT***  However, these misgivings weren't enough to not enjoy what I liked.

There is another book being published to continue this story and I think knowing that also helped me understand that not everything was going to be solved in this one.  I'm not totally against reading the next book, but at the same time I'm not in a rush to read it.  However, I do think that fans of PNF and UF will find this an entertaining and fun read.


Friday, September 16, 2011

I'm trying!

Been very sick this past week and trying to catch up.  In the meantime please enjoy this video of our cat.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

In My Mailbox (September 11, 2011).

In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren.  Please click HERE for complete rules and to check out other IMM posts. 

~Vampire Academy boxed set by Richelle Mead
~Books of Blood 1-3 by Clive Barker.
~Coldheart Canyon: A Hollywood Ghost Story by Clive Barker.
~Mr. B. Gone by Clive Barker.
~Rosemary and Rue by Seanan McGuire.
~An Artificial Night by Seanan McGuire.
~Late Eclipses by Seanan McGuire.
~A Local Habitation by Seanan McGuire.
~The Monstrumologist by Richard Yancey.
~Demon Bound by Caitlin Kittredge.
~Bone Gods by Caitlin Kittredge.
~The Seventh Witch by Shirley Damsgaard.
~The Witch's Grave by Shirley Damsgaard.
~Dying Bites by DD Barant.
~Vampire Sunrise by Carole Nelson Douglas.
~Flashback by Dan Simmons.
~Witches on the Road Tonight by Sheri Holman.
~The Agency by Y.S. Lee.
~Nevermore by Kelly Creagh.
~The Breaking by Marcus Pelligrimas.
~Howling Legion by Marcus Pelligrimas.
~Vampire Uprising  by Marcus Pelligrimas.
~Teeth of Beasts by Marcus Pelligrimas.
~A History of Ghosts by Peter H. Aykroyd with Angela Narth.
~Tuck by Stephen Lawhead.
~The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson.
~The Seance by John Harwood.

~Awakenings by Edward Lazarelli. (Thanks Lisa!)

9/11 - 10 years later.

I will never forget it.

I remember in exact detail where I was, what I was doing and what I was thinking the moment I heard the first plane hit the north tower.  I remember almost everything about that day in surreal clarity.

I wasn't planning on writing a post about 9/11.  This is a book blog, after all, but I can't seem to not post something.  A small tribute, a tiny slice of homage on the worldwide web.  I'll keep it short.

I live 50 miles north of New York City.  My husband watched the towers fall from the roof of a building he was working construction on, I watched on a television screen.  I waited numbly until I heard that two dear friends were home safe and had not gone to work that day.  One of them called in sick and one is a Port Authority cop who happened to have switched shifts with somebody.

Less then a year later guests came to town and wanted to see the WTC site.  I didn't.  But I took them down anyway.  I had to go through the memorial site and museum that was erected at that time alone.  The experience was painful and powerful.

I understand not wanting to re-hash the memories and I understand wanting to move on and I understand not having a lot of time on a vacation.  However, if you are ever in NYC, whether it is 10 years later, 20 or 30, I encourage you to visit Ground Zero and pay tribute to the thousands of people who are now heroes in their own stories.

You will never forget it.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Replacement.

Title/Author: The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff.

Genre: YA/Urban Fantasy.

Publisher: Razorbill.

Source: Purchased.

Favorite character: Mackie, Emma, Tate and Roswell.

Favorite quote: Too many to list!

All in all: Beautiful.

Synopsis: Mackie Doyle is not one of us. Though he lives in the small town of Gentry, he comes from a world of tunnels and black murky water, a world of living dead girls ruled by a little tattooed princess. He is a Replacement, left in the crib of a human baby sixteen years ago. Now, because of fatal allergies to iron, blood, and consecrated ground, Mackie is fighting to survive in the human world.

Mackie would give anything to live among us, to practice on his bass or spend time with his crush, Tate. But when Tate's baby sister goes missing, Mackie is drawn irrevocably into the underworld of Gentry, known as Mayhem. He must face the dark creatures of the Slag Heaps and find his rightful place, in our world, or theirs.

My Thoughts: When I saw the cover of this book I went nuts. It had to be something dark, mysterious and sinister right? But after I bought The Replacement it sat on my shelf for a very long time. I mean it couldn’t be that great? Right? The characters couldn’t be that compelling or the story couldn’t be that mesmerizing? Right? Wrong. Very, very wrong.

The story is familiar, yet the author’s spin on events makes the plot clever, fresh and exciting. It’s a thriller as much as a supernatural story and I was captivated from page one.

The writing is beautiful, skillful and vivid. Yovanoff uses very little to convey a lot. Her words are powerful and put together in combinations that convey emotions as much as descriptions and surroundings. The feelings that Mackie expresses are complete, sophisticated and dramatic. The teens are conveyed as very realistic in their language and actions. I like the inclusion of mature content without being graphic. The romantic scenes were steamy but classy.

I think what I loved are the characters. Mackie’s voice is strong yet wistful and I could feel his longing and loneliness, how lost he is in his own skin. The way his sister Emma loves him is beyond devotion without being over the top, and Mackie’s realization about the effects of her dedication is breathtaking. Tate, one of Mackie’s love interests is a total badass who is believable. I adored her. She is hard to describe without her sounding cliché, but she is not. She is so real. I also absolutely love his best friend Roswell. He is constant, reassuring, understanding and he always, always has Mackie's back.  All of the characters are vibrant and authentic. There was no eye rolling while reading this book, I believed everything.

Another aspect I really enjoyed is the music.  The author knows what she is talking about.  The scenes and descriptions of watching bands and playing were forceful, beautiful. “The bass was low and inevitable.” “Her voice was like lonliness. It was regret.” Stunning! What I also realized is the performances that mirror each other. In Mackie’s life he is trying to pretend he is normal and fit in and it's an exhausting performance. When he plays in the band it’s another kind of performance, one that frees him.

An ingredient of Fairy Tales is transformation and I loved the flipping of the story.  Instead of someone going to an otherworld, Mackie is placed in ours.  Instead of someone from that world being powerful, Mackie is weakened by ours.  I also loved how he goes through his own transformation and revelation at the end.

I also loved that this is a stand alone book. I went to a book signing where Brenna spoke and she said she felt the story is complete so there is no need for a sequel or trilogy. She felt she told Mackie’s story.  I’m so happy to say that the story is even better than I anticipated and it surpassed my expectations.  I was encouraged by Misty of The Book Rat to read this and now I hope I can encourage you to do so as well.

Other Editions:

Sunday, September 4, 2011

In My Mailbox (September 4, 2011)

In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren.  Please click HERE for complete rules and to check out other IMM posts. 

I'm having some issues with the video on Blogger, but you can click here to watch the video on my YouTube channel by clicking HERE.

~Bloodfever by Karen Marie Moning.
~Faefever by Karen Marie Moning.
~Dreamfever by Karen Marie Moning.
~Vampires not Invited by Cheyenne McCray.
~No Werewolves Allowed by Cheyenne McCray.
~Demons not Included by Cheyenne McCray.
~A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness.
~The Last Werewolf by Glen Duncan.
~Cold Blooded by Lisa Jackson.
~Walking Evil by Kylie Brant.
~Ghouls Gone Wild by Victoria Laurie.
~Life As We Knew It by Susan Beth Pfeffer.

Won from Dreadful Tales:
~Zombies: A Record of the Year of Infection Field Notes by Dr. Robert Twombly.

Friday, September 2, 2011

The Night Circus.

Title/Author: The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern.

Genre: Fantasy.

Publisher: Doubleday.

Source: BEA.

Favorite character: Herr Friedrick Thiessen.

Favorite quote: “Should you choose your questions more carefully, you may receive more satisfying answers.” Tsukiko.

“It’s as if there is love and loss at the same time, together in a kind of beautiful pain.” Isobel.

All in all: AMAZING!

Synopsis The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night. But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus per­formers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

My Thoughts: This is not just a book to be read, it is a book to experience. To delve into these pages is the epitome of what a story should do; transport you and make you feel.

The feelings that I did have while enjoying this story: wonder, fascination, delight, longing, heartbreak and deep contentment.

The Night Circus is told via an omniscient pov focusing on several characters and also interspersed with narratives that describe what you see and experience within Le Cirque des Reves (The Circus of Dreams). It seems to me that each person leaves the Circus somehow changed. Perhaps they come out believing that magic is real or perhaps they simply believe that it is real while inside the gates.

The writing is poetic without being pretentious and it gave me not just a clear picture, but a clear emotion. I didn’t just envision it, I was among the characters and within the setting, helped along by such phrases such as:
“But you think perhaps you can smell caramel wafting through the evening breeze, beneath the crisp scent of the autumn leaves.”
“The air itself is magical. Crisp and sweet in her lungs as she breathes…”
There are several other gorgeous descriptions and lines, but I want you to discover them on your own.  Also, the writing and overall tone is so convincing in a gentle yet powerful way that events which occur written by someone less talented would not be believable.

Did you ever go to a Renaissance Faire and at some point in the day feel like you’re in a magical realm? A flute may be playing in the background or a costumed actor may walk by, but for that one moment, you are in another time. That is what Les Cirques des Reves is, a place where patrons explore magical and unique experiences, an illusionist, a hall of mirrors, a cloud room.

The characters are vibrant and rich. From the main characters Celia and Marco to minor players such as Elizabeth, the woman who gives Bailey (another key player) a red scarf. Some motives are veiled until they fall together like a completed puzzle. My favorite character is Friedrich Thiessen, who is commissioned to make a clock for the circus and then becomes an ardent fan. There is nothing out of the ordinary about him except for his talent in clockmaking, but he is genuine and enthusiastic. When asked why he never asked for any inside secrets he replied, “I prefer to remain unenlightened, to better appreciate the dark.”

The fans and followers of the circus are one of my favorite aspects of the story. They are called "reveurs" and they form a bond with each other through their love of the circus and their experiences. They kind of remind me of Dead-Heads who instead of a band, follow this special circus and collect mementoes, meet with other reveurs and reminisce, contemplate and discuss Les Cirque. They wear a touch of red to distinguish themselves and recognize each other, a red scarf, a red flower, a red ribbon. I’ve seen this group camaraderie at conventions I’ve gone to where people who may not see each other more than once a year form a special relationship united by a common love.

One of the main themes in this book is magic. What is it? Is it real? What is happening as you step into the Circus? Are all these wondrous things possible? “Nothing’s impossible.” Poppet says, who was born and raised in the Circus. You will get very interesting theories on the subject within the pages.

The large clock that is displayed in the circus seems to symbolize another theme: time. The fates of the players, the duration of the challenge, the precision of the performances and the decisions that each character makes all depend on timing. The story also switches between two different (yet not so far apart) time periods and I could almost hear that clock ticking until the sand runs out and the events culminate in the final solution.

This is the most beautiful, magical, creative story I’ve read in a long time and I will keep this on my bookshelf forever. I may have to start a reveur-like group for the book itself. Who’s in?

Other editions:

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