Review: Hidden – A Child’s Story of the Holocaust

Hidden
Written by  Loïc Dauvillier,  Marc Lizano (Illustrations), Greg Salsedo (Ink), Alexis Siegel (Translator)
To be published on April 1, 2014 by First Second
80 Pages
Graphic Novel – Historical
Received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

17934457Synopsis:

In this gentle, poetic young graphic novel, Dounia, a grandmother, tells her granddaughter the story even her son has never heard: how, as a young Jewish girl in Paris, she was hidden away from the Nazis by a series of neighbors and friends who risked their lives to keep her alive when her parents had been taken to concentration camps.

Hidden ends on a tender note, with Dounia and her mother rediscovering each other as World War II  ends . . . and a young girl in present-day France becoming closer to her grandmother, who can finally, after all those years, tell her story. With words by Loïc Dauvillier and art by Marc Lizano and Greg Salsedo, this picture book-style comic for young readers is a touching read.

Hidden is a beautifully written and illustrated book about a horrific time in our history. I felt extremely comfortable for my eight-year-old to read it as well. It is a perfect introduction for a young minds without scarring them and giving them nightmares.

However, as an adult, I felt all the pain and humiliation that was portrayed in Hidden. Dounia had an amazing journey during the war. So many people risked their lives to save hers. This book depicted her incredibly scary journey in fairly simplistic terms to make sure that a child like Dounia could feel her fear and uncertainty.

I loved that Dounia began her story with her granddaughter on her lap. It brings in a younger generation who have no idea what happened during the Holocaust. I really love multi-generational stories where the older generation tells their life story to the younger generation. There is so much wisdom, and sadness to their stories. It breaks your heart while at the same time, heals it.

I really can’t wait to share this book with my daughter. I feel she’s not quite ready for Diary of Anne Frank; but Hidden is a great way to introduce a very scary time in our history. I will give her a good sense of what happened so they will never forget; because the millions of people who were murdered CANNOT be forgotten.

KinxsBookNookScore5

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

ItsMonday

Welcome to It’s Monday! What Are You Reading! This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… you never know where that next “must read” book will come from! Hosted by Book Journey

Last Week:

This Week:

Floats the Dark Shadow by Yves Fey

Project Darcy by Jane Odiwe

18684482A LOVE STORY LOST IN PRIDE & PREJUDICE… It is high summer when Ellie Bentley joins an archaeological dig at Jane Austen’s childhood home. She’s always had a talent for ‘seeing’ into the past and is not easily disturbed by her encounters with Mr Darcy’s ghost at the house where she’s staying. When Ellie travels into the past she discovers exactly what happened whilst Jane danced her way through the snowy winter of 1796. As Steventon Rectory and all its characters come to life, Ellie discovers the true love story lost in Pride and Prejudice – a tale which has its own consequences for her future destiny, changing her life beyond imagination.

 

 

Audiobook:

Changes by Jim Butcher

Long ago, Susan Rodriguez was Harry Dresden’s lover-until she was attacked by his enemies, leaving her torn between6585201 her own humanity and the bloodlust of the vampiric Red Court. Susan then disappeared to South America, where she could fight both her savage gift and those who cursed her with it.

Now Arianna Ortega, Duchess of the Red Court, has discovered a secret Susan has long kept, and she plans to use it-against Harry. To prevail this time, he may have no choice but to embrace the raging fury of his own untapped dark power. Because Harry’s not fighting to save the world…

He’s fighting to save his child.

What are you reading?

Review: The Penny Thief

The Penny Thief
Written by Christophe Paul and translated by Jennifer Adcock
Published 2013
386 pages
Thriller
Received from the author in exchange for an honest review

18659792Synopsis:

…and if someone was robbing a bank cent by cent without anyone realizing it…

Paris, Montmartre and La Defense, the ultra-modern business district with their skyscrapers. Henri Pichon is a quietly sharp programmer  whose daily routine is altered by a fortuitous accident from which will change the fate of everyone around. A different crime/detective: a story of love, hate, greed, murder…and a refreshing touch of black humor. How far are you willing to go for the money?

The Penny Thief is a wonderful depiction on what greed can do to a human being. Greed can absolutely destroy and that was shown extremely well throughout the book. The story flowed well and was full of fast-paced action and intrigue. The race to find the money will definitely make your skin crawl due to the wickedness of greed.

I felt that Henri was a great anti-hero; he’s definitely not perfect. He begins as a victim but as the story unfolds his character becomes very complex; so complex it is very hard to view him as a hero. At times, I found him a little bit disturbing but likeable as well.  I really enjoyed the romantic side of Henri. His expressions of love were so creative. Mr. Paul wrote a very interesting character in Henri Pichon.

Jean-Phillippe Maillard is another interesting character who doesn’t fit into one definitely archetype. I rather liked him; even with his greedy shortcomings. His love for his daughter, Tash, redeemed him. I’m not sure if he deserved his ending. It was incredibly harsh.

Of course, there are true villains in The Penny Thief. Pierre Gabriel turns into a complete ogre due to his greed. In the end, he would do anything to get all the pennies; no matter who got hurt. He is a prime example of what can happen when greed totally overwhelms you.

Besides the greed and betrayal, there are so aspects of true kindness in this story. Marcel, Etienne, Yvette and Valerie gave the story a sense of compassion that balanced out the awfulness of greed. Their characters gave the story more texture and emotion where you won’t drown in the corruption of money.

The Penny Thief is full of intrigue and suspense. It is, also, very intelligent and will keep you engaged until the very end.

KinxsBookNookScore4

It’s Monday! What are you reading?!

ItsMonday

Welcome to It’s Monday! What Are You Reading! This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… you never know where that next “must read” book will come from! Hosted by Book Journey.

Last Week:

This Week:

The Penny Thief by Christophe Paul, Jennifer Adcock (translator)

18659792… and if someone was robbing a bank cent by cent without anyone realizing it …

PARIS, Montmartre and La Défense, the ultra-modern business district with their office skyscrapers.
Henri Pichon is a quietly sharp programmer whose daily routine is altered by a fortuitous accident from which will change the fate of everyone around him.
A different crime/detective novel: a story of love, hate, greed, murder … and a refreshing touch of black humor.
How far are you willing to go for the money? …

 

 

 

Floats the Dark Shadow: a mystery of Paris by Yves Fey13646255

Young American painter Theodora Faraday struggles to become an artist in Belle Époque Paris. She’s tasted the champagne of success, illustrating poems for the Revenants, a group of poets led by her adored cousin, Averill. When children she knows vanish mysteriously, Theo confronts Inspecteur Michel Devaux who suspects the Revenants are involved. Theo refuses to believe the killer could be a friend-could be the man she loves. Classic detection and occult revelation lead Michel and Theo through the dark underbelly of Paris, from catacombs to asylums, to the obscene ritual of a Black Mass. Following the maze of clues they discover the murderer believes he is the reincarnation of the most evil serial killer in the history of France-Gilles de Rais. Once Joan of Arc’s lieutenant, after her death he plunged into an orgy of evil. The Church burned him at the stake for heresy, sorcery, and the depraved murder of hundreds of peasant children. Whether deranged mind or demonic passion incite him, the killer must be found before he strikes again.

Audiobook

Turn Coat by Jim Butcher (Dresden #11)

3475161When it comes to the magical ruling body known as the White Council, Harry keeps his nose clean and his head down. For years, the Council has held a death mark over Harry’s head. He’s still thought of as a black sheep by some;and as a sacrificial lamb by others. But none regard him with more suspicion and disdain than Morgan, a veteran Warden with a grudge against anyone who bends the rules.

Like Harry.

So when Morgan turns up asking for help, Harry isn’t exactly eager to leap into action. Morgan has been accused of treason against the White Council;and there’s only one final punishment for that crime. he’s on the run, he wants his name cleared, and he needs someone with a knack for backing the underdog.

Like Harry.

Now Harry must uncover a traitor within the Council, keep a less than agreeable Morgan under wraps, and avoid coming under scrutiny himself. And a single mistake may cost someone his head.

Like Harry…

What are you reading this week?

Barefoot Saturday: Happily Ever After

 

 

 

Do you have a princess in your life who loves to read? You do?! So do I! In fact I have two amazing daughters. I’m so blessed to have two incredibly smart, vivacious and beautiful girls. They love to read whether its by themselves or cuddled up next to me for story time. Do you have story time at your house? I can’t tell you enough have important it is. I have been reading to my girls since the day they were born and I truly believe it has made them into the little readers they are today.

Today I’m going to recommend some amazing books for your little princess from little bitty to big girls. I hope you take the time and look at these wonderful books.

PrincessAndTheWhiteBearKing_PBwCD_WThe Princess and the White Bear King

Ride along with the beautiful princess and the majestic white bear on a voyage in the snowy north. When the young princess inadvertently betrays the mysterious white bear, she must prove her loyalty and strength through a series of trying tasks, in order to regain her lost chance at happiness. Book with CD editions include story read by actress Miranda Richardson.

Ages 5 to 11 years
Retold By: Tanya Robyn  Batt
Illustrated By: Nicoletta Ceccoli
Narrated By: Miranda Richardson

I absolutely love this book. The illustrations are so beautiful and the story delivers a very strong message of being a strong and loyal young lady.

The Twelve Dancing Princessestwelvedancingprincesses_pb_temp-w

Every night, the king wishes his twelve beautiful daughters good night and locks the doors to their bedroom tight. But every morning, the princesses’ shoes are worn through. Where do they go every night? The twelve famous sisters shimmer across the pages of this gorgeous retelling of the classic tale.
 Ages 8 and up
Retold By: Mary Hoffman
Illustrated By: Miss Clara
This book comes into two beautiful formats; a chapter book for your confident reader and hardcover with a story CD. You will be amazed at these books.

BFBPrincesses_HCwCD_WThe Barefoot Book of Princesses

 Meet seven very strong and special princesses in this collection drawn from sources from around the world. Each faces challenges and trials, and each finds a way to triumph with bravery, compassion, ingenuity and a little bit of luck. Book with CD editions include stories read by Margaret Wolfson.
Smithsonian Magazine Notable Book for Children
 Ages 4 to 9 years
Retold By: Caitlín Matthews
Illustrated By: Olwyn Whelan
Narrated By: Margaret Wolfson
The best part of this book is that each story comes from a different country and culture. Your little girls will read and learn about princess that she has never known.

The Kite Princesskiteprincess_genhb_w_1

 Princess Cinnamon Stitch is a tomboy who has no interest in courtly life. She’d rather cartwheel through puddles and dance with alley cats. Can she show the king and queen that there’s more to life than being pretty and good? Includes instructions for making your own kite.
Audio CD includes two versions of the story: one with page-turn chimes and one without.

Ages 3 to 8 years
Written By: Juliet Clare Bell
Illustrated By: Laura-Kate Chapman
Narrated By: Imelda Staunton

This book shows you that it is ok to be different, strong and independent. It gives a wonderful message to your little girls.

Real-Princess-UKUSHBPB_HRES_mockup_WThe Real Princess

A Mathemagical Tale

    Practice your math skills while enjoying this quirky take on “The Princess and the Pea.” The King and Queen and their three sons are on the search for a real princess, but it is only the Queen who knows the secret. After the story, there is an opportunity for readers to test their counting skills with fun number games. Book with CD edition includes story read by actress Juliet Stevenson.

Ages 4 to 9 years
Written By: Brenda Williams
Illustrated By: Sophie Fatus
Narrated By: Juliet Stevenson

I love this book. It is a wonderful way to learn numbers and counting.

I hope you enjoy these Barefoot recommendations for the little princess in you life!

Book Blogger Hop & FF Friday

book blogger hop

The Book Blogger Hop was originally created by Jennifer from Crazy-For-Books in March 2010 and ended on December 31, 2012.

Luckily, Billy from The Coffee-Addicted Writer has relaunched the Book Blogger Hop. Each week the hop will start on Friday and end on Thursday. There will be a weekly prompt just like before. The hop’s purpose will remain the same as it will give bloggers a chance to follow other blogs, learn about new books, befriend other bloggers, and receive new followers to your own blog.

Q: How do you handle unsolicited books that appear in your mailbox?  Do you add them to your queue?  Do you write to the sender and explain you  didn’t ask for the book and are not sure when you will be able to read  and review the book?  Or do you simply not read the book at all? (submitted by Elizabeth)

A: I haven’t received any unsolicited books. I usually will receive an email, asking me whether I would consider reading his/her book. I’ve never add anyone just send me a book without my consent. However, if I did receive an unsolicited book, I would definitely consider reading it.

8474595901_873f4993f4

The Feature & Follow is hosted by TWO hosts, Parajunkee of Parajunkee’s View and Alison of Alison Can Read. Each host will have their own Feature Blog and this way it’ll allow us to show off more new blogs!

Q: Find a “new to you blogger” and feature their button on your post this week. Tell us why this blogger stands out to you.

A: I really enjoy reading Historical Fiction Connection. I love historical fiction and this blog posts wonderful review.

Review: Divergent

Divergent
Written by Veronica Roth
Published in 2011
487 pages
YA Dystopian Fiction
Purchased from Amazon for Books, Babes and Booze

13335037Synopsis:

In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue – Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year –olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is – she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During a highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are – and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she’s chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she’s kept hidden from everyone because she’s been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, Tris also learns that her secret might help her save the ones she loves…or it might destroy her.

Divergent is another Young Adult (YA) book based on dystopian themes. First of all, I’m not a fan of all the dystopian fiction that’s out there. As mother, it is extremely difficult reading about kids hurting and even killing each other. I don’t find it fun to read or entertaining.

I think I know why young people enjoy this type of fiction. It gives them some sense of the control and independence. They can overcome the control of the authority, win their independence and live life on their own terms. I wonder if the hovering parent encouraged this? I don’t know. But it kind of disturbs me that such violence can be so popular. But I guess that is our current societal norm.

Now I will spend some time about the actual the book and it’s character. I actually like Tris. I like how she overcomes her fears, or is able to control them. She has a strong sense of character; even if she doesn’t think so. I, also, like Four. I thought he compliments Tris well. He is tough but has strong principles. He’s interesting with some complexity. I like that.

The antagonists in Divergent are the typical villains. I thought they were pretty predictable. All they want is power and control. There is nothing unique about them.

Divergent is a really quick read for which I am thankful. Otherwise, I don’t think I could have gotten through it. Overall, I liked the main characters but all of the brutality and cruelty toward young kids really got to me. I won’t be reading any more of this series.

KinxsBookNookScore3

HFVBT: Between the Cracks

Between the Cracks_Tour Banner_FINAL

Between the Cracks

Written by Carmella Cattuti

Published on August 20, 2013 by Three Towers Press

324  pages

Historical Fiction

Received from HFVBT in exchange for an honest review

18388553Join Angela Lanza as she experiences the tumultuous world of early  20th century Sicily and New York. Orphaned by the earthquake and  powerful eruption of Mr. Etna in 1908, Angela is raised in the strict  confines of an Italian convent. Through various twists of fate, she is  married to a young Italian man whom she barely knows, then together with her spouse, immigrates to the U.S. This novel is an invitation to  accompany the young Angela as she confronts the ephemeral nature of life on this planet and navigates the wide cultural gaps between pre-World  War II Italy and the booming prosperity of dynamic young America. Join  Angela Lanza as she traverses the tumultuous landscape of Sicily and New York.

Between the Cracks is a powerful story of ongoing tragedy but also one of continued hope. What I found so amazing is that this book is semi-biographical; taken from life the of the author’s great-aunt. I can’t imagine someone experiencing all of that tragedy and still remain sane. One would think by reading about tragedy, the story would be become incredibly depressing and tiresome. But not this book. It will keep you engaged and wanting to know about more about this family.

Angela and Franco make an interesting couple. First of all, their marriage was basically arranged. No love; but wanting to get away or find the right kind of person. Both had their motives for wanting to marry a complete stranger. I found that to be so intriguing and so different from what I know. They spent their entire marriage trying to get to know each other. There were so many times that I thought they were complete strangers to each other, even when they had been married for many years. But in the end, their bond was extremely strong.

The tragedy that Angela faced seems so incredible to me. Plus that she was able to overcome and survive just amazes me. I loved watching her grow from an insecure little girl to a strong, confident woman who takes care of her family. She ended being the backbone that everyone came to for help. She was their savior. Your heart will break as Angela’s continues to search for her lost sister. Loss after loss, Angela was still able to endure and maintain her home.

Franco frustrated me at times; but he was a good man. He faced his own turmoil and did his best to deal with his life. The frustrating times for me were when kept he himself ignorant over his little sister’s situation. He wouldn’t interfere until it was too late. I found that to be so incredibly sad.

Between the Cracks is a very special book about a young woman’s journey to overcome tragedy and loss and find a place in a new world. Please read and be prepared to be overwhelmed with all kinds of emotions.

KinxsBookNookScore4

 

About the AuthorCarmela Cattuti

Carmela Cattuti started her writing career as a journalist for the  Somerville News in Boston, MA. After she finished her graduate work in  English Literature from Boston College she began to write creatively and taught a journal writing course at the Cambridge Center for Adult  Education As fate would have it, she felt compelled to write her great  aunt’s story. “Between the Cracks” has gone through several incarnations and will now become a trilogy. This is the first installment. To  connect with Carmela email her cattutic@gmail.com or leave a comment at  betweenthecracksnovel.blogspot.com.

For more information please visit Carmela’s website. You can also connect with her on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. Visit the Between the Cracks Facebook page.

Follow the Tour

Monday, February 10 Review at Oh, for the Hook of a Book Giveaway at Passages to the Past

Tuesday, February 11 Review at Kinx’s Book Nook Spotlight & Giveaway at So Many Precious Books, So Little Time

Wednesday, February 12 Review at History & Women Guest Post & Giveaway at Historical Fiction Connection

Thursday, February 13 Guest Post at Broken Teepee

Friday, February 14 Review at Just One More Chapter

It’s Monday! What are you reading?

ItsMonday

Welcome to It’s Monday! What Are You Reading! This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… you never know where that next “must read” book will come from! Hosted by Book Journey.

Last Week:

This Week:

Augustus Baltazar by Neil Bursnoll

17951009Mark. Enforcer. Just plain old Stu. Augustus Baltazar is a Paranormal Investigator with more skeletons than space in the cupboard. He only has best friend Mike to depend on, until beautiful brunette Jenny threatens to rattle his bones. DI Joe Merrick is on his last life with the Police force, caught between a case he is struggling to solve and a DS with a different opinion. Out of all this, what piece of the puzzle does Mike’s girlfriend Sera hold? And just what are the sinister shadow and the man on fire that haunt them all? Once the fuse is lit, everything changes. This is the first thrilling volume in an ongoing series from emerging author Neil Bursnoll.

Between the Cracks: One Woman’s Journey from Sicily to America by Carmela Cattuti

Join Angela Lanza as she experiences the tumultuous world of early 20th century Sicily 18388553and New York. Orphaned by the earthquake and powerful eruption of Mt. Etna in 1908, Angela is raised in the strict confines of an Italian convent. Through various twists of fate, she is married to a young Italian man whom she barely knows, then together with her spouse, immigrates to the U.S. This novel is an invitation to accompany the young Angela as she confronts the ephemeral nature of life on this planet and navigates the wide cultural gaps between pre-World War II Italy and the booming prosperity of dynamic young America. Author, artist, and teacher Carmela Cattuti created Between the Cracks as an homage to her great-aunt, who survived the earthquake and eruption of Mt. Etna and bravely left Sicily to start a new life in America.

Small Favor by Jim Butcher

927979No one’s tried to kill Harry Dresden for almost an entire year, and his life finally seems to be calming down. For once, the future looks fairly bright. But the past casts one hell of a long shadow.

An old bargain has placed Harry in debt to Mab, monarch of the Winter Court of the Sidhe, the Queen of Air and Darkness-and she’s calling in her marker. It’s a small favor he can’t refuse…one that will trap Harry Dresden between a nightmarish foe and an equally deadly ally, and one that will strain his skills- and loyalties-to their very limits.

It figures. Everything was going too well to last…

What are you reading this week?

Barefoot Saturday: Why I love Barefoot

Why I love Barefoot Books

As you can tell, I’m a complete book nut. I absolutely loves books and reading is a huge part of my life. I don’t think I would keep my insanity if I didn’t have a book handy. I’m hoping to give that passion for reading to my daughters and Barefoot gives me that opportunity. I remember, in 2007, when I was first introduced to Barefoot. I went to a home party and I fell in love! The books were so beautiful. All of the books just popped out at me. I even remember the first books that I bought: Herb, The Vegetarian Dragon, The Prince’s Bedtime, Farmyard Jamboree,Cleo’s Color Book, and Zoe and Her Zebra. From that moment I was completely hooked.

Very shortly after that party, I became a Stallholder (the title before Ambassador). I joined on a whim. I didn’t even tell my husband (probably not the smartest thing). When I received my starter kit, I thought I died and gone to Heaven. I couldn’t wait to share these books with all of the my family and friends. Barefoot Books are so special and unique. You don’t see them at any book store. So, once again, I couldn’t wait to share Barefoot with everyone I knew.

My launch party was a complete success. I loved seeing my guests’ eyes when they first opened a book. Every book is a work of art and everyone appreciated that. I sold a lot of books that day. I, also, booked several parties. It was a great day! From that day on, I had a passion for sharing Barefoot with EVERYONE!

Due to family issues, I had to leave Barefoot in 2010. BUT, in March 2013, my passion returned and a became a Barefoot Ambassador. My passion not only returned, but it has increased tenfold! I’m, now, part of a wonderful Barefoot family. I love the support I receive from my Barefoot mentor, Allison, and all of the members of the Barefoot community. It is truly a community. If I feel little frustrated and discouraged, all I need to do is turn to other Ambassadors and I will get that support I need.

For me, Barefoot is not all about making money; it’s about watching a child when they open his/her first Barefoot Books. I love hearing “Mommy, Mommy can I get this books?” It’s music to my ears. Furthermore, I hear from parents that they have never seen these books before. I love talking to them and telling them the Barefoot story.

Now, I’m doing all kinds of Barefoot events: home parties, fundraisers, craft fairs. I’ve met some amazing people and, of course, I get to share Barefoot. I going to leave you now with one of my favorite Barefoot Singalongs, A Dragon on the Doorstep. Enjoy!!


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Kendal's bookshelf: currently-reading


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TBR

Kendal's to-read book montage

The Gods of Heavenly Punishment
Where Are the Dinos?
Lydia Bennet's Story: A Sequel to Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice
Cold Blooded
Bristol House
My Notorious Life: A Novel
Moms Who Drink and Swear: True Tales of Loving My Kids While Losing My Mind
Long Live the King
To Be Queen: A Novel of the Early Life of Eleanor of Aquitaine
Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore
Bad News for a Ghost
The Next Pendragon
Caroline Bingley
My Beloved World
Royal Mistress
My Dear Sophy
The Wild Girl
To Marry an English Lord: Or How Anglomania Really Got Started
Hades: Lord of the Dead
The Man Who Loved Jane Austen


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