Wednesday, April 10, 2024

[ARC REVIEW] Sparky and Mya: The King Must Laugh by Godwin Temisa

 


Title:  Sparky and Mya: The King Must Laugh

Author:  Godwin Temisa

Genre:  Children's / Animals / Humor / Friendship / Royalty

Year Published: 2020

Date Read: 4/11/2024

Source:  eARC (Author)

Content Rating:  Ages 4+ (Nothing Objectionable)

Buy on:  Amazon 




I would like to thank author Godwin Temisa for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

So, I received a copy of this cute little children’s book called “The King Must Laugh” by Godwin Temisa and man, was this book a joy to read!

 

The book starts off with a dog named Sparky, who enjoys making people laugh and his dream is to become a clown for the King of the land.  But unfortunately, Sparky ends up falling ill and he asks his friend, Mya the Cat, to go to the King and make him laugh in his place.  So, Mya goes to the King’s palace and tries to make the king laugh, but she keeps on messing up her routine.

 

Can Mya make the King laugh and will Sparky’s dream to become a clown come true?

 

Read this book to find out!

 

Wow!  This book was really enjoyable!  I loved the way that Godwin Temisa made this book so cute and heartwarming to read through.  I really loved the relationship between Sparky and Mya as they have a great friendship and I loved the fact that Mya was willing to help out Sparky, when Sparky got sick.  Another thing that I liked about this book was the artwork.  Godwin Temisa’s artwork was extremely unique, as the characters have odd and detailed designs and yet, those designs made the characters really stand out to me.  The artwork reminded me of those 90s cartoons, like “Duckman” and “Rugrats” that have unique designs to the characters and the artwork in this book made me feel nostalgic for those cartoons.

 

Overall, “The King Must Laugh” is a truly adorable and heartwarming book for anyone who loves reading books that deal with friendships.  I would recommend this book to children ages four and up since there is nothing inappropriate in this book.







Waiting on Wednesday #237: The One That Got Away With Murder by Trish Lundy and Kill Her Twice by Stacey Lee

Hello everyone! "Waiting On" Wednesday is a weekly event, that is hosted by Breaking the Spine and the purpose of this event is that we spotlight upcoming releases of books that we are excited for!  This will also tie into Wishful Ending's Can't Wait Wednesday post!











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This week's pre-publication "can't-wait-to-read" selections are:





The One That Got Away With Murder

By: Trish Lundy

Expected Publication Date: April 16th, 2024

Buy on:   Amazon (Hardcover)
           Amazon (Kindle)

Be careful who you fall for...

Robbie and Trevor Cresmont have a body count—the killer kind. Handsome and privileged, the Crestmont brothers' have enough wealth to ensure they’ll never be found guilty of any wrongdoing, even if all of Happy Valley believes they're behind the deaths of their ex-girlfriends. First there was soccer star Victoria Moreno, Robbie’s ex, who mysteriously drowned at the family lake house. Then, a year later, Trevor’s girlfriend died of a suspicious overdose.

But the Crestmonts aren’t the only ones with secrets. Lauren O'Brian might be the new girl at school, but she's never been a good girl. With a dark past of her own, she's desperate for a fresh start. Except when she starts a no-strings-attached relationship with Robbie, her chance is put in jeopardy. During what’s meant to be their last weekend together, Lauren stumbles across shocking evidence that just might implicate Robbie.

With danger closing in, Lauren doesn't know who to trust. And after a third death rocks the town, she must decide whether to end things with Robbie or risk becoming another cautionary tale.

This is an edge-of-your-seat debut YA thriller about a teen who is forced to confront her past in order to catch a murderer before she ends up the next victim. Perfect for fans of Karen McManus and Holly Jackson.


Oooh!  A book about murder and forbidden romance!  I never seen a combo like this before.  Definitely worth checking out!







Kill Her Twice

By: Stacey Lee

Expected Publication Date: April 23rd, 2024

Buy on:   Amazon (Hardcover)
           Amazon (Kindle)



From the New York Times bestselling author of The Downstairs Girl comes a YA murder mystery noir set in 1930s Los Angeles’s Chinatown.

LOS ANGELES, 1932: Lulu Wong, star of the silver screen and the pride of Chinatown, has a face known to practically everyone, especially the Chow sisters—May, Gemma, and Peony—Lulu’s former classmates and neighbors. So the girls instantly know it’s Lulu when they discover a body one morning in an out-of-the-way stable, far from the Beverly Hills home where she lived after her fame skyrocketed.

The sisters suspect Lulu’s death is the result of foul play, but the police don’t seem motivated to investigate. Even worse, there are signs that point to a cover-up, and powerful forces in the city want to frame the killing as evidence that Chinatown is a den of iniquity and crime, even more reason it should be demolished to make room for the construction of a new railway depot, Union Station.

Worried that neither the police nor the papers will treat Lulu fairly—no matter her fame and wealth—the sisters set out to solve their friend’s murder themselves, and maybe save their neighborhood in the bargain. But with Lulu’s killer still on the loose, the girls’ investigation just might put them square in the crosshairs of a cold-blooded murderer.

Oooh!  A murder mystery with a conspiracy in the background.  Sounds like an interesting read!






So, what upcoming books are you looking forward to?  Please respond below!



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Tuesday, April 2, 2024

Top Ten Tuesday #107: Top 10 Book Covers with Rain (or Rainy Day Book Covers)!

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme that was formerly created at The Broke and the Bookish but has now moved to That Artsy Reader Girl. 





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This week's top 10 Tuesday topic is Top 10 Book Covers with Rain (April Showers)!

So, it's finally April and that means that it's time for April Showers!  April is supposed to be the rainy month of the year and that means that it's time to list my favorite book covers with rain on the cover!

So, here are my top 10 Book Covers with Rain (April Showers) (in no particular order of course)!







1. The Colors of the Rain by R.L. Toalson

Buy on Amazon:  Kindle  |  Hardcover





This historical middle grade novel written in free verse, set against the backdrop of the desegregation battles that took place in Houston, Texas, in 1972, is about a young boy and his family dealing with loss and the revelation of dark family secrets.

Ten-year-old Paulie Sanders hates his name because it also belonged to his daddy—his daddy who killed a fellow white man and then crashed his car. With his mama unable to cope, Paulie and his sister, Charlie, move in with their Aunt Bee and attend a new elementary school. But it’s 1972, and this new school puts them right in the middle of the Houston School District’s war on desegregation.

Paulie soon begins to question everything. He hears his daddy’s crime was a race-related one; he killed a white man defending a black man, and when Paulie starts picking fights with a black boy at school, he must face his reasons for doing so. When dark family secrets are revealed, the way forward for everyone will change the way Paulie thinks about family forever.

The Colors of the Rain is an authentic, heartbreaking portrait of loss and human connection during an era fraught with racial tension set in verse from debut author R. L. Toalson.


2. The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware

Buy on Amazon:  Kindle |  Paperback





From New York Times bestselling author of the “twisty-mystery” (Vulture) novel In a Dark, Dark Wood, comes The Woman in Cabin 10, an equally suspenseful and haunting novel from Ruth Ware—this time, set at sea.

In this tightly wound, enthralling story reminiscent of Agatha Christie’s works, Lo Blacklock, a journalist who writes for a travel magazine, has just been given the assignment of a lifetime: a week on a luxury cruise with only a handful of cabins. The sky is clear, the waters calm, and the veneered, select guests jovial as the exclusive cruise ship, the Aurora, begins her voyage in the picturesque North Sea. At first, Lo’s stay is nothing but pleasant: the cabins are plush, the dinner parties are sparkling, and the guests are elegant. But as the week wears on, frigid winds whip the deck, gray skies fall, and Lo witnesses what she can only describe as a dark and terrifying nightmare: a woman being thrown overboard. The problem? All passengers remain accounted for—and so, the ship sails on as if nothing has happened, despite Lo’s desperate attempts to convey that something (or someone) has gone terribly, terribly wrong…

With surprising twists, spine-tingling turns, and a setting that proves as uncomfortably claustrophobic as it is eerily beautiful, Ruth Ware offers up another taut and intense read in The Woman in Cabin 10—one that will leave even the most sure-footed reader restlessly uneasy long after the last page is turned.




3. Made You Up by Francesca Zappia

Buy on Amazon:  Kindle |  Paperback




Reality, it turns out, is often not what you perceive it to be—sometimes, there really is someone out to get you. Made You Up tells the story of Alex, a high school senior unable to tell the difference between real life and delusion.



Alex fights a daily battle to figure out the difference between reality and delusion. Armed with a take-no-prisoners attitude, her camera, a Magic 8-Ball, and her only ally (her little sister), Alex wages a war against her schizophrenia, determined to stay sane long enough to get into college. She’s pretty optimistic about her chances until classes begin, and she runs into Miles. Didn't she imagine him? Before she knows it, Alex is making friends, going to parties, falling in love, and experiencing all the usual rites of passage for teenagers. But Alex is used to being crazy. She’s not prepared for normal.




4. Weather Girl by Rachel Lynn Solomon

Buy on Amazon:  Kindle  |  Paperback




Ari Abrams has always been fascinated by the weather, and she loves almost everything about her job as a TV meteorologist. Her boss, legendary Seattle weatherwoman Torrance Hale, is too distracted by her tempestuous relationship with her ex-husband, the station’s news director, to give Ari the mentorship she wants. Ari, who runs on sunshine and optimism, is at her wits’ end. The only person who seems to understand how she feels is sweet but reserved sports reporter Russell Barringer.

In the aftermath of a disastrous holiday party, Ari and Russell decide to team up to solve their bosses’ relationship issues. Between secret gifts and double dates, they start nudging their bosses back together. But their well-meaning meddling backfires when the real chemistry builds between Ari and Russell.

Working closely with Russell means allowing him to get to know parts of herself that Ari keeps hidden from everyone. Will he be able to embrace her dark clouds as well as her clear skies?

A TV meteorologist and a sports reporter scheme to reunite their divorced bosses with unforecasted results in this charming romantic comedy from the author of The Ex Talk.



5. Different Seasons by Stephen King

Buy on Amazon:  Kindle |  Paperback




Includes the stories “The Body” and “Rita Hayworth and Shawshank Redemption”—set in the fictional town of Castle Rock, Maine

A “hypnotic” (The New York Times Book Review) collection of four novellas—including the inspirations behind the films Stand By Me and The Shawshank Redemption—from Stephen King, bound together by the changing of seasons, each taking on the theme of a journey with strikingly different tones and characters.

This gripping collection begins with “Rita Hayworth and the Shawshank Redemption,” in which an unjustly imprisoned convict seeks a strange and startling revenge—the basis for the Best Picture Academy Award-nominee The Shawshank Redemption.

Next is “Apt Pupil,” the inspiration for the film of the same name about top high school student Todd Bowden and his obsession with the dark and deadly past of an older man in town.

In “The Body,” four rambunctious young boys plunge through the faΓ§ade of a small town and come face-to-face with life, death, and intimations of their own mortality. This novella became the movie Stand By Me.

Finally, a disgraced woman is determined to triumph over death in “The Breathing Method.”

“The wondrous readability of his work, as well as the instant sense of communication with his characters, are what make Stephen King the consummate storyteller that he is,” hailed the Houston Chronicle about Different Seasons.




6. Phantom Limbs by Paula Garner

Buy on Amazon:  Kindle |  Paperback |  Hardcover




How do you move on from an irreplaceable loss? In a poignant debut, a sixteen-year-old boy must learn to swim against an undercurrent of grief—or be swept away by it.

Otis and Meg were inseparable until her family abruptly moved away after the terrible accident that left Otis’s little brother dead and both of their families changed forever. Since then, it’s been three years of radio silence, during which time Otis has become the unlikely protΓ©gΓ© of eighteen-year-old Dara—part drill sergeant, part friend—who’s hell-bent on transforming Otis into the Olympic swimmer she can no longer be. But when Otis learns that Meg is coming back to town, he must face some difficult truths about the girl he’s never forgotten and the brother he’s never stopped grieving. As it becomes achingly clear that he and Meg are not the same people they were, Otis must decide what to hold on to and what to leave behind. Quietly affecting, this compulsively readable debut novel captures all the confusion, heartbreak, and fragile hope of three teens struggling to accept profound absences in their lives.




7. First and Then by Emma Mills

Buy on Amazon:  Kindle |  Paperback |  Hardcover




Devon Tennyson wouldn't change a thing. She's happy watching Friday night games from the bleachers, silently crushing on best friend Cas, and blissfully ignoring the future after high school. But the universe has other plans. It delivers Devon's cousin Foster, an unrepentant social outlier with a surprising talent for football, and the obnoxiously superior and maddeningly attractive star running back, Ezra, right where she doesn't want them: first into her P.E. class and then into every other aspect of her life.

Pride and Prejudice meets Friday Night Lights in this contemporary novel about falling in love with the unexpected boy, with a new brother, and with yourself.


8. In Your Light by A.J. Grainger

Buy on Amazon:   Paperback




Are you still a sister, if one of you is missing?

Sixteen-year-old Lil’s heart was broken when her sister Mella disappeared. There’s been no trace or sighting of her since she vanished, so when Lil sees a girl lying in the road near her house she thinks for a heart-stopping moment that it’s Mella. The girl is injured and disorientated and Lil has no choice but to take her home. But something’s not right… The girl claims she’s from a peaceful community called The Sisterhood of the Light, but why then does she have strange marks down her arms, and what – or who – is she running from…

Could she hold the key to Mella's disappearance?

And what happens if the Sisterhood is unwilling to let its daughters go…



9. It's Rainy Today by Kristen Sterling

Buy on Amazon:  Library Binding





Plip! Plop! Sometimes rain drips softly from the clouds. Sometimes rain comes down hard in a thunderstorm. What happens when the weather is rainy? Read this book to find out! Learn all about kinds of weather in the What’s the Weather Like? series - part of the Lightning Bolt Books™ collection. With high-energy designs, exciting photos, and fun text, Lightning Bolt Books™ bring nonfiction topics to life!


10. Soulless by Gail Carriger

Buy on Amazon:   Kindle |  Paperback |  Hardcover




Alexia Tarabotti is laboring under a great many social tribulations.

First, she has no soul. Second, she's a spinster whose father is both Italian and dead. Third, she was rudely attacked by a vampire, breaking all standards of social etiquette.

Where to go from there? From bad to worse apparently, for Alexia accidentally kills the vampire--and then the appalling Lord Maccon (loud, messy, gorgeous, and werewolf) is sent by Queen Victoria to investigate.

With unexpected vampires appearing and expected vampires disappearing, everyone seems to believe Alexia responsible. Can she figure out what is actually happening to London's high society? Will her soulless ability to negate supernatural powers prove useful or just plain embarrassing? Finally, who is the real enemy, and do they have treacle tart?




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