RSSAuthor Archive for Stephanie O'Connell

BOOK REVIEW: What Not To Do If You Turn Invisible by Ross Welford

BOOK REVIEW: What Not To Do If You Turn Invisible by Ross Welford

BOOK REVIEW: What Not To Do If You Turn Invisible by Ross Welford Harper Collins February 2017 Paperback, $14.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Middle Grade 8/10 Twelve-year-old Ethel Letherhead has spent the last year fighting a vicious battle with the extreme acne that decided to take up residence on her face rather suddenly. My acne […]

BOOK REVIEW: Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

BOOK REVIEW: Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

BOOK REVIEW: Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor Hodder & Stoughton March 2016 Paperback, $19.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Speculative Fiction 9/10 So many died that the tumbrils used to cart thieves to the gallows were repurposed to carry orphans to the monasteries and convents. They arrived live shipments of lambs, to hear the monks […]

BOOK REVIEW: The Turnkey by Allison Rushby

BOOK REVIEW: The Turnkey by Allison Rushby

BOOK REVIEW: The Turnkey by Allison Rushby Walker Books Australia March 2017 Paperback, $16.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Middle Grade 3/10 Flossie Birdwhistle is the Turnkey at London’s Highgate Cemetery. As Turnkey, Flossie must ensure all the souls in the cemetery stay at rest. This is a difficult job at the best of times for […]

BOOK REVIEW: Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

BOOK REVIEW: Bone Gap by Laura Ruby

BOOK REVIEW: Bone Gap by Laura Ruby Faber & Faber March 2017 Paperback, $19.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Young Adult / Magic Realism 7/10 “Because we don’t have your typical gaps around here. Not gaps made of rocks or mountains. We have gaps in the world. In the space of things. So many places to […]

BOOK REVIEW: The Cruelty by Scott Bergstrom

BOOK REVIEW: The Cruelty by Scott Bergstrom

BOOK REVIEW: The Cruelty by Scott Bergstrom Walker Books February 2017 Paperback, $18.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Young Adult / Action / Thriller 6/10   Since her mother was killed ten years ago, it’s just been Gwendolyn and her father, the man who adopted her when he married her mother. He’s taken her around the world, […]

BOOK REVIEW: Calling Major Tom by David M. Barnett

BOOK REVIEW: Calling Major Tom by David M. Barnett

BOOK REVIEW: Calling Major Tom by David M. Barnett Trapeze January 2017 Paperback, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Fiction / Humour 9/10 Thomas Major has given up on the world and is checking out. He’ll be the first man to walk on Mars, responsible for beginning the grunt work that will lead to a habitable […]

BOOK REVIEW: The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel

BOOK REVIEW: The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel

BOOK REVIEW: The Roanoke Girls by Amy Engel Hodder & Stoughton March 2017 Paperback, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Thriller/Suspense 7/10 Beautiful, rich, mysterious, the Roanoke girls seem to have it all. But there’s a dark truth about them that’s never spoken. Every girl either runs away, or dies. Lane is one of the lucky […]

BOOK REVIEW: Ragdoll by Daniel Cole

BOOK REVIEW: Ragdoll by Daniel Cole

BOOK REVIEW: Ragdoll by Daniel Cole Trapeze February 2017 Paperback, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Crime Thriller / Suspense 5/10 A body is discovered with the dismembered parts of six victims stitched together like a puppet, nicknamed by the press as the ‘ragdoll’. Assigned to the shocking case are Detective William ‘Wolf’ Fawkes, recently reinstated […]

BOOK REVIEW: Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough

BOOK REVIEW: Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough

BOOK REVIEW: Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough Harper Collins February 2017 Paperback, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Thriller / Suspense 6/10 Louise is a single mom, a secretary, stuck in a modern-day rut. On a rare night out, she meets a man in a bar and sparks fly. Though he leaves after they kiss, […]

BOOK REVIEW: Exploring Space - From Galileo to the Mars Rover and Beyond by Martin Jenkins, illustrated by Stephen Biesty

BOOK REVIEW: Exploring Space – From Galileo to the Mars Rover and Beyond by Martin Jenkins, illustrated by Stephen Biesty

BOOK REVIEW: Exploring Space – From Galileo to the Mars Rover and Beyond by Martin Jenkins, illustrated by Stephen Biesty Walker Books March 2017 Hardcover, $34.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Non-Fiction / Junior Science 8/10   Who hasn’t looked up at the night sky and wondered what it’s like deep out in space, far from […]

BOOK REVIEW: Rattle by Fiona Cummins

BOOK REVIEW: Rattle by Fiona Cummins

BOOK REVIEW: Rattle by Fiona Cummins Pan Macmillan February 2017 Paperback, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Crime / Thriller 7/10   A psychopath more frightening than Hannibal Lecter. He has planned well. He leads two lives. In one he’s just like anyone else. But in the other he is the caretaker of his family’s macabre […]

BOOK REVIEW: Maybe a Fox by Kathi Appelt and Alison McGhee

BOOK REVIEW: Maybe a Fox by Kathi Appelt and Alison McGhee

BOOK REVIEW: Maybe a Fox by Kathi Appelt and Alison McGhee Walker Books March 2017 Paperback, $16.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Middle Grade  9/10   Sylvie and Jules. Jules and Sylvie. Jules adores her older-by-one-year sister, Sylvie. Sylvie: beautiful like their mother. Sylvie: supreme maker of tiny snow families. Sylvie: faster than fast. Sylvie: gone. […]

BOOK REVIEW: See You in the Cosmos by Jack Cheng

BOOK REVIEW: See You in the Cosmos by Jack Cheng

BOOK REVIEW: See You in the Cosmos by Jack Cheng Puffin February 2017 Paperback, $16.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell10 Middle Grade 7/10 All eleven-year old Alex wants is to launch his iPod into space. With a series of audio recordings, he will show other lifeforms out in the cosmos what life on Earth, his Earth, […]

BOOK REVIEW: Me, All Alone, at the End of the World by M.T. Anderson, illustrated by Kevin Hawkes

BOOK REVIEW: Me, All Alone, at the End of the World by M.T. Anderson, illustrated by Kevin Hawkes

BOOK REVIEW: Me, All Alone, at the End of the World by M.T. Anderson, illustrated by Kevin Hawkes Candlewick Press March 2017 Hardcover, $19.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Picture Book 7/10 A boy lives alone at the End of the World, hunting for treasure with maps, whistling dance to his mule, listening to the rain […]

BOOK REVIEW: Lucy's Book by Natalie Jane Prior & Cheryl Orsini

BOOK REVIEW: Lucy’s Book by Natalie Jane Prior & Cheryl Orsini

BOOK REVIEW: Lucy’s Book by Natalie Jane Prior & Cheryl Orsini Lothian March 2017 Hardcover, $26.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Picture Book 8/10 Lucy’s Book looks at the path that a much-loved library book might take, and throughout these pages the library book in question is read in the car, at lunch, all through the afternoon, […]

BOOK REVIEW: One Was Lost by Natalie D. Richards

BOOK REVIEW: One Was Lost by Natalie D. Richards

BOOK REVIEW: One Was Lost by Natalie D. Richards Sourcebooks Fire January 2017 Paperback, $15.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Young Adult 3/10 We run and scream, like there’s somewhere to go or someone to hear. Come to think of it, there might be someone. And if there is, we probably don’t want them to hear […]

BOOK REVIEW: Snow Man and the Seven Ninjas by Matt Cosgrove

BOOK REVIEW: Snow Man and the Seven Ninjas by Matt Cosgrove

BOOK REVIEW: Snow Man and the Seven Ninjas by Matt Cosgrove Koala Books February 2017 Paperback, $5.00 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Middle Grade / Fairytale Retelling 7/10 Don’t worry! This ISN’T the story of Snow White & the Seven Dwarfs that has bored children for years. This digusting and completely awesome retelling of the classic […]

BOOK REVIEW: The Un-Discovered Islands by Malachy Tallack, illustrated by Katie Scott

BOOK REVIEW: The Un-Discovered Islands by Malachy Tallack, illustrated by Katie Scott

BOOK REVIEW: The Un-Discovered Islands by Malachy Tallack, illustrated by Katie Scott Polygon January 2017 Hardcover, $34.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell History/Geography/Myth 8/10 The title of this book refers to a very specific type of island; not one that is yet to be discovered, but one was believed to be real at some point but […]

BOOK REVIEW: Good Morning, Midnight by Lilly Brooks-Dalton

BOOK REVIEW: Good Morning, Midnight by Lilly Brooks-Dalton

BOOK REVIEW: Good Morning, Midnight by Lilly Brooks-Dalton Weidenfeld & Nicolson August 2016 Paperback, $29.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Literary/Science Fiction 6/10   Augustine, a brilliant, aging astronomer, is consumed by the stars. For years he has lived in remote outposts, studying the sky for evidence of how the universe began. At his latest posting, […]

BOOK REVIEW: MWD: Hell is Coming Home by Brian David Johnson and Jan Egleson, illustrated by Laila Milevski and Karl Stevens

BOOK REVIEW: MWD: Hell is Coming Home by Brian David Johnson and Jan Egleson, illustrated by Laila Milevski and Karl Stevens

BOOK REVIEW: MWD: Hell is Coming Home by Brian David Johnson and Jan Egleson, illustrated by Laila Milevski and Karl Stevens Candlewick Press February 2017 Hardcover, $24.99 Reviewed by Steph O’Connell Graphic Novel 7/10 With unflinching candor, a moving graphic novel follows a young woman’s return from war and her bond with two dogs—one who […]

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