Highly Anticipating - The Witch Hunter by Virginia Boecker & Daughter of Deep Silence by Carrie Ryan

The Witch Hunter by Virginia Boecker
Expected Publication Date: June 2nd, 2015
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Page Count: 368 pages

The magic and suspense of "Graceling" meet the political intrigue and unrest of "Game of Thrones" in this riveting fantasy debut.
"Your greatest enemy isn't what you fight, but what you fear."
Elizabeth Grey is one of the king's best witch hunters, devoted to rooting out witchcraft and doling out justice. But when she's accused of being a witch herself, Elizabeth is arrested and sentenced to burn at the stake.
Salvation comes from a man she thought was her enemy. Nicholas Perevil, the most powerful and dangerous wizard in the kingdom, offers her a deal: he will save her from execution if she can break the deadly curse that's been laid upon him.
But Nicholas and his followers know nothing of Elizabeth's witch hunting past--if they find out, the stake will be the least of her worries. And as she's thrust into the magical world of witches, ghosts, pirates, and one all-too-handsome healer, Elizabeth is forced to redefine her ideas of right and wrong, of friends and enemies, and of love and hate.
Virginia Boecker weaves a riveting tale of magic, betrayal, and sacrifice in this unforgettable fantasy debut.

Why we can't wait: First of all, the cover is AMAZING! It's simple, but very cool. Also, high fantasy with witch hunters? YES PLEASE!

Daughter of Deep Silence by Carrie Ryan
Expected Publication Date: May 26th, 2015
Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers
Page Count: 384 pages

I'm the daughter of murdered parents.
I'm the friend of a dead girl.
I'm the lover of my enemy.
And I will have my revenge.
In the wake of the devastating destruction of the luxury yacht "Persephone," just three souls remain to tell its story--and two of them are lying. Only Frances Mace knows the terrifying truth, and she'll stop at nothing to avenge the murders of everyone she held dear. Even if it means taking down the boy she loves and possibly losing herself in the process.
Sharp and incisive, "Daughter of Deep Silence" by bestselling author Carrie Ryan is a deliciously smart revenge thriller that examines perceptions of identity, love, and the lengths to which one girl is willing to go when she thinks she has nothing to lose.

Why we can't wait: We're huge fans of Carrie Ryan and her morbid world-building so this is guaranteed to be another AWESOME read!

Review - All the Rage by Courtney Summers

All the Rage by Courtney Summers
Publication Date: April 14th, 2015
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Genre: Social issues, bullying

The sheriff's son, Kellan Turner, is not the golden boy everyone thinks he is, and Romy Grey knows that for a fact. Because no one wants to believe a girl from the wrong side of town, the truth about him has cost her everything--friends, family, and her community. Branded a liar and bullied relentlessly by a group of kids she used to hang out with, Romy's only refuge is the diner where she works outside of town. No one knows her name or her past there; she can finally be anonymous. But when a girl with ties to both Romy and Kellan goes missing after a party, and news of him assaulting another girl in a town close by gets out, Romy must decide whether she wants to fight or carry the burden of knowing more girls could get hurt if she doesn't speak up. Nobody believed her the first time--and they certainly won't now--but the cost of her silence might be more than she can bear.

With a shocking conclusion and writing that will absolutely knock you out, Courtney Summers' new novel "All the Rage" examines the shame and silence inflicted upon young women in a culture that refuses to protect them.

Romy Grey is from the wrong side of the tracks. Kellan Turner is the town’s golden boy - the sheriff’s son. When Romy accuses Kellan of rape, she is branded a liar, ostracized from the community, and constantly bullied. Her only refuge is a diner outside of town where no one knows about her past. When her former best friend, with ties to Kellan, goes missing, Romy must decide whether or not she is ready to confront her demons and reveal everything. Summers takes on tough themes and writes a gritty, powerful and unflinching story about rape culture, class prejudice, and bullying. This is Summers at her best. The narrative and characters are just as compelling as the issues she writes about. On par with Laurie Halse Anderson's Speak.
Connie from Books Inc. Opera Plaza

Books Inc. Kids Review - Ms. Rapscott's Girls by Elise Primavera

Ms. Rapscott's Girls by Elise Primavera
Publication Date: March 10th, 2015
Publisher: Dial Books
Genre: Action Adventure
Ages: 8-12

Fans of Mary Poppins will love this whimsical tale of a boarding school for children of very busy parents, where an extraordinary headmistress teaches them life lessons about courage, adventure, friendship . . . and the importance of birthday cake.
Nestled inside a lighthouse, Great Rapscott School for the Daughters of Busy Parents takes its motto from Amelia Earhart: Adventure is worthwhile in itself. Headmistress Ms. Rapscott couldn't agree more, but her students, who are shipped to the school in boxes, could use a little convincing. Still, despite their initial reluctance, the students are soon soaring through the sky and getting lost on purpose. In addition to learning what birthday cakes are and how best to approach a bumbershoot tree, the students also manage to learn a little something about strength and bravery.

Busy parents don’t have time to teach their daughters things like How to Boil an Egg or How to Stick Up for One’s Self. That’s where Ms. Rapscott comes in. Her school is specifically for teaching Girls with Busy Parents everything they need to know. Her current crop of girls is one short though—one of the flying cardboard boxes that deliver her charges wasn’t sealed properly, and the poor girl was lost! Will they ever find her?  This is one of my favorite books from the past year. It has such humor and heart that I smiled the whole way through, especially whenever Lewis and Clark - the teacher’s assistants who just happen to be sweater-and-watch wearing, clipboard-wielding corgis - were mentioned.
Reviewed by Eleanor from Books Inc. Palo Alto

Ana's Silver Flip

In Sara Novic’s harrowing and beautiful Girl at War, we witness the rupture of Yugoslavia through the eyes of 10-year-old Ana.  To acknowledge the rich Croatian history she leaves behind when she flees, I updated a classic cocktail, the Flip, by introducing Rakija to its mix.  Rakija (Slivovitz) is a plum brandy her friends will use to toast her return - you can use it to salute this wonderful debut.

Ana’s Silver Flip
2 oz. Slivovitz
1 oz. simple syrup
White of one egg
3 dashes plum bitters

Shake the first four ingredients without ice.  Add ice and shake again to ensure the egg is emulsified.  Strain into a chilled flip glass.  Dust with nutmeg.


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