Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Book Review: The Door in the Alley (The Explorers #1) by Adrienne Kress


Media Type: Print Book (ARC)
Title: The Door in the Alley (The Explorers #1)
Author: Adrienne Kress
Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers
Pages: Hardcover; 320
Release Date: April 25, 2017
Source: Publisher
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Content Screening: Nothing of note

HDB Rating: 4 Keys to My Heart

Recommended to: Readers who enjoy smart, fast-paced stories with fascinating characters!

Add it on: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Featuring a mysterious society, a secretive past, and a pig in a teeny hat, "The Explorers: The Door in the Alley" is the first book in a new series for fans of "The Name of This Book Is a Secret" and "The Mysterious Benedict Society. "Knock once if you can find it but only members are allowed inside.

This is one of those stories that start with a pig in a teeny hat. It s not the one you re thinking about. (This story is way better than that one.) 

This pig-in-a-teeny-hat story starts when a very uninquisitive boy stumbles upon a very mysterious society. After that, there is danger and adventure; there are missing persons, hired thugs, a hidden box, a lost map, and famous explorers; and there is a girl looking for help that only uninquisitive boys can offer.

"The Explorers: The Door in the Alley" is the first book in a series that is sure to hit young readers right in the funny bone."

So much fun! That was the first coherent thought that raced through my brain as I crossed the finish line of The Door in the Alley. Everyone knows that I love a good middle grade book. Coincidentally, my favorite type of middle grade book though, is the kind that doesn't talk down to its readers. The kind that is smart, funny, and filled with adventure. That, my friends, is exactly what The Door in the Alley is. It is a wonderful ride!

Our story begins with Sebastian, a studious and mild mannered boy who loves to stick to the rules. So, of course, when his path is crossed by a pig in a teeny hat, he's not sure what to make of it. When that same pig then leads him into an adventure that he never expected, that's where things really take off! I loved watching poor Sebastian, with his rigid ideas of the way the world worked, suddenly thrown into the madness that was The Explorer's Society. His personality was the perfect contrast to such an imaginative place, and looking at this new world through his eyes was fascinating.

Then Evie entered the picture, and things got even more exciting. Imagine finding out that you've actually been part of a grand cover up your entire life. That you've always felt that you were ignored, and are now the most important person in the story! That's exactly what happened to Evie, and I warmed to her instantly. She's the type of character who I love, because she isn't quite sure of herself and yet does what needs to be done anyway.

Oh, and the adventure! If you have a young reader (or, like me, are just a young reader at heart) who loves books like A Series of Unfortunate Events, this is the book for you. It's funny, a bit worrisome at times, and full to the brim with courageousness and growth. Both Evie and Sebastian, although completely different in personalities, were absolute perfection in this story. You'll giggle, you'll gasp, and you'll love every minute of it. Pick this up! It's well worth your time. Meanwhile I'll be sitting here, eagerly awaiting their next adventure.




FTC Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for a fair and honest review. I was not monetarily compensated for my opinion.

Monday, May 15, 2017

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (5/15/17)


I hope all our bookish mommies out there had a fabulous Mother's Day! At the very least, I hope that you had some time to sit around, relax, and read. That, right there, seems like a pretty good gift to me.

I spent my weekend, once again, playing catch up. The good news is that I had some time to write some of my backlog reviews down, so you'll get more content this week! I'm really trying to get more organized again, so I don't leave you with long bouts of radio silence.

Here's how my reading has been shaping up so far this week.




As I mentioned last week, I've been powering through books lately. So quickly, in fact, that I haven't had the time to write reviews for them. Which, honestly, hasn't been all that bad. With the exception of 5 Worlds: The Sand Warrior, the other two books above were things I chose to read instead of reading to review. It's been nice! My re-read of The Demon King was especially enjoyable because I forgot how much I missed this series.



One of my bookstagram friends finally pushed me to read Sleeping Giants, and I'm so glad that she did! It's been excellent so far, especially because I'm listening to a full cast audio book and they're really bringing it to life! I'm also re-reading The Voyage to Magical North in anticipation of reading Journey to Dragon Island, the sequel!




I actually started The Deathday Letter, but put it aside for a while. I've been on a Shaun David Hutchinson kick, but I needed a break from sad for a while, to focus on Fantasy and Sci Fi! I'll be back though soon, to devour this and sob over it.

That's it for me! What are you reading this week?

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