If you are in a hurry and need to decide if you should read a book, then consider one of these. We have condensed the reviews into simple statements that will help you find your next great read…or not.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay by J.K. Rowling
Being a huge fan of the original Harry Potter series and having not seen the movie for this screenplay, I was not sure what to expect. The artwork that was included was very well designed and had a cool tie-in with the story, so I really enjoyed that aspect of this book. The story, on the other hand, was very fast and did not seem developed to me. I was glad to get another story in the same world as Harry Potter, but the character of Newt was VERY underdeveloped. The character of Jacob really had personality and felt developed, in comparison to Newt it just didn’t make a lot of sense…after all, Newt is the main character. Overall, it was a good story and I am sure the movie is great too, just don’t expect anything close to the originals
Tales of the Peculiar by Ransom Riggs
Wow! I have been away from the Peculiar Children series for a while now, having finished them as they were released, so to discover this gem of a book was fantastic. I really enjoyed the majority of the stories and found that the illustrations were perfect, they really matched the stories well. It is not a very long book and is in some ways more of a collectors or fan item, but overall I am glad that this is out in the world! I hope that there will be more to come.
An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
I really liked this book! When it came time to give it a rating, it was no question that I would give it 5 stars! The characters are all very dynamic and keep you interested in the story and their individual well-being. Even the villain characters have such a strong personality that is built with great backstory weaved into the main story that it is hard not to like them for what they are. This author did a fantastic job creating an action packed and intense world that the reader grows to care for. I highly recommend this book.
The View from the Cheap Seats: Selected Nonfiction by Neil Gaiman
I highly recommend that you get or listen to the audiobook version of this book, or at least have both. I read about half of this book and listened to the other half. I enjoyed hearing Neil read his own words, they came to life in a way that they didn’t when I simply read them. There were many pieces of writing in this book that I didn’t understand much about, but the ones where I knew what he was talking about were very fun to listen to. I discovered more books to read (when will my TBR ever end?) thanks to Neil’s recommendations and I think it is an admirable thing of him to recommend artist and authors who perhaps don’t get the amount of credit that they should. His words are powerful and carry deep meaning, his personality somehow seeps slowly through the words and onto the pages, and this book leaves a lasting impression.
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, Parts 1 & 2 by J.K. Rowling
This book is the script for the new stage play based on the world of Harry Potter. Go into this book knowing that and you will very much enjoy it. I knew that it was written as a script, so I was not disappointed to see how it was written. I always find that dialogue is my favorite part of most all stories, so to have a book of basically nothing but dialogue (and the occasional stage direction / setting info) worked out great for me. It is a fast read compared to some books due to the nature in which it was written. I found my mind filling in bits and pieces of the imagery all by itself due to my previous knowledge of the books and movies. If you’ve ever watched a Harry Potter movie, then your mind will fill in most of the details all by itself. The lack of descriptions was not an issue for me and I don’t think it would be for anyone familiar with the world in which the story is set. It was great to get to check in on some of my favorite character’s lives and gain a whole new perspective on some characters. I found myself really enjoying the two new and most notable characters. I really liked it for what it is and I think everyone who reads it should appreciate it for what it is rather than what they “want” or “expect” it to be.