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islandcolleen has commented on (5) products.

The Bloodletter's Daughter (Novels of Old Bohemia) by Linda Lafferty
The Bloodletter's Daughter (Novels of Old Bohemia)

islandcolleen, July 14, 2013

This story is apparently based on factual events/people and what an interesting topic. During the early 17th century, the Hapsburgs ruled much of Eastern Europe, all the while fighting the Ottomans for more control. In this, the reader is introduced to King Rudolf and his violent/mentally disturbed son, Don Julius. While Don Julius is actually his son from his mistress, he is treated with all the respect due to a ruling monarch and his violent and depraved behavior is accepted, until it can no longer be controlled. It is a this point he is sent to Bohemia (modern day Czechoslovakia) to be "cured" through bloodletting and with the assistance of the Jesuits, who will see to his soul's well being. It is through the local bloodletter that he meets Marketa, the bloodletter's assistant and daughter. Don Julius is entranced, as he views her as his "angel" who will save him from the voices in his head that lead him to behave as he does. As he continues to decline, those around him continue to suffer. The results of his depravity will rock the foundations of the Hapsburg throne.
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The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern
The Night Circus

islandcolleen, January 3, 2013

I was completely floored by this book. I've never read a book so setting driven, which really surprised me. Most of the books I love are character driven, but the images created by Morgenstern were so overpowering, I couldn't stop thinking about them. The story of two "practioners" of magic was basically simplistic, however, the places that Morgenstern took these characters was at both fantastic and unforgettable. I am waiting anxiously for the movie to be made.
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Mockingjay (The Hunger Games #3) by Suzanne Collins
Mockingjay (The Hunger Games #3)

islandcolleen, January 2, 2011

This final book in The Hunger Games Trilogy did not fail to please. Staying true to her characters, Collins wrapped up all the story lines with grace and honesty. Her character and plot decisions made sense to the plot as a whole, making this one of the best reads of 2010. I was sorry to see it end.
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Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt
Tuck Everlasting

islandcolleen, August 20, 2010

As a teacher, I have used this book in my classroom for almost 10 years. Every time I hand it out, the boys immediately go "YUK! A girl book!" I tell them there is no such thing and they are going to enjoy it. They don't believe me, until we start reading. It takes about 5 chapters to get them hooked. This story centers on the question, "If you could, would you choose to live forever?" Natalie Babbitt gives the readers both sides of the coin, but ultimately, her point of view is clear. Her writing is full of imagery and she creates some of the most vivid characters in literature. Winnie, Mae, Tuck, Jesse, and often overlooked but perhaps most tragic, Miles. They present a fantastic story that couldn't possibly be true - or is it? I tell my students that they get to decide and given that freedom, they embrace the story.
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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter #07) by J. K. Rowling
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter #07)

islandcolleen, January 2, 2010

I'm not sure if this is my favorite book of the series or if the series is my favorite of the decade, but however you look at it, this series changed how everyone, young and old, reads. No longer is reading reserved for the "bookworm," Rowling made it cool for everyone to read and being the first one to possess any Harry Potter was the height of cool.

I applaud Rowling for doing what so many before her tried to do - she gave all of us a hero who had to learn how to accept himself. She gave us a setting we've all wished for at one time or another. She gave us a story we could all accept as a reality, knowing full well it didn't exist. She gave me (us) a story I couldn't wait to read, then started to cry when it came to a close. She gave me (us) the story of the decade.
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