Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Selection - Kiera Cass

Title: The Selection
Author: Kiera Cass
Publisher: HarperTeen, 2012 (Hardcover)
Length: 327 pages
Genre: Young Adult; Dystopian Fiction
Started: May 28, 2014
Finished: May 29, 2014

From the inside cover:

For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of the gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn't want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she's made for herself - and realizes that the life she's always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

I hadn't even heard of this trilogy till recently; it's quite popular so I decided to try it out. Whoo boy, I fell fast and hard for this book. I'm not a typical girly-girl, I've never been that into dresses and shoes and the like, and looking at the cover and the synopsis I assumed it would be very superficial like that; but thankfully for me America's not an uber girly-girl either.

America Singer is a Five, coming from a family of artists and only steps above being destitute like the Eights. In Illea, the land that was formed after a horrific war that destroyed the United States, a caste system prevails. Ones are royalty, Twos and Threes have a decent life, anyone below a Four has surely suffered hard times, some more than others. America loves Aspen, a Six, and the two have plans for marriage. When she is chosen for the Selection, America only agrees to it because her family will be compensated while she is at the palace, money they desperately need.

As she goes through the process, trying to make friends with the other chosen girls and her maids, America realizes the prince is more than she at first assumed. The two become friends and begin to fall in love. As Maxon confides in America, she learns of the rebel attacks and experiences them first-hand. As the girls dwindle down to the final few, America wonders why Illea's history has never been written down and who Prince Maxon will choose.

The book has more to it than one would assume. The hints at political intrigue are subtle enough to grab your attention and will assumedly be a bigger focus in the later books. The romance is incredibly well done, the interactions between Maxon and America are very natural and do a wonderful job of showing the developing romance versus telling. America herself is a very down to earth character, very admirable and determined and not allowing anyone to walk all over her, including Prince Maxon.

Very enticing and addicting read, I urge you to give it a go, even if you give the frilly cover the side-eye. I'm eagerly awaiting the arrival of my copies of books 2 and 3 (already released).

Thoughts on the cover:
I figured this was a stereotypical YA cover, but once I saw the covers for the other two books, I had to give them some credit. These are freaking gorgeous covers, they indulge the fraction of myself that is the girly-girl.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The Kingdom of Wrenly: The Lost Stone - Jordan Quinn

Title: The Kingdom of Wrenly: The Lost Stone
Author: Jordan Quinn
Publisher: Little Simon, 2014 (Hardcover)
Length: 114 pages
Genre: Children's Fantasy
Started: May 28, 2014
Finished: May 28, 2014

From the inside cover:

Eight-year-old Prince Lucas is lonely and wishes he could play with the other children in the kingdom, but his father, the king, has forbidden it. Lucas also longs to explore all the different lands of Wrenly. When his mother loses her prized emerald pendant, Lucas finally gets his chance! He teams up with Clara Gills, the daughter of a seamstress, and the two friends set off to find the lost stone. Will Lucas and Clara be able to find the precious jewel and claim the king's reward?

I haven't ventured into the land of chapter books in a long time, especially since I don't often teach the primary grades where kids are more apt to read them. By the time I see them in the junior grades most kids (as expected) have already moved on to middle grade books or even YA stuff for the really advanced and mature readers. But since my circle of friends has children who will soon be reading these (and my own daughter in 4 years give or take), I've been paying closer attention to the kinds of chapter books that are coming out now, aside from the usual Magic Tree House or Geronimo Stilton (I've already got a few of those on A's "big kid" bookshelf).

The Kingdom of Wrenly series is unique in that it's a high fantasy series. Usually most chapter books are straight realistic fiction with maybe some fantasy elements thrown in, but never a pure knights and dragons with trolls and fairies all rolled up into a package kind of series. I especially like that there's both a boy and a girl as the protagonists and they're good friends, which means this series is equally geared towards boys and girls (always a plus in my book). There's illustrations on every page,  and the writing on each page is big, so kids will confidently fly through the pages.

A lovely new chapter book series for the primary grades (ages 6-8), kids who love fantasy worlds will adore this.

Thoughts on the cover:
Typical cover, I like the illustrator's style.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Love Letters to the Dead - Ava Dellaira

Title: Love Letters to the Dead
Author: Ava Dellaira
Publisher: Farrar Straus Giroux, 2014 (Hardcover)
Length: 323 pages
Genre: Young Adult; Realistic Fiction
Started: May 26, 2014
Finished: May 26, 2014

From the inside cover:

It begins as an assignment for English class: write a letter to a dead person.

Laurel chooses Kurt Cobain because her sister, May, loved him. And he died young, just like May. Soon, Laurel has a notebook full of letters to the dead - to people like Janis Joplin, Heath Ledger, Amelia Earhart, and Amy Winehouse - though she never gives a single one of them to her teacher. She writes about starting high school, navigating the choppy waters of new friendships, learning to live with her splintering family, falling in love for the first time, and, most important, trying to grieve for May. But how do you mourn for someone you haven't forgiven?

It's not until Laurel has written the truth about what happened to herself that she can finally accept what happened to May. And only when Laurel has begun to see her sister as the person she was - lovely and amazing and deeply flawed - can she truly start to discover her own path.

In a voice that's as lyrical and as true as a favourite song, Ava Dellaira writes about one girl's journey through life's challenges with a haunting and often heartbreaking beauty.

The plot and title grabbed me and convinced me to pick this up. I'm so glad I did; you would never know this was a debut book for this author, it's so beautiful (granted I'm not surprised, I find the most impressive books to be debuts).

Laurel is just starting her freshman year of high school after her older sister May died just a few months before. Trying to get away from the stigma of May's death, Laurel transfers to a school in her aunt's district, where she lives every other week when not with her dad. With her mother gone to a ranch in California, her father a shadow of who he once was, and her aunt a Bible-thumper, Laurel doesn't have a lot of people to confide in. She soon opens up to dead people through letters, originally an assignment in Mrs. Buster's English class. Laurel writes to Kurt Cobain, Judy Garland, Jim Morrison, River Phoenix, and others; admiring them for their life's work and lamenting their loss as if their greatness wasn't long meant for this world, just like May. Laurel idealizes her sister both in life and in death, hanging around May's friends, wearing May's clothes, liking everything May liked; if she idealizes May so much it'll keep her from hating her sister and the events that took place right before her death. Only when Laurel can tell the truth in her letters to the dead can she tell the truth to her friends and parents and finally begin to move past her sister's death.

This novel is just breath-taking in so many aspects, I read it in one day in various sittings because I could not put it down. The concept of letters to dead people is original, particularly the people Laurel writes to. I expected people like Amy Winehouse and Heath Ledger, but Janis Joplin, River Phoenix, Judy Garland, and Kurt Cobain not so much, I don't even think most of my high school students know who River Phoenix is. Laurel not only confides to them about her life, she also talks about the lives of the dead and how she can identify with them, for example, with Judy Garland trying to sing and be happy in the midst of family tragedy because her sister was the same way. Later on as she gets closer to the truth she actually admires some of them less, like Kurt for committing suicide.

Laurel is a very down to earth, realistic character. Though her actions don't make a lot of sense early on (the drinking, skipping class, etc.), everything comes together once the reader gets a full sense of the relationship between Laurel and May and all the events leading up to May's death...I wanted to hug Laurel by the end.

The writing is beautiful, there are so many quote-worthy lines in here, I almost regret reading this so fast since I didn't write any of them down. The lessons are noteworthy, you explore a girl going through immense loss and traumatic experiences and isn't quite sure how to process any of it; but through her writing, good friends, a caring boyfriend who metaphorically knocks some sense into her about coming to terms with her past, and her parents and teachers, she eventually comes out of her grieving fog and begins to move on.

Gorgeous novel in so many aspects. It will hold your attention, keep you hooked, make you laugh, cry, and feel bittersweet by the end.

Thoughts on the cover:
I love the twilight-esque colour scheme (the sky/time of day, not the books) with Laurel perched on the title writing in her book.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

400 reviews!

I just noticed I reached 400 book reviews! I'm kidding actually, I've been watching my numbers for quite some time and have kept meticulous track ^_~ Anywhoo, just a self-congratulatory post for 400 reviews in roughly four and a half years; my brain-child (this blog) is still alive and kicking!

Thanks for reading, commenting, and being awesome blog followers in general :)

Artwork to the left is an illustration from The Real Boy by Anne Ursu, isn't it pretty?

Friday, May 23, 2014

Moon at Nine - Deborah Ellis

Title: Moon at Nine
Author: Deborah Ellis
Publisher: Pajama Press, 2014 (Paperback)
Length: 223 pages
Genre: Young Adult; Historical Fiction
Started: May 23, 2014
Finished: May 23, 2014

From the back cover:

Fifteen-year-old Farrin has many secrets. As the daughter of a wealthy family in Tehran, Farrin has learned to keep a low profile. It has been ten years since the Shah was overthrown; the Revolutionary Guard must never learn of her mother's Bring Back the Shah activities. Her family could be thrown in jail, or worse.

The day she meets Sadira, Farrin's life changes forever. Sadira is funny, wise, and outgoing; the two girls become inseparable. But as their friendship develops into something deeper, events take a dangerous turn. If their secret is uncovered, Farrin and Sadira will be arrested by the religious police. And in Iran, there is only one outcome for gays: execution.

Deborah Ellis is an internationally acclaimed and multi-award winning author best known for her stories about young people in the Muslim world. Based on real-life events, Moon at Nine is a tense and riveting story about finding love and staying true to oneself, even in the face of a merciless regime.

Farrin lives in Iran in 1988. The Revolutionary government has been in place for the past ten years since the overthrow of the Shah, and everyone lives their lives under a microscope. Farrin's mother is still loyal to the Shah like many of Iran's upper class, and even though her frivolous parties pose no threat to the government, Farrin knows to keep that a secret and not draw attention to herself. When Farrin meets Sadira at school, she is immediately drawn to her. Sadira inspires Farrin to study harder and improve; and for the first time, Farrin actively attracts attention. But when Sadira and Farrin begin to fall in love, that attention could mean the difference between life and death. Homosexuality is punishable by death in Iran and the girls know it, but though they try to stop seeing the other, they cannot live a lie.

The author is known for writing books about tough situations involving children, many of them living  in the Middle East. We use her Breadwinner trilogy in classrooms quite frequently to illustrate concerns of children living in different societies around the world. This novel takes on a whole new view of the violation of the rights of LGBT people in different countries. The writing is gorgeous, peppered with Iranian poetry and culture, with beautiful metaphors about Farrin and Sadira's love for each other.

Based on a true story, this novel illustrates the reality for many LGBT people in various countries even today. I couldn't imagine my students or my child having to face prison and execution just because they were true to themselves, so stories like this are good for kids to read simply to remind them of human rights issues around the world.

A well-written novel on subject matter rarely explored (but sorely needed).

Thoughts on the cover:
I love the barbed wire in that shimmery plastic going across Farrin's face, very telling.

Monday, May 12, 2014

The World's Strongest Librarian - Josh Hanagarne

Title: The World's Strongest Librarian
Author: Josh Hanagarne
Publisher: Gotham Books (Penguin), 2013 (Hardcover)
Length: 288 pages
Genre: Adult; Nonfiction
Started: May 9, 2014
Finished: May 12, 2014

From the inside cover:

A funny, book-obsessed kid, Josh Hanagarne was born to Mormon parents in rural Utah. He plotted escape to Piers Anthony's magical land of Xanth, freaked himself out with Stephen King's Pet Sematary,  and fell in love with Fern from E.B. White's Charlotte's Web.

Large for his age, Josh was playing the role of Tree in his elementary school play when he suddenly started twitching uncontrollably. Turns out the tree had Tourette Syndrome.

By the time Josh turned twenty, his tics had become too drastic to ignore. Desperate for liberation, Josh tried all possible treatments: well-intentioned chiropractic massage from a future convict; antipsychotic drugs that left him in a fog; even Botox injected directly into his vocal cords to paralyze them, which left him voiceless for two years. The results were dismal.

As his tics worsened, the list of casualties grew: Josh's relationship with his girlfriend, his Mormon mission, his college career, countless jobs, his sense of self, and - slowly but relentlessly - his faith.

It turned out to be weight lifting that provided the most lasting relief, as Josh learned to "throttle" his tics into submission in the weight room. Under guidance from an eccentric, autistic strongman - and former Air Force tech sergeant and prison guard in Iraq - Josh quickly went from lifting dumbbells and barbells to performing increasingly elaborate feats (like rolling up frying pans and bending spikes). What started as a hobby became an entire way of life - an an effective way of managing his disorder.

At an imposing 6'7" and literally incapable of sitting still, Josh is certainly not your average librarian, He is an aspiring strongman, bookish nerd, twitchy guy with Tourette Syndrome, devoted family man, and tearer of phone books. A tall, thin paradox in thick glasses. Funny and offbeat, The World's Strongest Librarian traces this unlikely hero as he attempts to overcome his disability, navigate his wavering faith, find love, and create a life worth living.

I'll read anything to do with books and libraries, even when they're interwoven amongst a big guy with Tourette's. Thankfully this book was immensely entertaining, you'll laugh even if you're not into book humour.

The book begins with Josh's early years in the late 70s and progresses until his present-day adulthood.  Each chapter begins with an anecdote about Josh's experience working in the Salt Lake City library, which are pretty authentic if you are familiar with the library environment or have friends that work in one.

I learned a lot about Mormonism while reading this; the whole section on Josh's mission and the training leading up to it was fascinating, like college but with a community service internship tacked on at the end. Plus I learned stuff about kettlebells that I probably will never need to know, but was pretty entertaining to read about. I already know a bit about Tourette's since I work in schools, but Josh's case was really extreme, his wife deserves a medal for how supportive she was during the worst years of it.

The best part of the reading experience, at least for me, was the instant connection as a book lover over Josh's many literary anecdotes. Like falling in love with Fern from Charlotte's Web (I never had a girl-crush on Fern, but reading Charlotte's Web was nevertheless a memorable experience for me as a child), loving Mark Twain, and having a reverence for libraries themselves.

Hilarious, enlightening, and makes you stop and think. A must for book lovers, and I'm willing to bet you'd enjoy it even minus the bibliophile content.

Thoughts on the cover:
I like the strongman carrying a huge stack of book, a classic image turned on its head.

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Etched in Sand - Regina Calcaterra

Title: Etched in Sand: A True Story of Five Siblings Who Survived an Unspeakable Childhood on Long Island
Author: Regina Calcaterra
Publisher: William Morrow Books, 2013 (Paperback)
Length: 320 pages
Genre: Adult; Nonfiction
Started: May 7, 2014
Finished: May 9, 2014


In this story of perseverance in the face of adversity, Regina Calcaterra recounts her childhood in foster care and on the streets - and how she and her savvy crew of homeless siblings managed to survive years of homelessness, abandonment, and abuse.

Regina Calcaterra's emotionally powerful memoir reveals how she endured a series of foster homes and intermittent homelessness in the shadow of the Hamptons, and how she rose above her past while fighting to keep her brother and three sisters together.

Beautifully written and heartbreakingly honest, Etched in Sand is an unforgettable reminder that regardless of social status, the American Dream is still within for those who have the desire and the determination to succeed.

I'm a sucker for punishment, I find myself attracted to books with subject matter most people avoid like the plague. This novel is incredibly hard to read, especially now that I'm a mother, but if you can get past the repulsion you'll find an incredible story of perseverance from an incredible woman.

The book opens with 13-year-old Regina and her siblings (Camille 16, Norman 12, Rosie 7) moving abruptly to a new home in the summer of 1980 on Long Island, New York. Their older sister Cherie has already found a way to escape by getting married and having a baby, leaving the four younger siblings to fend for themselves when their mother Cookie abandons them for 6 weeks almost as soon as they move in. When their mother returns and beats Regina to the point where her teachers cannot ignore it, social workers plead with her and Camille to tell the truth and claim emancipation from their mother, promising that it will allow them to remove the younger siblings from Cookie's care as well. Regina recounts her childhood from age four onward: the abuse, the neglect, the foster homes, the instability. When Cookie runs off with Norman and Rosie to Idaho, Regina and Camille can only move forward in their new foster home and try to plan for when they age out of the system. The novel goes through Regina's struggle to come to terms with her past while trying to get through school, college, and her career; while at the same time trying to intervene for her younger siblings still in her mother's care.

This book is at the same time disturbing and inspiring. The treatment that Regina and her siblings endure at the hands of their mentally unstable, neglectful mother is nothing short of horrific, to the point where you wonder how a mother can do such things to her children (then you remind yourself that it happens more often than we like to think about), and how freaking resilient some children actually are.

The publisher pens this as a testament to the idea that the American Dream is still in reach for people, look at Regina and what she went through, and she's incredibly successful. While that is a lovely thought, and the author did rise above circumstances most of us can't even fathom, I have issues with saying, "oh anyone can do it now,"because I don't think that is true. I work with children that will never rise above their circumstances for several reasons, one of which is that they are never strongly told that school is a way out for them. Regina loved to read and school was her escape, plus she was quite bright and teachers reinforced this trait in her. She had the drive and took advantage of scholarships and grants to attend college and things took off from there. Very few kids actually have the personality and willpower to do all this when they come from an under-privileged background, and most of the time it stems from the idea they get that school isn't important. Once kids have this planted in their head, usually from parents and surroundings, there's nothing teachers can do or say to undo it; that child will either struggle on infinitely or eventually wake up and realize they need to work hard to graduate high school/post-secondary/trade/apprenticeship if they want more. Plus there's mental health issues thrown into the mix that just complicate things even more, so I affirm that it's not so easily put-together as stories like this make it seem.

Incredible book about a woman who rose above her horrific upbringing to find personal success as a lawyer as well as being in service to help others.

Thoughts on the cover:
I love how the cover model is positioned on the beach where we can't see her face. The whole thing just screams 'perfect cover.'

Thursday, May 8, 2014

A Child's Introduction to Art - Heather Alexander

Title: A Child's Introduction to Art: The World's Greatest Paintings and Sculptures
Author: Heather Alexander, Illustrated by Meredith Hamilton
Publisher: Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers, May 20, 2014 (Review copy is an ARC from the publisher)
Length: 96 pages
Genre: Children's Nonfiction
Started: May 7, 2014
Finished: May 8, 2014

From the inside cover:

No one knows when humans began creating art. The earliest paintings were found in caves from 30,000 years ago! Since then, art has been an important presence in cultures around the world from the pyramids in Ancient Egypt and sculptures in Ancient Greece to tapestries in the Middle Ages and ceremonial masks in Africa.

Beginning with cave paintings of 18,000 BC, A Child's Introduction to Art explores periods from art and artists throughout history. It highlights thirty-five well-known painters and sculptors including Michelangelo, Rembrandt, Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, and Andy Warhol.

Here are the great works of these famous artists, their biographies, explanations of their particular techniques and what inspired each of them to paint. Read about how American painter Mary Cassatt was one of the only women to attend art school in the 1800's, how Spanish painter Diego Velazquez started working as an artist's apprentice when he was only twelve years old, and how Auguste Rodin, one of the most famous sculptors in history, was rejected from the most famous art school in Paris three times!

Uncover hidden meanings and surprises like the fact that Spanish painter Salvador Dali hid a portrait of himself in his Persistence of Memory. And, learn the secrets of behind how some of the world's most famous paintings were created, like how Leonardo da Vinci brought in clowns and musicians to entertain the real-life Mona Lisa, and that Vincent Van Gogh painted Starry Night from his hospital room.

After reading about these famous artists and their work, you'll be ready to create your own art through projects like Q-tip pointillism, surreal collages, and splattering artwork.

As a teacher, I'm honest with parents that there will be gaps in their child's education that they will need to fill in, especially if the subject is important to them. I'm not talking about literacy or math, but subjects like visual arts, music and drama especially tend to fall to the wayside in our race to finish curriculum in the more basic areas. This is a shame, since most people agree that an education that includes the arts makes for a well-rounded child. The good thing is, being an English teacher, I'm a big believer that books can help to fill in these gaps; my arts education in school was pretty subpar, but with books, television, and music lessons, I feel I'm now fairly well-rounded in that area. Which brings me to this book. A Child's Introduction to Art fits my criteria for being deserving of a spot on your family's bookshelf: it is general enough to cover a lot of material without sacrificing the depth of information, and it is basic enough to engage a younger child but not too childish to alienate an older one.

The book begins with a very basic "what is art?" kind of page, which I love because it actually gives the best 'definition' of art I've heard anywhere. Then, a spotlight on ancient art from various cultures and their characteristics (I learned about the Bayeux Tapestry). Then the two-page spread profiles of the thirty-five artists and their most famous work, complete with comments on aspects of the paintings (I now look at Velazquez's Las Meninas in a completely new way). Peppered in between the profiles are sections on colour, museums, perspective, as well as easy project ideas: illuminated letters, upside down art ala Michelangelo's Sistine Chapel (I've actually seen a class do this, it's quite entertaining), silhouettes, and many others. The variety of artists portrayed is what I expected, all the typical ones you'd expect as well as some I didn't (I was quite happy to see Hokusai in the profiles and Ai Wei Wei mentioned; as well as Klimt's The Kiss, one of my favourites).

If that's not enough, inside the front cover is an attached envelope with 5 colouring page-type outlines of masterpieces for kids to colour: da Vinci's Mona Lisa, Monet's Japanese Footbridge and the Water Lily Pool, Cassatt's Young Mother Sewing, Seurat's A Sunday Afternoon on the Grande Jatte, and Dali's  The Persistence of Memory.

Definitely something you want on your shelf for your child, this is something I can see 8-12-year-olds devouring on a lazy weekend while pulling out the art supplies. There are other books in this series that I'll be checking out now that I've seen what they're all about: the environment, greek mythology, the night sky, the story of the orchestra, poetry, and the world.

Thoughts on the cover:
I like a few things the illustrator did here. The kids are diverse in culture and gender, and some of the kids are emulating famous pieces (the girl at the bottom is imitating The Thinker, the two girls on the right are posing as Mona Lisa and the goddess Flora from Botticelli's La Primavera). Plus I love how the boy at the bottom left is reading a copy of this very book.

Giveaway: The publisher has generously offered a giveaway copy for one of my fine readers out there. Just fire me off an email to safielstar AT hotmail DOT com with your name and address (open to Canada and the US only),  I'll pick one at random and forward the winner's details to the publisher and they'll mail the book. Entries will be accepted until the end of the day on May 15th, at which point I'll pick the winner. Good luck everyone!

Saturday, May 3, 2014

Midwinterblood - Marcus Sedgwick

Title: Midwinterblood
Author: Marcus Sedgwick
Publisher: Indigo (Orion Books), 2011 (Hardcover)
Length: 263 pages
Genre: Young Adult; Fantasy
Started: May 1, 2014
Finished: May 2, 2014

From the inside cover:

'I will live seven times and I will look for you and love you in each life. Will you follow?'

In 2073 on the remote and secretive island of Blessed, where rumour has it that no one ages and no children are born, a ritual sacrifice takes place.

It echoes a moment ten centuries before, when, in the dark of the moon, a king was slain, tragically torn from his queen. Their souls search to be reunited, and as mother and son, artist and child, forbidden lovers, victims of a vampire, after they come close to finding what they've lost. But can love last forever?

This was a surprisingly well-done book that blew me away (the few books I've read with reincarnated lovers have frankly sucked).

It opens up with Eric Seven taking a trip as a journalist to investigate Blessed Island and the rumours that plague it. Strange things begin happening right away: he gets no signal on his phone and apps don't work, there are plenty of people but no children, and he becomes captivated by a young woman named Merle that he's never met but feels like he knows her. Eric loses track of time as he's been given a tea that acts like a sleep aid, and eventually becomes the target of the islanders' sacrifice to allow more children to be born. Just as he sees the knife flash over his head with Merle watching does  Eric realize he's been through this before, which begins the flashbacks from his most recent life all the way back to his original one.

Each of the following six stories feel like they could be stories unto themselves, but they really click when read together since little details unite all seven lives together: the apples, the tea, the rabbits, the Dragon Orchids, the viking grave. Eric and Merle were reincarnated as twin brother and sister, reclusive artist and young child, mother and son, farmer and pilot's daughter, and lovers in a Romeo and Juliet type story; and some of you might cringe thinking "ewww, brother and sister, mother and son, old man and little girl, they're supposed to be lovers right?" The good thing is that the two of them don't necessarily have a romantic love in each lifetime, but the two figures do love each other; which I think is more interesting since if they were reincarnated as romantic lovers each time it would get a little boring.

The whole book has a kind of ephemeral quality to it, light and airy like reading an old-fashioned story with not much substance, but hits you somewhere deep inside yourself like you've just discovered some obvious truth that it just took you forever to realize.

An amazing book about lovers reincarnated across hundreds of years and various lives. Just trust me on this one and read it, it will blow you away.

Thoughts on the cover:
Considering how good the book is, the cover makes it look like a boy's B-grade novel or something. There are cover variants out there with two rabbits on the cover with a red and purple colour scheme which look nicer.