My Reading Month August

I know it is very late for a reading month August since it is already October, but what the hell…here goes nothing. 🙂 Slowly I feel that I have my reading groove back at least I had it back for a short time due to late summer nights on my balcony and a nice stress level at work that made me grab an audiobook or two. Yet the groove to publish content more regularly has not yet returned in full force. But I am happy about a little force as well. All in all, I am quite happy with the month of August.

  • Books: 4
  • Audiobooks: 6
  • Pages (only books): 956
  • Pages (incl. Audiobooks): 4300
  • Minutes listened: 6779min. (almost 13 hours)

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Books:

Maggie Stiefvater and Jackson Pearce – Pip Bartlett und die magischen Tiere: Die brandgefährliche Fussels/ Pip Bartlett*s Guide to Magical Creatures

My first read this month is also the book that has gotten me out of my little low. This book is such a lovely story with a wonderful and rich world of magical creatures and great ideas. I enjoyed every minute of the story as well as the beautiful illustrations. A great children’s adventure story about magical creatures and a girl who can talk to them.

Kerstin Rottland – Agathe Bond: Cool wie das Wasser im Pool

Another fantastic and adventurous read is this spy novel with a tortoise as the main protagonist and major spy. A hilarious and fantastic story with beautiful illustrations, quite some adventure and a lot of spy equipment hidden in one small tortoise-shell.

Dora Heldt – Jetzt mal anders

This collection of columns written by a well-known German author were entertaining, sweat, and short. I did not feel the pressure of having to read the book cover to cover but pick it up when I felt like it. The stories cover a wide range of everyday topics and observations.

Martina Sahler – Matilda und die Sommersonneninsel

This young adult book or early teen book – whatever age range this is supposed to cover – is a wonderful summer read for young girls as the story centers around a group of young girls and their long summer vacation. Short, sweat, and entertaining.

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Audiobooks:

Kirstin Cashore – Die Flammende / Fire

I have read this book some years ago and I enjoyed every page of it. The same holds true for the audiobook. It was as riveting and exiting as I remembered the book to be. A wonderful fantasy novel with a great protagonist. I thoroughly enjoyed the read.

Eve Chase – Black Rabbit Hall

A family drama with two different timelines that intertwine towards the end. Though I felt like I could predict what was going to happen, the author had the uncanny ability to make me doubt my previously made decisions. The story kept my on my toes and was an entertaining and thrilling audiobook. A great read or better a great listen.

Frauke Scheunemann – Ziemlich unverhofft

The second book centering around the protagonist Nicola was another entertaining and fun audiobook. I returned to the world, the people, and a similar chaotic life of the protagonist with pleasure and passion. Though I was a little annoyed by the story line with her neighbor Tiziano and this attempt at some sort of love triangle thing…the remainder of the story was great.

Lucinda Riley – Der Lavendelgarten/ The Lavender Garden

My second Riley novel was another audiobook for the win column. The story was set in two different times (as seems to be the case with Mrs. Riley) and follows the family history of Emily de la Martiniere – her struggle to maintain a family legacy and the struggles of her family in WWII. The story was riveting, the characters were sympathetic and likeable, both story lines drew the reader in yet were slow enough to enjoy the beauty of the scenery the narrative was set in as well as the writing.

Sarah Lark – Das Lied der Maori (#2) / Der Ruf des Kiwis (#3)

These two audiobooks are the second and third installment in a family tale. I enjoyed the first immensely and wanted to continue with the narrator and the author and the family story. We follow the descendants of the two women that came to New Zealand in the first book – trying to survive in a world and situation that they cannot escape and if they do, they have to endure a lot of pain and suffering.
Though I think you could have listened to these audio books individually without a specific order in mind, I was happy that I listened to them how it was intended. The books were a little more intense than the previous one especially the third installment. This is not necessarily for times when you as a reader are in emotional distress or more vulnerable because the story includes quite an ordeal of abuse and rape into these books. I had to stop on occasion. Despite those scenes the books were very good.

Kristin Cashore – Graceling/Die Beschenkte

Graceling

Blurb/ Klappentext:

Katsa has been able to kill a man with her bare hands since she was eight – she’s a Graceling, one of the rare people in her land born with an extreme skill. As niece of the king, she should be able to live a life of privilege, but Graced as she is with killing, she is forced to work as the king’s thug.
When she first meets Prince Po, Graced with combat skills, Katsa has no hint of how her life is about to change.
She never expects to become Po’s friend.
She never expects to learn a new truth about her own Grace – or about a terrible secret that lies hidden far away… (Goodreads)

In den sieben Königreichen, in denen Katsa lebt, kommen hin und wieder Kinder mit einer besonderen Fähigkeit zur Welt. Auch Katsa besitzt eine solche Gabe: Sie kann töten! Katsas Onkel Randa, König von Middlun, macht sich Katsas Können zunutze: Erhebt einer seiner Feinde sein Haupt, erledigt Katsa die Drecksarbeit. Katsa hasst ihr Leben als Randas Werkzeug. Ihr fehlt nur ein Anlass, um aus dem blutigen Geschäft auszusteigen. Sie findet ihn in Prinz Bo, der ebenso wie Katsa eine Gabe besitzt. Gemeinsam ziehen sie gegen die dunkle, tödliche Gewalt, die im Norden des Reiches ihre Schwingen ausbreitet und in deren Zentrum ein einäugiger König seine Fäden zieht … (Amazon)

In (Very) Short/ In Kürze:

+ first in a trilogy about specially gifted people (e.g. fighting skills etc.)
+ focused on the development of a very likable character
+ fun and slightly sarcastic dialogues – Raffin is the best
+ erster Teil einer Trilogie über Menschen mit besonderen Gaben
+ konzentriert sich auf die Entwicklung der sympathische Hauptfigur
+ unterhaltsame und sarkastische Dialoge – Raffin ist der Beste

My Opinion/ Meinung:

I have read this book a few years ago and I thoroughly enjoyed it. When I came across the audiobook, I had to have it – just to see if I was as captivated by the story when I listen to it this time. And I was.

Katsa lives in a world where people can be born with a special grace: to be great fighters, cooks, dancers, acrobats, musicians, and killers. Katsa is born with the grace to kill, she is part of king Randa’s court – one of the 7 kingly courts in her world. She works for the king – doing his dirty work namely killing or maiming people. She hates her life and the king but is to afraid to leave. One day – on a rescue mission ordered by the secret council she also works for – she meets a prince graced with powers. This meeting changed her life forever, but it also gets her on a path towards danger. A danger even her grace cannot save her from.

Katsa is an interesting, stubborn, yet still relateable and likeable character. You start to see where she is coming from, understand the choices that she makes and relate to the anger that she carries. While the story is adventurous and exiting, it is Katsa’s development and character that dominates the story – and I was not bored with this.

Though the action is not always constant and there is a lot of walking and getting to different places (which I enjoyed because it does take bloody time to travel long distances on a horse), the story is never boring. I never wanted to put the book down or stop listening to the audiobook.

The world creation is interesting, the other characters extremely likeable, and the villain someone you loath with a passion although you barely have any time with him. I enjoyed the humor and the slight sarcasm of the dialogue and writing which lightened the mood when other parts where quite heavy – I really enjoyed any interaction that Raffin is involved in.

Still, sometimes the actual action was a little abrupt and a little rushed. I had to “rehear” some places because I didn’t even notice that something significant happened.

Now in German – to read or not to read – depends on your preference 🙂

Beschenkte

Ich habe das Buch vor einiger Zeit gelesen und es hat mir wunderbar gefallen. Also ich über das Hörbuch gestolpert bin, musste ich es einfach haben. Ich wollte sehen, ob ich von dem Hörbuch genauso gebannt werde, wie von dem Buch. Und ich war gefesselt.

Katsa lebt in einer Welt in der Menschen mit besonderen Gaben geboren werden. Entweder können diese besonders gut kämpfen, schießen, kochen, tanzen, musizieren oder auch töten. Katsa ist mit der Gabe des Tötens geboren und lebt am Hof von König Randa – einer von sieben Königen in ihrer Welt. Sie arbeitet für Randa und macht seine Drecksarbeit: Leute töten und verletzen. Sie hasst dieses Leben und den König, doch sie hat zu viel Angst ihn zu verlassen. Als sie eines Tages einen Prinzen mit einer besonderen Gabe trifft ändert sich ihre ganze Welt und sie begibt sich in große Gefahr. Eine Gefahr vor der nicht mal ihre Gabe sie schützen kann.

Katsa ist ein interessanter, sturer Charakter, die jedoch auf ihre Art liebenswert und nachvollziehbar ist. Man erkennt schnell wer sie ist und warum sie so ist, man kann ihre Handlungen und Entscheidungen nachvollziehen und versteht die Wut mit der sie umzugehen hat.

Während die Geschichte abenteuerlich und spannend ist, ist Katsas Entwicklung der Hauptfokus des Buches. Da ich sonst etwas zurückhaltend bin, was Erzählungen angeht, die sich primär auf die Entwicklung von Figuren beschränken, war ich hier sehr positiv überrascht. Es war in keinster Weise langweilig. Selbst wenn der Spannungsbogen nicht immer gleichmäßig spannend bleibt und die Geschichte auch Zeit mit der Reise verbringt (schließlich ist man nicht mal eben von einem Land zum anderen Land via Pferd gereist), ist das Buch trotz alledem spannend. Ich wollte weder das Buch zur Seite legen noch das Hörbuch unterbrechen.

Die Welt ist wunderbar und sehr schön aufgebaut, die anderen Figuren sind liebenswert, der Antagonist einfach zu hassen. Besonders hat mir der humorige und sarkastische Dialog gefallen, mit dem das Buch regelmäßig durchzogen ist – besonders die Gespräche in die Raffin verwickelt ist.

Trotz alle dem schien mir der Handlungsstrang, der sich primär mit der Spannung und dem Abenteuer beschäftigt hat, doch gelegentlich etwas schnell und gehetzt. Ich musste einige Stellen öfter lesen bzw. hören, weil ich signifikante Ereignisse überlesen/überhört hatte.

Bottom Line/ Fazit:

A fantastic and fun fantasy story focusing a likeable main character and her development.

Ein tolles und unterhaltsames Buch, welches sich um die liebenswerte Hauptfigur dreht.

My Reading Month April

I am happy with my reading month. I managed quite a few books as well as audiobooks. I will start of with the books I have read this past month.

Charlaine Harris – A Bone to Pick (Aurora Teagarden #2)

I picked up the second book in the series because I wanted a nice and easy read and the Aurora Teagarden series did not disappoint. It is advertised as a mystery book which it really isn’t. Aurora just happens to be at the places where dead bodies are found and she spend a few thoughts on them. This does not make it a crime story. But her private life is compelling and so is the effortless writing of Harris. It just washed over me and I had to continue.

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Andreas H. Schmachtl – Hieronymus Frosch: Das hat die Welt noch nicht gesehen

This German children’s book is lovely and wonderful and focuses on stories about an inventor frog and his friends. It is a fun read, beautifully illustrated and the book is made up of many stories that can be read individually. Really great for reading to a child. And since a frog is green, so is the color of the fond.

John Farman – The Very Bloody History of Britain (Without the Boring Bits) The First Bit!

Another quick read was the history of Britain without the boring bits – and it sure was bloody. It is an interesting take on the subject of history and I enjoyed reading it. Kings and queens seem to be quite weird. Fun.

Derek Landy – Skulduggery Pleasant: Playing with Fire

The second installment in this series was again really enjoyable. The story was fast-paced from the beginning, adventurous, exiting, fun, with incredibly funny dialogues. I loved it.

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Bette A. Stevens – Amazing Matilda: A Monarch’s Tale

This children’s book is a lovely little story about the monarch butterfly Matilda who wants to fly so bad and is told to be patient. It is a lovely book with beautiful illustrations. Wonderful.

Now onto my audiobooks that I listened in April.

Kristin Cashore – Die Beschenkte/ Graceling

I have read this book some time ago and now listened to the audiobook when I came across this. I enjoyed it as much as the first time. The premise is interesting, the characters well-developed, and likeable, and the translation was really good (I occasionally peeked into the book and compared). Totally recommend this.

Sabine Weigand – Das Buch der Königin

A German historical novel about an „old“ queen who gave birth to her child in a market place because people believed she wasn’t really having a child at 40. It was a good and entertaining story but was drawn out a little at times.

Veronica Roth – Divergent

I loved this audiobook. I found the unabridged version in English in my local library and I was thrilled to have it. The narrator was fantastic, the story well-paced and the characters well-developed. I enjoyed the main characters, the minor characters, I loathed the antagonists and wasn’t bothered by the love story thing. Great fun!

Andrea Sawatzki – Tief durchatmen, die Familie kommt.

This book is written by a German author/actress and focuses on one complicated family during Christmas time. It was an entertaining book though I had difficulties warming up to the female main protagonist. But the family was chaotic and I really enjoyed the end.

Kristin Cashore – Bitterblue

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paperback
publisher: Gollancz
published: 2012
pages: 547

Book on Amazon

Blurb:

Eight years have passed since the young Princess Bitterblue, and her country, were saved from the vicious King Leck. Now Bitterblue is the queen of Monsea, and her land is at peace.

But the influence of her father, a violent psychopath with mind-altering abilities, lives on. Her advisers, who have run the country on her behalf since Leck’s death, believe in a forward-thinking plan: to pardon all of those who committed terrible acts during Leck’s reign; and to forget every dark event that ever happened. Monea’s past has become shrouded mystery, and it’s only when Bitterblue begins sneaking out of her castle – curious, disguised and alone – to walk the streets of her own city, that she begins to realize the truth. Her kingdom has been under a thirty-five-year long spell of a madman, and now their only chance to move forward is to revisit the past.

Whatever the past holds.

The two thieves, who have sworn only to steal what has already been stolen, change her life forever. They hold a key to the truth of Leck’s reign. And one of them, who possesses an unidentified Grace, may also hold the key to her heart…

In (Very) Short:

+ final installment of the Graceling Realm
+ connects the two previous books
+ main protagonists search for the past in order to move on to the future
+ surprising twists in Leck’s history revealed (at least for me)
+ a different approach to the love story (which is secondary) than the previous books

My Opinion:

In the final installment of the Graceling Realm I meet Katsa, Po, and Bitterblue again. Characters I got acquainted to in Graceling but who disappeared from the second book Fire. Bitterblue not only concludes the story but brings all three books together.

Bitterblue is Queen of Monsea after her father was killed and his terrible reign ended. Her advisers have ruled in her name the first years but now that she has grown up, her interest in her people and her city increase more and she escapes the castle during the nights. Realizing that many things are at odds with what she has been told by those she trusted, Bitterblue wants to discover the truth. The truth about her kingdom and the truth about her own past – about her father’s secrets, behavior, and his experiments. She slowly realizes that many want to keep those truths a secret at all costs.

I think this was a satisfying conclusion to the trilogy and answered questions and doubts I had while reading the other installments. It brought all three books together. I got to meet old friends from the first book and although I have to confess that I forgot quite a lot about those characters (it was a long time ago I read the first novel), it all came back to me quickly. (And it reaffirmed my wish to read Graceling again)

Bitterblue herself is a strong yet not completed or perfect character. She has to learn to come out of her protective shell. A shell she might not have chosen herself but was put in. Her desire and drive to understand what is going on in her kingdom, what happened in her past, and what king Leck really did, are understandable. Whatever happens in your life forms you into the person that you are. She grows with every discovery and is able to take charge when it is needed most.

The trauma caused by the abuse of Leck, the toll it took on the victims and the desire to suppress the past is interwoven into the narrative and is neither subtle nor dominant. Cashore did not shy away to show the consequences of that trauma and I take my hat of to her.

The narrative pace and the story itself were interesting yet seemed sometimes a little dragged. The obligatory love story followed the common scheme in this trilogy but had an interesting twist which I personally enjoyed quite a lot. But maybe it could be unsatisfactory to other readers.

This edition of Bitterblue has beautiful illustrations by Ian Schoenherr which really helped me imagining all those fantastic bridges. They are quite stunning.

Bottom Line:

A wonderful and satisfying finale, which did not shy away from difficult topics and surprising twists. I thoroughly enjoyed the trilogy and can recommend the books wholeheartedly.

Rating:

rating 4

My Reading Month August

August was another quite successful reading month for me. Although I have not read as many books as I read the previous month, it was a good reading month: entertaining, funny, and exiting.

Kristin Cashore – Bitterblue (Graceling Realm #3)

My month started off with the final installments of the Graceling Trilogy. After reading Fire the previous month I wanted to finish this series.

The novel was good and I enjoyed the read. The story was exiting, the new characters likeable and the novel did not shy away from showing the results of mental and physical abuse. Great read.

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Bastian Sick – Der Dativ ist dem Genitiv sei Tod: Ein Wegweiser durch den Irrgarten der deutschen Sprache (#1)

This book is a collection of newspaper columns on the ridiculous side of the German language. You have to know German quite well to find it funny and understand how many redundant and honestly stupid rules there are and stupid mistakes people make. I loved that it was not a coherent story but columns that I could just read in between other appointments.

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Moira Young – Rebel Heart (Dust Lands #2)

After Cashore I started reading Young’s Rebel Heart. I wanted to know how the Dust Lands trilogy continued as there were quite a few open questions after finishing the first book. I am still amazed that I could not put the book down although I was close to strangling on of the main protagonists. In the first installment it was Saba, who got on my nerve. This time it was her brother. At the same time I could not stop reading.

Karin Bergrath – Tod im Anflug: Eine Gänsekrimi

I had to return to a good old crime story after reading so much fantasy, so I picked up a crime novel narrated by a goose. This is a German book and as far as I know it is not translated yet.

The goose Tom tries to figure out who killed the heron Neptun only to be dragged into a murder of a human. Since Tom is a big fan of CSI and Thomas Magnum, he is very well equipped to help the wingless investigators.

This is a really sweet, easy, and funny crime story. It was a great summer read and I thoroughly enjoyed it especially since it was really blood less.

Andrea Schacht – Der Dunkle Spiegel (#1)

I read one or two historical novels in my time, yet I am quite reluctant to enter that genre. This novel however is a historical crime story, so I felt somewhat save as it is down my alley.

Again this book is a German book, focusing on the middle ages in Cologne and I don’t believe this will be translated into English, but if you read German I recommend this book.

Although it started quite slow (for me at least, but I assume that is typical for a historical novel), the case was interesting and exiting, the main protagonist Almut was a feisty, strong woman for her time, and her sidekicks were likeable and sympathetic. I am looking forward to read more.

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Susan Rich – Mein kleiner Horrortrip

This is a collection of short and very short horror stories by many different authors. The eye on the cover caught my attention and I picked it up and browsed through. I honestly have to say that some stories very quite horrific since my imagination just ran with those ideas. Others were actually quite funny. The book is written for young adults maybe since most of the stories play with those myths such as the monster under the bed etc. The right book for every ghost story and horror fan.

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Patricia Schröder – Meeresflüstern (#1)

The last book this month was another fantasy story. Again a written by a German author and not translated yet. However, it touches upon themes found in some young adult fantasy books such as Josephine Angelini’s Starcrossed trilogy and Meyer’s Vampire Saga, while at the same time mixing it up with new fantasy aspect of the mermaid (do I say mer-people when I want to be gender neutral?).

The book is about a young woman, Elodie, who moves to Guernsey to come to terms with her father’s death and to learn to control her fear of water. There she meets a mysterious boy who could know something about the death of a young woman murdered on the island and whom she feels she has to protect.

I enjoyed the themes the book touched upon, the story itself was a little calm for my taste.

Kristin Cashore – Fire

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paperback
publisher: Gollancz
published 2009
pages: 384

Book on Amazon

Blurb:

Her beauty is a weapon – and Fire is going to use it.

Fire’s exceptional beauty gives her influence and power. People who are susceptible to it will do anything for her attention, and for her affection.

But beauty is only skin deep, and beneath it Fire has a human appreciation of right and wrong. Aware of her ability to influence others, and afraid of it, she lives in a corner of the world away from people – not only to protect herself from their attention, their distrust, and even their hatred.

Yet Fire is not the only danger to the Dells. If she wants to protect her home, if she wants a chance to undo the wrongs of the past, she must face her fears, her abilities, and a royal court full of powerful people with reason to distrust her.

In (Very) Short:

+ 2nd installment in the Graceling Realm Trilogy
+ at first has not apparent connection to the first book
+ good story with likeable characters
+ wonderful and interesting world creation esp. the mind influencing animals
– story itself was somewhat predictable and dribbled a little towards the end

My Opinion:

I read the first installment in this series some years ago. But since I already knew that I can understand Fire without remembering every detail from Graceling (and to be fair, I didn’t remember a lot), I thought it was a good choice.

Fire lives in the Dells and belongs to the unique part of that story world. She is the daughter of a monster and a human. The monsters in that world are beautiful and mind numbing, but most importantly they are also very deadly.

Fire hides away from the world in order to keep the people save from her. But when Fire is attacked repeatedly, she has to leave her hiding place to protect her home. She is thrown into the middle of the royal court and the middle of a possible war. In order to trust her abilities, she has to accept her past to navigate her future.

I thoroughly enjoyed this novel. The world creation is interesting and different and the monsters are magnificent and colorful. The main characters are divers and interesting, although the character pairing is quite obvious from the beginning.

The story is a little predictable and sadly looses its momentum towards the end.

The part of the narration that connects this book to the other in the Graceling Realm Trilogy seemed a little out-of-place for me and felt somewhat forced. But all in all it was an enjoyable and entertaining read.

Bottom Line:

A good fantasy novel with an interesting world creation, likeable characters and a good story. I picked up the last installment of this series shortly after I finished this.

Rating:

rating 3

My Reading Month July

This month was particularly children’s book heavy. Since I had to read a lot of theory texts for my thesis I had difficulties to get into any long, convoluted story. I needed something short and sweet that could be read in one or two sittings and that was easy for me to get.

Since I borrowed most of the books from my local library I read many German books this month. I think almost all of them (I have to check that again) are also published in English so I will write a German and an English review.

But I did not only read kids books this month, there were a few others in between as well. You’ll see. Anyway lets just get going.

My month started with a non fiction book by a German author writing about Jane Austen.

Elsemarie Maletzke – Mit Jane Austen durch England

This book is a trip through Jane Austen’s life, through England and basically a trip with Jane through England. The important places of Austen’s life are visited and her experience and life connected to her books and characters. It is an interesting read as I enjoyed reading Austen so far and I am quite a fan of England. However, I don’t think this book is translated into English as I believe they have enough authors writing about Austen’s life 😉

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Jutta Bauer – Selma

Well, it is actually not really a book and should not be counted as one, but I got this for Christmas from my very good friend Anja and I love it very much. It made me smile and happy. This little illustrated story is about a sheep looking for the meaning of happiness.

Cornelia Funke – Gespensterjäger auf eisiger Spur
Cornelia Funke – Ghosthunters and the Incredibly Revolting Ghost

Written by one of the most well-known children authors in and outside of Germany this books is the first part of Funke’s ghost hunter stories. Tom sees a ghost in his cellar and only his grandmother believes him and suggest he get some help to fend of that ghost.

It is a lovely and sweet story that weaved some simple and easy accessible tricks for fending of ghosts into the narration. It will probably help some frightened kids sleep a little better and see that not all ghosts are bad.

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Hiawyn Oram, Sarah Warburton: Rumblewicks Tagebuch: Hilfe, meine Hexe gründet eine Girl-Band!
Hiawyn Oram, Sarah Warburton: My Unwilling Witch Starts a Girl Band (Rumblewick Diary #3)
Hiawyn Oram, Sarah Warburton: Rumblewicks Tagebuch: Hilfe meine Hexe kocht im Fernsehen!
Hiawyn Oram, Sarah Warburton: My Unwilling Witch gets Cooking (Rumblewick Diaries)

The story is told from the perspective of the cat Rumblewick, who was assigned to a witch to do witchy things with her. But his particular witch, Haggy Aggy, is stubborn and wants to be part of the human world rather than frighten people. This is of course punishable in the magic world and Rumblewick really doesn’t want to lose his diploma.

Both books are funny and sweat but especially beautifully illustrated and written in form of a diary that Rumble keeps which include many photos.

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Kate Klise, M. Sarah Klise: Friedhofsstraße 43: Gespenster gibt es doch!
Kate Klise, M. Sarah Klise: Dying to Meet You! (43 Old Cemetery Road #1)

Again another series of books that caught my eye because of the beautiful illustrations and their different way to tell a story. This book is narrated through letters and newspaper articles, which is a great and lovely idea.

Severin lives in an old house with his cat and the ghost Olivia while his parents travel the world and don’t care about him. An old author, whose success with ghosthunter novels has been long time in the past, rents the house to write another installment. There he is challenged by the ghost to believe in the topic that he writes about.

Tom Angleberger – Yoda ich bin! Alles ich weiß!
Tom Angleberger – The Strange Case of Origami Yoda (Origami Yoda #1)

After spending some time with ghosts I took up this book. Yes, I did it because it had Yoda in the title and I do like Star Wars. But you don’t have to be a Star Wars fan to read and to enjoy this story.

The “weird” kid Dwight creates and origami Yoda that gives great advice and becomes quite popular and sought after in school. Tommy wants to find out if origami Yoda is real or not.

Each chapter is a little Yoda related story told by a different person. The book is created like a case study, but still works fluently and beautifully. This is a book for kids who do not have the greatest attention span.

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Kate Klise, M. Sarah Klise: Friedhofsstraße 43: Nur über meine Leiche!
Kate Klise, M. Sarah Klise: Over my Dead Body (43 Old Cemetery Road #2)

And again I returned to a ghost story. This time around Severin (Seymour) and his author friend are forced from their home and the authoritative figure Dick Tater wants to forbid all ghost stories and rename Halloween. But the ghost Olivia has something to say about that.

Again a story that I thoroughly enjoyed. I can only recommend this series.

Sara Paretsky – Deadlock

To split from my children’s books addiction this month I started with a traditional crime story, which took me a while to get into. This was due to me being occupied with all that theory. I couldn’t concentrate and did not have the patience to get into any kind of long, convoluted storyline.

V.I. Warshawksi investigates the death of her cousin only to discover a conspiracy. It follows the typical pattern of the hard-boiled genre only with a female protagonist, who does not necessarily gets beaten up that much (instead is involved in a number of “accidents”). Everything else stays the same. It was a good book and draws upon the strength of Paretsky when it comes to creating those conspiracies, but as I said, this time it took me a while to warm up to this.

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Agatha Christie – Miss Marple’s Final Cases

Another short-lived and entertaining read were Miss Marple’s Final Cases. It is a collection of short stories centering around Miss Marple (only two of those stories had nothing to do with any of Christie’s known investigators) and offering her to solve a case within the span of 20 to 40 pages per story. Lovely as always and a sure recommendation.

Kristin Cashore – Fire

Towards the end of the month I did pick up a young adult fantasy book. It is some time ago that I read the first installment called Graceling. Now that I finished Fire and that I am currently reading the final installment of the trilogy I want to read the first again. I did forget quite a bit.

Fire itself has only limited connections to Graceling through the character Leck present in both books, but is an independent story from the first book.

Fire is a unique person, who can influence people to do anything for her. Although she is afraid of her abilities and tries to hide from the world in order not to hurt anyone, she learns to accept her gift. Fire uses her gift to help the royal family win the war that has been threatening the kingdom for years and to come to terms with her past and the past of the kingdom.

I enjoyed the narrative very much and though the story itself was somewhat predictable and sadly drifted off in the end, it made me pick up the last book in the trilogy very fast.

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Marliese Arold – Magic Girls: Das verbotene Amulett

My final book this month is sadly not translated into English yet.

It is the second book in a series about a two teenage witches who have been exiled to the human world. Elena’s father has committed a grievous crime in the witch world and was transformed into an iguana. Elena’s best friend Miranda goes with Elena’s family into exile in order to study the humans, their behavior, their life, and their world.

The girls are not only challenged by surviving in the human world, avoid being discovered by anyone, but also discover the secret of an amulet Elena has discovered among her father’s belongings.

This again is a story that is lovely and entertaining. Each of the chapters contains little passages about the life of witches as well as old discoveries about humans that are funny and cute.

And that was it for this month. I like that the number of books is quite high although I did not necessarily read that much. But all in all it was a good month and an entertaining one at that.