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Book Reviews
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The Umbrella Academy Volume 2
by Gerard Way and Gabriel Ba

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While this second volume in the series explained some character actions, it wasn't as intriguing for me. Will I read volume 3? Probably.

Thrawn Treason
by Timothy Zahn

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Overall pretty good book. Similar themes as to the other 2 in this trilogy, with questions about Thrawn's loyalty, Thrawn thoroughly outsmarting everyone, etc. Would read again.

The Chalice and the Crown
by Kassandra Flamouri

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This story put a nice twist on madness and magic. It is a fairly dark fantasy with the main character, Sasha following in the footsteps of her mother with ballet and then a quick descent into what looks like madness/illness. But it turns out that not is all as is it seems, or is it? Sasha's dreams/visions turn into another life as a thrall in a kingdom that uses them for Light sources. It was a really interesting book and though it was dark at times, I really wanted Sasha to be okay. I liked how it was all wrapped up (very sweet ending) and that it is a standalone.

The Hallows Victor Methos
by Victor Methos

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Page Turner

Dinosaur Time Peggy Parish
by Peggy Parish

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I like it because I love dinosaurs. I like the meat eaters.

Runner
by Patrick Lee

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I really enjoyed this. The action was well paced, and there were enough surprises to keep it interesting. The ending was nice and circular, and honestly something I didn't see coming, but that was in hindsight pretty obvious. So, now I can dive a little into a discussion of the concepts of the book. The whole mind reading thing is explained to be an evolutionary thing. Apparently, millions of years ago, many primates had the ability to read others' minds, but for evolutionary reasons, over time those genes got suppressed. Apparently the drugs that the doctors gave the test subjects inhibited this inhibition, and allowed the genes to express themselves again, which allowed them to read minds. The author claims that the reason mind reading was evolved away from is because humans, with complicated emotions and other stuff, probably ended up being in the position where it was best if people didn't know what everyone was thinking, that secrets could be a good thing. But, this explanation has two problems that are fundamentally problematic. One, is that those who evolved without the trait at first would be at a severe disadvantage to those who could read minds, so it seems like the initial evolutionary disposition would be towards keeping the mind reading. Two, in the book, it is impossible for those who can read to read each other's minds, so if a million years ago, everyone had the ability to read minds, then no one had the ability to read minds (hopefully that makes sense to future Xavier), so people wouldn't even know they had the power. Obviously this book isn't science fiction, so I don't knock it too hard for this hole, but I do think they are big holes. Tbh, the fact that I'm even bringing it up show how good I thought this book was, because there wasn't really a whole lot else to knock about it, other than maybe it's (hopefully) exaggerated content about military contractors, and how much killing people are willing to do to prevent a secret from coming out. But yeah, I think this is my first book by Patrick Lee, but it probably won't be my last. A good use of 4 hours.

Hid From Our Eyes
by Julia Spencer-fleming

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This may be the 9th book in the series but it reads well as a standalone. It revolves between three different times, 1952, 1972, and present day as those are the years when a young woman is found dead on the road with no evidence why. It provides an intriguing story, especially since one of the main characters in the present time, Russ, was a suspect in the 1972 case and is now a police chief facing another murder. This was a good mystery and I liked getting to know Russ and Clare as they juggle with the case and a new baby and all the other work issues. The other character are interesting too, like Hadley and Kevin. I haven't read the other books in the series but I think I might now that I finished this one. Plus, with the ending this one has, I definitely would like to continue the story!

The Umbrella Academy Volume 1
by Gerard Way and Gabriel Ba

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First in the series of graphic novels. Somewhat dystopian/sort of sci fi about a dysfunctional family of created superheroes. Netflix series is based on this. Not what I'd normally read but it is interesting to compare book and video. Would I recommend it? Depends..

The Pioneeers
by David Mccullough

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I am a fan of Dav8d McCullough books in general. While I enjoyed this title, I preferred The Wright Brothers, possibly as I knew more about the people discussed and the geographical area. That aside, this was very interesting and informative about the Ohio Valley and settlements.

Fried Green Tomatoes At The Whistle Stop Cafe
by Fanny Flagg

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Enjoyed the characters. I could picture myself in this little town with the colorful descriptions.


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