Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Beastkeeper by Cat Hellisen

Sarah's life is not what with think of as normal. They move a lot, whenever the cold gets especially sharp and the smell of wet dog gets especially strong.  But, her mom and dad seem to figure out how to make it work, until they don't- and her mom disappears.  That is when she chances to meet Alan, the beastkeeper in the little not quite forest behind her house, and life doesn't return to normal.

This is a dreamy, dark, story woven around a fire on a winter evening of old magic and curses and pain.  It is beautifully written - lyrical and sharp at the same time.

When I finished I wanted to start at the beginning again, because I knew I had not paid attention to the right threads in this story! I have a feeling this will be a book you hear more about!

All Fall Down by Ally Carter

Grace is one messed up ambassador's granddaughter.  That seems to follow here all around Adria, the country where she lands with her grandfather.  She lived in Adria with her mother for ,any Summer's before the fire and her moms death.  Now Grace has been bumped from therapist to clinic and finally landed at the last spot available- her grandfathers house.  Grace is haunted by her moms death- she smells smoke and sees the scarred face of her moms killer everywhere. Except her mom was not killed by the scarred man, and there is a death certificate to prove it.

I had this mystery all figured out, from her moms actual killer to the shady figures appearing in the empty embassy down the road.  But, I was wrong! I love it when I am wrong!  And boy was I wrong!

This story didn't begin or end with this book.  This continues on in the next book. But there are details that are cleared up. Grace solves part of the mystery- and realizes she is not all alone. That makes a big change for her!

I liked this- it was a mini Bond-there was spy work, some acrobatics and diplomacy between embassiesand some pretty big twists. I enjoyed this quick read.

The Distance Between Lost and Found by Kathryn Holmes

Image from LibraryThing

Hallelujah, not the best name for a cool girl-so when Hallie was welcomed in to Luke's group and then his arms she as sure she had arrived.  Instead, she became the butt of harassment and ridicule. And it just wouldn't stop.  Life in school and church had deteriorated to the point that Hallie's only real wish is to disappear. And the it was time for the youth group camp out.

When Rachel, the new girl, tries to make friends Hallie one more time and Hallie snubs her- that is the end.  Rachel breaks off the hiking group and starts back to the camp . Hallie feels bad and joins her and Jonah, Hallies old friend joins them.  It should be an easy walk down the mountain.

Should be., but it isn't.  There is a rain storm, a mudslide, and that is all it takes for these three to become hopelessly lost.

So- this is a pretty predictable story.  The there have to depend on each other to make it back.  There is a bear, some unexpected injuries, no food and a bear.  The part that wasn't as predictable was their relatives bishops with God and how that is woven into the story.  I appreciated the honesty and the non- preachy attitude. I also liked that it wasn't all tied up neatly at the end. Hallies questions remained.
I would recommend this one. Survival stories are a hit, weave in a love story and a growing friendship and this was really good.