Let’s talk about what we have been reading.  I have been reading more than ever lately, lots of freebies and several library holds came through.  It’s been so hot, this is the perfect time to sit in the shade and read, read, read!!  Here are my thoughts on a few of my most recent reads: First up the most perfect children’s book ever written and it will blow-your-mind!

 Fortunately, the Milk by Neil Gaiman, illustrated by Skottie Young

Gaiman writes the perfect kid’s book: great story, fleshed-out characters, unexpected events and a wrap up that fits the story and ties up all the loose ends with some heartwarming details.  Skottie Young’s illustrations seamlessly match every character & situation in the book.  What is it about?  Well, how does time travel & cereal sound as a description?! This is the simplest plot ever:  Mom is away so Dad pops out to pick up some milk for breakfast. But, this simple errand goes so awry it will boggle your mind! Does Dad get the milk? Does something odd happen? Will he have some fantastic adventures? Will it involve time travel?  Very likely and then you will laugh so hard YOUR milk will run out of your face!! I loved it, my kids loved it.  I will say that for adult books, Mr. Gaiman is kind of hit or miss for me-sometimes I ADORE his books and sometimes …meh… but this one is a home run and he (and Skottie Young) deserve infinity stars for Fortunately, the Milk.

 Don’t Judge a Lizard by His Scales, Book One in The Principle Gang Series by Dan and Bli Dugi

Ah, me.  I was given a copy of this book to read and review but yikes, I just didn’t like it all that much. The little lizard was kind of rude and talked down to his fly friend so no wonder the other lizards picked on him.  The way he kept sneaking around the fly, I felt like he was a stalker lizard.  Also, when I started reading the book, I thought the fly was named Bill so for the first half of it I thought they were a gay couple!  Just so you know, it’s not always just me-I read this to some kids and they didn’t ‘get’ it either. There were a couple of secondary plots (second chances and how the mother fly was so wrong about the lizard) these took away from the main bullying plot.  The idea is great-fight bullying with cartoon characters but this little book just didn’t make it.

Top Secret Twenty-One by Janet Evanovich

The Plum series is always worth reading but this one is not one of the best in the series.  I do love the series and the first ones were a hoot and the last two were getting back to that level. Then came this one.  Stephanie & Lula are trying to find Jimmy Poletti.  Jimmy is a used car dealer selling quite a bit more than cars.  This book has so many plot twists going on that nothing ever really happens. They find Jimmy, lose Jimmy, attend a funeral, eat something.  Lula has a date, Ranger has an issue that only Stephanie can help him solve. It is so familiar and seemed like Evanovich took all the plot ideas she could find and shoved them into this book. There are familiar faces like Randy Briggs who just happens to work for Jimmy-what are the odds? Briggs is a favorite character, fans love him, so he gets a part in this book.  I hope Sally Sweet shows up again soon, Sally & Lula together are an entire book!! But, I digress-Top Secret Twenty One has some great ideas, just nothing ever gets more than just a quick going over.  No deep plot or character development.  There are funerals, shootings, fires, explosions, FBI, casino’s, Russians, tight dresses, dogs, crazy people, crying people, people eating, people running for their lives and don’t forget to drop a few nuggets in Rex’s aquarium. Of course there are the usual tired/sad FTA’s and scary/YIKES FTA’s that have to be tracked down so Stephanie can pay her rent. I do have to say there were a few places in the middle where it felt like the first books-I was reading until too late because the book got GOOD, and I laughed so hard at some of the antics! But, most of the book was a very formulaic, check list type of book. Evanovich has another series going on and I felt like it took her attention and she let my old book friends in Trenton down with Top Secret Twenty-One. So, just like life-reading is some good, some …meh… but at least we are reading and that deserves a smile 🙂

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    1. Author

      I agree!! I’ll never live long enough to tackle my to-be-read pile lol

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