Book Review: Quest for the Great Diamond

Hidden Gems: Quest for the Great Diamond

By H. K. Boughazian

3 out of 5 stars

Gem’s parents are made of beautiful and colorful minerals, but Gem’s skin is plain gray rock. She is teased for her gray skin and leaves mineral school to go to the rock school where she tries to fit in. But when her rock friends find out that her parents are minerals, Gem loses her only friend. She sets out on a quest to find the Great Diamond, and ask him why she was born as a rock. She is joined by other misfits searching for answers, and they travel through exciting adventures across the country, until they discover the truth about rocks and minerals.

I loved the premise of this story! The world building is phenomenal, and so detailed with plants, people, and animals all made from different stone and crystals and minerals.

The characters are cute and I liked their friendships. The plot has good pacing and a simple storyline that is just right for a children’s book.

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Non Fiction Book Review: Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin

The Autobiography and Other Writings by Benjamin Franklin
The Autobiography and Other Writings
by Benjamin Franklin

3 out of 5 stars

This is an interesting look at Benjamin Franklin’s life. The first part is his autobiography, which he never finished. It tells mostly of his early life and his beginnings in the printing business. Then there are collections of his letters, scientific writings, and political writing. These are divided by topic, with short explanations from the editor giving general information surrounding those letters or publications. It shows his work as a scientist and inventor, his gradual assent into public life as a statesman and politician, and his personal life as a husband and father and his personal relationships.

I found it very interesting and readable, and I loved seeing how meticulous and sensible Franklin was in ordering and organizing his life. He had some excellent ideas and some crazy ideas. He was a person always searching and wondering and puzzling through the mysteries of life. He must have had a terrific amount of energy, since he often writes about diligence and industry. He was a rare personality.

I enjoyed this close look into American history!

Book Review: Larklight

Larklight by Philip Reeve
Larklight (Larklight, #1)
by Philip Reeve (Author), David Wyatt (Illustrator)

5 out of 5 stars

Arthur and his sister Myrtle live in a space home in an outer orbit of the Moon, and they find it very boring. Nothing ever happens in such a remote area of space, and they long to travel to Earth, or see the colonies on Mars, or visit the exciting moons of Jupiter. One day their home is visited by a mysterious stranger named Mr. Webster, and they are thrown into an adventure that takes them across the solar system with pirates, ancient civilizations, and alien spies.

I loved everything about this book! The plot, the characters, the hilarious writing, the world-building, the mystery, the adventure, and every single dramatic chapter all kept me reading for hours on end. This is one of those books where there isn’t a good place to stop reading. You just have to keep going through the next chapter and the next. Continue reading

Graphic Novel Review: The Daughters of Ys

The Daughters of Ys by M.T. Anderson
The Daughters of Ys
by M.T. Anderson, Jo Rioux 

1 out of 5 stars

When their mother dies, two princesses handle their grief differently. One sister finds solace in the beauties of nature, and the other learns everything she can about her mother’s magic in the palace. Ys is a city built with dark magic. As the sisters grow up, the evil of their kingdom can no longer be contained.

I did not enjoy this graphic novel. There are very graphic violent scenes with a lot of blood and gore. And there are sexual scenes, and that ruined it for me. I wish the story could have been told in a more classy way. Continue reading

Book Review: The Star Dunes

The Star Dunes by Trudi Trueit
The Star Dunes (Explorer Academy #4)
by Trudi Trueit (Goodreads Author)

5 out of 5 stars


Cruz is in Africa searching for the missing clues his mother left behind for him to find after her death. The explorers help a family of mountain gorillas in Uganda, and then follow the clues to a desert region of Africa. The evil Nebula organization is breathing down their necks, and Cruz is devastated when one of his friends is targeted.

I loved this plot! There is plenty of action and suspense. I never knew what was going to happen next! I really loved that Lani is finally part of the team! She is such an interesting character.

The exotic locations are amazing, and I loved learning about different conservation efforts in Uganda and Namibia and all the national parks.

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Board Book Review: Harris Finds His Feet

Harris Finds His Feet by Catherine Rayner
Harris Finds His Feet
by Catherine Rayner

4 out of 5 stars


Harris is a young hare who is self-conscious about his very large feet. His grandfather helps him understand how useful large feet are for a hare. He learns to jump high, run fast, and even to dig holes in the ground.

I loved the sweet illustrations in this board book! The art is lovely in a watercolor and ink style, and done with earthy colors. Harris and his grandfather are so cute! You can really feel the energy in the illustrations when the hares run and jump.

This story has such a great message of acceptance and love!

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Series Review: Sherlock Academy

Sherlock Academy by F.C. ShawWatson's Case by F.C. ShawThe Holmes Brigade by F.C. ShawSherlock Academy by F.C. Shaw

Sherlock Academy
by F.C. Shaw

4 out of 5 stars

Rollie and his best friend, Cecily, have just been accepted into the prestigious Sherlock Academy. They have to solve clues to figure out their class schedule, learn the art of disguise, decode secret messages to find out their assignments, and analyze fingerprints in the class roster. But there is a deeper mystery hidden in the library of Sherlock Academy! Throughout each book, Rollie and his detective friends work to stop the evil mastermind, Herr Zilch, who leads Moriarty’s old underground ring of criminals.

I loved everything about these books! The characters, the plot, the mystery, the action, the school, the writing style… everything is wonderful!
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