Shiela Blankemeier

Books

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Smashwords book reviews by Shiela Blankemeier

  • Doggirl on Dec. 11, 2011

    Love animals? Love reading? Love Young Adult books? Even if you answered just one yes, you will love DOGGIRL by the wonderful Robin Brande. Part Dog Whisperer (Cesar Millan, not Pet Psychic), part High School Drama Department, and a pinch of Mean Girls, DOGGIRL showcases the magic that happens when a young girl finds her niche in high school, and the rough road she took to get there. DOGGIRL captures all the coming-of-age ups and downs, from the anxiety and depression from not fitting in and getting bullied, to the triumphant joy of finding that special group, and even that one cute guy, who likes you just the way you are. I adored it and especially appreciated that while true to the high school experience, its also something that all my kids can read. (no explicit profanity or sex, thank you very much!) Highly, highly recommend - a wonderful read!
  • Parallelogram (Book 1: Into the Parallel) on Dec. 15, 2011
    (no rating)
    As usual, Robin Brande's spot-on teen voice rings true and pulls you back to those wonderful, confusing and arduous times. Her characters leap off the page and into your heart. Audie's whip-smart comments and heart-felt honesty left me in tears more than once. And smart only begins to describe not only the main character, but also the writing. The science used here is grounded in real quantum physics and related in a way that's easy to understand. The romance is clever, never condescending, and had me falling in love right along with Audie. The only negative - having to wait for the next book to satisfy this cliffhanger of an ending. And I mean that in the best way possible. I simply cannot sing enough praises for this wonderfully imaginative, smart, and exciting YA novel. This will make a perfect gift for that beautiful, smart girl in your life. Even better - for you!
  • Parallelogram (Book 1: Into the Parallel) on Dec. 15, 2011

    As usual, Robin Brande's spot-on teen voice rings true and pulls you back to those wonderful, confusing and arduous times. Her characters leap off the page and into your heart. Audie's whip-smart comments and heart-felt honesty left me in tears more than once. And smart only begins to describe not only the main character, but also the writing. The science used here is grounded in real quantum physics and related in a way even I could understand. I felt my IQ rise from page one: after reading, I understood more of the jokes on the Big Bang theory. The romance is clever, never condescending, and had me falling in love right along with Audie. The only negative - having to wait for the next book to satisfy this cliffhanger of an ending. And I mean that in the best way possible. I simply cannot sing enough praises for this wonderfully imaginative, smart, and exciting YA novel. This will make a perfect gift for that beautiful, smart girl in your life. Even better - for you!
  • Parallelogram (Book 2: Caught in the Parallel) on Dec. 20, 2011

    When reading a series, you oft times expect book two to be the weakest. Not with Robin Brande at the helm. CAUGHT IN THE PARALLEL is every bit as fantastic as book one! Smarter, more romantic and fantastical, and new, just as authentic teen characters as before. Ms. Brande displays her world building chops by taking us to another dimension, all while showing how this new world and what is happening in it is all technically possible through real quantum physics. I was so invested in the story and characters from the first book, that I hit the ground running with this one, starting it at 8pm Friday night and finishing by 11am Saturday morning. The story never slows, but propels you further into a new world full of questions and betrayals - you never know who to trust. Since Audie doesn't know what's going on, neither do we, so we get to experience that most wonderful aspect of reading - the joy of discovery. And Ms. Brande serves it up expertly, delivering new discoveries and newer, more perplexing questions, setting us deliciously up for book three. I cannot wait!!
  • Secret Security Squad (Book 1: Operation Erase) on March 14, 2012

    Of course Darby's plan does not go perfectly, but to my great joy, OPERATION ERASE surely does! With a pitch-perfect tween voice, conflict, and sweet crushing, Robin Brande's MG debut is a fun, fast read that not only entertains but also gives hope to all facing the joys and horrors of junior high. Robin Brande tackles bullying with an unflinching eye and a creative, non-violent solution. How effective it is remains to be seen since this is a planned series, but as the situation goes from bad to worse, I cannot wait to find out!