Speed Dating from the Shelf (#2)

ft. Bradstreet Gate, Spy Ski School, Borderlands, One Half from the East, and Mennonite
in a Little Black Dress

Another day another book, and I’ve been picking up books like mad! In the last two weeks I bought 18 books from McKay’s and picked up three ARC’s from my indie bookstore Malaprops. I recognize I have a problem, but I am happy to never lack information or adventure in my life! In an effort to weed through some of these books and recycle (to the Little Free Libraries!) some of the books I’m never actually going to read, I birthed “Speed Dating from the Shelf”. 3 chapters per book, boom boom boom, first impression, get it done. #speeddatingfromtheshelf

Bradstreet Gate is a book that I promised to review a looooonnng time ago. Oops. It’s a contemporary murder mystery starring Georgia, our young protagonist. Although I initially found the prologue rather boring, I’m intrigued by the first several chapters after that! I realize now that the prologue feels like you need to know what’s going on already in order for it to have meaning, unfortunately that’s just not the point of a prologue. I enjoyed Kirman’s introductions. Georgia is seen primarily through the eyes of the men around her, which I would typically take offense to, but seems fitting for this setting.

“You’re not the issue, Miss Calvin – no one cares about your affair, whatever went on with that guy.”

I’m looking forward to the uncovering of mystery!

Spy Ski School is actually the forth in a series. I had no idea when I picked it up at Malaprop’s, I just thought it looked vaguely interesting. Fortunately for me, it seems I don’t actually have to know the previous story line to enjoy the plot of this story. This is a middle grade novel, so the writing is a bit bland at times and concisely worded. However, despite the simple style, the characters are charming and the plot is nostalgic, hearkening back to the Alex Rider and Artemis Fowl series’ from my youth. Should prove to be a quick and entertaining read.

Borderlands: the New Mestiza is a textbook I’ve been trying to read for a long while. I bought it from one of the used bookstores in town after a recommendation from a friend, but unfortunately I’m just not into poetry and I have a hard time reading textbook-style work, so this whole book has felt like trying to walk through four feet of mud. I really want to like this book as I think the subject matter is incredibly important, and the insights truly are gold.

“The gringo, locked into the fiction of white superiority, seized complete political power, stripping Indians and Mexicans of their land while their feet were still rooted in it. “

One Half from the East is another middle grade novel, this time a coming of age story of Obayda. Obayda is transformed into a boy with just a haircut and a change of clothes to bring good fortune to her Afghani family. The test seems to be whether or not she will pass in her community.

“It’s not just bread I’ve brought back from the market – it’s a sign that I can play the part of the boy in the real world. “

What a concept! It’s a cultural aspect I’ve not heard of before and will definitely be looking into more. I’m really digging the point of view from Obayd/Obayda, the characters, and the plot so far, so I’m super excited to see where this goes. Also it seems to be about cross-dressing that’s not transphobic and also part of a different culture so I’m super curious about that.

Finally, I started Mennonite in a Little Black Dress and all I have to say so far is that it’s hilarious and the quotes are pure gold. This is going to be a fast and fun read.

“Having endured a painfully uncool childhood, we realized that our genetic heritage positioned us on a precarious cusp. “

So that whittled down my TBR just a little bit, as I am no longer planning to read Borderlands. I also decided not to read Champion of the World, as the writing style was far too much on just the first page, and skimming did not show any signs of it getting any easier to read. I also probably should have noticed the praise that claimed the author was a young Cormac McCarthy with better characters and decided to stay away at that. Alas, I do not always catch these things.

Read on, my fellow bookworms, and best of luck slaying the TBR dragon!

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