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Month in review

Reviews
Blowing Clear by Joseph C. Lincoln
Captain Superlative by J.S. Puller
Charlie & Frog by Karen Kane
The Divided Earth by Faith Erin Hicks
File M for Murder by Miranda James
Flotsametrics and the Floating World by Curtis Ebbesmeyer
Giant Days Volume 8 by John Allison
Harbor Me by Jacqueline Woodson
Hello, Universe by Erin Entrada Kelly
If Someone Says 'You Complete Me,' RUN! by Whoopi Goldberg
Inkling by Kenneth Oppel
Jess, Chunk, and the Road Trip to Infinity by Kristin Elizabeth Clark
Just Like Jackie by Lindsey Stoddard
The Law of Finders Keepers by Sheila Turnage
Little Red Rodent Hood by Ursula Vernon
The Lotterys More or Less by Emma Donoghue
Meet Me at the Cupcake Cafe by Jenny Colgan
The Mystery of the Missing Mask by M.A. Wilson
The Parker Inheritance by Varian Johnson
Promise the Night by Michaela MacColl
The Rhino in Right Field by Stacy DeKeyser
Runaways, Volume 2: Best Friends Forever by Rainbow Rowell
Secret Coders: Potions & Parameters by Gene Luen Yang and Matthew Holmes
Seldom Disappointed by Tony Hillerman
Show Me a Story! by Leonard S. Marcus
Small Favor by Jim Butcher
Soof by Sarah Weeks
The Speaker by Traci Chee
Sweep: The Story of a Girl and Her Monster by Jonathan Auxier
Very Rich by Polly Horvath
Welcome to Your Authentic Indian Experience™ by Rebecca Roanhorse

Miscellaneous
Cybils Update (December 04)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (December 03)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (December 10)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (December 17)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (December 24)
It's Monday! What Are You Reading? (December 31)
November 2018 Sources
November 2018 Summary

Best of the Year
Favorites of the second half of 2018

Thirteen favourite Canadian reads of 2018

Twelve favorite diverse books read in 2018

Twelve Favorite graphic novels read in 2018

Twelve favorite mysteries read in 2018

Twelve favorite Road Narrative Spectrum books read in 2018

Twelve favorite road narrative spectrum essays written in 2018

Road Essays
FF9900 Orphan Wildlands Blue Highway

FF66FF: orphan home cornfield: or who lives alone in a cornfield?

FF66CC: Orphans at home in the maze

FF6699: orphans at home in the labyrinth

Road Narrative Update for November 2018

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Rating System

5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

Canadian Book Challenge: 2019-2020



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Hello, Universe: 12/28/18

Hello, Universe

Hello, Universe by Erin Entrada Kelly is a middle grade novel about a group of kids who live on the edge of a forest. Virgil Salinas is shy and embarrassed by his loud family. Valencia Somerset is deaf and loves to explore and sketch nature, and Kaori Tanaka is psychic. Then there's Chet Bullens who is the bully of the area — a monster in the middle.

Over the course of a day, all these lives will intersect. Virgil is Kaori's client. Valencia is Chet's victim. Kaori's rituals and understanding of people and the forest will help Virgil rescue Valencia.

Like this year's novel, You Go First, it's difficult to describe the book without either doing a plot summary or revealing spoilers.

Although this book is set entirely in and around a forest, it fits into the road narrative spectrum. I didn't read this book for the project but recognized aspects of spectrum while reading it. Looking at the spectrum, then, this book comes in as a 9999CC — minotaur, wildlands, maze.

It is Chet's role as the bully of the forrest, that puts the traveler aspect of this novel into the minotaur range. The forest here is the wildlands. It is the place of their adventure and for some, the place of their destination. The method of travel, though, is a maze because of the abandoned well that features so prominently as both a blind alley and a trap.

Five stars

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