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January Wrap-Up and Reading Plans for February

February Reads

Here we are, a full week into February already! I can’t believe how quickly the weeks are flying by in 2018. January was a great month for me. I took on a couple of new book projects (more to come on those later!) and I read some great books. My February reading is also off to a great start with a debut novel from a talented author that is turning out to be a wonderful young adult fantasy read. Added bonus: I’m reading it from sunny Arizona, getting a much needed break from winter in the northeast. In today’s post, I will recap my January reads and share my reading plans for February, all while sending sunny vibes your way!

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Book Review: The Ghosts & Jamal by Bridget Blankley

The Ghosts & Jamal“It had been good to climb, as good as anything he had ever done. It had not been so good to fall, but he would recover. All in all, he thought, it was worth the fall, just to have climbed the tree.” – The Ghosts & Jamal

Jamal is a thirteen year old boy in rural Nigeria whose favorite drinks include Fanta and Sprite. He seems like everyone else except that he lives with epilepsy. His epileptic episodes are misinterpreted by his family as “bad spirits” coming upon him. So Jamal lives apart from his family, in a separate hut on the outskirts of his village. This isolation will ultimately save Jamal’s life during a terrorist attack on his village. I read Jamal’s story in one sitting. Once I started reading, I couldn’t put it down. I was worried for this young man – for his health, for his safety, and for his feelings – as he set out on his own to try to escape the attackers and to find his grandfather, or anyone else who survived, and might be able to help him. I feared for him and wanted to help and protect him. Continue reading