Nina O'Daniels

Shannon Grieshaber

Created in 2017

December 17, 2018

 On this blog, O'Daniels and I review recently released YA books.  When I saw the movie trailer for Ashes in the Snow, the film adaptation for Ruta Sepetys' popular novel, Between Shades of Gray, I knew we needed to make an exception.  We both read this book not long after its 2011 publication.  It eventually became a Gateway Readers Award nominee (Missouri's teen choice book award) and earned second place.  Historical fiction is traditionally hard to sell in high school libraries but Between Shades of Gray  is a special case.  The story is one of World War II but it's one you m...

January 5, 2018

Agatha Christie is a no-nonsense type of writer- she's sparse, void of flowery language and overly descriptive sentences; she just tells it like it is. Like Hercules Poirot, her Belgian detective, she just sticks to the facts. Murder on the Orient Express elicits the exact sort of scene I think of during that period. Sophisticated, worldly travelers spending time together in a somewhat opulent train car, the women sipping on tea and the men bourbon all while lush landscape passes by in a blur. The conversation would be civilized, lest anyone is offended, and intelligent. As it happens, some of...

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