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Ivy's Reviews

Ivy grew up very close to Santa Cruz and is a UC Santa Cruz graduate. She is the head of the Hardback section, History, and helps with Sci-Fi/Fantasy. Her voracious reading appetite can include anything from history, fiction, graphic novels, and anything in between.



Terciel & Elinor by Garth Nix

Old Kingdom fans rejoice! 25 years ago, we were introduced to Sabriel and her world. All we saw of her parents were bits of memory, but now we finally hear their story. Elinor has been kept away from knowledge of the Old Kingdom, so she’s baffled when a young man called Terciel knocks on her door speaking of dead creatures. Here’s everything (and more!) Garth Nix fans have come to expect, but previous knowledge is not required to enjoy this lush sorcerous prequel.—Ivy

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Terciel & Elinor (Old Kingdom) Cover Image
ISBN: 9780063049321
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Katherine Tegen Books - November 2nd, 2021

Vespertine by Margaret Rogerson

Painfully shy after an early encounter with a possessing spirit, Artemisia wants only to keep her head down and escape into the life of a nun who keeps the spirits at bay, but destiny, of course, has other plans. When her home is threatened, she binds herself to a revenant—a dangerous undead spirit trapped in a relic—and makes a deal. Part spooky, part adventure, and all heart, this book is for fans of Sorcery of Thorns and The Bone Witch.—Ivy

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Vespertine Cover Image
ISBN: 9781534477117
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Margaret K. McElderry Books - October 5th, 2021

The Beatryce Prophecy written by Kate DiCamillo, illustrated by Sophie Blackall

Everyone dismissed the prophecy because it was about a girl messing with power. It’s the same reason everyone overlooked Beatryce. With the help of a monk, an orphan boy, a mysterious man in the woods, and a cantankerous goat, Beatryce is going to surprise them all. Kate DiCamillo’s books are always a delight and this does not disappoint, especially when paired with Sophie Blackall’s illustrations. Strange and surreal, it kept me guessing until the last moment.—Ivy

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The Beatryce Prophecy Cover Image
By Kate DiCamillo, Sophie Blackall (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781536213614
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Candlewick - September 28th, 2021

Pony by R. J. Palacio

Silas Bird has a genius for a father and a ghost for a best friend. Their simple lives are upended when men take his father in the night, believing him to be a notorious criminal. When Silas goes after them, he finds deep woods and even deeper secrets. R.J. Palacio (author of Wonder) has crafted a surprising departure from her previous work and it is excellent. Trust me, this story is both unexpected and exactly what you want.—Ivy

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Pony Cover Image
ISBN: 9780553508116
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Knopf Books for Young Readers - September 28th, 2021

Stuntboy in the Meantime written by Jason Reynolds, illustrated by Raúl the Third

Portico Reeves has a secret. A super secret. Don’t tell anyone, but he’s really a superhero named Stuntboy! His superpower is to protect other supers so they can save the day. But no stunt can stop his parents from fighting or from Herbert the Worst from teasing him. Interspersed with Raúl the Third’s expressive artwork, Jason Reynolds’ story perfectly captures all the trials and anxieties of a young kid living in a turbulent situation. This is a great book for kids going through big changes.—Ivy

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Stuntboy, in the Meantime Cover Image
By Jason Reynolds, Raúl the Third (Illustrator)
ISBN: 9781534418165
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books - November 30th, 2021

Life Is What You Bake It by Vallery Lomas

As an amateur baker, I’ve oft dreamed of winning an American version of The Great British Baking Show. Now, imagine being the very first winner and…the show gets cancelled before anyone finds out. That’s what happened to Vallery Lomas, but it didn’t stop her from turning lemons into lemon chiffon cake. Drawing on her Southern roots, Lomas has written a cookbook for bakers of all stripes and levels. I particularly appreciated the small, surprising tips with each recipe (don’t twist the biscuit cutter!). —Ivy 

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Life Is What You Bake It: Recipes, Stories, and Inspiration to Bake Your Way to the Top: A Baking Book Cover Image
ISBN: 9780593137680
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Clarkson Potter - September 7th, 2021

Baggage by Alan Cumming

Alan Cumming’s last memoir was a catharsis; this one is a hard-hitting stroll through his star-studded past. Cumming looks back at the moments that shaped him into the man he is today from teen journalist (really!) to stardom and beyond. I think I ended up reading half of this book aloud to my partner because it was so funny and raw. I’m always in awe of how richly his voice comes through in his writing, as it does once again in Baggage.—Ivy

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Baggage: Tales from a Fully Packed Life Cover Image
ISBN: 9780062435781
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Dey Street Books - October 26th, 2021

When Women Ruled the World by Maureen Quilligan

For almost half of the 16th century, four women shaped Europe in powerful and irreparable ways. Mary Tudor, Elizabeth Tudor, Mary Stuart, and Catherine de Medici are often portrayed as bitter rivals, but revisionist historian Quiligen uses letters and records of gifts to untangle the web of patriarchal views of these women. Each one has a complicated history with the others and I loved diving deep into their shared bonds. It certainly made me look at them all in a different light.—Ivy

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When Women Ruled the World: Making the Renaissance in Europe Cover Image
ISBN: 9781631497964
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Liveright - October 12th, 2021

The Vanished Queen by Lisbeth Campbell

A (probably) murdered queen, a rebellious academic, and a dissatisfied prince are at the heart of this complex and richly told fantasy. Karegg has been ruled for years by a despotic king and rebellion licks at the heels of the kingdom. When Anza finds the missing queen’s journal, she uses her words to fan the flames of disquiet. I love fantasy fomented with rebellion and the parallels between Karegg and the US are hard to miss. Endlessly engaging. —Ivy

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The Vanished Queen Cover Image
ISBN: 9781982141301
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Gallery / Saga Press - November 9th, 2021

Cranky Chicken by Katherine Battersby

A cranky chicken and an optimistic worm are unlikely pals in this hilarious series starter about friendship and learning to love people as they are. Cranky likes being cranky and doesn’t want any friends, but after saving a worm named Speedy, it would seem she is stuck with one. The illustrations are laugh-out-loud funny, and I have never felt like a chicken was a kindred spirit until now. Perfect for fans of Bad Guys and the Narwhal and Jelly series. —Ivy

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Cranky Chicken Cover Image
ISBN: 9781534469884
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Margaret K. McElderry Books - September 7th, 2021


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