Tag Archives: Mystery

Purple Panda Points: Kiki Strike, The Darkness Dwellers

15 Feb

Hi!

Happy Sunday! I hope you all had a lovely Valentine’s Day; mine was filled with snow, sewing, Sleepless in Seattle, and the Story Thieves by James Riley. I am off school this week for vacation and have plenty of fun new features planned, but for now here’s a new Purple Panda Points for you wonderful readers…

Here’s a quick recap of my book review system for any of you who aren’t yet familiar with it:

My book review format is called “Purple Panda Points”, where I talk about three elements of the book (setting, plot, characters) in brief points. Hopefully this will help to keep the reviews informative, interesting, and spoiler-free!

The books are rated using the ice cream rankings (because, obviously)…

1 Panda PointOne Purple Panda Point: One point means that the book was just plain bad. I would never read it again. It’s the book equivalent of spinach ice cream.

Two PointsTwo Purple Panda Points: Two points means the book was okay. Fine. Nothing remarkable. The book equivalent of vanilla ice cream with no toppings in a dish.

Three PointsThree Purple Panda Points: Three points means the book was good. I enjoyed it and would read it again. The book equivalent of vanilla and chocolate swirl ice cream in a wafer cone.

Four PointsFour Purple Panda Points: Four points means the book was great. I loved it actually! The book equivalent of cookie dough ice cream with rainbow sprinkles in a sugar cone.

Five PointsFive Purple Panda Points: Five points mean that the book was one of the best ones I’ve ever read. Amazing! Awesome! Cool beans! The ice cream equivalent of chocolate cookies and cream ice cream in a sugar cone with chocolate sprinkles. Yum!

Woo, that made me hungry! And now onto the review…

The Darkness DwellersToday I’ll be reviewing “Kiki Strike: The Darkness Dwellers” by Kirsten Miller. You can read my full thoughts below or a quick overview of them in the image above.

Summary: The Irregulars, a group of kick-butt delinquent girl scouts led by the dangerous Kiki Strike, are off to the City of Lights! While attempting to reclaim her throne, Kiki is captured by her vengeful cousin and must rely on the wits of her friends in New York and Paris to help plan her escape. With thoughts of baldness, manners, underground cities, and love on their minds, the Irregulars are about to embark on their biggest adventure yet.

Plot: A finishing school. A novice stalker. A group of Parisian explorers. A hair-growing formula. An evil twin. A revolution against manners. A royal kidnapping. A World War II mystery. All of these plot lines seemed unconnected as I was reading, but by the time I had closed the back cover they were all flawlessly weaved together!

Characters: The Irregulars are just plain awesome, and there is no way to possibly change that fact. However, I did find Ananka’s crush pretty annoying at times. :( This book is really an ode to Betty Bent though, and seeing her kick butt was pretty cool. And Kiki Strike having a crush? Greatness.

Setting: Betty and Kiki may have spent their time underground Paris, but New York and the Shadow City are not at all forgotten in this installment! Although NYC didn’t have as big of a role this time around, I did enjoy reading about the girls’ city adventures, as well as the parallels between the Shadow City and the catacombs.

Favorite Character: Betty. Always Betty. 

Favorite Line: “So I’ll keep my distance from him and start kidnapping delivery boys like Iris instead.” -Ananka Fishbein (on getting over her crush)

Cover Conversations: It isn’t a bad cover, but I miss the old ones.

Recommended Reading: If you enjoyed the third book in the Kiki Strike series, you’ll love The Mysterious Benedict Society.

Overall Rating: Five Purple Panda Points

Five Points

Have an awesome night! I’m getting ready for some serious Downton Abbey watching.

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Purple Panda Points: Kiki Strike, The Empress’s Tomb

8 Feb

Hi!

I hope you’re all having a great weekend! I am currently watching even more snow fall outside my window, and although it’s a bit cold outside, it’s perfect reading time! I’ve gotten through a couple books so far, and I plan on reading some more this evening, (Nothing’s better than a cup of cocoa and a book!) but first, a new Purple Panda Points Review for all of you lovely readers…

Here’s a quick recap of my book review system for any of you who aren’t yet familiar with it:

My book review format is called “Purple Panda Points”, where I talk about three elements of the book (setting, plot, characters) in brief points. Hopefully this will help to keep the reviews informative, interesting, and spoiler-free!

The books are rated using the ice cream rankings (because, obviously)…

1 Panda PointOne Purple Panda Point: One point means that the book was just plain bad. I would never read it again. It’s the book equivalent of spinach ice cream.

Two PointsTwo Purple Panda Points: Two points means the book was okay. Fine. Nothing remarkable. The book equivalent of vanilla ice cream with no toppings in a dish.

Three PointsThree Purple Panda Points: Three points means the book was good. I enjoyed it and would read it again. The book equivalent of vanilla and chocolate swirl ice cream in a wafer cone.

Four PointsFour Purple Panda Points: Four points means the book was great. I loved it actually! The book equivalent of cookie dough ice cream with rainbow sprinkles in a sugar cone.

Five PointsFive Purple Panda Points: Five points mean that the book was one of the best ones I’ve ever read. Amazing! Awesome! Cool beans! The ice cream equivalent of chocolate cookies and cream ice cream in a sugar cone with chocolate sprinkles. Yum!

Woo, that made me hungry! And now onto the review…

Kiki Strike Purple Panda PointsToday I’ll be reviewing “Kiki Strike: The Empress’s Tome” by Kirsten Miller. You can read my full thoughts below or a quick overview of them in the image above.

Summary: The Irregulars, a group of delinquent girl scouts led by the mysterious Kiki Strike, are back, and this time they’re diving into the world of haunted mansions, ghosts, evil twins, and art heists. Ananka is being threatened with the idea of boarding school, Betty is falling in love with a squirrel-loving artist, Kiki is dealing with murderous foreigners, and Oona Wong’s dangerous father, Liester Liu, seems like he wants to be part of her family again…but these adventurous girls know that not everything is as it seems.

Plot: The Irregulars’ ghost-themed mystery had it all: Suspense! Kidnapping! Squirrels! Butt-kicking girl adventurers! My only problem with it is that it didn’t focus enough on a certain Eastern European royal family. That cliffhanger though – it killed me!

Characters: The Irregulars are back! The original six were as awesome as ever, and they have a new cast of characters joining them this time around too. Kaspar and Betty’s budding romance was quite cute, and I really enjoyed the antics of the rebellious Molly Donovan.

Setting: A mansion that once belonged to an eccentric socialite that may be haunted by a ghost? Yes please! Although a lot of the Irregulars’ adventure takes place in the creepy mansion, their awesome underground hangout is still very present throughout the book. And how can you not love a city covered in squirrel art?

Favorite Character: I’ll always have a soft spot for Betty, but Oona really rocked this one!

Favorite Line: “One clap switches the lights on, two claps makes me a cappuccino, and if I clap three times, the lasers come on and turn you all into toast. Make yourselves at home.” – Luz Lopez, (when asked why she installed a clapper.)

Recommended Reading: If you enjoyed the second book in the Kiki Strike series, you’ll love Greenglass House, Gilda Joyceand The Wig in the Window.

Overall Rating: Five Purple Panda Points

Five Points

Have an awesome week!

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Purple Panda Points: Kiki Strike, Inside the Shadow City

4 Feb

Hi!

Happy Wednesday everyone! I went back to school this morning after a couple snow days spent being productive…which in my case means reading and having marathons of The Lizzie Bennet Diaries. :) I did get a chance to write up a few reviews for the blog and create a Goodreads account, (which you can check out here) though, so I thought today would be a perfect time to post a new Purple Panda Points…

But first, a recap of my book review system for any of you readers who aren’t familiar with it! Enjoy!

My book review format is called “Purple Panda Points”, where I talk about three elements of the book (setting, plot, characters) in brief points. Hopefully this will help to keep the reviews informative, interesting, and spoiler-free!

The books are rated using the ice cream rankings (because obviously, ice cream is the food that makes the most sense)…

1 Panda PointOne Purple Panda Point: One point means that the book was just plain bad. I would never read it again. It’s the book equivalent of spinach ice cream.

Two PointsTwo Purple Panda Points: Two points means the book was okay. Fine. Nothing remarkable. The book equivalent of vanilla ice cream with no toppings in a dish.

Three PointsThree Purple Panda Points: Three points means the book was good. I enjoyed it and would read it again. The book equivalent of vanilla and chocolate swirl ice cream in a wafer cone.

Four PointsFour Purple Panda Points: Four points means the book was great. I loved it actually! The book equivalent of cookie dough ice cream with rainbow sprinkles in a sugar cone.

Five PointsFive Purple Panda Points: Five points mean that the book was one of the best ones I’ve ever read. Amazing! Awesome! Cool beans! The ice cream equivalent of chocolate cookies and cream ice cream in a sugar cone with chocolate sprinkles. Yum!

Woo, that made me hungry! And now onto the review…

Kiki Strike Today I’ll be reviewing “Kiki Strike: Inside the Shadow City” by Kirsten Miller. You can read my full thoughts below or a quick overview of them in the image above.

Summary: The Shadow City is a system of tunnels hidden under the bustling city of New York used by thieves and criminals to hide their loot…and secrets. For hundreds of years it has laid undisturbed, that is, until now. A group of delinquent girl scouts led by the dangerous and mysterious Kiki Strike is about to go deep under the city they’ve known all their lives and start an adventure bigger than they could ever imagine.

Plot: A mysterious underground city hiding dangerous secrets? An evil plot against the royalty of an Eastern European country? Butt-kicking girl scouts? Suspenseful and interesting writing? Looks like you have all the ingredients for my new favorite mystery!

Characters: The Irregulars are the type of people I would love to be friends with in real life! Although the story is told from Ananka’s point of view, I still felt that they were all very well developed and not at all forgettable. And let me just say that Kiki Strike is super cool. :)

Setting: I loved how New York City was incorporated into this book; the buildings may hold clues to the mystery, the park may have a secret opening to a creepy (and AWESOME) underground city, even the main characters’ homes were cool! If only I had my own personal library like Ananka or basement full of clothes like Betty…

Favorite Character: This is definitely a three-way tie between Betty, Iris, and Kiki. Decisions, decisions…

Favorite Line: “When I grow up, I’d like to be dangerous.” – Kiki Strike (when asked what she wants to be when she grows up.)

Recommended Reading: If you enjoyed the first book in the Kiki Strike series, you’ll love The Red Blazer Girls, Spy School, Capture the Flag, and The Mystery of the Third Lucretia.

Overall Rating: Five Purple Panda Points

Five Points

Have you read any good mysteries lately?

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