Wednesday, August 11, 2021

#BookReview: My Contrary Mary (Mary #1) by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, Jodi Meadows

Synopsis: Welcome to Renaissance France, a place of poison and plots, of beauties and beasts, of mice and . . . queens?⠀

Mary is the queen of Scotland and the jewel of the French court. Except when she's a mouse. Yes, reader, Mary is an Eðian (shapeshifter) in a kingdom where Verities rule. It's a secret that could cost her a head—or a tail.⠀

Luckily, Mary has a confidant in her betrothed, Francis. But after the king meets a suspicious end, things at the gilded court take a treacherous turn. Thrust onto the throne, Mary and Francis are forced to navigate a viper's nest of conspiracies, traps, and treason. And if Mary's secret is revealed, heads are bound to roll.⠀


Rating: 3 Stars
My Review:  
So I really wanted to love this one because but it fell a little short for me. There were some things I loved such as the sarcasm between the characters and I adored Mary and Francis' relationship.  I also loved Aristotle's character and her part in the story. I didn't like that Aristotle's visions were movie references from our time. I realize they were meant to add humor but for me it threw off the story confusing the two time periods that way. It also felt a little slow at times but rushed at other times, there wasn't really a steady pace to it. Overall it was a good book, but not amazing enough to make me want to read the next ones.

From School Library Journal

Gr 9 Up—The author team known as the Lady Janies don't let historical facts get in the way of a rollicking story full of queens, court intrigue, and shapeshifters. Set in the same world as the acclaimed "Jane" trilogy, this irreverent and wildly amusing first in a series focuses on Mary, Queen of Scots; her fiancé, the dauphin of France; Francis; and Ari, the famed seer Nostradamus's daughter. Mary, 17, and Francis, 16, have been engaged since they were five years old and best friends for almost as long, both working to keep Mary's true nature as an EÐian shapeshifter secret. For France is a country ruled by Verities, people who do not have such gifts, and where being EÐian is a death sentence. When Nostradamus has a vision of treachery in the court, Ari finds herself dragged into aristocratic life. Either age or his power has driven Ari's father out of his senses, but he does have one clear warning: Beware the biscuits. The authors manage to seamlessly blend modern humor and Renaissance France through a combination of parenthetical asides and wry self-awareness. While Mary and Francis' relationship-turned-romance takes center stage, Ari is a lesbian and has a sweet romantic subplot with one of Mary's ladies-in-waiting. The main cast is white, and the race of most supporting characters is undefined. VERDICT Full of puns, memes, and Disney references, this novel kicks off a trilogy with the perfect balance of history and paranormal and is, in short, pure fun. Recommended for YA collections.—Emmy Neal, Lake Forest Lib., IL --This text refers to the hardcover edition.


★“Fast-paced, well-plotted, frequently hilarious—as delicious as the finest French pastry.” -- Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

Praise for My Calamity Jane:  “Witty and winsome, this rollicking tall tale makes its own rules.” -- Booklist (starred review)

“Full of twists, turns, and laugh-out-loud humor, this tongue-in-cheek feminist alternative history is impossible to put down. A thrilling alternative history that sparkles with wit and charm.” -- Kirkus Reviews

Praise for My Plain Jane:
? “The authors’ affection for their source material is abundantly clear in this clever, romantic farce.” -- Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“A delightfully deadpan deconstruction of a Gothic novel, with a ghost almost no one can see providing the commentary. Marvelously self-aware and almost too clever for its own good.” -- ALA Booklist (starred review)

“A madcap story of ghosts, possession, revenge, and murder. Humorously blends fact with fiction and offers a gentler, more hopeful outcome for Charlotte, her siblings, and her heroine.” -- School Library Journal (starred review)

Praise for My Lady Jane:  “Wacky, irreverent, and just plain fun. This fantasy-adventure politely tips its hat to history before joyfully punting it out of the way. An utter delight.” -- Booklist (starred review)

“An uproarious historical fantasy that’s not to be missed.” -- Publishers Weekly (starred review)

“Gleefully anachronistic comedy.” -- Kirkus Reviews --This text refers to the hardcover edition.

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