Empire of Corpses

Empire of Corpses

In an attempt to revive his dearly departed friend, young medical student John Watson becomes obsessed with replicating the work of Dr. Victor Frankenstein; the legendary corpse engineer whose research produced the only re-animated corpse to possess a soul. But when his illegal experiments put him at odds with the British government, Watson is drafted into a worldwide race to find the lost research notes of Victor Frankenstein before the secrets of the human soul fall into the wrong hands.

Napping Princess

Napping Princess

The year is 2020, three days before the opening of the Tokyo Olympics. While she should be studying for her exams, Kokone Morikawa is often dozing off, stuck between reality and a dream world full of fantastic motorized contraptions. But after her father, a talented but mysterious mechanic, is arrested for stealing technology from a powerful corporation, it’s up to Kokone and her childhood friend Morio to save him.

SYNC Audiobook Week 10

This summer, SYNC will be providing two free teen audiobooks each week from April 26th to July 25th. Each week will focus on a specific theme, pairing a classic YA title with a more modern YA title. These two titles will be available to download for free this week only (from 6/28 to 7/4) at the SYNC website. The tenth week will start on Thursday, June 28th with Macbeth by William Shakespeare and The Curse of Crow Hollow by Billy Coffey. The theme for the tenth week is “The weight of guilt.”

In one of Shakespeare’s shortest plays, a Scots noble, inspired by witches, murders to become king and then loses himself in brutality. James Marsters and Joanne Whalley, as Macbeth and his Lady, are both quite good, if rarely exciting or remarkable. Whalley hits that mark more often. There are, by turns, some flatness and overacting in the lesser roles. There’s too much forced laughter among the supernumeraries and too much grunting during fights we cannot see. Still, the overall production is effective. Without standout performances, the play takes the lead. The music and sound effects, though occasionally overdone, help build a sense of dread and things gone very wrong. Text, performances, and sound combine to deliver an affecting tale of tragic horror.

Narrator Gabe Wicks evokes both old-fashioned Appalachian hospitality and barely concealed menace in this suspenseful story. The audiobook’s unnamed narrator invites the listener to sit a spell as he slowly unfolds the story of what happens when four teenagers bring the wrath of a supposed witch down on their sleepy town. Wicks paces the story perfectly by maintaining an affable conversational tone while allowing dread to creep in as the people of the town grapple with the possibility of the supernatural and their own moral failings. Though he doesn’t differentiate character voices, Wicks gives the listener a good sense of who is speaking.

 

Live Fearless: A Call to Power, Passion, and Purpose by Sadie Robertson

Live Fearless: A Call to Power, Passion, and Purpose by Sadie Robertson

Are you tired of the struggle? Tired of fear, loneliness, anxiety, and not knowing who you are or what you’re meant to do? You don’t have to struggle anymore! In [this book], bestselling author and star of Dancing with the Stars Sadie Robertson shares her story of overcoming anxiety and fear. Sadie battled insecurity, comparison, and isolation — just like so many of us do. And she went on a journey of transformation that has left her living a fearless life. As you read through these pages, you’ll discover how you can embrace a fearless life too. Join Sadie on the road toward power, passion, and purpose as you live at the center of who God created you to be!

Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America’s Shining Women by Kate Moore

Radium Girls: The Dark Story of America’s Shining Women by Kate Moore

As World War I raged across the globe, hundreds of young women toiled away at the radium-dial factories, where they painted clock faces with a mysterious new substance called radium. Assured by their bosses that the luminous material was safe, the women themselves shone brightly in the dark, covered from head to toe with the glowing dust. With such a coveted job, these “shining girls” were considered the luckiest alive–until they began to fall mysteriously ill. As the fatal poison of the radium took hold, they found themselves embroiled in one of America’s biggest scandals and a groundbreaking battle for workers’ rights. The Radium Girls explores the strength of extraordinary women in the face of almost impossible circumstances and the astonishing legacy they left behind.

All Out: The No-Longer-Secret Stories of Queer Teens Throughout the Ages by Saundra Mitchell (ed.)

All Out: The No-Longer-Secret Stories of Queer Teens Throughout the Ages by Saundra Mitchell (ed.)

Seventeen young adult authors across the queer spectrum have come together to create a collection of beautifully written diverse historical fiction for teens. From a retelling of Little Red Riding Hood set in war-torn 1870s Mexico featuring a transgender soldier, to two girls falling in love while mourning the death of Kurt Cobain, forbidden love in a sixteenth-century Spanish convent or an asexual girl discovering her identity amid the 1970s roller-disco scene, All Out tells a diverse range of stories across cultures, time periods and identities, shedding light on an area of history often ignored or forgotten.

Heart of Iron by Ashley Poston (Heart of Iron #1)

Heart of Iron by Ashley Poston (Heart of Iron #1)

Seventeen-year-old Ana is a scoundrel by nurture and an outlaw by nature. Found as a child drifting through space with a sentient android called D09, Ana was saved by a fearsome space captain and the grizzled crew she now calls family. But D09, one of the last remaining illegal Metals has been glitching, and Ana will stop at nothing to find a way to fix him.