Book Review & Giveaway: The Breedling & the City in the Garden by Kimberlee Ann Bastian



Absolute obedience, servitude, neutrality.

These were the laws that once governed Bartholomew, an immortal soulcatcher, until one ill-fated night when he was forced to make a choice: rebel against his masters or reveal an ancient, dangerous secret.

He chose defiance.
Imprisoned for centuries as punishment for his decision, Bartholomew wastes away—until he creates an opportunity to escape. By a stroke of chance, Bartholomew finds himself in the human world and soon learns that breaking his bonds does not come without a price. Cut off from the grace that once ruled him, he must discover a new magic in 1930s Chicago.
Armed with only a cryptic message to give him direction, Bartholomew desperately tries to resume the mission he had started so long ago. Relying on the unlikely guidance of the streetwise orphan Charlie Reese, Bartholomew must navigate the depressed streets of the City in the Garden. But in order to solve this riddle, he must first discover if choice and fate are one in the same.

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My Review

I chose to read this e-book after receiving a free copy from the author. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.
The Breedling and the City in the Garden is part fantasy, part historical fiction. The fantasy part is pretty confusing possibly because it’s not explained in enough detail. If you’ve read many of my reviews, you know that it’s rare that I say that. The historical fiction part, however, is very good and I enjoyed that part of the book.
Bartholomew/Buck, an immortal soul catcher, ends up in Chicago in the 1930s, when he escapes prison after being there for centuries for not revealing an ancient, dangerous secret to his masters. He is saved from a fire by Charlie whose character I love. The teenager is street smart but has a big heart. Together they battle challenges both supernatural and typical for teens at that time.
I look forward to reading more by Kimberlee Ann Bastian, especially historical fiction.

About the Author

2016-11-24_11-09-41Kimberlee Ann Bastian has a unique love affair with American nostalgia, mythology, and endless possibilities. This melting pot of elements is what prompted the creation of her epic ELEMENT ODYSSEYS series, starting with the reboot of her debut novel now titled THE BREEDLING AND THE CITY IN THE GARDEN.

When she is not in her writer’s room, working her current “day job”, or consuming other literary worlds, she enjoys hiking and cycling around the bluffs of your Southeastern MN home and catching up on her favorite pop culture.

Connect with the author:  Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~Pinterest  ~ Instagram





  • 8 winners will each get a print or ebook copy of The Breedling & The City in the Garden (print open to USA & Can / ebook open Int’l)

  • 1 winner will get the Chicago Swag Box (USA only) Prize contains: Jay’s Potato Chips, Wrigleys Gum, mug, a book on history of Chicago (Then and Now), a magnet and a few other items

  • Ends Dec 17

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Rare Book Collection at the Museum of Science & Industry


The Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago has an incredibly rare book collection on display for the first time ever, but you might need a magnifying glass to read them! Tiny books from the Fairy Castle Library will be the focus of the exhibit’s public conservation project this week. First and only edition, these books include hand-printed versions of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ Tarzan with custom illustrations and John Steinbeck’s Of Mice and Men.


Not a Review: Divergent by Veronica Roth


9780062024039_custom-6b2ed0b3ebbd559fe8a0527ec3f7d4ca7aecf427-s6-c10Title: Divergent

Author:  Veronica Roth

Genre:  Young Adult

Publisher:  HarperColllins

Publication Date:  2011

Description: In Beatrice Prior’s dystopian Chicago world, society is divided into five factions, each dedicated to the cultivation of a particular virtue–Candor (the honest), Abnegation (the selfless), Dauntless (the brave), Amity (the peaceful), and Erudite (the intelligent). On an appointed day of every year, all sixteen-year-olds must select the faction to which they will devote the rest of their lives. For Beatrice, the decision is between staying with her family and being who she really is–she can’t have both. So she makes a choice that surprises everyone, including herself.

During the highly competitive initiation that follows, Beatrice renames herself Tris and struggles alongside her fellow initiates to live out the choice they have made. Together they must undergo extreme physical tests of endurance and intense psychological simulations, some with devastating consequences. As initiation transforms them all, Tris must determine who her friends really are–and where, exactly, a romance with a sometimes fascinating, sometimes exasperating boy fits into the life she’s chosen. But Tris also has a secret, one she’s kept hidden from everyone because she’s been warned it can mean death. And as she discovers unrest and growing conflict that threaten to unravel her seemingly perfect society, she also learns that her secret might help her save those she loves . . . or it might destroy her.


I read this book for 2 reasons: first, my niece loves it. She told me it’s better than The Hunger Games, which I really liked. Second, I’m going to be meeting the author at Book Expo America in a couple weeks and I didn’t want to meet her without having read one of her books.

Since there are thousands of reviews of this book online already, I’m not going to review it. I will say that I did like it (not as much as The Hunger Games though) and if you like dystopian literature and underdogs coming out ahead then you’ll probably like it too. There are a lot of questions left unanswered but I’m hoping that maybe they’ll be answered in the next book or two.

Order Divergent from Amazon.