I picked up this book randomly from the library shelf. I knew nothing about it or its author before I started reading. It is a bit different then what I would normally read, which is one of the benefits of randomly picking up a book. The book starts with the main character in a car wreck which starts bringing back memories from her childhood. The book is told from three different perspectives, the present, her father, and a journalist. The reader is introduced to her past before the main character even is. In one way this was a great way to structure the story. It allowed for more detail into her childhood. In another way, it was not as satisfying. It was very easy to figure out what was going on, and the ending of the book was not a surprise in any way.
The writing was good. The book flowed well, was edited well, and the main characters were well defined. The side characters were a little bit generic, but they also do not feature in the book as often. I cannot figure out why the viewpoint of the journalist was included. It was over the top, served little point to the narration, and was a horrible stereotype. Religion was portrayed as evil in this book, and men were not portrayed in a very good light either. The premise was interesting and worth reading, however, I think it had the potential to be better.
Assessing Academic Programs in Higher Education focuses on implementing assessment within academic programs. Allen includes a lot of useful information within this small volume. It focuses on educational outcomes and learning outcomes, as well as aligning curriculum with learning outcomes. This is the role of assessment. Allen breaks down ways of implementing assessment, engaging faculty in the assessment process, as well as assessment techniques. The book contains a very detailed introductory guide to direct and indirect assessment techniques. It focuses on rubrics and focus groups specifically.
This is a great volume of a variety of academic assessment. At times it is very basic and could have gone into a bit more depth. However, overall it is extremely informative without being centralized to just one aspect of academic assessment. The book is written more towards faculty but is a good resource for anyone who is interested in learning more about academic assessment. It is also a great book to have on hand when you want a refresher on one aspect of assessment.
Iron Kissed is the third book in the Mercy Thompson series and it is not losing its momentum. By the third book, the reader knows who all the main characters are. This book is a lot about character development. There is also a lot about Mercy figuring things out about Samuel and Adam. This book is not paranormal romance. While there is a relationship, it is one of the many aspects of both Mercy and the series. The relationships are complex, dynamic, and thankfully not keeping you entangled until you want to just scream "pick someone already."
If you have not read it before then you are not going to suspect how the book ends. It is very different than how the book ends. Except that I do think it is important for a reader to know that there is sexual abuse in the book. While it is not described graphically, it could still be a big trigger for readers. I am not sure how I feel about its inclusion.
Overal, it has good writing, great plot development, and great characterization.
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