Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Granny Torrelli Makes Soup by Sharon Creech

I liked how Granny Torrelli's Makes Soup brought everybody together. And, even though it wasn't the hardest book, it was still very good and touching.

Among the Hidden by Margaret Peterson Haddix

I really enjoyed reading this suspenseful series. Among the Hidden is about this place and there is a rule enforced by the Population Police, that says there can't be more than two kids in each family. Luke is a third child trying to hide.

The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown

The author brings out images in your head. The Da Vinci Code is very mysterious. Opinions are discussed about religion and faith. There is a lot of action. Adventurous with a little French history and facts thrown in.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J. K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince is Rowling's greatest book of the whole series! I never wanted to put the book down; I finished it in less than a week.

Terrier by Tamora Pierce

Terrier is a prequel to many of the Tortall books. It is one of the most amazing books I have read. An astounding mix of misfortunes, luck, and intellect leads Beka (the warrior) to two major criminals. Will she survive her first year of law enforcement?

The Penultimate Peril by Lemony Snicket

The Penultimate Peril was an okay book. The book was kind of like a mystery book. It was about the Baudelaire orphans, named Violet, Klaus and Sunny. The children were located in the Hotel Denouement. They had to find out information about the hotel and their opponents, who were Count Olaf and his assistants. Hopefully, his last book of the series called The End will be more exciting.

Last Shot by John Feinstein

I play and love basketball so I knew what the story meant. Last Shot was really good! I liked how it was interesting and how the author included good use of words! The ending was a big surprise too!

Best Friends For Never by Lisi Harrison

Best Friends For Never is the 2nd book in the Clique series and is a never-ending drama. Betrayal and backstabbing are only a few problems this group faces. When Massie finds out she is "slipping" from being in control, she must go out of her way to save her reputation. This book is a must read and I recommend it to all.

1984 by George Orwell

In the classically dystopian style that earned him a permanent niche in the English language, George Orwell managed to rekindle paranoia in people all over the world with his classic novel, 1984. Not only is this story an absorbing learning experience, it's written amazingly--and its plot, a stern warning of things to come, is nothing short of stunning.

Animal Farm by George Orwell

In his 1947 classic, Animal Farm, George Orwell manages to paint a dystopian picture of what happens when society becomes blind to its own faults. Unlike other authors of his time, Orwell possesses a writing style that is concise and easy to understand, in addition to being entertaining in a morbidly twisted way. All in all, Animal Farm is an educating read--one more than worth its ink.

Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Considering how many people have read this striking classic by William Golding, there's not much left to say about it. Lord of the Flies is an excellent example of the fact that humans are violent by inherent nature. If you're willing to wade through an archaic writing style for the sake of an entertaining story, pick this up.

Friday, May 18, 2007

Eldest by Christopher Paolini

The continuation of Eragon is here. In Eldest, we find Eragon and Saphina recovering after a great battle. Eragon is now in love with beautiful Arya, an elf. Saphina, Eragon, and Arya set off for a nearby country when they learn it's being opposed by evil King Galbatorix. In this exciting battle, Eragon discovers his true identity. Read the book to find out more!

The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

The Lightning Thief is a wonderful mix of Greek Mythology and adventure. It keeps you interested until the very last page and sucks you in to the not so distant world of Percy and his friends.

The BFG by Roald Dahl

This book was about man-eating giants. But one giant doesn't eat humans; he trys to save them. BFG stands for Big Friendly Giant.

Peter and the Shadow Thieves by Dave Barry

Peter and the Shadow Thieves is a very action-filled and good book. It's like a prequel to Peter Pan, and does a good job of filling in some questions that you may have had after the movie/book Peter Pan.

Into the Wild--Warriors Book 1 by Erin Hunter

Into the Wild is a great book and the start of a great series. Even people who aren't cat people will love these! I have read them all and I love her writing. She creates her own little world with danger, love, and everything in real life!

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Shackleton's Stowaway by Victoria McKernan

Shackleton's Stowaway was an adventurous thrill that I would read over and over again. I've never read a book that better describes the cold, harsh lifestyle of a transatlantic explorer. This exciting story of Perce Blackborow and his crew and captain is one I'll never forget!

Reviewed by Rebecca

Holidays on Ice by David Sedaris

In Holidays on Ice, a myriad of humorous fiction and accounts of Christmas past, David Sedaris proves the fact that emotional suffering is the best source of unabashed hilarity that anyone could ever hope for.

Reviewed by Kim

Eragon by Christopher Paolini

Eragon is a great adventure book! Eragon, a farm boy, finds a dragon egg. Soon, the egg hatches and Saphira, a blue dragon, is born. Eragon discovers that he and Saphira can communicate via telepathy. The two set off to rid their world of the powers of evil and to join the legendary Dragon Riders.

Reviewed by Hannah

Dragon Rider by Cornelia Funke

Dragon Rider was really good! I usually don't favor books that have crazy creatures, but this book was really mysterious and exciting.

Reviewed by Julia

An Acceptable Time by Madeline L'Engle

An Acceptable Time is an amazing book that continues the Wrinkle in Time series. Polly, a teenager staying at her grandparents house, stumbles into a different time, 3,000 years ago, and meets people who lived there back then. She also finds that a family friend, Bishop Colubra, has landed in this time too. There's only one problem: They are trapped in the past! And, if they don't return to the present soon, the people of the ancient tribes may sacrifice Polly to bring rain to their land!

Reviewed by Hannah

Love Comes Softly by Janet Oke

In Love Comes Softly, unlike most Christian teenage fiction, all of the God stuff doesn't get in the way of the story line. The characters are realistic and the author depicts prairie life very vividly.

Reviewed by Carli

A Single Shard by Linda Sue Park

In A Single Shard, a Korean orphan in the 12th century must take many challenges in the Potter's Village. After he breaks one of Miu's pots he must pay his debt in work. But his offer to travel to the Palace gets him more than he expected. Will he finally be able to please the honorable potter?

Reviewed by Emily

Fire and Hemlock by Diana Wynne Jones

In Fire and Hemlock it's kind of a strange idea of having two memories. Polly's overactive imagination makes this book fun to read. The story takes place mostly in the past and Polly has to figure out if a man she met was real.

Reviewed by Carli

Invisible Monsters by Chuck Palahniuk

I read Invisible Monsters because Ryan Ross from Panic! at the Disco based the song Time to Dance off it. It was amazing and really made you think about what was going on. The twists just pulled you in more. Chuck Palahniuk is now my favorite author and the song Time to Dance makes so much more sense.

A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray

A Great and Terrible Beauty grabbed my attention from the first page to the last. The plot line was so amazing that I couldn't put it down chapter after chapter after chapter.

The Cry of the Icemark by Stuart Hill

Hey everyone this is an awesome book! The Cry of the Icemark is about a 14 year old girl who is the queen of Icemark. She has to lead her tiny country in war against the enormous empire's army with only the help of a 15 year witch's son.

Mister Monday by Garth Nix

Mister Monday by Garth Nix is a fast paced adventure book. Arthur receives a special minute hand of a clock and because of that must battle the enemies and save a somewhat different world. Along the way Arthur learns the value of trust and leadership. This book is great for those who love mystery and fantasy.

I'm A Stranger Here Myself by Bill Bryson

Bill Bryson's I'm a Stranger Here Myself is a memoir of one man's experience after twenty years away. Free coffee at the post office, garbage disposals, and friendly people are what make up America. Bryson also makes fun of our crazy customs and makes us realize how difficult we make our lives.

Wizards at War by Diane Duane

Diane Duane has done it again and written yet another awesome book in her Young Wizards series. In Wizards at War, the eighth book in the series, there is yet another threat from the evil and devious Lone Power. Wizards are losing their power, and there looks to be no solution in sight. However...help comes from unexpected places.

Reviewed by Jen

Hoot by Carl Hiaasen

Hoot is about a boy Roy Eberhardt who moved from Montana to Florida and is having hard time in Trace Middle School. He meets a boy who is willing to do anything to save the owls, even sabotage the plans of building a pancake house. He goes on an adventure with his new friends to save owls from being evacuated by builders. This book is one of the best Battle Of The Books for 2005.

Reviewed by Nandhinee

Esperanza Rising by Pam Ryan

Pam Ryan uses the experience of her own Mexican grandmother as the basis for this story of immigration. In Esperanza Rising, you can see the struggles Mexicans faced during the Great Depression. This story is about a girl, Esperanza, who is forced to leave her life of wealth and privileges in Mexico to go work in labor camps in southern California were they must cope with the harsh conditions.

Reviewed by Nandhinee

Dragons of Autumn Twilight by Margaret Weis & Tracy Hickman

In Dragons of Autumn Twilight, all seems peaceful in the world. Towns are thriving, people are happy. Everything seems perfect for all of the races. WHAM! Out of nowhere, the dragons reappear, and only a small group of people can save the world from them, by finding a legendary weapon called the Dragonlance.

The party consists of Tanis (a half-elf who left his homeland), Flint Fireforge (a surly dwarf with a soft spot in his heart), Tasslehoff (a cheerful and fearless trickster that comes from the “kinder” race), a chivalrous knight called Sturm, and a warrior named Caramon with a fraternal twin brother named Raistlin. But one of the most vital characters to this story is a young woman of the Plains People named Goldman. She carries a mysterious staff that has incredible power. Traveling with her is her “bodyguard” Riverwind.

Anyway, their quest is to find this supposedly mythical weapon that was wielded by a dragonslayer named “Huma”, hundreds of years ago. Tensions rise as new members join the group and Raistlin’s dark power causes suspicions among the companions.My only complaint about this series is the uncanny similarity to The Lord of the Rings. Still, the writing style is very good and I think that fans of D&D and the Forgotten Realms series will like these books.

Dragons of Winter Night
Dragon of Spring Dawning

Reviewed by Maria

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy is a Sci-fi humor book, and it starts when the world blows up to make room for a hyperspace- bypass. And the only survivor is Arthur Dent, who escapes just in the knick of time. It is very funny, where they have a million adventures hitchhiking and time traveling through space. I strongly recommend that every one read it, because it really is worth the time to anyone who is less than perfectly content, which is everyone these days.

Reviewed by Elyse

Sunshine by Robin McKinley

Sunshine is a story about the world. About 50-100 years in the future. The main character is Rae, whose nickname is Sunshine. She lives in a world inhabited by dark ones, vampires, weres, and demons. She ends up getting kidnapped by vampires, and then saves one of their lives. Save your mortal enemy? What is up with this human? Find out in this exciting new book, by Robin McKinley.

Reviewed by Annelise

The Thief Lord by Cornelia Funke

The Thief Lord is a story set in Venice, Italy about two runaway brothers; Prosper and Bo. They live in a secret area in the city with four other children they’ve christened “The Star Palace”. The Thief Lord is a special friend of Prosper and Bo’s who has a knack for getting away with things…literally! I think this book is great because it’s got a lot of adventure, excitement and it’s also set in VENICE! Which is super cool. Prosper and Bo run into all kinds of trouble. If that’s the kind of book you’re interested in, then I would totally recommend this book to you…or anybody else! Ha Ha!

Reviewed by Hannah

Left Behind Series by Tim Lahaye and Jerry B. Jenkins

Left Behind was a really good series, especially if you are into the end of the world stuff. This series takes what is said in the Book of Revelations in the Bible and applies it to present day life. This series is full of suspense, tears, religion, the righteous and the damned. It is well-written and full of people that you start to take on as your own friends and family.

Reviewed by Theresa

Pendragon #5: Black Water by D. J. MacHale

Pendragon #5: Black Water was a really good book. It’s number 5 in a series (duh) where this kid named Bobby Pendragon finds out that he was to travel to different dimensions. And he has to save the universe from this guy named Saint Dane. In the fifth book, he’s already halfway through, and he’s on this planet where everyone is a giant panther. And the people who look like actual people are their servants. But it’s not the panthers’ fault, they just think that people are unintelligent. So then Bobby has to educate them. It’s really good. But if you don’t like Sci-fi, then you wouldn’t really like this book. But I don’t really like Sci-fi, so I guess that this statement is not really true. Never mind.

Reviewed by Anonymous

Angus, Thongs, and Full-Frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison

Angus, Thongs, and Full Frontal Snogging is a hilarious book about a teenager named Georgia living in England. Written in the form of a diary, it explains the woes of having a big nose and a crazy cat and sister. Going to a private school, Georgia is always causing trouble, because of her sense of humor. When setting her friend Jas up with hottie Tom, she spots a Sex God named Robbie. Unfortunately, he is already dating wet Lindsey. Begin snogged by boys, shaving her eyebrows off, and moving to Sweden are only a few of the hilarious things she has to worry about. I recommend this book to everybody.

Reviewed by Anonymous

The Shannara Series by Terry Brooks

The Shannara Series is after the times of the Great Wars, when Mankind almost destroyed itself with it’s advanced technology. The few survivors went into hiding for hundreds of years, trying to survive and evolve from their primitive state.

The humans that fled far south stayed humans. The humans who fled north had to live in the harshest of climates, so they adapted; skin turning rougher, body bigger, with blunter features, becoming what we call “trolls”. The humans to the east took refuge in the mountains, and to adapt to their environment, turned stocky and dwarfish, hence their name “dwarves”. And, the humans that fled far south stayed humans.

Everyone thought that the humans that went west became elves, but the elves were always there. The elves are descendants of the Faerie, magical beings that died long ago, but for one kind soul. ANYways, the elves were there, are there and will BE there.

And since the old-world science has died and is unrecoverable, something must take its place. And that is magic, not as reliable, but more ready that the sciences that destroyed the world of long ago. There are 11 Shannara books out right now, and more are to come, but the basic synopsis in general is that there is an evil in the 4 lands, as everyone callsit. There is someone that can wield a special magic, and he/she/they must triumph over the evil. They endure a lot. Deaths, battle, survival, changes in character and philosophy, and so on. Quite the good read, Shannara is. SO GO AND CHECK ONE OUT!

Reviewed by Marina

Flatland by Edwin A Abbott

What more can be said about the concreteness of the dimensions? After all, a fourth dimension? Unimaginable? In actuality, the fourth dimension exists as time. But the fourth dimension of space?

This problem was trekked in 1884 by Edwin A. Abbott, by writing of life in two dimensions, where the main character is A. Square. A. Square describes life in two dimensions, and also his own journey to be knowledgeable of three dimensions.

The purpose of the story is to show societal and perceptive limitations. As it was written in 1884, it is often offensively sexist, but the questions posed by it often appear in science today, such as with the new string theories which involve as many as eleven dimensions. Unusually timely in its soul, Flatland is worthwhile for geeks and philosophers alike.

Reviewed by Jaclyn