Sunday, July 14, 2013

More summer book reviews...

Here's another installment of book reviews from the Teen Summer Reading Program...a little bit of everything!

From Keithleen M., a classic:

The Secret Garden, by Frances Hodgson Burnett, is a magical book about the discovery made by three kids who are not as different as they first seem. The story starts out when Mary Lennox (an EXTREMELY spoiled child) is sent to live with her uncle, Mr. Craven, after an unfortunate incident that happened in her previous home in India. At her uncle's home, Mary finds that there is much more to her new environment than just grumpy old men and porridge... there is a hidden garden. A hidden garden with a tragic story to tell.

The difference between this and any other book I've read so far is that the way it is written makes me feel like I was five again in a positive way. The story is told as if it was a fairy tale and the characters all developed in their own special way. It really was a great book! I recommend it to anyone who loves reading about mysterious fantasies and long ago romances!

From Katrina D., fantasy:

Beyond the Deepwoods,
by Paul Stewart and Chris Riddell
A lonely boy named Twig, who has lived with wood trolls for as long as he can remember, one day strays from the path and is lost in the Deepwoods. As he walks, he makes friends and foes and finds out about his true parents and his true self. But he still feels like someone or something is watching him.This book shows lots of diversity with all of the creatures, and is a wonderful story.

Katrina also read some sequels to this book, which is part of The Edge Chronicles.

From Srujan D., mystery:

The 39 Clues: Trust No One, by Linda Sue Park
Amy and Dan Cahill and their friends, Atticus and Jake Rosenbloom, must find a page of a historical manuscript for the Vespers, an unknown organization who kidnapped seven Cahills, or else the Vespers will kill one of the hostages. When they deliver the page to the Vespers, they find out the Vespers’ horrible secret plan. I think the book was very gripping. It was also very funny. The book also has mysteries and riddles that need to be solved by the main characters. I liked it very much.

This is a popular series, with lots of books. (This is not the first one.)

From Patrick C., science fiction:

Beta, by Rachel Cohn, was a really great read, in my opinion. It explored a world where certain people called Beta are experimental models of a teenage clone. But quickly you get absorbed in this world and Beta does a wonderful job of captivating you.

The characters in Beta were pretty good, but there is definitely more potential for improvement in the second book. Elysia was this quiet, conservative type of person in the beginning and then gravitated towards someone who wanted to feel what she wants. The romance was okay. It wasn't "insta-love," something we see loads of in YA, but had a potential for more suspense and questions. Plus clones? We don't see that much either.

The world building was really good--sometimes fast, sometimes slow. But what was great was that the concept of the clone, the Beta, and experiments was super cool and addicting to read! The ending was wildly crazy and really good, and loads of "what?" held me to finish it.

Pick it up if you love The Hunger Games or Under The Never Sky by Veronica Rossi!

From Katherine W., a classic:

The Prince and the Pauper,
by Mark Twain
This book is about a poor, ragged boy named Tom Canty and a well-beloved prince, Edward Tudor. They were born on the same day, shared the same facial features, but were in two very different worlds. Tom was on a small pallet and his mother had searched for some rough material to use as a blanket, while Edward lay in a soft silken bassinette lined in lace with maids watching his every move, adoring him. When luck brings them together, they switch lives. Edward sees what it is like to be mistreated and unloved, and Tom gets to see what it is like to be loved and well taken care of. And Tom almost gets crowned King of England!

I like this book because each boy gets a taste of the opposite world around them.

From Caleb V., nonfiction:

The LEGO Adventure Book, by Megan Rothrock
If you like LEGO bricks, then you will totally dig this book. It is filled with nearly 200 models and 25 brick-by-brick breakdowns from the world's best LEGO builders. This book is a good addition to anyone's LEGO collection. But some of the break downs are tougher than what you would find in your average LEGO instruction book.I would give this book a 4/5.

From Camille W., suspense:

The Face on the Milk Carton, by Caroline B. Cooney
This book is about a girl named Janie who thinks she may have been kidnapped as a young child. Her parents may not actually be her real parents! She tries to find evidence that the girl on the milk carton was her at a young age. The book is good, and ends with a cliffhanger. I hope the library has the sequel.

We do, Camille! Whatever Happened to Janie, The Voice on the Radio,What Janie Found and Janie Face to Face are all sequels to this book! You can find most of them in the teen paperbacks section at the Central Library. The newest one is in the Teen New Books.

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