Saturday, December 28, 2013

Teen Review:

Title: Time After Time
Author: Tamara Ireland Stone
Number of pages: 368
Genre: Realistic
Is it part of a series? Yes, #2
Reading level: 7th grade and above
Reviewed by: Patrick Castro, 10th grade

I fell in love with Time After Time and I have to say that it is way better than Time Between Us! Time After Time had the perfect elements of Time Between Us, but written from Bennett's perspective, which made it relateable and spell-binding at the same time. I loved it and would definitely not mind re-reading it!

Because it was written from Bennett's perspective, I thought it would just crash and fall, since every book written in a guy perspective just fails (Patrick's opinion! --ed.), but this was done flawlessly! Tamara gave him a good voice throughout the whole book, and I related to everything he went through with Anna. There is more of an exploration of the struggles of time traveling, but also the relationship aspects. There were a great number of romance scenes, mixed with the time traveling and family parts. It's a job well done.

The book is part bittersweet, especially towards the end when Bennett makes a heart-wrenching choice for Anna! (Be ready for tears!) Tamara does a great job of playing with your emotions. Overall, Time After Time is a memorable sophomore book to Time Between Us, with a fresh new voice from Bennett. I am excited to see what Tamara has in store next time!

Editor's note: BPL owns Time Between Us, but Time After Time is still on order.

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Teen review: Tech fiction

Title: The Social Code
Author: Sadie Hayes
Number of pages: 320
Genre: Realistic fiction
Part of a series? Yes (The Start-up, #1)
Reading level: 8th grade and up
Reviewed by:
Patrick Castro, 10th grade

The Social Code was a a great read filled with the world of technology, backstabbing, and decisions. Sadie Hayes created a world so true to people's motives and ambitions for a successful life. Even though it was a quick read, it was a memorable one, and I'm excited to see how the second book delves into this world of technology!

One thing I loved about The Social Code was that it wasn't my normal niche of YA. I usually try to push myself, but The Social Code was completely different because of the premise. And definitely the technological aspect of the book, I mean who would pick that up? But no, Sadie Hayes sucks you into the world of Silicon Valley with Adam and Amelia Dory. Amelia and Adam are students at Stanford, and while Adam likes to explore his options, Amelia loves to decode and decode.

The fast-paced plot and characters really made the book a strong and moving one, and I enjoyed every second of it. It was a true page-turner, which surprised me because it wasn't in my niche. I am now more inspired to pick up books similar to this. I seriously kept turning the pages with excitement to see how everything would turn out with Adam and Amelia! The same goes for the other characters in the book, who we get a taste of in small plot lines. Wickedly genius, Sadie! All the characters were so real and I could feel the emotions jump off the page. 

The Social Code is definitely a book you should try, especially if you're an avid reader. The book grows with you throughout the plot, and the characters were real and honest: Anyone could relate to the choices they had to make and situations they were in. In the middle of betrayal and distrust, Sadie Hayes creates a true, honest world where anyone can place themselves in Adam and Amelia's shoes.

Editor's note: We have this book on order for Central and Buena Vista, and it will be available very soon...

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Teen Review: TFIOS, last time!!!

Teen reviewers, beware! I know y'all love this book, and now everyone who reads our blog knows too, because we have published about eight (glowing) reviews of it! So this is the last one we will post! Feel free to read it and talk it up, but please--review something else!

Author of book: John Green
Number of pages: 316
Genre: Realistic
Is it part of a series? No
Reading level: high school
Reviewed by: Angela, 12th grade

This book is about a girl named Hazel Grace, who has had terminal cancer most of her life. She joins a support group one day and during the first day of the support group, Hazel meets a boy named Augustus Waters, the most gorgeous plot twist of Hazel’s life. Soon enough they are flirtatious friends and talk to each other about everything. They talk about their interests and how Hazel has a love for this one book called An Imperial Affliction, so Augustus reads the book. After he's done with it, they both realize they have an unconditional love for the same book but the book never had a full closure. They both want to visit the author in Amsterdam to get some questions answered, but those questions lead to dangers in Augustus’ life.

I've read a lot of books, but this is one of my all-time favorites; that's not something I can say about very many books. The thing I mainly liked about this book was that it had some nerdy humor in it but it had a meaning to it too. It got me really emotional by the time I was almost done with it, and I can tell you I don’t get emotional quickly. By far, there was nothing I really disliked about the book, I just kind of wish it ended differently--but I don’t want to give out spoilers!

The writing in this book was literally so good. A lot of the quotes mentioned in this book had so much more deeper meaning than they appear to have. Hazel’s personality was predictable because she was just blunt and a feminist. Augustus, however, his character was exactly what you would call a “dream boy.” What thoughts or feelings did the book inspire? My feelings towards this book are so different from what I would usually feel. I never cried while reading a book and this just made me bawl my eyes out. I love it. I would recommend the book to anyone 15+, honestly. I made my best friend read it after I was done, and she fell in love with it too. I would definitely rate this book a 5/5.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Happy Holidays!

Some reminders for the holiday season:

All branches close at 5:00 p.m. on Christmas Eve, December 24, and are CLOSED on Christmas Day, December 25.

All branches also close at 5:00 p.m. on New Year's Eve, December 31, and are CLOSED on New Year's Day, January 1, 2014!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Teen Review: Dystopian fiction

Title of book: Pawn
Author of book: Aimee Carter
Number of pages: 346
Genre: Dystopian
Is it part of a series? Yes
Reading level: 8th grade and up
Reviewed by:
Patrick Castro, 10th grade

I loved reading Pawn from beginning to end, with its gripping premise, amazing characters, and crazy twists. It was a book that blew me away. I would call Pawn a great mash-up of every dystopian book out there, but yet Aimee Carter brings something new and addictive; I couldn't stop reading Pawn!

In Pawn, we meet Kitty Doe, who is a III with a determination for a better life--one in which she doesn't have to worry about judgment for her number in society. I thought Kitty was a great and solid character throughout the book. She goes through so much, from being Masked into Princess Lila, the Prime Minister's niece, to being separated from Benjy, her boyfriend. I loved how fast Aimee Carter takes you in--you will not want to stop turning the pages! Kitty has her own personality and traits that are true and honest; you just fall in love with her and her determination. I also liked how Aimee made the other characters real, with evil motives and showing no mercy--it made the book more intense and gripping. 

Pawn was a great mash-up of The Hunger Games, Wither by Lauren DeStefano, Divergent by Veronica Roth, and The Selection by Kiera Cass, but it was written in its own unique way. There were twists and turns that Kitty and readers will face that pull away from the "mash-up" aspect to making it its own series, delving deeper into the politics to a rebellion Lila started. I loved those parts in the book. Well done and well written also!

I really do recommend Pawn to any YA reader who loves to pick up dystopians for a living. It has such potential for a stand-out series, I cannot wait to pick up the next book.

Editor's note: The library doesn't own this book, but now I will definitely buy it! Thanks, Patrick.