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Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Firebug by Lish McBride

Firebug (Firebug, #1)

Name: Galloran
Age: 15
Title: Firebug
Author: Lish McBride
Publisher: Henry Holt


Would you like to nominate this book for Teens’ Top Ten?

No

If yes, please give a 2-3 sentence summary of the book that will make other teens want to read the book. If no, please tell us why you would not nominate this book.

Firebug was a good read, but I try to be rather elitist when it comes to what I nominate, and Firebug just wasn't great enough. Don't get me wrong, Firebug was a good magic\fantasy read with a cool twist, but it isn't a book I would go out of my way to read again.

What did you like about the cover? Did the cover reflect the contents?

The cover showed a girl's hands just spewing fire. As the main character is both a girl and a pyrokinetic, this works quite well, without giving anything away. I like it.

Describe the most compelling aspect of the book.

Definitely the Coterie. The idea of a magical mob, especially the way Lish McBride presents it, is absolutely fascinating.

Were you disappointed with any aspect of the book?

Well, like I said, it was good, just not great. There was also some very confusing parts where characters did things and you never learn why they did them.

How would you rate this book?

4 - Better than most

Anything else you’d like to add?



Sanctus by Simon Toyne

Sanctus
Name: Beatrice
Age: 18
Title: Sanctus
Author: Simon Toyne
Publisher: Harper


Would you like to nominate this book for Teens’ Top Ten?

Yes

If yes, please give a 2-3 sentence summary of the book that will make other teens want to read the book. If no, please tell us why you would not nominate this book.

There is a place called the Citadel in a town known simply as Ruin which is rumored to contain one of the most important religious artifacts in the world, the Sacrament. The monks that reside there are sworn to protecting this treasure but, when one of the monks kills himself and draws his sister into the mix, a prophecy predicting the end of the Sacrament and the beginning of a new age begins to become evidently true. This causes everyone associated with the Sacrament to seek the sister, who is a normal woman who doesn’t know what’s coming.

What did you like about the cover? Did the cover reflect the contents?

The cover of the book shows a symbol that resembles the cross but is actually a symbol known as the Tau in the story. The Tau is what put this whole event into action, so I would say that the cover reflected the contents of the book pretty well.

Describe the most compelling aspect of the book.

The most compelling aspect of this book was the mystery. This book really kept me on the edge of my seat, and I couldn’t stop reading it because I had to know what happened next. It was incredibly thrilling.

Were you disappointed with any aspect of the book?

No, I thought the entire book was brilliant.

How would you rate this book?

5 - Hard to imagine a better book

Anything else you’d like to add?

This book is fictional, and it does hint at some parts of the Bible untrue. If this would offend you, do not read this book. It approaches religion in a different way than most books do.

The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters

The Cure for Dreaming
Name: Margo Roth Spiegelman
Age: 15
Title: The Cure For Dreaming
Author: Cat Winters
Publisher: Amulet Books


Would you like to nominate this book for Teens’ Top Ten?

Yes

If yes, please give a 2-3 sentence summary of the book that will make other teens want to read the book. If no, please tell us why you would not nominate this book.

Olivia Mead is an aspiring suffragist and supporter of the temperance movement, and her father has had enough of her "unladylike dreams". He hires a hypnotist to stomp any desire to vote out of her, but the young showman actually gives her the power to see how influential the words of some and the silences of others can be.

What did you like about the cover? Did the cover reflect the contents?

Yeah, I liked the cover. It actually depicts something that happened in the book for a change.

Describe the most compelling aspect of the book.

Olivia's ability to let her more easily see the intentions of people and how a few unquestioned words can silence others definitely made it clear that casual remarks actually can affect how we view the people around us.

Were you disappointed with any aspect of the book?

I'm not coming up with anything. I really, really liked this book.

How would you rate this book?

5 - Hard to imagine a better book

Anything else you’d like to add?

Monday, October 13, 2014

The Living by Matt De La Pena

The Living (The Living, #1)
Name: Little Red Riding Hood
Age: 17
Title: The Living
Author: Matt De La Pena
Publisher: Delacorte Press


Would you like to nominate this book for Teens’ Top Ten?

No

If yes, please give a 2-3 sentence summary of the book that will make other teens want to read the book. If no, please tell us why you would not nominate this book.

Things are going well for Shy on his summer job; making money on an expensive cruise liner, until, a man commits suicide on the ship. Things immediately go downhill from there. The cruise ship faces a deadly storm and Shy ends up stranded on a life boat with a rich girl.

What did you like about the cover? Did the cover reflect the contents?

The cover did reflect the contents very well. I liked the giant wave and the hand reaching out for life.

Describe the most compelling aspect of the book.

The most compelling part for me was when the storm hit and was destroying the cruise ship so everyone was in a panic trying to survive.

Were you disappointed with any aspect of the book?

I actually was not too disappointed, but the book to me seemed very slow paced for over more than half of the book. It took a while to get to what the book was really about.

How would you rate this book?

3 - Readable

Anything else you’d like to add?

Of Scars and Stardust by Andrea Hannah

Of Scars and Stardust
Name: Artemis
Age: 15
Title: Of Scars and Stardust
Author: Andrea Hannah
Publisher: Flux, Llewellyn Worldwide Ltd.


Would you like to nominate this book for Teens’ Top Ten?

Yes

If yes, please give a 2-3 sentence summary of the book that will make other teens want to read the book. If no, please tell us why you would not nominate this book.

"Of Scars and Stardust" is a wonderful book. It is filled with suspense and quite a bit of romance as well. It is quick paced and the more you learn about the characters, the more you will begin to love them. The story's plot is confusing at times, however, it quickly explains some parts later on. If you begin to read this book, have fun trying to put it down.

What did you like about the cover? Did the cover reflect the contents?

The cover of this book is part of what got me to pick the book. It shows two girls, most likely the main character and her sister, standing alone in a wide, snow-covered path in the woods. I believe it is of the main character trying to protect her sister from the harm that will come. I truly like the suspense and nervousness the cover gives me. I keep looking at it, wondering maybe . . . just maybe, I will see the wolves stalking them.

Describe the most compelling aspect of the book.

The most compelling aspect of this book is its suspense. Each moment seems to just hang in the air, waiting to fall and reveal a secret or something. I may have read this book for a review, but I would have bought it if I had, too.

Were you disappointed with any aspect of the book?

The end of "Of Scars and Stardust" was a bit disappointing. I enjoyed how it gave that twist toward the ending, but (being my "fairy tale loving" self, I did not like it, too, much . . . read the book, and possibly you will see what I mean.

How would you rate this book?

4 - Better than most

Anything else you’d like to add?


Saturday, October 11, 2014

The Boy on the Bridge by Natalie Standiford

The Boy on the Bridge
Name: Little Red Riding Hood
Age: 17
Title: The Boy on the Bridge
Author: Natalie Standiford
Publisher: Scholastic Press


Would you like to nominate this book for Teens’ Top Ten?

No

If yes, please give a 2-3 sentence summary of the book that will make other teens want to read the book. If no, please tell us why you would not nominate this book.

Laura is spending a semester in Russia to focus on learning the language and the nation. However, when a Russian boy, Alyosha, saves her on a bridge from Gypsies, Laura is immediately thrown into a complicated romance.

What did you like about the cover? Did the cover reflect the contents?

The cover obviously goes along with the title and both are connected with the book, since that is where the characters meet. I like the beautiful scenery that is displayed on the cover.

Describe the most compelling aspect of the book.

The most compelling aspect is when Laura realizes she has to go back to America and she attempts to figure out how she can still be with Alyosha.

Were you disappointed with any aspect of the book?

I found the romance to be extremely cheesy and not enjoyable to read. There were several times I found myself angry and annoyed with the main character. Despite that, I truly enjoyed how the setting was in Russia and how the book had insight on how rough it was there for some.

How would you rate this book?

2 - Needs more work

Anything else you’d like to add?

Friday, October 10, 2014

Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand

Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption
Name: Flame
Age: 13
Title: Unbroken: An Olympian's Journey from Airman to Castaway to Captive
Author: Laura Hillenbrand
Publisher: Delacorte Press


Would you like to nominate this book for Teens’ Top Ten?

Yes

If yes, please give a 2-3 sentence summary of the book that will make other teens want to read the book. If no, please tell us why you would not nominate this book.

This is the story of Louie Zamperini - a former Olympian track star who volunteered for the Airforce in WWII and had been sent on a rescue mission with his crew. Their plan crashed into the vast ocean... after surviving the ocean perils he was captured by the Japanese and put in a POW camp. Zamperini survived the POW camp and was united with his family and got married to the love of his life. Later he, practically forced by his wife, went to hear Billy Graham speak and his life was forever changed. The book then documents some parts of his later life.

What did you like about the cover? Did the cover reflect the contents?

The cover was pretty good. It did reflect the contents of the book. I do not know if the plane on the cover was a B-24 or not (that is the kind of bomber that Louie Zamperini flew in).

Describe the most compelling aspect of the book.

That would most likely be when Louie decided to follow Jesus and become a Christian.

Were you disappointed with any aspect of the book?

A few of the quotes had an unsavory word. That was it

How would you rate this book?

5 - Hard to imagine a better book

Anything else you’d like to add?

It was very intriguing and historical.