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Sunday, May 3, 2015

Proxy by Alex London

Proxy (Proxy, #1)
Pen Name: Beatrice
Age: 18
Title: Proxy
Author: Alex London
Publisher: Philomel Books

Summary:

Syd and Knox are living in a society where the rich, Knox, are Patrons, and the poor, Syd, pay off debts as a Proxy. Whenever a Patron does something wrong, the Proxy is punished. When Syd is about to be punished for a murder which Knox accidently caused, the two stumble into something much bigger.

Cover appeal:

I liked how the cover portrayed a silhouette covered with a barcode. It reflected how people were given a monetary value in the book.

Most compelling parts of the book:

I enjoyed reading about a homosexual hero. I haven't read much with that take, and it gave the adventure a different perspective.

Disappointments:

There wasn't much to be disappointed with in this book, though there probably could have been more twists added in the story. It needs it since the utopian society is such an overused plotline now.

How would you rate this book?

4 - Better than most

Recommendations and final thoughts:

I would reccomend this book to fans of Divergent and The Hunger Games because the theme and writing was similar.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

The Conformity by John Hornor Jacobs

The Conformity (Incarcerado, #3)
Pen Name: Batman
Age: 16
Title: The Conformity
Author: John Hornor Jacobs
Publisher: Carolrhoda Lab


Summary:

This is book #3!!!! Read the other two first!!! The Conformity is growing. The Society is falling. When chaos goes full blown, Shreve, Jack, and the other extranaturals must find out what to do to save the world from complete desolation. 

Cover appeal:

The cover was eye catching. Good color scheme. It gives you the reality of what the Conformity really is. 

Most compelling parts of the book:

It was the last one. Their super powers were cool too. 

Disappointments:

I feel like this series declined with each book. The first was really great. #2 was pretty good, but this one really just ended the series. 

How would you rate this book?

3 - Readable

Recommendations and final thoughts:

Older readers. Very graphic and full of quite offensive language. If young and/or squeamish DO NOT READ!!! 

Friday, May 1, 2015

Trouble is a Friend of Mine by Stephanie Tromly

Trouble is a Friend of Mine

Pen Name: Cress
Age: 14
Title: Trouble is a Friend of Mine
Author: Stephanie Tromly
Publisher: Kathy Dawson Books


Summary:

When Zoe Webster moves to her mom's house, Phillip Digby shows up on her doorstep. Although she never expects to see him again, they somehow become best friends and end up in the most bizarre of situations.

Cover appeal:

I liked the minimalist feel of the cover. It looks rather peculiar, but I think that's a pretty good adjective for the story itself.

Most compelling parts of the book:

As I mentioned earlier, I enjoyed the plain bizarreness of the situations Zoe manages to land herself in. I also liked the writing style.

Disappointments:

This wasn't a big detractor for me, but some of the characters are barely described appearance-wise.

How would you rate this book?

5 - Hard to imagine a better book

Recommendations and final thoughts:

I would recommend this book to those who enjoy reading humorous books.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Wildflower by Alecia Whitaker

Wildflower (Wildflower, #1)

Pen Name: Smiles
Age: 13
Title: Wildflower
Author: Alecia Whitaker
Publisher: Poppy


Summary:

I absolutely loved this book. It's about a girl (bird) who sings in a family band but soon gets an opportunity for a solo career. I also loved how this book proved that there isn't always a happy ending. If you love musical things then this book is most definitely for you.

Cover appeal:

I liked that it pulled me to it, it grabbed my attention, yes

Most compelling parts of the book:

Probably when Bird missed Adams performance, and it ruins everything.

Disappointments:

Nope

How would you rate this book?

4-Better Than Most

Recommendations and final thoughts:

Most likely girls who are into musical things.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

My Beloved Brontosaurus: On the Road with Old Bones, New Science, and Our Favorite Dinosaurs by Brian Switek

My Beloved Brontosaurus: On the Road with Old Bones, New Science, and Our Favorite Dinosaurs

Pen Name: Lupin
Age: 17
Title: My Beloved Brontosaurus: On the Road with Old Bones, New Science, and Our Favorite Dinosaurs
Author: Brian Switek
Publisher: Scientific American

Summary:

You and Brian tour western America, exploring dinosaur sites and chatting with paleontologists. From dinosaur child development, to their social structure, it's not all about the controversy of how they ceased to exist. This book narrates how they lived.

Cover appeal:

I love this cover. On the jacket there's Brian sitting on a rock, offering a bouquet to a brontosaurus who devours it right out of his hands. The jacket is a fold-out poster, so I'm tempted to buy a copy myself. The hard cover has the title written in stone, accented by a heart shaped leaf. At first glance, it does look childish in an 80s throwback way. But that adds to its charm being that dinosaurs are "just for kids;" a motif of the book.

Most compelling parts of the book:

My favorite chapter was "The Dinosaurs, They Are a-Changin'." This chapter was on dinosaur child development. Although there isn't much known about it, in recent years paleontologists have removed species from the "dinosaur list" because they've turned out to be the juvenile or adult stages of other dinosaurs. It's all about triceratops in this chapter.

Disappointments:

I was a little disappointed in that there wasn't as many pictures as I thought there should be. A dinosaur would be referenced and described, but there wouldn't be a picture of it. Though, I was able to recognize models of them just from the description. That being said, the best pictures are in the chapter about dinosaur feathers.

How would you rate this book?

4 - Better than most

Recommendations and final thoughts:

I would recommend this to anyone who at any point in their life was vaguely interested by dinosaurs. It may be a turn-off to read a black and white nonfiction book, but this one goes beyond satisfying curiosity.

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Cuckoo Song by Frances Hardinge

Cuckoo Song

Pen Name: Tonks Toes
Age: 15
Title: Cuckoo Song
Author: Frances Hardinge
Publisher: Pan Macmillan

Summary:

Triss Crescent is literally falling apart at the seams. She wakes up with leaves in her hair and twigs falling out of her sides. Then she discovers that she isn't Triss at all, but a doll made to replace her. With no name, she is called Not-Triss. Told through Not-Triss's narrative, we discover how she came to be, how Triss's father and sister have a role in the original Triss's disappearance, the mysterious death of their brother Sebastian, and the world of the Besiders that live along-side them, yet no one can see. 

Cover appeal:

It really turned me off from reading this because it seemed like a really cheesy middle school "horror" novel. More people would read this book if the cover was something not so...cliché.
It looked like whoever designed the cover read the first few chapters and then chose something from there. 


Most compelling parts of the book:

I really like how we learn things along with Not-Triss; the fact that she isn't human at all and the people who she thought were her family really aren't, exactly who created her and why, and how to figure out why actually happened to the girl she is supposedly trying to pretend to be.

Disappointments:

Besides the cover, I really can't think of anything that I would change. 

How would you rate this book?

5-Hard to Imagine a Better book

Recommendations and final thoughts:

Anyone looking for a creepy novel but isn't fond of the books about a haunted house or ghosts or possessions. I definitely won't lose sleep over this book; it isn't made to scare you.

Monday, April 27, 2015

Shutter by Courtney Alameda

Shutter

Pen Name: Hula Girl
Age: 16
Title: Shutter
Author: Courtney Alameda
Publisher: Macmillan


Summary:

Shutter is a book about a girl named Micheline and her ghost hunting crew - Oliver, Jude, and Ryder. During a ghost hunt, Micheline and her friends are infected with a disease called Soulchain and are given only a few days to live. The book follows Micheline as she tries to destroy the ghost that infected her, and keep her friends alive.
I thought that this book was a decent book. I enjoyed reading it, however I did not get invested with the characters and the plot line.


Cover appeal:

The cover itself reflects the book because it is a photo of a ghost, which is what the book is centered about- the hunting of ghosts. Also, I liked the title of the book because Micheline uses a camera to extract ghosts, hence the name "Shutter".
I liked the cover because it automatically draws you in because it is the image of a frightening ghost, so you automatically wonder what kind of monsters Micheline and her friends will be facing.


Most compelling parts of the book:

The most compelling aspect of this book was the countdown at the beginning of each chapter. It was suspenseful because every minute that passed signified how much time was running out for Micheline.
Also, I liked the development of the relationship between Ryder and Micheline because who doesn't love a good romance on the side.


Disappointments:

One thing that was disappointing was that the action in the book was interesting, however I just didn't get super involved in the book. I was not as invested in the book as I would have wished to be. When suspenseful parts happened, they weren't as suspenseful as the author hoped for them to be.
Also, some of the ghost terms were confusing and they should have been clarified more. Perhaps add a glossary at the end of the book just explaining the different terms.


How would you rate this book?

3-Readable

Recommendations and final thoughts:

This book would not be at the top of my list to recommend, just because it wasn't amazing. However if I were to recommend it, I would suggest it to a person that likes action. Also, to read this book you can't be grossed out by slightly graphic fight scenes.