Thursday, July 29, 2010
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Monday, July 26, 2010
Thursday, July 15, 2010
Sunday, July 11, 2010
I was listening to this unabridged audiobook on my drive to the airport for ALA Annual. I knew I was going to hear Libba Bray's acceptance speech for this book, and it was quite the treat! Do I think this is the best book ever? No way. But I think the Printz committee did a great job picking a winner. This book is different and showing where YA literature is going in the future. It's complex, yet simple. I laughed and got a little teary at the end. I wanted to befriend Cameron. And adopt him. Or date an older version of him. And that's what you call good characterization, my friends!
Cameron gets the shock of his life when he finds out he has mad cow disease. His brain does some funny things and he doesn't have much time to live. So he goes on the road trip of his life to find a possible cure. He finds love, a talking garden gnome, a dwarf who becomes his best friend, and love. They travel to New Orleans during Mardi Gras (whoo-woo!) and even make to Disney World.
Bray made quite the departure from her Great and Terrible Beauty novels, but, wow, she made something unique. And, after hearing her speak, I know. Where the strangeness comes from. And the awesomeness. :)
Some kids just love horror books and I'll have to put this one in my library just for them. Reggie starts living a nightmare when her younger brother is possessed with some thing. She's not sure what, exactly, but she gets some clues from an old bookseller and a book she found that described The Devouring. They are evil beings that devour your soul. Ooooooo....insert creepy music. But the author builds some pretty scary moments and throws some gore in there, too. It's not my type of book and I think the cover should be less girly and more gory, but it fills a niche for kids who are finished with Stine, Pike, and Shan, but not yet ready for Stephen King.
Monday, July 5, 2010
I'm blogging from my phone due to the holiday. I've been looking forward to reading this novel because an earlier version of it won a contest at textnovel.com as a novel written on a cell phone. So it's only fitting that I'm writing my blog on my Droid, right?
Jessica has some issues because her mother died in a car accident and her father isn't quite sure what to do with a teenage girl. She gets good grades, works on the family horse farm, and surrounds herself with girlfriends and newspaper buddies. But then she is asked by the office to show Pietr around, a transfer student from a neighboring town. His Russian accent and rugged good looks attract lots of attention, and Jessica doesn't want any part of it. But she can't help it. The bad boy is attractive. And has secrets that Jessica will find out.
I could have done without the plotline of Jessica's need to sacrifice herself (with Sarah) because I didn't think it was needed or supported the main plot sequence with Jessica and Pietr. Their chemistry and Jessica's snarkiness made the book and will make the sequel, too. It should be noted that I read an ARC that had many mistakes, but I'm assuming those will be corrected in the paperback original that is supposed to be out in July. Oh, and guess what? This is a werewolf title!
Thursday, July 1, 2010
I hate when authors don't create distinct characters. I spent half of the first fifty pages trying to figure out the difference between Mia and Candice. When I finally did, I didn't really care for either of them. Mia finally has a popular (but stupid) guy dating her and she is going to prom with him. But now the most popular girl in school is after her date, so she has do do something! The two friends chant a love spell that ends up creating zombies of the entire senior class. Of course, the zombie effects move in stages and there just happens to be a Paranormal Containment Officer in her class. He's cute, of course. The three kids save the day and no one gets hurt. Ugh. Why must most zombie novels be so mediocre?
Ugh. Nothing like a preachy environmental cheesy book for 8 year olds to tick this reviewer off in an airport! I mean, really, what kid would pick this up for fun? I can see it being assigned reading in an Environmental Science class in junior high, but, oh, it's not fun. What kid says "holy ship!"? Add in the childish illustrations and you have a book most students wouldn't check out. The deer pictures are childish and sappy. The bullet holes on the cover hint at adventure, but unless you consider creating a green ecology club adventure, you'll be disappointed.
Aphra is back and is reunited with her mom after four long years. In the original book, Aphra learns her mom is ex-CIA, and in this volume, Aphra learns that her mom is still mixed up in intrigue. Seth is back in all his hotness, but love can't save them from the crooked CIA agents this time. Things end peacefully, of course, but, hey, read volume 3 to find out what happens when Aphra has to move to