Saturday, August 27, 2011

Matched by Ally Condie

In a novel set in the future, The Society controls everything - food, jobs, marriage. Cassia attends her "matching" ceremony, only to find that she has been matched with two boys: Xander and Ky. How could The Society make such a mistake? Who will Cassia choose?

Personal Thoughts: What a fantastic read! Cassia's journey to discover the truth about herself and the truth about Xander and Ky is powerful. I can hardly wait for the sequel, Crossed. It's due out November 1, 2011.

Visit and check it out!

Stuck on Earth by David Klass

Humans are "the laughingstock of the universe" and the planet is about to be vaporized. But there is hope. Ketchvar III takes over the mind of a middle-school nerd to see if humans should live or die. Once inside Tom's brain, Ketchvar learns lessons about the power of the human spirit as he watches Tom overcome class bullies and heartache. Will Ketchvar III's observations help save the planet?

Personal Thoughts: Klass' novel made me laugh and cry. Klass accurately portrays a middle-school boy through the character of Tom.

The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman

When Elizabeth begins her job at the New York Circulating Material Repository, her life changes. She's given access to the Grimm Collection, a room that houses all of the objects from the Grimm Brothers' fairy tales. The items, including glass slippers and magical mirrors, start to disappear, and she must help find the thief or take the blame.

Personal Thoughts: I grew up listening to my parents read fairy tales, so I really enjoyed this book. If you love fairy tales that twist and turn, you will love Shulman's book!

Fantasy Series by Cinda Williams Chima

I LOVE all books by Cinda Williams Chima.
Visit her website to read summaries and watch book trailers for
The Warrior Heir and The Demon King series.
If you love fantasy, adventure, and romance, you will enjoy Chima's books.
I cannot wait for the next book in each series to arrive.

Alex Van Helsing: Vampire Rising by Jason Henderson

To everyone around him, Alex Van Helsing is a troublemaker who gets in fights. After being transferred to a boarding school in Switzerland, Alex discovers that he is a descendent of great vampire-hunters. From this discovery, everything changes for Alex. He becomes involved in a vampire-tracking organization and must work to save his friends.

Personal Thoughts: What a fantastic read! It was fun following Alex through his adventures, and without a doubt, the book is action packed. I cannot wait for the sequel - Voice of the Undead.

Bruiser by Neal Shusterman

Brewster "Bruiser" Rawlins doesn't have many friends, until Bronte and Tennyson befriend him. The twins begin to notice that Bruiser is different, and they worry about him. He lives with an abusive uncle and always seems to have cuts and scrapes. Bronte and Tennyson, however, feel better when he is around. Why does Bruiser feel so much pain when they don't?

Personal Thoughts: I am a huge fan of Neal Shusterman's works, but I believe this might be my favorite! This powerful story is told from three different points of view, Bruiser, Bronte, and Tennyson, and explores the idea of true sacrifice through pain. Like most of Shusterman's works, you will think about the message long after you put down the book.

Forgive My Finds by Tera Lynn Childs

Lily is the new girl in high school, and she hides quite a secret: she is a mermaid princess living on land. Before she is allowed to take the throne in the ocean kingdom of Thalassinia, she must find a a mate. In fact, one kiss will seal her to her love, but the kiss comes from her annoying neighbor Quince. Lily and Quince swim to meet her father and have the bond removed, but she finally realizes that Quince truly loves her. But, how does she feel about him?

Personal Thoughts: I loved swimming through Lily's adventure! She is a strong character, possessing lots of intellect, humor, and under-the-water wit.

Invisible Girl by Mary Hanlon Stone

Fourteen-year-old Stephanie feels invisible, especially since her father doesn't really notice her and her mother only worries about her next drink. Eventually, Stephanie moves to California to live with family friends, but the transition proves difficult. Stephanie must find her own inner strength.

Personal Thoughts: Although Stephanie's situation is difficult, I enjoyed watching her develop into an independent young woman. She had to realize her own identity, not take it from the words and physical actions of her parents.

The Ranger's Apprentice Series by John Flanagan

In The Emperor of Nihon-Ja, the final book in John Flanagan's Ranger's Apprentice series, Horace, takes center stage, as he attempts to keep the Emperor of Nihon-Ja from being killed by others who want to take control. As soon as Will, Halt, Alyss, and Evanlyn learn that Horace needs help, they immediately leave to help. The battle to help the emperor proves to be one that relies upon courage, humor, strategy, and friendship.

Personal Thoughts: What a fantastic final adventure! Although Horace matures and proves himself in this novel, Will, Halt, Alyss, and Evanlyn are right next to him. As usual, Flanagan's novel did not disappoint. I'm only sad that the adventurous journey is over.

Countdown by Deborah Wiles

Growing up in 1962, eleven-year-old Franny Chapman has quite a lot to worry about. Personally, she must work through a betrayal by her best friend, her uncle's embarrassing actions, and her sister's secrets. On another note, Franny must also begin to understand the bigger picture, as President Kennedy announces that Russian missiles are in Cuba.

Personal Thoughts: While reading the book, Franny became a good friend. I loved being beside her throughout her coming-of-age journeys. In the novel, Wiles' included historical quotes, newspaper articles, and pictures, so I was immediately transported back in time. If you enjoy historical fiction, you will love this book!