Monday, April 27, 2009


by Alice Hoffman

# of pages: 166
age range: 12-15

Estrella de Madrigal thought she knew herself: daughter, granddaughter, dearest friend. But truth is rare in this cruel and unforgiving century in Spain, when Jews who refused conversion to Christianity risked everything - love, life, family, faith.

Then: a startling discovery shakes Estrella's world to the core. Emerging from a cocoon of secrets, new love burns brightly, but betrayal unleashes a monstrous evil upon her. Estrella must find the strength - despite grave consequences - to become the person she is destined to be.

Remember the story she is about to tell you.

I read this novel awhile ago, sixth grade! Bought at a book fair, one of the teachers mentioned to me that it might be too old to read, being 12 at the time, and desperate to grow up I scoffed at the idea that the book may be in fact beyond my maturity level. But if it was in the middle school book fair didn't that mean it was middle school friendly? So of course I bought it, and I'm glad I did.

Estrella's story is moving, written in middle-school friendly writing, Estrella's brutal but truthful tale will have tears dampen your eye's. Though the novel is short it doesn't need to be any longer. Hoffman gets the point across, develops her characters, and makes readers feel the pain of Estrella experiences.

If you're worried that you might get bored with it, don't worry. There's plenty of romance to go around, though PG rated it's still sweet, a love between Estrella and Andres.

OMG, i forgot to tell you what the story was about, hah! Incantation is a story about a girl named Estrella (star in Spanish), who discovers that her family are secretly Jew's in a time where being Jewish meant torture and death. Terrified of the secret she is burdened with, Estrella barely manages to make it trough the hardships she endures. But in her time of pain Estrella finds true love, sees beyond the pretty veil her best friend wears, and discovers herself on this heartfelt journey that turns Estrella from a girl into a woman.

If you enjoyed Incantation be sure to check out:

What my mother doesn't know - sonya sones
The sacrafice - kathleen benner duble
the witch of blackbird pond - Elizabeth George Speare


by Rachel Maude

# of pages: 290
age range: 13+

Fueds. Dudes. Attidtudes. You're not wearing that, are you?

Four high school girls who all love fashion (but hate each other) are forced to work together to create a designer label for their exclusive LA private school. Can a cool coquette, shy punk, a getto-glam egomaniac, and a hippie goddess make peace for couture? Welcome to Winstion Prep - where wardrobe means war.

When I saw this book in Barns n Noble i was expecting a quick fluff read; i most definitely got it. Luckily I only spent a dollar on this book, because it most certainly wasn't worth 10$!!!

- which I thought was pronounced pah-sure - is about four girls, Jannie Farish a shy low esteem girl who likes to design clothes, Charlotte Beverwil a fake french teen who will easily squish you as soon as hug you, Melissa Moon an ego obsessed hip-hop princess, and finally Petra Greene a gorgeous druggie who really could care less about what she wears.

So you'd think the story would be in interchanging views of these girls, right? Yes...and no. You do see the different sides of the girls but you also see little blips of other minor characters lives, and see their problems and what not. This could be played out into a long connecting story web, but it's not. Instead all the different perspectives come off as messy and confusing. And honestly, fashion doesn't even come off as the main focus of the story!

Sure it was entertaining, but some parts were confusing, unrealistic, and the characters were way under developed. The series will continue, but it doesn't look promising. This book is fine for a quick read, but don't expect much. (don't waste 10$ on this novel!)

If you liked Posuer check out,
The Clique - lisi harrison
the a-list - zoey dean
gossip girl - cecily von zeiger
secrets of my hollywood life - jen calonita
private - kate brian
pretty little liars - sarah shepard
the ashley's - melissa de la cruz
summer intern - carrie karosyov

Saturday, April 25, 2009


by Judy Waite

#of pages: 249
age range: 14 +

Elinor is luck, so lucky. At least that's what the other members of the true cause think. They are all blessed to be a part of the true cause, safe from the Outsiders, living only to work for Endtime. They have been chosen for a better life.

But for a long time now, fifteen year old Elinor hasn't felt so lucky. Sometimes she doesn't want to kneel for hours in the cold, listening to True Cause's founder, howard, pray. Sometimes she doesn't want to be one of Howards brides when she turns sixteen. And especially sometimes, she wants to know more about the green-eyed Outsider boy who seems to be following her.

Because there's something oddly familiar about him. Something that is making Elinor remember that there used to be more to her life that just true cause...

I honestly don't know if I can write a review about this book. Honestly. It is just so...weird. The whole book is about Elinor, who is pretty much being brainwashed into believing she is happy being half-starved, dressed in ratty clothes, living with a bunch of girls who magically disappear when they get sick, and never being able to interact with the Outside world.

Baned from any use of modern technology, or newspapers, Elinor is being taught to follow a "master" named Howard, who had fifteen wives. Elinor will become one of his wives at fifteen. But then she meets Jamie, who tries to get her to see a different light. And she is always torn.

Waite did an amazing job covering the whole brainwashed teen perspective but it was just so weird, i could barely stand to read it sometimes.

So read at your own risk.

If you enjoyed Forbidden check out:

Running out of time: Margaret Petterson Haddix
Uglies - scott westerfeld
The giver - Louis Lowry

To Catch A Pirate

To Catch a Pirate
by Jade Parker
# of pages: 226
age range: 12 - 16

Once caught, it’s harder still to let a pirate go

When Annalisa Townsend’s ship is set upon by pirates in search of her father’s treasure, one of the crew, James Sterling, discovers her in the hold. When he moves to take her necklace, she begs him not to, as it is all she has left of her mother. He accepts a kiss in exchange for the necklace. “A fair trade, m’lady,” he tells her afterward, before disappearing.

A year later, with a forged letter of marque, Annalisa is intent on hunting down the wretched James Sterling and reclaiming her father’s treasure from him. But now she’s in danger of him stealing something far more vulnerable this time: her heart.

This novel is a great weekend read, quick and fluffy. I got this book at a school book fair and i felt it was probably the most interesting book in the whole lot.

Now I love pirate books, i guess I have a thing for bad boys who are into good girls, ever seen Greece, loved it!
So i quickly devoured this book, although you really can't say Annalisa is a "good girl", she tries to be at least.

James Sterling though, now he's bad, I mean he is a pirate. After capturing James Annalisa holds him captive on her ship, which proves very interesting when Anna remembers that one breath taking kiss they shared. It's no surprise that she wants another one.

But wait, we have another character in the picture, Nathaniel! He's Mr. Goody-too-shoe's gone bad, and he want more than Anna's hand in marriage. He's one of those guys who sees woman's as porcelain dolls, meant to be looked at but not to be touched. So when pirates attack the ship he locks Anna up in her room, and she's the captain!

I want to tell you more but you should read it for yourself. Don't expect a moving novel, or a new twilight, but you can expect a fast moving adventure romance book with a lovely ending.

If you enjoyed to catch a pirate, check out:
Pirates - Celia Rees
Sovay - Celia Rees
Aurelia - Anne Osturlund
Bewitching Season - Marrissa Doyle

Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist

Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist

by: Rachel Cohn and David Levithan

# of pages: 208

Age range: anyone who can stand to see the F word more than 5 times in a sentence.

Unfortunately I couldn't get the Synopsis for this book, but I'm sure my own review will do just fine.

Every chapter the book alternates between Nick, and Norah's perspective. It starts with Nick who's all like "F the world, F you!" In other worlds his fake chested cheating dyed blonde girlfriend dumped him, what a loss.

Norah's all like, "Eh, I don't want to listen to this crap band sing F you anymore, but I can't leave my drunk bff alone with sexual predators."

So of course the two meet and Nick ask's Norah to be his girlfriend for five minutes when he see's his Ex Tish with another man, the two kiss, tish see's them, the story begins.

Tish turns out to be a school mate of Norah's, so Norah know was a good boyfriend Nick is, she likes him but she's kind of atough girl. The two go rampaging around NYC for the night, get to know each other, and fall in love.

This book is high on talk about, alcohol, swearing, drugs, sex and all of that stuff, which is frighteningly real these days, but can be a downer in a book when you want to escape from the real world into a nice little fake world for a few minutes.

But getting past all the swearing and drunkness, the book is actually pretty good. But on a movie rating scale, it's a PG-13.


by Alyson Noel

# of pages: 301
age range 13 +

After a horrible accident claims the life of her family, sixteen-year-old Ever Bloom can see people's aura's, hear their thoughts, and know someones entire life story by touching them. Going out of her way to avoid human contact and suppress her abilities, she has been branded a freak at her new high shool - but everything is about to change when she meets Damen Auguste.

Damen is gorgeous, exotic, and wealthy. He's the only one who can silence the noise and random energy in her head - wielding a magic so intense, it's as though he can peer straight into her soul. As Ever is drawn deeper into his enticing world of secrets and mystery, she's left with more questions than answers. And she has no idea who he really is - or what he is. The only thing she knows to be true is that she's falling deeply and helplessly in love with him.

Evermore was another one of those books that i had to rush to the store and buy. It looked so good. Of course, Evermore was also one of those books where i thought the story line was completely different than what it actually was.

I thought Evermore was about this girl who is the sole survivor of a deadly car crash, so she moves to a new school with her abilities - ones that she's had her whole life - is then branded a freak and meets this Damen guy who stops all the voices. Then they go on magical adventures, yada yada yada.

In reality, Evermore is actually about Ever, who moves in with her wealthy single aunt after the car crash and is then branded a freak when she doesn't wear miniskirts and designer heels in her new Californian school. Then after almost a year of being at her school does Damen come into the picture - which is about the first chapter.

From there Damen is like her half boyfriend, he is this amazing guy one minute, then totally secretive and not there the next. So the whole book Ever was in denial about whether she should be with him.Of course there is Damen's Ex who is in the picture as well, and starts to mess with Ever's life and friends.

Even though the story wasn't what i expected i still loved the book, it was highly addictive. You kept reading to see what Damen would do next, how Ever would react, and when the secrets would be revealed.

It was definitely a good book, great for twilight lover's I'm sure you'll fall in love with gorgeous Damen just as I did. So definatly check this book out it looks to be promising series.

Now the con's, i was confused on a couple parts of the story, there were a few little things that could have been explained better. The ending, to me, seemed a little rushed and could have been written differently. And I think there should have been another twist put in there, something totally shocking, but maybe the book didn't need it, I don't know this is just my opinion.

Now stop listening to my constant complaining and go out and read this, it actually is very good. Oh, there's more of a PG, PG-13 style romance for all you teens who need more than the occasional "beautiful kiss"

P.S. the girl on the cover is the same girl as the one on the cover of North of Beautiful!!!

If you liked Evermore check out:

Evernight - Claudia Gray
Wake - Lisa McMann
Need - Carrie Jones
Vampire Academy - Richelle Mead
Deadly Little Secret - Laurie Faria Stolarz
Wondrous Strange - Lesley Livingston
The Vampire Diaries - L.J. Smith
Moonlight - Rachel Hawthorne

Friday, April 24, 2009

Blue is for Nightmares

Blue is for Nightmares
By: Laurie Faria Stolarz
Age range: 11-13

I know your secret...

Stacey Brown has lots of secrets-her crush on her best friend Drea's boyfriend, the spells she casts, and the nightmares that come true. Now she's dreaming about Drea and a psycho stalker. Saving Drea will take all the magic and courage Stacey's got. And everyone's secrets will have to come out.

What soes this remind you of... Harry Potter? Even slightly at least? The spells, and the secret of the nightmares that come true. Stacey is... oh maybe a form of superstitious.

Stacey is then debating whether to tell Drea about the nightmares or not. She keeps having flashbacks to the time before... the little girl. It was this young girl she had been babysitting and then began having nightmares about. After these nightmares, the girl was kidnappeed.

Of course she can't let this happened to her friend, but what will Drea think of her when she lets her in on the message of her nightmares?

Blue is for nightmares, has so many different types of book genres in it, I find it hard to categorize it as a single one. One theme of the book has to do with working with your enemies, and telling your friend's the truth. Nothing good comes from keeping secrets about people from them... right? Everything, from judgements to relationships seem to be questioned.

Even though I didn't read this book too recently, I still enjoyed it. You were always on the edge... "what what what was gonna happen next?!?!" This was good-of course it is when books keep your interest!-yet I flew through it in a couple days! Good thing there are a bunch more books in this series...

There were definitely parts in the book that were, lets just say, very descriptive and a tiny bit cheesy. Luckily it made up for it with details and a good plot.

The rest of the series...
Marked By P. C. Cast

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Poison Study

Poison Study
By Maria V. Snyder
# of pages: 416
Age range 14+
A Quick Death...
...Or Slow Poison
About to be executed for murder, Yelena is offered an extraordinary reprieve. As a food taster, she'll have the best meals, have rooms in the palace - and risk assassination by anyone trying to kil the Commander of Ixia.
As Yelena tries to escape her her new dilemma, disasters keep mounting. Rebels plot to seize Ixia and Yelena develops magical powers she can't control. Her life is threatened again and choices must be made.
But this time the outcomes aren't so clear...
This has got to be one of my all time favorite books. Have you ever seen a book online, passed it by, then one day really looked at it, and then...
...You have to have it, need it, will cripple if you don't obtain it. That's how I felt with the Study series (there are three books total).
Yelena has spent a year in prison for murdering the sole son of general Brazell. Orphaned at Brazell's mansion with other children Yelena grew up under the General's watchful eye, and unfortunately under the eye of his son...
To Yelena the execution she faces would be a relief, a final escape from her tortured past. But the Commander's head assassin and right hand man has other thoughts for pretty little Yelena. Offering her the chance to become the Commander's poison taster instead of her death seems unreal to Yelena.
But she can't help but thinking why it's such a coincidence that the previous food taster dies just before she was offered the job. Not that the assassin Valek could have anything to do with it right?
But Yelena had other things to worry about, General Brazell had stopped in for a visit and he isn't too pleased to see the murderer of his son alive and well in the palace. With Yelena's life on the line, Valek commands Yelena to move into his apartments, he can't loose another food taster. Sure Valek.
The palace staff is convinced Valek has a thing for Yelena, that she's the one girl "to get his cold heart pumping". Yelena could disagree, Valek is furious when he finds out one of the palace staff is spilling secrets to a local gossiper, and all signs point to Yelena.
But when the real culprit is uncovered Yelena ans Valek are in for a shock. (btw thats oly a blip in the story).
As Yelena struggles to avoid many near death experiences the ghosts of her past won't leave her alone. Is it possible that she possesses magical abilities? And if so how can she live with Valek, the lone person responsible for ridding of all beings that possess magic in Ixia.But does it even matter, are she and Valek in too deep to care about such a thing.
This novel was really great. The character development was extremely evident and the plot was rich and thick with many surprising twists and turns. If you haven't read this book, go read it! Especially if you're a twilight lover.
Other books you might enjoy if you liked Poison Study:
Keturah and Lord Death: Martine Leavitt
Vampire Academy: Richelle Mead
First Truth: Dawn Cook
The summoning: Kelley Armstrong
Tithe: Holly Black
Storm Glass: Maria V. Snyder
Unwind: Neal Shusterman
A certain slant of light: Laura whitcomb
midnighters: Scott Westerfeld


by Lisa Klien
Pages: 328
age range 14+
In this reimagining of Shakespeare's famous tragedy, it is Ophelia who takes center stage and finally gets her due. Ambitious for knowledge and witty as well as beautiful, Ophelia catches the attention of the captivating, dark-haired Prince Hamlet, and their love blossoms in secret. But bloody deeds son turn denmark into a place of madness, and Ophelia will be forced to choose between her love for Hamlet and her own life. In desperation, Ophelia devises a treacherous plan to escape from Elsinore forever...with one ver dengerous secret.
Beautiful. Absolutly beautiful.
I picked up Ophelia at a Barns n' Nobles one day by force. My mother was very firm when she "reccomended" I get a "classic". Seeing nothing of interest - Dickens, and Austen weren't working for me that day - I held up Ophelia to my mother's appraising eye.
"It's Hamlet," I told her, "In Ophelia's perspective." She took the book and read the back with judging eyes.
"Get it," she said before moving on. I rolled my eyes. In the car i pulled out the book and flipped through the first couple of pages, did I actually have to read it? From the look mom gave me, I most certainly did.
The first couple chapters were of Ophelia growing up, and by the end of the first chapter i was already sucked in. Not only was the writting lovelyand elegant, but teen friendly. While I watched Ophelia grow it was shockingly, un-boring! And when Ophelia and Hamlet met at an oppropriate age for courting, Opheliaa was so collected and sly. I loved her! (and apparently Hamlet did too).
Watching the events unfold as Ophelia and Hamlet fell in love was amazing, it couldn't have been better portrayed. By the time Hamlet, "went mad" i was too in-love with the charachters to give up on them. Though i was dissapointed when Ophelia left, the secret she held was so exciting i pushed aside my dissapointment and watched her adjust to her new life.
When i finally finished Ophelia, i was quite upset. Unfortunatly there wouldn't be a sequal - much to my dissmay. For a first novel, Klein did a very, very impressive job. I really hope to see more work from her in the future.
p.s. don't be so quick to roll your eyes when your mother tells you to read a classic.
if you liked ophelia you might enjoy:
Loving Will Shakspeare: Carolyn Meyer
Romeo's Ex: Rosalinds story: Lisa Fielder
The Luxe: Anna Godberson
I Am Rembrandts Daughter: Lyn Cullen
Duchessina: Carolyn Meyer
Aurelia: Anne Osterlund
Song of the Sparrow: Lisa Ann Sandell
A Countess Below Stairs: Eva Ibbotson
Saving Juliett: Suzanne Selfors
A Curse as Dark as Gold: Elizabeth C. Bunce
Two Girls of Gettysburg: Lisa Klein

This Lullaby

This lullaby
By: Sarah Dessen
Pages: 352
Age Range: 12-15

Sarah Dessen's captivating novel introduces readers to a girl who believes her heart is made of stone—and the boy who proves her wrong.

Raised by a mother who's had five husbands, eighteen-year-old Remy believes in short-term, no-commitment relationships until she meets Dexter, a rock band musician.

Remy doesn't believe in love... ah! She is hardly even phased when she finds out that her boyfriend cheated on her, the only reason she was even slightly upset was because she didn't want people feeling bad for her.

She has a big group of friends, all varying in personality. Over the summer she meets this guy who might actually prove her suspicions of love, wrong. It all started when she went to ask her mom's fiance (yes, the fifth one) a question at his auto/car shop. This guy, Dexter comes has been eyeing her the whole time shes standing there, until he finally approaches her. he says he feels that there was just a certain chemistry he felt between himself and Remy. Of course she didn't feel it... or did she? Is she just denying it to herself?Remy discovers a deep secret about herself.

I thought this book was very well written and explained. The characters' feelings were displayed well and realistoc (in my opinion) for the character's age. The difficult situations Remy finds herself in, are leaving her confused, and in the end she has to do what is best for herself and stop trying to please and help everyone else around her. she has to live her life.

I have read some of Sarah Dessen's books including The Truth About Forever and Just Listen. If you enjoy This Lullaby then i suggest the rest of Sarah Dessen's books, and Lost It byKristen Tracy.

Kiss me, Kill me

Kiss me Kill me
By Lauren Henderson
Age Range: 12-14
Pages: 260

When Scarlett Wakefield transfers from St. Tabby's, a posh private school outside London, to Wakefield Hall Collegiate, the world-renowned prep school that her grandmother runs in the English countryside, she is relieved that no one knows her dark, haunting secret.

A few months ago, Plum Saybourne, the queen of St. Tabby's "Smart Set," surprisingly invited Scarlett to an elite party with a guest list full of the hottest names in British society, including Dan McAndrew, Scarlett's secret crush. Before the party, Scarlett had only imagined what it would be like to have her first kiss with Dan, but on the Penthouse terrace, Dan leaned in close and she no longer had to wonder. Their kiss was beautiful and perfect and magical, and then...

Dan McAndrew suffocated in her arms.

No one knows how or why Dan died, and everyone at St. Tabby's believes Scarlett had something to do with it. After all, she was the last person to see Dan alive. But now that she's safely hidden away at Wakefield Hall, Scarlett would rather forget that it ever happened.

Only she can't. Especially when she receives an anonymous note that will set her on the path to clearing her name and finding out what really happened to the first and last boy she kissed.

This synopsis makes it sound like Kiss me Kill me is about a girl who is kind of in a Bella Swan (twilight) position. When i had started this book I thought it would be similar to Twilight. You know a little bit fantasy, yet still realistic. Don't let it fool you, though, this book was more realistic fiction, not fantasy at all. Not good, not bad, just different.

Scarlett isn't staying with family while she goes to school, but with a family friend. She gets fairly good grades, cooperates, and stays pretty quiet around the house. When the Dan McAndrew incident occurs, the family friend won't let Scarlett stay there any longer because she doesn't want to ruin her reputation. Therefore leaving Scarlett to have to go to Wakefield Hall, the school her grandmother runs.

This part of the book was where i actually began to like the story line and plot. The beginning consisted of a lot of cliques and popularity which just got boring and made the book seem pointless, whereas when she transfers schools it is more out in the country and you can really see more of her real personality and see she isn't a fake.

My favorite aspect of the book were the characters. There were so many and they all varied so much. There were a lot of people who weren't what you thought, and who, once you got to know them better, became your great friends. To me it just seemed like a real example. In some books they'll introduce you to the character and tell you their personality. The personality may change throughout the story but you always know what it is. Lauren Henderson really did a good job of describing what people were like, through Scarlett's eyes and what they became when she got to know them.

Books you might like/related to Kiss me Kill me:
I heart you, you haunt me ByLisa Schroeder
Kisses and Lies By Lauren Henderson (the sequel to Kiss me Kill me)


By Cayle Kluver
Pages: 444
age range: 13 +

Across the land of Hytanica, under the shadow of the crimson moon, infant boys continued to vanish. Not until the blood had faded from the sky did the disappearances stop and the bodies of the murdered infants were found outside the gates of the city, a final word from the greatest enemy Hytanica had ever known. For the next sixteen years, peace reigned, but one mystery remained unsolved. The Cokyrians had abducted forty-nine newborns, but returned only forty-eight bodies.
Now, as seventeen-year-old Princess Alera of Hytanica is besieged from all sides by suitors vying for the Throne, a teenage Cokyrian boy, Narian, is encountered within the walls of her Kingdom, a boy who will show Alera a world where women serve a purpose and not just a husband. As Narian helps Alera find her voice, she struggles against an arranged marriage that will shatter the life she has scarcely begun to live. And when Narian's shocking past is uncovered, and war with Cokyri looms once more, he must fight to defy a fate ordained at his birth.

I honestly guess that not many people have heard of the book Legacy. It hasen't been well promoted and is well over-shadowed by the shinning lights like Twilight, and the other Vamp books. But this is actually a gem in the rough.

Written by a 16 year old i expected the book to be eh, blah, okay. But it actaully was surprisingly good. Alera is the heir to the Hytannican throne, and is responsible to marry right after her eighteenth birthday (18th or 17th not sure!) But of course, it's quite hard to marry when you sole canadatite is an infuriatingly handsome Steldor.

Steldor oh Steldor, i quite disliked him. He was a complete conceited blah! Probably fun to write but totally annoying to read. One thing that bugged me was that Alera could never really stand up to him and tell him directly that she DID NOT LIKE HIM. She was a strong willed character but she needed a back bone against Steldor.
But Narian...Now that's what i'm talking about. He is the long lost child held captive in the horrid land of Cokyri. Now back, he's not only stolen the heart of the crown princess but the weapons of his father. How can a child raised by the enemy be trusted?

The plot was pretty good, and after a some-what slow begining i started to get into the book. A few little things that got to me, though, was some things the author did in her writting. She went into detail, like super macho mega detail about everything. Every single outfit the princess wore was written down to the last thread, even when it was completly and utterly unnessesary. Also when she was talking about the market, she went on to say ALL the fruits that were in the small fruit basket, and ALL the spices, and All the silk.... I think you get my point.

So besides skimming some extremely detailed pages, i did enjoy the book and will definatly pick up the sequal wich is due to be released sometime in the future... (it's called

If you enjoyed Legacy check out...
Aurelia: Anne Osterlund
Poison Study: Maria V. Snyder
The Swan Kingdom: Zoe Marriott
The amarath enchantment: Julie Berry
Princess of the midnight ball: Jessica Day george
Sovay: Celia Rees
La petite Four: regina scott
Keturah and Lord Death: Martine Leavitt


By Gail Carson Levine

pages: 243
age range: 11-15

Falling in love is never easy...

...Even for Kezi, though she knows her days are numbered. And Head-over-heels, come-what-may love is inevitable if her heart's desire is Olus, the Akkan god of winds.

But expecting death is hard, especially when romance is new.

Falling in love is easy for Olus if his beloved is Kezi, a beautiful mortal, a dancer and a rug weaver from the city of Hyte. But facing Kezi's approaching death is unbearable.

Love brings Kezi the will to fight her fate. Love gives Olus the strength to confront his fears.. She questions her faith and seeks truth in dark places. He suffers a god's trial when she needs a champion. Together-and apart-they encounter spiders with webs of iron, the cruel lord of the land of the dead, the mysterious god of destiny, and the tests of the Akkan gods. If they succeed, they will be together; but if they fail, Olus will have to endure the ultimate loss and Kezi will have to make the supreme sacrifice.

Gail Carson Levine is like the queen of Fantasy, and this is exactly what Ever is; fantasy. Like most of Levine's novels the romance was G rated, with is sweet but after reading twilight romance fans might be gripping for something a bit more realistic.

In most of Levine's novels I've noticed that the plot is steady and some-what believable for the first part of the book, but then towards the end she'll trow in a twist that you totally weren't expecting. In Ever, the twist that caught me by surprise was when Kezi went on her mission to "be with Olus" (both Olus and Kezi had to complete a mission to be together).

She had to go into the underworld and come back, but when your in the underworld you turn into these puffy gray bird things - ya I'm serious. It was a bit odd... I certainly wasn't expecting that, but with Levine you never know.

All in all the novel was okay, three stars out of five. I think this would be a novel to read when you need a quick entertaining read that'll go by fast. If that's what you're looking for than Ever is your novel. Don't get me wrong, I liked the book but i think it is a better read for people without high expectations in the blooming romance department.

If you liked Ever you might consider...

Fairest: Gail Carson Levine
The two princesses of Bamarre: Gail Carson Levine
Princess Ben: Catherine Murdock
The wish: Gail Carson Levine
Ella enchanted: Gail Carson Levine
Enna Burning: Shannon Hale
Princess acadamy: Shannon Hale
Goose Girl: Shannon Hale

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Suite Scarlett

Suite Scarlett

By Maureen Johnson

# of pages: 353
Age range: 14 +

Scarlett Martin has grown up in a most unusual way. Her family owns the Hopewell, a small hotel in the heart of New York City. Her nineteen-year-old brother, Spencer, is an out of work actor facing a family deadline to get his career in order. Eighteen-year-old Lola has the delicate looks of a model, the practical nature of a nurse, and a wealthy society boyfriend. Eleven-year-old Marlene is the family terror with a tragic past.

When the Martins turn fifteen, they are each expected to take over the care of a suite in the once elegant, now shabby Art Deco hotel. For Scarlett’s fifteenth birthday, she gets both a room called the Empire Suite, and a permanent guest named Mrs. Amberson. Scarlett doesn’t quite know what to make of this C-list starlet, world traveler, and aspiring autobiographer who wants to take over her life. And when she meets Eric, an astonishingly gorgeous actor who has just moved to the city, her summer takes a second unexpected turn.

With Mrs. Amberson calling the shots, Spencer’s career to save, Lola’s love life to navigate around, and Marlene’s prying eyes everywhere, things won’t be easy. Before the summer is over, Scarlett will have to survive a whirlwind of thievery, Broadway glamour, romantic missteps, and theatrical deception.

The show, as they say, must always go on . . . .

M: What can i say, I'm a huge fan of Ms. Maureen Johnson. And her newest novel, Suite Scarlett did not disappoint. Just like many of her novels, readers can expect a moving plot with plenty of twists and turns but without the fluffiness of a short little romance or fashionista novel. Maureen Johnson delivers in Suite Scarlett, the plot is original and entertaining with great character development.

Scarlett is your typical Manhattan born teenager; typical as in lives in a once grand art-deco hotel with three unique siblings and parents who refuse to give her a cell phone until she's fifteen! So now that Scarlett's fifteen she is a proud owner of a new shiny cell - oh and the manager of the Empire Suite with permanent resident Mrs. Amberson.

Mrs. Amberson isn't your typical hotel guest, the c-list starlet has money to spend and opinions to give galor. It seems she wants to relive her Manhattan glory days through Scarlett. Luckily Scarlett has adorable Erick to run too, I mean he's only three years older and her brother Spencer's acting buddy...

But it's not like any one's going to find out, right? Spencer wouldn't care, right? And Erick can still date a sophomore in college, right? Poor Scarlett her summer is becoming a bigger hassel than she thought. :(. And to make matters worse her brothers acting gig just got cancelled, but there does happen to be an empty hotel ready for use...

In this comical and smile worthy novel, Johnson manages to tie together a growing family and overcome Scarlett's...not so unusual teen problems. All the loose ends get tied up and the characters all go through amazing self discoveries all the while you don't feel like your reading a heavily emotional Sarah Dessen novel. I would definitely suggest reading this novel, it's a great read.

if you liked Suite Scarlett, check out:

13 little blue envelopes: Maureen Johnson
Girl at Sea: Maureen Johnson
Airhead: Meg Cabot
My Most Excellent Year: Steve Klugar
The Possibilities of Sainthood: Donna Frietas
Cross my Heart and Hope to Spy: Ally Carter
The Opposite of Invisible: Liz Gallagher

Song: one original thing - cheyenne kimball

Losing Christina Collection/Trilogy (Fog, Snow, and Fire)

By: Caroline B. Cooney

Number of pages: 624

Age Range: 11-13

Mr. Shevvington, the handsome principal. Mrs. Shevvington, the dedicated teacher. Who better for Christina and Anya to board with while attending school on the mainland? But something evil is happening at the Shevvingtons' house.

In Fog, Anya slowly starts to lose her mind and Christina knows that the Shevvingtons are behind it. Can she stop them before they turn their attentions on her?

In Snow, the Shevvingtons brinng Dolly to live with them when they realize Christina is too strong for them to control. Sweet, trusting Dolly appears to be lost in a snowstorm, but Christina knows the truth. Dolly is lost inside the house, and that's much worse.

In Fire, the final book in the series, Christina finally finds the evidence she needs to expose the Shevvingtons. Can she do it before everything goes up in flames?

Y: Christina, as all the other children from the island, is really looking forward to finally going off to school on the mainland. How could you blame them, barely getting off a little island their whole life? Of course it looks better than it is. The kids from the mainland think that they are just "all that" and so much better than the island kids. Christina is strong though, and just deals with it.

Their is something up with the family they are staying with, too, the Shevvingtons. Mr. Shevvington is the principal of the school Christina is about to attend. I don't think that the family Christina is staying with should have had anything to do with the school system. It seems too planned out and therefore slightly cheesy.

The Shevvingtons are known as evil to some of the kids, and none of the adults. They somehow empty brilliant students of their confidence and personality. That was one of the things i liked about the book, Caroline Cooney made it seem like the Shevvingtons were doing this through some sort of fantasy, when really they were just messing with their minds.

Since this is a trilogy, some of the infrmation is repeated in each book to jog your memory. It's understandable, and expected, yes? Well in my opinion there was quite a lot of information repeated in every single book. I would find myself skimming, and then missing some important information.

The whole plot was very original, even though you knew what was going to happen a lot of the time. Everything was very vividly described. There was a sort of eerie feel to the whole thing, which is extremely different from the typical YA book.

If you enjoyed this book, or it sounds good to you, then you might enjoy the Blind Faith Hotel by Pamela Todd.

Song that went with the book:

Underwater by the Ballas Hough Band

thanks enjoyy


Life As We Knew It

Life as We Knew it
By Susan Pfeffer

# of pages: 337
Age range: 11-14
Format: diary

When Miranda first hears the warnings that a meteor is headed on a collision path with the moon, they just sound like an excuse for extra homework assignments. But her disbelief turns to fear in a split second as the entire world witnesses a lunar impact that knocks the moon closer in orbit, catastrophically altering the earths climate.

Everything else in Miranda's life fades away as super markets run out of food, gas goes up to more than 10 dollars a gallon, and school is closed indefinitely.

But what Miranda and her family don't realize, is that the worst is yet to come.

Y: Life as We Knew It was a very different and out there sort of book. Nothing that you predict while reading the book happens, everything turns out unexpectedly.

Miranda is your sort of "average" teen (up until the part with the uhh moon collision) living in this scientifically impossible catastrophe. She has a few best friends, but lately they have been going a little whacked and acting differently than the best friends Miranda thought she had. This aspect of the novel bothered me. I think it would have been easier to relate to and not so confusing if she had a few normal best friends to help deal with the situation. Little pieces of her regular routine seem to keep her from going crazy, along with seeing her crush.

The ending (of course I won't give it away!) was not what i expected. Throughout the whole book it is just about how the problem is getting progressively worse, in my opinion i found it depressing yet hard to relate to that sort of trauma. You would expect that the conflict would be solved in the end, but it was just Miranda getting used to the new "lifestyle" and realizing how much her family really mattered to her. I could almost but not quite see where she was coming from up until this point. It isn't the sort of thing anyone could become accustomed to because people just don't work like that.

Susan Pfeffer could create a sequel to Life as We Knew it, yet i don't think that you would want to continue reading because there is no way to solve the collision therefore resulting in the book to just be depressing and fairly similar to the original story.

Susan also wrote the book in a diary format, which was sometimes annoying (but it is personal preference) because you could feel you didn't know everything that was going on, just the selected details from Miranda.

Overall this was a good idea for a book, but the way in which it was done didn't quite click.

M: Life as we knew is it, is a book that made me think. What if that happened to me, what if the prospect of starving to death wasn't humorous but real. What if...

Although the book was great for my thoughts I couldn't say that the characters were enticing. Miranda bugged me throughout the story, to me it seemed like she couldn't focus in on the situation, couldn't get a grip on her life. Obviously she was put in a difficult situation, but when the author writes in a way that makes you think, you sort of begin to see yourself in the character's position and then question their every motive. In other words: you hate it when the character doesn't do what you would do.

Now of course that's just my opinion, someone could have opened this book up, and put it down on the very last page. For me the story was slow, a type of book i could put down and pick up a few days later while I read another book in between. I finished it because I felt like I had too, and i certainly wasn't dying for a sequel. Over all the book was okay, insightful and emotional but without enough twists and plot development to keep the story moving.

If you're a Sarah Dessen fan you might enjoy this book in between the next Sarah Dessen novel. For those of you who need fast paced books with lots of action, to do read this. If you have read this and are looking for similar books these might be of interest.

The Dead and the Gone - Susan Beth Pfeffer. : a companion novel to life as we knew it. A look at life in the city when disaster strikes. (defanitly promises more action).
The rules of Survival - Nancy Werlin
The book Theif - Markus Zusak
Sold - Patricia McCormick
Everlost - Neal Shusterman
Rules - Cynthia Lord

Songs that work with the story:
Y: Mercy - One Republic
M: Goodbye to You - Michelle Branch

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