I loved this book when I read it for the first time in 6th grade, and loved it again, with a different experience when I read it years later. It's a bI loved this book when I read it for the first time in 6th grade, and loved it again, with a different experience when I read it years later. It's a book that changes as you grow, but never loses its power.
I read this again a few days ago, and it's still amazing! ...more
The first of the fantastic L'Engle trilogy. I LOVED this book growing up. It lets your imagination run wild!
Upon rereading this book after a LONG timeThe first of the fantastic L'Engle trilogy. I LOVED this book growing up. It lets your imagination run wild!
Upon rereading this book after a LONG time, I still love it. It's like a warm towel after a bath ... There's lots of familial love, magical creatures and landscapes that you could probably draw if you had a mind to, and a girl whose teenage life isn't your classic sob story, but she still has a hard time dealing with her feelings (sound familiar?). ...more
The second in L'Engle's trilogy of A Wrinkle In Time. Upon re-reading this book I find it pretty amazing that traveling through space and time can putThe second in L'Engle's trilogy of A Wrinkle In Time. Upon re-reading this book I find it pretty amazing that traveling through space and time can put the crew onto another planet in another galaxy; can put them onto a planet that is completely hypothetical and based on nice visual thoughts and compounded into another space; can put them INSIDE of Charles Wallace's mitochondrion, Yadah (yeah, it's named), where the farondolae (little ultra-microscopic organisms inside the mitochondria) are getting out of control and destroying their 'world'. This microcosmic world they delve into with being in a PART of a cell in the human body, acts as a metaphor for how small humans/Earth is compared to the entirety of the universe. To the farondolae, Charles Wallace is their universe, and his heart beats every 10 years in their time. They have trouble believing there is anything outside of their universe (i.e. other universes/humans with their own "galaxies" of mitochondria and cells, etc.). Anyway, this may not make sense if you haven't read it, but the fact that L'Engle can get micro and biological and super theoretical scientific to inadvertently (or probably on purpose, actually) describe the existence of humanity and Earth and the universe, is, well -- MIND BLOWING! And I read this in 5th grade and picked up on NONE of this, but just enjoyed the imaginative adventure I was taken on. Wow. I. Love. Books. ...more
The third in L'Engle's trilogy of A Wrinkle in Time. An excellent series for young adults.
I've just finished re-reading this book and found it reallyThe third in L'Engle's trilogy of A Wrinkle in Time. An excellent series for young adults.
I've just finished re-reading this book and found it really interesting that it has much more of a historical fiction vein running through it than I remember. The time and space travel is still going on, this time with Gaudior the unicorn. I love how L'Engle uses these classic mythical creatures and gives them attitude and character not normally associated with such creatures. For example, the unicorn is gorgeous, but impatient, and says something to the effect of, "We unicorns aren't accustomed to being thanked. Please desist." to Charles Wallace. And the cherubim in the Wind in the Door is unexpected as well -- shattering the classic image of pudgy, pink, white baby with golden curls and little wings, because it's a mass of dragon wings and eyes, and it's name is Proginoskes.
I just love the way L'Engle writes, and her imagination is wonderful. My favorite image from this book will always be when Charles Wallace and Gaudior go to the hatching grounds of the unicorn's planet, where unicorns drink from the moon's light to quench their thirst, and acquire energy and sustenance from the stars. And the shells that the time-moving unicorns hatch from break into snowy, healing powder that blankets the ground. Wonderful!...more
It took me a couple of chapters to get into it, but when I did, I was IN -- as in I couldn't put it down. This book is like a "1984", with social commIt took me a couple of chapters to get into it, but when I did, I was IN -- as in I couldn't put it down. This book is like a "1984", with social commentary like "Fahrenheit 451", and a young adult version of the bones of "Blindness" by Jose Saramago. The message is spectacular! And the way Doctorow grabs onto a way to make security and freedom and the whole "war on terrorism" accessible to the teens who may be more concerned with their own lives, dramas, video games, etc., is awesome. I was infuriated so many times by the unfairness of what was occurring and the way the government just keeps saying it's "for your protection" or "we're making our country safe from terrorists". It's like, how far does that let us go? Does that make it okay to toss out the Constitution especially when the government is attacking its own citizens and setting up a Guantanamo Bay look-alike without trials, attorneys, rights, and WITH "persuasive methods" a.k.a. torture?
My only complaint about this book is the much too lengthy explanations into technology that passes beyond my understanding or care to understand. Just give me the basics, make it obvious that I would NOT want the government all over me with spy cams and what not, but the details about building a computer, about hacking into systems and making this secret -- again the DETAILS -- made it tough going at times. This info is vital, but in less bogging detail please.
A great YA book, even adults could appreciate it, I think, about a mixture of X-men, Lord of the Flies, and Heroes the tv show. What do you think woulA great YA book, even adults could appreciate it, I think, about a mixture of X-men, Lord of the Flies, and Heroes the tv show. What do you think would happen if one day everyone over 14 disappeared? Would 13 year olds be the new adults? Would they even act like kids anymore -- would anyone? Why did they all disappear? Will they disappear on their 14 b-day? Will the bullies manage to rule the new society they find themselves in? Will they go too far? And throw in kids with "powers" that have sort of appeared and then you have a struggle of how to use power and if "power tends to corrupt, [does:] absolute power corrupt absolutely"? And is there anything beyond their town? Are they in a new universe or just blocked off from everyone else on earth by a weird magical wall? And who is the Darkness who "lives" in a deep mine shaft and speaks through coyotes? All in all, pretty awesome. Well thought out, good plot, good character development and good writing. Some YA novels fail at all of these, so very impressive. ...more
Quite a good book! So many social issues addressed, like what it means to be different, importance of individuality, how government and society's liesQuite a good book! So many social issues addressed, like what it means to be different, importance of individuality, how government and society's lies can influence everyone's opinions about something, etc.
The story follows a boy named Matt who is the clone of the drug lord of "The" Opium farm which makes the borderland between the United States and Aztlan (formerly Mexico). Are clones people? No one seems to think so -- in fact they are treated like animals, experimented on, and their brains are destroyed at birth so that they behave like vacant zombies and serve as "living" containers for organ transplants. Once the truth is out, Matt escapes Opium country and makes it to Aztlan only to be faced with more hardships and a world that is coping with dried up oceans, reduction of natural resources, crime control, etc. How will Matt fair?
I'm currently re-reading the Abhorsen trilogy, and this is by far my favorite book. I LOVE the Clayr's library and the idea that a librarian's job canI'm currently re-reading the Abhorsen trilogy, and this is by far my favorite book. I LOVE the Clayr's library and the idea that a librarian's job can be dangerous, treacherous, adventurous, and requires "Charter magic" and contains tombs of books and floors unknown to some librarians as they've been unused and hidden for such a while ... I'm currently getting my Masters in Library Science, and if only I could be a librarian in the Clayr's library, I think my life would be complete! Some collections of books are so dangerous that they are chained to the shelves, deep in the library, on unexplored floors; as you advance in position, you are given more access to rooms and a new color of tunic; just to work in the library, you get a whistle and a charter-spelled mouse that you can send for help if you are in trouble while shelving! There are Charter Sendings who YEARN to shelve! Ah! I just love it! If I could paint a picture of the amazingness, I would so do it, but I think the words defy depiction in any other form but the imagination ... And this is only a part of this book! I kind of wish the whole book were about the Clayr's library, or that there was another book about it and the Clayr. But I also love the creepiness of the Abhorsen's bandolier of bells that can be "tricky" and dangerous to user and the Dead. Again, the imagery of "walking in Death" and the iciness of the river, and it's need to pull you deeper past all 9 gates into a sort of permanent death, and the idea that dead creatures and people alike may be waiting at certain gates for a chance to get back into life to wreak havoc ... so creepy and cool, seriously. This is from "Sabriel" but goes for all of the Abhorsen books, and I find it creepy and compelling, a description of all the bells of a necromancer:
"'Ranna,' she said aloud, touching the first and smallest bell. Ranna the sleepbringer, the sweet, low sound that brought silence in its wake. 'Mosrael.' The second bell, a harsh, rowdy bell. Mosrael was the waker, the bell Sabriel should never use, the bell whose sound was a seesaw, throwing the ringer further into Death, as it brought the listener into Life. 'Kibeth.' Kibeth, the walker. A bell of several sounds, a difficult and contrary bell. It could give freedom of movement to one of the Dead, or walk them through the next gate. Many a necromancer had stumbled with Kibeth and walked where they would not. 'Dyrim.' A musical bell, of clear and pretty tone. Dyrim was the voice that the Dead so often lost. But Dyrim could also still a tongue that moved too freely. 'Belgaer.' Another tricksome bell, that sought to ring of its own accord. Belgaer was the thinking bell, the bell most necromancers scorned to use. It could restore independent thought, memory and all the patterns of a living person. Or, slipping in a careless hand, erase them. 'Saraneth.' The deepest, lowest bell. The sound of strength. Saraneth was the binder, the bell that shackled the Dead to the wielder's will. And last, the largest bell, the one Sabriel's cold fingers found colder still, even in the leather case that kept it silent. 'Astarael, the Sorrowful,' whispered Sabriel. Astarael was the banisher, the final bell. Properly rung, it cast everyone who heard it far into Death. Everyone, including the ringer."...more
2nd time around -- it was totally me not being in the right mindset to read this book the first time I attempted. NOW it's completely awesome so far.2nd time around -- it was totally me not being in the right mindset to read this book the first time I attempted. NOW it's completely awesome so far. Rock.
What a fantastical book -- fantastical in the best way. I love that the main character is a tough chick, who happens to NOT be the "chosen one" because her friend, "the chosen one," couldn't cut it and needed to be rescued. That's so cool! And I love these plays on words and thus worlds by creating an opposite, or a place where the real world's runoff travels into the opposite world and becomes useful and takes on a life.
UnLondon is the opposite of London; unbrellas are opposites of umbrellas; an Un-Gun is something totally different and way cooler than any sort of gun.
Deeba is the un-chosen one, who saves everything, and she gets a faithful following of a half-ghost boy, a bus conductor, a clothes-maker (who makes clothes out of books and papers and readable materials). My favorite follower is a discarded piece of trash, a milk carton, which is living and much like a little puppy, named Curdle. These cast off items take on life and usefulness when others thought their usefulness was over. Inanimate objects become animate in UnLondon.
I think my favorite part of the book was the trip into the forest-house ... you'll have to read it to get what I'm talking about; and then their trip into Webminster Abbey, full of Black Windows. Ha! The Abbey is made of webs, and Black Windows are spider-like creatures but windows, where going into the windows when open takes you somewhere else entirely.
Anyway, it's such a cool, creative, fantastical book. Everyone should give it a go if they like using their imaginations and being taken to somewhere else entirely. ...more
This book was a great wrap up for the series. It definitely redeemed itself from the previous two books, which I didn't really enjoy b/c of infuriatinThis book was a great wrap up for the series. It definitely redeemed itself from the previous two books, which I didn't really enjoy b/c of infuriating happenings or situations. The previous two felt dragged out and just sort of milked for length and suspense. I remember reading all kinds of things about "who will live and who will die?" right after the book was released, and it was as if one major character would die. But that was dumb b/c basically no main characters died but a lot of everyone else did. Anyhow, a very masterful wrap-up about Snape and everything that previously happened worked out. Well done and a very good conclusion. I'm glad I read these after so long. ...more
While this book brings up some interesting ideas, the writing isn't great, and the story line isn't completely amazing. In other words, it's a very woWhile this book brings up some interesting ideas, the writing isn't great, and the story line isn't completely amazing. In other words, it's a very worthy YA novel, but nothing that exceeds expectation. It's a bit girly, and maybe that's where my general "it was ok" comes from b/c I tend not to be too into those. But the message is good for everyone -- that looks don't matter, etc. ...more