Laia is a teenage Scholar girl living with her grandparents and brother in Serra, under the rule of the unforgiving Martial Empire. One night, the MasLaia is a teenage Scholar girl living with her grandparents and brother in Serra, under the rule of the unforgiving Martial Empire. One night, the Masks (an elite Martial fighting group) raids the house killing her grandparents and taking her brother to prison, claiming he has committed treason. Laia manages to flee and meets the Resistance, who put her in the house of the Commandant, the leader of the Masks, as a slave and spy. Elias is about to graduate as a Mask from Blackcliffe Academy, but is planning his escape from that life. The book alternates between Laia and Elias's viewpoints. Will Laia be able to get her brother out of prison? Will Elias ever escape the Martial military? To find out, read this awesome book. Highly recommended for ages 14+, 5 stars.
I adored this book! I literally could not stop reading it, and it's hard to believe that this is the author's first book. The author is great at world-building and you can feel yourself totally immersed in the characters and setting. It definitely lives up to the tremendous hype it has gotten so far. The description made it sound like the Martials are Roman, and the Scholars sound Greek or Egyptian to me. I really enjoyed the writing, and even the story was fairly complex, I was able to follow along pretty easily. The violence in the book is pretty graphic, especially in the beginning,so that's why I settled on ages fourteen plus. I can't wait to see what happen next in the series - apparently it is billed as a stand-alone book, but she definitely left it wide open for a sequel and I know many people will be disappointed if she does not!...more
In this volume, the enemy of the Library Task Force (the Media Betterment Committee) is censoring a piece of artwork in the Museum of Modern Art in thIn this volume, the enemy of the Library Task Force (the Media Betterment Committee) is censoring a piece of artwork in the Museum of Modern Art in the hometown of Kasahara, and she is chosen along with Dojo and the others to represent the Task Force in the town. They are going to protect the freedom of speech of the artist. The only problem with this is that Kasahara's parents do not like the idea of her being in the Task Force to begin with, as they say it is unladylike. Once there, Kasahara is tormented by the female librarians, who do not like that she is there with the Task Force. She manages to work her way through it and holds her own, which Dojo praises. The bonus manga was very fascinating, and makes me wonder if Dojo really likes Kasahara as well. Can't wait till the next volume comes out! Recommended for ages 13+, 4 stars. ...more
My version is 13 discs. This is seriously the best book I've listened to in a long while. It was a crazy seriously nerdy story, but I really enjoyed iMy version is 13 discs. This is seriously the best book I've listened to in a long while. It was a crazy seriously nerdy story, but I really enjoyed it. I originally picked it up after listening to Wil Wheaton read another awesome book, Bill Willingham's "Peter & Max" A Fables Novel." When I looked up his list of other recorded books, this was one of the first ones there. It's no wonder Wil Wheaton is awesome as he helped the book win a 2012 Alex award for its audiobook version.
The premise is that it is 2044, and everyone in the dystopian world is connected to this virtual reality MMORPG sensation called the OASIS, as the real world sucks. The creator of the Oasis is a man named James Halliday, part of gaming company, who, five years previously, left his 240 billion dollar fortune to the person who can solve three puzzles and gates. Halliday was obsessed with 1980s culture and a gaming community named the Gunters springs up studying everything 80s and Halliday, to try to find the egg. Wade, aka Parzival, is a high school senior and the main character of the book. He becomes the first to get the first key and go through the first gate. Right after he gets the key, he runs into Art3mis (Artemis) who he later falls for. Parzival's best friend is a guy named Aech, and he also ends up in the top 5 of the contest, along with two Japanese "brothers" Datto and Shoto (to see a fan-drawing of these characters, check out the Ready Player One website: http://www.readyplayerone.com/). Parzival and friends are battling it out against the Sixers, a task force created by Halliday's rival gaming/internet company IOI, who do not play by the rules. They will use anything to win. Will Parzival and the others be able to win against such great odds? Will Parzival ever be able to tell Art3mis how he really feels? Will anyone meet in person? To find out, read this amazing book! Highly recommended for ages 12+, 5 stars. ...more
I had originally tried the audiobook version of this, but got too distracted to listen to it, so I figured the graphic novel version would work betterI had originally tried the audiobook version of this, but got too distracted to listen to it, so I figured the graphic novel version would work better (which it did). The book is set in the not-too-distant-future and is about fireman Guy Montag, whose job is to find all books and burn them and the houses that contain them down. He has been a fireman for years and always liked his job, until he is questioned by a young free-spirited girl named Clarissa, who opens up his eyes and makes him question everything. He ends up hoarding a book from a burning and reads it and soon he is devouring all the books he can get his hands on. His wife ends up betraying him and he has to burn down his own house, but ends up killing his boss and escaping with some books. He joins a group of intellectuals who have each memorized one book and when it is safe, they will write them all down. Recommended for ages 13+, 3 stars. ...more
I love this series, but the main character Kasahara is a little bit clueless. She is asked by Tezuka's brother (the one trying to centralize the libraI love this series, but the main character Kasahara is a little bit clueless. She is asked by Tezuka's brother (the one trying to centralize the libraries, who doesn't care how it gets that way) to join his splinter library group. She says no after she realizes that he is for censorship. Once Tezuka's older brother realizes he's not going to get Kasahara's help he says he can end her suffering (i.e. get out of the inquiry that has been hounding her for two months after the book burning of the previous volume)if she will just send Tezuka to him. The rest of the task force realizes where she has gone through the help of her roommate, Shibazaki, and Dojo goes after her and takes her home. A few days later, Kasahara gets a letter from Tezuka's older brother and he drops the bombshell on her of the true identity of her "prince", aka Dojo. Now if you, the reader, have been paying attention, you figured this out awhile ago, but Kasahara is slow with these things, and she is blown away. She thinks Dojo hates her, but she talks to her other instructor, Komaki, who assures her that he doesn't. Meanwhile, Marie (the high school girlfriend of Komaki) is molested in the library by a stranger and the Library Forces band together to try to catch him, using Kasahara and Shibazaki as bait. My favorite line in the book is where Kasahara is dressed up to catch the perp, and Tezuka can't stop staring at her legs. So she yells in frustration: "My legs are not for show! They're for running fast and kicking ass!" Can't wait for the next volume! Recommended for ages 13+, 4 stars. ...more
This volume was kind of boring in comparison to the others, even though they did finally tell you some things that they had been hinting at forever. TThis volume was kind of boring in comparison to the others, even though they did finally tell you some things that they had been hinting at forever. There is a mysterious reviewer on the library's website, and the Library Task Force find out it is Sunagawa, Tezuka's roommate. The reader is finally introduced to Tezuka's older brother who works for the Library Association of Japan. He and his younger brother had a falling out once he found out that the elder believed that the library should become a central government agency, which takes away from its autonomy and freedom from censorship (basically goes against everything the Library Task Force is for). Iku, because of a stupid mistake, finds herself drawn into the investigation of Sunagawa and becomes their main target. Everyone who works for the library believe she is responsible for burning books, although she is innocent. ...more
It's Valentine's Day at the beginning of this volume, where apparently it is traditional in Japan for a girl to give chocolates to the guy she likes.It's Valentine's Day at the beginning of this volume, where apparently it is traditional in Japan for a girl to give chocolates to the guy she likes. Tezuka tries to ask out Shibazaki but gets turned down, but then a cute customer asks her out and she accepts. We see a side of her that she doesn't normally show to others, the act she puts on to survive, and how she really trusts Kasahara as a friend. Meanwhile the Weekly World News magazine has printed an article about the teen serial killer and it has been banned by the new head librarian, which shocks everyone in the Library Task Force. We learn a little bit more about Kasahara and Tezuka's families. I think the slapstick between Kasahara and Dojo definitely goes up in this volume, esp in the bonus manga with the bank robbers. Overall, it was an okay volume with some really funny parts but not as good as the last 5 volumes. ...more
This series is so addictive! I got really bummed when the county library didn't have the rest of the series, until I found out Phoenix Public did haveThis series is so addictive! I got really bummed when the county library didn't have the rest of the series, until I found out Phoenix Public did have it, so I reserved the rest of the series thus far. In this volume, Iku managed to fool her mother although her dad found out but didn't tell her mother or freak out about it. Iku's other instructor, Komaki, has a friend named Marie (a young deaf girl) who he gets books for. Iku can see that she's in love with him, even though Dojo thinks that's impossible since they are about 10 yrs apart. Komaki is taken by the MBC and accused of abusing Marie by giving her a book about a deaf girl, and that he was making fun of her. The MBC tortured him for three days until the Task Force found his location and broke in with Marie to explain to the MBC the real situation. Komaki confesses that he likes Marie.
My favorite part of the manga was the 2nd bonus manga where Dojo, Komaki, Iku and Tezuka are at a party thrown by the library on protection duty and Iku damages her clothes, so the ladies at the hotel make her over and even Dojo is blown away (though he pretends like it doesn't faze him). Iku is getting hit on left and right and Dojo acts all aggressive/possessive, which is pretty funny. ...more
In this volume, Iku manages to send a message to Library headquarters in code to tell them where she and the Director are being held. So they are quicIn this volume, Iku manages to send a message to Library headquarters in code to tell them where she and the Director are being held. So they are quickly saved. It is finally revealed (although I guessed a few volumes ago) that Dojo is Iku's mysterious prince from a few years ago, that saved her in the bookstore and rescued her book from the MBC. It turns out he was punished severely for what he did, and when he saw her a few years later at the interview to get into training for the Task Force, she never knew that it was him. He liked her because she had passion for what she does, something he lost along the way. Dojo told her he was proud of her and what she did to save the Director. The big problem Iku has in this book is that she hasn't told her parents that she is on the Task Force, the militant wing of the library, just that she works in the library, because they wouldn't let her do what she loves to do. They are coming to visit and she has to hide the fact that she is in the Task Force. The funniest part of the whole manga was when Dojo decided to throw a party for Iku and she has alcohol for the first time and gets really drunk off two drinks, and Dojo has to take care of her again. Well that and when her other superior officer, Komaki, is eating in the booth right behind Iku and her parents and hears her talk about her prince and he can't stop laughing. ...more