This is the story of Harper, a teen ballerina who gets her heart broken by the one she loves -- not who you'd expect -- and runOMG. What a great book!
This is the story of Harper, a teen ballerina who gets her heart broken by the one she loves -- not who you'd expect -- and runs away to Antarctica to clear her head and find herself.
This is such a charming book: Harper's a sweet girl, she has a great best friend (the kind of friend I think most people wish they had) until she doesn't anymore, she has a passion she loves until it doesn't love her back, she meets a nice boy (the kind of boy I think most girls wish they could meet), she meets another boy (the kind of boy I think most girls wish they could meet), and has a grand adventure.
And this isn't some sappy teen romance. It also isn't some cheesy ballerina story. This is a Good Book. It has plot and depth and believability (except, as Longo points out in her "Author's Note," the part where a teenage girl can run away to Antarctica. And okay, maybe the boys are a little too good to be true. And who has a family that loves each other as much as Harper's family loves each other?); it has great characters you root for, and want to know. I don't often give books 5 stars, especially YA books, but this is totally a 5-star book in my mind. I loved it, and wish I'd purchased it instead of checking it out from the library. This may go on my wishlist in the near future.
I'd forgotten how inspirational Baby-Sitters Club books can be, or try to be. In this book, Mallory learns how to stick up for herself (to a teacher,I'd forgotten how inspirational Baby-Sitters Club books can be, or try to be. In this book, Mallory learns how to stick up for herself (to a teacher, a principal, and other students), while at the same time knowing she has the intelligence to lead a major project, and also has to remind herself that being a "brain" isn't a bad thing. At the same time, Kristy's sub-plot (creating a marching band for kids who don't belong to any clubs) is about inclusiveness, creativity, stick-to-it-ness, and teamwork.
I could see how young readers get some good lessons from these books... even though I don't remember every learning or being inspired by them. I always just thought they were fun, light stories....more
I wasn't that thrilled reading this book. I do see how it could be a great book for young readers (5th through 7th grades, probably), but I personallyI wasn't that thrilled reading this book. I do see how it could be a great book for young readers (5th through 7th grades, probably), but I personally didn't like it much.
I think part of my problem was that I was so torn about whether I liked Artemis Fowl. He's a 12-year-old evil genius, and I think we're not used to *young* evil geniuses, so it's unsettling that this boy is SO smart, and yet uses it for not-good. The evil genius is not an uncommon character, but it's uncommon for a young evil genius. We want our smart kids to do *nice* things and be nice people. We're used to adults being jaded or evil, but we want (or expect, or are used to) kids to be nice and use their intelligence for good, not for greed! So I think I was sort of unsettled that this brilliant 12-year-old was only using his smarts for greed and harm.
I also think the language at times was a little off-putting for someone who doesn't need dirty talk to be lured to read a book. Again, I can see how this would work for a certain set of readers, but you don't *need* to talk about dwarves expelling dirt and gasses, and fairies or leprechauns swearing or almost swearing much worse. It's not necessary. But I *will* say that Colfer seems to have a great gift of descriptive language -- even when he was describing things like dwarves expelling gases and dirt, he used language like "expelling" and describing the action and results, rather than going for the cheap-shot crassness of "Mulch farted," or something like that.
And the storyline itself is decent, especially for the target audience: fairies, leprechauns, dwarves, trolls, gold, scheming. Again, I can see how this could be a good book for that tween/early-teen group, especially for tweens/early teens who aren't normally in to reading, but for me, it wasn't interesting enough to keep me riveted throughout the book....more