A poignant look back at a traumatic year for Suzanne Collins as a first grader. Her healthy and vibrant father heads off to the Vietnam War, and littlA poignant look back at a traumatic year for Suzanne Collins as a first grader. Her healthy and vibrant father heads off to the Vietnam War, and little Suzanne has no concept of time, distance, and combat in a foreign land. You experience the horrors of war through the eyes of one so young and sheltered from the evils of the world. It introduces elementary children to the meaning of having a military parent and having little to no contact for prolonged periods of time, and the later shock of seeing your military parent so profoundly changed in appearance and behavior. It will take some planning to introduce students to the historical aspects of the Vietnam War to make this picture book understandable to them. For grades 1st and up....more
A sweet, floral tribute to a dearly departed grandmother. Cecil Castellucci captures the beauty of friendship between granddaughter and grandmother, aA sweet, floral tribute to a dearly departed grandmother. Cecil Castellucci captures the beauty of friendship between granddaughter and grandmother, a special bond forged in the garden and cemented at the kitchen table over tea, cookies and special secret doughnuts. Highly recommended for ages five and up. ...more
Lauren Myracle leaps with both feet into serious and dark YA territory with the gripping novel "Shine" which begins immediately with a gut-wrenching fLauren Myracle leaps with both feet into serious and dark YA territory with the gripping novel "Shine" which begins immediately with a gut-wrenching first chapter that tells you this tale isn't for the faint of heart. Myracle displays her talent for her descriptive narrative, and giving life to characters you come to care about. "Shine" will haunt you for a long time to come, a story that will stick with you.
Cat and Patrick are lifelong friends, kindred spirits in the truest sense, and act as surrogate siblings for one another in a lonely town where they don't quite fit in to or belong. In their tween years, Patrick reveals to Cat that he is gay, which she digests for a moment then accepts this new facet of her best friend. Sadly, something terrible happens to Cat, but she keeps this bad episode a deeply hidden secret. Soon after, she cuts everyone out of her life, and with quiet decisiveness, stops talking to Patrick all together, ending their friendship with cruel abruptness.
Patrick mourns the loss of his dear friend, not knowing what he could have said or done to have deserve such treatment, but he gives his kind friendship to their other "friends," friends that are mean and nasty but allow him to tag along. It's not until Patrick is hospitalized and in a coma that Cat valiantly attempts to be by his side, with both kids now seventeen years old and in bad shape. Cat takes it upon herself to solve the mystery of the violent hate crime that Patrick was victim to, and finds out things about her family, friends and sleepy little town, giving new, sinister meaning to, "let sleeping dogs lie."
Highly recommended for teenagers, ages sixteen and up....more
Unbelievable. Unrelenting. Shocking. This book blew me away.
Warning: make time to read this straight through because you can't put it down once you sUnbelievable. Unrelenting. Shocking. This book blew me away.
Warning: make time to read this straight through because you can't put it down once you start.
Who do you love? Who do you trust? Who are you? Are you a fighter? Are you a killer? Are you a friend? Are you a lover? How far are you willing to go in the name of justice and peace? And once it's all over and you're still breathing, will you ever be the same again? Would you rather die on your feet than live on your knees? Welcome to another chilling round of the "Hunger Games."
This book is non-stop in action, with Katniss waking up in District 13, her beloved District 12 a charred and obliterated memory. Peeta is the hostage of the Capitol, and Gale now assumes the mantel of protector and friend of Katniss. But our intrepid heroine learns District 13 is not an ideal utopia, and everyone is trying to manipulate her for their own agendas, so no one can be trusted. The only person she's confident isn't out to get her is Finnick, who is deemed mentally unfit. Propaganda against the Capitol is being orchestrated by President Coin, leader of the rebels, and by former Gameskeeper, Plutarch. At the center of it all is Katniss who has reluctantly agreed to be the Mockingjay, to rouse and lead the rebellion to victory. Under new and ever-changing orders, Katniss begins to wonder if Coin is just a self-righteous version of Snow, ands believes her life is in danger once more. The most visceral and agonizing moments are when Katniss and Peeta are reunited, and she learns the boy she admired and loved is no more, courtesy of Snow. This propels the story into a rapid fire pace of mayhem, plotting, descending upon the Capitol and submitting to new heights of madness in the throes of loss, death, revealed secrets and devastating betrayal. But the pressing romantic question is does she choose Peeta or Gale? Or do these two men and their actions make the decision for her?
This was a really good historical fiction title that delved into the working conditions for young people during the Industrial Revolution in America.This was a really good historical fiction title that delved into the working conditions for young people during the Industrial Revolution in America. Annie Steele is one of two teenage siblings who have a hard-working mother and an irresponsible father who spends money he doesn't have, plunging his family into debt, and risks losing the family farm for junk he has to have. Pa's latest purchase is a clock, and in order to pay it off, he signs up his fifteen year old daughter for six-month contract at the wool mills to clear up his eight dollar clock debt. Annie has no choice but to give up her dreams of becoming a schoolteacher and have to work hard and long hours due to her father's inability to provide for his family and racking up mounting debts that continually get him in trouble. To Annie's comfort, she does get to work with her best friend Hetty and her would be beau, Robert. Robert can't work his family's farm due to an accident that has left his ankle crippled, so he handles the numbers at the mill. Robert discloses a mill secret to Annie, that the evil mill manager is stealing wool, and instead of leaving it be, Annie is determined to gather evidence that Mr. Hoggart is a thieving man. In the meantime, she tries to avoid his attention, but he sexually harasses her and other young girls, telling them if they're "nice" he'll give them better jobs, and if not, he'll make life hard for Annie and Robert. Things progressively worse until a tragedy occurs that spurs Annie into action, despite knowing her life could be in danger, too.
Recommended for students studying the Industrial Revolution in the U.S. and for historical fiction buffs, ages 12 and up....more
A gorgeous biography that breathes new life into the classic "Peter Pan", and it's creator, James Matthew Barrie. I myself had no real knowledge of J.A gorgeous biography that breathes new life into the classic "Peter Pan", and it's creator, James Matthew Barrie. I myself had no real knowledge of J.M. Barrie other than he wrote "Peter Pan", but I learned so much about the man in just 48 short pages. You are transported to the late 19th century in Scotland, meeting Jamie in his large family, he being the third of seven siblings. You see the ups and downs of his family, how happy they were at times, and how they almost fell apart in times of loss and sorrow. Jamie is not touted as an exceptional student, but you understand that he made friends, enjoyed some aspects of school, but loved reading and writing more than anything else. Although he finds a fulfilling career writing theater and book reviews, he begins penning his own material, finding different measures of success that allows him to be an independently wealthy man. His failed marriage gets a brief mention, but what is emphasized is his lifelong friendship with the Llewelyn Davies family, namely their five boys who are the inspiration for his masterpiece, "Peter Pan." The illustrations are nice, and the quotes from Barrie's plays on every other page are words that are not soon forgotten.
A masterpiece from Russell Freedman, who has brought to life the tragic and often ignored Great War - World War I. This is a definitive volume on "TheA masterpiece from Russell Freedman, who has brought to life the tragic and often ignored Great War - World War I. This is a definitive volume on "The War to End All Wars", written with great depth, and the vivid photographs displaying the carnage of millions who lost their lives in 20th century warfare. This is an excellent non-fiction book for middle and high school students who want to supplement their textbook education on World War I....more
Can a book improve upon a stellar debut? Yes it can! "Linger" is the highly anticipated sequel to "Shiver", now marking two books in The Wolves of MerCan a book improve upon a stellar debut? Yes it can! "Linger" is the highly anticipated sequel to "Shiver", now marking two books in The Wolves of Mercy Falls trilogy, which will conclude with "Forever". Our favorite couple Sam and Grace are back, but shadows and clouds loom wherever they go, canceling out their good fortune of being together as humans.
"Linger" reads like a modern-day Greek tragedy, two amorous and kind teenagers who swear an allegiance of love and devotion for all time, with the forces of evil trying to separate them: new werewolves, lost friends, a mysterious lupine death, interfering parents, and a chilling illness in the midst of spring. Sam and Grace are barely rejoicing Sam's return in his human form, grateful that the meningitis injection not only didn't kill Sam, but has now kept the wolf at bay - for now. In the midst of this new found joy, Grace is keeping a secret - she is sick, not getting better, and feels the lunar pull of the werewolves beckoning her to join. Add to this, after months of essentially living together in her room, her negligent and adolescent parents discover Grace's love nest and throw Sam out, deciding to go into parental mode for the first time in their pathetic lives. If ever parents were ever the jerks of a story, Mr. and Mrs. Brisbane are it.
The only reason Sam and Grace get caught is because Grace is starting to show symptoms of an unknown illness. Grace is grounded, while Sam returns "home", where he used to live with Beck and the other werewolves. There, he has to put up with a new and uncontrollable werewolf, Cole St. Clair, a self-destructive young man that Sam remembers from viewing in the back of Beck's car, but he also has seen him elsewhere - he just can't peg just where yet. Obnoxious but lovable Isabel is also back, with a meatier role and her own narrative, which alternates with Cole's own past and current story. Weave all these people together, and you're on a collision course of the unknown, a future that is not secure due to the unpredictable nature of the werewolf. As Sam becomes more assured in his footing in the human world, Grace is slipping away from him, slowly having her life leeched out of her because she's caught in physical limbo.
This is another great entry by Maggie Stiefvater, an author whose writing has matured and strengthened with time, now knowing exactly where this story line is going and how it will all end. Highly recommended for fans of paranormal and romance books, high school and up....more