There are books that are difficult to read because of violence, killing or something else but you can't stop reading because you want to make sure somThere are books that are difficult to read because of violence, killing or something else but you can't stop reading because you want to make sure someone is okay. I experienced it with A Long Way Gone by Ishmael Beah and I experienced it again with this book.
Arn's family is torn apart when the Khmer Rouge soldiers arrive in his village. Sent to a work camp he does everything he can to keep himself and others alive. He is recruited to play in an instrument when he's never played a note in his life. This may be the one act of the Khmer Rouge that saves him for a while. Later he is pulled into becoming a soldier to save his own life.
Patricia McCormick has written another powerful, gripping story that reads as if you are by Arn's side experiencing the horrible destruction of his country and the brutal killings of its people. It's a fictionalized version of Arn Chorn-Pond's life told in a very authentic voice after many interviews with Arn. Definitely a book that will be with me for a long time. Highly recommend with the caveat that there is a lot of very realistic violence....more
A fascinating middle school & high school nonfiction book about the teens who were instrumental in the Birmingham marchereviewed for NetGalley.com
A fascinating middle school & high school nonfiction book about the teens who were instrumental in the Birmingham marches in the 1960s. In the spring of 1963, adults were worried about their families, safety and their livelihood and were afraid to march for civil rights in Birmingham, Alabama. Who could blame them after the way several of the leaders of the movement were treated in jail.
At nightly meetings, Birmingham teenagers were motivated and mobilized to march. They skipped school to march. The photos famous photos of hoses being turned on marchers are from Birmingham and those marchers are teenagers. Many whites in Birmingham were unaware of what was happening in their own citybecause the newspaper wasn't reporting on the happenings in town.
This book follows the stories of several teenagers who were involved in the Birmingham marches, their time in the Birmingham and how their actions helped shape the future of the civil rights movement. Told through stories, photos, as well as sidebars with laws and letters, this book is extremely effective in reaching its audience. The photos help breakup the text making it an easy and interesting read. The attitude of local officials and law enforcement is woven into the stories of the marchers. This book is definitely on my list of great history nonfiction books for young adults this year. I think it would be a very effective book to add to the discussion about the civil rights movement....more
I really struggled with this book, if I hadn't listened a lot of it as an audiobook I would never have gotten through it. I wanted to like it and I keI really struggled with this book, if I hadn't listened a lot of it as an audiobook I would never have gotten through it. I wanted to like it and I kept reading because I kept waiting for something big to happen. I kept waiting for the "unexpected twists" mentioned on the back cover quote from Lisa McMann and she said it was "rewarding". I think they put the quotes there to make people think it's a better book than it really is, even though those author quotes sometimes ring true.
This book really just felt like it was put through the dystopian formula machine. I wanted scandal (there were so many opportunities) and something crazy to happen with Vaughn and Rhine but nothing happened. There was nothing to be outraged about. There were so many missed opportunities of twists and turns with this book.
I know there will be those fans of anything dystopia that will like this book but I think it may just languish on the library shelf.
I wanted to love this book as much as I loved The Chosen One. I really liked Glimpse and felt it was a really touching and emotional story but this boI wanted to love this book as much as I loved The Chosen One. I really liked Glimpse and felt it was a really touching and emotional story but this book just didn't affect me like the others by Carol Lynch Williams did. At times I struggled to figure out where in the overall story London the narrator was. I didn't find the free formatting to be as effective as in Glimpse. I had high hopes for this book but in the end felt a bit indifferent about it. I know some teens in my library will love this book....more
Amazing! I really struggled with the first 150 pages of this book. I had a hard time keeping some of the characters straight and why I should care aboAmazing! I really struggled with the first 150 pages of this book. I had a hard time keeping some of the characters straight and why I should care about them. Then some interesting twists happen and I couldn't put the book down. I'm not sure how to review this book without giving too much away.
Verity's plane has crashed in France during the German occupation in WWII. She's being held hostage in a hotel by the Nazis. She's willing to give up the wireless codes she knows in order to save herself. Through her writing we learn of her friendship with Maddie, a pilot who was flying the plane that crashed. Maddie is presumed dead from the photos that the Nazis have shown Verity. As the story progresses we learn about the Women's Auxiliary Air Force (WAAF) during WWII in England and how Maddie became the pilot that would transport Verity to France.
An amazing story of friendship and the sacrifices we'll make to save our friends. The mystery and the twists make this a story that once you get to a certain point, you won't want to stop reading....more
A graphic novel of familiar fairy tales ripe with cynicism, sarcasm and humor perfect for teens. Each fairy tale stars one of the Angry Little Girls aA graphic novel of familiar fairy tales ripe with cynicism, sarcasm and humor perfect for teens. Each fairy tale stars one of the Angry Little Girls and stays true to the original story but doesn't have the fluff that so many fairy tale books can have....more
3.75 stars for me. I never really cared or connected with the characters for some reason. I wanted to like this book so much but it just didn't grab m3.75 stars for me. I never really cared or connected with the characters for some reason. I wanted to like this book so much but it just didn't grab me....more
** Reviewed for NetGalley** I had somewhat high expectations of this book based on the publisher's promotion. Fortunately, I read a few of the reviews** Reviewed for NetGalley** I had somewhat high expectations of this book based on the publisher's promotion. Fortunately, I read a few of the reviews on goodreads, so my expectations were a bit more normal. This review is a bit disjointed.
The first few chapters of this book almost made me give up. Younger kids and older people have survived the spore war that the U.S. went through in the previous few years all because they received the important vaccination. The kids who survived are mostly living on the streets or in abandoned buildings after the deaths of their parents. Older people, those it seems 80 and older up to age 200, are renting the bodies of teenagers to relive their youth. What annoyed me was the older people are called Enders, couldn't there be a more original name? (It just felt like a forced name to appeal to those kids who have read Ender's Game.)
Callie is the main character and she and her younger brother Tyler have been homeless since her dad was taken away and her mom died. Callie says the war ended a year ago but it sounds like they've been homeless for more than a year. Some references to time just don't feel quite right but then when you're a teenager time can feel a lot longer than when you are an adult. To get her and her brother a house, Callie signs up with Prime Destinations that allows Enders to rent teens' bodies. It all works through a microchip placed at the base of the teen's brain. Things are great with the first two renters of Callie's body but the third one goes very wrong.
Two other things that I found a bit too much like THE dystopian novel The Hunger Games, which I think has seen it's share of copy-cats, were that Callie just happens to be good at archery and shooting, and she undergoes this amazing make-over at Prime Destinations prior to being rented.
Once I got past my annoyances I plowed through this book in a little over a day. It had quite a few holes in the story and some sticky situations seemed to work out a little too conveniently but it was an enjoyable read....more
An amazing book and an excellent audiobook. A wakes up in a different body each day. The morning he wakes up as Justin changes his life. He meets RhiaAn amazing book and an excellent audiobook. A wakes up in a different body each day. The morning he wakes up as Justin changes his life. He meets Rhiannon and they have an amazing day together.
The next day A wakes up in another body but can't sop thinking about Rhiannon. Over the next few days A figures out how to see Rhiannon again. After that he is in love.
An excellent audiobook that I think was extremely easy to follow with a story that is quite complex. Alex McKenna narrates the entire book, which allows you to follow A as though he is a spirit traveling between bodies with an individual personality and obviously emotions. My one complaint about the audiobook was that Alex's voice is a throaty female voice which made me wonder is A really a male as described on the cover? Also a few tracks seemed to be quiter than others requiring me to adjust the volume in my car a few times since I listened to the majority of this in my car on a road trip.
While I was listening to this book on my car trip, I was just along for the ride of the book. But later it had me thinking a lot about identity and what makes us who we are. We all inhabit our bodies but some of us have a love/hate relationship with our bodies. Our souls carry wonderful memories along with sad memories but our souls are a significant part of who we are, what we believe and the emotions that well up inside of us.
I was feeling a bit burnt out on YA dystopian fiction but enough friends had given it good reviews I thought I should try it. Honestly, I was pleasantI was feeling a bit burnt out on YA dystopian fiction but enough friends had given it good reviews I thought I should try it. Honestly, I was pleasantly surprised and really enjoyed this book enough to read the second one.
I think it's a good read-alike for Hunger Games fans without being too formulaic and predictable. The pacing is good, I honestly wasn't sure what to expect and I was just along for the ride....more
I had a bit of a harder time getting into this book than I did Across the Universe. I'm not sure if it was because I listened to that book as an audioI had a bit of a harder time getting into this book than I did Across the Universe. I'm not sure if it was because I listened to that book as an audiobook and this was my first full eBook or what? I enjoyed this book and the developments in the story that I don't want to reveal but half way through I thought I could be done with the series and be happy. Then I read the last few chapters and I'll definitely be back for more in January 2013!...more
4 1/2 stars. Absolutely amazing and heartbreaking. There were times as I was reading that I had to stop reading just because the story was so heavy an4 1/2 stars. Absolutely amazing and heartbreaking. There were times as I was reading that I had to stop reading just because the story was so heavy and intense....more
I enjoyed this book. It took me a while to read as I got distracted with The FitzOsbornes in Exile that I was also listening to on audio during my comI enjoyed this book. It took me a while to read as I got distracted with The FitzOsbornes in Exile that I was also listening to on audio during my commute. I read this book mostly during lunch and before going to bed. If I had devoted larger blocks of time to it I might have enjoyed it more.
Cullen's brother has disappeared and a woodpecker thought to be extinct may have been seen in town. Cullen weaves in and out of narrating the current happenings around him while also telling us what's happening as his mind wanders off. There is a parallel story about Benton, who goes on a mission trip to Africa. Of course, the two stories merge in the end but in a way I was not expecting.
I'm not sure who to recommend this book to and what teens this book will appeal to. I hope someone picks it up at the library and enjoys it....more