This story has a little of everything- it's set in an exotic country with adventure, mystery, and even romance. The main character is dealing with somThis story has a little of everything- it's set in an exotic country with adventure, mystery, and even romance. The main character is dealing with some problems and has escaped to Brazil to pursue her budding journalism career. While there, she becomes obsessed with trying to solve a murder that has recently taken place. Between flashbacks of what is going on back home and her trips with her father and a dreamy photographer, Jimmy, who is off limits to her, she begins to understand who she is and the lengths to which she will go to prove herself. This story wasn't the best book I have ever read but I did enjoy it. The character of Emma was relatable and you found yourself rooting for her to be accepted and to figure out what happened to Milton Silva. She goes through a lot over the course of the book and its fun to see how she grows and maneuvers her way out of some sticky situations. I also really enjoyed the character of Jimmy. He's a sweet guy who is trying to make a name for himself away from a career that his family has laid out for him. There are some sexually explicit scenes so beware of younger readers picking up this title. I would give Amazon Burning 3 stars out of 5 mainly because it took me so long to get into it. Give it a shot, it turned out to be a pretty enjoyable read. :-)...more
This is a really neat book that is full of science experiments and the history to go along with it. Ever experiment has been grouped into a category aThis is a really neat book that is full of science experiments and the history to go along with it. Ever experiment has been grouped into a category and the history of the category is explained before the experiments are listed. For example, on page 136, they begin talking about George Stephenson's stream train. The explain what the stream train is and then go on to explain the science behind the steam train on page 140. This is followed by a science experiment that closely resembles what was just explained. In this case, on page 142 there is an experiment about Stephenson's steam can. I also love how there is a "catastrophic meter chart" on each experiment that tells how messy it is and how much supervision is needed. I think this would be a great book for students to use for science experiments, or if they just want to have fun and learn about the history of scientists and the science that backs up their inventions. Very cool book!...more
In Alexie Sherman's autobiographical novel, you get to live through the pain of a young Indian boy trying to find his way in life and make a better naIn Alexie Sherman's autobiographical novel, you get to live through the pain of a young Indian boy trying to find his way in life and make a better name for himself in a world where he was told he'd never survive.
This story is a it a young man defying all odds and surviving in a world that's been set up for him to fail. The story has Been written in a way that makes you fly through the story and all of a sudden you're finished. I really enjoyed this coming of age story and would recommend it to the older young adult audience. I also enjoyed the bullying theme that was prevalant throughout the novel and seeing how junior was able to rise above it. The novel is brutally honest, from the mind of a young adolescent boy who will say anything and very thing that goes through his mind. Filled with his own drawings, you will love every moment you spend engrossed in this novel.
-It's got some language and some sexual reference so this book is geared more towards the upper part of the young adult audience.
Wow... I'm not usually a fan of historical fiction, but this book was amazing. It follows fifteen year old Lina as she is put through the most horrifyWow... I'm not usually a fan of historical fiction, but this book was amazing. It follows fifteen year old Lina as she is put through the most horrifying trials imaginable. She had everything taken away from her but was somehow able to keep her hope alive. The pain and heartache that Lina felt were conveyed so convincingly, I felt my heart break right along with Lina at each turn. The story sheds light on the horrors that people were put through during Stalin's reign and it is a very humbling read. I would highly recommend this book to anyone, young adult or adult, and don't let the genre title of historical fiction deter you, this is one story you do not want to miss....more
This book is set up in a question and answer format that are grouped together by topic. The author takes questions that many people have asked about This book is set up in a question and answer format that are grouped together by topic. The author takes questions that many people have asked about gay and lesbian people and has given the most honest answer he is able to come up with. He is very frank about it and doesn’t sugar coat anything. As I was reading through this book, I was a little offended by a few of the questions that were asked. If a person is gay or lesbian, that doesn’t make them any different from a heterosexual person. Some of the questions asked were things like “Do gay teens take their boyfriends and girlfriends to high school proms?” and “do gay people make more money than heterosexual people?” Some people are ignorant and treat homosexual people as a different species but this book does a great job in answering these types of questions. There are also a lot of legitimate questions that the author answers about coming out to family and friends, religious beliefs, and the dating relationships. I think this is a great book for people who are questioning their sexuality and it’s a good book to teach others about tolerance on the subject. I also think the fact that the author is gay helps provide authenticity on the subject. ...more
Skinny is a powerful story about Ever, a young overweight girl, who comes to terms with her weight. She finally realizes everything that she missed ouSkinny is a powerful story about Ever, a young overweight girl, who comes to terms with her weight. She finally realizes everything that she missed out on by being so consumed with the number on the scale. I feel that every teenage girl should read this book to realize that it’s what is on the inside of a person that matters and to remember who your real friends are. The author had gastric bypass surgery as well and is able to use that personal experience to write a compelling novel that will have you racing to the end. Ever spends a large portion of the novel arguing with the voice in her head that tells her she’s not skinny enough, not pretty enough, etc. I believe that this is a real experience for many young people and that they can relate to this story and it’s positive, uplifting ending. I loved the characters and the interactions Ever has with them. I felt like it would be the true interactions of a 302 pound girl and the popular crowd, very well written and I enjoyed every minute of this read. ...more
Curveball: The Year I Lost my Grip follows Peter, a high school freshman, who is trying to find his place in the world after tearing his arm ligamentsCurveball: The Year I Lost my Grip follows Peter, a high school freshman, who is trying to find his place in the world after tearing his arm ligaments throwing a baseball. He is trying to juggle his resentment at not being able to play anymore, his feelings for his photo shop partner, and his fear for his grandfather. I really enjoyed this book and feel that it is a story that teenagers can identify with. The voice of Peter is believable and he goes through many situations within the course of the book that many high school freshmen have to deal with. The only thing that drove me insane about the book was that his parents didn’t listen to him to him about his grandfather and he kept everything a secret, which is something teenagers seem to do. I really feel like this book will be enjoyed by both boys and girls alike. The main character is a male and it involves sports which will bring in the boys while the girls will be drawn in by the overall concept of the book. The writing is done in a way that brings in the reader and leaves you feeling like you’re listening to these people have conversations. I would highly recommend this book to young adult readers. This is a true coming of age novel and shows Peter surviving and growing through loss. ...more
The Sweet Dead Life is told from the point of view of an 8th grade girl named Jenna Samuels. Jenna’s family is falling apart and she is too sick to d The Sweet Dead Life is told from the point of view of an 8th grade girl named Jenna Samuels. Jenna’s family is falling apart and she is too sick to do anything about it. Her father left five years earlier with nothing more than a short note and a coupon to a Mexican restaurant to explain his absence. Her brother, Casey, is left picking up the pieces as Jenna has a mysterious illness that no doctor can explain and his mother never leaves the house and is slowly losing her memory. After a car accident, everything changes. Casey didn’t live through the accident and was sent back to earth to figure out what is happening to his family. The story revolves around Jenna’s illness and what really happened to their father five years earlier. The voice of Jenna is very believable throughout the story. The way she acts, talks, and behaves is exactly as a real 8th grade girl would act. She is tough but vulnerable as well. I loved seeing the characters’ transformations throughout the book. Casey goes from being a total stoner to a guy his family can count on, while Jenna learns to forgive and move on with her life. There are many humorous scenes throughout the story where you can’t help but laugh at the situations they are going through. I also enjoyed the character of the mysterious Amber Velasco and see the transformation in Jenna as she slowly comes to accept Amber as a part of her life. The coolest part of the story, in my opinion, was the mystery that is being investigated throughout the whole book. Casey, Jenna, and Amber have to figure out what is happening to Jenna and her mother and how their father is involved in everything that is happening around them. In the beginning the plot was a little slow moving but overall I really enjoyed the story. It has a little bit of everything. There is fantasy, mystery, and teenage angst all rolled into one Texas tall story that will have readers enamored. ...more
Call of the Vampire is a refreshing new take on the creatures of the night. Aurora meets gorgeous, gray eyed Jessie and is mistaken for a past love anCall of the Vampire is a refreshing new take on the creatures of the night. Aurora meets gorgeous, gray eyed Jessie and is mistaken for a past love and she feels an immediate attraction to him that she doesn't understand. As the story progresses a mystery unfolds that links Jessie and Aurora in a way they never thought was possible. I loved the characters and I feel in love with Jessie and all of his mysterious flaws. He's the big bad vampire who just wants to be considered anything but evil. The book moved along rather quickly and had a little of everything in it, evil lurking waiting to take away anything that would make Jessie happy, a mystery of their pasts, a friendship tested, and a forbidden romance. If that doesn't have the making of a great book, I'm not sure what does....more
Maid of Secrets is a story full of excitement, mystery and action. I loved this book and I believe that Jennifer McGowan did a magnificent job in deveMaid of Secrets is a story full of excitement, mystery and action. I loved this book and I believe that Jennifer McGowan did a magnificent job in developing the characters and the relationships in this book. Queen Elizabeth has just taken the throne and she is faced with people, foreign and close, who wish to see her off the throne. In order to uncover the truth of what is happening and to keep her crown safe, she has contracted five maids to be her spies. Meg is employed as the eyes and ears of the queen and is to report on anything she overhears, but she is not only responding on the queen, but is asked to spy on her as well. As Meg goes through her time as a spy she is forced to do things that go against her conscience, betray her friends, and she falls for an unlikely courtier. I loved the development of the plot, how the mystery was mixed in and the excitement of trying to figure out what comes next. The book is lengthy, but there is never a dull moment. It was nice to have a book so well detailed and explained that I couldn't put it down until I finished the last page. I also enjoyed learning the pasts of a few of the maids and to see how it brought them all together. Maid of Secrets is a fresh new tale in the young adult literature world and I think it will be met with a great response!...more