I LOVED this book! If you were to put all the things I like in a book all together, it would come out to be something like Lock and Key. I really conn...moreI LOVED this book! If you were to put all the things I like in a book all together, it would come out to be something like Lock and Key. I really connected with the characters and when I finished this book, I felt like a really good friend had moved away--I knew I wouldn't be "hanging out" with her any more.
Ruby was "doing just fine" on her own. So what if the heat didn't work, she had a space heater. Sure there was no hot water in the kitchen, but she could bring it in from the bathroom to wash the dishes. The dryer broke, but a clothesline across the kitchen would do just fine. And what of a few beer bottles in the living room, didn't she deserve to unwind after a long day of high school and a night job? That social worker had no right to drag her away.
So, now she is stuck at her rich sister's house. Cora, 10 years older than Ruby, had abandoned her and her mom as soon as she was old enough to leave the house. She and her husband were really successful and living in one of those fancy gated neighborhood, Yuck! Now, they really expect Ruby to go to private school? Could it get any worse? ***********
Lock and Key is a journey. As Ruby struggles to find herself and changes, her perspective on others changes as well. She tries to help a friend and has to reconcile her new self with her old one. The struggles in this book are more than just "teenage angst" and high-school drama. The problems the characters face are real-life problems. (less)
A true psychological thriller, Freaky Green Eyes really blew me away! Francesca, who prefers to be called "Franky," is the daughter of a famous sports...moreA true psychological thriller, Freaky Green Eyes really blew me away! Francesca, who prefers to be called "Franky," is the daughter of a famous sportscaster who is a former Seattle Seahawk, Reid Pierson. Reid Pierson is very strong, charismatic and controlling. He hates weakness, and has to always be right. 15-year-old Franky adores him and sees her mother's sensitivity as shameful weakness. Her mother, scared to death of Reid, pursues her own art and spends a few days a week at her cabin out of town. Franky feels betrayed and abandoned by her mother. Then the story gets really good!
Although the story is told in first person by 15-year-old Franky, this is not a "teen" novel. I only recommend it for very mature teens and for adults. The story, while not graphic in the least, is subtle in its ability to keep the reader feeling uneasy. I had a knot in my stomach the entire time I was reading it.
Reading Strategies: You will need to infer A LOT to be able to really follow the feeling of the story. Much of what makes this book good is what the writer alludes to but does not tell you.(less)
Wow! This book was amazing. I couldn't put it down and then I was sad that I was done. Heidi is a 12 year old girl who's mom is mentally disabled and...moreWow! This book was amazing. I couldn't put it down and then I was sad that I was done. Heidi is a 12 year old girl who's mom is mentally disabled and has been raised by her neighbor, Bernadette, who has agoraphobia. She doesn't know anything about her past before the day Bernadette found her and her mom. "Mama" can only speak about 20 or so words, and Heidi wants to know what "soof" means, so she sets out trying to learn about it and about her past
I recommend this book to just about anyone. But I especially recommend it to people who have a mentally disabled person in their life. The amazing thing about this book is that while it was extremely "heartwarming," it never made me really sad or angry like many stories that are touching.
Reading strategies: It's a fairly easy story to follow, but I recommend a sticky note with the acronyms on it (Heidi uses quite a few of them) if you are not good at remembering such things. For example, I could remember that A.P. was Bernadette's agoraphobia, but I kept forgetting that M.B.F. stood for Man's Best Friend which meant the dictionary. Once Heidi decides to go to New York, go back and reread the first page--I had completely forgotten by that point in the book.(less)
Once I started reading "Cut," I couldn't put it down. It grabbed me from the first sentence and never let me down. It is about a teenage girl in a hos...moreOnce I started reading "Cut," I couldn't put it down. It grabbed me from the first sentence and never let me down. It is about a teenage girl in a hospital for people with mental disorders, who is there because she cuts herself on purpose. She doesn't speak at all, and her roommate calls her "silent treatment." The characters were interesting and very real.
Although the vocabulary is fairly simple, the book is complex. Most of the characters were introduced in one chapter, so I found it helpful to write their names and disorders/personality quirks and refer back to them as I read on. It is written in an unusual style--the main character is talking to her psyciatrist (in her head), saying things like "you lean in and your chair squeaks..."
I recommend this to mature teenagers who enjoy stories about troubled teenagers. Since almost all of the characters are female, girls will probably be more likely to enjoy this book.(less)
Warewolf-human romance...sound intriguing? Well, it is, and that is the theme of this book, but there is more to it than that. The story is really abo...moreWarewolf-human romance...sound intriguing? Well, it is, and that is the theme of this book, but there is more to it than that. The story is really about a teenager who is trying to find her true identity and how she fits into her world. The fact that her world is a wolf-pack adds a fun twist.
There is some graphic violence--the members of the tribe are ferocious. Beware if you have trouble with that kind of thing, but it really is necessary for the plot. I think that girls who like the Twilight series will also like this one. I liked that the girl (Vivian) was the warewolf and that the boy was the human.
Reading Strategies: Don't get bogged down in the details in the first chapter. If you are having trouble getting started, just plow through, then go back and re-read after you "get to know" the characters a bit better. I found the first chapter to be much more interesting once I had read 4 or 5 chapters. Once the book gets going, it gets really good.(less)
This book was a lot of fun and a good mystery. I really felt bad for the boy (Zach) who had to go into the witness protection program. He found it ver...moreThis book was a lot of fun and a good mystery. I really felt bad for the boy (Zach) who had to go into the witness protection program. He found it very difficult to lie about who he was and it was hard to make real friends when he couldn't really tell them about his past.
Because the main character is a boy, and because there is a fair amount of action, I recommend this book to most boys. But the issues he deals with could easily be relevant to girls as well. There are things that happen in the story that require a certain amount of maturity, so I would not recommend this book to readers younger than 4th grade. It is an excellent read for middle-schoolers.
A book that is a fairly easy read but containing problems that teens will relate to is often difficult to find. I enjoyed this book and really connect...moreA book that is a fairly easy read but containing problems that teens will relate to is often difficult to find. I enjoyed this book and really connected with the characters. I found the ending to be rather cheezy, but I still recommend this book to teenagers who struggle with their reading.
Reading Strategies: This book has fairly simple language, but that doesn't mean that the problems that "Dime" is facing are not complex. Make sure you take time to make inferences so that you get the full story, not just the words.
Pure sillyness but lots of fun. It takes a sophisticated sense of humor to understand, but the stories are very simplistic, so this book is not for ev...morePure sillyness but lots of fun. It takes a sophisticated sense of humor to understand, but the stories are very simplistic, so this book is not for everyone. Definitely entertaining, though and a quick read. (less)