Wednesday, August 31, 2011

The Death Cure by James Dashner


Thomas knows that Wicked can't be trusted, but they say the time for lies is over, that they've collected all they can from the Trials and now must rely on the Gladers, with full memories restored, to help them with their ultimate mission. It's up to the Gladers to complete the blueprint for the cure to the Flare with a final voluntary test. 


What Wicked doesn't know is that something's happened that no Trial or Variable could have foreseen. Thomas has remembered far more than they think. And he knows that he can't believe a word of what Wicked says.

The time for lies is over. But the truth is more dangerous than Thomas could ever imagine.
Will anyone survive the Death Cure?
~Goodreads

Publisher: Delcorte Books for Young Readers 
Number of Pages: 384
Type: Hardcover

Reviewed by Sean, age 13

Friday, August 26, 2011

See What I'll Be Reviewing In the Coming Months!

I'm posting an In My Mailbox, which was started by the lovely Kristi at the Story Siren! Although instead of what I got this week, this is what I've received over the course of two months.


This video pretty much tells you all the books I'll be reviewing up until 2012! I keep on getting more and more good books to read that I'm getting backed up, so I'd like to let you know that I still have reviews coming in and this video shows all the reviews that are to come from me (Rachel). But don't forget to check back for the continuous flow of great reviews by the Youth Board!


Thanks and Enjoy!



Happy reading!

"Withering Tights" by Louise Rennison



Hilarious new series from Queen of Teen – laugh your tights off at the (VERY) amateur dramatic antics of Talullah and her bonkers mates. Boys, snogging and bad acting guaranteed! 
Picture the scene: Dother Hall performing arts college somewhere Up North, surrounded by rolling dales, bearded cheesemaking villagers (male and female) and wildlife of the squirrely-type. On the whole, it’s not quite the showbiz experience Tallulah was expecting… but once her mates turn up and they start their ‘FAME! I’m gonna liiiiive foreeeeeever, I’m gonna fill my tiiiiights’ summer course things are bound to perk up. Especially when the boys arrive. (When DO the boys arrive?) Six weeks of parent-free freedom. BOY freedom. Freedom of expression... cos it’s the THEATRE dahling, theatre!!
~Goodreads

Publisher: HarperCollins Children's Books
Number of Pages: 351
Type: Hardcover

Reviewed by Peyton

"My Life Undecided" by Jessica Brody


PLEASE READ THIS! MY LIFE DEPENDS ON IT!
Okay, maybe that was a bit melodramatic, but I’m sorry, I’m feeling a bit melodramatic at the moment.
Here’s the deal. My name is Brooklyn Pierce, I’m fifteen years old, and I am decisionally challenged. Seriously, I can’t remember the last gooddecision I made. I can remember plenty of crappy ones though. Including that party I threw when my parents were out of town that accidentallyburned down a model home. Yeah, not my finest moment, for sure.
But see, that’s why I started a blog. To enlist readers to make my decisions for me. That’s right. I gave up. Threw in the towel. I let someone else decide which book I read for English. And whether or not I accepted an invitation to join the debate team from that cute-in-a-dorky-sort-of-way guy who gave me the Heimlich maneuver in the cafeteria. (Note to self:chew the melon before swallowing it.) I even let them decide who I dated!
Well, it turns out there are some things in life you simply can’t choose or have chosen for you—like who you fall in love with. And now everything’s more screwed up than ever.
But don’t take my word for it. Read the book and decide for yourself.  You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll scream in frustration. Or maybe that’s just me. After all, it’s my life.
~Goodreads

Publisher: HarperCollins
Number of Pages: 320
Type: Hardcover

Reviewed by Peyton

"The Apothecary" by Maile Meloy


It's 1952 and the Scott family has just moved from Los Angeles to London. Here, fourteen-year-old Janie meets a mysterious apothecary and his son, Benjamin Burrows - a fascinating boy who's not afraid to stand up to authority and dreams of becoming a spy. When Benjamin's father is kidnapped, Janie and Benjamin must uncover the secrets of the apothecary's sacred book, the Pharmacopoeia, in order to find him, all while keeping it out of the hands of their enemies - Russian spies in possession of nuclear weapons. Discovering and testing potions they never believed could exist, Janie and Benjamin embark on a dangerous race to save the apothecary and prevent impending disaster.
Together with Ian Schoenherr's breathtaking illustrations, this is a truly stunning package from cover to cover.
~Goodreads

Publisher: Putnam Juvenile 
Number of Pages: 368
Type: Hardcover

Reviewed by Sean, age 13

Monday, August 22, 2011

"Ingenue" by Jillian Larkin


Bobbed hair. Short skirts. Cool jazz. Dark speakeasy. Anything goes. Meet the flappers, Gloria, Clara, Lorraine . . . and the rich young boys who love and loathe them.
~Goodreads

Publisher: Delacorte Books for Young Readers 
Number of Pages: 351
Type: Hardcover

Reviewed by Peyton

"Icefall" by Matthew J. Kirby


Matthew J. Kirby, author of THE CLOCKWORK THREE, deftly weaves a brand-new tale with chilling cleverness and subtle suspense that will leave readers racing breathlessly to the end.
Trapped in a hidden fortress tucked between towering mountains and a frozen sea, Solveig, along with her brother the crown prince, their older sister, and an army of restless warriors, anxiously awaits news of her father's victory at battle. But as winter stretches on, and the unending ice refuses to break, terrible acts of treachery soon make it clear that a traitor lurks in their midst. A malevolent air begins to seep through the fortress walls, and a smothering claustrophobia slowly turns these prisoners of winter against one another.
Those charged with protecting the king's children are all suspect, and the siblings must choose their allies wisely. But who can be trusted so far from their father's watchful eye? Can Solveig and her siblings survive the long winter months and expose the traitor before he succeeds in destroying a kingdom?
~Goodreads

Publisher: Scholastic Press
Number of Pages: 336
Type: Hardcover

Reviewed by Sean, age 13

"Secrets of Tamarind" by Nadia Aguiar



It’s been four years since Maya, Simon, and Penny Nelson left the lost island of Tamarind. For Maya, the island is a nearly forgotten part of her childhood; for Penny, it’s a secret place she can’t remember, but longs to see; and for Simon, it’s an adventure waiting to happen. An evil group called the Red Coral Project is lurking around the Nelson’s home in Bermuda, and the children discover that the project has moved into Tamarind, and are desiccating it to ruin. Only the Nelson’s can save the island.

In Tamarind, there is the mystery of the magical mineral ophalla that Red Coral is greedily mining, their old pirate ship, the Pamela Jane, and the secret of their friend Helix’s parentage. This time, it is up to Simon to put the clues together, and save his sisters from the island and the nefarious Red Coral Project—and defeat Red Coral before the magnificent island is put to ruin.

Nadia Aguiar’s sequel to The Lost Island of Tamarind, crafts a vivid story reminiscent of such classics as Peter Pan, full of adventure, magic, and haunting beauty.
~Goodreads

Publisher: Feiwel and Friends
Number of Pages: 448
Type: Hardcover

Reviewed by Lily, age 10

"The Silver Bowl" by Diane Stanley


Unwanted at home, Molly goes to work for the king of Westria as a humble scullery maid. She arrives at the castle with no education, no manners, and a very disturbing secret: She sees visions, and those visions always come true.
One day, while she's working in the king's great hall, young Prince Alaric passes by. Molly finds him unbearably handsome—but also unbearably rude. But what does it really matter? She'll probably never see him again.
In time Molly is promoted to polishing silver and is given a priceless royal treasure to work on: the king's great ceremonial hand basin. But there's something odd about it. The silver warms to her touch, a voice commands her to watch and listen, and then the visions appear. They tell the story of a dreaded curse that has stalked the royal family for years. There have already been deaths; soon there will be more.
As tragedy after tragedy strikes the royal family, Molly can't help but wonder: Will the beautiful Alaric be next? Together with her friends Tobias and Winifred, Molly must protect the prince and destroy the curse. Could a less likely champion be found to save the kingdom of Westria?
~Goodreads

Publisher: HarperCollins
Number of Pages: 272
Type: Hardcover

Reviewed by Lily, age 10

"The School for the Insanely Gifted" by Dan Elish


Daphna Whispers is insanely gifted.
At age two and a half, she composed her first sonata.
At age eight, she completed an opera.
And now, at eleven and three-quarters, she is orchestrating a piano rhapsody.
With a rÉsumÉ like that, it's no wonder she is a student at the prestigious Blatt School for the Insanely Gifted. But as sixth grade draws to a close, Daphna's mind is far from the upcoming "Insanity Cup" competition. She's preoccupied by her mother's disappearance two months ago.
When a mysterious man breaks into Daphna's small New York apartment, Daphna discovers that her mother's disappearance wasn't a random accident. Her mother knew something—and now somebody is after Daphna. What starts out as a simple fact-finding trip to the basement with her friends spirals into an international expedition. And while Daphna hopes to uncover the secret of her mother's disappearance on her global trek, the last thing she expects to uncover is an outrageous secret about the Blatt School.
And one insanely shocking secret about herself.
~Goodreads

Publisher: HarperCollins
Number of Pages: 304
Type of Book: Hardcover

Reviewed by Lily, age 10

"Scary School" by Derek the Ghost


You think your school's scary?
Get a load of these teachers:
Ms. Fang, an 850-year-old vampire

Dr. Dragonbreath, who just might eat you before recess
Mr. Snakeskin—science class is so much more fun when it's taught by someone who's half zombie
Mrs. T—break the rules and spend your detention with a hungryTyrannosaurus rex!

Plus
Gargoyles, goblins, and Frankenstein's monster on the loose The world's most frighteningly delicious school lunch
And
The narrator's an eleven-year-old ghost!
Join Charles "New Kid" Nukid as he makes some very Scary friends—including Petunia, Johnny, and Peter the Wolf—and figures out that Scary School can be just as funny as it is spooky!
~Goodreads

Publisher: HarperCollins
Number of Pages: 237
Type of Book: Hardcover

Reviewed by Lily, age 10

"The Rabbit Girl" by Mary Arrigan


What is the secret of Mallie's picture? The mystery unfolds as evacuees Tony and Alice escape the terrors of London's Blitz for the Lake District, where they befriend a fascinating and fearless old lady. Many years later, an after-school job in a pet shop enables well-meaning Mallie to buy her mum a drawing of a girl with a rabbit. Could this old picture bring past and present together - and change Mallie's life?
~Goodreads

Publisher: Frances Lincoln Children's Books
Number of Pages: 224
Type of Book: Hardcover

Reviewed by Lily, age 10

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Love of the Game by John Coy



"Middle school is full of new challenges for Jackson, Gig, Issac, and Diego, four sports-loving friends who have always stuck together. Lockers that won't open, older (and bigger) kids, classes that are far apart, tons of homework--there's alot to get
used to.
One thing the boys are looking forward to, however, is making the football team. Not everyone will get what he wants though, on the field and at home. Jackson, his mom, and his little brother have moved in with his mom's boyfriend, and Jackson hates it.
Gig's dad is still in Afganistan. And Diego and Issac are questioning whether middle school will leave time for sports at all.
In this third installment of his 4 for 4 series, John Coy scores big with readers who can relate to the ways their life, like sports, can be unpredictable, frustrating, and exhilarating. Especially in the first year of middle school!"   
~John Coy



Publisher: Fiewel and Friends
Number of Pages: 192
Type: Hardcover


Reviewed by Colin


Wednesday, August 10, 2011

"Reasons to be Happy" by Katrina Kittle

Hannah's parents are glamorous Hollywood royalty, and sometimes she feels like the ugly duckling in a family of swans. After her mother's tragic death, Hannah's grief is compounded by her desperate need to live up to her mother's image. She tries to control her weight through Bulimia, and her devastated father is too distracted to notice. The secret of her eating disorder weighs heavily on Hannah, but the new eighth grade Beverly Hills clique she's befriended only reinforces her desire to be beautiful. The only one who seems to notice, or care, that something is wrong is Jasper, the quirky misfit.
~Goodreads

Publisher: Sourcebooks Incorporated
Number of Pages: 224
Type: Hardcover

Reviewed by Katie, age 12

"Calli" by Jessica Lee Anderson


Fifteen-year-old Calli has just about everything she could want in life—two loving moms, a good-looking boyfriend, and a best friend who has always been there for support. An only child, Calli is excited when her parents announce that they want to be foster parents. Unfortunately, being a foster sister to Cherish is not at all what Calli expected. First Cherish steals Calli’s boyfriend, then begins to pit Calli’s moms against one another, and she even steals Calli’s iPod. Tired of being pushed around and determined to get even, Calli steals one of Cherish’s necklaces. But this plan for revenge goes horribly awry, and Cherish ends up in juvenile detention.
Isolating herself from her moms, her boyfriend, and even her best friend, Calli wrestles with her guilt and tries to figure out a way to undo the damage she’s caused. When her moms are asked to take on another foster child, Calli sees an opportunity to make amends for her past mistakes.
Funny, moving, and emotionally rich, Calli is a portrait of an endearing young woman caught between adolescence and adulthood, striving to do the right thing even when all of her options seem wrong.
~Goodreads

Publisher: Milkweed Editions
Number of Pages: 198
Type: Hardcover

Reviewed by Sara, age 13

"Putting Makeup on Dead People" by Jen Violi



In the spring of her senior year, Donna Parisi finds new life in an unexpected place: a coffin.
Since her father’s death four years ago, Donna has gone through the motions of living: her friendships are empty, she’s clueless about what to do after high school graduation, and her grief keeps her isolated, cut off even from the one parent she has left. That is until she’s standing in front of the dead body of a classmate at Brighton Brothers’ Funeral Home. At that moment, Donna realizes what might just give her life purpose is comforting others in death. That maybe who she really wants to be is a mortician.
This discovery sets in motion a life Donna never imagined was possible. She befriends a charismatic new student, Liz, notices a boy, Charlie, and realizes that maybe he's been noticing her, too, and finds herself trying things she hadn’t dreamed of trying before. By taking risks, Donna comes into her own, diving into her mortuary studies with a passion and skill she didn’t know she had in her. And she finally understands that moving forward doesn’t mean forgetting someone you love.
Jen Violi’s heartfelt and funny debut novel is a story of transformation—how one girl learns to grieve and say goodbye, turn loss into a gift, and let herself be exceptional...at loving, applying lipstick to corpses, and finding life in the wake of death.
~Goodreads

Publisher: Hyperion
Number of Pages: 336
Type: Hardcover


Reviewed by Sara, age 13

Saturday, August 6, 2011

"Lola and the Boy Next Door" by Stephanie Perkins


Budding designer Lola Nolan doesn’t believe in fashion . . . she believes in costume. The more expressive the outfit--more sparkly, more fun, more wild--the better. But even though Lola’s style is outrageous, she’s a devoted daughter and friend with some big plans for the future. And everything is pretty perfect (right down to her hot rocker boyfriend) until the dreaded Bell twins, Calliope and Cricket, return to the neighborhood.

When Cricket--a gifted inventor--steps out from his twin sister’s shadow and back into Lola’s life, she must finally reconcile a lifetime of feelings for the boy next door. 
~Goodreads

Publisher: Dutton
Number of Pages: 338
Type: Hardcover