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Teens Review Teen Lit

Friday, July 25, 2014

The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa

Reviewed By: A.C.
I do not read vampire novels. I do not like them. This series is probably the only vampire novel I will read, and boy is it good. If you have read the Birthmarked trilogy (which I also recommend)think of it as the city walls and hierarchy of Birthmarked but with vampires being the rich ones and the babies given to the inner city as blood instead. So similar, just so different and new and wonderful, because this time instead of finding a new town to fit into, instead try finding a human group when your a vampire. Allie is the main human, at least until she dies and comes back as part of the undead! Her vampire teacher also happens to be the most hated vampire of them all, no pressure right?  She must fight her way to freedom and try not to kill her new friends who have no idea that she's a vampire.
Why I Picked it Up: I was bored and it looked interesting.
Why I Finished It: the characters are so likable and trusting, plus I liked that it was a different perspective from going from a human to a vampire midway through and not being all human or all vampire. Plus theirs is this really great love story that is twilight-ish but reversed so it is wayyyy better.
I’d Give this Book To: Anyone and everyone!

**Librarian Side Note** This author has also written another EXCELLENT series, only it's all about the Fae Folk (aka, faries!).  The first book in the Iron Fey series is called The Iron King, and yes, the Library owns all the books in the series, and yes, all the books are out!

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Friday, July 18, 2014

Perfect by Ellen Hopkins

Reviewed By: L.S.
This book is part of a series written by Ellen Hopkins and these books are written as free-verse poems so they are interesting to read and different than other books. This book is about four teenagers named Cara, Kendra, Sean, and Andre. Each of these teens have different ambitions and come from different families. They all want to achieve their idea of "perfection" but go through different struggles to do so. The struggles they go through are also a little bit extreme and they make mistakes along the way. Often, their families do not agree with their goals in life. Also, each of their stories end up being connected in one way or another and it is interesting to see how this happens.
Why I Picked it Up: I picked up this book because I have previously read most of the other books written by Ellen Hopkins and I really enjoyed reading them. They are about serious topics and teach the reader lessons based off of the mistakes that the characters make.
Why I Finished It: I finished this book because it was written as a collection of poems so it was different than reading a book written in a normal format. Also, the individual stories of the four teenagers make you not want to put the book down because they are so unique and sometimes even tragic.
I’d Give this Book To: I would recommend this book to teenagers who would not mind a sad ending or reading about mature, serious topics.

**Librarian Side Note** Love, love, love this author! While she is mostly known for her first series that starts with Crank, Ellen Hopkins is a master of the novel in verse. I highly recommend ALL of her books, which of course, we have here in the Library.

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Friday, July 11, 2014

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie

Reviewed By: S.F.
The same day he accidentally breaks his teacher's nose with a twenty year-old geometry textbook, Junior decides to transfer to a new school with more opportunities (also, textbooks published in the last year). The school he selects is off of the reservation ("the Rez") where Junior grew up, about 20 miles away. His friends and neighbors think he's betraying their way of life, and the white, wealthier kids at his new school aren't exactly welcoming him with open arms. In navigating this new world (where everyone calls him by the name on his birth certificate and kids don't punch each other out at the drop of a hat), Junior must figure out how to stay true to his native American roots. Can Junior use his comics and street smarts to make himself a better life?
Why I Picked it Up: This book has been banned ALL OVER the place this year, which automatically makes me want to read it. Also, I had never read a book about a kid who lived on a reservation before, and I wanted to know more about his life.
Why I Finished It: This book was great, also totally tragicomic. Junior is hilarious, but he also has to hitchhike to school sometimes because his dad can't afford to buy gas for the car. This book illustrates some really uncomfortable truths about Indian reservations (widespread poverty, malnutrition, alcoholism) that aren't easy to fix or acknowledge.
I’d Give this Book To: Fans of realistic fiction, coming of age narratives, and anyone looking for a unique hero from a misunderstood background. Also, people who like banned books and want to know why so many adults were scared of this book (if you figure it out, please tell me, because I've got nothing).

**Librarian Side Note** I know it was already mentioned above, but seriously, this book has been routinely banned and challenged for many years now, and we all know that nothing makes a book more enticing that labeling it FORBIDDEN!  Now get out there and check it out!

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Friday, July 4, 2014

The Reluctant Assassin by Eoin Colfer

Reviewed By: L.D.
Riley is an orphan who works for a "down and out" magician in Victorian London. The magician has sunk to breaking into people's homes, robbing and killing. He is training Riley to follow in his evil footsteps, but the first time he tries to force Riley to murder someone, that someone turns out to be a modern-day scientist who pulls both Riley and his magician boss through a wormhole back to modern-day London. Chevron Savano is a teenage FBI, in London standing watch over an inactive wormhole as punishment for a disastrous operation in Los Angeles. When Riley tumbles out of the wormhole, closely followed by the magician, he and Chevie must try to get away from his old boss, who wants to kill them both and take a bunch of 21st century knowledge and technology back to Victorian London so he can make his fortune.
Why I Picked it Up: I love time travel books and I like Eoin Colfer's Artemis Fowl series, so I thought it would be a good story. AND, the audiobook was a free download from SYNC (http://www.audiobooksync.com/about/)
Why I Finished It: The audio was very good. It was suspenseful, lots of twists and turns to the plot, and I had to see how it ended.
I’d Give this Book To: Anyone who likes YA time travel books; anyone who likes the Artemis Fowl series; anyone who likes suspense... just about anyone!

**Librarian Side Note** So I know it was already mentioned above, and in a comment from an earlier blog post, but you should definitely check out www.audiobooksync.com!  If you are a fan of audiobooks like me, you cant pass up FREE audiobooks for the summer!  While you may have missed your chance for The Reluctant Assassin, there are a ton of great books in the line up this summer.  Still want to hear The Reluctant Assassin instead of reading it??  We can always InterLibrary Loan something if we don't have it in our collection!

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Friday, June 27, 2014

The Selection by Kiera Cass

Reviewed By: A.C.
I prefer to think of this book as a Hunger Games turned princess story. Illea, the young country born from the ashes of the United States has a monarchy with a handsome young prince that must be married. the catch, he must chose from 35 women in varying states of poor from each province in the country. It is a lottery chance to go to the palace and win the heart of the prince, but it is a huge honor and the winner is automatically given a crown. America Singer is one such contestant but doesn't want to be. Will the prince be able to change her mind and win her heart or will the other princesses-in-training tear her apart.
Why I Picked it Up: I have a weakness for a good dystopian book and combined with princesses competing for a prince!? I just could not pass that up. Plus I had finished all my other books already.
Why I Finished It: SOOOOOOO much tension that I must know who stays and who goes, sadly it is a trilogy but all three books are out now and the library owns all of them.
I’d Give this Book To: Those in need of a dystopian fix and fans of the Hunger Games.

**Librarian Side Note** When I first saw this title, I was a bit skeptical about the whole idea, but I have heard NOTHING but FANTASTIC reviews of this! Plus, all the books in the series are out now (and available at the Library) so there is no waiting to find out what happens to America.

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Friday, June 20, 2014

Dorothy Must Die by D.M. Paige

Reviewed By: A.C.
We have all heard the story of the Wizard of Oz and how Dorothy saved Oz and every one in it by killing the wicked witch of the west. What happened after is a bit of a mystery. Dorothy and the Wizard go back home and Oz is ruled by the forces of good again. But then Dorothy comes back and messes Oz up. She is the complete selfish princess that girls have nightmares about. It doesn't help that if you don't do what Dorothy wants exactly when and how she wants it, you die. End of story. Oz will be destroyed by her destructive nature and her drinking unless....... The wicked witches turn wicked and creates an order to kill Dorothy. just remember, up is down and down is up!
Why I Picked it Up: There is a series of funny sketches on YouTube by epic reads called, Dorothy the real princess of Oz. They are a take on this book to advertise it. They made me want to read this book.
Why I Finished It: Oh My Gosh, it is funny and serious and the plot just keeps thickening. Let me just tell you, Dorothy really must die.
I’d Give this Book To: Fantasy lovers and people who like the Wizard of Oz, but I have to say that it is a bit on the mature side, just a warning.

**Librarian Side Note** When I first saw this title, I thought it was pretty funny, but now that I have seen this review, I have to read this! Also, now I have to go check out Epic Reads on YouTube.

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Friday, June 13, 2014

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

Reviewed By: A.W.
The Fault in our Stars is a fantastic book about two teenagers with cancer, with the book being spoken from the girl's point of view. They start dating and the book is about how their relationship grows through their experiences with the disease. It is a very emotional book that shows that you must make the best out of the life that you are given. The book definitely helps you see that cancer not only affects the people who have it, but also their friends and family as well. I really enjoyed reading the book and simply could not put it down.
Why I Picked it Up: My sister had read the book and told me that she thought it was amazing and that I would love it. She wanted me to read it so that I could tell her what I thought of it.
Why I Finished It: Towards the end of the book, I was in tears because it was so emotional. I read it in one day because I did not want to stop reading it. I thought it was an amazing book and I couldn't wait to see the movie.
I’d Give this Book To: I would recommend The Fault in Our Stars to anyone who enjoys reading books that are about love stories and can handle a sad ending.

**Librarian Side Note** Okay? Okay. :) Read it, love it, watch the movie. 'nuff said.

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