Posts tagged !category: Review

Book Review: Gone (A)

Title: Gone
Author: Michael Grant
Publication Date:
June 2008
Genre:
Science-Fiction
*Pages: 576

Grade: A

Summary:

Sam Temple is just a regular guy in Perdido Beach, California, when all of sudden, all that’s left in the world is them. Little kids, all under the age of 15. All the adults and teenagers…they just blinked out without a warning; they just vanished them moment they turned 15. When people start turning to Sam for an answer, he doesn’t know what to do. Sure, he helped save a school bus of students once and dove into a fire to save someone…but that doesn’t mean he can lead. He’d rather just surf with his good buddy Quinn, or just hang out with perfect Astrid and her disabled little brother, Peter. He doesn’t want to face the bullies who are starting to take over town, or the even more powerful ones coming down from Coates Academy, school for the troubled kids, led by Caine. There was nowhere to run anymore that wasn’t blocked off by the barrier surrounding them, and mysterious powers and mutations were sudden multiplying. Turmoil is hurricaning through the town, and Sam can’t help but step back into the game and fight back against the bullies. Even if it meant risking his life, and watching as it tumbles faster and faster towards his birthday. His 15th birthday.

Review:

Gone is a very different kind of novel from what I usually read. I usually stick to pure reality, so Gone was quite a change. It was a good change though. It was a very suspenseful read, and despite its lengthy pages, it was worth it in the end. New twists and turns kept popping up through the course of the book, and you’re never left bored and without another question awaiting an answer. The novel was thrilling and a real page turner once you got into it.

There were also many different conflicts going on at once; there was Sam of course, battling his inner dislike to be leader, Sam with the bullies, and then Sam and his relationship issues with Quinn and Astrid… There was also another plot going on with Lana and her dog Patrick, who are stranded far off from Perdido beach and from civilization in general. Lots of things were going on in this novel, and I loved how Grant wrote from not only Sam’s perspective, but from the bullies, like Caine and then Lana. In the end, it was really nice to see how it all tied together.

Grant left the ending perfect for a sequel, which I can’t wait for. This is an especially good book if you’re someone who enjoys science-fiction with a dash of fantasy. An added plus: this is a teen book, but I found it’s actually suitable for younger ages too, like 10 or 11 (there wasn’t any sex or swearing, although you should be wary that some seens are a bit more graphically violent, if that’s something you mind).

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Book Review: The Opposite of Invisible (A++)

Title: The Opposite of Invisible
Author: Liz Gallagher
Publication Date:
January 2008
Genre:
YA Reality

Grade: A++(I *loved* this book)

Summary:

Alice is an outsider in her high school in Seattle, but it’s alright, because the outside is with Jewel, her best friend since forever. Together, they’re allowed to be different, they’re allowed to be their artistic selves and share everything they could ever possibly have to share. They may be invisible to the rest of the world, but to Alice, Jewel is the opposite of invisible. The boundries between visible and invisble start melting though, when suddenly Simon Murphy, Alice’s long time crush and one of the most popular guys in school finally notices her, and by some miracle, asks her to the Halloween dance. Suddenly, it feels like everything has been flipped over sideways, especially when Jewel decides to kiss her one day, right after Simon’s offer. How can someone so close to the edge of invisible suddenly turn so flamboyantly visible? But Jewel’s her best friend, and Simon is, well…he’s her long time crush, and seems even more perfect when she gets to know him. Is a perfect relationship worth losing Jewel though? The one she can spill all her secrets to?

Review:

(please pardon the really bad summary).

I *loved* this book. I loved it beyond words. Back in January, when I first heard of its release, I was skeptical in picking it up. So many other cool novels were coming out at the time, and I’d decided that I would skip this one. If I could go back in time now, I would tell myself to go back and reshelve all those other books and go straight to The Opposite of Invisible. I was even reluctant to grab it last week; it was more because I couldn’t find any books to take out (not that I didn’t have a bunch rotting in my room everywhere already). So I took it home, and since it looked short, I decided to give it a try (yes, I know, I know, not a good thing to do). I turned to the first page…and then couldn’t put it down! It was amazing (mind you, it was maybe 11 pm when I decided I didn’t feel like sleeping and started reading…on a school night. But I couldn’t stop. When I was finally too tired to continue, I finished the rest of it on the bus, which I rarely do, since reading in motion gives me headaches but…back to the point, this was a read that was worth the trouble!).

Liz Gallagher is a debut author, and she is definetly an author to watch out for. Not only was this novel witty and funny, it was just so captivating and cute. The basic idea, a not so popular girl catching the eye of a popular guy and losing her best friend that way, may be a bit unoriginal, but Ms Gallagher makes it work. The novel is full of imagery and metaphors…the writing really is beautiful. Its lyrical almost, poetic and unstopping. And Alice, the main character…wow. Just wow. I loved her. She was refreshingly different, but so easy to relate to. All the characters, in fact, were unique and likable.

If you’re going to get only one book at the library, or book store, or wherever, be sure to pick of The Opposite of Invisible (if you haven’t already 😉

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Book Review: The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary E. Pearson (A)

Here is my very first review. Criticism and comments are very much appreciated! (:

Title: The Adoration of Jenna Fox
Author: Mary E. Pearson
Publication Date: May 2008
Genre: Science-Fiction

Grade: A-

Summary:

Who is Jenna Fox? Who is the perfect girl with the perfect life on all those discs? Who is the girl her parents call a miracle? Jenna sure doesn`t know. After a year in a coma, Jenna doesn`t seem to know much of anything. She doesn`t know who her parents are, who her best friends were, and everything that had once made up her life, but she remembers everything about the French Revolution, and all the events that made up _____. She remembers every detail of a history much before her, and yet she couldn`t even recognize her own mother. Who was Jenna Fox? Who is she now?

In The Adoration of Jenna Fox, Jenna searches for the one thing no one else can give her, not even 16 discs documenting every year of her life: her identity. She needs to know who she is, and slowly, the edges of her past life, and the one that followed the brutal accident that should have destroyed her, are peeling away to show the secrets that it was hiding. The bits and pieces that made up her life are starting to reammerge, and with those memories come even more questions, with answers even Jenna is afraid to hear.

Review:

This novel was written brilliantly by Ms. Pearson. The writing just seems to flow in almost a poetic way, and the phrasing really draws you into the story. The emotions captured in the writing is absolutely unbelievable. You really follow Jenna as she slowly grows during the story, and the realization that comes with every new discovery. You feel extremely connected to her as you read, and the other characters are also drawn in such an interesting, raw way that you feel as if you know them or as if they were standing right in front of you.

The story itself is really powerful. It tells an enlarged story that seems to be every teen`s at some point. Who are you really, at the end of the day? Who is the real you, and who is the fake? This story truly makes you think about it, about who you are. What do all those odd bits and ends add up to? Jenna is fighting herself in this story, who she thinks she was, who she is, and who she thinks she should be.

If you haven`t read this novel yet, you definetly should. Ms Pearson definetly has a talent in writing; this novel was absolutely beautiful. It will keep you reading for hours, and when you`re done, you will without a doubt be exploring all the questions Jenna was trapped with, in your mind too.

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