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Showing posts from May, 2019

Uglies by Scott Westerfield

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Uglies by Scott Westerfield



After spending four years with other Uglies in a dormitory, pulling all kinds of tricks, you finally grow up and become a Pretty on your sixteenth birthday. That’s what Talla had been looking forward too. Her best friend Peris was three months older than her, living lavishly in New Pretty Town, going to fancy parties, dressing up and having the time of his life. Alone and lonely, that was when Talla met Shay. Shay would turn sixteen the same day Talla would! But Shay wasn’t sure if she wanted to be a Pretty. And the stories she told Talla about a place where your looks didn’t matter, where you could live without looking pretty like everyone else, seemed appalling to her. But when Shay runs away Talla might not have a choice of whether or not she wants to be a Pretty. Someone might have just stripped that choice away. This new world Westerfield created where you become a Pretty and everything is perfect, everyone looks the same, no troubles, no care is downr…

Let me Hear a Rhyme by Tiffany D. Jackson with lyrics by Malik "Malik-16" Sharif

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Let me Hear a Rhyme by Tiffany D. Jackson with lyrics by Malik "Malik-16" Sharif


They had no idea if this plan would really work. Steph was dead but that didn’t mean his memory had to be. All the tapes he had under his bed, the cd they found, the notebooks filled with lyrics all seemed like possibilities to Steph’s two best friends Jarrell and Quadir and his little sister Jasmine. It gave Jarrell and Quadir a chance to put their best friend on the map. And Jasmine only agreed to help if they promised to help find out who killed her big brother. They had a chance to make Steph a legend, a star. But there were so many things they didn’t know about Steph and there was no way they could have known how dangerous his lyrics could be.
Everyone handles grief in different ways and I find it very interesting the way these three characters handle their grief by continuing to love and honor their friend through his novel. This is as much a novel about three teenagers dealing with grief a…

The Crossover by Kwame Alexander

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The Crossover by Kwame Alexander


I am absolutely loving the amount of Middle Grade/Young Adult novels that I am seeing in verse. In the hands of capable authors like Kwame Alexander they are absolutely extraordinary. This is the first novel I’ve read by Alexander and needless to say I plan on eventually owning them all if any of them are anywhere near the level of skill that is on display in this one. The Crossover is the story of twelve-year old Josh Ball, the only kid his age that can dunk. He’s on the same team as his very talented twin brother Jordan. Their mom is the assistant principal at their school, so their education is just as important as their skills on the court. And their dad, now retired, once played on a championship European team. While Josh has his eyes on a championship, Jordan only has eyes for his girlfriend. With the two seemingly longing for different things, a fracture occurs that not only affects the family, but the team. This book was good because as much as …

How We Disappeared by Jing-Jing Lee

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How We Disappeared by Jing-Jing Lee


This is a story about family. It’s a story about war. It’s a story about surviving. A story about living after loss. It’s a story of healing and a story about the passing of time. It’s a story of teenage girl taken from her family during World War II and forced to live for years in a brothel as a comfort woman. It’s the story of a women married to a man for decades, who both suffering from the pains of war, never really knew each other or shared their past. It’s the story of a boy whose grandmother left him with a truth that he doesn’t know how to share. This novel takes place in Singapore during both World War II and the early 21st century. It focuses heavily on the atrocities committed by the Japanese during the war and the affect that had on the Chinese communities during and after the war for generations to come. Lee did a beautiful job weaving these stories together and creating these characters. She created such interesting family dynamics that…

With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo

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With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo


This is one of those books that once you start reading it you can’t put it down. The words just flow through the page, the characters become your friends and you feel entwined in their lives. This story of Emoni, the seventeen-year-old Puerto Rican mother, doing her best to raise her child, finish her senior year in high school and working when she can to help her abuela financially is extremely well done. Emoni loves to cook and that loves is poured into every creation she makes, bringing those who try her food to feel unexpected emotions. Some people call what she can do in the kitchen magic. But she still has a baby father to contend with, classes that she struggles with and a fear of what the future will hold. When an opportunity arises to take a Culinary Arts class at her school, she hesitates but only for a second.
I didn’t want this book to end. I honestly could have devoured a hundred more pages of this novel. I was way to caught up in…

Dactyl Hill Squad by Daniel José Older

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Dactyl Hill Squad by Daniel José Older


This is the story of a group of young orphans, led by our main character Magdalys, who lived at the Colored Orphan Asylum in New York during the Civil War. That is before it was burned down in the Draft Riots leaving Magdalys and her friends homeless and in search of the other orphans who they fear have been kidnapped by the magistrate, Richard Riker and sent down south to slavery. Did I mention they escaped on the back of brachiosaurus? A brachiosaurus they may or may not have been controlled by Magdalys’s mind? Because dinosaurs are alive and well in this historical fantasy novel and they might be the key to helping Magdalys find her friends and hopefully her family.
I don’t know where to begin with this novel! I had so much fun reading it but it’s set in such a horrible point in our history that shrouds over it. In Dactyl Hill Squad you have this incredible adventure novel, where dinowrangling is real and it’s nothing to ride on a Triceratops p…