November 11, 2015

Chaos Walking Trilogy by Patrick Ness


Hello Everyone,
Today I'm reviewing Patrick Ness's "Chaos Walking Trilogy" (aka the best trilogy ever).  The trilogy consists of The Knife of Never Letting Go  (#1), The Ask and the Answer (#2), and Monsters of Men (#3).  This review will be for all three of the books as a whole.

Prentisstown isn't like other towns. Everyone can hear everyone else's thoughts in an overwhelming, never-ending stream of Noise. Just a month away from the birthday that will make him a man, Todd and his dog, Manchee -- whose thoughts Todd can hear too, whether he wants to or not -- stumble upon an area of complete silence. They find that in a town where privacy is impossible, something terrible has been hidden -- a secret so awful that Todd and Manchee must run for their lives.
But how do you escape when your pursuers can hear your every thought?
-via Goodreads (summary of The Knife of Never Letting Go).
This is my favorite trilogy for many reasons, but I'll only list three:
1. Patrick Ness steers away from a lot of clich├ęs in the series.
 A lot of things in YA fiction have been written fifty million times, and so many books just seem like edited versions of other books.  This trilogy had a lot of new concepts and ideas though, nothing seemed "same old, same old" or boring.
2. Lots of Action!
I like action-packed books.  They are quite honestly my favorite.  I like books with more conversation in them too, but action is definitely my favorite as it satisfies my brain and keeps me interested. 
3. No "Good vs. Evil".
One thing about this series is that there never seems to really be one specific "bad guy".  There are characters who definitely seem like the bad guys at different points in the book, but it's not all "good guys and bad guys", there are no straight lines dividing good and evil.  

My overall opinion: 5/5 stars.
-Precautions -
Language: There is definitely language in this series.  There's not any other way to put it: there is language.  It's not to the point where it's annoying/unpleasant to read (they're not swearing every other syllable), but there is language.
Romance: There isn't a whole lot of romance overall, especially in the first book.  There are a few instances where certain things are mentioned, but it's all pretty subtle.
Violence: There is violence.  And  lots of it.  
Age rating: PG-13

You probably shouldn't read this series...
-If you dislike violence (or action in general).
-If you dislike strong language.
-If you are under the age of 12. (I would still encourage 13-14 year olds to use caution, it all depends on what you like and what you can handle.  

Overall, it's a great Young Adult trilogy, and you should read it! 



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May 13, 2015

Picture Me Gone by Meg Rosoff

Hello Readers!
Anna here, bringing you a book review about one of my recent reads...Picture Me Gone by Meg Rosoff. 
Mila has an exceptional talent for reading a room—sensing hidden facts and unspoken emotions from clues that others overlook. So when her father’s best friend, Matthew, goes missing from his upstate New York home, Mila and her beloved father travel from London to find him. She collects information about Matthew from his belongings, from his wife and baby, from the dog he left behind and from the ghosts of his past—slowly piecing together the story everyone else has missed. But just when she’s closest to solving the mystery, a shocking betrayal calls into question her trust in the one person she thought she could read best. 
-via Goodreads
I really enjoyed this book.  It talks about some pretty deep (and even kind of dark) stuff, but it was beautifully written.  
Over-all age rating- Definitely a young adult book, I'd say 14-15 and up and kind of PG.
Romance- There was definitely some romance in here...but not so much love and kisses as it was relationships falling apart.  This is part of the reason I rated it PG 14.
Violence- None.
Language- Some language.

Happy Reading!

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April 03, 2015

Catalina Currently Reading

Hi there, Adventurers! I hope everyone has been having a rocking 2015! With three months over, how many books have you crossed off of your reading list?
I'll be honest- I haven't crossed many off- in fact, my list seems to growing as I come across book recommendations from friends, family and most of all, shelves in bookstores!
So here are two books that I am reading and will be hopefully, writing a book review on soon!

When Wings Expand, by Mehded Maryam Sinclair
13591894She wrapped her arms around me and said, "Nur! I know. I don't want to go. But all I can do is keep trusting in Allah. Nur, I will always be with you! My love and advice will always be with you to guide you in the right direction." She patted my heart. "They are forever sealed inside this little place."

Writing on the pages of her journal, Nur, a teenage girl in Canada, charts the onset and advance of her mother's cancer. Nur watches her mother's body begin to shrink and her mood begin to darken. And when family and friends begin to encroach, Nur must face the prospect of her mother's looming death.

Nur bears the crushing loss and finds her adolescent life more demanding and complex. But with the legacy of her mother's love, her family's support, and the guidance of her faith, she manages to overcome the searing pain and use her newfound strength to bring joy to the lives of others, showing them that after death wings can expand.
-Goodreads





Never Let Me Go, by Kazuo Ishiguro
6334As children, Kathy, Ruth, and Tommy were students at Hailsham, an exclusive boarding school secluded in the English countryside. It was a place of mercurial cliques and mysterious rules where teachers were constantly reminding their charges of how special they were. Now, years later, Kathy is a young woman. Ruth and Tommy have reentered her life, and for the first time she is beginning to look back at their shared past and understand just what it is that makes them special--and how that gift will shape the rest of their time together.
-Goodreads










Well, that's what I'll be reading this month! What books are you Adventurers thinking about diving into next?
-Catalina Blue

February 25, 2015

Palace Of Mirrors by Margaret Peterson Haddix

Hi y'all! Hannah here. I'm doing another book review this one is Palace Of Mirrors by Margaret Peterson Haddix.



There's more to being a princess than wearing a tiara.
Cecilia knows she's not just another peasant girl. She is actually a princess hiding until the evil forces that killed her parents are vanquished. A commoner is on the throne as a decoy.
But it's hard for Cecilia to secretly study statesmanship and palace protocol and pretend she has nothing more on her mind than scrubbing gruel stains out of her best apron. So Cecilia decides to take charge. Along with her best friend, Harper, she flees to the capital city to reclaim her throne. But when Cecilia and Harper reach the famed Palace of Mirrors, they discover that Princess Desmia believes an entirely different version of the story...

My Review:
I LOVED this book! The whole book was very interesting and exciting and the ending was SO creative! My one note is that it could have been a LITTLE faster in the story line.

Rating:

Romance: 2 out of 5
Violence: 2 out of 5
Language: 0 out of 5
Age: 12+ (It was labeled Young Adult)

Hope y'all enjoyed!

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Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry by Mildred D. Taylor

Hi Guys!
Anna here doing another book review... this one is about Roll of Thunder, Hear my Cry by Mildred D. Taylor.

Why is the land so important to Cassie's family? It takes the events of one turbulent year—the year of the night riders and the burnings, the year a white girl humiliates Cassie in public simply because she's black—to show Cassie that having a place of their own is the Logan family's lifeblood. It is the land that gives the Logans their courage and pride—no matter how others may degrade them, the Logans possess something no one can take away.
^vid Goodreads^
This book is a really good one.  I read it for school a couple of years ago, and then read it again recently and I loved it.
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Romance: None
Violence: Level 3- There is definitely some violence, for example shooting, and there is mention of other violence like hanging, but nothing goes into great detail.
Age Rating: I'd have to say 13+
Hope this book review was helpful!
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Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt

Hey Guys!
Anna here today, reviewing one of my favorite books, Tuck Everlasting by Natalie Babbitt.
"What if you could live forever?"
Doomed to - or blessed with - eternal life after drinking from a magic spring, the Tuck family wanders about trying to live as inconspicuously and comfortably as they can. When ten-year-old Winnie Foster stumbles on their secret, the Tucks take her home and explain why living forever at one age is less a blessing that it might seem. Complications arise when Winnie is followed by a stranger who wants to market the spring water for a fortune.
^via Goodreads^
Winnie is a ten year old girl bored out of her brain.  When she happens across a family with a secret, she experiences her first real adventure-and is faced with a difficult choice.
This book is so good.  It's beautifully written; sad sometimes, but over all a very enjoyable read.
My rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Romance: None.
Violence: Level 2.  There's some, not too much, but still probably not good for younger kids.
Age Rating:  I'd say 12+, not really that it's not appropriate for kids younger than that but it's hard to understand sometimes and gives you a lot to think about.
Hope you guys enjoyed this review!  Have a great day!

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January 30, 2015

Kingdom Keepers by Ridley Pearson

Hi y'all! Hannah here. I'm doing another book review! This book series is called The Kingdom Keepers, but I'm just doing a review for the first book and it's called Disney After Dark.




















*Disney After Dark*

Description:

In this fantastical thriller, five young teens tapped as models for theme park “guides” find themselves pitted against Disney villains and witches that threaten both the future of Walt Disney World and the stability of the world outside its walls. Using a cutting-edge technology called DHI–which stands for both Disney Host Interactive and Daylight Hologram Imaging–Finn Whitman, an Orlando teen, and four other kids are transformed into hologram projections that guide guests through the park. The new technology turns out, however, to have unexpected effects that are both thrilling and scary. Soon Finn finds himself transported in his DHI form into the Magic Kingdom at night. Is it real? Is he dreaming?
Finn’s confusion only increases when he encounters Wayne, an elderly Imagineer who tells him that the park is in grave danger. Someone, known as the "Overtakers", are plotting to destroy Disney’s beloved realm, and maybe more.
This gripping high-tech tale will thrill every kid who has ever dreamed of sneaking into Walt Disney World after hours and wondered what happens at night, when the park is closed.

My Review:

I really enjoyed this book. It was very captivating and intriguing. As a younger kid, and now;), I have always wondered what Walt Disney World was like after dark, and this book kind certainly gave an idea of what might happen after dark. Over all I loved this book!

My Rating:

Romance: None 
Violence: None 
Language: None 
Age: 12+ 

I would rate this book 4 out of 5. The reason why I'm not giving it a perfect score is because it could be a little better in my personal opinion. Here's why:  First: It can be a little confusing in the first 5 chapters. My 12 year old brother asked me a lot of questions about them, since I read it before him, and I understood why I did as well. If you are like my brother you judge a book by the first few chapters in it, but YOU CANNOT DO THAT if you read this book. It answers all of your questions throughout the book. Second: I think the author could have talked a little more about the "chosen ones".  He didn't really tell why they were chosen. Third: He could have been a little more creative and used more stuff about Disney World. 

Well that's all I had to say!;) 

Hope y'all enjoyed!



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January 08, 2015

Dragonsdome Chronicles 2: Flight to Dragon Isle by Lucinda Hare

Hello people of the world, it's Kat and today I thought I'd write a review for Flight to Dragon Isle. Now it is a sequel, but I hope you can still understand this!


Blurb: A brutal war against the united hobgoblin tribes rages, and Quenelda longs to accompany her hero Dragon Lord father into battle. But when the elite Stealth Dragon Services is ambushed and defeated - due to the dark treachery of the Grand Master - and her father is presumed dead, the Seven Sea Kingdoms are thrown into turmoil.


Evil plots swirl - with even Quenelda's own beloved dragon in mortal danger - but Quenelda finds a magical, secret solace at the heart of the fabled fortress Dragon Isle. Can she use her new powers to set the tide of victory turning against the hobgoblins?
via Goodreads

Romance: 2 out of 5 | surprisingly little. Quenelda didn't have a love interest, but other people were getting engaged. Nothing bad!

Violence:  4 out of 5 | It's a war, there are bound to be a bit, but nothing is gory or anything. So just relax.

Language: 1 out of 5 | None caught my eye. I don't think there was anything. If there was it was very small!

Age: 9+ | Almost anyone would enjoy this book!

Rating: 3 out of 5 | Disappointing

My Thoughts: This is where it get a little bit heated. You see, I adore The Dragon Whisperer. It is one of my most favourite book, but then this book come along and I high hopes and it was a little disappointing.

It sort of skimmed over bits, especially that moment that Quenelda had been waiting for her WHOLE LIFE!

Also, they killed off one of the best characters which still has me crying. PEOPLE WHO ARE GOING TO READ THIS, BE WARNED!!!

On the upside though, there were plenty of new characters which was great. It was nice to meet some more characters. Also Darcy's character was expanded and fleshed out, which was good. He still needs more work though.

I am left on tendered hooks though, the villain (shan't mention his name in case there are readers who haven't read The Dragon Whisperer). I'm wondering whether something is seriously wrong with him. Is he dying, is he very sick? I have hopes that the next book will play around with that a bit more. That would be awesome!

****
Anyway, that's my review for this book. If you enjoyed The Dragon Whisperer then you might like to read this book. Definitely not as good as the first, but worth the read!
 

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January 07, 2015

Live Original by Sadie Robertson

Hi y'all! Hannah here! I'm doing another book review called Live Original by Sadie Robertson.



Description:

Sadie Robertson represents everything that a well-adjusted teenager should be, even while growing up in the spotlight on Duck Dynasty. She exhibits poise, respect for her family and friends, and a faith that influences her choices. Everyone wants to know how a family as eclectic as the Robertsons are raising such confident, fun, family-loving kids. With this book, Sadie sheds light on the values instilled by her family that make her the person she is. 

Sadie lives by a simple list of principles that lead her to personal and spiritual growth and allow the relationships she has with her friends and family to flourish. These values include think happy, be happy; dream big; shake the hate; do something; and many more.
Living as a culturally relevant teen who loves God and her family, Sadie has become a role model for other teens and for parents who are eager to instill the same characteristics in their children.
 

My Review:

This is my such a good book. Sadie shows you how to live original, standing up for yourself, being happy, and so much more. It has encouraged me to be a better person. One of my favorite things about this book is that it has a bible verse before every chapter and it also has verses throughout the book as well.  

Rating: 

I rate this 5 out of 5!

Romance: 2 out of 5.  It does talk about relationships.
Violence: 0 out of 5.
Language: 0 out of 5.
Age: 11+

Hope y'all enjoyed!
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