Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Rash of Reviews

Ok so I've been letting the book reviews pile up a little bit. This is due to several reasons, including but not limited to the fact that the computer chair is not comfortable (not many chairs are these days -- still pregnant) and the fact that my mom gets me out doing stuff instead of sitting around, and also I've been too busy reading the actual books!

Also, FYI, I'm reviewing these books for the library's summer reading program. Hence, my reviews will be a little bit more structured (each including a short summary followed by my opinion and a score out of 5). Tell me if you like the new structure or if you're ambivalent.

Scott Westerfeld, 372 pages, 2006.
Things have only gotten more complicated for Tally and the rest of the characters we loved and hated from Westerfeld's Uglies and Pretties. Now that Tally finally has the power to make things right, she has to ask herself if she wants to.

I would recommend this book to fans of the previous two books in the series, of YA fiction, and Sci-Fi. The book pulls some interesting stunts, managing to stay true to the style of the series without being predictable, and finally concludes the trilogy in what I found a satisfactory way. The whole series makes you think a lot (but not too much) about the values of different cultures, all while keeping you on the edge of your seat. */*/*/*

Evolution, Me, and Other Freaks of Nature
Robin Brande, 2007
On the first day of High School, Mena Reece finds herself in a bad situation: her former friends all hate her, her parents are not happy, and her church has made it known that she's not welcome at meetings. As Mena confronts several issues about her life and her beliefs, we find out what it was that Mena did to make everyone so upset.

I heard great things about this book before it even came out, and my library only just got a copy of the audio book (still no hardcopies -- wierd) so I checked it out and took a listen. I would recommend this book to fans of YA and Realistic Fiction. It will probably appeal most to girls, but my husband enjoyed listening to the audio book with me since the story is so intriguing. Brande does a great job weaving many plot threads together to create a thick, believable story. The book deals with issues that are important and thought provoking, but keeps things fun with a dab of romance and plenty of suspense. An enjoyable book. */*/*/*

Laurie Halse Anderson, 215 pages, 2005
Ashley is not the stereotypical high school girl. That is to say, she's not excited about her Senior Prom. But when her math teacher makes off with the Prom money, Ashley's friends are understandably upset. Roped into being a reluctant hero, Ashley finds the ideas flowing and her attitude toward Prom changing.

I would recommend this book to fans of YA and realistic fiction who don't mind a spoonful of "edgy" in their reads. Characters in the book swear and occasionally smoke or make other less-than-perfect decisions, but their consequences are portrayed realistically, and a believable, happy ending finishes things off. The writing is compelling and the humor is fun. I especially enjoyed the way that Ashley's family relationships were shown -- the characters did things that people in real life would do, which was a pleasure to read. */*/* (Readergirlz book for this month!)
Mmmkay, I've still got 2 more reviews for you, but I've been sitting here for too long. Look forward to hearing about The Wednesday Wars and Middle School is Worse Than Meatloaf!

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