Friday, May 29, 2015

Twilight by Stephanie Meyer

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Author: Stephanie Meyer
Lexile: 720
Length: 486 Pages
Genre: Fantasy
Awards: None
Reading Ram Star Rating: 5 out of 5

           Bella Swan thinks her life has made a turn for the worse when she moves to Forks. Forks is a small rainy town in Washington, and a stark contrast to the huge sunny city of Phoenix, where she lived before. Her mother Renee and her boyfriend Phil have moved to Florida for a little while, and Bella chose to pick somewhere else to go. She chose Forks because, well, her real father lives there and she hasn't visited him in a while. Big mistake. 1, it is one of the rainiest places in the U.S., no joke. 2, she is the daughter of the Police Chief and gets a lot of unwanted attention at school. There is one good side to it though, Edward Cullen. Edward goes to her tiny high school, and is in a lot of her classes. As Bella becomes closer and closer to Edward romantically, he cannot hide his secret any longer. He is a vampire. With this knowledge, Bella's life takes a frightening turn. Is Edward really worth all this trauma?
           I really, really, really loved this book! No surprise, obviously. I know so many people have read it and gushed about it, but I am telling you, this book is worth it. As you probably saw, I gave this book 5/5 stars. So I am truly serious, this book is awesome! It has so much suspense and action! It was sooooooo amazing! You should seriously consider reading it. No, not consider. You should read it. In the beginning of the book, you knew something was up at school with the way Edward treated Bella, and that will just suck you in! It looks like a super long book, but it goes by really fast. You want it to be that long, trust me. It made me really sad when it was over, but at least it's a series! I finished it in about 2 days. Seriously. So yeah, you should read it. It is a little old for some 6th graders, and even some 7th graders, but it is still really good. There really aren't any super inappropriate parts in it, but this is still not a book for 5th or 4th graders. You should really try this book out in your free time! You will not regret it!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Summer Reading Programs!

Image result for cartoon person reading a book at a swimming pool

Hey readers!  Summer is here (thankfully), and now is a great time to get signed up for the summer reading program in your area.  There are free summer reading programs offered through the City of St. Louis library system, the St. Louis County library system, and the St. Charles City-County Library district.

Happy reading!

Friday, May 22, 2015

The Year We Sailed the Sun by Theresa Nelson

The Year We Sailed the Sum
Author: Theresa Nelson
Lexile: 940
Length: 417 Pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Awards: None
Reading Ram Star Rating: 4.9 out of 5 Stars

         Eleven year old Julia Delaney thinks everything has finally calmed down somewhat, after her father dying and whatnot. She lives with her older sister Mary at her aunt's house. Then, of course, Julia and her sister are taken by some Nuns to the House of Mercy. It is a girl's orphanage/school. Julia is constantly trying to get out and escape.Her older brother Bill keeps telling her to wait for the signal to leave, but she can't. Besides, going back means going into the Sin Room. Where the head Nun, Sister Maclovius, will be able to tighten her iron grip on Julia. But where would Julia go? She has nowhere, no family to go too. But Julia can dream, oh boy she can dream. She has dreamed of having her father and mother back, and her whole family moving to New York, or another place outside of St. Louis. She has never dreamed of going anywhere truly amazing. But will her life take a different path all on its own?
         I absolutely adored this book! It was so good! The story had so many twists and turns, it was amazing! It takes a little getting into, like maybe the first 100 pages, but it is still awesome! The way Julia changes in this book is incredible! It is probably my favorite historical fiction book of all time! Julia is named after a fiddle tune, which I think is cute. But she will not stand it if the person playing isn't her dad. since he's dead, she basically didn't want to hear it at all. This book is not inappropriate at all. I would recommend it to 5th grade through 7th grade. Just know that, as I said before, it is kind of hard to get into. The change in this book is so fast at the beginning, you're just thinking, what? But don't worry, I promise you will love it! You should definitely check this book out from the library, or even buy it, it's that good. I already want to read it again, so try it out!

Friday, May 15, 2015

Red Butterfly by A. L. Sonnichsen

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Red Butterfly
Author: A. L. Sonnichsen
Illustrator: Amy June Bates
Lexile: 830
Length: 392 Pages
Genre: Realistic Fiction
Awards: None
Reading Ram Star Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

           Kara lives in China, she's Chinese, but her "Mama" is not. Kara lives with an American woman in the Chinese province of Tianjin. She is an orphan, her parents left her out in the street one night to die. Then Mama took her in. Mama was very kind, but she didn't have very much money. She is also very old. Kara doesn't leave the apartment much, and she spends most of her time there. She has a few freedoms, a red bicycle, and she gets to occasionally go out to get groceries. Kara always wonders why they don't just move back to the U.S. with Mama's husband. Mama tells Kara not to want more, but she does anyway. Is it so wrong to want something even if you know it will never happen?
           I really liked this book, it was written very... interestingly. It was written in verse (Poetry)! So I kind of read it differently. For example, I read it with pauses between each of the lines. I still read it really fast, maybe in two hours. I also liked the illustrations, they were so cool! They were kind of blurry, but still pretty awesome. The reason I gave it 4 stars is because of the ending. It ended, well, I shouldn't say. But the ending was kind of strange. I don't think it should've ended that way! It was too much like a fairy tale I think. This book's lexile is only 830, so I guess that should be expected, but still. Books shouldn't always end like a fairy tale. It makes them boring. But other than that, it was awesome! I loved all the compassion and empathy Kara could feel throughout the book. I would recommend this book to kids 5th grade and up. Maybe not for High School though. I think adults would maybe like it. So it is a great book for book clubs, t has a lot of interesting discussion questions. You should definitely try it out in your free time!

Friday, May 8, 2015

The Expeditioners and the Treasure of Drowned Man's Canyon, by S. S. Taylor

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The Expeditioners and the Treasure of Drowned Man's Canyon
Author: S. S. Taylor
Lexile: 880
Length: 375 Pages
Genre: Dystopia
Awards: None
Reading Ram Star Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars

         Kit, M.K., and Zander are all alone in the world. Their father just died under mysterious circumstances while exploring new lands. Everyone is trying to find new places to get goods from for the United States and it's allies. Their father was one of those people, called Explorers. He left his children one day to go and explore a new mountain range, then it was though he was wiped off the face of the planet. The BNDL, an organization that controls these explorations declared that he was dead. But Kit and his siblings aren't so sure. Their father also left them part of a hidden map, but what was it a map of? And why was it only half, where was the other half of the map?  Kit and his siblings, M.K. the engineer, Zander the courageous, and himself being the brain and expert map reader would have to figure this out for themselves. They would have to solve the intricate puzzle left by their father, all the while avoiding contact with the BNDL.
        I really liked this book, it is pretty awesome. It is fairly Dystopic, because it is about a time where there are lots of new things, like new countries and stuff, but also still the United States. And their are a lot of high tech things, like steam powered machines, and new fruits, foods, and clothing. It is a Dystopia book that is way less intense than say, The Hunger Games. It is very well written, and the first book in a series, the next book is The Expeditioners and the Secret of King Triton's lair. Sorry if I confused anyone about that, this book is the first one. I really liked how the author compacted words together to make the names of new technologies. For example, SteamCycles, IronSteeds, that kind of thing. I would recommend this book to 5th graders and up. It is not a very challenging read, and I think that once you get into it, it is very hard to put it down. You should definitely try it out.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Michael Vey; Prisoner of Cell 25 by Richard Paul Evans

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Michael Vey; Prisoner of Cell 25
Author: Richard Paul Evans
Lexile: 500
Length: 336 Pages
Genre: Science Fiction, Young Adult
Awards: 2013 Truman Award
Reading Ram Star Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

         Michael Vey appears to be your ordinary teen at Meridian High School, in Meridian, Idaho. But in fact he's not. He is electric. Michael thinks he is the only one of his kind, he can shock people at will. But he isn't. And something, or someone is looking for all the people like him. All the people who have powers... like him. The something hunting them will stop at nothing to find it's prey. Michael has to figure out how to beat it, but how do you beat a multibillion dollar company? You don't. He has to find a way to stop them and get back what they took. But what can a 15 year old do? Even a 15 year old with special powers. 
          I LOVED this book so much! It is seriously one of the best books I have ever read! I think it might be (Gasp!) my favorite book ever, which is saying a lot. The story was just so interesting, with so many plot twists, and surprises, I couldn't put it down for a second! I started it one school day because I had seen other kids reading it, and I was bored. But man, am I glad I did! As soon as I finished the first chapter, I couldn't even put it down. When I had to leave, I realized that I had the book at home, so I went and kept on reading it there. This book may have a low lexile, but it really isn't directed toward a younger crowd. I think that it is good for all ages, elementary, middle school, high school, and even adults! It is a fun, well written story, that any age will enjoy and appreciate. Thankfully, the story doesn't end at this book, it's a series! There are 3 more books out that I know of, and I believe the author is working on the 5th one. But really, this book was so awesome. If you don't try it, you will really regret it! Just pick it up at the library sometime, I promise you will love it!