Tuesday, July 22, 2014

My Name is Mary Sutter, by Robin Oliveira

In My Name is Mary Sutter, by Robin Oliveira, Marry Sutter dreams of becoming a surgeon even if she has to overcome the prejudices against women. When the Civil War breaks out Mary leaves home against her mother's wishes to go to Washington D.C. to fulfill her dream. Her mother desperately needs her at home to take care of her sister, but Mary doesn't want to give up. As her mother's pleas become more desperate Mary has a life changing decision to make.

This book was a riveting historical novel that truly explored the hardships of the Civil War. The issues that Mary faces come to life and were relatable to people in the 21st century. I highly recommend this book to all. The pacing of the book allowed for the reader to decide what he/she would have done in that particular situation. This makes My Name is Mary Sutter a fascinating read that is hard to put down.

Reviewed by Jackie, grade 9
Montrose Crescenta Library

Monday, July 21, 2014

Marked, by P.C Cast + Kristen Cast

In a world where vampires have always existed, 16 year old Zoey Redbird has just been Marked as a fledgling vampire and joins the House of Night, a school where fledglings learn how to blossom and become successful once they fully Change. But all who go through the Change make it. Zoey is no average fledgling though. She has been chosen by the vampire goddess Nyx to do the things she can't. Zoey now has these weird powers on the leader of the Dark Daughters-- the elite group of fledglings-- in order to save her friends and her school.

Marked, by P.C Cast + Kristen Cast books are like drugs. You need to keep reading to satisfy your cravings to know what happens next. I have this addiction to this book, i don't know if its good addiction for reading, or its bad because i spent over $50 trying to read them all (i should have gone to the library) but this has so many good plot twists and so much drama! Along with lots of supernatural things.They are great for short reads, i could read one in a day. So be careful. Overall i think they keep dragging this series on, but the story is sooooo good

Reviewed by Emily, grade 9
Montrose Crescenta Branch

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Beautiful Music For Ugly Children, by Kirstin Cronn-Mills

Beautiful Music For Ugly Children, by Kirstin Cronn-Mills revolves around a girl named Liz or shall I say a boy named Gabe. He is in his senior year and close to graduation. He has his own DJ radio show where he can actually be Gabe and be proud of who he is. He begins to embrace Gabe, as he calls it, "his B side", right after high school, and goes through hardships along with his best friend Page, his neighbor John, and his family, who have yet to come to terms with who he is. 

The title alone got me interested. It's that type of book that I have never encountered before and I loved it. It showed me the bonds of friendship, the acceptance of family, and how much hatred there is in the world along with how much love that equals it. It made me think that no matter what, people will still love you for who you are. I believe this book may or may not be an eye opener for some people who have very strong opinions against transsexuals, lesbians, gays, and bi-sexuals. It may even change their views to be accepting of others. Overall, I recommend this book to anyone and everyone, it's amazing.

Reviewed by Anahit T., grade 12
Glendale Central Library

Monday, July 14, 2014

Season of Secrets, by Sally Nicholls

Season of Secrets, by Sally Nicholls, is about a girl named Molly who moved to the country to live with her grandparents and sister Hannah. One night her sister Hannah wakes up and comes to her and asks to leave because the place is they live is old and boring. Molly tries to convince her not to leave but they both run off into the night and Hannah leaves her and runs home to grandparents. Molly finds a man that is being chase that says run away and be safe. She runs back to her grandparents house and the next day she sets out to find the man. When she finds him she gives him food and become friends. She finds out he has magical powers because he is able to grow a plant in his hand and transfer it to the ground. Molly also discovers that he is hiding from the Holy King who was chasing at the night she was running away. What would the future hold for Molly, her family, and the magical man?

In my opinion, this story is very dramatic. The main character Molly must find a way to move on with the way her life is going and must overcome the obstacles. The seasons in this story reflect a new beginning. In the beginning life is hard for her since she is forced to move away from her original life. I enjoyed this book because it teaches us that life has its ups and downs and we must learn to overcome the difficult times. As her life progresses she meets a magical man that gives her life hope and meaning. I really enjoyed this book because Molly's gives the life lesson to the reader to learn and accept life as it is.

Reviewed by Tiffany, grade 8
Grandview Library

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Choke, by Diana Lopez

Windy is a normal eighth grade girl that becomes friends with a girl named Nina. Nina is in the popular group, so it is a huge change for Windy to be friends with a girl in the popular group. They soon become closer friends, but then realize that they would like to become even closer friends. They want to be breath sisters. To be a breath sister, the other friend has to choke you until you slightly pass out. Then she or he has to wake you up, and you do the same to him or her. Will Windy risk her life to be in the popular group and to become a part of the "in" crowd? Or will she make the right choice and just stay nothing but friends with Nina? Read this fantastic book to see what choice Windy makes.

There were some things that I liked and some things that I didn't like about Choke, by Diana Lopez. I loved the fact that it took place in middle school, because when I was reading it I was i middle school. As I read through the book, I realized how relatable the book was to real life. The way some of the people acted in class or even walking through the halls. I didn't like the fact that there was a "popular group" that acted all snobby, because that isn't how it was in middle school. There was always a "popular goup" but not one that was as powerful as the one in the book. I feel like middle school kids, or ninth graders would love to read this book, because I feel like they could all relate to some of the situations that happened in the book. I really liked this book, and hope that someone will like it too!
Reviewed by Anonymous, Grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Pretty Guardian: Sailor Moon Book 4, by Naoko Takeuchi

In  Pretty Guardian: Sailor Moon Book 4, by Naoko TakeuchiAmi and Usagi are in the same school and Sailor Mars goes to a private school so they do not see each other. Ami and Usagi find out there is a new girl on campus who everyone is intimidated by her because of her height and the rumor about why she switched schools, the rumor is she was kicked for fighting. But not Usagi, she does not care what the rumor says she is determined to become friends with her, and she becomes friends with her. When the Sailor Moon, Mars, Mercury, and the new girl are out they come faced with another Nega monster and they are over powered. When the new girl is caught by the monster she becomes Sailor Jupiter.

The Sailor scouts meet a new scout. She is seen as a mean looking girl but Sailor moon sees her differently and is determined to become friends with her. This gives a great life lesson. the lesson is, do not judge a person for what you hear about them, make a decision for your self. I believe the new Sailor Scout Sailor Jupiter will be a great asset to the team and make the book more interesting and fun in later books.

Reviewed by Nichole Z., grader 9
Glendale Central Library

Monday, June 30, 2014

Shadowland, by Alyson Noel

Ever and Damen are two teenagers who love each other. After many years of searching for his soul mate who keeps mysteriously coming and going out of his life, Damen is finally reunited with Ever. The only resolution he can think of to keep her with him forever, is turning her into an immortal. Just when they are starting to make up for the lost time, a curse has been set upon him and is forcing them to be separated. Ever is doing everything she can to seek the antidote that is hidden by the one who cursed Damen, Roman. Meanwhile, Ever is hired for a job by a 19 years-old boy named Jude who seems strangely familiar. Damen tells her why and gives her space to make a difficult decision that might mean losing him. 

Shadowland, by Alyson Noel is one of the best I have ever read. I like books that are in a series because they don't end and the story keeps going on and on. This book is basically based on true love. There are conflicts and big obstacles that have to be faced. There are a lot of mistakes done that have to be fixed. Responsibility is also a big challenge for all the characters. When I started to read this book, I didn't want to put it back down to take a break. I only took a pause when I started to have a headache. That's how good the book is. This book encourages me to keep reading and see what happens next till I get to the very last page and have to wait until I can get my hands on the next one... at the library! 

Reviewed by Lou, grade 8
Grandview Library

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

The Known World, by Edward P. Jones

The Known World, by Edward P. Jones, is a series of stories regarding the death of Henry Townsend. Henry Townsend, a black plantation owner, is a freed slave who has started his own plantation with his own slaves. We switch off from his slaves, his childhood, and the lives of surrounding characters to learn about his life and the events his death caused. To start off, Moses, the overseer slave, is the first slave Henry ever bought. He is extremely loyal up until Henry's death. However, when he develops feelings for Henry's widow, Caldonia, trouble arises. It is a time where slaves are as vulnerable as ever, running away, being cruelly punished, and very few laws protecting them. There is a strict division between what is thought, and what should be thought. Regardless of "free papers", a colored person is subject to discrimination, and in some cases is stolen back into slavery. The stories surrounding Henry Townsend's death not only teach the leader of his life, they teach the reader parts of history that were ignored.

My first few days reading The Known World were unpleasant, and continued to be unpleasant. This novel seems senseless, theme less, and requires excessive thought to decipher its true meaning. I found myself confused often, having to reread and constantly looking up unfamiliar words in the dictionary. One factor that contributed to this confusion was the Jones's writing technique: prolepsis. Prolepsis is when the author is the "god" of those in the story therefore he knows every detail of their lives. This is revealed constantly in the text in instances such as the circumstances in which a newly introduced character was born or will die. I found The Known World to be a horrible book, and would not recommend it to anyone except perhaps a historian. 

Reviewed by Kristine K., grade 10
Casa Verdugo Library

Monday, June 23, 2014

The Battle of the Labyrinth, by Rick Riordan

We once again join Percy Jackson, son of Poseidon, at Camp Half-Blood. During training, Percy and Annabeth find an entrance into the Labyrinth and find out that Luke has been there before. They figure that Luke will lead his army in through the Labyrinth and ambush the camp from within. They must find Daedulus before Luke does, so that he won't know where to go in the Labyrinth. Will Camp Half-Blood stay protected or will this be it's final stand? 

Usually, I would love this book because it's part of the Percy Jackson series. But, I honestly didn't like this one. To me it was kind of like a few of the others.The plot line was the same, Percy is in a race against time, making sure that Luke does not succeed. The Battle of the Labyrinth, by Rick Riordan, was kind of bored me, but it did have some twists that I was surprised when I read. This book kind of saddened me too, because you could tell they're preparing for the final book of a great series.Definitely not my favorite for the series standard, but an okay book. 

Reviewed by Julian, grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Fallout, by David Michaels

A spy named Sam Fisher finds himself on another mission, but this time it's for revenge. His brother is found dead due to radiation poisoning. As Fisher follows his brothers traces, he finds out that it's not one man that killed his brother, it is an entire organization of terrorists and religious extremist. It's also not about vengeance anymore, it now concerns the whole world. This organization dreams of no future, so they created an irradiated virus that can destroy all of the world's oil supply. It's up to Fisher to save the world and any hopes of a future. 

Tom Clancy's Splinter Cell: Fallout, by David Michaels, will keep you on the edge of your seat the entire way, it contains action on almost every page. The action isn't wimpy at all, in fact, I would not recommend this for those who are squeamish. However, I would recommend this book for those who love spies or stealth. I thought that it took too long for the plot to escalate and that it took a while even for the main plot to start. The book also has a bit of mystery which was nice to see. I personally liked the book and will be reading more of the series. 

Reviewed by Julian, grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Monday, June 16, 2014

Timeline, by Michael Crichton

In France, a team of archaeologists are exploring mysterious medieval ruins. One of them, Professor Johnston starts to question why the company that hired them pays so much attention to just that area. So he went to their headquarters and there is no trace of him, except when they find his glasses and a note of help from him that seems as old as the ruins. So three fellow archaeologists, Chris, Kate and Andre go to the company headquarters where Professor Johnston was last seen. The company explains to the three that Professor Johnston in fact did travel back in time with their latest technology. Now it's up to Chris, Kate and Andre to also go back in time and find their missing professor as well as the story to the ruins. 

I thought Timeline, by Michael Crichton, was very visual, everything would be described as if you put a magnifying glass up to it. There are great action scenes in the book, as well as intellectual parts. A bit confusing at times, since the book is about time travel, it switches from past to present very much so. It was even a little boring at times, but the suspense does build and it is definitely worth getting through the rough patches. Overall, a great book, however I would recommend this for older teens and up, mainly because you kind of have to know some extent of history. 

Reviewed by Julian, grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Monday, June 9, 2014

The Hoopster, by Alan Lawrence

I chose  The Hoopster, by Alan Lawrencebecause I decided to change my "book reading routine" and read a book about sports. The story I read was completely different than what I expected. Andre, an African-American and the main character, is a superb writer who works at Affairs magazine as the printer is suddenly given the task of writing about racism. His article raised the amount of readers and he was given a raise; but his good fortune was short lived when he got ambushed by a viscous gang of racist and they broke his right hand which wouldn't let him play the sport he loved and beat him up badly which threw him into an all too quiet depression.

My favorite quote is "'Revenge? How can someone really ever get revenge, Andre.....It doesn't exist.'" because what Andre's dad is saying is true. Sure, he can do what someone else did to him, but would it make him happy? I think not. The author really captured the slang that people use and put it in the story, making it a lot more realistic. I would actually recommend this book to anyone who likes drama and a "satisfying ending" ending kind of book because it has those genres in this book. 

Reviewed by Narek A., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, by Ransom Riggs

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children, by Ransom Riggs, is about a sixteen year old Jacob sets out to find about the truth of his grandfather's death.He goes to Wales, a place where his grandfather grew up in, and meets a girl named Emma. She can control fire. Emma takes Jacob to an orphanage where his grandfather lived in. All the children there are peculiar, they all have special abilities. Jacob is the only one who can see the hollowgasts, these creatures are responsible for his grandfather's death. Jacob kills the creatures and returns to the orphanage to discover that Miss Peregrine is kidnapped. When they find her she is in bird form and can't change back into a human. The children leave the the orphanage in Wales and look for a new home

This novel was different from my normal reads. I still liked the story line and the characters. It was fascinating to read about how all these kids had different abilities. I also liked the black and white pictures it had. Definitely a 5 out of 5 stars from me. 

Reviewed by Karla S., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Monday, May 26, 2014

The Lost World, by Michael Crichton

More than half a decade has passed since the Ingen incident. Jurassic Park was destroyed, and the dinosaurs were killed. However people like scientist Richard Levine don't believe so. There are rumors of a second island, known as Isla Sorna, that is believed to contain dinosaurs like the ones at Jurassic Park. To try to find truth to this, Levine confronts a survivor of the Ingen incident, Ian Malcom, asking him if he would be willing to lead an expedition on the island. Ian declined. However, Levine would not give up and went to the island himself. Contact with Levine is soon lost, and his colleagues are thrown into panic. Now, Ian Malcom must lead a search team to find Levne. While on the island, Ian's team face dangers, like the dangerous dinosaurs he faced before, and poachers who are trying to steal dinosaur eggs. It's a race against the clock as Ian's team scramble to find Levine, and survive the deadly dinosaurs.

The Lost World, by Michael Crichton, is a good book, and great continuation of Jurassic Park. The Lost World will stand up to the standard set by it's predecessor. It has frightening excitement at every turn, and is a great scientific adventure. I like this book almost as much as I did the first. However, I highly recommend reading Jurassic Park before The Lost World, because, I feel it'll make reading The Lost World a much more enjoyable experience. 

Reviewed by Gian R., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Ethan Frome, by Edith Warthon

Ethan Frome, by Edith Warthon begins in first person, speaking through the voice of the narrator. Ethan Frome is a man trodden with hardship. The death of his parents leaves him with a farm to care for by himself, and his wife's chronic illness is also in his responsibility. Ethan finds one light in his gloomy life, and that is the house maid Zeena. He and Zeena can not be together, though.

I liked this book. It was a short read, and the characters were believable. It was easy to follow, and very obviously a love story. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a short read and for teens of all ages. 

Reviewed by Anonymous, grade 11
Pacific Park Library

Monday, May 19, 2014

Batman: Arkham City, by Paul Dini

This comic takes place after the events of Batman Arkham Asylum. It centers around Batman's quest to find out the truth behind the mysterious Arkham City. Arkham City is a super prison for super criminals, and normal criminals alike. However, something sets this prison apart from others. it will be placed in the middle of Gotham City. Batman sees this as a problem, and he to tries to discourage Arkham City. Try as he might, the mysterious figurehead behind Arkham City is too powerful for even Batman to overpower. Now, Batman must face brutal gang wars, numerous super criminals, and an army of foes trained specifically to take him down, all placed in the heart of Gotham City. 

Batman: Arkham City, by Paul Dini has an interesting story line, and spectacular art. It has a chance to see what Batman is thinking about as he works as the detective he is. It makes you want to know who the mysterious mastermind behind the just as mysterious Arkham City is. It'll especially cater to fans of the comics or video games. If you are a comic fan, it's worth a read. If you are a batman fan, you should definitely give it a read. This one adventure of the Caped Crusader that you won't want to miss.

Reviewed by Gian R., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Jurassic Park, by Michael Crichton

A mysterious company called, "Ingen" had been working on a top secret project for five years. As this mysterious project nears completion, the project must be checked by dinosaur experts Alan Grant, and Ellie Sattler, along with mathematician Ian Malcom. The top secret project turns out to be a geological zoo called, "Jurassic Park," filled with genetically created dinosaurs. This prehistoric zoo would no doubt dazzle people of all ages, until disaster strikes. A rogue worker shut down the park, allowing the dinosaurs to run free. Now with danger at every turn, the human inhabitants of Jurassic Park must fight for their very survival.

Take it from someone who's read this book a few times, Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton is a epic adventure of prehistoric proportions. Even if you've seen the film, the book Jurassic Park is worth at least one read-through. Jurassic Park is filled with suspense, and terror, action and adventure, while still catering to the scientific thinker. It probes the question,"Could dinosaurs be cloned?" Jurassic Park is one of my favorite books of all time, I very much enjoy its tense mood, and I think you should give this adventure story a try. 

Reviewed by Gian R., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Monday, May 12, 2014

The New Dead, by Christopher Golden

The New Dead by Christopher Golden is a zombie anthology book. In the book, there are stories about military might in the beginning of an outbreak, survival in a deserted wasteland, the passion of falling in love with a zombie, and a family outing at a circus. With stories from John Connolly, Kelley Armstrong, David Liss, Jonathan Maberry, and many others, this is an insanely diverse and amusing collection.

In my opinion, The New Dead is a fantastic book to read. There are many types of writing styles included in this book. If you like books that express many writing styles, I highly recommend this book. When I read this book for the first time, I was very skeptical about the book. After reading it for a while, I was able to enjoy it more because there was a new story every time.

Reviewed by Bernard M., grade 9
Pacific Park Library

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The Son of Neptune, by Rick Riordan

The book, The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan, is a fantasy story about how Percy Jackson is found by a pack of wolves and trained to be a warrior. He doesn't know how he got there, but after getting chased by the sisters of Medusa, he stumbles upon a camp made for half-bloods. He then goes on to find out he is a half-blood, and meets two other half-bloods, Hazel and Frank. Now it's Frank, Hazel, and Percy's mission to go and rescue the eagle standard which belonged to Camp Jupiter though was lost in a battle against the titans. To bring back hope to the camp, Percy has to use all his power to get the eagle standard back. 

In my opinion this was a great continuation of The Lost Hero of The Heroes of Olympus. I like how we know who Percy is, yet he doesn't, so it brings a feeling of dramatic irony into the story to the point you want to go into the story and tell Percy yourself! The characters are also very well written in terms of their back-story, so that each one of them has their own secret in which they are keeping from each other. They all have such different personalities yet they blend so great so that they can get each task done with as little consequences as possible. Overall, it has a great feel to it with a great blend of action and drama.

Reviewed by Arvin O., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy, by Ally Carter

http://catalog.gpl.internal/ipac20/ipac.jsp?session=139E9B4U03572.21068&profile=gcent&uri=link=3100007~!932292~!3100001~!3100002&aspect=browse_search_page&menu=search&ri=1&source=~!horizon&term=Cross+my+heart+and+hope+to+spy+%2F&index=PALLTI#focusCammie Morgan, a young spy, just wants one normal semester for a change. At the Gallagher Academy, a top spy school, danger seems to follow Cammie everywhere. She learns that her private school will be the home for mysterious guests, only known by the name Blackthorne. Cammie Morgan is blamed for a school security problem putting all their identities at risk. Her and her closest friends have to go to many extremes to learn the truth about Blackthorne and to clear Cammie's name. Even though, Cammie and her friends have confidence, this mission will be more treacherous and challenging than any other they have faced.

In my opinion, Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy by Ally Carter was amusing and thrilling to read. The humor lightened the serious situations they were put in. It is a very positive book with multiple suspenseful scenes. While tip toeing silently through forbidden corridors, the girls took the risk of getting in trouble to prove the truth. I think that young girls and teens would love reading this book over and over again. They can connect and relate to the boy drama, strong friendships, and adventures and hardships in school. While our lives may not be as exciting as Cammie's, it's still entertaining to hear about her dangerous spy adventures.

Reviewed by Jennifer G., grade 9
Montrose Branch Library

Monday, May 5, 2014

Water for Elephants, by Sara Gruen

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen is a great historical novel revolving around a 23 year old American man named Jacob. Jacob literally "runs away with the circus" after finding out that his parents had died in a car accident. He falls in love with one of the girls in the show, Marlena, who handles the elephant. Marlena is with August, a rough and abusive man who mistreats everyone-humans and animals alike- he meets. Jacob narrates his life in the time he was in the circus and after it's collapse. 

I enjoyed this book. It had a great setting and provided fine visual detail of the scenes. I could see all the characters in my mind from the descriptions by the author. I would recommend it to older audiences, probably high school level and above. Great book, overall.

Reviewed by Anonymous, grade 11
Pacific Park Library

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Never Let Me Go, by Kazuo Ishiguro

Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Ishiguro  might be a science fiction novel or a love story, or it may be both. It revolves around the life of Kath, who spent her childhood until she was 16 in an exclusive "boarding school" in England with her friends Ruth and Tommy. The three grow up together and as they grow older discover more things about the place they live in and why they live in it. Though the novel is disturbing and very sad, it conveys a larger message.

I absolutely loved this book. I enjoyed every page thoroughly and thought the ending was rather magnificent. The author's style was so intricate and complicated, yet in actuality very simple and understandable. I can't begin to think of how much he must have understood his subject before he wrote about it. Great novel, great ending, great read. I would recommend it to readers in high school and older.

Reviewed by Anonymous, grade 11
Pacific Park Library

Monday, April 28, 2014

The Time Traveler's Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger

In this novel, The Time Traveler's Wife, by Audrey Niffenegger,  Henry Detamble is introduced as a man with an extraordinary ability to time travel. His travels are spontaneous and most often cause him a lot of trouble. The story revolves around the romance between Henry and Clare, a girl Henry has known for very long and under strange pretense. The novel follows their troubles and their joys, imparting a powerful message at the end about the fleetingness of time.

I loved this book very, very much. It was rich with detail, and he way the chapters were laid out in such a disorderly fashion was confusing at first but I found it to be great choice by the author. I was intrigued and always left wanting more. I don't remember putting this book down. I would recommend this to teens and older audiences.

Reviewed by Anonymous, grade 11
Pacific Park Library

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Paper Towns, by John Green

In Paper Towns, by John Green, the main character Quentin Jacobsen has spent a lifetime loving the magnificently adventurous Margo Roth Spiegelman from afar. One night, she climbs through Quentin's bedroom window and asks him to join her on an adventure. After a night full of action, Quentin does not see Margo for weeks. Driven by his love and the promise of adventure, he sets out to find her- and so begins a journey that changes him forever.

This book is great for teens. I liked it, though at times it was a bit cheesy for me. The book did speak a lot of truth, though. People are not always who you make them out to be in your mind, and it is disappointing to realize this. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a light read. 

Reviewed by Anonymous, grade 11
Pacific Park Library

Monday, April 21, 2014

The Lost Hero, by Rick Riordan

This book starts off the Heroes of Olympus series, which caught my interest. It starts off as Jason wakes up in a bus not knowing how he got there or who he is. He is sitting next to a girl, whose name he finds out is Piper, who claims they are a couple. To make things worse, a boy who is sitting on the bus as well, whose name is Leo, claims that he is Jason's best friend! Jason realizes that they are taking a trip to the Grand Canyon, and that this is a summer camp. Though things turn upside-down when they are attacked at the canyon and are taken to camp half-blood and told they are demigods. Now they must go on a journey to save the queen of the gods, Hera.

In my opinion, The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan, starts off very well by introducing the characters and getting to the plot in a fast and simple style. Jason not only has to remember who he is and where he is but also has to go on a journey with two people who he barely knows and save the queen of the gods. This book caught my attention because I have a great interest in roman and Greek mythology, and that I had already read the Percy Jackson series. It starts the Heroes of Olympus series very nicely with the bonding of the characters and quest to find out who Jason really is, which keeps you wondering the whole story.

Reviewed by Arvin O., grade 9

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

The Secrets of Boys, by Hailey Abbott

http://catalog.gpl.internal/ipac20/ipac.jsp?session=13R1559E10E50.61418&profile=gcent&source=~!horizon&view=subscriptionsummary&uri=full=3100001~!676803~!6&ri=7&aspect=browse_search_page&menu=search&ipp=20&spp=20&staffonly=&term=Abbott,+Hailey&index=PAUTHOR&uindex=&aspect=browse_search_page&menu=search&ri=7#focusIn the book, The Secrets of Boys, by Hailey Abbott, Cassidy Jones has her summer all planned out; she and her BFF, Larissa, have jobs lined up at a super-trendy clothing boutique and her gorgeous, surfer boyfriend, Eric, wants her to spend time in the sand with him. Sadly, her ultra-organized and goal-oriented parents have decided she should spend her summer in an intensive language program at a university.

Can I just say how cute and romantic this book is? This book definitely will interest teenage girls. It has a plot that we can relate to and it never gets boring. It's also super easy to read. It's not one of those books that keeps you thinking for hours after you read it, but it still has a meaning. SPOILER ALERT There is this HOT TA that all girls will fall in love with while reading a description about him. Just Saying.

Reviewed by Iren H., grade 10
Glendale Central Library

Physics of the Impossible, by Michio Kaku

A truly revolutionary way of explaining the world of the impossible and letting us in on when our space fantasy of the future will arrive, Michio Kaku did the absolute best job of explaining the things that we only dream of. Physics of the Impossible classifies the impossibilities in three categories: class 1, which is in the near future, class 2, which are the impossibilities that will most likely show up in a century, and class 3 impossibilities, ones that might never be possible with the standard laws of physics. Taking us through time travel, parallel universes, speed of light travel, and force fields, it excites the reader of what the potential of physics really are.

As a physics enthusiast, I was one to love this book. It had exactly what I was looking for, an easy yet advanced foresight into the laws of physics and what can be done and what can't be done. Yet one very important thing I learned from this book was that, anything truly is possible, all that has to happen is a change in the laws of physics. It is really exciting to think that one day humanity will evolve into one that can be what only Hollywood movies are today. The potential of Physics is limitless when there are great minds to resolve these problems that we run into today.

Reviewed by: Arvin O., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

The Accidental Tourist, by Anne Tyler

Summary: Macon Leary is the protagonist in Anne Tyler's The Accidental Tourist. He and his soon to be ex wife are dealing with the recent death of their son, Ethan who was killed at his summer camp. Their loss puts a huge strain on their marriage, making them realize just how different they are, and helps cause their divorce. When Sarah leaves him, Macon takes his dog, Edward, to be trained by Muriel, who is a peculiar woman. During their training sessions, they get to know each other better and start going out. Macon is now stuck between two women. Should he choose his ex-wife who he's spent most of his life with or does he choose Muriel who has taught him to be more carefree?

Opinion: The Accidental Tourist was a very interesting book. I liked the way the author portrays Macon. Over time you grow to be attached to him and you can't help but feel sorry for him and his ways. There were some points in the book where it was hard to get through, especially in the descriptive parts. But when it's two characters just talking to each other like regular dialogue, it's addicting to read. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes love stories such as these. If you like Nicholas Sparks' novels you'll probably like this book as well.

Reviewed by Nayri T., grade 10
Casa Verdugo Library

Inhuman Remains, by Quintin Jardine

http://catalog.gpl.internal/ipac20/ipac.jsp?session=13929Q09HJ640.20962&profile=gcent&uri=link=3100007~!1042341~!3100001~!3100002&aspect=browse_search_page&menu=search&ri=3&source=~!horizon&term=Inhuman+remains+%3A+a+Primavera+Blackstone+mystery+%2F&index=PALLTI#focusPrimavera Blackstone is a single mother living with her son after her husband died. Primavera had traumatic experiences in her past that make her very protective and attached to her son, Tom. Knowing she was a private investigator before, she gets pulled into a dangerous adventure by her Aunt Adrienne when she asks her to help her find her son, Frank. She finds him and finds out that he was into some shady business but Adrienne gets kidnapped and now they have to try to find her and save her in time before she is killed. As they try to make their way back to her, they encounter many difficulties and face a lot of danger. In the end, they may be too late to save her or themselves when they get into trouble.

I thought that Inhuman Remains, by Quintin Jardine, was a great book. It was mysterious and suspenseful at times. I also liked how the characters had an interesting background that was used to develop the story. The events that happened are also dramatic and they made me want to keep reading to find out what happened. I think many teenagers would enjoy reading it because it is an exciting book about adventure and crime. It made me think about the events that happened in the beginning of the book because of the twists and turns the plot had. Overall I thought that this book was exciting and I would recommend it to teenagers and above because there was some content that is unsuitable for younger readers. 

Reviewed by Kaylee, grade 9
Montrose Crescenta Branch

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

The Grimm Legacy, by Polly Shulman

http://catalog.gpl.internal/ipac20/ipac.jsp?session=1392SV44617Q4.12191&profile=gcent&uri=link=3100007~!1111525~!3100001~!3100002&aspect=browse_search_page&menu=search&ri=7&source=~!horizon&term=The+Grimm+Legacy+%2F&index=PALLTI#focusElizabeth started her new job at the New-York Circulating Material Repository (its a library but instead of books they have things like vases or buttons or other mysterious things that they loan out) But when items start going missing, everyone thinks of the giant black bird that follows some of their fellow librarians home. After a few months working at the Repository, Elizabeth is given the chance to finally see what is going down on the super, tightly locked floor.(I'll tell you a secret, its somethings magical) Now Elizabeth is noticing that items that are magical are not coming back magical. It's up to her and her coworkers to find out and stop what is happening to their safe-guarded secrets. Can she protect her new found friends and these precious items? Will she ever get to date basketball star Marc Merrit? You'll have to read The Grimm Legacy, by Polly Shulman, to find out.

 This book is amazing to read! The words are magic in themselves. You go on this amazing adventure with Elizabeth and you can almost feel the magic seeping out of the book, but maybe too much. Once you read it the first time, it's great. the second time, it's still a good book, but not quite the same. After your first use of the book, after knowing all the tricks, and the plot twists, it is just not as exciting. Anyone who loves old time Disney movies will definitely love this book. It wasn't my favorite book, but try it, it might be yours!

Reviewed by Emily, grade 9
Montrose Branch Library 

Monday, March 24, 2014

Inheritance, by Christopher Paolini

In the book Inheritance, or, The vault of souls, by Christopher Paolini, Eragon and Saphira continue their fight to free Alagaesia from Galbatorix's evil reign. They try to find a way to gain more power so they can defeat the evil king when the time comes. They get help from Arya, princess of the elves, Eragon's cousin Roran, and Nasuada, leader of the Varden. As unforeseen events occur, the dragon and her rider must push through their difficulties to try to fight for the freedom of Alagaesia. They fight for all the people who have already fallen in battle as a result of the struggle between the Empire and the Varden and they fight for those who do not have the means to stand up for themselves. In a final battle between good and evil, Eragon gives all he has left to try to save his friends. 
 I thought this book was amazing and it is one of my favorite books. It contains a lot of action and the relationships between the characters make the book so much more interesting. I loved this series of books and this was a great end to it. I would have liked the ending to have not been so abrupt but I still think that it is one of the best books I've ever read. I would recommend it to anyone who likes to read adventure stories because this is a great example of what an adventure story should be like. This book makes me think about how people can do things that are so morally wrong while still believing that they are doing what is best for the world. Overall, I really enjoyed reading this book and I would recommend this book to everyone.

Reviewed by Reviewed by  Kaylee, grade 9
Montrose Library  

Monday, March 17, 2014

The Diary of a Young Girl, by Anne Frank

http://catalog.gpl.internal/ipac20/ipac.jsp?session=1391D478K0X29.644&profile=gcent&uri=link=3100007~!511632~!3100001~!3100002&aspect=browse_search_page&menu=search&ri=1&source=~!horizon&term=Diary+of+a+young+girl&index=PALLTI#focusThe Diary of a Young Girl, by Anne Frank, is about a young Jewish girl growing up in Europe during Nazi rule. this book portraits all the struggles that her and her family had to endure in order to survive . they were reduce to live like animals just so that the Nazi army wouldn't find them and killed them.

I think this books very inspirational because it shows the will of people to survive and keep going during hardship. this book was also very sad because it was and injustice everything that happen to the Jewish people.

Reviewed by Juan M., grade 12
Glendale Central Library

Loose girl : a memoir of promiscuity, by Kerry Cohen

http://catalog.gpl.internal/ipac20/ipac.jsp?session=139E6432K652Q.541&profile=gcent&uri=link=3100007~!954204~!3100001~!3100002&aspect=browse_search_page&menu=search&ri=1&source=~!horizon&term=Loose+girl+%3A+a+memoir+of+promiscuity+%2F&index=PALLTI#focusThis book is about a girl who's parents recently got divorce and she was looking for some how get attention and stand out more. At the time Kerry Cohen was 11 when she realize the power that she has over men just for her body. She loved the attention she received and she just keep wanting more and more of it but she didn't realize that the attention she was receiving from man was all negative and it made her seem bad.

Loose girl : a memoir of promiscuity, was a good book it talked about how girls use their bodies to get any attention they could get from other people they don't care if the attention is positive or negative . It also shows that girls have a lot of self esteem issues and they try to cover it by having a guy telling them how pretty they are but in reality the guy is just looking after one thing and would say anything in order to get it .

Reviewed by Juan M., grade 12
Glendale Central Library

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Anna and the French Kiss, by Stephanie Perkins

Anna Oliphant, a senior in high school, was a completely normal teenage girl until her suddenly decided to enroll her in the American School in Paris, an elite boarding school. Anna is reluctant to leave her best friends and her almost-boyfriend Toph behind, but she is shipped to France nonetheless. There she meets Etienne St. Clair, a beautiful, British boy who she quickly becomes close friends with. The only problem: he has a serious girlfriend.

Anna and the French Kiss, by Stephanie Perkins,  is one of the cutest, most heartwarming teen books I have read. The plot captured my attention from the beginning, and the idea of boarding school in Paris really intrigued me. The book was filled with humor and kept me laughing throughout. The characters are believable, fun, and easy to fall in love with. I sincerely enjoyed this novel from start to finish. I would recommend Anna and the French Kiss to teenage girls who enjoy cute, romantic novels and I would rate it a 10 out of 10. Anna and the French Kiss is an absolute must-read!

Reviewed by Rebecca S., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Monday, March 10, 2014

Seven Kinds of Ordinary Catastrophes, by Amber Kizer

http://catalog.gpl.internal/ipac20/ipac.jsp?session=139156S4R19V4.61525&profile=gcent&uri=link=3100007~!1151462~!3100001~!3100002&aspect=browse_search_page&menu=search&ri=5&source=~!horizon&term=Seven+kinds+of+ordinary+catastrophes+%2F&index=PALLTI#focusSeven Kinds of Ordinary Catastrophes is about Gertrude, or Gert, as everyone calls her, and her experiences as a sophomore in high school. From boyfriend troubles to overbearing parents to crazy teachers, Gert is in every way your average teenage girl trying to survive her high school years. With her friends by her side, Gert takes on the world like only she could.

Seven Kinds of Ordinary Catastrophes, by Amber Kizer, was honestly one of the funniest young adult books I've ever read. I was literally laughing out loud constantly! It was well written, engaging, and overall a great read! It was also refreshing to read a book for teens in which the whole plot did not revolve around a love triangle, since that seems to be very popular right now. I would recommend this book to teenage girls looking for a good, funny book, and I would give it an 8/10.

Reviewed by Rebecca S., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Break, by Hannah Moskowitz

Jonah is 17 years old and his goal is to break every bone in his body so they can grow back stronger. Jonah's family is falling apart; he needs the strength. His 16 year old brother, Jesse, is allergic to almost everything and has horrible reactions to half the stuff in their house, and Jonah spends his days worrying about him. Naomi, Jonah's best friend, records all of Jonah's stunts as he attempts to break his bones, but she doesn't know the reason behind it. Nobody knows. When Jonah's friend Charlotte finds out about his unique form of self harm, she decides to get him some help and he ends up in a psych ward. Will Jonah give up on his disturbing goal, or will he continue hurting himself and his family?

When I first picked up this book, I thought the plot was very unique. Disturbing, but unique. I didn't expect to enjoy the book as much as I did. I loved the characters and I definitely got attached to Jonah and Jesse the most. I liked the brotherly bond they had; instead of being cliche siblings who don't get along, they were the opposite. Jonah and Jesse loved each other and were always there for each other, which isn't common. I also thought Jonah and his breaking bones issue was interesting, because it was a new type of self harm that I had never heard or read about. Overall, Break by Hannah Moskowitz was a very original book, a quick read, and I would recommend it to teenagers who like reading about conflicted characters with somewhat dysfunctional families.

Reviewed by Maggie P., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Big Girl, by Danielle Steel

http://catalog.gpl.internal/ipac20/ipac.jsp?session=13R1559E10E50.61418&profile=gcent&uri=link=3100007~!1091201~!3100001~!3100002&aspect=browse_search_page&menu=search&ri=12&source=~!horizon&term=Big+girl+%3A+a+novel+%2F&index=PALLTI#focusA chubby little girl with blond hair, blue eyes, and ordinary looks, Victoria Dawson has always felt out of place in her family, especially in body-conscious L.A. Her father, Jim, is tall and slender, and her mother, Christina, is a fine-boned, dark-haired beauty. Both are self-centered, outspoken, and disappointed by their daughter’s looks. When Victoria is six, she sees a photograph of Queen Victoria, and her father has always said she looks just like her. After the birth of Victoria’s perfect younger sister, Gracie, her father liked to refer to his firstborn as “our tester cake.” With Gracie, everyone agreed that Jim and Christina got it right.

The book Big Girl, by Danielle Steel, made me so sad for a couple of reasons. The main character has a weight problem. It's sad how this is such a HUGE problem in our society. Her parents don't like or support her because she doesn't look like them. This book is also very inspiring. Her story made me realize that you do not have to be skinny to be successful and loved in life. You will find that one, who makes you feel like you're the most beautiful person in the world.

Reviewed by Iren H., grade 10
Glendale Central Library

Monday, February 24, 2014

Plain Kate, by Erin Bow

Plain Kate is a novel by writer Erin Bow. Plain Kate is about a young orphan girl who is accused of being a witch because of her talent in wood carving. Plain Kate takes up with a man who claims to be a witch and wants to take her shadow from her. When Plain Kate finds herself forced to move on, she agrees to trade her shadow for some food and other items she needs in order to travel safely. Plain Kate then learns that the witch plans to use her shadow to seek revenge for his sister's death and bring the sister back to life. Plain Kate is a story of strength, of love, and of loneliness that will leave the reader in tears by the final page.

Let me start by saying, this story was exceptional. The writing is beautiful. I wasn't shocked to find out Erin Bow is also a poet, because her writing is amazing! I truly loved every moment, it held my attention from start to finish. I was never bored. In fact, I savored it, actually finding myself a bit disappointed when I had to put it down and be done. I wasn't ready to leave the characters. Every town Plain Kate travelled to, no matter how evil it appeared, there was always someone good, always someone there worth saving. Plus, everyone in this story was selfless, giving themselves to help others. It was amazing how the author ties it all together in the end. This is a sad story, a story about survival and also one about giving up the things we love. I can't rave enough about how wonderful I thought this book was. It also illustrates the value the companionship a pet can provide, since I love animals, this set well with me. I do have to warn readers, this was a very sad story, a fairy tale with less than a "happily ever after" ending. I respect the way it ended, though. The conclusion made sense. Its all about doing what is right, even though it's painful and leaves the reader feeling badly. I commend the author for making the story feel real and creating something powerful enough to make me cry. It comes to show that in reality, not every fairytale story gets a happy ending.

Reviewed by: Pamela F., grade 12
Central Library