By Leslie Connor
Plot: Eleven-year-old Perry was born and raised by his mom at the Blue River Co-ed Correctional Facility in tiny Surprise, Nebraska. His mom is a resident on Cell Block C, and so far Warden Daugherty has made it possible for them to be together. That is, until a new district attorney discovers the truth—and Perry is removed from the facility and forced into a foster home.
Writing: This story is cute at some points and sad at others. The writing made sense and wove a great story. Very descriptive.
Age Level: I would recommend this to people ages 10-14. Includes mature topics relating to the crimes some of Perry’s friends had committed, but other than that it was a great story.
Overall: It was eye-opening to read what goes on in a correctional facility such as Blue River, and shocking to see how our perception of criminals varies from most of the people imprisoned. This book was interesting and kept me hooked.
By Stacy McAnulty
Plot: When Lucy Callahan is struck by lightning, she receives the ability to calculate complicated math problems in her head, lightning fast. Lucy is so smart, she had the chance to go to college at twelve years old! Unfortunately, her grandmother decides to put her through the ultimate trial first: middle school.
Writing: This story has a fun mood to it, and the characters are all well-developed and lovable. The plot is interesting and the writing is descriptive.
Age Level: Kids around the ages of 11-14 would enjoy this book. Not too many complicated words or sentences or mature topics.
Overall: This book highlights the issues people with differences have and how to resolve those issues for yourself. I loved this book and most likely you will too.
By Sharon Gosling
Plot: Remy Brunel is an amazing tightrope walker at the La Cirque De la Lune. Thaddeus is a loyal police officer in London. When Remy is ordered to steal the second-largest diamond in the world, she and Thaddeus uncover a conspiracy hiding under London…
Writing: I thought it was a straightforward story line, and the plot was interesting and twisty. The writing was descriptive and straight-to-the-point, and I enjoyed it immensely. It was not very descriptive, however.
Age Level: I’d say this book is better for 10-15 year olds, because it is has harder words for younger kids.
Overall: I loved this book, but there were a couple of very sudden events, in which there were no clues leading up to the event anywhere else in the book.
By Rin Chupeco
Plot: Tea lives on a small farm, dreaming of an unreachable goal: becoming an asha, a powerful, beloved position across the lands, restricted to women with magic. When Tea’s brother dies, she realizes she is a bone witch, a witch who specializes in raising the dead and using dark runes. After her raising her brother back to life, she is taken in by another bone witch. Soon, the fate of her world depends on her rare powers.
Writing: The writing was simple and elegant, but there were points where I couldn’t understand exactly why something was going on. The book takes on a more serious tone. The plot was straightforward enough.
Age Level: Teens ages 13-15 would enjoy this book. It includes mature topics such as death and raising the dead and such, but it isn’t really gory or anything. The reading level is better for the ages I specified, but kids younger or older might still like this book.
Overall: This book was suspenseful and fun to read, with twists in every chapter. Every other chapter there is a flash to the future of some sort, as if a future Tea is telling her story to someone else, but it is a little confusing to keep track of that story line and the main story line. Overall, I would recommend this series to fans of fantasy.
Other books by Rin Chupeco: Heart Forger, Shadowglass, The Girl From The Well, The Suffering, The Never Tilting World and more….
By Shannon Messenger
Plot: Sophie Foster is a prodigy in the human world, but she feels out of place. She realizes why when Fitz Vacker, an elf, tells her she is actually one of them! She is whisked off to the Lost Cities, home of the elves, where she learns the Lost Cities is in trouble, and only she can save it…
Writing: The writing is smooth and follows a story line that is not complicated and easy to keep up with. Shannon Messenger is really good at breaking up serious sections with jokes, and I found myself laughing out loud more than once.
Age Level: I would recommend this book to kids 9-13. Although the reading level is for that age, even teenagers would enjoy this book.
Overall: This book expands into an amazing series. I would recommend reading the whole thing. The characters are lovable and well-developed, and clever and loyal to their cause.
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