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The Bear and the Nightingale
Journey to a frozen forest hidden in the Old Country Russia and get swept away in the re-telling of a Russian folktale. The author weaves a spell as fragile as snowflakes and as haunting as an ancient melody in the story about a winter demon and a young girl who can save her village. Wrap up in a blanket, grab a big cup of coffee, this book and prepared to get lost.
I loved this book and could not put down. I still think about the characters and the rich world where they live. I highly recommend it for readers 16+ who love fairytales and folktales. I am looking forward to more adventures like this one.
- Melissa Schweitzer, MS Office
Red Queen is a slow-starting, yet thrilling novel about how one girl can change the future by challenging the unfair government.
In the novel, your fate is determined by the color of your blood. If you have silver blood, your life will be filled with unbelievable power and royalty. However, if you have red blood, your life will be filled with disappointment and injustice. Mare Barrow, the story’s main character, begins her life as an ordinary red girl, but is discovered by the silver government to have powers greater than any silver. Mare’s superior capabilities present her with a unique set of challenges, because she doesn’t fit in with reds or a silvers.
One of my favorite parts of the novel is the denoument, since it is so unexpected. The characters you loved from the beginning start to turn against the characters they have been allied with the whole time. The ending is a cliffhanger, but it is a perfect setup for the sequel, Glass Sword.
Although I loved Red Queen for the most part, in my opinion, there were a few downsides. The author chose to leave out some crucial information about the main characters and also chose to leave a lot of unanswered questions at the ending. While some people might appreciate the mysteriousness, I personally wish the questions were answered at the end of the novel. Another challenge was that usually it takes me less than a week to read a book, but Red Queen took about three weeks for me to read, since it started very slow with little action. However, around the sixth chapter the pace starts to increase, and many plot twists happen until the the completion in chapter twenty-eight.
I thought the author chose great diction, and I would definitely recommend this novel for seventh to tenth graders, but anyone who loves action-packed, dystopian novels will undeniably love Red Queen.
- Avery Wyrick, 8th Grade
March 8, 2017
Percy Jackson's Greek Heroes
A funny , sarcastic addition to Rick Riordan's Greek mythology. The illustrations are hilarious and beautiful at the same time. It's not an advanced read but anyone that doesn't have dirt in their head will find this book witty and entertaining. Each of the twelve stories take you on an adventure in Ancient Greece. The book is factual but cloaked in middle school sarcasm and is told from the perspective of a teenager. I would highly recommended this book to anyone who thirst for knowledge and who appreciates edgy humor.
- Nathan Redford, 6th Grade
Odysseus in the Serpent Maze
Let me just start by saying that this book is great, and although I say that about every book I read, this one really is a wonderful fantasy, Greek mythological adventure! In this book, Odysseus, the main character, is the prince of Ithaca, but doesn't really act it. He just enjoys hunting and parties and things that common folk would enjoy. However, he does want to be a hero. What happens is he and his friend Mentor get on a boat, fall off that boat in a storm, get on a pirate ship, jump off and find an island, and finally face Ladon, a demon dragon, in the labyrinth that no one ever escapes.
When I first started this book, I was thinking this isn't going to be much. It's a 245 page book with a strange title. But even as early as the 2nd chapter, I realized that this was a book of action, adventure, young love, and cliff- hangers. The moment you pick this book up, you will not be able to put it down. I wasn't. By now you're probably saying just get it over with kid. So in short, it's a great book you will love and definitely recommend to others.
- Clayton Ailshie, 6th Grade
If you can imagine a world in which books are closely guarded secrets and readers are rare, where pirates rule the seas, and stories are passed “from mouth to mouth like kisses, or plagues…”, then you have sailed into the world of Kelanna. Sefia is an orphan on the run with a mysterious past, an uncertain future, and pirates that keep showing up in her story. But as all readers know, the story is deeper and more complicated than that.
Sefia sets out to find the only family she may have left in the world, her Aunt Nin, who has been kidnapped. The only clue she has is a mysterious book to guide her – if she can learn how to read it and understand what it is telling her. Luck or destiny brings help to Sefia in the most unexpected ways in this first adventure.
I have to admit I am guilty of judging this book by its cover. But when I saw the cover art for The Reader (Book One of Sea of Ink and Gold), I was mesmerized. I love the hidden book trimmed in gold over the beautiful art picture. The first lines of the book were all it took to hook me into finishing what promises to be an epic tale. I discovered puzzles and secret codes while reading, which made me read deeper and think about the story long after its pages were closed. Kelanna is such a well-developed intriguing world, sometimes I found it hard to return to my own. This book is for those that like action and adventure especially of the fantastical kind, for readers looking for a deeper meaning to the story, and for treasure hunters who know how to search out even the tiniest of clues.
I highly recommend this book!
- Melissa Schweitzer, MS Office
Tales from India
This book is a great read for kids who don't read as advanced books. I am not
all that great at understanding, and this book really broke it down for me and really helped me understand it. It also includes great illustrations by Amanda Hall! The book has multiple small stories in it about different tales and myths about Hinduism. I would recommend this book to everybody, it is a great fun read!
- Aashi Vora, 6th Grade
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