Book Reviews

Book Review: The Letter for the King by Tonke Dragt

LetterKing

It was first published in 1962. It was recognized as the children’s book of the year in 1963, and the best children’s book in 50 years as of 2004. It was translated into fifteen different languages between 1977 and 2011. It has sold over a million copies. It was made into a feature film in 2008. Its author received a knighthood and a lifetime award for youth literature, and is considered the greatest children’s author ... Read More »

Book Review: No Place Like Oz by Danielle Paige

noplacelikeoz

An alternate title for this story could have been “Dorothy Gale: My journey to the dark side” as we see Dorothy work her way into becoming the villain she's set to play in the following full-length novel... Read More »

Robbie Reviews The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbraith

CuckoosCalling

Here is a most satisfying recent example of the classic type of private-eye novel. The detective is the whimsically named Cormoran Strike, an ex-military policeman whose career in the army ended when a roadside bomb took away half a leg. His name has nothing to do with his father, a philandering superstar rock musician with whom he has no relationship whatever, and a lot to do with his “supergroupie” mother, who was flaky and impractical ... Read More »

Book Review: The Monster by Garth Nix & Sean Williams

Monster

The second book in the Troubletwisters series finds the small seaside town of Portland threatened by a fragment of The Evil that menaced it in Book 1. At least, so the Shield twins suspect. Jack and Jaide are still a bit jumpy after their narrow victory in their first adventure. The wards are all intact, protecting Portland, and the world, from the all-consuming hunger that lurks outside our universe. But Jack can never forget how ... Read More »

Book Review: Troubletwisters by Garth Nix & Sean Williams

Troubletwisters

The cover art of this book gives a misleading impression of what kind of trouble the “troubletwisters” specialize in. The fact that the book actually does feature several tornadoes and a hurricane may add to that impression. So you may be surprised to learn that the term “troubletwisters” in this book does not have anything to do with cyclones, as such. Troubletwisters are kids who have started to manifest powers—powers which, if brought under control ... Read More »

Book Review: Darksolstice by Sam Llewellyn

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The second book of Lyonesse concludes this most unusual variant of the Arthurian legend, based on the folklore of the author’s native Isles of Scilly, off the southwest tip of Britain. It follows up on The Well Between the Worlds, which seemed such an engaging and original work of fantasy that I had read half of it before I realized that the resemblance between its characters’ names and figures associated with King Arthur was more ... Read More »

Book Review: Alien on a Rampage by Clete Barrett Smith

AlienRampage

Alien on a Rampage by Clete Barrett Smith Recommended Ages: 12+ In his second summer at the Intergalactic Bed & Breakfast, David (formerly “Scrub”) Elliott expects to enjoy his time with Grandma, his sweetheart Amy, and a houseful of extraterrestrial tourists. But things get off to a disappointing start, and get worse from there. First, he suspects that the new alien handyman is up to no good. But far from being able to convince anyone ... Read More »

Book Review: Blood Oranges by Kathleen Tierney

Blood-Oranges

Blood Oranges by Kathleen Tierney Recommended Ages: 16+ Siobhan Quinn is a runaway, a junkie, and a tough chick, living by her wits in the streets of Providence, R.I. Things start to get really dark for her when she sees her girlfriend being eaten by a ghoul. She kills it, of course. Under the patronage of a flamboyant character whom she calls “Mean Mr. B,” she soon sets out on a career as a slayer ... Read More »

Book Review: Panic by Lauren Oliver

Panic by Lauren Oliver

Panic by Lauren Oliver Recommended Ages: 13+ Heather and Dodge are two sides of the same coin, just two kids looking to rectify the problems of their unpleasant home lives in the middle of Carp, population 12,000. And when Panic starts ups again, an annual summer contest for graduating high school seniors that pushes their fears and limits to the brink, both of them realize an opportunity to get themselves out of their respective troubles. ... Read More »

Book Review: Rise of a Hero by Hilari Bell

RiseHero

Rise of a Hero by Hilari Bell Recommended Ages: 13+ The legend says that the great hero Sorahb will return when his country has need of him. If ever Farsala needed a hero, it is now. The Hrum Empire has destroyed its army and taken possession of most of its major cities. They still have most of a year to meet their deadline, when they must either subdue all resistance or abandon their plan to ... Read More »