Book Review: Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan

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Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan Recommended Ages: 14+ Book 1 of “The Lynburn Legacy” introduces us to Kami Glass, a teenaged girl of mixed Japanese and English ancestry who lives in the Cotswolds village of Sorry-in-the-Vale. Since she was a baby, Kami has had an imaginary friend named Jared who talks to her in her head, telling her all about his make-believe life in America. Even into high school she continues to converse with this ... Read More »

Book Review: Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride

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Hold Me Closer, Necromancer by Lish McBride Recommended Ages: 14+ Even though Samhain is not pronounced anything like how it looks, somehow young Samhain Corvus LaCroix has picked up the nickname Sam, along with a mediocre career path based on dropping out of college and working at a burger joint. He shares a one-bedroom apartment with his buddies Ramon and Frank (who sleep on the couch and the living room floor, respectively), and has zero ... Read More »

Fan of the Week: Jade – December 22, 2013

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JADE Age 18 – Melbourne, Australia GRYFFINDOR How did you become a Harry Potter fan? I am an only child and was always bullied for being different. The one day my mum took me to see the first film and all of a sudden, my world changed. I finally had friends; Harry, Ron and Hermione. I was only 7 but read the books as much as I could. I would write Hogwarts letters to myself and ... Read More »

Book Review: Blameless by Gail Carriger

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Blameless by Gail Carriger Recommended Ages: 16+ In Book 3 of “The Parasol Protectorate,” Lady Maccon, a.k.a. La Diva Tarabotti, is forced to flee England by the scandal of her pregnancy, which no one seems to believe could be the result of her marital relations with Lord Maccon, Alpha werewolf of the Woolsey Pack. Seriously, nobody can find any precedent for a werewolf reproducing except via bite. And though His Lordship is good at that, ... Read More »

Book Review: Hero by Mike Lupica

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Hero by Mike Lupica Recommended Ages: 13+ When New York sports journalist Mike Lupica first turned toward writing Young Adult fiction, it was mostly in the form of sports-related novels, such as Travel Team, Heat, and Miracle on 49th Street. And he’s still writing them. You may be surprised at the length of his list of titles, and whether part of a series or a standalone novel, each one is primarily about sports—with only a ... Read More »

Review: Fall of a Kingdom by Hilari Bell

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Fall of a Kingdom by Hilari Bell Recommended Ages: 12+ Inspired by a Persian legend and originally titled Flame, this is the first book of the Farsala Trilogy. The new and improved title, while dramatically distinctive, has the drawback of giving away the ending. But since the story is only getting started, that’s probably all right. The kingdom that falls in this book is called Farsala, a society that has held its own for many ... Read More »

Fan of the Week: Kaajal – December 15, 2013

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KAAJAL Age 22 – London, UK RAVENCLAW How did you become a Harry Potter fan? It all started in Year 4 Literacy Class when I was 8 years old. Our teacher asked us if we would like to study Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone or The Hobbit. The class ended up choosing The Hobbit but my interest was piqued. I asked a friend who was already on the Goblet of Fire, “Are these books ... Read More »

Movie Review: ‘Saving Mr. Banks’ starring Emma Thompson

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After watching the trailer for Saving Mr. Banks, I expected a light-hearted comedic historical film about how the classic Disney film Mary Poppins came together—but what I got was both much darker and more enjoyable than the film I had anticipated. Read More »

Book Review: Changeless by Gail Carriger

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Changeless by Gail Carriger Recommended Ages: 16+ In Book 2 of the “Parasol Protectorate,” a racy supernatural riff on Victorian steampunk, something has taken the fangs out of London’s werewolves and vampires. No worries! Lady Maccon (formerly Miss Alexia Tarabotti) is on the case. In her role as the preternatural adviser to Her Majesty’s Shadow Council—a role she earned by being the only soulless, supernatural-powers-neutralizing, respectable married lady in town—she gate-crashes a reunion between her ... Read More »

Book Review: Tam Lin by Pamela Dean

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Tam Lin by Pamela Dean Recommended Ages: 14+ The author of the Secret Country trilogy, when asked to contribute a volume to a series of fairy-tale novelizations, delved instead into a traditional Scots ballad about a girl named Janet who saves her lover from being sacrificed to the powers of Hell by the Queen of Faerie. Transferring the setting to the campus of a small midwestern college in the 1970s, she weaves this eerie storyline ... Read More »