Tag Archives: 4 lightning bolts

Book Review: It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini

It's Kind of a Funny Story

It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini Recommended Ages: 13+ At the risk of sounding too much like a trailer warning for the newest episode of Law & Order, I would like to preface this discussion by noting that the themes of It’s Kind of a Funny Story may be of a more sensitive nature for some people out there. Craig Gilner is a fairly typical American teenager living in New York trying ... Read More »

Book Review: Untold by Sarah Rees Brennan

Untold

Untold by Sarah Rees Brennan Recommended Ages: 13+ In Book 2 of “The Lynburn Legacy,” a dark ultimatum looms over the outwardly charming town of Sorry-in-the-Vale. The evil sorcerer Rob Lynburn means to return the town to its old ways, in which the sorcerous few held power over the non-magical many—an arrangement whereby good weather and prosperous fortunes were given in exchange for blood sacrifice. Rob and his sorcerers demand a victim—a human victim, mind ... Read More »

Book Review: Empire of Bones by N. D. Wilson

EmpireBones

Empire of Bones by N. D. Wilson Recommended Ages: 12+ The third and final book of “The Ashtown Burials” features so many characters, doing so many things at once, in so many places, that even quite close to the end I couldn’t believe it was going to conclude the trilogy. I fully expected another cliffhanger, hooking us for a surprise fourth book, à la Brisingr. The good news—if you’ll pardon my relief—it really does end ... Read More »

Book Review: The Journal of Curious Letters by James Dashner

DashnerJournal

The Journal of Curious Letters by James Dashner Recommended Ages: 11+ Atticus Higginbottom, Tick to his friends, is a 13-year-old science geek who gets bullied at school, trips over his own feet, and plays champion-level chess. Few people would guess that such a boy would have the makings of a hero who might one day save the world. Somebody seems to have guessed, however. Somebody calling himself M. G. (short for Master George) begins sending ... Read More »

Book Review: The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes

AdventuresHolmes

The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle Recommended Ages: 12+ Sherlock Holmes had already appeared in two novels, but his popularity did not really take off until the brief “adventures” collected in this book began to appear in monthly issues of The Strand Magazine, from 1891 to -92. And though there are two novels and three volumes of short stories still to come, these twelve mysteries include some of Holmes’ most memorable and ... Read More »

Book Review: Froi of the Exiles by Melina Marchetta

froioftheexiles

Froi of the Exiles by Melina Marchetta Recommended Ages: 14+ An “Adult Content Advisory” remains in effect for the second book of the Lumatere Chronicles, in which the fate of kingdoms depend on the actions of highly sexed Young Adults. Even more so than in Finnikin of the Rock, in which the figurative and literal rape of a kingdom is involved in the tale of a nation divided 50/50 between captives and refugees. But now ... Read More »

Book Review: A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle

StudyScarlet

A Study in Scarlet by Arthur Conan Doyle Recommended Ages: 12+ When detective fiction was still in its infancy, in the year 1887, this novel first appeared in an issue of Beeton’s Christmas Annual. Just imagine: it was the first anyone had ever heard of Sherlock Holmes! Then a young physician, just starting to stretch his literary muscles, Arthur Conan Doyle here created a character who has become one of the most enduring figures in ... Read More »

Book Review: Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children

Peregrine

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs Recommended Ages: 13+ What happens when a filmmaker, vintage photograph collector, and author of a reference work on Sherlock Holmes decides to write a YA novel? What happens is this creepy, funny, weird fantasy involving monsters, time travel, and children with super powers, all accompanied by an atmospheric selection of black-and-white photos. Our narrator on this journey is sixteen-year-old Jacob Portman, a smart-mouthed rich kid from ... Read More »

Book Review: The Ballad of Sir Dinadan by Gerald Morris

SirDinadan

The Ballad of Sir Dinadan by Gerald Morris Recommended Ages: 12+ The fifth book of the “Squire’s Tales” series continues this Wisconsin-based author’s retelling of Arthurian legends for younger readers with a combination of two knightly love stories with the point of view of a minstrel knight who has fallen out of love with romantic love. Forced into knighthood, though he would rather be a rebec-playing troubadour, Sir Dinadan rides out into the English countryside ... Read More »

Book Review: Rotters by Daniel Kraus

Rotters

Rotters by Daniel Kraus Recommended Ages: 14+ This book is a thriller and chiller of the sort that probably would have turned stomachs a generation ago. But if you’ve been watching CSI and its spinoffs, you may already have an idea what decaying corpses look like—though, mercifuly, not so much how they smell and feel. So this may be the perfect time to read a book featuring ripening bodies, graveyard dirt, and the last days ... Read More »