Tag Archives: friendship

Book Review: Escape from Castle Cant

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Escape from Castle Cant by K. P. Bath Recommended Ages: 11+ After I read this book, but before I started writing the review, I did a little research on the internet. Basically, I was looking for a link to the author’s website (which doesn’t exist). Only then did I learn that Mr. Bath was arrested in 2009 and sentenced in 2010 to six years in prison for possession of child pornography. So right off I ... Read More »

Book Review: Gifts by Ursula K. Le Guin

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Gifts by Ursula K. Le Guin Recommended Ages: 13+ Life is harsh in the northern uplands where Orrec Caspro grows up. The climate is cold. The farmers and serfs scratch an uneasy living out of indifferent soil. The land-owning families that lead them are divided by vicious feuds. And the most powerful among them, honored with the title Brantor, wield terrible powers. One family’s gift is calling to animals, which can be helpful when you’re ... Read More »

Book Review: The Castle Corona by Sharon Creech

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The Castle Corona by Sharon Creech Recommended Ages: 10+ The first author to win both the Newbery Medal (for Walk Two Moons) and the Carnegie Medal (for Ruby Holler) here deviates from her general habit of depicting present-day kids in dramatic situations. Instead, she conjures a make-believe kingdom somewhere in medieval Italy, with a king and a queen, a princess and two princes, hermits, peasants, servants, and knights. King Guido of the Castle Corona is ... Read More »

Book Review: The Wall and the Wing by Laura Ruby

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The Wall and the Wing by Laura Ruby Recommended Ages: 11+ The author of Lily’s Ghosts brings us a book so funny that it hurts, set in a magical world so weird that it can only be New York City. She doesn’t come right out and name it, though. She describes it as “a vast and sparkling city, a city at the center of the universe.” But it’s also a city that has grown upward ... Read More »

Book Review: LightLand by H. L. McCutchen

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LightLand by H. L. McCutchen Recommended Ages: 11+ I don’t know anything about the author of this book except that her first name is Heather, and that Scholastic (the U.S. publisher of the Harry Potter series) believes in her. Now that I’ve read this book, I believe in her too. I hope she will continue to write books as interesting and touching as this. It begins with two quirky kids, best friends since they were ... Read More »

Book Review: The Last Siege by Jonathan Stroud

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The Last Siege by Jonathan Stroud Recommended Ages: 12+ Three present-day teens are thrown together in the last defense of a medieval castle—each one lonely for a different reason. Emily is an only child whose schoolmates either pick on her or ignore her. Simon is the youngest child of a big, blue-collar, trouble-making family, who often gets picked on at home. And as for Marcus… well, he’s not even from the West Norfolk village where ... Read More »

Book Review: The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin

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The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin Recommended Ages: 14+ Winner of the 1970 Hugo Award for Best Novel, this book by the author of A Wizard of Earthsea more than deserves to be in the company of such books as Stranger in a Strange Land, Dune, Foundation’s Edge, Ender’s Game, American Gods, Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, and The Yiddish Policemen’s Union. It packs ... Read More »

Movie Review: ‘The Great Gatsby’ Blu-Ray/DVD Combo Pack

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The Great Gatsby Book by F. Scott Fitzgerald Film by Baz Luhrmann Starring: Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey McGuire, Carey Mulligan, & Joel Edgerton Rated: PG-13 English was (almost) always my favorite subject when I was in high school. I truly loved the fact that every other week I was specifically told to transport myself into, to get fully enveloped by, to really experience, a world outside of my own.See, my high school world was that of ... Read More »

Review: 13 Curses by Michelle Harrison

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13 Curses by Michelle Harrison Recommended Ages: 12+ In 13 Treasures, a silver bracelet strung with thirteen charms serves mainly as a link between twelve-year-old Tanya and a tragically short-lived ancestor who shared her gift, her curse: the second sight, or the ability to see faeries. But other than that, the book wasn’t really about the thirteen magical objects that gave it its name. The treasures were then little more than a talisman representing the ... Read More »

Review: 13 Treasures by Michelle Harrison

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13 Treasures by Michelle Harrison Recommended Ages: 11+ Being able to see fairies isn’t all sparkly dust and tinkly bells. Tanya has been able to see them since she was a baby, and it’s a living nightmare for her. Her parents are fed up with what they see as serious behavioral problems. And the winged creatures that visit her on moonlit nights do not bring wonder and enchantment, but threats and punishment when she doesn’t ... Read More »