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Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Review: The Hero's Trail by T. A. Barron

The Hero's Trail by T. A. Barron.

The Hero's Trail by T. A. Barron

Puffin Books
Publication Date: February 2007
List Price: $6.99
ISBN-13: 9780142407608

Review: If you're looking for a book about hardships that did not end in failure, then, The Hero's Trail by T.A. Barron is a perfect choice. It is about how people with diseases and just other problems in general don't let them give up. Even though them may be faced with ridicule, they showed determination.

In The Hero's Trail, it shows that someone with polio even turned out to be one of the fastest people in the worldÉmaybe even the fastest! Wilma Rudolph had polio, and she could walk and run like other kids did, unlike other people with polio. Soon she broke records and became the fastest woman in the world! But not all of the stories in this book are all about having a disease. The Hero's Trail is also about a man named Glenn Cunningham had been scorched by an old stove, and his legs were seriously scorched leaving almost no muscle remaining! The family and especially Glenn prayed that he would be able to walk and run again. He slowly felt feeling around his legs. He moved his toes and his knees. And soon he was walking around his room. Then he started breaking records. All of them were determined to keep on going. There are even more people in the book like, Sherwin Long and many other people that fought through.

This book should be told to everyone, in every age. But some of the vocabulary may be challenging for younger readers. But otherwise, this book is amazing. It has crazy stories of one of the most famous people ever! And they may have had things happen to them that you never knew about. But they fought through. And that is what I admire most about these people. And that is what I think that I what the author (T.A. Barron) is trying to get across: to determinate. Determination got them through their hardships. And Glenn Cunningham prayed to get better. And that is what I think is the best type of determination there is. And ever was! All of the people in this book wanted to conquer what had happened; and they did! Just with determination. They did anything they could in their power to fix it. I also love how some of the people didn't care what other people thought of him or her. They knew they were amazing. They knew they would conquer the disease and/or problem. And they did. This book is as amazing as the people in it. Buy it or check it out at your local library and enjoy!

Review written by Tommy (6th grade student).

We would like to thank T. A. Barron for providing a copy of The Hero's Trail for this review.

Have you read The Hero's Trail? How would you rate it?

Monday, July 7, 2014

Review: Promise Bound by Anne Greenwood Brown

Promise Bound by Anne Greenwood Brown. The Third Installment in her Mermaid Trilogy.

Promise Bound by Anne Greenwood Brown

Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: January 2014
List Price: $17.99
ISBN-13: 9780385743839

Review: There are creatures that can breathe in water. They call them mermaids. They're all around you, living next to you, eating with you. You don't know what they really are, and they don't mind. They practice their manors and await the real frenzy that enhances as you hit the water. In the thrilling closing to Lies Beneath and Deep Betrayal, Anne Greenwood Brown gives you Promise Bound, as serious as it sounds.

Falling in love is a roller coaster. Caldor and Lily never think that it would go down, but when it does, they crash. Lily has taken the duty of guarding Nadia's pendant, but that includes sleeping through the dead mer's memories. Stuck to the conclusion that Nadia wants Caldor to find his real parents, Lily makes a tough decision that could end it all. All the while though, trouble is brewing when mortal, Jack, takes the responsibility of Pavati's new child. And the two mer sisters quarrel for the leadership of the clan and the loyalty of Lily and her father.

Any young adult readers will melt into the book and experience the journey right along with Lily and Caldor. Through heart-breaking break-offs, turf wars for leadership, and emotional conflicts, come along with Caldor and Lily as they figure out what life is all about. You race right along with them on the beaches, in the waters, and through all the dangers the fighting mer's put them through. Go through Lily's experiences, Caldor's choices, and the decision that seals their fate.

Review written by Emily (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Random House for providing a copy of Promise Bound for this review.

Have you read Promise Bound? How would you rate it?

Friday, July 4, 2014

Review: Dirt Bikes, Drones, and Other Ways to Fly by Conrad Wesselhoeft

Dirt Bikes, Drones, and Other Ways to Fly by Conrad Wesselhoeft.

Dirt Bikes, Drones, and Other Ways to Fly by Conrad Wesselhoeft

Houghton Mifflin Books for Children
Publication Date: April 2014
List Price: $17.99
ISBN-13: 9780544232693

Review: Have you ever had to go through grief and pain? In Dirt Bikes, Drones, and Other Ways to Fly by, Conrad Wesselhoef, A teenager named Arlo has to get over grief when his mom dies. How will he get over the grief? Will he suffer or prosper? Follow Arlo and his epic stunts in Dirt Bikes, Drones, and Other Ways to Fly!

Five months ago Arlo's mom had died. When she had one to the shop to get Arlo's sister Purple Gatorade, some lunatic shot her. Siouxsie (Arlo's little sister) is still grieving because she took it harder then Arlo did, Arlo loves his mom, but he has different ways to deal with the grief. He rides his dirt bike, and he plays a game called Drone Pilot. When Arlo beats the top player in it, a person from the Air Force, he gets a message from someone who works with the Air Force. Because of Arlo's amazing score in Drone Pilot, he is invited to join the Air Force in Texas. This opens Arlo up to many challenges; one of which is to beat all the other pilots in the trial.

Dirt Bikes, Drones, and Other Ways to Fly is a great book. I love the tragic scenes and the action that filled the pages of this book. It shows a relationship between tragedy and action. It is nice to know how all people have different ways to deal with grief; people should know that there isn't one "right" way. I recommend this book to people 12 and up. The book isn't appropriate for younger kids because of the language. A boy might like the book more than the girl because it is mostly about motorcycles, drones and much other action filled objects. This book has many stunts in it, and some end up good while others end up bad. In essence, Dirt Bikes, Drones, and Other Ways to Fly, combines a perfect balance of action and tragedy.

Review written by Matthew (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Houghton Mifflin Harcourt for providing a copy of Dirt Bikes, Drones, and Other Ways to Fly for this review.

Have you read Dirt Bikes, Drones, and Other Ways to Fly? How would you rate it?

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Review: Atlantis Rising by T. A. Barron

Atlantis Rising by T. A. Barron. An Atlantis Trilogy Book.

Atlantis Rising by T. A. Barron

Philomel Books
Publication Date: September 2013
List Price: $17.99
ISBN-13: 9780399257575

Review: In the magical land called Ellegandia, a boy named Promi survives by stealing cakes, pastries, and all sorts of sweets. When Promi steals a cake from the Divine Monk, his entire life is turned upside down. He is thrown into a dangerous dungeon, and learns of a prophecy. A prophecy that tells of someone just like him, who will bring an end to all magic. Promi wants nothing to do with this, yet he is pulled him into a battle not only on Earth, but also within the spirit realm. T.A Barron tells of the adventures of Promi in Atlantis Rising.

Atlantis Rising was amazing the entire time. Right from the start, I was hooked. Whenever something needed explaining, it was done in an exciting style. Anytime the book got boring, it quickly jumped back into action, opening my eyes and mouth even wider. For example, when Promi is having a conversation with a monk in the dungeon, the conversation ends abruptly by a scream that echoes through the corridors. Furthermore, I was astonished by the description in this book. For instance, in the forest, the leaves are mysteriously described as their color changes. Also, the characters in this book are very well developed, and you instantly form some connection to them. (Whether it be good or bad.) For example, the monk, Bonlo, has a very short part in the story, but has a big impact. Bonlo tells about a prophecy in the land of Ellegandia before he leaves the story. Boys and girls of all ages would enjoy Atlantis Rising. It is full of diverse, exciting moments, but still has a fantastic storyline.

Review written by Josh (6th grade student).

We would like to thank T. A. Barron for providing a copy of Atlantis Rising for this review.

Have you read Atlantis Rising? How would you rate it?

Monday, June 30, 2014

Review: The Tyrant's Daughter by J. C. Carleson

The Tyrant's Daughter by J. C. Carleson.

The Tyrant's Daughter by J. C. Carleson

Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: February 2014
List Price: $17.99
ISBN-13: 9780449809976

Review: Are you interested the Middle East and conflict? Then The TyrantÕs Daughter by J.C. Carleson is the book for you. The main character in the book is Laila.

Laila lives like royalty until the day her father dies when sheÊmoves to America and everything changes. In her home country, her father had run the country, but when she, her mother and her little brother Batsien moved to America she hasnothing. Laila eventually meets friends and her life gets better. These men visit her house and then her mother starts getting gifts and money. Then she hears about these poor people who are supplying money for them. She knows she has to stop this plot before it is to late. She also meets a guy and wonders if he is right for her. Will Laila stops her mothers plan in time? Will she get the guy that she likes?

The TyrantÕs Daughter is a book that boys and girls ages 10-12 will enjoy. The book has some high level words. Boys may not be as interested in all the romance, however a girl might enjoy this element. The plot has elements of war, action, mystery, and romance. The storyline is good because you can see how the main character is feeling throughout the story. Some parts of the story are a little hard to understand. The TyrantÕs Daughter has a complex plot, and sometimes the events arenÕt always clear. The characters however are easy to understand, and their motives are clear. The TyrantÕs Daughter also gives insight into a world that is foreign to so many Americans. It is a good choice for a thought provoking novel.

Review written by Elizabeth (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Random House for providing a copy of The Tyrant's Daughter for this review.

Have you read The Tyrant's Daughter? How would you rate it?

Friday, June 27, 2014

Review: Tree Girl by T. A. Barron

Tree Girl by T. A. Barron.

Tree Girl by T. A. Barron

Puffin Books
Publication Date: October 2001
List Price: $7.99
ISBN-13: 9780142427088

Review: Where did you find me? Rowanna asks her guardian, Mellwyn. Although at one time he was a stranger, Rowanna gets to know him. Were her parents tree ghosts? Where were they? Those three questions Rowanna is dying for him to answer. Tree Girl is a riveting story about how a girl struggles with trying to understand her life with the forest. She has always told never to go into the willow. She has been told to never speak of it. She has also been told never to ask about herself and the willow. So, what is in the willow?

Rowanna was found as a baby in the high willow down inside the great forest that stretches in front of her house. Her house is small, very small. It has one room, a kitchen, and one bed that fits into it. She is pretty much alone on this island, except for her guardian, a fisherman with a ruffed up beard. He is the man that found Rowanna and took her in. With a giant forest to one side and a giant ocean to the other, not many people would want to live there. But, Rowanna does, she is crafty and smart and knows how to make things out of twigs. She also knows how to plant and make her plants thrive. She is motherly and brings in a sick, wounded bird nursing it to health. But Rowanna is also very curious, especially about herself and her family É her real family. She wants to know where she came from, were her parents there, did the man see her parents, did her parents love her, who were they, and who see was. Rowanna has asked where what the willow was like several times, but the man won't tell. She doesn't know why. Why is so bad to say? She doesn't know if there are tree ghosts there or not because she has never been there. Rowanna needs answers and she isn't getting them.

Tree Girl is a suspenseful, interesting, and compelling book. Many people can to relate to Rowanna's problem and life. The book has a great setting putting the story in the perfect location to imagine Rowanna's life and problems. The story has a great exposition that really setts the story up for the dangers and journeys Rowanna will have in the future. I love the characters and their characteristics; it gives the story a feel and interest; like Mellwyn is a rough sailorman, and Rowanna is a likeable well-behaved girl. The jargon in the story also gives interest like, "Claw ye to bleddin' shreds, they will. Or crush ye, bones and all, with their graspin' feet." I recommend Tree Girl to people who love fantasy and adventure. This book will appeal to readers in middle and high school. Even though the jargon is a little hard to understand sometimes if read over a few times the younger ages will understand. I hope other young readers will come to know this book and get a sense of how lucky kids are to have a family that loves them. You will only find out what happens to Rowanna in the High Willow if you sit down and enjoy this phenomenal book. You won't be able to put it down until you finish it!

Review written by Jamie (6th grade student).

We would like to thank T. A. Barron for providing a copy of Tree Girl for this review.

Have you read Tree Girl? How would you rate it?

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Review: On the Scene by Robin Caroll

On the Scene by Robin Caroll. A Samantha Sanderson Book.

On the Scene by Robin Caroll

Publication Date: May 2014
List Price: $8.99
ISBN-13: 9780310742470

Review: Have you ever experienced bullying or seen one of your friends be bullied? Well in Samantha Sanderson: On The Scene by Robin Caroll one girl Samantha or Sam knows becomes a victim of string attacks, and Sam wants to find out who is doing it. This is the second book in the Samantha Sanderson series.

In Samantha Sanderson: On The Scene, Sam and her best friend Makalya do cheer at their school. Sam's mom is a journalist who travels around the world, and when Sam gets older, she wants to be just like her mom. Sam is in the newspaper at her school. So is the girl Nikki, who is getting bullied by someone at the school. To make matters worse, Nikki's parents might be getting a divorce soon. Nikki and Sam have never been the best of friends; in fact they were almost enemies until the bulling started. Nikki's best friend is Aubrey who is mean to almost everyone. When Nikki first starts getting bullied, she doesn't want anyone to know about it mostly because it may have a chance to harm her chance of becoming homecoming queen. On top of all of this, there is a break in at the school; someone steals computers out of the lab. Sam and Makalya might have been responsible for part of it. If you would like to find who did it and more, read the book.

I liked Samantha Sanderson: On the Scene a lot. It was very interesting and left me anxious to come back and read more. I liked they way the book was formatted so that the chapters ended in just the right spots, to make readers want to read more. Overall, the book was great overall and a good story that you would want to read again and again. This is a good story also because anyone may be able to relate to the main character, Sam. This is a great realistic fiction book and very informal. It handles serious situation in bullying and teaches a lesson in a great story. You can learn a lot from the fictional character Sam Sanderson.

Review written by Sydney (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Zonderkidz for providing a copy of On the Scene for this review.

Have you read On the Scene? How would you rate it?