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Monday, December 30, 2013

Review: Lion by Jeff Stone

Lion by Jeff Stone. Book 2 in the Out of the Ashes Series.

Lion by Jeff Stone

Random House Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: September 2013
List Price: $16.99
ISBN-13: 9780375870194

Review: Have you ever had a passion that you loved, but it turned out to be a complete disaster? Jeff Stone, author of The Five Ancestors out of the Ashes: Lion, brings a novel about a kid named Ryan with big dreams of biking. However his dreams slowly fall apart, in this action packed book filled with adventure. This book is part of the Five Ancestors out of the Ashes, series.

Ryan discovers through a biking accident that his body begins to heal rapidly. He believes the drug, dragon bone, is a performance enhancer. He begins to question what his uncle gave him. As he begins to research the drug, he discovers that the drug dragon bone is connected to a line of deaths. During a visit to his cousin's house, he signs up for a biking competition with his friends. His cousin suddenly is found missing. DuSow, the antagonist, captures Peter and holds him hostage. DuSow suggests that he will let the cousin go if Ryan joins his bicycling team. Ryan and his friends go to the biking stadium to race. Then in the middle of the race Ryan drops out secretly to save his cousin. Will Ryan save Peter, or will DuSow beat him to it? Find out in The Five Ancestors out of the Ashes: Lion.I would recommend this book to a kid or an adult that is interested in realistic fiction. The main character, Ryan, is a dynamic character that demonstrates his bravery by trying to save his kidnapped cousin from DuSow, the evil enemy. This book is appropriate for boys and girls in grades 5th through 7th grade. Readers who are interested in action packed adventure will find this book interesting. The author, Jeff Stone, write a series of books that all has animal related Kung Fu. The book has some higher-level words, but, if you're a high level reader I bet you can read and understand this book if you are in a grade lower than 5th grade. I love this book because of all the action packed adventure about Kung Fu and biking. Jeff Stone writes a series called The Five Ancestors all of the books in the series involve Kung Fu. If you like martial arts and biking, this is the right book for you.

Review written by Matthew (6th grade student).

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

Have you read Lion? How would you rate it?

Friday, December 27, 2013

Review: How to Make Friends and Monsters by Howard Boward

How to Make Friends and Monsters by Howard Boward.

How to Make Friends and Monsters by Howard Boward

Publication Date: August 2013
List Price: $12.99
ISBN-13: 9780310736073

Review: Do you know how it feels to be oppressed? Well, Howard Boward, the main character of How to Make Friends and Monsters does, he experiences it every day. Being called How-Lame or How-Weird everyday by the UPs (the Uber Populars) doesn't feel good, until he becomes one because of an accidental experiment creating his powerful, giant, hairy monster named Franklin Stein that eventually becomes his best friend. Ron Bates wrote this diverting, attention-grabbing book. Howard Boward's journey from How-Lame to How-Cool is an incredible time for him. It is like a dream for him but how will it change his friendship with others?

Howard Boward is a boy who hasn't always been a very popular person. He wants to be an Uber Popular. Just when you think that a nerd has no chance of being popular you are wrong. Howard decides to actually make a friend with animal DNA, wonder putty, and some weird chemicals. When Howard looks back at the blob, he notices it changing. In a few days, the blob turns into the giant but nice monster named Franklin Stein. Franklin and Howard become best friends, but getting popular gets to Howard, leading him to forget about him. Franklin feels double-crossed so he goes to live with Uncle Ben. When Howard asks to borrow Reynolds' phone he calls Uncle Ben and asks to talk to him. Franklin says 'hi' but he refuses to talk further. Then, Howard accidentally calls Crystal, who is a major gossiper. She over-hears that Franklin is a monster, and Howard tells her not to tell anyone. She wouldn't if he created a monster for her. He does, but Crystal tells the other UPs, and now, all of them want one. He makes them, but they want to give them back. He knows he can't care for giant animals, so he refuses. Then, the UPs bring Howard to The Palace, which is their hideout. What will happen to Howard? Will anyone save him? Read the book to find out!

This book, in my opinion, was fantastic! I really liked how it's not realistic! I like books that have super-powers, monsters, aliens, and other fake things. Giant monsters are better than boring stories about history. I loved how they kept pushing the story further, instead of stopping it short. It would be interesting it if there was a sequel of this book; it would be great. What is great about this book is that it has a theme to it. It shows friendship is important. It also shows that you need to be loyal to people to remain friends. It also shows that people can change: good to bad, or bad to good. It doesn't matter if you have popular friends or not only the real friends matter the most. True friends stick with you no matter what. Some parts in the book I didn't like because they were confusing because Howard uses Reynolds' phone to call Uncle Ben, what I didn't get is, how does Reynolds have Crystal's number? He wasn't popular. This book's story line is really meant for boys. Most girls aren't interested in monsters, science, fires, and football, but most guys love those things. You should read the book if you like fictional things. This book isn't meant for serious people. I personally liked the storyline. It was action, sci-fi, and adventure. This book is one of the best I have read! A great audience for this book would be for kids around ages 9-12 because it is engaging, but it is also a long book to read. Or those kids who like to play with toy monsters, who like science, and whoever likes creating things. So, if you like any of those things, you should read How to Make Friends and Monsters by Ron Bates! Enjoy your journey!

Review written by Kenneth (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Zonderkidz for providing a copy of How to Make Friends and Monsters for this review.

Have you read How to Make Friends and Monsters? How would you rate it?

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Review: A New Home for Lily by Mary Ann Kinsinger and Suzanne Woods Fisher

A New Home for Lily by Mary Ann Kinsinger and Suzanne Woods Fisher. An Adventure of Lily Lapp Book.

A New Home for Lily by Mary Ann Kinsinger and Suzanne Woods Fisher

Publication Date: February 2013
List Price: $12.99
ISBN-13: 9780800721336

Review: Baa! Neigh! Come on over to the Lapp family's Amish house and farm, in Pennsylvania. A New Home for Lily by Mary Ann Kinsinger is the second book in a series that features Lilly Lap as the main character.

Lily is an Amish girl that lives with her Mama, Papa, and her brothers Joseph and Dannie. She just moved from New York to a small farm in Pennsylvania. The book tells about how they live their lives on their newfound farm home. On their second day at the farm, Lily goes to a new school. She meets a mean girl named Effie, a kind girl named Beth, and a very annoying boy named Aaron. As Lily goes to school, the weather changes and the holidays come and go. Soon, she gets a special surprise, a new baby brother named Paul. As she grows up, many different things happen to her. Papa falls off the roof, she makes gray Jell-O, and he cousin moves next door. What happens next, that's for you to read. The many adventures that Lily has never end!

I really liked A New Home for Lily! It is a must read book for girls ages 8-12. It has family, love and fun on the farm! It begins with the Lapp family moving to Pennsylvania and then stories about how they live their life afterward. It is a pretty big book with around 260 pages, but is an easy read. If you like Little House on the Prairie and like playing house, you will love this book! It has a few pictures every page so you can picture what's happening in your head. It is not a good book for boys, because a girl named Lily is the main character. I hope there is another book coming out in this series, but I can't promise anything. You should read and love this book.


Review written by Katlyn (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Revell for providing a copy of A New Home for Lily for this review.

Have you read A New Home for Lily? How would you rate it?

Monday, December 23, 2013

Review: Joshua Dread: The Nameless Hero by Lee Bacon

Joshua Dread: The Nameless Hero by Lee Bacon. A Joshua Dread Book.

Joshua Dread: The Nameless Hero by Lee Bacon

Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: September 2013
List Price: $16.99
ISBN-13: 9780385741866

Review: How does it feel to be famous superhero? Can things too out of hand? Lee Bacon's genius book, Joshua Dread: The Nameless Hero starts off with Joshua receiving an invitation to Gyfted & Talented, a mysterious program for children with superpowers.

Joshua's entire summer plan is turned upside down as he goes through training to help him prepare for the battle against the man who wouldn't want anything more than to have Joshua dead. That man is Phineas Vex, who is thought to have been dead. As he prepares for battle, Joshua and his friends Sophie and Milton get more than they bargained for as they discover the secrets behind Gyfted & Talented.

When I picked up Joshua Dread: The Nameless Hero, I expected another one of those stereotypical superhero stories. I was VERY wrong. Joshua, the main character, doesn't even know he possesses superpowers or a 'gyft'. Both of his parents are super villains, which makes his life even more bewildering and comedic because most of their inventions horribly fail. Also, I love that every chapter ends in suspense, though some chapters may have tried a little too hard in order to create suspense. Joshua Dread is the perfect book for boys ages 9-13 because it has a lot of action packed scenes involving super heroes. This book starts off with every character seeming like they have a secret, but as you read you learn more and more about them, readers may even feel a connection with them. I don't want to give anything away for the readers planning on reading this book, but I wasn't expecting that plot twist at the end. Now I'm stuck impatiently waiting for the next bookÉ if there is one.

Review written by Josh (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Random House for providing a copy of Joshua Dread: The Nameless Hero for this review.

Have you read Joshua Dread: The Nameless Hero? How would you rate it?

Friday, December 20, 2013

Review: Mister Max: The Book of Lost Things by Cynthia Voigt

Mister Max: The Book of Lost Things by Cynthia Voigt. Book 1 in the Mister Max Series.

Mister Max: The Book of Lost Things by Cynthia Voigt

Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: September 2013
List Price: $16.99
ISBN-13: 9780307976819

Review: Max is one small boy on an old bicycle and has very strange eyes. His grandmother Grammie is a librarian. Ari is Max's tutor and he is a "lost child". Pia is a girl who helps Max solve his cases. Cynthia Voigt tells the story of an intelligent little boy, Max, basically living on his own. Mister Max: The Book of Lost Things is the first book of an amazing series of books about the adventures of Mister Max.

Mister Max is a story about a boy, Max Starling, the son of two actors, William and Mary Starling, who gets invited to a ship called Flower of Kashmir. When Max gets to the harbor to board the ship, he finds that his parents are gone! The only thing left was a letter from his father saying that they cannot take him with them. Max, confused by the letter, turns to his grandmother, Grammie, for help. Max is, unsure of what to do and starts to work as an unlicensed "detective". While trying to uncover the secrets of his parents' disappearance, he meets two other people, Ari who is Max's math tutor, and Pia, a girl who hates people who show off their pets. Both characters help Max uncover the mysteries of his detective works.

Cynthia Voigt is an excellent author. Because Max is also an actor, she writes good points about how Max uses his talent as an actor to solve mysteries that come his way. I disliked why Cynthia Voigt made Pia so annoying and why Ari is working so much or what he is up to with the money he earns. I like that she made up for these confusions with the quality of the book. It is well written and intriguing. Mister Max is highly recommended for 9-11 year olds or for younger high-level readers.

Review written by Jarred (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Random House for providing a copy of Mister Max: The Book of Lost Things for this review.

Have you read Mister Max: The Book of Lost Things? How would you rate it?

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Review: Revenge of a Not-So-Pretty Girl by Carolita Blythe

Revenge of a Not-So-Pretty Girl by Carolita Blythe.

Revenge of a Not-So-Pretty Girl by Carolita Blythe

Delacorte Press Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: April 2013
List Price: $16.99
ISBN-13: 9780385742863

Review: Did you ever do something horrible that you still regret to this day? You probably think that what you did was just an accident and it wasn't really your fault, or was it? Is the guilt still right behind you blowing it's icy-cold breathe that's chilling your neck, making your hair stand on edge? If you had that experience, then you have something related to Faye, the main character of Revenge of a Not-So-Pretty-Girl, by Carolita Blythe. It is a great read that would keep you reading for hours and hours.

Faye and her friends, Caroline and Gillian are bad girls. They feel justified to attack the rich because they feel like the rich takes advantage of money and also, they have a condescending attitude towards the poor. They are bad enough to rob and almost kill a poor old woman who lives in apartment 1H. Faye and her friends heard that a famous "movie star" (the old lady) lived in the apartment building. They needed some extra cash and they were bored, so there they were in the apartment building, patiently waiting for the lady to come home. When the lady finally walked in, she walked into the lobby with handfuls of groceries, Gillian and Faye rushed up to "help" the innocent lady. Caroline offers to bring the groceries inside her cozy little apartment. The lady accepts the offer, but what she doesn't know is that that was a big mistake. The next thing she knew, she was being pushed by one of the girls and being asked where all her money is hidden. Soon after, Faye fights with the old woman and sends her flying to the floor. The old woman laid there lifeless. Did Faye kill the old woman? Can Faye make it right or will she have to live with the dreadful wrong? Will Faye ever want to get revenge on anyone ever again?

Revenge of a Not-So-Pretty-Girl is suspenseful, riveting, and compelling. In the book, the characters have interesting personalities. Like, "both of you, shut up," Caroline responds. "And why'd you have to punch me, Faye? Next time you do that, I'm punching you back harder." This statement also exemplifies that repeated exposure desensitizes a person's moral compass. In some situations within the story the setting can be confusing and unclear. There are also many moral messages. Like, desensitization, revenge, prejudice, karma, and guilt, power/control. Over all, I thought Revenge of a Not-So-Pretty Girl was a great book. I would recommend the book to people that like crime/drama stories. The age range for the book should be around 12-14 because the book has some adult language and has some complicated story lines. I hope other young readers will read and enjoy Revenge of a Not-So-Pretty Girl and you find out what really happens to Faye and the old lady. You will not be able to put the book down until you finish it!

Review written by Jamie (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Random House for providing a copy of Revenge of a Not-So-Pretty Girl for this review.

Have you read Revenge of a Not-So-Pretty Girl? How would you rate it?

Monday, December 16, 2013

Review: Super Jack by Susanne Gervay

Super Jack by Susanne Gervay.

Super Jack by Susanne Gervay

Kane Miller
Publication Date: October 2013
List Price: $5.99
ISBN-13: 9781610671293

Review: No, I want this!

"But I want this!"

Starts the bickering in Super Jack. Have you ever had to increase your family? If you have, then you will be to relate to the book Super Jack a heartwarming and caring story written the author Susanne Gerway.

Super Jack is about a 12-year-old boy named Jack who needs to get used to taking in new family members of his family. After living with his sister, grandma and mom, his mom dates a man named Rob. Then when Rob declares that he wants to take a family trip up North to see his son Leo, it sounds like the perfect family vacation because of the gorgeous beaches, the awesome theme parks and the fact that Jack can bring his friend, Anna along; but will Leo's presence will it ruin the whole thing. When on this vacation they could do a lot of fun things like eating ice cream and a lot of fun family stuff. But when Jack finds secretive stuff about Leo like how he does not like Nana or how he hid the big bag of gummy worms he may not be able to cooperate with him. However, in the end, Jack and Leo need to unite in order care for someone who is the loveliest person in the world.

Super Jack was very realistic, for example, in the story the whole family bickers which is common behavior in many families. Also Jack's family goes to vacations, to theme parks, they eat breakfast together, and so much more! I also like how Jack has a conflict with Leo because I sometimes fight with my own brother. Another good thing about this book was that Gerway used the most age appropriate words for this book. Another way Gerway did what all good authors do, is that she made the setting one of the big elements of the book; because without the traveling or Jack's house all of this couldn't happen. One thing I didn't like was the jokes because sometimes they were a little crummy, but that is okay because in general, Gerway did write a good story. She even wrote another book, I Am Jack which involves the same characters. If you want to find a book where you can relate to the characters and plot. This book is also good for a family to read together because they can relate to this book, even with young readers.

Review written by Ian (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Kane Miller for providing a copy of Super Jack for this review.

Have you read Super Jack? How would you rate it?

Friday, December 13, 2013

Review: Dust Girl by Sarah Zettel

Dust Girl by Sarah Zettel. Book 1 in The American Fairy Trilogy.

Dust Girl by Sarah Zettel

Publication Date: June 2013
List Price: $9.99
ISBN-13: 9780375873812

Review: Sarah Zettel has started off her new series with the great hit, Dust Girl. Callie LeRoux, small Kansas girl, had known all her life that her father wasn't coming back and that her mother was forever crazy for thinking so, but with the arrival of the greatest sandstorm in history everything in Callie's world has been flipped upside down. Her mother taken captive by the beautiful Seelie; her father, well thanks to the help of a stranger caught amongst the dust, has been locked up still trying to be forced to marry the Seelie princess.

Callie has just experienced the worst shock of her life, the greatest dust storm in history, her mama gone for good, a man and his fortunes, and now meeting a young boy Jack Holland who claims Callie's a fairy. She found Jack on the way to get food for her new "costumers" in a prison cell humming along to an old railroad tune. Taking pity upon him she releases him and has her work for him, becoming incredible friends. Through tight locks, railroad busts, and undead sheriffs Jack and Callie's relationship has grown tighter and tighter. Even after the sudden disappearance on Jack and the change in Callie they remain everlasting friends.

This book is for 2nd graders and up. The land of fairies and magical creatures has taken a new turn in this book. If you love magic and fairytales and happy endings then you should try out this book. The two part series has all the magic and fairies to last you a lifetime. Take a step into a small town Kansas's girl's life and experience all the adventures, danger, anger, love, and feelings of a girl lost in a huge world, or make that two worlds. Callie has discovered the land of the fairies, a huge world where her grandparents are king and queen, her father a prince, and Callie a princess. But this world is more dangerous than it seems, if a human or fairy eats or drinks from this world they can never leave. Sound thrilling? Go grab a copy of Dust Girl by Sarah Zettel today, you won't regret it.

Review written by Emily (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Random House for providing a copy of Dust Girl for this review.

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

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Review: Dancer Daughter Traitor Spy by Elizabeth Kiem

Dancer Daughter Traitor Spy by Elizabeth Kiem.

Dancer Daughter Traitor Spy by Elizabeth Kiem

Soho Teen
Publication Date: August 2013
List Price: $17.99
ISBN-13: 9781616952631

Review: Do you want to read a book about a girl who has to multitask every day? If so then Dancer, Daughter, Traitor, Spy by Elizabeth Kiem is a good book for you. It is about a girl named Marina.

Marina and her father have to escape Russia and Soviet Union. Her mother was born with a special gift and Marina has it too. When Marina and her father arrive in America she wants to become a dancer again. Her father enrolls her in a high school and she quickly makes some friends. She goes to an audition for the American Ballet School. She has a vision of something bad and now she has to decide whom she can and can't trust. What does the vision bring and how will it affect Marina? Who will she trust?

I liked the book and its story line. But this book will better appeal to girls rather than boys. Some boys may like the book because there is some action in the plot. Dancer, Daughter, Traitor, Spy is probably intended for girls ages 10 to 13. Dancer, Daughter, Traitor, Spy has a few high level words and has some Russian in it. The book made me smile when Marina was dancing again. Overall I enjoyed Dancer, Daughter, Traitor, Spy and I hope you will too. It was a great book and girls and boys may appeal to it.

Review written by Elizabeth (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Soho Teen for providing a copy of Dancer Daughter Traitor Spy for this review.

Have you read Dancer Daughter Traitor Spy? How would you rate it?

Monday, December 9, 2013

Review: The Dark Between by Sonia Gensler

The Dark Between by Sonia Gensler.

The Dark Between by Sonia Gensler

Alfred A. Knopf Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: August 2013
List Price: $16.99
ISBN-13: 9780375867026

Review: Have you ever lost a friend? If you have you could very well connect with a character in The Dark Between. The Dark Between is written by Sonia Gensler. There are numerous characters some of the main characters are Kate, Asher, and Elsie.

Kate is a 14-year-old girl who works for Mrs. Martineau, but when Mrs. Martineau's show is committed fraud she can no longer work or live with Mrs.Martineau. Kate had nowhere to go because she was an orphan. For a night she stayed at her friend Tec's house. Then she finds out that her dad had a good friend named Mr. Thompson, and that he owned a college near by. When Kate goes to the college to see if he would allow Kate to stay she meets a man named Asher. Both Asher and Kate need to see Mr. Thompson. Kate needs to see him because she needs a place to stay, and would like to see if Mr. Thompson would allow her to stay. Asher needs to see if Mr. Thompson would allow him to stay there at the college also. Mr. Thompson agrees that both kids can stay. While Kate and Asher are both living there they meet Elsie who is Mr. Thompson's niece. While Kate is living there she learns that one of her good friends has passed away. Asher and Elsie try to help Kate figure out who killed Billy, Kate's good friend. While they try to figure out the mystery, Elsie reveals a secret to them that could help then figure out who killed Billy. When they have and idea who might have killed Billy they look for clues, but when they are looking for clues Kate finds out that her other friend Tec has died. Who killed them? Why did they kill them? Those answers will be answered if you read The Dark Between.

This book I would say is intended for girls because there is some romance in it. I would say it could be for older girls because The Dark Between does have some words I did not know. I would recommend this book for 8th grade girls who like mystery, romantic, and dramatic books. I enjoyed it because it was a good mystery story. Also it has some twists to it, and it makes you eager to read it. The book had a good story line also. The Dark Between also makes you wonder while you are reading. Another detail I liked about The Dark Between it describes everything very well. With all the details you could picture all of the events and characters in the story. One thing I did not like about the beginning was that it was a little confusing. Also it seemed a bit long. Also to add the beginning was not as exciting has the other parts of the book. But other than that that this is a magnificent book.

Review written by Danessa (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Random House for providing a copy of The Dark Between for this review.

Have you read The Dark Between? How would you rate it?

Friday, December 6, 2013

Review: Task Force by Brian Falkner

Task Force by Brian Falkner. A Recon Team Angel Book.

Task Force by Brian Falkner

Random House Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: September 2013
List Price: $17.99
ISBN-13: 9780449812990

Review: Imagine if you were 17 years old and the fate of the world was in your hands. In Task Force by Brian Falkner, that is exactly what happens to Lieutenant Ryan "Lucky" Chisnall and his elite squad of teenage soldiers. Together they form Recon Team Angel, and their mission is not an easy one.

In 2012, a group of aliens called Bzadians came to Earth to destroy the human race. Over the last 25 years, the Bzadians have taken over most of Europe, Asia, and Australia. Australia is now called New Bzadia and is the Bzadian's main headquarters. The Bzadians are perched in Russia waiting for the Bering Strait to freeze over so they can take over their final conquest-the Americas. If they succeed, the human race will be wiped out.

Chosen for their intellectual and physical abilities, Chisnall and his team have been surgically modified to resemble the Bzadians. With their knowledge of Bzadian language and culture, they are able to blend in behind enemy lines. The only hope for saving the human race is to invade New Bzadia and sneak in a fleet of the remaining world's military. If they are able to cut off the alien army's fuel and supplies, humanity might just have a chance.

This is book two in Brian Falkner's Recon Team Angel series. Even those who haven't read book one, The Assault, will be able to jump right into Task Force. Teenagers and young adults alike will be riveted by this military recount of their special mission. Follow the team as they evade capture, interact with the alien species, and put their lives on the line over and over again. It's hard to keep in mind that the members of Team Angel are merely children, with their innate military skills and ability to think clearly under pressure. Readers will feel the excitement of every small battle and feel the tension that mounts, as they get closer to their objective. Will the human race survive? Will our heroes survive? These questions are in your head until the very end.

Review written by Christian (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Random House for providing a copy of Task Force for this review.

Have you read Task Force? How would you rate it?

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Review: Captive Maiden by Melanie Dickerson

Captive Maiden by Melanie Dickerson.

Captive Maiden by Melanie Dickerson

Publication Date: October 2013
List Price: $9.99
ISBN-13: 9780310724414

Review: Cinderella is a classic fairytale. You know the story, you know how it has a lot of magic; but what you didn't know is that the story is still magical without the magic. It is possible, especially in the story The Captive Maiden the story of Gisela a bright courageous girl living with her stepfamily. The story The Captive Maiden was written by Melanie Dickerson who has an amazing skill for writing.

The Captive Maiden is about a young girl Gisela who's father has died leaving her to his evil step-wife Evfemia and her two wicked daughters Irma and Contzel. All her life only the thought of her father, who died when she was little, and the Duke's own son, Valten, kept her happy. Many years later, when running into Fredric Ruexnr, Valten's worst enemy, was when Valten and Gisela met. Valten wanted her to come to the tournament he would be fighting in where he crowns her The Queen of Beauty and Love. This makes Evfemia jealous so she locks Gisela in her room to be bought by none other than Fredric Ruexner. Can Gisela avoid Ruexner and make it to the ball? If so will Ruexner plot revenge on Gisela and Valten? If you want to knowÉ you will have to read The Captive Maiden for yourself.

The Captive Maiden is an interesting story with reasons why the reader may or may not enjoy the book. One thing is there is no magic. Personally, someone might enjoy a Cinderella story without magic. Others might think that there is no Cinderella without magic. So this may change your opinion on if you would read The Captive Maiden. Also The Captive Maiden is incredibly descriptive. I felt like I was Gisela, I was distressed when she was locked in her room, I rejoiced when she was crowned The Queen of Beauty and Love. However at some times Melanie Dickerson was over descriptive, The Captive Maiden has a little violence. Some people get broken bones and there is a little blood. Some readers may think the action is thrilling, some however may not read the book because of the violence. I think the part of The Captive Maiden that made it a truly meaningful story was Gisela's positive attitude. All the years Gisela spent with her stepfamily she had two things to keep her happy, Valten and her dad displaying a true passion for Gisela's love - making for an incredible book.

I would suggest The Captive Maiden to anyone who thought most of the qualities, such as no magic, and description, make for a fantastic story.

Review written by Ashley (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Zonderkidz for providing a copy of Captive Maiden for this review.

Have you read Captive Maiden? How would you rate it?

Monday, December 2, 2013

Review: The Wolf Princess by Cathryn Constable

The Wolf Princess by Cathryn Constable.

The Wolf Princess by Cathryn Constable

Chicken House/Scholastic
Publication Date: October 2013
List Price: $16.99
ISBN-13: 9780545528399

Review: It seemed so wonderfully, beautifully, romantically different from anything she had known. And yet, she felt, somehow not different at all. Sophie is a girl from rainy London and she dreams of a magical place such as this one. The author Cathryn Constable has written The Wolf Princess in such a frosty, cheek-blushing way that you just can't get enough of the wild and beautiful forest. This book is filled with all of the magical action, adventure, and truth that you can handle.

Sophie Smith and her two best friends, Delphine and Marianne, live in London. Sophie's father has died, and the girls soon end up somewhere in Russia that strangely reminds Sophie of her beloved father, and her frosty dreams. They discover a new friend, Anna Volkonskaya, who takes them on a journey that they will all never forget. But when a princess turns out to be nothing they had ever expected, and when a wolf unexpectedly shows up, Sophie has to become another person to save a wonderful palace, friends, wolves, and a princess.

The Wolf Princess is the most creative, wildest, and frostiest story I have ever read! The setting made the story very interesting. The blowing snow and the wild forest created a great image in my mind. I cannot relate to any of the characters in this book, for they are all so unique. Cathryn's writing style made this story keep going like when Sophie said, ÒYes, I saw it.Ó What did she see? Read and find out! This book would be great for grades 5 - 9. The Wolf Princess started out very slow and calm, but quickly became magical, exciting, and wild! This story is also told in first person and that made the story very easy to understand and that made the setting very detailed. This story showed me to go with your gut and at times, when you need to, don't follow the rules.

Review written by Ada (6th grade student).

We would like to thank Scholastic for providing a copy of The Wolf Princess for this review.

Have you read The Wolf Princess? How would you rate it?