Thursday, December 29, 2011

Born Wicked

Hola! I hope everyone had a good holiday season? So, Born Wicked is by Jessica Spotswood. Cate Cahill and her sisters live in a world of danger for any girl, the witch hunts. But it is even more perilous when you are the Cahills, real witches. Cate struggles to take care of her sisters, quell the rumors circulating about their isolated family, and decipher her rather tangled love life. With a deadline threatening to destroy her whole life, Cate must choose between herself or the so-called "greater good." This was actually a pretty good book. The characters had depth and the plot had enough twits to keep it interesting without making knots in the story. I particularly liked Finn, although I disliked the fact that she had to turn to the popular girls for guidance. The ending, as usual, was complete torture. The story could have continued quite well into other books if given a bit more of an "and they lived happily ever after ending." Born Wicked was surprisingly good, but be ready for thorough disappointment at the finish. Three stars.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011


Hola! Finals, nooooo! Well, Foundling is by D. M. Cornish. Living in an orphanage is no easy feat for Rosamund Bookchild, and his name part of the hardship. Teased for having a girl's name and wanting to read rather than join in the fights that often occur between students, Rosamund dreams of leaving to be a vinegaroon (Sailor) on the Vinegar Seas. But when the time for students to be apprenticed for various occupations, Rosamund is overlooked. His future plans dashed, he almost despairs before a mysterious man comes to employ him as a Lamplighter. Worried that his life outside the orphanage will be dull but still set on leaving, Rosamund departs, however his journey will be anything but boring. This book was mediocre. I think that the story was good and the characters where fine, nothing special, but how it was written made it a bit of a chore to read. And the fact that, because the author made up half the words in the book, the glossary takes up a third of the novel. I was very surprised when I read the final page. I will say that the ending was quite good, a first! It didn't tie up all of the loose ends, but that was to be expected as I am now reading the sequel. It was not amazing, but not a waste of time, two and a half stars.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Ender's Game

Hola. This was recommended to me by many people, and they were right. Ender's Game is by Orson Scott Card. In the future, the world will be on the brink of chaos and the military will be recruiting kindergartners. Ender is one such six-year-old, harassed by his pugnacious (Vocab word, ha!) brother and the bullies at school, he is not a happy child. But when Colonel Graff comes to collect Ender, more than just his safety is at risk. Humans are fighting a war against the buggers, insect-like aliens, and if we don't win soon, we never will. And the winning is up to Ender. This book is so complicated! Here is some advice: read the introduction last, it made me very confused. The author said the book had been ridiculed for being simple, straight forward. I had a hard time just figuring out if I liked Ender or not! Let alone if the rest of the people are good or bad. I really enjoyed this book, but I was disturbed by the fact that I was so confused. And there are some parts that are horrible, they add much to the story, but are still awful. And the ending was just odd. I really liked this book, but if you read it, be ready for a ride. Four stars!


Hola! It's been so long! Okay, Starcrossed by Josephine Angelini. When a mysterious family of wealthy but reclusive people move to the minute island on the East Coast that Helen Hamilton lives on, she can't help but be curious. However, the minute she sets eyes on Lucas Delos, the unbelievably attractive but very odd middle child, Helen knows that there is something different about them. With the truth about her family only beginning to come to light, Helen must learn to control The Fates, and herself. Sorry that was so vague, but it's hard to describe without completely giving everything away. Whatever. So, it was a good book. A bit of Oh. My. Gods. vibe, but there was some City of Bones as well. Though there were some Twilight-esque plot twists. And Lucas was totally Edward, just read it. Really what I'm saying is, entertaining book, sort of cliche but bearable. It looks long but a very easy read. Although, the ending was infuriating, big surprise. Three stars.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Athena's Favorite Things

Hola! Welcome to Athena's Favorite Things, where I give you the KNOWLEDGE of five things that I like. (See, I was channeling Oprah but I don't think I can give you all cars...)

1. Blogs. (Because I am so outrageously tech savvy, I totally know how to name URLs!) This is The Best Funny Music Blog Ever, written by one of my friends, Alex. He is a very talented chap who I have been trying to make a YouTube channel, oh well. I can truthfully tell you that I died laughing while reading this.

2. YouTube! I happen to be a horrible YouTube addict. My favorite people include charlieisocoollike, nerimon, and communitychannel. I definitely recommend checking them out. 

3. Clothes? This is a secret, keep it on the down-low! TeeFury is the most magnificent website in the history of the world. Each day they have ONE t-shirt for ONE day, $10, and after that it is gone, so each day there is something new!

4. Music. Okay I admit to knowing next to nothing about music but for the fellow nerd I say check out Wizard Love on YouTube or iTunes for that matter. I may not love Meekakitty, though HeyHiHello is good and the song is hilarious.

5. Video Games... I am not saying I am some sort of Nintendo expert but, if you happen to have a DS I HIGHLY recommend any of the Professor Layton Saga. They are absolutely amazing games where you solve a mystery by completing rather difficult puzzles. It is incredibly addicting, one of those, "Oh my god, I have been playing this for four hours, and I didn't even notice!"

Sunday, October 23, 2011


Hola, Possession is by Elana Johnson. Violet lives in a world of rules. Always wear the hat, don't walk with boys, don't touch anyone, listen to the transmissions every night, but she doesn't want that anymore. She rebels against the Thinkers, the strangely persuasive people that set the numerous laws, in her own ways. But one day she goes a step too far. Violet learns that she has an important role to play in the world, and that she must choose who to follow. Jag, an odd but unusually compelling boy, or Zenn, her oldest and best friend. This book was really weird. It was kinda Hunger Games-like, overlords oppressing the submissive population. The end was awful, it kind of made me want to forget I read the book in the first place. What is with authors these days? All they want to do is torture us with endings! If it had an alternate finish it might have gotten a higher score, because the book itself wasn't all that bad. As a whole, though, bizarre and rather blah. And it annoyed me that she could never give up Zenn! Okay, two stars.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Son of Neptune

HOLA!!! Son of Neptune, by Rick Riordan! YAY! Okay, so Percy is back, but he can't remember what happened before. After spending a few weeks living with wolves and fighting-off working-class gorgons, Percy is a little more than confused. The only thing he can remember from his past is Annabeth, a girl he knows he cares for, but he can't seem to recall anything else. When he stumbles into a camp full of Roman soldiers, his memory starts to come back, but even more exciting are his new adventures. Traveling with Hazel, a girl who seems to have even more problems than Percy, and Frank, a nice but kind of goofy guy only realizing his true talent. Together they take on the newest threat; Mother Earth. This book was really good. It was a satisfying follow-up to The Lost Hero, though I could have used a bit more about Percy. The characters are different and rather refreshing after so many books about the same people. However, the ending was horrific! The biggest cliffhanger ever! And I bet some people are with me when I say that it should be against the law to stop a book right before Annabeth turns up. Overall, a solid and deserving book, four stars.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

The Future of Us

Hola... Ready for the strangest concept of a book I have ever laid eyes on? The Future of Us by Jay Asher and Carolyn Mackler. Josh and Emma are teenagers who manipulate their lives (set in 1969...) using their Facebook accounts from the future. They are high-schoolers in a town on the East Coast, with plans of doing something with their lives. But when they get to see their real futures laid out before them, it suddenly doesn't seem so good. By coming to terms with the present, maybe the future won't seem so bleak. It was actually better than I thought it would be, but it was still seriously odd. The characters weren't bad, it was really just the plot that threw me. Maybe this is someone's thing but it isn't mine. Two stars?

Shatter Me

Hola! Shatter Me is by Tahereh Mafi (I agree, totally awesome name). Juliette Ferrars is not sure if she is sane. Which is perfectly sane considering that she hasn't touched a fellow human being in 264 days. But she doesn't want to touch anyone, because she is a monster. After living alone in a world of screams and blank white walls for so long, the shock of meeting a person, someone kind, is overwhelming to Juliette. So when Adam enters her life everything is different, but is it for the better? With the Reestablishment controlling the whole world, it will be a hard journey for Juliette to regain her lost life. This book was weird but good. It was a bit confusing because there are all these crossed-out bits, which are presumably thoughts of Juliette's that she doesn't like or want. And at the end it went totally Xmen! (I will give you a hint of her power, think Rouge.) Adam was lovable and a good balance to the bizarre story, but Warner is still a mystery. The ending was rather abrupt, I wouldn't have minded a few more chapters to tie up the numerous loose ends. Three stars, good enough that I will follow the series for the rest of the story.

Monday, September 26, 2011


Hola, new book: Between, by Jessica Warman. After her eighteenth birthday party on a boat with her closest friends, something about Elizabeth Valchar happens; she dies. But when she doesn't move on, staying in our world as a ghost (type-thing), she knows something is not right. While she observes her family and argues with her now only friend, she can't help but notice that nobody is what they seem, least of all herself. I accidentally lied in Lola and the Boy Next Door, this is the hands down most teenage-booky piece of literature I will ever read. Liz's boyfriend is a freaking drug-dealer! The characters are all horrible people, (Maybe except for Alex...) and it was really confusing to read a book where the main character barely knows anything about herself. It is also a little late for Liz to have an epiphany about her personality, she is dead, after all, can't change much now! It was a chore to read, but I did finish it. One star.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

The Beginning of After

Hola. The Beginning of After, Jennifer Castle. Laurel's world is torn apart when her parents and brother are killed in a car accident. The son of the man thought responsible confuses her even more while she tries to reconstruct her suddenly unsteady life. But with Laurel questioning everything, how can she understand their relationship, let alone her friendships? Seriously depressing. I think David is really strange, too, it made me feel bad for Joe. And Meg is a little bit unfeeling, she is not the best friend I would want to help me through tragedy. I know this is so short but I don't have anything else to say, it was kinda bland. Two stars.

Notes From an Accidental Band Geek

Hola, I am very efficient this month! Notes From an Accidental Band Geek is by Erin Dionne. Elsie Wyatt is a high-schooler with high ambitions, to get into Shining Birches (A very prestigious orchestra thingy,) and nothing can get in her way. Even if that means joining marching band to fit the requirements. But this place-filler turns out to be much harder and--more fun?--than anticipated. Elsie must use her new experiences to learn much more about life than just how to play the mellophone. This book was overall lame. Yes, she does learn a good lesson but it was SO unrealistic! One: Elsie has about as much empathy as a rock. Two: her friends are incredibly sensitive—she snaps at then once and they completely freak out. It wasn't a horrible book but just rather annoying to read. One and a half stars.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Hola! Daughter of Smoke and Bone is by Laini Taylor. Karou's life is split into her real life and her real life. The former is of a rather mysterious but highly gifted art student in Prague, while the latter is the one littered with animal hybrid caretakers, many near-death experiences, and innumerable teeth. But when mysterious hand-prints turn up, scorched on the portals into her secret life, both Karou's worlds fall to pieces. While she tries to regain her lost lives, her past comes back, and along with it, a danger that could just tear her apart. This book was a little bit strange. I have heard of the characters before, chimaera and Seraphim, demons and angels, but the context was weird. And the ending was so bizarre and unfulfilling! The book itself wasn't too bad, but the finish was a complete cliffhanger. (And Akiva reminded me of Edward Cullen which was odd.) Not the best but it could have been worse, two stars.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Lola and the Boy Next Door

Hola, super short one here. Lola and the Boy Next Door, by Stephanie Perkins (Companion to Anna and the French Kiss...). Lola Nolan lives in San Francisco with her two dads and has a boyfriend who is way too old for her. She wants to be a costume designer and expresses herself by not wearing the same outfit—all bizarre. And the main conflict is that she has issues with her next-door-neighbors. This book was lame and so teenage-booky that it was almost painful. Drugs and serious dating had to crop up somewhere! The characters were all slightly strange and definitely wouldn't exist in real life. The only bright spot is that you get to see Anna and St. Clair in their lives after French Kiss. And Cricket is slightly awesome but I have major problems with Lola. Waste of time, one star. (Sorry if I just ruined Anna and the French Kiss for you but you really had to see it coming!)

Anna and the French Kiss

Ho-- I know! I know! Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins is not my usual genre but I did read the Clique books so... Anna Oliphant's father made his fortune writing smut novels, (Smut, a term I picked up from my aunt: those trashy romance novels with a Fabio-type character on the cover.) Now part of a higher social scene, Anna has to fit into his idea of "class," so he sends her to France. However, Anna was perfectly happy in her home of Atlanta, Georgia, with her best friend Bridgette and crushing on her work colleague Toph. But if Anna keeps an open mind, Paris might not be that bad, especially if the dreamy Etienne St. Clair is around. Can Anna balance her chic Parisian life with her home in Atlanta, or even get her tangled love-life smoothed over? I liked this book more than I should have. It was not too teenage-ish, only laced with the occasional swear word or suggestive comment. It was highly entertaining and the characters are actually really interesting. I'm not saying that it was fabulous but it was much better than I thought it would be for a teen romance novel. Three stars.

Sunday, September 4, 2011


Hola. Divergent is by Veronica Roth. Five "factions" divide the world of Beatrice Prior: Amity, Candor, Dauntless, Erudite, and Abnegation. Each represents a way of life that, when one turns sixteen, one chooses their lifestyle. Amity stands for peace, Candor for honesty, Dauntless are the brave, while Erudite strives for knowledge and Abnegation are selfless. Beatrice has to make the almost impossible decision—stay with her family or follow her heart. What follows is a time of grueling struggle for the newly named Tris as she tries to fit in with her new life. Even more hardship comes, while trying to deal with a mysterious boy and possibly murderous friends. And Tris has a secret, which it just might be the end of her. I actually really liked this book. The characters were good, very mysterious and hard to anticipate, and the premise was awesome as well. This book is what The Hunger Games should have been. But the ending was horrific. I felt like I had lost a few chapters somewhere. I now know that it is going to be a trilogy—but that ending was the biggest cliffhanger in the world! I am torn between three and a half and four stars (Maybe even four and a half if I am feeling generous).

Monday, August 29, 2011

Theodosia and the Last Pharaoh

Hola, school is about to start! As always, Theodosia and the Last Pharaoh is by R. L. LaFevers. Continuing her adventures with Egyptian magic, Theodosia actually goes to Egypt to return some ancient artifacts to their original owners. But with the murderous Serpents of Chaos on her trail and some other mysterious characters determined to hinder her mission, Theo has her work cut out for her. I know this is a vague summary but this is a complicated book and it is more fun if you don't know what's coming. I really enjoyed this entire series. (This is probably the last book, by the way...) Theodosia is a prim and proper English girl who always gets into just enough trouble to make it exciting, but still manages to pull a spectacular spell out of her small hat. Really very entertaining reads, three and a half stars. (See a review for the first book under Theodosia and the Serpents of Chaos.)

Thursday, August 25, 2011

The Book Thief

Hola... Markus Zusak is the author of The Book Thief. Liesel Meminger is the book thief, and her story begins when she picks up her first book, next to her brother's grave, in Nazi Germany. Aided by her foster parents, Liesel learns to read. But it is more complicated than that, with the Nazis on the loose and parents that are not exactly 'in the party' Liesel and her best friend Rudy need to stay out of trouble. With "Jesse Owens" (Read the book!) life can never be boring. Punctuated by a stolen book here and there, Liesel and her family try to survive the horrible conditions and crimes surrounding them. By the way, it is written from the point of view of Death—I like him, he has a sense of humor. This was an interesting book. I actually liked it, but it took me forever to read. It is so dense! Rudy is lovable and Rosa and Hans add some comfort to this dismal story. And Max was brilliant. Good characters, thick book, two and a half stars.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

The Help

Hola, The Help is by Kathryn Stockett. Aibileen Clark is a life-long, "colored" maid in Jackson Mississippi whose specialty is raising her white employers' children. From their numerous employments Aibileen and her friends have many stories to tell about their situations, but they can never tell them. But then again, what if they could? When Skeeter Phelan, a white friend of Aibileen's employer, approaches Aibileen about writing a book from the point of view of "the help", it seems much too dangerous an opportunity to take. However, with racial tensions stirring in Jackson, what is a little more stirring going to do? With a myriad of subplots, The Help follows Aibileen and Skeeter's journey as change-makers in their community. I thought this was a really good read. I will say that the ending was disappointing but the story was solid. The characters were refreshingly human and it was a really easy book to power through. On a side note I thought the movie was good and cried throughout. I would recommend this book, three and a half stars.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Starfleet Academy, The Edge

Hola! Starfleet Academy, The Edge. (I know, I am such a nerd.) Jim Kirk, Nyota Uhura, and Monica Lynne are all first year Starfleet Cadets, along with many other applicants. School seems to be going well—they are all struggling to keep up with the work but that is only to be expected. But when some serious medical anomalies arise concerning other students, Cadet Kirk's best friend, Cadet McCoy, could take the blame. It's up to Kirk to uncover the lengths people will go to succeed. I know this book sounds like a cheesy-little-kid-movie book but it was pretty intense. Some parts were kinda creepy. The story made sense and included many characters that aren't in the movie, which I thought was cool. It was a solid book, three stars.


Hola, Larklight by Philip Reeve. Art and Myrtle Mumby live in Larklight, an ancient house that orbits around the moon. They live a rather dull life there, accompanied by their scatter-brained father. However, one morning, word of a guest arrives and throws their lives into chaos. The guest is only the beginning of a terrifying adventure. Aided by cutthroat space pirates they travel to places they never dreamed of going to save themselves and the universe. I liked Larklight. It was one of those kind of silly space books where kids save the day, but it was entertaining. I like Art and Ssillissa, they are both very unique characters. Overall good, but a light read, two and a half stars.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Around the World in 100 Days

Hola! Around the World in 100 Days is by Gary Blackwood. Harry Fogg, the son of the famous Phileas Fogg, built a motorcar, the Flash. Harry believes that motorcars are going to be the new way of transportation, and his conviction is so great that he gambles an awful lot of money, and and his future on the fact that he can drive it around the world in 100 days. On his journey, Harry and his friend Johnny encounter danger, adventure, and many different people. I really enjoyed this book. It was just the right length and had lots of action and suspense. I also thought that it was a very nice follow-up to Phileas's story, (Yes, I have read Around the world in 80 Days, thank you very much!). A good, exciting read, three and a half stars.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

The Door to Time

Hola! This book is bad for me, I already wrote this blog but then the computer spazzed and it got deleted. The Door to Time doesn't have an author (Weird!). Jason and Julia, both eleven, move from busy London to an almost empty town on the coast of England. Although they are twins, they couldn't be more different. Jason is a very observant dreamer, while Julia is athletic and adventurous. And the enormous house they move into seems to have some secrets. In this book, Jason and Julia explore Argo Manor (the house), question Ulysses Moore (the former owner), and discover the world through a single door. This book is for little kids. I would compare it to the Spiderwick Chronicles—the first book is like the first chapter. The kids are also outrageously smart, knowing things that no sane (I hesitate to say "teenager") would know. And they don't act British at all, a crime for the setting! Strange book, one and a half stars.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Ring of Fire, Century Quartet Book 1

Hola. Happy (Belated) Independence Day! Ring of Fire, Century Quartet Book One, by P. D. Baccalario. A series of coincidences drive four kids to one hotel room, Ellettra, Harvey, Sheng, and Minstral. The only thing they seem to have in common is their unusual birthday, Leap Day. But when they go for a nighttime stroll, their world turns upside down. The road ahead is fraught with danger, mystery, and what seems to be magic, but can they all take the heat? This was kind of a weird book, it was kind of half murder mystery half mundane scavenger hunt. The characters were fine, nothing special. But Ellettra's abnormalities confuse me, isn't this supposed to be a scavenger hunt? And what about Hermit Devil?! Anyway, two and a half stars.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Skulduggery Pleasant, The Faceless Ones

Hola. Okay, here is the problem with this book. It is the third in the series and I barley remember the first two. Skulduggery Pleasant, The Faceless Ones, by Derek Landy. Valkyrie Cain, previously known as Stephanie Edgely, and her magic mentor, Skulduggery Pleasant, are out, once again, fighting crime. But the stakes are higher than ever. Someone is killing the teleporters, and Skulduggery has a keen idea what its about. With an insane cult of worshippers following the evil gods known as the Faceless Ones trying to foil them, Valkyrie and Skulduggery need all the help they can get. I completely understand if you don't understand this blog. I will reread the first book and see if I can write something slightly less confusing. But anyway, this was a really exciting read. The characters are good and the dialogue is witty. My only thing is that the Faceless Ones seemed just a little too east to fight. And one more thought, wasn't this supposed to be a trilogy? The series totally isn't over! Whatever, three and a half stars.

Nobody's Princess

Hola! Nobody's Princess, by Esther Friesner. Helen is a girl who wants a lot out of life, including the combat training that her brothers get. This would be a much easier feat if she wasn't Helen of Sparta. Yup, that one. "The most beautiful princess in all the land." She longs for adventure, and with the help of her friends she just might escape her sheltered life. Throughout this book, Helen befriends heroes, dodges marriage, and relies on no one but herself. Nobody's Princess was fine, it might have been a little boring but overall it wasn't bad. I like her brother and Atalanta rocks. It was good but nothing special. Two and a half stars.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Wide-Awake Princess

Hola, The Wide-Awake Princess is by E. D. Baker. With so many magically enhanced people around, Princess Annabelle's gift seems more like a curse; no magic can ever touch her. And there is more to her "gift"—if she goes near enchanted people, then their gifts start to fade. But when a real curse comes into play, Annie counts herself lucky. She sets off on a journey to save her family from, of course, one hundred years sleep. With the help of her handsome guard Liam, how can Annie not save the day? I really like Baker's books. They are happy princess stories that are always punctuated by just enough magic. Very light and entertaining! Three and a half stars.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Tale of Two Castles

Hola. The weather has not improved. A Tale of Two Castles is by Gail Carson Levine, a favorite author of mine (and also the author of Ella Enchanted, also reiewed on my blog). Elodie is but a poor farmers daughter with grand ambitions, to be a mansioner (Which I think is an actress). She travels to Two Castles, a town over shadowed by, you guessed it,...two castles. One is run by the greedy king and his strange daughter, the other by a feared and hated ogre. When her dreams are crushed by the mansioning leader, Elodie is taken on as an assistant to the brilliant dragon Meenore. It expects a great deal from Elodie, and she must perform (no pun intended) if she is to discover the secrets of Two Castles, from the cats to the people. This was a good book, nothing exceptional, but good. I think that Meenore added a lot to the story but that Jonty Um could have played a larger role. Renn is just weird and I think that half of the ending was obvious and the other half was highly unlikely. Those didn't detract much from the story, however, and I give it two and a half stars.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Peter and the Starcatchers

Hola, it is not supposed to rain during the summer! Peter and the Starcatchers is by Ridley Pearson and Dave Barry. As a matter of fact, I met Ridley Pearson, and that was recorded on my firs ever post! (He was really cool,). Okay, here goes; Peter is the leader of a small band of orphaned boys, all of whom have had the misfortune of being put aboard the Neverland, a very old ship bound for Rundoon. But while the Neverland sails, even more ancient powers are at work. With the help of Molly, an extraordinary girl that Peter meets on his voyage, he must solve the mystery of a strange trunk that seems very important. And then they must survive the astonishing adventure that ensues. This is a rather old book, it came out around seven years ago but is still really popular. I really enjoyed this book. It is a different twist on the historic tale of Peter Pan, while making the explanation to his adventures much more logical than the other versions that I have read. The plot is exciting and the characters are lively and unpredictable. I especially like it when authors write how the characters speak, spelling the words out phonetically (Did you understand that because I was having a hard time explaining,). Awesome book, four stars! (Just a heads-up, the rest of the books in the series are kinda creepy, but still good.)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Heist Society

Hola, and now I realize that I haven't blogged Heist Society yet, the book that came before Uncommon Criminals (also written by Ally Carter!). There is a family, not brought together by hardship or the holidays like most of us, rather, connected by one occupation: being a thief. But Katarina Bishop was not happy with this risky existence, so she walked away. Escaping her fate isn't so easy though, and soon her old friend Hale turns up to drag her back in. He came with good reason— Kat's father is caught between a very dangerous man and his very valuable paintings. Kat and her crew are her dad's only hope, but will they be enough to help him? YAY! Loved it! This book was really spectacular. The writing is conversational but witty, as if looking into a very smart person's mind. The plot is original with just enough spice to make it interesting without violence or language (I would compare it to a teenage girl's Oceans Eleven). Totally awesome book! Four and a half stars!

Thursday, June 23, 2011


Hola. By Eoin Colfer (I wonder how you pronounce his first name...), Airman. Conor Broekhart calls the Saltee Islands home. He lives a privileged life, good friends with the king, a close relationship with his daughter (Isabella), and taught by a master of flight, Conor's own love. However, when he unearths a plot against the royal family, Conor gets a little too deep. He is soon branded a traitor and thrown into Little Saltee, an infamous prison. He has to escape the jail's torturous lifestyle and help Isabella uncover the truth. But first, he must fly. Sorry, not a fan. The beginning was good, descriptive with some action, but when he gets thrown in jail, it's horrible. It turns tedious and weird. I really don't understand the Battering Rams thing. And the blatant evilness of the bad-guy is lame (No names, spoilers!). He thinks about what he is doing and consciously agrees with the author that he is a terrible person. Okay, I'll admit, I didn't finish it, which is why it gets half a star.

Uncommon Criminals

Hola! It's summer and new books are coming out! Uncommon Criminals is the sequel to Ally Carter's Heist Society. Katarina Bishop is back and single-handedly righting the wrongs of the world, one stolen painting at a time. So that when a plea for the Cleopatra Emerald is voiced, how can she resist? With the help of her crew, Kat has to steal the enormous—and reportedly cursed—stone. But with so many cons and some very inconvenient accidents... cough, cough... will Kat be able to hold her family together? (That includes people not strictly related to her.) I thought this was a really good book. It is nice to now that Kat has flaws other than walking away from stealing, if that is a flaw. The characters develop well, although Nick didn't play as much of a role as I had hoped. My only problem was that, looking back on it, it was a really painful book to read, bad stuff happens that isn't in a good, plot-twisting way, it's just uncomfortable. Well, the other thing is that I always have kind of a hard time working out how they pulled the job. Carter doesn't explain enough. Other than that, I did really like it. Three and a half stars!

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Wild Magic

Hola, schools out! I am very sorry, I accidentally lied in my second-to-last post, I haven't blogged Wild Magic by Tamora Pierce yet, so here goes! Daine is a thirteen-year-old girl with a plan and a knack for animals: get a job, go to Tortall. This works very well for her, soon she is hired by Onua to take care of her ponies as they go to the capital of Tortall. As she learns about this new land, she also discovers that her "knack" is really magic, wild magic. Daine loves her new home, from the new sights and peculiar nobles to Numair, her magic teacher. However, trouble is brewing for Tortall as blood-thirsty mythical creatures (Immortals,) attack. And Daine has a secret that could jeopardize her whole new world. I really liked this book. Daine's character really develops over the entire series (There are three more books,) and the plot is unexpected. The other characters also add a lot to the story and I like how this ties into Pierce's other books. Overall I think that this book is an exciting read for many ages. Three and a half stars!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Young Samurai, The Way of the Warrior

Hola. By Chris Bradford, Young Samurai, The Way of the Warrior. Jack Fletcher is a young English boy who, with his father, has been sailing to the unknown land of Japan. After a shipwreck and a pirate-ninja attack, all Jack has left is his father's rutter—a priceless book of extremely accurate maps and charts. When Jack is taken in by Masamoto-sama, one of the most revered samurai in Japan, he learns that Dragon Eye, one of the pirates, is after the rutter. However, Jack's worries do not stop there. While at his samurai school, he is harassed for being an outsider. But in the end, will Jack see that trading Jack Fletcher for Jack-kun may not be so bad after all? I really enjoyed this book. Jack was an interesting character, made very realistic by his occasional frustration but lovable by his courage and loyalty. My main problem was that the chapters were so short! It could have had half as many chapter breaks and been even better. I also liked the other characters. Yamato is deep, and Yori is quietly forceful. Personal favorite: Akiko! Really great read, four stars!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Tortall and Other Lands, a Collection of Tales

Hola... I have been reading as much as possible! Tortall and Other Lands, a Collection of Tales is by Tamora Pierce. These eleven short stories concern a myriad of different topics, from continuations of her previous fantasy books to modern, more realistic stories. I will tell you about my two favorites and two least-favorites. Bad first. Nawat is the story of a half-man and half-crow being, who is shunned for his humanity. Huntress is the other one. It is about a girl whose family worships old gods, and tries to fit in at school (I know, it even sounds weird). Both of these stories are strange, with boring characters and lame plots, I can't give you a full report because I didn't finish either. Half stars each. My two favorites were The Dragon's Tale and Plain Magic. The first was about what happens to Daine's dragon "Kitten", after the series, The Immortals (As seen in Wild Magic, a previous blog), ends. The latter is about a peddler who visits a village that is being attacked by a dragon, and saves an unfortunate girl. Although I will admit that all of the stories lack Pierce's usual charm, they were good and entertaining. (It was also nice to know what happened to the characters in Wild Magic. I give each three stars.

Monday, May 23, 2011

The Spiderwick Chronicles, The Field Guide

Hola, The Spiderwick Chronicles, The Field Guide, by Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black. After Malory, Simon, and Jared's father leaves, their family life takes a definite downturn. They move with their mother into an extremely old house that seems to be coming apart by the seams, and owned by a possibly older woman. After only the first night, strange things begin to happen, but the more informed they become, the worse their situation looks. I read this book in about fifteen minutes. I think that the authors should have combined all of the five books into one decent-sized book. Their mother, Helen, seemed awfully quick to accuse Jared of the problems. The plot was non-existent, I felt as if I read the first chapter rather than an entire book. All of this books problems seem to come from its length, we don't even learn anything about the characters in its measly 107 pages! Highly unsatisfactory! One and a half stars.

Thursday, May 19, 2011


HOLA!!!! I had to do it eventually! Twilight, by Stephanie Meyer. Bella Swan has moved herself from the sunny paradise of her home in Phoenix to Forks, Washington because of her mother's remarriage. She thinks that this will be at best a boring, sleepy little town and at worst torture. Both of her assumptions are proven wrong however, as soon as she meets Edward Cullen. With Bella's world opened up to the vampires, her life has been changed forever. But is it for the better? And does it even matter? Okay, I'll admit, I am a fan. The writing is horrible and the characters are far from realistic but it is highly entertaining. The other thing that I don't like is Jacob in general. He is whiny, violent, and adds absolutely nothing to the story. I also don't like how Edward seems to be bipolar. Despite its numerous faults, Twilight is a rather addictive series. One and a half stars.

Monday, April 25, 2011

The Hunger Games

Hola... The Hunger Games is by Suzanne Collins. Living in the Seam, a gritty neighborhood in District Twelve, Katniss Everdeen struggles to feed her family. She never dreams that her younger sister Prim will be chosen for the Hunger Games. A punishment thought-up by the Capitol for the Districts' rebellion, each District sends two children between twelve and eighteen, called tributes, to the Capitol for a fight to the death. When her volunteering in Prim's place, she is thrust into the Capitol life with full force. But what about Peeta, the other tribute from District Twelve, who presents interesting challenges. Or the other blood-thirsty tributes, who are fighting for riches as well as life. The first time I read this book I hated it. It did not meet my expectations at all. I wanted excitement and action, but what I got was a bleak future and lots of sitting in a cave. I am now re-reading it and am enjoying it much more. Katniss is an interesting character with lots of spunk, and Peeta has a lot of depth. Gale also throws some more conflict into the bargain. Now that I understand the appeal, this is a pretty good book! Three stars.

Fever Crumb

Hola! Next up to bat is Fever Crumb by Philip Reeve. Fever is the first girl engineer ever. In a time where the streets of London are overrun with rioters and the low-lifes that haunt the city. In the midst of the end of the Scriven hunts—Scriven being much like humans, only speckled—the engineers strive for rationality. But when Fever is taken from her home on a mysterious mission, irrationality crashes over her whole life. Mixed with technology, honour, and adventure, Fever's journey takes some unexpected turns. I thought that this was a really weird book! It's set in the future but in a really strange way, referencing present things but making them seem a little primitive. I still don't understand what Scriven are, either. Fever has very little personality and the plot was rather disjointed. This was just a seriously weird book. One and a half stars.

Monday, March 28, 2011

The Calder Game

Hola, I know this the third book in the series but I read the first books forever ago! The Calder Game by Blue Balliett. In this book, Calder and his dad are off on an adventure in England! Well actually, his dad just has some meetings and Calder is going along. But Calder's artistic namesake, Alexander Calder, is stirring up some trouble. When Calder reaches the town he is staying in, Woodstock, he is surprised, and intriuged, by the mysterious mutterings of the townsfolk about the new sculpture. It was donated by an anonymous person and is by the great artist, Calder himself. But the mystery continues, fueled the strangely unfriendly inhabitants of Woodstock. I don't remember liking the first two books very much (Chasing Vermeer and The Wright Three,) but this book was surprisingly good. I really liked the conflict between Petra and Tommy, but I had a problem. It just wasn't mysterious enough! I distinctly recall being a little scared while reading The Wright Three, and thinking that it was a good story, but in this book, the outcome was too logical. The beginning to middle of The Calder Game was rather whimsical and interesting, but the solutions were too normal, and nobody was at fault. I need to reread the other books! Two and a half stars.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Steinbeck's Ghost

Hola! Steinbeck's Ghost, by Lewis Buzbee. Travis and his parents just moved from a cozy house in old town Salinas into a giant, blank slate of a house in Bella Linda Terrace. With the change of house, his parents changed as well. No longer the happy, tight-knit family they were that Travis needed to remember his old life. One day he rides his bike to the library and from there, the story begins. While working to keep the library from closing, he sees characters straight out of John Steinbeck's novels. Travis unravels the mystery of the author's hometown (Steinbeck lived in Salinas,) while overcoming the challenges of "normal life". I though this was kind of a strange book. Travis was a good character, misunderstood, heroic, and friendly. My problem with it was that it seemed kind of stuck in the middle, it should have been really fantasy or more realistic. The two parts of the book just didn't mesh well. Overall, it was good, just a little weird. Two stars.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

First Term at Malory Towers

Hola, First Term at Malory Towers, by Enid Blyton. Malory Towers is a prestigious boarding school sitting on a high cliff overlooking the ocean. (It is in England.) Although the building may look elegant and proper, the inhabitants aren't. In this book you follow Darell Rivers—a likable, happy girl with a fast temper—through her first year full of laughs, pranks, and some unexpected surprises at Mallory Towers. These books are awesome! The school, though very entertaining, is incredibly realistic. The characters are the perfect combination of fun and anger. Each person goes through different changes, and the fact that they are at a boarding school doesn't hinder their adventures. The only real problem is that the books are from Great Britain, so they might be hard to find... but anyway, the Malory Towers books are not a waste of time! Three and a half stars!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

The Sisters Grimm, Book 1

Hola, The Sisters Grimm, Book 1 by Michael Buckley. After Sabrina and Daphne Grimm's parents go missing, the girls are shipped off to their Grandmother's house, but before this, they didn't even know she existed! Sabrina, the elder sister, gets more and more suspicious while Granny Relda serves them strangely colored food and tells them about how the Grimm family has been detectives, and the keepers of the Everafters. These are characters straight out of story books, but are sometimes a little bit different than they may seem at first. When Granny Relda goes missing, the Sisters Grimm are on the case! I really like the characters. The plot is fun and original and the setting, though confined to a single town, is quite an adventure. However, a really hate Sabrina! She rather bogs the whole story down, but, if you ignore her, these are awesome books! Three stars.

Monday, March 14, 2011


Hola, next is Magyk by Angie Sage. On a dark and stormy night (Actually, it was snowing, but whatever!) a seventh son of a seventh son was born, and he was named Septimus Heap. However, he died shortly thereafter. At least, that is what his family thinks... On the same dark and stormy night, Silas Heap (His father,) was walking home after work when he heard a baby crying. He found a little baby girl with dark hair and violet eyes hidden in a bush. Silas took her home and raised Jenna in place of his lost son, Septimus. But what was the real story behind Septimus's early death, and who is the strangely mute boy that chance has thrown at Jenna? Okay, I'll admit that the first time I read this was in Second Grade, but it was good! The story may have been a bit predictable but the characters quickly changing personalities give the plot some twists and turns. I would definitely recommend this to younger readers (Good gift for cousins, etc.) or if you are an older reader that is looking for something entertaining but decidedly easy. Three stars.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Eyes Like Stars

Hola? (I am running out of punctuation...) Eyes Like Stars, by Lisa Manchev. Bertie lives in the Theatre Illuminata, a magical place where the character of every major play ever written resides. Bertie, a rather rebellious teenager is one of the only real humans in the Theatre. She is constantly trying to remember life outside of the Theatre, however, she is not the only one to have been outside its walls. When the mysterious air spirit Ariel discovers the secret to freedom, he may do a lot more than escape—he may destroy Bertie's chance to stay in the home she has ever known. Follow the motley crew through a suspenseful story full of humor, wit, and a very original cast of characters. I love the faeries from A Midsummer Night's Dream! (Peaseblossom is by far the awesomest!) I thought that this was a rather strange but incredibly interesting book. The plot kept me engaged and I thought the cover art was really cool. (I know it's not strictly "the book", but it was cool,) In all, I think that is you happen across it, Eyes Like Stars is not a waste of time, three stars.

Ella Enchanted

Hola! Sorry it has been such a long time, I have been getting lazy! Ella Enchanted, by Gail Carson Levine, they made a movie out of it, the book is WAY different. Ella of Frell is a kind, strong girl, with a fairy gift, she must always be obedient. Or maybe it's more of a curse! With her malicious step sisters and greedy father ordering her around, it's no wonder that Ella needs to break the curse before she does something truly terrible. With Ella's adventure punctuated by ogres, elves, finishing school, and the occasional letter from Prince Char, her story is an exciting one! I REALLY REALLY liked this book! Ella is smart and funny, while the other characters bring out deeper parts of her personality. The concept is intriguing, with hints of other classic fairy tales thrown in. I think that this is good for a large range of age groups and would keep all of them highly entertained. (It was just kinda short...) Good read, four stars!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Clockwork Angel

Hola, I am now doing a prequel. Clockwork Angel, by Cassandra Clare, is the first book in the Infernal Devices series, and a prequel to the Mortal Instruments (City of Bones...). Tessa was living with Aunt Harriet until she died, and then she was hurried off to London in search of her brother. This is the start of the story of Theresa (Tessa) Gray, whose journey is quickly followed by two sinister beings called the "Dark Sisters" and soon after that, Shadowhunters. With Tessa not even knowing who she really is, how can she manage plotting Downworlders, her brother, or just some boys! This book was not as good as the first series, without a doubt. However, it was good. My biggest problem with it was that I didn't like the characters. Will is a bad imitation of City of Bones' Jace, and Jem is halfway between Simon and Alec—super weird! Tessa is okay but after Clary, her Victorian manners are tiring. Maybe people should read these books before City of Bones so they are not disappointed... Hmm... Well, two and a half stars.

Jane Eyre

HOLA! I know, I know, before you all start yelling at me! I have been very lazy and haven't posted in around a month! I'm sorry! Okay, up next is Jane Eyre, by Charlotte Bronte (The "e" has two little dots over it but I don't know how to do that). Jane Eyre is an orphaned girl living with her aunt. This book starts with her horrid life as a child, beaten by her cousin and treated like a servant. This theme follows Jane throughout the entire story, (the "mistreated" theme) but Miss Eyre encounters a few events that could lighten her life a bit. This book is Jane's rather memoir-like story of her tragic life, but it does have a happy ending, don't worry. I liked Jane Eyre, but didn't love it. I really wouldn't recommend this book to anyone under thirteen and maybe only mature teens, it is heavy. The story is engaging, but the fact that Charlotte Bronte based this on her own life is a little off-putting. In all, good book, wait until you are older. Two and a half stars.