Saturday, May 12, 2007

Westerfeld, Scott. Uglies

Westerfeld, Scott. Uglies #1. Simon Pulse, 2005 [0-689-865384]
Westerfeld has created an alternate world in this first of a trilogy where at the age of 16 people are given an operation to change their appearance and thought from "ugly" to "pretty." After the operation they live in a paradise where life is fun. Tally is approaching her 16 birthday and suddenly becomes friends with Shay does doesn't want to become "pretty." Shay runs away to a mythical place where everyone is not pretty and because Tally was her friend, the authorities give Tally a choice, either go after her and betray her friend Shay and her new world or never to get the "pretty" operation. This 425 page book is a great science fiction tale centered around everything teenagers are concerned about... appearance.. and fitting in. This is one of those books that I purchased because I saw several 8th grade girls walking around with it before I even hear of it. Note that one of my copies has a page order problem after page 380. You may want to look at yours if no one has read it yet.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

Lawrence, Iain. The cannibals

Lawrence, Iain. The Cannibals. Delacorte, 2005 [0-385-73088-8]
In this sequel to "The convicts" the boys have to escape their prison ship. They do and in the long boat and are shipwrecked on a strange island where they run into a guy who has been stranded there for a long time. He tells them about the cannibals in these waters. The bulk of this 230 page book takes place as the boys and this strange guy are trying to stay away from and escape the cannibals. This is an exciting conclusion to the tale. A plus for readers of seafaring and/or adventure stories.

Haddix, Margaret Peterson. Double identity

Haddix, Margaret Peterson. Double Identity. Simon & Schuster, 2005 [0-689-87374-3/978-0689-87374-4]
Bethany is 13 and suddenly her parents pack everything up and drop her off at an Aunt's house (where her parents used to live) who she barely remembers. At her Aunt's house she is reminded of the sister who died just before she was born. Everyone is acting strange around her and she is hearing whispers about how much she looks and acts like her sister. She gradually finds out that she is a clone of her sister. Can she develop her own personality? Can she be her own person? Who is their parents hiding from? This 218 page book is a thought-provoking story.

Frank, Lucy. Lucky stars

Frank, Lucy. Lucky stars.Atheneum, 2005 [0-689-85933-3]
Kira lived with her grandmother in the country after her parents divorced. When she goes back to live with her father in NYC, she is forced to sing with her dad in the subway. At school she meets some new friends, one of which has a severe case of stuttering. So their could all be in the same classes, they all transfer to chorus where an demanding teacher sees something in all of them. This is a nice reading 295 page book relating the story of kids all with different problems, under the guidance of a seemingly strict, yet caring teacher.

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Carter, Forrest. The education of Little Tree

Carter, Forrest. The education of Little Tree. University of New Mexico, 1976 [0-82632809-1]
This book takes place in the Appalachian Mountains of Tennessee during the depression of the 1930's. Little Tree is a Cherokee orphan who is adopted by his grandparents. In the mountains he learns to hunt and live the "Cherokee Way. He also learns the cruelty of the white people toward them who eventually take him away from his grandparents and send him to an orphanage. This 216 is not a quick read but is a warm and touching story of a family caring deeply for each other and their way of life. Unfortunately, there is some controversy surrounding this book. It originally was marketed at autobiographical (which it is not.) Also, the "Cherokee Way" as described in the book, is far from accurate according to some. I purchased this book because one of our sixth grade teachers requested it after seeing it on a list of suggested readings in their textbook.