Friday, October 30, 2009

The Magician by Michael Scott

The Magician (Nicholas Flamel, #2) In this second book of the Nicholas Flamel series, the twins, Sophie and Josh, escape from Doctor Dee in California with Flamel to Paris. There, the twins attempt to escape capture from Machiavelli, also charged with capturing them.

Filled with many battle scenes, this is a fast-moving story. I was engrossed in the story, and finished it in no time. There are still many unanswered questions at the end of The Magician, leaving me eager to read the next book in the series. A solid read, fans of The Alchemyst and fans of magical fantasy in general will love it.

I give this one a B, recommended, but it came very close to being an A book!

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Princess of Gossip by Sabrina Bryan and Julia DeVillers

Princess of GossipI picked up Princess of Gossip to read because I liked the cover and I thought it might be a cute story. (And I liked Julia DeVillers' How My Private, Personal Journal Became a Bestseller.) Avery has just moved to southern California from Ohio and becomes embroiled in the world of celebrities and their publicity events after starting a fan page for a new musician. Okay, complete fluff and totally unbelievable, but fun to read in parts. I really liked the idea of how the friends created a second life type world for fans of the singer. I thought the climax and ending was a bit rushed and Avery really didn't get into as much trouble as I would have anticipated, but overall just what I expected -- a cute story. There's nothing special about it, but not a total waste of time either. I give it a 'C' -- Optional.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Inkdeath by Cornelia Funke

Inkdeath (Inkheart, Book 3)I was feeling a bit daunted by the size of INKDEATH when I first picked it up (700 pages!), but I got over that quickly as I once again became immersed in the Inkworld. This story focuses more on Mo than on Meggie, but after getting over a teeny tiny disappointment in that, I was fine. I thoroughly enjoyed the exciting adventures of Mo as he battles death and imprisonment, worries over possible betrayal all in his quest to keep Meggie and Resa safe. While there are recaps of books one and two at the start of the book, I still think the best bet is to read all three books in order. I felt the series came to a satisfactory conclusion, with enough of a question at the end that you can imagine things working out as you please. Loved, loved this series! My grade? An A, Highly Recommended!

Bayou Dogs By Tony Abbott

Bayou Dogs (The Haunting Of Derek Stone)After the cliffhanger ending of CITY OF THE DEAD, I was excited about reading more about Derek in BAYOU DOGS. The story starts off right where the previous book ends, so it's helpful to have already read COTD. There's plenty of action, spooky spirits returning from the dead and suspense to please. Unfortunately, I didn't find it nearly as gripping as the previous book. It seemed to devolve into a ghost story that's not as original as I'd hoped. Warning, this installment ends with another cliffhanger and many questions still unanswered, and the reader will definitely want to find the next volume in the series. I give it a C, Optional.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

The Tail of Emily Windsnap by Liz Kessler

The Tail of Emily Windsnap
Cute story of a girl that discovers a secret about her past and goes on a search for her missing father. I really enjoyed reading this one and wished I'd found it when my daughter was a bit younger. Interest for it will probably be no older than 6th or maybe 7th grade, but an excellent story for the intermediate grades (like 4th or 5th). I will be reading more in this series, if for nothing more than my private pleasure.

My rating: B, Recommended.

Perfect Chemistry by Simone Elkeles

Perfect Chemistry I liked this story about two kids from different sides of town who fall in love. While on the surface, their two lives seem to be worlds apart, they turn out to have a ton in common. I wish the Spanish phrases had been easier to figure out in context, but it really fit with the story. (Some, I had to go translate!) It's a bit too mature for middle school -- some issues in this novel are just a bit more than most sixth graders are ready to confront. I think this would be a good fit for many teens, including some relutant readers. My rating: B, Recommended.