Ridgecrest Student Book Reviews
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TimestampYour nameTitle of bookAuthorGenreReviewGenre
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10/26/2010 11:53:17Joanna FScaredy-Cat, Splat!Scotton, RobFunny, Picture BookSplat wants desperately to be the most scary cat at his school on Halloween, but he's just not sure about his costume. Will Splat find a way to scare his classmates, even when their costumes are more frightening than his?
3
10/26/2010 13:47:05simon ackerMr. Revere and IRobert LawsonThis book is about the events that happened to Paul Reveres horse up through his ride.
This book starts off in England, then moves over to the British colonies. Sherry the main character starts off as a British lieutenants horse, but the lieutenant loses her in a bet to the owner of the glue factory. When sherry drives a cart into a fruit stand the rebels take her and give to Paul Revere, that is when she is introduced to the revolutionary war....
Historical Fiction
4
10/26/2010 16:23:30Mika NThe Lake at the End of the WorldCaroline McDonaldThis is the great story of a girl and a boy living after most life has been destroyed. I would recommend this book to people ages nine and up. this book is deep and features many twists in the plot. I enjoyed this book immensely and think anyone who wants to read a good adventure novel will too.
5
10/27/2010 12:01:16Anya L.The Black CirclePatrick Carman In "The Black Circle" Amy and Dan adventure through Russia searching for the next clue that will lead them a step closer to the "Cahill Treasure." This book takes general Russian history, and informs the readers about Rasputin who is know for the theorys about his healing powers. "The Black Circle is a great book, and I would support you to read it. I personally enjoyed it.Adventure
6
10/27/2010 22:08:51Charles D.The Four-Story MistakeEnright, ElizabethYou have moved from your city house to a new place in the country. How do you feel? The Melendys' have a situation just like this one. Our main sibling characters are the four Melendy children, Oliver, Miranda (Randy), Rush, and Mona. The book is set in New England, USA, during the early 1940's. Our book's main theme is moving to a new area and settling down there. I believe The Four-Story Mistake is a great book for people from second grade up through high school because each age group can relate to a different character because the characters range in age from 7 years old to 19 years old.Realistic Fiction
7
10/28/2010 13:14:58Steven Z.Jackie & MeGutman, Jackie & Me is about this boy named Joe who is doing a report on Jackie Robinson. He decides to go back in time to meet him. All he has to do is get a Jackie Robinson card then hold it and he is there. Joe gets a lot of information about him but also learns a lot more.Historical Fiction
8
10/28/2010 17:30:59Sheridan S.The HelpStockett, Kathryn“The Help”, was a well written book about the writing of a book about the treatment of black maids in 1962, Mississippi. It shows that the black people were willing to stand up for themselves, even if it wasn’t directly (a book). Aibileen, Constantine, Minny (black maids), Skeeter, Stuart, Skeeter’s mom, Miss. Hilly, and the other ladies in the book club are the most important characters. I think this book was written for people who like history especially concerning the Civil Rights Movement of the 1900’s. It is also written for, young adults-adults. It is definitely NOT a kid’s book because it would be too confusing for them. Overall this was a great book and I think everyone who has a chance to read this book, but is also prepared to see the dirty side of the treatment of black maids in the 1900’s, should read this book. Historical Fiction
9
10/28/2010 18:30:20Daniel Z.StormbreakerAnthony Horwitz This book is about a boy who is trying to stop an evil man who wants to kill all of the children in England. This book is called Stormbreaker. The author is Anthony Horwitz. This book is about a boy named Alex Who’s uncle was a spy. In the beginning of this book, Alex’s uncle dies and Alex is hired as a spy by Alan blunt, and he must stop an evil man from killing all the children in England. The theme of this book is good stopping evil and it takes place in London and in a place called Port Talon.

I think that this book is an adventure book and three reasons that I think it is an adventure book are, one it is fiction and adventure books are fiction. Two, There is a lot of action in it like shooting and other things, and adventure books have a lot of action in them. Three, Alex almost dies several times, and adventure books usually have people that almost die.

I think that this book has a lot of strengths. Here are some of them. One, This book has a lot of action and not very many boring parts. It is difficult to put down when you have to stop reading. Another strength is that it is possible that this could happen. Another strength is that this book is very modern and there is a lot of technology and I like technology, so I like this book. I think that this book does not have a lot of weaknesses, but here are some. One, It is possible that this book could happen, but some things in it are unrealistic, like two people on quads trying to cut Alex in half with cheese wire and trying to kill him with a flamethrower. Two, a man named Herod Sayle gets a lot of deadly smallpox virus to try to kill all of the children in England with, and that couldn’t happen in real life.

I think that this is a very good example of an adventure book because it is action-packed, has a lot of guns (which a lot of adventure books have) and some adventure books have spies and a lot of adventure books have young people as the main character, and this book has both. I think that compared to Leepike Ridge, which is another adventure book that I have read, this is a very good book. I like it better than Leepike Ridge because Leepike Ridge takes place mainly underground, and I think that that setting is very oppressive. But Stormbreaker takes place mostly above ground in a beautiful place called Port Talon, so I like the setting a lot more. I also like Stormbreaker more because there are a lot more characters and because the plot of Leepike Ridge is mainly to escape a place that is deep underground to get back to the surface, and I like the plot of Stormbreaker better.

I think that there are more strengths than weaknesses because overall, I would give this book a nine on a scale of one to ten and I wouldn’t give it a ten because adventure isn’t my favorite genre but another reason that I think there are more strengths than weaknesses is because I could think of three strengths but only two weaknesses. I think that this would be a good book to read if you like books with lots of action, suspense, and adventure in them and if you like books that have futuristic technology in them. I think that this is a fairly easy book to read and I would recommend it to people in third through eighth grade.
Adventure
10
10/28/2010 21:31:16Evan D.The Red PyramidRiordan, Rick Action-packed, exciting, and suspenseful are what describe The Red Pyramid, written by Rick Riordan. I found it difficult to stop reading. Two siblings separated six years ago, Carter and Sadie Kane, set off to rescue their father, after he releases the most dangerous Egyptian god named Set. The god’s plan is to destroy the world with a giant red pyramid that explodes once completed. But in order to save their father and the world from the evil god, the siblings need to be trained to use their magic powers. Set in 2010, in London and many places in America, Carter and Sadie discover the meaning of family when they are reunited to work together to save their uncle and father, as well as each other.
The Red Pyramid is a good example of the fantasy genre. It contains mythical people, objects, and beasts, which are distinctive to this genre. The Egyptian gods such as the sun god Ra, the snake Apophis, magic wands, staffs, and weapons are some examples of these mythical symbols. In addition, the magic described in the book is not natural, and is not in reality. For example, on page 225, Carter transforms into a falcon by imagining he was a bird. There are also imaginary places, such as the underground Egyptian temple under the Cairo airport whose teachers educate young people how to use magic.
As a page-turner, Riordan writes to hook the reader by creating another problem occur after the first problem was solved. As a result, the reader becomes engrossed in the plot. There is action and peril, “We clashed sword against staff and sparks flew,” page 458. The writer does his best to keep the reader on the edge of their seat. In the battle between Carter and Set, Riordan makes it seem that the tables are always turning between Carter and Set. The reader doesn’t know who is going to be victorious. A weakness of this book is the author plays out battle sequences that some readers may have trouble understanding due to the complexity of the battle.
Three reasons that make this a good fantasy book are, one, the strengths outweigh the weaknesses. Two, there are events that happen in the book that only happen in the fantasy genre. One example of an incident that occurred in the book that can’t happen in real life is when Carter gets hit by a shotgun pellet and transforms into a lizard. Here is a quote from page 300 “…the man with the cowboy hat lowered his staff which morphed into a shotgun.” This quote proves this book is fantasy genre because staffs cannot magically morph into shotguns.
Another series Rick Riordan has written is the Percy Jackson series. Percy Jackson is very similar to The Red Pyramid. The Percy Jackson series is about Greek mythology, while The Red Pyramid is about Egyptian mythology. In each series, an evil mythological god wants to destroy or take over the world.

On a scale of 1 to 10, I would rate The Red Pyramid a 9 for several reasons. I learned more about the Egyptian gods. Also, I thought the book was very exciting with a very great plot. I think the strengths outweigh the weaknesses because the author keeps the book at a good pace and does his best to keep the reader hooked. I found there were very few weaknesses and many strengths. I would recommend this book to people age eight and above because it is a long book and young readers may not understand some of the plot. I would also recommend this book to people who like learning about mythical creatures and fantasy.
Fantasy
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10/28/2010 22:07:23Schuyler P.The HelpStockett, KathrynThe Help, by Kathryn Stockett (2009), is an inspiring novel about the Civil Rights Movement. It takes place in a rural community of Jackson, Mississippi in 1962. Three women (Skeeter Phelan, Aibileen Clark, and Minny Jackson) embark on a dangerous journey to publish the stories told by Black maids living in a "White" America. I liked this book because it is very informative about Civil Rights.Historical Fiction
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10/28/2010 23:12:03Michael P.Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and SweetFord, JamieHotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet is a compelling story about Japanese internment and love between a Chinese boy and a Japanese Girl (something that was forbidden at that time). I think that this book was really written for adults but could be for middle school readers (AR 7-8) and people who are interested in Japanese internment. Also, you might want to consider reading this book if you like reading about America’s history and discrimination.Historical Fiction
13
10/29/2010 7:46:21Emily P.ShiverStiefvater, MaggieShiver by Maggie Stiefvater is a great fantasy novel. It takes place in Merry Falls, Minnesota where a seventeen-year-old girl, Grace Brisbane is obsessed with the wolves that live behind her house. She is particularly interested in the yellow-eyed wolf that saved her life six years ago. When she finds that this wolf, Sam, is part human, a werewolf, their affection for each other can’t be denied. But, with trying so hard to stay together, to not let Sam change back into a wolf, they learn what it means to be resistant to your destiny.

This is a fantastic novel to read if you enjoyed Harry Potter or the Twilight series. With great description, character, plot, opinion, emotion, humor, tragedy, and scenes that you can clearly picture in your head, This book you will not be able to put down!
Fantasy
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10/29/2010 7:47:17Emily P.ShiverStiefvater, MaggieShiver by Maggie Stiefvater is a great fantasy novel. It takes place in Merry Falls, Minnesota where a seventeen-year-old girl, Grace Brisbane is obsessed with the wolves that live behind her house. She is particularly interested in the yellow-eyed wolf that saved her life six years ago. When she finds that this wolf, Sam, is part human, a werewolf, their affection for each other can’t be denied. But, with trying so hard to stay together, to not let Sam change back into a wolf, they learn what it means to be resistant to your destiny.

This is a fantastic novel to read if you enjoyed Harry Potter or the Twilight series. With great description, character, plot, opinion, emotion, humor, tragedy, and scenes that you can clearly picture in your head, This book you will not be able to put down!
Fantasy
15
2/23/2011 14:06:17Simon AWho was Elvis Presley?Edgers, GeoffIf you have not read this book and you are looking for a biography to read, I definitely think you should read this book because it is full of facts about a very important person in American music and it is very well written. The people that I think should read this book are between 9 and 13 because it has some bigger words and it has some things in it like drugs and smoking that younger kids shouldn’t read or know about. The book is written so that anyone that can read in fourth grade or above can read it because it is in big font and it does not have too many big words. The people that would enjoy this book the most would be people that enjoy reading about people’s lives and learning about the history of music. To sum up what I think about this book, it is a good, easy to read and fact-full book.Biography
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2/23/2011 14:08:46Simon AWho was Elvis Presley?Edgers, GeoffElvis Presley grew up in a small two room home that his dad built just before he was born. The book I was called Who was Elvis Presley? By Geoff Edgers (Author), John O'Brien (Illustrator), Nancy Harrison (Illustrator). This book is a biography about Elvis Presley, the characters in it are Vernon Presley (his dad), Gladys Presley(his mom), Elvis (the main character), Sam Phillips (the boss at Sun Records and Elvis’s director). Elvis’s life starts off in Tupelo, Mississippi in 1935 where he was born and raised until was 13. During his 13th year, his family moves to Memphis, Tennessee where he enrolled at Humes High School. When Elvis was 18 he walked into Sun Records hoping he would get discovered, while he was at Sun Records he met Sam Phillips, the boss of Sun Records but he was not discovered so he kept coming back. During one of Elvis’s later visits to Sun Records Sam had his door open to the control room and he listened while Elvis played and sang. Elvis was the person he had been looking for, he was a white man who had the black man’s’ sound and feel. From there Elvis’s career was in the clouds. He was the first rock n’ roll star, he was on TV, on the radio and in live performances. He continued to sing and play until he died in August 15th, 1977.Biography
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2/26/2011 17:32:45Sheridan S.Caddie WoodlawnBrink, CarolCaddie Woodlawn is a book about a girl and her brothers growing up in 1864 in western Wisconsin. Caddie's older sister Clara is growing up how a lady is supposed to; sewing and cooking with her mother, Caddie on the other hand runs wild along with her brothers Tom and Warren. Hetty is a seven year old who dosen't know if she wants to be like Caddie or Clara and Minnie is just baby. Wether she is going to school, visiting the local Indians, or working at home, Caddie seems to always be in the middle of a troubling situation. Personally, I loved this book because it shows what growing up in the 1800's in Wisconsin would be like and because this author has an amazing way with words that really deepens the emotions and situations that occur. I would recomend this book to people who need a little laughter or amazment because it is sometimes really hard to believe that people lived the characters in this book. Adventure, Biography, Newberry (this book is part biography and part fiction)
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2/26/2011 20:39:09Charles D.Guards! Guards!Pratchett, Terry There’s a dragon in the city! Good or bad? Guards! Guards! by Terry Pratchett is a tremendous novel. The main plot of the book is: Carrot Ironfoundersson joins the Ankh-Morpork Night Watch. He thinks the Watch upholds the law quite strictly. As it turns out, Carrot is dead wrong. A group of people summon a dragon and take over the city. The Watch then joins forces with the dragon lady, Sibyl Ramkin. Errol, one of Sibyl’s dragons, takes a liking to Vimes, then starts eating everything in the Watch House, including a kettle, two gallons of lamp oil, a tin of armor polish, and the coal scuttle. The Librarian of Unseen University joins the Watch. Vimes get imprisoned with Vetinari. The Librarian rescues Vimes from prison. Errol saves everyone from the dragon. Not the end.
The main characters are Lance Constable Carrot Ironfoundersson, Commander Samuel Vimes, Brother Fingers, Lord Vetinari, the dragon, Errol, and Lady Sibyl Ramkin. Some supporting characters are Sargent Fred Colon, Corporal Nobby Nobbs, the Librarian the palace guards, and the citizens of Ankh-Morpork. The theme of this book is change. I identified the theme of this book as change because the Watch changes from hiding in the shadows to saving the city (as well as their location), Carrot turns from a strict rule-follower to someone a bit unorthodox, and Ankh-Morpork changes because of the takeover and the destruction. This book is set in Ankh-Morpork, the biggest city on Discworld. I think the strong point of this book is the level of suspense/action.
Fantasy
19
2/27/2011 19:54:56Simon AWho was Elvis Presley?Edgers, Geoff Elvis Presley, the king of rock and roll, didn’t grow up in a castle. Instead he grew up in a small two room home that his dad built. Here is the author’s description of Elvis’ childhood on page 1: “Elvis wasn’t always rich. He didn’t always own a mansion or a garage filled with Cadillacs. He didn’t always have fancy clothes and expensive jewelry. As a boy, Elvis was poor. Very poor.” The book Who was Elvis Presley? by Geoff Edgers describes Elvis Presley, where he was born, his childhood, how he learned to play music, how he became famous, and how he died. It takes place in Tupelo, Mississippi and Memphis, Tennessee. In this book, you will meet Elvis Presley, his parents Gladys and Vernon Presley, Priscilla Presley (his wife) and Sam Phillips (owner of Sun Records and his manager).Biography
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2/28/2011 16:24:50Evan D.JohnLennon, Cynthia Funny, sad, lovable, and touching- these are the four words that describe the fantastic book John. Written by John Lennon’s wife, Cynthia Lennon, she tells the story of John’s life. The story begins when they meet in high school, and continues into the 21st century. She writes about the other Beatles, her family members, and their friends. The setting takes place in England, India, and the United States of America. It really demonstrated the theme of belief when John believed he could make a living playing music with the Beatles even when his Aunt Mimi told him he couldn’t.
On a scale of one to ten, I would give the book a 10. I found no weaknesses in the book, there were great descriptions, and the book really taught me about what I never knew about John Lennon. I would recommend this book to people who like the Beatles, rock music, or John Lennon. I would recommend this to 12 years old and above because younger kids would not understand the book. People should read this book because it really taught me about John Lennon and about the person inside of him I never knew about. I enjoyed John, and I hope others will too.
Nonfiction
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10/12/2011 10:49:17Will L.fablehavenMull,BrandonFablehaven is about Kendra and her brother Seth as they embark on amazing, magical adventures.Their Grandma is turned into a chicken and their Grandfather is taken captive. Together they must free their Grandfather and save FablehavenFantasy
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11/2/2011 7:48:41Emma S.Small Steps: The Year I Got PolioKehret, PegAutobiographyOnly one person was diagnosed with polio in Austin, Minnesota during 1949; a girl named Peg Schulze. Small Steps is by the very same Peg, and she writes about how she battles polio when she is 12 years old. This book takes place in the University Hospital in Minnesota, and the Sheltering Arms hospital in Minneapolis. Small Steps is about an unforgettable journey of an average twelve year old to a struggling, persevering teenager and how she learns and understands pain while meeting people like herself along the way.
This book is an autobiography because it is written by Peg Kehret and it is about Peg Kehret. This book is an account of Peg’s life when she was 12-13 years old. This paragraph from the text shows that this is an autobiography. “When I began to write about my polio days, long-forgotten memories bubbled to the surface. I was astonished by the intense emotions these memories brought with them. Those months, more than any other time of my life, molded my personality.” That paragraph shows that this is an autobiography because Peg writes about her polio and this book is also about her polio. In the whole book Peg writes in first-person. She is the main character. That shows that this is an autobiography because Peg is writing as if she is there in the book. Which she is, of course! Small Steps truly makes you feel like you are with Peg. Are having her struggles and feel her pains, but also her hope. When she learns to walk, you are there to. You feel her pleasure. The story is told so well that you learn information about polio in a story kind-of-way, not in a lecture non-fiction kind-of-way. I think that this is a good example of an autobiography because the author shows lots of insights of how Peg felt, and gives numerous real life situations. You can really feel that Peg Kehret knows what she is talking about, and really understands what Peg in-the-book feels. (Of course she does, she is Peg!) Small Steps is the only book Peg Kehret wrote about her life, and Peg says that Small Steps is special to her because it is her own story. The rest of her books seem like action and adventure books, not realistic fiction like Small Steps.
This book is a great read for teenagers and kids from 5th grade and up. Small Steps is a pretty easy read, but is a great story with important life skills in it. I think that people interested in life stories and particularly lives about teenagers who must adapt to a big change will like this book. The strengths of this book definitely outweigh the weaknesses (There are no weaknesses) and I recommend this book to anyone looking out for an amazing true story of a kid with a remarkable life story. And as Peg says, “Although I returned on walking sticks, moving slowly and taking small steps, I knew that in many ways, I was stronger than when I left.”
Nonfiction - Biography/Autobiography
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11/2/2011 14:44:12AaliaJoan of arcWilliams, JayShould you read Jay William's Joan of Arc biography? This book is all about the legend of Christan Warrior Saint Joan of Arc and what she did to go from a farm girl to a legend. And some about The Hundred Year War between England and France. Joan of Arc was french, so it is set in France.
This book is definitely a biography, because it is a true story. Although some parts seem a bit christian bias that makes it less knowingly true. Also since it was so long ago that Joan of arc was, it would be hard to know exactly what happened. But it is a biography because it is about a real person, and is a true story.
The book is very informative, and pretty accurate, but it is almost impossible to be exact because of the time era and how long ago it was. In some parts it was pretty boring, but if you are like me, biographies are boring in general. I, personally feel as though it is a bit christian bias, but that of course is an opinion. Any book review really is an opinion. Also, I felt as though it were slow in the beginning. That seemed to ruin the book a bit, if I didn’t have to but I decided to read the book anyway, I probably would not have read the whole thing.
I think this book is a good example of a biography because as I have said, it is a true story about someone. Even though it may not be the most accurate from the time distance, a lot of biography would have that problem. Most people didn’t get biographies before it was too long to know exactly what happened. And like I said before (Though I am not sure of myself here) it seems to have christian bias. Though I would not be the right person to ask about how it worked with the genera well because it was my first biography to read! Too bad I didn’t enjoy it.
I did not think that this was the best book, and the scale would lean on the weak side for me. I would not recommend this to many people, but I think it would be best for 5th and 6th graders because there are some tough words, but not too many. I think that people with a liking to history and bravery, but do not mind slowness would like it. But If you are very picky about books, like me, and are impatient with books, like me, I do not recommend it.
Nonfiction - Biography/Autobiography
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11/3/2011 11:25:42Sage E.Luka and the Fire of LifeRusdie, SalmanDo you like reading fantasies? If you do then you'll love Luka and the Fire of Life. When Luka's father, Rashid, falls under a deep sleep so that no one can awaken him Luka sets off to find the Fire of Life which can awaken his father and save his life with his pets a dog named Bear and a bear named dog. Along the way he faces many dangers in the magical world to get to the Fire of Life such as giant rats and mythical creatures. I would recommend reading this book because of the way it just sweeps you off your feet into the magical world. Fiction - Fantasy
25
11/3/2011 19:35:01Matthew W.The Great Train RobberyMichael CrichtonHave you read about the greatest robbery of all time? The Great Train Robbery, by Michael Crichton, is a masterpiece. At the beginning in 1854, Edward Pierce, a gentleman and a criminal in London, makes a plan to steal a shipment of gold worth more than twelve thousand pounds that is being transported every month to the front of the Crimean War. This is no easy task, as the gold is stored in two heavy metal safes. On top of that, each safe has two locks, so that a total of four keys are needed, and there is always a guard riding in the boxcar with them, for Pierce's robbery targets the pride of England at this time: the mighty locomotive. Fiction - Historical Fiction
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11/3/2011 20:12:46Donna W.The Tale of DespereauxDiCamillo, Kate This story was about a couragous mouse who happens to fall in love with a human princess, a young girl who dreams of becoming a princess, and a rat who wants to see light. I thought this was a good book overall because it entertained me with the small and big adventures that all characters encountered and if you wanted to understand everything that happens, I'd say that seven yrs. and older would be the approximate age level for this book, which I thought was very detailed.Fiction - Fairy Tale, Fiction - Fantasy
27
11/3/2011 21:57:36Ryan S.The LandTaylor, Mildred DHave you ever wanted to read a good strong historical fiction book? The Land is the book for you. The Land begins with Paul, whose father is a wealthy landowner and a mother who is a former slave. He is constantly teased by others for his light brown skin, the only sign that he is from African American descendant. When he befriends a former enem y Mitchell Thomas, he is shocked because his brother sides against him with some other white boys who were teasing him. After being whipped by his father, he decides to run away with Mitchell Thomas and make a fortune of their own. When they reach manhood, they decide to split up and live their own lives. Paul eventually goes to Vicksburg, where he makes a deal with a local landowner to cut down 40 acres of trees within a set number of time and Paul will own the land. But before he starts cutting, he recruits Mitchell and some others to help him. When Mitchell is shot and dies, Paul must stay resolute and take care of Mitchell’s wife.
The genre of The Land is historical fiction and fits into that genre well because it is based off of Mildred D. Taylor’s familys’ life . It retells the story of two young African Americans from boys to manhood that relates to the time period of around 1870. Also, it includes the fact that many African Americans were mistreated even after slavery ended. A comparison to other books in this genre is that they don’t take out the fact that white people mistreated African American People from the story like other historical fiction books do. Another comparison is that the author is not afraid of including harsh words that Americans used against African Americans unlike many authors.
The strengths of The Land are that it includes historical information and shows the lifestyle of African Americans during the 1870s’. Another strength is that The Land does not take away the fact that Americans disrespected and wasn’t biased to whites. The Land also has a fast paced and enjoyable plot because it includes adventure, historical events, and moral values.
The weaknesses of the book were that people still called African Americans the “N” word. An example from the text that supports this is “Could be tonight, could be next week, could be never, you smart nigger! Now get!” (from page 117) However, that weakness could be counted as a strength from the opinion of the reader because it can offend African Americans and Whites but can also show how African Americans were treated during that time. One of the major weakness is that Mildred D. Taylor includes some unrealistic information such as a African American learning how to read and write and a former slave to buy land from their master. An example from the text that supports this is “Our daddy told us that your mom bought 10 acres of land after she was emancipated”(from page 351)
The strengths in this book far outweigh the weaknesses. I would recommend this book to readers who enjoy books based on history. The Land is based on true facts how people were considered, how lifestyles were for African Americans, and how there were many unjust, unfair laws. This book has a very good plot, which is not only entertaining, but also educational. This book would most likely be read by 10 and up or kids with reading levels that are really high, because it includes many concepts that are pretty difficult to understand and has many words that should not be read by under 9 year old.
Fiction - Historical Fiction
28
11/3/2011 22:00:11Ryan S.The LandTaylor, Mildred DHave you ever wanted to read a good strong historical fiction book? The Land is the book for you. The Land begins with Paul, whose father is a wealthy landowner and a mother who is a former slave. He is constantly teased by others for his light brown skin, the only sign that he is from African American descendant. When he befriends a former enem y Mitchell Thomas, he is shocked because his brother sides against him with some other white boys who were teasing him. After being whipped by his father, he decides to run away with Mitchell Thomas and make a fortune of their own. When they reach manhood, they decide to split up and live their own lives. Paul eventually goes to Vicksburg, where he makes a deal with a local landowner to cut down 40 acres of trees within a set number of time and Paul will own the land. But before he starts cutting, he recruits Mitchell and some others to help him. When Mitchell is shot and dies, Paul must stay resolute and take care of Mitchell’s wife.
The genre of The Land is historical fiction and fits into that genre well because it is based off of Mildred D. Taylor’s familys’ life . It retells the story of two young African Americans from boys to manhood that relates to the time period of around 1870. Also, it includes the fact that many African Americans were mistreated even after slavery ended. A comparison to other books in this genre is that they don’t take out the fact that white people mistreated African American People from the story like other historical fiction books do. Another comparison is that the author is not afraid of including harsh words that Americans used against African Americans unlike many authors.
The strengths of The Land are that it includes historical information and shows the lifestyle of African Americans during the 1870s’. Another strength is that The Land does not take away the fact that Americans disrespected and wasn’t biased to whites. The Land also has a fast paced and enjoyable plot because it includes adventure, historical events, and moral values.
The weaknesses of the book were that people still called African Americans the “N” word. An example from the text that supports this is “Could be tonight, could be next week, could be never, you smart nigger! Now get!” (from page 117) However, that weakness could be counted as a strength from the opinion of the reader because it can offend African Americans and Whites but can also show how African Americans were treated during that time. One of the major weakness is that Mildred D. Taylor includes some unrealistic information such as a African American learning how to read and write and a former slave to buy land from their master. An example from the text that supports this is “Our daddy told us that your mom bought 10 acres of land after she was emancipated”(from page 351)
The strengths in this book far outweigh the weaknesses. I would recommend this book to readers who enjoy books based on history. The Land is based on true facts how people were considered, how lifestyles were for African Americans, and how there were many unjust, unfair laws. This book has a very good plot, which is not only entertaining, but also educational. This book would most likely be read by 10 and up or kids with reading levels that are really high, because it includes many concepts that are pretty difficult to understand and has many words that should not be read by under 9 year old.
29
11/6/2011 17:22:30DeMeaus W.I Heard the Owl Call My NameMargeret CravenIf you were diagnosed with an incurable disease, what would you do? Mark Brian didn’t have a choice. Margaret Craven tells a touching story of a young vicar named Mark Brian sent to a Native American Village called Kingcome. In the time Mark is there, he learns of how the Native American culture is dying, lasting only in the minds of the elders of the village because all their young have go out into the world, forced away from home, away from the culture that has survived for centuries in the minds of their fathers and before them. Mark comes to know the village and its sadness and loss. His time in the village is short but, when he hears the owl call his name, he is prepared to pass on as generations of Native Americans have before him.
The genre of this book is historical fiction. It takes place in the early 1900’s, in a Christian Native American village, during the time when children of Native American villages were being forced to go to boarding schools. The range of time this epoch called Americanization of Native Americans transpired was 1790-1920.
The style this book is written in is rather unique. It is like poetry, slow moving yet every word counts and flows into one another. For example, “His eyes sought a beach from which, long ago, the big stones had been removed so the war canoes could be pulled up stern first.” To me, the author has to painted an intricate picture in my mind with only one sentence, and to think the book is filled with more elaborate sentences, it is like watching a movie.
The vocabulary used by the author is a strength in her book but, and it is also a weakness. Unless, the reader has some knowledge of Native American phrases or psychology as used in the book, it may be less enjoyable since the reader may be unaware of the meaning of some passages. If the reader does have some knowledge of Native American phrases and psychology, the book could be more humorous because the book includes many segments of Native American jokes that would not be understood otherwise. One of the books lesser points would be the way it starts. It begins in the middle of a scene in the book and can be hard to understand, due to the randomness of the scene, requiring the reader to read the first chapter multiple times to clarify.
I recommend this book to intermediate elementary to high school students because of the detailed language used in it. I also recommend it to people who have an interest in Native Americans, historical fiction, or have to do a report on Native Americans because this book includes a great deal of information on various historical subjects including Native Americans. A tip when reading I Heard the Owl Call My Name, even if the beginning is difficult to understand, be persistent and read on and return to the beginning later. The beginning will clarify itself more as the book is read. In conclusion, I Heard the Owl Call My Name may have some hard to understand passages, but overall, it is a enjoyable book.
Fiction - Historical Fiction
30
11/15/2012 16:55:00Lauren HTime Stops for No MouseMichael Hoeye Do you like a book full of mystery, daring, and evil plastic surgeons? Then Time Stops for No Mouse is the book for you! This book is about a mouse named Hermux Tantamoq who works in a watch shop and has a pet ladybug named Terfle. But his normal life changes on page one when a female adventurer and aviatrix Linka Perflinger enters his shop with a broken watch. Soon, he is wrapped up ina mystery including a shady looking rat, an evil plastic surgeon, a supposedly kind news reporter, and the secret of eternal youth. In this wonderful book, all of the characters are rodents, and the story teaches you about friendship, beauty, and that even a mouse can be a hero. A ten to fourteen year old would find the most pleasure in this book, but any person over nine or ten years old could read and enjoy thihs book. It would be most enjoyed by a reader who enjoys a good adventure, with a reading level where they can understand twisty plots, and have the maturity to not be frightened by evil rodents of unusual size.Fiction - Mystery
31
11/15/2012 17:53:30Samya MThe Mark Of AthenaRick RiordanI would reccomend this book to anybody that is in 4th grade or above, UNLESS you are a very skilled reader and likes to read challenging books.Fiction - Adventure, Fiction - Mythology
32
11/15/2012 19:38:48David C.The Mark of AthenaRiordan, RickDavid Chen
11/8/12
Ms. Lytle

The third book of the Heroes of Olympus series is finally out! The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan. The Mark of Athena is a book with an amazing plot. The evil goddess Gaea plans to eradicate the Heroes of Olympus and wants to rule the world. Percy Jackson, Annabeth Chase, Jason Grace, Piper McLean, Leo Valdez, Frank Zhang, Hazel Levesque, and along with our furry, blood thirsty friend(literally), Coach Gleeson Hedge have to terminate her evil plan. I think that the theme of the book is to do whatever you can to accomplish your goals. There are multiple settings in this book. Here are a few: Camp Half-Blood, Camp Jupiter, Rome, etc.
I think that the book is categorized in the fantasy/mythology genre. Three reasons is that the book is mostly about four Greek and three Roman demigods trying to save the world from the Greek/Roman goddess, Gaea. Another reason is that Greek and Roman gods and goddess are mating with mortal humans. The third reason is that the world could be destroyed if the demigods fail. All these reasons can tell you why the book is fantasy/mythology.
There were plenty of strengths in the book although there were a few weaknesses too. Rick Riordan used plenty of descriptive words. Rick also made it so that the book wasn’t from the perspective of just one person but seven people instead. An example from page 197. “But his heart was pounding. He remembered sinking in the the cold Alaskan bog-black mud covering his eyes, mouth, and nose.” (This was from Percy’s perspective). As you can see, Rick didn’t put too many. It was just right. The storyline was very intriguing. Just reading the first chapter hooked me up and made me want to read more. Rick Riordan would also make a prophecy that would predict the future. “Seven half-bloods shall answer the call. To storm or fire, the world must fall. An oath to keep with a final breath, and foes bear arms to the Doors of Death. Wisdom’s daughter walks alone, The Mark of Athena burns through Rome. Twins snuff out the angel's breath, who holds the key to endless death. Giants' bane stands gold and pale, Won through pain from a woven jail.” Page 28. Almost nothing was rushed. Also, something funny that Riordan thought of was that whenever someone was surprised, scared, etc., he/she would say, “Oh my gods,” It is hilarious! I think the Mark of Athena is one of Riordan’s greatest accomplishments.
This novel is a great example of the fantasy/mythology genre because it has almost nothing to do with nonfiction or things. I would say it is great because 40% of the book has something to do with mythology, 50% has something to do with fantasy, and 10% is other. It would even be safe to say that there was barely anything that was not related to the fantasy/mythology genre. Rick Riordan was right on track.
I would like to make a comparison to Riordan’s other book, The Son of Neptune. They are very similar. It is also in the same genre. The plot is definitely different from The Mark of Athena. First of all, Percy Jackson’s memory was completely wiped out by the ambitious Hera. While in The Mark of Athena, Percy has his memory back and is with 6 other demigods to complete one of the most important quest in history.
I think that the strengths out number the weaknesses by much. First of all, I think that there were almost no flaws made by Rick Riordan because almost everything was perfect in my opinion. People who haven’t read the previous books should not read it because The Mark of Athena is a spoiler. But for those who have, then I would recommend it 100%. I think that people who are 10 through 16 years of age would like this book the most because it does not use repetitive words. Here is an example. On page 383, Leo said, “ We’re setting down in the park, Leo announced.” I also think that people who have a lexile score over 1000 and is interested in books filled with adventure.
Fiction - Fantasy, Fiction - Mythology
33
11/15/2012 19:47:38Bella H.Someone Named EvaWolf, Joan M.I think that this book is a great read for pre-teens who can withstand sadness and enjoys historical-fiction stories that are sad and don't always have a happy ending. Age wise, I would say this is a good book for 11-14 year olds. This was a really good book, and I would rate it 4.5 stars. Enjoy!!!Fiction - Historical Fiction
34
11/15/2012 20:05:47Olivia C.The Call of the WildLondon, JackThe wild - a place where many enter, but few return. The Call of the Wild by Jack London is about a dog named Buck. Buck gets stolen from his home to work in the north, where gold is plentiful, and sled dogs are needed. To survive, he must quickly learn the ways of the wild. In only a series of months, Buck is transformed into a fierce beast. The book is about his transformation from a loyal pet to a ferocious wolf. The Call of the Wild would be hard for younger readers to understand, and London uses the N word once. If you are a reader who does not like violence or blood, this is not the book for you. Almost every other page, there is some gore. However, if you are fine with these subjects, I would wholeheartedly suggest this book to you.Fiction - Adventure, Fiction - Realistic Fiction
35
11/15/2012 21:01:13Arryn O.The Green Glass SeaEllen KlagesThe Green Glass Sea a Historical Fiction novel set in the year 1943. It is the story of two girls and their journey of discovering how to deal with reality and what it’s like to be a true friend. The author, Ellen Klages, sets up an unforgettable plot brimming with tragedy, perseverance, and triumph as the two girls, Dewey and Suze, work through their endless calamities and hardships, forming a duo that provokes moods as various as fond humor to utter terror to aching sadness. Soon, the “gadget” that all of the childrens’ parents have been mysteriously constructing is reaching a point of success, and life in the barren desert of Las Alamos, New Mexico is thrown into utter chaos. Full of action, adventure, character growth, and stunning description -- I believe that virtually any reader would find this book both fascinating and emotionally moving.
Set in World War II, this book consists not only of heaping piles of intense action and detailed personality, but also a considerable amount of Historical Information about, firstly, insight on daily life in the 1940’s, but also a perspective on the scientific side of the war and how children’s lives were affected by such as large event as the one that dominates these character’s lives. Overall, I would definitely recommend The Green Glass Sea to anyone looking for an engaging Historical Fiction novel. This book does not contain any inappropriate content, and is not a particularly high-level or chunky read, making it a relatively versatile book. Any person over the age of ten years would likely understand and treasure this book’s varying qualities, including people of both genders and of high or low level reading comprehension and vocabulary.
Fiction - Historical Fiction
36
11/15/2012 21:07:31Mason K.The Mark of AthenaRick RiordanThe Mark of Athena, by Rick Riordan, was released on October 2nd, 2012. Being a fan of Riordan’s books, I naturally decided to buy a copy soon after it was released, and my expectations were more than met; rather, I thought that this book was one of his best creations since the beginning of his mythological universe seven years ago. With his characteristic humor and lush descriptions of mythological beings, Riordan once again takes readers on a fantastic journey around the mythological universe of Camp-Half-Blood.

Percy Jackson, the modern-time son of the mighty sea god Poseidon, has ascended to the rank of Praetor in the Roman Camp for demigods, and has precariously negotiated a settlement between the children of the Greek gods and Roman gods, who have been at odds for centuries. However, chaos ensues as the Greeks arrive, and demonic spirits from the dead turn up to destroy any chance of settlement between the two powers. Fleeing for their lives, seven demigods from both sides embark on a quest to close the mythical ‘Doors of Death,’ which are letting the spirits of the dead into the world, and defeat the evil goddess Gaea, who is at the center of all their troubles. Along the way, Percy Jackson and his friends must decide what matters most, even when that means sacrificing things that you love...

Rick Riordan once again pulls off the feat of meshing mythology with the modern world in a way that is at the same time entertaining, yet could manage to replace an old-fashioned mythology lesson. The book is a fantasy novel, if not fantasy/mythology, with all its powerful mythological deities, malevolent, monstrous creatures and ancient, magical artifacts scattered around the book. Riordan has a very unique take on the ancient Greek and Roman stories; he describes mythological entities in great detail, forging interesting and unexpected characters out of the ancient tales of gods and monsters. His books are not quite a prime example of fantasy, however: being set in modern times, they incorporate elements of realistic fiction, and the mythological content in them makes distinguishing which genre it really falls in is a little complicated.

Most of the Mark of Athena I liked; the comedy in it was, although not very sophisticated, quite funny, and the plotline was interesting. However, I thought that Riordan could often be very predictable, which annoyed me quite a bit; I dislike it when I can foresee the plot in books, because it becomes boring to read. I was annoyed that Riordan solved a lot of his characters’ problems with deus ex machina; I had expected better from a writer of his status and experience. I also sometimes noticed that Riordan sometimes appeared to run out of writing steam and was reusing his old plot ideas from previous books. Despite its flaws, however, I thought that it was the best book he had written so far in his second series about greek mythology, for various reasons. Generally his books end either in happy, somewhat cliché endings, or cliffhangers that are only suspenseful enough to ensure that readers will buy the sequel. These work well for younger, more commercial audiences, and indeed, when I was reading Riordan’s Percy Jackson and the Olympians series (I was about nine when I read it), I thoroughly enjoyed those types of endings; however, as I grew and matured, I found that I liked them less and less, and I craved more interesting finishes. I found that Riordan started to make his endings more interesting as his audiences grew up and continued to demand more; however, up until this book, I was generally not completely satisfied with his endings. This time, however, Riordan manages to create an ending that is at the same time interesting and suspenseful, with more emotion in it than previous books.

Overall, I thought that the good qualities of the novel eclipsed its faults, and I would give it a solid four stars out of five. It is not a very challenging read; you don’t read Riordan’s books as challenges, but simply as entertainment. I would dissuade people that love exclusively literary novels from reading the book, as it is nearly on the opposite side on the spectrum of literary vs. commercial. However, for most of the rest of the audience, if you are 9-13 (and maybe older), I would recommend the book to you, though it wouldn’t make much sense unless you read the preceding books by Riordan. The book is especially good for people that like fantasy or science fiction, and would at least be interesting for anyone that likes to read about mythology. The book is probably better-suited for people that like higher-action, faster paced books, than the people that are more into slower-paced, domestic dramas and lower-key novels. However, I would recommend that, if nothing else, just read a chapter of one of Riordan’s books: you may like it more than you think.
Fiction - Fantasy, Fiction - Mythology
37
11/15/2012 21:23:59Aeryn B.Philippa Fisher's Fairy GodsisterKessler, Liz This book is a fun and medium-paced read, and would be great for kids in 4th, 5th, or 6th grade. It is a bout an eleven and a half year old girl named Philippa, who gets a fairy godsister. Her fairy godsister has to complete a special assignment. The assignment is to make sure Philippa uses three wishes in the lifespan of a picked daisy, Read the book to find out what happens.Fiction - Adventure
38
11/15/2012 21:41:41ARAlice In WonderlandLewis CarrolFall down the Rabbit Hole with Alice, a curious girl (who apparently has no last name) in Lewis Carrol’s Classic, Alice In Wonderland One day witnesses a white rabbit wearing a waistcoat and holding a clock shouting “I’m Late!” This to Alice is very odd, and in curiosity, follows him. The White Rabbit goes down a rabbit hole (which is only practical because he is a rabbit right?) and Alice follows saying goodbye to her beloved cat Dinah. After falling down the rabbit hole, she enters a strange world in which it may as well be that anything is possible! Where eating and drinking different things will make you grow and shrink! A place that animals and cards can talk!
I think that this book was quite the wild book!... Which was not to mention the best part about it! The characters often times slyly bring up very good points like when Alice asks questions about a certain story that a small dormouse tells at a mad tea party, the March Hare (Who is mad) points out out that she is being rude for asking questions and interrupting, but many people say that asking questions in good because it shows that you are interested, so what is the right thing to do?
This book is DEFINITELY in the fantasy genre because it is set in a bizarre world where amazing and awful things happen, some of the content in not physically possible (which makes it even more curious) This could even be a dream! It is Also a classic because it was written in 1865 and people still read it now! Also, almost everyone know of Alice in Wonderland and several movies (Which were not as good as the book) were made off of it and many different prints and abridged versions of the book have been made. It’s a good example of both genres because for fantasy, all of wonderland is a fantasy, and it’s a good example of classic because, as I said, it has been alive and extremely well known for AGES and the book has been printed SEVERAL times and there have been many movies.
I really did like this book, it was a very great and intriguing plot and was the perfect amount of description, not so much that the reader would get lost and have no part in the imagination, and not so little that the reader had no idea what was going on and where. The emotions were richly described and as I read, I knew how the characters felt, I was with them. Just as a book should be. The nonsense in the book was the best part, it is as if The Author, Lewis Carroll, was just saying “Why Not?” Why wouldn’t this happen, it was great food for thought and I could go on and on discussing the topic with somebody. The one thing that I did not like about the book was the word choice, I wish it was seeded with richer word choice because the book was probably written for young kids, although I think it is good for all children, I just wish that the level of the ideas how I interpret them could have matched up to the words but I understand why it is not like that.
Overall, this book was really good! I think it is appropriate for all children, not adult or teens because teens think they're too good for books like this and adults would probably enjoy it more as a read aloud to their students/kids because it is probably a bit too childish for teens and adults but It is a great book that I recommend unless you are trying to find useful information, that my friends, you will not find here but the pros weigh out the cons and the book should be read by all children!
Fiction - Fantasy, Classics
39
11/15/2012 22:31:58Siying L.Touch BlueCynthia Lord Do you like realistic fiction? If you do, you will love the book “Touch Blue” by Cynthia Lord. The main characters are Tess and Aaron, Tess being an island girl and Aaron a foster child who has bounced from home to home. Tess’s family and some other families on the island are taking in foster children. This is because the state of Maine wants to close the island school, causing the families on the island to move. They do not want this. This book is set on an island of the coast of Maine. I would recommend this book to people age eight to twelve and rate it a four out of five. Fiction - Realistic Fiction
40
11/15/2012 22:40:34Marin S.And Then There Were NoneChristie, AgathaWhat happens when you send ten people to an island, then kill them all? Agatha Christie tells us in, debatably, her best novel ever. Agatha Christie (D.O.B September 15, 1890, D.O.D January 12, 1976) is nicknamed the Duchess of Death because of her adeptness with the murder mystery genre, and “And Then There Were None” just proves that point. In this book, ten very different people are summoned to a mysterious island. That night at dinner, all ten are accused of playing a large part in a murder, and by morning, two people are dead! People continue to die, following a maniacal theme, until there are just a handful are left. Will anyone survive?
“And Then There Were None” is a great book, with intriguing mystery and a clear setting. However, the characters are as flat as a piece of paper until about five of them have died. Then, the problem pretty much alleviates. I would recommend “And Then There Were None” to readers, provided they are prepared for a hard mystery (tip: don’t suspect anyone all the other characters suspect, particularly if it’s obvious) and very flat characters (one character knits through a conversation about who the murderer is). The strengths do outway the weaknesses, although flat characters are a MAJOR problem, capable of ruining a book. As I said, that problem pretty much stops later in the book, and the mystery (the best part) is spectacular throughout the book, especially once the book really digs into the psychological elements of murder. Also, “And Then There Were None” is a very eloquently written book, with exquisite descriptions (much shorter than “Cat of Bubastes”, but good) and the story itself is easy to follow (so a clear storyline with a big piece that Christie doesn’t tell you until the end). Written in the 1940’s, it has become a classic, so this is great for IR’s and book reports. I would recommend “And Then There Were None” to readers over the mental age of 13, because of the creepiness and a little language, but mostly just the complexity of the book. I would also recommend this book to people who love a good mystery but don’t mind not getting attached to characters in their books. Agatha Christie manages an incredibly difficult plot line with the ease, fluidity, and a strong air of mystery. I really liked “And Then There Were None”, and encourage everyone to read at least one Agatha Christie novel.
Fiction - Mystery, Classics
41
11/16/2012 8:35:43Emma SAn Acceptable TimeL'Engle, MadeleineImagine living 3,000 years ago, where sacrifices are made for rain, druids are banished, and the space/time continuum seems to have been broken. This is the world you delve into when you read An Acceptable Time, by Madeleine L’Engle. In the book, Polly O’Keefe feels herself falling into the time of three thousand years ago when she visits her grandparents’ house in New England. She is caught in a tesseract, or a time cube, from the time of the Ogams, where the people treat her as a goddess for her carrot-colored hair and healing hands. In this exciting and engaging novel, Madeleine L’Engle twisted a deep, thought-provoking tale with mystery and time weaving through love, fear, loss and betrayal. To help keep these strong emotions in check, Polly leans on Bishop Calubra, who was the first to discover the tesseract and her friend Zachary, who seems to be hiding an important secret. But, first she must help the clans around her. With help from their Ogam friends, Polly reaches deep into the heart of the lake and her surroundings to create peace among the nations. But to do so, she must first discover herself. This book could be for all ages who understand some of the basic concepts of time travel and the space/time continuum. Also, it would be easier to relate to Polly and some of the characters if you were old enough to know and understand about growing up and independence. There is a bit of the teenage topics of love, but not enough to make it a big idea of the book. Overall, I would say that it could be anyone over the age of 12, or maturity level a bit higher than your age if you are under 12. I personally loved this book, vocabulary was high, themes and ideas were deep and intricate. Some were universal ideas, with no right or wrong answer. There were life lessons, sorrow and pain, but an overwhelming love of truth and good. An Acceptable Time by Madeleine L’Engle where nature heals, love prevails, and identity’s are found. “She listened, and a calm strength slowly began to move through her.” (page 304)Fiction - Fantasy, Fiction - Science Fiction
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2/25/2013 8:43:00boyle road elementary schoolschool of fearnoseNonfiction - Biography/Autobiography
43
4/6/2013 13:38:24Lauren H.EndangeredSchrefer, Eliot Full of thrills, emotion, and a group of endangered bonobo monkeys, Endangered is the story of a young girl in the midst of a civil war. Endangered is a book by Eliot Schrefer, who has a love of bonobos and is the author of books including The Deadly Sister and The School for Dangerous Girls. This book takes place in The Democratic Republic of Congo, where fourteen-year-old Sophie used to live with her mother and father. But then her mother started a bonobo sanctuary, things got complicated, and her parents divorced. Now, Sophie lives in America with her father, and is off to visit her mother for a while. While she is there, she meets a little bonobo named Otto, who turns her life upside-down. Sophie adopts the baby, and takes him back to her mother’s sanctuary. She nurses the baby to good health. But then one day, Sophie’s mother has to go to a bonobo release site to release some of her bonobos, and civil war strikes in the capital. Sophie is thrown headfirst into tragedy, and embarks on a long and life threatening journey to find her mother.
There are both strengths and weaknesses of Endangered, but I would say that the strengths are more numerous than the weaknesses, and that this is an incredibly powerful book that everyone should read. I think that everyone old enough should read this book, as it is very inspiring and also informative. It was very enjoyable for me to read about the lifestyle of Congo and the little bonobos. I would recommend this book to kids twelve years old and up, because there are some graphics and content for more mature audiences. There is also a scene that anyone under the age of twelve SHOULD NOT read and would most likely not understand. This book should be read by a kid who is fairly mature and can handle the graphics of a civil war. Eliot Schrefer does not leave out any details, and the book is so realistic that it might scare young children. If you are interested in nature and endangered species, like bonobo monkeys, then Endangered is the book for you! It is also full of cultural information about life in Congo. Overall, I think that this is a great book for environmentalists and any willing audience, and will capture you the way that it did for me.
Fiction - Realistic Fiction
44
4/7/2013Siying L.Moon Over ManifestVanderpool, ClareHistorical FictionWhat is it like to be sent off to a old town for a summer and discover a box of mysterious mementos that mention a spy? Is this your sort of book? Moon Over Manifest, a Historical Fiction book set in 1936, is the book for you! Abilene, the main character, goes to the old town of Manifest where her father Gideon once lived for the summer. With her new friends Lettie and Ruthanne, Abilene goes on a spy hunt. Abilene also looks for marks her father might have left on the town. Filled with mystery, secrecy and excitement, Moon Over Manifest includes both historical details as well as a touch of fantasy to keep you interested. The book ends with a surprise that you could never predict. Any person older than nine would feel a deep love for this book. I loved Moon Over Manifest and would rate it 5 out of 5 stars for its winning mix of fantasy and historical details.

Historical Fiction
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4/7/2013 12:37:41Bella H.WonderR.J. LupinWonder is a really great book about a boy who has what doctors call: "Small Anamolies". In other words, his face is deformed. But now, his parents have signed him up for a mainstream school. Will he be able to convince his classmates to accept him?

I reccomend this book to anyone who can get their hands on it, but especially to people who enjoy reading about people with hardships and problems, and Star Wars fans who have the Lexile of 800-1400 and who are 10-13.
Fiction - Realistic Fiction
46
4/7/2013 19:03:36Olivia C.Never Cry WolfMowat, Farley Wolves are not the cold-blooded killers that are always depicted in movies and books. Farley Mowat’s book “Never Cry Wolf” is based on his adventures in the Canadian wilderness to investigate why wolves were killing caribou. During his government payed for mission, Mowat meets many Eskimos, including Ootek, a young man who (spiritually) seems to be part wolf, and Mike, a white-Eskimo man who earns his living as a trapper. In his book, Mowat describes the nature of wolves, and has some very interesting encounters. He really dives into natural vs. unnatural sources.
You should definitely read “Never Cry Wolf.” It is very well written, and it brings you deep into the world of wolves. It makes you want to live in the wilderness. There are more pros to the book than cons, because there is a mix of humor and seriousness. I would reccomend “Never Cry Wolf” to people ages 12 and up, because there are some high level words that younger people might not know. There is also some mild swearing. Other than that, “Never Cry Wolf” is an amazing book.
Nonfiction
47
4/7/2013 21:44:30Marin S.A Mango-Shaped SpaceMass, WendyFiction - Realistic Fiction
48
4/7/2013 21:56:12Marin S.A Mango-Shaped SpaceMass, WendyA Mango-Shaped Space is a very, very good book. It's about a 13-year-old girl named Mia who has synthesia, a neurological condition where sounds have shapes and numbers and letters have colors (there are other types of synthesia, but that's the kind Mia has). Mia has kept her colors secret her entire life, but when bad grades force her to tell her family and friends, her entire life changes.
A Mango-Shaped Space is an extremely well-written book, and it tells you a lot about what living with synthesia is like, as well as being just an incredibly well-written book. I would recommend A Mango-Shaped Space to kids who are at the mental grade of 5th and above because of some mature content, and because it may be hard for younger kids to relate to the story, as Mia goes through some more adult challenges. A Mango-Shaped Space has a couple glitches, like a few kind of forced characters and one character who is majorly forced, but otherwise, A Mango-Shaped Space is a great book I would recommend to anyone and everyone of the age I mentioned above.
Fiction - Realistic Fiction
49
4/8/2013 8:02:53Emma S.Navigating EarlyVanderpool, Clare3.14159265358979323 “1...This is Pi. And the rest of the numbers are his story.” pg 31 In Clare Vanderpool’s second astounding novel, Navigating Early she introduces us to the characters of Jack, Early, a mysterious pirate, a powerful bear, a grieving father, a lonely mother and a fading school hero. With Jack as narrator the story begins by telling us about losing his mother and having to go to boarding school. There he meets Early, a boy whose mind takes complex twists that no one seems to follow. Jack is drawn to this 13 year old when Early teaches him how to row. Early has a connection to numbers, and tells the story of the digits of Pi to Jack on their adventure down the Appalachian Trail. This story envelops you with heart-warming friendship, true innocence and gentle touch of a naive child who can reach deep inside you.
I really loved reading this book. I tasted all the emotions and people with clarity and feeling. It could be read by anyone who digs hard enough and has a good understanding of math. The word choice is excellent, but not too difficult for a 5th or 6th grader if they enjoy rich books full of ideas and thoughts because Navigating Early is a story of finding yourself, where emotions crowd the scene and overwhelm your heart, charismatic characters find truth in an intricate, deeply woven journey that lifts the boundaries between your mind and the page before you. “Just then, a tear rolled down Early’s face, and in one motion he swept all the jelly beans onto the floor in an explosion of color and chaos.” pg 260
Fiction - Adventure, Fiction - Historical Fiction
50
4/8/2013 8:03:07Arryn OMaisie DobbsWinspear, JacquelineThe depth and potential of an occupation as a Psychologist and Investigator may seem limited, that is, until one hears of Maisie Dobbs. Witty and sentient, confident and perceptive, Maisie Dobbs, written by Jacqueline Winspear, features Maisie -- an unforgettable character with an unforgettable story. Set during World War I in France and the United Kingdom, this first Maisie Dobbs account documents a maturing woman as she searches for her role in the world. The story intricately weaves Maisie’s inquisitive reflections into a gripping mystery as she is faced with the death of her mother, the cessation of her schooling and the start of work as a housemaid. The adventure continues with the introduction of another entertaining character, Maurice Blanche, as well as Maisie’s experiences attending Cambridge University and the shocking rendition of her job as a nurse on the battlefront in France. During this life-changing excursion, Maisie becomes lost in a whirlwind of crosspaths as she attempts to find a way to deal with the death of her best friend, her first fractured romance, and her initial endeavour as a psychologist and investigator. This first exciting investigation yanks Maisie into a complicated plot that reveals a brutal clash of personalities and the lost stories of damaged souls reliving memories of their days in the war.
One of the aspects that made Maisie Dobbs so engrossing was how Jacqueline Winspear deftly wove together two different themes throughout the story. The first theme occurs in the chapters describing Maisie’s childhood by giving a detailed account of Maisie’s hardships and decisions as she searches for her role in the world. This riveting coming-of-age theme morphs into another mysterious plot as Maisie puts a stop to her schooling to work as a nurse in the war, one of her most shocking and life-changing experiences. This loss of innocence theme occurs throughout the book right up until Maisie’s first task as a Psychologist and Investigator. Using her insightful and discerning mind, Maisie is able to pick apart the clues of a romance gone wrong and connect them with the questions that have arisen from a war sanctuary housing men who suffer from serious post-war ailments related to their time on the battlefront. Maisie and her newfound agent Billy are able to connect several clues and discover that ‘Major Jenkins,’ as he is known as by the men in the sanctuary, is really a cruel man willing to end the lives of those he finds unworthy. This section of the story introduces a mysterious side to the plot, and brings to life a second theme, about how emotional events can deeply affect someone, and how their mental state can alter an amicable personality into a manipulating character.
Overall, Maisie Dobbs was a fascinating read and is a classic example of a mystery -- it demonstrates excellent literary devices, gives another inside view on the turmoil of World War I, and is not limited in it’s versatility. In my opinion, the word choice and edgy plot definitely outweigh the slightly slow buildup of tension, although it is possible that audiences with a desire for action-packed plot lines would find the first section of the book slightly tiresome. This book is appropriate for almost all ages and is both educational and entertaining for a variety of audiences. After considering all of those aspects, I would recommend it to both genders of age 12+, mainly to those who are interested in historical accounts and deeply emotional text.
“Such is the legacy of war . . . the discarded dreams of children . . . the waste. The tragedy.”
Fiction - Historical Fiction, Fiction - Mystery
51


52
10/12/2013 17:15:42xavierThe Fellowship of The RingJ.R.R Tolkien This is one of the most balanced for stuff I like and stuff I don't like books I have ever read. The first book in the lord of the rings trilogy the fellowship of the ring by J. R. R. Tolkien. The setting is in middle earth a magical world of strange creatures including an interesting character frodo a hobbit much smaller than a human that has a magical ring that is in a set of 20 rings. 9 for humans 7 for dwarves 3 for elves and 1 to rule them and his quest to destroy the ring.

This book is of the fiction genre. The book is of the fiction genre because there are things like wizards and the only type of wizards we have in real life are the people are the people that do special effects for movies there. Are also things like dwarves, hobbits, orcs and elves none of which are in real life. My favorite parts about the book is that there is a lot of character development like from Sam a gardener to being Sam a traveler that on a quest going to one of the most dangerous places in middle earth. I also like how J.R.R Tolkien had so much detail in his writing. i also really liked the build up there is for the getting to there first check point Rivendell.

That brings me to what I don't like about the book the only three things I really don't like about this book is the fact that is so long its not like 2,000 pages but its more than 350. The other main thing that I really didn't like about the book was all of the names half of the time when they were getting stories told by Elorn the kind of leader of the elves in rivendell I had no idea about who he was talking about but it wasn't that bad because it didn't last for too long. The last thing I didn't like about the book was how many poems and song there was in the book one or two of them I just skipped over because they weren't immensely important. But I do have to give some credit to J.R.R Tolkien because he had to make every single one of those song and poems. That is why I don't like the book.

The other books that J.R.R Tolkien made that I know of are all fiction books because they all have to do with middle earth. All of his books are considered fiction fantasy and classics and maybe even historical because in the book they used bows swords and other medieval weapons not guns and tactical weapons like in these days. There was probably about 20 songs and poems in the first book and this is just the first book in the sires and plus he made the hobbit and the silmarillion and all of them have to do with middle earth as I said before. So all and all its probably about 100 songs and poems so really he's an other a poet and a songwriter.

Over all I think that the good things out-way the bad things. All of the good thing were really good but the length of the book was my the problem I can deal with the poems and song because if I really want to I could just skip over them and I also didn't have a big problem with the confusion with the who's who because I could just reread what I don't get. My big problem was the length because if you have a whole bunch of different things that you have a busy schedule then its going to take you a while to read the book and if you like the book then it will really long to read the series. So over all I would recommend this book for 5th to adults if you have time because it is a great book.

Fiction - Adventure
53
10/13/2013 10:55:21Marcus FWonderR. J. Palacio Fiction - Realistic Fiction
54
10/13/2013 12:11:56Amogh P. (This is the real one)Stepping on the CracksMary Downing HahnAmogh Pande
10/12/13
IRBR: Stepping on the Cracks

Do you know about World War II? Stepping on the Cracks (written by Mary Downing Hahn) is narrated by a girl named Margaret who lives in a small town named College Hill in 1944, two and a half years into World War II. Stepping on the Cracks is about Margaret and her best friend Elizabeth, who have a severe enemy. That enemy is Gordy, and his two friends, Doug and Toad. But after following Gordy and his friends into the woods after Gordy stole Elizabeth’s and Margaret’s things, they discover something that Gordy has been hiding inside the woods. They make a decision with lives at stake, and try to keep it a secret.
This book is a realistic fiction book since it is possible that those events happened, but maybe not with the same exact people. So some parts of it are fiction but realistic. This book is a pretty good example of this genre since when you think of a realistic fiction book, you think of something that could have happened or can happen but not necessarily with the exact same people, and that is what this book is like.
This book has a few strengths and weaknesses. Here are a few strengths:
1. It is very informative and has a lot of detail.
2. It is kind of suspenseful and the author does a good job of keeping the reader on the edge to know what happens next.
3. It gives you a bit of historical information as well.
4. You can feel the emotions in the book.
A few weaknesses are:
1. Maybe too much detail? It is good to be informative, but not so much to have the reader bored at some parts.
2. Plot is sort of predictable, but still a good book.
This book is a bit more historical fiction like than some other books in the realistic fiction genre. It gave you some interesting info about this time as well. As for other books by this author I know there are more but this is the first Mary Downing Hahn book that I have read.
This book has more strengths than weaknesses, as you’ll see above, and I think the strengths are way more powerful than the weaknesses and so heavily outweigh the weaknesses. Having the plot be a bit predictable can still be a good thing because if something that you don’t expect happens, you’ll be more taken aback. Also, the really only real weakness that I found in this book is that at some times it might dwell of from the exciting part, making the reader a bit bored. However, the book is still very interesting.
I think that you would most enjoy this book if you are older than 10, have at least an okay vocabulary and reading level, and enjoy learning about history. I think this since this book doesn't have that hard of a vocabulary, but the plot is long and at sometimes though predictable, a bit hard to understand. Also, if you don’t have background information on World War II than this book is not for you. (Or at least until you learn about World War II.) This book kind of goes around what’s going on in the war. However, if you enjoy learning and can understand this plot, this is the book for you. I really enjoyed this book and I think most of you will too.

Fiction - Realistic Fiction
55
10/13/2013 18:32:17Karen H.Little WomenAlcott, Louisa May Of literature, one of the most famous classics of all time is Little Women by Louisa May Alcott. It’s a charming tale of the March family during the Civil War, telling of their adventures, joys, hopes, and despair. The trials and hardships of the poor March family lasts several years, as they guide each other in their troubles to helping even more needy ones. The story of Meg, who has an “elderly sister fashion” (page three), Jo, “tomboy and bookworm” (page two), Beth, the peacemaker, Amy, the young lady, and neighbor and friend Laurie is a fantastical one.

What makes this story a classic novel is its timelessness, or the generations of readers who hand this book down to their own children, and to theirs, until it comes to us today with loving care. Another important factor is its influence, which is one reason for its timelessness. The final aspect is that it’s universal. You really can’t call a story ‘the greatest classic of all time!’ unless everybody has a chance to agree.

As you follow the story of Meg, Jo, Beth, and Amy, you will notice that one of the strengths of Louisa May Alcott’s novel is how one part flows into the next perfectly. Even the cliffhangers are well timed! If you read the introduction by author Elaine Showalter, you may also realize that some of the characters, events, and timings of the events were based on Alcott’s life. That is also a strength because it will help the readers to connect with author as they learn about how people went about their lives in the ‘olden days’. The readers will learn new terms, uses of those terms, words, and the lifestyle of a poor family. In my opinion, there are not many weaknesses to this book, except some of the words she uses young readers would not know, and that it starts a bit slow. Also, though this is not her fault, some of the terms used in Alcott’s days are not used commonly today, (like the word ‘toilet’; pg 249: “As the younger girls stood together, giving the last touches to their simple toilet...”) so readers may not know what Alcott is talking about. Another confusing issue is that some words have a totally different meaning, so a couple of phrases might seem a bit odd in the sense they are used in.

Compared to other classics, I believe this book to be a good example of the category because it fits perfectly into the genre. Though I have only read a few classics, I believe it to be as well written as The Adventures of Tom Sawyer or The Complete Collections of Sherlock Holmes. It may not be as exciting as The Hobbit or Alice in Wonderland, but Little Women is a good read. It may start slow, but you’ll be glad that you read it all the way through. I have not yet read any of Louisa May Alcott’s other books in the series (Jo’s Boys and Little Men) or any other books she has written, but I am confident that readers who enjoyed Little Women will enjoy them too.

I think that this book’s strengths outweigh the weaknesses because some of the weaknesses can be easily solved. If you don’t know a word or phrase, you can look it up in a dictionary or online. If you think a phrase is used oddly, do the same. I would recommend this book to readers who like realistic fiction and to those who like stories with morals. If you like books filled with adventure and drama, then this would not be my first recommendation to you. This book is probably more suitable for people above age eleven. For readers younger than eleven, the story probably wouldn’t be very interesting because parts of it are about fancy tea parties, and close to the end of the book, there are a few proposals, and that’s not really interesting to younger children. Overall, it’s a well-written novel and Little Women deserves to be read.
Classics
56
10/13/2013 20:51:28Joy CKing of the Wind Story of the Godolphin ArabianMarguerite Henry Being a mute Morocco horse boy was never easy, but being a mute Morocco horse boy sent to France in the 1700s with orders to take care of a horse for as long as it lives is even harder. But that is exactly what happens to one young horse boy in the book, “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” by Marguerite Henry. In this Newbery Medal book, it talks about the story of a horse boy called “Agba” who lives and works in the Sultan’s royal stables located in Morocco, Africa and loves an golden bay colt named “Sham”. One day, the Sultan chooses several horses and horse boys that included Sham and Agba to be given to the King of France as a present. At France, Sham and Agba are mistreated and go through many hardships but always sticking together.
The book, “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” , is probably in the animal/pet story genre because the whole book talks about a horse’s life and the hardships it faced in a new country. Also, the book is based on a true story about a horse boy and a horse traveling from Africa to Europe and in the 1700s, making it not fictional. Lastly, the reason why the book falls into the animal/pet story genre is because although the horse is the main character, the life of it is told from the point of view from the horse boy Agba.
Somethings I liked about this book is that Marguerite Henry went to a great length describing things in the book so you can picture it in your mind very well, for example, when she describes the horse when it is first born through the eye’s of the horse boy, Agba, on page 31 and 32 as - “ “He is not much bigger than a goat, and he has long whiskers like a goat. Long and silky. And his tail is curly. And he is all one color. Except - except…” Suddenly the boy’s heart missed a beat. On the off hind heel there was a white spot. It was no bigger that an almond, but it was there!”” Another reason why I think she did a good job is that the story is simple but straight to the point, Henry doesn’t revolve around the main idea but tell you what happens, which satisfies the reader. But one weakness of this book to me is that Henry rushed through the story a little too fast and doesn’t give time for the reader to think about what was or is happening and savor that moment in the story.
A book that I would compare to “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” is “The Black Stallion” by Walter Farley. The reason I would compare this book to “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” is that both of these stories are in the animal/pet genre since they are both about a horse’s life in the point of view from a boy or the caretaker of that animal. Some differences is that “The Black Stallion” is based in a more modern time while the “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” is based in the early 1700s. Also, the book, “The Black Stallion”, is a little bit more abrupt and sudden like a huge river while “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” is more calm and sweet like a little creek running down a mountain side. In my opinion, I like “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” better because I think that the book “The Black Stallion”, is too predictable and cliff-hanging for my type.
In conclusion, I think that “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” by Marguerite Henry is an excellent book because Henry gets straight to the point and is very descriptive when writing. Also, the strength outweigh the weaknesses since there was two strength but only one weakness. I think readers should read this book because it is lighthearted and a sweet book about friendship and understanding. It also gives the reader some historical information about how life was like in the early 1700s in Morocco, Africa and France from the point of view from a native and a foreigner. The age group of readers that would enjoy this book the most is probably 10 years old and up because although the story of this book is quite simple, there are a lot of old fashion and Moroccan words in this book such as “budra”, a type of rancid butter, and “medley”, a a mixture of people of things. The reader’s reading level should be at a 4th grade level since the words in this story is a little bit complex. Also, the reader should like or at least have an interest in horses and other animals since this story is about a life of a Arabian horse and a horse boy.

57
10/13/2013 21:49:51Cameron L.The Hitchhikers Guide to the GalaxyDouglas Adams“The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy” is a classic. It it was written in 1985 and even if you have not read it you probably have heard of it. It will be read by generations and generations to come. This book was one of my favorite books because I could sit down and read a few chapters and not want to stop until I was told to do something else like take out the trash. But the book was a little confusing. If I did not have someone to discuss it with I would be lost because the book changes perspectives a lot. So I recommend reading this book with someone else.
Fiction - Science Fiction, Classics
58
10/14/2013 7:04:26Amogh P.Stepping on the CracksMary Downing HahnAmogh Pande
10/12/13
IRBR: Stepping on the Cracks

Do you know about World War II? Stepping on the Cracks (written by Mary Downing Hahn) is narrated by a girl named Margaret who lives in a small town named College Hill in 1944, two and a half years into World War II. Stepping on the Cracks is about Margaret and her best friend Elizabeth, who have a severe enemy. That enemy is Gordy, and his two friends, Doug and Toad. But after following Gordy and his friends into the woods after Gordy stole Elizabeth’s and Margaret’s things, they discover something that Gordy has been hiding inside the woods. They make a decision with lives at stake, and try to keep it a secret.
This book is a realistic fiction book since it is possible that those events happened, but maybe not with the same exact people. So some parts of it are fiction but realistic. This book is a pretty good example of this genre since when you think of a realistic fiction book, you think of something that could have happened or can happen but not necessarily with the exact same people, and that is what this book is like.
This book has a few strengths and weaknesses. Here are a few strengths:
1. It is very informative and has a lot of detail.
2. It is kind of suspenseful and the author does a good job of keeping the reader on the edge to know what happens next.
3. It gives you a bit of historical information as well.
4. You can feel the emotions in the book.
A few weaknesses are:
1. Maybe too much detail? It is good to be informative, but not so much to have the reader bored at some parts.
2. Plot is sort of predictable, but still a good book.
This book is a bit more historical fiction like than some other books in the realistic fiction genre. It gave you some interesting info about this time as well. As for other books by this author I know there are more but this is the first Mary Downing Hahn book that I have read.
This book has more strengths than weaknesses, as you’ll see above, and I think the strengths are way more powerful than the weaknesses and so heavily outweigh the weaknesses. Having the plot be a bit predictable can still be a good thing because if something that you don’t expect happens, you’ll be more taken aback. Also, the really only real weakness that I found in this book is that at some times it might dwell of from the exciting part, making the reader a bit bored. However, the book is still very interesting.
I think that you would most enjoy this book if you are older than 10, have at least an okay vocabulary and reading level, and enjoy learning about history. I think this since this book doesn’t have that hard of a vocabulary, but the plot is long and at sometimes though predictable, a bit hard to understand. Also, if you don’t have background information on World War II than this book is not for you. (Or at least until you learn about World War II.) This book kind of goes around what’s going on in the war. However, if you enjoy learning and can understand this plot, this is the book for you. I really enjoyed this book and I think most of you will too.

Fiction - Realistic Fiction
59
10/14/2013 7:25:38Marcus FWonderR. J. Palacio Wonder is an incredible story of trying to live a normal life even though people treat you like a monster because of how you look and not caring who you are underneath the facade. R. J. Palacio tells the life of August “Auggie” Pullman, who had Treacher Collins syndrome. August is starting school in the fifth grade at Beacher Prep School, after being home schooled all his life. He learns that it is hard to make friends when people think you are freak. After multiple surgeries that were tough and hard to endure, middle school was the toughest challenge of all. The story is in the point of view of multiple characters and shows how all of their lives revolve around August and his life. Auggie has the most easily detectable struggle, that being his syndrome. However, the story reveals that each character has a struggle of their own. whether it is divorced parent, deceased parent, or financial struggles, they all have something they have to deal with and get through.
Wonder is a great example of realistic fiction because you can relate to all the characters and it describes very well what would happen if someone has Treacher Collins syndrome. Treacher Collins syndrome is a rare congenital disease that makes the face grossly deformed. This book is also engaging because it describes what middle school and high school is like and places Auggie in the middle of those challenges. The book demonstrates the character’s struggles academically in ways that every kid would be in real life. The strengths of the book are as follows:
Detail is good, and not too much.
Lots of foreshadowing, leading to something unpredictable towards the end.
The author is great at triggering empathy: one minute you will be laughing, the next sad that people could be so mean because of a moment of bullying that the reader can relate to.
Lots of controversy that support a good plot.
Some weaknesses of the book are as follows:
The plot towards the end was predictable.
The plot was confusing when it switches to a new person’s perspective, and it goes back to the beginning of the story and starts over.
The book seems to target a younger audience with its humor.
What makes this novel fall into the realistic fiction genre is that you can relate to all the characters as someone you know, or could know. Also, there are not any aspects that would be considered fantasy or syfy. The book also contains facts that are all truthful, and accurate in historical realism. And the book could almost be non-fiction if all of the names and schools were real.
Another book similar to Wonder would be Out of My Mind, because it is about a girl who is going to a normal school and has Cerebral Palsy. Since everyone thinks she isn’t very smart, in fact they think she has no intelligence at all, they discredit her. She is also trying to fit in like August is in wonder. These books are masterful at giving the prospective of these kids with extraordinary struggles, but also making them like any other kid.
Wonder is a great book, and the strengths outweigh the weaknesses, because there are more strengths than weaknesses, and even if the plot was predictable it was still a great plot. Readers should read this book because it is a book that really makes you want to cheer for the characters, and it is very suspenseful in a sense that when it changes perspectives, there are questions that go unanswered, that you have to wait to find out about. Someone who would most enjoy this book is someone in about 5th or 6th grade that is about to go into middle school with a 1100-1300 reading level and is interested in a story about facing tough challenges.
Fiction - Realistic Fiction
60
61
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Joy CKing of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian Being a mute Morocco horse boy was never easy, but being a mute Morocco horse boy sent to France in the 1700s with orders to take care of a horse for as long as it lives is even harder. But that is exactly what happens to one young horse boy in the book, “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” by Marguerite Henry. In this Newbery Medal book, it talks about the story of a horse boy called “Agba” who lives and works in the Sultan’s royal stables located in  Morocco, Africa and loves an golden bay colt named “Sham”. One day, the Sultan chooses several horses and horse boys that included Sham and Agba to be given to the King of France as a present. At France, Sham and Agba are mistreated and go through many hardships but always sticking together. The book, “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” , is probably in the animal/pet story genre because the whole book talks about a horse’s life and the hardships it faced in a new country. Also, the book is based on a true story about a horse boy and a horse traveling from Africa to Europe and in the 1700s, making it not fictional. Lastly, the reason why the book falls into the animal/pet story genre is because although the horse is the main character, the life of it is told from the point of view from the horse boy Agba.       Somethings I liked about this book is that Marguerite Henry went to a great length describing things in the book so you can picture it in your mind very well, for example, when she describes the horse when it is first born through the eye’s of the horse boy, Agba, on page 31 and 32 as - “ “He is not much bigger than a goat, and he has long whiskers like a goat. Long and silky. And his tail is curly. And he is all one color. Except - except…” Suddenly the boy’s heart missed a beat. On the off hind heel there was a white spot. It was no bigger that an almond, but it was there!”” Another reason why I think she did a good job is that the story is simple but straight to the point, Henry doesn’t revolve around the main idea but tell you what happens, which satisfies the reader. But one weakness of this book to me is that Henry rushed through the story a little too fast and doesn’t give time for the reader to think about what was or is happening and savor that moment in the story. A book that I would compare to “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian”  is “The Black Stallion” by Walter Farley. The reason I would compare this book to “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” is that both of these stories are in the animal/pet genre since they are both about a horse’s life in the point of view from a boy or the caretaker of that animal. Some differences is that  “The Black Stallion”  is based in a more modern time while the  “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian”  is based in the early 1700s. Also, the book, “The Black Stallion”, is a little bit more abrupt and sudden like a huge river while “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian”  is more calm and sweet like a little creek running down a mountain side. In my opinion, I like  “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian” better because I think that the book “The Black Stallion”, is too predictable and cliff-hanging for my type. In conclusion, I think that  “King of the Wind Story of the Godolphin Arabian”  by Marguerite Henry is an excellent book because Henry gets straight to the point and is very descriptive when writing. Also, the strength outweigh the weaknesses since there was two strength but only one weakness. I think readers should read this book because it is lighthearted and a sweet book about friendship and understanding. It also gives the reader  some historical information about how life was like in the early 1700s in Morocco, Africa and France from the point of view from a native and a foreigner. The age group of readers that would enjoy this book the most is probably 10 years old and up because although the story of this book is quite simple, there are a lot of old fashion and Moroccan words in this book such as “budra”, a type of rancid butter, and “medley”, a a mixture of people of things. The reader’s reading level should be at a 4th grade level since the words in this story is a little bit complex. Also, the reader should like or at least have an interest in horses and other animals since this story is about a life of a Arabian horse and a horse boy.
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