Saturday, November 22, 2014

Glory O'Brien's History of the Future by A.S. King

I have not yet finished reading this book. . . so will update this entry soon.  I just wished that I'd gotten the author's. Dust of100 Dogs and had her sign it back in March 2009 at the first Tucson Festival of Books. I even talked to her,  but had no idea who she was.  I almost did but was out of cash!

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Drama by Raina Telgemeier

Drama by Raina Telgemeier (2012)

Callie is in 7th grade, and she just loves musicals and the theater.  However, she learned young that she really could not carry a tune, so therefore, she really couldn't perform in a musical.  She has found her place though and is the set designer for her middle school's latest musical production.  Meanwhile, she is having crushes on various 8th graders, and suddenly life seems crazy.

I read Telgemeier's Smile a couple of years ago, and I am surprised that I didn't read this one until now.  I personally enjoyed it very much.   In another year or two, I may consider recommending it to my nine year old niece. 


Monday, November 10, 2014

The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher by Dana Alison Levy

The Misadventures of the Family Fletcher by Dana Alison Levy (2014)

This is a book that will be of interest to boys as well as girls. The main characters are four brothers who are ages 12, 10, 10, and six. The two 10 year olds are not twins biologically. All of the brothers are adopted, and Jax and Eli were such friends as toddlers that their adoptive dads adopted them both at the same time. The oldest is Sam and the youngest is Frog (as in "Jeremiah was a bullfrog".)  The brothers are all beginning a new school year in the opening chapter of the book.  As the school proceeds, things don't go quite as each of the boys thought they would. 

I really enjoyed this book overall, and think boys (and girls) aged 8 to 10 would particularly enjoy it, as well as people who enjoy family stories.  However, something that bothers me now, and would have bothered me at that age as well (I spent time as a young child rather obsessed with what age everyone should turn in what grade.)   At 10, Eli and Jax were only starting fourth grade.  I was 10 when I started fifth grade.  It was the same with the others.  Frog was already six and only starting kindergarten, and Sam was 12 and starting sixth grade.  Excuse me, but I was 11 most of my sixth grade year . . .  perhaps all of their birthdays were in August right before the school year?

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Chefs and What They Do by Liesbet Slegers

Chefs and What They Do by Liesbet Slegers (2013/2014)

This book, first published last year in Belgium and Holland, is fascinating for my four year old son.  He was a chef for Halloween, and then we saw this among the new books at our local library.  He really liked hearing about what chefs actually do in a restaurant.  This is a very colorful book, with lots of foot illustrated as well. The writing is very clear and informative.  One can tell that this book was written in another country.  There are a few lines about the fishmonger.  I should find out. . . perhaps fishmongers deliver fresh fish to restaurants in the United States?  If so, then I assume some ignorance on my part!  The final  page of the book encourages kids to experiment with tastes and combinations.

My son says he is going to open a restaurant when he grows up, and already as many plans as to what is going to serve the customers.  I have also been informed that I am going to be in charge of making desserts!  And his dad is going to chop all of the vegetables and meat. 

Saturday, November 8, 2014

Blood Diaries: Tales of a 6th Grade Vampire by Marissa Moss

Blood Diaries: Tales of a 6th Grade Vampire by Marissa Moss (2014)

This is a cute book that I would have definitely enjoyed back in fourth or fifth grade . . . I like to think my mom would have let me read it. (She was always pretty cool about letting my choose my own, but tried to steer me away from horror, and toward mystery.  Let's just say, I tended to prefer more horror to mystery.   That has maybe changed a bit as an adult, but mystery isn't always my favorite genre, but then I've mostly gotten away from horror as well.) 

Edgar is a vampire, as is his family.  Vampire children and adults can choose to age as they wish.  Edgar could choose to age faster and skip sixth grade at school, or choose to skip middle school entirely.  He doesn't want to.  He wants to experience the same age as his human peers.  Some of his cousins like being teens so much that they just stay the same age for  years at a time.  

So what happens when his human classmates seems to discover that Edgar is really a vampire?  And that is against the rules of his vampire family.  He needs to pass as human.  What's a young vampire to do?


Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Prince Lestat by Anne Rice

Prince Lestat by  Anne Rice (2014)

This is the book I have been waiting to read for a long, long time, like many fans out there. I tried to read it slowly, but I still finished it in under five days. 

I will not give away too much.  There are many other good reviews out there, as well.   I will say that I highly enjoyed it.  

Lestat has returned after many years.  Finally!  He has been hiding out mostly, but it turns out that his life has been busier than we knew.    There are also more vampires (particularly old ones) that survived Akasha's rampage back in 1985 (chronicled in Queen of the Damned) and we learn more about all of them in the course of this book, too.   There has been some criticism about this . . . that we meet more vampires and other creatures in this book, and that there is not enough about Lestat.  Actually, this is one of the things that I loved about this book. . . we finally find out so much more.  Many questions are answered in this book.    As well, science finally comes into play, too.  There are now scientist vampires!  I really enjoyed this and felt like there should be more science.  (Maybe in the next book!  Anne Rice has reported that there will be a next one.) 

And, of course, Louis is in this book.  It wouldn't have been right if Louis and all of the others were not in this book.   

I could probably be more critical, but I really do not wish to be at this time.   I love this book because I loved the earlier books twenty plus years ago.  I have not loved some of the other books Ms. Rice has published in the meantime.  I liked them, but it was Louis and then Lestat that I loved most as an older teen.    I loved this book because many questions there for years were answered. 

"Interview With The Vampire", the movie, came out in theaters twenty years ago this month.   I did see it in the theater, as well. 


Thursday, September 25, 2014

Finding Ruby Starling by Karen Rivers

Finding Ruby Starling by Karen Rivers
(Arthur A. Levine Books, 2014)


An almost 13-year-old named Ruth, who likes to skateboard, write poetry (and publishes it on her Tumblr), and help make movies with her best friend has always known she was adopted.  Her parents adopted her as a newborn and she was in the NICU in New York.  She had a heart transplant when she was just a month old.  One day, she discovers, in the internet, a girl in England who looks exactly like her!  So she emails Ruby.   The entire book is told mainly through email, texts, poetry, and some of Jedgar and Ruth's "Shorca!" scripts.  

I recommend this book for 10 to 12 year olds in particuar.  It deals with what it means to be a friend, a sister, a child, and finding forgiveness.