Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Generation Dead by Daniel Waters

Coming Out May 6, 2008 Come see Mrs. Perry in the library if you want to borrow her Advanced Reading Copy.

Generation Dead is Daniel Water’s first novel and he did a bang up job!  He captured the voices of teenagers who are navigating their way through the trials and tribulations of high school.  The only difference between a regular high school and the high school in this book is that for some reason, and no one knows why - not even the scientists, SOME teenagers that die aren’t staying dead.  They are referred to as “living impaired” or “differently biotic.” 

Phoebe, a goth to the bone girl, is the main character of this interesting story.  Adam is her best friend, football star, next door neighbor.  Margi is her best friend.  Together they experience life with the “differently biotic” - each are affected a different way. 

Phoebe becomes fascinated and starts to fall for Tommy, the leader of the “differently biotic” kids.  Since all of the zombies, as they like to call themselves, don’t come back the same - meaning some move and communicate better than others - Tommy makes sure some of the lower functioning ones aren’t left alone walking through the halls or in the cafeteria.  Phoebe’s feelings for Tommy cause a lot of talk.  People can’t believe she would want to have anything to do with a dead person.

Adam has to deal with Tommy in his own way.  Tommy decides he wants to join the football team.  The coach doesn’t want him to, of course, but the principal tells him he has no choice.  Adam is the only player that gives Tommy a chance and sees what a great player he really is.  The problem is, Adam starts to realize he has feelings that go beyond friendship for Phoebe and a love triangle is formed.

Margi can’t understand why Phoebe is warming up to the zombies.  One of their best friends is one and Margi can’t seem to get past that Courtney was once alive and hung out with them all the time.  She struggles to see what Phoebe likes about the zombies.

This fresh look at teen fiction contains it all.  Light romance, paranormal oddities, danger, and suspense.  Be sure to check this out as soon as it hits the shelf.

Remembering Raquel by Vivian Vande Velde

How would you be remembered if you died unexpectedly?  Readers find out just what people thought about Raquel Falcone after she was hit by a car on her way home from a animation festival at a movie theater down the street from her house. 

The story is told from multiple perspectives: her best friend, her father, the people with her when she stepped off the curb in front of the car, the woman that actually hit her, and various students from school. 

No one, except her best friend, really knew much about Raquel.  She was shy, a little overweight, and someone that tended to be invisible.  She didn’t have any true friends at school, but you wouldn’t know that after her death.  Kids who never had anything nice to say about her weight, her clothes, or her overall appearance were at the funeral home on the day of the viewing crying and carrying on like they were her best friends.  Kids from school started campaigns to reduce the speed limit on the street Raquel was killed on; money was collected to purchase a memorial bench for Raquel at the high school. 

Through the voices of all the people that surrounded Raquel while she was alive, we hear the story of how life went on after she was gone.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Sonya Sones Marathaon

This week I started reading books by Sonya Sones.  Our 8th grade book club is reading One of Those Hideous Book Where the Mother Dies for their discussion in November so I decided I better read it before we meet.  Well, since it is written in verse it definately is a fast read, but also once I started I couldn’t stop. 

Ruby’s mother passed away from what it sounds like is cancer.  She is sent to live with her movie star father in L.A. and is dreading every minute of it since she has never met her father.  She doesn’t want to leave her best friend or her boy friend and doesn’t know what to expect when she finally meets her father.

Ruby comes to learn that not everything is what it seems as she becomes accustomed to her new life.

In Stop Pretending is the first novel-in-verse Sonya Sones wrote.  It is an autobiographical novel about what happened when she was thirteen and her nineteen year old sister had a nervous breakdown and had to be hospitalized.  The story is gripping and your heart breaks for the younger sister as she continues to try to keep her relationships going with her sick sister as well as her mother and father who have also been wounded by events.

What My Mother Doesn’t Know is about Sophie’s love life during her freshman year in high school.  She describes her first three loves and realizes that the one that isn’t her best choice socially might just be the best choice for her emotionally.

What My Girlfriend Doesn’t Know is the story from the point of view of the boy Sophie chooses in the end of What My Mother Doesn’t Know.  This sequel follows the lives of Sophie and the young man and their lives after making their relationship public. 

I loved every one of these books.  Sonya Sones really captures what it is like to be a teenager.  The stories really ring true.  I felt myself relating to Sophie several times and flashing back to my high school days and the days of first loves.

Seeing Redd by Frank Beddor


If you haven’t read The Looking Glass Wars be aware there will be some spoilers in the following review.

This is the second book in The Looking Glass wars series.  I absolutely loved the first book, but this one was a little hard for me to read.  I had to force myself to continue through the chapters.

Seeing Redd follows Redd in her quest to gather forces in order to continue her fight against Alyss.  The only thing is, since Redd went into the Heart Crystal at the end of The Looking Glass Wars, she had to wait for someone to generate her, using their imagination, into the real world.  Finally, she gets a painter to paint a picture of her and The Cat which allows them to come off the canvas and join the world.

Meanwhile in Wonderland, King Arch from Boarderland is assembling his own forces to fight against Alyss in order to take over ALL of Wonderland.  He is using Redd as a scapegoat to keep the blame off of him.  He kidnaps Hatter’s daughter in order to force him to come and work for him and things begin to fall apart in Wonderland when Alyss is overwhelmed by attacks at every border.  Eventually, there is a huge event that leaves many in Wonderland helpless.

Redd eventually makes it back to Wonderland after completing her maze and claiming her power.  Battles ensue, people get hurt, and Redd is defeated (kind of).  However, life will never be the same in Wonderland again.  Alyss has lost something extremely important and will have to learn to live a new life.

I’m sure there will be a third book in this series and it might be better than Seeing Redd.  This could be a bridge book.  One needed to connect the story from the first book to the third book.  I can picture more interested events to come.

Mutts Comics Does Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

Check this out!  The Comic Strip, Mutts, used Twilight as the inspiration for a recent story line. Go to to see more.

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