sam is a fairly nondescript fifteen year old boy- he skates and hangs out with his stupid friend rabbit, and tells all his woes to his faithful tony hawk poster. (apparently talking to posters of celebs is all the rage now, but somehow it never occurred to me to have a conversation with the giant john lennon hanging on my door) things are not so bad for sam- he gets along with his mum, who had him at sixteen, and is looking into college.
then his mum introduces him to her boss’ daughter, alicia and they fall madly in lust. and it’s fabulous, until he starts to lose interest in her. and then she tells him that he’s pregnant.
this is the story, according to sam’s slightly daft inner voice, of how they cope. i laughed and laughed listening to this in the car. it’s funny and awkwardly sweet and, at times, a little outlandish. will the dudes in my library read this? i haven’t figured that out yet…but i wish they would. because they would love it.
one of my school chums mysteriously got her hands on the ARC and kindly lent it to me. i have loved sarah dessen since i was a young teen myself, the happiness i felt reading the ARC was akin to how i would feel if my beloved installed a soda fountain in our living room. we were just talking about that this morning. wouldn’t it be fabulous? no more flat soda at the bottom of the 2 liter. fresh cold fizz in all your favorite flavors, and chocolate soymilk from one nozzle. my beloved actually went to far as to check prices on the internets, at which point our dream fell flat.
but i am handling it okay BECAUSE i have the ARC of lock & key to review. ruby is an independant lass who has had to look our for herself since her older sister, cora, left for college. ruby’s mom is an alkie deadbeat, and they live from paycheck to paycheck, moving periodically until ruby’s mom abandons her. cora is contacted, and ruby reluctantly moves in with her and her geekchic husband, jamie. but it’s hard for ruby to accept all the things people want to give her: tuition, a clothes allowance, friendship, encouragement, a family. and it’s hard for her to give back what she assumes will be expected if she does accept these offerings. bildungsroman in the unsurprising but satisfying dessen style, all wrapped up in a pretty pink striped cover. yumm. 4 stars.
one from my own personal amelia bloomer project list–
during an eye-opening move to her family’s slave-run plantation in jamaica, nancy finds out her family has betrothed her to a creepy brazilian more than twice her age. hoping to instead marry her childhood sweetheart, she and minerva, her slave/best friend join a band of borderline well-behaved pirates for a swashbuckling adventure on the high seas, with the creepy brazilian hot on the trail.
you don’t run across adventure books of this caliber for teen girls very often. i love this book and everything it stands for. 5 stars!
the curtain opens on our fair heroine, mena, as she begins her first day at a public high school. she once had many a chum at her church’s youth group, but she has been ousted due to an un-foreclosed scandal, and now they slam her into the wall as they pass merrily by, filled with the love of christ. (i went to a christian high school so i’m allowed to say things like that.) the only bright spot in mena’s day is biology class, where ms. shepherd reigns with scientific brilliance and her lab partner, casey, is the best kind of geek (ie cute). But when ms. shepherd begins the unit on evolution, the Youth Group causes a ruckus and mena is torn between how she’s been raised and what she knows to be true.
i loved the story, especially watching mena…well, evolve. (i get symbolism!) religious people may feel troubled by the way 97% of the christians in this book are portrayed…but i have an eerie feeling that brande researched these characters in my hometown and didn’t even have to embellish anything. i shall say no more.
except that i listened to the audio version of this book and thought the reader was perfect. really, really well done.
in a fictional african country, people are dropping dead right left and center. one was chanda’s step-father. then her best friends’ parents. then her little sister. then her NEW step-father. but the families always cover up the truth, saying cancer or tuberculosis, when they actually mean AIDS. now chanda’s mom is sick, but if chanda tells the truth she won’t be able to get help for her.
certainly a heart-wrenching and gripping tale, one which sheds much-needed light on why AIDS is spreading so rampantly in some areas of the world…so forgive me if i say that chanda is a little…boring? she mentions wanting to get a scholarship to college so she can grow up and be an important career-person, but mostly she runs around taking care of everyone and being a brave little toaster and eventually has to neglect her schoolwork. and does she complain? noooo. i like my heroines a little more disobedient and lively. but still…read this if you’re in the mood for a weepie funk.
so many love triangles in this turn-of-the-century society manhattan drama. godbersen opens with an edith wharton quote which prepared me for some satirical fun, but alas, i did not leak a chortle within all 433 pages. is the opening quote why people are comparing this to wharton? because aside from the setting they have nothing in common. so cut it out. thank you. love, krick.
the writing was spot-on for the story, which is about rich teenagers falling in love and sneaking around and plotting and scheming. that is all i will say plot-wise because i’m guessing that either sounds good, or it doesn’t. i liked it but did not love it. however, the ending, though a little predictable, definitely has me looking forward to the sequel. swoon.
a title i grabbed at work to see what the big deal is. yu-gi-oh! duelist vol. 1.
someone called yugi has a bunch of boring friends, and they play this card game with magical monster cards that fight each other. i guess it really is a game, so if readers actually shell out for the cards, they might have fun with the books. for me, on the other hand, it read something like this: Continue reading
Posted in reviews
Tagged manga, reviews
“I have been in love with Titus Oates for quite a while now—which is ridiculous, since he’s been dead for ninety years.” So begins The White Darkness, this year’s recipient of the Michael L. Printz award.
Titus Oates, who joined Robert Falcon Scott’s exploration of Antarctica, has indeed been dead for ninety years, and he met his end on that very exploration. Fourteen-year-old Sym, a dork at school because of her hearing aids and obsession with the south pole, has been hearing his voice in her head (but not in an Avril way) for a couple years now. He is likely her best friend.
Sym’s adventure begins when a weekend trip to Paris with her Uncle Victor, the man responsible for Sym’s obsession with “the ice,” turns into a surprise holiday tour of the south pole. The generosity! But then everyone gets the runs, and there’s an explosion, and some mysterious Scandinavian hotties are plotting and scheming with Uncle Victor. Then the emergency phones don’t work. Then all the other tourists mysteriously fall asleep. Sym doesn’t get in on the plan until it is too late to stop Crazy Uncle V. She, Victor, and the hottes are already in perilous danger.
I love YA books that are adventuresome and have smart girls as main characters. The White Darkness is only a little funny- Sym is one odd duckie- but definitely stark and eerie in a good way.
don’t get me wrong. i love avril lavigne, or at least i like her more than is normal for a graduate student. it began in my sophomore year of college, before i had noticed that i would go on being seventeen years old while everyone around me matured and shopped for breast pumps. i became inexplicably fond of the song “Sk8er Boi” and blasted it merrily through the dorm day in and day out. i thought it provided a welcome relief from j0hn mayer and jack j0hnson. others, perhaps, did not agree.
so imagine my delight when, in my daily round of tidying the library’s manga shelves, my eyes lit upon this two volume comic set starring avril herself!!
“look what i found!” i screeched to my fellow librarian, mr. e. he ridiculed me, and i took them home and read them. the first one was ok. hana loves avril. i can understand that. she also doesn’t have any friends and imagines avril climbing out of the poster on her wall to converse with her. i can’t quite understand that. hana’s parents are fighting, and she wishes everything in her life was different. so she does what any hip teen would do: she turns to the internet. buys a mail-order wish granting service. a few days later, a cute little red demon shows up in a box, and instructs her to break off his little horns and make wishes: 5 horns, 5 wishes. of course, things don’t really go the way she thought they would, but hana learns an important lesson about being careful what you wish for. right?
WRONG. (this is volume 2 now.) the little demon grants hana’s selfish wishes in increasingly bizarre ways, and three people die in a freak boiler explosion. hana survives but feels so crummy that she dresses up like avril and jumps off a bridge. her body is never found. the end.
ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME?? booooo, hissy.
i should note that avril did not actually write/illustrate these comics, but presumably did agree to endorse the series. pretty heavy stuff for the singer of lyrics like “she’s like so whatever/you can do so much better.”
Winner of the 2007 National Book Award for “Young People’s Literature.” This is the story of Arnold “Junior” Spirit, who lives with his drunk father and his formerly drunk mother on the Spokane Indian Reservation. (His sister, who may or may not be drunk, lives in the basement and makes everyone nervous.) Junior’s life changes when he decides to transfer to a school off the rez and get a decent education. His best friend Rowdy stops speaking to him, but his sister gets the courage to leave the basement and run off to Montana to get married and write romance novels. What follows is a story achieving that oft promised concept of making the reader both laugh AND cry. Highly recommended for those who liked Youth in Revolt by C.D. Payne but were also ever-so grossed out by it.