Sunday, August 23, 2009


Evermore is by Alyson Noel. The first book in the new Immortals series. Ever Bloom barely survived the car accident that killed her family. But the sixteen-year-old can now see people's auras, hear their thoughts, and know someone's entire life just by touching them. She also sees dead people, including her dead sister. Then Damen Auguste enters her life and the voices are silenced, and he's gorgeous, wealthy, and wields a magic she doesn't understand. Who is Damen? And what does he want with Ever? Can she trust him? Does that matter when she loves him? This is a very different and interesting series. You can't help looking forward to the next book.

Ratings: 9th grade - 10 out of 10 - AC (mature thematic content) - P (profanity).

Shaquille O'Neal

Shaquille O'Neal is by Ellen Emerson White. An interesting biography of the famous NBA star. It is full of stats and basketball trivia. A good introduction to non-fiction for young boys. A quick and easy read.

Ratings: 6th grade - 6 out of 10.

The Dollhouse Murders

The Dollhouse Murders is by Betty Ren Wright. Amy is fed up with being responsible for her mentally challenged sister and never having any privacy or friends of her own. In a fit of rage she goes to stay with her aunt. While there she discovers a dollhouse in the attic. A dollhouse that lights up at night and whose dolls move on their own. Are the dolls trying to tell her something? How are the movements of the dolls connected to her great-grandparents' murder? A clever story of family, sacrifice, and love.

Ratings: 5th grade - 9 out of 10.

Killers of the Dawn

Killers of the Dawn is by Darren Shan. The ninth book in the Cirque Du Freak series. Darren and his friends are on the run; chased by the police, the vampaneze, and an angry mob. Still they must rescue Debbie and kill the Vampaneze Lord. Can they do both and at what cost? Another great book in the series. The ending is surprising, terrible, and poignant.

Ratings: 8th grade - 9 out of 10 - V (violence) - MP (very mild profanity).

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Turn Coat

Turn Coat is by Jim Butcher. The 11th installment in the Dresden Files. Just when Harry thinks his headache is as bad as it can get, Morgan appears. Morgan is badly injured and has been accused of murdering a member of the White Council. He claims to be innocent and wants Harry to help him prove his innocence. To quote Harry, "You have got to be kidding me!" In typical Harry fashion it's all conspiracy and dead bodies from there. Butcher grabs you from page one and you can't put the book down. The only problem is that you have to wait for the next book!

Ratings: 11th grade - 10 out of 10 - P (profanity) - V (violence) - S (non-graphic sexual references) - AC (mature thematic content)

Ella Enchanted

Ella Enchanted is by Gail Carson Levine. This is a charming take on the traditional Cinderella tale. Ella is the daughter of a rich merchant. At her birth the fairy Lucinda curses Ella with the "gift" of obedience. When given an order she must obey no matter what. After her mother's death her step-sister discovers the curse and makes Ella's life miserable. Ella decides to find Lucinda and have her rescind the "gift". Will she succeed? Will she get to go to the ball? And what about Prince Char? A very cute tale, much better than the movie version.

Ratings: 6th grade - 9 out of 10.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The Buccaneers

The Buccaneers is by Iain Lawrence. The final installment in the High Seas Trilogy finds John Spencer on the Dragon headed for Jamaica on a trading venture. On the way they pick up a man drifting in a boat. There is something about Horn and his story that seems odd. Can he be trusted? Then the Dragon runs into a real pirate ship and the answers to the questions about Horn become even more important. A wonderful tale with a surprise ending. Another gem from Lawrence for boys.

Ratings: 7th grade - 9 out of 10.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

The Prophet of Yonwood

The Prophet of Yonwood is by Jeanne DuPrau. The third book Book of Ember is really a prequel to the first book. Eleven-year-old Nickie and her aunt go to Yonwood, North Carolina to see about the sale of a family home. Nickie discovers one of the town women has had a vision of the end of the world and has become known as "the Prophet" whose every saying must be obeyed. Is her vision correct? Is the world really on the brink of destruction? Just because a person wants to do good, does that mean everything they do is good? A wonderful story of a child's battle to understand good and evil and the gray area in between.

Ratings: 7th grade - 8 out of 10.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Allies of the Night

Allies of the Night is by Darren Shan. The eighth installment in the Cirque Du Freak series. Darren, Mr. Crepsley, and Harkat are still trying to track down the evil Vampaneze Lord. Now Darren must face something even more evil - school! Darren also comes face to face with two people from his past. He is glad to see them both, but are both of them his friends? Shan fans will not be disappointed in this next chapter of the saga of young Darren.

Ratings: 8th grade - 8 out of 10 - MP (very mild profanity) - V (violence).

Living Dead in Dallas

Living Dead in Dallas is by Charlaine Harris. The second book in the Sookie Stackhouse Southern Vampire Mysteries series. A worthy sequel to the first novel. Harris has a unique blend of humor, suspense, and down-home southern charm that is utterly addicting. In this edition, Bill and Sookie must fly to Dallas to aid the vampires there in finding a missing vampire. Sookie is also committed to finding Lafayette's murderer at home. She also discovers the existence of other "mythical" creatures, the hard and painful way.

Ratings: Adult - 9 out of 10 - P (profanity) - AC (mature thematic content) - S (sexual content) - V (Violence).