Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Physik is by Angie Sage. The third installment in the Septimus Heap series. When Silas unseals a forgotten room in the palace the ghost of a long dead Queen escapes. To realize her evil plans she needs the help of her son, Marcellus Pye, a famous alchemist from five hundred years ago. When Septimus is transported back in time, Jenna and her friends must follow him back and bring him home. Will they succeed or will they all be stuck in the past?

Ratings: 7th grade - 7 out of 10.

Shadow of the Moon

Shadow of the Moon is by Rachel Hawthorne. The fourth novel in the Dark Guardian series. Hayden can feel the emotions of other Shifters. This has made life so uncomfortable for her that she runs away. When Daniel is sent to bring her home as the moon of her first shift draws near, she wonders if the handsome Shifter is more than he seems. Why can't she read his feelings? Why has no one else seen him shift? Can he protect her from the harvester who is killing her kind? If you liked the first three books, you'll love this one as well. Hawthorne does a good job of writing a series of books that don't have a continuous story line, which keeps them from getting old quickly.

Ratings: 8th grade - 8 out of 10.

The Book of Lost Things

The Book of Lost Things is by John Connolly. I'm really at a loss how to describe this book. The only word that comes to mind is CREEPY! The story is set in England during the German Blitzkrieg of WWII. David is a twelve-year-old boy whose mother has died. His father has remarried and he now has a new baby brother. The family moves to the country to escape the German bombing runs on London. David sees his father's marriage as a betrayal of the mother he loved. He dislikes his step mother and the new baby. As the war rages, David finds himself suddenly transported to a strange land populated by characters from familiar fairy tales and legends that have been recast in Stephen King fashion. He must seek out the king and escape the clutches of werewolves and the evil Crooked Man to find his way home. A really creepy, but very good, tale of the often painful journey we all must make from childhood to adulthood. You'll either love it or hate it, but I'm ready to read more from this author.

Ratings: 10th grade - 9 out of 10 - AC (mature thematic content) - V (violence) - MP (mild profanity).

Yummy: The Last Days of a Southside Shorty

Yummy: The Last Days of a Southside Shorty is by G. Neri. This is a wonderful graphic dramatization of the short life of 11-year-old Robert "Yummy" Sandifer. Raised on the south side of Chicago he became involved in the local gang. In 1994, he killed an innocent girl and was then killed by his own gang members when the public outcry became more than they wanted to bear. There are no language issues, but the content of story is mature enough to warrant a young adult rating. A great story and a wonderful introduction to nonfiction, and this from someone not fond of graphic novels.

Ratings: 8th grade - 10 out of 10 - AC (mature thematic content).