Sunday, January 22, 2012

Alibi Junior High

Alibi Junior High is by Greg Logstead. Cody's father works for the CIA. Cody has helped his father in his assignments and been on the run with him since his mother's death. He has traveled the entire world, speaks five languages, and has two black belts. When he and his father survive an assassination attempt, his dad sends Cody to live with his Aunt Jenny in a small Connecticut town. He now must endure the most fearful terrifying trial he has ever had to face - the typical American junior high. A charming book filled with excitement. A must read for teenage boys.

Ratings: 6th grade - 10 out of 10.

Blackbird House

Blackbird House is by Alice Hoffman. Blackbird House is located on a farm on the outer reaches of Cape Cod. The house was built by John Hadley who hoped his family would prosper. Over the next two hundred years many will call this place home. This book is a collection of stories telling the stories of these families and their experiences with Blackbird House, the farm, and the mysterious white blackbird who haunts its confines. Another gem from Hoffman!

Ratings: Adult - 9 out of 10 - P (profanity) - AC (mature thematic content) - S (non graphic sexual references).

Monday, January 16, 2012

Open: An Autobiography

Open: An Autobiography is by Andre Agassi. Even if you aren't a fan of tennis you will enjoy this book. Agassi talks openly and honestly about his childhood, his early career, his marriages to Brooke Shields and Steffi Graf, and his hatred of tennis. Usually celebrities use autobiographies to dish dirt, but Agassi is honest, yet tactful in his recounting of both friends, and adversaries, his triumphs, and his mistakes. He comes across as a very interesting guy you'd love to sit down and talk to over a couple of beers.

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

Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto

Liberty and Tyranny: A Conservative Manifesto is by Mark R. Levin. If you're conservative you will love it; if you're liberal you will hate it - but no matter where you find yourself on the political spectrum you should read it. This book is extremely well researched with almost fifty pages of source notes. It clearly and with accuracy explains what conservatives believe and why they believe it. The book covers such issues as the economy, environmental concerns, immigration, and more. A great conversation starter.

Ratings: Adult - 9 out of 10.

Lipstick Jihad: A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America & American in Iran

Lipstick Jihad: A Memoir of Growing Up Iranian in America and American in Iran is by Azadeh Moaveni. Moaveni is a journalist whose parents fled Iran after the deposition of the Shah. This book is the story of her struggle to find herself, a refugee in the midst of two cultures. Beginning with her childhood Moaveni takes us through her years as a journalist in Tehran and her subsequent return to America after 9/11. A challenge to read at times, the book does give American readers an idea of Iran seen through the eyes of its inhabitants.

Ratings: Adult - 7 out of 10 - P (profanity) - AC (mature thematic content).

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Broken for You

Broken for You is by Stephanie Kallos. Margaret is an elderly lady living alone in her Seattle mansion with her collection of valuable antiques. She decides to open her house to boarders and is captivated when broken hearted Wanda appears on her doorstep. Both women are haunted by secrets from their past; as their friendship grows they realize they are not as fragile as they had once thought themselves. They begin to find strength in their brokenness. A wonderful story of hope, love, the importance of ties to others, and the strength of those ties. We highly recommend this book.

Ratings: Adult - 10 out of 10 - P (profanity) - AC (mature thematic content).

The Gate of Days

The Gate of Days is by Guillaume Prevost. The second book in the Book of Time series. Sam is still trying to rescue his father from Dracula's castle. On his search for more coins for the machine he accidentally drags his cousin along with him. After escaping prehistoric hunters, the eruption of Vesuvius, and ancient Greeks, Sam and Lily must find their way back to their own time after meeting their great grandparents in 1930s Chicago. Will they get home? Will Sam be able to save his father from the clutches of Vlad Tepes?

Ratings: 6th grade - 7 out of 10.


Captivate is by Carrie Jones. The second book in the Need series. Zara and her friends thought they had solved their pixie problem by trapping them all in the woods. But as the king's need grows he loses control over his followers, then new kings begin to arrive to take over her father's territory and followers. Astley is one of these new kings, he claims he is not evil like the others and that Zara is meant to be his queen. Zara refuses until everyone she cares about is endangered. How far will she go to protect those she loves?

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

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Watch the Skies

Watch the Skies is by James Patterson. The second installment in the Daniel X series. Alien Hunter Daniel X is after #5, an evil alien who is brainwashing humans to participate in an alien reality show and then killing them. Daniel must stop him before the entire planet is destroyed for the entertainment of aliens across the galaxy.

Ratings: 7th grade - 8 out of 10.

The Demon Trapper's Daughter

The Demon Trapper's Daughter is by Jana Oliver. The first novel in the Demon Trappers series. Riley is seventeen and the daughter of legendary demon trapper Paul Blackthorne. She dreams of following in her father's footsteps and joining the Trapper's Guild. Then a Grade Five Geo-Fiend comes after her, a tragedy strikes the Guild, and Riley's life is changed forever. An amazing and very different urban fantasy. 

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

The Forever War

The Forever War is by Joe Haldeman. A science fiction masterpiece. The Earth has gone to war with an alien race. William Mandella has been drafted into an elite unit that will be sent into space to combat the enemy. But as he journeys through space and time, the world he left behind ages centuries while he only ages months. Think of this book as Vietnam in space. A powerful study of the human will to survive and our penchant for destroying ourselves in pursuit of gain. A classic for science fiction and war novel fans everywhere.

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

The Eyre Affair

The Eyre Affair is by Jasper Fforde. The first novel in the Thursday Next series. Set in a very different Britain circa 1985, Thursday Next is a LiteraTech, a literary detective, whose job is to stop literary crimes. When someone begins to kidnap characters from the pages of Britain's greatest literary works Thursday must track down the villain to prevent an act of literary homicide. If you love classic literature and mysteries this is the series for you. Full of literary humor and surreal historical revisionism this is a delightful beginning to a promising series.

Ratings: 9th grade - 9 out of 10 - P (profanity) - V (violence).

Little Bee

Little Bee is by Chris Cleave. Two women bound together by a terrible event meet again and must sort through the past to have any hope for the future. Little Bee is from Nigeria, Sarah is from England. They are bound by the horror of their first meeting in Nigeria. When Little Bee comes to England her arrival completes a chain of events begun years before on a lonely stretch of beach. A powerful tale of friendship, hopelessness, and love. The story is extremely moving, but violent and depressing. Not for the faint of heart.

Ratings: Adult - 8 out of 10 - P (profanity) - AC (mature thematic content) - V (violence).

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Red Handed

Red Handed is by Gena Showalter. The 1st book in the Teen Alien Huntress series. Phoenix is a recovering drug addict. She goes to a party with her friends, but the party turns into a nightmare when a group of aliens attack the group. She's brought home in what seems to be a drug induced haze and her mother sends her to a boot camp for troubled teens which turns out to be a recruitment center for A.I.R., Alien Investigation and Removal agency. Does she have what it takes to hunt down dangerous aliens and protect the planet?

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

Dead is so Last Year

Dead is so Last Year is by Marlene Perez. The third book in the Dead is... series. Daisy's sister gets a job working for the mysterious Dr. Franken and then duplicates of Nightshade residents begin to appear in town, including Daisy's missing father. There also appear to be problems in the werewolf community as well. Can Daisy, her boyfriend Ryan, and her sisters solve this mystery?

Ratings: 7th grade - 8 out of 10.

The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles

The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles is by Julie Andrews Edwards. Mary Poppins writes a bedtime story! We have all enjoyed Julie Andrews in her many movies, now we can enjoy her in a different field of endeavor. Three children meet a famous professor who invites them to join him on a trip to Whangdoodleland to meet the last of the Whangdoodles. A charming children's story.

Ratings: 5th grade - 9 out of 10.


Wringer is by Jerry Spinelli. Palmer is almost ten and in Waymer all ten year old boys become wringers. Their job at the annual pigeon shoot fund raiser is to wring the necks of injured pigeons. But Palmer doesn't want to be a wringer. He likes pigeons, in fact he has a pigeon of his own. A charming tale of growing up and being brave in the face of peer pressure.

Ratings: 5th grade - 7 out of 10.

The Warrior Heir

The Warrior Heir is by Cinda Williams Chima. The first book in The Heir Chronicles. Jack is a normal teenager, except for the medication he takes daily since his heart surgery when he was an infant. One day he forgets to take his medication and suddenly feels stronger and more confident and nearly kills another student during soccer practice. Soon he learns he is Weirlind, and not just any Weirlind, but a warrior heir. A rare breed sought after by both houses of wizards to play in their tournament, which is a fight to the death. So much for a normal teenage existence.

Ratings: 8th grade - 8 out of 10.

The Eternal Kiss: 13 Vampire Tales of Blood and Desire

The Eternal Kiss: 13 Vampire Tales of Blood and Desire is edited by Trisha Telep. Thirteen creepy tales by a selection of famous authors of young adult paranormal fiction like Libba Bray, Nancy Holder, Cassandra Clare, Rachel Caine, Melissa da la Cruz, and more. A must for vampire lovers of all ages.

Ratings: 9th grade - 8 out of 10 - P (profanity) - AC (mature thematic content) - V (violence).

Raised by Wolves

Raised by Wolves is by Jennifer Lynn Barnes. The first book in the Raised by Wolves series. Bryn's family was killed by a rogue werewolf when she was four. She was rescued by Callum and taken to live among his pack of werewolves. Now at fifteen she knows only pack life and the rigid hierarchy that controls it. Then a new werewolf appears, one who was created not born a Were. His presence sends her on a hunt for answers about his past that leads her to the truth about her own. One of the more unique werewolf stories to come out recently. An excellent and suspenseful read.

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

Monday, January 2, 2012

The Sugar Queen

The Sugar Queen is by Sarah Addison Allen. Josey Cirrini takes care of her elderly demanding mother. She hides sweets in her closet and has a crush on the mailman. She believes her life is settled until she comes home and discovers a local waitress hiding in her closet. Her efforts to force Della Lee to leave cause Josey's world to expand. She meets the owner of a local cafe, Chloe Finley, who has troubles with books and has just broken up with her boyfriend, who happens to be friends with Adam, her mailman. A magical tale of loneliness, duty, love, and family secrets. A Reader's Corner highly recommended read. We love this one even more than Garden Spells.

Ratings: 11th grade - 10 out of 10 - P (profanity) - AC (mature thematic content). 


Snowfire is by Phyllis A. Whitney. Linda Earle leaves her job to work at a ski lodge, but she isn't just looking for a change of pace. Her brother Stuart has been accused of killing Margot McCabe, wife of Julian McCabe famous former skier and owner of the Juniper Lodge. Julian is supposedly Stuart's friend and yet he refuses to help him. Linda must find the murderer, clear her brother, and keep her identity secret from Julian and the other occupants of Graystones, but someone knows, and now Linda must worry about her own safety. Another gem by one of America's greatest mystery authors.

Ratings: 8th grade - 8 out of 10.

The Ghost and the Goth

The Ghost and the Goth is by Stacey Kade. Alona Dare was a cheerleader and the most popular girl in school; until she was run over by a school bus and killed. Will Killian is goth loner, who tries to stay off the radar of the popular set. He has his own personal problem, he sees ghosts, and now he's stuck with the ghost of Alona Dare who is every bit as obnoxious in death as she was in life. Can these two unlikely allies help each other? A charming opening to a new series.

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