Posts Tagged ‘YA books’

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Skeleton Creek by Patrick Carman

January 20, 2009

Title: Skeleton Creek

Author: Patrick Carman

Release Date: Feb. 10, 2009.

Edition: Paperback

Number of Pages: 186.

Grade: B

Contains: Coming-of-age, Relationships, Drama, Suspense, Mystery.

Analysis of Book (1-10 on each aspect):

Writing: 8

Plot: 9

Characters: 8

Wow Factor: 8

Summary (scholastic.com): Strange things are happening in Skeleton Creek … and Ryan and Sarah are trying to get to the heart of it. But after an eerie accident leaves Ryan housebound and forbidden to see Sarah, their investigation takes two tracks: Ryan records everything in his journal, while Sarah uses her videocam to search things out … and then emails the clips for Ryan to see. 

In a new, groundbreaking format, the story is broken into two parts — Ryan’s text in the book, and Sarah’s videos on a special website, with links and passwords given throughout the book.

Review: This book is the first of its kind. Targeted to reluctant readers, it asks that you read twenty pages of Ryan’s thoughts and adventures and your “reward” is to watch a video made by Sarah that relates to it. It’s a ghost story. I bet you’re wondering if it’s good enough to make your knees shake? I truthfully was scared throughout the book. I think the videos had a great impact in my whole perception of the book because I could view what Ryan was talking about in his journal. The videos just make it that much more like you’re really there, witnessing whatever this ghost is.

While I was reading it I had the sense that it was kind of like National Treasure meets lonelygirl15. It was short, quick, and effective. 

But I did have some problems with it. What if you’re not by a computer when you’re reading? This happened to me more than once. So I tried watching the video through my iPhone, but it didn’t work. Another thing is that I wished the supporting characters had been more developed. I felt as though I didn’t truly know them as much as I knew Ryan and Sarah and hope that in the next book there will be more explanation about them.

The ending was a total cliffhanger. But I do think it’s one more step to getting reluctant readers to pick up the second book in the series. And perhaps the piece that makes it that much more interactive is that this book is being speculated to be real over at skeletoncreekisreal.com

I recommend this book to boys 9-13 who don’t really enjoy reading. But if you’re like me– a total ghost stories and suspense fan– you’ll really get a kick out of this.

Want to watch a book trailer? Here ya go:


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Books I Read in Dec. 2008

December 31, 2008

Here’s what I read this past month in chronological order:

By the way, reviews for all of these will come shortly.

1. Fallen Angels by Walter Dean Myers: Violent, sad, and good (at the end, especially).

2. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K Rowling: Really amazing. I am so late… but better late then never.

3. Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom: Inspiring, sad, beautiful.

4. Girl vs. Bear: Stories from the 80s by Lisa Kerr: I really enjoyed this! 

5. Skeleton Creek by Patrick Carman: Scary and interesting.

6. In Your Room by Jordanna Fraiberg: Less than I expected, but still good.


 

Needless to say, it was a very productive month. Thank you, Winter Break, without I wouldn’t have read three of these.
NFL New England Patriots from Fanzz
 

What did YOU read? Leave it in the comments 🙂 Happy New Year, btw!

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Fly On The Wall by E. Lockhart

December 26, 2008

Title: Fly on the Wall

Author: E. Lockhart

Edition: Harcover

Number of Pages:182.

Grade: C+

Contains: Coming-of-age, Drama, Romance, Relationships.

 

Anaylis of Book (1-10 on each aspect):
Writing: 7
Plot: 9
Characters: 8
Wow: 7

 

Summary: This book deals with a girl named Gretchen Yee who is very much antisocial. She only has one true friend, Katya, until she starts “being busy.” Gretchen is the ordinary girl at Manhattan High School for the Arts, a school where everybody strives to be different. On a usual day Gretchen is flustered-maybe about her ex Shane who is not “the new guy” anymore but the popular one or that her dad is divorcing her mom because he found a new girlfriend- and wonders why guys are the way they are. As silly as it may sound, she says she wishes she could be a fly on the boys’ locker room. Little does she know… the next day she wakes up and she’s a fly! She uses her new-found body to spy on the males in her class and home, including her crush Titus. She sees that guys do have problems and even feelings. If and when she turns back into a human, will she see things differently?  

Review: I enjoyed this book, sure, but it was definitely not E. Lockhart’s best. It was whatever, truthfully. I thought the characters were different than the typical ones used in YA books. They were cool, and I could relate to Grethen. I especially liked Titus. One thing that I kinda don’t understand is what happens with Carlo/Xavier/Gunther. What’s the point in having them in the book? I do kind of want to be a fly… because who doesn’t want to know what the boys in our lives do. The ending was rather predictable but still happy and cute. It was quick and easy, so I recommend it for a nice summer read.

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Girl Week Over At Reviewer X’s Place

December 17, 2008

Steph is freaking amazing. She’s having a week-long (awesome) event called Girl Week. Basically superb authors are stopping by with guest blogs and interviews… all pertaining to feminism and strong females! Of course, she couldn’t have stopped there… so she’s bringing in a crazy amount of book reviews and of course contests! 

Click here to see the Table of Contents (aka everything that is happening). 

So check on over until Dec. 21 and celebrate WOMEN! (Because uh, we rock.)

 

Edit: Here are some great things I’ve found so far on her blog:

This interview with Melissa Walker.

This guest blog, which is awesome, by CK Kelley Martin.

This interview with Libba Bray. She’s so cool.

This interview with Megan McCafferty. Amazing much?

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CONTEST: Lisa Schroeder’s Far From You Release Party

December 15, 2008

 

 

 

 

Hi everyone!

Finally I can punch you in the face with a contest! And it’s not ordinary contest, you know…. it’s Lisa Schroeder’s release party for FAR FROM YOU (which drops Dec. 23).  Read on…

 

 

 

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FAR FROM YOU RELEASE CELEBRATION AND CONTEST!!!

Lisa Schroeder, author of I HEART YOU, YOU HAUNT ME, is celebrating the release of her upcoming YA novel, FAR FROM YOU, and hosting a contest with LOTS of great prizes!

For three days leading up to the book’s release date of December 23rd, you can watch VLOGs and hear some excerpts read from the book. The VLOG schedule is as follows:

Sunday, December 21st – Liv’s Book Reviews – http://livsbookreviews.blogspot.com/

Monday, December 22nd – What Vanessa Reads – https://whatvanessareads.wordpress.com/

Tuesday, December 23rd – Lisa Schroeder, author – http://lisa-schroeder.livejournal.com/ AND http://myspace.com/writerlisa

Help spread the word, and you might win a fabulous prize!

Copy and paste THIS entire blog entry into your blog between now and December 21st, then come back to Lisa’s blog at either Livejournal OR Myspace and leave a comment with the link to your blog and you will get TWO entries to win a number of prizes.

Wondering what you might win? Here is the list (there will be multiple winners):

~ An Advanced Review Copy of THE FOREST OF HANDS AND TEETH, by Carrie Ryan

~ An Advanced Review Copy of SOMETHING, MAYBE, by Elizabeth Scott

~ Young adult novel GIRL, HERO by Carrie Jones

~ Young adult novel, THE POSSIBILITIES OF SAINTHOOD by Donna Freitas

~ Young adult novel, UGLIES by Scott Westerfield

~ Pair of YA fairy tale retellings by Cameron Dokey (BELLE and BEFORE MIDNIGHT)

~ TWILIGHT movie soundtrack

~ $15.00 Barnes and Noble gift card along with some Harry & David’s chocolate moose munch

~  And of course, a signed copy of FAR FROM YOU

For more chances to win, watch one or all of the VLOGs and leave a comment on that vlogger’s page, and you get another entry. That means if you post the schedule on your blog AND comment on all three VLOGs, you can have FIVE entries for the contest!

A live drawing with winners announced will be done by Lisa Thursday morning, December 24th, in a special holiday VLOG.

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So what are you waiting for? Place the blog between the dashes (—-) or what’s in black on your blog and received extras entries (go to Lisa’s blog to show her). Watch all the VLOGs and leave comments in each and receive extra entries. It’s really easy and look at what you can win!

My VLOG will be posted Dec. 22, so make sure you tune into my blog that day to watch it!

See you guys,

V