Monday, June 9, 2008

Teen Advisory Board Reviews

Look in the comments to this post to find the T.A.B. reviews!


  1. "Midnight Magic" by Avi

    Ok, it wasn't that it was a bad book, because it wasn't, but it was way too predictable for me...
    A mystery where someone is supposed to be dead, but they pop up later in the book.

    The King's daughter is plagued by a ghost. Mangus the Magician is called upon to rid her of the apparition.The main character is the Magician's apprentice, Fidelio, who befriends Princess Teresina, and eventually solves the mystery.
    There are a few quite, obvious clues as to "who dun it".
    My rating = 1 1/2 stars

  2. The Sword in the Stone is written by T. H. White. The novel was written in 1938, so reading this 70 years later is . . . different. Overall it was a pleasant read, but it’s just average. There really is nothing awe-inspiring that sticks in your mind besides the fact that it’s a sort of prequel to King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table. That alone will attract many fantasy readers, and it already has. It really didn’t wow me in any way, and it’s really difficult to get past the first twenty pages or so. Once Merlin (or Merlyn as it’s spelled in the book) is introduced, it picks up considerably. This is one of the types of book that is famous during the era when it’s first introduced, but doesn’t age particularly well. The book itself runs a little more than 250 pages, so it doesn’t drag on, yet it should be read in small bursts. Ending this, I say there’s nothing spectacular, and nothing absolutely horrible and I award The Sword in the Stone 3 ½ stars out of five.
    Review by Alisa Heskin

  3. The Edge on the Sword by Rebecca Tingle Review

    Ethelflaed is known as one of the most revered West Saxon queens in history. In this first novel penned by Rebecca Tingle, the childhood of this great ruler is imagined. I thought that its beginning was average and didn’t impress me much. As the story goes on, the characters grow; the conflict deepens itself, and overall becomes a much more interesting read. This book does differentiate itself from other medieval fantasy novels with the plot point of being based on a real person and actual history. Albeit, it’s been done before, but I find this to be a more entertaining read then most. Again, it’s not the best or well-written, but it stands out and deserves a look. I award this novel 3 ½ stars out of 5.

    Review by Alisa Heskin

  4. "Out of the Dust" is written by Karen Hesse. The book wasn't that bad, but the writing style really annoyed me, since it was more like a journal written in freestyle poetry than an actual book. I know it won the Newberry Honor Award (something or other) but I still didn't like it.

    Billie Jo Kelby and her family live in Oklahoma during the troubling times of the 1930s. Her father farms and Billie Jo and her mother, who is pregnant with her second child, both play the piano. There were some interesting parts, but mostly the book was all about Billie Jo's day-to-day life, which got pretty boring (dust storms, dying crops/livestock, etc.). Billie Jo manages to solve most (not all) of her problems by the end.
    I give this book: 2 stars

  5. The Picture Of Dorian Gray

    I cannot write a review for the book The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde because I could NOT finish this book. This book is as dry as a bone. The story takes place in England so the way people talk is very flowery and elaborate. The characters go into debate a lot and because they use a lot of wit it makes it hard to follow the flow of the conversation.

    This book seems a little too adultish and not really suitable for teenagers unless you like that kind of book. I found it very dull and frustrating so I had to give up. I give this book a 2 out 5 stars.

    Sara Schuster

  6. "Montmorency" by Eleanore Updale
    This book was extremely interesting. The book was about a man who was an aspiring criminal. He was the best until he fell through a skylight and severly injured himself. A young doctor was determined to save him, and amazingly healed all his injuries.
    Montmorency, after being released from prison, was not gong to go on the straight and narrow road. He has some interesting plans for what he's going to do with his new life.
    "Montmorency" is a book that I'd recomend to other readers anyday. It's fast paced and funny, and I found myself hardly able to put it down.

    Kelsey Gisi

  7. "Under the Jolly Roger" by L.A. Meyer
    This book was absolutely hilarious. Although it contained some serious material, I still couldn't help laughing at every page. "Under the Jolly Roger" is the third book in the "Bloody Jack Adventures," and although I haven't read the second one, the third is just as good or better than the first.
    When Mary "Jacky" Faber escapes on a whaling boat from a girl's school in Boston, she comes back to London searching for her one true love, Jaimy. She gets angry when she sees him holding hands with another beautiful young woman. Jacky runs off and is captured by a press gang, and recruited onto a ship with a crazy captain. She starts in on a whole new series of adventures, and soon finds herself proclaimed as a pirate with a hefty price on her head.
    Again, this book is hilarious. Jacky is so funny, warring with herself as to wether she wants to be a lady in love or a adventurer on the high seas. I give this book 4 1/2 stars.

    Kelsey Gisi

  8. "The Rover" by Mel Odom

    I actually really enjoyed this book. It reminded me alot of Lord of the Rings, because it was about dweller/halfer(they're basically hobbits by a different name)named Edgewick Lamplighter going on alot of adventures.

    Edgewick Lamplighter, or Wick as he likes to be called, works in the Vault of All Known Knowledge (which is a huge library containing all the books) as a Third Level Librarian. While Wick is delivering a package to the Customs House, he sees an odd man dressed in black and decides to follow him to sate his curiosity. After killing some evil creatures, he is abducted onto a pirate ship crewed by dwarves and many adventures ensue, until Wick finally finds his way home.

    My rating: 3 1/2 stars

  9. "Girl in a Cage" by Robert J. Harris

    This book was actually very boring. I struggled to get through the entire thing. I really didn't care for it.

    It's actually quite a lot like many other books that involve a king, a castle, and a war. One of the people with much land and authority got quite upset with the King of England and his reign on much of the Scottish lands. He gets into a rather large fight involving much name calling and a little fighting. The Scott then flees back to his castles across the Scottish land and takes a march for independence and names himself king of Scotland. The man's daughter is taken hostage at one of the castle's and is held in a cage by the King of England.

    It was definitely not my favorite book and was rather boring.

    Rating -- 1 3/4 stars

  10. "Surviving the Applewhites" by Stephanie S. Tolan

    This book was rather good once I got into it. Just as a warning though, you have to get through about the first chapter and a half or so.

    It is about a delinquent kid that is kicked out of many schools in Rhode Island. He is then put into a home full of people that work to find their own talents. It turns out that it is a house full of artists of many different forms. Jake is put with a girl that has no artistic ability and is very organized. Jake is cast as a lead part in "The Sound of Music" and to find the rest you will have to read it.

    Rating -- 4 out of 5 stars

  11. The Lost Years of Merlin-T.A. Barron

    The first installment of The Lost Years of Merlin series is quite frankly, brilliant. What T.A. Barron (the master behind these tales) does is create a world and background for one of the most famous wizards of all time. A certain depth is added to the character, no longer a ready-made wise and powerful wizard, this Merlin (or Emrys as he is named) is afraid of his powers, much younger, and doesn’t possess the wisdom he will soon acquire throughout the years. In my opinion, this is a brilliant series and should be read whether you enjoy fantasy or not. Clever writing, incredible imagination, stirring storyline, and lovable characters make this novel an amazing read. Review score- 5 stars *****

  12. "Fake ID" by Walter Sorrells

    I liked this book, mostly because i couldn't put my finger on what was to happen next.
    The main character is Chastity Pureheart, who's mother has gone missing. Chastity sets out to find out just what happened to her mother, and along the way she finds out who she really is. You see, Chastity isn't her real name, in fact she doesn't know her real name because she and her mom are on the run, but who from?
    Good book, 3 stars.

    Erienne Sjoquist

  13. "In the Belly of the Bloodhound" by L.A. Meyer

    I absolutely love the Bloody Jack Adventures, I'm not sure why, but I do.
    In this book, Jacky Faber, has gotten herself into trouble again. This time though, it's with the British government. She has a price on her head for piracy, and must stay out of trouble if she is to go unnoticed. That is easier said than done for poor Jacky, there are posters everywhere describing her in detail, the price for her live capture, 250 english pounds. Jacky seeks sanctuary in Boston, hoping to find safety until Jamie can come claim her and take her away with him. Before that can happen, Jacky and 31 other girls are kidnapped and taken to a slave ship, the Bloodhound, and are on course to Africa to be sold.
    Exciting story, loved it. 4 1/2 stars.

  14. "Artemis Fowl and The Time Paradox" by Eoin Colfer

    Artemis Fowl and the Time Paradox is the sixth in Eoin Colfer’s fantastical and riveting series. For fans of the series, they should all be familiar with the events of the last five books. Number six, of course, picks up after where the “The Lost Colony” left off with Artemis having to deal with two younger siblings and all the changes in his absence. One aspect I’ve always enjoyed from the Artemis Fowl series is that in most situations, the protagonist usually succeeds in their ventures, yet the “bad guy” almost always fails. What’s interesting is Artemis is both, leaving a sort of unpredictability to the story. I think I expected more from this book. There just wasn’t much there. The humor, there, the intrigue, there; what’s missing is what made the series appealing. Artemis is no longer the apathetic, cold genius he once was. He’s still brilliantly clever, but the unpredictability is gone along with his criminal ventures. Don’t get me wrong, there are plot twists and unexpected turns aplenty, but it’s lost some of its charm. How is it that a character drops from the face of the earth? I’m of course speaking about Minerva. I didn’t particularly enjoy her character, but an explanation would’ve been appreciated. Also, at the end of the story, a plot hole emerges that could possibly undo the last five book’s events. Here’s a hope to a seventh book to remedy this. Also for all those hopefuls who wanted Holly and Artemis to be together, you shall find closure. To end this, could I put it down, no, was it still a more than excellent read, yes, so I reluctantly award this installment of Artemis Fowl, four stars. It’s better than many, but the last five books have easily earned five stars and beyond.

    Review by Alisa Heskin

  15. The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes
    By: Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

    This was a very good book. Once I opened it I had a very hard time putting it down. In fact I did not put it down until I was finished with it. There are three mysteries that Holmes solves in this book. One called "The Red-Headed League", one called "The Speckled Band", and one called "The Copper Beeches". If you would like to know what these mysteries are about I would definitely urge you to check out this book. Some of you might be thinking that it is an old crusty classic. That is not the case with this book because it has illustrations to help imagine what's going on and it is a very easy,extremely well written, book to read.

    Rating 4 stars (picture classic??)

  16. "Rebels of the Heavenly Kingdom" by Katherine Paterson

    This book might not appeal to all readers, but I thought it was fairly good.

    Wang Lee is a peasant boy in China who lives on a farm with his parents. After he gets kidnapped, a woman (disguised a man) named Mei Lin buys him from his kidnappers and lets him join this secret society called the "God-Worshipers", the followers of the Heavenly King on Earth. After a few battles and general taking over of China, Wang Lee and Mei Lin leave the Rebels and go back to Wang Lee's home.

    I give this book 3 1/2 out of 5 stars.

  17. "Across the Wall" by Garth Nix.

    To begin with, I'm not a great fan of Nix's work, but I thought this book was okay once I got past the first part.
    The whole book was a jumble of short stories separated by boring authors notes that nobody wants to read and that I myself skipped over. Only the first story pertained to the book's title. It was about some monster and the main character, Nick, chasing after it to bind it with a chain of daisies. I liked this story the least.
    There was some sort of game thing in the middle of the book that I had the most fun with. It was hilarious.
    So, I give the whole book 3 stars.