Tag Archives: Young Adult

Book Review: The Lightning Thief by Rick Riordan

It’s like Harry Potter meets Ancient Greece with a mix of Bruce Coville’s “My Teacher is an Alien.” It was entertaining, if not a little immature, but the part that was most touching to me was why Rick wrote these stories.  His son loved Greek Mythology and when Rick ran out of stories, he made them up.  He created Percy Jackson off the top of his head and Percy had ADHD and dyslexia like his son did at that time. The author was showing his son how someone became a hero with the same problems he had and, in an indirect way, that he was special.

He talks about this and other things more in his interview here.

Content Rating: Mild, for a few swear words and action.


Book Review: The Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare

Will’s character bugged me most of the time (mostly because he reminded me of Jace from the Mortal Instrument Series).  Sometimes it just didn’t feel like the story and characters “fit” in Victorian England. But overall, it was entertaining.  It was a page-turner for me.  The author is very good at creating an unpredictable story and immersing you in a totally different world.

Content Rating: Medium, for some swearing and some violence.

Book Review: The Body Finder by Kimberly Derting

I was disappointed by this book – 200 pages in I was still waiting for the story to start. I had to make myself finish it. It was more teen novel with a tiny bit of super-natural sprinkled in.  That being said, I like super-natural stories and I was expecting there to be more of a super-natural element than there was.  So it might be that I didn’t like it because I had different expectations.  Lots of people like this book and it’s a good murder mystery, but I don’t like murder mysteries, either.

Content Rating: Medium, there was a long make-out section that I skipped over and there may have been some swearing (It’s been a while since I read it and I don’t remember:)

Book Review: Beastly by Alex Flinn

It was cute, fun, and entertaining, but it reminded me a lot of Disney’s version of Beauty and the Beast. It went back and forth between teen-angst and old-fashioned which made it feel a little inconsistent sometimes. Honestly, it veered a little into the sappy and over-the-top.  The characters were good, though, and it was fun to watch them grow.  I’m excited to see the movie because I can tell you right now without even seeing it that it’s very different from the book.

Content Rating: Medium, for swearing and crude teen humor.

Book Review: The Hunger Game Series by Suzanne Collins

It’s like 1984 meets reality TV and gladiators. I think the series is so popular because it makes you examine and ponder how we as a world are living now.  This is one of the first books to come out in the huge dystopian YA market.  It was recommended to me by Stephenie Meyer (not personally…) and I enjoyed the series as a whole.  The end of the last book grew on me.  I didn’t like it at first.  There’s a supernatural element to them, too, which I enjoyed.

Content Rating: Medium, for lots of violence, some of it kind of disturbing.

What to read next…

I’m getting that bogged down feeling when I’ve read something long and hard.  It’s like eating really healthy, high-fiber food for a week and you just want a Twinkie or something.  I like long, hard books (and high-fiber food, for that matter) but I need something fluffy, sweet and entertaining to get me in the mood for more of the difficult books on my to-read pile.  This is why I usually alternate between classics and YA (Young Adult) fiction.  After reading YA stuff, I want something with some depth and meaning.  When I finish a hard book that took me forever to get through, it’s nice to have something like YA books that boost my confidence and remind me that I am good at reading after all.

So here’s my dilemma.  I have read so many first books in YA series that I’m worried I’ll start forgetting who’s who in all these series by the time the rest of the books come out.  So, no new series.  That whacks off half of my YA to-read list.  Plus, I’m out of money so that leaves me with the selection at the library or on lendle and I’ve looked – there’s nothing there but Book 1 in some series I haven’t read yet. GRRR.  I’m going to finish my book tonight and I want something new to read NOW.  Maybe my husband’s got 10 bucks he won’t miss.  I’ve really wanted to read Beastly by Alex Flinn before I watch the movie from Redbox.  In fact, I think I’m going to go look for my husband’s wallet right now…

P.S. I think I’m totally waking up at 5 am to watch J.K. Rowling’s announcement live. Chances are YouTube will crash with all the visitors, but I don’t care.  I’ll sit there with the rest of the world refreshing the page til it works and I KNOW what the heck her website is about.

Book Review: Matched by Ally Condie

One of the best dystopian novels I’ve read.  The world was one I could really see growing out of the one we live in. In fact, Cassia’s world is supposed to be a utopia in a lot of ways and the dysfunction is not immediately obvious.  This made it all the more frightening because the world Cassia lives in is not blatantly evil and oppressive – it’s mostly beautiful.  I found it haunting and hard to forget.

Content Rating: Mild, for a little violence and minor swearing (if any).

Book Review: Wings by Aprilynne Pike

Enchanting, beautiful and sweet. It’s about the kind of fairies you think of as a little girl with flowers and fairy circles.  It also surprised me with its new imagining of fairies walking among us.  A great page-turner that I couldn’t put down.

Content Rating: Mild, for minor swearing, some kissing, and a tiny bit of violence.

Book Review: Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater

Maggie Stiefvater is a great storyteller.  I liked how she used smells to describe everything. A lot of it made me think of Twilight. I always thought Jake had it easy. What if you couldn’t choose to be a wolf? It was heart-breakingly sad and beautiful at the same time.  The pace was calm to me – kind of like winter. It was slow but refreshing at the same time. Loved it. It even made me cry.

Content Rating: Medium, for some swearing, non-graphic suggestive scenes and very mild violence.

Book Review: The Book Thief by Markus Zusak

The narration style is what made this book so unique and interesting. The narrator is all-knowing and is actually a character in the story that talks to you, the reader. It’s old-fashioned to do that, but the author modernizes it by making the narrator Death. Set it WWII, it’s a thought-provoking story on the power of words and friendship. Despite the serious subject, it still manages to be funny sometimes. Loved it!

Content Rating: Medium, for swearing in German and English.  Some war violence (not graphic).