chat loading...

All Book Reviews

The Hunger Games
Collins, Suzanne
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

The nation of Panem resides in a place that was once known as North America. It is a Capital surrounded by 12 districts. Once, the districts rebelled against the Capital and were defeated. Thus, The Hunger Games were born. Every year, each district must send one boy and one girl between the ages of 12-18 to fight to the death in The Hunger Games, which is broadcasted across national television. When Katniss' sister is chosen, she volunteers to go in her place, knowing that to go means certain death.

I really enjoyed this book. I found it to be very interesting. It's scary to think that anybody would allow an event such as The Hunger Games to occur. Power in the wrong hands can lead to terrible things.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
Breaking Dawn
Meyer, Stephenie
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

After Bella marries the love of her life, Edward, she's happier than she's ever been before. She can't wait to one day become a vampire and spend the rest of eternity with him. During their honeymoon, everything changes. Bella finds herself pregnant with a half-vampire, half-human child, but her pregnancy doesn't go without complications. The fetus develops at an alarming speed and keeping it may very well end Bella's life.

I liked this book. I thought that it was a good place to end the series; everything was tied up nicely, from the threat of the Volturi in New Moon to the future of Bella and Edward's child.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
Awards:
Eclipse
Meyer, Stephenie
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

Once again, Bella has found herself in the center of a dangerous battle between vampires. James' mate, Victoria, is on a murderous rampage; she's determined to get her revenge on Edward for killing her love.

Meanwhile, Bella is forced to choose between her love for Edward and her friendship with Jacob. Vampires and Werewolves are natural enemies, but can they ever get over their differences? Bella's life may depend on it.

This book was alright. There was a lot of tension due to the love triangle, but it wasn't too bad. I liked it overall.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
New Moon
Meyer, Stephenie
3 stars = Pretty Good
Review:

Bella's love for Edward is stronger than ever. As she turns 18, she panics, realizing that she's older than Edward ever will be. She never wants to lose him, but each day is a step closer to them being torn apart due to her own mortality. When she goes to a birthday celebration thrown for her by the Cullens, her world turns upside down. It turns out that mortality never was the problem; she has much less time with Edward than she ever dared to expect.

I wasn't huge on this book. I found it to be quite boring. A lot of it was spent on Bella being sad and trying to figure out how to get through life without Edward. While it has it's moments, the dullness of the rest of the book overshadows them. Overall, I think it's an okay book, just not my favorite.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
Animal Farm
Orwell, George
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

In Animal Farm a group of animals are faced with some problems with the owner of their farm. Through these problems the animals form an alliance in order to try and get rid of their owner. It's full of action and controversy making it more fun to want to read. There are also some sad parts which also add a spark of emotions to the book. I believe this can also relate to actual human things that go on in the world, which makes it able to be relatable to the reader.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Dominique R.
Frankenstein
Shelley, Mary Wollstonecraft
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

This book definitely isn't like the movies, but it is still really interesting to read. The main character, Victor Frankenstein, goes through a lot of crazy times. He creates a so called monster by many and everything that comes after keeps you wanting to read more. There is a lot of melancholy feelings and struggles that many go throughout the book. It uses a lot of diction and has foreshadowing throughout giving you hints here and there of what might come. I highly recommend this book because it's a very cool story.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Dominique R.
The Night Circus
Morgenstern, Erin
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

This novel is unique. It is a historical fantasy that is almost impressionistic in style and dreamlike in tone. It tells the story of two enchanters who occupy themselves by forcing their respective students into decades-long, painfully drawn-out, life-engulfing…duels? Competitions? Contests? Endurance tests? The rules are vague and the structure of the contest difficult to illustrate, describe, or understand, but the author is so skilled that the reader is drawn in completely, despite the lack of concrete concepts. The mysterious Night Circus of the title is merely the venue for the contest, but it is so compellingly depicted that it pulses with life – almost as if it is a character itself. The real stars are the competitors, however. Celia and Marco – two impossibly gorgeous, talented, and intelligent magicians whose magic is so beautiful and illusory in itself that the reader wishes that it were real, if only to experience the dream which the circus patrons are privileged to witness. The magicians are trapped in a constant battle for something they don’t understand, despite their being drawn to one another and entirely fascinated by the other’s whole being. They strive to win, and, eventually, strive to lose.

The plot is nonlinear, going back and forth in time with almost every chapter, but this is rarely a problem since the chapter headings give precise dates and the chapters focus almost exclusively on one set of characters at a time. The plot is filled to the brim with other fascinating side characters with enchanting plot lines of their own – some are likable, some despicable, all mysterious. The story is woven together intricately. No thread is complete until the final moment, and even then, some enigmatic strings are left hanging, just to give the reader something to think about.

The author does a wonderful job of simply describing – everything. While occasionally the detail is overwhelming and the plot only loosely defined, it makes for pleasurable reading nonetheless. The brief portions written in 2nd-person are spellbinding. Suspension of disbelief is required in enormous quantities, but if you have a good imagination, that should be no problem. Additionally, I found Celia and Marco to be rather boring and unrealistically perfect compared to other characters (the unlikely hero is much more compelling), but that’s part of the charm – the author merely portrays the facts, and the conclusions are left to the reader. If you can briefly relinquish your hold on reality, this book is absolutely magical.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Caroline K.
Awards:
Twilight
Meyer, Stephenie
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

When Bella moves to Forks, she figures she'll be miserable. She expects it, even. But when she meets a mysterious boy, she finds herself intrigued. She knows that there's something unusual about him and she's determined to find out what it is. Too bad his secret is dangerous and may cost her her life.

I liked this book. There wasn't a lot of action until the end, but it wasn't boring. The time that it took for them to become close didn't feel too rushed or too dragged out. It was just right.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
City of Heavenly Fire
Clare, Cassandra
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Sebastian's army of Endarkened Shadowhunters is growing day by day. After five institutes around the world are attacked, the Clave holds an emergency meeting to discuss the problem. Whatever they do, they have to act fast. An attack is imminent, and if the war draws out much longer, they may not even have a chance at winning.

I really liked this book. I found Sebastian to be an unnerving character. It was clear that he didn't have any remorse. He was so far gone and determined to get what he wanted that he'd do anything. It was kind of scary to witness. Also, I enjoyed the end. The last chapters were so sad, but the epilogue managed to tie the story up nicely.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
Genres:
City of Lost Souls
Clare, Cassandra
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

After Jace and Sebastian disappear, Clary is worried about Jace's well being. After constant searching with no success, the Clave decides that finding them is not a priority. When this happens, Clary decides that it's time to take matters into her own hands. No matter what anybody else says, she's determined to rescue him; but what if he doesn't want to be saved?

I enjoyed this book. It wasn't as dull as the previous one, but it still was more of a buildup to the finale. It wasn't bad, though.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
Genres:
Book Review: Justin Morgan Had a Horse
Henry, Marguerite
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

I liked this book because it was very catchy. For instance, at the end of a chapter, it left you at a cliffhanger. For example, Little Bub, later called Justin Morgan, was about to run in the biggest race in his life, and then the chapter ended. Also, it was a great book for kids because it didn’t have too much detail about the Morgan breed, but it still gave you the feel of the great horse.

My favorite character is either Little Bub or Joel, the main character. I liked Little Bub because he was such a good runner and puller and because of his funny little neigh. Joel and Little Bub became fast friends partly because of that neigh, and as the author describes it, “like the sound of a bugle.” His ability to run so fast helped the schoolmaster (Justin Morgan) to pay off his debts. I liked Joel because of his determination, like when he served for his state in the militia, to help care for the horses. He worked odd jobs in peoples houses to get much-needed supplies, such as water
pails and blankets. Also, I admire Joel in his hopefulness and patience.
For example, he had expected a letter from the schoolmaster and he waited for months. He stayed hopeful, and finally the letter came! Another example was that when the stranger bought little Bub, he didn’t give up looking for him, and he finally found him!

Right now, if I was the author, I would change three things. One, I would change the schoolmaster dying. Two, I would change the author not revealing who the anonymous buyer was for Little Bub. Three, I would change the scene where the small puppy ran out onto the racetrack. I thought Joel shouldn’t of interfered with the schoolmaster’s life.

Reviewer's Name: Kyle
Book Review: Justin Morgan had a Horse
Tytle, Harry
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

My favorite character in the book was Little Bub because of his personality.
He was a very hard worker and he was brave. He stepped into a boat without hesitation. He worked all day pulling down trees. He was in pulling matches at night.

I liked this book because it had really good descriptions. The author wrote great descriptions like “You are as skinny as a fiddle string!” I also
liked the suspense. When we read about the races we didn’t want to stop.
My least favorite part was that the schoolmaster died. It made me sad because he was really nice. He was like a grandpa to Joel. He was loving because he took Joel on a trip.

Reviewer's Name: Seth
City of Fallen Angels
Clare, Cassandra
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

With Valentine defeated and Clary's mother finally awake, things seem to be finally working out. Sadly, nothing's ever as it seems. Jace has been having nightmares where he hurts Clary, and it's put a strain on their relationship. Meanwhile, somebody is out to get Simon, but his mark protects him. Sinister forces are lurking, and it's only a matter of time before the world comes crashing down around them again.

This book was okay. I didn't find myself as drawn to it as I was to the first three. Honestly, it felt like a filler book that was just there to get the series moving along. While it was necessary, it was also boring. It took a while for the action to actually kick off.

Reviewer Grade:12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
City of Glass
Clare, Cassandra
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

To revive her mother, Clary must travel to the City of Glass to find the warlock who brewed the potion that put her mother to sleep. When she misses the portal there, she decides to find a way there herself, even though that means breaking the law, which is punishable by death.

Things are finally coming to an end as Valentine uses all of his power to destroy the shadowhunters. Fighting alongside the downworlders may be the only way to save them all, but can the shadowhunters let go of their prejudice against them enough to accept their help? The fate of the world depends on it.

This series has not disappointed me. It was fun to watch as Clary grew as a character and learned to handle herself. While love can be powerful, it can also be dangerous, and this book just goes to prove it.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
City of Ashes
Clare, Cassandra
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Clary may have succeeded in rescuing her mother, but things will never go back to normal for her. Her mother is in a magically induced coma, and nobody knows how to wake her up. Her father is an evil sociopath who wants to cleanse the world of demons, downworlders, and anyone who gets in his way. Her brother is under suspicion by the Clave, who thinks that he's a spy. Sadly, though, her family troubles are the least of her worries.

Somebody has been murdering downworlder children. On top of that, the second mortal instrument, the soul-sword, has been stolen. Nobody knows why, but one thing's for certain - whoever it is that's doing this must be stopped.

I loved this book. To be honest, I haven't been this enticed by a book series in ages. I've always been a fan of things involving the supernatural, so this book is perfect for me. Also, the "forbidden love" aspect isn't bad. After the reveal in the previous book, it's been played out well. I like how the author handled it.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
The Alienist
Carr, Caleb
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

This book is amazing. It spent weeks on the bestseller lists the year it was published, and is currently being turned into a television series. It takes place in 1896 and concerns fictional psychologist (or “alienist”) Dr. Laszlo Kreizler who works with his best friend John Moore, a crime reporter, to solve a series of brutal and perverted murders of New York City child prostitutes. They are joined by several other unconventional and intrepid characters who help them investigate the murders, eventually leading to an edge-of-your-seat climactic showdown worthy of any blockbuster thriller.
Our narrator, John Moore, is well-drawn and extremely likeable, providing insight into the personalities of more-difficult-to-access characters such as Laszlo as well as entertaining the reader with sarcastic asides and private commentary. His interactions with Laszlo are especially enjoyable – the two are polar opposites, yet have an enduring friendship that allows them to work together like Holmes and Watson. Dr. Laszlo Kreizler himself is dark, brooding, and intelligent, but moves beyond a stereotype and gains the reader’s sympathy, especially as his intriguing past – and relationships -- come to light. The other members of the team are generally likable as well, if rather underdeveloped. Their racial and religious political correctness seems somewhat manufactured considering the time period, but the strength of the plot and their own likability allows the reader to accept it as signs of the characters’ progressive viewpoints and accepting natures. Also, Theodore Roosevelt and other actual historical figures make cameos – it’s like a treat for history buffs.
Speaking of history, a main factor in the story is the concept of “psychological determinism,” a psychological theory that was new at the time but is now largely accepted, as well as forensic science, which was also mostly untested in 1896. The heroes in this story aren’t your typical Victorian detectives, using Holmesian deduction and raw logic to trace the killer. These investigators use psychology and forensics to catch a murderer who leaves no hard clues, making this mystery uncommonly scientific and engrossing. Additionally, the abundance of subplots -- romantic, criminal, historical, etc. -- create an atmospheric and fleshed-out world that serves its reader well.
I urge fans of psychological thrillers as well as traditional mysteries to read this book. However (as you may have guessed), the subject matter is dark, and there is more than one gory and detailed description of a dismembered body. Additionally, the nature of the investigation leads the investigators into some very unsavory locales. The imagery alone requires that I recommend this book for mature readers, probably ages 15 and up. If you don’t have a strong stomach, you may want to skip a few scenes. Otherwise, this is one mystery you won’t want to miss.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Caroline K.
Awards:
City of Bones
Clare, Cassandra
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Clary Fray is an ordinary girl with an ordinary life. When she goes out to a club, the last thing she expects is to witness a murder, let alone one that only she can see. The next day, her mother disappears and she finds herself thrust into a world that she didn't even know existed. Now, she must find a way to save her mother without jeopardising the fate of the world as well.

I really enjoyed this book. It has the perfect mix of action, romance, and suspense. I found myself completely absorbed in it from start to finish.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
Undivided
Shusterman, Neal
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

Proactive Citizenry has been hiding a way to create new body parts that would make unwinding completely unnecessary. If this information can be revealed, unwinding may finally come to an end, but nothing's as easy as it seems.

Starkey and his brigade of storks are growing more powerful every day. Instead of helping anything, the attacks made by the brigade are only convincing people that the new laws that allow teenagers (without parental consent) and convicts to be unwound must be passed. Desperate times call for desperate measures, right?

Between people's fear of feral teenagers and their belief that unwinding is the only way to provide them with a substantial amount of body parts, unwinding may never end.

I enjoyed this book. It really goes to show how fear can drive people to do drastic things. The only thing that I didn't like a lot was the ending. While the fate of the future was implied, it didn't feel very concrete. I personally didn't find it satisfying, but that's just my opinion.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Alex M.
The DUFF
Keplinger, Kody
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

The Duff is a extremely good book. The book is about a girl who is having a good time with her friends at this place called the nest. Overwhelmed by stress she kisses the boy she hates, Wesly Rush. She then half realizes throughout the book she is falling in love with him. But she catches the eye of her crush, Toby Tucker. She is torn between the two, trying to make a decisive pick to stick with one and ditch the other. I don’t want to give the book away, so I'm not going to tell you much more. I chose this book as a last ditch attempt at a book. But this book was a lot better than you think, it’s not a sappy romance, but it’s not one of the romances that is so fast it’s only 100 pages. It is a perfect book for everyone, ages 8 on up. Even if you don’t like love stories, this book must be on your top books to read. I went into the book thinking that “I'm going to hate this.” But came out thinking “Is there a sequel?” That’s how good this book is. So all and all, I recommend this book, everything about it.

Reviewer Grade: 7

Reviewer's Name: Lucas L.
Awards:
Genres:
A Lesson Before Dying
Gaines, Ernest J.
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Two characters. Grant and Jefferson. Playing the roles of God in Jesus in society, as saviors. Jefferson is on death row for killing a man. Grant is a man who would rather have nothing to do with the sinner, Jefferson. However, Grant is persuaded to help Jefferson. The two men develop a crazy relationship. Grant’s job is to help Jefferson find his humanity again, after Jefferson’s astonishing defense in trial that compared him to a swine who wouldn’t know better than to kill a man, for he is just that dumb. This book teaches so many lessons, but most important how to be a hero for others. Read this book for nothing else than to get to Jefferson’s tragic journal in the end, where you should be prepared with tears and tissues, for your heart will break for these characters.

Reviewer Grade: 12

Reviewer's Name: Madison H.

Pages