Kids Book Reviews

Wonder
Palacio, R. J.
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Have you ever felt out of place? Like all you want is to fit in with the crowd, but it seems impossible? If so, you'd get along well with August Pullman. Ten-year-old August (Auggie) Pulllman is about to go into fifth grade at Beecher Prep, ready to face the world with his Padawan braid and astronaut helmet. But there are two things that get in the way: 1. He's been home-schooled all his life. 2. Auggie has Treacher Collins Syndrome, (TCS) a rare condition that occurs in one in fifty-thousand births. Because of his TCS, Auggie has downward-slanting eyes, a small jaw and chin, and the development of his facial bones and tissues are altered, causing him to have had twenty-seven surgeries -- and also causing some kids in his school to be scarred with night terrors. Everyday, Auggie is constantly challenged with overcoming whispers, side-glances, and even public humiliation from his peers that could get him killed one day. Auggie's world isn't all that bad though: he has two loving parents, a dog named Daisy, his older sister Olivia (Via), Via's friends Miranda and Justin, and his two new best friends, Summer and Jack, all of which are willing to do anything for Auggie, embarking on every incredible adventure he has so he doesn't have to face life alone.
Wonder is a magnificent book, filled with the challenges that every child and adult alike have to go through, whether or not they have a facial deformity. It is incredibly touching, and finds ways to connect with the reader and captivate its audience so much so that you won't be able to put the book down once you pick it up! Although many people would be disturbed by the imagery used to describe characters like Auggie Pullman, R.J. Palacio is able to create such a lovable and relate-able character that you just can't help but throw appearances aside and route for Auggie throughout the novel. You'll really wish that you could give him a hug the more you read the book, especially with the multiple POVs R.J. Palacio writes with, allowing you to observe Auggie's wonder of a story from every possible angle.

Reviewer's Name: Aimee W.
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
Rowling, J. K.
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

It is the second book in J.K Rowling's fantastic book series Harry Potter. 12 year old Harry has just come back from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry to spend a dreadful summer at Number 4 Privit Drive. Little does he know his summer is about to get worse. Uncle Vernon is expecting to get one of the best deals of his life during a visit from the Masons. Unfortunately it doesn't go as planned when a house elf shows up in Harrys bedroom with an ominous message. The elf proceeds to try to get Harry expelled from Hogwarts by dropping a pudding on Mrs. Masons head. Uncle Vernon puts bars on Harrys window to stop him form getting out. Harry is in despair when the Ron (his best friend), Fred, and George(Ron's twin brothers) Weasley save him from the clutches of his aunt an uncle and he spend the restof the summer with them.

Harry is back at Hogwarts after an eventful journey. He's ready to start a new peaceful year at Hogwarts. That doesn't go to plan when he starts hearing a mysterious voice in the school corridors. Harry, Ron, and Hermione partake on a amazing and thrilling journey to uncover who is petrifying the students.
This book is absolutely amazing and is worth reading. It has magic, mystery, and loads of adventure.

Reviewer's Name: Katie
Genres:
Kensuke's Kingdom
Morpurgo, Michael
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

In the book Kensuke’s Kingdom which was written by Michael Morpurgo,a family of 3 and a dog named Stella Artois decided to go on an 18 month journey around the world after Michael's parents lost their jobs. As they take a vast journey across England to Africa and then from South America to South Africa in a yacht named Peggy Sue. Everything was going great for everyone, they traveled to so many countries around the world, until one night when Stella Artois and Michael went off board the Peggy Sue one night. What happened to them is what you’ll have to find out. This book has many cliffhangers after every chapter, for me I just couldn't put the book down. Plus the book does a great job of describing the setting and giving you a great description of what's happening. If you are into animals and geography then this is the perfect book for you. This in my opinion is a great book and everyone should read it.

Reviewer's Name: Shireen D.
My Brother's Secret
Smith, Dan
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

This book takes place during WWII, and is from the perspective of a boy attending the Hitler Youth. He starts out supporting Hitler and what he's doing, but after moving soon discovers that the way he'd been thinking was wrong. He slowly starts to change the way he's thinking and join a rebellion, putting him at risk. This does end up getting him in a sticky situation, but does he get out? Read to find out.

Reviewer's Name: Ash N.
Awards:
Genres:
The Thing About Jellyfish
Benjamin, Ali
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

The Thing About Jellyfish is a mysterious book that you will never want to put down. It starts out with a twelve year old girl named Suzy watching jellyfish at a aquarium. A few days ago her best friend had died swimming in the ocean while on a vacation. When Suzy is told this she realizes it can not be true, her best friend had been a great swimmer, so she sets out to find what happened to her best friend. She believes it could have only been one thing, a jellyfish. She does as much as she can to prove what happened to her best friend, but no one believes her. If you love mysteries and like not knowing what is going to happen, this book is for you. It is a great read for teens and children and I totally recommend reading it.

Reviewer's Name: Aspen
Chains
Anderson, Laurie Halse
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Isabel Finch is a slave girl and belongs to Miss Mary Finch. When Miss Mary Finch dies, she and her younger sister Ruth must travel away from Rhode Island and to New York where they are bought and serve a new master. This master is a strong loyalist and Isabel finds herself trading information about battles and invasions to the local patriot camp in New York. I loved this book because it showed bravery and the injustice of slavery for young girls. I would fully recommend this book to anyone who has a heart for historical fiction.

Reviewer's Name: Nina F.
Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them: The Original Screenplay
Rowling, J.K.
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

I found this book really good sure some people would have a hard time reading a sceen play but I found this easy and im reading the second book right now and I would recommend this book to all ages this book took place in the 1920 before harry potter and it gives you the chance to use your imagination to picture these fantastic creature.

Reviewer's Name: David
Genres:
Wonder
Palacio, R. J.
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

In the beginning of the book August has a facial deformity called Treacher Collins syndrome where his ear is lower than the ears are supposed to be. He has not gone to a regular school ever so in fifth grade his mom has decided that she does not want to

Reviewer's Name: Hannah
Genres:
Ember Falls
Smith, S.D.
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

Being a fan of children’s series like The Chronicles of Narnia, as well as a lover of rabbits (owning two Flemish giants as pets), I was glad to get back into the Green Ember series with the second book, Ember Falls. Obviously, as this series is mainly geared toward children, there were a few points of the plot of this second book that I either predicted from the start or could see coming from a mile away. In any case, the world building that continued with this book was top notch, despite certainly feeling like a “linking” part of the series.

While The Green Ember could stand on its own and laid the groundwork for the books that came after it, Ember Falls certainly needs its predecessor to make sense. It also seems to rely on the next book in the series to reach some conclusion. This is an issue that often arises in book series. The saga of the story as a whole (across numerous books) is prioritized over focusing on a complete plot for each book. Don’t get me wrong: I still want to see where this series goes; however, it’s a little infuriating when I don’t have access to the next book in the series yet.

Ember Falls inherits a lot of what I liked and disliked about The Green Ember. This is likely going to be the case for the series as a whole. The individual characters are well-rounded and have clear motivations. However, the fact that they are rabbits seems to be often overlooked. These characters mostly act like ordinary people and only occasionally use their unique lagomorph attributes to advance the plot (same goes for the enemies as well). Other than that, this is certainly a series I’ll be reading to my children someday.

An adequate progression of the Green Ember series, I give Ember Falls 4.0 stars out of 5.

Reviewer's Name: Benjamin W.
How to Give Your Cat a Bath in Five Easy Steps
Winstanley, Nicola
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

It’s not easy to give a cat a bath as you will soon realize when you read this book! Mr. Flea, the cat in this book, is NOT agreeable to having a bath. The five simple steps that start the book turn into much more work than Mr. Flea’s owner is expecting. Enjoy this book and its pictures and learn what might be the best way to bathe a cat.

Reviewer's Name: Carol
What Is Inside THIS Box?
Daywalt, Drew
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

Monkey and Cake are asking big questions in this easy reader. They are curious about the magical cat that’s inside the box. Why does it disappear when they open the box? How do they know if the cat is really in the box when it is closed? When the box is closed, they can think about anything they want to be inside. It’s a dilemma, isn’t it? See what happens when Monkey & Cat walk away from the box. This is a beautifully illustrated fun book for those who are learning to read.

Reviewer's Name: Carol
The Boy Who Loved Math: The Improbable Life of Paul Erdös
Heiligman, Deborah
3 stars = Pretty Good
Review:

Once there was a boy who loved math. He loved math so much that he spent all of his time thinking about numbers. He spent so much time with math that he couldn’t do many things that ordinary people do. The biography tells the story of Paul Erdos, one of the greatest mathematicians, and how he found his way in the world sharing his ideas and love of math.

Reviewer's Name: Carol
The Marvels
Selznick, Brian
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

This book begins on a ship at sea with a boy named Billy Marvel. He survives a terrible shipwreck and later finds work in a London theatre. There his family lives for generations as brilliant actors--some who are the best kind of people, some who are awful people. All of the family are actors and love the stage and spotlight until young Leontes Marvel. He hates acting, misses his cues, and can’t remember his lines. His parents are ashamed and banish him from the stage. He decides that his destiny lies somewhere else so he runs away.

A century later, Joseph Jervis, another runaway, finds a place to stay with an uncle in London. Grumpy Uncle Albert and his strange but beautiful house lure Joseph on a search for clues. He begins to think that he might be related to the Marvels and begins an incredible adventure to find out who he truly is.

I really enjoyed this book. During the mystery, I felt like I was right alongside Joseph as he found clues to his mysterious past. I am happy that I figured out the mystery before Joseph did. The story had a very sad ending, but overall stayed pretty bright. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes Brian Selznik’s other books, mysteries, or heartfelt books.

Reviewer's Name: Ben C
Talons of Power
Sutherland, Tui
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

I am an avid fan of the Wings of Fire series, and Talons of Power is by far my favorite! Individual books in the series have been from another dragons point of view, and this time we get to see the world through the eyes of Turtle the Seawing. As Darkstalker's grip over Pyhrria tightens, Tui gives the most unassuming and fearful character in the group to lead them towards victory. The dragonets will be forced to get creative if they want to stop Darkstalker. Each chapter is full of thrills and plot twists, with an ending I'm sure no one saw coming.

Reviewer Grade: 8

Reviewer's Name: Adia R
The Wishing Spell
Colfer, Chris
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

Twins, Alex and Connor Bailey, are two average middle school kids. Alex is a bookworm and is very lonely, while Connor is the class clown and has a lot of friends. Their dad died a year before, and their mother is still struggling to pay off bills. Both of the twins have grown up loving all the classic fairy tales. On their twelfth birthday, their grandmother comes into town to celebrate with them. Alex and Conner are given the old family storybook, filled with all those classic stories they grew up with. Late that night, while Alex is reading, the storybook begins to glow and hum. Alex is shocked, and throughout the week, she realizes its a portal to the land of stories, where fairytales come to life. I chose to read this book because I was told it was about a spin on classic tales. I think that people that like the show once upon a time would like this. I love how Chris Colfer made a connection and a community of the stories like Cinderella, Thumbelina, Sleeping Beauty, and much more. The only part I don't like is that there is sometimes profanity and foul language. Otherwise, this is an AMAZING book and I highly recommend it.

Reviewer's Name: Abby P.
Genres:
Floors
Carman, Patrick
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Leo lives in a hotel. The hotel consists of many rooms and some of them are crazy. Thee owner of the library is inside one of the rooms and has the keys to the room that Leo needs to open to save the hotel from closing. He and his friend Remi go around the whole hotel to find the room. Join Leo and Remi with their awesome adventure to find the keys that will help the hotel form closing down.

Reviewer's Name: Harshith J.
Where the Red Fern Grows
Rawls, Wilson
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

A boy named Billy lives in the foothills of the Ozarks in southern Missouri. He gets dog fever when he is ten. He begs his parents for a pair of hunting dogs. This goes on for about six months. Then his parents give him three steel traps. This entertains him for a while but then his hunger for dogs is stronger than ever. He works his tail off saving money to buy dogs himself. Let Billy take on a wild adventure of coons, dogs, and love. I read this book because I loved how close Little Ann, Old Dan, and Billy were. I liked it because it slows down the story and really explains it. If you are going to read this book I would recommend that you have the Internet handy. The talk that they use is slightly difficult to understand, but immerses you into that time period.

Major Themes

Adventure
Love

If you love the outdoors and are a dog person I would recommend this book for you.

Reviewer's Name: James
Awards:
Genres:
Where the Red Fern Grows
Rawls, Wilson
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

I loved Where The Red Fern Grows. It is a great book and it is a story about a boy and his two dogs. After you read this book, I think you will be reading it again soon after! It just shows that his dogs will do anything for their owner through kindness and loyalty.

Reviewer's Name: Olivia D.
Awards:
Genres:
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe
Lewis, C.S.
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

When 4 british school children are sent away during World War II to a old professers home the have no idea what adventures are there. The children find a wardrobe in a room of the house and enter it where they find themselves in a magic land called Narnia. This book is full of adventure and is a good read for people of all ages.

Reviewer's Name: Kaci
Be Brave Like Batman!
Hitchcock, Laura
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

There is no need to be afraid of the dark. You have all the tools to be brave like Batman! Just use your gadgets, get help, and use your wits. Don’t let your fear stop you from doing what you need to do. Think like Batman and conquer your fears!

Reviewer's Name: Carol

Pages