Book Review #26: Posted

31371228STORY:

“Words are ghosts.”

Posted by John David Anderson (384 pages) is about how the removal of cell phones inadvertently causes the rise of sticky notes everywhere. The only thing is everything on the sticky notes aren’t always nice.

This book seemed to be a run-of-mill middle school cliche hierarchy story (much like those overdone high school stories), but it turned out to be a lot more clever. It covered how divorces affect kids differently, being an outcast, bullies, and popularity too. I was expecting cookies but got a cookie pizza instead. You know what I’m saying? Posted is a pleasant surprise.

CHARACTERS:

Continue reading “Book Review #26: Posted”

Monday: What I’m Reading Now 7/17/17

What’s up!

Things are going pretty well. I started watching El Chapulín (the animated version), and it’s funny and easy to understand. I’m finally learning a bunch of Spanish and getting more confident in my speaking too. Very excited about that! ¡Quiero ser bilingüe!

What I’m Reading Now:

31371228Posted by John David Anderson

I have read 21 pages so far. The beginning’s interesting and I look forward to reading more. Sometimes, stories set in (American) high schools get overdone and terribly cliche, so a story set in middle school is almost a fresh breath of air.

 

 

 

What I Read Last Week:

32671347Rickety Stitch and the Gelatinous Goo: The Road to Epoli by Ben Costa & James Parks (208 pages)

Nice little surprise worth reading perhaps a bit confusing at times. Wonderful artwork!

 

 

 

 

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Kidlit version hosted by Kellee Moye of Unleashing Readers and Jen of Teach Mentor Texts; original version hosted by Kathryn at Book Date.

 

 

Book Review #23: Recess Warriors: Hero is a Four-letter Word

29772862This book was so dumb in the best way possible. It had a Codename: Kids Next Door meets Teamo Supremo meets Recess feel. The story’s so surreal! The line between what’s real and imaginative is seriously blurred and that makes things so entertaining!

STORY:

“I love the beginning of things…I just hate endings” (pg 123).

In Recess Warriors: Hero is a Four-letter Word by Marcus Emerson (144 pages), recess is serious business because it’s when Bryce a.k.a James Scrap (minus the James) does his vigilante business. He’s accompanied by his much more qualified best friend— sidekick— Yoshi (Caitlyn Yoshimura), and the two have to navigate through a cooties epidemic that’s affecting both boys and girls and a shady pirate gang.

This book evoked a sense of nostalgia in me, and I felt like I was a kid again in my bedroom, eating goldfish crackers and downing a Capri Sun. Everyone probably won’t have that same sentimental feeling, but I did find the storyline silly and interesting.

CHARACTERS:

Bryce/Scrap is indubitably dumb and funny.

I liked Yoshi a lot! Even though she was a great leader and a skilled fighter (she can do some serious biz with her jump rope), she didn’t come off as a know-it-all or a brat. Sometimes, she’s just as confused as we (read: readers) with the junk that goes on during recess.

Clinton was my favorite. Anti-heroes are always cool in any form.

Juliet should have been a grating character, really, but with how she was presented I was able to take her lovesick personality.

ART:

I like the wonky, blocky, and angular style. It has that Saturday morning cartoon feel. Sometimes, the faces look a bit sunken in during close-ups though. The backgrounds and color direction are vivid and fun.

OVERALL:

Some kid (or adult or teen or elder or alien or….) is really going to have fun reading this. I am excited for the next book in the series.

Book Review #21: The Sweetest Sound

29280882STORY:

“You know, church is like that. Sometimes the pastor is talking and all you can think about is eating pancakes when he is done. But sometimes he says something and, just like that, it feels like he’s talking absolutely, positively to you!” (pg 17)

In The Sweetest Sound by Sherrie Winston (272 pages), Cadence Jolly is tired of adults giving her “motherless child” pity. She’s also trying to break out of her perpetual shyness enough to own her beautiful voice. In a fit of frustration and later regret, Cadence films herself disguised singing on Youtube. Of course, now her church choir is trying to find the little girl with the big voice, and Cadence doesn’t know if she will be able to own up to it.

CHARACTERS:

The cast is very diverse with Cadence and her family being African-American, Faith, a Dominicana, Zara, bi-racial (black mom/white dad), and Mei-Mei and Sophie, Chinese.

Some of the best singers (and def your faves) started singing in church, and Cadence is no different. Cadence was very shy but prideful, and I actually like that combination. She was also an avid reader, always mentioning classic books, and wanted to be a writer.

I couldn’t stand Faith. At all. Little girl be happy for your friend.

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Zara wasn’t memorable but at least she was sweet.

Cadence’s dad was well-meaning but overbearing. Still, he was okay in my book. I didn’t care about his little romance though.

Random note: I kept reading Sofine as So-Fine. :p

OVERALL:

“…Learning to be strong didn’t mean changing everything” (pg 259).

This book was a little dry. Too much poetry and way too much irrelevant junk. It was really hard for me to push through and finish it.

I don’t like giving stars, but this one is about a 2.5. Still, I’m sure it will make some kid’s day.

SN: THAT COVER! (ღ˘⌣˘ღ)

Cadence has the cutest pixie cut!

Book Review #20: The Saga of Rex

7890024Okay, this was cuter than expected. Also, no quote this time because this book is 98% no text.

STORY:

In The Saga of Rex by Michel Gagné (200 pages), basically, a frog-like God of some alternative universe akin to Noah’s ark created and paired animals together (the beginning had me confused but who cares). Also, somehow the God collected/teleported real creatures to the world. Anyway, Rex, a cute little fox creature, got teleported to the weird world and was paired with a purple-shapeshifting squirrel-fox, Aven. Rex doesn’t have a clue about his new surroundings, but he just wants to follow his new mate.

I hadn’t expected there to be such a violent part in the book (a creature was about to be sacrificed, a creature was pierced through the stomach with a bloody knife, and a creature died), but it was okay because nothing stayed too sad for long.

ART:

The art was very beautiful! There’s a climatic part when Rex loses a unicorn horn that is just mesmerizing to see. When Rex and his mate become one (nothing vulgar or sexual; kids won’t even pick up on the symbolism) was another beautiful part. I loved the color direction in this book as well.

CHARACTERS:

Rex was an absolute cutie and Aven seemed to be a lot of fun.

OVERALL:

To sum this book up, it’s message was “travel all you can with the one you love.” Or maybe it was really “this book was kind of weird and I didn’t understand most of it, but I loved the pictures.” Either way, it’s worth picking up! I found the ending so sweet.

Happy Friday: Book Haul

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I have a bunch of books (and an e-book) that I will be reading! I don’t know which ones I will review or not, but I do know I look forward to being engulfed in a good book.

SN: I have noticed that I tend to type really fast sometimes and make many typos. I have to work on that! ^^;

Book Review #15: Wide as the Wind

30732696It’s been a while since I had written a review because finals had kept me busy. I finally managed to finish the first (and so far only) book I have won in a Goodreads giveaway. On an unrelated note, all the names in the book, every single one, were so beautiful.

WatW is diverse fiction. The story is heavily embedded into a Polynesian setting. I know absolutely nothing about Polynesian culture, so I can’t tell you if it was accurate or offensive. But it’s always pleasant to read about racially or culturally diverse characters.

STORY:

“With the cruel blindness of lovers, they neglected the girl. […]They had found their own island” (pg 93).

The premise of Wide as the Wind by Edward Stanton (213 pages) is that Miru has to go on a journey to find tree seeds to replenish his village’s barren land. Luckily his sister Renga Roiti and whoever else he can scrounge for a shipmate are going with him.

Initially, I thought Miru was much younger from reading the first few pages, but a glance at the back cover stated he was fifteen. His transition into manhood was an essential part of the story.

“Miru felt the urge to lick the saliva from Kenetéa’s mouth” (pg 33).

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Well, alright then…

Although it was a big portion of the story, the sailing at sea dragged so much to me, but it was probably one of the better parts. With how high the stakes were, of course, there was an inevitable death, and I felt really bad when it happened.

 sad alone spongebob spongebob squarepants lonely GIF

“Neira sighed. ‘If you’re fated to die, how can I stop it? So, I’ll teach you and your sister what I know. But be careful, son! If my husband finds out we’ll all be in danger” (pg 43).

I found a lot of the writing to be somewhat “matter-of-fact.” Like, “The boy loved him for he was his sister’s friend (not an actual quote).” This is not a particular writing style I am fond of, but it works okay for this book.

Also, Miru was madly in love with Kenetéa, but alas, they were star-crossed lovers, both from different tribes. I wish those two could have had more backstory and development for their love. Miru hopelessly longed to be with her, but I just did not have the same urgency for them to get together.

When Miru and his companion returned home, I felt the story began to pick up.

CHARACTERS:

I did not really have any favorite characters. I felt like WatW was more plot-driven than character-driven. Surprisingly, I liked Nuku, the prince of the rival clan, and Kaimokoi the most.

Also, enjoyed the active role Miru’s sister Renga Roiti played. She got along well with her brother and had a talent of communicating to birds. I kept forgetting she was only 10-11 years old because Renga seemed so mature.

Miru was okay. A decent guy who knew he made mistakes and happened to love a girl from an enemy tribe. A little bland but, again, a decent average guy.

I wanted Kenetéa to have a much bigger role. She was basically Miru’s motivation and seemed like the princess locked away in the castle. She had like maybe four appearances if you don’t mention Miru’s thoughts of her. However, I loved how she always called Miru out on his self-righteousness. [Example: Miru:Téa, your tribe is so evil…  Kenetéa:Hold’up Miru, your people are not saints either (not an actual book quote).]

To be honest, I don’t think I could keep loving Miru if I were Kenetéa because it felt like he caused everyone she loved to die.

OVERALL:

Anyway, Wide as the Wind was pretty good. It had a strong environmental message (and probably an anti-war one too). There’s a little carefully-covert sexual content like a boy waking up with “his milk covering his groin”, but not enough to offend or arouse someone, so no worries.

I think there were some scenes that could have been condensed, but it’s worth a read.

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