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Showing posts from October, 2015

The Graveyard Book

The Graveyard Book
Neil Gaiman
HarperCollins, 2008
Source: Library
Audience: Children, Teens

From Goodreads:
After the grisly murder of his entire family, a toddler wanders into a graveyard where the ghosts and other supernatural residents agree to raise him as one of their own.

Nobody Owens, known to his friends as Bod, is a normal boy. He would be completely normal if he didn't live in a sprawling graveyard, being raised and educated by ghosts, with a solitary guardian who belongs to neither the world of the living nor of the dead. There are dangers and adventures in the graveyard for a boy. But if Bod leaves the graveyard, then he will come under attack from the man Jack—who has already killed Bod's family . . . 

Beloved master storyteller Neil Gaiman returns with a luminous new novel for the audience that embraced his New York Times bestselling modern classic Coraline. Magical, terrifying, and filled with breathtaking adventures, The Graveyard Book is sure to enthrall reader…

The Baby-Sitters Club: Mary Anne Saves the Day

The Baby-Sitters Club: Mary Anne Saves the Day
Rana Telgemeier
GRAPHIX, 2007
Source: Library
Audience: Children, Younger Teens

From Goodreads:
Who would have guessed that when the BSC girls get in a HUGE fight, it's shy and quiet Mary Anne who manages to save their friendship?

When a terrible fight breaks out among the four BABY-SITTERS CLUB friends, Mary Anne is left to her own devices. She has to sit by herself at lunch, make new friends, and deal with her overprotective father without advice from the BSC gang. But the worst part is when she faces a terrible baby-sitting predicament, and she can't find any help.

Luckily, Mary Anne rises to the occasion. Not only does she handle all her problems with aplomb, she also manages to get the BSC back together again.


This is much better than The Truth About Stacey! Whew, what a relief.

In this story, the babysitters aren’t exactly getting along. Understandable. Something great comes from it - Mary Anne meets Dawn! The beginning of a w…

The Baby-Sitters Club: The Truth About Stacey

The Baby-Sitters Club: The Truth About Stacey
Raina Telgemeier
GRAPHIX 2006
Source: Library
Audience: All Teens

From Goodreads:
America's favorite baby-sitters come to life in a new graphic novel series!

Poor Stacey. She's moved to a new town. She's still coming to terms with her diabetes. She's facing baby-sitting problems left and right. And her parents are no help.

Luckily, Stacey has three new, true friends -- Kristy, Claudia, and Mary Anne. Together they're the BSC -- and they will deal with whatever's thrown their way... even if it's a rival baby-sitting club!


What. Happened.

The first book was SO GOOD! This isn’t even the second book in the series. What happened to Claudia and the Phantom Phone Calls??? Why wasn’t that one made into a graphic novel? More importantly, from what I remember, Stacey kept her diabetes a big secret from the other babysitters. I thought this book was about telling them, too. Even though I was disappointed in this book, I’m st…

Perfect Couple

Perfect Couple
Jennifer Echols
Simon Pulse, 2015
Source: E-Galley
Audience: Older Teens

From Goodreads:
As yearbook photographer, Harper is responsible for those candid moments that make high school memorable. But her own life is anything but picture perfect. Her parents’ bitter divorce left her wondering what a loving relationship looks like. And ever since the senior class voted her and star quarterback Brody “Perfect Couple That Never Was,” her friends have been pushing her to ask Brody out.

Brody doesn’t lack female admirers, but Harper can't see herself with him. He’s confused about the match too. Yet they find themselves drawn together—first by curiosity about why the class paired them, then by an undeniable bond.

The trouble is, though they’re attracted to each other, they have a hard time getting along or even communicating well. If they’re the perfect couple, this shouldn’t be so difficult! Soon it becomes clear their class was wrong, and they throw in the towel. But they f…

The Baby-Sitters Club

The Baby-Sitters Club
Raina Telgemeier
GRAPHIX 2006
Audience: All Teens
Source: Library

From Goodreads:
Kristy, Mary Anne, Claudia, and Stacey are best friends and founding members of The Baby-sitters Club. Whatever comes up -- cranky toddlers, huge dogs, scary neighbors, prank calls -- you can count on them to save the day. But baby-sitting isn't always easy, and neither is dealing with strict parents, new families, fashion emergencies, and mysterious secrets. But no matter what, the BSC have what they need most: friendship.

This book couldn’t have been more perfect. I was a big fan of the BSC back in the day. It’s the first series I remember really LOVING. Raina Telgemeier did such a great job with this graphic novel. It was interpreted perfectly. I especially like Claudia’s perfect hair. Overall, I was surprised at how much I remembered from the original book and how well the graphic novel lined up with it. Fantastic!

Dear Hank Williams

Dear Hank Williams
Kimberly Willis Holt
Henry Holt & Co, 2015
Source: E-Galley
Audience: Children, Younger Teens

From Goodreads:
It's 1948 in Rippling Creek, Louisiana, and Tate P. Ellerbee's new teacher has just given her class an assignment--learning the art of letter-writing. Luckily, Tate has the perfect pen pal in mind: Hank Williams, a country music singer whose star has just begun to rise. Tate and her great-aunt and -uncle listen to him on the radio every Saturday night, and Tate just knows that she and Hank are kindred spirits.

Told entirely through Tate's hopeful letters, this beautifully drawn novel from National Book Award-winning author Kimberly Willis Holt gradually unfolds a story of family love, overcoming tragedy, and an insightful girl learning to find her voice.


Well, I wasn’t expecting this book to be so bleak.

The cover makes it look like a sunny, fun, historical fiction book. In reality, Tate’s life isn’t so sunny. She has had more to deal with tha…

Wicked Charms

Wicked Charms
Janet Evanovich and Phoef Sutton
Bantam, 2015
Source: E-Galley
Audience: Adults

From Goodreads:
Lizzy and Diesel return once again in an all-new adventure in the #1 New York Times bestselling series from Janet Evanovich and her co-author, Phoef Sutton!

Murdered and mummified more than ninety years ago, bootlegger Collier “Peg Leg” Dazzle once found and re-hid a famous pirate’s treasure somewhere along the coast of New England. A vast collection of gold and silver coins and precious gems, the bounty also contains the Stone of Avarice — the very item reluctant treasure seeker, Lizzy Tucker, and her partner, Diesel, have been enlisted to find. While Lizzy would just like to live a quiet, semi-normal life, Diesel is all about the hunt. And this hunt is going to require a genuine treasure map and a ship worthy of sailing the seven seas . . . or at least getting them from Salem Harbor to Maine.

Greed is eternal and insatiable, and Lizzy and Diesel aren’t the only ones searching …

Fangirl (II)

Fangirl
Rainbow Rowell
St. Martin’s Press, 2013
Source: My Own Bookshelf
Audience: Older Teens

From Goodreads:
Cath is a Simon Snow fan.

Okay, the whole world is a Simon Snow fan...

But for Cath, being a fan is her life—and she’s really good at it. She and her twin sister, Wren, ensconced themselves in the Simon Snow series when they were just kids; it’s what got them through their mother leaving.

Reading. Rereading. Hanging out in Simon Snow forums, writing Simon Snow fan fiction, dressing up like the characters for every movie premiere.

Cath’s sister has mostly grown away from fandom, but Cath can’t let go. She doesn’t want to.

Now that they’re going to college, Wren has told Cath she doesn’t want to be roommates. Cath is on her own, completely outside of her comfort zone. She’s got a surly roommate with a charming, always-around boyfriend, a fiction-writing professor who thinks fan fiction is the end of the civilized world, a handsome classmate who only wants to talk about words... And …

I Survived: The Destruction of Pompeii, 79 A.D.

I Survived: The Destruction of Pompeii, 79 A.D.
Lauren Tarshis
Scholastic, 2014
Audience: Children
Source: Library

From Goodreads:
During the infamous eruption of Mount Vesuvius, one boy struggles to escape. Can he survive the most devastating disaster of ancient times?

In this thrilling addition to the bestselling I SURVIVED series, readers are taken back to antiquity with a young boy trying to escape as the giant Mount Vesuvius erupts. Does he have what it takes to survive the epic destruction of Pompeii?


I love historical fiction, especially children’s historical fiction. I don’t know why, but it’s underrated to most. In general, historical fiction gravitates to semi-recent wars or tragedies. That is why this I Survived book is so refreshing. It was a major time warp for the series. I think kids will love it! I remember being fascinated by Pompeii in school, but never really learned about it in-depth as an adult. The story followed its usual format, but I’ll set aside my feelings on…

The Lost Girl

The Lost Girl
R.L. Stine
St. Martin’s Griffin, 2015
Source: E-Galley
Audience: Adults, Older Teens

From Goodreads:
Generations of children and teens have grown up on R.L. Stine's bestselling and hugely popular horror series, Fear Street and Goosebumps. Now, the Fear Street series is back with a chilling new installment, packed with pure nightmare fodder that will scare Stine's avid fan base of teen readers and adults. 

New student Lizzy Palmer is the talk of Shadyside High. Michael and his girlfriend Pepper befriend her, but the closer they get to her, the stranger she seems… and the more attractive she is to Michael. He invites her to join him on a snowmobile race that ends in a tragic accident. Soon, Michael's friends start being murdered, and Pepper becomes convinced that Lizzy is behind the killings. But to her total shock, she and Michael are drawn into a tragic story of an unthinkable betrayal committed over 60 years ago. Frightening and tense in the way that only thi…