Tuesday, December 20, 2011

PENNY AND HER SONG By: Kevin Henkes Early reader with chapters.

PENNY AND HER SONG  By: Kevin Henkes
Penny loves to sing and she wants her family to listen. But when she comes in from school the babies are sleeping and Mama and Papa don't want her to wake the babies. She has to wait and wait. Henkes doesn't disappoint with this early chapter book. Penny is delightful. $14.99 Greenwillow
There is a stuffed Penny too! $18.00 Merrymakers

YOKO LEARNS TO READ By: Rosemary Wells

YOKO LEARNS TO READ  By: Rosemary Wells
Yoko loves to be read too. Her mother has read her three books and she loves them, but at school you get a leaf for every book you read. The only problem, Yoko's mother can't read English. So Yoko start taking books out of the library and learns to read them herself. In the end Yoko's mother wants to learn to read too. A charming book that you will want to read again. Ages 3-6 $15.99  Hyperion

EXTRA YARN By: Mac Barnett

Extra Yarn  By: Mac Barnett
Annabelle found a box filled with yarn, so she began knitting. She made sweaters for everyone, and there was still yarn in the box. So she made sweaters for dogs, cats and other animals too. The yarn box never was empty. So she made sweaters for more and more things, until one day the Arch Duke stole her box. He wanted the yarn, but when he looked inside it was empty. Until....  A cozy little story. Ages 4-8 $16.99  Balzer and Bray

DINI DINOSAUR By: Karen Beaumont

DINI DINOSAUR  By: Karen Beaumont
Dini is taking a bath, that should be easy enough. But silly Dini forgets to take off clothes and keeps returning to the bath tub, forgetting to scrub here an there. Parents can relate when their little ones don't quite get the dirt off. Then the reward of a great big hug, kiss and being tucked in to bed. Ages 2-5 $14.99 Greenwillow  Coming in March 2012


Duckling gets a cookie and Pigeon wants to know why? Pigeon asked to drive the bus, for a hot dog party, a walrus and many more things and he never got one. Now Duckling how does he get a cookie? Pigeon wants to know. This new book is hilarious, sure to make everyone laugh. $15.99 Hyperion  Ages 2 and up.

OTTO THE BOOK BEAR By: Kate Cleminson

OTTO THE BOOK BEAR  By: Kate Cleminson
Otto is part of a storybook, he loves when the children read his story most of all. But when no one is awake he goes exploring. One day the family that lived in the house moves away and leaves him behind. So off he goes looking for another home. The world is big and he is only small. But he soon finds a library with many characters just like him. A charming read. Age 3 and up. $16.99 Hyperion


Fancy Nancy is determined to be the Mermaid in the ballet. But she is really disappointed for she is going to be a tree instead. A very dull tree. Will Nancy be able to make this come out fancy? When disaster strikes before the ballet, who will get the spotlight? Ages 4-7 17.99 Harper 


This book will make you laugh out loud as the Easter Bunny wants to color eggs and Skunk wants to help. Everything would be great if only Skunk could control his scent. For each time he gets excited he omits a smell that isn't very pleasant. What is the Easter Bunny going to do? A must read. Ages 2-5
Harper $12.99

I'M FAST By: Kate and Jim McMullan

I'M FAST  By: Kate and Jim McMullan
A great books for little ones that love trains and fast cars. For this speedy little train makes a bet with car that he can get to Chicago faster than the car. They travel through the desert, mountain and a blizzard. Find out who the winner will be. Ages 4-8 but I think even a two year old would love this book. Balzer and Bray $16.99

PEEPSQUEAK By: Leslie Ann Clark

PEEPSQUEAK  By: Leslie Ann Clark
Peepsqueak is a chicken, and he is determined to fly. Peepsqueak is on the move, he tries jumping off of a wall and many numerous objects, but one by one all of the animals tell him he just can't fly. Then goose comes along and offers him a ride into the sky. Now Peepsqueak can fly, but now he wants to swim! Adorable. Ages 2-5 $12.99 Harper


Petunia doesn't want to be a little girl, she wants to be a tiger. She doesn't want to take a bath and have clean clothes, she just wants to be wild. She even goes to far as to get a box and try ship herself to Africa. But then she hears Mom singing and she knows that tigers don't sing. So she saves her box for when she feels the need to be wild. Ages 3-7 $12.99  Harper

CROAK By: Gina Damico Ages 12 and up.

CROAK  By: Gina Damico
Lex Bartleby is a delinquent. She's violent, stubborn, impulsive, and in the midst of a full on rebellion. And Lex's parents are sick of it. So off to estranged uncle Mort's farm Lex goes, where her parents think she will be spending her summer shoveling cow manure and raising goats. But farming is not really on the to-do list once Lex arrives in her uncle's hometown of Croak. As it runs out, Uncle Mort is anything but a farmer. He's a Grimm Reaper. And he's about to teach Lex everything he knows. Ages 12 and up.
Maggie thought this book was hilarious! Graphia $8.99 Coming March 2012

HAVOC By: Jeff Sampson Ages 13 and up.

HAVOC  By; Jeff Sampson
Emily was hoping that her life would return to normal after the death of the man who attacked her and her friends. But it didn't. Emily is still a werewolf and danger is still lurking around every corner. Mysterious shadow men are hunting down Emily and her fellow pack-mates, and the most popular girls in school have suddenly developed super powers of their own, and another werewolf has started to prowl. Emily is desperate to find answers to who she is an dhow she become a monster, but the more she learns about herself, the more danger she puts herself in. Soon she comes face to face with her worst nightmare and is forces to make the toughest choice of herlife. Ages 13 and up. Blazer and Bray $17.99 Reviewed by Maggie Age 16.

HALO By: Alexandra Adornetto Ages 12 and up.

HALO  By: Alexandra Adornetto
Bethany came to Earth with a mission. Her siblings and she were sent from Heaven to bring good to the world falling under the influence of the Dark Forces. As the most human of her siblings, Bethany is having the most trouble concealing her super human appearance and powers. When Bethany starts to develop feelings for a human boy, Xavier Wood, things get even more difficult. Not only does Bethany have to hide her identity from Xavier, she also has to hide Xavier from her bother and sister ( not an easy task when they're celestial beings). And on top of all that, a mysterious new transfer student, Jake Thorn, seems to be channeling the Dark Forces. Bethany will do anything to protect Xavier and her new Earthly home, but as Jake's power grows it's not just Xavier who is trouble. If Bethany doesn't stop Jake, everything she knows and loves may be destroyed. Ages 12 and up. Feiwel and Friends. $16.99 Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

LEGEND By: Marie Lu Ages 14 up

LEGEND  By: Marie Lu
Day and June couldn't have been more different. A military prodigy, living in one of the Republic's wealthiest districts, June will do anything that is ordered of her. Coming from the slums, Day is the Republics number one criminal. Day and June have no reason to cross paths-until the Day makes a costly error, ending up as the prime suspect in June's brother's murder. Set on avenging her brother's death, June begins to chase Day through the slums of the Republic. But as June searched for Day, she begins to realize that he may not be who she things he is. June soon uncovers the truth about what really brought them together and the shocking lengths that her beloved Republic will go to keep its secrets hidden. Ages 14 and up. $17.99 G.P. Putnam  Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

UNLEASHED By: Nancy Holder and Debbie Vigie Ages 12 and up

UNLEASHED  By: Nancy Holder and Debbie Vigie
After her mother's untimely death, Katelyn McBride is shipped off to the middle of nowhere. Arkansas to live with her estranged grandfather. If it wasn't bad enough that Katelyn had to leave her entire life behind in Los Angles, something really strange is happening to her new small town home, Wolf Springs. Girls are going missing left and right, strange wolf like creatures have been seen lurking through the woods, and Katelyn has been, basically, placed under house arrest by her overly superstitious grandfather. Wolf Springs has secrets more sinister than Katelyn could ever imagine. The town has a dark history that reaches back centuries and Katelyn McBride is about to change everything. Ages 12 and up. $18.99 Delacorte  Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

Monday, December 19, 2011

UNDER THE NEVER SKY By: Veronica Rossi Ages 14 and up

UNDER THE NEVER SKY  By: Veronica Rossi
Exiled from her home pod, Reverie, Aria knows that her chances of surviving in the wastelands are slim, but she won't go down without a fight. Wit deadly energy storms striking suddenly, wild animals lurking around every corner, and cunning cannibals trying to keep Aria for their dinner, Aria would be lucky to even make it a week on the deadly terrain. But then Aria meets an Outsider named Perry. A savage in Aria's eyes, Perry is the only chance she's got of surviving the wastelands and returning home. Perry would normally leave a  Dweller like Aria to die, but Aria has something he needs, something that will save his nephew and his tribe from destruction. As they travel across the vast wastelands together, they form an unlikely alliance, an alliance that will determine the futures of everyone living under the never sky. Ages 14 and up. HarperCollins $17.99 Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

FORBIDDEN By: Syrie James and Ryan James Ages 13 up

FORBIDDEN  By: Syrie James and Ryan James
Claire has been attending Emerson Academy for two years now. It's the longest she and her mom have stayed anywhere and Claire is desperately trying to stay put for the rest of high school. So there is no way that Claire is going to tell her mom that she's been having strange psychic visions or that she's receiving creepy warnings from a mysterious figure as she sleeps. When Alec chose Emerson Academy, he thought it would be the perfect place to hide from his duties as an angelic watcher. He just wanted to be normal for once, but when he meets Claire all his dreams fly straight out the door. Claire is dangerous, she shouldn't exist, and Alec can't help but want to protect her. But as Claire's power s develop and her life is threatened Alec will have to choose between his beliefs and the girl that he may be falling in love with. Ages 13 and up. Harper Teen $8.99  Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

Saturday, November 26, 2011


QUEEN OF THE DEAD  By: Stacey Kade
After her untimely death, former homecoming queen, Alona dare, is finding herself doing something she would have never done if she was alive: hanging out with social outcast and seer Will Killian, Helping ghosts cross over into the light. It's not really the ideal way to spend her death, but it's better than hanging our at home where her parents are throwing out everything that Alona has ever held dear. But then a strange seer girl named Mina enters Will's life and suddenly Will is ditching her too. Will has never met another seer before, so its is only natural that he would want to spend so much time with Mina, but Alona just can't get past her jealousy. Now, hurt and angry, Alona is left to fend for herself, which, let's face it, is never a good idea. Ages 12 and up. $16.99 Hyperion  Reviewed by Maggie age 16.


BEWITCHING  By: Alex Flinn
Kendra is a witch, known through the witching community for the curse she placed on that beastly teen, she's been trying to play fairy godmother on unsuspecting teens for the past five hundred years. But as Kendra has discovered, even the best intentioned curse can backfire. In a series of stories, teen witch Kendra Hilferty chronicles her existence as a witch, form the discovery of her powers to the many disastrous spells she has cast over the centuries. Filled with hilarious characters, twists and turns, and unexpected endings, Bewitching is a great read for fairy tale and fantasy lovers everywhere. Ages 13 and up. Coming February 14, 2012. Harper Teen $17.99  Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

BELLE'S SONG By: K.M. Grant Young Adult Novel

BELLE'S SONG  By: K.M. Grant
Belle has been living with a terrible burden: A few years ago her careless acts caused her father to lose his legs. When an aspiring writer named Luke wanders into town, Belle sees her to escape from her guilt. She decides to join the pilgrimage to Canterbury to atone for her sins and pray for the return of her father's legs. Joined by Luke, famous writer, Geoffrey Chaucer, and a handsome young squire named Walter, Belle begins her journey to Canterbury with hope and excitement. But dangerous times lie ahead of the pilgrims, as Belle discovers that Chaucer is involved in treacherous politics. Suddenly the peaceful pilgrimage to save her father is transformed into terrifying adventure to stop a war. Ages 12 and up. Walker and Co. $17.99  Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

Monday, November 7, 2011

EIGHT KEYS By: Suzanne LaFleur bullying

EIGHT KEYS  By: Suzanne LaFleur
Elise is starting middle school and the day before she is playing knights with her best friend Franklin. As they are playing Elise stumbles and falls, only to scrap her legs up terribly. When school starts so does the torment of her locker partner. She continually calls her names and squashes her lunch. Elise starts to fall behind in her work and doesn't want to attend school.
Another story plays out at the same time. Elise's parents are both dead and she lives with her Aunt and Uncle. On her twelfth birthday she is given a letter. Every year she gets a letter from her father. He wrote them to her before he died. But this will be her last one. Her father has left her eight keys. They open doors in the barn outside their home. What she discovers when she acquires each key helps her figure who she is and what is important. Sure to be a classic. Kleenex's required. Ages 9-12 $16.99
Wendy Lamb Books


Ollie's family travels throughout the country preaching the word of the bible.  But then they come to Binder, Arkansas to have a revival meeting.  Ollie meets Jimmy Koppel whose mother is in jail for murdering his father. Jimmy is sure she is innocent and Ollie tries to convince her parents and siblings to help. The setting is 1957, in a town that doesn't take well to strangers. They are extremely prejudice when it comes to Jimmy and mother. Will Olivene Love be able to help Jimmy and set things right with the town? A remarkable story of a resilient family. Make sure you have your Kleenex's handy. Ages 10-14
$16.99 Farrar Straus and Giroux


SECRETS OF THE SEA  By: Richard Peck
A family of mice live in the wall of a family home in America. They have a family they look after called the Cranstons. When they are in their home they dress in clothing they have made from scrapes they have found in the house, but when they go out they don't wear clothes, so they won't draw attention. The Cranstons have a daughter they want to marry off and the prospects aren't good. So they decide to travel to England to find her a wife. The mice decide to go along as their food supply will be shipping off. So they stow away in the trunk and head to sea. Even though they are afraid of the water. What they find on the ship will delight everyone. Hundreds of mice all traveling with their families. The humor throughout this book is so engaging and the storytelling will make you smile. A great read aloud for the whole family. $16.99 Dial Books  Ages 8-12

DARK EDEN By: Patrick Carman

Dark Eden  By: Patrick Carman
Seven young adults who have been seeking treatment for phobias are sent to Fort Eden for a cure. Will Besting is among the fifteen-year-old kids sent for a week. On arrival will decides to hide out in the bomb shelter at Fort Eden, where he witnesses first hand what the Doctor has in mind for the other kids. What happens will rock his world. The suspense is great and the outcome will shock you. This is the first book in a series. Had to read it all at once, it was remarkable. $17.99  Katherine Tegen Books  Ages 11-15


Lizzie's mother is a zookeeper in the town of Dresden. The war is raging and the town throughout Germany are being bombed. Lizzie's mother has raised an Elephant at the zoo and was told all the animals would have to be shot if the town was bombed. She gets permission to take the Elephant home to her garden. When the war rages in Dresden with Elephant in tow they head out to find somewhere safe to live. Throughout their travels the Elephant helps to pave their way. A very touching story that will never leave you. Inspired by a true story. $16.99 Feiwel and Friends  Ages 10 to 13

Friday, November 4, 2011

EVERY THING ON IT By: Shel Silverstein

EVERY THING ON IT  By: Shel Silverstein
I bought Shel Silverstein's Every Thing On It for my granddaughters. We are having such a great time reading the poems in it. The five-year-old insisted on my reading the "Every Thing On It" to her dad who orders his sandwiches that way. Then she gleefully showed him the picture of everything he could get! Both girls memorized the poem on the end page shaped like a circle. Now whenever they have a spare minute, they walk in a circle and repeat the poem. The poem "The One Who Invented Trick or Treat" has been great for Halloween. While they are counting their candy, I always remind them of the dentist who is waiting for them! Reviewed by my friend Julie Hoch. Another review is posted also, but this book is not to missed!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


WITCHLANDERS  By: Lena Coakley
Living high up in the mountains the red witches pray to goddess, throwing bones, telling the future, and protecting the Witchlanders from danger. Ryder has heard these stories of witches since he was just a little boy. He's just never believed them. But when a terrifying, evil creature attacks his village, Ryder has no choice but to travel into the mountains and beg the "witches" for help. Everything he's ever believed about magic, the witches, and himself changes on his journey to save his village. As Ryder braves the steep mountain ledges he discovers that witches may not be as make believe as he once thought and they're magic may be the only way to save his home. Ages 12 and up. Antheneum $16.99 Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

LIFE ETERNAL By: Yvonne Woon

LIFE ETERNAL  By: Yvonne Woon                                                      
 Last May, Renee Winters died and was brought back to life by her undead boyfriend, Dante Berlin. Now Renee is stuck in boarding school, with little to no way of contacting her soul mate. The separtation is almost unbearable and Dante's second life is close to an end. With each passing day, Dante grows weaker and weaker and will soon fade into nothing. Renee is just about to give up hope when she learns of the Nine Sisters, a group of scholars who, according to legend, learned how to cheat. The Sisters are Dante's last chance, but the deeper Renee digs into their legend the more danger she puts herself in and the closer Dante comes to destruction. Will Renee be able to save her soul mate, or is Dante's existence doomed to be cut short? Ages 13 and up. Hyperion  Coming January of 2012. Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

PAST PERFECT By: Leila Sales

PAST PERFECT  By: Leila Sales
Chelsea was looking forward to summer. She was going to hang out with her best friend and eat so much ice cream it was going to make her sick. Sure, working at Essex Colonial Village wasn't her first choice for a summer job, but she can deal. There's just one problem. When Chelsea shows up for work, she discovers that her ex, Ezra, the boy who broke her heart into a thousand tiny pieces is going to be working there too. There goes her perfect summer. With Ezra looming like a rain cloud, a war with the civil war reenactment kids to strategize, and her new crush being totally, 100% off limits, Chelsea has a lot to figure out. Chelsea is really just ready for the summer to be over, but moving on is tough, especially when you are (literally) living in the past. Ages 14 and up. Simon Pulse $16.99 Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

ALWAYS WAR By: Margaret Peterson Haddix

ALWAYS WAR  By: Margaret Peterson Haddix
Tessa's country has been at war for as long as she can remember, but she has hope that it will end soon. Her childhood friend, Gideon Thrall, has just led a successful attack on the enemy territory taking out thousands of enemy troops. He is deemed a hero and is awarded a medal for courage, but instead of accepting the award, Gideon runs away. Tessa is startled, and decides to follow Gideon as he flees from his award ceremony. Before she realized it, she is stowed away on a rouge aircraft headed into enemy territory. Thousands of miles from home. Tessa must brave through battle fields and dangerous wilds. But everything is not as it seems outside of the city. One her journey home, Tessa discovers a truth that alters everything she has ever thought about the war. It's a truth that will change the world. Ages 12 and up. Simon $16.99  Reviewed by Maggie.

MELODY BURNING By: Whitley Strieber

MELODY BURNING  By: Whitley Strieber
Beresford doesn't remember much about his past. he has been living in the chutes of air-ducts of the high-rise that shares his name that he can't even remember his age. Traveling from apartment to apartment, Beresford was perfectly content with his life living as a squatter. But then Melody McGarth moves into an apartment on the fiftieth floor. Beautiful, rich, and famous, Melody is Hollywood's golden girl. It's no surprise when Beresford begins to fall in love with her. But Beresford is wild and the owner of the building wants him out, even if it means destroying the high-rise in the process. With danger looming just behind him, Beresford realizes that he will have to make a choice. Melody or himself? Ages 15-18 Henry Holt  Coming December 6, 2011 Reviewed by Maggie

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


This book is written from the viewpoint of Addie who is struggling with many problems teenagers face. I like the frank discussions about diversity, homosexuality, being slow to reach puberty, being in the "popular" group while staying true to her values, dating a popular guy, and trying to maintain friendships with girls and boys she knew from childhood. As a grandmother, I find her close relationship with her grandmother heart-warming. My favorite quotation from the book is: "You never tell a star: Hey, tone it down." In this book Addie gains the self-confidence and maturity to be a star in her own way. If I had a teenager or preteen, I would like to read and discuss this book with him/her. It is truly a "coming of age" book that is well-written. $16.99 Antheneum  Reviewed by: Julie Hoch.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

WAITING FOR THE MAGIC By: Patricia MacLachlan

WAITING FOR THE MAGIC  By: Patricia MacLachlan
Going to my mailbox today I discovered this wonderful package. In this envelope was a magical book. It is the story of a troubled family. William and Elinor's father has decided to leave, writing a note for each child that he will be back soon. Their mother takes the children to an animal shelter to get them a dog after their father leaves, only they come home with four dogs and a cat. Elinor can hear the animals talk! And thus begins the most magical tale of talking animals and bringing a family back together again. Not to missed. Ages 8-12 $15.99 Atheneum

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Meeting authors, Brian Selznik Malie Malloy, Kadir Nelson

Just had the most incredible weekend. I went to a booksellers convention and was fortunate enough to meet and hear so many authors.
Brian Selznik author of Wonderstruck was one of the most dynamic speakers I have ever heard. The way he writes his novel with little references to the book, From the Mixed Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Farnkweiler.
How his wonderful characters are derived, to how he draws all those fantastic illustrations.Brian even went to the musuems in New York City to make sure all of his pictures were accurate too! A book and author your children should not miss. Also his movie for the Invention of Hugo Cabaret will be out on Thanksgiving, should be a wholesome family treat.
Malie Malloy author of  The Apothecary was another speaker. Her novel takes place in England and all the references are accurate. Malie's talk took us through all the thought processes, so you actually felt like you were watching her compose the book.
Kadir Nelson was another speaker who showed us how he wanted to trace the real African American experience. His stunning painting are works of art, not to be missed. 
There were many more authors, and hopefully I will blog about them soon. Please look for the blogspot about these fabulous books. Not to missed. 

WONDERSTRUCK By: Brian Selznick Ages 9 and up Fabulous Read

WONDERSTRUCK  By: Brian Selznick
Just like the title of the book you are struck with wonder as this story unfolds. Ben has lost the only parent he has ever known and is now living next door to his old house. While searching his mother's room for clues of his father he discovers a bookmark with the name Daniel on it. He tries to call the number on the bookmark and lightning strikes the phone line and renders Ben deaf. Thus begins his journey that takes him to New York to find out about Daniel.
Another story unfold throughout the book in pictures taking place in 1927, here you see a young girl climbing out her window to go into the city. She too is deaf.
When Ben arrives in the city his is robbed immediately and has to survive without hearing. Many things happen along the way to find his father. He ends up in a museum and finds a friend in Jamie a boy whose father works for the museum. With Jamie's help Ben begins to live in the museum.
Will Ben ever find his father, you must read this book to find out. If I had one book to give for the holidays to my grandsons this would be it. Ages 9 and up. $29.99 Scholastic Press  Coming September 2011

APOTHECARY By: Maile Meloy

APOTHECARY   By: Maile Meloy
Let me start by saying this book is like nothing I have ever read. So intriguing is the plot that I couldn't put it down.
It starts off with a family in the year 1952 that is moving from Los Angeles to London. Janie is so angry with her parents that she has to leave her friends behind. Her parents are actors and Janie is left to take care of herself most of the time. So enters Benjamin the apothecary's son. He is in Janie's class at school and he is intrigued by Janie and begins to follow her. His mission in life is to become a spy, so they begin by spying on a man in the park. When Benjamin's father the apothecary is spotted with this man life takes a sudden turn. Benjamin's father tells him to guard a book called the Phamacopoeia and then he disappears. Benjamin and Janie must find out where he is and help save him. With the help of the Parmacopoeia they become invisible, turn into birds and stowaway on a ship all to find Benjamin's father. A must read for everyone. $16.99 Ages 10 up $16.99 Putnum 

LOST VOICES By: Sarah Porter Young Adult

LOST VOICES  By: Sarah Porter
Luce for fourteen-year-old Luce has never been easy. Her mother is dead, her father is missing, and her uncle is an abusive drunk. But Luce was still hopeful that one day she would be reunited with her father and that her life would return to normal again. That is, until one night when a storm hits and Luce is thrown into the sea. She expects to die, but instead she undergoes an amazing transformation and wakes up a mermaid. Suddenly, it seems as though Luce has found where she truly belongs, She loves her life among the mermaids until she discovers that she has an extraordinary talent, a talent that she is expected to use to murder humans. As the other mermaids begin to recognize Luce's skill, they begin to pressure her into using it to their advantage. Now Luce is struggling between loyalty to her new found family and her conscience. Ages 12 and up. Harcourt $16.99 Reviewed by Maggie age 16. Visual, language.


The only thing that Vivien, Shirin, and Ingrid have in common is that they are being forced to spend the summer together at some swanky boarding school in Switzerland. At first that divides them and their first summer turns into a disaster. But the next summer as the girls navigate through their first loves, individual successes, and their first tragedies, it is their differences that ultimately bring them together. And when the girls return for their third and final summer at camp, they create a bond that would last a life time. Ages 12 and up. Simon and Schuster $16.99 Reviewed by Maggie, age 16. Sex and language.

CIRCLE NINE By: Anne Heltzel

CIRCLE NINE  By: Anne Heltzel
When Abby wakes up, she is lying outside a burning building, covered in soot and embers, with absolutely no idea who she is or how she got there. But there is a mysterious boy named Sam by her side. He swears that he will take care of Abby and Abby believes him. But no matter how charming Abby's new life with Sam may be, she still can't remember who she is. Then Sam begins to fall ill and tension begins to build as Sam falls deeper and deeper into darkness. Amidst the turmoil, Abby begins to see glimpses of their past. And what she sees leaves her questioning her relationship with Sam and wondering who he really is. Ages 14 and up. Candlewick $16.99 Reviewed by Maggie age 16. Implied drug use, some sex

Sunday, October 9, 2011

13 GIFTS By: Wendy Mass

13 GIFTS  By: Wendy Mass
Tara is caught stealing a goat from the principal and spraying pepper spray in his eyes. As punishment she is suspended from school and sent to Willow Falls to stay with relatives she hardly knows. All she remembers is the last time she saw her cousin she ate an entire glue stick. Tara has moved a lot over the years and starts to make many friends in Willow Falls, but another lapse in judgement makes her beholden to an old woman in town. With the help of her new friends and some very hilarious events Tara learns a lot about herself and her family.
A must read. I laughed and cried. Ages 9 up. $16.99 Scholastic

CAT FOUND By: Ingrid Lee

CAT FOUND  By: Ingrid Lee
Billy lives in a town that has lots of stray cats. But one day he finds one that is hurt and takes it home to hide in his bedroom. Everything is going okay until he realizes that Conga is pregnant and he has to find a new home for Conga before she delivers or his parents will find out he has the cat. Then things get more complicated as the town bullies and folks decide to get rid of the cats that are overpopulating their town. Will Billy and two of his friends manage to change their minds in time. Great read.
$16.99 Scholastic Ages 8-11

Sunday, October 2, 2011


Del is a good kid, a good kid that made a mistake. In the eyes of the law Del is a felon. He can't go to college, he can't get a license, and everyone treats him like a social pariah. The only job Del can get is working as a grave digger at a local cemetery. Del doesn't have much of a future, but when he meets Fairy Girl everything begins to change. Suddenly Del has something to look forward to in life. But Del can't look forward to a bright, happy future just yet. He still has that criminal record hanging over his head. Before Del can even think about starting a new life for himself, he has to make amends with his past and the mistake that cost him everything. Ages 14 and up $16.99  Bloomsbury  Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

DAVID By: Mary Hoffman

DAVID  By: Mary Hoffman
All Gabriele wanted was to come to Florence, make an honest wage as a stonemason, and return to his hometown to get married. But that was before he caught the eye of the famous sculptor, Michelangelo. Everyone knows who Gabriele is now, the model who posed for Michelangelo's David. Young, handsome, and naive, he could never have guessed how much his life would change because of  one statue. But change it does. Suddenly Gabriele finds himself trust into a world of spies, secrecy, and murder, where being in conspicuous is a matter of life or death. But it's hard to stay hidden in a city where everyone knows your name. Ages 14 and up. *Sex- not graphic. $17.99  Bloomsbury  Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

MOMENTO NORA By: Angie Smibert

MOMENTO NORA  By: Angie Smibert
Terrorist attacks happen all the time in the city. Someone sees a building explode, a shot rings out in the night, it's nothing new. Only Nora can't seem to forget the attack she witnessed, so it's off to the TFC (Therapeutic Forgetting clinic) she goes. There she can describe her memory, take one tiny pill and forget. But after an encounter with a mysterious boy, Nora decides she wants to remember. She doesn't take the pill and that is when everything starts to spin out of control. Ages 13 and up. *Some strong language. $16.99 Marshall Cavendish Reviewed by Maggie age 16

AFTER OBSESSION By: Carrie Jones and Steven Wedel

AFTER OBSESSION  By: Carrie Jones and Steven Wedel
Everyone thinks Aimee has the perfect life. She gets good grades, she hangs out with the right people, and she has the perfect boyfriend. No one knows that Aimee is haunted by an evil spirit called the River Man. Alan is rugged, sexy, and mysterious. He's new in town and he's the only one who knows Aimee's secret. Neither of them could have known that dark forces were stirring in their own backyards. Maybe if they had they could have stopped them, but now it's too late. A terrible monster is wrecking havoc on the town and no one is safe. Aimee and Alan are the only ones who can stop the terror from spreading, but it could mean destroying themselves in the process. Ages 12 and up. Bloomsbury $17.99 Reviewed by Maggie age 16.

PIE By: Sarah Weeks

PIE  By: Sarah Weeks
Alice has a wonderful, generous Aunt Polly. Aunt Polly is the best pie maker in all of Ipswitch, Pennsylvania. Everyone loves her pies. So one day after winning the Blueberry award for best pie she opens a pie shop. Not an ordinary pie shop, but one the will not take money for a pie. So people leave her things, like peaches, nuts, flour to name a few. Alice goes over everyday and sits on a stool and watches her Aunt make pies. They talk and laugh, have lunch together and life is wonderful. But something unexpected happens. Aunt Polly dies and leaves her cat Lardo to Alice. And her pie crust recipe to Lardo. Her mother is so upset, for she said Aunt Polly was selfish for leaving the recipe to a cat. Then terrible things begin to happen, everyone is hounding them for the pie crust recipe, and things are being destroyed. Can Alice and her friend Charlie solve the mystery. A great read. $16.99 Scholastic Ages 9-12


What would you do if you found a bread box in the attic of your grandmother's house and it was magical. Anything you wished for appeared. Well twelve-year- old Rebecca has found such a box. When her parents became separated and her mother moved her from Baltimore to Atlanta, Rebecca was really angry. So when this bread box appears she feels it can solve her problems. Only it doesn't seem to work that way. Find out what happens to Rebecca and the challenges her life has taken on. $16.99 Random House Ages 9-12

Friday, September 30, 2011


Cyrus and Antigone are living in a sagging motel run by their brother Dan. Then the unthinkable happens, an old man shows up at the motel, takes over Cyrus's room and is killed, but not before he give Cyrus a set of old keys, part of a dragon's tooth and a snake. Soon they are taken to an ancient secret society to live and try to stay alive. This is the first book in a series, and not to be missed. Just couldn't put it down. $16.99 Random House Ages 10-14


What a sweet Christmas story. A seedling grows amongst other evergreens and when it gets slightly bigger it is dug up and brought to the city to be sold as a Christmas tree. Since the story is told by the tree you find that he isn't really happy being inside and being decorated. It is hot and uncomfortable. But the story is enchanting. For when the family takes off all the decorations the tree is given a new home in the ground outside the families home. A beautiful story. $16.99 Ages 4 to 7 Katherine Tegen Books