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All Book Reviews

Book Review: Everything Everything
Yoon, Nicola
5 stars = Curiosity Mars Rover Awesome!

Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon was full of emotion, adventure, and romance! Maddy is a girl who is allergic to practically everything. She has never left her house in the length of seventeen years, and her books get delivered to her in airtight bags. It all changes when Olly, her new neighbor, catches her attention, and she falls in love with a person she can't even breathe the same air as. I absolutely fell in love with this book! Though there was not thrilling adventure, I found myself sitting on the edge of my seat! I mainly chose this book because Maddy's medical condition was intriguing to me, but the cover is also stunning! Everything Everything caught me off guard many times with its unpredictable turns and its heartwarming ending. Overall, this was one of my favorite books this year, with a rating of 5/5 stars! (Grade: 7 Age: 13)

Rachel
Book Review: Illuminae
Kaufman, Amie and Kristoff, Jay
5 stars = Curiosity Mars Rover Awesome!

I loved this book so much! Its written in a series of IM's, secret documents, emails, the mind of the AI and more! Its the most unique book ever. It is full of twist and turns and it made me cry and laugh and feel frustrated and more! I could not put it down!

Kathleen
Wells, Robison E.
3 stars = Pretty Good

Blackout changes perspectives throughout the story. It does get kind of annoying because it leaves you at a cliffhanger but other then that is a great book. I really hated how it didn't make sense before but then you see the entire story for what it is. I chose this because it's a Battle of the Books book and the cover looks really interesting. I wish that I had more details.

Isabella
Shaw, Susan
5 stars = Curiosity Mars Rover Awesome!

The Boy from the Basement is a story of a boy who escaped child abuse and neglect. This is one of the books that we are required to read for Battle of the Books. I went online to find a summary about this and I decided it would be a great book. I sure wasn't disappointed. It was so beautifully written that I could easily picture everything that was going on with the main character through all of this. This is one of the books I recommend to anyone who wants be moved and be captivated.

Isabella
Hugo, Victor
1 star = Yuck!

Les Miserables was one of the most boring books I've read. I chose this book because my mom told me that there was a movie about it and the new musical. Well I bought it and I almost fell asleep. I mean if you like the classics then go for it but if you're more of an action or adventure person then this could easily put you to bed. the historical facts we're seen clearly in this book but if you a lot about French history then this book is easily predictable.

Isabella
Sepetys, Ruta
5 stars = Curiosity Mars Rover Awesome!

This book really made me want to cry. I loved how this entire story revolves around a 12 year old girl who is forced to move from place to place. I could relate to the protagonist because she has to make tough choices and she had to make sacrifices for the greater good. This story will cause sadness and also create a spark of hope. This is a beautifully written story and is perfect for any age.

Isabella
Green, John
5 stars = Curiosity Mars Rover Awesome!

I love how this book really moved me and how it's written. This girl truly wants to be normal but having cancer makes it impossible. She hates everything and is forced go to a support group. Her life is seemingly unbearable until she meets a boy named Augustus Waters. This is a story that will make people enjoy the little things in life. I love how it was written and how it is a modern book.

Isabella
Book Review: 7 Men: And the Secret of Their Greatness
Metaxas, Eric
4 stars = Really Good

A great book with mini biographies of 7 men who made choices that changed their society and left legacies for us. The writing style is informal. I learned things about these famous men that I hadn't known before.

A great inspirational book for teens and adults.

Julie
Book Review: Don't Get Too Comfortable
Rakoff, David.
1 star = Yuck!

The book description says it is "bitingly funny grand tour of our culture of excess". It turns out to be politically snide, not about the subjects declared. Not worth reading.

Dean
https://transit.coloradosprings.gov/sites/default/files/transit/files/rt25_acade
Condie, Ally
4 stars = Really Good

Most amazing book! an intruiging dystopian novel that exites and entrances! its also a series READ IT!!!

Alethea
Shteyngart, Gary
4 stars = Really Good

This certainly was a super sad, albeit not really true, love story. I really enjoyed the near-future setting with the destruction of the U.S. and the "sci-fi-ish" element with the Post-Human Services idea, and the fact that it was written like journal entries is a plus because that makes any book crazy easy to read. Makes one wonder about the prospect of love and the future.

Cassie
Cameron, Graeme
2 stars = Meh

It started off really intriguing, almost like a Dexter meets Hannibal premise. Ended I don't know where. I couldn't tell how the author was trying to portray the narrator. Was he a psychopath with daddy issues or a hopeless romantic who deserved empathy and compassion? It's a big meh.

Cassie
Rubin, Lance
4 stars = Really Good

This book is a totally out-there look at death and dying young. In a world where everyone knows the day that they're going to die, Denton Little has known that he would die when he was 17 for his entire life.

Though this could be more of a tear jerker along the lines of a John Green novel, Rubin has turned a gruesome topic into a hysterical read. Denton's end of life adventures are super funny and irreverent. A great read for anyone who enjoyed "Going Bovine" or "Grasshopper Jungle".

Corrie
Foster, Thomas C.
3 stars = Pretty Good

The book is a very practical book and an amusing guide to literature. It is about a chatty Professor from University of Michigan who talks about different elements of literature such as mythology, geography, faith, Bible, seasons, Shakespeare, etc... There are ample of examples and the language is friendly. The author is quite controversial about some topics but overall, the book is entertaining and fun to read!

Shivani
Hillenbrand, Laura
4 stars = Really Good

I found this book extremely depressing for the most part. Not because it was a bad book, but because it was so sad. I was surprised and stunned at the intensity of the book. Normally I don't care for fictional books. This was a true story about a man who went through hard times.
Louis Zamperini was a mischievous kid, an Olympian, a bombardier on a B-24 Liberator and a World War II prisoner of War (POW). As a POW Louis was treated as trash. The Japanese forced them work for them. Turning the POW's into slaves. Many of the POW's died of sicknesses or to much work. Louis was beaten and tormented. They tried to take everything from the POW's. They took those men and stripped them of their dignity, leaving them feeling worthless.
Everyday Louis watches as men unable to hold on anymore give up and die. To keep himself going he thinks about home. As the war gets closer to ending his hopes fly up higher. When the war was finally over Louis comes home. He is not the strong Olympian he was. He is a frail man of 29. He can't leave the horrors of the camp behind. His dreams are tormented by thoughts of the prison. His life might have taken a turn for the bad had he not met Jesus. I highly recommend this book to most teens. This is a heart worming and heart breaking story. I loved it!!!

Rachel
Pratt, Maureen
4 stars = Really Good

Millions of Americans experience pain every day of their lives. Maureen Pratt, who has lupus, is intimately aware of the toll chronic pain takes on people and their families. In this practical and spiritual guide, she shares how she navigates through the frustrations, fears, and complexities of living with chronic pain and illness. Pratt provides help on such issues as finding meaning in suffering, feeling guilty for being a burden to others, and resolving unmet expectations. The chapters are short and concise, written with honesty and humor. The book can be read from cover-to-cover or just choosing individual topics.

George H.
Hough, Jason M.
4 stars = Really Good

Any fan of adventure, aliens, sci-fi, Australia, daring innovations, zombie-like creatures, characters some could easily relate to, flying ships, and an interesting plot is sure to love this book. I randomly checked out this book for the summer and was surprised to enjoy it; unlike other books where it takes a few chapters to get to the point and books with boring dialogue, this book can take any reader to another world which, in a couple of decades and some imagination, a reader can understand happening for real.

Caitlyn
Lawhead, Stephen
4 stars = Really Good

I mostly read this book for the enjoyment of finding a new take on Robin Hood. It's an excellent story with developed characters and rich plot. A must read for Robin Hood fans, historical fiction readers, and anyone who is just looking for a unique story.

Caitlyn
Book Review: Homeschooling FAQs
Orr, Tamra
5 stars = Curiosity Mars Rover Awesome!

By far the absolute best and most resourceful homeschooling book In have read on our journey. Very Informative!

Jill
Book Review: Anna and the French Kiss
Perkins, Stephanie
3 stars = Pretty Good

This is a cute story about a girl in her Senior Year of High School discovering the ups and downs of love. The beginning of the book isn't written as well as the middle of the book, and the ending is very cliche. But it was a pretty good read, likeable characters, and I would recommend it to any High Schooler looking for a fun read.

Elizabeth
Book Review: William Shakespeare's: Star Wars: Verily, a New Hope
Doescher, Ian
5 stars = Curiosity Mars Rover Awesome!

Who knew that theater greats Willy and George were meant to be together???

Fans of Shakespeare will recognize both passages ripped from his major plays and the similarities of Lucas' characters to greats like Hamlet.

Wanna make it better? Get the audio version performed by Danny Davis, Jonathan Davis, Ian Doescher, Jeff Gurner, January LaVoy, and Marc Thompson.
The drama of C3PO's delivery alone makes it worthwhile.

Doescher's iambic pentameter treatment of Star Wars doth make me merry! Also, check out the Empire Striketh Back and the Jedi Doth Return.

Renee
Book Review: Running Out of Time
Haddix, Margaret Peterson
5 stars = Curiosity Mars Rover Awesome!

I love history, but I also love the present. I love that in this book, both collide to make a fun story!

Becca
Wolff, Isabel
5 stars = Curiosity Mars Rover Awesome!

I love dual timeline novels, as long as they are well done. This one alternate between Jenni, who is a ghostwriter who prefers to dig into other people's lives rather than deal with her own past, and Klara, a Dutch woman who was interned in a camp on Java during WWII. Jenni is an interesting character, but I felt like she was more of a foil for Klara's amazing story of survival. Very powerful book, one that will linger in my mind for quite a while, I'm sure.

Krista
Dean, Josh
5 stars = Curiosity Mars Rover Awesome!

Very interesting inside look at the world of show dogs. You follow the progress of Jack, the Australian Shepherd, but the author also gives you a brief history of dog shows in general, different breeds, and even the evolution of the dog from wild animal to domesticated pet. Well written and fun to read (I finished it in just a couple of days), this is a great book!

Krista
Bradley, C. Alan
3 stars = Pretty Good

Not my favorite of the series. SO many characters, I had a hard time remembering them all! I understand it must have been nice to have Flavia visiting his home country (the author is Canadian), but I preferred the books set in Bishop's Lacey, England.

Krista