Monday, November 25, 2013

Don't Turn Around by Michelle Gagnon

Noa – wakes up with a surgery scar on her chest in a warehouse, she has no memory of the event, and has lost three weeks of her life.

Peter – after doing some research on the internet, has his door is broken down, laptop stolen, and life threatened.

Two very computer literate teenagers form an uneasy alliance when they discover they are running from the same people. Peter, a wealthy amateur hacker, used to charming his way out of uncomfortable situations, can’t use those skills this time. Noa, a former foster kid, who has scammed the system so she’s in charge of herself, finds herself needing the help of others for the first time.

This moved fairly quickly but I got kind of bored with it about 75% of the way through. It was beginning to feel like one big, long, chase scene. It doesn't really end, so if you care, the sequel is Don't Look Now.  I got frustrated with the book because it's series title is "PERSEFoNE" and I kept expecting some mythology to be a part of the story, or be related somehow, but if's it's there, it's too subtle even for me.  I give this 3/5 stars.  

Monday, November 18, 2013

Slide by Jill Hathaway

Vee, or Sylvia, has narcolepsy, except, when she passes out, she actually projects herself into someone else’s body and sees through their eyes. She witnesses a murder at the beginning of the book, but has no idea who she’s slide into. The sliding aspects remind me of Everyday by David Leviathan (see my review here). But it’s not done as well. A has learned to live with the changes he has every day, and works within his system.  Vee fights “sliding” but then, suddenly she embraces it and learns control all at once?!  It felt awkward. Also awkward, was the relationship between Vee and Zane. He’s cute, but creepy to me, and all too easily dealt with at the end. This book is like a road trip – exciting to start, then slow – feels like you’re going nowhere, then bam – you’re here! There is a sequel, Imposter, but I’m not compelled to read it. I’ll only buy it for school if someone asks for it, specifically. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Croak by Gina Damico

Lex’s personality change is the key to finding her niche in life as a Grim Reaper. She’s funny, snarky, and in no way ready to just take things at face value. Lex’s relationship with Driggs, her partner, is fun to watch develop, as they both make mistakes along the way.   What a fun read! While I don’t agree with the author’s take on the afterlife, this was a funny exploration to what happens when we die.

I got caught up in mystery and the twist at the end, caught me unaware. Nice job. I’m putting the sequel on the top of my TBR pile, having already purchased it for the library.

Friday, November 8, 2013

The series question

Ender's Game is a great book.  I loved it.  My students have read it and are excited about the movie.  When they find out it's a series. . . "What? Wow! What order do I read them in?"

    Sigh, this is where the confusion starts.

I have them in the library.  Most of them anyway.  They weren't numbered because I couldn't decide how to do it.  Chronologically?  In order of publication? Neither one is perfect.  I am a compulsive series reader.  I understand the NEED to read them in order.  I spent 45 minutes looking and checking different sites to determine for once and for all how I would organize them.  (Was that a waste of time?  Maybe, is it important to me and my students?  Yes. Time well spent!)  I really like the chart I found at Wikipedia.  I may even print it out to hand out to other obsessives, like me.

So, why am I telling you this?  One of my boys came back in today, after reading Ender's Game in two days.  I'd numbered the books by then (colored dots on the spine labels, with numbers on them.)  He was excited.  But we still spent 5 minutes discussing the order to read them.  Which book or series did he start after Ender's Game?  Ender's Shadow? or Ender in Exile?  He decided to read Ender in Exile.  I numbered it as a 2 even though it's listed as 5, because chronologically that's the way it goes.  So there, I made a decision.  I can live with it.  I just hope they can.  


Monday, November 4, 2013

You know you live in the Midwest when...

You ask the kids for pictures of the deer they shot during deer season to display on the announcement tv. 

It's amazing how many kids come in late during (insert any) hunting season.

You' re constantly looking for something else like Hatchet by Gary Paulsen.

You wonder when the snow days will start?

"Take your hat off," is a constant refrain. 

Camo is considered a serious daily fashion choice by some people.  

Pickups are as evenly distributed in the student parking lot as cars. 

Work boots are worn to school by students frequently.

   I love where I live. My students are so much fun.