Junior Fiction

Book ReviewThe Magic Thief

Reviewer's Rating: 
5
This book was so good I'm going to throw a brick through the bookstore window so I can have my own hardcover copy RIGHT NOW!
Author: 
Category: 
Publisher: 
Harper Trophy, 2008

I’m always looking for books that my son can sink his 12 year old teeth into but I found my own choppers greedily eating up every page of this book and then I immediately plowed through the next two in the series. Isn’t it great when you can share books like this with your children? It creates a bond unlike parent – more like friends. With children on the cusp of teenage-horror-hormones anytime I can foster a friendship with my children I’m game! But I digress...

Book ReviewThe Giant-Slayer

Reviewer's Rating: 
5
This book was so good I'm going to throw a brick through the bookstore window so I can have my own hardcover copy RIGHT NOW!
Author: 
Category: 
Publisher: 
Delacorte Press, 2009

I read this book on a fluke request from a local school who wanted the staff at the library to participate in their class quiz on books that had been nominated for the silver birch awards in 2010. This book was great on so many levels – not only is Iain an excellent storyteller, he weaves both a 1950’s setting with a parallel whimsical fantasy world like pb and jam. The characters, both modern and fantastical, are...

Book ReviewThe Clockwork Three

Reviewer's Rating: 
4
I truly enjoyed this book...and yet, it failed to rock my world because (see explanation in review).
Category: 
Publisher: 
Scholastic, 2010

This book was a little steam punk, a little fantasy and a lot of great fiction. This is a fresh, new author I can only hope will become a prodigious writer as the years fly by. Go Matthew Go! I’ve made it no secret that I feel any historical setting provides the most fertile ground for believability when you incorporate steam punk (the automaton that Frederick attempts to build), an element of fantasy with Giuseppe’s magic violin and the big fantastical treasure hunt that Hannah is on. Fiction, I know, is, well, fiction. But somehow with a historical setting it’s so much more REAL to me than trying to pull...

Book ReviewThe Brimstone Key

Reviewer's Rating: 
5
This book was so good I'm going to throw a brick through the bookstore window so I can have my own hardcover copy RIGHT NOW!
Category: 
Publisher: 
Little Brown and Company, 2010

I bought this book, and the second in the series, The Relic Hunter for a friend’s son. I chose them because of the male main characters and it had a great cover that looked like Robert Munsch in older form ie: kids save the world, not adults. Before I wrapped these books, I took a little peeky inside...okay, it was a lot of peekys (ies?) and then I promptly asked our Chief Librarian to add them to our collection. There is a delicate balance in a book that has..

Book ReviewScumble

Reviewer's Rating: 
5
This book was so good I'm going to throw a brick through the bookstore window so I can have my own hardcover copy RIGHT NOW!
Author: 
Category: 
Publisher: 
Penguin Group Inc., 2010

Scumble is a great follow-up novel to Ingrid Law’s first best-seller, Savvy. It begins 9 years after Savvy was set and we find ourselves riding in the backseat of the car with Ledger, just after his 13th birthday. For readers not familiar with this series, when a power makes itself known, it is up to the person to learn to ‘scumble’ their savvy – in other words, learn how to control it. You can tell from the book’s description above that Ledger, like most teens, does not have it ‘all together’ yet, in fact...

Book ReviewSavvy

Reviewer's Rating: 
5
This book was so good I'm going to throw a brick through the bookstore window so I can have my own hardcover copy RIGHT NOW!
Author: 
Category: 
Publisher: 
Scholastic Inc., 2010

Every now and then a book comes along that is purely enchanting. This was one such book for me and my daughter. As much as we like to think we are intellectual enough to choose a book for the description, even the author – I chose this book initially because of its gorgeous cover. But as it turns out, a superficial reason to read became the key to one of my most beloved books. This is...

Book ReviewPeter Nimble

Reviewer's Rating: 
4
I truly enjoyed this book...and yet, it failed to rock my world because (see explanation in review).
Category: 
Publisher: 
Puffin, 2011

This is a first novel by Jonathan and I say, Bravo and bring it on! I can only hope he will endeavour to gift us with more from his treasure of a storytelling brain. Gritty and sometimes harder to swallow than I’d like for junior fiction, Audrey Niffenegger of The Time Traveler’s Wife fame, likens Peter Nimble to Little Nemo in Slumberland and Oliver Twist and it’s easy to see why. The harshness of a life of crime and a childhood spent half-starved is clearly felt, though Jonathan tries to lighten it by...

Book ReviewInkheart

Series: 
Reviewer's Rating: 
3
Don't you hate a fence sitter, and yet, this is where this book falls, not bad but not great.
Category: 
Publisher: 
Scholastic Inc. 2003

I have to admit, I waffled (with extra butter) on whether or not to grade this book with a 4. The reason I found it hard to praise this noteworthy book was because of the aftertaste. Yes, it’s written expertly. Yes, the character development is strong. Yes the style draws you in and makes you anxious and fearful for the ending. But it felt like I had to hold my breath forever until happy (and very tired) days were here again. It reminded me of the never ending struggle of Bilbo to just bloody reach that mountain and get rid of the ring already!...

Book ReviewIcefall

Reviewer's Rating: 
4
I truly enjoyed this book...and yet, it failed to rock my world because (see explanation in review).
Category: 
Publisher: 
Scholastic, 2011

I’m a sucker for underdog stories so Huzzah! here’s the perfect book for me! I love it when a homely chick makes good and shows up her family. In this case, Solveig has never been important in the grand chess game of her Royal family. Her younger brother is the heir, her older sister is the beautiful daughter for a marriage alliance and Solveig is just, well, Solveig. The fun is reading how slowly, bit by bit and through courageous acts, Solveig shows herself to be the strongest, most intelligent and capable of all her siblings. Way to go main character! The other reason I truly enjoyed this book was...

Book ReviewThe Time Snatchers

Reviewer's Rating: 
4
I truly enjoyed this book...and yet, it failed to rock my world because (see explanation in review).
Author: 
Category: 
Publisher: 
G.P. Putnam’s Sons, 2012

I can only hope this will NOT be a stand alone novel. There are, after all, quite a few avenues for further stories at the conclusion of this novel. Go Richard Go! Reading Time Snatchers was like watching TV with a bowl of MnM peanuts at the side. There are nuggets of historical facts that you keep munching on and when the bowl is empty, your hand keeps searching for more until you realize it’s all up, aw man! I love it when an author is this sharp, this well written and this good at the game. Whoo! Whoo! (or is the correct spelling, Whoot? I never hear the ‘t’ when people say it out loud.)

Pages