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Book Review: The Bridge by Jane Higgins

The Bridge - Jane Higgins

 

 

 

 

Nik is positive that his future is secure- after high school, he will be recruited for the Internal Security and Intelligence services and will do his part in the war to keep the hostiles on the other side of the bridges from overtaking the city side. But when his school is bombed, and his friend’s young brother is kidnapped, Nik will embark on a journey that will open his eyes to the truth about the war — and himself. 

This was an example of how two sides of the same event can be racially different. The characters were strong, with unique traits that made them three dimensional. However, while it was written with skill and description, there was not much emotional connection. With the turbulent events, some more focus on communicating and transferring the emotions to the reader would’ve been nice.

Perhaps I am less struck by this novel because I have recently read a slew of “divided city” books. This one follows the basic pattern, though the author does a worthy job of creating characters and adding plot twists. Recommended for readers 12 and older.

Reviewed by Marissa, grade 11

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Book Review: Stormbringers by Philippa Gregory

stormbringers

 

 

 

 

In the second book of the Order of Darkness quartet, Luca, Isolde, Freize, Ishraq, and Brother Peter still travel throughout Christendom, recording the signs of the end of the world. Of course, those signs are by no mean benign, and the group faces danger every day. The dangers they face are both physical and emotional, as the young people slowly start to see each other in a different way. But Luca is planning on taking his Vows, which leaves no space for the Lady Isolde, and Ishraq was raised to be as a lady, while Freize is a kitchen boy. Father Peter has no tolerance for the young lovers, as he is determined to answer in full to both his masters.

A wonderful continuation of Changeling, this novel has the right amount of heartbreak tempered with happiness to keep you on the verge of tears. Though the plot dragged at times, it seems to set up the next book to be action packed and full of revelations to clear up the murkiness brought on in “Order of Darkness”.

Reviewed by Marissa, grade 11

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Book Review: If I Should Die by Amy Plum

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In this conclusion to the Die For Me series, Vincent’s body has been kidnapped by Violette, and she is planning on destroying to to take Vincent’s strength. That power would allow her to win the war between the Revenants and the Numa, giving the Numa control of the earth, which would result in widespread death, pain, and suffering. But Kate isn’t the kind of girl to stand by while the love of her life is killed (for real) and a crazy traitor attempts to take over the world, even if her newly informed grandparents are totally against their granddaughter dating–and possibly dying–for an undead boy. 

Tense and action-packed, with twists of the unexpected and an overlay of everlasting love, this final book is sure to delight and answer any questions remaining for readers. Amy Plum does a wonderful job tying loose ends and keeping the history of the Reverents consistent, as well as mixing things up and balancing happiness with reality, making the ending seem plausible, or as plausible as a final battle between two different kinds of undead can be.

Reviewed by Marissa, grade 11

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Book Review: The Eternity Cure by Julie Kagawa

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The follow up book to The Immoral Rules, this book is a labyrinth. With changes and unexpected events springing out of every corner, you will not be bored when reading. Allie is chasing after the evil, insane, cruel vampire Sarren, who has kidnapped her Sire, Kanin and is torturing him for his sins. Determined to rescue him, Allie has tracked him across the country after delivering a band of humans to the safety of the city Eden. After meeting up with her ‘brother’, the unsavory and heartless Jackal, and her human love, Zeke, they prepare for a final battle, while trying to cure the disease that is wiping out the humans. 

An incredible addition to a phenomenal series. This book has gore and action as well as romance and friendship, which balance out perfectly. With a fast-moving plot that never remains in a straight line, I wait anxiously for the next installment. Once you read the ending, you’ll see why. 12  & up.

Reviewed by Marissa, grade 11

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Book Review: The Madness Underneath by Maureen Johnson

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In this sequel to The Name of the Star, Rory is still recovering from a near-fatal stabbing, but she wants to help her friends Boo, Stephen, and Callum destroy ghosts. When they land a case, Rory throws herself into it–maybe a little too much. One thing leads to another, and then she’s in over her head. Again. This time, though, she doesn’t need saving–she needs to save her friends.

With a monumental ending that will leave you screaming in frustration and anger, this was a great second book that left me wanting and waiting for the next one. The mystery, sic-fi, and touches of romance and history makes the Shades of London series spellbinding. Recommended for 11 & up.

Reviewed by Marissa, grade 11

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Book Review: Every Day by David Levithan

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“A” inhabits a new body every morning. When he wakes up, he could be in the body of a dancer, a wrestler, or a druggie. Gender doesn’t matter, though A is male. Age, however, always stays near his own, around 16. He tries to coast through lives affecting them as little as possible, but when he wakes up in the body of Justin and meets his girlfriend, Rhiannon, he becomes determined to stay near her, no matter what it takes. Can a love that changes form every day survive? 

This story bored me for the most part. The plot remained the same for much of the story. New body, new location, same need to see Rhiannon. She is uncomfortable because of the body switching; he aches to be with her. They fight, they make up. They are uncertain. This is an original thought, but a timeless and stagnant plot. 9 & up

Reviewed by Marissa, grade 11

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Book Review: The Girl with the Iron Touch by Kady Cross

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The Steampunk Chronicles are back. This time, Finley, Griffen, Sam, Jack and Jasper must rescue Emily from the Machinist, who is determined to rise again using her mechanical talents. But Emily is no damsel in distress. She fights to free herself while her friends fight to find her. But will they be able to defeat the insane and dangerous Machinist a second time? And will he stay dead?

This novel explores and deepens all of the relationships in the previous books. Decisions are made and feelings announced, but can anything survive the crisis at hand? Another story of romance, friendship, and strength. 11&up.

Reviewed by Marissa, grade 11

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Book Review: Phoenix by Elizabeth Richards

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The second book in the Black City series (the first being Black City), this is another action- and romance-packed installment in the story of Natalie and Ash. They thought that the preliminary success of their rebellion would carry through without a hitch, but Puritan Rose is determined to shut down the threat to his ‘perfect’ society. With torture, murder, and heartbreak at every turn, Ash and Natalie need to make the right decisions–even if those choices pull them apart. The handsome and flirty leopard-boy Elijah, who is infatuated with Natalie, isn’t helping with the tension between Nat and Ash as they travel across the dangerous, barren Wastelands in search of a secret weapon. 

This story has a twist that you’ll never see coming that will cause you to root for Ash and Nat. Their story isn’t over yet, and I can’t wait to find out the fates of Nat, Ash, Elijah, and the rest of the rebels. 12 & up.

Reviewed by Marissa, grade 11