Heather's books

Sarah's Key
The Help
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
Charlie and the Chocolate Factory
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
New Moon
Breaking Dawn
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows
The Lightning Thief
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
The Notebook
Eat, Pray, Love
The Time Traveler's Wife
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

Heather's favorite books »

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

A great book club choice for kids

Flora and Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo
Flora & Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures

By: Kate DiCamillo

Genre:  Juvenile fiction

Pages: 233

Published: 2013

Read: December

4 out of 5

I read this book because it was suggested on a website as a great selection for a YA book club. I feel it is too young for teens, but would be perfect for a kid’s book club. DiCamillo is also the author of the very popular book and movie, Because of Winn Dixie. Both books are a must read for kids, for boys and girls, of all ages. It was very funny and the pictures were great. Ulysses, the squirrel, was named after the vacuum cleaner that sucked him up. After being saved by Flora it was discovered that he had special powers all because of the vacuum. Flora has a great imagination and brings the story to life. 

I loved the artwork

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children: The Graphic Novel

By: Ransom Riggs

Genre:  YA graphic novel

Pages: 272

Published: 2013

Read: December

3 out of 5

This is a good rendition of the YA novel. I still much prefer the actual novel, but teens who are intimidated by reading will enjoy it. There were several story lines in the original version that aren't even touched upon in the graphic novel which was a disappointment. I did loved the artwork and really liked how the color themes changed depending on where the story was taking place. However, I wish more photographs of the peculiar children were included. The photographs were a large part of what makes the story so unique. I also felt that the graphic novel was more violent because the picturistic aspect. This would be a good option for 7th grade and above. 

Monday, December 29, 2014

Midwest YA novel

The Blind Faith Hotel

The Blind Faith Hotel

By: Pamela Todd

Genre:  YA fiction

Pages: 320

Published: 2008

Read: December

3 out of 5

I read this book hoping it would be a good YA campaign novel to Shotgun Lovesongs by Nickolas Butler for One Book One Community.   Although the story does take place in the Midwest and Zoe does community service at a forest preserve, I don’t feel the premise was good. More importantly, this story won’t entertain boys at all. The story itself was OK and teen girls may enjoy it. I just didn’t get what I wanted out of it. However, my biggest issue was that Zoe confesses to shoplifting and still receives the same punishment she would have if she was caught rather then turn herself in. What does this message send to the kids? Don’t bother confessing, the punishment is the same.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Wanted it to be funnier

How to Build a Girl
How to Build a Girl

By: Caitlin Moran

Genre:  Adult fiction

Pages: 336

Published: 2014

Read: December

2 out of 5

This is another book I expected to really enjoy. It may have been because I was sick when I read it, but I didn’t find it nearly as funny as I hoped. Furthermore, I found the book way to unrealistic – no matter how talented you are (and she wasn’t) I don’t see a 14 year old becoming a music journalist and quitting school. While there were definitely some funny parts, I was really hoping by the end she would grow up and have some revelations that she was going about her life all wrong, but I guess I was wrong.  

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

YA or Adult..That is the Question


By: Andrea Portes

Genre:  Adult/YA fiction

Pages: 264

Published: 2007

Read: December

3 out of 5

I cannot decide if this should be a YA or adult book. My feeling isn’t so much that a teen couldn’t handle the material (although it’s probably too rough for young teens), but I don’t know if the story would hold their interest. Libraries seem to find it a difficult task as well – some have in YA others in Adult – probably depending on how conservative the library is. It’s told in the voice of Luli, a 13 year old girl, as she leaves home and travels to Las Vegas. She meets a lot of unique strangers along the way.  I was really into this book at the beginning and couldn’t put it down but then it fell flat. There was never any climax and the excitement just disappeared.

One of Rainbow Rowell's adult novel


By: Rainbow Rowell

Genre:  Adult fiction

Pages: 310

Published: 2014

Audiobook: 7 discs (9 hours)

Read: December

3 out of 5

Being a huge fan of Rowell, especially Eleanor and Park, I had no choice but to read this book – her latest adult fiction. And like the other ones, I listened to Landline. Her books are great on audio and this one is the same narrators as E & P.  Maybe because the narrators are the same I felt that this could have easily been a YA novel, if the characters were younger. The main characters were in their 30’s but had a magically phone that caused replays of their budding romance when they were younger. Plus, Georgie often acted like a teenager. The best part was the audio. This would be a good book for an adult who is looking for a quick, easy summer romance novel. Personally, I think I will stick with her YA novels.  

The last of the Monument kids

Savage Drift (Monument 14, #3)

Monument 14: Savage Drift

By: Emmy Laybourne

Genre:  YA science fiction

Pages: 306

Published: 2014

Read: December

4 out of 5

This is the last of the trilogy of the kids from Monument, Colorado. This is a hard book to review without giving any of the exciting conclusion away. I will say that the ending will not leave you unsatisfied and just like the first two books Savage Drift is action packed.  Often in trilogies I find that one book is not nearly as good. This is not the case with this one. Similar to Hunger Games and Unwind this series will interest both males and females, which I believe is a great achievement for any author.  Because of this fact, the exciting plot and quality writing I booktalked this trilogy last week to 7th and 8th graders. I also found out that the production of a movie has begun. Very Excited!

Shocked at the overall rating!!

Cages of Glass, Flowers of Time

By: Charlotte Culin

Genre:  YA Fiction

Pages: 288

Published: 1986

Read: December

2 out of 5

I expected to really enjoy this book. The rating for it on Goodreads was 4.61 (out of 5 stars) and with 120 reviews. The story was told in the voice of a 14 year old, Claire, but I felt her thoughts and feelings were of a 9 or 10 year old. She was way too immature sounding for me to believe her age. Furthermore, I felt it was poor writing and besides the old man in the woods I couldn’t connect with any of the characters. Claire falls for a boy that helps her deal with the child abuse she encountered, but with how young she seemed to be I had a difficult time buying the romance. And even in those aspects of the story her thoughts were childish to me. 

Friday, December 5, 2014

Book needed more research

The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker

The Age of Miracles

By: Karen Thompson Walker

Genre:  Adult/YA Fiction

Pages: 294

Published: 2012

Read: December

1.5 out of 5

I really don't understand why this book is considered adult fiction. First of all, the protagonist and narrator throughout the book is a 11 year old girl. It is a coming-of-age dystopian novel that to me seems only teens would enjoy. There were two plots - the world coming to an end and then  Julia being more concerned about Seth liking her. I felt the two storylines didn't connect well in this particular novel. Lastly, I felt Walker should have researched more on what would happen if the earth rotation did begin to slow - it didn't go anyway and didn't seem necessary to the overall story Walker was attempting to write. 

Monday, December 1, 2014

Love the 80's - Read this book!

Ready Player One
Ready Player One

By: Ernest Cline

Genre:  Adult/YA Science Fiction

Pages: 374

Published: 2011

Read: November

4.5 out of 5

80’s ROCK!!! If you think so too, this book is definitely for you! I was very surprised how much I enjoyed this book – I stayed up to 1 am because I HAD to finish it. The book takes place in 2044 when a video game creator obsessed with the 80’s decade runs a contest to win his inheritance (he has no living kin). To win the game, the players must become obsessed with the 80’s as well. This book is excited and brings back great memories of movies, music, and games from the decade. This is a MUST if you are a teen of the 80’s, obsessed with the decade or a video gamer. My only disappointment was that you were told who wins the contest in first chapter, so the suspense of that aspect is nonexistent, hence the ½ point deductionJ. Still one of my favorite reads of 2014.