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A Temptation of Angels

tempationA Temptation of Angels by Michelle Zink is a mash up of Divergent/Mortal Instrument concepts. The story itself shines in its own way and makes for an easy read. The writing of it all makes for an astounding story. This is a great book to read between series and enjoyable for anyone who is willing to read it. (Review by Amanda J.)

Wanted: Dead or In Love

watneddead One day Monroe’s father comes home with an extremely valuable collector’s item, the bullets that killed Bonnie and Clyde. When Monroe accidentally cuts her finger on one of the bullet she is soon possessed by Bonnie’s spirit. Before she knows it a preppy guy soon joins in her in their predicament when he has an asthma attack and is taken over by Clyde. From then on it is a constant battle between who is in charge of their own or hosts body.

Soon Monroe and Jack get fed up with the southerners trying to take over and they have to come up with a plan to get rid of them. However the plan Monroe has, ends up having three charges of grand theft auto, letting Clyde take over Jack’s body and not to mention a 1000 mile trip they take to escape the cops.

The author’s style of writing drew me in from the first sentence,the way she words things truly make the book come alive. For nearly the entire book I was on the edge of my seat waiting to see what happened next. If you are looking for a good mystery book with a hint of history than you should try reading “Wanted: Dead or in Love”. (Review by Carolyne)

Never Fall Down by Patricia McCormick

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Never Fall Down is based on the true life story of Mr. Arn Chorn-Pond. As a young boy, he survived the Khmer Rouge communist regime and Cambodian genocide that took place from 1975 to 1979.Like they did to most other Cambodians during those years, the Khmer Rouge forced Arn and his family to leave their town. Arn and his family were then separated and sent to different labor camps.
 
On his own, Arn had to work in the rice fields along with other children his age. Later on, nearer to the fall of the regime, he was forced to fight as a child soldier. He was exposed to and forced to participate in nasty, brutal violence.  One of the better things in Arn’s life while in the camps was being able to play traditional instruments in the labor camp band. This helped Arn find favor with the Khmer Rouge officials, and allowed him to form new bonds and friendships with some of his bandmates. Through it all, Arn forced himself to never fall down, to not succumb to the exhaustion, starvation, malaria, or horror that was caused by the Khmer Rouge. Eventually Arn was able to escape to a refugee camp in Thailand, where he was adopted. 
 
Since then, Arn has been raising awareness of the Cambodian genocide, helping the people of Cambodia, and teaching youn Cambodians the traditional Cambodian arts through an organization called Cambodian Living Arts. (Review by Sarah P.)
 

The Giver by Lois Lowry

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Jonas has always been normal. He grows and learns at the same rate as the other children born in his year. He follows all the community rules. He lives peacefully with his family unit. He spends time volunteering in his community, just like all the other elevens do. But as the ceremony of twelve approaches, Jonas becomes apprehensive. He has no clue as to what job the elders will assign him to, even though he spent time volunteering in order to discover his talents and interests. When the ceremony arrives, Jonas, along with the rest of the community, is shocked. He is selected to be the next receiver of memories. From then on, through the training and memories given to him by The Giver, Jonas changes. He forms different opinions based on feelings, which are forbidden in the community – feelings such as peace, love, and pain. Jonas becomes unique in a society where sameness and comfort are the highest ideals, and therefore he does not fit in any longer. Ultimately, when he cannot bear living in the community any longer, he has to decide what to do about it.

If you are looking for a well written, science fiction, utopian book, you should read The Giver. (Review by Sarah P.)

Check out a trailer for the movie version of "The Giver" which is scheduled to be released in August or September.  Also consider the other books in "The Giver Quartet" - Gathering Blue, Messenger, and Son.

 

Ender's Game - Discussion Questions

EndersOn March 28th, the Sci-Fi/Fantasy Book Club will discuss Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card. Here are some of the things we will consider.

About Ender & His Family

What kind of person is Ender? What kind of person would he like to be?

Ender never loses, but he is sometimes defeated. Discuss why this is not a contradiction. 

Peter and Valentine are polar opposites, but at the end of the story they work together. What do you think happens in the relationship between those two after Ender leaves for Battle School?

How does Ender make friends? How does he convince the other students to follow his leadership?

Society & Choices

All the characters in the story grapple with moral dilemmas and choices. Let's look at some of the characters (other than Ender) and their choices. What difficult moral conflicts do Ender's parents face? His brother and his sister? The military? The school staff? The students?What do you think about the actions of the adults that related to Ender and his peers?

Was it ethical for the adults to lie to and manipulate the children?

What do you think about the adults' attitudes toward the deaths and injuries suffered by the children at the Battle School?

Read more: Ender's Game - Discussion Questions

Superhero Stories

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Ever wish you had a superpower? (I think the answer is an obvious YES!) So, tie on your cape, get your super senses ready, and dive in to one of these superhero stories suggested by Walter H., one of our teen volunteers.  And don't forget to let us know if you have suggestions of other great superhero books to add to this list!

Read more: Superhero Stories

Sick by Tom Leveen

sickbookcoverAt an average high school in Phoenix, Arizona, strange things are happening. When a “virus” breaks out in the area, Brian and his group of friends watch as their classmates and teachers start to turn into grotesque, flesh-eating predators with super-human strength. With their school on lockdown, surrounded by a prison-style, spiked fence and awaiting the help of the United States armed forces, Brian and a group of theater geeks must figure out how to save their other friends, who are stranded across the high school campus, without getting captured by the predators. Fast-paced, violent, and oh-so-bloody, Sick is a suspenseful, thrilling read for zombie lovers and those just looking for an adrenaline-pumping good time.

Graphic Novels

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Looking for a read that tells a story both through its pictures and its text? Try one of these graphic novels suggested by Walter H., one of our library's teen volunteers:

Read more: Graphic Novels

Far Far Away by Tom McNeal

far far away Jeremy Johnson Johnson lives in Never Better and he's a strange boy. There's his name of course.  Well, both his parents were named Johnson.  When his mother disappeared his father took to his room and has barely come out. Jeremy mostly keeps to himself and studies, guided by the ghost of Jacob Grimm who narrates Far Far Away.  Jacob, who died hundreds of years ago but woke  up as a  ghost in the Zwischenraum - the space around us mortal beings, is protecting Jeremy from "the Finder of Occassions."

When beguiling Ginger comes along, despite her friend's thoughts that Jeremy is not a worthy boyfriend, she invites him to join them.  But mostly she brings him into dangerous situations, and Jeremy, flattered to be invited by such a charming girl, and despite Jacob Grimm's warnings, goes along.   Is this the case of a demonic girl "luring" Jeremy into evil or an innocent girl just playing pranks?

This amazing small town modern tale, meshes with the haunting tales of the Brothers Grimm. It is full of surprises, plot twists and hidden places.  I thought  I knew where it was heading and was totally wrong.  It's a seat of your pants thriller, but in an old fashioned, Grimm sort of way.  Far Far Away is being released today, June 11.

Scarlet by Merissa Meyer

scarletScarlet, the sequel to Cinder is every bit as good as Cinder was. Scarlet Benoit is a farmer living in rural France.  Her grandmother has been missing, she'd disappeared without leaving a message or sending a comm.  She'd missed Scarlet's 18th birthday, even though she'd bought the ingredients for Scarlet's favorite lemon cake. No one had seen her go and Scarlet had found her id chip. And now the police has said her grandmother had wanted to leave, but Scarlet knew that was wrong, she knew grandmere been kidnapped.

In Rieux, the town where she goes to deliver vegetables to a tavern, Scarlet happens to meet a man, a ferocious street fighter, named Wolf. Though she doesn't know if she can fully trust him, she is attracted to him and when he tells her he will help her find her grandmother, she goes off with him to Paris.

Having escaped from prison with a dashing daredevil prisoner Cinder arrives in Paris, just when Scarlet is at her lowest. Their fight to stay ahead of Queen Levana and the Lunars is exciting and the book ends on a cliffhanger with you anxiously waiting for the third book in the Lunar Chronicles.

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