Codes for Reviews

First Initial (Overall Rating):
E = Exceptional
VG = Very Good
G = Good
F = Fair
NR = Not Recommended

Second Initital (Reading Level):
A = Average Reading Level
E = Easy
M = Mature

“The views expressed are of individuals and do not necessarily reflect the views of their respective institutions.”

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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Escape Theory

General YA Fiction

F/A. Froley, Margaux. Escape Theory: A Keaton School Novel. Soho Press, 2013. 288 p. 9781616951276 $17.99

Devon feels connected to Hutch after a incident freshman year even though they rarely speak anymore so his apparent suicide is a shock. Using her new role as a peer counselor, Devon sets off to prove that Hutch was murdered. This is the first in a series.

Sarah Mae Harper, CoLAPL- AC Bilbrew

The Ruining

General YA Fiction
G/A. Collomore, Anna. The Ruining. Razorbill, 2013. 313 p. 9781595144706 $17.99     

Ever since she was unable to save her younger sister from drowning, Annie has felt responsible for the death. Now she has a chance for a clean slate. She is heading to San Francisco to be a live in nanny for the well-to-do Cohen family, but all is not what it seems. A psychological mystery that takes a page from The Yellow Wallpaper and Gaslight, one can’t be sure what is real and what is hallucination.

Sarah Mae Harper, CoLAPL- AC Bilbrew

Monday, April 15, 2013

This Is What Happy Looks Like

General YA Fiction

VG/A  Smith, Jennifer E.  This is What Happy Looks Like.  Poppy, 2013.  416p.  978-0316212823.  17.99.

When Ellie responds to an email sent to her on accident, she has no idea that she has started a witty correspondence with Graham, a 17-year-old movie star. Graham loves the anonymity with Ellie since the rest of his life is under a microscope. So when given the opportunity, Graham opts to shoot his next movie in Ellie’s small, seaside Maine town so he can finally meet her. Ellie can’t believe that Graham has been her pen pal for the past few months, but she has family secrets of her own and the constant paparazzi are too much for her and her mother to handle. This book is the epitome of a teen summer read; it’s a sweet, romantic story with no sex or bad language. It’s what all teen girls daydream about…falling in love with and being swept off your feet by a handsome celebrity. Swoon worthy. Loren Spector, LAPL, Felipe de Neve

Friday, April 5, 2013

The Madness Underneath

General YA Fiction

VG/A. Johnson, Maureen. The Madness Underneath. Penguin Young Readers Group, 2013. 304 p. 9780399256615 $17.99

Rory’s back after almost being killed by a ghost. As she struggles to keep up with her school work, she decides to see a therapist. She soon discovers that the school was built on top of a mental institution and the dead patients are coming back.

A compelling sequel to The Name of the Star.

Sarah Mae Harper, CoLAPL- AC Bilbrew 

Bronte Sisters: Brief lives of Charlotte, Emily and Anne

General YA Nonfiction

VG/A. Reef, Catherine. Bronte Sisters: Brief lives of Charlotte, Emily and Anne. Clarion Books, 2012. 240 p. 9780547579665 $18.99     

From the author that brought you Jane Austen, comes a new bio of Charlotte, Emily and Anne. I didn't know anything about the Brontes and now I wish I didn't. Much like her previous biographies Reef shows us their real lives and circumstances even when they aren't very pleasant.

Sarah Mae Harper, CoLAPL- AC Bilbrew 

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Nobody's Secret

General YA Fiction
F/A  MacColl, Michaela.  Nobody’s Secret.  Chronicle Books, 2013.  248p.  978-1-4521-0860-5.  16.99.
When a nameless, but handsome stranger turns up dead in the Dickinson’s pond, Emily decides to take it upon herself to figure out who he was and why he ended up on their property. While figuring out the man’s untimely death, she discovers town secrets and gets herself in a little trouble too. Although each chapter’s title is a line or two from Emily Dickinson’s poetry, there is no other connection between the story and the famous poet. The girl in the story could have been any well-connected teenager in 1845 Massachusetts. Otherwise it’s a nice little mystery that isn’t overly complicated for the average teen reader. Loren Spector, LAPL, Felipe de Neve