Friday, March 4, 2011

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, by Jules Verne

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, by Jules Verne, begins in the year 1866. Three men have one cause: ridding the world of a massive monster thought to be the cause of many recent ship sinkings. Professor Aronnax, his servant Conseil, and Ned Land, a Canadian harpoon man of great glory, are our protagonists. Little did they know that the "monster" they persued was actually a submarine of which no one had seen and which not even the best inventor could dream up. And with that our heroes begin on their fantastic voyage with their new captain, Captain Nemo.

This is only the first few pages of, in my opinion, one of the best classic books of all time. This book is sci-fi as of 130 years ago and now is only a mild stretch of the imagination. This book will fascinate, amaze, and enlighten you to the fantastic story only a true classic book can deliver. This book is one that has been enjoyed by all people all over the world. Even both of my grandfathers have enjoyed this epic story and told me of how they remember this one book after countless years. This book is one I would highly recommend to almost anyone and I do know that if you are in the e-book market, this is one of the many free-to-all books you can get. Read at your own risk, you may not come out into reality for the duration of your trip.

-Reviewed by Ashot C., grade 9.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Powerfully Fit, by Brian Chichester, Jack Croft, and the Editors of Men's Health Books

The fitness book called Powerfully Fit: Dozens of Ways to Boost Strength, Increase Endurance, and Chisel Your Body, by Brian Chichester, Jack Croft, and the editors of Men's Health Books, discusses how one could build themselves a powerful body for both athleticism and for everyday life. Backed by research conducted by universities, this book tells how to gain muscle and strength for each part of your body. The book also tells of specific exercises that one should do for different sports such as for basketball and tennis. Other than that, this book features athletes who talk about their fitness achievements and how and why they started training. As someone who is into fitness, I really enjoyed this book. It tells about what you should do to better your athleticism chapter by chapter. Being skeptical at first, I knew about false claims other fitness books and magazines make, and after reading this book I was assured that this book was backed by solid facts, guaranteed to show anyone the right way to build a functional and more powerful body. Before reading this book, I already knew a lot of fitness facts and the right way to train, but after reading this book I overall became even more knowledegable about physical fitness. I would recommend this book to anyone who is a teen or older, looking forward to improving their mental and physical wellness. -Reviewed by Allen, grade 9.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck

Of Mice and Men, by John Steinbeck, is about two best friends who are on wild adventures and who are constantly getting into trouble. George Milton is the person who we can say has the brains and Lennie Smalls is the person who doesn't. These two friends just can't be separated. George finds himself always having to bail Lennie out because at every new job that they get he is always getting into trouble. The story starts in a range which George found that they could work. Everything was going alright, but the problem was that Lennie could mess up at any moment. So George threatens Lennie with something that made him go soft. When the boss's wife gets into the picture, things start to get complicated because she targets Lennie with major flirting. George knows that she is going to be the cause of something that would cause Lennie to snap. Lennie does end up doing something but you have to read in order to find out.

I would recommend this book to anyone who is looking for an adventure and thriller novel. I could read this book four times and I wouldn't get bored of it. Yeah, it's that good. I like the story because it makes you think. Sometimes you have to read a paragraph twice in order to understand it completely. I really enjoyed this book.

-Reviewed by L.U, grade 9.

The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak

The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak, takes place in Nazi Germany. Liesel Meminger's life changed in one single day when her brother died, her mother left her, she stole a book, and her new faster parents adopted her. In her new alien world, the book she stole, The Grave Digger's Handbook, is her only line to her past family and her dead brother. Slowly, she gets used to her foster family, the Hubermanns, and learns to call them Mama and Papa. When things finally seem to settle down, there's another jarring incident in her life. A Jew, Max Vandenburg, had come to her house, begging to let him hide in their house. It was not a very good time to hide a Jew in one's house, but Liesel's foster parents do so. With the new stranger in the house, Liesel's life is turned upside down. At the same time, her love of words grows, propelling her to acquire books anywhere she can. She shares some of the books with Max in the cold basement and Max fills the spot of her brother that had been empty for a long time. However, as the Allies get the upper hand, life gets harder, and reoccuring bombings make it almost impossible to hide Max. Will they manage to keep Max hidden? The Book Thief is narrated from an unusual perspective. The narrator is death, who is tired from gathering souls all over the world. From this one-of-a-kind perspective, there is unexpected humor and vivid descriptions. This book is the perfect match for someone who is tired of everyday boring narratives. -Reviewed by JunHyung, grade 7.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Demons of the Ocean, by Justin Somper

Demons of the Ocean, by Justin Somper, is about twins Connor and Grace who lost their father at the age of 14. Their father was an unusual lighthouse keeper. He had been the perfect lighthouse keeper in that sense, but he often sang of Vampirates (demons of the ocean), which somehow soothed the twins. However, with their father gone they are destitute and they decide to set off in a boat (which legally wasn't their's) and explore what lies beyond. Too bad that was the day a storm struck.

Shipwrecked, the twins are separated from each other. While Connor is saved by pirates, Grace wakes up to find herself on a mystery ship. As a rookie pirate, Connor learns how to sword fight and even goes on a raid, but he never forgets about his lost sister. Grace, on the other hand, finds out that she's on a Vampirate ship and is in terrible danger. With barely the slightest chance of even seeing each other, will the twins be able to be reunited?

This amazing book successfully combines two different worlds together. One world is full with pirate life and all the strings attached, and the other is a world where you can be killed anytime in the night if just one person loses control. This exciting, mysterious, and suspenseful book is to be read by anyone who is interested in pirates.

-Reviewed by JunHyung, grade 7.