Monday, May 26, 2014

The Lost World, by Michael Crichton

More than half a decade has passed since the Ingen incident. Jurassic Park was destroyed, and the dinosaurs were killed. However people like scientist Richard Levine don't believe so. There are rumors of a second island, known as Isla Sorna, that is believed to contain dinosaurs like the ones at Jurassic Park. To try to find truth to this, Levine confronts a survivor of the Ingen incident, Ian Malcom, asking him if he would be willing to lead an expedition on the island. Ian declined. However, Levine would not give up and went to the island himself. Contact with Levine is soon lost, and his colleagues are thrown into panic. Now, Ian Malcom must lead a search team to find Levne. While on the island, Ian's team face dangers, like the dangerous dinosaurs he faced before, and poachers who are trying to steal dinosaur eggs. It's a race against the clock as Ian's team scramble to find Levine, and survive the deadly dinosaurs.

The Lost World, by Michael Crichton, is a good book, and great continuation of Jurassic Park. The Lost World will stand up to the standard set by it's predecessor. It has frightening excitement at every turn, and is a great scientific adventure. I like this book almost as much as I did the first. However, I highly recommend reading Jurassic Park before The Lost World, because, I feel it'll make reading The Lost World a much more enjoyable experience. 

Reviewed by Gian R., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Ethan Frome, by Edith Wharton

Ethan Frome, by Edith Wharton begins in first person, speaking through the voice of the narrator. Ethan Frome is a man trodden with hardship. The death of his parents leaves him with a farm to care for by himself, and his wife's chronic illness is also in his responsibility. Ethan finds one light in his gloomy life, and that is the house maid Zeena. He and Zeena can not be together, though.

I liked this book. It was a short read, and the characters were believable. It was easy to follow, and very obviously a love story. I would recommend it to anyone looking for a short read and for teens of all ages. 

Reviewed by Anonymous, grade 11
Pacific Park Library

Monday, May 19, 2014

Batman: Arkham City, by Paul Dini

This comic takes place after the events of Batman Arkham Asylum. It centers around Batman's quest to find out the truth behind the mysterious Arkham City. Arkham City is a super prison for super criminals, and normal criminals alike. However, something sets this prison apart from others. it will be placed in the middle of Gotham City. Batman sees this as a problem, and he to tries to discourage Arkham City. Try as he might, the mysterious figurehead behind Arkham City is too powerful for even Batman to overpower. Now, Batman must face brutal gang wars, numerous super criminals, and an army of foes trained specifically to take him down, all placed in the heart of Gotham City. 

Batman: Arkham City, by Paul Dini has an interesting story line, and spectacular art. It has a chance to see what Batman is thinking about as he works as the detective he is. It makes you want to know who the mysterious mastermind behind the just as mysterious Arkham City is. It'll especially cater to fans of the comics or video games. If you are a comic fan, it's worth a read. If you are a batman fan, you should definitely give it a read. This one adventure of the Caped Crusader that you won't want to miss.

Reviewed by Gian R., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Jurassic Park, by Michael Crichton

A mysterious company called, "Ingen" had been working on a top secret project for five years. As this mysterious project nears completion, the project must be checked by dinosaur experts Alan Grant, and Ellie Sattler, along with mathematician Ian Malcom. The top secret project turns out to be a geological zoo called, "Jurassic Park," filled with genetically created dinosaurs. This prehistoric zoo would no doubt dazzle people of all ages, until disaster strikes. A rogue worker shut down the park, allowing the dinosaurs to run free. Now with danger at every turn, the human inhabitants of Jurassic Park must fight for their very survival.

Take it from someone who's read this book a few times, Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton is a epic adventure of prehistoric proportions. Even if you've seen the film, the book Jurassic Park is worth at least one read-through. Jurassic Park is filled with suspense, and terror, action and adventure, while still catering to the scientific thinker. It probes the question,"Could dinosaurs be cloned?" Jurassic Park is one of my favorite books of all time, I very much enjoy its tense mood, and I think you should give this adventure story a try. 

Reviewed by Gian R., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Monday, May 12, 2014

The New Dead, by Christopher Golden

The New Dead by Christopher Golden is a zombie anthology book. In the book, there are stories about military might in the beginning of an outbreak, survival in a deserted wasteland, the passion of falling in love with a zombie, and a family outing at a circus. With stories from John Connolly, Kelley Armstrong, David Liss, Jonathan Maberry, and many others, this is an insanely diverse and amusing collection.

In my opinion, The New Dead is a fantastic book to read. There are many types of writing styles included in this book. If you like books that express many writing styles, I highly recommend this book. When I read this book for the first time, I was very skeptical about the book. After reading it for a while, I was able to enjoy it more because there was a new story every time.

Reviewed by Bernard M., grade 9
Pacific Park Library

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

The Son of Neptune, by Rick Riordan

The book, The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan, is a fantasy story about how Percy Jackson is found by a pack of wolves and trained to be a warrior. He doesn't know how he got there, but after getting chased by the sisters of Medusa, he stumbles upon a camp made for half-bloods. He then goes on to find out he is a half-blood, and meets two other half-bloods, Hazel and Frank. Now it's Frank, Hazel, and Percy's mission to go and rescue the eagle standard which belonged to Camp Jupiter though was lost in a battle against the titans. To bring back hope to the camp, Percy has to use all his power to get the eagle standard back. 

In my opinion this was a great continuation of The Lost Hero of The Heroes of Olympus. I like how we know who Percy is, yet he doesn't, so it brings a feeling of dramatic irony into the story to the point you want to go into the story and tell Percy yourself! The characters are also very well written in terms of their back-story, so that each one of them has their own secret in which they are keeping from each other. They all have such different personalities yet they blend so great so that they can get each task done with as little consequences as possible. Overall, it has a great feel to it with a great blend of action and drama.

Reviewed by Arvin O., grade 9
Glendale Central Library

Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy, by Ally Carter

http://catalog.gpl.internal/ipac20/ipac.jsp?session=139E9B4U03572.21068&profile=gcent&uri=link=3100007~!932292~!3100001~!3100002&aspect=browse_search_page&menu=search&ri=1&source=~!horizon&term=Cross+my+heart+and+hope+to+spy+%2F&index=PALLTI#focusCammie Morgan, a young spy, just wants one normal semester for a change. At the Gallagher Academy, a top spy school, danger seems to follow Cammie everywhere. She learns that her private school will be the home for mysterious guests, only known by the name Blackthorne. Cammie Morgan is blamed for a school security problem putting all their identities at risk. Her and her closest friends have to go to many extremes to learn the truth about Blackthorne and to clear Cammie's name. Even though, Cammie and her friends have confidence, this mission will be more treacherous and challenging than any other they have faced.

In my opinion, Cross My Heart and Hope to Spy by Ally Carter was amusing and thrilling to read. The humor lightened the serious situations they were put in. It is a very positive book with multiple suspenseful scenes. While tip toeing silently through forbidden corridors, the girls took the risk of getting in trouble to prove the truth. I think that young girls and teens would love reading this book over and over again. They can connect and relate to the boy drama, strong friendships, and adventures and hardships in school. While our lives may not be as exciting as Cammie's, it's still entertaining to hear about her dangerous spy adventures.

Reviewed by Jennifer G., grade 9
Montrose Branch Library

Monday, May 5, 2014

Water for Elephants, by Sara Gruen

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen is a great historical novel revolving around a 23 year old American man named Jacob. Jacob literally "runs away with the circus" after finding out that his parents had died in a car accident. He falls in love with one of the girls in the show, Marlena, who handles the elephant. Marlena is with August, a rough and abusive man who mistreats everyone-humans and animals alike- he meets. Jacob narrates his life in the time he was in the circus and after it's collapse. 

I enjoyed this book. It had a great setting and provided fine visual detail of the scenes. I could see all the characters in my mind from the descriptions by the author. I would recommend it to older audiences, probably high school level and above. Great book, overall.

Reviewed by Anonymous, grade 11
Pacific Park Library