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Teen Reviews July 12, 2011

July 12, 2011 | dIAN-the-LibrarIAN | Comments (10)

Blog down your fines posts! See what other teens are reading.

Earn $2 in library bucks towards your fines when you share your favourite reads.

Gail reviewed Last Sacrifice - By: Richelle Mead

(Dian's note: this is a very popular book, with many holds but it is also available in ebook or audio book  if you can't wait! )

First of all, if you like to read about vampires and you haven't heard of the Vampire Academy series, then you're definitely missing out.  The Vampire Academy series by Richelle Mead\ follows mainly Rose Hathway and her trials as a guardian and dhampir.  A dhampir is a half blood vampire and are usually guardians to the moroi, which are the full blooded vampires.  Rose's best friend, Lissa is a moroi and a royal one too, she's the last of her family, the Dragomirs. In the last book, Last Sacrifice, the whole plot twist , is that there is ONE more Dragomir and Rose is ultimately dragged in to more fighting and turmoil in her attempt to find this vampire so Lissa's family could represent in the Clave.  A summary of what happened beforehand and how it all adds up to the last book would be too long so i suggest you go and read the past five books.  If you didn't read them and just read this one, many of the relationship issues would be confusing and the characters often reflect on past events in the previous books so reading the previous ones would benefit the reader and provide the maximum shock.  I love the Vampire Academy series but this final edition just left me speechless, in a bad way.  The main reason why i liked this series was the action you got when you read each word.  Every time i read a scene, i could fully picture it in my mind but in this book, the scenes are dull and often uneventful.  Because Rose is seperated from Lissa throughout the book, the author found a clever way to switch back between characters and settings but in my opinion, that sort of took away from each setting and i couldn't submerge myself completely in to the book this time.  I was very excited to see some more of Rose's relationship problems and dissapointed that the series ended just when everything seemed good, i wanted to know about her life after this book but the author has already stated that there will be no more books in this series.  New characters do appear in this book but they are characters mentioned in past ones already but never to make an appearence.  The book is much too long in my opinion.  it's about 600 pages and maybe half of it was just useless conversations.  I remember reading and reading, page after page until one climatical part then going back and just reading uneventful talk.  The plot twist and the revealment of the last Dragomir was unpredictable but predictable in that you sort of had a small idea as to who the author would choose in an attempt to surprise the readers more. Overall, i really recommand reading the Vampire Academy series and when you get to the last book, just think of it as the build up of something much more exciting because the true action doesn't happen until the last 50-100  pages or so.

Gail reviewed City of Bones - By: Cassandra Clare

(Dian's note: this also is a very popular book with many holds but is also available in audio book if you can't wait!)

I don't know why it took me this long to start this series.  I also have no idea why i thought this was about fairies...but anyway, the City of Bones is the first book in the Mortal Instruments series.  The Mortal Instruments series follows Clary Fray who finds out about the world of shadowhunters and "Downworld" creatures (werewolves, vampires etc.) In the City of Bones, Clary is introduced to the shadowhunters when she accidentally sees them doing their job at a night club she frequents.  From there, the story takes off at a quick pace but i like quick paced stories and this one was quick but still had all the details so you didn't get lost.  There, Clary meets Jace Wayland and the Lightwoods and they tell her more about their world and what they do.  The whole plot of the series is revealed and the main villian is also introduced, that being Valentine, who is actually Clary's father.  This is one of the reason's why i love this series, it's Cassandra Clare's sudden plot twists that leave be so eager to pick up the next book which is why i'm very glad the series is now extended to SIX volumes as oppose to three.  Anyway, as most stories follow, Clary has a childhood friend, Simon, who is (no surprise) in love with her and then of course, Clary also loves someone else and a really sudden plot twist completely ruins their relationship.  I'm usually the one who can easily predict what will happen in a story but when i came upon this revealement, i was so shocked i had to read it a coupld more times, that's how amazing Cassandra Clare is.  The settings in this story are explained with much clarity and the author often goes in to the details of the surroundings.  The plot is typical but the use of angels in this book is one i have never read about, which is always good considering the many angel books that have been published.  The shadowhunters are the nephilim, which are usually described as the beings that are half human and half angel.  This book mixes in the bible stories of the angels and mixes it with fiction to combine them in to something completely new and exciting to read about.  Each character is also developed differently and the author takes care in giving them each a different personality that is very apparent in the book.  I can't wait to read the next one and definitely recommand this series to you if you haven't already read it.

Cherise reviewed The Anti Prom - By: Abby McDonald

(also available in audio book)


     When I first saw the title, "The Anti Prom", I thought, wow, well this could be interesting or a big letdown. When I finally picked up the book and reread the synopsis, I truly thought "Yep this is going to be a letdown." However, I decided to give the book a chance. I read it and once I started reading I found it really hard to put down, loved it.
     The book was just like any other prom, or at least like the prom at my school, which made relating to the book easy. The way things escalated in the book from betrayal and revenge, to crime committed in anger, to love flowed perfectly. I WOULD LOVE TO GO INTO MORE DETAIL BUT I WOULD MOST LIKELY REVEAL TOO MUCH!
     The book is written in first person, from the point of view of each of the three main characters (Bliss, Jolene and Meg) and I love how the book is formatted  because it allows the reader to learn a more about each character and their reasoning. Another great thing about the format is that the way certain events take place, each character may experience things differently and you are able to see them change as the story progresses.
     What made the whole book something I would gladly recommend to any friend (mainly female), is that if you're in your later years High school you can understand how High school works, and you'll probably relate well to some of the feelings and situations. I found that I could somehow relate to each character, but I really Identified with wallflower Meg and how she felt about high school and the people it. Just like in the book you really start to understand who you're really friends are and if you're like Bliss, you will start to see people for who they really are and maybe realize what's truly important in friendship.

Catherine reviewed We'll always have summer - By: Jenny Han

We'll always have summer is the final book to summer trilogy, following after The summer I turned pretty, and It's not summer without you. The Summer Trilogy is about a girl named Isabel "Belly" Conklin who spends her summers at a Cousins Beach house with her mom, brother, and their family friends Suze, Conrad and Jeremiah Fisher. The third and final book starts off with Belly at the end of her freshmen year at Finch University. Belly attends University with her old best friend Taylor and her new best friend Anika. Jeremiah also attends Finch University and at this point they have been dating for 2 years, and their relationship has been going well. Things start to change however when Belly finds out that Jeremiah cheated on her over Spring Break, so she ends up breaking up with him. The next few days are tough for Belly as she reminisces on her time spent with Jeremiah but eventually he comes to apologize and with a surprise twist he asks her to marry him. Belly agrees and while their too families do not completely support them 100% the two decide to go through with it anyways. The rest of the novel is spent with Belly and Jeremiah and their struggle planning the wedding but of course to anyone who has read the other too previous books Conrad is obviously involved. The book basically answers all the questions Jenny Han left us wondering after It's not summer without you and features some chapters told from Conrad's perspective so we can see his point of view on why he let the girl of his dreams go off with his brother in book two. We'll always have summer is a beautifully written book, and will leave all readers satisfied with Belly's choice of guys in the end whether your Team Conrad or Team Jeremiah.

Catherine reviewed The Sisterhood Everlasting - By: Ann Brashares

For fans of the Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants series the final book is one you do not want to miss. The Sisterhood Everlasting catches up with Carmen, Bridget, Tibby and Lena 10 years after they lost the pants Greece.  Carmen is currently a somewhat successful actress, Bridget is living with Eric, Lena is an art instructor and Tibby has moved away with Brian to Australia all the way on the other side of the world. While the girls have somewhat grown apart that all changes when one day they all receive invitations and plane tickets to meet Tibby in Greece at Lena's grandparents’ house. However on the trip the girls are faces with a surprise incident and their lives are change as they are forced to cope with grief, sorrow and confusion. The Sisterhood Everlasting alternates from Carmen, Bridget and Lena's point of views as they grow older and deal with the choices they’ve made and if the life they’ve been living is truly what they want for themselves. The book deals with more serious issues since the girls are of course now about to turn 30 but the girls still have their same essence that fans of the sisterhood fell in love with from the beginning. This is an amazing book and I'd recommend it to anyone whether you have read the first four sisterhood of the travelling pants books or not.

Catherine reviewed Thirteen Reasons why - By: Jay Asher

Dian's note: this is a very popular book, with many holds but it is also available in ebook or audio book  if you can't wait!)

3 Reasons Why is an amazing book which I'd recommend to anyone. It has an amazing storyline which has won a ton of awards and at the same time deals with the serious issue of teen suicide. The book starts off with Clay Jensen and the day his life completely changed, the day he received the tapes. Not too long before, Clay’s classmate Hannah Baker died and everyone believes it was an accident, but really it was not. Hannah Baker has left a set of 13 tapes to be passed around to everyone on her list explaining the reasons why she killed herself and how everyone on the list contributed to her death, almost like a chain letter. The tapes contain secrets that can ruin the lives of those on the tapes but as long as the tapes make it through everyone on the list, they won’t be released. The day Clay recieves the tapes he is confused, he barely knew Hannah Barker and he can’t seem to figure out why he would have anything to do with her death, so he listens to the tapes. 13 reasons why follows clay on his adventure as he listens to the tapes and you can listen to the tapes too while you read along here  . 13 Reasons why is a book way more than a book about suicide it’s suspenseful, mysterious, and it has a hint of romance, it is an intense book you won't be able to put down and when it’s over you won't be able to get it out of your mind.

Catherine reviewed - The Unwritten Rule - By: Elizabeth Scott

Every girl knows there is one unwritten rule in friendship which may just be the most important rule of all, you don't like your best friend’s boyfriend, the book The Unwritten Rule however shows us that sometimes a girl just can't help it. Sarah has a crush on Ryan for years, and she thinks he just may like her back but then Brianna and Ryan start dating. Brianna is Sarah's best friend and the girl boys can't help but to like. Sarah tries really hard to stop liking Ryan but after one night where something happens between them Sarah is torn apart with guilt. She knows she could never due this to Brianna, especially since Brianna is going through a lot right now but at the same time she believes Ryan could be the one. While this book may have a somewhat cheesy storyline it is actually very realistic and the way Scott writes the book makes it seem real and something like it could truly happen. The Unwritten Rule is a short but compelling read which will appeal to readers who enjoy drama, love, heartbreak, and friendship.

Catherine reviewed - Ten things we did (and probably shouldn't have) - By:  Sarah Mlynowski

Ten things we did and probably shouldn't have is a newly released book and if you love any of Sarah's other books like the Magic in Manhattan Series (Bras and Broomsticks, Frogs and French Kisses etc.) or her other book Gimme a Call then you will LOVE this book. Even if you haven't read her other books then I still suggest you read this book since this is one of my favourite books I have read this year. Ten things we didn't (and probably shouldn't) is about a 16 year old April who get he chance to move in with her friend and live parent free. This is an opportunity I know many teens wish they had a chance to do and this book gives you a chance to do it. It is a book you can relate to since after getting caught drinking April lives with her dad and stepmom who are super strict and give her a 10 O Clock curfew but due to some serious planning April is given the chance to move in with her friend Vi. During the book April and Vi throw wild parties, buy a hot tub, harbour a runaway, and a ton of other crazy things which will keep readers entertained and wanting to read more. If you enjoy good laughs, love triangles, or have ever dreamed about living on your own parent free then this is a book you wouldn't want to miss out on.

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The web space of Toronto Public Library's 2011 teen summer reading program. Feel free to look around, but the summer of 2011 is over now.