Book Reviews

The Unbreakable Code by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman Review


About the Book: The Unbreakable Code is the second book in the Book Scavenger series by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman. It has 368 pages and was publish on April 25th, 2017 by Henry Holt and Co. (BYR). It is a middle-grade mystery about almost thirteen-year-old Emily and her best friend James, as they attempt to solve the mystery of the unbreakable code and fires that are appearing around the city.

My Review: It’s been a couple years since I read Book Scavenger and in the time that’s passed I have forgotten most of the book; nevertheless, I picked up the sequel, hoping that it would prove an interesting read. Well, thankfully it did. Even thought the plot of Book Scavenger is no longer in my memory, well, mostly that is, I didn’t have much trouble understanding what was going on in The Unbreakable Code. It really was quite an interesting and entertaining story. Not to mention that there were two mysteries in one book. From Steve-James’s cowlick- wearing glitter to the awesome librarian, this really was a great read. The only complaints I have are that some of the dialogue seemed weird and choppy, as if it would have been better of as narrative, and that if you try a little, figuring out who the arsonist is isn’t all that difficult, although it isn’t completely clear either. Other than that, The Unbreakable Code was quite enjoyable and should prove an interesting read for many ages.

Book Reviews

Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan Review


About the Book: Counting by 7s is a stand alone book by Holly Goldberg Sloan. It has 380 pages and was published by Dial Books on January 1st, 2013. It has a Lexile measure of 770 and is a contemporary middle-grade book about a twelve-year-old genius named Willow Chance and the people she becomes involved with due to her parent’s death in a tragic car accident.

My Review: This book was awesome! I loved it. From Willow’s obsession with the number to 7 to Dell Duke’s odd way of living I absolutely adored this book and it’s characters. Almost everything and everyone in this book was entertaining, from Cheddar the cat to Dell’s obsession with meatloaf, this was a really fantastic read. In addition to holding my interest, this book also showed how hard it is for people to accept that people are differnt, whether the differences happen to be good or bad. I loved how Willow just throws the system for a loop. She does insanely well with school and she looks at function before fashion. If you’re looking for a book that is entertaining, full of emotion, and all around just a fantastic read, you will love Counting by 7s.

Book Reviews

Liar and Spy by Rebecca Stead Review


liarspyAbout the Book: Liar and Spy is a stand alone book by Rebecca Stead. It has 180 pages and was published on August 7th, 2012 by Wendy Lamb Books. It has a Lexile measure of 670 and is a contemporary, middle grade, mystery about Georges (the s is silent), and what happens when he moves to a new apartment and becomes friends with Safer, a secret agent wanna-be.

My Review: Liar and Spy was an enjoyable read that like When You Reach Me and Goodbye Stranger have a wonderful ending. (Seriously, what is it with Rebecca Stead’s amazing endings? It’s like her superpower or something!) The story was interesting and kept me going. I loved all of the unusual names and now have this thing for the name Safer. Part of the ending was a little predictable but it was nonetheless extremely satifying. On the down side, there were a couple minor cuss words but other than that I didn’t really have any problems with the book. This book will draw in everyone from young middle-schoolers to middle-aged adults and I would highly recommend it if you’re looking for a short and easy read that makes you think.


Book Reviews

The Sound of Life and Everything by Krista Van Dolzer Review

lifeandeverythingAbout the Book: The Sound of Life and Everything is a novel by Krista Van Dolzer. It has 272 pages and was published on May 5th, 2015 by G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers. It is a historical fiction set in the 1950s and is about Ella-Mae a twelve-year-old girl and her quest to give a Japnese man another chance at life.

My Review: This was a really good book that showed the power of love. Despite the fact that the whole thing with bringing people back to life was a little far fetched I did enjoy the book. It portrayed a beautiful picture of how sometimes loving someone is painful, yet in the end, no matter the pain love is worth it. I loved Ella-Mae’s character. She has spunk, she’s never afraid to fight for what she believes in, and she realizes her mistakes.  In addition, her mother was a fantastic role model, who always stood up for what’s right. There was nothing objectional in this book and it was a truthfully enjoyable read.

Book Reviews · Uncategorized

Yours Truly by Heather Vogel Frederick Review


yourstrulyAbout the Book: Yours Truly is the second book in the Pumpkin Falls series by Heather Vogel Frederick. It follows Absolutely Truly and has 336 pages. It will be published on January 31st, 2017. It is about the mysteries Truly Lovejoy, her cousin Mackenzie, and the Pumpkin Falls Private Eyes, solve over spring break.

My Review: Ever since I read Absolutely Truly in the winter of 2015, I’ve wanted to re-visit Pumpkin Falls. From the hilarious characters to the wonderful small town feel, Absolutely Truly was fantastic. Yours Truly picks up only a week or two from where Absolutely Truly left off. Beginning with Truly’s thirteenth birthday. I really enjoyed this book, but unfortunately not as much as the fist Pumpkin Falls book. Maybe I read it too fast but it just seemed to be lacking some of the humor Absolutely Truly possessed. I guess you could say this book was a little more focused on the mysteries Truly has to solve and a little less centered on the characters and their amazing personalities. Although the characters are portrayed well I really missed Jasmine and Cha Cha, and frankly, wished Mackenzie hadn’t been in the book at all. I suppose some of this could be because Truly is no longer new to town so she’s no longer observing things from a new comer’s perspective; still, I missed the frog dissection and snowball attacks. Nevertheless, the book was still good and had two points I really couldn’t resist mentioning. For one, the private eyes have a stakeout. This was fairly entertaining but seemed to have a little less excitement than one would expect when a group of seventh graders sneak out of the house. Secondly, there was another MDBC crossover! Not a major one or anything, but Felicia, Jess’s cousin, was present for several scenes so that was pretty cool.

Lastly, at a later date I’ll be doing a post all about Pumpkin Falls as a town, so be ready for some small town fangirling.

Book Reviews

Planet Thieves by Dan Krokos Review


About the Book: The Planet Thieves is the first book in The Planet Thieves series, it has 256 pages and was written by Dan Krokos. It was published on May 21st, 2013 and has a Lexile measure of 770. It is about Mason, a thirteen year old space cadet, who through a crazy turn of events ends up trying to save the world.

My Review: Planet Thieves was an okay book that I found to be a little on the boring side. Maybe it was the whole alien thing or the pictures but the book just felt too juvenile. It was hard to finish this book but I pressed on since it is my book club’s book of the month. In the end the book had a fairly good ending. It showed how much team work matters and how sometimes being a leader isn’t what you expected. In addition, there were several minor cuss word. Overall, I didn’t particularly enjoy this book, yet it might appeal to younger audience or someone who really enjoys science fiction.

Book Reviews

Ruins of Gorlan by John Flanagan Book Review

Abobookreviewut the Book: Ruins of Gorlan, the first book in the Rangers apprentice series, is a 249-page book by John Flanagan. It was first published on January 1st, 2004 and has a Lexile measure of 920. It is about Will, a fifteen-year-old boy, who gets selected to be a Ranger’s

Review: The Ruins of Gorlan is a fairly entertaining book that follows the life of Will, a teen boy in medieval times, as he becomes a Ranger’s apprentice. The book was fairly entertaining but at times felt a little slow and lost my interest. There were some fairly funny things though and the story was pretty entertaining. Despite these good things the book did have some problems other than some slow points. For one, there was some cussing as the D-word was used several times and the H-word was used at least once. Also, I did feel that it took a good while to get to the meat of the plot.  All this taken into consideration this was a fairly good book and I do plan to read the next in the series.