What is JacketFlap

  • JacketFlap connects you to the work of more than 200,000 authors, illustrators, publishers and other creators of books for Children and Young Adults. The site is updated daily with information about every book, author, illustrator, and publisher in the children's / young adult book industry. Members include published authors and illustrators, librarians, agents, editors, publicists, booksellers, publishers and fans.
    Join now (it's free).

Sort Blog Posts

Sort Posts by:

  • in
    from   

Suggest a Blog

Enter a Blog's Feed URL below and click Submit:

Most Commented Posts

In the past 7 days

Recent Comments

JacketFlap Sponsors

Spread the word about books.
Put this Widget on your blog!
  • Powered by JacketFlap.com

Are you a book Publisher?
Learn about Widgets now!

Advertise on JacketFlap

MyJacketFlap Blogs

  • Login or Register for free to create your own customized page of blog posts from your favorite blogs. You can also add blogs by clicking the "Add to MyJacketFlap" links next to the blog name in each post.

Blog Posts by Date

Click days in this calendar to see posts by day or month
new posts in all blogs
Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: dystopia, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 232
1. The Flame Never Dies

The Flame Never Dies. Rachel Vincent. 2016. 343 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: I crouched, tense, in the derelict remains of a high school gymnasium, one of the last buildings still standing in the town of Ashland, which had been mostly burned to the ground during the demonic uprising more than a century ago.

Premise/plot: The sequel to The Stars Never Rise by Rachel Vincent. If you've read the first book, it's likely you won't be able to resist picking up the second book. (And this is NOT a trilogy. So this is not a middle book--feels nothing like a middle book.) So Nina Kane, our heroine, is now officially an outlaw of sorts, on the run from THE CHURCH and hiding out in the badlands. She's not alone...she's surrounded by friends and almost friends. Much of the book focuses on their exorcist lifestyle--fighting the bad guys--the demons--whenever, wherever, and taking risks when needed, which is often.

My thoughts: I read both books one right after the other. I found them impossible to put down. I don't know that they are "great literature" as they say. But if you're looking for ACTION and DRAMA with some romance this is a good series to pick up. I like that the romance is not in any way whatsoever a love triangle. Now that doesn't mean it's an problem free romance...but it does mean it's not your typical YA dystopian novel.


© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

0 Comments on The Flame Never Dies as of 9/13/2016 12:35:00 PM
Add a Comment
2. The Stars Never Rise

The Stars Never Rise. Rachel Vincent. 2015. 368 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: There's never a good time of day to cross town with a bag full of stolen goods, but of all the possibilities, five a.m. was the hour best suited to that particular sin.

Premise/plot: Nina Kane, the heroine, is contemplating pledging herself to the Church--the Unified Church when the novel opens. But a few things get in her way of making that commitment. First, her fifteen year old sister, Mellie, rebels and flees a school required assembly, second, comes the big reveal that Mellie is PREGNANT. Since pregnancy requires a license and the full permission of the church beforehand, that's a BIG one. Third, the WAY their mom reacts to the news that she's going to be a grandma turns Nina's world upside down and then some.

Things you should know:
It's a dystopian novel (YA, of course) with a very urban setting for the most part.
There is NOT a love triangle, but, there is a romantic twist.
You should forget everything--and I do mean EVERYTHING--you know about "the church." This futuristic UNIFIED CHURCH should not in any way be connected to the actual Christian church of this or any age.
The book is all ACTION, ACTION, DRAMA.
What is predictable, in a way, is that the heroine comes into her own and gains an ability--an advantage--for surviving in the crazy world she lives in.
The world-building is great for the most part. There is some info-dumping squeezed into the novel early on. Nina is quizzing kindergartners on some fairly basic material....material that the author definitely wants readers to know.

My thoughts: If you look at the bare facts of the premise, there would be no reason in the world for me to like it--or love it even. It's PARANORMAL. There are demons and exorcists. And even zombies, though they are not called such. The church instead of standing for good, is a downright evil institution. And yet, I could not put this one down. I read it in one day. I read both books in the series over about a thirty hour period.

© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

0 Comments on The Stars Never Rise as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
3. The Heir

The Heir. (Selection #4) Kiera Cass. 2015. HarperCollins. 346 pages. [Source: Library]

I have very mixed feelings on The Heir by Kiera Cass. That isn't a huge surprise. I had mixed feelings about the first three books as well. The first three books in the series focused on Princess Eadlyn's parents--America and Maxon. I found the books both silly and irresistible at the same time. If I found the books on the silly, ridiculous, predictable side, why did I care so much about what happened and who ended up together?! That was the question then, and, to some extent that remains the question. The difference being I am less attached to Princess Eadlyn than I was to her father, Prince (now King) Maxon.

So. America and Maxon have four children together: twins Eadlyn and Ahren, and two younger boys that barely enter into the story, or, perhaps are completely forgettable no matter how many times their names are dropped. Eadlyn being born seven minutes before her brother is the heir to the crown. She's about eighteen or so when the story opens. And readers are led to believe that she may become Queen much sooner than anyone thinks. Conveniently perhaps America and Maxon have not aged well it seems. Though young when they married, and though their oldest is just eighteen, they are talked about as if they're closer to sixty or sixty-five than forty! Granted, we don't know for sure how long they waited after marrying to have children, but, even if it was five or six years--they still shouldn't be over forty-five! The fact that they are presented as so decrepit and ancient--their health so fragile--frustrated me. And I did not like the ending at all. Trust me on that.

So is Princess Eadlyn likable? I don't think she's meant to be. I think we're supposed to struggle with liking her perhaps? She struggles with being an actual human being.

So "to save the monarchy" the parents are strongly-strongly encouraging their daughter to hold a Selection and get married. Thirty-five young men will be coming to the palace just for her. One of the selected is not a stranger at all, but, someone she's a little too familiar with on the surface, someone who has grown up in the palace, someone who's always been friendlier with her brother than herself. His name is Kile. And he gets the first kiss, though it is staged. Other men of note, Henri (Swedish cook who needs an interpreter) Eric (the interpreter and not really an option for the selection, at least not officially), and Hale (he doesn't seem as obvious a choice as the others, but, he isn't as forgettable or as obnoxious as the others, so, I wouldn't be surprised if he makes it to the top six or seven at least). Since Eadlyn struggles with, you know, actually being human herself, it's hard for her to talk with others and be herself. I don't know that I have a favorite-favorite, but I'm leaning towards Henri.

The world Cass has created still doesn't seem fully fleshed out and lived in, like it makes sense logically. And the political, social, cultural side of it still seems a bit flimsy, but this book like the other is just oddly readable and entertaining.

© 2016 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

0 Comments on The Heir as of 7/19/2016 11:19:00 AM
Add a Comment
4. Book Trailer: The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary Pearson

We have an amazing booklist for freshmen to choose from and this is one of the titles!  I made one YEARS ago and decided to revamp.  Here's the new trailer for an older YA book (didn't even know I was reading dystopia at the time!)
If you can't access Youtube, here are alternate links:

Google Drive: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B-wHb5Nsjhy0dW9XWlB3MGZoUlU/view
Schooltube: http://www.schooltube.com/video/71ae95640e7240da9144/The%20Adoration%20of%20Jenna%20Fox



0 Comments on Book Trailer: The Adoration of Jenna Fox by Mary Pearson as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
5. FIRSTLIFE by Gena Showalter \\ Fun, Fast, and Full of Action

Review by Natalie FIRSTLIFEEverlife #1by Gena ShowalterSeries: An Everlife NovelHardcover: 480 pagesPublisher: Harlequin Teen (February 23, 2016)Language: EnglishGoodreads | Amazon Tenley "Ten" Lockwood is an average seventeen-year-old girl…who has spent the past thirteen months locked inside the Prynne Asylum. The reason? Not her obsession with numbers, but her refusal to let her parents

0 Comments on FIRSTLIFE by Gena Showalter \\ Fun, Fast, and Full of Action as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
6. FLAWED by Cecelia Ahern was Flawed, but Still a Good Dystopian Read

Review by Sara Flawed (Flawed #1)by Cecelia AhernAge Range: 12 - 18 yearsHardcover: 336 pagesPublisher: Feiwel & Friends (April 5, 2016)Goodreads | Amazon Celestine North lives a perfect life. She's a model daughter and sister, she's well-liked by her classmates and teachers, and she's dating the impossibly charming Art Crevan.But then Celestine encounters a situation in which she makes an

0 Comments on FLAWED by Cecelia Ahern was Flawed, but Still a Good Dystopian Read as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
7. The Shadows of Sherwood, by Kekla Magoon

Robyn is a tinkerer.  She loves building things with her dad, but since her dad's job has taken up most of his time lately, Robyn is on her own.  One night after Robyn sneaks out as usual to head to the junkyard to find a voltage adapter for a project, things seem a bit off.  Usually dodging the guards and scaling the fence are fun endeavors, but this night the guards are more soldier-esque than usual.  And this time when she made it over the fence, there was a dog.

Luckily Robyn is a prepared girl, and has a pocket full of bacon to keep the dog at bay. True, the bacon was orignally for Robyn's friend Barclay who calls the junkyard his home, but Robyn is thankful she packed it.

It turns out that changes are afoot in a much more far ranging way than just upped security in the junkyard.  This night comes to be called the Night of Shadows, and what it is is a coup.  The standing government and all of the members of parliament are rounded up and/or killed. Robyn's father works for the government.

When she races home, she finds a horrifying sight.  Her empty house is in shambles and her parents are gone.  All that is left is a puddle of blood in the kitchen. Robyn is a wanted girl.

Now Robyn is forced to try to remember all of the warnings her father gave her that she only half listened to.  The ones that started with "If anything ever happens to me and your mother...".  Upon hearing strangers back in her house she takes the few items from her safe and takes off into the forest.

What comes next is an adventure that will keep readers up well into the night.  Solitary Robyn must learn that sometimes it's okay (and necessary) to trust others. Her group of friends must learn to live by their wits and manage to help others who may not be so resourceful along the way.

Magoon has reimagined the world of Robin Hood in an alternate time period and has woven in technology and the idea of the big brother very well.  Readers do not need to be familiar with the original tale to have a rip roaring time, but the ones who are familiar will likely be pleased with the reimagining of many of the main characters.  Magoon has also woven in moon lore as an aspect of the world building that brings an air of fantasy to the whole story.

I cannot wait for the next installment of this exciting story!

0 Comments on The Shadows of Sherwood, by Kekla Magoon as of 1/17/2016 12:01:00 PM
Add a Comment
8. NEXIS by A.L. Davroe // Felt Like One Of The Longest Books EVER...

Review by Sara... NEXIS by A.L. Davroe Series: Tricksters #1 Paperback: 304 pages Publisher: Entangled Teen (December 1, 2015) Language: English Goodreads | Amazon In the domed city of Evanescence, appearance is everything. A Natural Born amongst genetically-altered Aristocrats, all Ella ever wanted was to be like everyone else. Augmented, sparkling, and perfect. Then…the crash. Devastated

0 Comments on NEXIS by A.L. Davroe // Felt Like One Of The Longest Books EVER... as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
9. CONCENTR8 by William Sutcliffe \\ Almost a DNF

Review by Sara CONCENTR8by William SutcliffeHardcover: 256 pagesPublisher: Bloomsbury USA Childrens (January 19, 2016)Language: EnglishGoodreads | Amazon In a not-so-distant future London, riots have become the norm. But when the government suddenly stops distributing Concentr8--a behavioral modification "miracle" drug akin to Ritalin--the city's residents rise up fiercer than they ever have

0 Comments on CONCENTR8 by William Sutcliffe \\ Almost a DNF as of 12/21/2015 12:29:00 AM
Add a Comment
10. THE AUGUST FIVE Sadly Did Not Get a Five From Me

Review by Leydy THE AUGUST FIVEby Jenna HellandAge Range: 12 - 18 yearsHardcover: 320 pagesPublisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) (November 10, 2015)Goodreads | Amazon In a world rocked by revolt, your worst enemy can become your greatest hopeFourteen-year-old Tommy Shore lives a life of privilege: he has the finest clothing, food, and education available and servants to take care of his

0 Comments on THE AUGUST FIVE Sadly Did Not Get a Five From Me as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
11. MARTians

MARTians. Blythe Woolston. 2015. Candlewick. 224 pages. [Source: Review copy]

Did I enjoy reading Blythe Woolston's MARTians? Yes, for the most part. Not wholeheartedly perhaps. But I can see some definite strengths, which is a reason to recommend it, in my opinion!

MARTians is a YA novel that will appeal to lovers of dystopian novels mainly. Also to those perhaps who really enjoyed Ray Bradbury's science fiction. Though don't expect MARTians to be as amazingly wonderful and as complex as Bradbury's fiction. I definitely got the feeling that the author was inspired by several of Bradbury's stories. And since I love Bradbury too, I felt at times a kindred spirit with the author.

The heroine of MARTians is a young teen girl named Zoe Zindleman. The novel practically throws you right into the action, for better or worse. On the day the novel opens, Zoe learns that she--and her whole class, the whole school, I believe--is being graduated early, several years early in fact. She is curious as to why. But is trying to adapt as best she can. She knows that in a day or two, she'll hopefully be offered a job, start training, and go to work. She's not sure what job she'll be offered--though she knows she'll have a choice between two jobs, a rare treat in this futuristic society. But that's not the only change in her life--school to full-time job. No, her mom received news as well. And as a result, essentially abandons Zoe, trusting that Zoe is now old enough to be on her own. Zoe, for a few days at least, will be all on her own in a house that won't sell, in a neighborhood that's been abandoned--none of the houses will sell--and trashed. She feels very much alone. Until she meets someone who offers to help her so long as she agrees to always lend a helping hand to others. She agrees, and her new life begins...for better or worse.

Much world-building is done in MARTians, but, still enough is left mysterious and shadowy. Readers definitely get the impression that this society is not all-happy despite the focus on materialism and shopping.

I definitely found this a compelling read, and, a quick read.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

0 Comments on MARTians as of 11/17/2015 1:20:00 PM
Add a Comment
12. Review: The Scorpion Rules

The Scorpion Rules (Prisoners of Peace) by Erin Bow. Margaret K. McElderry Books, an imprint of Simon & Schuster Books. 2015. Review copy from publisher.


The Plot: Our world, about 400 years in the future. For various reasons (wars, water shortage, environmental changes) an AI (artificial intelligence) named Talis seized control of, well, everything, and first forced peace on the world by blasting a few cities.

Then Talis realized there was a better way. That destroying towns wouldn't create world peace. But hostages would. Child hostages, to be specific. It's simple: take a child of each leader. Hold onto them until they are 18. If the leader declares war, the child hostage's life is forfeit.

Greta Gustafsen Stuart is the Duchess of Halifax and the Crown Princess of Pan Polar Confederacy. She has been a hostage since the age of five. She is now sixteen; if she can make it until eighteen....

But her country has water. And others don't. And she knows that one day, sooner rather than later, war may be declared and her life may be forfeit.

The Good: Alright, let's cut to the chase: this is a Favorite Book of 2015. Hell, I'll go on record and say this is easily a top ten book. I'll go even further: I'll be damn disappointed if this isn't on awards lists and best lists at the end of the year.

And to say why this is so, why I am so passionate about this book, I'll be talking spoilers. So fair warning: stop now if that bothers you, read The Scorpion Rules, then come back.

The Scorpion Rules is a dystopia, or, at least, a dystopia for those children of rules and leaders who are sent away to be held hostage, knowing that if their parents pick country over blood they will die. They have been taught history to understand their role and their history, including ancient history to give a broader, perhaps colder, perspective on people and war and violence.

Greta, like her friends and fellow hostages, have been taught about their role; have been taught to accept it; have been taught to not fight back. To not resist. To not escape.

And then a boy comes to their school, a boy whose grandmother just gained power so he's been sent as hostage, a bit older than most, and less royal, so less prepared. Elian.

I KNOW WHAT YOU ARE GOING TO SAY IT'S JUST ANOTHER DYSTOPIAN ROMANCE BUT IT ISN'T. AND YES THERE IS A SECOND LOVE INTEREST BUT IT'S NOT A TRIANGLE JUST, WAIT.

Yes, it's dystopian; but like I said, at least for this book, it shifts the burden of the dystopia to the upper class, to the privileged. And the Children of Peace, the hostages, realize both their burden and their privilege. And it's grounded in real history -- the exchanging and taking of hostages has historic basis. (Fans of the TV show Reign will remember King Henry saying he and his brothers where hostages in the Spanish Court. That was true.) I say at least for this book, because we haven't seen much of life beyond where Greta lives, so I can't be sure of how others live. There is a hint that Talis controls and meddles with the lives of others, but it's unclear just how much of an impact that has.

This dystopia also makes sense; it's coherent, enough is given to explain why and how this system was accepted and evolved. It's also thoughtfully and realistically diverse. The Children of Peace come from all over the world, from all types of countries. Some, like Greta, are their for hereditary reasons -- she is the crown princess, born into this world, born to be a hostage. Others, like the Children from what was the United States, are there because parents have been voted into/taken charge by other means. They have no titles; they may arrive at the school older, with their status sudden and unprepared for. That is Elian.

And it's also grounded in science fiction, not fantasy -- the AI that controls the world, Talis, and the link between humans and computers is a scientific element of the story, not a fantastical one, and it's not just the push for the story. Talis is present throughout, lurking in the background, moving to the forefront.

Also, the threats are real. The Scorpion Rules starts with a child hostage being taken away because his country declared war. There is a graveyard by the school. There is torture, there is manipulation, not nice things happen again and again.

Now, on to the love triangle. Which isn't. There is new boy Elian and there is some sort of connection or attraction between him and Greta, but more important than that, is that Elian shows Greta another way. That submission and acceptance is not the only path in life. That no matter what, there is choice.

And then there is Greta's best friend and roommate, Xie. Greta has not just accepted the way she has been raised, the future she's been told to expect. She has also buried most of her emotions and feelings, avoiding emotional risk. And yet when Elian helps provide the catalyst for her to open up, and change, and question, it also helps her unlock her frozen feelings for Xie.

See? It sounds like a triangle because there are two people -- but it isn't. It so, so isn't.

One last thing: Greta may have accepted her part in life and politics; she may have tried to avoid certain deep attachments; but she is also a royal. Born to be a hostage, born to live a role, but also born to take her place if she lives past 18. Born to be a leader, and at her school, she is a leader. She's not a follower. She's not passive, even if to someone like Elian, the Children of Peace hostages look passive and accepting.

So, go, read it, and like me, look forward to the next book. Because I have no idea what will happen next -- and that? That is a great feeling to have.















Amazon Affiliate. If you click from here to Amazon and buy something, I receive a percentage of the purchase price.

© Elizabeth Burns of A Chair, A Fireplace & A Tea Cozy

0 Comments on Review: The Scorpion Rules as of 11/12/2015 4:58:00 AM
Add a Comment
13. AN INHERITANCE OF ASHES by Leah Bobet

Review by Leydy AN INHERITANCE OF ASHES by Leah BobetAge Range: 12 and up Grade Level: 7 and upHardcover: 400 pagesPublisher: Clarion Books (October 6, 2015)Goodreads | Amazon The strange war down south—with its rumors of gods and monsters—is over. And while sixteen-year-old Hallie and her sister wait to see who will return from the distant battlefield, they struggle to maintain their family

0 Comments on AN INHERITANCE OF ASHES by Leah Bobet as of 11/7/2015 2:50:00 AM
Add a Comment
14. In Which Becca & Andye Argue Over THE REVOLUTION OF IVY by Amy Engel, or The Many Ways Andye Would Like to Throttle Ivy

By Becca & Andye THE REVOLUTION OF IVYby Amy EngelAge Range: 12 and up Paperback: 400 pages Publisher: Entangled: Teen (November 3, 2015)Language: EnglishGoodreads | Amazon Beyond the fence. I am still alive. Barely. My name is Ivy Westfall. I am sixteen years old and a traitor. Three months ago, I was forced to marry the president's son, Bishop Lattimer-as all daughters of the losing side

0 Comments on In Which Becca & Andye Argue Over THE REVOLUTION OF IVY by Amy Engel, or The Many Ways Andye Would Like to Throttle Ivy as of 11/6/2015 1:05:00 AM
Add a Comment
15. Is this Abuse Acceptable? NAMELESS by Jennifer Jenkin

Discussion by Andye NAMELESSby Jennifer JenkinAge Range: 12 and up Grade Level: 7 and upSeries: NamelessPaperback: 336 pagesPublisher: Month9Books, LLC (October 6, 2015)Amazon | Goodreads Four clans have been at war for centuries: the Kodiak, the Raven, the Wolf, and the Ram. Through brutal war tactics, the Ram have dominated the region, inflicting death and destruction on their neighbors.

0 Comments on Is this Abuse Acceptable? NAMELESS by Jennifer Jenkin as of 10/20/2015 10:53:00 PM
Add a Comment
16. Lizard Radio: Review

Do you want to read a dystopian novel with a genderqueer protagonist who may or may not be part lizard? If this sounds like something you didn’t know you wanted, Lizard Radio is the book for you. It’s a hard book to describe. Our protagonist, Kivali – familiarly known as Lizard, was abandoned as a baby  (wrapped in a lizard t-shirt!). Lizard is adopted by Sheila, a human woman who becomes her foster mom and sends her, at the opening of the novel, to CropCamp. The novel takes off from there – CropCamp is all about teaching teenagers how to be good citizens of an oppressive totalitarian government; teens have to attend CropCamp or one of the many other strictly regimented government-run camps and, if they fail, risk being sent to Blight. At CropCamp, a camp focused on developing agricultural workers, group conformity is prized; state-sanctioned heterosexual relationships are supposed to emerge... Read more »

The post Lizard Radio: Review appeared first on The Midnight Garden.

Add a Comment
17. Archivist Wasp

Archivist Wasp. Nicole Kornher-Stace. 2015. Big Mouth House. 268 pages. [Source: Library]

Two words describe Archivist Wasp, in my opinion, confusing and compelling. It's not often a book is equal parts confusing and compelling. Even though I found myself with more questions than answers and lingering confusion, I couldn't stop reading Archivist Wasp. Two more words to describe the book? How about post-apocalyptic and ghosts?

Our heroine is an archivist calling herself "Wasp." I'll be honest, Wasp doesn't have the best of lives, even, when she's not fighting for her life, fighting to stay the Archivist. (She's challenged every year by three Upstarts. That's how she got the job as well, by killing the previous Archivist.) Archivists have a marginally better life than Upstarts. But essentially, no one in this post-apocalyptic world has a happy, easy life. The villagers, well, they have their problems too. But at least they aren't tortured/tormented by the Catchkeep's Priest and brainwashed into a life of hate and violence.

So what does an Archivist do? She hunts ghosts, recording what she learns from each ghost, disposes of ghosts after studying, except, for when a villager wants to buy a ghost for whatever reason. It's a bleak, lonely life. And Wasp does spend a good bit of the book recovering from various injuries.

So the book is about what happens when Wasp meets an out-of-the-ordinary ghost, one that is actually able to communicate with her, one that has a tragic tale to tell and a huge request for her. This nameless ghost (he can't remember his identity, I believe) wants her help in finding another ghost, Catherine Foster. He wants them both to travel to the underworld and search the spirit-world. She agrees, and, in the process learns that life below isn't any more bleak than life above. In fact, in some ways it might even be slightly better. But the search won't be easy. And it will have its own dangers.

The book is about what she learns through this search, it will change her certainly....

Do I understand everything that happened in Archivist Wasp? Not really. The quest was really confusing in places, and, she is thrown in and out of other people's memories. She sees the past on her quest, in bits and pieces, and probably not sequential flashbacks either. She has to piece it all together. And she does a much better job than I did with that!


© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

0 Comments on Archivist Wasp as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
18. THE SCORPION RULES \\ The Sting is Real (but not in a good way)

by Paola THE SCORPION RULESby Erin BowSeries: Prisoners of PeaceHardcover: 384 pagesPublisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books (September 22, 2015)Language: EnglishGoodreads | Amazon In the future, the UN has brought back an ancient way to keep the peace. The children of world leaders are held hostage—if a war begins, they pay with their lives. Greta is the Crown Princess of the Pan Polar

0 Comments on THE SCORPION RULES \\ The Sting is Real (but not in a good way) as of 8/25/2015 12:48:00 AM
Add a Comment
19. TRACKED by Jenny Martin

by Andye TRACKEDby Jenny MartinAge Range: 12 and up Grade Level: 7 and upHardcover: 400 pagesPublisher: Dial Books (May 5, 2015)Goodreads | Amazon The Fast and the Furious gets a futuristic twist in this action-packed debut! On corporately controlled Castra, rally racing is a high-stakes game that seventeen-year-old Phoebe Van Zant knows all too well. Phee’s legendary racer father

0 Comments on TRACKED by Jenny Martin as of 4/21/2015 2:37:00 AM
Add a Comment
20. A Little Hate Mail...

From Becca THE MEMORY KEYby Liana LiuHardcover: 368 pagesPublisher: HarperTeen (March 3, 2015)Language: EnglishGoodreads | Amazon Lora Mint is determined not to forget. Though her mother's been dead for five years, Lora struggles to remember every detail about her—most important, the specific events that occurred the night she sped off in her car, never to return. But in a world ravaged by

0 Comments on A Little Hate Mail... as of 4/22/2015 1:13:00 AM
Add a Comment
21. Nil Unlocked by Lynne Matson

Review by Meghann Title: Nil Unlocked Series: Nil #2Author: Lynne MatsonPublisher: Henry Holt and Co., an imprint of MacmillanGenre: Young Adult Fiction - Science Fiction, DystopianRelease Date: May 12, 2015Source: ARC provided by the publisher, opinions are honest and my own. On the island of Nil, the rules are set. You have exactly 365 days to escape—or you die. Rives is now the

0 Comments on Nil Unlocked by Lynne Matson as of 5/15/2015 11:01:00 PM
Add a Comment
22. Rook (2015)

Rook. Sharon Cameron. 2015. Scholastic. 464 pages. [Source: Review copy]

The heavy blade hung high above the prisoners, glinting against the stars, and then the Razor came down, a wedge of falling darkness cutting through the torchlight. One solid thump, and four more heads had been shaved from their bodies. The mob around the scaffold roared, a sudden deluge of cheers and mockery that broke like a wave against the viewing box, where the officials of the Sunken City watched from velvet chairs. The noise gushed on, over the coffins, around bare and booted feet crowding thick across the flagstones, pouring down the drains and into the deep tunnels beneath the prison yard like filth overflowing the street gutters. The city was bloodthirsty tonight.

If you love The Scarlet Pimpernel, Rook may appeal to you. Though I can't promise you'll love of it, of course. Rook is a loose retelling of The Scarlet Pimpernel. It's not set in France and England, but in the "Sunken City" and the "Commonwealth." Also, it's not historical fiction set during the days of the French Revolution, but, is set at least eight hundred years in the future. Perhaps a love of dystopia would add to the book's appeal. But for those readers who happen to love both, well, this one has a great premise.

Did I LOVE everything about Rook? I'll be honest, I didn't LOVE, LOVE, LOVE every little thing about it. I thought, however, that it worked more often than not. That overall, it was an enjoyable, mostly compelling romantic adventure.

Sophia Bellamy is the heroine of Rook. She keeps herself very busy, mainly by saving as many as she can from the Razor, all undercover, of course. Her father has arranged a marriage for her, not that he's concerned with her happiness or her future. But a good marriage will bring in enough money to pay off his debts and keep the property out of the hands of the Commonwealth. I don't often want to boo, hiss characters, but I must say that I was oh-so-tempted here. For he not only hurts his daughter, but, his son, as well by his words and actions. Rene Hasard has his own reasons for wanting the marriage.... Both Rene and Sophia have a few secrets they'd like to keep secret until they know the other person much, much better.

One thing, however, is obvious. Rene's cousin, Albert LeBlanc, is TROUBLE for Sophia. For it is his main goal in life to find the Red Rook...and bring "him" to justice.

Action, adventure, intrigue, betrayal, drama, and ROMANCE. I wouldn't mind a good adaptation of this one!

Here's how Scarlet Pimpernel begins so that you can compare:
A surging, seething, murmuring crowd of beings that are human only in name, for to the eye and ear they seem naught but savage creatures, animated by vile passions and by the lust of vengeance and of hate. The hour, some little time before sunset, and the place, the West Barricade, at the very spot where, a decade later, a proud tyrant raised an undying monument to the nation's glory and his own vanity.
During the greater part of the day the guillotine had been kept busy at its ghastly work: all that France had boasted of in the past centuries, of ancient names, and blue blood, had paid toll to her desire for liberty and for fraternity. The carnage had only ceased at this late hour of the day because there were other more interesting sights for the people to witness, a little while before the final closing of the barricades for the night.
And so the crowd rushed away from the Place de la Greve and made for the various barricades in order to watch this interesting and amusing sight.
It was to be seen every day, for those aristos were such fools! They were traitors to the people of course, all of them, men, women, and children, who happened to be descendants of the great men who since the Crusades had made the glory of France: her old NOBLESSE. Their ancestors had oppressed the people, had crushed them under the scarlet heels of their dainty buckled shoes, and now the people had become the rulers of France and crushed their former masters—not beneath their heel, for they went shoeless mostly in these days—but a more effectual weight, the knife of the guillotine.
And daily, hourly, the hideous instrument of torture claimed its many victims—old men, young women, tiny children until the day when it would finally demand the head of a King and of a beautiful young Queen.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

0 Comments on Rook (2015) as of 5/28/2015 3:15:00 PM
Add a Comment
23. Artist of the Day: Wakana Yamazaki

Discover the work of Wakana Yamazaki, Cartoon Brew's Artist of the Day!

0 Comments on Artist of the Day: Wakana Yamazaki as of 6/24/2015 7:40:00 PM
Add a Comment
24. MATERIAL GIRLS by Elaine Dimopoulos // This needs to be a TV show!

Review by Paola  MATERIAL GIRLSby Elaine DimopoulosHardcover: 336 pagesPublisher: HMH Books for Young Readers (May 5, 2015)Language: EnglishGoodreads | Amazon In Marla Klein and Ivy Wilde’s world, teens are the gatekeepers of culture. A top fashion label employs sixteen-year-old Marla to dictate hot new clothing trends, while Ivy, a teen pop star, popularizes the garments that Marla approves.

0 Comments on MATERIAL GIRLS by Elaine Dimopoulos // This needs to be a TV show! as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment
25. An Ember in the Ashes (2015)

An Ember in the Ashes. Sabaa Tahir. 2015. Penguin. 446 pages. [Source: Library]

I definitely enjoyed reading Sabaa Tahir's An Ember in the Ashes. This young adult fantasy is a quick, compelling read with two narrators. Laia is a slave from the conquered Scholars tribe. Elias is a Mask, a soldier from the dominant (conquering) Martials tribe. The chapters alternate points of view. Which is good and bad. Good in that both narrators have action-packed stories that sometimes happen to collide. Bad in that the action is interrupted oh-so-often. And when you're all caught up in the moment, the last thing you want to do is switch narrators! Even if you know that in just a page or two you'll be swept right back up again. But at least both stories are fast-paced and action-packed. It could be a lot worse.

So. The world building is interesting. And the world-building is gradual in a way. You keep learning more about the world as the plot unfolds. It is never so unsettling that you're completely confused. But you know that the world is unique from the start.

So what is this one about? Laia turns to the rebel resistance when her brother is arrested and put in prison. She has no spy-skills to speak of, but, she's determined to do whatever it takes, no matter how hard, no matter how risky, to free him. She's placed as a spy within Blackcliff, the soldier-school, and her mistress is cruel. (She's also the Commandant.)

Elias is planning an escape of his own. He may have trained as a soldier--as a mask--but he's never bonded with his mask. He doesn't see himself as a cruel, heartless soldier who rapes and kills and follows orders. But he hesitates at the last minute, and decides to become an Aspirant instead. There were four named. Two will die. One will be the new emperor. One will take an oath to serve the new emperor until death. And the four trials will be more challenging, more risky, than anything he's ever faced before.

Both Elias and Laia are absolutely miserable and are facing huge challenges daily...

I liked it because sometimes you just need an intense, compelling read.

© 2015 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

0 Comments on An Ember in the Ashes (2015) as of 1/1/1900
Add a Comment

View Next 25 Posts