Tuesday, September 25, 2007


Jinx by Meg Cabot

Jinx is the story of a girl who has left rural Iowa for the big city, New York. Jean "Jinx" Honeychurch has come to live with her aunt and uncle and their three kids. Right away things don't start off well for Jean. I mean, when your nickname is Jinx, how could they?

Jinx has nothing but bad luck. When she arrives in New York no one is waiting for her at the airport, she falls down some stairs, and finds out that her cousin hates her! Tori, her cousin, has turned totally goth since she saw her five years ago. Not only does she wear all black, but she does drugs too!

Jean has trouble fitting in, not only because she is a preacher's daughter from Iowa who is stricken with permanent bad luck, but because she also has a secret past. You see, Jean's grandmother has told her and Tori that one of them might be a witch. A prophecy from a great-great-great-great grandmother says that her granddaughter's granddaughter will be a witch.

This book is full of mystery and fun events. It is the perfect read for anyone who has felt like they just didn't fit in. I hope that Cabot creates a sequel.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The Looking Glass Wars

The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor

I will admit this right out, I have never read Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Being a child of the eighties, I fell into the Disney trap. Why read the book, when you watch the cartoon version? I know, I know, I have changed my ways. I know read the book before I see the movie. That being said, I like the story of Alice even if I had only seen the movie.

Although, I like Alice, I love Alyss, Frank Beddor's main character. Alyss is the true Alyss Heart, the one that Alice in Wonderland is about. When she travelled to our world to escape her evil Aunt Redd, she was mistakenly called "Alice." She was also done the travesty of having her life story changed by Charles Dodgson (aka Lewis Carroll).

Mr. Dodgson got everything wrong. The "Mad Hatter" is not a stupid tea drinking man, but a member of the Millinery, the elite squad sworn to protect Princess Alyss. The "Cheshire Cat" is really an assassin who help Redd take over Wonderland and kill Alyss's parents. The "White Rabbit" is not a rabbit at all, but Bibwit Harte, Alyss's tutor.

In this first book of a trilogy, Alyss must return to Wonderland and defeat her evil Aunt Redd in order to save her home and her friends. She must also deal with life as an ordinary human. I suggest this book for everyone, even if you haven't read Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Maybe, Disney will turn this into a movie too. :)

The Water Mirror

The Water Mirror by Kai Meyer

I should start this entry off by saying that I almost didn't post this blog entry. I usually do not like to write about books I did not like, but in the sense of fairness I decided I should. This book is one of the worst YA fantasy books I have ever read!

I found the plot a contrast of Pulman's The Golden Compass and Funke's The Thief Lord, both very well written books in my opinion. This book however, did not live up to the reputation of either book.

The book had an interesting fantasy concept to it, magic mirrors, multiple dimensions, living stone lions, etc. However, the plot was both boring and complicated at the same time. The characters didn't seem very flushed out and the character of the Flowing Queen was more annoying to me than anything else.

So much great potential is lost in this book. Perhaps it is the fact that this was originally a German book, that makes it such a lackluster American read. In any case, I could barely get through it (I found myself falling asleep when I wasn't even tired). I would NOT recommend this book to lovers of good YA fantasy novels.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Ruby Parker Hits the Small Time

Ruby Parker Hits the Small Time by Rowan Coleman

At age thirteen Ruby Parker is facing unemployment. You see, Ruby is one of the stars of Britain's top soap, Kensington Heights. She plays Angel, a role she has had since she was six!! Now, the producers might be giving her the sack, all because she is going through "an awkward phase."

If that is not bad enough; Ruby's parents are splitting up. She doesn't know what to do. What happens when the role model to thousands of girls, suddenly has to take her own advice?

I found this book hilarious. It was a pretty quick read. The only downside to it is the ending. Everything seems to tie itself up pretty quickly. There is an unrealistic relationship with the school bully and everything seems to suddenly work itself out. However, there is a nice twist ending.

Overall, I would recommend this book to girls in middle school (junior high). I think that they would be able to relate to Ruby and enjoy learning about her life. There is also the added touch of the British theme, which is fun for American readers.

Saturday, September 1, 2007

I'd Tell You I Love You, but Then I'd Have to Kill You

I'd Tell You I Love You, but Then I'd Have to Kill You by Ally Carter

So, I've already told you all about teenage spy Alex Rider (Stormbreaker, Point Blank), now I have a new spy to introduce you to, Cammie Morgan. Cammie goes to an elite school for geniuses called Gallagher Academy. Her mother happens to be the headmistress and a former spy.

Cammie’s school is a training ground for future female spies (no boys allowed!!!). The surrounding town folk believe the school is nothing more than a rich girls’ boarding school. Cammie doesn’t care much about what these people think, until a routine training mission goes wrong.

Cammie, the Chameleon, is spotted by a local teenage boy. How did he see her, when no one else can? And, why does Cammie feel so attracted to him?

Now, it is up to Cammie and her friends to pull-off the biggest mission of their careers so far, dating. It will take all of the evapopaper, hacking codes, and listening devices they have to decode the most confusing thing in existence, the teenage boy.

To find out if Cammie and her girlfriends succeed, or if they are caught by her mom and tortured, you will have to read, I’d Tell You I Love You, but Then I’d Have to Kill You by Ally Carter.