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Welcome to the book blog, featuring reviews for teens from InfoSoup librarians and users!

Reviews by Elizabeth: (Seymour) Muehl Public Library

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Author: Pete Hautman

I was enamored of Shayne, a vigilante type/djab.I think high school kids would be, too. He comes to town and begins to "take care of business". He even confesses to the police. And then he disappears. However, he has left his imprint and influence behind.

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Author: Elizabeth Eulberg

This was a delight! This is a modern version of 'Pride and Prejudice' set in a fancy prep school on the east coast. Eulberg does an entertaining job of assigning modern characters to the "originals" and she hits both the moods and the class system right on. Terrific!

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Author: Elizabeth Eulberg

Cute! I think it is good for the age range to have a tale about girl empowerment and how friendships are a very important thing to cultivate. The high school stress on dating (is this true?) is demystified. The context of Penny Lane's parents' love of the Beatles was fun.

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Title: Karma
Author: Cathy Ostlere

First of all, adored the style of the book. It is written as a series of diary entries. Also, loved the hopeful ending which reflected the ability of love to surpass so many challenges. This book has tough content. Maya is visiting New Delhi, India, with her father. They are taking the ashes of her mother there. Her mother died tragically and Maya is coming to terms with that. She was raised in Canada so she has trepidations about this trip. They are well-founded since shortly after reaching India she discovers that she is betrothed! On top of that there is a sudden revolution and her dad is caught up in it because of his religion. Maya is separated from her dad and then witnesses a most horrific sight which leaves her dumbstruck. She is taken in by a family but treated horribly by their neighbors. Finally, she gets her voice back. And there is more important plot lines of her relationship with the son in the family, Sandeep. This is an amazing story with layer upon layer of mystification with cultural differences. I learned a lot from this book.

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Author: Iain Lawrence

I found this treasure of an audio in our collection at the library. The reader (Ed Sala) had such an interesting style of presentation with meaningful pauses and breaks in his narration. The story is about a mom, dad, son, and daughter living in isolation on an island off the Western coast of Canada. We are introduced to how they spend their days, ("Work first, play later."), their months, and their years. All four characters deal with the loneliness in different ways. Squid (the daughter) looks forward to leaving the island some day. Alistair (the son) keeps diaries and plays the flute in attempts to stay sane. Hannah (the mother) does her daily chores and works with the lessons for her children. And Murray (the patriarch and lighthouse keeper) lords over all. (To be fair, he was there first!).

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Title: Flipped
Author: Wendelin Van Draanen

A sweet book about friendship and love. Bryce and Juli live across the street from each other and attend the same school. This book is about how they learn about each other's families, each other's friends, and what is really important. BTW, the movie is terrific, too!

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Author: Mick Cochrane

I have a new found understanding of baseball after reading this book. Molly's dad died in a car accident and Molly enjoyed playing baseball with him. She tries out for the baseball team at her school and she shows the coach her specialty: the knuckleball. This particular pitch was very interesting to learn about! Also, the legacy of women and/or the knuckleball in baseball history was enlightening. Via baseball and the confidence she gains from her gift, Molly works through the emotion of grief over losing her father. This book is very well written and the characters are engaging. The ending line is wonderful!

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Author: Henry Neff

Wonderful--I loved the main character. I loved the initial Chicago setting because I was familiar with exactly what was described. I loved the world of fantasy that was created at Rowan Academy particularly the animals. I liked how fast the plot kept moving. I liked how there are so many questions left unanswered in anticipation of the next book. Thank you to my sixth grade patron, Lauren, who did an amazing book talk to me about it. She was right!