Review Crew - book reviews by teens, for teens

Cover of the book Wonder
Palacio, R. J.
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Wonder is about a boy with Treacher Collin Syndrome (TCS) who goes through the adventures of a sixth grader. To everyone else, this may be just the first day of school. But to Auggie Pullman, this is the first day in a public school. Before sixth grade, he was homeschooled. Through the ups and downs in of middle school, Auggie Pullman manages to get through it, make new friends, and shows he doesn't care what they think or say. I would recommend this book to anyone looking for an emotion pulling book or just a good and fast read. I loved this book. There was never a dull moment. I couldn't put this book down for a second. Whenever someone asked me for a good recommendation, this was first on the list. This book was one of the best books I have ever read.

Reviewer's Name: Mackenzie H.
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
Sáenz, Benjamin
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Aristotle is 15 and has no friends. One day at the pool Aristotle metDante, Dante offered to teach Aristotle how to swim. After swimming they became fast friends. They laughed and joked together. Then one day Dante saw a bird in the middle of the road with a broken wing then picked it up. Dante stood in the middle of the road and didn't notice the car coming. The next thing Aristotle remembered was waking up in the hospital. Then Aristotle's parents told him that he pushed Dante out of the way. After the accident
Aristotle learns that Dante's family is moving to Chicago for the school year, for Dante's dads job. They wrote and they called each other. In one letter Dante told Aristotle that Dante would rather kiss boys than girls. Aristotle didn't think much of it till 4 people beat up Dante so bad he has to go to the hospital. In the end they go out in the desert and Aristotle realizes something with help from his dad. The ending was quite different then what I expected. The book is happy and sad. I recommend this book to any one who likes to have a good cry. It is really good. I also recommend the authors other books.

Reviewer's Name: Jaime
Awards:
The Undefeated
Sheinkin, Steve
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

Undefeated is about a Native American named Jim Thorpe who is an amazing athlete and becomes an Olympic medalist. Him and his coach, Pop Warner create an unforgettable team with the legendary Carlisle Indian Football Team. Then Carlisle Indian Football Team was known for having the most wins in 1907. The team goes through an adventure of close games, injuries, and amazing plays.nI really liked this book. I couldn't put this book down for a second. I would recommend this book to anyone who likes Native American history or likes sports. This book also shows some of the plays the Carlisle Team played.

Reviewer's Name: Mackenzie
Awards:
The Reminders
Emmich, Val
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

The Reminders is about Joan Lennon Sulley and a ten-year old girl and Gavin Winters a 30-year old actor. Gavin's partner Sydney just had just died and Gavin is going through a rough time. So Gavin goes to live with Joan and her family. Joan's mom was Sydney's friend and Gavin went to stay with them to get away from the Reminders. The only problem is the Joan has HSAM which means she has a highly superior autobiographical memory so she remembers everything. So as a deal Joan promises to tell Gavin of all her memories of Gavin if he helps her write a song for a singer-songwriter contest. Gavin finds out things about Sydney he didn't know. It turns out that he had come to New Jersey for a different reason then what he told Gavin. So he investigates that. Joan tries to make the song to win the contest. Once they finish the song her dad has to close down the studio because he can't work in it anymore.

The reason I liked this book was because it reminded me of other books I've read and loved. One reason I didn't like it that much was that Sydney had to die because according to Joan's memories he seemed like a good man. This book wasn't very funny but it made up for it by being touching and moving. Another thing I like about the book was the characters seemed so real like I was there with them and part of the story.

Reviewer's Name: Kaitlyn
No Judgments
Cabot, Meg
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Sabrina Beckham moves to a little island in the Florida Keys. She moves to Little Bridge because she had just gone through a rough time. She moved to the island to take a break from the busy life of living in New York. After 3 months of living their a category hurricane is coming. After the hurricane Sabrina and her friend Drew go out to take care and feed all the pets of the people who evacuated and couldn't come back, because the bridge to the main land got washed out. The book ends with a happy ending and everything in the hurricane worked out.

The one reason I picked this book was because it was one of the books by Meg Cabot I hadn't read. I really like her other books. After reading the book I thought about what I thought the way it would end, but the ending was different then I thought. The book was really good and I recommend it to any one who doesn't know what to read.

Reviewer's Name: Jaime
Bloom
Oppel, Kenneth
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

This book is kind of like an apocalypse story, but instead of zombies, it's plants. Now, I know that sounds boring, but these plants, they are carnivorous, they kill people, and they are scary. They come unexpectedly, and soon, they are all over the world. People are dropping like flies, and nobody knows how to stop it. But three kids on Salt Spring Island may have the answers people need. For some reason, they are not affected by the sleepy gas the plants let off, or the acid they use to digest their prey. How can these three teenagers save the world? And how are they connected?

I really enjoyed this book, even though, to be truthful, it scared me a little bit at times. It was an interesting take on the apocalypse, and I loved seeing it play out. This book is part of a series, one that I am still reading, and I am already looking forward to the next one! This book has hardly any swearing in it, and plenty of action. I shouldn't give too much away, but I'll tell you this: I never though plants could be so scary! I hope you enjoy this book

Reviewer's Name: Marian
Careless Whiskers
James, Miranda
3 stars = Pretty Good
Review:

Careless Whiskers is the twelfth book in the Cat in the Stacks Mysteries. It takes place in Athena College in Athena, Mississippi where Charlie Harris' daughter and son in law, teachers of theater at the college, are putting on a production of Careless Whispers, starring Luke Lombardi a semi-famous actor who has a bad relationship with Charlie's daughter Laura. Following over the top pranks on Luke, he is murdered on opening night in the middle of the performance, and his co-star Laura is the prime suspect. Charlie needs to find out who would go to such extreme lengths so he can prove his daughter's innocence. The book is pretty good but it can be a little slow in parts.

Reviewer's Name: Emily
Genres:
The Silence of the Library
James, Miranda
3 stars = Pretty Good
Review:

The Silence of the Library is the fifth book in the mystery series "The Cat in the Stacks Mysteries". It takes place in the town of Athena in Mississippi, where Charlie Harris volunteers at the local public library. The library is holding exhibit to honor mystery authors of old books with female detectives, especially Electra Barnes Cartwright, the author of the Veronica Thane mysteries. When a avid collector of the Veronica Thane mysteries is murdered leading up to the exhibition, the police must discover who will stop at nothing, not even murder, to get a hold of one of the rare Veronica Thane books. The Silence of the Library is a good mystery story but is a little predictable in parts and can be slow in others.

Reviewer's Name: Emily
Genres:
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
Rowling, J.K.
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

This book trails Harry Potter, who is visited by a group of wizards and then goes to Sirius Black’s house, which is the headquarters of the Order of the Phoenix. The Order of the Phoenix is a group of wizards, led by Hogwarts headmaster Dumbledore himself. This group is dedicated to making sure that Voldemort never rises to power ever again. But the Order has to operate in secrecy under the radar of the Ministry of Magic.

This novel is quite capable of giving you the chills, like in one part Harry is forced to write with the Black Quill, an invention of the gruesome Dolores Umbridge. The Black Quill is a torture device, because it does not require ink, it writes with the blood of the person who’s using it. This quill will scar the back of your hand, and if you continuously keep using it, the back of your hand will have a permanent scar.

But this book has its share of adventure too, like in one part, Harry Potter has to race to the Ministry of Magic headquarters, but Harry doesn't take a car, he takes a Thestrals which is just a flying horse. Harry Potter also uses the power of teleportation by teleporting around, fireplace to fireplace.

With a bunch of cliffhangers, this book is definitely a good read. So I'm going to go with 4/5 stars for Harry Potter & The Order Of the Phoenix.

Reviewer's Name: Gurman
Genres:
The Merciful Crow
Owen, Margaret
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

4 Stars(Some Weird Stuff)

Warning: There is some non PG content.

What I like about this book is that its very real. Even though it is fantasy, it has elements in it that make it seem like the people were sucked into this book from real life. The way that the Crows were treated is realistic, since they are in the lowest Caste. I appreciated how hard the author worked at this to make it almost perfect. The one thing that I didn’t like about this book is how it just throws every single detail there is at you. There is no gradual introduction to this book.

Reviewer's Name: Ethan W.
Genres:
Six Cats a Slayin'
James, Miranda
2 stars = Meh
Review:

Six Cats a Slayin' is the tenth book in the Cat in the Stacks Mystery series. Charlie Harris is preparing for the holidays in Athena, Mississippi when a new neighbor moves in across the street and seems to bring trouble with her. At a holiday party a few days later she is murdered and everyone there is a suspect. To top it all off Charlie finds a box of kittens at his front door with a note asking him to help with the kittens. Charlie needs to find the murderer and the owner of the six kittens. This book is okay but it can be pretty slow in parts and isn't very entertaining.

Reviewer's Name: Emily S.
Genres:
Arsenic and Old Books
James, Miranda
3 stars = Pretty Good
Review:

Arsenic and Old Books is the sixth book in the Cat in the Stacks Mystery series. Charlie Harris is a librarian at the Athena College Library in Athena, Mississippi. The mayor of Athena, Lucinda Long has donated a set of Civil War diaries to the library's archive. The books soon become a problem when many people, including a history professor and two opponents in the campaign for state senate, go head to head to gain access to the books. The book is pretty good but it could use a few more plot twists as it can be slow in parts.

Reviewer's Name: Emily S.
Genres:
Code Talker
Bruchac, Joseph
3 stars = Pretty Good
Review:

Code Talker is about a Navajo (Native American) who uses his language to help win the war. It is World War Two and the United States of America is fighting against Japan. Every code the Americans have used to send secret information has been cracked by the Japanese. The Navajo language is one of the hardest languages to learn. The Americans, knowing that, chose Navajos to make a secret code to use at war. Ned Begay (the Navajo) and his friends risk their lives, going into war, making their own secret code, and saving millions of American lives.

I really liked this book. There were some slow parts of the book where I got a bit bored. There were other parts where I couldn't put the book down. I would recommend this book to people who like war books. This book has juicy details and is based off of a true story.

Reviewer's Name: Mackenzie H.
Genres:
Schooled
Korman, Gordon
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

Cap Anderson has been living on a farm with his hippie grandmother. He has never been to a public school and he does not know many everyday things such as what a TV is or how to act in a public setting. When his grandmother has an accident and is now staying at the hospital, Cap moves in with a guidance councilor and her daughter. He begins to go to a public middle school where big man on campus: Zach Powers uses Cap's strangeness to his advantage by nominating Cap for class president as a joke, but that plan soon backfires as Cap becomes more popular.

This book reminded me of Jerry Spinelli's Star Girl, but with a twist. School is my favorite book by Gordon Korman because the plot is so funny and unbelievable, but it teaches a valuable lesson about being who you are and not changing for people. The book goes by really quickly and I like the way that Korman writes the story in different perspectives. This is a really good book and I think it is definitely one to try if you like Stargirl.

Reviewer's Name: Emma M.
Awards:
Genres:
The Raven Boys
Stiefvater, Maggie
4 stars = Really Good
Review:

The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater tells the story of Blue, a teenage girl in a family of psychics. Blue doesn’t have the family gift, but on St. Mark’s Eve she sees a phantom boy--Gansey, one of the boys who attends Aglionby Academy. As a non-psychic, there are only two reasons Blue would see someone: she either kills or falls in love with him sometime in the course of the next year. One other little problem: Blue has been told her whole life that she’ll kill her true love with a kiss. Despite this, Blue still finds herself drawn in by Gansey and his world of the Raven Boys at Aglionby Academy. It only took me a day to finish The Raven Boys, proof it’s a good page turner. The plot pulled me in and left me wanting to read the second book in the series. I’ve read better books this year, but it’s by no means bad or even close to the worst book I’ve picked up in 2020. I don’t really have anything negative to say about this book, so if you’re considering reading it, just go for it.

Reviewer's Name: Cora G.
Matilda
Dahl, Roald
3 stars = Pretty Good
Review:

Roald Dahl's Matilda, is a good short read. The concept of a heroine rising to action is decently intriguing. However, the book feels very lackluster with its characters being so one dimensional. While the characters are great for its intended audience, creating some depth to characters can always benefit a novel. Overall, the book is great for younger reader and those looking for a short book that has a lot of fun packed into it.

Reviewer's Name: Steven
Awards:
The Betrothed
Cass, Kiera
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

The Betrothed is set in a fantasy kingdom called Coroa where Hollis Bright, a noble, is trying to catch the king's eye and become the next Queen of Coroa. The King soon picks her, and Hollis is shoved into this new lifestyle as future queen, which becomes a lot more extravagant and challenging than she first thought. The King of Isolten is soon to be visiting Coroa, and Hollis uses this to prove that she can be queen. That is, until Isolten refugees comes to Coroa seeking saftey, her plan stops when she meets them and Hollis leaarns that being future queen is not her ideal future.

I do not enjoy romance novel's very much, but I really liked this one. Cass mixes many plots together to create this really cool story. It has romance, action, and mystery. This book was really well written and I soon became connected to Hollis and the other characters when the story began. The book left off at a very suspenseful point and I hope there will be second book. This book is somewhat different from the other books the author has written such as The Selection, but if you are a fan of Casses books, or like
princessy, fairy tale type books, then I would give this a try.

Reviewer's Name: Emma
Genres:
 The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes
Collins, Suzanne
3 stars = Pretty Good
Review:

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins is a prequel to the Hunger Games trilogy, but instead of following Katniss it takes the perspective of a much younger President Coriolanus Snow. It’s the 10th annual Hunger Games, and this year students from the Capitol’s Academy will serve as mentors for the tributes. Coriolanus is assigned Lucy Gray, the female tribute from District 12. What starts as ambition to win a spot at the University quickly evolves as the Games approach closer. While it was a decently good read, I couldn’t help thinking as I read it that it did not need to be written. President Snow’s perspective wasn’t really one I thought I would read or needed to. However, it was interesting to see his opinions/outlook when he was young and to witness the bitterness within him along with his loyalty to the Capitol. Seeing the evolution of the games and small nods to the Hunger Games trilogy was also a nice touch. I really liked the first half of the book, but the second half was kind of boring, and I wasn’t very invested in the characters at that point. It’s definitely nothing compared to the Hunger Games, but it wasn’t all bad either.

Reviewer's Name: Cora
American Sniper: The Autobiography of the Most Lethal Sniper in U.S. Military History
Kyle, Chris
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

This book is phenomenal! American Sniper is the autobiography of Chris Kyle, a U.S. Navy SEAL and the most effective sniper in United States military history. Chris Kyle writes honestly about the brutality and pain of war and the toll it took on him and his family. This book is absolutely captivating and unforgettable. Everyone who reads this book will become appreciative of the United States Armed Forces and will gain a glimpse of their courage on and off the battlefield. I highly recommend this book for everyone.

Reviewer's Name: John
The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Teens
Covey, Sean
5 stars = Bohemian Rhapsody Awesome!
Review:

The Seven Habits remade!

6 stars. (This helped me a LOT with my state of mind ☺)

I loved seven habits because it helped me see that a lot of the stuff that we blame on others is actually the fault of ourselves, and it taught me to be kind to both myself and others. I highly recommend Seven Habits for Teens to anyone who is having a tough time. It taught me to have a clearer mind, a better outlook, and to trust myself. Although it is very hard to implement these changes in yourself, it helps you be so much better. Anyone can read this book and feel better about themselves if they follow the book's
instructions. If you don’t read this book, then it’s your loss.

Reviewer's Name: Ethan

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