Archive for May, 2011


A huge trend in YA lit right now is dystopian themed stories. This book is a kick-butt example of the best out there right now, hence it’s my pick for this week’s review!

book cover of "The Knife of Never Letting Go" by Patrick Ness

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

Summary:

Todd Hewitt is the last boy left in Prentisstown. There are no other children, and no women at all. Only 142 men, Todd, and his dog Manchee. In 30 days Todd will become a man, but he is starting to sense that maybe something strange is going on in town. Aside, of course, from the obvious lack of women and children, oh and the fact that everyone’s thoughts can be heard all the time. ALL of their thoughts, ALL of the time. Needless to say, it gets pretty noisy in Prentisstown.

Very quickly Todd’s world is blown apart. He is forced to run away from his home by a hoarde of violent and angry Prentisstown men and heads into the wilderness without a clue as to where to go or how he will get there. With only Manchee for company, Todd’s run for his life very quickly forces him to see the world as it truly is, rather than how he had always thought it was… and what he and Manchee find is not pretty.

Review:

This book grabbed me by the face and didn’t let go until I had finished it. Twice I had to put it down and walk away because I was so shocked/upset, but within minutes I was back… dying to know what happened next. Totally not for the faint-of-heart, this is a book that if you start it at 9pm you will be up until 3am with your flashlight on under the covers.

Patrick Ness writes this book in a crazy, almost punctuation-free slang. Todd very quickly has a voice inside your head thanks to how unique the writing is; but, unlike some books with lots of slang, I didn’t find it hard to understand at all. I found that you could hear Todd and the other characters talking very clearly while you were reading, and that their voices were very unique. Definitely one of my favourite parts of the book.

I’m not normally a huge thrill-seeker in my reading, but this is one adrenaline ride I will be pushing at people for years to come!! Be prepared to laugh, cry, rage and be triumphant; not necessarily in that order and sometimes almost all at once. But whatever you do, you’d best hang on to your shorts people, and get reading!

Rating: 5 of 5 star rating

I give this book 5 out of 5 stars for being, quite frankly, amazeballs. Books that make me cry don’t usually get rated highly… mostly because crying makes me look like a mess and my nose run. Ugh. Never a good thing in my view. But this one managed to escape this curse. So read it. NOW! 🙂

How to get this book:

  1. e-audiobook
  2. e-book

Remember ladies and germs*, you will need your library card to access these online jobbies. If you don’t dig the online/downloadable formats, just call (705-645-4171), email or come on by and we’ll get it in for you from another library. This will also require a library card. Perhaps you should get one of those. Just sayin’.

*germs = my cute way of saying gentlemen. No disrespect intended. I swear.

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So I’ve decided that I’m going to occasionally drop you some classic YA lit. And by classic, I mean I read it when I was YA-age appropriate or maybe my babysitter did back in the day. I will obvs have warm fuzzy feelings about it, and this is why I’m sharing. B/c when you have warm-fuzzies about something you just want the whole world to know.

Our 1st official Wayback Playback?

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

Summary:

Meg Murray feels like a freak. With her glasses, braces and mousey-brown hair; combined with her temper and being stuck in the lowest learning group in her class, Meg sticks out at school. And at home, Meg is faced with a brilliant and beautiful scientist mother, popular and athletic twin brothers and a father, who she loved more than anything, who has been missing for years. The only person who seems to understand her is her genius baby brother, Charles Wallace. But he’s only 5, as well as being a freak like her, so what can he really do to help?

When a strange woman stops by in the middle of the night, Meg and Charles Wallace’s world is turned upside down. Joined by one of the most popular boys in Meg’s class, Calvin O’Keefe, they are sent on a journey beyond imagining… beyond this world.

Review:

So like I said above, I’m sharing this book because I loved it years ago. And I still love it. It’s a small book, my copy has 190 pages, but this makes it no less exciting and mighty.

I would say that everyone, despite their IQ, feels like Meg at one time or another. And Madeleine L’Engle does such a fabulous job of telling us a story, and making Meg’s experience feel real. She contrasts this reality with an epic story of adventure and fantasy, but it feels almost possible the way she tells it.

There are so many things that I would love to say about this book, but they would spoil the story. So I’m going to restrain myself! And you are just going to have to trust me. 🙂

If you’re anything like me, you will want to read the next book in the series to find out what happens to this extraordinary cast of characters. Take a look at the list below to find out about what to read next!

Rating: 4 out of 5 star rating

I give this book a solid 4 stars. I read this book when I was younger, and because of that there is such a wonderful feeling of coming home again every time I read it. I also think that Madeleine L’Engle was a brilliant writer, and that is why her works have stood the test of time. Book love, ladies and gents… isn’t it the greatest? You can discover new reasons to love a book and things you missed with every reading, but it still feels like a friend.

How to get this book:

  1. book – don’t be offended that you have to go to the Children’s Dept to get this book. It’s just b/c they didn’t have the YA category back when it was written. True story.
  2. book on tape (Yes, that’s cassette tape. What?)
  3. e-audiobook

Like I said, if you want more you can have it! This is book 1 of the ‘Time Quartet’ series. Next up is:

Madeleine L’Engle also wrote these books which connect to the series as well:

  • The Arm of the Starfish
  • Dragons in the Waters
  • A House Like a Lotus
  • An Acceptable Time

So we only have one of the other titles, but I will be seeing if we can’t get the others very soon. Not having every book in a series irks the heck out of me. How about you? As usual though, we can get these books from other libraries. 🙂 *Update, we’ve got more of the series in now! Check out the links above*

Graphic novel fan? Have no fear, an adaptation is in the works.

There was also a movie, but I refuse to link to the trailer. Mostly because it looks lamesauce. And I don’t want you to associate that lamesauce with the book. But I know you can google, so I’m sure if you want to see it badly enough, you’ll find it. 😉

In case you have been out of touch with the world since 2009, this review will feature this little book here.

book cover of "The Hunger Games" by Suzanne Collins

Maybe you’ve heard of it??? If not, don’t worry, I’m going to tell you all about it! (With as few spoilers as possible. Promise.)

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Summary:

Katniss Everdeen is 16 and lives with her mother and younger sister in Panem’s District 12, aka the Seam. (Panem was founded in the ruins of what we call North America and is divided into 12 districts and one capitol territory.) They live in poverty, surviving on what Katniss and her friend Gale bring home from their dangerous and illegal hunting trips in the forest outside the Seam.

The morning we meet Katniss is a holiday of sorts in Panem. Called the reaping, it begins the Games; a huge televised event held every year in Panem pitting two children from each district against each other in a fight to the death. The winner of the Games each year is given fabulous riches and lives in luxury for the rest of their lives. Unfortunately, to manage this they have to survive the unimaginable horrors of the Games.

At this year’s reaping Katniss’s sister, Prim, is the first person, or tribute, picked in District 12 to compete in the Games. Not willing to let her sister die in the Games, Katniss volunteers herself and begins the terrifying journey to the Capitol where the Games are held each year.

Review:

I LOVED this book. It moves so quickly, the story just pulls you from chapter to chapter. *Be warned, this might not be a good book to start before bed. You won’t want to sleep!* Katniss is a really well written character; and, while I certainly didn’t agree with all of her decisions as the story went forward, I understood her well enough to at least get why she makes the choices she does. I really felt that Katniss was a real person, she is so well described. I connected with her quickly and felt the whole range of emotions (terror to happiness) with her as she competes in the games.

Suzanne Collins does a really great job of helping the reader to see the world of Panem and the games clearly. Her characters are equally vivid, and she builds so much suspense in the story with her strong clear writing. Thankfully this is the first book in a series, so you don’t have to worry about saying goodbye to Katniss and Panem when this book ends. Also, you know that Suzanne will make the next books just as suspenseful and fun to read as the Hunger Games!

Rating:

four of five star rating

I give this book 4 stars. It kicked-butt and took names à la Chuck Norris.

How to get this book:

Because I know you are now totally excited to read this book, I will share with you the 2 ways that you can get your paws on it from our library. And remember, you’ll need your library card for both!

  1. book (This link is currently broken… we had to get a new copy of the book, but it will be on the shelf and the link fixed soon I promise!)
  2. e-audiobook

Once you’ve read it, let me know what you thought!! Oh and btw, you are allowed to disagree with me. 🙂

Want the next two books? Find Catching Fire and Mocking Jay at the library too.

P.S. This book is being made into a movie. I can’t decide if that’s a good idea or not… We’ll see!

Hot off the interwebs: Check out this killer glog (it’s like a blog smashed with a poster smashed with YouTube) for books that you may like if you liked The Hunger Games. I take no credit, some other awesome librarian did this sucker! 😀