Saturday, May 25, 2013

Out of my Mind

     Melody is eleven-years-old and never been able to speak until now.  Her Cerebral Palsy has kept her  body in a wheel chair and her words locked inside her mind.  After years of feeling alienated and alone, she gets a special computer that speaks for her.  She hopes it will be enough to be normal like the other kids in her class, but she finds out that life isn't always fair.
     This book is not one of my favorites.  The author plays with the reader's emotions and forces reactions.  The characters are black and white and overly good or overly bad.  They are not shades of gray like real people.
     Many pages of the book are spent on lists of questions and multiple choice answers which gets monotonous.  Although the reading level is pretty easy, mature readers will like the book more than other readers because of the way the book is written and the emotional reactions to bullying.  Since there is not much action and lots of the book takes place in Melody's head, it is not a good choice for reluctant readers. 

Sunday, May 19, 2013

The Bridge to Never Land

   Aidan and Sarah Cooper find a strange clue that leads them to England in search of Stardust.  Ombra has been waiting for a century for Stardust so he can take over the world.  He uses ravens to attack people, steal their shadows, and control their minds.
     The kids head to America to find a legendary Starcatcher to help them keep the Stardust from Ombra.  When they find out about a possible Einstein-Rosen Bridge hiding Never Land,  they race to Disney World's Peter Pan's Flight in hopes they can get to Neverland before Ombra catches them.  
     Although the books starts slowly, it quickly becomes action packed.  There are a lot of coincidences to get everyone to Never Land, but kids won't mind.  Some parts may be too scary for young kids.  There are references to the other books in the Starcatchers series, but you can still enjoy the book if you haven't read any of the other books in the series.  The author explains the references to you.  It's a fun book for kids that like fantasy, Disney, or Peter Pan.          

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Happy Birthday Bad Kitty

     It is bad kitty's birthday.  He doesn't want to go to the party or spend time with the other cats coming to his party.  On top of all that, his presents are all disappointments and he hates his cake.  Luckily his birthday is saved when his mom comes to visit.
     This is a fun book for kids who are just learning to read chapter books.  There are lots of pictures to support new readers.  The words are easy to read and the structure is predictable.  There are only a few words on each page, but several chapters make it seem like you are reading a longer book at 176 pages.  Bad Kitty will make kids laugh with his bad antics.  There is also information on cats to help students learn while they read.  The only thing I didn't like was that the author's asides were distracting.  This is a quick read and fun for ages 6-9.