A blog for reviewing YA, children's, classics and whatever I feel like.
Also for discussing developments in the the book world, specifically in the St. Paul, Minnesota.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

The Key to Rondo

Author: Emily Rodda
Review Writer: Book Girl
Leo is a normal boy living a normal life. Every year he goes to tea with his eccentric Great-Aunt Beatrice. He is ridiculed in front of his cousins about being the spitting image of his Great-Uncle Henry. Then there is the traditional listening to the music box. There are very precise rules to the music box. When Aunt Beatrice dies, she leaves Leo the music box. When his family has his cousin Mimi over for a month she disobeys the rules of the music box, and they are quickly drawn into the fantasy world that is painted on the music box. An evil blue queen steals Mimi's best friend and beloved dog, Mutt. With Leo reluctantly joining her, she sets out on a quest to get Mutt back. Will they make it?

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Daddy Long-Legs

Author: Jean Webster
Review Writer: Book Girl
Jerusha is an orphan with no hope for the future. But things start looking up when a trustee from the orphan asylum decides to pay for her education. The only condition is that she must write letters to the trustee who is paying for it. She decides to call him Daddy Long Legs and her letters begin with a desire to meet Daddy Long Legs. Will she?

The Trumpeter of Krakow

Author: Eric P. Kelly
Review Writer: Book Girl
Year it won the Newbery: 1929
A family of three is traveling into Krakow, the capital of Poland, because their house and fields were burned up by bandits. Joseph a young boy, saves the niece of a scholar from a dog bite, so Joseph and his parents and his parents are offered apartments. The father is offered a job being the trumpeter at a church at night. He needs to sound the gong on the hour and play a hymn in the four directions. Everything is going well, until bandits start attacking the family for a pumpkin. And to find out what happens next, read the book!

Friday, May 14, 2010

Love, Ruby Lavender

Author: Deborah Wiles
Review Writer: Book Girl
Ruby is looking forward to having a great summer. But then everything goes wrong. Her best friend, partner in crime, fellow chicken stealer and grandmother is taking a long trip to Hawaii. Plus her archenemy Melba Jane is meaner than ever. But then things start to look up when she makes a friend called Dove. Ruby is sure that she and Dove will be good friends; until Melba shows up and starts to tell the tragic story of how Melba Jane's father and Ruby's grandfather died when their car started to go off the bridge and into the road. Can Ruby turn her summer around?

"Good garden of peas! What a summer!"

Thursday, May 13, 2010

The Firefly Letters

Author: Margarita Engle
Review Writer: Book Girl
This book is set in the time when Cuba still had slaves. Fredrika is from Sweden. When she comes to Cuba she thinks it is Paradise. Except for the slaves. The women in Cuba have a lot of rules the Fredrika doesn't follow, such as covering your head from the moon. She and a girl who lives in Cuba called Elena have a plan to free Cecilia, a slave. Will it work?

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Journey to the River Sea

Author: Eva Ibbotson
Review Writer: Book Girl
Maia is an orphan whose parents got killed in an accident. Maia goes to a boarding school. However she finds out she has relatives across the ocean in Brazil. She goes to live with them and their governess. The family is not very nice and Maia is forced to be shut up inside the house all day. Then she makes friends with the natives there and everything changes.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Princess Academy

Author: Shanon Hale
Review Writer: Book Girl
Miri, named after a mountain flower, has lived on Mount Eskel all her life. Mount Eskel is the only place in Danland where you can mine linder, a prized building material. All the people who live in the village on Mount Eskel are very poor and often are very hungry. Life on Mount Eskel is predictable until one day when Miri's world is torn apart. The priest of the king has prophesised that the prince's future wife will come from Mount Eskel. All the eligible girls, including Miri, are sent to a Princess Academy where they will learn manners so that the prince may choose one of them at a ball. At the academy the girls are miserable, homesick and subjected to cruel punishment for breaking unfair rules. But one day Miri discovers a secret that will change their lives forever.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Trial by Journal

Author: Kate Klise
Review Writer: Cool Aunt Holly

Book Girl recommended this book to me, and I'm glad she did! It's the story of Lily Watson who is chosen to serve on the jury of a murder trial. Bob White is accused of killing Perry Keet, a boy from Lily's class at school. Everyone thinks that Bob did it, including Lily, but as the trial goes on, Lily starts to have some doubts.

Instead of a regular "narrative" form, the story is told using newspaper clippings, letters, and entries from the journal that Lily keeps during the trial. One of the best things is all the imaginative names of the characters!

This book is fun to read, and you can learn a little bit about what happens during a trial. (Although, if you're ever on a sequestered jury, I don't suggest that you sneak out like Lily did!)

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Does my Head look Big in This?

Author: Randa Abdel-Fattah
Review Writer: Book Girl
Amal is a Muslim girl who decides to wear her hijab full time. A hijab is a shawl and head scarf which Muslim women wear in public. This is very hard because Amal is about to start at a fancy prep school and the teacher won’t allow it. When she finally does Amal is very pleased, even though a lot of kids are teasing her. This is a very good book, and I highly recommend it.

Shadow of the Dragon

Author: Kate O’Hearn
Review Writer: Book Girl
Kira is a girl whose life is governed by the first law. All girls must marry at age 13. But when the king’s men come to arrest her family, Kira and her younger sister Elspeth must run for their lives. They take shelter on a large mountain, home to Ferarchie, the most ferocious dragon in the land. When they rescue Ferarchie’s son who is just a baby, they have no idea how much trouble they are getting into.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Walking Backward

Author: Catherine Austen
Review Writer: Book Girl
Josh’s mother has died in a car crash, and now his family is falling apart. His dad is constantly in the basement working building a time machine. And his little brother Sam is talking to a Power Ranger like it’s his mom. Josh really needs a break, so he decides to make death his summer project. He finds out how different religions cope with and talk to people about how death affects them. Struggling in a home where every day is party day, he tries to find his place in the world.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Vote 4 Amelia

Author: Marissa Moss
Review Writer: Book Girl
This book is Amelia’s journal about an election. Amelia is running for secretary and her friends Leah and Carly are running for treasurer and president. They work very hard to be able to win. They make posters and hand out fliers. But their main competitor is handing out free candy and promising candy machines everywhere. Will they be able to win?

The Magic Thief

Author: Sarah Prineas
Review Writer: Book Girl
Conn lives in Twilight, a city of darkness and fear. He lives on what he steals. But on day he accidentally steals a wizard’s locus magicalicus. The locus magicalicus is a stone a wizard uses to focus his or her power to make spells. The wizard is surprised when the stone doesn’t kill Conn, and decides to take him on as his apprentice. The problem is that Conn needs a locus magicalicus by the end of 30 days. And behind that, the city is slowly losing its magic, and it is up to Conn to save the city.

Discovering Pig Magic

Author: Julia Crabtree
Review Writer: Book Girl
When three friends decide to try and ancient spell for fun, they have no idea what is going to happen. They all bury something important to them. Mattie buries a ceramic pig because everyone thinks she loves them. Ariel buries a small spoon because she wants to be a chef. Nicki buries a small Indian doll to represent her heritage. The book says they will start discovering the results right away. But then everything goes horribly wrong. Mattie’s mom becomes an agoraphobic. Ariel accidently submits a bad recipe for an original contest. Nicki’s brother needs an operation to survive. The three friends decide they need to reverse the magic. There is a surprise ending too. Enjoy!

Friday, March 5, 2010

The Sisters Club

Author: Megan McDonald
Review Writer: Book Girl
In this book there are three sisters: Alex, Stevie, and Joey. They live in Acton, and everyone in the family loves the theater. This book is a play of their lives literally. And all forces are set in motion, getting ready for opening night. I highly recommend this book, and it is one of my all time favorites.

Friday, January 22, 2010

The Supernaturalist

Author: Eoin Colfer
Review Writer: Book Girl
In the future, in Satellite City, Cosmo Hill is a no-sponsor. He lives in Clarissa Frayne institute for the parentally challenged, and spends his days testing products. However, he soon gets a chance for escape, and after a near death experience, becomes part of a group of Supernaturalists, dedicated to fighting blue creatures that suck the life out of you.

Odd and the Frost Giants

Author: Neil Gaiman
Review Writer: Book Girl
Odd is a boy with no father and is also crippled from when a tree fell on his leg. He has grown up with myths of the norse gods. When winter strikes harder and longer than before, Odd decides to run away to his father's hut. There he encounters a series of creatures that one would never think they would see. Can Odd help end winter?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Boggart

Author: Susan Cooper
Review Writer: Book Girl
When Emily and Jessup inherit a castle, the have no idea what is in store for them. Because, when inheriting a castle you also inherit the Boggart, a invisible shapless mischief making magic creature. The Boggart is taken to their home in Toronto and chaos is the rein.


Author: Sharon Creech
Review Writer: Book Girl
Annie is a girl who loves to run barefoot. She always runs with her friend Max. But lately Max has been changing. Now he wants to run faster and Annie says no. Annie has also been asigned by the the art teacher to draw an apple a day for a hundred days. This book is written in poetry form, and I really enjoyed it.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon

Author: Grace Lin
Review Writer: Book Girl
This is the book for you if you like mythology. A girl name Minli grows up working hard at the muddy fields by day and listening to her Ba's stories by night. One night while she is home alone she writes her parents a note and runs away, hoping to find the man in the moon(a character from her father's story so that she may change her destiny. On the way she encounters several mythical creatures.