by Anne Brashares

5 Stars

The Here and Now by Ann Brashares

The Here and Now is a teen science-fiction novel written by Ann Brashares, that blends the catastrophic effects of climate change with time travel (from the 2090s to 2010), adventure, and teen romance. This story is about a seventeen-year-old girl named Prenna James, who immigrated to New York when she was twelve-years-old along with her mother and a few hundred others. However, they did not come from a different country, but from a different time. A future where a mosquito-borne illness has evolved into a pandemic, killing millions and leaving the world in wrecks. 

Prenna and the others who escaped from the future must follow a strict set of rules which are, never reveal where they are from, never interfere with history, and never, ever be intimate with anyone outside of their community. “Follow the rules. Remember what happened. Never fall in love.” Prenna does as she is told, believing she can help prevent the plague that will someday ravage the earth.

Everything changes when she falls in love with Ethan Jarves. Ethan is not a member of their community, and his relationship with Prenna is forbidden. In essence, a catalyst for her to question the strictures under which she lives. Quickly after she is confronted by a homeless man who proposes she may be able to prevent the disastrous future by changing the present. But why? If a disastrous future can be avoided, isn’t it rational to try? Rather, as the community believes, is it more important to “respect time’s integrity and her natural sequence”? 

This exhilarating, unforgettable, and heartbreaking story is a must-read. I really enjoyed reading this book. Reading this book had me really excited to know what was going to happing, but it also made me disappointed. Overall it was a good teen fiction book. I loved everything in the story except for the ending. I am not satisfied with the ending. I think there should be a sequel. Other than that, this book is amazing and must be read by anyone who loves a romantic thriller.

Angie L.

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by Lois Lowry

5 Stars

Amazon.com: The Giver (9780385732550): Lowry, Lois: Books

The Giver is a very engaging novel with intense, fast-paced action on every page, taking the readers on a thrilling roller coaster ride to the unknown future. While this graphic novel is very close to the original book, it still allowed some room for creativity and imagination. Each illustration complemented the story and made the words pop out of its pages and take life. This book captures many emotions, such as feeling sad, confused, happy, scared, surprised, inspired, and loved. The storyline is amazing. The story’s suspense and cliffhanger made it a page-turner. The symbolism made the novel more interesting. As a reader, it will make you raise questions while holding you on your toes, leaving you wanting more and wondering more.

This graphic novel takes the readers on the journey of life, “without pain, color, or past” along with the protagonist of the story named Jonas. Jonas is a brilliant boy who lives in a dystopian society and is now faced with the greatest challenge of his young life. As the story evolves, one thing to appreciate is how the author showed the main characters’ flaws which made them more relatable, real, and inspirational. With every scene in the story, it pulls the readers right in and captures their imagination such that the readers feel as though he or she is part of the story itself. 

I would recommend this book to those who are 13 years old and over. This is great for students and can be part of the school’s library. Although there are several scenes in the story that are realistically for a more mature audience, the author has brilliantly written it in a manner that is child-friendly. So I encourage you to read this fictional novel and let your mind wander into the future and its possibilities.

Tyler D.

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by J.K Rowling

5 Stars

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets Book by JR Company

Harry kicks off his second year at Hogwarts after a terrible summer vacation with his relatives. Just as he starts packing up his bags, he receives a letter from a mysterious creature claiming, if he returns to Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry, disaster will strike immediately. Confused and worried, Harry sets out on his journey, back to his wizarding school to see what was wrong. The beginning of Harry’s second year at Hogwarts starts with fresh torments and horrors begin to arise, including a spirit who haunts the girl’s bathroom and other unusual events. But the real danger begins, as he discovers that a mastermind is turning the students of Hogwarts into stone. Harry and his friends have been assigned a difficult task, and it’s up to them to find out who this mastermind really is. Could it be Hagrid? Could it be Hermoine? Or possibly Harry himself? Find out by reading Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets.  

Overall, this book was an absolute gem. It’s filled with adventure, imagination, and fantasy that helps the reader engage more in the story. This exciting sequel makes me never want to put the book down. The words written in the story bring the wizarding world to life, making me and other readers wish this all would exist. It was well-crafted and included a surprising plot twist during the end. This book is a must-read, and I recommend this to all ages who love fantasy, action, and humour. I would give this book a 10/10. 

Ahmed Q.

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by J.K Rowling

5 Stars

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone: Rowling J.K.: 9781408855652:  Amazon.com: Books

Harry’s life is gloomy and filled with despair. With his parents dead and his uncaring relatives who he’s stuck with, he’s forced to live in a dark, tiny closet located under the stairs. Every day seems the same to Harry, being mistreated by his relatives and being bullied at school. But one day, his downhearted life soon changes as he receives a letter claiming that he’s no ordinary boy, but a wizard. A mysterious visitor soon saves Harry from his relatives and brings him to a mysterious school called Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Harry’s first year at Hogwarts academy was phenomenal, but there was still one problem. A secret object was hidden in the castle walls of Hogwarts. Harry realized that it was his duty to protect it from evil hands that could cause destruction to the whole world. By doing so, Harry will go through the toughest of forces that he could’ve never imagined. 

To conclude, this book was absolutely amazing, and one of my favourite Harry Potter books from the series. There was never a dull moment, and J.K Rowling kept me engaged from the beginning to the very end of the novel. I would definitely recommend this book because it keeps you engaged without ever putting the book down. The book makes you love the characters and their personalities. Remember to not only read this but the whole series as well. The rating that I would personally give this book would be a 10/10.

Ahmed Q.

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by S.E Hinton

5 Stars

Book Review For Teens: The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton

Set in the ’60s, in the divided state of Oklahoma, this novel tells the story of two rival gangs separated by poverty and social status. The Greasers, known as the working class, are seen as very low in the eyes of the Socs, a high-class gang, the complete opposite of the Greasers. The Outsiders is told from the perspective of 14-year-old Greaser, Ponyboy Curtis. He details two of the most intense weeks of his short life, struggling in a community where he is viewed as an outsider with difficult decisions of right and wrong.

His life certainly hasn’t been an easy one. Having his parents taken away from him due to a recent car accident has taken a toll on him. Ponyboy and his 16-year-old brother Sodapop are allowed to live with their eldest brother 20-year-old Darry, as long as they stay out of trouble.

While out with his friends, Ponyboy attends a drive-thru movie where he meets a Soc girl named Sherri, the first of the Socs he had ever gotten along with. As the gang walks home with Sherri, they are stopped and threatened by her boyfriend, a Soc by the name of Bob. Ponyboy gets home at 2 am, angering his guardian Darry, prompting him to slap Ponyboy. Due to this, Ponyboy runs out of the door, meeting his friend Johnny in a park expressing his anger.

Bob, Sherri’s boyfriend, suddenly reappears along with his crew. Ponyboy and Johnny are outnumbered, a gruesome fight breaks out, ending up with Ponyboy being held underwater to drown by Bob. Johnny freaks out and kills him. After the fight ends, they realize they can’t go back, they now have blood on their hands.

This novel is extremely interesting, constantly keeping the reader engaged and interested. Definitely a 5-star book.

Vlada E.

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by Stephen King

5 Stars

The Shining: Amazon.ca: King, Stephen: Books

The Shining is definitely a horror that will force you to fall back into your seat, making you not want to stop reading the book. This book is definitely not a children’s book as it has swearing, and is very scary. The Shining is a horror book about a family that moves to a hotel to take care of it and eventually goes insane. It has some suspense that gets you hooked, and there is always something happening. You will never be bored in this book, and you will want to read it over and over.   This book does get confusing in certain parts, and there are uneven transitions from scenes in the book. Sometimes this book will change between characters, and you would never know. Sometimes in this book, you will have to re-read some paragraphs to fully understand it. If you are a non-fluent reader, I would suggest not reading this book and listen to the audiobook.   I would highly recommend this book as a birthday gift to an older person that loves suspense. Although this book has certain disadvantages, this book has way more positives than disadvantages. This book was an amazing book, and I recommend it to anyone that enjoys reading. Good luck reading this book, and I hope that this review gives you enough information to properly influence your decision. 

Luke P.

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by Lisa Jewel

5 Stars

Watching You by Lisa Jewell

The book Watching You by Lisa Jewell, takes a turn on many events, making this book even more suspenseful than it already is. Watching You takes on many different perspectives, making your conclusions and assumptions take a quick turn. As I was reading the book, I didn’t see many events taking place, and they were so far from what I was expecting. The book takes place in a sweet neighbourhood where everyone seems to know each other. Everyone seems to get along, but it turns out that all those secrets are kept inside.  The title “Watching You” gives the book a creepier feel to it. It’s not like other typical suspense books, and the title really owns up to the book’s plot and story. In the book, there are multiple perspectives that really make you question who the antagonist really is. Who committed this? Did this person really do this? The author really took the time to make this story and plot eventful and suspenseful. Once you pick it up, it’s hard to put it down. Throughout the story, it is filled with drama, and you start to question who is watching who?  The mystery of who the real antagonist is, who has the darkest motives, must be decided through your judgment. Is it the teacher, Tom Fitzwilliam, who seems to be getting quite the amount of attention? Is it the neighbours down the street? Maybe even the teenagers attending the school, you may never know. After all, people don’t seem as innocent as they seem. Watching You is a really good thrilling experience if you want to be immersed in something for a while. 

Rhoanne A.

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Death Prefers Blondes

by Caleb Roehrig

Death Prefers Blondes by Caleb Roehrig

Margo Manning is a socalite by day, but something very different by night. When the sun goes down, her and her heist team of drag queens race against the clock to pull off high stakes heists. They think they have their strategies down pat, until one job sends them over the edge and creates a whirl wind they have trouble escaping.

All of the sudden, all their lives are turned upside down, and they must work together to figure out how to end the threat once and for all. Behind the action, Margo is experiencing devastating grief, an absent mother and a family friend who is up to no good.

An exhilarating, genuine and action packed novel, Caleb has written a book both endearing and dangerous.

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by: Jarrett Krosoczka

3 Stars

La revanche de la grande soeur, or Revenge of the Sis in English, is a little disappointing. Jarrett and Amy collaborate here on the seventh book in the Jedi Academy series, and I’m not very pleased with it.

The beginning of the story resumes from where Victor Starspeeder graduates from the Jedi Academy at Coruscant. Christina, the main character of book number 7, goes into her first year in the Jedha Jedi Academy, which is almost like a post-secondary school for the citizens in this fictional universe. Christina’s new mentor, Master Ro, is an aggressive and wise middle-aged woman,(on the right of the cover) accompanied by a droid named Q-13, a mildly rude robot, who’s mentality improves as the story goes on.

We also learn that Christina Starspeeder is still a young rookie who still needs experience, even after comfortably graduating Jedi Academy. As the story goes on, she learns about Jedha itself, the hostile mobs, the people, Porgs and much more.

Why do I give this book 3 stars? The story is actually quite stale, especially compared to the original trilogy written by Jeffrey Brown. There isn’t very much coming from the other characters in the book, and there is hardly any character development going on. Although that is a big downfall for this seventh book, it has very crisp drawings, with fine lines, and there is a lot of detail, which is what we expect from Jarrett J. Krosoczka and Amy Ignatow.

This story is lacking in substance, but the drawings are a big improvement from books 4 to 6 in the series.

Alec T.

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