Teen Reviews -- Summer 2013

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Article in Young Adult Fiction category.

Book, movie, and CD reviews that have been written by teens participating in the 2013 Teen Summer Reading Program, "Beneath the Surface." Posted with permission of the reviewers.

Ratings are on a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being the best. Newest reviews appear at the top of the list for each star rating.

Book Reviews

Five Stars

Inkheart is a wonderful, exciting story. I loved it because characters got to come out of the books. There is also a movie which is really cool to watch. My favorite character is Meggie because she read Tinkerbell out of the book and because she shared her father's gift. I think all ages could enjoy it except for really small kids.

Review by Alexis, grade 7

I love this book because it was from a teenage's perspective. My favorite character was Ruby. I think this book is for people who are 12-17 or are just big fans (like me) of Sarah Dessen.

Review by Jamesha, grade 9

  • Son by Lois Lowry

I loved it. It always kept me intrested.

Review by Anna, grade 7

A little boy named Willy is going to race in a dogsled race, because his grandfather is very sick. While his grandfather is sick a tax collector comes bye and Willy's grandfather is sick, he doesn't have the money. So the tax collector has to take the house, but there is a lot of people racing in the race, and one of them is Stone Fox. He has never lost a race.

Review by Cameron, grade 6

I liked the story about Nikki!

Review by Maureen

Conspiracy 365 by Gabrielle Lord
This is a series of twelve books that I am reading. I love these books becuase they are filled with action, worry, and suspence. Callum Ormond is my favorite character. He is a hunted fugitive and is now on the run. Callum is only 15 years old and he has to survive 365 days. I think that people who like action book would like this. Ages 10 to 15 would probly like it.

Review by Isabel, grade 7

I love this book because it had a lot of action in it. I had a lot of favorite characters. This book is filled with action, humor, and mystery. This book is for kids who like action and humor. I loved this book and so will you. Their are 4 books in this series so read them all.

Review by Soumil, grade 8

I love this book because it is about a bunch of friends putting something together. My favorite character is Kate because she never gives up and you can tell she is kindhearted and determined. She didn't stop trying to earn money for her dad's b-day present. This is a great book for kids that are thinking about having a lemonade stand.

Review by Abigail, grade 6

This book is awesome. It is a giant book of poems. I think this is a great book for someone who likes humor and rhyming!

Review by Abigail, grade 6

A World Away is about a 16-year old named Eliza, who has been Amish all her life. She has never tried on a pair of jeans, never made a phone call, or watched TV. She is asked for a nanny job for two kids, and excited accepts. She learns the good, bad, and the ugly of learning of love, life, and lessons of the non-Amish world. She learns that most of the time, the life your blessed with is the life your meant to belong to, even if it doesn't seem that way. This was a phenomenal book!

Review by Anna, grade 9

I liked this book because it made you think about what is going to happen next. My favorite character is Meg. I like Meg because you can tell she is adventerous and likes taking risks. I think kids from 4th grade to 7th grade would like this adventerous tale.

Review by Abigail, grade 6

I liked how the author made the setting feel like the future and it could happen. I felt like every chapter Lena was changing and starting to realize love is good and it is something to celebrate. I liked how the ending was put together. I feel like this was a fast paced book that left me wanting more at the end. I thought it was a great book.

review by Megan, grade 9

I like it because it was kinda like me. My favorite character is Nikki J. Maxwell. Recommend to 10, 11, 12, and 13 year olds.

Review by April, grade 6

I felt that Beautiful Creatures had a great story line. I liked that they placed it in the real world. It made it feel like it could happen. I liked how they made the connection with Lena and Ethan. It made it feel magical. All around it was a great book that most people would like to read.

Review by Megan, grade 9

It's very captivating with major romance and mystery. A simpleton guy from a small town finds out that this new summer time city isn't all its cracked up to be. There are real vampires and some aren't as friendly as they seem. It is truly a must read for the summer.

Review by Robin

This book is easy to read and keeps you wanting to know more. Personally, I loved Gus, he was sweet and hilarious. This book is perfect for anyone in middle school or up!

Review by Amanda

The book I'm doing my review on is "Matilda." I picked Matilda because it's one of my favorite books. I also enjoyed the movie. Matilda is about a little girl growing up on her own in a family she doesn't belong. She discovers that she has magical powers. In the end she was adopted by her teacher which she loved, and they lived happily ever after.

Review by Mariah, grade 9

Curing disease seems to be the new big thing around books these days, yet out of all of them this just might be my favorite. First starting it I thought it was as boring as all heck and put it down, but like anything you can’t start something and not finish it so, I did and absolutely loved it. I highly highly recommend it and if you have the same trouble as me, push through it: I promise it gets better, way better. The characters are really interesting, but I think it is the plot that is the most intriguing. I would recommend this for the young adults age group (teens).

Review by Dominique, Grade 10

Clearly with a rating of five, I enjoyed this book. It was a play off of the original story “Cinderella,” a story that I basically hated as a kid because the main heroine was pathetic and never stood up for herself. The tomboy Cinder is the exact opposite, someone people can actually relate to and an all around likeable character. Cinder was very much original because it didn’t take the exact same story/plotline and rewrite it as a modern story, but took the basic skeleton of the story and added tons of new components making it a new story. It might have been pretty predictable throughout, but overall was really good, so I’m excited for the next 3 books!

Review by Dominique, Grade 10

This book was outstanding! Yes, it was and is most definitely meant for an older audience (teens and such) but half of the obscenities are what make this book so great. I’m sure a lot of teens can relate to what went on in this book. It was hilarious, thought provoking, heart wrenching, and just about every other emotion there is all at the same time. I myself did not enjoy the back cover’s description. I don’t think it made for an intriguing sort of “explanation”, but ignore the back. I did and LOVED this book. So obviously I recommend this book, along with his other books which are also really good.

Review by Dominique, Grade 10

This review is on “Witness”. I chose this book because it is a good/sad book. This book is about a lot of different things but it’s basicly about a Klu Klux Klan group in a small town in Vermont. This book is very racist but it ends up being good in the end. My favorite character was Esther Hirsh a 6 year old girl from New York.

Review by Mariah, Grade 9

My book review is on “The BFG.” Also known as “The Big Friendly Giant.” This is a very popular children’s story. I read it for the first time when I was in 2nd grade. This book is mainly about a little girl named Sophie who lived in an orphanage, and one night she was awake and was kidnapped by a friendly giant and taken to giant land where many giants lived. In the end the giant was able to come live with everyone and treated normal. My favorite character was Sophie because she was intelligent.

Review by Mariah, Grade 9

I really liked this book. With many twists and turns it made for suspenseful and exiting reading. I was so happy with it I ended up reading the whole 11-book series in about a month!

Review by Russell, Grade 7

This book was really great. I had seen it on shelves for quite some time and it wasn’t until a while that I picked it up and really saw its…awesomeness. Although I must say it got a little confusing eventually.

Review by Russell, Grade 7

Bloomability by Sharon Creech

Bloomability is about a girl who’s family moves a lot – ever 6 months to a new place. Soon she is sent to Switzerland, which she hates, and learns how to speak Italian, Spanish, Japaneze, and French at an American School. She soon makes close friends w/ some of her peers and goes on a skiing trip w/ them. Two of them are burried in an avalanche, and I won’t tell you if they survive. She soon loves this school and can not bear to leave her friends (some who are not coming back next year) and their is no guarantee she will. She soon learns the value of friendship and that no one will ever forget her.

Review by Kaylin, Grade 6

Four Stars

I like this book because the boy was nice.

Review by Tiffany

1812: A War That Forged a Nation by Walter R. Borneman
Not knowing much about the war of 1812, or having an intense desire to put forth the extra participation in the history of our country, this non-fiction is written with the intention of getting the attention of the younger generation. Younger generations on occasion associate history with school, and in the beginning of the summer that is the last thing anyone wants to think about. This story of the war, the living conditions, and the tensions of the years preceding 1812 until the years dating after the war, shows relations to the present. The relations are not in the difficulties, but more so in the language and thoughts of America's founders. These similarities cause the formation of fantastic relationships. These relationships are between the reader and the historical figures, in this historical review. This author is successful his attempt to connect the present and the past. This written piece is helpful in preparing for future history based classes, as well as impressing friends and colleagues with esteemed knowledge of a historical event. Over all, this piece is a needed read, if not for the historical knowledge, then for the extreme vocabulary.

Review by Hanna

This adventure with Katie Kazoo is as wild as always. Her teacher Mrs. Derkman moves in next door. What a surprise. Once again the magic wind comes and turns her into Pepper. Pepper (Katie) does some crazy stuff and then when she turns back into herself she fixes everything. Pepper is my favorite character.

Review by Abigail, grade 6

Francine and Muffy have a bet that Francine can't be nice for a whole week. Muffy bets her Princess Peach watch. Arthur and his friends push Francine to the limit but she holds back her temper. My favorite character is Muffy. Find out what happens to Francine as she tries to be nice for a whole week.

Review by Abigail, grade 6

This book is amazing! It's about 2 rabbits named Hazel and Fiver who try to leave their home warren. It really makes you think about how rabbits live in the wild and how similar and at the same time how different rabbits are to humans.

Review by Johanna

I loved Fairest because it was about things like love and hatred and there were a lot of details which helped me get an image of the story in my head, making the story better. My favorite character was Ijory because he was nice to everyone. I think someone who enjoyed magical things, like fairies, would like it.

Review by Amelia, grade 6

A girl named Amu Hinamori wants to be her true self. She ends up with 3 character guardians who help her. People that work for Easter steal her eggs and guardians! She has to protect them and save the characters.

Review by Ariana, grade 6

Three Stars

Two Stars

One Star

Movie, Music and Audiobook Reviews

Five Stars

Four Stars

The movie I'm doing this review on is "Holes." I decided to do a review on this movie because it's one of my favorites. This movie is mainly about Stanley Yelnats gets sent away to a correctional camp for stealing shoes, that he was wrongly accused for. There family believes in this 100 year old curse that his great great grandfather put on them. In the end he finds a treasure chest that was meant for him all along, but throughout the whole movie they would look back into the past and tell the story of "kissing Kate Barlow." Which was one of my favorite characters, my other favorite character was Theodore aka "Arm pit."

Review by Mariah, grade 9

Three Stars

Two Stars

One Star