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Author Archives: jholub2015

Warcross

Title: Warcross
Author: Marie Lu
Series: Warcross #1
Recommended for: 6th grade and up
Pages: 353 pages
Call Number/Link:  TEEN FICTION LU, M.
Synopsis: For the millions who log in every day, Warcross isn’t just a game—it’s a way of life. The obsession started ten years ago and its fan base now spans the globe, some eager to escape from reality and others hoping to make a profit. Struggling to make ends meet, teenage hacker Emika Chen works as a bounty hunter, tracking down Warcross players who bet on the game illegally. But the bounty-hunting world is a competitive one, and survival has not been easy. To make some quick cash, Emika takes a risk and hacks into the opening game of the international Warcross Championships—only to accidentally glitch herself into the action and become an overnight sensation.

Convinced she’s going to be arrested, Emika is shocked when instead she gets a call from the game’s creator, the elusive young billionaire Hideo Tanaka, with an irresistible offer. He needs a spy on the inside of this year’s tournament in order to uncover a security problem . . . and he wants Emika for the job. With no time to lose, Emika’s whisked off to Tokyo and thrust into a world of fame and fortune that she’s only dreamed of. But soon her investigation uncovers a sinister plot, with major consequences for the entire Warcross empire.

Comments: This is a interesting dystiopian where gaming has become a part of everyones life, by wearing special glasses you earn points for just about everything.  The game itself is like capture the flag, except that you are in a virtual world where steping stones disappear, and just about anything can happen.  I am not a gammer, so I think the world set up seemed well done.  I would be interested to hear someones view who is a gamer. I will say that I was able to figure out early on who the mysterious hacker was, but I am not sure of motive.  I am very interested in what the next book will bring.

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Posted by on November 29, 2017 in Sci-Fi, Teen

 

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Beneath

Title: Beneath
Author: Roland Smith
Series: Beneath #1 
Recommended for: 4th grade and up
Pages: 272 pages
Call Number/Link:  TEEN FICTION SMITH, R.

Synopsis: What waits Beneath? Pat O’Toole has always idolized his older brother, Coop. He’s even helped Coop with some of his crazier plans — such as risking his life to help his big brother dig a tunnel underneath their neighborhood in the suburbs of Washington, DC. Coop is . . . different. He doesn’t talk on the phone, doesn’t use email, and doesn’t have friends. He’s never really cared for anything but the thrill of being underground and Pat. So it’s no surprise to anyone — even Pat — that after a huge fight with their parents, Coop runs away. Exactly one year later, Pat receives a package containing a digital voice recorder and a cryptic message from his brother. He follows the clues to New York City, and soon discovers that Coop has joined the Community, a self-sufficient society living beneath the streets. Now it’s up to Pat to find his brother — and bring him home.

This is a Rebecca Caudill nominee for 2018.  I think the premise is great, with the community living under the city of New York.  This is also a fast read. There is suspence around every corner. It is a little unbelievable with the technology that the secret community has installed.  I think that kids will definetly enjoy the book.  I am going to check out the next book in the series to see how it ends.

 

 
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Posted by on November 24, 2017 in Adventure, Teen

 

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The Ship of the Dead

Title: The Ship of the Dead
Author: Rick Riordan
Series: Magnus Chase and the gods of Asgard
Recommended for: Grades 4-8
Pages: 421 pages
Call Number/Link:  J FICTION RIORDAN, R.
Synopsis: Magnus Chase, son of Frey, the god of summer and health, isn’t naturally inclined toward being a brave warrior. Still, with the help of his motley group of friends, he has achieved deeds he never would have thought possible. Now he faces his most dangerous trial yet. Loki is free from his chains. He’s readying Naglfar, the Ship of the Dead, complete with a host of giants and zombies, to sail against the Asgardian gods and begin the final battle of Ragnarok. It’s up to Magnus and his friends to stop him, but to do so they will have to sail across the oceans of Midgard, Jotunheim, and Niflheim in a desperate race to reach Naglfar before it’s ready to sail. Along the way, they will face angry sea gods, hostile giants, and an evil fire-breathing dragon. But Magnus’s biggest challenge will be facing his own inner demons. Does he have what it takes to outwit the wiley trickster god?

This is the third and final installment of Magnus Chase.  For those who are wondering Percy and Annabeth make an appearance in this book.  Magnus, Samirah, Alex, Hearthstone, Blitzen are joined by, floor 19 hall mates,  Thomas Jefferson Jr., Halfborn Gunderson, and Mallory Keen to stop Ragnarok from starting.  All of these characters are called to help aid in the trials to stop Ragnorak.  Lots of action, but it also has background information about the different charaters.  Now I am eagerly awaiting for the next Rick Riordan book that comes out in May.

 
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Posted by on October 31, 2017 in Adventure, Fantasy, Juv

 

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Never Say Die

Title:Never Say Die
Author: Anthony Horowitz
Series: An Alex Rider Adventure
Recommended for: Grades 6-12
Pages: 349
Call Number/Link:  TEEN FICTION HOROWITZ, A. 
Synopsis: Following the events of Scorpia Rising, Alex relocates to San Francisco as he slowly recovers from the tragic death of his best friend and caregiver, Jack Starbright, at the hands of terrorists working for SCORPIA. With Jack gone, Alex feels lost and alone, but then, out of the blue, he receives a cryptic email–just three words long, but enough to make Alex believe that Jack may be alive. Armed with this shred of hope, Alex boards a flight bound for Egypt and embarks on a dubious quest to track Jack down.
Yet SCORPIA knows Alex’s weakness. And the question of whether Jack is alive soon takes a backseat to a chilling new terrorist plot–one that will play with Alex’s mind as he grasps the magnitude of what is at stake.
From Egypt to France to Wales, from luxury yachts to abandoned coal mines, Alex traverses a minefield of dangers and cryptic clues as he fights to discover the truth.

Comments: This book starts off six months after the book Scorpia Rising, which was supose to be the last book.  Horowitz did a great job, especially since the book is coming out six years later.  I was going to reread the series, but Horowitz gave enough details that I didn’t feel lost when things were referenced from another book(I still might reread, just because I enjoyed them). This is a fast pace, action filled adventure. Looking forward to seeing the next book in summer 2018.

 
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Posted by on October 31, 2017 in Adventure, Teen

 

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Just Friends

Title: Just Friends
Author: Tiffany Pitcock
Series: N/A
Recommended for: 8th – 12th grade
Pages: 302  pages
Call Number/Link:  TEEN FICTION PITCOCK, T.

Synopsis:Told from both viewpoints, after Jenny and Chance, a bookworm and a popular heart throb, pretend friendship to save a doomed assignment, they are shocked to find a real friendship–and more–developing.

Comments:  Jenny and Chance have fifteen minutes to learn about each and then present what is learned in front of class.  There time is up before anything is done, so Chance and Jenny pretend in front of the whole class that they have been best friends forever.  They make up a silly story and each takes a turn embellishing.  It gets them the grade, but also starts their friendship.  I love the back and forth banter between these two.  It was a quick fun read.

 
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Posted by on September 30, 2017 in Realistic, Romance, Teen

 

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A Night Divided

Title: A Night Divided
Author: Jennifer Nielsen
Series: N/A
Recommended for:
Pages: 317 pages
Call Number/Link: J FICTION NIELSEN, J.

Synopsis: When the Berlin Wall went up, Gerta, her mother, and her brother Fritz are trapped on the eastern side where they were living, while her father, and her other brother Dominic are in the West–four years later, now twelve, Gerta sees her father on a viewing platform on the western side and realizes he wants her to risk her life trying to tunnel to freedom.

A neighbor told me that I needed to read this book, he was right.  I have read other books by the author and like her writing style. Before reading this book, I knew very little on the subject. This has prompted me to read more.  The story allowed you to see how the government pitted everyone against each other.  My only complaint is that realistically Gerta would have been caught right away.  I didn’t feel that she hid what she was doing all that well.  This book did make me want to learn more about true stories of people crossing.

 
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Posted by on September 30, 2017 in Historical, Juv

 

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John Deere, That’s Who!

Title: John Deere, That’s Who
Author: Tracy Nelson Maurer
Series: N/A
Recommended for: K-3 grade
Pages: 40 pages
Call Number/Link:  E B DEERE, J.

Synopsis: 

Back in the 1830s, who was a young blacksmith from Vermont, about to make his mark on American history? John Deere, that’s who! Who moved to Illinois, where farmers were struggling to plow through the thick, rich soil they called gumbo? Who tinkered and tweaked and tested until he invented a steel plow that sliced into the prairie easy as you please? Long before the first tractor, who changed farming forever? John Deere, that’s who!

Comments:  This is a simple read for your young John Deere lover.  It has nice pictures and simple text on how John Deere, a blacksmith, changed farming.  I liked how it brought up his failures, but he didn’t give up.

 
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Posted by on August 23, 2017 in Non-Fiction, Picture Books

 

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