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Category Archives: Fantasy

The Rest of Us Just Live Here

Title: The Rest of Us Just Live Here
Author: Patrick Ness
Series:
Recommended for: 9th grade and up
Pages:  317
Call Number/Link:  TEEN FICTION NESS

Synopsis:  In this highly satiric exploration of the “chosen one” genre, an incredibly normal group of friends are approaching the end of high school and their parting of ways. Mikey is just trying to get through the year and hopefully ask his longtime crush to the prom. Similarly, each person in Mikey’s close-knit circle of friends is battling a myriad of highly relatable issues: jealousy, various insecurities, and dysfunctional family relationships. The beginning of each chapter also contains an update in the concurrent story line centering on the “indie kids.” These are Mikey and his pals’ extraordinary peers, those from exceptional families who are exclusively chosen whenever there is a supernatural occurrence. They’ve fought off zombies and fallen in love with vampires, and now they’re being targeted by the Immortals, a mysterious group looking for a permanent Vessel. In the end, Mikey and his friends come to grips with the ways in which they are both ordinary and extraordinary. 

I picked this book because I really liked the premise.  What DO the ordinary kids do while the chosen ones battle monsters?  Unfortunately the story fell flat for me.  Maybe it was because I listened to it as an audio book, but I found it very hard to enter the story and really care about the characters.  It’s written in kind of a stream of consciousness style that really didn’t work for me.  Each chapter starts with a brief description of what’s happening with the ‘indie’ kids followed by a chapter about the ordinary kids.  It all felt disjointed and disconnected and I got to the point where I really didn’t care what happened to the characters.  Kids who are fans of this kind of narrative (like ‘Going Bovine’) might like this and it’s gotten lots of praise from reviewers, but not from me.  Sorry.

 
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Posted by on April 6, 2017 in Dystopian, Fantasy, self-esteem

 

Labyrinth Lost

27969081Title: Labyrinth Lost
Author: Zoraida Córdova
Series: Brooklyn Brujas
Recommended for: Grade 7th and up
Pages: 336
Call Number/Link: Teen Fiction Cordova, Z. 

Synopsis: Nothing says Happy Birthday like summoning the spirits of your dead relatives.

I fall to my knees. Shattered glass, melted candles and the outline of scorched feathers are all that surround me. Every single person who was in my house – my entire family — is gone.

Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation…and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can’t trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange markings on his skin.

The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland…

Review: I love, love, love this book. First of all, this Latinx world is so rich and full of depth. From the underworld that mimic Dante’s Infernal to her family (including her ancestors) to the magic, it’s all done so well. For most of the book, Alex’s family isn’t even present, but they were well rounded and you felt like you really knew then even though the focus wasn’t really on there. Even her grandma, who really is only present for one scene–you just get a deep understanding of how important family really is. I also loved that they were latinx for all over the world and not just one spot–because most family ancestries are nice and messy like that.

Alex is a great heroine. However, she’s deeply flawed, which I actually loved. She doesn’t have it all figured out. She struggles almost every step of the way. Yes, she never wanted magic, but she never meant to banish her family as a way to do it! The journey is about righting that mistake and coming to terms with her magic/things about herself along the way. I also really loved that Alex was bisexual and it was no big deal. Not to her family, her friends, or anyone else. She struggled if she really felt about Rishi that way, but it was more of “do I really have a crush on a friend” than “do I really have a crush on a girl.” It was simply no big deal and it was portrayed in a healthy way as well. All around, I give this book two thumbs up.

 
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Posted by on October 26, 2016 in Fantasy, Teen

 

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The Hidden Twin

hidden twin

 

Title: The Hidden Twin

Author: Adi Rule

Series: N / A

Recommended for: Grades 7-10 

Pages: 272

 

Call Number/Link:  Teen Fiction Rule, A.

 

Synopsis: In Adi Rule’s stunning new novel, The Hidden Twin, the girl with no name, must finally choose a name and a path for herself, drawing a line between myth and history to prove herself more than a monster if she is to save both her sister and her home.

Thoughts: This was a very unusual book but interesting.  If you like fantasy, magic and intrigue this is the book for you.  The twin was born a Redwing and comes to know the power she posesses as the story unfolds.  I applauded for the twin throughout the book and felt her pain. A great book to keep a reader engaged.

 
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Posted by on June 11, 2016 in Adventure, Fantasy, Teen

 

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Matched

matched

 

Title: Matched

Author: Allyson Braithwaite Condie

Series: Matched Trilogy

Recommended for: Grades Middle & High School

Pages: 512

Call Number/Link:  TEEN FICTION CONDIE

 

 

Synopsis:

In the Society, Officials decide. Who you love. Where you work. When you die.

Cassia has always trusted their choices. It’s hardly any price to pay for a long life, the perfect job, the ideal mate. So when her best friend appears on the Matching screen, Cassia knows with complete certainty that he is the one… until she sees another face flash for an instant before the screen fades to black. Now Cassia is faced with impossible choices: between Xander and Ky, between the only life she’s known and a path no one else has ever dared follow — between perfection and passion.

Thoughts: I really love this book I think as one reviewer said that this is very similar to the giver but more beautiful people.  I would also compare it to The Selection series as well.  The fans of both these books would love this trilogy.  It is fast paced and I just whizzed through the books since there are so many twists. They are available as an eBook, audio book and book form.  I started reading as paper copy then I finished listening to the eBook since I could not obtain a paper copy.

 
 

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Talon

TalonTitle: Talon
Author: Julie Kagawa
Series: Talon Saga
Recommended for:
Pages: 461 pages
Call Number/Link: TEEN FICTION KAGAWA, J.

Synopsis:Long ago, dragons were hunted to near extinction by the Order of St. George, a legendary society of dragon slayers. Hiding in human form and growing their numbers in secret, the dragons of Talon have become strong and cunning, and they’re positioned to take over the world with humans none the wiser. Ember and Dante Hill are the only sister and brother known to dragonkind. Trained to infiltrate society, Ember wants to live the teen experience and enjoy a summer of freedom before taking her destined place in Talon. But destiny is a matter of perspective, and a rogue dragon will soon challenge everything Ember has been taught. As Ember struggles to accept her future, she and her brother are hunted by the Order of St. George. Soldier Garret Xavier Sebastian has a mission to seek and destroy all dragons, and Talon‘s newest recruits in particular. But he cannot kill unless he is certain he has found his prey–and nothing is certain about Ember Hill. Faced with Ember’s bravery, confidence and all-too-human desires, Garret begins to question everything that the Order has ingrained in him–and what he might be willing to give up to find the truth about dragons. 

This is another great series by Julie Kagawa.  Ember and Dante are twin hatchling dragons that up to this point have only ever been with trainers.  This summer they actually get to be around humans and no trainers.  Unfortunately, the next level of training is moved up and for the first time  Ember and Dante are separated for training.  This starts a riff between the two sibling.  Throughout the book you can see how the Ember is maturing and growing.  Dante you see a little from him but he is secretive.  The book also introduces Riley a Rouge dragon and Garret Xavier Sebastian a soldier of St. George. These are the guys that bring in a love triangle to the story and make Ember question everything she has been taught.  This is a good set up for the Talon Saga.  It is a good pace with action spread throughout.  I have read the second book and am eagerly awaiting the third book.

 
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Posted by on February 29, 2016 in Fantasy, Teen

 

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The Siren

The siren

 

Title:     The Siren

Author:   Kiera Cass

Series: N/A

Recommended for:   Ages 13-17

Pages:   336

Call Number/Link:  Teen Fiction Cass, K.

Synopsis:   Kahlen is a Siren, bound to serve the Ocean by luring humans to watery graves with her voice, which is deadly to any human who hears it. Akinli is human—a kind, handsome boy who’s everything Kahlen ever dreamed of. Falling in love puts them both in danger…but Kahlen can’t bear to stay away. Will she risk everything to follow her heart?

This was such a spellbinding book.  I loved the way she writes the character so heart felt.  She is unique and feels so many things and does not know why until she asks the Ocean more questions.  The twists and turns keeps you on the edge of your seat and you will never guess the ending.  Surprising what people keep hidden because they just don’t think it’s possible.  Can’t wait to for the sequel to see where she takes it, there are so many possibilities.  A great read for 8th grade and beyond.

 
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Posted by on February 8, 2016 in Fairy Tales, Fantasy, Romance, Teen, Uncategorized

 

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The Imposter Queen

23495112Title: The Imposter Queen
Author: Sarah Fine
Series: The Imposter Queen #1
Recommended for: Grade 6 & up
Pages: 432
Call Number/Link:  Teen Fiction Fine, S

Synopsis: Sixteen-year-old Elli was a small child when the Elders of Kupari chose her to succeed the Valtia, the queen who wields infinitely powerful ice and fire magic. Since then, Elli has lived in the temple, surrounded by luxury and tutored by magical priests, as she prepares for the day when the Valtia perishes and the magic finds a new home in her. Elli is destined to be the most powerful Valtia to ever rule.

But when the queen dies defending the kingdom from invading warriors, the magic doesn’t enter Elli. It’s nowhere to be found.

Disgraced, Elli flees to the outlands, the home of banished criminals—some who would love to see the temple burn with all its priests inside. As she finds her footing in this new world, Elli uncovers devastating new information about the Kupari magic, those who wield it, and the prophecy that foretold her destiny. Torn between the love she has for her people and her growing loyalty to the banished, Elli struggles to understand the true role she was meant to play. But as war looms, she must align with the right side—before the kingdom and its magic are completely destroyed.

My Thoughts: I had a lot of fun with this one and would be great for those fantasy people. The world is not overly unique, but enough so that it’s not one I’ve seen too often. The kingdom is protected by the Valtia, who can wield powerful magic. The magic is not solely hers though and it passes on to her predecessor, the Saadella, on her death. Elli is the current Saadella, the only problem is when the Valtia dies the magic doesn’t transfer to her. In fact, she can’t even do the most basic thing like freeze ice or light a fire. Knowing they’ll kill her, Elli rans and finds herself in the outlands with bandits/outcasts. It’s there she learns there is way more to the magic of the land and that not all is as it seems.

There are times where it was a bit predictable, but nothing that was too horrible that I couldn’t get over. The romance is pretty mild. They kiss and sleep next to each other (innocently) but it wasn’t too much beyond that. It is implied that there is way more there and even some talk, but nothing is depicted on the page. This series is one to look into and one I’ll be gladly be continuing.

 
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Posted by on January 27, 2016 in Fantasy, Teen

 

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