Monday, February 25, 2013

Starters by Lissa Price

This may be one of the best books of the year.  If you liked Legend and The Hunger Games, then you may have found your next read in Starters

 Sixteen-year-old Callie, having lost every family member besides her little brother when a genocide spore killed all of those who were not vaccinated, thinks she has found a way to support them by renting her body to seniors who want to be young again.  But after a neurochip malfunction results in her being stuck in the life of her rich renter, she uncovers the horrible plan of her boss and must race against time to stop it.

Nominated for the 2014-2015 young adult Golden Sower award, Starters will definitely keep you turning the pages.  

Click here to view a video book trailer.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Love, Aubrey by Suzanne LaFleur

Love, Aubrey is a deeply moving story about tragedy, loss, love, and moving on.  If you are a reader drawn to the human drama genre, this is a book to put on your reading list.  After losing her father and little sister in a tragic accident and then being abandoned by her grief-stricken mother, Aubrey goes to Vermont to live with her grandmother.   When she arrives, Aubrey cannot talk about what she is feeling.  Writing letters is the only thing that makes her feel better.

While in Vermont,  Aubrey makes new friends, learns to cope with what has happened, and begins to heal.   I think readers will fall in love with Aubrey, cry with and for her, and cheer for her as she has to face one of the biggest decisions of her life.  Love Aubrey has been nominated for 2012-2013 Golden Sower Award.  (Intermediate)

Click Here to see a video book trailer.

Walls Within Walls by Maureen Sherry

I'm not sure if I was influenced by a childhood of reading Nancy Drew mysteries or if this was just a good story, but I found myself really liking this book.   Walls Within Walls is the story of a family who moves from their cozy house in Brooklyn to an upscale apartment on Manhattan's Fifth Avenue.   Their father, a video-game inventor has struck it rich and the family is adjusting to not only a different lifestyle, but also to having no friends, a nanny who takes the place of their parents, and an uncertain school year.  Then one day, the kids discover an astonishing secret about their old apartment.  The apartment and all the clues it hides are a part of a gigantic puzzle that will will lead to unraveling the mystery of long-hidden treasures.    

Follow the Smithfork kids as they attempt to discover and decipher clues hidden within the walls of their new home.  Walls Within Walls has been  nominated for the 2012-1013 Golden Sower Award in the intermediate category.

Click Here to view a video book trailer.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

Lucky: Maris, Mantle, and My Best Summer Ever by Wes Tooke

This one is for baseball fans - especially Yankees fans!  Louis is having a difficult time adjusting to his new life in White Plains, New York.  He doesn't get along with his new stepbrother, he doesn't fit in at school, and misses his mom who now lives in New York City.   Louis loves baseball and spends hours with his baseball card collection despite being the worst stickball player in White Plains.  After the opportunity to become the Yankee's batboy arises, Louis doesn't think life could be much better.   Set in 1961,  this story follows the record-setting homerun race between Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris and along the way Louis finds himself learning about much more than just baseball.

Lucky: Maris, Mantle, and My Best Summer Ever is nominated for the 2012-2013 Intermediate Golden Sower Award.  

Red Cell by John Kalkowski

After winning a baseball game with an innovative toss of a rosin bag, Will Conlan catches the interest of a chief operative of the Homeland Security’s Analytic Red Cell. Utilizing the creative problem solving of philosophers, futurists, and Hollywood movie writers, this intelligence unit is seeking any original ideas about anticipating terrorist plots.  When a surge of terrorist activity occurs, the operative banks on the notion that Will’s youthful imagination and problem-solving skills will provide the key insight they need.  

Unaware of the magnitude of danger surrounding him, Will uncovers something he wasn’t supposed to discover—a connection between a television advertisement and a master terrorist plot. Narrowly surviving, he alone foils a bombing at Wrigley Field. Uncertain about the knowledge he now holds, he has to figure out the terrorists’ next target. Will just doesn’t realize…it’s him.  This book will be a good choice for readers who like Roland Smith's IQ series.  Red Cell is nominated for the 2013-2014 Young Adult Golden Sower Award.

Click here to read an excerpt from Red Cell.