Monday, January 17, 2011

Tuesday's QBR

I have three Quick Book Reviews for ya today.
1. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
Description from Goodreads: Young Katniss Everdeen has survived the dreaded Hunger Games not once, but twice, but even now she can find no relief. In fact, the dangers seem to be escalating: President Snow has declared an all-out war on Katniss, her family, her friends, and all the oppressed people of District 12. The thrill-packed final installment of Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games trilogy will keep young hearts pounding.
QBR: Of the three books, this one was my least favorite. I just didn't like all the detailed accounts of death.  Possible spoiler alert:  I did like the ending though with the surprise assassination. Thought she did the right thing and picked the right guy.

2. The Kind of Friends We Used to Be by Frances O'Roark Dowell
Description from Goodreads: Kate and Marylin are smack dab in the middle of middle school-seventh grade-and lately being stuck in the middle is starting to feel like a regular theme in both of their lives. They know that they can never be best friends like they used to be, not after Marylin became the kind of person who cares too much about hair (a.k.a. a middle school cheerleader). But, what if they still kind of want to be friends . . . and what if that's much harder than they ever imagined?   To read the rest of the description click here.
QBR: I think I'm becoming a fan of Frances O'Roark Dowell. This is my second book and it was not a disappointment either. I thought the characters were developed well and true to middle school friendship drama. A good clean book for any pre-teen or teenager to read.

3. Little Leap Forward: A boy in Beijing by Guo Yue and Clare Farrow
Description from Goodreads:  A sensitively written, semi-autobiographical story about a boy called Little Leap Forward, growing up in the hutongs of Beijing in the 1960's, during the Cultural Revolution. Little Leap Forward offers children an intimate and immediate account of a child's experiences as Mao Tse Tung's Great Leap Forward policy tightens its grip on China.
QBR:  I read this book in light that Chinese New Year is fast approaching.  I thought this was a GREAT book to introduce the Cultural Revolution to young readers. It is in the POV of a young boy who is musical like his father. His mother is an educated teacher. Everything seems magical until the Red Guards come and all things "old China" and "foreign" are burned.  Thought the illustrations by Helen Cann brought the book to another level for kids who may not have experienced anything Asian. Highly recommend it.