"A book, too, can be a star, a living fire to lighten the darkness, leading out into the expanding universe." — Madeleine L'Engle

Monday, March 29, 2010

The Lumby Lines by Gail Fraser

Title: The Lumby Lines
Author: Gail Fraser
Published: 2007
Pages: 286
Rating: 3/5
Summary: Nearly destroyed by fire,Montis Abbey remains on the outskirts of Lumby. Once home to a resourceful order of monks, it stands abandoned, surrounded by its overgrown orchards. Then Mark and Pam Walker, a vacationing couple from the East Coast, stumble upon it- and upon the answer to their prayers. Leaving behind their hectic lives to restore the monastery and turn it into an inn is a dream come true.
But some residents of Lumby take a while to warm up to outsiders. One of them is irascible William Beezer, owner of The Lumby Lines- the newspaper "worth the paper it's printed on." At every turn, he tries to hinder the Walkers' efforts. The couple soon leans that for every citizen like William, there are many more willing to lend a hand, and that Lumby isn't just a place- it's a way of life.

Review: The change of voice from a teen to an adult was something that I had been looking for a while, just to see how it would be like. I have to say that I enjoyed reading this book for a change.

The Lumby Lines is fun read that follows the story of Mark and Pam Walker. They are a couple that are looking for something different than the lives that they have lived up to that point. They have to choose if they really want to give up that life and then they have to adjust to the change that awaits them.

I really liked most of the characters. The one that I didn't really like was William Beezer. It seemed that he only wanted the Walkers to fail in their attempt to restore Montis. Other than that the characters were fun to read about. One of the characters that I enjoyed the most reading about was Brooke. I liked seeing how she made decisions for her life and went along with them.

I liked how the book let the reader know what the characters thought and what they felt. I thought that it gave the story more of a feel of how the Lumby residents reacted to the outsiders. It was also fun to read of how they started to like the outsiders a bit more. I enjoyed reading this book, especially the newspaper that they had. It was funny.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

In My Mailbox (7)

In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren. This week I didn't get any books from the library which is surprising. I did get 1 book though!


Crash by Jerry Spinelli
Someone told me that I should read a book by Jerry Spinelli so I decided to go ahead and read a book by him. Hopefully it's good!!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Book Blogger Hop (2)

Book Blogger Hop is a fun new meme hosted by Crazy For Books. Enter your link and go hop around other blogs that are out there to read! You never know what great blogs you can find!

Angeles, my cousin

March 26, 2008 was one of the saddest days for me but it was also a day when I learned many things. This day also had a big impact on what I like to call my reading life.

It was one of the saddest days because my cousin died. She was a little baby of only 23 days that had done no harm to anyone. I could probably go into detail of exactly what happened. The worse part was that she died while we went on a little trip a couple of hours away from where my aunt and grandma live. We were in a church when she started to do nothing, no crying and no sleeping. It was in Mexico and what I couldn't understand was why it had to happen when it was my first time going over there without my parents. I can't really say how I felt when she closed her eyes and appeared as if she were merely going to sleep. When I saw her doing that I had no idea of what was happening.

What happened that day made me realize many things. I learned that I had to live my life and spend time with those that I love because there will be a time when I won't be able to do that ever again. As hard as it was, I had to come to terms that people die everyday and you truly never know when that time will come for you.

When I came back to the U.S. I took a long time trying to see who I was, what I was doing wrong, and what I was doing right. After that time I tried to change for the better. Part of that change was reading. Before then I read but not as much as I do now. I remember seeing how reading was one of the few things that helped me go through that night. Reading calmed me down and helped me not to get overwhelmed seeing all the people that night.

After that time reading became a constant in my life. It's something I know will calm me down when I need it. I hear people saying that they have been reading since they were little kids but that's not the case with me. The first thing that got me into reading was Harry Potter and the second was the death of my cousin. Now my life keeps going and I learned that you have to go along with it. Three things that I won't be able to part with is the memory of what happened, of all those people, and of course the love for books that I got from that experience.

In school, right after I came back, we started poetry and my teacher told us we had to write poems. Most of my classmates had trouble with it but I didn't. Here are some of the poems that I wrote of this experience:

Poem 1                                    Poem 2
Where did she go?                    In the day she was
Why did she go?                       Then in the night she wasn't
She was the best                      She was away from us
Simple as that
Angeles, Angeles
What a little baby                     Poem 3
We had                                    The day was so hot
A small little baby                   The night was so sad and cold
That did nothing                      She had gone away
But stay
For a little while                   
At least
Angeles, Angeles

My aunt was so happy
But she went away
"Why did she go," she said
Angeles, Angeles

She'll always be here
She'll always be here
I said

I know they may not be that good but I like them. They came from the heart and that's all I really care about.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The Midwife's Apprentice by Karen Cushman

Title: The Midwife's Apprentice
Author: Karen Cushman
Published: 1995
Pages: 117
Rating: 4/5
Summary: One frosty evening, a girl who knows no home, no parents, and no name but Brat finds shelter and warmth in a farmer's dung heap. There jane the village midwife finds her. So it is that Brat- now called Beetle by her new mistress- begins her career as a midwife's apprentice.
It's not soft life. Jane is a hard woman with a sharp glance and a sharper temper. Still, Beetle makes a place for herself, adopting a cat and befriending one of the village boys. By secretly watching Jane work, she learns some of the skills the midwife greedily tries to hide. Beetle even gives herself a real name at last: Alyce.
Then one day she fails at an important assignmennt. Alyce runs away, believing she is too stupid to be of use to anyone. Is she truly Brat, a know-nothing who belongs nowhere? Or is she Alyce, the midwife's apprentice, a person with a name and a place in the world?

Review: I don't know what I expected from this book so it's easy to say that I liked it! At least more than I thought.

The story follows Brat while she tries to find a place where she can spend the night and get some food. Jane, the midwife, finds her and offers her a place for her to stay and have some food as long as she works. Then the story goes on for the reader to see through the hard circumstances that she goes through.

Knowing the life that Brat, who changed her name to Alyce, had up to that point was hard. The reader sees that not everybody has an easy life and that Alyce was one of those people. I think that all the things that Alyce went through helped the reader know more of who she was, why she did some things, and why she reacted the way she did.

I liked how Alyce changed her name and gave herself an identity. Also, I thought it was nice of her to make a friend and to have the cat who liked her. I understood why she left after she failed after knowing her story even though I may not have done the same thing she did.

I think this book gives the reader a sense of how little was known of women giving birth. It was interesting to see of what people thought would help a woman to give birth. Overall, this was a really good and interesting book to read.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

In My Mailbox (7)

In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren. This week was library week! I spent about an hour at the library and I got 2 books!


The Icebound Land by John Flanagan
I wanted this book but the library didn't have at the time so I had to wait. Now I have it and I'm eager to start reading it!
The Midwife's Apprentice by Karen Cushman
I read this one already. My review of it should be up sometime this week.

What did you get this week?

Friday, March 19, 2010

Book Blogger Hop (1)

Book Blogger Hop is a fun new meme hosted by Crazy For Books.Enter your link and go hop around other blogs that are out there to read! You never know what great blogs you can find!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Title: The Hunger Games
Author: Suzanne Collins
Published: 2008
Pages: 374
Rating: 5/5
Summary: In the ruins of a place ounce known as North America lies the nation of Panem, a shining Capitol surrounded by tewlve outlying districts. The Capitol is harsh and cruel and keeps the districts in line by forcing them all to send one boy and one girl between the ages of twelve and eighteen to participate in the annual Hunger Games, a fight to the death on live TV.
Sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen, who lives alone with her mother and younger sister, regards it as a death sentence when she steps forward to take her sister's place in the Games. But Katniss has been close to dead before- and survival, for her, is second nature. Without really meaning to she becomes a contender. But if she is to win, she will have to start making choices that weigh survival against humanity and life against love.

Review: I can't believe that I didn't read this book before! It was amazing!

The main thing that goes on is the Hunger Games. Katniss goes in the place of her sister when her name is drawn. The boy tribute turns out to be Peeta Mellark. Both of them go through many things until the Games. The Games start and you simply can't stop reading.

I loved the characters! I enjoyed looking at the Games through the eyes of Katniss and seeing how she tried to survive and she didn't annoy me at all. Peeta was fun to read about. Once the Games started I wanted to know what he was doing. I really liked how I could keep guessing the reasons of why he kept doing what he did. I thought that Haymitch could be annoying but I still liked his character. In general I enjoyed knowing about every character that was in the book!

Reading while they are at the Games was amazing. I couldn't stop reading! I didn't do my homework just so I could finish it! During the whole next day I think I didn't learn a thing just because I was reading the book simply because I was so eager to know what happened! It seems that I can't say enough good things about this book! I can't believe I didn't read this amazing book before now!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

In My Mailbox (6)

In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren. This week I got 2 books!

For Review:

Death of a Cure by Steven H. Jackson
This one seems very interesting! Can't wait to read it!


The Hobbit by J.R.R Tolkien
I got this one from school. I don't really know anything about The Lord of the Rings so I really want to see what they're about!

So what did you get?

Friday, March 12, 2010

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Title:Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Author: Lewis Carroll
Published: 1865
Pages: 116
Rating: 4/5
Summary: Alice is lounging ona riverbank when she is startled by the sight of a peculiar White Rabbit, muttering anxiously to himself and plucking a wath from his pocket. Burning with curiosity-after all, she's never seen a rabbit with a watch before, let alone a pocket in which to keep it-Alice follows him. Down, down, down the rabbit hole she tumbles, finally landing in Wonderland, a world of twisted logic and nonsensical rhymes.

Review: An amazing book it is! I really liked it! Weird but good!

Alice went through so many adventures that I really had to pay attention to what was happening. I did love reading about how everything was so strange and different.

I honestly loved the characters that I read about. Each had something different about them. Most of the time I kept thinking of how weird they were but I loved it! The way that Alice talked about them made it appear as if everyone was perfectly normal. By the end of the book I felt that I had some sense of who the characters were even though the reader never really does.

I loved seeing everything through the eyes of Alice. All of the different things that she went through really kept me reading. Each time something strange happened I wanted to see if there was anything else that could happen.

Reading this book was really different for me. I had never read anything like it before and I liked that. I doubt I will read anything close to what this book gave me. These really were Alice's Adventures in Wonderland!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

The Burning Bridge by John Flanagan

Title: The Burning Bridge
Author: John Flanagan
Published: 2005
Pages: 262
Rating: 5/5
Summary: For years, the Kingdom of Araluen has prospered, with the evil Lord Morgarath safely behind the impassable mountains. But the scheming hand of the dark lord has not been idle.... When Will and his friend Horace, an apprentice knight, travel to a neighboring village they discover the unsettling truth. Could it be that Morgarath has finally devised a plan to bring his legions over the mountains? If so, the King's army is in imminent danger of being crushed. And Will and Horace are the only ones who can save them.

Review: I'm so glad that I read this book! I thought that this one was better than the first! Worth reading any day!

This book continues the story of Will. Will and his friend Horace go on a mission to a nearby village with Gilan, another Ranger. Once they finally got there they saw that something wasn't right. This leads them to have an urge of finding out exactly what's wrong. All the while they see that everything is the same wherever they go to. Also, they meet a girl named Evanlyn who might be keeping something hidden from them. Because of circumstances they have to go seperate ways and then you start seeing what really happened.

The book changed perspectives, which I thought helped the reader appreciate more of the story and to know more of the characters. This time around we didn't get to see Will's other wardmates except for Alyss. I really liked reading of what she was doing and what she thought of Will. Evanlyn always had something to say and I liked how she understood many of the things that were going on.

It was nice to see how some characters were willling to sacrifice themselves to save others. This gave me more of a feel of how much they meant for each other. I don't think you'll be disappointed after finish reading this amazing book!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

In My Mailbox (5)

In My Mailbox is hosted by The Story Siren. This week I got 2 books. All Alice related!


I want to know the story so I decided to read the book!

For Review:

Series Editor: William Irwin
Edited by: Richard Brian Davis
I'm really excited to read this one! Sounds interesting!

So what did you get this week?

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Title: The Great Gatsby
Author: F. Scott Fitsgerald
Published: 1924
Pages: 180
Rating: 3/5
Summary: The mysterious Jay Gatsby embodies the American notion that it is possible to redefine oneself and persuade the world to accept that definition. Gatsby's youthful neighbor, Nick Carraway, fascinated with the display of enormous wealth in which Gatsby revels, finds himself swept up in the lavish lifestyle of Long Island society during the Jazz Age. Considered Fitzgerald's best work, The Great Gatsby is a mystical, timeless story of integrity and cruelty, vision and despair.

Review: For me this was a weird book. That's all I can really say.

It just basically talks about how the people cheat on each other. Little by little you learn of the stories behind this. The narrator talks about his summer but I felt that he was telling the story of others.

I didn't like who the characters were. The one I only really did like was Nick. I thought he was honest and it's what I liked. All the other characters were people who appeared to be someone they weren't. The actions that they took really frustrated me.

The fact that Tom and Daisy left after what had happened really annoyed me. They were people who didn't want to clean up the mess that they had started and left that job to others. Towards the end of the book you realize that things weren't really going to change that much.

One thing that I did learn is that you need to know who your real friends are and who are the ones that just want something from you.