Thursday, July 11, 2013

33 Minutes

Sam Lewis and Morgan Sturtz used to be best friends, but in exactly 33 minutes Morgan is going to kick Sam's butt.  Why?  Well, that's kind of a long story.

Only a year ago, the had the best day ever with an all day marathon of Alien Wars, their favorite video game.  They were a power team with each player using his own strengths and defending the other's weakness.  What could tear such awesomeness apart you ask?

Well, things have been changing for a while.  Morgan just keeps getting bigger and more athletic, and Sam just keeps staying the same size and getting smarter.  Despite this, the Wagner Middle School's star football player and star ArithmeTitan remained close.

The real problems started with Chris Tripadero.  Sam was leery of the new kid, but Morgan always wanted to hang out with Chris, and slowly but surely, Chris began to take Sam's place as Morgan's best friend.  What does Sam have against Chris?  For starters, he's a jerk.  Also, his parents are never around to say things like, "Hey, maybe you shouldn't throw that (fill in the blank) off the roof; you might hurt someone."

Now, instead of hanging out with his best friend, Sam is nervously counting down the minutes said best friend kicks his butt.  Will the butt kicking actually happen, or is there still a chance for Sam and Morgan to be friends?

Read Todd Hasak-Lowy's funny, painful, and poignant story of middle school and friendship.  This is a great story that had me laughing out loud on one page, and heartbroken on the next.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013


Here's another sequel alert!  If you haven't read Cinder yet, stop now and get a copy!  Cinder was one of my favorite books of last year, and I've been eagerly anticipating the sequel since I finished it.  I have to admit, I was a little annoyed, like I always am, when I discovered the sequel added a new protagonist.  That being said, author Marissa Meyer quickly won me over!  The new characters in this book only enhance the mystery and conspiracy we tasted in Cinder.

Scarlet is angry.  No one is looking for her grandmother.  Grand-mere disappeared from their farm in rural France three weeks ago, and the police have given up the search already.  Scarlet will never be satisfied until she finds the only person who's ever cared for her.  On top of all this, she's annoyed that every seems so quick to judge that Linh Cinder girl on the news.  She's just a kid; it's not her fault she's a cyborg.  What can she have done that's so horrible she deserves everyone's scorn?

As she's making a produce delivery to one of the farm's best clients, she meets a handsome and hungry stranger who's never tasted a tomato.  She is both attracted and repelled by Wolf.  But she soon becomes suspicious that Wolf is involved in her grandmother's disappearance even though he insists he isn't.  Soon Scarlet is on a journey to find her grandmother with Wolf in tow.  Can she trust this Wolf?

Meanwhile, Cinder is still reeling from her discovery that she is the long lost Lunar Princess Selene, and she has no intention of falling into Queen Lavana's hands and certain death.  In her escape from prison, she makes a miscalculation and ends up with an actual criminal in tow.  The good news is, Thorne seems pretty harmless, and he has a ship.  With a new foot and hand and her Lunar gift unlocked, Cinder is better equipped than ever but wracked with guilt over her ability to bend others' perception of reality.

How are Cinder and Scarlet connected, and how can these two girls stand against the powerful Lunar queen whose ultimate plan is coming to fruition with violence and terror?  Read Marissa Meyer's action packed sequel to find out.