Review: Nightmare Escape by Greg Grunberg & Lucas Turnbloom

278829301Nightmare Escape by Greg Grunberg

My rating: 1 of 5 stars
Received: Scholastic Canada
Publication Date: June 28th, 2016
Publisher: Graphix
Point of View: Masculine
Recommended Age: 9+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Middle Grade, Graphic Novel, Fantasy

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BLURB:

Ben has a problem. When he sleeps he dreams, and when he dreams, they’re all nightmares! But he can also jump into other people’s dreams. So when his friends start falling victim to an evil dream-monster that prevents them from waking, Ben knows he has to help them. Easier said than done when dreams can shift and the monster knows his way around the ever-changing landscape of the mind! With help from a talking rabbit-companion who has a mysterious past, Ben might just be able to defeat the monster and save his friends . . . if he can figure out how to use the power within him against his enemies. Continue reading

Review: The Light Fnatastic by Sarah Combs

28814848The Light Fantastic by Sarah Combs

My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Received:Publisher
Publication Date: September 13th, 2016
Publisher: Candlewick Press
Point of View: Various
Recommended Age: 13+
Pacing: Slow
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Contemporary, Murder

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BLURB:

Seven tightly interwoven narratives. Three harrowing hours. One fateful day that changes everything.

Delaware, the morning of April 19. Senior Skip Day, and April Donovan’s eighteenth birthday. Four days after the Boston Marathon bombing, the country is still reeling, and April’s rare memory condition has her recounting all the tragedies that have cursed her birth month. And just what was that mysterious gathering under the bleachers about? Meanwhile, in Nebraska, Lincoln Evans struggles to pay attention in Honors English, distracted by the enigmatic presence of Laura Echols, capturer of his heart. His teacher tries to hold her class’s interest, but she can’t keep her mind off what Adrian George told her earlier. Over in Idaho, Phoebe is having second thoughts about the Plan mere hours before the start of a cross-country ploy led by an Internet savant known as the Mastermind. Is all her heartache worth the cost of the Assassins’ machinations? The Light Fantastic is a tense, shocking, and beautifully wrought exploration of the pain and pathos of a generation of teenagers on the brink—and the hope of moving from shame and isolation into the light of redemption. Continue reading

Review: The Devil’s Intern by Donna Hosie

20558767The Devil’s Intern by Donna Hosie

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Received: Thomas Allen & Son
Publication Date: August 31st 2014
Publisher: Holiday House
Point of View: 1st Person & Masculine
Recommended Age: 13+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Death, Fantasy, Time Travel, Romance, Humor

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BLURB:

“How did you die?”

It’s the most popular question in Hell, and Mitchell Johnson has been answering it ever since he was hit by a bus at age seventeen and inexplicably ended up in the Underworld. Now Mitchell is The Devil’s intern in Hell’s accounting office. Lately, he’s noticed a disturbing trend: the volume of new arrivals is straining Hell’s limited resources. Then Mitchell overhears his boss discussing plans to limit newcomers with a legendary time travel mechanism. With a device like that, Mitchell realizes, he could change history and prevent his own death.

Mitchell’s plot goes awry when his three closest friends—Alfarin, the Viking prince; Elinor, from 17th-century London; and Melissa, from 1960s San Francisco—insert themselves into his plans. It soon becomes clear that the fates of all four are entwined in dangerous and unpredictable ways. With unforgettable characters and a thrilling premise, this original novel is by turns funny, poignant, and thought-provoking. Continue reading

Review: If You’re Lucky by Yvonne Prinz

28110860If You’re Lucky by Yvonne Prinz

My rating: 2 of 5 stars
Received: Thomas Allen & Son
Publication Date: October 20th, 2015
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Contemporary, Mystery, Mental Illness

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BLURB:

When Georgia’s brother drowns while surfing halfway around the world in Australia, she refuses to believe that Lucky’s death was just bad luck. Then a stranger named Fin arrives in False Bay claiming to have been Lucky’s best friend. Soon Fin is working for Lucky’s father, charming Lucky’s mother, dating Lucky’s girlfriend. Georgia begins to wonder: Did Fin murder her brother in order to take over his whole life?

To uncover the truth about Lucky’s death, Georgia secretly stops taking the medication that keeps away the voices in her head. But as her suspicion grows, her mental state becomes more and more precarious. Is Georgia’s mind playing tricks on her, or is the entire town walking into the arms of a killer who has everyone but her fooled? Continue reading

Review: Asking For It by Louise O’Neill

25255576Asking For It by Louise O’Neill

My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Received: Publisher
Publication Date: September 3rd, 2015
Publisher: Quercus
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 14+
Pacing: Slow
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Contemporary, Rape, Feminism

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BLURB:

It’s the beginning of the summer in a small town in Ireland. Emma O’Donovan is eighteen years old, beautiful, happy, confident. One night, there’s a party. Everyone is there. All eyes are on Emma.

The next morning, she wakes on the front porch of her house. She can’t remember what happened, she doesn’t know how she got there. She doesn’t know why she’s in pain. But everyone else does.

Photographs taken at the party show, in explicit detail, what happened to Emma that night. But sometimes people don’t want to believe what is right in front of them, especially when the truth concerns the town’s heroes… Continue reading

Review: The Best Possible Answer by E. Katherine Kottaras

28220719The Best Possible Answer by E. Katherine Kottaras

My rating: 3 of 5 stars
Publication Date: November 1st, 2016
Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 11+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance, Family, School

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BLURB:

Ultra-high-achiever Viviana Rabinovich-Lowe has always had a plan—and no room to be anything less than perfect. But her quest for perfection comes toa screeching halt when her boyfriend leaks racy pictures of her to the entire school. Making matters worse, her parents are getting divorced and now her perfect family is falling apart. For the first time, Viv feels like a complete and utter failure.

Then she gets a job working at the community pool, where she meets a new group of friends who know nothing about her past. That includes Evan, a gorgeous guy who makes her want to do something she never thought she’d do again: trust. For the first time in her life, Viv realizes she can finally be whoever she wants. But who is that? While she tries to figure it out, she learns something they never covered in her AP courses: that it’s okay to be less than perfect, because it’s our imperfections that make us who we are. Continue reading

Review: Kill the Boy Band by Goldy Moldavsky

25184383Kill the Boy Band by Goldy Moldavsky

My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Received: Scholastic Canada
Publication Date: February 23rd, 2016
Publisher: Point
Point of View: 1st Person & Feminine
Recommended Age: 12+
Pacing: Fast
Genres & Themes: Young Adult, Contemporary, Humor, Celebrity

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BLURB:

Just know from the start that it wasn’t supposed to go like this. All we wanted was to get near them. That’s why we got a room in the hotel where they were staying.

We were not planning to kidnap one of them. Especially not the most useless one. But we had him—his room key, his cell phone, and his secrets.

We were not planning on what happened next.

We swear.

From thrilling new talent Goldy Moldavsky comes a pitch-black, hilarious take on fandom and the badass girls who have the power to make—or break—the people we call “celebrities.” Continue reading