Thursday, July 30, 2009

Anything But Typical by Nora Raleigh Baskin

Jason is autistic and has trouble communicating with the rest of the world. But that doesn't mean that he doesn't have lots of ideas. He especially likes to write stories for an online peer site because in his stories he can say all the things he is thinking and no one knows who he is or assumes things about him. When he starts receiving comments on his stories from Rebecca he begins to think of her as his girlfriend. But when he unexpectedly has the chance to meet her in person he is terrified that she will treat him just the same as everyone else he knows instead of the way she has been writing to him when he was just a name on the computer.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Cricket Man by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor

Kenny helps his family by cleaning their backyard pool. He especially likes to save the crickets and other bugs that get stuck in the pool and eventually decides that if he was a superhero he would be Cricket Man. In fact, he designs a logo for himself and has it made into a T-shirt that he wears underneath his other clothes. He and his best friends James and Luis spend all their time outside of school skateboarding and trying to perfect their stunts. But at home he has begun to spend time with his neighbor Jodie, an older girl he has always admired from afar. Now that he and Jodie are becoming friends he finds himself being concerned about her because she seems to be depressed. Even with his secret identity as Cricket Man Kenny doesn't think he knows how to save Jodie from whatever is happening to her.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Flygirl by Sherri Smith

Ida Mae has had a dream of being a pilot her entire life but she knows that her chance of achieving this dream is small since she is a black woman. She has resigned herself to helping her family do whatever they can to support the troops fighting World War II in Europe when she comes across an ad asking for female pilots to fly missions in the United States. Ida Mae forges her pilot's license and goes to the interview. But in the waiting room she sees another black woman rejected just for the color of her skin. Ida Mae's skin color is so light she knows that she can pass for white so she does just that to earn herself a spot with the WASP. Although she is thrilled to finally be flying and helping her country, she knows that she will be in deep trouble if her secret is ever discovered.

Sovay by Celia Rees

When Sovay suspects her fiance has just been using her to spy on her father she decides to become a highwayman and steal back the ring she gave him. It is a dangerous time in England with many people talking about revolution, just like the revolt currently happening in France. Sovay finds out that both her brother and father have gone to France and she knows that she must find a way to protect them from charges of treason or bring them home. She is being stalked by a dangerous man who plans to bring about the downfall of her entire family beginning by exposing her life as a thief on the road. Sovay has to rely on her own bravery and help from some new friends to help save everyone she cares about.

Lament: The Faerie Queen's Deception by Maggie Stiefvater

Deirdre is an extremely gifted harpist who always throws up before a big performance. When she arrives at a competition she meets Luke, a mysterious boy who seems to know lots about her and joins her onstage in an impromptu award-winning performance. As Luke shows up Dee's life more often she finds other strange things happening - she can read minds and move objects just by thinking about them. She can also see the fairies all around her and that they are not happy about that. And after reading Luke's mind she sees that he is an assassin working for the fairy queen and that she is his latest target. Dee doesn't know what to do when the boy she is falling in love with is also the one who is supposed to kill her.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

The Eternal Smile by Gene Luen Yang

This graphic novel contains three completely separate stories. The first one is about Duncan, an average boy who is in love with a princess. When her father is killed by the Frog King he must face his fear of the swamp to avenge the king's death. If he can bring back the head of the Frog King he will become the new king and marry the princess.
In the second story Grandpa Greenbax is obsessed with money. Although he has great wealth he is looking for enough to fill a swimming pool deep enough for him to swim in it. When his meek assistant shows him a smile in the sky Greenbax hatches a new plan to get money from all the people who will come to worship the eternal smile.
Janet is the star of the third story. She works for a mean boss who refuses to give her a raise. When she receives a letter from a Nigerian prince asking for money she sends it to him and begins an online adventure.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

The Juvie Three by Gordon Korman

Gecko was driving the getaway car for his brother when he robbed a store. Now Gecko is in juvenile hall for his crime. But out of the blue Mr. Healy shows up with an offer for something better. He has hand-picked three boys in jail to join him in a halfway house. Along with Arjay and Terrance, Gecko now goes to school, does community service and attends counseling. Arjay and Gecko are happy for the chance to redeem themselves but Terrance is still looking to join a crew and cause problems. When he sneaks out one night the other boys and Mr. Healy find themselves on the fire escape trying to stop him. In the scuffle Mr. Healy falls off the escape goes into a coma at the hospital. The boys know that if anyone finds out they are three criminals living alone they will all be sent back to jail so now they have to make sure not to attract any attention at all. But as time goes on that becomes harder and harder. Terrance is still trying to join a gang, Arjay joins a band and becomes more famous, and Gecko meets a girl at the hospital where Mr. Healy is staying. It's only a matter of time before everything falls to pieces for the juvie three.

Messed Up by Janet Nicols Lynch

R.D. is repeating 8th grade and while breaking up a fight he is suspended on the first day of school. He is well known by the school deputy and administrators. R.D. lives with his grandmother and her boyfriend Earl but his grandmother left several months before with another man. Although Earl is not actually his grandfather he takes care of R.D. But when R.D. comes home from school one day he finds that Earl has died from the lung problems he has as a result of his time in Vietnam during the war. R.D. doesn't know how to contact his grandmother and doesn't want to go to a foster home so he has to find a way to take care of himself. What's more, he has to take care of himself well enough that no one will notice that he is living without any parents around. For the first time in his messed up life, R.D. has to try to straighten things out for himself.

The Season by Sarah MacLean

In the 1800's Alex is 17 and getting ready to enter her first season in London where her mother expects her to find a rich husband. Alex and her friends Ella and Vivi are not interested in getting married but are not sure how to avoid marrying uninteresting men who will not value their intelligence. Alex's friend Gavin has recently become an Earl after his father has died. Although Gavin's father's death appears to be accidental, Gavin is convinced that he was murdered and is investigating the circumstances. Although Alex would like to help Gavin discover what happened to his father their relationship becomes strained after they kiss during a party. Now Alex is not sure if she and Gavin are still friends or something more. But while she is struggling to figure out their relationship she overhears a plot to kill Gavin just like his father. Now it is up to Alex to warn Gavin and try to keep herself and her reputation safe.

Lily Dale: Connecting by Wendy Corsi Staub

Since moving to Lily Dale, New York Calla's psychic abilities have been growing and she is seeing ghosts everywhere she looks. She has also had a dream about her mother's death and is convinced that her mother was murdered so she begins investigating. When her investigation leads her back to her house in Florida she finds that she is not alone there and must hope that the prophecies about danger she has been given will not come true.