Thursday, February 24, 2011

Yummy: The Last Days of a Southside Shorty by Greg Neri

This graphic novel tells the true story of Robert "Yummy" Sandifer, an eleven year old gang member who murdered a girl. From a bad home and in trouble his entire life, Yummy joined a gang at a young age. His gang used younger members to commit many of their crimes since the juveniles wouldn't receive harsh punishments. Yummy was one of their most active members. During a street fight in 1994 Yummy killed a bystander, a girl his own age. Her murder resulted in Yummy being hunted down by police and a national outcry about youth and gang violence. On the run, Yummy ends up a casualty as well but who is responsible for what happened to him?

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Hunger by Jackie Morse Kessler

Lisa feels sure that she is too fat even though her best friend and boyfriend believe that she is anorexic. After the latest fight with her boyfriend Lisa considers suicide and is approached by Death who offers her the job of Famine, one of the four horsemen of the apocolypse. Lisa is convinced that it was all a bad dream but she wakes up to find a set of scales and a black horse waiting for her. As she travels around the world on her steed she is confronted with famine as well as the other two Horsemen. But back at home she is just herself, still struggling with her weight and her relationships. Lisa knows she needs help - for herself and to find a way to use her new power to help others.

Monday, February 7, 2011

A Long Walk to Water by Linda Sue Park

A Long Walk to Water tells two stories at the same time. Salva is at school in Sudan when rebels attack the village and he is forced to run away, leaving his entire family behind. With other refugees he walks hundreds of miles across a desert until they cross the border into Ethiopia and find shelter at a refugee camp. In the other story, Nya must walk for hours each day to fetch water for her family from the only pond within hundreds of miles. She travels to the pond in the morning and afternoon. Even when she returns with the water it is often dirty and makes members of her family sick. Salva's and Nya's stories come together in an unexpected way. Based on a true story of lives in Sudan.

Brain Jack by Brian Faulkner

When Sam hacks into a company to get some free computer equipment he single-handedly brings down networks around the world. But he feels it is all worth it when he receives his new laptop and neuro-headset which allows him to control his computer just by thinking about it. When Sam is arrested by Homeland Security for his earlier break-in he just looks on it as a new hacking problem and finds a way to escape from prison. Impressed with his skills, the government hires Sam to work for them protecting their networks from other hackers. Everything is going great for Sam and his new friends until their boss is attacked through her neuro headset, leaving her brain dead. What's more, most of his new colleagues are programmed to believe that Sam is responsible for the attack. On the run from a computer villain that can see everything, the only place to hide is the site of the worst nuclear attack in history - Las Vegas.