Friday, November 18, 2011


Unwind, by Neal Shusterman, is a book you'll LOVE if you enjoy sci-fi and unsettling subjects. Set in the future during a 2nd civil war, Connor, Risa and Lev struggle to keep themselves alive and away from being "unwound," or being taken apart little by little and donating their organs. Each has no need to exist in society according to the authorities, therefore being unwound is the best decision. This book is creepy, thought-provoking, and will keep you captivated until the very end.

Becoming Me

This is a funny, heartwarming story written in diary entries about friends, family, peer pressure, boys and heartache. It's a quick, light read that I would recommend for someone who needs a break from schoolwork. It brings up some challenging and thought-provoking ideas as well. Becoming Me is definitely written more for girls than guys, but it's inspiring and refreshing for anyone who reads it.


This book contains various aspects of teenage life and views when they lack love from their parents and have been abandoned. This book is entirely in poem writing style so it is very interesting to see the poem stanza and placement change throughout the plot of the story. Towards the ending, a big twist will surprise you if you read this book. I highly suggest this book, so go grab this from the library or book store right now!

The book Identical is written in poems, and it is a story about these teenage twins, who are having problems with relationships and trying to defeat their fear. This novel is really interesting, it makes people think over and over again, the creepiness of the book and the way the author tells the story is just like solving a puzzle as you are reading. If you are looking for books about teenage problems or you enjoy reading mysterious and creepy stories, Identical is definitely a book for you!

The Help

The Help, by Kathryn Stockett, is a great book because the different angles of the plotline give the reader a fuller view of the story. It allows the reader to be immersed within the book and relate closely with the characters. While all of us may not be black maids or white socialites in Jackson, Mississippi, the emotions tie the reader in. If social gatherings and fried chicken are your cup of tea, then The Help would be my recommendation.

The Help follows three different women in the 1960s when segregation and integration was a highly debated topic. Kathryn Stockett uses the interesting method of using the women's voices to tell their stories, as opposed to having one set speaker. I recommend this book because it stimulates the reader to think about the changes, whether great or small, that the United States has endured. The Help was a book I loved because of the writing techniques and the story overall.

Good to Great

When I first got the book, I expected it to be a boring, serious and professional economy/business book. However, after reading the first 10 pages, I realized that I was entirely wrong. How to run a business is exactly like how to live a life. Prepare for the most inspirational non-fiction book of the year, and change your life from good to great.

Oscar Wilde's Wit and Wisdom

Oscar Wilde's Wit and Wisdom is a collection of quotes gathered from Oscar Wilde's works, including Picture of Dorian Gray and Lady Windermere's Fan. His quotes cover a myriad of topics ranging from youth to politics, offering wit and profound insight to the reader. One of my favorite Wilde quote is "People who count their chickens before they are hatched, act very wisely, because chickens run about so absurdly that it is impossible to count them accurately," which means that people who plan for the future are prepared. Wilde's quotes were brilliant displays of intelligence.

The Chronicles of Narnia

I would recommend Narnia. It is a fantasy that tells the story of an amazing world. Some brave boys and girls get into that world and started their adventure. It is really interesting and tells us about love and faith.

City of Bones

Book one in the Mortal Instruments series (total six books, four have come out, by Cassandra Clare, is a typical teenager book. It contains immortals - vampires, werewolves, fairies, etc.; and humans that have special power - shadowhunters. If you like young, forbidden, uncontrollable love and twisted love triangles, the relationship between Jane, Clary and Simon will definitely interest you. If you're more interested in power-hungry villains and exciting actions, the journey they go through, the war, and Valentine - the big villain himself - will suit your taste. People who like the Harry Potter series will like this book. I will absolutely recommend the City of Bones to others.


Emma, by Jane Austen, is a classic novel about a young girl's love, friendship and emotions. The main character matures, gains self-knowledge and finds true love. Jane Austen's writing style is sarcastic and ironic as usual. It was really interesting to read with an unexpected twist. You will like this if you liked any other Jane Austen novel.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire is a book with all the aspects of a fun novel. It brings friendship, trust, magic and adventure all together to form a book for all audiences. Though it's long, it is an enjoyable read that will capture your mind. Harry Potter is a boy who finds out that he is a wizard and gets sent to a magical school where most of his adventures take place.

Lord of the Flies

Lord of the Flies is a disturbing novel that brings many questions to mind. What is really moral, or immoral? How far can a "joke" justify itself as harmless? If you enjoy intriguing books such as Animal Farm, then Lord of the Flies will be the book for you. They both portray conspiracies about our world in two very different topics. I enjoyed both a lot, and I highly recommend at least reading Animal Farm if you're a more political person.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

To Kill a Mockingbird

To Kill a Mockingbird, by Harper Lee, is an excellent novel. It expresses the importance of not judging others by what one hears. This novel also highlights the process of growing up and learning to see the world in a different way. I highly recommend this book for all teenagers.

One Day

One Day, by David Nicholls, is the best romantic-comedy since Dear John! You're able to follow the journey of two lovers: Emma and Dexter. Nicholls's writing is detailed and helps you really picture the relationship between the two. If you liked Dear John, you'll love One Day. It'll make you want to keep flipping the page!

Looking for Alaska

Looking for Alaska has relatable characters, and you get to go through the journeys and obstacles they face. The style was fluid and an easy-to-read book. It was set up as counting down to the climax, which kept me reading.

A Walk to Remember

I recommend A Walk to Remember because it's your typical Nicholas Sparks' book, but with an original twist. A Walk to Remember will play with your emotions. If you enjoyed any other Sparks' book, you will enjoy this beautiful love story. You will want to keep reading!

The Truth About Forever

With tears, joy, and a broken heart, I read this book without taking any breaks. It is intriguing and although it may sound like a cliche, The Truth About Forever is more than your typical Sarah Dessen teenage book. By far, it is my favorite book by Dessen and I strongly recommend it.

Sunday, April 24, 2011

The Lady and the Monk

Pico Iyer goes to Japan in order to learn more about Zen Buddhism and the Japanese culture. As he spends one year in Japan he learns more about Buddhism and also finds his new love Sachiko, who is already married. The journey of Iyer is very slow-paced but it is a good book to read if you want to spend a peaceful afternoon by yourself.

Sarah's Key

Sarah's Key, by Tatiana de Rosnay, ties together the stories of Julia, a middle-aged American living in France in 2002, and Sarah, a ten-year-old Jewish girl from Paris who lived through the Holocaust. This book gives a fresh perspective on France's role in the Holocaust and people's desire to forget the past. Julia's story kept me interested with family drama, and Sarah's story helped me understand what kind of trauma a Jewish child had to experience in the 1940s. I recommend this book for anyone who likes historical fiction but wants to also read a book that has a modern twist in its story line.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

The Witch of Portobello

The Witch of Portobello is told from many perspectives: the people telling the story are all somehow related to the "witch" Athena, but Athena herself never narrates her own story. Athena's missing perspective creates a mysterious feel for the readers. While reading the book, readers think about the seemingly normal things in life, supernatural powers, and the people around them.


Which side would you choose if you were torn between friends and pretty appearances? Tally in Uglies, by Scott Westerfield, chose the latter at first. Tally was an ugly and she was going to have an operation to turn into a pretty on her 16th birthday. Before her operation, her friend Shay ran away from the operation and Tally made a promise that she wouldn't tell anyone about this. However, Tally got thrilled by specials before her operation. She was forced to be a spy to find out where Shay had gone or she would never turn to pretty. Which side will Tally side with at the end? Read Uglies.

Uglies is an intriguing book about a futuristic society. It's a great book to read casually if you have extra time. If you like The Hunger Games, you will like Uglies because it is a similar setting but with less action. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who wants a fun read.

The Five People You Meet in Heaven

The main character Eddie works as an amusement park and suddenly dies to save a little girl from a bad accident. The story is about Eddie's adventure through heaven as he is reunited with five people that had some form of impact on his life. This book teaches many life-long lessons and is a quick read. This book is great to read right before bed and gets you thinking what really is up in heaven.

These Things Hidden

In the novel These Things Hidden, a young girl named Claire was always the perfect daughter. She got straight A's, was beautiful, popular, and was supposed to go to Stanford. However, after becoming pregnant her life seems to go off the deep end, and she ends up in jail for an unimaginable crime. Throughout the story, readers help to uncover the mystery of Claire's past, and they journey with her as she tries to reestablish herself and get back her old, perfect life. It's easier said than done, as she soon discovers her life may never be the same.

The Virgin Suicides

The Virgin Suicides is quite an interesting read, not only because the subject matter revolves around death, but also the mysterious existence of the 5 Lisbon sisters: Therese, Mary, Bonnie, Lux and Cecelia. Eugenides' writing, in its simplicity, conveys the surrounding community's desire to understand the sisters' frustration with society and life along with the untold suffering they endured. This is an incredible book, and is highly recommended.

The Good Good Pig

When I was shopping in the bookstore with my mom, I was interested in this book because there was a cute little pig on the cover. The Good Good Pig, by Sy Montgomery, is in fact a book about a pig named Christopher Hogwood. Sy and her husband, Howard, received Chris because he was the runt at the local farm. At first, Chris ceased to grow. However, he eventually did start to grow, and his relationships with the people around him grew as well. You don't have to love pigs to enjoy reading this book because a lot of the book is about the relationships with the pig, not just the pig in general. At the end, you learn a good lesson about life and how a small pig named Christopher Hogwood grew to be 750 pounds and changed many lives of the people around him.

Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress

Balzac and the Little Chinese Seamstress will take you into the world of two young teenage boys who lived in China during the Cultural revolution. Together they discovered a trunk of banned books, which widens their knowledge of the outside world, and makes them yearn to be free of re-education.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Charlie is a fictional character living in a fictional "real life." The Perks of Being a Wallflower is a collection of letters written by Charlie, explaining what's going on in his life. This book covers various issues such as homosexuality and teenage life crisis, much like The Catcher in the Rye. This book is entertaining, sad and engaging, mainly because most of the issues he covers are much like the ones we go through as young adults.

Calling myself loud is an understatement, so reading The Perks of Being a Wallflower gave me a perspective I'm not used to. It's a series of letters from a boy named Charlie who is known for being a "wallflower" to someone he does not know. Because he doesn't know them, he feels he's not being judged. He tells about his family, his new friends, and the adventures and situations they get into. I really enjoyed this book, and I know anyone who reads it will too.


Stormbreaker, by Anthony Horowitz, is the first book in the series of the life of Alex Rider. Alex is a teenage boy raised by his uncle, but suddenly his life is ruined when his uncle dies in a car accident. Alex realizes though, that that wasn't the case. His uncle was murdered, but for what? Alex was then thrown into the world of M16, he must become a spy to learn for what and why his uncle was killed, all while keeping himself alive.

If you like this book, you might also like: Ender's Game


Battle Dress

Have you ever wondered what it's like? Have you ever wondered what it's like for a girl? Amy Efaw's story Battle Dress follows a girl named Andi whose dysfunctional family leads her to apply and leave her home. But West Point isn't all it's cut out to be. Beast (the summer training program before freshmen year) is hard and has scary similarities to home. Will Andi survive Beast? Will the physically and emotionally hard experience break Andi?

Hate List

Hate List, by Jennifer Brown, is about a girl who is part of an unpopular gothic group. She and her boyfriend got made fun of everyday at school so they would make a list of people they hated for it. One day her boyfriend decided to get rid of all of the people that tortured her at school. The book is mainly about how his hatred turned into murder and how she recovered from a life-changing event during what was supposed to be a normal day at school. It is a sad book, but very interesting.


The book Dreamland, by Sarah Dessen, is about a young teenager trying to figure out why her older sister ran away. She leaves behind a journal and says she will see her in her dreams. Caitlin waits to hear from Cass and one day she gets a phone call from Cass. This book is easy to relate to and mysterious at times.