Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Incantation by Alice Hoffman
Reviewed by Lisa Doyle-Redmond

Incantation is Alice Hoffman’s sixth novel for young adults and it is an enchantingly written and haunting tale of a young girl’s experiences of friendship, love and betrayal aimed at readers aged twelve and upwards.
Incantation tells the story of Estrella de Madrigal who is fifteen and her best friend Catalina. The girls are inseparable until a strange and dangerous time begins, the burning time. For Estrella and Catalina live in Spain in the sixteenth century and the country is being cleansed of the hated Jews. As the story unfolds Estrella falls in love with Andres but he is promised to Catalina and jealousy causes a rift in their friendship. Estrella also begins to understand the secrets of her family and her heritage and as Catalina seeks her revenge, the de Madrigal family pay a terrible price.
This is a powerful book highlighting the evil effects of intolerance and hate. It is also a beautiful story of a young girl’s journey to self knowledge, wisdom and adulthood. It was chosen by Publisher’s Weekly as one of the top ten teen books of the year for 2006 and it is one not to be missed.
Diary of a Wimpy Kid
By Jeff Kinney
Reviewed by Lisa Doyle-Redmond

Diary of a Wimpy Kid has already been a huge success in America and across the world. Originally published as a series of cartoons, it is now available in book format complete with illustrations and at least two more books are due to follow. The book introduces us to Greg Heffley, Greg is stuck in the middle wherever he goes, as he is trapped between an annoying younger brother and a sneaky older one and has also just started middle school, where he is not quite part of the popular set but not a complete loser. Greg’s trials and mishaps at middle school are hilariously recounted and are guaranteed to make you laugh out loud. This book will hold the attention of even the most reluctant reader as you will be racing ahead to find out what Greg gets up to next as he battles bullies, brothers, parents and teachers and attempts to become one of the popular kids even cashing in on his hapless best friend’s rising star. I would recommend this book to anyone male or female from 8 upwards, it’s a hoot.

5 stars
A Great and Terrible Beauty
By Libba Bray
Reviewed by Lisa Doyle-Redmond

A Great and Terrible Beauty is the first book in a fantastic trilogy by Libba Bray. The books are an intriguing mix of history, fantasy and magic. The story begins in India in 1895 when a horrific event changes the course of 16-year-old Gemma Doyle’s life and she is sent to the very prim and proper Spence Academy in England. She must learn to become a young lady just as her world has been shattered and she has developed a strange and uncontrollable ability to glimpse visions of past and future. She must navigate the rigid social hierarchy of Victorian England as well as discovering her own destiny. Why is she being followed by a handsome young Indian man? How will she ever make friends with the cold and unwelcoming young ladies of Spence? How is her mother connected to an ancient magical group called the Order? Featuring a witty and feisty heroine and a magical spellbinding plot which unfolds through all three books this is a tale for those who like to curl up and enter a fantasy realm that is dark thrilling and gothic.

5 stars
Reading is so much more fun than cleaning

Sunday, May 24, 2009

So is The Kite Runner the best book ever it certainly sooms to be a book that everyone loves even people who can agree on nothing else.