Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Dystopian Books for High Schoolers

This week's theme for Top Ten Tuesday is Back to School Freebie. I chose to write about one of my favorite genres by doing Ten Dystopian Books for High Schoolers. Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by the Broke and the Bookish blog. For more information, click here.

Dystopian is when something or someone threatens the human race. For example, an asteroid hitting Earth, or a breakout of a horrible disease. The following YA books are listed in random order and link to my reviews. All of these books are the first book in a series.

Life is calm and normal in Pemberwick Island until the starting football player, Marty Wiggins, drops dead after a game because he overdosed on a crystal called the Ruby, which makes you stronger and faster. Not soon after, SYLO, claiming to be part of the U.S. military, shows up and quarantines and cuts off the island from the rest of the world, saying that a deadly virus is going around. But there is more to the story, and Tucker, Tori, and Quinn must discover why they are really here.

After the Seven Stages War, parts of the world are destroyed. The problems now rest on the next generation. In order to make sure that the next leaders don't make the same mistakes, the government created The Testing to evaluate what leaders they can become. Cia is very excited when she finds out she is one of the four Testing candidates from her small colony of Five Lakes. Then her dad tells her some news about it. He advises Cia to not trust anyone, and to be very careful. After arriving, Cia realizes that she is in more trouble than she thought.

The oxygen levels in Earth drastically lowered after the government cut down a lot of trees to make room for farmland. Global warming just made matters worse for Earth. A company called Breathe figured out how to manufacture air and put the survivors in a glass dome. Other than that dome, the world has no air. Three teens leave the dome with two days of oxygen and learn the secrets of Breathe.

Jem has a secret. Ever since she was very young, whenever she looks into someone's eyes, she sees a number. That number is the date they are going to die. While waiting in line to ride a Ferris wheel, she notices that everyone around her has the same number, and that was the date of that day! Terrorists attack London. Jem barely manages to get them away in time. She is forced to break her own rule and tell Spider about the numbers.

Juliette has a power that can kill. Whenever she touches someone, she causes them excruciating pain. Juliette has not made contact with anyone in 264 days. The last time she did, she accidentally killed a little boy, and was sent to jail. Warner, the leader of the Reestablishment, has his eyes set on Juliette, and wants her as his weapon to stop the reestablishment.

Cassie calls the aliens "Others." They have been attacking Earth in waves. In the first wave, they stopped technology. In the second wave, they caused tsunamis. In the third wave, they used birds to spread an advanced form of Ebola. In the fourth wave, it was discovered that the Others could go inside humans and control them. As the fifth wave approaches, the Others take all the remaining children to a military compound. Cassie's younger brother, Sammy, was taken as well. Cassie promised to come after him. She will do anything to keep her promise and rescue Sammy.

The honeybee population was the cause of a horrible disease. The government tried to make a cure. But instead the vaccination turned people into ferocious, deadly beasts. Fiona has ten legs on her spider, which should make her the most dangerous, but she is normal.

It was just a usual day in Eden Mills for Adam Daley until the power went out. At first, it was just thought of as a standard thing that would resolve itself. However, it soon became clear that the problem was much more severe. Everything relying on computers was useless, including cars, airplanes, phones, appliances, and water filtration.

In the blink of an eye, everyone 15 or older vanishes into thin air, along with phone signals, internet, and anyway to get help. A barrier is surrounding the teens and there is no way to get through. On top of that, some people get powers that lead to power conflict.

 500 vertexes open around the world, telling everyone on Earth that they are from the year 2359 in an alternate dimension. They say that a comet is on a collision course with Earth, and their only hope is to step into a vertex to an alternate dimension.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Homeroom Diaries by James Patterson and Lisa Papademetriou

Homeroom Diaries is a YA realistic fiction book about the unique and complicated social life in high school. Margaret "Cuckoo" Clarke's mother left her. She is now living with her next door neighbor, after a short stay in "Crazytown" mental institution. She is determined to put the past behind her with "Operation Happiness" and escape the Haters and Terror Teachers by writing and drawing in her diary. She also creates imaginary conversations with her favorite characters from books and movies.

She and her friends, who call themselves the "Freakshow," want to try to bring all the cliques of high school together and get along. When her best friend is pushed too far with a prank from the Haters and an event changes her life, Cuckoo decides that she has had enough and she has to take action.

In Homeroom Diaries, there was constant activity, and every event had a clear reason for being there. James Patterson did a great job connecting to a teen audience even though he writes mostly middle grade and adult books.

There were a lot of illustrations in her diary, which I liked. She had a habit of making up alternate endings to movies and books, and they were funny. She also made up alternate realities with her and the characters. Homeroom Diaries deals with a lot of issues in high school, and Cuckoo shows ways to handle stress and bullying. Writing in a diary is one technique, and the book is her diary! The book deals with friendship and helping others get back up after they fall.

The ending of this book highly implies that there would be another book, so I am disappointed that there is no mention of another one coming soon.

I highly recommend that you read this book!

Title: Homeroom Diaries
Author: James Patterson and Lisa Papademetriou
Publisher: Jimmy Patterson
Pages: 272
Series: No
Rating: 5 Stars

Sunday, August 21, 2016

Genius: The Game by Leopoldo Gout

Genius: The Game is a YA science fiction book about geniuses competing against each other. Kiran, the world's youngest CEO organized The Game, a competition with 200 geniuses. The winners are recruited for a special project that will revolutionize the world. Rex is one of the best coders in the world. He created WALKABOUT, a program to find his missing brother, who ran away to join a revolution.

Painted Wolf is a blogger who is focused on uncovering and publishing the corruption and lies in the world. Tunde is an incredible engineer. He built the device that gave electricity to his town. This attracted attention from corrupt leaders. One of them partnered with Kiran and threatens his family unless he can build the most powerful GPS Jammer in the world. Rex and Painted Wolf unite with Tunde to help him solve this problem and uncover the real motive behind The Game.

The friendship of these three teens is amazing. Rex and Painted Wolf were willing to sacrifice everything to help Tunde, even if it means lying. They stood by each other when it counted, and worked together endlessly. I liked the little touch of romance between Rex and Painted Wolf. I really liked the character of Painted Wolf, and how she disguised her true self.

The thing I did not like was the ending. It was scattered and quick. There was not much detail, and there could have easily been another 100 pages or so. With the next book not coming out for another year, I definitely expected more.

The illustrations in the book were awesome and very technical. Every page had tons of things on the edges and even some on the text. There were diagrams and math equations and coding. It was unlike any other book I have read. It took me way longer to read it than usual since I kept looking at the pages!

I recommend that you read this book! There is a sequel that will come out on June 6, 2017 called Genius: The Con.

Title: Genius: The Game
Author: Leopoldo Gout
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Pages: 304 pages
Series: Yes, Book 1 of 2
Rating: 4 Stars

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Consider by Kristy Acevedo

Consider is the first YA dystopian book in the Holo series. Alexandra (Alex) Lucas has an anxiety disorder. With panic attacks nearly everyday, the last thing she needs is more to worry about. While Alex is on a train with her boyfriend, Dominick, the train stops because of a hologram and vertex. 500 of them open around the world, telling everyone on Earth that they are from the year 2359 in an alternate dimension. They say that a comet is on a collision course with Earth, and their only hope is to step into a vertex to an alternate dimension.

Right when the book starts, there is instant action with the holograms. I was a little surprised, since most books build up to an event like that, but I liked it. It was pretty much like that the whole book with nonstop events and action.

Her anxiety was very detailed. Alex was very descriptive with the symptoms and emotions that go along with her panic attacks. The amount of detail describing her thoughts and feelings were so realistic and persuasive.

The holograms allowed people to ask them questions about their dimension. At the start of every chapter, there would be a question and answer that relates to the concept of the chapter you are about to read. That was cool, and it put things in perspective while providing more information.

Contribute is the second book in the Holo series and comes out on January 1, 2017. I can't wait to read it! I'm glad I purchased Consider.

Title: Consider (Holo #1)
Author: Kristy Acevedo
Publisher: Jolly Fish Press
Pages: 288
Series: Yes, Book 1
Rating: 4 Stars

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Series Review: Pulse by Patrick Carman

Pulse is a YA dystopian trilogy series about having telekinetic powers. In 2051, there are only two states- the Eastern State and the Western State. Faith Daniels lives outside of the states. At her high school, there is only 133 kids when there was supposed to be 2000. At her school, she meets Dylan Gilmore, a student who has a secret. He helps Faith discover that she has a pulse. She can move things with her mind. She discovers that the boy she has a crush on is one, too. Wade and Clara are telekinetic masters, and Dylan needs Faith's help to defeat them.

In the second book, Tremor, Faith discovers she has a second pulse, the ability to withstand damage. They are almost indestructible, with the exception of one weakness. When it is discovered that Dylan's father is part of their enemies, they decide to infiltrate enemy grounds and find out more about the war that they are planning.

In the third book, Wade and Clara release Hotspur Chase, the smartest man in the world. Hawk leaves in the middle of the the night to sneak inside the Western State to find out more about his violent plan. Outside, Faith and Dylan take part in the final battle of Wade and Clara with new help- Jade, who can turn the tide and even the war. One mistake and half of the states' population is wiped out. Hawk might be the only person who can stop it.

In the first book, I did not like the pace. Half of the book was already over before she discovered her pulse, so the second half of the book was rushed and should have been longer. I liked the background information in the first half about living life in an area where there are so few people. I enjoyed when  things floated around the room while the characters were asleep.

I feel like the second book, Tremor, had too much emotion. Faith was either angry or in love scenes with Dylan. I understand the situation that she was in, but I would have liked her to cry a couple of times instead of being so mad. At the same time, I would have liked Dylan to be more emotional. He was basically a rock when he went undercover, but beforehand he got over the news quickly, too. However, Tremor was fun to read! I liked the undercover part and getting the insider scoop on everything that happened on the other side.

The third book, Quake, was my favorite. There was nothing I did not like! It had the most action and suspense. All the secrets were revealed, and there were plenty of surprises. Jade was a great character, and she was very helpful.

I recommend that you read this series!

Title: Pulse
Author: Patrick Carman
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Pages: 371
Series: Yes
Rating: 4 Stars

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Favorite Book Covers

When I am browsing for books, one of the first things that catches my attention is the cover art. Today, I am celebrating Book Lovers Day and Top Ten Tuesday free choice by blogging about my favorite book covers for middle grade and young adult books.

This week's theme is Top Ten Tuesday Rewind, where you can do any past topic that you missed. Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by the Broke and the Bookish blog. If you want to participate, click here.

Cover art can draw a reader in and make them more excited to read a book. These are my top favorite book covers in order with number one being my favorite. Be sure to click each title to read my review.

1. Keeper of the Lost Cities: Everblaze by Shannon Messenger

I love all of the covers in this series, but Everblaze is my favorite! It shows that they are teleporting, which is really cool.

2. The Ward by Jordana Frankel

Even though I did not enjoy the book that much, the cover art is one of my favorites of all time! I love how the main character is in the letter A, and I love how they made the buildings going toward the waterfall! If you pay close attention, you can see the main city way in the distance! 

I love how the E is backwards to be a 3. I like the font that was used, and I love the fire and smoke. The power lines were a cool addition.

4. SYLO by D.J. MacHale

I love the purple smoke and the texture of the letters. The island is also cool, as well as the strange aircraft. The green contrasts well with the purple.

5. Breathe by Sarah Crossan

I love the cracks on the ground and the shadows.

6. Man Made Boy by Jon Skovron

I like the bolts sticking out of his wrists. I also like the electricity on the O of Boy in the title, and how it is shaped like a heart. 

7. The Dirt Diary by Anna Staniszweski

I love the look on Rachel's face. I also really like the arrows and the way the title was drawn. The hearts are a nice touch. 

8. Ask My Mood Ring How I Feel by Diana López

I like the drawings in her notebook and the decorations. 

It is cool that the cover is underwater and how the animals are positioned. I like the colors of purple and yellow, which go nicely with blue. 

Even though I did not enjoy the book that much, I love the cover. The snow is really awesome and the yellow is the perfect accent color for white

Friday, August 5, 2016

The Revenge Playbook by Rachael Allen

The Revenge Playbook is an inspirational YA realistic fiction book about equality and revenge. Football players at this school are treated like royalty, and four girls have had enough of it. Peyton is tired of preferential treatment in her geometry class. The teacher even lets them correct their tests! Ana was taken advantage of at a party. When she told the guidance counselor, she told her to not risk him being kicked off the football team! Liv and Melanie Jane were dumped by their boyfriends because their teammates told them to. They come up with a plan to steal the most important thing to them in return for getting rid of the inequality.

Each chapter alternates. One chapter is about the scavenger hunt and stealing the football, and the other chapter is the background stories and prior events. I like how the author did it, but I would have wanted to switch the order. The first chapter was about getting revenge, but without any background knowledge.

This book is inspirational. It deals with self-confidence and standing up for yourself. It showcases empowerment in girls. The Revenge Playbook also deals with bullying and what to do in certain situations.

The characters were interesting and fun to observe. I enjoyed the struggle with Melanie Jane and Ana. They lost their friendship long ago, and it was nice to watch them try to be friends. Peyton was very brave and spoke up about geometry class, and I liked her bravery and determination, especially at the end.

I recommend that you read this book!

Title: The Revenge Playbook
Author: Rachel Allen
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 365 pages
Series: No
Rating: 4 Stars

Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten YA Books I Want to Buy Now

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by the Broke and the Bookish blog. If you want to participate, click here. The theme for this week is Ten Books You'd Buy Right This Second If Someone Handed You A Fully Loaded Gift Card. (And if I had endless space in my room!)

Before you buy a book, I recommend you see if it is in your local library as this is a great way to save money. These are 10 YA books that I really want to read, starting with the ones that interest me most!

1. Icons (Icons #1) by Margaret Stohl

One day, everyone on Earth dropped dead, and lost a war that they didn't know they were a part of. Four teens lived, and realize that their uncontrollable emotions are the reason they survived the Icon.

2. Pulse (Pulse #1) by Patrick Carman

Dylan Gilmore and Faith Daniels discover that they can telepathically move objects with their mind, and that this power is called a pulse. They must learn to control their powers and join their powers to save the world from evil telepathic masters.

3. The Revenge Playbook by Rachael Allen

In Ranburne, football players are treated like royalty, and treat girls like servants. Instead of getting angry, they decide to get revenge and beat them at their own game.

4. Revolution 19 (Revolution 19 #1) by Gregg Rosenblum

They built the robots to fight for them in the battle fields. Instead, they turned on the humans that created them in the robot revolution of 2071. Kevin, Nick, and Cass hope to save other survivors by attacking the main city controlled by the robots.

5. Doomed by Tracy Deebs

Pandora is an average teen that loves her phone and computer. That is, until one day her father sends her a link to a crazy website that supposedly has her baby pictures on it. When she opens the site, a global computer virus unleases. The only thing that still works is a virtual world game her father created. She must beat the game in order to rescue her father and the world.

6. After Eden (After Eden #1) by Helen Douglas

Ryan Westland shows up at Eden's school. He looks like a typical teenager, but he doesn't remember pizza or other normal things. She finds a book that is a biography of her best friend 50 years in the future. Eden discovers that she might have ruined everything.

7. Flawed (Flawed #1) by Cecelia Ahern

In Celestine North's society, perfection is mandatory. If you make a mistake, you are labeled as Flawed and imprisoned for life. When she makes an impulsive decision and risks being Flawed, she decides to take a stand on what she believes is right.

8. Acid by Emma Pass

In 2113, ACID rules. Nothing can hide from them. They locked Jenna away for life for a crime she doesn't remember. They took her life away from her. When she sneaks out, she tries to uncover the secrets of ACID and what really happened before she was locked away.

9. Solstice by P.J. Hoover

In Piper's world, every day brings hotter and hotter temperatures that will destroy the Earth. On her 18th birthday, she discovers there is another universe that is also in chaos. The greek gods are fighting to take control of the underworld. Piper tries to find the truth about what is happening.

10. Linked (Linked #1) by Imogen Howson

Elissa is getting bruises that appear randomly, having terrifying visions and strange pain. She is given a cure, to have small surgery to get rid of the overactive part of her brain. Right before the operation, she learns that she is seeing the world from her twin sister's eyes, who she never knew existed. She is on the run to protect her dangerous secrets.
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