Review: The Quest for Justice

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in #GetKidstoRead, Children's, Fantasy, YA books
The Elementia Chronicles: The Quest for Justice Pages: 500
Format: Paperback
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three-half-stars

New players join the game Minecraft every day. But dark forces are at work on the Elementia server, and when Stan,Kat, and Charlie arrive on the scene, they quickly find themselves in peril The King has passed a law banishing all lower level players from the server by the next Proclamation Day. Anyone who tries to help the noobs will be silenced. With the natural forces of the game closing in and the King's deadline approaching, Stan, Kat, and Charlie must work together to unravel the mysteries of Elementia and lead the battle for Justice. ---From the back cover.

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The Quest for Justice is the first book in a series based on the video game Minecraft. First time author, Sean Fay Wolfe, is bridging the digital divide between book nerds and gamers. The story is about 3 new players on a Minecraft world called Elementia. Stan, Kat, and Charlie join the game at the worst possible time.
The King, has decided that new players benefit too much from the hard work of the experienced players and is trying to ban them from the world. He has changed the rules so that when they die in the game, they are banned. This creates a dangerous situation for our heroes, but the world is full of monsters like creepers and spiders that attack at night. When our heroes learn about the Kings plan they start on a quest to overthrow him and restore justice to the land.
Quest for Justice moved at a fast pace and was full of action and adventure. This is definitely a book that fans of the game will want to pick up. At times it did seem a little long (at 500 pages) but, the characters are very weak at the beginning of the story and need the page length to level up to a believable point and defeat the king.
Minecraft is very popular and this book will have a following. Libraries should get multiple copies because they won’t be able to keep it on the shelf.

three-half-stars

Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in #GetKidstoRead, awesome, Dystopian, read this book twice or more, YA books

I love when a story grabs you by the bootstraps and pulls you around for a fantastic ride. It’s the reason I love so many YA novels. YA novels tend to do it they pull you for this fantastic ride and then swing something at you at the very end. Something jaw dropping. Something that makes you say “OH MY GODS!” Insurgent is just this type of book. We pick up right from where Divergent leaves off. The factions are preparing for a war. Eurodite, Dauntless, Candor, Amnity and Abnegation all have their own motives. There are heroes on all sides. I don’t want to give away too much but I will reiterate the tagline, “One choice can destroy you.” The plot moves fast. Veronica Roth is a fantastic author who can hold the attention but do more with that. It’s not only important to be able to hold the reader’s attention but it’s important that the author can tell a good story. I think a good story is marked by one that you don’t mind revisiting. This series is definitely one I want to revisit. I love looking for clues left in early books for things that happen in the finale. Divergent 3 will be out soon (see the countdown on my blog). Veronica Roth’s Divergent series is definitely one to revisit again and again.

Car Trouble

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in #GetKidstoRead, Retro Review, YA books

Car Trouble
Duff is a computer whiz.  He lives his entire life in a computer like world dealing with problems that come up like command codes put into a computer.  After attending a convention for computer programming Duff is offered a very good job in California.  Determined to go for this opportunity despite his parents objections Duff starts out on his journey that will not only take him to California but to become a better person as well. 
Along the way on this road trip Duff encounters many interesting characters some that help and some that hinder his ability to make it to California and get his top job. 
I thoroughly enjoyed this book.  The characters were well developed and real there was action humor and drama. I think that both boys and girls would enjoy this book. Other recommendations: The car by Garry Paulsen.
4 1/2 stars.

Soon

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in #GetKidstoRead, YA books

I’m currently reading Insurgent by Veronica Roth.  That review will be up when I finish it.  I know I’ve had a lot of picture book reviews lately.  I’m trying to post more than one review a week.  There will be more YA and Middle Grade reviews coming soon.  I look forward to reading this holiday weekend. 

Here there be Dragons

Posted on Leave a commentPosted in Fantasy, Retro Review, YA books
This is an old book review from when I was getting my MLIS.  I thought some of my readers subscribers may not have read it and  might consider it worth reading.  

Here There be Dragons by James A Owen

I really enjoyed this book.  Its about three Oxford students in 1917 who come to be the guardians of a magical atlas.  There are references to many famous fantasy stories from King Arthur to Lord of the Rings.  I only gave it a 2 for popularity because depending on their frame of reference, teens may not get the references.  Especially, if they haven’t read stories by or about Narnia and Lord of the Rings.
I really enjoyed this book.  The premise of it is to explain that the authors of the greatest Fantasy Novels of the twentieth century were the guardians of an at las of magical lands.  The three friends go on a magical adventure that will become the inspiration for their novels.  Fans of Narnia and Tolkien will better appreciate this book.

Retro Review: Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Posted on 14 CommentsPosted in Children's, Fantasy, Harry Potter, Retro Review, YA books

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone is getting a new cover and being re-released.  I thought I would write a retro review to honor the new cover art.  
Harry has no clue he is a wizard.  All he knows is a miserable life with the Dursleys, his Aunt and Uncle.  The Dursleys make Harry feel unwanted.  They make him sleep in a cupboard under the stairs.  Then just before he turns 11, he receives an invitation inviting him to attend Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry.  When Harry arrives he discovers he is no ordinary wizard, and he has a destiny to fulfill.   Harry will make friends and enemies and confront the evil Lord Voldemort, the evil wizard who killed his parents. 
This book is and remains one of my all time favorites.  Rowling writes authentic characters and mixes the mystery, adventure and magic all together in a perfect way.  15 years after its first publication, this book still touches the hearts of readers.  I strongly encourage you to read it with your children and share the text as it originally appeared.  Relive Harry’s first year as it was in the book before the movie and share it.  Share this book with a child who is ready for it, so they can experience Harry’s adventures for the first time.