Sunday, January 27, 2013

Every Day

The concept of David Levithan's Every Day (watch Levithan introduce the book here) really captured my curiosity.  When I heard about the premise, I automatically wanted to read it since it didn't seem similar to anything I'd previously read.  I was right; it was quite unique.

The premise of Every Day (visit Levithan's website) is that there is a being, who calls itself A, who lives inside someone different's body every day.  It or he or she...I don't know, wakes up inside the body of a different person every single morning.  It can access the memories of the host body so as to fit into that life for the day.  At the end of the day, the host does not recall being invaded by the someone unless A leaves a seed of a memory for the person.  Strange, right? 

It's a weird and lonely existence for A.  A never makes connections with others, has no family, has no life of his own.  Until one day, he meets Rhiannon and forms a bond with her.  The day he spent as Rhiannon's boyfriend, Justin changed A's life.  After this, he continually struggles to get back to Rhiannon, which is hard since he's someone different every single time. 

To make matters worse Nathan , one of the bodies A inhabited, is aware that some one lived his life that day.  Yep, that's awkward.  Nathan is convinced that A is the devil.  After this a religious group pledges to find this devil and bring him to justice.  Well, that will be a little difficult if he is a different person every day.

As you can see, this is a pretty unique adventure.  There are plenty of loose ends that Levithan could pick up for a sequel.  I have read rumors of the sequel, but can't locate confirmation of these.  If you're looking for something that most likely different from anything you've read lately, give Every Day a try.

*Every Day is probably better for older teens.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013


I had been putting off reading Finale (watch the trailer here) by Becca Fitzpatrick, but not because I didn't want to read it.  I actually put it off because I knew I would love it.  I've been in love with the Hush, Hush series ever since the first one was published.  I just wasn't looking forward to the end of the series.  I didn't want there to be no more Patch and Nora to come.  Sad times here people.  I gave into my curiosity, bit the bullet, and found out how it all came to its glorious end.  And, it certainly was glorious. 

As the series comes to an end, Nora continues to struggle with who she has become as a result of Hank's death, her new Nephil characteristics, and her place as the head of the Black Hand's army.  No big deal right?  To make things worse, the Nephilim doubt both her ability to lead and her loyalty to them as she is rumored to be seeing a fallen angel. 

Nora desperately searches for a way to fulfil her oath saving both her life and her mother's, preserve her relationship with Patch, and prevent an all out war.  Unfortunately, Nora places her trust in some of the wrong people, making her task even more complicated.  Speaking of complicated, enter devilcraft.  It is indeed as bad as its name suggests.

Yes, indeed, the stage is set for a dramatic ending to the series.  However, these things still hold true.  1.)  Hush, Hush is still a series I adore, 2.)  I still think everyone I meet (and those I haven't) should read the series, 3.)  I still hope the movie buzz materializes, and 4.)  I still have a crush on Patch.  So, that sums it up.  If you haven't tried the series, please do.  You can check out my reviews of Hush, Hush and Crescendo here and Silence here.

Sunday, January 13, 2013


Bewitching (Kendra Chronicles, #2)I suppose I have been under a rock because I was completely unaware that Beastly was a series.  I read Beastly years ago.  How did I miss this?  Bewitching by Alex Flinn is a twist on Cinderella as shaped by the witch Kendra who was responsible for turning Kyle Kingsbury from Beastly into his beastly form.

In Bewitching readers learn background information on Kendra.  She wasn't always the strange high school student who turns the cutest boy in school into a beast.  She's actually a quite sympathetic character...I kind of like her.

In addition to giving insight into the world of Kendra, readers also experience Cinderella in a new way.  Kendra has set out to help a girl named Emma.  Emma's life is about to change because she finds out her stepfather, who has really been the only father she has ever known, has a daughter, Lisette.  This unknown daughter's mother is recently deceased and she will be coming to live with Emma and her family.  Emma is determined to be friends with Lisette, who has evidently not had the cushy life Emma has.  However, Lisette has other ideas.

While the Emma and Lisette story is the main story, Kendra shares other stories from her past that relate.  This was a really cool way to structure the novel. 

All in all, this was a really fun read.  I will certainly be on the look out for another installment in the Kendra Chronicles.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Spies of Mississippi

Spies of Mississippi: The True Story of the Spy Network that Tried to Destroy the Civil Rights MovementI begin the new year on my little blog in a somewhat shocking way.  Hold on, people.  Yes, it's nonfiction!  Gasp!  I know, I know.  But, the world of teaching Common Core State Standards is impacting my life in a major way.  As a result of adjusting to the new demands of nonfiction in my classroom, I've been searching for nonfiction books that I really wanted to read.  I know my strengths, and they aren't being enthused about real life.  However, I really can get behind anything including the word spy.  So, obviously, I gave this one a whirl.

Spies of Mississippi: The True Story of the Spy Network that Tried to Destroy the Civil Rights Movement by Rick Bowers was a great way for me to dip my toes into the world of nonfiction.  The book describes the intriguing story of many undercover agents, backroom deals, and jaw dropping plans the government of Mississippi employed to prevent advances in civil rights during the 1960's.  I really liked that the book focused on the events that occurred in one state instead of an overview of the civil rights movement.  This small focus allows readers to learn more about some of the lesser known civil rights crusaders who get lost in an overview.

Also, all the chapters are fairly short and have wonderfully interesting titles including words like clandestine.  Speaking of word choice, this book offers oodles of excellent vocabulary words as well as challenging sentence structure.  I plan to use this book with my classes in early February.  I am excited to see their responses.  They, like me, are intrigued by the title.  Some students have seen the book in my classroom have said, "Hey, when are we reading that spy book?"  If you speak middle school, this is the equivalent of an adult saying, "Please, please, please, let me borrow this book with the most fascinating title I've ever heard!"  True.