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Customer Reviews: 98
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The Book Thief
The Book Thief
by Markus Zusak
Edition: Paperback
Price: $8.52
661 used & new from $0.54

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Cried like a baby, November 24, 2011
This review is from: The Book Thief (Paperback)
The Book Thief is an emotionally supercharged epic Holocaust story. Narrated by death and written in a very unique prose style, it is unlike anything I've ever read. I also love that it is not the traditional Holocaust tale, as it focuses on a German protagonist and her family as they experience life during the war and hiding a Jew. Personally, I found the story to have a very slow start, but I was hooked after a hundred pages. I was a little turned off by the strange writing style at first, but again, once I was in, it ceased to be a problem. It is a daunting read due to its size, but if you can push yourself into it, it will soon go really fast. By the last bit of the book, I was balling like a baby, again and again. I think I was crying for the last thirty or forty pages. I will warn you - there isn't a happy ending, no matter how much you want one. After all, this is WWII and Nazi Germany. Death even warns you that it won't be happy, and even spoils it for you in advance, but somehow I refused to believe until it was right in my face. This is an extremely powerful story, and a beautiful one at that. I read this for a school book club, and I can't wait to discuss it with my students. I highly recommend this novel to all.


Fat Cat
Fat Cat
by Robin Brande
Edition: Hardcover
37 used & new from $0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Charming, funny, and fascinating, August 1, 2011
This review is from: Fat Cat (Hardcover)
I would have to say that this is one of my favorite realistic fiction novels. The main character, Cat, is a funny, realistic, and charming protagonist, and I could relate to her on so many levels. She also is one smart cookie, and it's nice seeing a main character who is intelligent and no afraid to show it. She struggles with self-confidence, weight, dating, family, and friends in a very real way. I think there is something about her life that every reader can relate to, and I certainly connected with her. I also love her sarcasm; she was hilarious. I was laughing out loud. The audiobook narrator also captured Cat's voice and humor well. At first, I thought that the narrator kind of had a too old or mature sounding voice for Cat, but then I came to feel it fits her perfectly. She did a great job with Cat's sarcasm and bluntness. Initially, I was a bit reluctant to read this book because I figured it might be a bit preachy with the healthy choices and vegan aspects, but it wasn't at all. It was actually fascinating, and it almost made me want to lead a healthier lifestyle. Almost.


Because Writing Matters: Improving Student Writing in Our Schools
Because Writing Matters: Improving Student Writing in Our Schools
by National Writing Project
Edition: Paperback
Price: $16.04
129 used & new from $0.01

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you need to brush up on composition pedagogy, July 12, 2011
I'm more into literature and reading rather than composition, and so I found that I simply wasn't familiar with the research and best practices in teaching writing. I had heard bits here and there in college, but I didn't have a solid foundation. I picked up this book so that I could learn those things, and that's exactly what this book gave me, in a very readable way. It may be a refresher or regurgitation of what many already know, but I recommend it for teachers who may know more about best practices in reading rather than writing.


Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging: Confessions of Georgia Nicolson (Confessions of Georgia Nicolson, Book 1)
Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging: Confessions of Georgia Nicolson (Confessions of Georgia Nicolson, Book 1)
by Louise Rennison
Edition: Paperback
Price: $9.18
553 used & new from $0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars Laugh out loud hilarious, July 12, 2011
I LOVED everything about this book. It's British, and it has a mean, beastly cat, and that is awesome. Seriously, I wish I was British! They are so funny - British people can make the most ordinary things bloody hilarious. That's pretty much what this book is - the average diary of your average teenager, except laugh out loud hilarious at every single page! I read this in a couple of hours, nonstop, and I was busting out laughing over and over again. I have only found myself laughing this hard with one other book. Besides the obvious fact that readers will appreciate the humor, Georgia is just such a great character. She is real and faces all her teenage issues will humor and candid commentary. I loved getting a peek into her diary, and I can't wait to snap up the rest of this series!


Divergent
Divergent
by Veronica Roth
Edition: Hardcover
Price: $12.75
141 used & new from $0.92

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Best dystopian since The Hunger Games, July 12, 2011
This review is from: Divergent (Hardcover)
This is my favorite dystopia since The Hunger Games. Seriously, Divergent is right up there with it, and I loved this book. For a while, I avoided picking this one up because the concept sounded confusing and I didn't really get what the summary was about. Boy, am I sorry I didn't read it sooner! As soon as I dove in, everything made sense right away. While the names and values of the different factions confused me for quite some time (I had to keep flipping to the cover to remind myself which was which), everything about this strange society seemed so complex and real! This book may seem daunting at nearly five hundred pages, but trust me when I say this reads fast. I finished it in a sitting. It so so fast-paced, so suspenseful, and action-packed that my eyes were glued to it and it was over before I knew it. This book is the first in a trilogy, and while some trilogies end with either too much of a cliffhanger or not enough wrapped up, this was perfectly wrapped up. This book's big events were resolved, and yet there were many secrets and big issues set up for the next book. I absolutely cannot wait for the sequel to come out, and if you haven't read this book yet, read it now!


The Maze Runner (Book 1)
The Maze Runner (Book 1)
by James Dashner
Edition: Paperback
Price: $6.43
310 used & new from $0.65

4.0 out of 5 stars Bizarre yet so intriguing and uttlery suspenseful, July 9, 2011
The Maze Runner may be one of the most bizarre sci-fi/dystopia books I've read, but it sure hooked me in! I could not put this book down; I was constantly on the edge of my seat, heart pounding, and freaking out! Needless to say, one of this book's best qualities is suspense! What is really interesting about this book, is that the premise and events are so far-fetched, you have to suspend your disbelief a lot. Normally, this bugs me, but it didn't for this book. I was too intrigued and excited to care how out there it all seemed. Though, by the end, I must admit that I still don't understand the reason for the entire maze set up. It seems kind of pointless when things are figured out! But, I figured that maybe things would come together and make more sense in the sequel. Plus, there is a such a fun and varying cast of characters that are all very well characterized, so perhaps that all makes up for its downfalls.

I highly recommend listening to this on audio book. This has one of the best male narrators I've heard, and he does great with the different voices. It really adds extra personality to the other kids. It also reduces the urge to peek ahead and see what's going to happen! :)


Inkheart (Movie Cover)
Inkheart (Movie Cover)
by Cornelia Funke
Edition: Mass Market Paperback
114 used & new from $0.01

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars It couldn't hook this book lover, June 25, 2011
A book where the characters from its pages come to life? And where there is this crazy old lady who is so book-obsessed I can almost hear her petting them and saying "My precioussss..."? (Ok, not really, but you know what I mean). I thought this would be THE book for me, as I am wholly book-obssessed. It also didn't hurt that I enjoy the fantasy genre and that many of my middle schoolers loved this book. Unfortunately though, I did not end up loving this book. I can't at all say that I couldn't finish it because it's horrible, because it's not. The prose flows well and I must say that the audio book has an utterly fantastic narrator. I just couldn't get into it. I guess it didn't hook me and it kind of bored me. I think I got about halfway through the discs and gave up after several times I just turned it off then had to force myself to put it back on. Though I really wanted to finish it, I just couldn't get into it enough to do so.


Petmate Lifestyle Cab Sm Lady Pink/Dk Pink S
Petmate Lifestyle Cab Sm Lady Pink/Dk Pink S
Price: $29.49
4 used & new from $27.43

5.0 out of 5 stars Great crate, and pink!!, June 8, 2011
I bought this crate for my 7 pound tiny cat after purchasing and returning a pink one that was not all that sturdy looking (it was held together by crappy little plastic pins and came with no instructions). This one is far superior, and the same price. I got this for $20 at Walmart. I LOVE the pink! So cute! My kitty went right in, and while I thought it looked small, there was plenty of room for her inside. My big full size cat also checked it out, but she was kind of pushing it on the size scale. I am going to use this for short car trips and it will do perfectly fine. Great carrier!


The Giver
The Giver
by Lois Lowry
Edition: Paperback
130 used & new from $0.01

5.0 out of 5 stars A classic YA dystopian, May 28, 2011
This review is from: The Giver (Paperback)
I originally read this book back in middle school, but didn't really remember it. So, I thought it was high time to read it once more as an adult and teacher. I enjoyed it just as much as the first time. I think this was probably the first dystopian book I had ever read, and now I'm hooked and I think I have this book to thank for that. When reading it for the second time, I did notice some plot holes and some improbable events. But, it didn't ruin anything for me because I automatically suspended disbelief. After all, who knows what really is possible in such a future? Plus, what may be unrealistic to us may not be unrealistic in this world, as the people truly don't know any better. Really, if you like dystopians, this a classic book you have to read at least once. If you don't think you like dystopians, this would be a great segue into the genre. I will fondly look back on this book as one of the first YA dystopians and an excellent story.

I listened to the audio book and I absolutely loved the narrator. He has such an amazing voice that is full of emotion. He truly brought the book to life. I also would love to use the audiobook in the classroom because kids could learn a lot about reading aloud from this narrator.


Twisted
Twisted
by Laurie Halse Anderson
Edition: Paperback
Price: $9.18
239 used & new from $0.01

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Honest male insight, May 28, 2011
This review is from: Twisted (Paperback)
This is an excellent, excellent example of great YA narrated by a male protagonist. Tyler totally sounds like a hormonal teenage guy! I would never had guessed that a woman wrote this character. Props to Laurie Halse Anderson! I zipped through this book in one sitting, it was that good. It initially looked a tad lengthy but the print is quite large and it is most definitely a page turner that propelled me along. I didn't want to put it down, and I was not expecting that to happen! Before I read this book, I really had no idea what it was going to be about because the jacket gives only a couple words for description. This meant that the book kept me wondering and engaged, and I never knew what was going to happen next. It's not really a suspenseful book in the sense of the thriller genre, but I certainly was experiencing feelings of suspense for that reason! This was also quite funny. It wasn't laugh out loud, but just really amusing. It was also quite serious at times as well, and I really didn't expect those events to happen. Twisted successfully deals with so many teen issues, and Tyler really struggles to grow up and make the right choices. An excellent, compelling read for guys and girls alike.

I do have to mention that I originally tried listening to this audiobook, but got about two minutes in and quit because I felt like the narrator's voice was annoying, and I hated the way he tried to do female voices.


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