Friday, June 26, 2015

India and Books

I am off to India and I will be visiting the craziest bookshop ever in a place called Mousserie or Queen of the Hills. If you want a book at the bottom of the pile- well you have to unstack the pile until your chosen book can be plucked out to safety. The books in India are so much cheaper than here in New Zealand and the publishers get books earlier there- so I will come home with a selection of new titles- can't wait.
In the mean time- have a great holiday break, enjoy the winter reading weeks and if you find any good books I need to know about send a message on our library Facebook page
 or leave a comment below.
The blog will be back again on July 20th and over the holidays I am expecting a stack of new titles to arrive!
Until then-Alavidā and Acchī taraha paṛhēṁ.
Goodbye and read well!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

Would the real Stanley Carrot please stand up?

By: Rob Stevens
Location: FIC STE
Genre: Funny, Family and Real

"I've spent too long watching life from the sidelines. Now it's time to get in the game."

Stanley 'Carrot' Harris is ginger, tubby and definitely not cool. And he has a secret: he's adopted, and this makes him feel like he's never quite fitted in.

On his thirteenth birthday, he receives the one thing he's been waiting his whole life for: a card from his long-lost birth mother, asking to meet up. But Stanley isn't sure: what if he's a big disappointment to her? So he hatches a plan - and he's going to need a stand-in Stanley, someone who is handsome, sporty and God's Gift to Mothers.

What Stanley doesn't realise is he's about to have the most confusing time of his life . . . just who is the real Stanley Carrot?

"Would the Real Stanley Please Carrot Stand Up? was a heartfelt novel that featured doubts and fears of one that has been adopted and the insecurities that result from those apprehensions. It revealed the wonder of redemption and second chances, of belonging, of family and friends. It showed us that we all have our flaws and we all have our quirks but it's those beautiful differences that makes us so incredibly unique. I absolutely adored this book and I advise you to pick it up, as I guarantee that you'll most probably love it too!" Kyra- Goodreads.

Out of my Mind

By: Sharon M Draper
Location: FIC DRA
Genre: Overcoming Obstacles

“We all have disabilities. What’s yours?” 

Imagine being able to listen, think, watch but never vocally respond. Imagine having amazing ideas and contributions to a conversation- but never be able to share them. Imagine  being able to solve people conundrums and watch as they never solve them themselves. Imagine all this and then imagine what it would be like for those people to think you can't... do.... anything....think...anything....process .....anything.    
They think you cant think! But you can- you are a genius- you just cant speak!                                                                                                                                                                           

Eleven year-old Melody has cerebral palsy. She lives in a world of silence-- unable to talk or write. Although she is extremely intelligent, her classmates and more than a few teachers, see her as simple-minded. When Melody receives assistive technology that allows her to communicate, she finally proves to everyone that she is smart. Melody longs for acceptance, but events beyond her control throw Melody into conflict with her classmates. Touching and honest, the resolution of this conflict is realistic, and does not end perfectly for Melody. 

From the first page, Melody's thoughts and experiences show that language wields the power to free, crush, or illuminate the human spirit.

“Words have always swirled around me like snowflakes-each one delicate and different, each one melting untouched in my hands."

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

7 Days

By: Eve Ainsworth
Location: FIC AIN
Genre: Youth Fiction- Bullying

I was bullied at school- no fun. I was the geeky new kid at the new school who would not go down to the back field and smoke. That was a recipe for months of torment and mocking that led to a decent black eye and the perpetrator being expelled from school.
Being bullied is consuming, it is utterly destructive, it is dehumanizing and it leaves you just not wanting to be!
I got over it- made some good mates, finished my Yr 13 and have a life. The bully- did not finish school and ended up a teenage mum with a not much support and mates that lead her down a futile path- at the end of the day she has suffered far more than I

This bold, compelling and topical story about bullying is told from the perspective of the bully and the bullied. You won't be able put it down until you've reached the conclusion. Jess's life is difficult enough without Kez picking on her – it’s turning school from a safe place into a nightmare. Kez has plenty of problems too but she finds comfort in knowing she is better off than Jess - or so she thinks. A hard-hitting and even-handed look at bullying and the issues facing teenagers today.

As the title suggests, the story takes place over the course of one week. It follows both girls as Kez bullies Jess, both in person and online. As the bullying escalates, so do the emotions of each girl until everything explodes and everyone must deal with the fallout. 

"Seven Days is intense and addictive reading. Eve tackles the disturbing issue of bullying with sensitivity, but never lets up on the cracking pace. The tension builds and builds leading to an exciting and gripping conclusion, with plenty of emotional twists and turns along the way. Both carefully-constructed main characters, Jess and Kez, victim and bully, have their problems and I found my sympathies veering from one to the other throughout the book. Very cleverly done. 

At times the story made for uncomfortable reading but rightly so - Seven Days brilliantly demonstrates how complex bullying issues can be. It is thought-provoking, grim and tense in equal measure. "

J M Forster.
The Author has a great blog- check it out

Monday, June 22, 2015

Crocheted Bears

By: Val Pierce
Location: NF 746.43 PIE
Genre: Cute and Cuddly

20 cute crocheted Bears- one for every person you know!

This is a weird word- crochet!   I would make the guitar one for my son who plays guitar.  The Book Bear for Sarah my daughter who is an English teacher and devours books and Mr Groom Bear for my other son who is getting married. If only there was a Hockey bear and I could make three of them- one each! And if there was a bear on a Unicycle then I would make him for my hubby. Only problem is I cant crochet!

All Fall Down

By: Ally Carter
Location: FIX CAR
Genre: Contemporary-YA, Spy Thriller and Romance!
Series: Embassy Row


Believe it or not this book has  inter-political plots between countries with some espionage thrown in. It is not as light and fluffy as you might think. It is set in the Middle East in a country that borders Iran in the midst of  an area filled with  Embassies.

“We must respect our host country and we must respect our neighbours.”… “Sometimes the walls that stand between us and our neighbours are all that stand between our country and war.”

 There is a love interest- he is Russian and a murder to solve! This book squeezes a lot of stuff in it and does it well!

Grace can best be described as a daredevil, an Army brat, and a rebel. She is also the only granddaughter of perhaps the most powerful ambassador in the world and Grace has spent every summer of her childhood running across the roofs of Embassy Row.
“Yes, it was dark,” I snap back. “Yes, I was young, and it was traumatic. Yes, I have never been the most reliable girl in the world, but I know what I saw. And I’m telling you, I saw a man with a scar on his left cheek shoot my mother. I heard the bomb that burned her shop to the ground.”

Now, at age sixteen, she's come back to stay - in order to solve the mystery of her mother's death. In the process, she uncovers an international conspiracy of unsettling proportions, and must choose her friends and watch her foes carefully if she and the world are to be saved.

“You should go home now, Grace.” His face is covered in shadow. His voice is soft but strong. “I don’t want to see you get hurt.”

Friday, June 19, 2015

Unwind Dystology

By: Neal Shusterman
Location: FIC SHU

Genre: Dystopia, Apocalyptic 

Series: 4 titles in the series

 -  #1 Unwind. #2 Unwholly. #3Unsouled and #4 Undivided


Pro-Life vs Pro-Choice. When does life start? It even makes you think about your views on life. So many of us are pro-life, but only think about it in terms of abortion. This book reinforces (what should be a widely held belief) that all lives are valuable. This includes the unborn child and the prisoner on death row.

 Three thrilling books in Neal Shusterman’s New York Times bestselling Unwind trilogy, together in our library. After the Second Civil War, the Bill of Life states that human life may not be touched from the moment of conception until a child reaches the age of thirteen. However, a loophole allows parents to retroactively get rid of a teenager through a process called “unwinding.”

Three teens defy the system and run away from their unwinding: Connor, a rebel whose parents have ordered his unwinding; Risa, a ward of the state who is to be unwound due to cost-cutting; and Lev, whose unwinding has been planned since birth as a religious tithing. As their paths intersect and lives hang in the balance, Connor, Risa, and Lev have to work together to survive.

This riveting trilogy,  VOYA calls “smart, intense, and thought provoking,”

Unwind is about post civil war United States. The war was called the Heartland War which was between Pro-Life and Pro-Choice parties. This war had no end in sight, so as a compromise to end  it, both parties agreed to the Unwind Accord in the Bill of Life.  This Accord stated that when you conceived a child, you were not allowed to abort the pregnancy or do anything to your child until they turn 13 years oldd. If you had a child and didn’t want it, you could “stork” the child. That means you could leave the child on someone’s front porch and when that person saw that child, the child was legally theirs now. However, once the child reached 13 years in age up to 18, the parent/legal guardian could have a child “unwound.” Being unwound meant you went a “harvest camp” where your ALL your body parts were harvested to be used for other people. It’s pretty much a big organ transplant. The difference is, you don’t really die. The child is awake for the whole procedure which started from their feet and works up to their heads, but they can’t feel anything. By having them stay awake,  part of their soul goes with that body part. So this way, no one ever really dies. Abortion is not happening. Children are living even if it is through just body parts. Pro-Lifers and Pro-Choicers are happy. But is this really the best solution?


By: Elissa Sussman
Location: FIC SUS
Genre: Fairy story x Disney x Fantasy

I am grateful for my father, who keeps me good and sweet. I am grateful for my mother, who keeps her own heart guarded and safe. I am grateful for my adviser, who keeps me protected! I am grateful for the Path, which keeps me pure. 
"Ever After"

A beautifully tender, magical debut, Stray completely stole my heart--I loved it! Highly recommended for fans of high fantasy, fairy tales, and stories with strong heroines! Wonderful!  Kels

STRAY is the first in a collection of intertwined stories, all set in a world where magic is a curse that only women bear and society is dictated by a strict doctrine called The Path. A cross between The Handmaid’s Tale and Wicked, with a dash of Grimm and Disney thrown in.

STRAY is a fascinating fairy tale about a world where only the women had magic but they aren't allowed to use it. They are punished for any magic they do. They are supervised by fairy godmothers and led by male advisers. Aislynn is a daughter of a king but, when she can't control her magic, she is sent to undergo the harsh training needed to become a fairy godmother. Fairy godmothers lose their homes and futures and even their hearts and must devote themselves to a life of service.

Aislynn is very distressed to lose the path she thought she was bound for. She has tried very hard to buy into the brainwashing of her adviser and her culture. It takes meeting a gardener, a maid, and a carriage driver before she begins to question the path that she has been set upon. 

Thursday, June 18, 2015

This is not a love story

By: Keren David
Location: FIC DAV
Genre: Well it is not a love story but it is. LGBTG

I like Amsterdam far more than London. I can see why moving from  London to Amsterdam is a good move and would jump at the chance if it was me. But shifting when you are 16 is tough- I know I have done it, I was a bit younger,and it is no fun, you have to inflict a persona on yourself that is not who you really are in the hope that the class of faces gazing at the "new kid" will find you acceptable. Bad days!
 Kitty shifts too and she also goes on a journey of self discovery in her new world.
Will this be her opportunity to make her life picture perfect? 
In Amsterdam she meets moody, unpredictable Ethan, and clever, troubled Theo. Two enigmatic boys, who each harbour their own secrets. In a beautiful city and far from home, Kitty finds herself falling in love for the first time. 
With love triangles, the exploration of  diverse sexuality, set within a Jewish culture in the city of Amsterdam - will love be everything she expected? And will anyone's heart survive?

Not forgetting the Whale

By: John Ironmonger
Location: FIC IRO
Genre: Fiction with a dab of a post apocalyptic story and set in a very English Cornwell!

This is a kind of book I will chuck at Miss Featonby, Ms Bigge, Mr Mannins or Miss Bichan!!

They say this book may restore your faith in human nature!

Intimate, funny and deeply moving, NOT FORGETTING THE WHALE is the story of a man on a journey to find a place he can call home.

When a young man washes up, naked, on the sands of St Piran, he is quickly rescued by the villagers. From the retired village doctor and the schoolteacher, to the beachcomber and the owner of the local bar, the priest's wife and the romantic novelist, they take this lost soul into their midst. But what the villagers don't know is that Joe Haak worked as an analyst and has fled the City amid fears of a worldwide banking collapse caused by a computer program he invented. But is the end of the world really nigh? And what of the whale that lurks in the bay? 

"This is a wonderful book that I’d recommend to anyone who enjoys a heart-warming tale, where you can discover the often hidden traits of ordinary people without anyone wagging a finger in your face from the moral high-ground. Superb"  Wendy

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

The Tractor book

By: DK
Location: NF- 629.22TRA
Genre: Tractors! 

I grew up on a farm. we were Massey Ferguson people. Fords were cheap, John Deeres were nasty!. And Masseys were named after a real prime Minister so they had to be better. That is what I thought as a kid!
We had a Massey TEA- the best little tractor ever made, you started it by using the gear lever, my brothers would jump on the tow bar so when I was driving the front wheels would lift off the ground- they were so mean. That tractor went for eternity. Ask all those fisherman that use them for boats all over NZ. ICONIC.
Sir Ed used one even in Antartica! We had a Massey 35 - a bit bigger and newer and then Dad bought a 165-it had a cab!!
I loved driving our tractors and did so from 4 years of age, while Dad feed out the hay!
This book has tractors and gives a nod to less superior ones like Fords and John Deere as well.

It looks at 450 types of tractors from all around the world and all stages of development. It is a very cool book jam packed with photos and includes all the lastest technologies!
Brmm brmm !!

Extinction Game

By: Gary Gibson
Location: FIC GIB
Genre: Sci Fi

Do you avoid reading SCI FI- then this book is a great place to dip your toe in and give this genre a go!

"A riveting, action-packed, post-apocalyptic survival story from a master of SF"

When your life is based on lies, how do you hunt down the truth? 

Jerry Beche should be dead. Instead, he's rescued from a desolate Earth where he was the last man alive. He's then trained for the toughest conditions imaginable and placed with a crack team of specialists on an isolated island. Every one of them is a survivor, as each withstood the violent ending of their own alternate Earth. And their new specialism? To retrieve weapons and data in missions to other apocalyptic versions of our world. But what is "the Authority," the shadowy organization that rescued Beche and his fellow survivors? How does it access timelines to find other Earths? And why does it need these instruments of death? As Jerry struggles to obey his new masters, he begins to distrust his new companions. A strange bunch, their motivations are less than clear, and accidents start plaguing their missions. Jerry suspects the Authority is feeding them lies, and team members are spying on him. As a dangerous situation spirals into catastrophe, is there anybody he can trust?
"Ultimately, believable characters, interesting situations, stunning settings, and, above all else, a compulsively readable story makes this a must-read for sci-fi fans. Highly recommended"

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Skinjacker Trilogy

By: Neil Shusterman
Location: FIC SCH
Genre: Fantasy, Life after Death, Paranormal
Series: #1 Everlost. #2 Everwild. # Everfound

This series gets better and better and the ratings just go up and up until the third book gets 4.3 on with over 6000 reviews- believe  me that is very good.
I believe in the afterlife- heaven actually- but this series is about the afterlife in another spot and in another way!

Neal Shusterman explores questions of life, death, and what just might lie in between.

Nick and Allie don't survive the car accident..

Everlost is the in-between world of being alive and being in heaven. For some reason, kids are the only ones that get lost on their way to the light. When they awake nine months later, they find a coin in their pockets and a blurry world where the living continues around them. The only places where the children are safe are the places where a death has occurred. Standing too long in any other place causes the kids to slowly sink to the center of the Earth. Nick, Allie, and Lief begin their journey through this strange world, trying to understand the new rules of survival. 
The book has a very original plot and multi-dimensional characters that remind me of real poeople. You can enjoy the book on those merits, but subtly woven over the top of the story are philisophical questions about life and death. What does it mean to be alive? Can we make up for our past sins? Is it better to hold on tight to the ones we love or is better to let them go? This book made me question my own version of life.

“Great tragedies have great consequences. They ripple through the fabric of this world and the next. When the loss is too great for either world to bear, Everlost absorbs the shock, like a cushion between the two.” 

 I quite enjoyed Everlost and Everwild, but I was completely blown away by Everfound. This conclusion to Shusterman’s spectacular Skinjacker trilogy was its longest and most memorable installment by far.  This trilogy was such a pleasure to read that I am truly sad that it is coming to a close. It’s an epic story of life, love, and death that will keep readers on the edge of their seats until the very satisfying end.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

What I thought was true

By: Huntley Fitzpatrick
Location: FIC FIT
Genre: ya-contemporaryyasiblingsromancemental-illnesshigh-schoolcontemporary

This novel:

is layered, 
beautifully written, 
has an incredible setting, 
contains rich prose, 
has emotionally charged characters, 
explores deep relationships, 
shows family complexities, 
shows the differences between working class/upper class,
explores sexuality and the power and influence it has on one's life, 
explores "just sex" (hookups) versus sex with someone you love,
shows embarrassment/shame/humiliation and the pain "hookups" can cause,
shows how sex can be used as a weapon to hurt someone you care about,
shows the complexity of love, 
explores the power of lies and secrets & how they deeply effect people,
shows how communication is critical in relationships,
includes a special needs child & some of the dynamics that go with taking care of and loving that child, 
interweaves expectations of parents, 
explores the challenges and difficulties of working with the elderly, not just for a YA, but how it might feel to suddenly need help when you've always taken care of your own needs. 
Liza Wiemer-

“sometimes we hold on to something—a person, a resentment, a regret, an idea of who we are—because we don’t know what to reach for next.” 

One Kick

By: Chelsea Cain
Location: FIC CAI
Genre: Dark Action
Series:- Kick Lannigan #1

This is a very gritty book, the tension palpable, quick moving with plenty of action. But a warning, the subject is raw (it explores the issues and impact of child pornography), the violence explicit and graphic. Yet, the characters are so darn addicting.

The beginning of a new series by this author and one I am looking forward to reading.

Kick Lannigan, 21, is a survivor. Abducted at age six in broad daylight, the police, the public, perhaps even her family assumed the worst had occurred. And then Kathleen Lannigan was found, alive, six years later. In the early months following her freedom, as Kick struggled with PTSD, her parents put her through a litany of therapies, but nothing helped until the detective who rescued her suggested Kick learn to fight. Before she was thirteen, Kick learned marksmanship, martial arts, boxing, archery, and knife throwing. She excelled at every one, vowing she would never be victimized again. But when two children in the Portland area go missing in the same month, Kick goes into a tailspin. Then an enigmatic man Bishop approaches her with a proposition: he is convinced Kick's experiences and expertise can be used to help rescue the abductees. Little does Kick know the case will lead directly into her terrifying past...

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

You're the kind of girl

By: Daniel Herborn
Location: FIC HER
Genre:    Boy meets Girl with Music

I play the ukelele- kind off! At the end of the day I sit on the sofa and have a strum, it soothes my soul and helps me chill before |I find my electric blanket heated bed! Music is something that just lets me be in a different place and a different world.

Set in the cafes pubs and dives of Sydney's Inner West YOU'RE THE KIND OF GIRL I WRITE SONGS ABOUT is a ballad to that time of your life when you are trying to work out who you are, what it is you want and what will it take to get you there.

"You’re a recalcitrant, Tim. Always will be.’
‘I don’t know what that means,’ I say.
‘Why doesn’t that surprise me?’
‘I thought this was a geography class, not a pretentious words class.'

"Told in short, snappy back-&-forth chapters, alternating Mandy then Tim, it's a homage to old rock, punk rock, new style rock and the people who embrace it.

Mandy is having a gap year, which turns out to be a year of watching daytime television, working at a sandwich bar, and going to local band venues to check out the scene. Mandy knows her stuff. She's committed to her musical tastes, and when she meets Tim, singer songwriter, soulful and able to look into her soul, there is an immediate connection.

Of course the attraction is mutual. Tim is a character with hidden depths, a sad backstory, and an tenacious attitude to his craft. He is also a very nice boy. I loved his portrayal. He never comes across as too cheesy or clichéd. He's laid back, has great comebacks, and sets his sights on Mandy in a true gentlemanly fashion.
 A beautifully written, charming must read."


By: David Vann
Location: FIC VAN
Genre:  Coming of age- contemporary - literature

"This book reminds me of why I love literature. It's just  brilliant. Vann is a storyteller extraordinaire".. Debbie

In crystalline and graceful prose, Aquarium takes us into the heart of a brave young girl whose longing for love and capacity for forgiveness transform the damaged people around her. Relentless and heartbreaking, primal and redemptive, Aquarium is a transporting story from one of the best writers working today.

 A twelve-year old girl tells her story of discovery and hope in the context of a disturbing family drama in contemporary Seattle. Her single mom, Sheri, works hard at a container shipping facility, and each day Caitlin spends her afternoons grooving on the wonders at the aquarium. Her life may suffer from the grimness of poverty and the constraints of a tiny apartment in an industrial neighborhood, but she thrives through her imagination.

The many strange creatures at the aquarium seem to hold lessons for life for her. Some are so outrageously colorful and odd, but seem to get along fine in letting their freak flag fly in a protected cave-like space, while others camouflage themselves by emulating seaweed or coral in their environment. Vann places wonderful pictures of some of these beasties, so we get to look over her shoulder as she ponders their marvels. She befriends an old man there, who shares her fascination with these windows on another world.

"Anything is possible with a parent. Parents are gods. They make us and they destroy us. They warp the world and remake it in their own shape, and that’s the world we know forever after. It’s the only world. We can’t see what it might have looked like otherwise."

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Body Guard- Ambush.

By: Chris Bradford
Location: FIC BRA
Genre:     Adventure/ Action packed and AFRICA
Series: BodyGuard # 3

What a day for the BLOG- Two much awaited books that our students have been drooling over! well let the issuing scrap begin!


The world is a dangerous place. Connor Reeves is the BODYGUARD.

From the writer of the hugely popular  Young Samurai Series comes  the third in the Bodyguard series- AMBUSH!

This one is set in Africa-  on safari. Oh I have done one of those- our truck broke down in a ditch, it got axled in a hole. We had to pile off and wait on the savannah plains and less 1 km away was a pride of hungry lions! I tell you getting back on the truck was a very good thing to do!! Connor  and his friends has a lot more than one hour to survive in the craziness of the African plains! Did I ever tell you about the scorpion I nearly sat on...

In Africa only the strong survive! Teenage martial arts expert Connor Reeves is tasked with protecting a foreign ambassador's family on safari. Considered the perfect assignment, the holiday turns to hell when their convoy is ambushed by gunmen. Fleeing through the bush, Connor and his assigned family become the prey in a shoot-to-kill hunt across the African plains. As they fight for their survival, Connor realizes the gunmen are the least of their problems. For no amount of bodyguard training can prepare him for the wilds of Africa and one prowling hungry leopard...

Saint Anything

By: Sarah Dessen
Location: FIC DES
Genre: YA Contemporary- LIFE!!

If you love Pizza and French Fries this book is for you- it is often set in a pizzeria and it describes those delicious yummies to the point where you will be  speed dialing 0800 838383  

“There is a weird thing that happens when something goes from a one-time thing to a habit. Like the problem is no longer a temporary houseguest but has actually moved in.”

I reckon none of my siblings read this blog so I am safe to be a bit vulnerable. I am the youngest of 4 - with two high achieving brothers and a sister who has always been close to our parents I reckon due to a childhood illness- I came last and often it felt it. I am sure they would yell and scream and say I was the spoilt youngest- but I felt I  was truly the tag along, left out one stuck at the far end. None of your achievements count- they have all been done before you, it is difficult to cut your grove in a world where three other siblings have dug a trench. I understand invisible Sydney- although thankfully my siblings are wonderful stunning human beings- hers wasn't!
Like Sydney in this story- I too shifted schools and had to discover what my real "no known sibling" identity was- It was not pretty and I did not have the outside family to jump into that Sydney did- nor Mac- the understanding BF- well actually I did find him in the end- and married him- ah- nice end to the story!

Peyton, Sydney’s charismatic older brother, has always been the star of the family, receiving the lion’s share of their parents’ attention and—lately—concern. When Peyton’s increasingly reckless behavior culminates in an accident, a drunk driving conviction, and a jail sentence, Sydney is cast adrift, searching for her place in the family and the world. When everyone else is so worried about Peyton, is she the only one concerned about the victim of the accident?
Enter the Chathams, a warm, chaotic family who run a pizza parlor, play bluegrass on weekends, and pitch in to care for their mother, who has multiple sclerosis. Here Sydney experiences unquestioning acceptance. And here she meets Mac, gentle, watchful, and protective, who makes Sydney feel seen, really seen, for the first time

The uber-popular Sarah Dessen explores her signature themes of family, self-discovery, and change in her twelfth novel, sure to delight her legions of fans.

Monday, June 8, 2015

7 More Picture Books

Location: Picture Books

Genre: Picture Books


By: Pam Munoz Ryan
Location: FIC RYA
Genre: Fantasy- Fairytale- Historical Fiction- Holocaust

Our fate is not yet sealed.
Even in the darkest night, a star will shine,
A bell will chime, a path will be revealed.

Lost and alone in a forbidden forest, Otto meets three mysterious sisters and suddenly finds himself entwined in a puzzling quest involving a prophecy, a promise, and a harmonica.
Decades later, Friedrich in Germany, Mike in Pennsylvania, and Ivy in California each, in turn, become interwoven when the very same harmonica lands in their lives. All the children face daunting challenges: rescuing a father, protecting a brother, holding a family together. And ultimately, pulled by the invisible thread of destiny, their suspenseful solo stories converge in an orchestral crescendo. 

Friedrich in Germany lives with a visible birthmark that causes others to prematurely judge him as "genetically damaged." His world is dominated by Hitler's rise to power and the hysteria that ensues as citizens and families are divided by his plans.

Mike in Pennsylvania lives in an orphanage with his younger brother. His primary goal in life is to protect his brother and keep them together. 

Ivy in California is on the move. She faces discrimination on the basis of her Hispanic heritage and struggles to understand the hysteria stemming from the bombing of Pearl Harbor.

The writing is excellent. The theme is so artfully woven throughout the narrative that the entire experience of reading the book becomes orchestral, with each character's section reading like a solo and all building to a joyous conclusion. - Samantha

"Richly imagined and masterfully crafted, ECHO pushes the boundaries of genre and form, and shows us what is possible in how we tell stories. The result is an impassioned, uplifting, and virtuosic tour de force that will resound in your heart long after the last note has been struck."
Music, magic, and a real-life miracle meld in this genre-defying masterpiece from storytelling maestro Pam Muñoz Ryan.

"This may win her the Newbery. I loved the blended stories and magical realism but above all for me this was a book about siblings. A lovely read..."  Sarah

Friday, June 5, 2015

An Ember in the Ashes

By: Sabaa Tahir
Location: FIC TAH
Genre: Epic Fantasy 

“This life is not always what we think it will be,” Cain says. “You are an ember in the ashes, Elias Veturius. You will spark and burn, ravage and destroy. You cannot change it. You cannot stop it.” 

When I research different books and read the reviews, I  immediately connect them with some of you readers. This one is a book our Deputy Head Boy will devour and James who was at school last year would be fighting him for it.
One suspects though that our Head Librarian -Philipp will steal it for the weekend so long as Mr Manins doesn't come over and second-it for himself first.

Set in a terrifyingly brutal Rome-like world, An Ember in the Ashes is an epic fantasy debut about an orphan fighting for her family and a soldier fighting for his freedom. It's a story that's literally burning to be told. LAIA is a Scholar living under the iron-fisted rule of the Martial Empire. When her brother is arrested for treason, Laia goes undercover as a slave at the empire's greatest military academy in exchange for assistance from rebel Scholars who claim that they will help to save her brother from execution. ELIAS is the academy's finest soldier-- and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias is considering deserting the military, but before he can, he's ordered to participate in a ruthless contest to choose the next Martial emperor. When Laia and Elias's paths cross at the academy, they find that their destinies are more intertwined than either could have imagined and that their choices will change the future of the empire itself. Vow your blood and body to the empire. Keep your heart for yourself.

“Life is made of so many moments that mean nothing. Then one day, a single moment comes along to define every second that comes after. Such moments are tests of courage, of strength.

Thursday, June 4, 2015

Challenger Deep

By: Neal Shusterman
Location: FIC SCH
Genre: Young Adult Mental Health

 "Dead kids are put on pedestals, but mentally ill kids get hidden under the rug." 

I have watched a teenager that I know and love battle with the forces of mental illness. I have watched her succumb to her inner demons and then rise to try and fight them again. I have restrained her, held her, watched over her as she decides if her life is worth living, I have sat in a padded room with her and stroked her wrists as they lie carved up, tied to a bed.
Youth mental illness is no joke and neither is this book!

Laurie Halse Anderson, award-winning author of Speak, calls Challenger Deep "a brilliant journey across the dark sea of the mind; frightening, sensitive, and powerful. Simply extraordinary."

 Challenger Deep does for Mental Illness what Fault in our Stars does for Cancer. They shed an almost positive and hopeful light on their respective subjects. They challenge us to think deeper and see wider. Books that give me fresh and hopeful perspectives on darker subjects are always my favorites, and Challenger Deep is exactly that. 

Caden was a clever kid. He was a funny kid. He was relatively popular, talented, and moderately successful kid. Whether he was a superstar or a problem child, watching him sink would have been sad. The thing is that mental illness doesn’t pick and choose, though. It affects everyone and that’s why I think it was a good idea to write this journey about a kid that nobody expected to slide into psychosis.

Shusterman has always had a way of writing his characters and their worlds in a unique way, and this was no exception. At first the Captain and his pirate ship read as a completely different story from the one taking place in the real world. The real world was one of delusion, medication, anxiety and distrust. I admittedly preferred reading the story of Caden’s illness and the reactions of the people around him, rather than read more about his made up world. However, as the book went on, and the two worlds began to overlap and come together, the more I became invested in learning the purpose for Caden’s brain to have created the ship. The more I understood, the more I wanted him to succeed. The question became HOW would he succeed. Would the end come through the Parrot or the Captain? -Wendy F-

This  captivating story about mental illness lingers long beyond the last page, and  the novel features haunting interior illustrations by Neal Shusterman's son Brendan.

Bane Chronicles

By: Casandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan and Maureen Johnson
Location: FIC CLA
Genre: Fantasy- Cassandra Clare strikes again

I wonder if my husbands namesake is as cool as my hubby is.
Magnus- this book is all about you and those lovers of the Shadowhunter series are going to be stoked this is now in our library!

The perfect gift for Shadowhunters. This gorgeous illustrated paperback brings the 11 stories about immortal warlock Magnus Bane together in a handy smaller format for the first time. A fan-favourite character from Cassandra Clare's Shadowhunter Chronicles, Magnus features in The Mortal Instruments, The Infernal Devices, Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy and the movie of City of Bones. Magnus will never be able to tell all of his tales. No one would believe him. But these stories shed a little light on his often inscrutable character. They are stories he probably wishes had never got out.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Awesome World and Savage World

By: Discovery Channel
Location: All over the library I reckon
Genre: full of amazingness- facts, photos and stuff.

OK these books are seriously cool- full of information, jammed packed with amazing images, and I know they will be found all over the place as you all look through them.

Its the ultimate guide to the awesome world.

Its awesome!
It's brutal!
It's jaw dropping!

5000 extraordinary facts, 1500 spectacular images, 100 fascinating subjects.

The airbus A380 weighs as much as 165 elephants.
Sharks can smell bool from 1.6km away.
Temperatures get to 49 C in Mali.
Elephants walk 480km every year to find water and food.
the Chrysler Building is 77 floors and is 319 m high.
The heat shield of a spacecraft entering the Martian atmosphere is hot enough to melt gold...

There are heaps and heaps more amazing facts with amazing pictures. This is such a cool book to just be with and peruse through!