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Geronimo Stilton

So the books have been around for ages and there are so many of them, I have a lot but not all. I think they are great for young kids, they have action, simple to understand language and plenty of colour. There is also a tv series. It is quite fun to see these favourite characters come to life this way. If you or your kids are a fan of the books then track these down (they are actually on tv in Australia at  the moment), likewise if you or your kids are a fan of the show then definitely give the books a try.

I received my copy from the publisher

sweet-honey

By: Cathy Cassidy

Part of the Chocolate Box Girls series.

Honey Tanberry has been in so much trouble back home that she is moving to the other side of the world to be with her father. She knows this is her chance to straighten out but at the same time she is thrilled to be moving in with her father. Things don’t start of quite how she expected when she finds it’s not just him, her dad has a girlfriend he hadn’t thought to mention. Still Honey isn’t put off. She loves the weather and the beaches. She is even looking forward in a way to the alternative school her parents agreed for her to try, until she discovers that her dad has gone behind her mother’s back and enrolled her in a boring private girls school.

She tries to change, but she struggles at the new school and her dad is often absent. She starts up a social media account so she can keep in touch with family, but soon she adds new friends and one of them isn’t what she thinks. Things start to appear on her account that she didn’t put up there, including hurtful things to family and about friends. Honey struggles to understand what is going on and her dad is not interested. Thousands of kilometres from home she feels she has no one to turn to. Who will believe her, especially with her past.

There are some dark themes in this book. Honey has always been the darkest of the Tanberry girls. The most rebellious. She is in Australia as a consequence of her own actions. She thinks things are going to be perfect because she always saw her dad as perfect. This story touches on hard truths of divorce and cheating, also the very serious nature of cyber stalking. It is a tight story and Honey’s journey takes you further down before it starts back up. Her story is one of fresh starts, comfortable behaviour even in bad choices because it is what you know, and the need to be very careful who you allow into your life on line. This story provides a good opportunity to talk about some of these topics. At its heart it is a coming of age and redemption story. I like this series, I always have, it is an easy read that doesn’t shy away from some incredibly relevant yet difficult to talk about topics, cyber stalking and eating disorders, and it deals with them in a real and heartfelt way.

Highly recommended.

Publisher: Puffin BOoks

Published: 28 May 2014

Format: Paperback

Genre: Family, Friendship, Cyber Stalking

ISBN 13: 9780141341620

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on side of page

 

Breakaway

I received my copy from the publisher

breakaway

By: Jeff Hirsch

The 39 Clues – Unstoppable bk 2

Amy and Dan are on the run. For some reason J Rutherford Pierce is determined to destroy them. He will do this any way he can and as owner of a huge media company he is effectively targeting them in the press, any medium of press. This is a war that has been waging for years and the Cahill’s thought they were done with it all after the last time. This time the stakes are higher, Pierce has found the secret to the serum and he is planning to use it to dominate the world. The Cahills and their friends can not let this happen no matter what, they have found the ingredients they are hoping will prove to be a counter-serum and are racing against time to find things that may not (shouldn’t) exist anymore.

Amy is taking things hard this time around. She feels it is her responsibility as Grace left her to be head of the family. She begins to cut everyone off determined to allow them to escape from the danger that seems to go hand in hand with the Cahill name. Dan is at his wits end, this is becoming tiring and part of him wants nothing more than to stop, but his sister is the world to him and when she seems to betray him he is in a place he never believed he would find himself. The story remains action packed though somehow a little frustrating. Almost as if the whole thing is being dragged out too long. The relationship between Amy and Jake in its off again on again way is more frustrating than anything else. Yes I still wan to see how this ends and see Pierce get his comeuppance but I just don’t want them to take too long to get the end. You really just want the Cahills to catch a break.

Publisher: Scholastic US

Published: 06 February 2014

Format: Hardback 192 pages

Categories: Adventure, Family

ISBN 13: 9780545521420

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on side of the page

I received this from the publisher

bugs-from-beyond

By: Shane Crawford and Adrian Beck

A Kick it to Nick book

The Crocs haven’t done too well this season, in fact they are yet to win a game. Nick is sure they can win this next one. That is until mutant bugs start appearing. No one will listen to him though and his attempt to keep everyone safe means he is no longer team captain. How will Nick do what needs to be done?

This is a fun little story that has football as its backdrop. For those interested in the sport there are a few specific things, like a particular thing to practice to improve your hand balling. Nick is a focussed team player, he wants what is best for his team. I also like the fact that there is a girl who plays, yay! That probably wouldn’t  have happened all that long ago, so it is particularly nice to see. The two parts of the story blend well together making it something that both football fans and horrorish fans might read.

Publisher: Puffin

Published: 28 May 2014

Format: Paperback 96 pages

Categories: Horror, Sports

ISBN 13: 9780143307877

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page

 

Half Bad

I received my copy from the publisherhalf-bad

By: Sally Green

Nathan Byrne is a witch, but he is a witch no-one really wants anything to do with. His mother was a white witch, a healer, his father a black witch, a killer and a very notorious one at that. The time is coming for Nathan to come into his powers but those who are in control, the council of white witches are not about to let that happen. Nathan is persecuted his whole life, he can’t even date the girl he wants because she is a white witch and therefore off limits. Then he is taken from everything he knows and cares about. He is tortured, trained and doesn’t know why.

It appears as though the rules are being changed just for him as the council pull out all stops to try and use Nathan presumably to catch his father. Nathan is desperate to meet his father and get his powers and he will make whatever deals are necessary for this to happen.

The premise of this story is fairly solid. What happens when you don’t fit in because you’re not one thing or another? The story itself though is very slow moving. I enjoyed the last perhaps third but it took a bit of perseverance for me to get there. I’m also not sure how I feel about Nathan himself. I can see how he is pushed into making some choices, but on the whole I don’t think strongly about him in one way or another. He is troubled and has potential but he feels, in some ways, quite bland.

I may give the second book a read purely because the premise has so much potential, where do you go when people are pushing you to be something you’re not sure you want to be. If it remains so bland I may not finish it. Having said that though, if you like your books to meander through the story telling and you want something interesting with witches at the core, give this a go, it was a popular book by all accounts in its country of origin and we can’t all like the same thing.

Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd

Published: 27 March 2014

Format: Paperback 400 pages

Categories: Fantasy

 

ISBN 13: 9780141350868

Purchase: here or use Booktopia link on the side of the page.

I think we all know the plan is to split the third book into two movies, personally I’m not sure how that is going to work, I don’t know that there is enough substance to do this. However it’s not my decision to make.

This teaser trailer has been released and I’m not sure how I feel about it, the direction they appear to be taking and all, even though I love Donald Sutherland and he plays a smarmy dictator so well.

I guess only time will tell how people respond to this trend in movies to drag adaptations out.

So Five Kingdoms – Sky Raiders has come to my desk and I am really, really eager to read it. I have so many books to read at the moment and so little time in which to do it though. This book is one I’m keeping to treat myself with, I will hit certain other targets from my to do list then I will pick it up and I don’t expect to be spoken to for the next couple of days. I will let you know how I go.

For now though here is the trailer:

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