Tuesday, August 6, 2013

What I've been reading this summer....

Here's just a taste of what I've finished reading lately. I have to admit, it's hard to blog when I'm trying to finish so many great books!

My Sister Lives on the MantelpieceMy Sister Lives on the Mantelpiece by Annabel Pitcher
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I listened to this one and it was narrated by someone Scottish. Mesmerizing narration, really! I love the way Jamie overcomes his father's prejudice which is misplaced due to his sister's murder by a terrorist bomb. I disliked the way the mother abandoned the family following said murder. I thought that was a little over the top but people have different ways of dealing with tragedy and I guess she couldn't handle being with the rest of her family following the tragedy of her daughter dying. Overall, I would recommend this to upper middle and high school. There are some situations where lower middle school students wouldn't relate very well.

Mister Death's Blue-Eyed GirlsMister Death's Blue-Eyed Girls by Mary Downing Hahn
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I would definitely keep this one reserved for mature 8th grade readers and high school. There are some overtones and situations that require a bit more maturity than 6th and 7th graders possess, usually. I really liked the historically accurate depictions and personal touches Hahn includes, since this is so close to the real events. There were times where I wanted to slap Nora out of her funk though. Surely there were things around town where she could go to keep herself busy while pining away for friends who left the town to escape the memories of the murders. I appreciated the questioning of God's mercy and Nora's escape into books that her mother may not have approved of. I found the last part to be very interesting and a good conclusion to the story. Had MDH not included that part, I can imagine the questions we readers would have for her.

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