Monday, August 11, 2014

Wonder by R.J. Palacio

A wonderful story of August Pullman who suffers from a congenital facial deformity.  August has been homeschooled, but now that he's going into fifth grade, he decides to attend Beecher Prep. He and his family are admittedly nervous about how going to school will be for August.

The story is touching and told by several narrators in August's life who all share their perspective of the events. What endures is friendship and kindness and deciding what we want to be known for and how we want to be remembered.

Themes:  friendship, acceptance, perseverance, adversity

Friday, August 8, 2014

The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

Aliens invade the Earth, but not in the way you think...they do it in waves with the goal of destroying humans and saving the Earth. 

16-year-old Cassie and her family have survived the first three waves.  They lose their mother to the 4th wave.  Her father is gone at the beginning of the 5th wave and her 7-year-old brother, Sam, is taken to Camp Haven by the United States military.  

Cassie is left on her own in a wasteland.  The only thing keeping her alive is her promise to reunite with Sam.  Cassie is headed to where she thinks Sam has been taken by the military when she's shot. 

Later she awakes, having been rescued by the mysterious Evan Walker.  But, can she trust him?  Can she trust anyone? What will the aliens/"others" do next?

This is the first in a science-fiction series.

Themes:  survival, trust, relationships

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Panic by Lauren Oliver

In the small town of Carp, NY, there's a game that new high school graduates play each year in the summer after graduation.  'Panic' is high-stakes and fear-inducing and only the brave survive.  With winnings of over $50K, competition is fierce.  No one knows who the judges are or what daunting task they will develop next.

Heather and her best friend Natalie join the competition and must face their fears.  However, only only one person will win.

Alliances, friendship and trust will all be gained and lost and what will remain?  How does the game change the players and is it worth it?