Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Rescued from the Archives: Highlighting past titles YOU should read

In this first edition of what might accidentally be a new feature (if you guys like it) I'm going to pull a few books from the archives--2006 to be exact. I can say with certainty that almost all of my readers have never searched that far back to see what I've read and would recommend. Plus it's interesting to see which titles strike me as having staying power. Books that I'd still recommend to this day.

Hit the Road by Caroline B. Cooney. Originally reviewed in August of 2006. "Full of humor, action, adventure...HIT THE ROAD is an amazing novel." Yep, still feel that way.

I wonder if Natasha has read Over A Thousand Hills I Walk With You. It seems to me like this is the type of book she'd like. Originally reviewed in September 2006. This is what I said, "a touching tribute to her adopted daughter who was orphaned in the Rwandan war. Based on her daughter's recollections of her childhood--memories both pleasant and bittersweet--Jansen weaves a tale of sorrow, hope, fear, joy, and love."

Peeps by Scott Westerfeld. Originally reviewed in September 2006. I know Chris just got this one...I remember thinking at the time how vampires were becoming dominant in YA literature...and they've only been multiplying since then. Still, I like this one. "Peeps is an exciting book offering a little bit of everything to the reader...danger, adventure, romance, humor, and the truth. The truth? Yes, every other chapter describes the life cycle of an actual parasite and its positive and negative effects on its environment."

Legend of the Wandering King by Laura Gallego Garcia. This is a book that I just absolutely loved, loved, loved from 2005. The review was originally posted on my tripod page before being reposted in blogger in September 2006. This one is just very rich and satisfying.

Mira, Mirror. Mette Ivie Harrison. Another carry-over from the tripod page. Copied and posted in September 2006. This is a book, an author, that I wish more people were familiar with. It's a perfect read for the Once Upon a Time Challenge.

Surviving Antarctica by Andrea White. Originally reviewed October 2006. Fans of The Hunger Games might just enjoy this one. (Well of dystopia in general too...)"Surviving Antarctica is an imaginative combination of genres blending futuristic themes and new sciences often reserved strictly for science fiction with historical content and the feel of 'realistic' fiction. Andrea White's novel envisions the world--particularly America in the latter part of the twenty-first century as a shadow of its former self. Having cut all scientific research for economic reasons AND having stopped all public education systems for the same reason. Every household is required to have their children until the age of fourteen watch a certain number of 'educational' programs on tv per week. At the age of 14, each child is given a chance to win a chance at further education (high school, college, etc.) in a roll of the dice type situation. Money is scarce, and society is literally divided into the haves and have-nots."

The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl. By Barry Lyga. The sequel to this one is being released soon (well, later this year I believe.) And you really, really should read this one. It's GOOD. (October 2006)

Pepperland by Mark Delaney. Another carry over from the tripod site. I'll always have a soft spot for this novel set in the fall of 1980. It's rich with detail, a true must for all Beatle/Lennon fans.

The Schwa Was Here by Neal Shusterman. One of my favorites from 2004. Again cut and paste from original tripod review site. October 2006. "Set in Brooklyn, THE SCHWA WAS HERE tells the story of an unusual friendship that develops between two eighth grade boys: Antsy and the Schwa. Anthony "Antsy" is the middle child of his Italian Catholic family. Calvin Schwa "Schwa" is the only child of his absent-minded father. The "Schwa" is known for being invisible-ish; he goes unnoticed not only by his peers but by most adults as well. Antsy inspired by the scientific method just discussed in class decides to conduct a series of experiments to see if the Schwa truly is functionally invisible. The second experiment is the best. The hypothesis:"The Schwa will not be noticed even when dressed weird and acting freakishly" (26). The Schwa is dressed in a cat costume and a orange fluorescent sombrero and is sent into the boys bathroom and told to sing "God Bless America" loudly. Antsy and friends then interview boys coming out of the bathroom to ask if there was anything unusual going on. The resulting answers are comical and lead to the conclusion that "even when acting weird and dressed like a total freak, the Schwa is only barely noticed" (28)." October 2006

Also by Neal Shusterman, Everlost, which would be a great title for the R.I.P challenge.

If you love Looking for Alaska....you should so give King Dork a try. October 2006.

Another book that I just love and adore is The Road to Paris by Nikki Grimes. This is a heart-warming must read that just leaves you with a nice and cozy fully satisfied that-was-so-good feeling. (December 2006)

Rash by Pete Hautman. Words can't begin to describe how much I love this one. How much I wish people would pick this one up to read it. It's an intriguing novel with a great premise. It's funny. It's a book that is just-right. "Set roughly in the 2070s, Rash provides readers with a clever and imaginative look at the future. Opening, in my opinion, with one of the greatest first lines I've ever read: "Gramps, who was born in 1990, once told me that when he was my age the only way to wind up in prison in the USSA (back when it had only one S) was to steal something, kill somebody, or use illegal drugs" (3). But times have changed quite a lot since then as our hero Bo Marsten finds out." and "But the lessons Bo learns about life, friendship, pizza, and football--which is also illegal by the way--open up his eyes to a whole new world." (December 2006)

Skin by Adrienne Maria Vrettos. Loved this one. Loved it. Recommended for those that like books like Speak and Wintergirls and Looking For Alaska. A true must-read in my opinion. This one has stayed with me through the years. Originally posted in December 2006.

So what do you think? Do you like this idea? Have I convinced you to check out any of these from the library? Have I been a 'bad blogger'? I hope so!

© Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews
If you're reading this post on another site, or another feed, the content has been stolen.


Renay 12:22 AM  

Okay, you want a LIST of what I'm adding? ;)

Rash, The Schwa Was Here, and The Astonishing Adventures of Fanboy and Goth Girl. All going on my list! XD

chrisa511 12:22 AM  

Oh yeah...you were a bad blogger :p I just added fanboy and goth girl and king dork to my wishlist :p

Michelle Fluttering Butterflies 2:28 AM  

I read Speak awhile back. I thought it was really hard going finishing the book because of the subject matter. I thought it was well done, but definately difficult.

DesLily 5:22 AM  

like,.. when AREN'T you a bad blogger??? you are forever writing reviews that send people back to amazon or B&N to check more on a book!

but going into your archives is a great idea. No one has the time to do that much anymore and it's a shame.

Ana S. 5:54 AM  

I love the idea. You really made me want to read King Dork in particular!

Janssen 8:55 AM  

I just got a copy of Everlost last week (I'd never heard of it) so I'm glad to hear it's worth reading! I like this feature.

Charlotte 11:28 AM  

two more for my list!

Zibilee 5:07 PM  

I love this post! So many of the books you have highlighted sound ridiculously good. I am going to check out a few of them. Thanks!

Laura H 11:59 PM  

I love this feature. I'm going to go down the list and check 'em out.

Debi 7:13 PM  

I'm sorry, Becky, but I'm voting NO on this whole idea!

Okay, not really. I love it, love it, love it! But you made me add seven freakin' books to my wish list with this one post! That is just downright cruel, my dear. (But don't stop, okay?)

Post a Comment

I'm always happy to hear from you! To help fight spam, comment moderation has been set up for posts older than two days. Feel free to ask me questions or ask for recommendations!

Review Policy

I am interested in reviewing books and audio books. This blog focuses on books written for middle grade on up (essentially 10 to a 110). I review middle grade fiction and young adult fiction (aka tween and teen).

I also review adult books.

I read in a variety of genres including realistic fiction, historical fiction, mystery, romance, science fiction, fantasy, literary fiction, and chick lit. (I've read one western to date.)

I read a few poetry books, a few short story collections, a few graphic novels, a few nonfiction books.

I am especially fond of:

  • Regency romances (including Austen prequels/sequels)
  • Historical fiction set in the Tudor dynasty
  • Historical fiction and nonfiction set during World War II
  • Jewish fiction/nonfiction
  • dystopias
  • apocalyptic fiction
  • science fiction (especially if it involves time travel and alternate realities)
  • fantasy
  • multicultural books and international books

I am not a fan of:

  • sports books
  • horse books
  • dog books if the dog dies (same goes with most pets actually except maybe fish)
  • westerns (if it's a pioneer story with women and children, then maybe)
  • extremely violent books with blood, blood, and more blood

I am more interested in strong characters, well-written, fleshed-out, human characters. Plot is secondary to me in a way. I have to care about the characters in order to care about the plot. That being said, compelling storytelling is something that I love. I love to become absorbed in what I'm reading.

If you're interested in sending me a review copy of your book, I'm happy to hear from you. Email me at laney_po AT yahoo DOT com.

You should know several things before you contact me:

1) I do not guarantee a review of your book. I am just agreeing to consider it for review.
2) I give all books at least fifty pages.
3) I am not promising anyone (author or publisher) a positive review in exchange for a review copy. That's not how I work.
4) In all of my reviews I strive for honesty. My reviews are my opinions--so yes, they are subjective--you should know my blog will feature both negative and positive reviews.
5) I do not guarantee that I will get to your book immediately. I've got so many books I'm trying to read and review, I can't promise to get to any one book in a given time frame.
6) Emailing me every other week to see if I've read your book won't help me get to it any faster. Though if you want to email me to check and see if it arrived safely, then that's fine!

Authors, publishers. I am interested in interviewing authors and participating in blog tours. (All I ask is that I receive a review copy of the author's latest book beforehand so the interview will be productive. If the book is part of a series, I'd like to review the whole series.) Contact me if you're interested.

Unique Visitors and Google PR Rank

Free PageRank Checker

2018 Kitty Lit Challenge

2018 Kitty Lit Challenge
Link to sign-up page

Join the Victorian Reading Challenge

Join the Victorian Reading Challenge
Linked to sign up page

Family Tree Reading Challenge

Family Tree Reading Challenge
Link to sign-up page

2018 Share-a-Tea Challenge

2018 Share-a-Tea Challenge
Linked To Sign Up Page

2018 Charity Challenge (Sign Up)

2018 Good Rule Reading Challenge

2018 Good Rule Reading Challenge
Link to sign up page

2018 Picture Book Challenge

2018 Picture Book Challenge
Link to sign-up page

Join the 2018 Middle Grade Reading Challenge

Join the 2018 Middle Grade Reading Challenge
click image to go to sign up post

Good Rules Cheat List

Board books and picture books = new is anything published after 2013
Early readers and chapter books = new is anything published after 2013
Contemporary (general/realistic) = new is anything published after 2007
Speculative fiction (sci-fi/fantasy = new is anything published after 2007
Classics = anything published before 1968
Historical fiction = new is anything published after 2007
Mysteries = new is anything published after 1988
Nonfiction = new is anything published after 2007
Christian books = new is anything published after 2000
Bibles = new is anything published after 1989

My Blog List

(Old) Challenge Participants

Becky's Hosting These Challenges

100 Books Project: Fill in the Gaps

Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

  © Blogger template Newspaper III by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP