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Archive for Monday, July 12, 2010

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Summer reads for teens: Vampire saga, spooky sci-fi

July 12, 2010

Editor’s note: Kids are welcome to send book, movie and gaming reviews to go@ljworld.com to be considered for publication. Reviews should be 200-500 words in length.

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‘Love Bites’

“Love Bites” by Ellen Schrieber is unlike any other book I’ve read, although it reminds me a little of “Twilight.” How can it not, when there is a mortal girl with a vampire boyfriend? Not to mention that the girl, Raven, wants her boyfriend, Alexander, to change her into a vampire more than anything else.

This book is a simple, fast read and has some good suspense. However, the story doesn’t really go anywhere. The creepy atmosphere is so strong, it slightly diverts your focus from the story.

The story starts when Raven realizes her boyfriend has a best friend, Sebastian, who comes to visit them in their small town, oh-so creatively named Dullsville. Sebastian starts to hit on Raven’s best friend, Becky. Becky happens to already have a boyfriend, Matt, who she is supposedly going to marry after they graduate.

More than half of the story is basically about Sebastian liking Becky, Becky being oblivious, and Raven trying to make Sebastian realize that Becky already has a boyfriend. Raven hosts a party to try to find Sebastian another girl. Somehow, the entire high school finds out about it and comes over to Alexander’s mansion. Raven is furious, especially since the cheerleaders are all over Alexander, but he is a good boyfriend and practically ignores them. Sebastian finally realizes it’s not his place to text Becky all night or send her flowers, and apologizes to her and Matt.

The book gets creepy, but finally ends with Sebastian finding what he thinks is true love. “Love Bites” is the seventh book in the series, although I understood it without reading the books before it. This book would be appropriate for girls approximately ages 10 to 14.

‘The Hunger Games’

“The Hunger Games” by Suzanne Collins is one of the best books I’ve ever read next to the Harry Potter series. This book takes place pretty far in the future, in the ruins of what used to be North America, now called Panem. There was a rebellion and, The Capitol punished the 12 districts by holding The Hunger Games each year. Once a year from each district, the names of a boy and a girl between the ages of 12 and 18 are drawn. The kids, known as tributes, must compete in the Hunger Games. The Games are an extremely dangerous fight-to-the-death competition, in which each tribute has one goal: to stay alive.

Katniss Everdeen lives in District 12 and volunteers in place of her little sister. She and her fellow tribute, Peeta Mellarkare, are taken to the Capitol to prepare for the Hunger Games. Nobody has won from District 12 for decades. Can Katniss or Peeta possibly win The Hunger Games?

Surprisingly, “The Hunger Games” is not a violent book, although I wouldn’t recommend it to anybody younger than age 11.

— Naomi Grant will be an eighth-grader at Southwest Junior High School.

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