Sunday, October 23, 2011

RI Mock Newbery 2012 - November Reads

(I will be adding to this post as I make it through the list ... favorites at the top)

Dead End in NorveltDead End in Norvelt by Jack Gantos

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I literally laughed out loud while reading this book. It lost some steam by the end, but I'm still giving it five stars. Loved the way he brought in this day in history. It's up there with Okay for Now. Except instead of sobbing my way through, I chortled.

When Life Gives You O.J.When Life Gives You O.J. by Erica S. Perl

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

What a funny, sweet story. Cranky grandfather + fake dog + early adolescent angst = charming. And the touches of grief and understanding elevate it beyond quirky. Very nicely done.

Lucky for Good Lucky for Good by Susan Patron

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book really grew on me. One of my favorite aspects is the way the community members' less-than-rosy life situations (disability, recovery) are presented in a matter of fact way. It's just the way things are. Ollie's insults about immigrants and Miles' confusion about there being no dinosaurs in the Bible were timely issues; I wonder if they'll cause as much of a kerfuffle as the scrotum did in book one of the trilogy.

The Adventures of Sir Gawain the True (Knights' Tales, #3)The Adventures of Sir Gawain the True by Gerald Morris

My rating: 3.5 of 5 stars

A lively retelling of several legends woven together neatly and with humor (see p. 37: "Things are different nowadays. Nations are not founded on keeping promises so much as on bleak and gloomy things called economies, which expect people to do whatever suits them rather than what they've said they would do.")

The book has action, mystery, and even a moral. I would prefer to have read this instead of the full Gawain and the Green Knight back in college!

The Grand Plan to Fix EverythingThe Grand Plan to Fix Everything by Uma Krishnaswami

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I did like the way that Dini thinks in terms of possible plotlines, and how the movie theme was carried through with cuts to other characters' scenes and lines like "Life doesn't let you save the bloopers for the archives." But overall, I didn't connect with any of the characters, and I didn't really care about Dolly. At all.

Queen of the FallsQueen of the Falls by Chris Van Allsburg

My rating: 2 of 5 stars

The narrative seemed a little flat. But I was still outraged by the way people, including audience members and managers, treated this woman.

1 comment:

MM said...

We're being ruthless this year. Dead End is Norvelt is the only one I read that made it to the next round.

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