The Twisted Window

Title: The Twisted Window

Author: Lois Duncan

Language: English

Released: 1987

Published By: Bantam Doubleday Dell Publishing Group

Pages: 187

Chapters: 19

Goodreads Summary:

High school junior Tracy Lloyd is unsure about the new guy in school. Brad Johnson is attractive, smart, and polite, but Tracy can’t help but feel he watches her too closely. Then one day Brad confides in Tracy a horrible secret: His little sister Mindy has been kidnapped by his stepfather, and he needs Tracy’s help to get her back. But even as Tracy commits to a plan to help her vulnerable new friend, details emerge that suggest nothing is what it seems.

My Overall Review:

This book was pretty good, and it was definitly a thriller.

This was the first book I read of Ms. Duncan, and I didn’t expect it to be so predictable. Maybe I just set my expectations too high, but it was still pretty suspenseful. In the end of Chapter 12, everything started to fit in and I somewhat had a guess that Mindy was dead.

I actually didn’t realize the book was so old, until I researched online. So if you’re worried about the book being “too old” to understand, don’t fret. It doesn’t really affect the story itself.

I couldn’t stop myself from turning each page, even when it was past midnight, and I was yawning every 10 seconds. You have to keep going, as Lois kept the story very fast paced. She made the story like a mind game, and twisted my thinking each time the viewpoint was changed. I admire her writing skill and will probably continue reading her other books.

The ending definitely threw me off. I felt so angry, and I had so many questions left. I wish that the ending would have gone the way I would like it. Even an epilogue would have had me satisfied but oh well.

The story was good, the characters were just a little under developed, the plot was definitely original (not to mention creepy), and overall I would suggest this book to anyone. The ending just really left me hanging, but it was still very well written and hats off to Lois Duncan for creating a very suspenseful story.

★★★★

 

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The Princess Plot

Title: The Princess Plot

Author: Kirsten Boie

Published: Chicken House

Publication Date: May 1st 2009

Genre: Fiction, Princesses/Princes, Politics

Page #’s: 378

Age Group: 9-15

Synopsis: 

Jenna has just won the starring role in a film about a princess–sweet! In the wink of an eye, she’s whisked off to a remote, romantic kingdom for the “shoot.” But something’s amiss: First, she finds out she bears an uncanny resemblance to the real princess, who has run away following the death of her father, the king. Then she learns that the conniving regent plans to use her to take control of the country, now being fought over by rebels. As the plot twists and turns, Jenna discovers just what she’s made of–and just why she resembles the missing princess so much!

My Overall Review: 

The story started like a classic pre-teen tale, with the girls going out for frappes and coffees, but holy heck, it definitely didn’t continue like that.

The emotions were very realistic. I could relate to Jenna’s frustration of having an overprotective parent, and her feeling the need to know her family’s history. I also felt very mad at Jenna at some parts. For example, I felt like all readers can relate when I say that it was obvious from the beginning that there was something suspicious about the texts. I think it was pretty dumb of Jenna not to think much of it.

(SPOILER ALERT IN THIS PARAGRAPH) My heart also went out to her, when her father was revealed. I didn’t want Norlin to remain the bad guy, as he showed his affection for Jenna. I have to admit, I got teary eyed when Norlin stopped the dogs from being released.

I’m new to Kirsten’s writing, and I fell in love with the book as I read more and more. It reminded me of Cloaked, a fairy tale type of story in the present. The story was very detailed, but Kirsten didn’t stretch it on and on forever. Definitely not boring. Kirsten set a calm and mysterious tone to the story, that kept me wanting to read more, even at half past midnight. I don’t think anyone would be able to put the book down whilst reading halfway.

I thoroughly enjoyed this book. While it started like a book for young girls, the plot became deeper with twists at every turn. There were deadly adventures, scenes of political problems, and family mysteries. The different characters and points of view are what pulled me in most. There weren’t really villains or heroes in the story. On one page you rooted for some characters, on the next your total opinion changed.

I loved it, and would definitely read it again.

✮✮✮✮✮

Death by Latte

DEATH BY LATTE IS THE SECOND BOOK IN THE SERIES: DEATH BY MYSTERIES

Death by Latte (Death By Mysteries, #2)

Title: Death by Latte

Author: Linder Gerber

Genre: Mystery

Page #’s: 202

Publication: Puffin Books

Date Published: September 18th 2008

Age Group: 10-15

Synoposis: 

It was only a few weeks ago that Aphra Connolly’s life changed completely. She had been living a quiet existence on her father’s secluded island resort, until Seth Mulo turned up and stole her heart . . . and provided information that led her to find her mom in Seattle. But the reunion isn’t quite what she expected. Aphra’s mom, Natalie, doesn’t seem happy to see Aphra, and Natalie’s partner, Joe, insists that Aphra go home. Even worse, Seth shows up, only to ask her to return the ring he gave her the previous summer. At least Natalie’s hunky neighbor is sympathetic. But when Joe is found dead at a nearby coffee shop, Aphra discovers her whole trip to Seattle has been based on a lie. And now someone just might be trying to kill her. . . .

My Overall Review: 

Death by Latte is the second book in the series, and I felt like maybe if I read the first edition, the plot would have made more sense to me.

It was a fast-moving novel for me, once Joe was killed, time didn’t stop for Aphra and her mother. It kept me on the edge of my seat, and till the end of the book, I was definitley hooked.

I don’t think I’ll read this again, it wasn’t a book I absolutely fell in love with. It had action, and I’m sure many people will like it because of that. It also has a relatable rocky mother-daughter relatationship going on. Lots of adventure and cliffhangers at the end of chapters.

You know those books that have the main question? One problem starts the story and then the rest is followed by the sassy, independent girl or strong, attractive young man who save the day? This is not that type of book. One problem after another. One mystery after another. One lie after another. And Aphra Connolly must figure it all out with her mother.

Even though, it won’t be a favorite, it was good for wasting time in class and all.

★★★

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dear George Clooney,

Title: Dear George Clooney, Please Marry My Mom

Genre: Realistic Fiction, Family + Relationships

Author: Susin Nielsen

Publisher: Tundra Books

Publishing Date: 2010

Language: English

Age Group: 9-13

Synoposis:

Violet’s TV-director dad has traded a job in Vancouver for one in Los Angeles, their run-down house for a sleek ranch-style home complete with a pool, and, worst of all, Violet’s mother for a trophy wife, a blonde actress named Jennica. Violet’s younger sister reacts by bed-wetting, and her mother ping-pongs from one loser to another, searching for love. As for Violet, she gets angry in ways that are by turns infuriating, shocking, and hilarious.

When her mother takes up with the unfortunately named Dudley Wiener, Violet and her friend Phoebe decide that they need to take control. If Violet’s mom can’t pick a decent man herself, they will help her snag George Clooney.

My Overall Review:

12 year old Violet is upset at her divorced father, and dislikes his new wife, Jennica. She’s not very happy with her step-toddler sisters, and yearns for her mother to give up on the boys.

Violet is a funny girl, with her way of words and smart alec take on the world. I love how she matured through the book and how she made better relationships with everyone around her.

Violet’s mom (Ingrid), is no way near perfect, but I much prefer her than Violet’s dad. Ingrid did lots of things that I would never agree with, but in the end I felt like she cared about the kids way more than Violet’s dad. Later in the story, when some vulgar pictures of her were displayed on Facebook, my heart broke. I felt like Violet when my face started leaking because of Thing One and Thing Two.

Nielsen is a talented author, and just by reading the opening title, I was hooked!

“FOR THE RECORD: I did not mean to send my two half sisters to the emergency room.”

Much of the plots revolves around Violet. She goes great lengths to “protect” her mother from her line of loser boyfriends.

Now this book isn’t really about the crazed star, George Clooney. This book is about a family that I’ve absolutely fallen in love with. It’s equally hilarious as heartbreaking. It was a fun light read, and I reccomend it to anyone looking for a laugh!

★★★★★

 

Cloaked

cloaked

Title: Cloaked

Author: Alex Flinn

Publisher: HarperCollins

Publishing Date: 2011

Page #: 341

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Synopsis: (not owned by me)

I’m not your average hero. I actually wasn’t your average anything. Just a poor guy working an after-school job at a South Beach shoe repair shop to help his mom make ends meet. But a little magic changed it all.

It all started with the curse. And the frognapping. And one hot-looking princess, who asked me to lead a rescue mission.

There wasn’t a fairy godmother or any of that. And even though I fell in love along the way, what happened to me is unlike any fairy tale I’ve ever heard. Before I knew it, I was spying with a flock of enchanted swans, talking (yes, talking!) to a fox named Todd, and nearly trampled by giants in the Keys.

Don’t believe me? I didn’t believe it either. But you’ll see. Because I knew it all was true, the second I got CLOAKED

My Overall Review:

I got this book in my book club and I honestly wouldn’t have chosen it unless my teacher read the blurb inside the book (which is above).

Cloaked is amazing!

I’ve never heard of Alex Flinn before this book and I loved this book.

Judging the title I thought it was about kidnapping. No joke.

This book was creative, adventures, magical, and romantic all in one. It’s also a mash up of a few fairy tales:

  • The Elves and the Shoemaker
  • The Frog Princes
  • The Six Swans
  • The Golden Bird
  • The Valiant Tailor
  • The Salad
  • The Fisherman and His Wife

The prince was incredibly annoying. I mean the names he gave Meg? Honestly? “My tiny newt” and “dainty komodo dragon”? Please. I was really hoping that Meg wasn’t serious about him ahaha…

About Meg, I loved how she made Johnny so jealous to the point he just had to declare his love. She’s witty. smart, cute and funny.

Johnny is forced to consider the differences between fantasy and reality. To talking animals and enchanted animals, but in the realm of romance and love. Even if readers don’t recognize all of the fairy tales Flinn riffs on here, they’ll still enjoy Cloaked, just like I did.

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My Rating: ★★ ★★☆ 4/5 stars

Worth Re-Reading: Definitely!

Breadcrumbs

Breadcrumbs

Title: Breadcrumbs

Author: Anne Ursa

Publisher: HarperCollins

Publishing Date: September 27th 2011

Page Numbers: 312

Synopsis:

(from goodreads.com)

Once upon a time, Hazel and Jack were best friends. They had been best friends since they were six, spending hot Minneapolis summers and cold Minneapolis winters together, dreaming of Hogwarts and Oz, superheroes and baseball. Now that they were eleven, it was weird for a boy and a girl to be best friends. But they couldn’t help it – Hazel and Jack fit, in that way you only read about in books. And they didn’t fit anywhere else.

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My Overall Review:

First of all, we all know about the saying that goes “Don’t just a book by it’s cover”. But can I be honest with you all?

I do judge books by covers.

Covers tell us about the story. They create an idea in our minds about what this story is going to be about. And I decided to take out this book because of it’s beautiful cover. Hats off to person who made the cover. Gorgeous.

Now that I’ve said that, let’s get on with the real review.

This lovely story is based on the very famous ‘The Snow Queen’ story by Hans Anderson.

I love Hazel. And I felt so bad for her. Her pain and sadness over problems she faced, just made my heart melt. She thinks she’s an outsider because of her Indian descent (like me, if you don’t mind me adding) and her adoptive parents. The thing is, at least once in life, we all feel like we don’t belong.

What is normal? What can we do to fit in? What does so-and-so think of me?

Admit it or not, we all have felt like this at least once in our lives.

But Hazel feels like this again and again.

She gets even more puzzled when her best friend, Jack, turns away from her. Growing up is really hard. Your playing in the park one day with your friends, building castles and making mud pies, but the next day your faced with decisions and choices.

Although the story was very wonderful, I felt like the ending was rushed. I just wish that Anne had taken a little bit more time and given a few more details at the end.

Other than that? The book is very fabulous. I don’t often reading fantasy stories, but this one was a very good one. Just a few things I would tweak at, but still amazing!

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My Rating: ★★ ★★☆ 4/5 stars

Worth Re-Reading: Probably

Character Structure: I felt like I didn’t know Jack’s mom well enough or Hazel’s adoptive dad. Other than that, it was good.

Mature Content: Not at all