Nowhere But Here by Katie McGarry
This book is about a girl named Emily and her messed up family tree where her mom hides the past of her biological father and the time of her birth. But when Emily’s mom finds out that her mother in-law from the past has died, it puts her mother in a sad state; Emily will have to go to the wake and meet with the crazy family of her biological father, Eli. But her family brings a bundle of surprises. The Olivia situation is not as simple at it seems, she meets a gorgeous boy in her family’s group of friends who she might possibly fall in love with, and there is an illegal gang out for revenge on Eli and decide to take it out on Emily. Oh, and did I mention that her family is a biker gang? When a series of unchangeable events happen, Emily must get past the lies and get to the truth because that is the only way she will make it out unscathed.
I love this book because it has a series of plot twists that will change Emily’s future and will bring her to love her crazy and deranged family, and it will give her the truth of what her mother has been hiding, what everyone’s been hiding. I also love the new love that Emily and Oz start.
I recommend this book to kids 11 and above.
Megan C, Fifth grade, Glorietta Elementary, age 11
Spaced Out by Stuart Gibbs
Recently I read Spaced Out. It’s about a boy named Dash and he lives on the moon with many other people. They’re trying to find out what happened to their base commander, Nina, who has suddenly disappeared. I like it because it has many different characters that are very unique. I recommend it for people who like mysteries and space. Also, I recommend it for ages 8 and up.
Keizo, John Muir Elementary, age 10, 5th Grade
Artwork by younger brother Kenzo, age 7
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The Heartbreakers by Ali Novak
Stella hates the band The Heartbreakers, but her twin sister (who has cancer), loves the them. Stella loves her sister so much, she would drive to Chicago with her triplet, Drew, and stand in a line and wait to have a CD signed, only to end up leaving without an autograph. Stella suddenly realizes that the cute boy she bumped into at Starbucks who paid for her drink was the lead singer for the Heartbreakers and, get this, Stella insulted his music in front of the entire band, told him to his face that his music sucks. But then spending one night with the band changes everything; she gets a job doing what she loves most and she gets to hang out with the band, she falls in love, gets her heart broken, and has to make a decision that includes her sister.
I love this book because I love how the author made Stella have so many options and choices to make. I love how this book has so many obstacles and with each choice Stella makes, she ends up in an adventure to find who she really is. This book also gives you a major reality check on whats going on around you. I love how the author makes one character end up doing something so astonishing. I also like this book because every girl wants a job doing what she likes without having to work super hard and also being able to hang out with her friends at the same time.
Megan C., 10 years old, Glorietta Elementary, 5th grade
The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary
(artwork by Kenzo)
★ ★ ★ ★ ★
I like this book because it is very interesting and very fun to read. I give it 5 stars. The boy is named Keith and the mouse is named Ralph. I like this author because she wrote many books that I like. I recommend that you read this book. I think this is for ages 8-15. I hope you are convinced.
-Kenzo, John Muir, 1st Grade, age 7
Velvet Undercover by Teri Brown
In the midst of World War I, 17-year-old Samantha Donaldson serves her country as a home front messenger for the intelligence organization MI5. After her father disappears on a diplomatic mission, she continues her studies of languages, mathematics, and complex puzzles, only to find that her father is either missing, or dead. Samantha is asked to join the famed and secretive women’s spy group, La Dame Blanche; when she says no, the captain, claims he can find out more about her father’s whereabouts, thus forcing her to accept. She first must train, then go into Germany and serve as the governess’ assistant, teaching the Kaiser’s children, and trying to extract the most valuable British spy who is only known as Velvet, who might be in trouble.
This book was a big learning experience for me because I didn’t know anything about World War I, and after reading this book I got a general idea of what happened. I used to not like spy books or any sort of detective or mystery books, but now I think that spy books are really good and they get you to think about the works and the plots and trying to solve the mystery yourself. I love the three huge plot twists that happen on later in the story because they really tweak your perspective into something new each time. They also really blow your mind big time.
Megan C., 10 years old, 5th grade, Glorietta Elementary
Savvy by Ingrid Law
When Beaumonts turn thirteen, they get a magical power which they call their “savvy.”
Mibs is about to turn thirteen. She can’t wait to discover what her savvy is. Then Poppa gets hurt in a horrible accident. Mibs decides she needs to make things right again. But how? Follow Mibs on this exciting journey in Savvy by Ingrid Law.
I like Savvy because, besides their savvy, it is a realistic fiction book. I like how Ingrid Law blended the two genres together to make one story.
I also liked Savvy because it is about a girl a little older than me being on an adventure and facing challenges along the way.
People that are 8-12 will probably like this book the most.
Thank you for reading this. I hope you read and like Savvy.
-Theodora M., 6th grade, age 10
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Smile by Raina Telgemeier
Raina is in sixth grade when she trips and falls one night after Girl Scouts and loses her two top teeth. Raina went to the endodontist right away to see how the problem can be fixed. The whole story is about how Raina had troubles with her friends and her teeth. At the end of the year, she graduates from elementary school and is happy to finally be a teenager.
I like this book because it has drama and it tells me to not to be friends with mean people. Raina understands things and tries her hardest on tests and basketball try-outs. This book is a graphic novel. I think that seven-year-olds and older will like this book.
Evangeline K., Noble Elementary School, 6 years old, 1st grade
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Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai
Imagine living in Vietnam during the war as a 10-year-old girl. The war is near your home and you have to leave with your family to Alabama. This is what happens to Ha, the main character in this book.
I like this book because the author inspired me through the character Ha. She learned to live in a whole different place. Ha also had to leave her things such as her home, friends, toys, and most of her memories. When Ha gets to Alabama, she finds her new home completely different from her home in Vietnam. Ha struggles to find friends because she pronounces certain letters weird and doesn’t look like people in her new town. She gets picked on. The kids at Ha’s new school follow her home, throw rocks at her, promise to stomp on her chest, and pull on her hair. She learns to ignore their teasing.
This story reminds me that I am extremely fortunate and to be very thankful for what I have. Ha’s experiences taught me to never give up. This book is written in free-verse poetry and I recommend this book for girls 9 years old and up.
Jubilee K., Noble Elementary, 9 years old, 3rd grade
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Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card
★ ★ ★ ★ 1/2
Ender’s Game is a fictional adventure about a boy named Andrew who goes by Ender. A man named Graff comes to take Ender from his parents, his older brother, Peter, who will kill him, no joke, and his loving sister Valentine who shed the most tears at his departure. The book is about Ender’s journey through battle school with his fear of turning into a killing machine like Peter. He is good at playing training games, but will that work when the real war has to be fought?
I love this book because Ender is such a determined person. I think that Orson Scott Card has a great view of Ender and equality. I think it should be recommended for ages 9+. I would give it 4 1/2 stars.
Natalie G., Redwood Day, 6th Grade
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The Crossover by Kwame Alexander
This is an amazing book about basketball, family, and brotherhood. Twin brothers Josh and Jordan, star basketball players and best friends, find their close relationship unraveling when Jordan starts dating. But when the unthinkable happens, they must come together and rely on each other despite the tension between them. You will cry and laugh after reading Alexander’s powerful verses. I love this book and I hope you will too. I recommend this book for ages 10 and up.
Charlotte, Thornhill Elementary, 5th Grade