Posts filed under ‘Book Reviews’

Survive Middle School — Hammy the Hamster-Style

 Countdown to Un-Shushed Relaunch: 5 Days

How to Survive Middle School

 by Donna Gephart

 Ages: 11 and up


David Greenberg is starting middle school in the fall. He is terrified— and it doesn’t help when his cousin Jack spews a list of dos and don’ts and inevitable mistreatment of students there.  Really, middle school would have been bearable with his best friend Elliot, who used to help David with their Talk Time YouTube videos starring David and Hammy, the hamster. But now Elliot is only interested in girls and hanging out with Tommy Murphy, the local bully. And his father, sister, and grandmother are all nice … but they’re no substitute for his mother who left two years ago to find herself.  So David must go it alone. 

Luckily, David befriends a girl named Sophie who used to be homeschooled.  Sophie thinks David’s videos are hysterical!  She shares them with her homeschooling friends and they tell their friends and before you know it David is popular, really popular — but only online. What about his not-so-great real life in the halls of his middle school? Will David just merely survive? Or will he not only survive but surpass all expectations and thrive?

I loved this book because it has short chapters, realistic characters and a great cover! Any story with Hammy the Hamster is a good story in my book.

Recommended by Miss Cindy!


March 26, 2011 at 10:00 am 1 comment

Can’t we all get along?

Countdown to Un-Shushed Relaunch: 42 Days

Zombies vs.Unicorns

by Holly Black

Age: Teens only, yo.

Do you think zombies are the most brutally awesome terror to grace a fictional work? And, do you believe unicorns are only appropriate to adorn the covers of binders held under the arm of some goody-two-shoes as they tell on you for playing Angry Birds in class? If so, you are standing in the same shoes as I was before I finished Zombies vs. Unicorns. The short stories within present new and unique themes for zombies and surprisingly innovative storylines for unicorns.   Be it serial killer unicorns to zombies in love-at no point in time has there ever been a more heated rivalry. The legendary creatures have been at odds for eternity but their contention has reached the boiling point.  Who will survive and what will be left of them?

Recommended by Warren S!

February 18, 2011 at 10:00 am Leave a comment

Katie talks about the elephant in the room.


The Big Elephant in the Room

Lane Smith

Ages: 8 and up

Can we talk about the big elephant in the room?  Two donkeys have something … a little embarrassing to talk about.  But it’s a little hard to tell which embarrassing thing that might be.  Was it the time one friend ate the last of the ice cream?  Or the video game he still hasn’t returned?  Or that he picked his friend last for soccer?  Or the burping-in-the-cafeteria thing?

Lane Smith’s incredible ability to bring humor to the forefront of a story with his expressive and adorable illustrations makes The Big Elephant in the Room a great book for anyone who might have a bit of a … confession to make.

Recommended by Katie B.


June 15, 2010 at 10:26 am Leave a comment

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