Books, Read + Review, Teen Reviews

Read + Review: The Breakaways by Cathy G. Johnson


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In the book Breakaways, a girl named Faith joins her school’s soccer team to be with her friend, Amanda. When she joins the team, she figures out that Amanda is on a completely different team, the best team. Faith, who’s on the worst team, meets a lot of new people and gets to see how they play. Faith only wants to win for her team, but her teammates think differently. They don’t care about soccer and would much rather do different things. In the end, Faith manages to get all of her teammates to get together and just have fun.

I liked the book because of all of the friendships. There were some sad parts like when Bulldog and Warthog were fighting and when V moved away. Everyone had their talents besides just soccer, like drawing and playing the guitar. Faith had a lot of scenes throughout the book expressing how her life was going in the form of a fairy tale. They made the book more interesting and captured the essence of how her life in middle school is going. Overall, it was an awesome comic book, and I enjoyed reading it.

I wish that the author described the characters’ backstories a bit more. Other than that, the book was outstanding. There were a lot of good details and lots of funny moments. The book had really good graphics and pictures.


Reviewed by Rimil, Twin Hickory Area Library

Books, Read + Review, Teen Reviews

Read + Review: Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff



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Tyler Jones is the golden boy of Aurora Academy, a school in outer space. He should be getting his first mission and a stellar squad, but when he attempts a spontaneous rescue the day before his graduation, he ends up with a bunch of misfits and a mysterious girl named Aurora. Auri has been in cryogenic sleep for a century, but she holds more secrets than anyone could begin to imagine. Together, Tyler and his team embark on a dangerous journey across space and time to unearth Auri’s true purpose. The catch? The intergalactic police force wants to get their hands on Auri, too.

However fast you think this book is, multiply that speed by a billion and you could be half as fast as Aurora Rising is. The book starts intense, barely giving us time to recuperate from the crazy beginning before it accelerates and zooms off skyward -kicking up a cloud of dust as it soars off the ground. It stays very plot-driven rather than character-driven, which is both beneficial and detrimental. Since there is nonstop action, you’re always hooked to the page. Not a single chapter goes by without a battle scene; you generally have little downtime. However, this comes at the expense of developed characters, which is also important since there are seven people telling the story.

The ending was the most phenomenal (and memorable!) part of the book. The authors are very good at writing intense situations with flowing prose, and it shows in the last few chapters. While the beginning and middle had little emotion or standout scenes, the ending was shocking, devastating, and perfect. At times, it even sent chills down my spine. I am eager to get my hands on the next book.


Reviewed by Annie, Twin Hickory Area Library

Books, Read + Review, Teen Reviews

Read + Review: Hawkeye: Private Eye by Kelly Thompson


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This book is about a girl named Kate Bishop, also known as Hawkeye, the girl superhero. Hawkeye hasn’t seen her dad since she was a little girl, thus she sets out on a mission to find out where he is. Meanwhile, she takes requests from people who need a superhero while looking for her dad. If trouble comes her way, Hawkeye is very sassy but at the same time likes to think things through before getting into a fight. Hawkeye is an expertly skilled archer and has years of experience in crime solving.

This book was a really fun read. If you’re familiar with Hawkeye you’ll definitely want to read Hawkeye Private Eye! The plot of this book occurs when a girl named Mikka comes to Hawkeye seeking help. Of course Hawkeye is up to the challenge. This book is full of action and surprises which leaves you wanting more. I was not a Hawkeye fan before but after reading this book, I’ll definitely be looking for more in the series. The main characters consist of Hawkeye, Ramone, Mikka, Jess, Brad, Johnny, and Quinn. The setting occurs in sunny California.

The graphics in this book were amazing! The book itself kept me interested and wanting more, and I found that I just couldn’t put the book down. Hawkeye comes up against formidable super villains but she holds her own every time in the thrilling Marvel comic. The one thing I found peculiar about this book was that one segment seemed to repeat itself. I’ve definitely become a fan and will be looking for more Hawkeye books in the future. I consider this a must read if you’re into the Marvel Comics and especially are familiar with Hawkeye.


Reviewed by Semira, Fairfield Area Library

Books, Read + Review, Teen Reviews

Read + Review: Insignificant Events in the Life of a Cactus by Dusti Bowling



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Aven Green has no arms! But, even at the age of 13, that doesn’t stop her from doing what other kids do. She still eats cereal, brushes her teeth and hair, and much more by her self. She went to the same school, growing up with the same people and living in the same house in Kansas. But then at the age of 13, her parents decided to move all the way to Arizona to take a job running Stagecoach Pass; a rundown Western theme park. That means every thing and every one she knows will all be in Kansas while she on the other hand will be in Arizona….with no one she knows. She then has to start her life all over again– from making friends to feeling at home!

Aven Green moves to Arizona, where the sun heats up everything 24/7. She has to stay at an apartments complex in the heat, above a steakhouse, in a rundown theme park called Stagecoach Pass and, in the middle of nowhere in Arizona! Personally, if I were in that situation, I would not have liked it. It would have been torture! I am more fond of the cold and love it much better than the heat. But, over there she makes friends with two boys; Conner and Zion. Her parents love to see that Aven made friends already. I would have been so happy if that happened to me at that time. Such a lucky ducky! But, Aven is also trying to solve a mystery about the Cavanaughs and who this person named Joe Cavanaugh is. In the end, Aven loves the place she is in because of this mystery with Joe Cavanaugh, and what it had led her to become! She is so lucky to have what she has and that she learned a lot about herself all the way in Arizona!

A memorable thing about the book The Insignificant Events In The Life Of A Cactus is, when Aven finally gets the courage to play the guitar with her feet in front of whole crowd! If I were her I would be so embarrassed and humiliated but, this girl didn’t show any of that fear I would’ve had. She was calm, peaceful and open. She showed everyone that, even people with no arms can do everything else people with arms can!


Reviewed by Rida, Twin Hickory Area Library


Books, Read + Review, Teen Reviews

Read + Review: Girl of the Southern Sea by Michelle Kadarusman



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Nia yearns for the wonders of education, pursuing the career of literature and language. Unfortunately, the slums of Jakarta, Indonesia, offer naught except endless scorching heat and a scarce amount of money. Hardly sustaining her family’s food, Nia toils daily at the market, frying banana fritters and earning a mere handful of coins for dinner. As she struggles to save money for her dream, Nia rapidly notices the day’s earnings vanishing night after night and her father departing the home for hours to return dizzy and disoriented. Inquiring further, Nia discovers that her father consumes drugs nightly, exhausting their money in the process. Disheartened, Nia ponders a solution to halt her father’s constant drug intake and achieve her writing career. Luckily, an unexpected event reaps her instant rewards, although her benefit begins to seem far too pleasant to be true. Mysteries thicken and lies blur with the truth as Nia gradually unearths her family’s past, unraveling secrets that transform Nia’s entire lifestyle.

This novel contained a multitude of suspicious events, begging the reader’s attention and never ceasing to evoke a sense of thrill within the reader. Although I didn’t quite enjoy the author’s style of writing, the events and the thrill did not disappoint. Furthermore, pleasant stories and folktales were woven into Nia’s dreams and thoughts quite artfully, which was quite a contrast to Nia’s mundane lifestyle. Additionally, the novel contained quite an amount of subtle violence, which certainly aided in the constant action. Once more, mysteries lurked within the main conflict, clues seldom revealed, contributing to a truly captivating novel.

One memorable event within the novel lies within the beginning of the novel. Nia quickly opens her stand and begins to create the banana fritter batter, attempting to ignore the relentless heat. The ingredients dance through her mind, forming a chant as she follows the recipe. Eagerly, she awaits customers, whose rupiah may earn her an education.



Reviewed by Soumya, Twin Hickory Area Library