Friday, August 10, 2012

The Invasion (Animorphs #1) by K.A. Applegate

The Invasion (Animorphs, #1)

Animorphs! What a blast from the past. These novels were seriously my 3rd grade life. I only got up to number 37 for some strange reason though. I don't know why I never got farther than that lol. A few days ago, my boyfriend mentioned a hawk. The mention of the hawk reminded me of Tobias, one of the Animorphs who was stuck in a red-tailed hawk form. And then as I was remembering all the characters and the battles and the covers and the aliens and everything I began to get very excited! So then I ran upstairs to retrieve the few Animorph books I had purchased at used book stores and such. And then I promptly began reliving my childhood and reading #13, which had Tobias on the cover. And I sat there, just reading my beloved Animorphs book while my boyfriend fell asleep. Lol.

I'm not sure why I had loved these books so much, considering they were science-fiction, the type of books that I didn't and still don't read. Maybe it was the appeal of the Yeerk invasion and how "real" it all seemed. Like, what if they were real?! And how they were just normal kids but they were given special powers and it's all just so amazing! Haha anyways the next day I took a trip to the library and went to the children's section and behold, there were the books that I had loved so much. I did some research on the Animorphs when I got home and found out that they were being re-released! The fangirl in me is very happy because these books were literally my life. I've read that they're making small changes to make them more timeless, because pop-culture has definitely changed since the 90s! Haha so anyways...

The Invasion is about 5 kids, about middle-school age, who walk through a construction place when they see a dying alien (an Andalite). He tells them about the Yeerks, an invading parasitic alien species that crawl into people's ears and control their mind and body. He gives them the ability to morph into other animals after they have absorbed their DNA. The only thing is that they have to morph back into their human form before 2 hours or they will be stuck that way forever. Until the Andalites can come to Earth and save everyone, it's up to the Animorphs to protect their planet.

This is really awesome series, and maybe I'm just biased because I'm living in nostalgia, but I recommend that you try out this series. And if you're too old for it, recommend it to someone in middle school. Or just read them anyways because they're amazing. 5 out of 5 stars.

Between The Lines by Jodi Picoult & Samantha van Leer

book jacket

Delilah is a high-school loner who finds comfort in a picture book called "Between The Lines"  that she found in her school's library. Even though she knows she's too old to be reading fairy tales, she loves to read about Oliver, a handsome prince who sets out to save a princess. He fights dragons, tricks trolls, escapes mermaids, etc. Delilah likes to believe in happy endings, ever since her dad left her and her mom. That's why she can relate to Oliver, whose father was killed protecting his kingdom from a dragon. One day, Oliver from her book talks to her. It turns out that he lives a life too when the book is closed. When someone is reading the book he is an actor saying the liens that were written for him. Oliver has always wondered what was outside his book and desperately wants to get out.

For those of you who may not know, Jodi Picoult wrote this novel with her teenage daughter. I read in Entertainment Weekly that she had wanted to write a novel targeted towards a younger audience because he readers may have wanted to "share her stories with their children or younger siblings". That made me laugh a lot because sorry Jodi, I'm not in a huge rush to tell my younger brother about gay parenting rights, emancipation, cancer, abduction, etc. When I heard that Picoult was writing a young adult book I was very excited and knew I had to get my hands on it. And by the way, the picture of the two was taken by my favorite photographer Adam Bouska, who I actually got to meet the other day. He is a wonderful man and his pictures are extremely beautiful. Here is a video of him and them during the photoshoot: In case you couldn't tell, I am a huge fan of Adam.

Between The Lines has a really cool concept and a nicely narrated story. The plot is decently paced and the characters are likable. The chapters are alternated between a narration of Oliver, Delilah, and the story itself. I like books with chapters like this, which is why I enjoy Jodi's writing. It's a nice romance without being too much of a romance, and it also touches up upon family matters and friendship. I enjoyed this novel and I would recommend it, whether you've read any of Jodi's other novels or not. 5 out of 5 stars.

Getting Over Garrett Delaney by Abby McDonald

Getting Over Garrett Delaney

When Sadie met Garrett, she knew that one day they would fall in love and live happily ever after. But until that happens, she will have to settle with being very close friends until he realizes his unknown passion for her. Sadie has been pining after Garrett for two years and they have plans to go to a writer's camp together over the summer.Sadly, Garrett gets accepted while Sadie doesn't. It will still be okay though, right? They'll call and text and pick up right where they left off when he gets back. But after a few days, Garrett calls Sadie and tells her that he's fallen in love... with another girl. This event is not unusual, he has had his fair share of girlfriends over the years while Sadie gives helpful advice and waits her turn. This phone call is the last straw for Sadie. She is tired of waiting around for a guy that is clearly not going to love her back so with the help of some new and old friends, she sets out to Get Over Garrett Delaney.

I thought this was a wonderful book. The narration is spot-on and realistic and I really felt Sadie's pain over lusting over her best friend who, just isn't noticing her! This novel had everything in it: a hilarious narrator and main character, a realistic plot, and thoughtful messages. It went by quickly and I really liked the self-empowerment that Sadie went through when she realized that she should stop sculpting herself around a guy. Never change yourself for another person, never! I recommend it, as I found myself smiling and cheering Sadie on the entire time. The only thing I didn't agree on was how Sadie decides to go "cold-turkey" and start ignoring Garrett and just pretending he doesn't exist. I mean, I guess if that's what you have to do! But they were like BEST friends so it was kinda like "okayyy if you say so". The only reason I'm not giving this novel 5 stars is because of the ending. I'm fine for everything it stood for, but I'm not a huge fan of when author's make characters nice and then do a 180. Lol anyways: 4.5 out of 5 stars.