Wednesday, March 30, 2005

I Can't Tell You - Hillary Frank

I Can't Tell You is about a guy named Jake who gets into a fight with his high school friend and now college roommate Sean over a girl. So after this fight Jake decides that talking leads to trouble and decides to stop taking and communicate by writing. Through napkins, placemats, receipts, dry-erase boards, post-it notes, calculators, e-mail, pudding, scotch tape, snow, and even toothpaste Jake finds new ways to express himself. There are also notes he never sends to his friend Xandra. Notes saying that he loves her and wants to be with her. After she starts seeing a guy Jake and Xandra pranked called one night, he burns the letters he wrote to her. That then leads to Xandra and Jake revealing their true fealings for each other, and it leads to a falling out between them. They are still friends, but not as close as they were since Xandra knows that Jake has feelings for her. Also, Xandra is dating some one else, which complicates things quite a bit. The last few pages of the book sum things up nicely. It is a quick read and was enjoyable to read.

Tom Burnham

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Leave Myself Behind by Yates

This book caught me by surprise. Its part mystery and part first love romance. A teenage boy whose father recently died and his mother move from Chicago to a small eastern college town where mom will be teaching. The house they bought is about 100 years old and is a fixer upper.
Thats no problem since the two have rehabbed before. But, when they begin to find mason jars behind crumbling walls, each with some memoir from someone's past they begin to search for the truth about the house's former residents. Mom goes from curious to determined to obsessed with finding who put the jars there and why. Meanwhile, son continues working on the rehabbing . When a neighbor stops by to welcome him to the town and his new school, it isn't love at first sight but the boys are attracted to each other. Eventually this attraction gives way to all the wonderous confusing emotions of first true love. Neither the boys love nor the mother's search for truth are easy or easily accepted by the town. This is a great read. Highly recommended.
JDW 3/23/05

Wednesday, March 16, 2005

Sophie by: Guy Burt

The novel takes place completely in England, & seems to be typical English country side setting. The main characters are a brother, and sister. Sophie, is the older sister, and Mathew her brother. Sophie is very inteligent student at school, and generally in life too. She is also very creative, but raises her brother.

Their Mother lives in the house with the children, but is a recluse, and doesn't have any time for her children. She is an odd bird.

The Father of the household comes infrequently to the home. He never spends time with the family. In fact, the Father does not sleep much at the house.

To me the novel unravels, and takes place in the daily activities of Sophie, and Mathew, or Mattie as the sister caalls him. Mattie has a recurring dream of an appearance of a ghost with a face that haunts him at night in his bedroom. It is so real, that he screams, and Sophie comes to confort him, and sometimes lets him sleep in her bedroom.

This brother an sister both have a big curoisity. They live a few miles from an old quarry. They climb in, and explore the quarry many times. Then they find a new hang-out which is an abandoned barn that they fix-up, and make like their club house.

One day they discover two teenage boys Steven and Andy inside. Sophie tries to be 12 in front of their friends. She changes her appearance , clothing, and hair style. Her brother is 9.

For me I liked the book very much, because the reader sees the importance of how sibblings can be. The ending is very tragic, so read the book. It is worth it.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Truesight - David Stahler

Thirteen year old Jacob lives in a colony on a distant planet away from Earth. Everyone in his colony is born blind. They learn about their surroundings by touching, smelling, and listening to everything around them. They follow the philosophy of Truesight, which brings unity, purity, and freedom to the people of the colony. A few weeks before his 13th birthday Jacob gets this searing pain in his eyes during a class exercise. He thinks nothing of it as more than a headache. A few days later he begins to see shapes and colors of everything around him. A few days before his 13th birthday his best friend Egan gets him to go and see a delivery to the colony that night. Egan does not show up and he runs into Delaney. She want to get out of the colony and will do anything to achieve her goal. They are spotted and both run away. The next day Jacob is told that Delaney is dead. No one will say how it happened. On his birthday Jacob gets his sight and he keeps it a secret until the next to last day of school when he tells Egan. Egan then tells the listeners and Jacob is pulled out of school the next day and is taken to see the high councilor. A decision is made that the only way Jacob can remain in the colony is to have his sight removed and his memory of the past few weeks. The next day comes and he is in front of the whole colony, and is taken away to a building to correct his sight. He then learns from Delaney's father that she did not die, she ran away. He decides to run away also. It is the only way to save himself. This book was a page turner and it holds your attention to the end. Once you get to the end you ask your self what is next for Jacob. This is the first book in a trilogy, so we will have to wait until the other books come out to find out what happens.

Tom Burnham

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Saving Francesca by Marchetta

One review describes this book as perfectly honest and perfectly real. Yes, exactly. Francesca worries about what others think of her and the kids she hangs with. She is so worried about this in fact that she doesn't realize what valuable friends they are. Sees that behind the obnoxious rude and crude image he displays, Thomas Mackee is a decent guy. Feels guilty when she laughs and is happy while her mother suffers from depression. Worries that the same thing might happen to her. Parties. She is deeply hurt when a boy who already has a girl takes her aside at a party where they were pashing while drunk. Has doubts about the new school she has transferred to. She is embarrassed by the trouncing the boys give the girls at a friendly basketball match up. And, she looks back at it all with a wry humor and tears. It's hard not to like Francesca and her story. I vote this best book of 2004