Monday, February 10, 2014

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

To learn more about It's Monday! What Are You Reading? visit Mentor Texts

One of the Bluebonnet Nominees for 2014. I was not as impressed as I wanted to be. But I have boys who are clamoring for the next in the series. 

AR level: 2.6
Grade appropriate: 3rd grade and up

Overall: 3/5-- Funny and quick to read, not as easy to follow because of the constant dialogue and the comic style makes it a little difficult to keep up with exactly what's happening.

Creativity: 5/5-- Presenting history in this funny and irreverent manner is very engaging.

Characters: 4/5-- Funny, if not exactly clever.

Engrossing: 5/5-- I finished it in one day.

Writing: 3/5-- the comic style leads to choppiness and makes it a little difficult to follow.

Appeal to kids: 5/5-- They'll love this fresh approach to history.

Appropriate length to tell the story: 5/5-- quick to read

Language: mild, I think there were 4 instances of profanity, "damn" and "hell."

Sexuality: none

Violence: mild, it is about the revolutionary war after all. Nothing graphic; frames of gunshots and frames of motionless men on the ground.

Drugs/Alcohol: mild, some of the soldiers celebrate at a tavern.

Loved this book! I'm going to have to be careful who I recommend it to however.

While some kids can separate reality from fiction very easily, others will be disturbed by the idea of zombies. I can relate. I cannot handle intense books about serial killers because that's what I think about when I'm home by myself or when I have to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night.

 I know some kids would be that way about zombies, ghosts, etc. It is not scary if you can get over the idea of zombies.

AR level: 5.1
Grade appropriate: 4th grade and up.

Overall: 5/5-- LOVED IT! Funny and fast paced.

Creativity: 5/5-- I thought the idea that not all the zombies are bad is a great idea! Also loved the secret society of zombie killers.

Characters: 5/5-- I loved the characters. All real and flawed.

Engrossing: 5/5-- Couldn't put it down. I sat in bed one night finishing it and just said "OH!" when it ended. LOVED the twist ending.

Writing: 5/5-- Great! Didn't get in the way of the story.

Appeal to kids: 5/5-- THEY'RE GOING TO LOVE IT!

Appropriate length to tell the story: 5/5-- Perfect.

Language: none
Sexuality: none
Violence: medium, The kids hunt and end (not technically kill) bad zombies.
Drugs/Alcohol: none
I was not sure about this book. I mean really, a science fiction retelling of Cinderella? But I really did like it. 

But having read it, I'm really questioning whether it belongs in our elementary school library. Think I'll be passing this title along to our middle school. It was very emotionally intense. The citizens are dying of a new plague. It's a tough topic to swallow and the author goes into much detail. And the cruelty is amazingly real.

 AR level: 5.8
Grade appropriate: 6th and up

Overall: 5/5-- I really did love the story. I had to remind myself not to neglect my children and get too absorbed.

Creativity: 5/5-- A cyborg Cinderella. I mean, come on!

Characters: 5/5--I liked Cinder. Her stepmother and stepsister were really amazingly cruel. I liked that prince charming had some depth to him too. I think he was probably my favorite character; self sacrificing and wholesome.

Engrossing: 5/5-- See above comment about neglecting children.

Writing: 5/5

Appeal to kids: 5/5-- I think  sci-fi kids  will really like it. Some will not be able get into the cyborg/lunar people thing.

Appropriate length to tell the story: 5/5

Language: none
Sexuality: none
Violence: none
Drugs/Alcohol: none

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