From Andrea Kalinowski
Author: Thomas Emson
I was drawn to “Pariah” by Thomas Emson because the back cover mentioned Jack the Ripper, and by the time I realized that he was not the main focus, I was too far in to drop the book. A mix of fantasy, murder, and religious fiction, it was an odd read. Certain aspects reminded me of another unusual book, entitled Mister B. Gone, which was told from the Devil’s viewpoint. “Pariah” alternates between the year of 1888 and the year of 2011 in London, England. The year 1888 is when the Ripper was actually active among London’s prostitutes and the police were unable to definitively name and/or apprehend a suspect. This book has, as its base, reality, but a whole new motive for the murders is woven around the victims being seers (psychics). The seers are individuals who are both prey and predator. They see the evil coming and, as a result, are the prey of the evil. The evil, known as Jack, needs the evil in the hearts of man, to be reborn and to fuel his plan of world dominion. Without enough blood sacrifices, evil will not triumph and the balance will remain intact.
From Catherine, Teen Book Reviewer
author: Fitzpatrick, Becca
The book Hush, Hush is about a high school student named Nora Grey. She leads a normal life until Patch, her new biology partner, steps in. Everywhere she goes, Patch seems to be right behind her. And Patch knows things about Nora that she would never tell anyone; not even her best friend, Vee. Strangest of all, Nora is attracted to Patch in both a scary and comfortable way. When she meets Elliot, the transfer student from Kinghorn Prep, she stars to wonder what made him transfer from
a private school to a public school. After doing some background research, Nora finds out things that scare her even more than Patch does. Now she has to choose between two guys, both of them frightening and probably dangerous. On top of that, Nora thinks that somebody is following her and trying to hurt her. When Nora uncovers more truth about the people she goes to school with, the stakes get higher, and in the end, Nora’s own life might be at risk.
From Rosalia Millan
author: Bray, Libba
Cameron Smith is a sixteen year old focused on being a slacker, and doing as little as possible. There is nothing really wrong with his home life, he just feels overlooked and has decided to exploit that for all it’s worth. Everything changes when he contracts Creutzfeldt-Jacob or “Mad Cow” Disease and Dulcie, a punk rock angel, tells him that if he finds Dr.X he can be cured and he can save the world.
This book has a really great road trip adventure story that focuses on the importance of living life, without being overly heavy and trying to beat the reader over the head with a message. The author makes sure that Cameron gets a chance to experience everything, the good and the bad, without dwelling on Cameron’s disease. The adventure that Cameron and Gonzo go on is all about parallel dimensions and possible time travel, but the reader isn’t bombarded with a bunch of technical science terminology so that even those that are not really into science fiction can enjoy this work. I completely understand why this book was selected as this year’s Printz Award winner. It’s an entertaining adventure story with a lot of depth to it.
From Donna Barnes
author: Creech, Sharon
The Unfinished Angel
There is an angel living in a tiny Alpine village where life is quiet and good-until an American girl named Zola arrives with her father to open up an international school for children. Our “angel” feels untrained and without a mission until Zola arrives. Unlike everyone else, Zola can see the angel, because she has dealt with angels before. When Zola discovers some homeless children who need help, Zola and the angel help each other, and help the villagers become a closer community in the process.
“The Unfinished Angel” will make you giggle and wonder if maybe you have been exposed to angels in your life and if they did indeed help you and maybe you even helped them.