Brain Jack

From Megan Teen Book Reviewer
Author:  Brian Falkner
Brain Jack 
Brian Falkner’s newest creation brings the reader inside the inner workings of a teenage technological mastermind. Brain Jack is a fast paced thriller that keeps the reader enticed throughout. This book, however, could leave the reader confused with the technical terms and tech savvy jargon. This mysterious Sci-Fi thriller explores a world with vastly advanced technology. In our present world that is constantly fixed upon the newest and fastest technology, Brain Jack amps up our fixation and explores the possibility of taking technology too far. Falkner brings the level of technology to a whole new medium. He brings the reader into a world where not only computers can be hacked into… so can the mind. New mind video games dominate society and produce over obsessive game addicts. These new video games surpass the present day creations like the Wii or Xbox that require controllers and screens. In this alternate world, the brain functions as both the controller and the screen. Your very own neuro connection will allow you to put away your keyboard mouse and even your computer screen and let you operate solely using your own brain. The brain is described as acting like a piece of technology, which leads the reader to ponder the possibility of a brain hack. Brain Jack resembles the very popular mind warping Inception, yet leaves the reader similarly confused. Far from being a must read, Brain Jack is enticing as it dramatizes the growing technological aspects of society.

2030 : the real story of what happens to America

From Ellen Druda
author: Brooks, Albert
 2030 : the real story of what happens to America
 In 2030, America and China partner to rebuild Los Angeles after a terrible earthquake.  Thanks to medical breakthroughs, baby boomers are living long healthy lives and the AARP is the most powerful force in government.  Young people are broke, jobless, and angry as they see their future being eaten up by the entitlements promised their parents.  Brooks’ vision of the possibilities of 2030 seems very plausible.

The Unidentified

From Erem, Teen Book Reviewer
author: Mariz, Rae
The Unidentified
This story is about Katey (a.k.a. Kid), who goes to school in a mall that is run by corporate sponsors. As Kid goes deep inside the facts to find the unidentified, she gets tangled in a two way triangle. On one side, Katey is recommended to be branded by her sponsors.  As she struggles to keep away, she will become involved in the unidentified and make new friends.  As Katie begins to uncover more clues about the unidentified, she learns that they are a rebellious group that is  protesting the power structure of the school by overthrowing the game. Worst of all, she learns that everything can’t be kept as a secret in the open world. All the cameras are watching, with the spotlight on Katey.  The public soon watches Katey and makes her popular. Who is doing this, the corporate sponsors, or the unidentified? That is left to be unanswered.  I would recommend this book to teens who like fiction and suspense novels.  Will Katey change and lose her identity to the world and the unidentified?  Read the book to find out more about the story.

Grace

From Carly Skudin, Teen Book reviewer
author: Scott, Elizabeth
Grace
Grace by Elizabeth Scott is about a girl named Grace who was raised to be an angel; a messenger of death by suicide bomb. She refuses to die for the cause and is on the run in search for freedom. She is traveling to reach a border she may never find. On her journey she travels amongst evil-minded soldiers on a battered and broken-down train across the desert. She is accompanied by a mysterious and puzzling character named Kerr on her journey for freedom at the border. Grace struggles to be invisible, but her fear of discovery appears large as she remembers and recalls the sequence of events and her struggling past that delivered her to her questionable or uncertain fate.

 In this book Elizabeth Scott creates a world where you are told what you will be. A life without choices and many, many sacrifices. A colorless life, without beauty and connection and it is excessively cruel. In such a basic story the reader’s mind is continuously swirling as it puts  together the pieces of information and the actions of the protagonist, Grace, and Kerr.

 To me, this book was exciting and kept you on the edge of your seat when you wanted to find out what the next obstacle would be on Grace’s quest for freedom. It was a bit confusing, however, with the characters and the fact that some characters were spirits. This book had some historical fiction and religious beliefs to it, with all of the sacrifices for an almighty Keran Berj. I would recommend this book for anyone who enjoys reading historical fiction, suspenseful books, and someone who can keep track of characters. Overall, it was a well-written book.

Shadoweyes

From Edward, Teen Book Reviewer
author: Campbell, Ross
Shadoweyes
“Shadoweyes” by Ross Campbell is a graphic novel that takes place in a dark city named Dranac during the year 200X. The city is covered with disease,  crime and garbage. Hobos litter the streets. The story is about a teenager named Scout Montana who becomes a strange super strong creature and becomes an inspiring vigilante known as Shadoweyes. And through her acts of justice she slowly becomes a hero. Her life comes to a halt, as it became harder and harder to change back to human form. She becomes separated from society and things aren’t as easy as before.

This graphic novel is brilliantly illustrated, but the plot can be hard to believe some times. For instance, she gains her powers from getting hit with a brick. The characters are a bit sketchy too. They are thrown at you, one after another with hardly any information to help the reader know what is going on. Other than that, the novel is decent, however I wouldn’t recommend it to people who want a good story, but to people who want something new.

The Gardener

From Edward, Teen Book Reviewer
author: Stewart, Sarah
The Gardener
Teenage Mason has a disfigured scar across his face from a dog attack when he was young, just five years old. This is when they show him a video of his father. His disfigurement motivates  Mason to help people. Perhaps it is to help people understand Mason for who he really is on the inside, instead of the disfigured, abnormal outside.  He enjoys biology and sports. When a summer program for Biology shows up, his mom immediately says no. Is it because of hidden secrets she has been locking away from him? When he visits his mom’s patients, four teens deep in a coma, he decides to play the very same video to them of his father when Mason himself was hurt. One of them, Laila awakens and tries to escape with Mason. He helps her, curious as to the reason why  she had circular scars on her legs. What exactly happened to her? Read the book and find out. This book is an amazing, page gripping story that keeps you awake through the night. While bringing up simple realistic morals, the book is simply put, amazing.

Mockingjay

From Alicia, Teen Book Reviewer
author: Collins, Suzanne
Mockingjay
I read the book Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins. This is the third book of the series The Hunger Games.  Mockingjay is about a girl named Katniss who lives in the country of Panem and participated in something called the hunger games. Now, as the head of the rebellion, Katniss has ended up in District 13, a part of Panem that has been prospering underground for years, untouched by the capitol. While trying to film a commercial for the rebels, Katniss and her friends are attacked by air bombs hitting a hospital. When Katniss sees the damage that has been done, she realizes just how serious the situation is, and decides to be the mockingjay.  She and a team of people then head out into the capitol in disguises and try to reach the president, and when they find him, Katniss is the one who wants to kill him.  But when the time comes, the unthinkable happens.  I would recommend this book to anyone who is in 5th-9th grade. The series is very adventurous and unpredictable, making you never able to put the book down.