[Book Review] Coraline

Coraline_Audio_coverTitle: Coraline
Author: Neil Gaiman
Genre: Fantasy, Horror
Published: 2002
Recommended for ages 8 to 12 and up
Source: Borrowed from a friend
Audiobook: Narrated by Neil Gaiman

WHAT’S THE BOOK ABOUT?

Here’s a description from the author’s website:

When Coraline steps through a door to find another house strangely similar to her own (only better), things seem marvelous.

But there’s another mother there, and another father, and they want her to stay and be their little girl. They want to change her and never let her go.

Coraline will have to fight with all her wits and courage if she is to save herself and return to her ordinary life.

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[Book Review] How to Train Your Dragon

httyd_book1Title: How to Train Your Dragon (How to Train Your Dragon series, #1) Author: Cressida Cowell
Genre: Fantasy, Middle grade
Published: 2003 by Hodder Children’s Books (UK), Little, Brown Books (US) Recommended for ages 8 and up
Source: Borrowed from a friend
Audiobook: Narrated by David Tennant

WHAT’S THE BOOK ABOUT? Here’s a description from the author’s website:

Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III was an awesome sword-fighter, a dragon-whisperer and the greatest Viking Hero who ever lived. But it wasn’t always like that. In fact, in the beginning, Hiccup Horrendous Haddock III was the most put upon Viking you’d ever seen. Not loud enough to make himself heard at dinner with his father, Stoick the Vast; not hard enough to beat his chief rival, Snotlout, at Bashyball, the number one school sport and CERTAINLY not stupid enough to go into a cave full of dragons to find a pet… It’s time for Hiccup to learn how to be a Hero.

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[Movie Review] The Giver

The_Giver_posterBased on: The Giver by Lois Lowry (published in 1993)
Directed by: Phillip Noyce
Screenplay by: Michael Mitnick, Robert B. Weide
Cast: Brenton Thwaites, Odeya Rush, Alexander Skarsgård, Katie Holmes, Jeff Bridges, Meryl Streep, etc.
Film released in: 2014
MPAA Rating: PG-13

Synopsis:
The haunting story of “The Giver” centers on Jonas (Brenton Thwaites), a young man who lives in a seemingly ideal, if colorless, world of conformity and contentment. Yet as he begins to spend time with The Giver (Jeff Bridges), who is the sole keeper of all the community’s memories, Jonas quickly begins to discover the dark and deadly truths of his community’s secret past. With this newfound power of knowledge, he realizes that the stakes are higher than imagined – a matter of life and death for himself and those he loves most. At extreme odds, Jonas knows that he must escape their world to protect them all – a challenge that no one has ever succeeded at before.

“The Giver” is based on Lois Lowry’s beloved young adult novel of the same name, which was the winner of the 1994 Newbery Medal and has sold over 10 million copies worldwide.

(Synopsis taken from the movie’s official website)

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[Book Review] The Alchemyst

The_Alchemyst_Nicholas_FlamelTitle: The Alchemyst (The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel series, Book 1)
Author: Michael Scott
Published: May 2007 by Random House
Recommended for ages 10 and up
Source: Purchased

WHAT’S THE BOOK ABOUT?

Here’s a synopsis from the publisher:

He holds the secret that can end the world.

The truth: Nicholas Flamel was born in Paris on September 28, 1330. Nearly 700 years later, he is acknowledged as the greatest Alchemyst of his day. It is said that he discovered the secret of eternal life.

The records show that he died in 1418.

But his tomb is empty.

The legend: Nicholas Flamel lives. But only because he has been making the elixir of life for centuries. The secret of eternal life is hidden within the book he protects- the Book of Abraham the Mage. It’s the most powerful book that has ever existed. In the wrong hands, it will destroy the world. That’s exactly what Dr. John Dee plans to do when he steals it. Humankind won’t know what’s happening until it’s too late. And if the prophecy is right, Sophie and Josh Newman are the only ones with the power to save the world as we know it.

Sometimes legends are true.

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[Book Review] WARP: The Reluctant Assassin

WARP-1_book_coverTitle: WARP: The Reluctant Assassin (WARP series, Book 1)
Author: Eoin Colfer
Genre: Science fiction
Published: May 2013 by Disney-Hyperion
Recommended for ages 12 and up
Source: Purchased

WHAT’S THE BOOK ABOUT?

Here’s a synopsis from the author’s website:

The reluctant assassin is Riley, a Victorian boy who is suddenly plucked from his own time and whisked into the twenty-first century, accused of murder and on the run.

Riley has been pulled into the FBI’s covert W.A.R.P. operation (Witness Anonymous Relocation Program). He and young FBI Agent Chevie Savano are forced to flee terrifying assassin-for-hire Albert Garrick, who pursues Riley through time and will not stop until he has hunted him down. Barely staying one step ahead, Riley and Chevie must stay alive and stop Garrick returning to his own time with knowledge and power that could change the world forever.

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[Book Review] Moribito II: Guardian of the Darkness

Moribito_II_coverTitle: Moribito II: Guardian of the Darkness (Moribito series, Book 2)
Author: Nahoko Uehashi (English translation by Cathy Hirano)
Genre: Fantasy, Adventure, Middle Grade/Young Adult
Published: May 2009 by Arthur A. Levine/Scholastic Inc.
Recommended for ages 12 and up
Source: Purchased

WHAT’S THE BOOK ABOUT?

Here’s a synopsis from the publisher:

For many years, through countless fights, Balsa has survived. The evil King Rogsam tried to kill her when she was only six. Eight assassins pursued her in the long flight that followed. But her mentor, Jiguro, protected her until his death, and then Balsa became a bodyguard herself, helping other people survive the challenges they face. When she returns to her native country of Kanbal, she hopes to see Jiguro’s family and her own for the first time in many years. But what should be a simple visit of truth and reconciliation becomes a fight for her life when she learns that King Rogsam framed Jiguro for the deaths of the eight assassins—as well as a crime that threatens the very existence of Kanbal. With the help of two Kanbalese children, Balsa must unwind the conspiracy surrounding Jiguro and the mystery of the Guardians of the Darkness, before it’s too late.

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