Saturday, June 06, 2009

Challenge continues

2-2:45: Mancusi. Gamer Girl. Really enjoy Mancusi's sense of humor in Boys that Bite, and this one was good as well. Maddy moves from Boston after her parents' divorce, and ends up in a very conservative area living with her grandmother. For her birthday, her father gets her the Fields of Fantasy online game, and she gets very involved with it, talking to a boy online who ends up going to her school. What are the odds, right? Still, even though I saw it coming, I enjoyed Maddy's struggles with fitting in to her new school while still being true to herself. The side story of her father's gaming addiction is interesting as well. This will be popular! (248)

2:46-3:30: Oaks. Why I Fight. Misleading cover-- the main character, if 12, does not look like the photo! This is a title for older students. Very depressing and artistic. Quotation marks are not used, just dashes, and the prose is very lyrical. Basically, Wyatt's mother is unable to care for him, so he ends up with an uncle who is not much better. I thought there would be more about fighting, and the boys might like that, but most of it is about how depressing the various dives where the two live are. I'll send this one to the high school. (228)

3:31-4:35: Quigley. TMI. Becca tells everyone Too Much Information, but her best friend Katie puts up with her. So does Jai, a fashion forward Hot New Boy who is so stereotypically gay that I was not at all surprised when he outed himself. Becca's boyfriend dumps her because she shares too much with these friends, and she copes with this by creating a blog that is so transparent that everyone knows she is sharing her own life, and this gets her in trouble. A little unbelievable, but fun. This will keep Marsha Qualey company on the shelves. I think this book could have been improved by a lot of editing. (302)

4:36-5:15: Simmons. Alien Feast. I have liked all of Michael Simmons diverse books; Pool Boy, Finding Lubchenko, and Vandal, all of which were intriguing and different, but this one was a bit too young and didn't do it for me. The illustrations did not add anything to this story of a futuristic dystopian where human eating aliens (didn't we just see this in Hungry, to much better effect?) have taken over the earth but now need help from humans because our diseases are devastating their ranks. William has been living with unpleasant step parents, so he doesn't care when they are eaten. He ends up with his friend Sophie, whose doctor parents have been conscripted by the aliens, seeking out his uncle Maynard, who is very quirky. Then they run around a lot, trying to figure out what is going on. Somehow didn't hit the right notes for me. (228)

5:16-6:15: Dee. Solving Zoe. Zoe doesn't fit in in her private school that caters to the ultratalented, but begins to enjoy herself when she gets the attention of a mathematically minded boy who creates puzzles for her to solve. I've had enough of private schools. I didn't like Zoe, her family, or her friends. Started having problems staying awake while reading! (230)

6:15-7:30: Hunter. Great Bear Lake. Saints preserve me. Talking animals. Be it noted that the students LOVE the Warriors series, so that's going to be fun to plow through this summer, but, as with Jacques, these are going to be hard for me to plow through. As far as I could make out, the bears are trying to get to the spirit dancing place, and are traveling across the land, looking for food, occasionally fighting, getting lost, looking for more food, and generally wandering in the wilderness. Found this so mind numbing that I could not extract a plot. (301)

7:31-8:30: Harrison. Dial L for Loser. Okay. These are mean, but they are very readable. There is something breezy and easy about the style, which might explain their appeal. While I didn't really believe that the girls would be allowed to have this much fun while expelled from school, nor did I believe they would end up in Hollywood with one of them in a movie, I was able to stay awake! (437)

And blogging. My intent is to finish off Spellspam and the next Clique book this evening, ending the day with about 23 hours, 22 books, and 5,591 pages. And no, I truthfully have done nothing else but walk the dog while reading my book! The children have been very helpful.


  1. I am completely in awe of how fast you can read. I spend about two minutes per page at peak concentration.

  2. 22 books! I knew I'd feel more inadequate than ever about my reading speed on checking your progress, but that's incredibly impressive! Go team Yingling!

  3. Great job! Keep up the good work!