Friday, June 21, 2013


Title: Starglass

Author: Phoebe North

Rating: 3  3/4 stars

Summary: Terra has never known anything but life aboard the Asherah, a city-within-a-spaceship that left Earth five hundred years ago in search of refuge. At sixteen, working a job that doesn't interest her, and living with a grieving father who only notices her when he's yelling, Terra is sure that there has to be more to life than what she's got.

But when she inadvertently witnesses the captain's guard murdering an innocent man, Terra is suddenly thrust into the dark world beneath her ship's idyllic surface. As she's drawn into a secret rebellion determined to restore power to the people, Terra discovers that her choices may determine life or death for the people she cares most about. With mere months to go before landing on the long-promised planet, Terra has to make the decision of a lifetime--one that will determine the fate of her people.
Review: Did I hear someone say spaceships and secret rebellions? *pulls up chair* Let us discuss.
I loved the world-building in Starglass; society would be much different from not only now but also from on Earth in the future and the author explored that very well. She took time to establish the intricate details of life on Asherah. We as humans often look to the future as much better than how it is now, but dystopian futuristic books revel in showing us that that's not always the case. Many YA protagonists have lost one or both parents, and Terra Fineberg is no exception. The death of a parent and how it can affect a person is handled seriously and with purpose.  Despite the blurb, it was more of a coming of age story than a thriller, but enjoyable none the less.  Also, I was really hoping for a romance-free experience because nothing romantic was mentioned in the summary, but romantic love plays a huge role in the story.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013


Title: Poison

Author: Bridget Zinn

Rating: 4 stars

Summary: Sixteen-year-old Kyra, a highly-skilled potions master, is the only one who knows her kingdom is on the verge of destruction—which means she’s the only one who can save it. Faced with no other choice, Kyra decides to do what she does best: poison the kingdom’s future ruler, who also happens to be her former best friend.

But, for the first time ever, her poisoned dart . . . misses.

Now a fugitive instead of a hero, Kyra is caught in a game of hide-and-seek with the king’s army and her potioner ex-boyfriend, Hal. At least she’s not alone. She’s armed with her vital potions, a too-cute pig, and Fred, the charming adventurer she can’t stop thinking about. Kyra is determined to get herself a second chance (at murder), but will she be able to find and defeat the princess before Hal and the army find her?

Review: Poison was a fun, fantasy-adventure book. Kyra was a strong and capable heroine, not only physically but mentally as well. She could throw a poison dart with ease, the same way she knew how to mix up the perfect poison. Fred was neither Prince Charming nor a bad boy; just a cool guy who was nice and had a good sense of humor. I enjoyed the banter between him and Kyra. In the case of Rosie the magical pig, well, I happen to have a soft spot for animal sidekicks. Rosie was adorable and while Kyra was harsh to her at first, they bonded over the course of the story. I really liked the world-building, especially all of the magical monsters. The book was well-paced and had a several surprising twists. It's a stand-alone, and the ending wraps up quite nicely. I would definitely recommend this book to middle-grade fantasy fans.