Reviews written by Beth Rodgers, Staff Reviewer

182 results - showing 1 - 15
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January 07, 2021
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Plot/Story 
 
4.0
Illustrations (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Characters (if applicable) 
 
4.0
Editing/Design Quality 
 
4.0
Young Adult Indie
Perception vs. Reality

'My High School Royal Boyfriend' by Kylie Key follows new River Valley High students Blaire and Alex, as they try to escape the troubles that plague them by starting anew. While Blaire comes from an extremely wealthy family who owns the town's well-to-do ice cream shops, she has been accused...

November 12, 2020
Overall rating 
 
4.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Generous and Engaging Compilation

'Foreshadow: Stories to Celebrate the Magic of Reading and Writing YA,' edited by Emily X.R. Pan and Nova Ren Suma, includes a generous compilation of stories and essays, alongside writing advice and story prompts that any young adult reader or writer will appreciate. There are thirteen options to choose from...

November 12, 2020
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
Fun with Travel

'Amazing Islands' by Sabrina Weiss and Kerry Hyndman is a beautifully illustrated book, chock full of valuable information about islands around the world. From discussion of what an island is to how islands are made, on to people who live on islands, and a world map that shows a smattering...

November 12, 2020
Overall rating 
 
4.5
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
A Tale of Creation

'The Walrus and the Caribou' by Maika Harper, illustrated by Marcus Cutler, is an endearing tale of creation, based on a traditional Inuit story passed along through the generations through oral retellings in communities across the Arctic. Both the walrus and the caribou are shown how they were “originally” created,...

November 12, 2020
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable)  
 
5.0
Learning Value 
 
5.0
Nature and Birds

'About Seabirds: A Guide for Children' by Cathryn Sill, illustrated by John Sill, lends credibility to the power of nature and how it can be an appealing topic for kids. The writing is simple and clear, focusing on the main ideas of what seabirds are, including what they do, what...

November 11, 2020
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Plot/Story 
 
4.0
Illustrations (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Characters (if applicable) 
 
4.0
Editing/Design Quality 
 
4.0
Young Adult Indie
Finding Strength

'My High School Rebel Boyfriend' by Kylie Key follows main characters Harper and Mitchell as they have to find a way to work together. While Harper is on the volleyball team, Mitchell is a basketball player. Besides sports, they don't seem to have much in common, and Mitchell doesn't try...

September 22, 2020
Overall rating 
 
3.7
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Young Adult Fiction
Interactive and Unique

'Meanwhile' by Jason Shiga is a graphic novel adventure that will remind readers of the types of books in which you can choose your own adventure. The book has 3,856 story possibilities. The way it is laid out is quite unique, in that you have to follow a thin tube...

August 14, 2020
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Plot/Story 
 
5.0
Illustrations (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Characters (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Editing/Design Quality 
 
5.0
Young Adult Indie
Chasing Love, Chasing Truth

'Chasing the Sun' by Melanie Hooyenga captures the raw emotions felt after a breakup, as well as the ones that can throw anyone for a loop as they enter into something new. When Sage and Pax break up, she doesn't know if her heart and her mind will ever be...

July 27, 2020
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot 
 
4.0
Characters 
 
4.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Young Adult Fiction
Happiest Place on Earth

'BRB: I'm Going to Disneyland' by Courtney Carbone is a cute, quick read. As a novel written in texts, emails, and posts on social media, it does a nice job capturing the essence of teenage life nowadays. The six friends who make up the chain of texts are all on...

July 26, 2020 (Updated: July 26, 2020)
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
4.0
Kids Fiction
Nice Moral

'Feast of Peas' by Kashmira Sheth, illustrated by Jeffrey Ebbeler, is a cute story that captures how something might be just under your nose, yet you don't realize it. At the same time, when you find out, there are always work-arounds to be able to get through the situation without...

July 26, 2020
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot 
 
5.0
Characters 
 
5.0
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Young Adult Fiction
Provocative

'He Must Like You' by Danielle Younge-Ullman is an intensely provocative look at the various ways in which consent, upset, lack of choice, and the fallout of decisions can affect one's life. Libby's interactions with everyone from her parents to her friends to her boss and even her boss' boss...

July 24, 2020
Overall rating 
 
5.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
5.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
5.0
Kids Fiction
Dinosaur Puns and Adorable Illustrations

'Thesaurus Has a Secret' by Anya Glazer is a cute story about a dinosaur named Thesaurus. He loves words, but he feels he has to hide this secret because he believes that none of the other dinosaurs would understand. He finds spots where he will not be noticed and where...

July 24, 2020
Overall rating 
 
3.3
Plot 
 
3.0
Characters 
 
3.0
Writing Style 
 
4.0
Young Adult Fiction
Room for Discussion

'What Goes Up' by Christine Heppermann is a quick read, as it is a novel-in-verse, a format that can be very enticing not only because of the fast pace it takes, but due to its more intense nature as there are fewer words to convey all of the emotions and...

July 24, 2020
Overall rating 
 
4.0
Plot/Characters/Writing Style 
 
4.0
Illustrations/Photos (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Drama vs. Compassion

'TBH: Too Much Drama' by Lisa Greenwald is another one of her creative stories told in text messages, emails, and diary entries. Main characters Cece, Gabby, and Prianka are excited for Spirit Week, for which there is a week-long calendar presented at the beginning of the book. It is a...

July 09, 2020
Overall rating 
 
4.8
Writing Style 
 
5.0
Plot/Story 
 
5.0
Illustrations (if applicable) 
 
N/A
Characters (if applicable) 
 
4.0
Editing/Design Quality 
 
5.0
Young Adult Indie
Meant to Be?

'Neon Nights' by Katey Taylor is an addictive sequel to 'Inebriated'. Cait has moved to San Diego to live with her mom after her parents' divorce, and she is doing her best to move on from the harrowing events that closed out her junior year. Haunted by the memory of...

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