Posts Tagged 'friends'

The Eye of Minds by James Dashner

eye of minds

Genre:  Science Fiction/Mystery/Adventure

# of Pages:  310

RAC:  Yes

Michael enjoys playing video games, but he lives in a world where the best games are part of the VirtNet.  In the VirtNet you can actually immerse yourself completely into the game and leave your body behind in your house.  There are many types of games you can play, adventures you can try, and friends to meet in the virtual world.  People like it because they can do things they wouldn’t normally do in real life and if they “die” they simply wake up  safely in their own home.  Recently, there have been reports about a gamer who has managed to hurt people both in the game AND in real life.  Michael and his friends are enlisted to track this gamer down because they are very successful hackers and can see stuff others can’t.  Michael and his friends learn quickly that this is no ordinary gamer and if they are not careful they will not come out of this alive.  If they do not help the Virtual Authorities to catch this guy they will have all of their privileges revoked and can never game again.  Can they face a life without gaming?  Are they willing to risk their lives to keep gaming?

Fans of The Maze Runner series will enjoy this title as well.  Like that series, this one has a fair amount of excitement and violence.  The book is also set up as a series of tasks the characters must accomplish in order to be free.  The tasks are very challenging and often scary, but the characters feel they have no choice but to press on and follow through.  The ending is a bit of a surprise, but fans of  Dashner would be surprised if there wasn’t a twist at the end.  Video gamers, boys, and reluctant readers will enjoy this title.

Advertisements

Defying the Diva by D. Anne Love

Genre:  Realistic Fiction

Age Level:  14 and up

# of Pages:  257

RAC:  Yes

Haley Patterson was a perfectly happy freshman with two best friends and a place writing for the school newspaper.  After she writes something for the paper that the most popular girl in school, Camilla Quinn, takes offense to Haley’s life changes dramatically for the worse.  Camilla spreads vicious rumors about Haley and forbids anyone to talk to her.  Everyone is terrified of Camilla turning on them and suddenly Haley finds herself alone and tortured by everyone all day long.  This bullying takes its toll and by summer vacation she wants to hide out.  When her parents send her to stay with her aunt for the summer, her aunt insists she get a job at a nearby county club.  Haley is unsure of how to make friends anymore and how to trust people in general, but she begins to realize that some of the people she has met over the summer are truly good people who want to get to know her.  Can she let her guard down and become friends with them?  Can she tell her parents or aunt why she had such a difficult spring?  Can she ever return in the fall to face Camilla?

This story discusses bullying from a girl’s perspective.  Nothing physical is ever done to harm Haley, but the mental abuse is just as bad as anything else she could imagine.  The power of peer pressure and the need to fit in and feel accepted is very real and present in every high school.  Haley’s story of despair to hope and eventually revenge is a good story to give those suffering from this type of bullying hope.  However, in many instances students do not have the support system Haley finds.  It’s important for all students to be aware of this type of bullying and to be willing to stand up for those around them that are the victims of it.

The Fake Boyfriend by Kate Brian

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Age Level: 12 and up

# of pages: 262 p.

RAC book: Yes

Lane and Vivi feel that their other best friend, Isabelle, allows her loser boyfriend to walk all over her. When he cheats on her in a very public place they decide to act before she decides to take him back again. They start chatting with her online as a fake boyfriend. They set up the profile online and encourage Lane’s brother to chat with her so that it sounds like a boy. As you can imagine, craziness breaks out when Isabelle decides she wants to ask her mystery man to prom. Lane and Vivi have to scramble to find someone who can play their made up man.  Who they end up finding only causes more problems.

While this story has many predictable factors, there is also something sweet about the lengths these two girls will go to in order to protect their friend from someone they think intentionally hurts and uses her. The ending is a bit more complicated than expected based on the simplicity of the story thus far and packs a few unexpected twists. Girls who enjoy reading Meg Cabot books will be a fan of this one as well. The characters are well-developed and the ending is impossibly happy. Readers who like a little edge in their stories should avoid this one.

The V Club by Kate Brian

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Age Level: 14 and up

# of Pages: 280 p.

Eva, Debbie, Kai, and Mandy are all really good friends who in their own way need a way to help pay for college. When a new scholarship comes up offering enough for any of them to go wherever they want to go for four years, they all jump at the chance to apply. The only catch is that a stipulation of the scholarship is for the recipient to be “pure.”

Eva considers herself a perfect candidate since she has only even daydreamed about kissing a boy.  Mandy and long time boyfriend Eric have discussed taking the relationship further, but haven’t yet.  Debbie is shocked to learn that everyone assumes she has shared many sexual partners when in fact she hasn’t.  Kai, the new girl, seems mysterious about the entire discussion of purity.  As each girl struggles with her own personal battles they start to drift apart and get overly competitive for this scholarship money.  The question  is not whether or not their virginity is in tact, but whether their friendship will be after all of the drama that ensues.

The idea of purity to a high school student can vary depending on the student.  This open, honest book about four realistic high school students and their many struggles with relationships, parents, and even college planning will resonate with many high school girls.  It is not preachy in the direction of abstinence or sexual activity, but just tries to show the variety of reasons why high school students do or do not choose to stay virgins.  An interesting, realistic read about a very important but often ignored topic.


Archives

Advertisements