Posts Tagged 'kidnap'

Wish You Were Dead by Todd Strasser

Genre:  Realistic Fiction/Suspense

# of Pages:  236 p.

RAC Book: Yes

Madison lives in a wealthy, safe neighborhood where no one ever thinks anything bad could possibly happen.  When an anonymous blogger writes that she wishes one of the popular girls, Lucy, would die she disappears.  As the community frantically tries to find out what happened to Lucy, Madison must deal with her guilt over being the last one to see her.  When the blogger then starts singling out others and more disappear, the entire community begins to panic instilling curfews and chaperones on all the teenagers.  Meanwhile, Madison is receiving mysterious notes and she often feels like she is being followed.  Could she be the next victim?  Will she be able to figure this out before it is too late?

This story touches on the issue of bullying and how even minor comments and actions can have lingering effects.  The suspense and mystery will keep even reluctant readers interested, while at the same time providing several good topics for discussion in small groups.  How involved should parents and teachers be with bullying?  How should bullies be punished?  Should the victims take any responsibility?  What could you do if you see a student getting bullied?

Maximum Ride: The Angel Experiment by James Patterson

Genre: Fantasy

Age Level: 12 and up

# of Pages: 422 p.

RAC Book: Yes

Iowa High School Award Winner 2008

Max is one of many human experiments from a place called the School. Her and five others escaped four years ago and have been living alone ever since. There was a “white coat” named Jeb who helped them to escape, but has been missing for two years and they all think he is dead. The six kids are 98% human and 2% bird. In other words, they can fly which makes it difficult to blend into regular society. At the beginning of this story, the youngest, Angel, is kidnapped by men who have been genetically altered to be part-wolf. The remaining five kids must decide how to go back to the place that abused them and still gives them nightmares in order to save one of their own.

James Patterson is a very good storyteller. Although, this book is not what his fans usually expect it is well-written with a lot of action and exciting twists in the story. The journey Max has to take to protect the other five kids is difficult and exciting at the same time. They all have a chance to see things they could never have imagined in the past, but at the same time they are chased everywhere they go. Young fantasy readers will love the unique characteristics of the mutant characters as well as trying to figure out why the School suddenly wants them back after four years. A good fantasy read.