Animal Farm by George Orwell


What a powerful fable of how a manifesto written by the animals for the animals goes awry.  Just under 100 pages, Orwell blasts us with a vision of how egalitarian values can slowly slip away, if there is no ability to read, write, or remember on the part of the collective.  Slowly, the pigs take over and rule. Then one pig, aptly named Napolean, performs a coup d’etat, ousting the other pig, Snowball, turning him into the arch enemy of the farm. Napolean leads autocratically, fueled by greed. And slowly, the animals who had built their own government collectively begin to be dominated by Naploean, who little by little alters their manifesto, with very little notice or resistance.  A classic and a must-read for everyone who cares about equality and democracy and free thinking.

book_reviews, YA lit

City of Darkness by Ben Bova

Manhattan is under a dome. Ron is under the pressure of a controlling Dad. He is forcing Ron into a career he abhores. he decides to run, to have one last adventure in New york City. It is forbidden. It contains all the contamination. No one is let in, and no one there is allowed to leave. Ultimate act of redlining here because the only people remaining are poor, starving, fighting. Once there, his ID is stolen and he can’t get out. He gets robbed, trapped, and falls in love, all in a day, in a dark world full of gangs and misery and scarcity. #dystopia #futureisbleak #NYCteenlit

Student book reviews

Specials by Scott Westerfield

by Naomi

Jumped off high buildings, taking extreme risks. Even jumped off a floating ice skating rink! Tally survived all of these things as a “pretty” and more. Now she’s a special. She has excellent vision, sharp sense and very strong.

Shay and Tally go on a whole new adventure trying to look the New Smoke, the hideout for “uglies” who refuse to turn into “pretties”.

Will they make it? Will they get caught? Read it!

(Simon & Schuster, Inc., 2007)

Student book reviews

Uglies by Scott Westerfield

By Lisa

Tally would risk anyone’s life to be a pretty. Everything she’s ever wanted could crumble. The question tally faces is what’s in it for the others.

Tally Youngblood is a fifteen year old girl who’s turning sixteen years old. Tally lives in a society where everyone has to be a pretty. Her dream may crumble if she doesn’t do what certain people want her to do. Tally is on a mission which includes betrayal and finding her true self.

Uglies is a page turner, fast paced, and mind blowing. Uglies is out of this world. It’s futuristic and unique.

Don’t get your hopes up Tally.

by Naomi

Tally and Shay are best friends who really want to become pretty. Becoming pretty
is a month away for both of them, on their birthday. But as time passes by, Shay starts
to see the good side of being ugly. The way Shay sees it, being ugly is heaven, and
being pretty just makes people dumb. But for Tally, becoming pretty is the goal.
When Shay goes away to the smoke, a hidden place where some of the Uglies
go, Tally is left to make a decision. Will she stay ugly. Or become pretty? What would you do?
Read it and find out!
(Simon & Schuster, 2005)

(Simon & Schuster, 2007)

Student book reviews, Uncategorized

Pretties by Scott Westerfield

by Naomi

Tally was an ugly, and as an ugly she has gone through so many things, boyfriend trouble, love, hate. But there’s so much more in store for her. When an ugly becomes pretty, they get a disease that no one really knows about called “lesions.” Tally has to find a way to try to stop people fromsuffering and cure them with special pills. How will she do it? Will she betray her best friend again Shay once again? Is there a new boy for Tally?

(Simon & Schuster, Inc,, 2005)