Posts Tagged ‘young adult’

  • Rites of Passage by Joy N. Hensley

    Date: 2014.05.17 | Category: Uncategorized | Response: 1

    An ARC!! Can you believe it? Me with an ARC!Where I Got the Book: From the book group I have recently joined: Not So YA Book Club at Little Shop of Stories

    In Short: Pioneering girl attends a previously all male military school trying to survive against those who want her out.

    Sam McKenna is from a military family. Her father is a distinguished lieutenant colonel, one brother was a ranger, and the other has a very promising military career ahead of him. Growing up as an army brat she spends most of her time competing with her brothers seeing who can accomplish the dares that the others challenge them to do. Sam never backs down from a dare.

    Last year Sam’s oldest brother killed himself. Before he did, however, he dared her to become part of the first group of girls to ever be admitted to a traditionally all male military high school. As sophomore joining this school Sam will be lumped in with the rest of the freshman recruits and have to go through basic training with them. It means no cell phone, no TV, no free time, and no walking anywhere other than the gutter as long as she’s a recruit. As a female it means everything is going to be twice as hard. Most of the school is in an uproar over females being allowed to attend and several are more than willing to make sure the girls don’t last the year.

    While proving herself worthy of admittance to the military school Sam (known as McKenna or Mac by those at the academy) discovers a secret organization known as the “Society” who want her as well as the other female recruits gone and they will stop at nothing to force them out of the school.

    This book was amazing! I had to force myself to stop reading at several points because of life needing attention instead of letting me read. Hensley wrote very diverse characters and more than believable scenes. At one point I realized I was unconsciously holding my upper arm forward waiting for another character to see the bruises that Sam/Mac had on her arm. I kept wanting to jump in the book and help her out–or figure out away to get President Obama involved! Some parts genuinely had me holding my breath or had my stomach tied in knots worrying over what would happen to the characters.

    I don’t know if there will be a sequel to this book, but I know I will definitely keep an eye out for more by this author. I also absolutely intend on buying this book when it is released.

    Red Flags: There is teenage drinking and smoking. Because of the situation I would find it out of the ordinary if there weren’t any cursing and there is, but I don’t think it is excessive. There are some “intimate” moments (some good, some bad), but nothing graphic. Also, we learn more about her brother’s death, but it too is not graphic.


    Plot: 10/10

    Characters: 10/10

    Writing: 10/10

    Originality: 10/10

    Enjoyment: 10/10

    Overall: 50/50


    Genre: Young Adult Fiction, Military, Underdog

    Original Release Date: Not yet released! Projected release date to be 09-09-14

    Author’s website:

    Twitter: @joynhensley

  • Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

    Date: 2012.04.24 | Category: Uncategorized | Response: 2

    Where I Got the Book: Christmas present from my sister who purchased it from Amazon

    In Short: dual point of view, character delving, chilling

    I was really excited to begin this book. I had read all of Stiefvater’s Shiver trilogy and had enjoyed the romance and the myth woven together. What can I say? I’m a fantasy girl. Also, shortly after its release the book was optioned to become a movie (IMDb shows it in development with a release date of 2015). The Scorpio Races, however, was nothing like that trilogy, however, still really enjoyable.

    Kate “Puck” Conolly is an orphan with two brothers (one older, one younger) with a careful watch on the ever thinning contents of the pantry and the jar that holds all the money they have. Sean Kendrick who was abandoned by his mother and watched his father die is the hired “horse whisperer”/trophy racer at the Malvern stables. The Scorpio Races are what drive the two together and the haunting, terrifying, hungry, and beautiful water horses that come asore at the end of October may be the death of them.

    On the small island of Thisby the Scorpio Races run on the first of November hold the island’s heritage and the greatest source of income for the merchants there. They also, however, are the cause of many deaths. The year Puck decides to join is the first year a woman has ever dared to race. She races to save her family. Sean races for freedom.

    My Thoughts: This book started out slow for me, but you get to know a great deal about the characters, the island, and you feel the importance of an event because of this. Once the characters started taking shape in my mind, however, I found the book to be an absolute riveting read. For someone looking for a book as filled with action as one of the Percy Jackson books, I would say borrow first, then buy. Like in Shiver there is romance in the book, but–a little to my disappointment–Stiefvater doesn’t dwell on it for extremely long. In all honesty though, the brief moments of romance fit the characters that she had created, so I believe she did them justice.

    Red Flags: Little bit of language. There isn’t profanity throughout the book, but there are a few instances of curse words as well as a few innuendos and uncooth words. I think the reason Stiefvater chose this diction though is to emphasize and bring a ring of authenticy to the island and fact that a young woman was throwing herself into what had been historically a man’s sport. Also, the book–about blood thirsty horses–is a bit violent. You are a witness to death, brutality, and practices that seem barbaric.


    Plot: 10/10

    Characters: 10/10

    Writing: 10/10

    Originality: 10/10

    Enjoyment: 9/10

    Overall: 49/50


    Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult Fiction

    Original Release Date: October 18, 2011

    Recipe for November Cakes:

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