Sunday, February 27, 2011

February Reads: The Centurions of 2011

I surprised myself with 14 titles this month, most of which were read at the beginning of the month when I was out of school due to weather. I'd like to get back to the place where I'm reading a book a week, but it seems like the readings for graduate school are becoming more and more demanding.

Here's my list:

Identical by Ellen Hopkins
Leven Thumps and the Gateway to Foo (Leven Thumps #1) by Obert Skye
Going Bovine by Libba Bray
Into the Gauntlet (39 Clues #10) by Margaret Peterson Haddix
Matilda by Roald Dahl
Storm Warning (39 Clues #9) by Linda Sue Park 
The Emperor's Code (39 Clues #8) by Gordon Korman
The Viper's Nest (39 Clues #7) by Peter Lerangis
In too Deep (39 Clues #6) by Jude Watson
The Black Circle (39 Clues #5) by Patrick Carman
Beyond the Grave( 39 Clues #4) by Jude Watson
Hot Hand! by Mike Lupica
The Sword Thief (39 Clues #3) by Peter Lerangis
The Time Paradox (Artemis Fowl #6)

Matilda by Roald Dahl is one of my all-time favorites. I still have my original copy of the book from when I was a child, and it currently looks like this:


I do have another copy, one with a modern cover. The original cover of this version was yellow. I only took a picture of the front; there's no cover on the back of this edition either. It was very much loved.

I read the majority of the 39 Clues series, partly because I got them from the library, and partly because I wanted to know what happened in the end. It wasn't a bad read and I recommended them to my brother, who likes mysteries.

Going Bovine won the Printz Award, and I like to read award winners. We happened to have it in the library at my school, so I picked it up as well. This is one I've decided needs to be in my classroom library. I'll admit that it was a little trippy. The main character has Mad Cow disease (and now I know what they're asking me when I go to donate blood). As his mind is degenerating from this disease, he sets off on a cross-country trip in order to save the world. It's a story about living life rather than just getting through it, with a main character who has been compared to Holden Caufield (which pushed reading Catcher in the Rye up on my list--probably spring break time ). This novel was probably my favorite this month.

I know I didn't talk about all of the novels, but before I wander away for this month, I do want to mention Identical by Ellen Hopkins (@ellenhopkinsya on Twitter). I've read a few novels in verse before--All the Broken Pieces and Home of the Brave--but I was skeptical going into this one, though I'm not sure why. I tore through the book during a cheerleading competition last weekend. I had to think about it, but decided that Identical is appallingly beautiful. I love how Hopkins uses poem layout to aid in the storytelling.

I was talking about Identical on Twitter last week and compared it to Palahniuk's novel Fight Club.  @yaloveblog chimed in and agreed with my comparison. The subject matter is difficult, but I think it's would be a great read for high schoolers.

Book fair starts on March 4th, so I'm hoping that I'll have some great new titles to read next month (btw, yes, I do realize that I'm one of those people who buys more books than can feasibly be read before buying more books. Don't judge.)

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