Series Review: The Immortals, by Alyson Noel


If you are bored at home or just looking for a good book to read, I would got to your nearest bookstore or library and check out these books. When I started reading this series, I literally couldn’t put the book down. It’s sooooooo good. (Although I recommend it more for teenagers. Sorry to those of you who are tweens, one more year till you are an official teenager.)

This is one of those series where you can’t tell what the next book is about or else it totally ruins the book before, so I will try my best not to ruin it for anyone.

Sixteen-year-old Ever Bloom is not exactly what you find as your average teenager. Oh sure, she looks like everyone,  talks like everyone- that is, if she talks at all. Eliminating her drab wardrobe, hood over her head, and earbuds stuffed in her ears all the time, she is as normal as normal can be, except for the fact that she is a psychic. She can hear people’s thoughts and see their auras. Ever since Ever’s family died in a car accident a year ago, her life has been quite different. Ever has experienced nothing but emptiness and pain. With her only friends Haven, a goth girl, and Miles, a gay boy, Ever has been able to mange at her new school. When Damen August, a drop dead gorgeous seventeen-year-old, enrolls at her school, Ever’s world is turned around.

The only thing strange about this super hot new student is that Ever can’t seem to hear his thoughts and he doesn’t seem to have an aura. In the first book, Evermore, Ever tries to figure out Damen’s feelings for her. She discovers his unconditional love for as well as another secret. Damen may be the reason why she is a psychic. Unfortunately, there always has to be a bad guy in the book and that bad guy is Drina. With her gorgeous, fiery red hair and striking green eyes, she poses a threat to Damen and Ever’s love. Ever sees Drina as competition for Damen’s love. To find out more you are just going to have to read the first book, Evermore.

The second book of this series is Bluemoon. When a new student named Roman comes to Ever’s school, things seem to get a little out of hand. People who were thought to be worst enemies are now best of friends and everyone seems act differently, even Damen. Ever must figure out what Roman has done to her group of friends of whom she is worried will never be the same. With Damen growing weaker every day and Roman’s power increasing, Ever is presented with a choice one to reverse time and get her family back while losing Damen in the process or the other to stay with Damen and to try to nurse him back to health. Though, in the end, her choice puts Damen’s life on the line, keeping her and Damen apart.

In the third book, Shadowland, Ever’s choice has brought a curse upon Damen and her that gives them a deadly touch to each other. One single touch could mean the end of Damen’s life. Ever treks into the dark world of magick where she finds an unexpected friend, Jude Knight. Jude works at a psychic shop though he’s not one himself. Ever knows that her love for Damen is eternal and strong, but the tension between her and Jude makes her question herself. Is Jude really the one? Or is Damen her one and only soulmate? Got to read the books to find out. I can’t say anything about the other three books or else that would be spoiling the surprise. Its a good series,  I hope you enjoy it!

-Christina B., 7th grade

Book Review: Robinson Crusoe, by Daniel Defoe

robinson_crusoeThis book is super awesome. I had to read this book for a school assignment so I automatically thought that it would be boring. But I was in for a big surprise! Its a little slow at first but once you get into it, it gets really exciting.

Young Robinson Crusoe doesn’t want to live the life of his father, a church clergy, so he decides to run away. As he embarks on his journey to wherever life takes him, Robinson’s ship gets devastated by a huge storm. He makes out alive along with the others but is stuck on a small harbor for some time.He later receives help from a Portuguese captain who soon becomes one of his greatest friends. Things seem to go well for Robinson until he is caught and enslaved. In his bondage, Robinson devises a plan to escape and free himself from slavery.

We all know what the book Robinson Crusoe is famous for, right? Well, a short while later, Robinson faces his greatest challenge yet. He goes on another ship where he yet encounters another storm, except that this one actually destroys the ship. He is stranded on an island which he barely manages to come to. With no food or provisions, Robinson Crusoe must fight nature and himself. He comes across many “friends” of both animal and human. But also encounters enemies– the cannibals that rule the island.

Will he survive? Will he ever get off this wretched island? To find that out, you are just going to have to read the book. I hope it gives you the same impression that it gave to me. Enjoy!

-Christina B., 7th grade

Book Review: Moonglass, by Jessi Kirby

moonglassMoonglass is a really good book. Even though it looks thin, it is actually a long read.

In this book, Anna Ryan and her dad are moving to the beach where her parents supposedly met. Still faced with the reality of her mother’s death, both she and her father still mourn their loss. Still mad at her dad and herself, Anna finds out that they moved into the house next door to her mother’s old cottage. As Anna meets new friends and becomes acquainted with a very special lifeguard, she unravels the mysteries of her parents’ past.

Finding out secrets about her dad’s past and the reason behind her mother’s suicide, Anna’s life starts to make sense for once in a very long time. She fights to forget memories of her mother’s death but also yearning to be closer to her mother, she finds that balance of tranquility out in the waves. Trips on the beach searching for sea glass allow her the time to think and figure out the things of her parents’ past. But as she finds out more and more about her parents’ past, she finds it harder to cope with the pressure that she is under– except when she is in the water where the tide washes away her emotions leaving her at peace.

To find out the secrets of her parent’s past you are just going to have to read the book. Enjoy everyone!

-Christina B., 7th grade

Editor’s note: This book actually takes place in Crystal Cove, which is very local to us here in Mission Viejo! Visit and you’ll feel like you’ve stepped right into the pages of this novel.


photo by Allison Tran


Book Review: The Christmas Shoes, by Donna VanLierre

christmas_shoesThe book The Christmas Shoes is a wonderful novel. Though there is much to tell about this book there’s only so much that I can say without ruining the story completely. So I will start with this: have you ever had a time in your life where you felt like your was out of control? You just seem to be lost in your thoughts and feel stuck as you slowly, one-by-one, lose all of those you had ever loved. Well, I’m sure that Nathan and Robert can tell you a lot about that.

In a small little town there lives a little boy, and his name is Nathan. Now Nathan is just an average little boy about the age of 8 but always seemed to be quite sad. He had his reasons, and one of them was that his mother is very ill. Now I’ll tell you that his mother, Maggie Andrews, was always very active so it was a huge shock to mostly everyone that she was ill. You see, Maggie just gave birth to Nathan’s little sister, Rachel. Though there was something different about this birth and she knew it. It was a good thing that she got suspicious because she soon finds out that she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.

Robert Layton is a very successful lawyer who is just about rude to everyone. Although, his problem is quite different. He and his family had just moved into town a couple years ago and in that time he was promoted to a very high position. Now his problem is that he spends too much time working. He always breaks his promises and makes the excuse that he is too busy working. He hardly spends any time with his family and blocks off his wife from him. Now he is facing the danger of divorce with his wife Kate.

You will read that the Christmas of 1985 changes both families. Find out how a little boy gives hope to his mother and how a man saves his marriage all from  pair of little silver shoes. It is such a sweet story, though I’m warning you: this is a crying book and, trust me, you will feel the tears welling up. I hope you will enjoy reading The Christmas Shoes!

-Christina B., 7th grade

Book Review: Starling, by Lesley Livingston

starling_coverI’ve never been to New York, but in the novel Starling, author Lesley Livingston made me feel as if I was there during the cold, wet winter of the 2000s. It was at this time and place that an academy was attacked by strange creatures called draugr that two unsuspecting teens meet and are found to be drawn by each other’s embrace. The conflict of man against self is played out in how one young girl battles between her lovers and her fate.

This fantasy is told in the third person by 16 year old fencer Mason Starling, The Fenrys Wolf, a stunningly good looking 19 year old, Mason’s mentor and companion fencer Calum Aristarchos who is also in love with Mason, and Mason’s older brother, Rory Starling, who all go through a maze of love and loyalty. The two main characters Mason Starling and The Fenrys Wolf exemplify the author’s theme of love and loyalty; their actions gave suspense and kept my eyes glued to the pages as I traveled with them through the novel.

Fenrys is one of the reasons I loved this book. Though, he is not just a regular 19 year old and he tells the reader all about it. Fenrys has completely lost his memory, but discovers that he may be the one to determine the beginning of Ragnarok. The perilous adventure of Fenrys and his true love is just one of the reasons I wanted to keep reading the book that kept my eyes fixed upon its pages.

Mason Starling is another character that I appreciate in the novel. Her words are contradictory, self-explanatory, compelling, but at the same time annoying as I tired over this character. Her brave, but egotistic, demeanor and actions demonstrate that she greatly yearns to be the best person she can be as she fights over her feelings and love for Fenrys. Mason made me want to fall down and cry as she rejects the one who had loved her most dearly.

If you want to know how Mason and Fenrys face their fate, love, past, or how Calum Aristarchos copes with his unrequited love in Starling, you’ll just have to read the book!

-Christina B., 7th grade

Book Review: Black City, by Elizabeth Richards

black_city_coverI absolutely love this book! Richards portrays two teens who have hated each other at first sight. Natalie Buchanan is the daughter of the Emissary and a human. Ash Fisher is a half-blood darkling who just about thinks only of himself and is a complete jerk to everyone. In the United States Sentry, huge tension is present between the two races as well as a huge wall that separates the two communities.

All Ash has ever known is the cold stillness of his never-beating heart, when one day his heart starts to boom in his chest. Natalie then finds herself swept off her feet and in love with last person she wanted to be with, and the two find an amazing discovery: they are soul mates and have fallen in love. The struggle to pretend their hate for each other becomes difficult each day because all they want to do is be together.

War soon starts to break out among the two races as they struggle to survive. A disease called the Wrath has fallen upon the darklings who are spreading it to the humans through haze dealing. As the two put aside their differences and fight to unite the races Ash and Natalie soon realize that they have just put their lives on the line. Will they be able to save their people or not?

You are just going to have to read it to find out. When I started reading, it was as if my eyes were glued to the pages. I just couldn’t put the book down and I hope it does the same for you. Enjoy reading Black City everyone!

-Christina B., 7th grade