Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson

mistborn_brandonsandersonImagine a world without a sun. Where mysterious wraiths roam around in the constant mists. Where most of the population is controlled by a group of uptight nobles and a dark ruler. This is just part of everyday life for Vin, a girl abandoned to a thieving crew by her older brother at a young age. In this life, she must struggle to survive, occasionally calling on her strange, mythical Luck, an ability that allows her to soften the emotions of others. However, this all changes when a strange man wielding similar powers named Kelsier finds her with an insane plan to overthrow the oppressive Final Empire.

This is one of the best books I have ever had the pleasure of reading. It takes you on a wondrous adventure through the possibilities of a dark future, and the constant presence of the true strength that all humans wield. More than anything else, though, Mistborn really goes into detail about the different aspects of the human personality, including who you can trust and whether or not it’s a good thing. In fact, the author, Brandon Sanderson, also wrote The Reckoners series, which goes just as deeply into the human psyche. Mistborn was given to me by a good friend and actually helped me get through some hard stuff going on in my life because it truly illustrates the point: there’s always something you can do.

This book should mostly appeal to teens (high school or middle)  who need a little motivation in their lives. I would not, however, recommend this story for younger audiences as it is not appropriate and mentions some “iffy” topics not suited for children under 12-13. This is not a quick read but it is worth 33 AR points! A very worthwhile read, however.

-Evan G., 7th grade

Mistborn is available for checkout from the Mission Viejo Library

 

Movie Review: August Rush

augustrushI was very surprised to discover that not many people have heard of or seen the movie August Rush. It is my all time favorite movie and, in my opinion, deserves a lot more recognition than it has been given. Though the movie came out in 2007, August Rush is one of those movies that stays with me forever; like some would say about Star Wars or Harry Potter. 

August Rush is a movie that effectively expresses the talents of Robin Williams and Freddie Highmore. Highmore’s character, Evan, grows up in an orphanage and is bullied by the older kids. Evan has a special connection to music and hears it everywhere he goes, and he hopes that it will reconnect him with his parents. Evan’s mother, Lyla, never wanted to give him up, however her disapproving dad told Lyla that she lost the baby, when really Evan was sent to an orphanage. Evan’s father, Lewis, is a businessman who used to be the lead singer in his band until he quit. The movie follows Evan on his journey to find his parents.

Along the way, Evan meets The Wizard, played by Robin Williams, and finds that he is a musical prodigy. He picks up guitar in minutes, and starts playing for Wizard on park benches to get money. Wizard gives Evan a new stage name: August Rush. Evan later realizes that Wizard just wants Evan, now August, for his talent in which to make money. He escapes and comes to a church where he again displays a knack for music when he starts playing piano and reading music for the first time. The reverend gets August in school at Juilliard, and he composes an original piece called August’s Rhapsody. While in school, Wizard tracked him down and tries to take him back by pretending to be his father. Meanwhile, Lewis (August’s dad) gets back into music and starts playing guitar again.

While August is playing in the park waiting for Wizard to arrive, he is approached by Lewis and the two play together, not knowing they are related in any way. Later in the movie, August escapes Wizard yet again to perform his rhapsody in the park for thousands of people. His mom performing before, and his dad being nearby, August’s music reunites his parents with each other, and later, himself. August Rush has given me a new perspective to music and is a great film for all ages.

-Kyle H.

August Rush is available for check out from the Mission Viejo Library.