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Reviews by Category: Science Fiction

Teen Review
Aurora Rising Cover
Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Reviewer's Rating: 
4
Monday, Jul 29, 2019

The action is intense and the storyline is fast-paced; there is always something going on. The setting in intergalactic space and the unforgettable characters make for a perfect storm of events that draws you in deeper the more you read. The writing style is beautiful and the slang feels so natural it's like the culmination of 7 people's autobiographies thrown backward in time.

The most compelling aspect of the book is the mystery behind Aurora's newfound powers, and the fact that even she doesn't know what is going on. I really fell in deep after they started planning to break into...

Staff Review
Book Cover
Jesse Andrews
Reviewer's Rating: 
4
Tuesday, Jul 23, 2019

Whoa! Now here's an exercise in extended metaphor. Andrews has taken an idea that could have been a simple allegory and turned it into a fully developed novel. Imagine, if you will, an alternate reality in which physical size is literally determined by wealth. A standard person is middlescale. The middlerich are those larger than that up two doublescale and the middlepoor extend to halfscale. Smaller than that are the littlepoors: quarterscale, eighthscale, and tenthscale--about the size of a rat. The bigrich just get bigger and bigger to hundreds of feet tall.

Teen Review
Queen's Shadow Cover
E.K. Johnston
Reviewer's Rating: 
5
Monday, Jun 3, 2019

This book is a lovely, in depth look at Padmé's transition between Queen and Senator. It delves into the the inner workings of the galactic Senate and how Padmé finds her place there. I loved the cover! The art was gorgeous and it did a good job of conveying the theme of the book. I also loved how Padmé's handmaidens were their own characters, and how the author fleshes out characters that were only present for seconds in the movies. It's as compelling as some of the best fics I've read, which is truly the highest compliment I can give a novel.

Teen Review
Girl with Sharp Sticks Cover
Suzanne Young
Reviewer's Rating: 
5
Monday, Apr 15, 2019

Mena, a girl at the Innovations Academy, has her eyes opened and wants more out of life than to be stuck being a possession. She and her friends meet a boy named Jackson while out, and come up with a plan to escape from the perfection and obedience of the Academy. I love the cover because it goes to show that under a mask of perfection there is always another side hidden underneath.

The idea of having to be perfect all the time and emotionless was a strong point in this book. I feel that girls today feel that obedience and perfection is the key to being wanted in society as this...

Teen Review
Similars cover
Rebecca Hanover
Reviewer's Rating: 
4
Friday, Feb 1, 2019

The Similars is a fantastic literary tale of understanding actions and feelings of others while simultaneously exploring the concept of clones that may be a future reality. Emma is dealing with the aftermath of a friend's suicide when six clones, dubbed 'The Similars', begin attending her high school. One of them wears the face of her recently deceased friend, but she is quick to understand that he is not Oliver and will never be Oliver. 

I really like the idea of clones and how society would interpret the...

Teen Review
Lois Lowery
Reviewer's Rating: 
5
Wednesday, Jun 13, 2018

Twelve year old Jonas lives in what seems like an ideal world. Everything is chosen for you, where you live, who your spouse is, what your job is, because, according to the community leader, when people have the opportunity to choose, they choose wrong. But Jonas never expected his life assignment to be the Receiver. He is assigned to learn from the Giver, but not what he thinks he is going to learn. With the help of the Giver, he begins to understand the dark secrets behind his fragile community.

I don't remember reading a book as fast as I read this one. It was a great read. I...

Teen Review
https://jocolibrary.bibliocommons.com/item/show/1413631036_the_beast_of_cretacea
Todd Strasser
Reviewer's Rating: 
4
Tuesday, Apr 10, 2018

When Ishmael wakes up from stasis aboard the Pequod, he is amazed at how different this faraway planet is from the dying Earth he left behind. He is here to work, risking his life to hunt down enormous ocean-dwelling creatures to harvest and send back to the resource depleted Earth so he can save enough money to get his foster parents off Earth before it is too late. But time and again the chase boats are ordered to leave easy prey behind so they can pursue a dangerous and elusive monster, few people who have seen it have lived to tell the tale. One who has is Captain Ahab, who lost his...

Teen Review
https://jocolibrary.bibliocommons.com/item/show/1124639036
Richard Paul Evans
Reviewer's Rating: 
5
Wednesday, Apr 4, 2018

So .. it's about this 15 year old boy named Michael Vey and he has electric powers,he has had it his whole life. his mom knows it too so they try to keep it hidden and that is a bit hard for him since he was born with Tourette's Syndrome, and is always picked on. one day a bunch of bullies were hitting him and he got so mad he "pulsed' them and they were terrified of him after that day, the bad thing was someone saw electricity come out of his hands when he did it. it was his crush Taylor the head cheerleader and the prettiest girl in the high school, she saw what had happened. you late...

Staff Review
Book cover
Philip Reeve
Reviewer's Rating: 
4
Friday, Mar 2, 2018

Wonderfully exciting action that maintains just the right amount of suspense and energy from start to finish. At heart, this is a heist story; it just happens to be set in a universe of wonder: under the adrenaline are fascinating world-building and intriguing characters--of all shapes and sizes, far beyond human. And lurking somewhere in the background are enthralling science fiction considerations that keep simmering into awareness. It's not just action, but intelligent action. With excellently adept, unobtrusive writing. This is a universe I hope to visit again soon.

Staff Review
Book cover
M. T. Anderson
Reviewer's Rating: 
5
Wednesday, Oct 18, 2017

Well, that was cheerful and uplifting.

Er, no, that's not quite right. More like bleak, biting, and darkly satirical.

And far too real.

Though science fiction set in a near future, this is all about living at the lowest levels of the global economy, subject to extremes of imperialism, inequality, ethnocentrism, co-option, and poverty. It's an exploration of the dark sides of economic and cultural power. It's just that in this case it's the humans of Earth who have been colonized.

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