Hey, look what we read!

During the Summer of 2012, 143 teens in grades 6 through 12 participated in the Kinnelon Public Library Summer Reading Program. Many of these teens submitted book reviews on the novels they loved, hated, or found completely, terribly boring. We’re sharing the reviews here to showcase our great critical readers AND to give all you good folks out there ideas about what to read, what not to read, and what to avoid at all costs. Read on to see what real teens think about teen books!

And for LOTS of great reviews of middle and high school books, check out the Kinnelon Library Teen Blog. Happy reading!

“Planet of the Apes” by Pierre Boulle

“Planet of the Apes” was somewhat of a fast read, while still maintaining a deep and impactful message. I thought that among the books that I had to read for school, it was one of the better ones.

(PS ~ Y’all, the original “Planet of the Apes” movie, released in 1968, is pretty awesome, in my very humble opinion. Check out the wikipedia entry here and see below for a YouTube trailer!)

“The Mermaid’s Mirror” by L.K. Madigan

Sixteen-year-old Lena wishes nothing more than to surf, but her father refuses because of his own near-death experience in the waves. When Lena spots a mermaid in the ocean, though, her passion for surfing grows even more. With a little luck and a lot of lying, Lena just might be able to fulfill both her wishes: find the mermaid AND finally ride the California waves. A five-star rating for “The Mermaid’s Mirror”!

“Ship Breaker” by Paolo Bacigalupi

“Ship Breaker” is a great novel about a boy named Nailer living in a futuristic world. Nailer spends his days taking apart washed up oil ships. One day, a city-killing hurricane brings Nita, a wealthy girl who provides Nailer with an escape from his terrible life. In some ways, this novel is similar to “The Hunger Games.” I would recommend “Ship Breaker” to anyone who enjoyed “The Hunger Games.”

“Woods Runner” by Gary Paulsen

“Woods Runner” is an overall great book. The book is packed full of emotional and suspenseful events. The emotion during the book is both happy and bad. An example of a happy moment is when Samuel rescues his parents from the British soldiers after trying for days and days. Samuel finds them living in the woods and having to survive in harsh conditions. Bad moments include Samuel seeing a very kind family, who take him inside their nice house and feed him lunch. The moment he leaves, he sees two of the people get killed and their house burned down. Suspenseful events include Samuel finding very helpful allies that he never expected to meet. Another example of a suspenseful event that happens in the book in when Samuel comes back from hunting to find his house burned down and his parents taken away by the British soldiers. Overall, I would rate this book a 4.5 out of 5.

“The Outsiders” by S.E. Hinton

I read “The Outsiders,” a book published in the 1960s, in English class this year. It was interesting to relate the older topics in the book to contemporary times. The phrase stay gold meant a lot to me and my classmates.

(PS ~ “The Outsiders” is a rocking book with an absolutely FANTASTIC movie that you must check out as soon as possible! See the trailer below!)