* I didn't make it beyond the first 20 pages.
** I made it to the end, but I either skimmed or skipped large sections.
*** I might have skipped/skimmed, but I liked it and might read it again.
**** I read at least 95% of the book and it was good -- definitely will be reread.
***** I read every word, and I loved it! A favorite!
Carter Finally Gets It, by Brent Crawford ***** This could very well be the funniest book I've ever read. I laughed so hard I cried (numerous times), and my husband got so tired of seeing me giggle and chuckle and out-and-out guffaw that he finally said he's going to read it too! From the POV of a 15-year old guy, it's hysterical.
September Sisters, by Jillian Cantor *** I read most of this (though I did skim a little); it's an interesting story, because it focuses much more on how the family reacts to the kidnapping more than the mystery of it all. I felt some distance from the MC at times, but I think that might be necessary because of the painful subject -- and I liked how the ending showed that they're all finding a way to continue living somehow.
Marcelo in the Real World, by Francisco Stork ** I skimmed most of this. I picked it up originally because I'd heard about it in a number of places, but it's pretty literary (which we all know means it's not really my thing). I did like some parts of it, mostly because it gave me insight into my cousin, who was diagnosed with autism when we were kids. I'm amazed that Stork was able to write this and find his way so completely into Marcelo's world.
Catching Fire, by Suzanne Collins ***** Yeah, this is just as good as everyone else has said. It started off at a nice pace and just increased it -- I began it as we sat on the runway waiting for take-off, and by the time we landed, I only had about 20 pages to go (which I read as soon as I'd unpacked). If you liked Hunger Games, you'll love this one! (upper YA, releases 9/09)
Troy High, by Shana Norris (shanawrites) ***+ I read this while still in Chicago -- Saturday evening, in fact. I picked it up first because of the intriguing premise, and it didn't disappoint. I think Shana did a great job taking an older story and making it contemporary. I liked the characters and their interactions. If you're interested in Greek tales, I think you'll enjoy this! (YA, releases 8/09)
Smash Cut, by Sandra Brown *** I like Sandra Brown, and this one was her typical style. I thought the twist at the end was good. I read it in the airport on Sunday, and it definitely kept me entertained. (adult, releases fall/09)