* 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 -- probably will be reread.
***** I read every word, and I loved it! A favorite and definite reread.
1. Drought, by Pam Bachorz **+ I loved Bachorz's first book, but this one was tough for me to get into. It was stark (in the instance of morals and the overall story arc), but the prose itself along with some of the smaller scenes were lush. As far as the writing goes, I thought it was nicely done. As a reader, however, too many questions (which never really found an answer) kept me from truly engaging. I would've liked to know more about why Ruby, who acts like a typical teen in so many ways, is only now coming into 'teenhood' when she's 200 years old. I think that was the biggest hangup for me -- I just couldn't get my head around it. There are numerous other mysteries, and most of them are never answered here. I don't know if there are plans for another book or not (if so, I'd pick it up to find some of the answers, however). The story: Ruby lives with her mother in a community which is similar to cult, except that they are enslaved by an overseer (and his minions) who do not believe as they do. Ruby's father, a man (who never appears in the story except by name) called Otto, is the cult's god, and his blood supposedly lets them live forever. Ruby is the one who carries that blood now, so she keept the group alive (and heals them) by putting her blood into the cisterns. The community's job is to collect water in a time of drought. When Ruby falls in love with Ford, she finally begins to learn about the outside world (which appears to be a normal, modern-day society) and question her role in the cult. (YA alternate reality/dystopic?, released 1/11, publisher: Egmont)
2. Plague, by Michael Grant ***** Yeah, I like this series. It's a little surprising, since it's fairly horrific, but still...the tension with the kids, the way they have to stretch themselves to survive -- it's all still there. My only complaint is that the series seems to be going on forever, and I'm hoping the next book will be the final book (time to answer some questions, already). And poor Sam really needs a break ;) The story: Sam and Astrid are fighting, and Sam takes up Albert's task to find water. He, along with a couple of the other freaks, head out of town, right when a horrible plague seems to find everyone else. Along with the sickness, flying snakes release eggs onto victims which result in parasites making their home in kids' bodies (this is the horror part -- very gross). With Sam away, Edilio decides to involve Caine again (Sam's half-brother)...as all this happens, Little Pete floats in and out of consciousness and Astrid must decide if she can sacrifice her brother (who appears to be in control of the FAYZ) for everyone else. (YA paranormal/horror, releases 4/11, publisher: Katherine Tegan books)
3. DH read Plague too, and he loved it! Definitely not a book for impressionable kids (seriously, it's so gross in places), but if you have teens who like adventure and 'Lord of the Flies' type stories, they'd love this series.
4. Today I get to start a new book -- I haven't done that in a while (I've been reading so many at once) -- so I'm excited.
5. It's the beginning of spring break (well, after this final day of school), and I'm so reaady. So is D -- we're going to spend a couple of days next week playing as a family :)
Happy last weekend in March (ack, how did that happen?!)!