Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Not My Daughter by Barbara Delinsky

When Susan Tate's seventeen-year-old daughter, Lily, announces she is pregnant, Susan is stunned. A single mother, she has struggled to do everything right. She sees the pregnancy as an unimaginable tragedy for both Lily and herself.

Then comes word of two more pregnancies among high school juniors who happen to be Lily's best friends-and the town turns to talk of a pact. But Lily, Mary Kate and Jess are the top girls, academically, athletically and socially, in the Maine coastal village of Zaganack. Most of the scandal comes from the fact that Lily's mother Susan is the high-school principal. Susan too was pregnant and unmarried at 17. When Lily was a baby, Susan bonded with fellow mothers Kate (Mary Kate's mom) and Sunny (tightly wound parent of Jess); the women have been best friends ever since, and all three are devastated by their daughter's incomprehensible decision.

While Susan fights for her job, she revisits her painful past (her own parents shamed and disowned her) and begins to connect more deeply with Lily's father Rick, a globetrotting journalist who may be ready to stay home. Problems arise with the health of Lily's baby, the involvement of the babies' fathers and the stability of PC Wools, a division of the posh retailer that the three mothers' created and run together, they spend Saturdays dyeing yarn and trying to figure out why their girls traded in bright futures for teenage motherhood.

Not my daughter is a book about a mothers' love being put to the ultimate test.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson

Author, Laurie Halse Anderson, has returned to the Revolutionary War for her new YA novel, Chains. As the Revolutionary War begins, 13 year old Isabel and her sister, Ruth have been promised their freedom upon the death of their owner, Miss Mary Finch. But as a cruel twist of fate they are refused their freedom and end up in New York City as slaves to the Lockton's, a cruel family with strong British ties. Isabel meets another slave, Curzon, who encourages her to spy on her owners who have information on the upcoming planned British invasion of New York City. Isabel hesitates to become a Patriot informant until her sister is sold and now she must seek her freedom to go search for her sister. She takes information that she hears as she is serving Mr. Lockton and hopes for her freedom when her owners are discovered, but instead she is caught, branded with an I for 'insolence' on her cheek. This novel will sear you, as well. You will be moved, shocked and amazed at the spirit and Isabel's ability to overcome extreme hardships and to break the chains that have bound her all her life.

Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Be wary of the dark.

Before you think, "Ugh, not ANOTHER vampire novel?!" be warned. If a book that is over 700 pages long can keep my interest, especially one dealing with vampiric overtones, then it surely must be one that deserves a second glance.

The passage by Justin Cronin

A secret government experiment to create super soldiers for the military goes awry and our country's population is infected with the virus. (Oh, did I mention that they concocted the virus from Bolivian bats and used death row inmates as test rats?) Soon there's an epidemic of "virals" which disrobe, fly and leap on their victims and generally wreak havoc on those remaining in this post apocalyptic mayhem of a world which is left

Jumping ahead several decades, the second half of the book centers around a small community of survivors who live in what appears to be a compound which is surrounded by a wall. Daylight hours are safe, night time is a different story and using lights and shifts of guards, they manage to keep the "virals" or "jumpers" from invading their home.

Add a young girl to the heady mix, a girl who travels alone, a girl who can communicate with the virals through mind reading yet is not one of them and you'll find that this is indeed a book worth reading.