Daddy Long Legs

by Jean Webster

Image result for daddy long legs by jean websterA classic novel documenting the story of orphan Judy Abbott as she receives the chance to become an author, provided by a mysterious benefactor she lovingly nicknames "Daddy Long Legs".

Daddy Long Legs is written in a letter format, from Judy to Daddy Long Legs, and is an unusual yet refreshingly satisfactory book. I loved Daddy Long Legs for its rare and unique writing style. Even though it's a classic and was written long ago, the plot twists were amusing and surprising at the same time.

I would recommend this book to girls of any age, or to anybody who likes reading books with a bit of a old-fashioned flair. If you also enjoy reading things with a diary-like format, this book is for you!

Erica, 16

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Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie

Hercule Poirot, a quirky detective, is trapped on the famed Orient Express, a famous luxury train. Unfortunately, being the type to often become stuck in the oddest situations, a murder has occurred and Hercule must get to the bottom of it--with the murderer still on the train. 

It was interesting, to say the least; I felt like although the words and writing style were poignant, it was a bit boring and felt a bit rushed. The hints throughout the book were TOO well hidden, and at the end when Hercule Poirot spilled the secrets of the mystery, it felt like it was altogether too much information at once. 

I would recommend the book to anyone who enjoys classics or mysteries (or both) and has a higher reading level (e.g. high school). Preferably Sherlock Holmes fans, because if you're used to the language of Doyle, reading Agatha Christie will be a breeze.

Erica, 16

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For One More Day

by Mitch Albom

For One More Day coverCharlie Benetto is a shadow of his once successful baseball star self. Yet even when everyone else turns their backs, there is still one person there for him; his mother.

For One More Day circles around Benetto's constant struggle to change his life and is a great book because we can relate Benetto's problems and regrets to our own; particularly his inability to thank his mother for all the good she's done for him. It really makes the reader think of how their own parents sacrifice so much for them. 

If you enjoy those a heartfelt family themed book you will definitely enjoy For One More Day by Mitch Albom.

Gillyn, 15

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True Grit

by Charles Portis

Image result for true grit by charles portisMattie Ross is a plucky 14 year old girl who goes out in search of Tom Chaney, the murderer of her father. She ventures out to the wild Choctow Nation with the help of two rangers to avenge her father's death.

True Grit is the story of a young girl's persistence, strength, and love for her father. This book was great because Mattie never lets her age stop her from avenging her father. The book was definitely enjoyable, but it can drag on towards the middle and be a bit difficult for younger readers to understand. 

I would recommend this book to older readers ages 13 and up. It's a great read for people who enjoy reading about adventure, the Wild West, and a spunky main character. 

Gillyn, 15

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Eragon

by Christopher Paolini

Eragon coverEragon, a teenager in his prime, finds his peaceful life as a farmer boy being ripped apart as he discovers a valuable--and rare--dragon egg. Going headfirst into danger, against the government itself, he becomes a Dragon Rider and sets off to find a place of belonging, across the desert and into a land of the unknown. 

I liked this book! Eragon wasn't a perfect person and was sometimes reckless and annoying, but he was charismatic in his own way as he grew throughout each obstacle in the story. The only flaw I see in the book is that most of the plot and "world" is taken from Star Wars and the Lord of the Rings.

I would recommend this book to anyone grades 6 and up. Paolini's books are long, but if you can read Harry Potter or are at a higher reading level, you will enjoy Eragon.

Erica, 16

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Anne Frank: Diary of a Young Girl

by Anne Frank

The Diary of a Young Girl is set in the 1940's during the Holocaust. The story is a translated version of the real-life diary of Anne Frank, a young Jewish girl who hid with her family from Nazis occupation.

This book gives a real life look into the lives and minds of Anne Frank and her family, who had all been living in hiding for two long years. This book was simply mind-blowing; it's nearly impossible to believe that Anne, a normal teenager who struggled with little problems like the rest of us, was able to stay so strong till the very end. It is an inspirational book because it shows Anne's constant perky spirit, but it is also a very serious memoir of one of the millions of victims of concentration camps during the Holocaust. 

I would recommend this book to people ages 13 and up because it is a deeper read touching on the delicate topic of the persecution of the Jewish people during WWII. If you enjoy real stories about the persistence of the human spirit, you will love this book.

Gillyn, 15

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Mozart Season

by Virginia Euwer Wolff

Mozart Season coverAllegra Shapiro is a twelve-year-old girl who is the youngest contestant in the Ernest Bloch Young Musicians' Competition. As she meets new people and struggles with her persistence for the violin and her concerto, she discovers a new meaning to herself and her background. 

I enjoyed the book's musical themes, which a lot of books rarely describe accurately. Some parts of the book were a little hasty and seemed to pop out of nowhere, but overall it was an enjoyable, easy-read book. 

This would be a great read for 8th graders and up, to anyone who likes reading about music, or a book about everyday life without the teen drama. :)

Erica, 16

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Fat Cat

by Robin Brande

Fat Cat coverCat is a girl struggling with her weight as well as identity issues--one of which includes her long-broken friendship with smart, funny, rival/ex-best friend Matt. Her life only gets worse when she gets assigned a crazy school project, but she decides to put a spin on it by, essentially, going on a diet and becoming the girl she wants to be. 

I feel like it's supposed to be an uplifting story for girls with weight issues, and don't get me wrong: it is, and it's a great, light easy teen read, but at the same time I wonder about the image it portrays to the readers. Can girls only become accepted and loved if they're skinny and "hot"? I think that this is one of the flaws of the book, but it's overall a so-so read. 

I would recommend this book, just because it IS funny and enjoyable. Maybe if you're struggling with the same issues as Cat, you might relate to it, you might not, but generally teen girls from the age of 13-16 would enjoy this.

Erica, 16

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Artemis Fowl

by Eoin Colfer

Artemis Fowl coverHe's rich, he's smart, he's evil, and he's only twelve years old. Artemis Fowl, an Irish mastermind-slash-millionaire, embarks on an impossible journey to uncover the hidden world that nobody knows about: the land of the fairies. Is he crazy? Maybe. But he might be on to something.

My initial reaction was that it was funny, in a sarcastic "I can't believe he said that" kind of way. The plot is fairly new, and the characters are portrayed in a way that is enjoyable; although I couldn't follow the storyline sometimes, it was overall a good book, but it didn't make me want to rave about it.

I would recommend the book to fantasy lovers or people who like a good dose of evil-mastermind-protagonist in their reading rituals. However, readers beware: the series sours after around the 4th book, The Eternity Code, so be prepared.

Erica, 16

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Howl's Moving Castle

by Diana Wynne Jones

Sophie Hatter is a Plain Jane who believes that she is incapable of doing anything worthwhile due to her status as the eldest of three sisters. However, when she is turned into an old hag by an evil witch, she embarks on a quest to find the solution to her dilemma, in which she meets many fascinating characters, including a very handsome wizard and his moving castle.

I loved it; it was a topsy-turvy romance that had a classic feel to it along with a spice of humor. Additionally, I loved how the romance was understated verbally (there was actually no "I love yous" between the two protagonists) but adorable and fascinatingly addicting.

Yes, I would definitely recommend this book to others. Girls of any age would enjoy it (but grade level wise, perhaps 5th grade and up?) as well as select boys who enjoy quirky fantasy without minding a dose of sweetness.

Erica, 16

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The Truth About Forever

by Sarah Dessen

The Truth About Forever is about Macey Queen. Her father just passed away, and she has nothing to look forward to during the summer while her boyfriend is away and her mother painfully chooses to not acknowledge the death. It all changes when she joins the Wish catering crew and she finally learns to take risks and have fun.

I loved this book! It's one of my all-time favorite books! Macey finally learns to come out of her shell and experience life.

I would recommend this book to others if you have read any of Sarah Dessen's other books, and if you hadn't this would be a good book to start.

Audrey, 14

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Waiting for You by Susane Colasanti

In Waiting for You, Marisa just wants a fresh new start her sophomore year which doesn't include being depressed and obsessively thinking negatively like last year. She also wants her first real boyfriend...could it be Nash her old geeky friend from middle school? Or could it be Derek the popular guy of her dreams?

I thought it was an interesting book because it dealt with family problems too, not just your typical teen romance book.

I'm not sure if I would recommend this book though. It's complicated and deals with a lot of family issues. But if you like the type of books that have different kinds of subjects then you would enjoy this book.

Audrey, 14

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Spoiled by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan

Image result for Spoiled by Heather Cocks and Jessica MorganSpoiled is about two girls who just found out they're related. Molly Dix is the small town girl from Indiana who just found out she is the love child of Brick Berlin a famous movie star. Brooke Berlin just got the news that she has a half sister who is coming to live with them in Hollywood. As they discover, life couldn't get any stranger...

I thought Spoiled was a awesome book that expressed the rivalry between siblings in a hilarious way. 

I would recommend this to anyone who has a sibling... you will totally understand this book!

Audrey, 14

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Audrey, Wait!

by Robin Benway

Audrey, Wait coverAudrey, Wait! is about a girl named Audrey who has just broken up with her ex boyfriend. This leads to him writing a song about her that becomes a hit, and Audrey being nationally known.

I liked it, it was a decent book that had a lot of humor and characters that are hilarious. This book keeps you laughing so hard people will think you're crazy. 

I would totally recommend this book, if you like characters who have energy and witty comments Audrey, Wait! is for you!

Audrey, 14

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The Secret Year

by Jennifer Hubbard

Julia and Colt were together for a year, but nobody knew of their secret love. When Julia dies, Colt's life goes out of control. He is haunted by her memory and things only get worse when her journal falls into his hands. After reading Julia's journal, Colt finds love with a girl from school but can't seem to make it work because of all of his unanswered questions.

This is a really good book. It is a very quick read and hard to put down. The ending is a little bit of a let down, but the rest of the book makes up for it.

Bree, 16

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