Archive for August, 2009
The new book by Scott Westerfeld comes out soon. Click here to read more about chapter one and to listen to a great recording.
To call Schooled by Gordon Korman the guy version of Stargirl would be selling it short.
In the same tradition as Son of the Mob and No More Dead Dogs, Gordon Korman delivers another funny book. Cap Anderson has been raised on a commune for his whole life. When his grandmother, his only caretaker, breaks her hip, Cap must go to the local public school and see how the world has changed since the 1960s.
What I liked about the book is that each chapter is told from a different character’s perspective. Cap, through his caring attitude towards everyone, changes the school one person at a time (he memorizes every student’s name from the school yearbook).
The especially funny parts are how Cap reacts to things that we take for granted, like lockers and television. He can’t figure out why we can’t share our possessions; he also worries deeply for the people on a teen drama show, hoping that they can sort out their complicated lives.
Schooled is a quick read that will entertain while challenging you to evaluate how you treat other people.
If you are a fan of James Bond, this is a book for you.
Where do all of those supervillains learn their tricks? The Higher Institute of Villainous Education offers many courses that would make other schools cringe. Otto is joined by other students who show promise at becoming villains as they try and figure out exactly why the school was formed.
One of the funnier scenes in the book is when some of the older students are talking with each other about the main enemy agent. He always has a similar style and demeanor, but his face always changes. This is in direct reference to the James Bond movies, parodying how the main character is played by different actors.
Much of the book revolves around different tests, like trying to swing across a pit of spikes using grapple gloves or discovering a way to amplify a superweapon. Where the action really picks up is when Otto and his circle of allies decide to escape from the island compound.
H.I.V.E. is a fun, light-hearted adventure with some larger than life scenes that many junior highers will enjoy.
I’ve been a fan of BooksInMyPhone.com for a while now. It seems that more people are getting in on the act, with the White House publishing the inauguration text in an easy to download format for your phone.
Warning people ahead of time for spoilers, I love the MARC record in the online description of A Tale of Two Cities:
Relates the adventures of a young Englishman who gives his life during the French Revolution to save the husband of the woman he loves.
That’s, like, the last page of the book! They just told you that the main character dies and why he dies. It needs a far, far better summary for the book.
If you want to see some meteors, tonight the Perseids will be streaking through our sky around midnight.
Perseids being connected to the Perseus constellation…Lightning Thief, anyone?
While thinking about technology shifts and differences between generations, I think this video sums up a teen’s ability to multitask.
Check out the boy who solves two Rubik’s cubes while playing Guitar Hero. I think about how many windows my students have running on the computer at one time.