Give me magic, gadgets, monsters, zombies, everything that seems impossible, and throw in some tough chicks with swords. That's the stuff.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

2 Middle School/YA Reviews

Goliath (Leviathan #3) by Scott Westerfeld

Let me start by saying how much I have enjoyed this trilogy as a whole. I can't wait until the kiddos are a little older - I think they will love it too.

Now, on to Goliath...

I had a lot of fun reading it - read the whole thing in one day. Good pacing, action, and I enjoy the characters.

Leviathan is still hands down my favorite book of the three, but I like the resolution and the character progression that you find in book 3.

For Deryn, yes secrets come out (but I'm not saying how!) and she learns that there could be consequences for more than just herself.

For Alek, he's felt so much responsibility for the war (since it started with the deaths of his parents), that it's shaped most of his actions. He needs to figure out who his allies really are, and what his limits might be.

Both of them need to decide what it is they really want in their own lives, as well, not just what others want of them.

Down to the action and the gadgets - yep, those are still seamlessly interwoven into the story. The world in this series is just so rich, but it never felt overwhelming, like I was just reading blueprints.

The "bad guy" in this one is mad, yes, but like with many characters, his sense of right and wrong depends on your point of view. With a world at war, right and wrong are in a grey area. It does help shape our hero and heroine's actions though, and that's really the point here.

This is the end of the trilogy, and there is an end that I was satisfied with, although I'd be lying if I didn't mention how much I hope that we'll be treated to more from this world in the future. There are so many places it could go.

Circus Glacticus by Deva Fagan

On the surface, this book seems like a rollicking good ride. An orphan with a mysterious rock, an encounter with a strange masked man, an amazing circus that turns into a spaceship, aliens, epic battles, the value of friends and finding a home, all of that is there. It's just that it was missing some of the finer details to draw out the characters and their interactions. It all felt too rushed, and some things resolved far too easily.

Trix is a hard character to like. I think with a few more insights to her character, it would have been easier to follow and root for her. I am used to kids in tween/middle school age books choosing to go off on their own, not involving the adults, but the reasoning behind it and why their new friends would go along with them, needs to be there. Those scenes felt off to me here.

There were parts I enjoyed, but I was left wanting more, and not in an "I need the next book now" way.

[I received an Advance Readers Copy of this book to review for Amazon Vine. Link goes to Vine review.]

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