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Posts Tagged ‘Book review’

Tiger’s Curse by Colleen Houck: A Review and Author Talk!!!

Posted on October 11th, 2011 by Anna in Books, Events, Reviews - Staff

Tiger’s Curse by Colleen Houck

Read by: Anna/Copley Teen Room

 I couldn’t have read this book at a better time: Colleen Houck is coming to the Copley Teen Room on Saturday November 5th at 3pm!!!

I LOVED this book. If you like fantasy/shifter type novels, especially if they involve hot guys and a little romance, this is the book for you. It’s the story of a girl in foster care who gets the opportunity to accompany a circus tiger inAmericato a special reserve inIndiawhere the tiger was supposedly born before being captured. But upon arriving inIndia, Kelsey realizes that the story she was told was anything but the truth, and the tiger, is anything but your typical circus tiger! Together, she and the centuries old tiger must go on a quest to end the curse put on Ren, the tiger. They battle plants that eat you alive, statues that come to life, a fear of snakes, a fear of love, and other things that are sure to keep you on the edge of your seat.

 The page numbers are daunting at 400, but I couldn’t put the book down as soon as I’d started, and I finished it a lot faster than I’d ever predicted. I highly recommend this book to anyone looking for a good fantasy read!  

 The second book in the series, Tiger’s Quest, came out just this year and the library already has several copies on order. You can put a copy on reserve through our catalog at www.bostonpl.bibliocommons.com. Library copies of the first book, Tiger’s Curse, will be available in the teen room when she’s here, so have your library cards ready!

Carmen: A Staff Book Review

Posted on August 22nd, 2011 by Anna in Books, Reviews - Staff

Today’s staff book review comes to us from Ann, over at the Egleston Branch of the Boston Public Library:

Carmen, an urban adaption of the opera by Walter Dean Myers

I love the opera Carmen and I love Walter Dean Myers and I wanted to love this but I could not. It is set up exactly as a play– the settings, the stage instructions, the music. Set in El Barrio (Spanish Harlem) the characters are modern reincarnations of the original novela, pre-Bizet, infact– modeled after West Side Story. Factory workers, cops instead of soldiers, a Hip Hop Star instead of a Toreador, but the story remains basically the same. I still love the idea, but I thought the dialog was stilted and unnatural (“We’ll do the caper…”?) and many of the characters and settings were dangerously close to stereotyping. Please– I still love Walter Dean Myers and he added an author’s note explaining why he wanted to work with Carmen, he spoke about the very public music in the Harlem of his youth, about the stereotyping he had encountered in different versions of the novella– in fact I enjoyed the author’s note very much– much more than the novela.

Unfortunately, I can see adults liking this a lot, but i do not see it speaking to kids– only to an adult idea of what speaks to kids. Myers does not usually write about Latinos, and Carmen, unfortunately, is not what he does best. Sorry. It was very well reviewed but I was so disappointed.

Book Review: The Memoir of a Compton, CA Police Officer

Posted on August 3rd, 2011 by Anna in Books, Reviews - Staff

Vice: One Cop’s Story of Patrolling America’s Most Dangerous City by Sgt. John R. Baker

Read by: Anna/Copley Teen Room

This is a nonfiction book that reads like a novel. The action starts at the beginning with a brief history of Compton, California and how it’s gangs got started, and doesn’t end until the last page. Sgt. “Rick” Baker tells the story of how the Compton Police Department fought to protect and serve their city in a time of gang wars, and how they fought against the city council and the city’s many mayors to get the support they needed to do their job.

These police officers were known to use forces other than their guns to bring criminals down. While the LAPD would shoot first and ask questions later, the Compton PD would handle cases in an entirely different manner seeing as they’d grown up with the criminals they were now fighting. Everyone knew everyone, and the criminals, though they worked against the law, respected the cops enough to call for help when an officer was down.

Does it matter whether the general public knows what the Compton cops did? Does it matter whether we know how hard they fought to keep themselves going when things weren’t looking so good? They were only 130 officers strong while they were outnumbered with 10,000 criminals. In the end one of those officers said it didn’t matter, because THEY knew what they’d done. But Sgt. Rick Baker knew the public needed to know the truth, and so he gave us Vice.

This is a book I would HIGHLY recommend to anyone looking for a good nonfiction read, a memior, and the history of many of our most prominant gangs as well as the history of the city itself. Check it out TODAY!