Entertaining journeyman chapter in an ongoing epic.

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DECAY

A YA dystopian sci-fi/fantasy adventure, the second volume in Lingane’s Tesla series, which mashes up the cyberpunk and steampunk subgenres.

Humanity has been forced into one last city, swamped by refugees and besieged by an endless army of cyborgs and dragons. The city and its Steam Academy are being rebuilt from previous battles, but the influx of new people, new buildings and new ideas has created a rapidly changing landscape for these final battles of survival. Young Sebastian and Melanie are Teslas—humans with paranormal abilities attuned to electrical fields—who have fought to protect humanity while searching for Sebastian’s lost mother. Now they prepare to go on a mission to fight the deadly cyborgs on their home turf while old and new friends prove to be unreliable and things grow murky and complicated. Seb and Melanie also find new feelings in their friendship, even as the struggle intensifies and the enemy launches its new weapons, the sullivans: “They’re over fifteen feet tall, with arms to their knees, muscles upon muscles, and they’re covered in some special armor that makes them impervious to EM attack.” While assuming readers are familiar with the setting from the first book, this volume proceeds straight into action. That’s only a minor issue in this entertaining, fairly well-written story that will have readers eager to turn the page to find out what happens next. Dialogue is crisp, pacing is strong, and despite its generally grim tone and flashes of violence, the story is dotted with touches of humor. Seb and Melanie are fun, personable teens whom readers can identify with and enjoy. The cyborg enemy is somewhat reminiscent of TV’s Cybermen and Borg species—a hive of human beings merged with machines and controlled by a central computer—which embody fears of zombielike conformity and personal oblivion. However, there’s more going on here than a revamp of fan favorites, and the story closes on a cliffhanger, preparing readers for the next novel, Faraday.

Entertaining journeyman chapter in an ongoing epic.

Pub Date: April 19, 2014

ISBN: 978-0992377984

Page Count: 304

Publisher: Insync Holdings

Review Posted Online: Nov. 20, 2014

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The book is perfect for read-alouds, with occasional, often onomatopoeic Spanish words such as “quiquiriquí,” “tacatac” and...

WAITING FOR THE BIBLIOBURRO

Inspired by Colombian librarian Luis Soriano Bohórquez, Brown’s latest tells of a little girl whose wish comes true when a librarian and two book-laden burros visit her remote village.

Ana loves to read and spends all of her free time either reading alone or to her younger brother. She knows every word of the one book she owns. Although she uses her imagination to create fantastical bedtime tales for her brother, she really wants new books to read. Everything changes when a traveling librarian and his two donkeys, Alfa and Beto, arrive in the village. Besides loaning books to the children until his next visit, the unnamed man also reads them stories and teaches the younger children the alphabet. When Ana suggests that someone write a book about the traveling library, he encourages her to complete this task herself. After she reads her library books, Ana writes her own story for the librarian and gives it to him upon his reappearance—and he makes it part of his biblioburro collection. Parra’s colorful folk-style illustrations of acrylics on board bring Ana’s real and imaginary worlds to life. This is a child-centered complement to Jeanette Winter’s Biblioburro (2010), which focuses on Soriano.

The book is perfect for read-alouds, with occasional, often onomatopoeic Spanish words such as “quiquiriquí,” “tacatac” and “iii-aah” adding to the fun.   (author’s note, glossary of Spanish terms) (Picture book. 4-8)

Pub Date: July 12, 2011

ISBN: 978-1-58246-353-7

Page Count: 32

Publisher: Tricycle

Review Posted Online: June 6, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 2011

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CINDERELLA

This companion piece to the other fairy tales Marcia Brown has interpreted (see Puss In Boots, 1952, p. 548 and others) has the smoothness of a good translation and a unique charm to her feathery light pictures. The pictures have been done in sunset colors and the spreads on each page as they illustrate the story have the cumulative effect of soft cloud banks. Gentle.

Pub Date: June 15, 1954

ISBN: 0684126761

Page Count: 40

Publisher: Scribner

Review Posted Online: Oct. 26, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: June 15, 1954

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