Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Albert Park's reviews for December

Send Simon Savage by Stephen Meadsday - reviewed by Alex

This book is about a boy who loves surfing. When he comes back from a surfing trip he sees his house surrounded by police. He finds out his dad has gone missing. While all this is going on two men tell his mum that he and his sister will be sent to London, his sister will go to school while Simon is to be recruited by a special agency. At this agency Simon finds out that his father had set up a time travel machine. Simon's first mission is to travel to the future. He meets a girl there named Denise. He also meets the Chieftan who rules the land of the future.

It's really good although at the start it was a bit confusing and I didn't want to read it. But I kept going and it got better.

Rated:  3.75/5 - "very boring in some parts but lots of interesting bits as well."

Monstrum House : locked in by Z. Fraillon - reviewed by Zoe

This boy called Jasper is sent to Monstrum House, it's a place where children are sent when they have been in trouble at school too many times. There are monsters in there. Basically when they first get there they have to pass a test which is to catch a monster.

Jasper and the other children don't like it there and want to escape, but they don't know where they are because they were hypnotised and then fell asleep when they were brought to Monstrum House. They really want to get out of there.

Rated:  4/5 - "Pretty good."

Harry Potter and the goblet of fire by J. K. Rowling - reviewed by Leticia

I've read this book before so I knew everything about it. This time the Tri-wizard Tournament is on and other schools from Europe come to compete. One student is to represent each school and the student has to be 17 or older to enter. The names of the students go into the goblet of fire and then the chosen students will have their names shoot out of it. Fleur Delacour from Beauxbatons Academy of Magic, Victor Krum from Durmstrang Academy and Cedric Diggory from Hogwarts are picked. There should only be three students. But just when everyone thinks it's finished the goblet of fire unexpectedly spits out one more name - Harry Potter. This is not what is supposed to happen and some people are angry thinking that Harry put his name in there.

There are three tasks that the students have to complete, they are to fight a dragon, go through a maze filled with obstacles and retrieve their friends from a pond. During this competition Harry nearly gets killed.

Rated:  5/5 - "I give it this much because it's Harry Potter and I like anything to do with Harry Potter!"

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Albert Park reviews for November

Dangerous by Shannon Hale - reviewed by Tiana

I read the prologue and the first page and it seemed really interesting. None of the other books I looked at appealed to me. It sounds a lot like Hunger Games - but then again ... not really because it's set in an astronaut school.

Rated:   - "From what I've read I'm already giving it 4½!"

The end : bk. 13, A series of unfortunate events by Lemony Snicket - reviewed by Alex

The three Baudelaire orphans are stuck with Count Olaff on a boat, but when a storm hits they are washed up on a coastal shelf. Everything washes up there that has ever been in the sea. A girl named Friday finds them and when the orphans tell her about Count Olaff and how bad he is (and that he has even tried to murder them) she takes them back to her island. Ishamael is the leader of the island and tells everyone what to do. Story is basically about their time on the island.

The book has an interesting way of describing everything that happens to the Baudelaire orphans - it uses the third person who tells the story. I enjoyed it.

Rated:   - "Some bits are boring ... a bit up and down - but overall it was interesting and I couldn't put the book down."

The 52 storey treehouse by Andy Griffiths - reviewed by Zoe

Andy and Terry live in a treehouse, in every book so far they add another 13 levels, so now they live in a 52 storey treehouse. They have added a rocket-powered carrot launcher, chainsaw and a wave-machine with rocks. Mr Big Nose is their publisher and they have to give him books so he can publish them - but when they try to contact him he is missing. Andy and Terry decide to investigate. They go to Jill's house but she is asleep, she is under a sleeping curse.

They have a caterpillar which eats everything including rhinos and bulldozers. They also go on a train trip backwards. They need to go to Vegetable Castle to find the Potato Man who put a sleeping curse on people.

Rated:   - "I liked it."

The 39 storey treehouse by Andy Griffiths - reviewed by Emese

Andy and Terry have to deal with Mr Stupido who uninvents everything until there is nothing left in the world and the whole universe. Andy and Terry have to draw everything back.

Rated:   - "Very funny."

Gangsta Granny by David Walliams - reviewed by Tristan

Granny is an international jewel thief but she is now sick and in hospital. She wants to get out so she lies to her grandson and says the lifts aren't working so she can escape. In a jewellery store she meets the Queen and has a chat with her.

Granny has a nosy neighbour called Mr Parker who is suspicious of her. He calls the police to say that Granny has stolen the crown jewels. The police come and search her house but can't find anything. They tell Mr Parker that if he is a nuisance and calls again they are going to put him in jail! At the end of the book Granny tells her grandson that she has cancer and dies.

Rated:  4 1/8 - "I didn't really like the end, it was too sad."

Friday, November 14, 2014

November reviews from St Kilda

It’s about a girl called Hazel who has cancer. She goes to a support group with other people who have pretty bad diseases. The group is run by a twenty-one year old guy. In the group Hazel meets Augustus Waters. He has a fake leg because of his cancer. Hazel’s favourite book is called An Imperial Affliction by Peter Van Houten. Van Houten moved to Amsterdam so no one could contact him. Imperial Affliction doesn’t really have a proper ending. Hazel wants to find out the real ending, but Van Houten doesn’t respond to any letters or emails. All the children with cancer get one wish - Hazel had already used hers - to go to Disneyland. Augustus still has his wish so he uses it for himself and Hazel to go to Amsterdam so she can meet Van Houten and hopefully get some answers. 

It’s a romantic drama. 

Rated:  5 Reallys - "Amazing, best book ever!"

Thomas wakes up in The Glade with no memories except for his name. All these guys called Gladers live there, some of them are cool. They are all teenage boys, there aren’t any girls in The Glade. Thomas befriends a guy called Church. He works out that they are surrounded by a giant maze. Huge ivy doors lead into the maze. During the day the doors stay open, but at night they close. Giant slugs with poisonous spikes called grievers live in the maze. If you’re poisoned by one, you go through “the changing”, where you remember things from the past. Ben goes through the changing and says that he knows Thomas and that he’s evil. He bites him and ends up getting banished. 

Thomas and the Gladers hear the alarm go off for the lift where they get supplies and new arrivals. It normally only goes off once a month and their last delivery was two days ago. They rush over to find a girl who looks dead but is actually in a coma. She is clutching a note which says she’s the last one ever. 

Thomas wants to be a runner. Runners go into the maze during the day. Gladers Minho and Alby get stuck in the maze, and Thomas runs after them, breaking the number one rule of The Glade. He manages to get them out, but Alby has been stung by a griever. He goes through the changing and becomes insane and says he saw Thomas in his flashbacks. Then the girl, Teresa, begins talking to Thomas - In his mind!

Rated:  5 Reallys - “Action, adventure, mystery!” 

Alice in Zombieland, & Through the Zombie Glass by Gena Showalter - reviewed by Olivia

The first book is about Alice and her sister who really wants her to go to her ballet recital. They go the quickest route in the car – past the cemetery. Their dad has the ability to see zombies and other monsters. Their mum, who is driving, says they will go past the cemetery but really quickly and not to look. But as they pass he gets very scared and takes the wheel of the car, yelling that they have to go back. They end up crashing. Her dad was bitten by a zombie and it takes over his body like a parasite. Now she can see the zombies too!

After recovering in hospital she goes to live with her grandparents and attends a new school. At school she finds out a lot of the boys can see zombies as well. They begin fighting zombies together.

In the second book Alice tries to save a guy called Justin, but he ends up getting bitten by a zombie. Then he bites her and she begins to feel all evil. Justin seems fine. First she starts trying to kill people. Then she tries to kill the demon part of her instead. When she looks in the mirror she sees black smudges all over her face and under her eyes. She writes WHO ARE YOU? On the mirror, then turns to leave, but glances back and reads YOUR DOOM. 

Rated:  5/5 Reallys - “a little bit of romance, kinda scary”.

White Fox by Gary Paulsen - reviewed by Jack

It’s about two Americans who get kidnapped by the evil CCR, the Confederation of Consolidated Republics. One day the two of them manage to escape via the sewer system. One of the guards knows and tries to stop them but he gets shot. They just make it, running full speed ahead. They end up going through a desert and get really, really thirsty. They find a plane and fly it for a bit but find out it has a leak! They crash on a farm. The farmer sees them and wants to kill them. He starts yelling about reporting them to the CCR. They manage to barricade themselves in a barn for a while, then Cody manages to kill the farmer with a pitchfork. Then they get into a buggy and go to the American Utility Base where all the weapons and American military are. With supplies Cody goes back to the CCR to plant a bomb that will flatten the whole compound.

It made me feel grossed out.

Rated:  4¾ Reallys - “not a romance, which was good!”

Once by Morris Gleitzman - reviewed by Rosa

It’s about a Jewish boy called Felix. His parents are book sellers. One day they take him to a Catholic school to hide him from the Nazis. He escapes and in order to find them.

It is set during World War II. 

Along the way he meets meets Zelda who he rescues from a burning building. Zelda’s parents are Nazis but Zelda doesn’t like this. She runs away with Felix. Felix looks after her. He’s ten and she’s 6. They have to dodge lots of the Nazi army. 

Rated:  4 Reallys

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Albert Park's reviews for October

Eragon by Christopher Paolini - reviewed by Tiana

The main character is a boy called Eragon and he finds what he thinks is a stone, but turns out to be a dragon egg. The egg hatches but the Rezarks (monsters) come looking for the dragon egg and destroy Eragon's home.

Rated:  5/5 - "I loved it - it is now my new favourite book!"

A girl named Ingrid goes to the dentist and then to soccer training. On the way there a storm starts so she runs to the nearest house. The lady at the house rings for a taxi. The next day Ingrid realises that she left her soccer boots at the house. She then finds out that the lady has been murdered. Ingrid wants to find her soccer boots and solve the mystery of the murder. Ingrid also gets the role in a play for 'Alice in Wonderland'.

Rated:  5/5 - "Really, really good book."

The Maze Runner by James Dashner - reviewed by Tristan

Thomas arrives in a glade that turns out to be a maze. He has no idea how he got there. He hears lots of screaming and there are monsters in the maze. Everyone in the maze is male but the last person to appear is a female and she has a mysterious note in her hand. Thomas needs to find a way out.

Rated:  5/5 - "Really good."

There are five kids who name themselves 'The Findouters'. Someone has burnt down Mr Hick's workroom and they need to find clues to solve the mystery. They have suspects but have to figure out which one it was.

Rated:  4½/5 - "Pretty good."

A boy named Dwight has a finger puppet named Yoda, which is based on the Star Wars series. Yoda can tell the future and make it better. Dwight is sent away and the kids at his school want him back because they think he can tell the future (but it's his Yoda puppet which can). My favourite book in the series is 'Darth Paper'.

Rated:  4/5 - "It's got action but I'd like more action."

A boy who is bullied at school realises that the remote on the new TV his dad bought can stop and rewind things in real life. He tests the remote and pauses his dad during dinner and then on a fly in mid-air.

To get the bully he enters a spaghetti competition and so does the bully. Whoever eats the most spaghetti without vomiting wins. With the remote he makes the food vomit in and out of the bully's mouth.

Rated:  5/5 - "Funny, I'm not into fairy stuff."

My favourite bit in the book is when Captain Woodenhead tries to attack Terry, but he manages to escape because he is wearing inflatable underpants and is able to land on a roof.

Rated:  5/5 - "Too good for words ...."

I have read this book before but decided to read it again. It is about the Baudelaire Orphans, they are orphans because their parents died when their house was on fire. They are adopted by Count Olaf, but he only wants their money which they inherited when their parents died. The only way he can get his hands on the money is if he marries Violet (who is only 14). He tries to trick Violet into marrying via a play (there is a marraige scene in it).

Rated:  4/5 - "I knew the book and what was going to happen."

I've just finished Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets. It's Harry's second year at Hogwarts. The first problem he has is that he and his best friend Ron can't get through the barrier at the train station. Eventually they decide to use Ron's dad's car to fly to Hogwarts where they land right into the Whomping Willow, a giant tree that hits out if you go near it. 

Then there is the problem of students dying or becoming petrified. It turns out that there is a giant snake called a Basilisk on the loose in Hogwarts and if you look into its eye you will die, if you look at it's eye via a mirror you turn to stone. Then Hermione is petrified and when they find her in the Hogwarts hospital she is still clutching a note in her hand which has information about where to find the Basilisk.

Rated:  5/5 - "Like every other Harry Potter book - really good."