Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Happy summer break everyone...

Lightning Readers has ended for 2015 - it will resume in February 2016!

Thanks to everyone who participated. We look forward to reading your reviews and short stories next year.

Enjoy the festive season and we'll see you in in the new year!

December reviews from Albert Park

The long winter by Laura Ingalls Wilder - reviewed by Miranda

Laura and her family (which are her older sister who is blind, two younger sisters and parents) have moved into town. They were living in a small cabin far away from anything but an Indian tells that it will be a long and difficult winter so they decide to move back into town to survive the cold. They do loads of chores when the sun is out like making hay sticks to make a fire because it is freezing cold.

Trains could not get into town because there is too much snow on the tracks, Laura's dad helps to shovel it off. There is also a part where her dad wants to play the fiddle but can't because his fingers are frozen from the cold. Everyone survives the winter. The stories are based on her real life experiences growing up.

Rated:  5/5 - "The author uses lots of good words and it's a good story - it seems very exciting."

EJ spy school series by Susannah McFarlane - reviewed by Miranda

EJ is a spy and when she first becomes one she doesn't think she will be a very good one. But after the first few missions she is the top one. Her code name is EJ 12 and she is very good and the leader. She solves problems.

When you look at the cover it kind of gives away the story. I've read all 20 books and I'm waiting for the next one.

Rated:  5/5 - "I really like them, I've even re-read them."

Gone (bk. 1, Gone series) by Michael Grant - reviewed by Tiana

The story is set in Perdido Beach where all people over the age of 15 disappear and those under 15 have weird powers and rule the world. It is about a group of kids who live there (the book mentions so many people I can't remember all their names) and how they survive starvation and cannibalism and something called the 'Fayz'. One of the characters has very strange dreams, there are also lots of weird, mutant animals.

The main evil thing is the Geiaphage which is radiation that came with a comet and now lives in a cave and is growing bigger and invades people's minds - it feeds off radiation.

Rated:  4½/5 - "really, really good, but not my favourite book. The best one I've read this year was The strange and beautiful sorrows of Ava Lavender."

Demon dentist by David Walliams - reviewed by Georgia

This book starts when a new dentist arrives in town after the old one died under suspicious circumstances. The new dentist greets everyone and goes to school to introduce herself. She wants everyone to call her 'mummy'. Two children, Alfred and Gaby, don't like her and wonder why she is the new dentist and what happened to the old one.

Alfred loses his tooth but when he wakes up in the morning instead of finding money from the tooth fairy he finds an eyeball. There are more gross things - and Alfred follows the new dentist around to find out what she is up to. Lots of strange stuff happens.

Rated:  4/5 - "really funny."

Thursday, December 10, 2015

St Kilda's reviews for November

The rabbits by John Marsden, illustrated by Shaun Tan - reviewed by Netta

This is a really good bed time story, but it’s not just a bed time story. It’s about the First Fleet. There is a lot to find through the pictures which isn’t written.

Rated:  5/5 reallys

Soulprint by Megan Miranda - reviewed by Henrietta

It’s basically this world where, when someone dies, their soul gets printed onto a child. People worry that children whose soul prints come from murderers and criminals may carry on the same behaviour, so those kids get locked up. They lock up this girl Alina, who was printed by a famous murderer lady. At eighteen, she’s broken out of her confinement by this guy. They have to cut out a tracker device and go to a safe house that the woman who printed on Alina owned. It turns out that the guy got her out because he wanted to find out the coordinates to a safe in the house. All of the woman’s money was left to Alina. This dude is really evil. In the safe, they find coordinates made out of money. A lot goes on - there’s blackmailing, life-saving, school break-and-entering and romance.
"Well written, clear, emotionally powerful."

Rated:  4/5 reallys - " 'cos it was amazing!"

And then there were none by Agatha Christie - reviewed by Louise

It’s about these ten characters. Eight are invited to a resort on a remote island, owned by a rich old couple. They get there and have a party and chat and stuff and then a recording begins to play. It says that they were all there because they had killed someone and this was their punishment. They all really freak out then, as the recording lists all of the killings, but without saying who did them. The maid, who had been having trouble sleeping, collapses and dies. Another man dies that night from choking. There is a poem which prophesizes each death, along with ten little statues on the dining table. As soon as someone died a statue would disappear!

Rated:  5/5 reallys - “Because it was so well written, so well put together. And it’s got a great ending!”

Fire will fall by Carol Plum-Ucci - reviewed by Olivia

It’s about a girl whose family is quite religiously Christian. Her and her dad aren’t as religious as the rest of the family. Their religion is very strict and exclusive. They aren’t even allowed to eat food that “Outsiders” (people outside of their religion) touched or made unless they boil it first. She manages to make elders grumpy with her projects, and her dad is always getting in trouble with them too, because he asks too many questions in church. The elders think he is a bad influence on her. When she talks to an outsider boy she gets in trouble with the principle. Then her dad gets expelled from the church. He is shunned, which is when no one will speak to you. So she can’t talk to her dad. Now they have to go and live with her Grandpa, who doesn’t seem to be telling her the whole truth…

Rated:  3/5 reallys - "I really like the story but the writing was a bit too simple."

Feed by M. T. Anderson - reviewed by Jackson

It’s about a world in the near future where people have microchips planted in their brains. The chip feeds ads directly into their minds, like a Siri for your brain. People are called units. One day this group of teenagers are at this anti-gravity bounce place on the moon. They meet a girl who only got a chip inserted at seven because her parents couldn’t afford one when she was born. They’re thought of as an important luxury thing to have. While on the moon a hacker corrupts their chips and they all begin speaking gibberish. After that one of the girls finds out her chip has a virus, which leads to her losing control of her chip. Most of the book is about fighting against the feed, which is trying to give them certain personalities so that they buy things from companies the chip feed supports.

Rated:  4/5 reallys -  “Could have been better, the same thing kept on happening.”