When you Reach Me by Rebecca Stead
It was the Newbery Medal winner, and, as surprising as it was to me, it was my favorite book in the whole lot. Miranda’s story is entertaining, and the story line was unique. I appreciate the creativity and the complexity of the plot. Though at first, I wasn’t too sure of the story line, but the fact that I couldn’t predict the storyline made it that much better of a book. I wasn’t anxiously turning the pages, but at the end I enjoyed how the book tied itself up. I found that I could relate for different reasons with many of the characters. I think many youth would be able to relate to the characters and their challenges; therefore, making this a good book for youth to read. Though lower readers would have a hard time conceptualizing the resolution. There seemed to be a bit of a sci-fi twist, but it wasn’t too extreme to push people away from it. From the unique story to the likability of the characters, I can see why this was Newbery worthy.
The Mostly True Adventures of Homer P. Figg by Rodman Philbrick.
All in all, it is a pretty entertaining read; though, this book is a loose definition of a historical fiction. The main character, Homer, is easy to love with his crazy exaggerated stories and adventures of saving his brother, Harold, from being illegally sold into the Union Army. The biggest plus for this story is that a child who doesn’t like history could learn a few things about life during the Civil War. One could learn things that you wouldn’t normally find in the history books. Common Civil War slang is used throughout; as well as, what life was like for people during that time from the abolitionists to the Union companies. The book wasn’t quite the page-turner, but I didn’t have to force myself to continue reading. I think I would softly recommend this book to others. I wouldn’t rave about it, but it was enjoyable. However, my personal opinion is that this one isn't quite Newbery worthy.
Claudette Colvin: Twice Toward Justice by Phillip Hoose
I learned a lot from this book, and I appreciated the new insight I gained into the bus boycott and segregation situation in Montgomery. Like the other's reviewed, this book wasn’t a page-turner. However, I did enjoy the knowledge I gained. On a negative side, I thought the layout of the book was odd at times. There would be pictures or subtext that didn’t have anything to do with that page's information. I am pretty anal when it comes to the layout of informational text. I love informational text that has just the right amount of pictures and captions that go along with the text. Overall, I enjoyed this book; I just didn’t love the layout. I am also not a non-fiction lover. Therefore, it is quite difficult for me to say, “I love” a non-fiction book.