Sunday, May 31, 2009

A Great and Terrible Beauty (Libba Bray)

A Great and Terrible Beauty, by Libba Bray, is about four girls that share a spectacular secret.
The book is set in Victorian times, in London. The main character, Gemma attends a boarding school named Spence Academy, after her mothers tragic death from... cholera. (but it was really a murder-don't worry, I didn't give anything away; that's in the first chapter.) The school's aim to turn rambunctious teens into proper ladies to be married off... the sooner the better. Charm, grace, and beauty, thats their motto. 
Gemma is roomed with Ann, a quiet girl who is going to Spence to be made into a governess; she has no money and no family. They are the outcasts, the unwanted, the lower class. The 'ruler of the older girls', Felicity, and her amazingly beautiful accomplice in crime, Pippa, REALLY hate Gemma and Ann. But when Gemma finds out a secret about Felicity that she could easily use against her, they immediately become 'friends'. When the new found foursome find a diary of a former student named Mary Dowd, they began to meet at midnight in a cave to read from it.  
Now I must inform you, Gemma is no ordinary girl. She has visions, she can see things that somewhere in the future come true. She is different.
Mary Dowd, they soon figure out, has powers, too. Along with Sarah Rees-Toome. They, with the help of some unknown group of sorceresses called the Order, can travel to a realm between worlds. Its a place where anything can happen. If you close your eyes and want a butterfly, there's a butterfly. This realm is between our world, and where the dead go for afterlife. The four girls, Gemma, Felicity, Ann, and Pippa, travel to this world through a door of light, created by them all, but mostly Gemma. She is the one with the real power, the one thats taking them to this realm. But when an old family foe is searching for Gemma, she must fight her off, and save the power of the realms and restore the Order. 
As the lies and secrets unravel into truths, Gemma is shocked to find out some awful things. Murders, power-crazed school-girls, and more.
A Great and Terrible Beauty was a '"curl-up-under-the-covers-" book. I enjoyed reading it at EVERY moment. Libba Bray is such a talented author; she conveys ideas so that you are always surprised... but in a good way. A very good way. 
The only thing I did not enjoy about this book was Ann. I really liked her character, which is why I wish she stood up for herself more, fought for what she believed in. She needs more confidence, Libba. 
Other than that I loved the characters! I loved how Felicity was strong and brave. Pippa was a bit conceited, but it made it funny to read. Gemma was so clever, and I really connected to her. She is scared of many things, and very confused. Another character I really loved was Mrs. Hester Moore. She is so creative, especially compared to the other teachers at Spence Academy.
All in all, this is one of my favorite books ever written. If you haven't already, you need to read this!!!
And... I just found out they are making a movie to be released in 2010!

Story: 5
Characters: 5
Plot: 5
Cover: 5

Monday, May 25, 2009

To Be Read...

Princess of the Midnight Ball

Twenty Boy Summer




I think I might start with A Great and Terrible Beauty. I have already read the whole series. But it was a long time ago, so I'm going to reread them and review them.


Saturday, May 23, 2009

Kiss of Life (Dan Waters)

 Kiss of Life (Generation Dead Series #2) by Daniel Waters: Book CoverKiss of Life, by Dan Waters, was an amazing sequel to Generation Dead! As we watch Tommy, Karen, Tak, Phoebe, Colette, Adam, and Pete, along with new characters Dom, DeCayce, and Duke weave into the story, you will dread putting the book down.

Phoebe and Adam become a 'thing', as she helps him become more... alive. I love how the chapters from his point of view are written how he would actually think, and how the become more normal as he becomes more functional. 
Tommy begins his trip across America (which he is doing in real life, coming to MY town...yay!) , and sends riveting emails of his stories of traveling the country. Phoebe gets angry at him, and I enjoyed watching their conversations over the internet. 
We meet more characters, like Duke, and you see the true feelings of others. Tragedies strike, deaths (or re-deaths) occur, and more people are turning against zombies.

A must read; I loved this book! I definitely suggest reading it, if you haven't already. Find Tommy Williams at and Dan Waters at     Enjoy!

Story: 5
Characters: 5
Plot: 5
Cover: 4


P.S. Sorry it took me so long to review it, I finished it a while ago, but haven't had time to write lately. 

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The School for Dangerous Girls (Eliot Schreffer)

41wmpcbzhl_sl500_ The School for Dangerous Girls, by Eliot Schreffer, is about girls who go to a school called Hidden Oak, a school meant to make 'dangerous girls' presentable to society.
Angela Cardenas is a teenage girl who has, as a last resort, been sent to Hidden Oak School for Girls, after supposedly murdering her grandfather. When she arrives, the administrators strip her of her clothes, of her make-up, of her... pretty much everything. The put her into a 'school'. But its more like a prison; they beat the students, lock them in freezers, and they THINK they're helping them.
Angela and her fellow prisoners go through a month at the school before actual classes begin. They have 'games' that turn the girls against each other, forming some alliances, but mostly enemies. There is no way to talk their parents into letting them leave, because the teachers convince them that they are mentally weak and cannot be trusted. 
When the 'orientation month' has ended, the girls are separated into gold threads and purple threads. The gold threads are the girls who the teachers think can be helped, and put back into society. But the purple threads have been given up on, and no one knows where they are kept, or if they're even alive.
Angela is determined to expose the school for what it really is, but she's having difficulty, while EVERYTHING is being monitored. Angela devises many plans, most of them don't work. Will she find a way to get her and her friends out of Hidden Oak?

This non-stop thriller made me never want to put the book down. BUT, and thats a big butt ;) once I almost stopped reading. I just felt that she failed so many times, and it was so harsh, but I am glad I kept reading!

Writing: 5
Characters: 5
Plot: 5
Cover Picture: 4


Sunday, May 17, 2009

You Are So Undead to Me (Stacey Jay)

You Are So Undead to Me, by Stacey Jay, is about Megan Berry, a zombie settler. When people are buried, if they have any unsolved problems, they rise from they grave and find a settler, usually their age, to help them. That's what Megan is, by birth. Zombies come to her house to find her at night, and she gets the information needed to help them settle, then sends them back to their grave. Other than her family and other settlers, no one knows that Megan is one, in fact, most people don't know that zombies exist. Not even her best friend Jess, or her crush, Josh. When people find out that that Megan is going to homecoming with Josh, some sends a Reanimated Corpse after him. An RC (reanimated corpse) is a zombie that is raised by Black Magic, or evil spells, meant to harm or kill someone. They are usually fatal. When someone sends a Reanimated Corpse out to kill Josh, Megan doesn't think anything of it. Then, she decides to go to the homecoming with her settler tutor, Ethan. Someone sends a R.C. after him! Even when no one believes her, she must find out what's going on, and who's sending R.C.'s after all her homecoming dates! As she battles perverted zombies, clones, and obnoxious seniors, Megan Berry's story is made hilarious by the talented Stacey Jay.  Although this book has a few slow parts, I definitely recommend it. You won't stop being surprised by Stacey Jay's clever thoughts!
Hope you enjoyed this review!


Writing: 5
Characters: 4
Plot: 4
Cover Picture: 3

Generation Dead (by Daniel Waters)

Generation Dead, by Daniel Waters, is a phenomenal book that's sweeping the nation. Some, but not all American teens have begun rising from their graves (but they usually rise sooner than they get there). They are trying to live in a society that doesn't except them. Like living students, some zombies (or the politically correct terms "living impaired" or "differently biotic") are smarter than others. Most of the undead move and speak at a very slow rate, but some, such as Karen DeSonne and Tommy Williams speak and move as quickly as the living. Some of the living (breathers) think zombies deserve to be treated as normal citizens, while most others believe they are a sign of the apocalypse, and need to be 'killed'. 
Phoebe Kendall, a gothic teen, falls for the 'head of the zombies' at Oakvale High, Tommy Williams. As Phoebe and Tommy become closer and closer, Phoebe's other best friend Adam, star of the football team, who is in love with her, becomes jealous. It is obvious to everyone, except Phoebe, that Adams loves her. What will Adam do?
As each character changes, for the better, or for worse, you see how they really are, as they deal with America's bioism. Some stand strong, while others cave under the pressure. See what happens with Phoebe, Adam, Tommy, Margi, Colette, and This book is to die for, excuse the pun.

A must read book. Get it before it's gone! Check out Dan Water's blog:


Writing: 5
Characters: 5
Plot: 5
Cover Picture: 5

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Book Suggestions!

Hey everyone! This is where you can go to my comments folder and put in the name and author of a book that you think I should read n' review! Thanks!

~Lily Benan

Friday, May 15, 2009

Read to Live-Live to Read

Hey! This is my book review blog. I usually read Young Adult (YA) Books. Whenever I read a book, I will post a review on this webpage. I will tag the subject, author, genre, and title, if you wanna check if I have a certain review of a book on the blog. 

I will post a blog (you'll know which one it is) just for books you think I should read and review. Just go to the comments, and say the book and author. Thanks!

~Lily Benan 

P.S. I am trying to add a file (not a post) where you can post books for me to read.