Jillicious Reading: March 2009


Sucks to be Me

by Kimberly Pauley

Summary: Most teenagers are wrestling with questions about their future, but not many must make the decision Mina faces: become a vampire or stay human? Mina’s parents are vampires, and it’s never been that big of deal. But now, Mina must attend vampire orientation classes and decide whether or not she wants to become one. Her life is about to change forever, and she only has a month to decide! New friends, would-be boyfriends, living forever? Or, her lifelong best friend and the life she’s always know?
Thoughts: Sucks to be Me is a sassy, lighthearted vampire novel. I liked Mina and the contrast between her real-world high school experiences & the vampire realm. I also liked Mina’s lists, vampire “myth-busting”, and her eccentric English teacher. This is a fun choice for readers looking for vampire novels without the gory bite!


by Jennifer Bradbury

Summary: After high school graduation, best friends Chris & Win fulfill their dream of bicycling across the country from their home in West Virginia to California. But at the end of the trip, Win disappears. Chris returns home alone to begin his freshman year at college. When Win never returns, the FBI begins to look into the disappearance and Chris finds his world turned upside down.

Thoughts: This book pulled me in from the very first page and kept me intrigued to the end. I was captivated by the characters, their development, and the fascinating plot. Shift is a unique, memorable story; I look forward to more from this first-time novelist.

Next to Mexico

by Jennifer Nails

Summary: Gifted student Lylice Martin skips 5th grade and advances to the Susan B. Anthony Middle School. She has never had friends her own age and wants to fit in as a 6th grader. When she is paired with fellow newcomer Mexico, a new friendship begins. The girls enjoy art, playing in the band, and coming up with ways to deal with Principal Harrington. However, their friendship is threatened when Lylice becomes overly concerned with being accepted by the popular crowd.
Thoughts: Lylice Martin is a hilarious character. I loved her social awkwardness and enthusiasm. This is an entertaining novel that makes you smile and warms your heart.

The Year of Secret Assignments

by Jacklyn Moriarty

Summary: Three girls from private school Ashbury High write to three boys from rival public school Brookfield High as part of a pen pal project. The correspondence leads to secret assignments, pranks, romance, revenge schemes, and all-out wars between the schools.

Thoughts: I listened to the audio version of this book and thoroughly enjoyed every moment. The Australian characters, the plot, and the rival school wars were hilarious. The audio featured different voices for each of the characters, and I really missed hearing them when the novel came to an end! I just hope there is a sequel in the works so I can hear more from Lydia, Sebastian, Emily, Charlie & Cassie!

The Graveyard Book

by Neil Gaiman

Summary: While a mysterious man kills his family, a small toddler climbs out of his crib and escapes the murderer. The little boy wanders into a ancient graveyard where he is discovered and adopted by a community of ghosts to keep him safe from the assassin. Growing up in the graveyard, “Nobody” (Bod for short) has a series of unique, thrilling adventures while the murderer still attempts to find and destroy him.

Thoughts: It took me a while to get into this book as it was quite different from what I expected. Once I did get into it, I really enjoyed the intriguing plot and unique characters.


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