Jun 25, 2010

Review | In A Heartbeat by Loretta Ellsworth

When a small mistake costs sixteen-year-old Eagan her life during a figure-skating competition, she leaves many things unreconciled, including her troubled relationship with her mother. From her vantage point in the afterlife, Eagan reflects back on her memories, and what she could have done differently, through her still-beating heart.

When fourteen-year-old Amelia learns she will be getting a heart transplant, her fear and guilt battle with her joy at this new chance at life. And afterwards when she starts to feel different — dreaming about figure skating, craving grape candy —her need to learn about her donor leads her to discover and explore Eagan’s life,meeting her grieving loved ones and trying to bring the closure they all need to move on.

Thoughts: I'd heard really good things about this book when I signed up for it, so I was pretty sure I was going to like it. And I did.

From the beginning, I was able to connect with the characters, although at some points it felt like I was only getting to know Eagan and not Amelia. I wish there had been an even amount of both characters so that I could feel equally connected to both.

I'd never read a book about organ donors/transplants, but I have watched several movies about them and I know that's not the same thing, but I like those kinds of heart-wrenching movies and this book was pretty much like that. It was a sweet yet powerful story, and even though I wished it had been a bit longer, the story wraps up nicely.

I really enjoyed this book and I recommend it to everyone. It is a quick, intriguing story that many YA readers will enjoy :)

This book was provided by Around the World Tours for review.

Jun 18, 2010

Review | Lisa, Bright and Dark by John Neufeld

Lisa Shilling is 16, smart, attractive--and she is losing her mind. Some days are "light," and everything is normal; during her "dark" days, she hides deep within herself, and nothing can reach her. Her teachers ignore what is happening. Her parents deny it. Lisa's friends are the only ones who are listening--and they walk with her where adults fear to tread.

Thoughts: When I first picked up this book in Jr. High, it instantly became one of my favorites. So when I saw it at a used book store, I had to get it because I remembered loving it.

I enjoyed it again, but after reading it this time around I realized how outdated the story really is. I guess just didn't notice this when I first read it, but now it was something that constantly bothered me.

The characters were not really like teens today, and I am so accustomed to reading YA books that portray teens like they presently are, that reading this sort of threw me off a bit.

Other than that though, I really love the story. I think it would've been a bit more interesting if it was from Lisa's point of view, but I'm not sure how that could've worked. Instead, we see everything that happens to Lisa from an aquaintance who gets a bit more involved as the story unfolds.

Although I want to say I recommend this book to everyone, I'm not too sure if many YA readers will like it because it was written for teens in the late sixties. So, it makes it a bit harder to really connect with the characters and enjoy the story. In my opinion, it is still a great book.

Favorite Quote: "Elizabeth spoke first. 'The trouble with reasonable adult human beings is that they collapse when they meet other reasonable human beings. We don't.'"

This book was purchased by myself at a local bookstore.