Saturday, December 31, 2011

Matched, Monster, Chains

              The first book I want to talk about in this post is a fairly recent release.  The book Matched by Allie Condie is reminiscent of The Giver in that this dystopian society at first seems like a Utopia.  In Matched the main character, Cassia, is happy with her life and sees nothing wrong with the way the society decides things for everyone.  Her world makes perfect sense and seems to be better than what used to exist.  Then a series of events starts her thinking that maybe it is not the best idea to have everything decided for you.  This is an intelligent book that really gets into the head of the main character.  Cassia is a likeable teen who is faced with some pretty unpleasant decisions and realizations. 

     This next book is a book that I have been meaning to read for quite some time.  I am talking about Monster by Walter Dean Myers.  It is an excellent book for high-interest easy reading.  In this book the main character is a boy in jail going through his trial for murder.  He is interested in film and movie-making so the majority of the book is written like a screenplay.  In this book we get a glimpse of what it might be like to make the stupid mistake of helping some tough guys in the neighborhood.  I highly recommend this book to everyone.  It is a quick read and a great story as most of Walter Dean Myer's books are. 

     Last but not least is the book Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson.  I avoided reading this book for quite some time because I have a hard time reading heartbreaking books and I wasn't ready for another heavy account of how slaves were treated.  This book surprised me because it was set in the north during the Revolutionary War.  The book was an excellent work of historical fiction and I learned quite a bit about what was happening in New York during the war.  Yes, it is heartbreaking to think about slavery and the awful treatment of slaves.  The main character Isabel did experience her fair share of this, but she also is a resilient and intelligent girl that is a fascinating character.  The book is an intriguing story that tells more than just the story of this one girl and this one household.  I especially love the epigraphs that come from historical documents.  Laurie Halse Anderson obviously did extensive research before writing this historical fiction novel.  It is an excellent book. 

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