Tweens & Teens Review Girl-Powered Middle Grade & Thrilling YA

Our young reviewers tackle a range of recent works for children and teens, including novels featuring wacky aliens, murderous reality TV, and more.

Our young reviewers tackle a range of recent works for children and teens, including novels featuring wacky aliens, murderous reality TV, and more.

Middle Grade

Diane Magras. The Mad Wolf’s Daughter. 288p. Penguin/Kathy Dawson Bks. Mar. 2018. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780735229266.
Gr 4-7– This book is about a girl named Drest and her family who just came out of war. After they came out of war, Drest and her family mostly camp out in the woods. Her dad is a wolf and he had just found this family, so he took care of her and her siblings. One night Drest’s sheltered life on the remote Scottish headland is shattered when the invading disturbing knights come to capture her family. Her father who is the mad wolf of the north, and her beloved siblings are a fearsome war-band, but since all of them had been captured by the knights, Drest is the only one that can save them. She only has four days before her family dies. Days after, Drest finds out that she is not alone after all. Maybe she can save her family and end this madness that is going on.

What I really like about the book is how Drest is all alone and has to do it by herself. Also what I like about the book is that it worries me, because she is all alone and we don’t know what is going to happen. The plot of this book is really great in my opinion, because it is the type to jump and scare you in all sorts of ways, and also it is the type of the book to make you want to know what is going to happen, but you also don’t want a spoiler. That is what happened to me. I love this book. I’m glad I picked this book out and I’m glad my favorite teacher let me read this and do this review.

What I didn’t like about this book is how the author put so many siblings, because sometimes I wasn’t sure which sibling they were talking about. Also, why does her father have to be a wolf and not a normal human being? That is what I do not understand. Another reason why I don’t like this book is how the author made some of the parts scrambled in a way I didn’t understand. The last reason why I don’t like this book is because when you read this type of book, which is a scary and a fighting type of book, I didn’t really understand how they fought because the author didn’t give many details, so I didn’t really know what was going on.

I think that this book is a great book and I would recommend it because when I first saw this book I thought “who would take a book like this”? But then I thought, “hey do not judge a book by its cover,” and I picked up this book. When I read the first chapter, so much was going on and I really liked it. The middle part of the book was amazing because all of the characters were in danger, and I really love those type of books where the heroine has to save people.–Nida Ahmed

Elliot Sappingfield. Problematic Paradox. 352p. Putnam. Jan. 2018. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9781524738457
Gr 5–8 –I loved this book because it’s wacky and funny at the same time. I am such a big fan of this author and l am so happy to see that she made this book. This book is so extraordinary and l am so impressed.

The book is about a girl name Nikola Kross whose dad gets kidnapped by an alien named Tabbabitha. Then, Nikola finds out her dad was keeping secrets and lying to her. It’s hard for her to make friends since she isn’t entirely human. Nikola made mistakes that put her school in great danger. The book is also about how she is a “outcast’’ and a “weirdo genius’’.

My favorite part of the book is on page 15 when it states “In the end, I decided life is too short to worry about every little thing strange bullies say.’’ This states that Nikola doesn’t care what people say about her, which is inspiring. What I hate about the book is when Tabbaitha was bullying her….it was hard to read.

This book in my opinion was just amazing. I am such a huge fan and super glad that i got this book to read. The cover and the book are both awesome. I totally recommend this book for everybody to read, since it’s so interesting. The characters are also interesting, since they all have different personality.—Isha Ahmed


Katya de Becerra. What the Woods Keep. 384p. Imprint. Sept. 2018. Tr $17.99. ISBN 9781250124258.
Gr 9 Up –Don’t let the plain, unoriginal cover fool you...this book is breathtaking! I never knew this author, but now I love her books.

The book is about a girl name Hayden who inherits her childhood home, and with it she finds out dark secrets. She wants to forget about her past and she did: her mom’s disappearance was a long time ago. Her dad has so many crazy theories, and people talk about her mom. Hayden feels a tree calling to her and things feel very unreal.

My favorite part of the book is on page seven when the narrator says, “she has that enviable talent of rolling out of bed in the morning, already gorgeous.’’ I love this part because the author is giving us so many details, and it is just makes me feel like I am there, watching everything unfold.

I highly recommend this book to all readers out there. This book is so good that I am surprised to find a book that’s this good. I love this book because it makes me wonder about a lot and how life gives you so many choices that you have to choose from. This book was just spectacular and also stunning.—Isha Ahmed

Gretchen McNeil. #MurderTrending. 352p. Freeform. Aug. 2018. $17.99. ISBN 9781368010023.
Gr 9 Up –In my opinion it is a remarkable book, and since it’s my first time reading a book by this author, and it’s amazing. I am a big fan of this book and I am so glad to tell you how I feel about it. It’s marvelous and astonishing.

The book is about a girl name Dee Guerrera who is 18 years old and wakes up in a hazy lit warehouse. There is this app and she found out she is going be a victim of the app. Dee might die for something she didn’t do, so she has to try to survive with her posse. She has to convince them she is innocent or she might end up dying, or they all might die one by one. The whole world will see her dying if she does.

What I loved about the book is how the author makes you feel like you’re actually in the book. I also love how Dee is also so confident, even if they might die. In the text, some says: “‘You’re willing to just give up.’” Dee asked. “ ‘And die? Don’t you want to fight back?’’’ This proves that even if they’re close to dying, she will always believe in herself. What I don’t like about the book is in page 183 its states, “‘Ethan dropped her and rubbed his shoulder. That is the last time I will save your life’’’ In my opinion, he was being so rude and a complete jerk.

I love this book because it’s inspiring me more and more to write books one day. I definitely recommend this book in case you’re into thrillers and horror; this will be right for you. I hope one day you see this book and end up buying it, because all I know is that I made a right choice in picking a book like this. Also I love how the characters have such unique personalities and they seem like a good team together.— Isha Ahmed

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