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Beta Books: Teens Review Advance Reading Copies

2014 February 18
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ARCIt’s time for another post from the Beta Books club at my library, which reads, reviews, and generally has a grand time discussing ARCs (Advanced Reading Copies) of upcoming teen books. Our review form includes a cover discussion, space to share thoughts on the book, and 1-5 star rating. Thanks to today’s reviewers for agreeing to share their thoughts on The Hub! SPOILER ALERT: Some reviews mention plot points.

united-we-spy_612x918Reviewer: Julie

Book: United We Spy (Gallagher Girls, #6), by Ally Carter

What did you think of the cover? Matches the other covers in the series — Cam, in her Gallagher girl uniform, with her face — or at least her eyes — hidden. The graduation robe & scroll she has hints this is the last book in the series.

What did you think of the book? It was AWESOME of course. I’ve been waiting for it to come out. My favorite parts of these books are always the parts with Zach — my favorite character. Unfortunately, he’s not in the excerpt I read although he is mentioned. I suppose my favorite part is when they go to rescue Preston. I would recommend this book to a friend. It’s one of my favorite series. :)

How would you rate this book? 5 stars: Unbelievable! I’d rather read this book than sleep!

* * * * * * * *

love-in-the-time-of-global-warming-cover

Reviewer: Tim

BookLove in the Time of Global Warming, by Francesca Lia Block

What did you think of the cover? The cover was good, and it had lots of orange butterflies, which are an important part of the book.

What did you think of the book? I did not like this book. The book was really random & hard to follow, and because of this I didn’t really care about the plot twists. It had many flashbacks which made it hard to follow the action, and they do not explain Pen’s or Tara’s powers very well. Also, I was confused over the part where Pen loses an eye. I would not read this book in a box, or with a fox, or on a train, or in the rain. I also would not recommend this book to a friend.

How would you rate this book? 1 star. Blerrrgh. Maybe it can be used as a doorstop.

* * * * * * * *

time fetch coverReviewer: Julie

Book: The Time Fetch, by Amy Herrick

What did you think of the cover? It was pretty good. It had outlines of the characters running and an ancient stone arch. It wasn’t quite how I pictured it when I read the book, but not bad either.

What did you think of the book? I really liked the idea behind the book — Time itself is collapsing, these kids have to save it. That was cool. Mainly what I dislike is that it was a bit slow. They could’ve explained stuff earlier — like the enemy, the Unraveler. I think the part before the adventure-y, cool stuff begins could’ve been shorter. No, I would not recommend this book to a friend. It wasn’t horrible, but it’s not good enough to recommend to someone.

How would you rate this book? 2 stars. Meh. It just didn’t grab me.

* * * * * * * *

doon coverReviewer: Julie

Book: Doon, by Carey Corp & Lorie Langdon

What did you think of the cover? The cover matched the story. I liked how it looked like a magical kingdom, with the bridge and the mist. It made it easy to picture myself stepping into the kingdom of Doon.

What did you think of the book? “Doon” is a bit lame for a magical kingdom name. I think the title should be longer like — Adventures in Doon or True Love Sucks or something. It needs to be more descriptive. My main complaint about the story would be that a lot of it is the two main girl characters exploring the kingdom of Doon with little worries. There should be some more foreshadowing about the witch or something. I would recommend this book to a friend, but only if they’d already read all the books I consider to be excellent — Harry Potter, Artemis Fowl, H.I.V.E., etc. It’s OK overall.

How would you rate this book? 3 stars. Pretty good. I wanted to see how it ended.

* * * * * * * *

eternity cure coverReviewer: Izzy

Book: The Eternity Cure (Blood of Eden, #2), by Julie Kagawa

What did you think of the cover? The cover was okay. It kind of matched. I would make it match the first book more.

What did you think of the book? I thought it was good. I liked the details. I didn’t like the storyline as much as the first book. I liked when her and Zeke finally kissed. Yes, I would recommend this book to a friend…maybe.

How would you rate this book? 3 stars. Pretty good. I wanted to see how it ended.

-Becky O’Neil, currently reading Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life, by Anne Lamott

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5 Responses leave one →
  1. Mickie permalink
    February 18, 2014

    I think I *actually* LOLed at your Seuss reference…nice!

  2. Tamara permalink
    February 20, 2014

    My mom loved watching the movie/musical “Brigadoon” when I was a kid. It was an old movie then, which means it’s a way older movie now. If you’ve never seen it, I would imagine that the title, “Doon” would seem horribly mundane. But when I saw this cover, I chuckled at the modern twist. :)

  3. February 20, 2014

    Hello! Since attending my first ALA Midwinter in January I definitely have books on the brain. As a result I have started my own blog: Ms. Thom’s Bookitis (http://msthomsbookitis.weebly.com/).

    I love the idea of having my students reading ARCs and then having them review them. How do you get access to ARCs? Do you have any suggestions for how to get started with this? I was able to bring some back from ALA so I will get begin with those, but how do you continue getting your hands on ARCs throughout the year?

    • Becky O'Neil permalink
      February 20, 2014

      @Melissa, congrats on your blog! Some vendors and publishers provide ARCs to libraries and librarians — ours come from Baker & Taylor.

      • February 20, 2014

        @Becky~Thanks for your tip! I will see what I can find regarding vendors and publishers in my area:)

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