Books in the Middle: Reading for Middle School

Our focus is on books middle school students might like to read and topics pertaining to books for these students, and we are giving recommendations. Teachers, librarians and middle school students are the contributors to this blog. Enjoy!

Strapped In and Trapped June 22, 2018

Filed under: Science Fiction Books — oneilllibrary @ 5:50 pm

This is the year for sure that Rachel thinks she’ll be able to start on her soccer team. She’s download-1.jpgbeen working so hard and she just knows it is possible. Starting 7th grade, starting on the team (maybe even as a forward,) everything seems to be right on track.

Except for one thing – her back. Rachel’s mother had scoliosis and had to have back surgery to straighten her spine. Rachel has been diagnosed with it, but up until this point, hasn’t had to do anything other than go for uncomfortable doctor appointments every six months since she was 8. All that changes before school starts when the doctor tells her she will need to wear a brace, 23 hours a day to prevent her spine from curving to the point where she’ll need surgery. For Rachel, this could mean the end of her soccer dreams, and perhaps just as devastating, if not more, the loss of her self as she tries to navigate what it means to be different and limited physically.

Braced by Alyson Gerber takes an honest look at how something can change your life quickly, and it also gives readers a feeling for what it is like to be on the inside of things and suddenly feel like that has changed.

Recommended for 6th graders and up.

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Headline Only Tells Half the Story June 19, 2018

Filed under: Science Fiction Books — oneilllibrary @ 5:42 pm

downloadWhat we show to the world, and what is happening in our lives can be very different. Just because we look, or sound, or even act in one way, shouldn’t define everything about us.

Darrian Lopez lives in the world of headlines – because he wants to be a reporter someday. Each time he sees something or an event, he tries to encapsulate it into a headline. However, when he tells his counselor what he wants to be, he finds himself in Mr. Ward’s poetry class! Darrian doesn’t understand why he’s been placed in this class, when he wants to write about what really happens in the world – not fluffy poetry.

Darrian learns quickly though, that poetry might just be the ultimate truth as he gets to know his classmates and their lives through their poetry.

Between the Lines by Nikki Grimes is the long awaited and long hoped for sequel to Bronx Masquerade. For fans of the first book, you’ll be pleased Grimes has kept the same format, giving us glimpses of many different lives and showing how we are all more alike than different. This is a quick read and if you enjoy poetry, or not, still worth your time!

Recommended for mature 6th graders and up.

 

Life in Prison May 14, 2018

Filed under: Science Fiction Books — oneilllibrary @ 10:01 am

Each Saturday like clockwork, Trell and her mother Shey head to Walpole to visit Trell’s father who is incarcerated for the murder of a young girl. He has no possibility of parole. He will live the rest of his life in prison. However, he says he didn’t do it and there were people who were with him at the time of the shooting. So why is he locked up in prison after being found guilty at a trial? Trell has grown up with the story of how her father didn’t do this horrible crime. But it seems hopeless because it can be so difficult to get a new trial.

Then Trell’s father hears about a young lawyer who might be willing to take a look at his case. Things start to

get moving after that point – or so Trell hopes. Yet each time they feel they are making steps in the right direction, something comes up to slow or stop everything. Finally, as a last ditch option, Trell’s family and the lawyer decide to try to get a reporter interested in the case. However, it has been almost 15 years since the murder and people who were involved at the time have moved on, or so it seems.

Trell by Dick Lehr is a fascinating look at a wrongful conviction and all the things that could happen to land an innocent person in prison. It is made even more powerful by the fact the author was a reporter involved in a similar case of a wrongfully accused and convicted man.

Highly recommended for 7th graders and up.

 

The False Prince Book Review by 7th Grader Taylor May 9, 2018

fpIn The False Prince, Carthya is at risk when the whole Royal family gets killed by pirates, or so they they thought. Beven Connor goes around to orphanages, and picks up Sage, Tobias and Roden.  You either go along with Connor or die. Connor steps up to say in fact the prince isn’t dead and the pirates have failed to kill the prince. In fact, Jaron the Prince of Carthya is not as dead as he seems. Five years back, the pirates failed to kill the 8 year old prince Jaron. After all the years, Jaron has been hiding. When Connor steps up saying he has the princ. Jaron has come out of the shadows and is back to rein.

The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen is one of my favorite books ever! I listened to the first book last year and was really obsessed with it and just loved it. This year, I read it again and am now finishing the series. Reading is not one of my favorite things to do because I always get distracted or just cant keep focused on a book but this is truly one book I just wanted to keep reading! I  remember I had this moment twice where the whole plot just changed and I was so surprised and just in awe when I found out who the prince really was. By far, this is my favorite book that I actually finished and liked.

 

The Selection Book Review by 7th Grader Kaylin

sThe Selection by Kiera Cass is the best book ever! It’s about a girl named America and she joined a competition called The Selection. America was in love with someone else when she got selected. She reluctantly went to the competition where the Prince was choosing his wife from 35 girls. America didn’t think she would fall in love with the Prince but she couldn’t resist how nice he was.

The book is so suspenseful! I had so much emotion in the book than my whole life of living. Things would go good and then bad real fast. I fell in love with Aspen and then he made horrible decisions and then my heart went to the prince, Maxon. Maxon is now my NEW Shawn Mendes!

 

The Selection Book Review by 7th Grader Celeste

sThe Selection by Kiera Cass is the best book ever! This book has lots of suspense and a great love story. It’s about a girl named America and she was pressured to join a competition called The Selection. The Selection is a competition where the prince gets to choose his wife out of 35 girls. America was in love with someone else when she joined The Selection. She would have never expected what feelings she had for the prince with someone back home.

This is the best book I have ever read because there is such a great love story. This book also is so suspenseful. I fell in love with Aspen then he made a terrible decision that made me mad. Then after meeting Maxon, I fell in love with him and have not gotten over him since.

 

The Compound Book Review by 7th Grader Juan

Filed under: Science Fiction Books,Student Book Reviews — bhomel @ 10:05 am
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c At the start of The Compound, an explosion happens and some of the family members enter the compound but Gram and Eddy are left out there. The family inside the compound believe the world they left behind is now gone. All their food and milk come from cows. Suddenly the cows begin to die off, including their offspring. Eli and his family have no meat now and milk. Some time passes and Eli talks to his brother Eddy who is alive and well. Eli knows the truth now and tries to get out of the compound with his family alive but his father won’t let him.

In my opinion, The Compound by S. A. Bodeen is a great book. It has a decent ending. I really liked the part where Eli was in The Compound because of the explosion. Who doesn’t like explosions? I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.