Dolphin Tale

A movie tie-in (Scholastic) ISBN:  978 0 545 348 423

 

When a dolphin named Winter loses her tail in a crab trap, it’s up to a young boy named Sawyer and the staff at the Clearwater Marine Aquarium to help her survive against the odds.

 

Sawyer is a withdrawn boy, but as his bond with Winter deepens, he starts to come into his own. Soon he starts to have the idea of a prosthetic tail for the dolphin – and gets the support of the whole community.

 

Dolphin Tale is a tie-in to the 3-D movie of the same name. It’s an ideal bedtime story for a boy or girl, especially if they’re familiar with the movie.

 

Kids aged 8-10 could well manage to read it on their own. Great story, great reading.

 

Faith Parker

3/5

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Mockingjay

by Suzanne Collins (Scholastic) ISBN: 9780439023511 



Katniss becomes The Mockingjay. She is the Che Guevara of Panem. A face that inspired an uprising and a full scale rebellion. She is barely alive in District 13 after being rescued from the arena by rebel forces. Peeta, the boy she was supposed to save to become the face of this revolution, is trapped in The Capitol. 

This is the book that really sets Collins aside as a writer for me. There is no pretence of a never-ending series of books. This is as gritty and real as it gets. And no, I never want to be in The Hunger Games. I never want to be Katniss. Nobody does. The fact that she can write this dystopian novel without any sugar-coating, and still make you care for the character, is a feat. There is no silly 'Bella' torn between choosing a vampire and a werewolf. This really could happen. 

Katniss, the girl on fire, must face the end alone, and she must make the choices nobody ever wants to make. Collins is an exceptional storyteller. Read this series – even if you are cynical, especially if you are cynical. 

Amanda Patterson
4.5/5

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Catching Fire

by Suzanne Collins (Scholastic) ISBN: 9780439023498 



Katniss Everdeen is alive. She and Peeta have both survived The Hunger Games. Spiritually destroyed, psychologically hollow, the pair is back in District 12. Katniss’s friend, Gale, holds her at an icy distance. Was the ‘great love story’ of Katniss and Peeta that played out on television screens, real? As victors, they must embark on a Victory Tour of the districts. They must look the murdered children’s families in the eye, and celebrate. Katniss soon realises that her defiance has fuelled a rebellion she cannot stop. 

As the series develop, Katniss understands why Haymitch, her District 12 fellow victor and mentor, cannot exist without alcohol. She realises that she must fight. She has been a slave to a society that sacrifices its young, and starves its citizens. She must use her power. And when Peeta and Katniss are forced back into the arena for another Hunger Games, she knows she must save Peeta. 

Suzanne Collins has done it again. She writes fearlessly. There is no sentiment involved when she dissects the horror. Catching Fire is possibly even better than The Hunger Games. 

Amanda Patterson
4.5/5 

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The Hunger Games

by Suzanne Collins (Scholastic) ISBN: 9780439023481



Imagine a destroyed world. Imagine Ancient Rome. Imagine The Colosseum.

Katniss Everdeen is 16. She lives somewhere in the future in District 12 of Panem. The Capitol of Panem cruelly controls the half-starved population with food rations and ‘peacekeepers’. Every year, each of the 12 districts must send ‘tributes’ to compete in The Hunger Games. The tributes are children from 12 – 18, their names drawn in public at the ‘reaping’. The tributes get to compete in the biggest show on Earth. A girl and a boy from each district are styled, coached and thrown into an arena. The games are sponsored, and televised 24 hours a day.

The catch? Only one of the 24 comes out alive. The contestants have to kill each other. Horrifying, and yet familiar, Suzanne Collins has written an extraordinary novel. Using reality television, Collins holds up humanity’s future, its present and its past. Would you watch these games? Be honest.

Katniss is so human, so imperfect and so perfect for the role she never wanted. Selfish, brave, and pure, she becomes the Capitol’s worst nightmare. Read this book. It’s worth every page.

Amanda Patterson
4.5/5

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