March 2015 Book Reviews

MIND GAMES

Teri Terry

This was like nothing I’ve read before, set in a high-tech world where most living is done in virtual realities. People take virtual vacations, go to school virtually, have virtual relationships. Luna is a Refuser — she rejects an implant because when she enters the virtual worlds, she can still sense the body she leaves behind, and the connection makes her sick. Her nanna warns her of the dangers, never to tell anyone, but doesn’t give away much more, meaning once Luna finds a way to overcome her nausea, the virtual world is her oyster.  

If there’s one thing I know I’ll get from a book by Teri Terry it’s genius world-building, and this delivered on that as much as the Slated trilogy. We see multiple virtual spaces, a closed-off mysterious island, and a futuristic real world, all incredibly well shaped. The story takes surprising turns that racks up the tension from start to finish, and the questions pile up to an exciting conclusion. What is PareCo, and what really goes on on Inaccessible Island? Play their game and find out…

SALT & STONE

Victoria Scott

FIRE & FLOOD was one of my favourite books of 2014. It was so addictive. Tella, her Pandora Madox, and co. braved the jungle and the desert for the first two parts of the race, but two more ecosystems must follow before the race is complete. With the same fast-paced, adrenaline-fuelled adventure as the first book, SALT & STONE takes it to a whole new level as the race continues over ocean and mountains.

This was an awesome sequel! There were some REALLY scary scenes in this book! Contenders and Pandoras must face water, snow, wildlife, and tests before the finish line. The whole race is not only deadly, but there are so many other competitors that time is against them too. I wanted Tella to win so much that if they even stopped for a second I was like, “Nooo! Keep going, quick!”

The characters are great. I like Olivia, Harper, and Guy in particular. I enjoyed getting to know some new characters too. I loved Tella from the beginning, but she really found her strength throughout the story and I like how it slowly built up through each section of the race. The Pandoras are my favourite thing about this series, though! The race and the idea behind it are brilliant, but the Pandoras are my number one. Especially Madox, Monster, and Oz.

The ending was incredible! A spectacular, pulse-pounding conclusion that stayed with me for ages after finishing. Nobody is safe. Only one can win the Cure. This is a series I find myself recommending time and time again.

AN ISLAND OF OUR OWN

Sally Nicholls

Holly and Davy, raised by their older brother Jonathan, live in a small London flat and get by on very little income. When their rich Auntie Irene dies, leaving her jewellery to the three of them, Holly and Davy think it’s the answer to all their problems. But there’s a catch – Auntie Irene never just handed things over to anyone, she wanted them to earn it themselves. Armed with nothing but a photo album of clues, Holly convinces her brother to accompany her on a hunt to find the hidden treasures, but they aren’t the only ones following the trail.

This charming tale is a contemporary adventure with a classic quality, about the strength of family and the kindness of others. With real, memorable characters and an exciting journey to follow, I thought it was lovely.

ALSO READ THIS MONTH:

Losing It by Cora Carmack