MADreads

A review of Going Places by Peter Reynolds

Each kid in class competes in the annual Going Places contest. Rafael is so excited that when the teacher asks who’d like to get their go-cart kit, he’s the first to raise his hand. But she tells the rest of his jealous classmates not to worry, she’s got enough kits for everyone in class… and they are all exactly the same. As soon as he can, Rafael reads the detailed instructions and starts putting together his go-cart. Maya, his classmate and next-door neighbor, hasn’t even started working on ...read more

Reviewed by Tina - Central on
January 23, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Biography by Neil Patrick Harris

Who doesn’t love Neil Patrick Harris? Okay, those who raised their hands, go sit in the corner and think about what you’ve done wrong in life. For the rest of you, boy, do I have a treat for you… It’s Neil Patrick Harris: Choose Your Own Autobiography!! Not your ordinary, everyday autobiography -- which, I have to say, is not my normal thing. Someone talking about ...read more

Reviewed by Tina - Central on
January 22, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Prodigal Summer by Barbara Kingsolver

Prodigal Summer isn’t Kingsolver’s latest, but I was interested in a summer read as a vacation from a cold Wisconsin winter, and it really worked. For anyone who’s already a Kingsolver fan, this book follows her usual welcome pattern with compelling narrative intertwined so expertly with political and environmental commentary that it’s difficult to tease the two apart. In Prodigal Summer we meet a solitary mountain-top park ranger with dueling passions that threaten her ...read more

Reviewed by Carra on
January 21, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of The Family Romanov: Murder, Rebellion & the Fall of Imperial Russia by Candace Fleming

Even though Tsar Nicholas II of Russia abdicated the throne, he and his family, along with their maid and family dog were executed in July of 1918 after living under house arrest for an extended period of time.  Fleming details the events that led up to that horrible day.  The excesses of the royal family and the great poverty endured by millions of Russian citizens brought about a revolution and unfortunately the Romanov family paid the price.   Fleming gives a very ...read more

Reviewed by Lesley K on
January 16, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Screwdrivered by Alice Clayton

Viv Franklin hardly knows what to think when she receives word that her reclusive aunt has left her with a Victorian mansion high on the cliffs above the Pacific. A successful software designer, Viv has happily settled into a life with her chrome-and-black-leather Philadelphia apartment, her overactive but loving family and above all, her obsession with bodice ripper romances. Nonetheless, the house in Mendocino has its charms—even if the stately Victorian she remembers, complete with stables ...read more

Reviewed by Katie H. on
January 13, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Tomboy: A Graphic Memoir by Liz Prince

Liz Prince was a tomboy when she was a kid and it was not easy for her. Boys and girls alternately picked on her or ostracized her. Adults didn't know what to make of her and there were a lot of rules that made things tough for her, like a school requirement that boys wear shirts and ties and girls wear dresses on certain school days.  This autobiographical graphic novel shares her story. It's a really important one. But it got me thinking about tomboys. I am wondering if today's world is ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
January 12, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Hooray For Hat by Brian Won

When Elephant wakes up on the wrong side of the bed one morning, he is in no mood to hear his doorbell ring.  But after stomping down the stairs, he is surprised by a beribboned box on his doorstep.  Inside he discovers a tower of hats.  “HOORAY FOR HAT!”  Then Elephant goes off to show his friends who each have their own case of the grumps, and who each cheer for the hat Elephant offers them.  With minimal text and deceptively simple yet fully expressive illustrations ...read more

Reviewed by Karen on
January 9, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of What If? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions by Randall Munroe

Have you ever wondered just what might happen if…you shot an arrow in space? Or what would happen if a thunderstorm dropped all of its rain in one single gigantic drop? Randall Munroe, author of the web comic xkcd and its spin off site What If? has both the time, knowledge and insanity sanity to pursue answers to the unlikely scenarios that faithful readers submit, digging down to the scientific details to reveal some ...read more

Reviewed by Katie H. on
January 8, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of Not That Kind of Girl: A Young Woman Tells You What She's "Learned" by Lena Dunham

Much has been written about this book already, and it's been on the New York Times Best Sellers list for several months. It seems as though everybody has an opinion about Lena Dunham, her HBO television series Girls and this book. Why read another review? Maybe you're already waiting for this book and I want to cement that choice for you. Maybe you are looking for post- ...read more

Reviewed by Molly - Central on
January 5, 2015 | 0 comments
A review of The adventures of Beekle : the unimaginary friend by Dan Santat

Beekle was born to be an imaginary friend, but no one has imagined him yet!  When Beekle courageously sets out for the real world, will he finally find the special friend of his dreams?  The Adventures of Beekle is a brilliant feast for eyes and hearts, but don't just try to imagine it--borrow it from your local library today! ...read more

Reviewed by Abby on
January 2, 2015 | 0 comments