Tag Archives: Young Adult

Book Review: “Weird War 2”

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Book ReviewsWWII – “Wierd War 2” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Richard Denham. Mr. Denham has published seven books.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains some scenes of Violence. The book is a collection of short (one to two page) non-fiction stories about World War II.

I spent an interesting 5 hours reading this 176-page book of strange non-fiction tales. I was hoping for more of the unusual. Unfortunately, I had heard most of the stories collected in this book before. This might be a good book for someone just getting interested in that period, particularly for a young adult because of the short story structure. The cover art is a good choice for this book. I give this book a 3.4 (rounded down to a 3) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).


If you are a student of the World War II era in history, you may find my pages “World War II Sources” (a collection of museums, websites, Facebook pages, and Twitter feeds with information on the World War II era in history) and “World War II Timeline” of interest.

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Book Review: “The Cheerleaders”

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Book Reviews – “The Cheerleaders” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Kara Thomas (https://karathomasbooks.wordpress.com). Ms. Thomas has published six novels.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Language. The story is set in a contemporary suburban US community. The primary character is 17-year-old Monica Rayburn. She is on her High School competitive dance team. She probably would have been a cheerleader, but they don’t have cheerleaders at her school. At least not anymore, not for the last five years.

Five years ago two cheerleaders died in an auto accident, then two more were murdered. A fifth, Rayburn’s sister, committed suicide. All dead within three weeks. They had a suspect for the murders, but he was killed resisting arrest. Now Rayburn begins to question her sister’s suicide. She is seeing evidence that maybe the man resisting arrest wasn’t the killer after all.

She gets hints at what happened five years ago from a strange neighborhood boy. She hears other things from her stepfather, a cop, and the man who shot and killed the murder suspect. Then there are the things that she hears from people who were close to the dead girls. The more she finds out, the more she questions the official story.

I thoroughly enjoyed the near 7 hours I spent reading this 384-page young adult mystery. I liked the characters created for this novel and the convoluted plot. This is a bit of a dark story, but I liked it. I also liked the plot twist at the end of the novel. The cover art is OK, but I think a better image could have been chosen. I give this novel a 4.5 (rounded up to a 5) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Book Review: “Lakes of Mars”

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Book Reviews – “Lakes of Mars” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Merritt Graves. Mr. Graves has published two novels.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘R’ because it contains scenes of Violence and Mature Language. The story is set in the future. Mars and other locations in the Solar System have been colonized. The primary character is 17-year-old Aaron Sheridan.

Sheridan has joined the Fleet after a crash killed his family while he was piloting their shuttle. He had hoped to be assigned to the war out on the Rim and die. Unexpectedly he is assigned to Corinth Station, the premier Fleet academy run by the United Fleet of Mars.  The academy is nothing like he had expected. Life there is brutal and cutthroat. The young officers in training learn more through survival than from their instructors.

The cadets are broken into different groups and there is a battle going on between groups. Sheridan gets drawn into this and finds that it is not clear which side he should be on. Sheridan just tries to survive, then he meets the brilliant Eve. He dedicates most of his time to help her research a cure for her brother.

Before long though he and some of the other students begin to suspect that the United Fleet of Mars is hiding something at Corinth Station. The more they investigate, the stronger they feel that they have to do something.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 13.5 hours I spent reading this young adult science fiction novel. There is action and a touch of romance in the book. I liked the overall plot, but I am not a fan of the Sheridan character. I understand having a flawed hero, but to me, he has a few too many flaws. The cover art is OK, though I think something closer to the plot line would have been better. I give this novel a 4 out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Review of “Eye of the Ninja”

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Book Reviews -“Eye of the Ninja” eBook was published in 2015 and was written by D.M. Marlowe (http://www.dmmarlowe.com). Ms. Marlowe has published three novels in her “Eye of the Ninja Chronicles” series. This is the first novel in the series.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is set in the near future. Earthquakes and other disasters have claimed the ‘ring of fire’ around the Pacific leaving Japan devastated.

The primary character in the story is young Mei Barrett. She has been raised by her father and trained in the Ninja arts. When he is killed she spends four years in hiding. She suffers from a mutation of her eyes that draw attention to her where ever she goes. She must avoid any attention if she is to continue to avoid the wind demon that killed her father.

She finds that there are others that are fighting the demons. Others that knew her mother and father. Others that may become the friends, the allies, and the family that she has been missing.

I enjoyed the 8+ hours I spent reading this 277 page young adult fantasy. There is a lot of Japanese cultures embedded in this novel. I also felt that it was a little disjointed, particularly in the beginning. It also seemed to end more abruptly than it needed to. It is a mixture of martial arts and the supernatural. I do like the cover art. I give this novel a 3.8 (rounded up to a 4) out of 5.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Episode #5 of “Sage Alexander: The Dark Realm”

If you have not seen the four prior episodes, you should begin viewing with Episode #1.

Short Films– The fifth short (12:59) episode, “Sacrifice”, of the Sage Alexander prequel “The Dark Realm” was uploaded to YouTube by TigerBeat TV on August 10. The synopsis:

In this final chapter, all those trapped inside the Dark Realm face more difficulties as they try to escape. While Malcolm and Gavin mourn the loss of their friend, Chelsea finally reveals to Adelaide why they must stick together. What could it be? And will Sage succeed in saving the imprisoned girls, or will he change the course of history forever?

 

Episode #4 of “Sage Alexander: The Dark Realm”

If you have not seen the three prior episodes, you should begin viewing with Episode #1.

Short Films– The fourth short (9:00) episode, “They Are Coming”, of the Sage Alexander prequel “The Dark Realm” was uploaded to YouTube by TigerBeat TV on August 3. The synopsis:

Sage is faced with a dilemma: should he help the young imprisoned girls or obey his grandfather’s orders to not risk changing the future? In the meantime, Malcolm, Gavin and Navarro learn the mysteries of The Dark Realm from Oddvar, but will they be able to keep their cool in order to escape? And have they lost Chelsea and Adelaide forever?

 

Episode #3 of “Sage Alexander: The Dark Realm”

If you have not seen either of the two prior episodes, you should begin viewing with Episode #1.

Short Films– The third short (13:53) episode of the Sage Alexander prequel “The Rooms are Alive” was uploaded to YouTube by TigerBeat TV on July 27. The synopsis:

Sage enters the Dark Realm with strict orders not to alter the past — and possibly the future — by interfering with what he may witness in there. In the meantime, the five other young warriors get further lured into the Dark Realm and meet a surprising face. Can they work together to find a way out? Will Sage play it safe or risk the future when he hears desperate calls for help?

View episode #4

Episode #2 of “Sage Alexander: The Dark Realm”

If you haven’t seen it already, start viewing with episode #1 before you watch this episode.

Short Films – The second short (10:47) episode of the Sage Alexander prequel “Are We All Going to Die?” was uploaded to YouTube by TigerBeat TVon July 20. I do think this one was better than the first. I am glad that friend Ashlea Rae has a larger role in this episode. The synopsis:

Sage still feels unprepared to enter the Dark Realm, so grandpa Alexander begins to memory share with him. He continues to recount the story of the young warriors who set out to find a portal to the Dark Realm… Will they find it? And will Sage finally feel ready to enter it himself?

View Episode #3

Review of “Ruthless Magic”

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Book Reviews – “Ruthless Magic” eBook was published in 2018 and was written by Megan Crewe (http://www.megancrewe.com). Ms. Crewe has published eleven novels. This is the first in her “Conspiracy of Magic” series.

I received an ARC of this novel through https://www.netgalley.com in return for a fair and honest review. I categorize this novel as ‘PG’ because it contains scenes of Violence. The story is set on an Earth where magic has been real but hidden from the general public until recently. Now each year the North American Confederation of Mages assesses every sixteen-year-old who has a magic ability. Some of these are ‘chosen’ while the rest have their magical abilities destroyed. The only other option is to take the Mages’ Exam.

The two main characters are Rocío Lopez and Finn Lockwood. Lopez has dedicated herself to excelling in magic, but because of her low socio-economic standing, she is not ‘chosen’. In a desperate attempt to retain her magical abilities and advance in society, she chooses to take the Mages’ Exam. Lockwood has shown only mediocre ability but is ‘chosen’ because of his family. Feeling ashamed, he chooses to take the Mages’ Exam to prove his worth.

They and a group of others taking the Exam are put through a series of grueling and dangerous tests. Lopez and Lockwood become allies to survive. That evolves into a romantic feeling for one another. The challenge they have is to survive the tests.

I thoroughly enjoyed the 9 hours I spent reading this 350 page young adult fantasy. I liked the characters and the plot. I have read two other novels by Ms. Crewe and have liked them as well, though of the three I think this is her best. The cover art is OK. I give this novel a 4.5 (rounded up to a 5) out of 5.

Further book reviews I have written can be accessed at https://johnpurvis.wordpress.com/blog/.

My book reviews are also published on Goodreads (https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/31181778-john-purvis).

Sage Alexander: The Dark Realm

Short Films – The short (10:41) first episode of the series “Sage Alexander: The Dark Realm” was released July 14 on the TigerBeat TV YouTube channel. This six-episode video series is based on the Young Adult “Sage Alexander” series of books written by Steve Copling. I haven’t read any of the books in the series myself, but a granddaughter has and says it was very good. That seems to be a common consensus as the book is rated 5/5 on Amazon and nearly as well on Goodreads for both books in the series. The synopsis for the video series:

All of Sage Alexander’s training with his guardian angel Leah has lead to this moment, but is he actually ready to enter the Dark Realm on his own? Meanwhile, five more young warriors-in-training discover a portal into the Dark Realm… 200 years earlier. Will this truly be one last adventure?

The video series certainly looks promising. The few special effects shown in the first episode are reasonable. In addition to this just looking like a good story, I have the added incentive for it to be successful and picked up as a series – I know one of the young actors, Ashlea Rae.

See episode #2