Tuesday, October 29, 2013

The Buddha in the Attic
By Julia Otsuka

4 out of 5

This is the story of the lives of several Japanese women as they grow up, move to America, get married, and realize that the American Dream is not all that it is cracked up to be.

I really liked this book. It was such an enlightening story and it was an amazing journey that I got to take with these young women. While the story is told through the view point of several Japanese women, no one person ever has their own point of view. They always said we, or some of us, and I think that this is really enlightening. For their whole lives, these women were taught to think of others, and not themselves. These women never thought of themselves so much, that they didn't even think of themselves as individual people, just as a group of women who have experienced the same things. I loved the story, and it is such a different view of the story of Japanese women growing up during the time that they did. Incredible.

Monday, October 14, 2013

The Name of the Star
By Maureen Johnson

3.5 out of 5

Rory is a Louisiana girl who, due to parents work transfers, is now going to school in London, England. Rory is a complete outsider, but she soon befriends her roommate Jazza, and the cute prefect Jerome. And then the murders start. Exact replicas to the Jack the Ripper murders, but it couldn't be Jack, could it? After a severe choking experience, Rory starts seeing people no one else can: ghosts. Is it possible that Jack the Ripper's ghost is on the prowl and recreating his own killings? And if he is, how do you kill a ghost?

Really good and really interesting. I didn't really know what was going on until about half way through the book, but I feel like in a good ghost story, you're not supposed to know what is going on. I liked all the characters, especially Jazza and Jerome, and it made me really interested in the story of Jack the Ripper. Being American, the story of Jack the Ripper is not as well known as it is in England, so it was cool to read about something unfamiliar. Also, I felt that I could relate to the book because like Rory, I am also living at school, away from everything I have ever known. I understood Rory's reservations and nervousness, and I liked the way she dealt with it and put herself out there. All in all, a very cool book, with suspense, and moments of humor, and a little bit of teenage snogging. It did seem to end on a bit of an abrupt note, so I am wondering if it could become a series, or if a sequel is planned.