The True Blue Scouts of Sugar Man Swamp, by Kathi Appelt

th (16)My cousins gave this to me as a present last year and I am very happy to finally read and review it. I loved this book so much. 

OMG the raccoons are so adorable!!! They are to cute for words!!!! I love them so much!!!! *runs around room screaming* Calm down Annalee. Remember breathing exercises. In and out, in and out. There we go, I am all better now. I love those racoons. To much. They are so  adorable. They are so smart and sweet and caring!!! The racoons are my favorite characters in the book.

All of the characters are very good. The author impresses with how quickly the book moved along. I was very pleased with the world building as well. Everything coexisted very happily. The villains were horrible, like villains were supposed to be. This book was perfect in every way. It is why I wanted to become a book blogger in the first place. Why are more people not reading this book?

What I liked most about this book was the multiple character view points. So authors do this horribly but Appelt did it wonderfully. I was very happy with the results. I think that the racoons were portrayed the best. Appelt also added little bits of humor through the book. But, while doing this she also talk about how deforestation was bad. If I had just read a book that said that deforestation was bad I probably would have DNFed it. 

I think that everyone should read this book. It teaches everyone a lesson and you learn to respect animals because they think too. And for BookPrincess they have a Texas version of Sasquatch, the Sugar Man. But to learn more about him you have to read the book. 

The villains were horrible. I thought that it was best if they were dead. I think that this is the best punishment for them. There were two of them. A boy and a girl. Two people that I hate. A lot. Every day of my life I will hate them. Even in my death I will hate them. I am glad that I have found a villain that I have hated. 

This book is perfect. It makes me happy to even think about it. 

Book Rating:

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Thanks for Reading!!!!!! Have a Great Day!!!! -annaleeliz and Buttons

Gregor and the Code of Claw, by Suzanne Collins

download (10)*This is my first time trying one of these type of posts so hang with me. And please, please, pretty please tell me how I did in the comments bar. I hope that I do well on this.*

So I know that a book bloggers job is to promote books. But I like to find random books in the bookstore and read and rate those too. That is how I found my nice Gregor the Overlander series. I read it last year but I didn’t have a book blog to share my views. So now I am rereading the series and reviewing it now. This book was much better to read then all the books before it. That made me very happy. 

What I loved the most about this book was that it showed that things could change. This series could have been way worse. You see that when you realize that the author could have dragged on the fight scenes for another hundred pages or so like they do in some books. The author has done a brilliant job keeping the fight scenes contained just like she did well with everything else in this book. I was captivated and instead of watching the baseball game that I was at, I was reading this book.

The elements of death and doom for Gregor are there, but they are more like background music then the leading part. I loved how the author put so much skittishness into the book while still keeping the story moving. That was how I got entranced. I loved it so much!!!!!!!!!!!!! I even sort of loved the Bane. Except, not really. Oh, the love for that book!!!!!*sighs in happiness* How can you not love one of the characters in this story??? How can you not cry when one dies????? (Or you think that they died) 

I do need to talk about the villain of the story for a moment, the Bane. The Bane!!!! That poor demented rat!!!! He had problems. Mental problems. So in a fit of anger he chopped of his friend’s head. And then he rubbed his eyes a few times and forgot that he had even done it. Oh Bane!!!!!

Everything about Gregor and the Code of Claw was suspenseful. It got your blood pumping and your heart racing as you went around the corner, not sure of what you’ll find. That is one of the main reasons why I enjoy this book. Sometimes the book did go a little slowly but I was able together through that very quickly and I was to interested in the world and characters to care that much.

Another problem that I had with this book is that it is to gory. This book is meant for ten year olds so you do not have to say that there were so many dead that the soldiers were walking on a field of corpses. That is to scary!!! If I was ten I would be having nightmares. That is pretty much my only problem with the book.

Gregor and the Code of Claw is definitely thew best book in the Gregor the Overlander series. I think that this is a book that is going on my favorites shelf. Book rating:

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Series rating: 

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Thanks for Reading!!!! Have a Great Day!!! -annaleeliz and Buttons

Gregor and the Marks of Secret, by Suzanne Collins

th (13)Gregor is back in the Underland for a visit to his mom and a party. A party for Hazard. Then Gregor’s mom let’s them sleep over. It is all well and good until Luca decides that they need to go and find the mice. They find all that they need to know and try to get back to Regalia but some problems stop them. They have to go through Hades Hall. Hades Hall is like a death trap. You will probably die when you go through it. During the trip through Hades Hall they find out more about the mice’s fate. The adventurers are shaken by what they find and resolve to save the mice. Everyone decides that the best way to do it is to go get some of the army to help them. But going into Hades Hall leaves no one unscathed…

What I Liked
  • The Stingers: At first you think that the Stingers will try to kill Gregor and his friends. They do try to do that. Then you realize that you misjudge them. I think that the Stingers are some of my favorite characters in this book.
  • Thalia: Thalia is adorable. She acts like my little sister. I love her so much. I was happy that there was finally a funny bat. None of the bats are funny. Only Thalia.
  • The Passageway: The Passageway made me happy. We have stuff like that in my house too. You know the Underground Railroad stuff. It is really fun to find it. 
  • Lizzie: You don’t hear that much about Lizzie in the series but she is super nice to Ripred in the beginning of the book. I would not give a starving Ripred food. 
  • Ripred’s idea: Ripred finally has a good idea. With Gregor’s help. The time is rip to kill the Bane…
What I Disliked
  • The Hidden Prophecy: The Hidden Prophecy was just sad. The questers should have discovered the prophecy earlier. But they did only after two thirds of it had been fulfilled. That made me sad.
  • The Way the Mice Died: Suzanne Collins tried her best on the mice’s death. But she ended somewhat copying the Nazis. They used poison gas on the Jewish, the rats used poison gas on the mice.
  • Thalia’s Death: I get that Thalia had to die. I understand that. But it did not have to happen that way. When the other bats saw that she was hurting they should have gone in and helped her.
  • The Prophecy Dance: So before everyone realized that the song was a prophecy they had this dance to go with the song. The dance is horrible. The moves that the people did were just barbaric.
  • The Way the Questers Treated the Stingers: The questers treated the stingers horribly in the beginning. The just started trying to kill them without seeing if the stingers wanted to kill them. And then halfway through the battle Hazard, who is six, calls for them to stop because the stingers don’t want to hurt them.

There were some parts where I was ashamed for my race.  I was very embarrassed. But then there were other parts where I was glad that I was a human. Sometimes the humans were called killers, because they killed other species. This book was OK. Four Stars. Thanks for Reading!!!! Have a Great Day!!!!! -annaleeliz and Buttons

Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods, by Suzanne Collins

download (9)Gregor is back to leading a normal life now, mostly. But then it all changes. Apparently, the Prophecy of Blood is upon the Under landers. The Prophecy of Blood is a plague that no one knows the cure for. Gregor has to go down there for a meeting, or else. Gregor goes to the meeting and his mom gets the plague. So Gregor decides to go on an another quest. This time to find the plague cure. Gregor meets many new friends and makes some new enemies. The quest leads through a jungle to the Vineyard of Eyes. The Vineyard of Eyes, that sounds really creepy to me. Like, really creepy. In this Vineyard of Eyes there is this plant called Starshade. Gregor and his friends think that this is the only cure for plague. So Gregor and his friends set out to find this plant. But will they all make it out alive?

What I Liked
  • Nike: Nike is a princess but she isn’t stuck up about it. Like some people are. She cared for everyone on the trip. I was pleased to find another strong princess.
  • Frill: Frill is the first creature of her kind that we hear of in the series. She (I think it is a she) loves Hamnet and Hazard like they are her children. I really love it when an animal of one species adopts one animal of another species.
  • Hamnet: Hamnet is amazing!!!!! First, he lives in the jungle for ten years. Then he has a child in the jungle and manages to raise him, healthy and happy. I am impressed with this guy’s strength.
  • Hazard: Hazard reminds me of one of those children who is raised in both English and Spanish. He knows his own language, and then he knows many creature languages as well.
  • The Jungle: The Jungle has such a mystic effect to it. It sounds a bit scary but I like it that way. I think that I would like to be like Hamnet and live in this jungle.
What I Disliked
  • Solovet: Solovet is a butt head. I hate her. Like I really hate her. I hope that she dies in the next two books. The things that she does in this book are monstrous.
  • The Plague: The Plague sounds like it is a copy of other plagues from other books joined together. It just doesn’t sound very realistic to me. 
  • Gregor’s Mom: Gregor’s mom is not the nicest of people. But you can tell that she cares for Gregor and Boots. To the Underlanders she is just rude. I mean, the author did not need to make Gregor’s mother so mean to the Underlanders.
  • The Vineyard of Eyeballs: Some people may like the idea of reading about eyeballs staring out of plants at them. I hate this. It is to creepy. I would not give this to someone who gets scared easily. 
  • Third Person: This could have been way better in first person. From Gregor’s perspective. Not a lot better but a little bit better. Gregor would be able to add more feelings to the book.

Gregor and the Curse of the Warmbloods is okay. I am not sure about this book. If I was Book Princess I would give this book an Elsa rating. But I think that I need to be me and not copy Book Princess. I do think that I enjoyed this book that much. Three Stars. Thanks for Reading!!!! Have a Great Day!!!! -annaleeliz and Buttons

Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane, by Suzanne Collins

download (8)_1A few months have passed since Gregor was in the Underland. He is still thinking of it, though. Gregor’s father is still doing well. He gets fever and chills. Everyone thinks that he has a lasting illness. Boots is happy and excited, she still misses Tick though. When Boots gets captured by the cockroaches, Gregor follows them into the Underland. I do not think that I would be following giant cockroaches into the Underland. I do not think that you would be either. As soon as Gregor lands in the Underland he is loaded with another quest. This time he has to kill a giant white rat called the Bane. Or so everyone thinks. He takes Boots with him. A bad decision. Everyone thinks that Boots might die. I love Boots so I got scared. Can Gregor successfully kill the Bane? And will Boots survive?

What I Liked
  • Mrs. Cormaci: Mrs. Cormaci is not mentioned a lot, but when she is you can tell what a sweet person she is. All she wants to do is take care of Gregor’s family. At first you think that she will bug Gregor about where his dad was but then you realize that she really cares.
  • Ares: Ares is amazing. I want him so much. He is a bat. But he is a giant, strong, and awesome bat. I love him so much that I am going mad with love. He is not even human. I love Ares so much.
  • The Twist: I was not expecting the twist!!!!! I never even saw it coming!!!!! I was shocked!!!!!
  • Mareth: Mareth was so nice!!!!! I was overjoyed to realize that he actually cared for Gregor!!!!! I love him so much!!!!
  • Howard: Howard is amazing!!!!! At first you think that he is like his bratty sister. But he turns out to be really nice and caring!!!
What I Disliked
  • The Fireflies: The fireflies are pigs. They eat to much, argue to much, and do not do their job. I think that I could have ended up really hating them but the author did not do a good job on them. They seemed half done.
  • The Island: So I get that the author added the island to add a scary element but I did not get it. I think that it would have been better if the island was not there at all. 
  • The Serpents: The serpents were the exact definition of sad. To me, it sounded like the author had taken dinosaurs, flattened them out, and gave them flippers. It would have been much more exciting to see a new kind of sea monster. 
  • The Bane: The Bane was nothing like I expected it to be!!!!! It was just sad. I was expecting this ten foot white rat!!!! Nope!!! Can’t have that apparently.
  • Queen Nerissa: Nerissa should not be queen. It is just not right. I like Nerissa. But she should not be queen.

So, Gregor and the Prophecy of Bane is amazing. Most of the flaws in it are not that big. I think that I would have liked it a bit more if some of the things that I didn’t like were more developed. Gregor and Boots were once again my favorite characters. I enjoyed reading this book!!! Four Stars. Thanks for Reading!!!!!! Have a Great Day!!!! -annaleeliz and Buttons

Gregor the Overlander, by Suzanne Collins

download (7)Gregor lives a normal life. During the summer, he has to watch his two year old sister, called Boots, while his other younger sister, called Lizzie, gets to go to camp. Gregor is eleven. It has been this way since Gregor’s dad went missing. Two years, seven months, and thirteen days ago. No instead of being middle class, Gregor’s family is poor. Somehow, Boots discovered a portal to the Underland. And went through it. So Gregor has to go through the portal as well now. When Gregor lands in the Underland, he finds many amazing things. Everything talks. And I do mean everything. Apparently, Gregor is the mysterious warrior in this Prophecy of Gray. Or whatever. And the Underlanders have told him that his father is down here too. But captive of the rats. So Gregor decides to go rescue his father. But the question is: Can Gregor succeed?

What I Liked
  • Gregor: Gregor was just an awesome person. I loved him. He just cared about others so much. Gregor also impressed me with how much he matures in the book. I always hope that a character matures a little bit in a book. 
  • Boots: Boots was adorable!!!! She could not speak proper sentences yet, but she was still really cute. Everyone wanted Boots to love them. She respected everyone and made sure that everyone was treated equally on the trip. I really loved Boots.
  • Vikus: No matter how uncomfortable Gregor was Vikus always explained it to him. It was really nice of him. If I had landed in the Underland I would want Vikus to guide me. He also told the best stories. 
What I Disliked
  • Henry: At first I thought that Henry was a nice guy. That he cared about Gregor, Boots, and Luxa. But he didn’t. He liked the rats more. He was a backstabbing little traitor. I was glad when he died.
  • How Short This Book Was: This was to short. All the information was crammed together. I think that a hundred more pages would have been great.

Gregor the Overlander was pretty good. There were some places where I didn’t like the book. But those are behind me now. I think that everyone should read this book. It is really fun. Four Stars. Thanks for Reading!!!! Have a Great Day!!!! -annaleeliz and Buttons

The Sandcastle Empire, by Kayla Olson

download (6)Eden used to live the perfect life. Ice cream, sunrises by the beach, air conditioning, and friends. Then the Wolfpack came. They took everything. So Eden decides to escape. On a green frilly sailboat, with four other people, to go to a place that may or may not exist called Sanctuary Island. It apparently is some kind of amnesty island. Where if you go there they will be kind and give you food. Clothes. Pure Water. All the things that you never get when you live with the Wolfpack. When they land on Sanctuary Island nothing is as it seems. With her new friends, she explores Sanctuary Island. What they find is frightening to the fullest. Nothing on Sanctuary Island is as it should be. In fact it is as if the island itself is alive, and trying to kill Eden and her friends. Eden learns secrets and also learns that some secrets are better left untouched. 

What I Liked
  • Eden: Eden is just a likeable character to me. I enjoy her optimism and the hope that she has for everything to turn out all right. And the ship with Lonan. It is so sweet!!!!!! I loved it so much.
  • Lonan: Lonan does not seem so nice in the beginning of the book, but then you get to learn more about him and you think, Oh that poor child. Lonan is quite nice, but sad. Very, very sad. 
  • The Island:  The Island was not supposed to be nice or happy. It was not supposed to be filled with birds and butterflies either. I liked it the way that it was just fine. I liked that the wilderness was not always nice.
What I Disliked
  • Eden’s Dad: Eden’s Dad was a jerk. You don’t just leave your daughter in the barracks and tell her that you are dead. Not cool. That shows what a bad parent you are. And then you turn your daughter into a spy. Bad parent.
  • Cass: Cass is just mean. I mean I get that your girlfriend is a Wolf, but she said sorry and you still treat her like crap. Not cool. What is his problem?

I loved this book, except for it’s challenges. I loved Eden, Lonan, and Alexa. I would recommend this to every YA fan. Four Stars. Thanks for Reading!!!! I missed you!!! Have a Great Day!!! -annaleeliz and Buttons