It’s Teen Read Week! Teen Read Week is a national literacy initiative to encourage teens to read for the fun of it. To celebrate here on Book News & Reviews, throughout the week we will be posting guest reviews contributed by local teens. Plus, we will soon be announcing the latest updates to our Ultimate Teen Booklist! To kick us off, tonight we have three honest (sometimes painfully honest!) reviews of recent releases from three different teens. Thanks to all of our guest reviewers for sharing!

Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee
Reviewer: C.W., Age 16
C.W.’s Rating:
3.5/5 Stars
Genre: Historical Fiction
Audience: Adult/YA Crossover
Series: Companion novel to To Kill a Mockingbird

Summary: When a now adult Scout returns to Maycomb, Alabama twenty years after the trial of Tom Robinson, she struggles with her own personal beliefs and the prevailing opinions of her hometown in the midst of the political upheaval of the mid-1950s.

C.W.’s Review: I didn’t like this as much as To Kill a Mockingbird, but it was still good. It was kind of a good history lesson, and it shows some ways we have changed in society and a lot of ways we haven’t. I think that Atticus’s character changed too much between the two. He was open-minded and against racism in To Kill a Mockingbird, but he changed and I didn’t see him as the same person. What I do think was done well was that the author was able to warn readers about placing people too high on a pedestal.

The Rule of Three by Eric Walters
Reviewer: Samantha, Age 16
Samantha’s Rating: 2/5 Stars
Genre: Science Fiction/Apocalyptic Fiction
Audience: Teen/Young Adult
Series: Rule of Three Trilogy #1

Summary: Civilization quickly begins to crumble following a sudden global technology crash. Sixteen-year-old Adam is stunned by the local chaos, but with the guidance of his police-captain mom and his neighbor—a retired government spy—Adam is determined to do whatever is necessary to survive and rebuild civilization.

Samantha’s Review: This wasn’t too great a read. I had trouble making myself read it, because in parts, it droned on. And on. And on. It was a pretty good set up for the storyline, when Adam realized that something was wrong besides the cell phones not working all of a sudden. But, it didn’t seem very realistic that his mom was the Police Captain and his neighbor used to be a spy. Adam didn’t stand out as a very strong character. It was almost written like he was a bystander in his own life, but then the author made it seem like he was responsible for bigger things all of a sudden.

Minders by Michele Jaffe

Reviewer: Ashleigh, Age 16
Ashleigh’s Rating:
4.5/5 Stars
Genre: Science Fiction/Thriller
Audience: Teen/Young Adult

Summary: Sixteen-year-old Sadie is a privileged overachiever destined for success. But when she joins the elite Mind Corps Fellowship program as an observer monitoring the inner thoughts of an unsuspecting teenage boy, she finds herself falling for a troubled, possibly homicidal boy she has never met.

Ashleigh’s Review: I loved it! There was romance, crime, murder, peer pressure, and a thriller.

I like the idea of a teen mind-reader. And Sadie was so quick to fall for the bad boy, which happens a lot in real life. Then she finds out he might have committed a crime and wonders if she should turn him in to the police. It was kind of scary to think that she had to decide whether or not to turn him in, since the crime was so big, but I know girls who probably wouldn’t do it. I like the way the author describes what Sadie is seeing while in Ford’s mind—especially about the colors coming together into pictures. And the twist is awesome!
Source: Book News and Reviews