Spark by Jill Shope Hackman, a review

Spark by Jill Shope Hackman, a review

Spark by J.M. Hackman tells the Christian fantasy tale of Brenna, a Pennsylvania schoolgirl just turning 16. Brenna discovers to her dismay that flames shoot from her fingertips when she’s angry. After she sets a school display on fire, causing the sprinkler system to...
His Gift by Joan C. Benson, a review

His Gift by Joan C. Benson, a review

His Gift by Joan C. Benson tells the inspirational story of a gifted teenage concert pianist. Molly has entered a competition sponsored by the Detroit Symphony in the fateful fall of 1929. Can she compete with all the other skilled young people? Might she even win?...
Freerunner by Kathy Cassel, a review

Freerunner by Kathy Cassel, a review

In this young-adult book, Kia, a shy biracial kid whose issues usually keep her hiding in the shadows, is just entering high school. When a cool new coach shows up, she decides to join the track team. Turns out she’s good at it, because she’s been working on the new...
Merlin’s Nightmare by Robert Treskillard, a review

Merlin’s Nightmare by Robert Treskillard, a review

Robert Treskillard concludes his terrific YA Merlin trilogy with this book, Merlin’s Nightmare (2014), leaving some threads open for starting a new work focused on Arthur.  I’m really enjoying Treskillard’s re-imagining of Merlin as a non-magician. Merlin is a...
Merlin’s Shadow by Robert Treskillard, a review

Merlin’s Shadow by Robert Treskillard, a review

I reviewed the first book in the series, Merlin’s Blade. This second book, Merlin’s Shadow (2013), like any middle book in a three-book series, leads us through some majors trials for the main characters.  Merlin finds himself fleeing the traitor Vortigern, who...
The Hate U Give movie, a review

The Hate U Give movie, a review

In the movie “The Hate U Give,” 16-year-old Starr is an African-American living in what she calls “the ‘hood,” a place called Garden Heights, while attending a nearly all-white high school. She lives in both worlds, trying to fit in both...