Friday, March 30, 2012

Crossed - #2 of Matched by Ally Condie

For all the Hunger Games fans out there, here is another excellent dystopian society series full of well realized characters and thought provoking action. If Matched set the stage for Cassia, Ky and Xander, Crossed is a strong, compelling second act.  Told in alternating chapters from the point of view of Cassia and Ky, the story traces their attempts to reconnect since leaving the Society. Readers anxious for answers will get some but not others. The Carving and the Outer Provinces are finally reached. New characters enter the story pulling the action in surprising and unexpected ways.  The Rising, or Rebellion, has new light shed on it forcing the reader to question how and why individuals make the decisions they make. Well written, fast action in some spots, lyrical and slower in others, the pace mirrors the young protagonists struggling with their mixed emotions about their world and their places in it. The final installment, Reached, is tentatively due out in November. Be sure to visit the author's website at for a peak at the excellent cover for Reached as well as some interesting insights about the colors and titles of the cover art. Yes a books' cover does make a difference!

Cahills vs Vespers Book 2 - A King's Ransom

Jude Watson returns to write installment #2 in the "39 Clues" second series. Dan and Amy are back fighting for the lives of Cahill family members being kept prisoners for ransom by the mysterious Vesper One. This adventure takes you to Italy, Switzerland and the Czech Republic as the siblings track down Nazi stolen treasure and more information about the Madrigals side of the Cahill family.  Aided by the Massachusetts based family command center, Gideon, technology and quick wits combined with gutsy moves (not to mention some sizable amounts of cash) permit our heroes to escape harm or capture.  Hidden clues and coded messages are particularly tough in this installment but you always have the Internet based resources at Book #3 The Dead of Night is on order and Book #4 is due out in August. Keep enjoying the ride with multiple copies in the LTC found on the last rack of the PB towers!