Divergent #3 vs. Allegiant


In this Teen Book Battle I’m comparing Divergent 3 (what could have been) with Allegiant (what actually happened.)

In my heart and mind I built up this notion of what I thought Allegiant was going to be. As the third and final volume of the Divergent series, I just knew it was going to be epic.

Tris and Four are two of the best literary characters I’ve ever encountered. They are fierce. They show good judgement in most situations. They care about justice and fair-treatment. They are afraid of things, but they resist being paralyzed with fear. Basically they are awesome. I have tremendous respect for Veronica Roth’s brain for developing such complicated and compelling characters.

I spent more time than I care to admit daydreaming about Tris and co. leaving the city to go on a quest to save the world in Divergent #3. And I guess there was a little of that, but it was not at all what I imagined.

Allegiant left me pretty broken hearted. I can’t really talk about it right now. Was it horrible? No, it might even be good. But it was so far from what I’d imagined that I’m still struggling to adapt to the new reality.

Is it horrible that I hope they change the ending when they make Allegiant the movie?

Until It Hurts to Stop

Maggie was tormented in junior high by the other girls, and even though she is now in high school. Her tormentors have moved on, even the ringleader Raleigh Barringer has moved away. However Maggie is still looking for attacks, checking under bathroom stalls, and bracing herself, for jokes and laughs.
Okay I was completely ready to not recommend this book. Maggie’s constant worrying about what happen to her in junior high was at times a little much. I mean couldn’t she see that she had friends who adored her, and especially Nick her adventurous hiking buddy. Who after kissing her wanted to be more than friends, and just maybe she wanted more too. Until Raleigh Barringer returns, and Maggie’s anxiety takes over, when will Raleigh strike again? Maggie was stuck in the events of junior high and she was drowning in it. Nick starts to date someone else and Sylvie has stopped talking to Maggie. It is happening all over again. Maggie has to find the courage to overcome her past before it destroys her future. I think this book is defiantly worth a read. Until It Hurts to Stop, takes you through the mind of someone who has been bullied and their struggles to overcome. I would have to say that this book is a draw for me. The subject was compelling but I found myself just wanting to get through it.

I am Number Four Series

The I am Number Four Series is about a group of aliens (the Loriens) who have come to Earth to fight off another group of evil aliens (the Mogadorians, or Mogs) who have already destroyed the planet Lorien and are now planning on taking over our planet.  There were originally ten Loriens sent to planet Earth, but three of them have been killed by the Mogs.  The Loriens all develop legacies as they age.  Legacies are kind of like super powers.  All of them have telekinesis (the ability to move objects with your mind) and super strength but they all have individual powers as well. Whose legacies would you want?

Number Four – He is immune to fire. In fact, if there is any source of flame around, he can pick it up and form fireballs to hurl in his bare hands.

Number Six – invisibility.  She can also make others invisible by holding their hands.  She is the physically strongest of the group.

Number Seven – She can heal pretty much any wound as long as the person is still breathing.  She can also breath underwater.

Number Eight – He can teleport over short distances.  And take others with him.  He is also a shape shifter.

Number Nine He has super strength. He has super hearing. He has super sight. And, he can run on the ceiling!

Number Ten – She can change her age at will.

[polldaddy poll=7498183]

TRUE STORY SKIRMISH: Learning Japanese with Manga

Let’s be honest with ourselves!! 

Who among you IS NOT IMPRESSED when you find out someone you know speaks a foreign language!?  For those of you that are in denial and/or are not impressed, learning a foreign language can be useful and entertaining (I enjoy being able to read the mistakes in Japanese language tattoos). The library has items to help you learn a foreign language.


Japanese in MangaLand by Marc Bernabe


This is the best self-taught study book I have seen.  The book is broken into lessons which are bite size pieces of Japanese for beginners.  There are writing practice areas in the book for the different writing styles (please DON’T write IN the book).  Manga examples are used as teaching tools to help readers connect the lesson with how Japanese is used in everyday life.  This book is Volume 1 in a series of more advanced levels.

Japanese the Manga Way  by Wayne P. Lammers

This book is a guide to grammar & structure.  So, if you already know Japanese and need to know more about the mechanics of using sentence structure and grammar points, then this if the book for you.  In my opinion, this in not the best book for a beginner to use to learn the language but in the introduction of the book, the author provides a quick and basic overview of the Japanese language.   One thing I loved about this book is that it provides the titles of the mangas it uses, just in case I want to find and read it. (I’m keeping a list of the titles I want).


Both books are excellent, it just depends on what you want.  If you are a beginner go for Japanese in MangaLand, but if know some Japanese and need clarification on grammar and structure go for Japanese the Manga Way.

I Spy vs. Where’s Waldo


Before Pinterest, and other time-wasting technological marvels there were books designed to keep your eyes glued to the page in search of that special something. Perhaps the most famous of these hide-and-seek style books are the I Spy and Where’s Waldo titles. In a completely unscientific poll available on FAN IQ 82% of the voters said they would pass on the love of Where’s Waldo and I Spy to their future children. Today Dear Reader, I’m highlighting these books just for you!

In I Spy the reader is invited to engage with each page by hunting down a list of items. The pages are full or bright and colorful photographs with eye-catching items piled together haphazardly.

In Where’s Waldo, the reader is invited to engage with each page by hunting down Waldo as he hides in illustrations. Waldo is that guy with the striped red sweater, the glasses and the funny little bobble head. Waldo has many imposters and as the series progressed he gained a crew of friends you can hunt down too.

These are both great books to keep younger kids quiet. They are challenging and only occasionally frustrating. I read both as a child, teen and adult… my overall favorite is Waldo. Plus, Where’s Waldo appeared on a banned books list, and that makes him a rebel. He might have been my first book crush. Is anyone with me on this?