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The votes are in! We are very excited to announce the names of the three finalists who received the most votes for their reviews. These winners will join the blogging team on the NG Kids DogEared Book Blog:

Bianca, 13, Delirium by Lauren Oliver

David, 12, Wings of Fire: The Dragonet Prophecy by Tui T. Sutherland

Luke, 12, Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

Thanks to everyone who sent in book reviews and to everyone who voted!


2012 "So You Wanna Be a DogEared Blogger" Finalist Reviews

Bianca, 13, Delirium by Lauren Oliver

Delirium, by Lauren Oliver, is filled with cureds, diseased, and invalids. In the future United States, a cure has been found for the most horrible, disgusting, dangerous disease ever known to mankind: Love. Until your eighteenth birthday, girls and boys are kept completely separate to protect the "uncureds" from catching the disease. Breaking the rules can result in being thrown into the Crypts, a mental prison, or death. The book follows Lena, a seventeen-year old girl, months away from her procedure. She's always followed her government's strict rules; until she meets Alex. What happens when she's forced to choose between love and safety?

I was absolutely stunned with the creativeness of this book. I love this book's crazy twist on reality because instead of love being the best thing in the world today, it's suddenly the worst in this book. My favorite character was Alex. I admired how determined and sacrificing he was. Part of the story that showed this was when he saved Lena from the Regulators at a party. He put himself in danger for someone he barely knew. I also loved Lena for not being a dainty girl that falls in love and has her heart broken easily. Despite everything that she had drilled into her head since birth, she realizes how wrong her government is. At the beginning of the book, I thought it was similar to Matched or Uglies. However, its twist on love really sets it apart from any book I've ever read.


Casey, 13, Savvy by Ingrid Law

Mississippi "Mibs" Beaumont wants nothing more in the world than to turn thirteen. She wants to wear her brand-new dress, eat a perfect birthday cake, and inherit her special power that she knows will be just as strong as her brothers'.

Although, this now seems far more difficult once her dad is in a crash that results in a coma. Not to mention a pastor's wife that can't help but take charge of the birthday party Mibs now wants canceled, and a crazy whim that leads to her stowing away on a large pink bus...along with her two brothers and both of the pastor's children. This flawed plan becomes even more so when the bus sets off in the direction opposite the hospital her dad lays bed-ridden in.

I have read Savvy four times and it hasn't lost its charm yet. This isn't an on-the-edge-of-your-seat kind of book, so I would recommend it to fantasy lovers who like something that's more about human emotions than action-packed adventures. I would also say that this book is more suited to those eleven upward, but after that there are no bounds. I'll probably be re-reading this book for the rest of my life.


David, 12, Wings of Fire: The Dragonet Prophecy by Tui T. Sutherland

Wings of Fire: The Dragonet Prophecy, by Tui T. Sutherland, is the first in a series titled Wings of Fire. It's such a spectacular book that you won't be able to stop thinking about the action! Clay is a mud dragon, nurtured in a cave with peacekeepers so that Clay and his friends can fulfill the prophecy and the end of the world. 6 years later, Clay and his friends escape the cave, but surviving outside is harder than they think! Other dragons are trying to capture Clay and his friends, also known as the Dragons of the Dragonet Prophecy, or murder them so that the war will continue.

This book amazed me so much! I couldn't get to sleep at night because of the vivid description of dragons. It was full of adventure, action, killing, and full of suspense. I'm not fond of killing books and murdering people, but actually this really didn't make me think of bad thoughts or bad dreams. My favorite protagonist was Clay, the MudWing dragon, because he chose to be the leader. I'm also a leading type, so he appeals to me. Clay also has powers like being fireproof and when he rolls in mud his wounds heal. I don't really like antagonists, but if I had to choose my favorite villain it would have to be Queen Scarlet, because she hoards a lot of gold in her castle. If you enjoy reading fantasy books with dragons you would love this book.


Grace, 10, My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George

If you're looking for a book full of adventure My Side of the Mountain is the right book for you. My Side of the Mountain is about a boy named Sam, who doesn't like his life in New York City. To him the only way to fix his problem is to run away, and he does. After he gets to the Catskills Mountains, Sam discovers that living in the wilderness isn't as easy as he thought it would be. While living in the Catskills, Sam learns how to hunt animals, make a fire with flint and steel, train a falcon, and make a home with natural resources. As Sam learns living in the wilderness doesn't come easy harsh storms threaten his home, and wild animals damage his food supply. As winter approaches, Sam thinks going back to New York would be the easiest thing to do. Then he remembers why he ran away and tells himself never to go back to New York. Once winter comes, Sam realizes that he likes winter the same as the summer, maybe even more. After his father and Bando, a man Sam found in the woods during summer, leave after Christmas Sam realizes that he misses having people around him. My favorite thing about Jean Craighead George's writing is how she shows the characters feelings. If you love this kind of book I'm sure that you'll love My Side of the Mountain.


Joi, 13, Wicked: Witch and Curse by Nancy Holder and Debbie Vigué

The book Wicked: Witch and Curse by Nancy Holder and Debbie Vigué, the two parents of a teenaged girl named Holly Cathers die in a tragic river-rafting accident. As a result of this, Holly moves into the house of her cousins, Amanda and Nicole.  Through terrible ways, the three girls begin to discover magic, and find out that they are the descendants from powerful line of historic French witches who were originally called the Cahors. But the enemies of the Cahors, the Deveraux warlocks, live on. A love story, similar to the cases of Romeo and Juliet arise as Jeraud, a Deveraux descendant falls hopelessly in love with Holly. But as the girls discover the magic within themselves, both literally and figuratively, a trail of death follows them as they are forced to risk the lives of their friends.

This is a very interesting book that kept me hooked. It switched back and forth between 16th century France and the modern day, following the lives of both Holly and her ancestor Isabel Cahors. I recommend this book to everybody that enjoys a story with eruptions of strong emotions, that capture the reader and make them feel as if they're a part of the characters' lives. This was an amazing book, and I plan to read the next book in the series soon.


Josie, 13, The Bronze Pen by Zilpha Keatley Snyder

When Audrey Abbot finds a "sinister" cave, magical things suddenly start happening. Inside the cave is a strange old woman, one who knows all Audrey's hopes and fears. The old woman gives Audrey a mysterious pen and warns her to use it wisely. As Audrey writes with the pen, some wild things start happening. One day, she can even speak to her Irish wolfhound, Beowulf, and her bad-tempered cockatiel, Sputnik. And the next, a baby dragon is living under her bed. Audrey knows she should tell somebody about these extraordinary things that keep happening, but she doubts herself whether they are real or if she is just imagining them. Would anybody believe her?

I really enjoyed this book. Not just because of its fun characters and imaginative ideas, but because I can relate to the main character. It is a very good book and would recommend it to anyone age 7 and up. I think writers everywhere can connect to Audrey and readers will enjoy its wild ideas.


Luke, 12, Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

Uglies, by Scott Westerfeld is a futuristic book where first you're ugly, then you aren't. In this book's world, there are those who are "uglies" and those who are "pretties." Unlike uglies, pretties have the fantastic life, and all they do is party and doze off. The main character is a teenage girl named Tally who is considered "ugly." In this story she will have to overcome many obstacles. She will have to choose between betraying her best friend, but turning "pretty," she can run away into the wild and be with her best friend, but never turn "pretty." The thing is, Tally's only 3 months from this life, when suddenly she is forced to choose! Will Tally figure out how to spare her friendship, but still end up pretty?

I love this genre because of the action and adventure included in the story. My overall favorite character was definitely Tally. Tally is a girl who craves to be "pretty," and also a girl who is not afraid to take risks. The villain who caught my eye was Dr. Cable. She is a pretty, but in a cruel way. She's the one who tries to convince Tally to betray her best friend. This book reminds me of The Hunger Games. They're both about teenage girls taking risks, and fighting for their lives. They both venture outside the city limits, which can result in cruel consequences. Both books have characters fighting against society to make the world right.


Sarah, 14, Cinder by Marissa Meyer

Marissa Meyer's Cinder is a fantastic sci-fi twist on the classic tale of Cinderella. Cinder is a cyborg, the best mechanic in New Beijing.  This fact brings Prince Kai to her booth to fix a mysterious android of his. However, she becomes preoccupied when her stepsister contracts a deadly disease. Now, she must uncover her past as she grows closer to Kai, and the threatening Moon Lunars decide to visit earth, and she still needs to fix that android!

I'm a sucker for stories that take fairy tales and dismantle them, rebuilding them with new twists, and Cinder takes the cake. My favorite character is Iko, who acts like a stereotypical teenage girl, even though she's a robot. Meyer demonstrates this incredibly well by having Iko fawning all over Prince Kai as she rolls around Cinder's mechanic booth. Queen Levana, my favorite villain, pulls off the "tainted beauty" characteristic wonderfully, and I liked the intricate balance between majestic ruler and cruel dictator. Cinder is one of the best books I have read. I'd recommend this to anyone who loves twisted fairy tales, such as books like The Sisters Grimm and The Looking Glass Wars, or TV shows like Grimm and Once Upon a Time.


Tessa, 9, Princess Academy by Shannon Hale

Are you looking for a book with friends, surprises, and bravery? You might want to consider Princess Academy, by Shannon Hale. This is not your average fairy-tale. It is an ever-changing story, weaved together by friendship. Miri, a small mountain girl, wants nothing more than to work in the linder quarry with her pa and village. However, when her mountain is chosen to be the home of the future princess, other dreams start to beckon. A princess academy is opened and Miri can't believe what worlds lie beyond her mountain. Is there room in her life for both worlds? This is a beautifully written book, with such amazing descriptions you can almost feel like you're there, breathing the mountain air with Miri. The author explored how once Miri got exposure to learning and books, she and her village could be changed for the better. I agree, because, once people have gone to school and learned things, they can get jobs and have better lives. This seems especially today, when so many people are arguing about how much money should be put into schools.

Will Miri be able to combine her two worlds? What happens to her? What dream does she follow? How will YOU feel about this book? Find out in Princess Academy, by Shannon Hale!


Walker, 13, Liar and Spy by Rebecca Stead

When I picked up Liar and Spy, I assumed that it would be a great book. Why? Because I have read many of Rebecca Stead's books, and they are excellent. Liar and Spy? Not so much.

Georges (yes, the s is silent) is a seventh grader living in Brooklyn, trying to cope with his family's move and his dad's loss of work. School isn't great for Georges either, with his ex-friend Justin becoming friends with Georges' enemy, Dallas.

Georges meets Safer, a loner his age, in his new apartment building. Georges enjoys hanging out with Safer's crazy family, and the two become fast friends.

That's when Safer starts sending Georges on a series of spy operations to find out what the highly mysterious Mr. X is up to. Safer's assignments for Georges start getting crazier and crazier.

While dealing with increasing problems at school, Georges starts to question Safer's spy missions. Why is finding out what Mr. X is up to so important? Why is Safer so dedicated to his task? How far will Safer--and Georges--go for these missions?

The ending of this book was kind of disappointing. I don't want to give too much away, but let the title speak for itself. Liar and Spy is an okay read on a boring day for ages 10 and up. I would recommend checking this book out of the library, like I did, instead of buying it.