Josh and Emma have been neighbors and best friends for as long as they can remember, until a few months ago. Misunderstandings (and Emma’s boyfriend) have strained their relationship. However, when Emma gets a new computer and Josh’s mom sends him over with their free CD-rom of AOL minutes, Josh and Emma are pulled into the mystery of Facebook. The first time Emma logs into the internet, she finds a strange site called Facebook. The problem is the year is 1996 and Facebook hasn’t been invented.
Emma and Josh find themselves looking at their Facebook accounts fifteen years in the future. The strangest part is their daily events and decisions seem to be constantly altering their future. While Josh is pleased with his future life, Emma finds herself constantly miserable. Together they learn that focusing on the present and making the best of your current situation is the best way to influence your future.
This is a light read about teenage stupidity and stresses, but it does provide deeper life lessons. Both characters learn about the importance of current decisions and the value of focusing on the good of everyday life. They also learn the value of friendship and putting others needs before your own. Different than the books I usually pick, I found the story engaging with some good life lessons in spite of the teen drama focus.
Recommended for ages—13 and up
I generally avoid science fiction out of personal preference, but I am trying to give each type of book a chance. A Confusion of Princes is an intriguing story with compelling psychological questions and without the over abundance of futuristic technology that weighs so many science fiction novels down. It is a great read for science fiction lovers and a good read for others. None of the content is inappropriate, but I recommend it for older readers because of the depth of the psychological questions raised.
Prince Khemri is a privileged member of an intergalactic empire ruled by a group of princes endowed with superhuman abilities and the chance for infinite regeneration or resurrection. However, he soon learns his position is one of constant competition, intrigue, and threat of assassination. The Princes may feel they are in charge, but they are being controlled by a higher mind.
At the insistence of this higher mind, Khemri is stripped of his superhuman abilities and sent to experience life in a colony of mere humans. In this situation, Khemri begins to see the value of individuals and question his view of the Empire and of himself. Although Khemri’s struggle is placed against a backdrop of starships and invincible Princes, his quest to find himself and his place in the universe rings true to all types of readers.
Recommended for ages 14 and up.
Child genius and criminal mastermind, Artemis Fowl, has discovered the fairy people and their book of laws and traditions. In his best money making sceme yet, Artemis kidnaps a fairy and attempts to hold her for ransom. Unfortunately, the fairy he captures happens to be Captain Holly Short of the Lower Elements Police. The adventure that follows is entertaining and introduces one of the greatest casts of characters yet. This first book is fun, but the true value of Artemis Fowl comes in the series to follow where the characters develop, bond, and never cease to make me laugh.