Home Alone Movie Review

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Home Alone (1990)
Call #: BLU-RAY+DVD HOLIDAY HOME
Rating: 5/5 stars
Series: Home Alone, Movie 1
Review by David D.

 

Today I’m going to give a review about the best and most enjoyable Christmas movie of all time, Home Alone. This is the first movie in the series out of five, but in my opinion it’s the best one. I would personally rate this movie a 5 out 5 because it’s so entertaining to watch with your family, especially if it’s during Christmas.

The story is about a family who plan a trip to Paris, but the main character Kevin behaves badly the night before the trip. His mom makes him sleep in the attic where she will forget about him in the morning when they are all in a hurry to get to the airport. When Kevin finds out that he was left alone, at first he is terrified, but then he is excited for all the things he is able to do! That excitement will only be with him after some intruders try to break in into his house, but in order to find out more you will have to see the movie!

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Other Broken Things by Christa Desir

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Other Broken Things by Christa Desir
Rating: 4/5 stars
Review by Layla C.

 

Other Broken Things is about a 17-year-old girl named Natalie who, after receiving a DUI, is required to go to AA meetings. She meets an older man named Joe who she ends up falling in love with. Throughout the book, we see Natalie struggle with sobriety, self-control, self-esteem, family conflicts, and her past mistakes.

This book is one of my favorites because of the mature themes it covers. Personally, I’m not the biggest reader. It takes a plot that remains interesting throughout the book to keep me engaged. This book exceeded that and always left me wanting to read more. I found many topics in the book very relatable to my personal life such as the topic of family conflicts and self-esteem. I thought the way the author portrays the dark and difficult aspects of the struggles of a recovering alcoholics made the tone of the book much more personal than other young adult novels I’ve read.

I would recommend this book to older teens (age 16+). This book does include mature themes, and I would not recommend it to children. Overall, after reading it, I felt that I took away more perspective on controversial topics. When picking a good read I prefer one that makes me think hard about it even after I finish. This is definitely a tear-jerker that can help some gain insight when going through a difficult time in life.

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Scythe by Neal Shusterman

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Scythe by Neal Shusterman
Call #: TEEN SHUSTERMAN
Rating: 4.5/5 stars
Series: Scythe, Book 1
Review by Ariana K.

 

Scythe is a book set in the future, where death is caused naturally all with the help of an advanced computer system: Janine as the “Thunderhead” that controls society. Everyone lives in a world with no misery and danger. Scythes are the only ones who can kill and end life on command in order to keep the population under control. Now two teenagers named Citra and Rowan are taken under the control of Scythe Goddard, who abuses his powers and enjoys to kill.

I really like the book. I personally enjoy science fiction books, so this book really caught my attention. Scythe would be perfect for young adults who also enjoy science fiction and action. I had to read this book for the summer going into my freshman year of high school as a summer reading project. I really never read anything like this book, but the only similar book I can think of would sort of be The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. I really liked the characters in the book as well, and I like the relationship between Citra and Rowan. This book is just absolutely amazing, and I would definitely recommend it.

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Display Spotlight: Non-Fiction

Teen Display spotlight

Whether you’re looking to follow a real-life adventure or learn more about a topic, our Non-Fiction collection in the Teen Room has something to offer everyone! Stop by the Teen Room in March to see our display of fantastic Non-Fiction titles.

 

Laughing at My Nightmare by Shane Burcaw

81wEdiG5UFLShane Burcaw is a YouTuber, gamer, and writer who has used his sense of humor to write this absolutely hilarious memoir about his life. Burcaw has spinal muscular dystrophy, and Laughing at My Nightmare discusses everything from his girlfriend to a laugh-out-loud bathroom experience. Whether you’re already a fan of his youtube channel, enjoy in-your-face humor, or just want to read a funny, true story about someone living with a disability, you’ll find something to enjoy in Laughing at My Nightmare!

 

Amazons, Abolitionists, and Activists by Mikki Kendall & A. D’Amico

91s+PKeLToLAmazons, Abolitionists, and Activists tells the famous stories of women fighting for their rights throughout history, and includes many lesser known. If you’re looking for a good introduction to women’s rights and women’s history, this is an excellent book to pick up- you’ll fall in love with the drawings and the historical women, and you’ll learn something new too!

 

March, Book 1 by John Lewis, Andrew Aydin, & Nate Powell

March_Vol_1Although the civil rights movement of the mid-20th century may be something we’re used to seeing in history books, Congressman John Lewis lived it. The March series of graphic novels are his account not only of his early life, but his involvement in the movement. From organizing a lunch-counter sit-in to preparing for the inauguration of the country’s first black president, Congressman Lewis uses this graphic novel to tell a compelling story about who he is, what struggles he endured, and why he fought.

 

The 57 Bus by Dashka Slater

81WxHPCjCZLThe 57 Bus follows the story of Sasha and Richard, the fateful day they met, and the aftermath of their meeting. Veteran journalist Dashka Slater details the lives of Sasha (a white agender teen), Richard (a black teen), the history and geography of the city of Oakland, and the justice system with tact and detail; serious and complex topics like racism, LGBTQ+ violence, the education system, and more are deftly handled in The 57 Bus.

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Educated by Tara Westover

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Educated by Tara Westover
Call #: 371.042 WES
Rating: 4/5 stars
Review by David D.

 

This book is about a woman named Tara who overcomes the tough obstacles put in her life by her family. Since she was a child, her parents were very anti-government, so she never went to a hospital and never attended school. Her parents believed that the government was just brainwashing their minds into going to a hospital, taking medicine, or even learning information from a school.

I would rate this book a 4 out of 5 stars because it motivates and teaches you that anything is possible even if you have a lot of problems in your life. Tara Westover is a great example of this because she never got a proper education when she was young, but ended up going to Cambridge University and earned a degree in writing. I would highly recommend that you read this book because you will notice that there is people out there who have it much harder than you do, but with motivation and a strong attitude they can overcome these struggles and succeed in life.

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Display Spotlight: Romance-Free

Teen Display spotlight

Last month was Valentine’s and like many people, we got into the spirit at the library with romance-themed book displays. But sometimes it’s nice to get a break, and read a book that has absolutely no romance in it whatsoever; whether you’re burnt out on romance, never have enjoyed it, or are just in the mood for something different, try one of these books with little or no romance at all!

Does My Head Look Big in This? by Randa Abdel-Fattah

71MJtpebF6LThis is an older book, but still good for plenty of laughs! When Australian teen Amal, inspired by Rachel from Friends, decides to begin wearing a hijab full-time, her life changes in both expected and unexpected ways. From run-ins with school administration to adventures with her friends, Amal’s story combines laughs with feels in an unforgettable mixture.

 

Monday’s Not Coming by Tiffany D. Jackson

81fJ1hJO4FLWhen Claudia gets back from a summer vacation, her best friend Monday is missing. But nobody seems to care. The two girls have always been inseparable, and Claudia worries not just for her friend, but about what might happen to her without Monday. Despite resistance from those around her, Claudia starts trying to figure out where Monday has gone, as well as navigate a world without her. But the more she investigates, the more questions she has. Just where is Monday, and why isn’t anyone else looking for her?

 

Nimona by Noelle Stevenson

nimona-coverLord Ballister Blackheart is a villain, locked in a feud with Sir Ambrosius Goldenloin. But when Lord Blackheart hires shapeshifter Nimona to be his apprentice in this graphic novel, chaos ensues for both sides of the feud. Nimona is full of suprises, and this graphic novel is full of laughs. The phrase “I’m a shark” will never have the same meaning after Nimona.

 

 

The Memory of Light by Francisco X. Stork

9780545474337_mresWhat happens when you’ve lost all hope and given up – but find you’re still here? That’s what Vicky Cruz has to figure out in The Memory of Light. When depressed teen Vicky wakes up in a hospital after a suicide attempt, she isn’t sure how to move forward. But as she meets other teens facing their own mental health challenges, and gets help from an empathetic therapist, she slowly begins to remember the light. This is a slow, emotional, thoughtful novel inspired by the author’s own experiences with depression.

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Aladdin Movie Review

aladdin movie review

Aladdin (2019)
Call #: J DVD + BLU RAY DISNEY ALADDIN
Rating: 4/5 stars
Movie Series: Aladdin, Movie 1
Review by Andrea A.

 

Aladdin is set in the early days of the made up city of Agrabah, Iraq. It is about a young “street boy” who befriends and falls in love with Jasmine, the princess of Agrabah. He desperately wants to be with her and finds no hope in trying, until he finds a magic lamp that holds a genie inside who is willing to grant Aladdin three wishes as a thank you for freeing him. Meanwhile, Princess Jasmine attempts to fight cultural norms that prevent a woman from ruling the city on her own.

I really enjoyed this movie, as it included clever humor throughout the whole two hours and entertaining song and dance scenes. A lot of the time, remakes or any movie after an original movie in a series are usually not as good as the original film. The 2019 version of Aladdin goes against this typical belief. Another thing I really appreciated about this film was all the examples of support for feminism it included throughout the movie. Princess Jasmine was the main feminist icon in the film because of the way she fought for her independence and her say in what she wanted in her life. She also fought against the demanding rules of her own father and city overall that lived in fear of the powerful antagonist of the story, Jafar. Jasmine was such a powerful character because she was able to do both fight for her rights over her own life and also fight to be able to lead her city properly and keep them safe from evil.I was able to relate most to Princess Jasmine in the sense that she had to face a lot of discrimination and double standards as a woman growing up in a male-dominated society.

I decided to see this movie because I was a big fan of the original as a kid and was excited to see how Disney would improve it in a new way. I would recommend this movie to anyone of any age because it includes important lessons and topics that are relevant in today’s society and can also bring out the kid in you at the same time. I feel that the casting of the movie was done very well. Mena Massoud, who played Aladdin, and Naomi Scott, who played Princess Jasmine, both portrayed their characters personalities exactly as they were written; Scott especially brought a very feisty and intense performance to the film. Will Smith had very large shoes to fill as the genie, as Robin Williams was the voice of the original, but his energy and acting was perfect for his role. Overall, this movie brought me back to my childhood while also showing me some important lessons and topics that I might not have picked up on when I was younger. The movie is very dream positive and shows that anyone can be a leader.

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