Middle school students have reading interests that run the gamut from Diary of a Wimpy Kid to Twilight. Sometimes as a parent it is hard to know what is age appropriate for your child. Through this blog, I will try to help parents make informed decisions about what is available in our library. I am hoping that this blog will be a resource for our parents, and that we can all work together to make our students life-long readers!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013


by Kathleen Peacock
From the publisher:
"Mackenzie and Amy were best friends. Until Amy was brutally murdered.
Since then, Mac's life has been turned upside down. She is being haunted by Amy in her dreams, and an extremist group called the Trackers has come to Mac's hometown of Hemlock to hunt down Amy's killer:

A white werewolf.

Lupine syndrome—also known as the werewolf virus—is on the rise across the country. Many of the infected try to hide their symptoms, but bloodlust is not easy to control.

Wanting desperately to put an end to her nightmares, Mac decides to investigate Amy's murder herself. She discovers secrets lurking in the shadows of Hemlock, secrets about Amy's boyfriend, Jason, her good pal Kyle, and especially her late best friend. Mac is thrown into a maelstrom of violence and betrayal that puts her life at risk.

Kathleen Peacock's thrilling novel is the first in the Hemlock trilogy, a spellbinding urban fantasy series filled with provocative questions about prejudice, trust, lies, and love. "

This book is the first in a new trilogy about......... werewolves! As if there weren't enough werewolf books already out there. However, my 8th grade girls can not get enough of paranormal romances, so based on good reviews I ordered this one. What a surprise to find that it is well-written and takes a unique twist on the whole werewolf genre. I actually really enjoyed it, even though it had a couple of my pet peeves - a love triangle and lack of parental guidance/influence/support. However, it was exciting enough for me to read in one day, I loved the main character and felt sympathy for her sorrow and her actions, and enjoyed the mix of paranormal and dystopia in the world-building.

Areas of concern:  All in all a very clean read as far as romance (some kissing) and language (one "s" word) goes.  However, a girl's best friend was brutally murdered and the victim haunts her best friend in dreams.  There is brutality by police-approved "Trackers" (kind of a Neo-Nazi gang).  Talk of a date-rape type drug being used and other violence.

Suggested ages:
Publisher's Weekly:  14+
School Library Journal:  Grades 9+
*I'm not sure why the suggested ages are so high on this one when it was such a clean read, probably the violence.  In comparison to other werewolf books and suggested ages, I would put it on par with Twilight, and definitely cleaner than the Mercy Falls series."

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