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, October 1, 2013


Pawnby Aimee Carter
From the publisher:
For Kitty Doe, it seems like an easy choice. She can either spend her life as a III in misery, looked down upon by the higher ranks and forced to leave the people she loves, or she can become a VII and join the most powerful family in the country.

If she says yes, Kitty will be Masked—surgically transformed into Lila Hart, the Prime Minister's niece, who died under mysterious circumstances. As a member of the Hart family, she will be famous. She will be adored. And for the first time, she will matter.

There's only one catch. She must also stop the rebellion that Lila secretly fostered, the same one that got her killed …and one Kitty believes in. Faced with threats, conspiracies and a life that's not her own, she must decide which path to choose—and learn how to become more than a pawn in a twisted game she's only beginning to understand."

This is the first of a new dystopian series by the author of The Goddess Test books, which are very popular in my middle school library (I have not read them). It is a pretty formulaic dystopian that ticks all the boxes with an evil government, oppressed people, and teenagers trying to change the world and stay alive. However, there were many original ideas throughout and twists that surprised me. I found the characters interesting, although some of their decisions were ludicrous. The MC was incredibly naive and trusting when she obviously shouldn't have been considering what the ruling family had done to her. There was plenty of action and excitement, and I think the dystopian YA crowd will eat this up. I enjoyed it and read it quickly. I was extremely happy not to have a love triangle, although I'm not sure that will hold true for the rest of the series, I could see something possibly happening with one of the other characters. Don't look for closure at the end.

Areas of concern:  There is a lot of violence and some of it was very disturbing and directed at important characters. At the beginning of the book the MC tried to solve her problems by turning to prostitution. Nothing happened, but it was quite uncomfortable to read. There was a little bit of cussing, but it was minimal. Some kissing.

Suggested Ages:
Kirkus Reviews:  Ages 12+

*I received this as an ARC from NetGalley. The book will be released on November 26, 2013.

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