Eyes Like Stars: Theatre Illuminata, Act I by Lisa Mantchev
All her world's a stage.
Beatrice Shakespeare Smith is not an actress, yet she lives in a theater.
She is not an orphan, but she has no parents.
She knows every part, but has no lines of her own.
Welcome to the Théâtre Illuminata, where the characters of every play ever written can be found behind the curtain. They were born to play their parts, and are bound to the Théâtre by The Book—an ancient and magical tome of scripts. Bertie is not one of them, but they are her family—and she is about to lose them all and the only home she has ever known.
i raced through this book, and i didn't want it to end (must read sequel!!). Bertie is determined, unique, uncontrollable, and likable. the rest of the cast was varied and unforgettable--just as they should be--and they fit their parts perfectly. i thought that, at times, the plot was slightly weaker than the characters and prose (both definitely strong points in the story), but the rest of the time, the story thoroughly captivated me. i loved it.
The Cardturner by Louis Sachar
The summer after junior year of high school looks bleak for Alton Richards. His girlfriend has dumped him to hook up with his best friend. He has no money and no job. His parents insist that he drive his great-uncle Lester to his bridge club four times a week and be his cardturner—whatever that means. Alton’s uncle is old, blind, very sick, and very rich.
But Alton’s parents aren’t the only ones trying to worm their way into Lester Trapp’s good graces. They’re in competition with his longtime housekeeper, his alluring young nurse, and the crazy Castaneda family, who seem to have a mysterious influence over him.
Alton soon finds himself intrigued by his uncle, by the game of bridge, and especially by the pretty and shy Toni Castaneda. As the summer goes on, he struggles to figure out what it all means, and ultimately to figure out the meaning of his own life.
Through Alton’s wry observations, Louis Sachar explores the disparity between what you know and what you think you know. With his incomparable flair and inventiveness, he examines the elusive differences between perception and reality—and inspires readers to think and think again.
this story had a slow beginning that nearly ruined it for me. once i got through the non-action, though, i was hooked. this story has a little bit of everything...romance, unrequited dreams, human greed, mystery, a little magic, and, of course, CARDS!!! (i should mention here that i like playing cards...if you absolutely hate cards, this story might not be for you). this is a story that i definitely recommend to YA readers--both adult and teen.
D. N. Angel Vol. 1 by Yukiru Sugisaki
Daisuke Niwa is an ordinary middle school student with an extradinary genetic "condition". Whenever he starts longing for the girl of his dreams, he transforms into the legendary Phantom Thief, Dark! The only way to lift the curse? To have his love returned, of course. But how can Daisuke win the heart of a girl he can't even romance?
i love the creativity and humor in manga...and the artwork, of course! D. N. Angel is one of my favorites with its fantasy and romance. Vol. 1 is an excellent start to the series, which, like nearly all manga, improves as the reader learns more about the characters and the plot begins to unfold (therefore, the first few chapters are typically the least captivating in the entire series). if you like manga, i highly recommend D. N. Angel.