Saturday, June 18, 2011

Soldier X

Soldier X     Soldier X by Don L. Wulffson

     As World War II rages, sixteen-year-old Erik Brandt finds himself on a train traveling to Russia. He's one of the hundreds of thousands of German boys being sent to the Eastern Front by Hitler-since no men are left to fight. Trained as an interpreter and not a soldier, Erik manages to survive the combat, but only by slipping into a dead enemy's uniform, and posing as a wounded Russian. Now the young German must keep up his charade....

     Soldier X is based on a conversation author Don Wulffson had with a German war survivor. The result is a thoughtful and compelling novel that takes readers inside the mind of a boy who must fight and even die for a war he doesn't believe in.

     Ages 12-14

      Soldier X illustrates the dramatic tale of a young boy thrown into the midst of battle and lost behind enemy lines...As a member of HJ, or, more commonly known as the Hitler Youth. 

     I have always been a WWII buff, and I'll literally do anything to get my hands on a piece f literature relating to it, but, sadly, this one didn't meet my expectations. 

     In my opinion, you wait and wait, and you expect something big to happen, then it just...doesn't. Every one goes home, and nothing really actually happens. Though the beginning of the novel held such promise.

      I don't really have much to add to this, but, if you do enjoy War fiction, this just might wet your appetite, and, I also wouldn't rule it out for Junior readers. As a young adult, things like this (written simply without much graphics), just don't hold my attention. If you're schooling your children, or sixth grade class about the Holocaust, and want a unique perspective of Germany's feeling on the war, this is perfect for you. As a matter of fact, my youngest brother absolutely loves this, and your younger children probably will too.  

Vision-  3 stars
Originality- 3 stars
Technique- 4 stars
Imagination- 3 stars    

Overall Value- 4 stars

Thursday, June 2, 2011


Death Note Volume 1 by Tsugumi Ohba, Art by Takeshi Obata

R to L (Japanese Style)

Light Yagami is an ace student with great prospects - and he's bored out of his mind. But all that changes when he finds the Death Note, a notebook dropped by a rogue Shinigami death god. Any human whose name is written in the notebook dies, and now Light has vowed to use the power of the Death Note to rid the world of evil. But when criminals begin dropping dead, the authorities send the legendary detective L to track down the killer. With L hot on his heels, will Light lose sight of his noble goal...or his life?

Light tests the boundaries of the Death Note's powers as L and the police begin to close in. Luckily Light's father is the head of the Japanese National Police Agency and leaves vital information about the case lying around the house. With access to his father's files, Light can keep one step ahead of the authorities. But who is the strange man following him, and how can Light guard against enemies whose names he doesn't know?

Older Teens- Age 16+ for Blood, Violence and Mature Themes

     Most anyone of the manga and anime world have been introduced to the wildly popular Death Note series, and I am no exception, and, I have to admit, I've become a huge fan of this series. 

     With a complicated plot that has only just begun to reveal itself, you can't help but wonder, will L get him? Who is L? Will Light stray from his chosen path? And just what are the exact rules of the Death note?

     This was, actually, the first manga I've ever read, and I can honestly say I wasn't disappointed, the only difficulty I encountered was the reading style, essentially you have to read it backwards, which is difficult for most to do.

     But, seriously now, this is the best book I've seen in a long while, and three times better than the infamous Bleach

     I've also developed a serious crush on L, which may make this review slightly biased, but still, this is an excellent series! Anyone who is into anime should read this! 

     I can't wait to see some American author to try and rip this off.

Vision-  5 stars
Originality- 5 stars
Technique- 5 stars
Imagination- 5 stars    

Overall Value- 5 stars