Angie's Review of Zahrah - Here is the link to Angie's blog post.
Book Review: Zahrah the Windseeker
￼Image from goodreads.com
Title: Zahrah the Windseeker
Author: Nnedi Okorafor-Mbachu
Publication Date: 2005
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Summary Via Goodreads.com:
“In the northern Ooni Kingdom, fear of the unknown runs deep, and children born dada are rumored to have special powers. Thirteen-year-old Zahrah Tsami feels like a normal girl--she grows her own flora computer, has mirrors sewn onto her clothes, and stays clear of the Forbidden Greeny Jungle. But unlike other children in the village of Kirki, Zahrah was born with the telling dadalocks. Only her best friend, Dari, isn’t afraid of her, even when something unusual begins happening- something that definitely makes Zahrah different. The two friends determine to investigate, edging closer and closer to danger. When Dari’s life is threatened, Zahrah must facer her worst fears alone, including the very thing that makes her different.
In this exciting debut novel by Nnedi Okorafor-Mbachu, things aren’t always what they seem-monkeys tell fortunes, plants offer wisdom, and a teenage girl is the only one who stands a chance at saving her best friend’s life.”
I went into this book not knowing how it would really be. It was a book that I normally would not have picked out. I must say that I was very pleasantly surprised with the outcome of reading this book. I loved it! This Nigerian author wrote an amazing book!
At first I was leery when I was reading this book. It had a very different beginning than I was used to. It started out with a letter written by Zahrah, the main character, telling you why you should read the book and understand her story. Then it went on to give a little background on her dada (special hair that was looked on badly if a child was born with it) and how people just looked at her as cursed and made fun of her all the time. She really only has one friend, a BEST friend named Dari. He has never begrudged her, her hair or thought of her as a cursed person with only bad intentions like others do. Zahrah is a 13 year old girl who is teased at school all the time for her dadalocks and just wants to be “normal”. Because of all the teasing she is a very shy girl and unsure of herself and her own abilities. Dari is a 13 year old boy who loves learning about new/far off places and is very well liked. Dari is the kind of kid that makes everyone laugh. His manner is such that everyone listens to him, even if they don’t want to hear what he says.
Zahrah only feels more of an outcast when she discovers she can now hover in mid air. When she finally tells Dari he tells her they should go to the Forbidden Greeny Jungle so she can practice. This jungle is a very bad place according to the townspeople and no one is to enter it. When people enter the this jungle they die in it, never return, or return having gone mad. Dari convinces Zahrah to enter with him. They go there and he reads about the jungle while she practices her floating. Then Dari gets bit by a War Snake that lives in the Forbidden Greeny Jungle. The poison puts Dari in a coma and the only cure is an Elgort Egg (unfertilized). This egg is only found deep in the Forbidden Greeny Jungle, so doctors say that Dari (being they will never get an egg in time to save him), will be in a coma forever. Timid Zahrah can’t bear to see this happen so decides to put her fears aside and sneaks out to go on an adventure of her own to get this egg to save Dari. All the things she goes through while in the jungle is amazing. She learns more about the jungle than any book her and Dari could read ever could tell them. She sprouts into a brave, tough, and new girl in the jungle on her mission.
Questions are: What adventures does she have while in the forest? What does she learn and encounter? Will she make it back in time to save Dari? That you have to find out on your own by reading the book.
I would have to give this book 5 out of 5 stars! I really enjoyed it and thought it was very well written.
This book counts towards the following challenges: Read 100 Books, A to Z Challenge, Versatile Challenge, YA Challenge, Mix It Up Challenge, Cupcakes War Challenge, 1,000,000 page Challenge
Angie's Review of Warriors - Here is the link to Angie's Blog Post.
Book Review: Warriors: Into the Wild
Image from goodreads.com
Title: Warriors: Into the Wild
Author: Erin Hunter
Publication Date: 2003
Genre: Young Adult Fiction
Summary Via Goodreads.com:
"For generations, four Clans of wild cats have shared the forest according to the laws laid down by their warrior ancestors. But the ThunderClan cats are in grave danger, and the sinister ShadowClan grows stronger every day. Noble warriors are dying—and some deaths are more mysterious than others.
In the midst of this turmoil appears an ordinary house cat named Rusty . . . who may turn out to be the bravest warrior of them all."
This young adult book, by far, blew my expectations out of the water! I had picked up this book originally to read to my son from a library book sale thinking it sounded ok. I saw it was about cats and had to read it just because of my love of cats.
This book takes the reader into a whole new world; the world of CATS. I must say after the first few chapters I decided I LOVED the concept of this book. Rusty (an orange housecat) meets the aquaintence of Graypaw while he is on the outskirts of “Twoleg” territory looking for a mouse he saw from his fence. Graypaw is an apprentice of ThunderClan, a clan of wild cats that are in the woods near the “Twoleg” homes. Rusty soon learns that there are other clans of cats in the woods too. Bluestar (the headcat) sees something in Rusty and tells him she will allow him to join the ThunderClan if he wishes to leave his Twolegs. Rusty feels he has been missing something and decides that is what he should do. When he joins the clan he is renamed Firepaw. He is NOT welcomed into the clan by anyone except Bluestar and Graypaw (who quickly becomes Firepaw’s friend). They call him “kittypet” and do not trust him. Firepaw goes through much hardship to try and earn the clans trust. The clans do not all get along and soon Firepaw sees why there are apprentices of warriors. Firepaw soon learns the ways of the clan, but also refuses to be pushed around because of his kittypet past.
Soon there are many things that go wrong and Firepaw is left to fight for what he believes is right, which may not be what ThunderClan sees as right. Will Firepaw get sent away before he is able to prove he can be a good warrior for the ThunderClan and can help them win the fight against the other clans?
This book draws the reader in by pure curiosity. You can’t help but keep reading just because of the book being from the perspectives of cats. As a cat lover and owner, I feel like I found myself looking at my own cats in a new way. This is book one of a series of books. I can’t wait to read the rest of the series!
4 out of 5 stars. It did take a little bit to get going, but mostly because, like all series, the author was trying to establish rapport of the characters, backgrounds of the characters, and establish the background of the story of the warrior cats.
This book will count toward my following challenges: Off the Shelf Challenge, Read 100 Books, A to Z Challenge, 1,000,000 pages Challenge, Mount TBR Challenge, YA Challenge, Cupcakes War Challenge.
Thank you, Angie, for the two reviews above. Sorry you can't get your January cupcake yet though. It won't be ready until near the end of the month!
Until next time, keep curling up with a good book.....