Friday, October 30, 2015

Number the Stars

Written by: Lois Lowry

First line: "I'll race you to the corner, Ellen!"

Why you should read this book: Annemarie, like all the people she knows in Denmark, loves her family, her king, and her neighbors, especially her best friend, Ellen, with whom she does everything. Even though the Nazis have invades their country, the two girls and their families do their best to continue their lives uninterrupted, until the day that they learn that the Nazis will be sending all Jews somewhere else. Now Annemarie and her entire family are willing to risk their own lives to help the people they love stay safe.

Why you shouldn't read this book: This is one of those books that you don't get a pass on unless you are actually a Nazi, in which case you presumably don't understand literature anyway.

Alex + Ada (volumes 1-13)

Written by: Jonathan Luna and Sarah Vaughn

First line: Alex...Time to wake up.

Why you should read this book: There's a lot to love in the fast-paced story of a young man who is initially disgusted to learn that his grandmother has taken a sexbot for a lover, and then even more disgusted when he learns that she has bought him one for his birthday. In this near-future world, sentience in robots has been outlawed following an unfortunate incident in which an AI responded violently to its condition, but Alex gradually comes to feel sorry for his new companion's lack of free will. His decision to pursue another kind of life for Ada puts them both on the wrong side of the law but opens up a new understanding of consciousness.

Why you shouldn't read this book: The concept of robot sentience and sex bots flies in the face of all that is good and holy to you.

The Sandman XI: Endless Nights

Written by: Neil Gaiman

First line:  Here, where the darkness closes over me, like canal-water or the grave, I tell this story.

Why you should read this book: Even though book X tied up the story about Dream, there are still more stories to tell about the Endless, in this case, one for each sibling. Death's story takes a "Masque of the Red Death" turn with a Count who seeks to escape Death by removing himself from time; each tale has a powerful kernel of truth about the human condition. If you can't get enough Sandman, then here's some more Sandman.

Why you shouldn't read this book: You like things to wrap up already.