Rainer Maria Rilke

"Live a while in these books, learn from them what seems to you worth learning, but above all love them. This love will be repaid you a thousand and a thousand times, and however your life may turn,-it will, I am certain of it, run through the fabric of your growth as one of the most important threads among all the threads of your experiences, disappointments, and joys."--Rainer Maia Rilke

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Thursday, May 14, 2015

Much Better Than I Expected

Stranded #2:  Trial by Fire by Jeff Probst

Adolescent Adventure

I really didn't expect much from this series, but what a pleasant surprise they have been.  They're great!  This is the second in a trilogy and you have to read them in order.  This one starts right where the other stopped...literally the very next moment.

Four brothers and sisters are still stranded on an island.  Now, they have to learn to survive on their own, which won't be easy as they are typical techno kids of today.  They know nothing of surviving in the wild.  They really are surviving with scrounging to find foo, water and shelter.  No breaks here!  This makes the story realistic and so much better!  They encounter more defeats than successes, but they don't give up.  What a great lesson for young people!  This one has less adventure, but more survival than the first as the stakes for their lives are upped minute by minute.  Equal time is given to all of the main characters and it's hard to say which one I like best.  All are fallible and loveable and brave. It's also a story of a fractured family learning to work together, which is the real lesson behind the Hollywood TV glamour of the name on the front.

In case you're worried, the books are not like the show.  This book is full of heart and perfectly safe and ethically appropriate for young people.  There are adventures and thrills from the first page to the last.  This one doesn't end so you'll have to read the third in the trilogy to finish the story.  These are great books for reluctant readers.  They're short and really hold the reader's attention.  My students eagerly await the next installment, constantly asking me when it's coming out.  It's a good read for boys or girls. 

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