Sunday, 23 May 2010

The Wimpy Ways

Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney is an interesting book because it's about a person called Gregory who is bullied (sort of) and is very wimpy.
It's a funny book and it is going to be made into a film. It's the first one of a series.
Gregory is a wimp and his father doesn't like it. He has two brothers, the older one Rodrick pushes him around and treats him rather badly. The younger one, Manny, is always being a tattle-tale and being the favourite of the parents.
Greg's a huge quitter and not very good at sports. Greg has his best friend Rowley who he plays with a great deal. Greg likes video games. He also has a major crush on a girl in his class and is trying to make a good impression on her. When Greg is going to Rowley's house he meets this boy named Fregely who is always saying strange things like 'Do you want to see my secret freckle?' who is also super-sensitive to sugar, which makes him go hyper-active.
This story is a funny and exciting story. There's one thing which Greg does really wrong. He takes advantage of his friend.
I give this book four out of five because it was really funny but a bit simple. Good for any age.

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

My New Book

Happy Easter! This post is a bit different, because I have been writing a book and I would like your comments on it. It is a comedy drama, inspired by Sherlock Holmes and a bit of Dr Who. I hope you enjoy.


Chapter 1: Where the Madness All Begins

“A cocktail and my pipe,is what I want, my dear acquaintance who is becoming a good friend,” shouted Gregory the detective in an extraordinary Cockney accent which was very out of character.“Yes, sir!” replied the hardworking servant who failed his A levels and couldn’t get into a university, who needed a job so took this one.

Once Gregory’s pipe had arrived, he started smoking rings of smoke which made me feel sick. I am Gregory’s companion, Rahul and I come from India. I am a detective, like Gregory, however not as skilled as he is at noticing clues. Gregory and I have done many cases together most of them being a success generally because of our teamwork.
Suddenly, a stranger came rushing in to our mansion that we had paid for with the money that was a reward from a rich man. We captured the robber who stole a hundred million pounds-worth of diamonds and pearls. The stranger cried:“Aieeee…something terrible has happened! My friend is dead! Please come!”
“Ahh...We shall come,” Gregory answered, in his American accent with a touch of sarcasm in his voice.
"It was a long journey there but I did not know how long it took for I do not have a watch. The stranger introduced himself as the Duke of Manchester, named Antonio who happened to know of us because of our success in finding the lost diamonds and pearls. He said we could call him Tony. He was a very conversational bloke.
“So, now tell us, what is wrong?” I asked being as polite as one could be.
“My friend has died of cancer, then his heir, who is an orphan aged eleven, put his money in a trust now it has been stolen, oh what shall I do now?”
Just then, Greg slapped Tony then me. “Hey, what was that for?” I asked, I was furious to know why he had slapped me. He muttered his answer in a low tone with an Australian accent and an unimpressed demeanour: “Put a sock in it! I felt like it.”
That man is a truly brilliant detective, however, he’s absolutely nuts.
“Greg, hate to be mean mate, but however good you are at detective work, you have the maze,” I answered in an angry tone. “The maze, old country way of saying madness intresting, eh, well you could put it that way,” replied Greg dreamily, his eyes going cross-eyed.
Once we arrived Greg licked his finger, put it in the air and said, “Someone has died here.”
The duke said: “Correct as always.” We then entered a wooden shack which looked like it could drop at any second. We followed Greg into the shack and stayed quite still, with horror in our eyes. A dead man was sitting in a recliner with his hands cuffed to the armrests. Greg went over to the fire, which was illuminating the room and the smoke going out of a hole that was in the roof. The room was blazing so much I was almost burnt and the corpse stunk of things that really shouldn’t be talked about. Greg looked into the fire and cried: “Look! Ashes of an embroidered bag which has the initials M.A.D. Mason Adam Daggers if I am not mistaken.”
“Correct again,” replied the Duke like he had heard enough of Greg’s cleverness. Treacle dripped down all the walls which meant no leaning on the walls for all of us which was annoying. On the ceiling two big perpendicular lines were drawn in white chalk and which was just visible because of the ceiling being a more creamy white then the chalk.
“Charcoal not chalk, this ain`t good, RUN!”cried Greg in a weird Cockney/Polish accent. We all obeyed immediately with no complaints which felt weird. In five seconds of being outside the shack collapsed. “Aieeee…!” cried the Duke. It was a death trap!
Suddenly, slap, slap. “Again, really!” I screamed furiously. Then I must’ve passed out because I woke up in hospital. “What happened?” I asked wearily. “You passed out,” replied Greg, who was standing with his wife who had blonde hair, was very slim, had three piercings on the ears and one on the nose and a tattoo of an elephant on her neck. She wore many rings on her fingers and toes, flip-flops on her feet, designer jeans or jeggings (I couldn’t tell), a necklace with a skull on it and a rather open top with a cardigan over it.
Just then, Tony, the duke who was covered in scarlet-coloured goo which stank of urine, entered the room. “Have a shower dude, you stink, yuck man!” cried Greg holding his nose up then letting it go and continuing smooching his tomboyish wife. About half an hour later Tony came in, with new clothes on and he had obviously had a couple of showers and baths because he smelt of soap and shower gel.
“Here’s what happened when you left us,” Antonio told me. “You were slapped by a piece of wood. It fell on you. Then Greg and I followed traces of a mongrel which happened to be right next to you. So, we put together a kind of bed for you which we then laid you on. The bed was made of wood, it must have been very uncomfortable for you, however we knew that we had to follow these paw prints or we would lose the person who did this to you.
“Gregory’s wife, Amy, then arrived on the dot to pick you up and bring you to hospital. So while you were going to hospital Greg and I followed the paw prints into a piñata factory. Then the paw prints turned into footprints. We followed them to the owner’s office. We knocked on the door and went in. The owner was dressed in a cocktail dress! He also had a moustache and a beard. His beard had been combed into three sections. He looked quite queer. He spoke to us in a high-pitched voice, which was even stranger than his appearance. He told us his name which was Oscar Riberro and that he rode his biggest horse piñata to see what had happened. Gregory and I asked what he meant by ‘rode his piñata’ He said he put wheels on it.
“Gregory knew the fellow, from university where they did their degrees in Clown College which was a new college which was built in England but they spoke Dutch there.
Gregory invited this rather queer man to our little group. He said that he might have to go and change his clothes because they were unsuitable for public consumption. After he had changed into a tennis top, kilt and an exact replica of Peter Pan’s hat which was used in the play of Peter Pan plus the highest pair of high heels I had ever seen then he said he could go out on a runway and show off his moves. We looked everywhere but found nothing.”
There was silence after that except the kissing noises made by the love birds in the corner of my eye. Just then, Oscar came and bellowed in a high pitched voice, “My dear friend how nice to meet yo…”
A man had jumped out of nowhere with a machete in his hand and a gun in his other and shouted “Nobody gets hurt if you hand over the girl, if you don’t the man under my arm and the rest of you get killed!” Then Greg’s wife went over to the man was cuffed and taken away.
“No! Come back, take me instead!!” screamed Greg in despair.

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Londinium Mini Mysteries

The Roman Mini-Mysteries: The Legionary from Londinium by Caroline Lawrence is a collection of short stories which are really good. I liked how between every mini-mystery it said where it would come in her series of Roman Mystery books.

I went to see Caroline Lawrence give a talk at the Museum of London during half term which was very interesting. She explained how the books always use clues to help the four friends Flavia, Nubia, Lupus and Jonathan discover the solution to the mystery. For example a wax tablet had melted but somehow they figured out what it had said on it.

She also talked about the characters that were in it, and how they were classic ‘types’ that are in lots of stories such as the main hero, the wild one, the funny one and the sidekick and of course the enemy.

I really like this book because it was very intriguing and it always had me wondering what was going to happen next. All the stories were set in different places. At school we studied Roman London so I knew a bit about it already. Still it was very interesting.

In the book one of the mini-mysteries was that this man received five barley grains. Flavia helps the man find hidden treasure without even leaving her chair. Caroline Lawrence explained how the five barley grains was based on a Sherlock Holmes adventure where Sherlock Holmes unravels a mystery about five orange pips.

I give this book five out of five because I thought it was really good. This book is good for seven plus, because some bits are hard to understand for younger readers because it’s not set in the modern day times. However it is all very well explained. I recommend that you hear one of Caroline Lawrence’s speeches because they help you understand the books and are very interesting for everyone.

Saturday, 30 January 2010

Mystery on the Moor

The Hound of the Baskervilles by Arthur Conan Doyle is an exciting mysterious story. It's about Sherlock Holmes and Doctor Watson. I saw them in the film that was a different story but it was still good. Then my dad suggested reading this book.
The mystery is about a man whose ancestors are cursed because when the Baskervilles crossed the moor at nighttime it said that people die. After the mysterious death of Charles Baskerville, Henry Baskerville takes over the Baskerville Hall. Watson goes in with Henry while Sherlock Holmes secretly goes with him too, yet Henry and Watson don't know it yet.
Many exciting events happen in Baskerville Hall. Some bits are slightly scary but then you find out that they're not actually that scary. It's clever because you think you know something but it's not actually happened.
Sherlock Holmes was a clever and unpredictable character. My favourite character was Watson, because he seemed to be the main person in the action and we saw everything from his point of view. He's cool because he did all the planning without even knowing he did it.
Stapleton starts out as being a friend to Henry and Watson however he pulls tricks and is very clver. He is an evil genius.
My favourite bit was when Watson went into the hut and he thought it was a convict however he then found Sherlock Holmes had been secretly hiding on the moor to find out for himself.
I would read another Sherlock Holmes book and there are lots of them.
I give this book five out of five. It is good for nine plus because some of the storyline plot was a bit complicated. Tha language was a bit old-fashioned, it was helpful to have my dad read it to me.

Saturday, 16 January 2010

A Man Who Has the Gods Against Him

The Odyssey retold by Robin Lister is a fantastic, amazing, exciting book.

It the sequel to The Illiad which I have not yet read, but am going to read soon. However you could read The Odyssey on its own.

It is about a man who is coming back from the Trojan war. His name is Odysseus. Odysseus has many adventures against the gods. He has got onto the wrong side of the god Poseidon, god of the water, and faces many battles. They include him meeting ghosts and meeting a cyclops. A cyclops is a giant with one eye.

He gets ship-wrecked a couple of times, however he still manages to make new boats.

The book is a retelling of an ancient Greek poem written by someone called Homer. I loved the way Robin Lister rewrote it, because he made everything seem so real. It had a lot of description of the characters so you really got to know them well. Every word was so well chosen.

The Odyssey is a book that it's worth reading a couple of different versions, you could never get bored.

My favourite bit was when all the suitors - the people who had been trying to marry his wife - held a competition where they had to string Odysseus's bow and shoot the arrow. None of the suitors could do it, but he could. It proved that Odysseus, even though he was undercover pretending to be a weak old man, was still the strongest.

I learned about the Trojan War from this book and how the Trojans stole someone's wife called Helen.

I also very much liked the illustrations which were done by Alan Baker. They helped you understand the story.

I give this book five out of five stars and recommend it for seven plus. I read it by myself. Some of it was a little bit difficult but I did understand it.

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

The Tricks of Milady

The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas is a thrilling story that is a little bit gruesome however still a brilliant story.
It is a story all about a young man named d'Artagnan who meets Monsieur de Treville, captain of the king's musketeers to try to become one. The book is set in France and was written in 1844 but is set in 1628. D'Artagnan meets three musketeers who he duels with and then becomes friends with. His friends, Porthos, Aramis and Athos join d'Artagnan on his adventures. D'Artagnan, Aramis, Porthos and Athos along with their four servants Mousequton, Planchet, Bazim and Grimaux fight in many battles with the famous criminal Milady or Lady d'Winter.
Lady d'Winter is a cunning mysterious woman who is full of tricks. She sends wine that has been poisoned as one of her tricks. She also kills Madame Bonachere, d'Artagnan's mistress for revenge. D'Artagnan is as sad as sad can be that his lover is dead.
I think personally that Madame Bonachere was cheating on Monsieur Bonachere, her husband and I think it was very wrong of her.
D'Artagnan faces many clashes with Lady d'Winter who also has married someone and then married someone else which makes her a bigamist.
D'Artagnan gets mixed up in the arguments and political debates between the supporters of Cardinal Richelieu and the supporters of the king. This was all very interesting for me because it was interesting to see which side he'd take.
I liked how the names were really cool like Grimaux for example especially when you say them with a French accent. He was my favourite character because of his name. I liked how I learnt things about France for example about the Bastille which is a prison that you have to get branded for, a terrible place to be.
I give this book five out of five stars and recommend it for nine plus. The language was medium difficult and I needed a bit of help from my dad who was reading this book to me.

Tuesday, 29 December 2009

The War Over Treasure

Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson is a great book if you like adventure. It is packed full with adventure, mystery and excitement. I never knew exactly what was coming next.
This story is about a boy called Jim. Jim and his mother (only his mother) owns an inn when Blind Pew and Black Dog come and try to get a treasure map. Jim snatches some papers which he later finds out to be the map, and then sets sail with Doctor Livesey and Squire Trelawney on an adventure and a quest to find the treasure.
Unfortunately for Jim in his crew he includes a one-legged man called Long John Silver. Jim hides in a barrel and hears Long John Silver and his pirates talk about their plan to find the treaure before them. Jim warns his comrades. Then there is a battle to see who can find the trasure first. It is exciting.
The question remains: Will he find the treasure before Long John Silver or will the pirates come away rich?
I learned historical things from this book such as what a parrot would say like 'Pieces of Eight, Pieces of Eight'.
This is a very good book. I enjoyed it thoroughly. It is slightly old-fashioned in the language but my dad told me the words that I didn't understand. He sort of translated it to modern. It's best if someone reads it to you because you can concentrate more on the plot and they can do funny voices.
My star rating is five out of five. I recommend this book for 8 plus.