Month: May 2018

The Young Unicorns

Written by Madeline L’Engle and published in 1968, The Young Unicorns is a beautiful suspense\intrigue featuring an endearing family known as the Austins. We meet the Austins as they are adjusting to life in the bustle of New York City. Originally from a small county town, they are innocent to the evil that surrounds them in their new home; gangs, riots, and radical movements. Over time, the once close family begins to slowly drift apart. The children spend more time with friends than they do each other, and the father-Doctor Austin-is spending more time at his work than with his family. As a result of this, when strange things start happening to the different members of the family, they keep them secret. The mysterious appearance of a genie, the unusual actives of the Alphabat Gang, strange questions by strangers, and the secretive doings of the Head Bishop all are connected in some sinister purpose. If the Austins don’t realize what’s going on and start communicating, it might be too late to stop that evil purpose-and might even cost them their lives.
Madeline L’Engle is a remarkable author. Her writing style is very unusual; she uses little detail in the actual story but makes up for it by using plenty of detail in her dialogue. The Young Unicorns flows very well; it is not fast paced but something new is always happening to further the intrigue. I would say this book is an easy to medium read.
I would highly recommend The Young Unicorns for ages 13+. It is an outstanding story; however, there are some universalist and good versus evil themes that are difficult to grasp at times. All in all, a delightful read with excellent literature qualities and deep subject matter. 4 out of 5 stars.

The Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

One of Robert Louis Stevenson’s best-known works, The Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is an eerie tale of mystery and intrigue. It was published in 1886 and would be considered a psychological mystery thriller.

Henry Jekyll is a well-known man of science. To all outward appearances, he appears to have a comfortable, happy life; money, intellect, and many friends-one among them being Mr. Utterson, a lawyer. One day, however; things begin to turn sour for Dr. Jekyll after the sudden appearance of one Mr. Hyde. An unexplainable will, strange messages, and the sudden reclusiveness of his old friend make Mr. Utterson wonder if perhaps this Mr. Hyde is blackmailing his friend…or perhaps there is some darker corruption at work. Together with Poole, Dr. Jekyll’s butler, and Dr. Lanyon, an old friend; Mr. Utterson is determined to get to the bottom of the sinister business of the Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.

Robert Louis Stevenson is an amazing author. He combines just the right amount of detail and dialogue to make his stories flow smoothly with no dull spots in them at all. The Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is at a medium to hard reading level.

I would highly recommend this book for ages 16+. There is a little bit of mild language, and some mature dark themes. All in all, a well written book with excellent food for thought. 4 out of 5 stars.