Gwen & Kate's Library

Two sisters' reviews of Young Adult and Middle Grade books, inspired by their lovely library.

Explanations (Start Here!)

Hi! My name is Gwen, and my younger sister Kate and I run this blog. Since we aren’t really professional enough to have a review policy, this is just our explanations page, laying out how this blog works.

The Pages: For more information about us, the writers of this blog and owners of the home library, visit About Gwen & Kate. For the full story of how we began our library and later this blog, read The Story Behind the Library. Our blogroll, containing many amazing other blogs, can be found under Spreading the Love: Blogroll, and a full list of our book reviews, organized alphabetically by author’s last name is filed under Full List of Book Reviews.

Reviews: You might have noticed that I blog a lot more than she does, although she reads twice as much as I do and has twice as much free time. I write most of the book reviews, but she often contributes to the book lists we post once in a while. We also like to post interesting picture collections and have done two resource posts entitled “Royalty Explained,” and “Medieval Terms.”

Genres: Genres Kate and I most frequently read and blog about include young adult, middle grade, fantasy, romance, historical fiction, fairy tale retellings, graphic novels, and occasionally dystopia, contemporary fiction, or non fiction.

Book Descriptions and Covers: All book descriptions and book cover photographs come from unless otherwise marked (and will henceforth not be marked if they are from

Spoilers: We try and avoid spoilers as often as we can, but if we choose to include one in a review, it will be marked beforehand. Anything revealed in the official book description is not considered a spoiler, although they often do give major plot points away, we trust the author’s decision.

Our Rating System for Books:

5 stars: 5 star books are automatically added to our favorites category, especially if they deserve the rare 5+, meaning it has been our favorite for a long time and always will be. These are the books that we stay up all night reading, fall in love with the characters, and sit staring off into the distance after finishing, e.g. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, and Emerald Green by Kerstin Gier.

4 stars: These books are also loved, but there are one or two flaws. 4.5 stars are almost perfect, and would sometimes even join the favorites list. 4 stars are the most common, meaning a very well written book, and still recommended, but not amazing.

3 stars: 3 star books are liked but not loved. There is some quality we enjoyed, but the flaws dragged it down. These books are not highly recommended and will probably never be re-read. The series will probably not be continued either.

2 stars: 2 star books are very disappointing. They might have a slow beginning, flat characters, or a boring and predictable plot. Not recommended.

1 star: These books were probably abandoned from the start. 1 star is the lowest of the low (0 stars is not possible), and very rarely given. A book abandoned before the first 100 pages will usually not even be reviewed at all.

Thank you for visiting our blog! We love comments! Enjoy!

~Gwen & Kate


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