I thoroughly enjoyed this book including Nicoletta Ceccoli’s beautiful illustrations throughout. The adventure begins when “rivery” magic gives Claire’s bullying cousin Duke a horn instead of a nose. Similar to Pinochio’s nose, whenever he bullies someone, his horn grows as he slowly transforms into a rhinocerous. Only an act of true kindness will return him to himself, but Duke is too mean and selfish to care. He runs away and gets involved with some mischievous trolls who turn his family into stone. Claire agrees to help the trolls so that she can save her stony relatives and attempt to save Duke from himself. It’s aRead More →

Lynne Reid Banks’ newest novel is historical fiction set in Rome around the 3rd century AD. Two tiger cubs are captured and brought to Rome. One is given to the emperor’s daughter to be raised as her pampered pet. The other brother is taught to be a vicious man-eating fighter at the Colosseum. There is description of the gladiators and animals slaughtering each other, and also innocent, forbidden love between the princess and a slave. It demonstrates the social structure of Rome very vividly and also demonstrates how Christianity was viewed by the Romans. Tiger, Tiger would be excellent to use if you are teaching ancient Roman historyRead More →

 This book was fun! I don’t really understand how Quantum Physics works, but the author seems to do a good job of explaining it and integrating a challenging scientific topic into the basis of the story. This book introduces the main character, “Tick” Atticus Higginbottom, and his journey to become a “Realitant” who travels to different realities. I was pleasantly surprised by Tick’s close relationship with his father. In other children’s novels I am often frustrated when the main characters do not communicate with the adults. In The Journal of Curious Letters, Tick actually confides in his dad, and dad listens and supports him. It’sRead More →

The Patron Saint of Butterflies was unique and fascinating to read from the point of view of teens raised on a religious commune. The story is alternately told from the point of view of Agnes and then Honey, best friends who have grown up together at the commune. Agnes believes the commune’s doctrine, while Honey questions everything. When Honey flees with Agnes’ grandmother, taking an unwilling Agnes along on an adventure to save her little brother’s life, they have a life-changing journey that is satisfying and heartfelt. Highly recommended realistic fiction! Recommended for junior high and up. Posted by MichelleRead More →

Aislynn has the Sight. She can see fairies.  But if they realize that she can see them they will probably blind her or kill her, so her whole life she has carefully pretended that she can’t see them.  She just wants to be a normal teenager, hanging out with her gorgeous best friend, Seth.  Her friends encourage her to be more than friends, but she doesn’t want to ruin their relationship.  Her life changes suddenly when one of the most powerful fairies, Keenan the Summer King, chooses Aislynn to be his queen and attempts to win her over.  Keenan is beautiful, charismatic and persistent, but Aislynn justRead More →

  I couldn’t put Savvy down until I was finished! It was fun and touching with great characters and a clever premise. When a Beaumont kid turns 13, they get their “savvy.”   Mib’s older brothers have powerful savvys: one can make storms and the other makes electricity. What will Mib’s savvy be? Right before Mib’s 13th birthday her father is hospitalized from a terrible car accident. She is determined to visit her father at the hospital 90 miles away because she is convinced that her savvy will allow her to save him. On the journey to her father Mib has a grand adventure where she gets toRead More →

My Most Excellent Year is an hilarious and poignant novel of love, friendship, the nurturing nature of teen boys and of course, Mary Poppins. Told in letters, IM’s and emails, the author does a wonderful job of transitioning between the multiple voices. Filled with engaging and witty dialogue that will make you laugh, chuckle, or smile(or some weird genetic mutation of all 3) on almost every page.  The relationships between the characters are fresh and uplifting without being over-the-top. My Most Excellent Year is a charming and delightful read, and can be enjoyed by book lovers of all ages. Posted by FaithRead More →

Schooled, by Gordon Korman Capricorn has had a sheltered childhood growing up on an isolated old farm commune with his hippie grandmother. When she is injured and cannot care for him for two months he is forced to enter the real world and attend middle school in town. At first all the kids treat “Cap” terribly because he is so different. He is easily confused by the strange, foreign environment of middle school!  His innocent, kind and peace-loving nature help him to acclimate and eventually even win the kids over. It was interesting to follow the story from the different points of view of various people telling the story:Read More →

I finished Haddix’s Found earlier this week and loved it. Since I had already read Flanagan’s Battle for Skandia, equally satisfying, the next big book was Patterson’s Final Warning. (I’m a movie fanatic and waiting for Max Ride 4 after Ranger’s Apprentice 4 was the same feeling as waiting for Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and The Dark Knight.) Usually it’s my duty to hype books. I understand that sometimes it’s easier to just watch a TV show, so I understand the importance of finding a great book quickly. I especially understand a need for lots of action in a book. A few explosions neverRead More →