Archive | Book Reviews RSS feed for this section

Mara, Daughter of the Nile by Eloise Jarvis McGraw

Mara, Daughter of the Nile by Eloise Jarvis McGraw.  Puffin, 1985, 288 pages   Reading Level: Young Adults, ages 12-14 Recommended for: Ages 12-up Bottom Line:  Ancient Egypt comes alive through historical fiction when romance and intrigue meet in the life of a slave girl. As Mara, Daughter of the Nile opens, Hatshepsut is pharaoh.  While […]

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

Lilliput by Sam Gayton

Lilliput by Sam Gayton, Illustrated by Alice Ratterree. Peachtree, 2015. 252 pages Reading Level: Middle Grades, ages 8-10 Recommended for: ages 10-12 Bottom Line: Lilliput is an entertaining (alternative) window into Gulliver’s Travels, but may be too violent for sensitive readers. Lily’s world turned upside-down when the giant waded out of the sea and snatched […]

Read full story · Comments { 1 }

*Boats for Papa by Jessixa Bagley

*Boats for Papa by Jessixa Bagley. Roaring Brook Press, 2015. 40 pages. Reading Level: Picture Books, ages 4-8 Recommended For: Ages 4-8 Buckley, a young beaver, lives with his mother by the sea. While he loves everything about the sea, his favorite thing to do is to make boats: “big boats, small boats, long boats, […]

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

The Boys Who Challenged Hitler by Phillip Hoose

The Boys Who Challenged Hitler: Knud Pedersen and the Churchill Club by Phillip Hoose. Farrar Straus Giroux, 2015. 198 pages including appendices Reading Level: Middle Grades, ages 10-12 Recommended for: ages 10-14 Bottom Line: The story of how a handful of schoolboys sparked the Danish Resistance makes thrilling reading for middle-graders interested in WWII history. […]

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

Ranger in Time series by Kate Messner

Ranger in Time: Rescue on the Oregon Trail and Danger in Ancient Rome by Kate Messner. Scholastic, 2015. About 125 pages, plus author note. Reading Level: Chapter books, ages 4-8 Recommended for: ages 6-8 Bottom Line: The “Ranger in Time” series is a fun way to introduce early readers to history, as a loveable search-and-rescue […]

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

*Water is Water by Miranda Paul and illustrated by Jason Chin

*Water is Water: A Book About the Water Cycle by Miranda Paul and illustrated by Jason Chin. Roaring Brook Press, 2015. 40 pages. Reading Level: Picture books, ages 4-8 Recommended For: Ages 0-10 Most books about the water cycle show the classic diagram of ocean/lake, clouds, and land, using technical terms such as evaporation, condensation, and precipitation. In […]

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

20 Ways to Draw a…: A Sketchbook for Artists, Designers and Doodlers [series] by various authors

20 Ways to Draw a…: A Sketchbook for Artists, Designers and Doodlers by various authors. Quarry Books. 95 pages. Reading Level: Ages 4-8 and up Recommended For: Ages 4-8 and up If you want ideas for drawing a jellyfish (or a bicycle or any number of things related to nature, animals, oceans, transportation, facial features, everyday things, […]

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

Goodbye Stranger by Rebecca Stead

Goodbye Stranger by Rebecca Stead. Wendy Lamb Books, 2015. 304 pages. Reading Level: Middle Grades, ages 10-12 Recommended For: Ages 12-15 Bottom Line: Three best friends attempt to navigate seventh grade with their one rule–no fights–still in effect in this contemporary realistic fiction novel. Best friends since the fourth grade, Bridge, Tab, and Emily enter seventh grade […]

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

*Circus Mirandus by Cassie Beasley

*Circus Mirandus by Cassie Beasley. Dial, 2015, 304 pages Reading Level: Middle Grades, age 10-12 Recommended for: all ages Bottom Line: Circus Mirandus, a magical tale for middle-graders, avoids sentimentality and can easily be adapted to a Christian understanding of the Kingdom. Micah Tuttle is swiftly approaching a crisis: Grandpa Ephraim, who raised him from […]

Read full story · Comments { 2 }

SIX by M. M. Vaughan

SIX by M. M. Vaughan. Simon & Shuster (Margaret K. Elderberry Books), 2015. 361 pages Reading Level: Middle Grades, ages 10-12 Recommended for: Ages 10-14 Bottom Line: SIX, a science-fiction novel for middle-graders, offers likeable characters and the intriguing possibility of teleportation. Parker Banks has had a lot of adjusting to do over the last […]

Read full story · Comments { 0 }

Fort by Cynthia DeFelice

Fort by Cynthia DeFelice. Farrar Strauss Giroux, 2015. 200 pages Reading Level: Middle Grades, ages 8-10 Recommended for: ages 10-12 (especially boys and reluctant readers) Bottom Line: Sweet-but-rough justice is served up in this boys-only summer tale that pits three losers against two bullies. Wyatt Jones, age 11, is enjoying the last of his summer […]

Read full story · Comments { 0 }