Flying Ponies and Dump Trucks

Do little kids love fantasy? NPR recently reported on a study done by three academic psychologists on the subject of children and fiction. They asked a group of 4-to-7-year-olds what choose between two stories they might like to read or listen to: one story about a child who found a treasure, and another about a 

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The Last Dragonslayer by Jasper Fforde

The Last Dragonslayer: The Chronicles of Kazam, Book 1 by Jasper Fforde. HMH Books for Young Readers, 2013. 306 pages Reading Level: Young Adult, ages 12-15 Recommended for: Ages 14 and up Bottom Line: In an engaging alternative reality, punctuated with interesting sentences and quirky British humor, a teenage girl faces sorcerers, politics, and a dragon. Jennifer 

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The Doll People by Ann Martin and Laura Godwin

The Doll People Series, by Ann Martin and Laura Godwin. Disney/Hyperion Reading Level: Middle Grades, ages 8-10 Recommended for: ages 7-12 (mostly girls) Bottom Line: The Doll People series, rolling out in a leisurely way with four titles since 2003, offers a winning set of “living dolls” and an ideal transition from chapter books to 

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Percy Jackson

A Reflection on Rick Riordan

Five years ago I picked up a middle grade fantasy book called The Lightening Thief by Rick Riordan and was hooked by the end of the first page. For those unfamiliar with Riordan’s work,his first series, “Percy Jackson and the Olympians,” follows a middle school student, Percy, who discovers he’s a Greek demigod, and that 

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Sun and Moon Ice and Snow

Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George

Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George. Bloomsbury USA Childrens, 2009. 352 pages Reading Level: Young Adult, ages 12-15 Recommended for: Ages 16-up Bottom Line: A problematic retelling of a Nordic fairy tale “East of the Sun, West of the Moon” which explores the story of a nameless young woman and an ice bear 

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