Two middle-grade summertime stories, both by Newberry-winning authors: Half a Chance, by Cynthia Lord. Scholastic, 2014, 218 pages. Age/interest level: 10-14 Lucy is used to moving—it’s her third time in 12 years. This time, her photographer dad and computer-programmer mom have moved to a New Hampshire lake mostly populated with summer people, so the friends […]
Due to the loooong winter experienced by those of us in the Midwest and eastern United State, we’ve been slow to get our garden in. Also a bit tardy to look around and notice the new gardening books that always start popping up in March. But better late than never: here’s one nice addition to […]
Zondervan’s “Faithgirlz!” books are series novels aimed at middle-grade girls. These two “girlz” series fall prey to some common weaknesses of Christian fiction, but show some bright spots too: Riley Mae and the Rock Shocker Trek (Good News Shoes, #1), by Jill Osborne. Zonderkidz, 2014, 238 pages. Age/interest level: 8-12. Riley Mae Hart loves shoes: […]
Chitty Chitty Bang Bang Over the Moon, by Frank Cottrell Boyce. Candlewick, 2014, 240 pages. Age/interest level: 9-13 The magical car seems to be flying for the last time in this latest installment of her time-traveling adventures (following Chitty Chitty Bang Bang and the Race against Time, which takes her and the Tooting family back […]
Basketball season has peaked and poetry month is almost over, but here are some sports novels in verse (not so strange a genre as you might think), plus a poetic tribute to baseball, that are well worth a look. The Crossover, by Kwame Alexander. Harcourt Mifflin Harcourt, 2014, 237 pages. Age/interest level: 10-up. Basketball Rule […]
Last year we ran an extensive series of posts on the lucrative market of “specialty” Bibles, particularly for teens and children. That market just keeps on pumping, so it seems like a good idea to make this an annual feature. Today we’ll talk about new or new-ish Bibles for various age groups and demographics; tomorrow, […]
The Shakespeare Stealer (1998), Shakespeare’s Scribe (2000), and Shakespeare’s Spy (2003), by Gary Blackwood. Penguin Group; Puffin Books. Age/interest level: 12-16. True story: in 1998 I was shopping around a manuscript about a 14-year-old boy in 16th-century London who through a series of happy misfortunes becomes an actor in William Shakespeare’s theater company. Before starting […]
When I was a child I read large numbers of mysteries and was always somewhat irritated when I had to go to math class. I did just fine in math class, but all that specificity got in the way of my more verbal and creative side. If you have children that sound like this–or, believe it […]
NOTE: The giveaway contest is closed–congratulations to Nellie, who recommended Ivanhoe as her favorite adventure story. “High interest” children’s literature (see our explanation here), covers many genres and age levels. Today we look at some worthy titles in the travel/adventure genre for middle graders–and you, lucky reader, may have a chance to win three of […]
This week we begin a series of occasional posts called Retro Reads: those modern-day classics you may have missed in your teen years or before you were even on the radar screen. We’ll do this mostly by author: Beverly Cleary, E. L. Konigsburg, Elizabeth Speare, Natalie Babbitt—and any favorites you’d like to suggest? We launch […]
Sometimes fans of a popular book DEMAND a sequel (see Origami Yoda, below), and sometimes the entire series is planned out from the beginning. Whether a series conclusion lives up to its promise is another story, but all of these sequels have their charms. Click on the highlighted title of the previous book to read […]
Subscribe / Connect
- SRC, Week 1: Chitty Chitty And The Race Against Time June 16, 2014
- Parents, Teachers: How Does Your Christianity Change How and What Your Teens Read? June 26, 2014
- SRC Blue Comet: Problems and Alternate Suggestion June 22, 2014
- SRC, Week 2: Rush Revere and the First Patriots June 24, 2014
- SRC Week 2, Teen List: Dragon’s Tooth Discussion June 28, 2014
- Jessica: My son David and I both completed the Reading Chal...
- Emily: Thanks so much for all the insight on your experie...
- Sara: We just finished school so The Daughter (G - 13) d...
- H team: Read 3 books....We blacked out the bad language in...
- Janie: Thanks for chiming in, Anna! I sympathize with th...