Reading children’s books lately…

If you’re wanting books for tweens, I have a few recommendations for you.

The Lost Hero by Rick Riordin–I totally expected this to be a bomb.  I figured it would be a cheesy take-off of the Percy Jackson series, but boy, am I glad I gave it a shot!  It was just another excellent addition to the Lightning Thief series.  Nice and long, somewhat predictable in a couple of aspects, but still plenty of action, I had to finish it in one day.  As always, I love Riordan’s take on ADHD in these books.

The Landon Snow series by R.K. Mortenson–This is the Christian answer to Harry Potter and Spiderwick.  Following these series, I did like the characters and plot.alus Quidam.    But God gets changed to The Auctor (the creator/author), even though the Bible is presented as an important plot element and direction for life.  So why not keep God as God?  God’s enemy is changed to Malus Quidam.  I’ve read the first 3 in the series, and they stay pretty true to both scripture and the adventure.  A little wordy at times, and Landon Snow must be the world’s most articulate 10 year-old, but my 11 year-old liked them.  Landon’s sister seems a little OCD, but it’s fun to see how even that works out.  The first one is Landon Snow and the Auctor’s Riddle.

Scumble by Ingrid Law–Law’s first book, Savvy, was about Mibs and the special powers she gained on her 13th birthday.  Her whole clan acquires a special power on this special day, ranging from earth moving to sound capturing to hearing a person’s thoughts.  The companion book, Scumble, is just as well-written and imaginative.  This one takes place about 9 years later, focusing on Mibs’ cousin, Ledge.  Ledge acquires his Savvy, but he must learn to scumble (control) it.  He battles not only his new savvy, but living with his uncle in Wyoming for the summer, trying to head off a local girl interested in learning all about him and his family, and wanting to help his uncle save their family’s ranch.  I loved it so much I had to re-read Savvy again right afterward.  It was wonderful how the author dealt with a boy’s drive to destroy accidentally…and learn how to put things together again.

Turk and Runt by Lisa Wheeler–this is a picture book for 2nd grade up.  I laugh every time I read it at Thanksgiving.  Turk is the perfect older brother turkey, a great dancer, a fabulous football player; he’s sure to be chosen for something big.  Runt is his little brother turkey; small, but realistic.  He knows that Turk is really destined to be roasted and basted.  The dialogue in this book is witty, and younger kids really have to have a good grasp on dialogue to get the jokes.  I have my class do a reader’s theater of this just because it’s fun.  My favorite part?  The little old lady arrives at the farm.  “Maybe she’s a little old dance instructor!” says mother turkey.  “Maybe she’s a little old talent scout!” says father turkey.  “I hope she’s a little old vegetarian!” says Runt.  But no one ever listened to Runt.

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