The Iron Empire by James Dashner. The 7th book in the children’s Infinity Ring series in which we find out if Dak, Sera, and Riq save the world from the Cataclysm. These are fun books that might teach your kids a little about history, friendship, and working together.
The Wind in the Willows by Kenneth Grahame. This is the classic tale of the adventures of Rat, Mole and their friends along the river and in the woods. I was hoping to enjoy this a little more than I did.
Fat Cat by Robin Brande. This is a YA book that I read because it was about a fat teenager, although she doesn’t remain fat for long. Cat is a smart student whose goal is to win the science fair and beat her former friend and rival Matt. She decides to transform herself by living like our prehistoric ancestors. I got a little annoyed at Cat, and her transformation seemed a bit too easy. I was pleased with the outcome of the science fair.
Whittington by Alan Armstrong is a Newbery honor book. It is about a fighting tomcat who asks for a place to live in a barn. He tells both the animals and children of the family who own the barn the tale of Dick Whittington and his cat. Along the way, the telling of this tale helps one of the children who is struggling with reading problems.
The Web: Gulliverzone by Stephen Baxter. This is a kid’s book that I found on my shelf. It takes place on World Peace Day in 2027. In honor of the holiday, there is free access to virtual theme parks on the Web. Sarah and George go to the most popular park based on Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels and find themselves in Lilliput where danger lurks.
Hate that Cat: A Novel by Sharon Creech. I love Sharon Creech’s books, and this is a sequel to Love that Dog. The story is told entirely through Jack’s poems. Jack is learning about poetry and dealing with life by reading and writing in Miss Stretchberry’s class. Not as good as the previous book, but still worth reading.
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon. I haven’t decided if I enjoyed this book or not, but it was worth reading. It made me sad. It’s the story of autistic Christopher who finds a dog that’s been murdered. He likes dogs, so he decides to investigate. Along the way, he learns a lot about his family even when he has trouble making sense of it. This book gives good insight into a mind that doesn’t work like yours or mine. I sort of wonder if a boy like Christopher could really write a book like this. In order to explain things to someone, you have to understand that they think differently than you and have different feelings, and he really can’t comprehend what goes on in other people’s heads.
The World’s Wife: Poems by Carol Ann Duffy. This is a collection of poems in which many important events from history or mythology are told from the women’s perspectives. It was bawdy (to say the least), bitter and angry. It’s a clever idea, but I could not get past all that anger. I did like one line from the poem Eurydice, “But already the light had saddened from purple to grey.”