Friday, January 18, 2008

Moxy Maxwell Does Not Love Stuart Little

I have been in love with this cover since I first laid eyes on it at a Random House preview so, so, so long ago. Now I am kicking myself for taking so darn long to read it!

Moxy Maxwell is a dreamer. Moxy Maxwell is a planner. Moxy Maxwell is a list maker. Moxy Maxwell is a book carrier. She has had Stuart Little with her all summer long. She has simply been waiting for some "in between" time. You know...that time after something ends and the next thing begins? The perfect time for reading. Moxy's mother points out that she has never seen Moxy with any in between time. She is a busy girl.

But time has run out.

With one day left to read Stuart Little under the threat of consequences (the word itself is terrifying to Moxy). The fact that her twin brother Mark had read the book on the first day of summer vacation is no help. Can Moxy with the help of her lists, plans and neighbor Sam, finally make it through the book in time to get to her water ballet recital?

Peggy Gifford has written a perfect book describing a certain type of reluctant reader. Moxy is perfectly capable of reading, she just has better things to do. Her character is aptly named, the short chapters have hilarious titles themselves, and before I knew it, Moxy Maxwell Does Not Love Stuart Little was shifted over to my read pile. The photos added the perfect touch to making the Maxwell family come alive. MMDNLSL will be hitting my Summer Reading List this year!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

I have been reading .... honest!

I have been reading, but I haven't been posting! Cybils reading for the Middle Grade fiction category is keeping the pages turning! And after the judging is done and all, there will be a flurry of reviews posted over here!

But here's the rub!

I just returned from ALA midwinter with 4 bags of shiny, pretty, tween-y arcs! They are beckoning! Maybe I can squeeze one or two in between the official stuff!

I mean, how can I resist this!?!?

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Twice Upon A Marigold

How happy was I when this gem showed up in the mail? Very happy, indeed.

When you think about it, much of Marigold and Christian's happiness was based on the fact that Olympia fell in the river but never came back. Well, guess what? She's back.

Turns out that Olympia has been cooling her heels down the river in Granolha, in the home of the mayor and his wife. The thing of it is, Olympia cannot remember who she is. She has decided that her name is Angelica, and sweet Angelica in no way resembles meany Olympia. She is a good listener, and treats her friends well. All good things must end, however, and after about a year's time, Olympia remembers who she is and resurfaces in all her glory.

Her aim? To get back to Beaurivage and set her plan back in motion. She just knows that her husband King Swithbert must have messed things up by now. Soon she is ordering the people of Granolha to do her bidding, rig her up a carriage, and get her home. She brings Lazy Susan along for the ride to act as her maid. (She is still resenting her sister Beauty's castle life and wants some for herself!).

What follows is a fabulous sequel to Once Upon A Marigold that will simply delight fans. Many characters are the same, but developed more deeply. And the new characters like Mr. Lucasa are such fun! Filled with cheesy jokes, wordplay, and slapstick, this tale of friendship, family and loyalty will warm even the coldest hearts.

Thursday, January 03, 2008

2007 Round Up!

This is the time of years for lists, lists, lists. Favourites and bests. Least favourites and not-bests! I re-read this blog, and I am pleasantly surprised how many good books I was able to read this year. But what of the bests and worsts? Well, this is not a place for the worsts...but there definitely were a of which sits on my nightstand right now. I so wanted to like it.



My favourites for the tween set are:

Hands down, my favourite book of the year. Folks are up in arms. "It's YA", "No! It's cross-over!", "No, it's solidly written children's lit!" I have put my arguing about the shelf placement for The Wednesday Wars aside (aren'tcha happy, Jen?!). I am simply all about loving this book from characters to setting. Simply the best.

Ahhh...Enola Holmes (granted this title isn't 2007, but The Case of the Left-Handed Lady is!) My feminist self is SO pleased with Enola, and with Springer's crafty use of detail that has our students exclaiming when we tell them said details are true. Fast, fun, feminist...woot!

The Secret History of Tom Trueheart did not get the buzz that I thought it would. The same thing happened in the past to the superb Capt. Hook. Simply a delightful read, equally appealing to boys and girls. A great adventure! And a fab cover too!

And last, but not least, Amelia Rules! Superheroes. (Again a 2006, but there is a new 2007 volume out called "When the Past is a Present" and I have faith it'll be just as good!). In my opinion, Jimmy Gownley can do no wrong. Such smart books, with great characters and hilarious details. I champion Amelia Rules whenever and wherever possible. What a great series.

So there you have it. Not easy to whittle things down, let me tell you! For some other favourite lists around the kidlitosphere check out:

2007 Top 10 over at Reading Rants
A Wrung Sponge's 2007 in Review