Prins, Marcel and Peter Henk Steenhuis. Hidden Like Anne Frank: 14 True Stories of Survival.
March 25th 2014
by Arthur A. Levine Books
EARC from Netgally.com
Mr. Prins mother was hidden as a very young girl, and he was always enthralled with her stories. After he interviewed her, he collected the stories of 13 other people, mainly from Amsterdam, who were hidden during this time. The variety of the stories is compelling, and all are told in a gripping, realistic and yet not horrifying way. Most middle school students are familiar with Anne Frank's story, but this book points out that there were many other children who were hidden. Definitely purchasing a copy of this one for use in the Holocaust unit. There is a web site as well, http://hiddenlikeannefrank.com, that would be great for teachers to use in the classroom if there is an LCD projector. The pictures and brief nonfiction text would be a good addition to the lessons.
Dixon, Franklin W. The Vanishing Game (Hardy Boys Adventures #3)
June 4th 2013
Joe is dating Daisy, whose father has bought the Funspot, an older amusement park in Bayport. In order to get more attention, Daisy's father Hector has hired the Piperato Brothers to design the G-Force ride. However, since buying the park, Daisy's mother has lost her high paying job and the family has fallen on hard times, causing Daisy not to be able to go to a private school and therefore breaking up with Luke, who does. When the G-Force ride premieres, a girl named Kelly disappears from it. She can't be found, and news swirls all around the event. Of course, Frank and Joe start their own investigation. The Piperato brothers show up and are a bit bizarre, creating their own viral videos about the "death ride". When Luke also goes missing from the ride, the Hardy boys know that something is going on and find out some dark and dirty secrets about Daisy's family.
Strengths: Lots of good things going on here. Amusement parks, light romance, romantic rivalry, criminal pasts, and an awesome roller coaster. The Hardy Boys books are like graham crackers-- not the most healthy thing you can eat, but not too bad for you, and they make a yummy snack!
Weaknesses: I wish that this new series didn't go back and forth between Joe and Frank's view points. They are so similar that it's just confusing and unnecessary. This book seemed to end on a cliff hanger, which is too bad. The thing I like best about these books is that they don't need to be read in order. Have to find book #4 to see what the deal is.
Into Thin Air (Hardy Boys Adventures #4)
October 22nd 2013
Peril at Granite Peak (Hardy Boys Adventures #4)
February 4th 2014
As I suspected, book #4 needs to be read in order to find out what happens in book #3. This is too bad, because the fact that most of these books stand alone was a big selling point to me. Not a huge deal, and good to be aware that students can read these in any order with the exception of #3 and #4 being read together.
Peril at Granite Peak was exceptionally good, and one of the few books I've ever read that deals with skiing. That, and Gilman's Ice Claw. Since winter was so cold and snowy, I had a lot of students asking for books about skiing, and didn't have much to hand them!