Thursday, March 16, 2006

Yes, No, Maybe

Bruce Coville's The Monsters of Morley Manor(2001) was great fun. How can I not love a book with a line like "I can have a midlife crisis or a midlife monkey,"[my mother] announced on her fortieth birthday. "I've decided to go for the monkey." This book made me snort through my nose with laughter at various times; okay, it's fun that the children reanimate monsters and travel through space with them, but the writing was what hooked me. The 8th graders might turn up their noses at it, but everyone else will love it. I think there may be a series.

Andy McNab's Traitor (2005) is a great spy thriller. There are a few objectionable words, but considering the dearth of spy thrillers and the avidity with which the boys read them, I have got to order it. Orphaned boy's gradfather accused of being a traitor when he was really a "deniable operative" for MI6-- good stuff, down to the jargon and operating procedures of a stake out. There is a sequel to this. Thank goodness!

David Klass' Home of the Brave (2002) just didn't suck me in, and when it is a book about soccer, it's got to start fast. I am liking his Dark Angel (2005).

Cynthia Grant's Uncle Vampire (1993) would no doubt check out, but I was uncomfortable with the premise of the girl thinking her uncle was abused, and that she had a twin, because it was easier to think about that than the fact that he abused her. A good effort, but not for this library.

Cynthia DeFelice's The Missing Manatee (2005) I will have to think about. I need mysteries, and manatees are big here in Columbus, but there was too much quirky, dysfunctional southern family stuff going on, and it distracted me from the mystery.

Also read Eloise Jarvis McGraw's Moccasin Trail (1952). A Newbery Honor book about a boy who was captured by Indians as a child, later returning to his family but refusing to give up his Indian ways, it is a dense read. At first, all I could think was "Wagh!" (quoted frequently by the main character), but the more I read, the more students I could think of who would like it. I have one 6th grader who has already read all of my survival fiction, and the mere mention of panther pemmican would hook him. Also, many students want Indian captive stories, and there are always a few wanting more challenging "classics" and this would be good, too. Not to mention that it is worth 13 Accelerated Read points, and so far this nine weeks I have 181. My goal was 200, so I'd better get to work!

No comments:

Post a Comment