Monday, April 09, 2007

Assorted Spring Break Reading

Was oddly intrigued by Ritchie's Erin McEwan, Your Days Are Numbered, which was basically about a girl who struggled with math. She goes to work in a deli from which her mother was just fired, and learns a lot about business and practical applications of math. It was quite good. I'll recommend it.

Qualey's Thin Ice was a great mystery about a girl whose brother (who is her guardian after their parents' deaths) is thought to have been killed in an accident. She doesn't think he's dead and tries to prove it. Compelling.

Peck's The Teacher's Funeral was better than the more popular A Year Down Yonder. I liked the relationships in the family, and the struggles of the sister, Tansy, to teach school. Good historical novel.

Roberts' Jo and the Bandits was also a good one for students who need something historical. It was a bit of a mystery, a bit of comedy, and I enjoyed it. Her Girl with the Silver Eyes was science fiction enough for students who are assigned that, and problem novel enough for students who would like something else.

Phleger's Pilot Down, Presumed Dead was a GREAT survival tale of a pilot who crashes along the coast near Baja, California. He befriends a coyote and manages to survive by fishing. The details of survival were very specific, and there will be a lot of students who love Hatchet who will snap this up.

Pinkwater's Lizard Music was a bit odd, but then Fat Camp Commandos was not exactly mainstream. The only worry I have with this one is that it is dated-- many references to Walter Cronkite and Roger Mudd will confuse students. I will try this science fiction fantasy with comedic touches out on a few students.

Meredith Ann Pierce's The Woman Who Loved Reindeer was good high fantasy about a magic woman/healer who is trying to save several villages from instinction when the earth buckles and mountains spew lava, but the fact that she nursed the half reindeer/half human child and then fell in love with his just disturbed me. Still, fans of The Dark-Angel will like it.

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