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Tuesday, December 17, 2013


Ten of my Favorites
by Kitty Griffin

Is Underground by Joan Aiken
I dare you to find a more delightful adventure with a more daring heroine than "Is". She must find out why the children of London are disappearing. Where she goes, what she finds is an extraordinary tale of courage. Good for middle-graders, but your fantasy loving YA will also enjoy.

Truckers by Terry Pratchett
A colony of nomes live under the floorboard of a department store. Their wonderful life is about to be upended, for the store is to be demolished. "Truckers" is a riotous adventure full of humor as only Pratchett can deliver. The next two books are "Diggers" and "Wings" so if you buy the first, go ahead, get the next two.       

A Dark Horn Blowing by Dahlov Ipcar
This is haunting story has stayed with me since the first time I read it. Nora is called away from the two loves of her life, her husband and her baby. She finds herself in Erland, kidnapped by the wicked Erl King. He wants her to care for his newborn child, Prince Elver. The King promises Nora that she may leave as soon as the Princeling can walk on his own. Full of characters who enchant, plot twists that break your heart, this YA book is hard to put down once you start reading.

Tum Tum and Nutmeg by Emily Bearn
This is for a younger reader/listener. A tender sweet book where two little mice, Tum Tum and Nutmeg take on the care of two young children who move into the house. Charming black and white illustrations only add to the delight of this book.

This Dark Endeavor by Kenneth Oppel
So just why was Dr. Frankenstein so determined to reanimate a dead body? What in his past lead him to this stunning scientific experiment? Why, a dark endeavor of course. Richly told with haunting characters, this story leads the reader to a place where one see why a young man might challenge the boundaries of science. YA.

Skellig by David Almond
What would you do if you found a creature in your parent's garage and you realized it needed your help or it would die? Would you ignore your gravely ill sister? Would you ask your friend, Mina, to help? Weaving several taut threads together, Almond presents a tale mysterious and yet, fragile. Borders on young adult, but a clever young reader will enjoy this.

Mortal Engine by Phillip Reeve
This is one of those books that every time you catch your breath you're thrown off a cliff. The book opens with the city of London chasing a smaller city in order to capture it. Yes. London is mobile. And it's hungry. This stunning adventure stretches the imagination all the while giving remarkable characters whom you really care about. It's the first of the "Hungry Cities Chronicles". It's good for adventurous middle grade readers, it is YA.

East by Edith Pattou
What if? What if you took a small fairy tale and turned it into a complex novel? That's what Pattou has done with "East." Rose, an adventurous girl, leaves her family and her home in the company of a giant bear. While she thinks she's saving her family, the one she's really saving is herself. Middle-grade to YA.

A Long Way from Chicago by Richard Peck
I have given this book to many adults when they aren't feeling well. This book isn't a fantasy. It's a delightful, can't-put-it-down read that is for all ages. The name of the first story is "Shotgun Cheatham's Last Night Above Ground" and it makes me giggle just writing that. Full of humor and honest feelings, this book is stunning. Did I tell you I love it? Middle-grade readers all the way to grown up grown ups.

Which Witch by Eva Ibbotson
I love anything by Eva Ibbotson, but most of all, I love love love this book. Arriman the Awful, a very handsome Wizard who hails from the North, has decided it's time to get married. But which witch? Well, he'll marry the one who manages to perform, shall we say, something with a touch of wickedness and a sprinkling of dreadful? Belladonna doesn't want to be a good witch, but she is. And, she's very much in love with Arrriman. A recipe for disaster becomes a tale of delightful humor. Don't miss this! Wonderful for middle-grade and YA.

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