Posted tagged ‘Fantasy’

Mia’s Book Shoutout #4

April 1, 2012

Fifth grade book lover Mia shares her favorite books

“A Book to Get You Buzzing About Spring
Have you ever thought about a bee’s life? What it does, all the different kinds of bees: which ones are useful; which ones are not; how long a bee lives; or how you get honey, I mean real honey?
Well, A Hive for the Honey Bee is told from all sorts of bee perspectives and Thora is the main character. Thora, is a worker bee and we follow her through her life. To really appreciate this book, you really need to know a few things about bees. First, the queen controls everything. Second, the drones do absolutely nothing– well, it’s awkward, but the drones are needed for the queen bee to make babies. Third, all the bees that work are females.
Back to the story which starts when the queen bee leaves Thora’s hive to start a new hive somewhere else. Of course you probably know that it is bad for a honey bee hive for the queen to leave, because the queen controls all the work orders. And, just all the bees knowing the queen is there helps everyone. So a hive must learn how to survive with only about 100 bees and no queen, so if you want to learn how the hive survives in this beautifully illustrated and written book, I recommend you read it now.  But if you are not too interested in bees, there is another part of this story!  It is about Moe, a drone, and his search to find idleness for all worker bees whether they want it or not.  He can see how unfair the hive is, even though most drones are too blind to see it themselves.
A Hive for the Honey Bee is so sad and good. When you finish it you will probably start to cry because Soinbhe Lally is a truly amazing author. Her writing in this book is SO beautiful. This book might be hard to get into at first, but if you just keep pushing through, you will eventually come out on top with the beauty of it. So if this sounds appealing to you, go to the “L” section of the Crescent Park School Library and read it. So, on your mark, get set, BUZZ!

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Mia’s Book Shoutout #3

February 17, 2012

Fifth grade book lover Mia shares her favorite books

“Peter again!”

Are you a Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, Redwall, Narnia, or just a plain lover of all kinds of action packed books which are full of dangers and fights around every corner? Well, this novel by Dave Barry and Ridley Pearson is just the book for you. People don’t realize how good the original Peter Pan is,  so now with Dave Barry’s Peter Pan you will just simply fall in love.

When Peter and his mates from a boys’ orphanage learn that they will soon be sent on a ship to another part of the world called Rundoon where there is a king with a giant-man-eating snake and extremely strict rules, the boys are scared that they will be reduced to shreds. This scene leads to all the action.

When the boys arrive on the boat, they soon realize that the boat will be more likely sinking than sailing with a crazy drunken captain and a dirty underfed crew, but that’s not the worst of the boys’ problems. They are supposed to stay in a little tiny cabin where they are fed once a day and the food…well it’s, you’ll just have to find out for yourself. Also there is a mysterious black trunk that’s been loaded on the boat which could have magic in it. Peter soon finds a friend and companion, Molly. When Peter learns what Molly is protecting and how bad it could be if pirates, the sea, or if the crew get it,  Peter and Molly are on a mission to keep it safe even if it means flying. Peter and Molly fight grown men, pirates, and and Indians.

This book is simply delightful. When I read it I got so nervous that Peter would die or something tragic would happen. My little brother Eli, who is in first grade,  says that “Peter and the Starcatchers is the best book ever!” Eli also says “that he feels like he is in the book whether the boys are flying, swimming, or taunting the pirates.” This book is “hard to stop reading” says Eli;  “ it just keeps getting better and better every time my mom or dad says let’s take a break from listening to Peter.” If you are getting really excited about this book, or you’re getting a really good feeling about it, go directly to the library and look in the “B” section and start reading! Once you finish this book and you want to find out what happens next go back down to the library and check out the next couple called Peter and the Shadow Thieves, Peter and the Secret of Rundoon, and Peter and the Sword of Mercy.

Mia’s book shout out #2

February 2, 2012

Fifth grade book lover Mia shares her favorite books

“Happy 50th birthday,  Phantom Tollbooth!”

Do you ever think that a book can be really boring because there’s just something you can’t quite reach? Well then you won’t like the Phantom Toll Booth exactly for that reason. So after reading this, think about it, because if you read it at a younger age, you could still read it again and get more out of it.  But I’d still recommend reading it when you’re ten. It’s perfect – especially if you like words .  Or if you’re 7 and you are just into adventure and you can understand simple wordplay.

Have you ever wondered where letters, words, phrases, sentences, numbers, terms, expressions, and equations come from? When Milo finds a Phantom Tollbooth in his room, Milo decides to see what it can do, since he has nothing better to do. Milo hops in his little car and suddenly finds himself speeding along a highway, on his way to Dictionopolis. On the way, Milo encounters a trip to the Doldrums and Expectations and meets his journey companion Tock, a watch dog. Upon arriving in Dictionopolis, Milo discovers the silence between two regions, Digitotopolis and Dictionopolis. There, Milo is destined to rescue and return the fair Rhyme and Reason. Will Milo be able to save the fair Rhyme and Reason so fairness will return to the land?

I found that this story was so funny that I didn’t want it to end, but the great part of this is the wordplay and characters. Take the Which, for example, and look at how I spelled her name. She’s not dangerous, right? Only witches with the T are dangerous.

The Phantom Tollbooth is a hard book to know when to read because if you read it too early you won’t be able to understand a good part of this book, but it would still be a good adventure. If you are interested in reading this book it is located in the “J” section of the CPS Library. Have fun reading! The Phantom Tollbooth has been making people laugh for 50 years and hopefully many more!

Wildwood by Colin Meloy

December 2, 2011

Before winter and the Christmas season really set in, I want to tell you about the greatest book I read last month, Wildwood.  Set in the real city of Seattle and the fictional “wildwood” that is located across the river from Seattle, it is full of adventure, danger, colorful characters, and nail-biting suspense.  There are echoes of the “Narnia” books, but the author has put his own personal stamp on it and made it original.  There are beautiful pictures throughout the book, drawn by the author’s very talented wife.

The main character is Pru, a young girl who loses her nearly one-year-old brother one day when she’s babysitting.  One minute he’s sleeping in the little red wagon, and the next he gets carried away by crows! Very disturbing, but of course she sets out to find him, and of course the crows have taken him to Wildwood, which is the mysterious forbidden area across the river from Pru’s city. Children have been taught that it is a dangerous, uncivilized land, but Pru is a daring and loyal sister who will stop at nothing to get her brother back. What will she find when she gets there? Will she succeed in finding her brother, and why would crows carry him away in the first place? Read this beautifully descriptive fantasy if you are looking for a challenging and rewarding reading experience.

TUNNELS!

May 31, 2011

As I was finishing up PENNY DREADFUL by Laurel Snyder last night, I realized it was the fourth book I’ve read this spring that features a tunnel  as an important part of the story.   That got me thinking about a blog post, so here we go:

PENNY DREADFUL by Laurel Snyder is about a ten-year-old girl whose life changes in very big ways when her father quits his job and the family  leaves their mansion and their wealthy lifestyle in the city for the little town of Thrush Junction, Tennessee.  She has never had a friend before, or an adventure;  and suddenly she is surrounded by unusual characters and situations.  At the end of the book she finds herself in a TUNNEL, searching for the legendary hidden treasure….will she find it?  Will she stay in Tennessee or return to New York?  This is a great summer read with a slightly “old fashioned” feel.

THE TUNNEL OF HUGSY GOODE by Eleanor Estes

This book is set in New York in the 1970’s and features a neighborhood full of kids of all ages who have fun without video games (not invented yet!) or television.  If you are wondering how that is possible, check it out and read all about the boys who discover a TUNNEL running under their street.  What do they do there? And what on earth does the RACCOON have to do with it all?!

F IS FOR FREEDOM BY Roni Schotter

This one is more serious and historical.  Set in Vermont in the late 1800’s, it deals with a family who helps aother family of runaway slaves reach freedom in Canada.   The ending is very suspenseful, as  Amanda, the imaginative young daughter, has the opportunity to save the day because she knows of a TUNNEL that may keep the runaways safe from the slave catchers.  Find out if she is successful by reading this enjoyable, exciting historical fiction book.

THE PRINCESS AND THE GOBLINS by George MacDonald

A fantasy classic that has been loved for 150 years,  this book tells the story of Irene, a princess, and her friend Curdie who works in the mines.  There is a lot of exploration of the TUNNELS in the nearby mountain, tunnels where Curdie and his fellow miners make their living and which just happen to be populated by some pretty gruesome goblins with a plan that involves Irene.  This book has one of the most interesting grandmothers that I have ever had the pleasure to read about in a children’s book.  Check it out and see what an important role  Irene’s lovely, magical grandmother plays in this exciting adventure.

Blake’s “Secret” poster

February 18, 2011

Blake, a fourth grader in Mrs. Jerome’s class,  made this picture about a book he’s reading, THE NAME OF THIS BOOK IS SECRET by Pseudonymous Bosch.  “I think the whole school should read this book!  It’s really a good book!  It has a lot of mystery and it is very interesting,” reports Blake.  You can find this book and its sequels in the CPS library.

Calling all hamster lovers

September 2, 2010

I just finished reading The World According to Humphrey, and I found it very entertaining. The story is narrated by Humphrey, a sensitive, caring, and creative hamster who lives in an elementary school classroom and believes that “you can learn a lot about yourself by getting to know another species.” Humphrey learns about humans and the humans he interacts with learn valuable lessons about themselves. He goes home each weekend with a different student, and he makes big changes in every family he visits. His adventures are funny and touching, and they include escaping a nosy dog, helping a grumpy man recover from an illness, and showing a tv-obsessed family that they can learn to enjoy other pastimes. This is a wonderful animal fantasy and I strongly recommend it as a beginning chapter book as well as a great family read-aloud.

Note:  The CPS Library also has the following Humphrey adventures:  Friendship According to Humphrey,  Trouble According to Humphrey, and  Surprises According to Humphrey.  Check them out and make friends with this lovable furball.