I Am A Droid by Christopher Nicholas

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My girls are fans of Star Wars. One of my six-year-old twins is a Star Wars superfan. I purchased the collection of six Star Wars Little Golden books on Amazon, so when I found I Am A Droid at my town library, I knew my daughter would enjoy it.

I Am A Droid is a book about the droids in the Star Wars universe. The language used is simple “Some droids are small. Some droids are big. Some droids walk… some droids roll.” The book goes into slightly more detail in explaining things like the difference between an astromech droid and a protocol droid. There’s not really much of a plot; it’s an explanatory book that reads like nonfiction. Read more

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Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs

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I bought the Kindle edition of Library of Souls on release day back in September, but I had a backlog of books to review. I had the opportunity to purchase the Audible edition at a discount because I already owned the Kindle edition. I didn’t have anything to listen to in the car/house, so Library of Souls moved to the top of the queue.

Library of Souls is the third novel in Ransom Riggs’ Mrs. Peregrine’s Peculiar Children series. The books do need to be read in order, so if you have not read the first two books, please be aware that this review might contain spoilers for the first two books. Read more

A Frozen Heart by Elizabeth Rudnick

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I found A Frozen Heart in the new arrivals section in the children’s room at my town library. I picked it up for my oldest daughter because I thought that she would like it. This is a middle grade novel written by Elizabeth Rudnick.

There are already several novelizations of the Frozen movie, so I was a little surprised to see this book. What sets A Frozen Heart apart from the others is that half the chapters are narrated by Anna and the other half are narrated by Hans. Read more

A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis

41leocejialI found A Madness So Discreet on Goodreads, and then made a request for it through the library network. This young adult novel was written by Mindy McGinnis.

Grace Mae is a pregnant teenager. Perhaps if her story took place a century later, the plot may have been cute and quirky. But at the end of the 19th century, getting pregnant as a well-bred girl from a good home earns Grace a place in an asylum outside of Boston. It is a terrible place, where inmates are routinely abused. Grace is rescued by a doctor, and brought to another asylum in Ohio. This second asylum is an ethical treatment center, where patients are treated with dignity. Dr. Thornhollow thinks that Grace’s intuition is unparalleled, and thinks that she would make an excellent assistant. Thornhollow is a pioneer in the field of phrenology, and serves as a police consultant on murder cases. When Grace and Thornhill realize that there might be a serial killer in their midst, they become obsessed with catching him and bringing him to justice. Read more

The Secret Rooms by Catherine Bailey

512bmmzuv5elI found The Secret Rooms on Amazon when I was looking up books about the late Victorian/Edwardian era. From there, I looked it up on the library network. I was pleased to discover that there was a copy at my town library; I didn’t even have to make a request and wait for it to be sent!

The Secret Rooms was written by Catherine Bailey, and is subtitled “A True Story Of A Haunted Castle, A Plotting Duchess, & A Family Secret”. Belvoir Castle is the centerpiece of what was once one of the largest estates in England. Catherine Bailey finds herself visiting Belvoir as part of her research for a book about the Great War. While combing through the correspondence, she finds that there are three gaps. The 9th Duke had devoted his life to meticulous record keeping. In fact, the 9th Duke passed away in one of the rooms designated as the archives, and after his death, the rooms were closed for almost seventy years. The only conclusion is that the gaps are intentional, but what could the 9th Duke have been trying to hide? Read more

Waddle Waddle by James Proimos

51xhbbcg2bhlI always look forward to being able to chat with my friend when our oldest children have Girl Scouts. Her children are the same age as mine, and get along nicely. The last time we were there, her son asked if he could read Waddle Waddle to me. I was so honored that he asked; it was such a sweet gesture.

Waddle Waddle is a picture book written and illustrated by James Proimos. As the story begins, a penguin is looking for his new friend. He meets a penguin who sings, and a penguin who plays a horn… but where is his dancing friend? The penguin doesn’t have much time to think about this; a polar bear wants to turn him into a tasty meal. The penguin is in trouble, but who can help him? Read more

American Girl Beforever Melody: No Ordinary Sound by Denise Lewis Patrick

71p00i80oflI found American Girl Beforever: No Ordinary Sound by Denise Lewis Patrick at the library. I was very surprised to find it because I didn’t even know that the book was available already. This is the first story featuring the new American Girl doll Melody Ellison.

Melody Ellison is a nine-year-old girl living in Detroit in 1963. She is the youngest of four children: her oldest sister Yvonne attends Tuskegee University, Dwayne loves to sing, and Lila is in middle school. Melody also has a dog named Bojangles. Read more

Fox and Crow Are Not Friends by Melissa Wiley

51m5vgzfhslLast week, one of my first grade twins came home with two books. Her sweet classmate had noticed that she liked foxes, so he brought two books about foxes from his house for her to borrow.

Fox and Crow Are Not Friends is a level 3 “Step into Reading” book written by Melissa Wiley and illustrated by Sebastien Braun.

This story begins with Aesop’s fable about the fox and the crow, wherein a fox tricks a crow into giving up the cheese in her mouth by praising her beautiful singing. The vain crow cannot resist, but when she opens her mouth to sing, she loses her cheese. That is where the fable ends, but our story continues. The crow is annoyed about losing her cheese, so she seeks revenge. The fox is not happy about this development and insists, “No one outfoxes a fox!” There is something that the fox and the crow have not considered: who does all the cheese they keep taking belong to, and how will they react when they find out who has been taking the cheese? Read more

Frozen: Across the Sea by Ruth Homberg

51exkwmm5plI found Frozen: Across the Sea at my town library, and I grabbed it because my girls are fans of Frozen. This is a level 2 “Step Into Reading” book.

Across the Sea is a brand new adventure featuring Anna and Elsa. The two sisters are going on a trip. They visit two different lands, and finally, they visit the Duke of Weselton. The land of Weselton is in the middle of a heat wave, so Elsa uses her powers to make it snow. Everyone is happy to be cooled off; the duke is allegedly happy too, but he still looks as grumpy as ever! The story ends with Anna and Elsa heading back home after a lovely trip. Read more

The New Small Person by Lauren Child

61-3oiq052blI have been a fan of Lauren Child’s books for over ten years. There was something just something magical about her Charlie and Lola series. She took a pair of siblings, and placed them in ordinary situations like birthday parties and loose teeth. When complications arose, these siblings used creativity and their imaginations to solve their problems.

Lauren Child has written several picture books that do not feature Charlie and Lola, but most of these do not feature siblings. The New Small Person introduces us to Elmore Green, a young boy who likes things a certain way. He happily eats his orange jelly beans and lines up his toys, but then one day, a new small person arrives. Elmore is not happy about the intrusion, and does not appreciate that the small person is licking the jelly beans and wearing his fourth favorite outfit. Will Elmore ever find any use for this small intruder? Read more