Dear Student – book review

Dear Student by Elly Swartz Realistic Fiction Tween (grades 4-8) * * * Stars (Pretty good) Autumn is starting 6th grade with a lot of life changes. Her dad recently joined the Peace Corps to make a difference in the world, and as a result, the rest of their family has had to move out of their big house and into a small apartment. Her best friend also just moved across the country, and Autumn … Read more

Golden Goblet – Read It and Rate It

The Golden Goblet by Eloise Jarvis McGraw Adventure Historical Fiction Mystery Review #1 * * * * * Stars (Amazing!) What would it be like to live in the time of Queen Tiy, mother to Amenhotep IV? Ranofer does just that. He is a young Egyptian boy, who longs to be a goldsmith like his father. Unfortunately, his father dies and leaves Ranofer in the grips of his half-brother, Gebu. Ranofer’s life becomes miserable until … Read more

Lily and Dunkin – Read It and Rate It

Lily and Dunkin by Donna Gephart Realistic Fiction Review #1 * * * * * Stars (Amazing!) “Lily and Dunkin” is about two middle-schoolers who have to learn to deal with life while finding themselves. Lily is a transgender girl trying to embrace who she is, and Duncan is a boy who is dealing with mental illness. They slowly figure out who they are and grow together even through the tough years of middle school. … Read more

Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane – Read It and Rate It

The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane by Kate DiCamillo Adventure Review #1 * * * * Stars (Great!) “The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane” is a book told about a rabbit (Edward Tulane). He lives very comfortably in a home with a loving family. He gets used to a set routine and way of life. One day he gets lost and starts to learn more about life and how different people live it. Eventually he … Read more

Catherine’s War – book review

Catherine’s War by Julia Billet illustrated by Claire Fauvel translated by Ivanka Hahnenberger Graphic Novel Historical Fiction WWII/Holocaust (for grades 5+, teens, and adults) In 1942, teenager Rachel Cohen finds herself at the Children’s Home boarding school in Sevres France, after her parents send her there for her safety. World War II is being fought throughout France and the Germans are invading. As a Jewish person, Rachel is in an even more dangerous position and … Read more

Music for Tigers – book review

Music for Tigers by Michelle Kadarusman Realistic Fiction for tweens (grades 4-8) * * * Stars (Pretty good) Louisa is sent to stay with her uncle in Tasmania at a small camp in the Tarkine wilderness for her summer vacation while her biologist parents are off doing research. Louisa would have preferred to stay at home and prepare for her audition with the Toronto Symphony Youth Orchestra, but has to make do with a radical … Read more

Home of the Brave – book review

Home of the Brave by Katherine Applegate Novel in Verse Realistic Fiction Tween (grades 4-8) * * * * Stars (Great!) Kek is young boy who comes to America from a refugee camp in Africa to stay with relatives. His father and older brother were shot by men who came to their village. He ran when they came, and was separated from his mother. Now he doesn’t where she is or if she even survived, … Read more

Twins – book review

Twins by Varian Johnson Illustrated by Shannon Wright Graphic Novel Realistic Fiction Tween * * * * Stars (Great!) Maureen and Francine are identical twins who are starting 6th grade. Although they’ve spent all of their lives together up until now, on the first day of school it becomes clear that Francine wants to reinvent and distance herself from Maureen and their group of friends, which really hurts Maureen’s feelings. Francine has always been more … Read more

Lion of Mars – book review

The Lion of Mars Science Fiction Survival Tween * * * * * Stars (Amazing!) Bell lives in a small compound on Mars along with a group of other Americans – scientists, researchers, etc. – who all contribute to their community to keep things running, growing, working. He and some of the older kids are curious about the other settlements on Mars (France, Germany, etc.), but their interest is firmly rebuffed by their Commander who … Read more

Aster and the Accidental Magic – book review

Aster and the Accidental Magic book #1 by Thom Pico and Karensac Adventure Fantasy Graphic Novel Tween * * * * Stars (Great!) Aster is not super thrilled when her parents move them from the city to a small mountain town so Aster’s mother can continue work on her robo-birds (that will save them all from the enormous crow migration that’s about to take place). After she meets a mysterious old lady shepherd who gives … Read more