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Saturday, July 31, 2021

Series Pick: The Oddmire: Deepest Darkest (Book 3)


The Oddmire: Deepest, Darkest (Book 3)
by William Ritter
Algonquin Young Readers
320 pages
ISBN: 9781643750927

Entertaining, Thrilling, Non-Stop Action 

Book Three in William Ritter's The Oddmire series does not disappoint. The "twin" brothers Tinn and Cole go in search of Cole's missing father who disappeared when they were both babies. They enlist help from their two best friends, Evie who knows all about strange creatures and Fable, destined to become the next Queen of the Wild Wood. 

Going underground in search of their father worries Tinn. He's afraid if they do find him alive, his dad won't accept him as the goblin he truly is. The character of Tinn is so lovable, readers will want to hug him and comfort him in his pain. 

 The boys' mother Annie travels with them and their friends. She has hope to see her husband alive again, but there is ancient evil building and they will have to work quickly to complete their mission. 

Ritter has a knack for creating magical, whimsical creatures, and Deepest, Darkest is full of trolls, spriggans, elves, nymphs, goblins and more.

Readers will be on the edge of their seats with the pages turning at a fierce pace. Don't start this book at bedtime because you'll be up all night finishing it. It's that great! 

Highly recommended for fans  and readers of the first two books, and if you've not read The Oddmire series, what are you waiting for? 

A must have for all middle school libraries and readers.

Saturday, July 24, 2021

Halloween Treats: Three New Books for Littles

 Just in time for Halloween: Here are three great new books from Simon for your youngest readers. 

                                                                    BOO! BAA, LALALA!

by Sandra Boynton 

9781534452831Boo! Baa,  Lalala! a cow discovers a new sound as she says "Boo!" for Halloween. She's answered by another voice, "Baa!" This is a quaint read aloud for the youngest readers. Priced at $5.99 it's a true bargain for parents. 

Knock Knock, Trick or Treat! A Spooky Halloween Lift-The-Flap Book 

by Amy E. Sklansky

Illustrated by Chiara Galletti


This is a must-have for all kids! Rhyming text and lift the flaps reveal Halloween favorite characters appear: a witch, a mummy, a ghost, a zombie, a skeleton, Frankenstein and even a cyclops! Lovely little fun book for parents to read and kids to lift the flaps to uncover monsters. 

How To Hide a Ghost: A Lift-The-Flap Book

by MacKenzie Haley 


Rhyming text and winning illustrations make this a gem. The cover even has a lift-the-flap. Innovative design on each flap will keep kids entertained as they discover how each one lifts. 

All three books are highly recommended for the youngest readers. Why not purchase all three for someone you love this Halloween? 

Tuesday, July 13, 2021

Middle Grade Pick: The Girl and the Witch's Garden


The Girl and the Witch's Garden
by Erin Bowman
Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
273 pages
ISBN: 9781534461581

Twelve-year old Piper Peavey doesn't want to stay at her grandmother's cold and imposing estate. She wants to stay with her sick father. Dying of cancer, Dad needs her, but Aunt Eva insists Piper must stay at the mansion because she has a busy job and must be in Colorado. 

Dumped at the Mallory Estate, Piper expects to be met by her grandmother and finally spend time with her runaway mother. She hasn't had any contact with her mother since she was a baby, but she longs to meet her and find a relationship. When she's greeted by four orphans her mother has taken in, she's gobsmacked. Her mother who never had time for her has now adopted a band of orphans in her place? Things don't make sense and Grandmother is strangely missing. Pipe knows something isn't right. 

When her mother sits down for dinner in the vast dining room she lays down the law. She will not dine with Piper. Piper must stay away from her part of the mansion and no sneaking around the grounds. Also, there's a strange Persian cat who seems to patrol the children whenever they are someplace they shouldn't be. 

It doesn't take long for the kids to fill Piper in: her mother is looking for a way into the garden to find a magical elixer that grants immortal life. What Piper wouldn't give to find that elixir and save her father's life! Nothing is as it should be and Piper's going to have to work hard to figure out puzzles and clues to find the elixir. 

Beautiful cover art will help sell this story. 

Readers who love a smart girl and solving mysteries with a little magic will like this book. 
Recommended grades 4-7. 

Friday, July 9, 2021

Native American Pick: Living Ghosts & Mischievous Monsters

 Living Ghosts & Mischievous Monsters: Chilling American Indian Stories

by Dan SaSuWeh Jones, Ponca Nation (written and selected stories)

Illustrated by Weshoyot Alvitre, Tonava Nation 

Scholastic Press


176 pages

ISBN: 9781338681604

Publishing Date: September 7, 2021

What a welcome addition to any folklore, myths and legends collection. Compelling and entertaining stories from various Native American Nation members and collected by Dan SasSuWeh Jones,  the former Chairman of the Ponca Tribe of Oklahoma and consultant for National Geographic Encyclopedia of the American Indian insure this book will be a bestseller and likely multiple awards winner. The state of Oklahoma is likely to make it the state winner of 2021. 

The publisher recommends this beauty for fans of Scary Stories To Tell in the Dark. I recommend it for anyone who enjoys legends, stories and myths and readers who want to know more about Native American stories. 

The author informs readers that as a young child he listened to ghost stories every night from elders around him. Later, he traveled across the country seeking out other tribes' stories. One common thread ran through all the stories: ghosts. Ghosts, the author states, are a part of every day life. 

From the story of his great-aunt who visited them daily titled "My Great-Aunt's Last Ten A.M. Visit" to Herman Viola's (Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian) story of his dead brother who comes home titled "You Don't Live Here Anymore" readers will find the stories entertaining and provocative. These stories are not soon forgotten. "You Don't Live Here Anymore" sticks with me always. Their father goes to the gate of the property and tells the spirit, "You don't live here anymore. Join the spirit world. We love you and miss you, but it's time for you to go." It is heart-breakingly beautiful and filled with paternal love. 

You must have this book or buy it for a special reader. It's a must-have, must-read.

So highly, highly recommended grades 3-7.