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Thursday, September 2, 2010

 

August 2010


The following reviews, interviews and features are running on Kidsreads.com for the month of August.


Reviews And Excerpts

Click HereOn a rather abnormal day at school, 12-year-old David MacAvoy learns he is one of the Magnificent Twelve and that an evil force is on its way. Mack needs to track down the other 11 in order to defeat it. There is just one little problem: Mack is scared --- of everything. Reviewed by Benjamin Boche.
Click HereSCUMBLE by Ingrid Law
Nine years after Mibs's
Savvy journey, her cousin Ledge has just turned 13. But Ledger Kale's savvy is a total dud --- all he does is make little things fall apart. So his parents decide it's safe to head to Wyoming, where it's soon revealed that Ledge's savvy is much more powerful than anyone thought. Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman.
Click HereTHE BIG TIME: A Football Genius Novel, by Tim Green
Things couldn't be going better for Troy White. The Atlanta Falcons' football genius is at the top of his game, agents and lawyers are knocking on his door with big-money offers for the upcoming season, and his own football team has just won the Georgia State Championship. But then another lawyer comes knocking --- and he says, "I think I'm your father." In that instant, Troy's life is changed. Reviewed by Joy Held.
Click HereSABOTAGED: The Missing, Book 3 by Margaret Peterson Haddix
After helping Chip and Alex survive 15th-century London, Jonah and Katherine are summoned to help another missing child, Andrea, face her fate. Andrea is really Virginia Dare, from the Lost Colony of Roanoke. Jonah and Katherine are confident in their ability to help Andrea fix history, but when their journey goes dangerously awry, they realize that they may be in over their head. Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman.
Click HereGHOST HUNTER: Chronicles of Ancient Darkness #6 by Michelle Paver
Winter is coming. Souls' Night draws near. Eostra, the Eagle Owl Mage, holds the clans in the grip of terror. GHOST HUNTER, the final book in the
Chronicles of Ancient Darkness series, draws the reader for the last time into the shadowy world of the deep past and brings Torak to the end of his incredible journey. Reviewed by Sally M. Tibbetts.
Click HereADVENTURES OF A CAT-WHISKERED GIRL by Daniel Pinkwater
Big Audrey waves goodbye to her friends Iggy and Neddie, Seamus and Crazy Wig, in Los Angeles and hitches a ride with bongo-playing-while-driving Marlon Brando across the country to Poughkeepsie, New York, city of mystery. She finds she has questions needing answers --- and a bit of inter-plane-of-existence traveling to do. Reviewed by Norah Piehl.
Click HereKEEPER written by Kathi Appelt and illustrated by August Hall
Kathi Appelt's follow-up to her Newbery Honor Book, THE UNDERNEATH, is a thoughtful, lyrical, hopeful ode to love of all kinds: the loves we recognize but can't name, the loves we rely on but don't appreciate, the loves between lovers, between parents and children, between people and animals. Reviewed by Norah Piehl.
Click HereLING & TING: NOT EXACTLY THE SAME! by Grace Lin
Ling and Ting are twin sisters who share many traits and activities, such as their black hair, enjoyment of making dumplings, and pleasure in each other's company. They may be "identical," but they are definitely not exactly alike…as early readers will discover in this charming collection of short stories. Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.
Click HereSLUGGERS #6: HOME OF THE BRAVE by Loren Long and Phil Bildner
In the final book of the magical turn-of-the-20th-century baseball series, the Payne family and the barnstormers depart New Orleans and head east. Before they leave “the Big Easy,” the Chancellor’s goons carry out a brutal attack. As bullets fly, the attackers steal the magic baseball, and not everyone survives. Reviewed by Donna Volkenannt.
Click HereAS SIMPLE AS IT SEEMS by Sarah Weeks
Eleven-year-old Verbena Colter wishes she could be someone else. It all starts when her best friend decides to be friends with the popular girl instead of her. But the pain grows unbearable when Verbena uncovers a family secret that turns her world upside down and cuts her to the core of her heart. Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman.
Click HereTHE REINVENTION OF MOXIE ROOSEVELT by Elizabeth Cody Kimmel
Moxie Roosevelt Kipper has endured 13 years of being an ordinary girl with an unordinary name. Now that she has entered boarding school, the time is ripe to reinvent herself. She’ll become unusual, outlandish, unexpected, sassy --- someone worthy of a name like “Moxie.” But at boarding school, Moxie isn't the only one who isn't what she claims to be.
Reviewed by Jana Siciliano.
Click HereELVIS & OLIVE: SUPER DETECTIVES by Stephanie Watson
When Natalie (nicknamed Olive) decides to run for student council secretary, she is required to perform a social service, such as collecting cans for the hungry. But her best friend Annie (nicknamed Elvis) comes up with an even better idea --- to start up their very own detective agency and help solve mysteries in their neighborhood. Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman.
Click HereMACKENZIE BLUE: FRIENDS FOREVER? by Tina Wells
Twelve-year-old Mackenzie Blue is back for another fabulous adventure. This time, Zee (as her friends and family call her) heads to camp with her classmates. She’s nervous to be away from her parents for an entire week, but that turns out to be easy compared to what she has to endure at camp, including feuding friends, budding romance, and the spooky legend of the Mountain Man. Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman.



Graphic Novels and Manga
Click HereGHOSTOPOLIS written and illustrated by Doug TenNapel
When young Garth Hale accidentally crosses over into the spirit world, a pair of ghost trackers immediately sets out to rescue him. But Garth is in serious danger, as the evil leader of the ghostly realm sets out to destroy him. Reviewed by John Hogan.
Click HereTHE UNSINKABLE WALKER BEAN written and illustrated by Aaron Renier
Walker Bean is more interested in listening to his grandfather's tales of adventure than living them. But when his grandfather's life is in danger, Walker finds himself on a pirate ship, chased by sea monsters and racing to return a cursed skull to its rightful owners. Reviewed by Brigid Alverson.
Click HerePOSSESSIONS, Book One: UNCLEAN GETAWAY written and illustrated by Ray Fawkes
Ray Fawkes’s graphic novel walks the line between horror and humor with just the right touch of action and gross-out moments to appeal to younger readers.
Reviewed by Snow Wildsmith.
Click HereFINDING NEMO: REEF RESCUE written by Marie Croall and illustrated by Erica Leigh Currey
Something is killing the coral in Nemo's part of the ocean, so Nemo and his companions set out to find the culprit --- and face down a giant squid, spiny starfish, and a fearsome, mysterious group known only as The Tribe on their travels. Reviewed by Brigid Alverson.
Click HereZOEY ZETA AND THE SISTERS OF POWER, Book 1: FAMILY SECRETS written by Robert Simon and illustrated by Tomomi Sarafov
Zoey Zeta and her little sisters, Ella and Lexi, must stop the evil Dr. Impossible from taking control of summer. Reviewed by Snow Wildsmith.







Author Interviews

Author Photo and Cover ArtMichael Grant
Michael Grant is the author of 150 books, including the dystopian
Gonetrilogy for young adults, and the middle-grade series Animorphs, co-written with his wife, Katherine (K.A.) Applegate. In this interview, Grant explains what prompted his latest project, The Magnificent 12 --- which centers on Mack MacAvoy and the destiny he shares with 11 other 12-year-olds to save the world ---- and why he chose that specific age for his main characters. He also discusses the influence of J. R. R. Tolkien on his work, shares details about his writing process, and muses on where the Twelve’s future adventures may take them.

» Read an author talk with Michael Grant and the review.



Contests
Win a Copy of DEAR DUMB DIARY #10: THE WORST THINGS IN LIFE ARE ALSO FREE by Jim Benton
Summer is here, and that makes everyone at Mackerel Middle School very happy. But what happens when a few of the students have too much time on their hands…and not enough money in their pockets? Sneak a peek inside the diary of Jamie Kelly to find out!

Kidsreads.com is giving away 15 copies of THE WORST THINGS IN LIFE ARE ALSO FREE, the 10th installment in Jim Benton’s hilarious series. The deadline for entries is Wednesday, August 25th at noon ET.

DEAR DUMB DIARY #10: THE WORST THINGS IN LIFE ARE ALSO FREE by Jim Benton
School's out for the summer, and that means no more Meat Loaf Thursdays, Sunday homework-cramming, or teachers (way way unsuccessfully) trying to act cool. It also means that certain Mackerel Middle Schoolers have a lot of time on their hands…and seriously empty pockets.

Isabella is going to change all that. And Jamie and Angeline are going to help --- whether they like it or not. It's the best kind of teamwork: When a whole bunch of people work together to do something wrong, instead of doing it wrong one at a time.
- Click
here for all the contest details.
- Click
here to read a review of THE WORST THINGS IN LIFE ARE ALSO FREE.
- Click
here to read an excerpt from THE WORST THINGS IN LIFE ARE ALSO FREE.
- Click
here to read Jim Benton's bio.

Win a Copy of THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF NATE BANKS #1 and #2 by Jake Bell
SECRET IDENTITY CRISIS and FREEZER BURNED kick off The Amazing Adventures of Nate Banks, a fantastic new action-packed series by Jake Bell that introduces readers to sixth grader Nate Banks, a comic book expert who’s determined to save the day. Each book in the series includes a very cool extra --- an eight-page full-color comic book insert!

Kidsreads.com is giving 15 readers the opportunity to win a copy of the first two installments in the series. The deadline for entries is Wednesday, August 25th at noon ET.

THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF NATE BANKS #1: SECRET IDENTITY CRISIS by Jake Bell
As the three-time winner of the Ultimate Comic Book Trivia Championship of Knowledge, Nate Banks has always been the sixth grade's biggest comic book expert. But when a mysterious new superhero shows up in town, not even Nate knows who she really is. And when he sets out to discover Ultraviolet's secret identity, all of the clues seem to lead Nate to the least likely suspect --- his uptight history teacher, Ms. Matthews! Could she really be moonlighting as a super-powered crime fighter? It's up to Nate to find out!

THE AMAZING ADVENTURES OF NATE BANKS #2: FREEZER BURNED by Jake Bell
For a town in the middle of the desert, Kanigher Falls has been awfully cold lately. Sixth grader Nate Banks knows something odd is going on, especially when it starts to snow, and the snow smells like rotten cabbage! It's clear that the supervillain Coldsnap is on the loose. Nate thinks he knows how to defeat him, but superhero Ultraviolet thinks the case is too dangerous. When Coldsnap goes after an American treasure and Ultraviolet can't go it alone, it's up to Nate and his friends to save the day!
-
Click here for all the contest details.


Special Features

WILDWOOD STABLES #3: RACING AGAINST TIME by Suzanne Weyn
Thirteen-year-old Taylor Henry is finally making progress with her beloved gelding, Prince Albert. But spoiled Plum Mason is still causing problems, overtraining her new horse, Shafir. Can Taylor and the other Wildwood girls protect Shafir from this reckless rider?

WILDWOOD STABLES #4: LEARNING TO FLY by Suzanne Weyn
Taylor feels more at home at Wildwood Stables than she does anywhere else. But she still has so much more to learn! So when Daphne offers to teach her English-style riding, Taylor can’t wait to get started. But will her horse, Prince Albert, be as excited to try something new? Especially if it means competition --- and jumping?

» Read reviews of RACING AGAINST TIME and LEARNING TO FLY.
» Read excerpts from RACING AGAINST TIME and LEARNING TO FLY.
» Click here to read our interview with Suzanne Weyn.
» Click here to read Suzanne Weyn’s bio.


Series Features
Current Book Cover Art for seriesCurrent Book Cover Art for seriesCurrent Book Cover Art for series

CANDY APPLE SUMMER VACATION TRILOGY
It’s true. Over the last three years, the
Candy Apple series has taken the nation’s tween readers by storm. What could be better than another book in the series? THREE more books! Plus, the summer trilogy is devoted to all things young girls love: cute boys, lounging on the beach, road trips, cute boys, art and poetry in hopping New York City, red velvet cupcakes, super hip sunglasses, surfing, moonlight raids of restricted swimming pools… Did I mention cute boys?

But these three books aren’t only about fun in the sun (and cute boys). There’s also some heart --- and heft --- to them. Best friends Liza, Mina and Samantha are sure their respective summers without each other will be dreadful, but it doesn’t quite turn out that way…thankfully. In fact, it’s precisely because the trio is without their usual safety nets that they grow, take chances and blossom. Before the girls realize what’s happening, they’re having what turns out to be one of the most amazing summers of their lives --- and it has nothing to do with cute boys! (Well, mostly.)

» Click here to read our Candy Apple Summer Vacation Trilogy series feature.


Throughout the hunt for the 39 Clues, Amy and Dan Cahill have uncovered history's greatest mysteries and their family's deadliest secrets. But are they ready to face the truth about the Cahills and the key to their unmatched power? Find out when INTO THE GAUNTLET, the explosive finale to The 39 Clues series, releases on August 31st. This month’s roundup of Cool New Books also includes THE ATLANTIS COMPLEX by Eoin Colfer, which continues the story of the world’s greatest teenage criminal mastermind, Artemis Fowl; SCUMBLE, the enchanting companion to Ingrid Law’s debut novel, which takes place nine years after Mibs’s Savvyjourney and focuses on her cousin Ledge, who has just turned 13; THE MAGNIFICENT 12: THE CALL, the first book in Michael Grant’s fantasy series about a 12-year-old boy who, armed with only his phobias and quick wit, sets out to gather a team to defeat the Pale Queen and save the world; and LOST BOY, Jane Yolen and Steve Adams’s picture book biography of J. M. Barrie, the creator of Peter Pan. » Click Here


New In Paperback

August’s roundup of New in Paperback titles includes STAGE FRIGHT, book four in Meg Cabot’s tween series that finds Allie Finkle’s theatrical hopes crushed when she doesn't get cast as the princess in the school play; ZOOBREAK, the long-awaited sequel to Gordon Korman’s SWINDLE, in which Griffin Bing and his team rescue animals from a floating zoo that have been mistreated and try to break them back into a better zoo; THE HANGING HILL by Chris Grabenstein, which marks the return of the intrepid Zack and his stepmother, Judy, who narrowly escaped a malevolent spirit in THE CROSSROADS; and Louise Borden’s THE JOURNEY THAT SAVED CURIOUS GEORGE, a biography that chronicles the lives of Margaret and H. A. Rey --- creators of everyone's favorite mischievous monkey --- during their time spent in war-torn Europe, circa 1940. » Click Here


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