Title: The Dragonsitter
Author: Josh Lacey
Recommended for: Grades 1-4
Genre: Early chapter books, Fantasy, Funny books
Reviewed by: Ms. Joanne
You have heard of babysitters, dog sitters, even cat sitters, but in this first book in the series Eddie and his mother agree to be sitters for Uncle Morton’s dragon while he goes away on vacation. The story is told with emails and we see that taking care of a dragon can be quite frustrating, as well as expensive. Eddie is determined not to fail his uncle and the story ends with some surprising news about a new character. The Dragonsitter is a book that will make you laugh out loud as well as keep you guessing.
Title: The Secret Mission of William Tuck
Author: Eric Pierpoint
Recommended for: Ages 9-12
Genre: Historical Fiction, Adventure
Reviewed by: Ms. Pat
Twelve-year old William Tuck heard those words only moments before he saw his brother Asher executed by a British firing squad. Heartbroken and full of anger, William leaves home to join the militia as a drummer boy. After a deadly battle, Will stumbles across a dying Patriot courier who gives him an important secret message for the eyes of General George Washington only. As Will starts his journey to find General Washington, he meets up with Rebecca Townsend, who is disguised as a boy. Together they encounter spy rings and learn the basics of cryptography as they make their way from Virginia to New York. If you enjoy historical fiction or adventure books, this is a great read.
Title: Rain Forest Relay by Kristin Earhart
Recommended for: Grades 2-4
Series: Race the Wild
Reviewed by: Ms.Tery, Head of GAPL’s Novel Detective Agency
Rain Forest Relay, a newly released book from Scholastic, grips the reader through all 144 pages of intense action. Master Detective Inspector Gadget recommended this book to me to read and it was a thumbs up. Russell and his friends enter a race around the world, starting in the lush Amazon rain forest. Unfortunately, they are divided into separate teams. What will Russell do when his friends on the other team start to cheat? What would you do?
Title: Shadow on the Mountain by Margi Preus
Recommended for: Ages 9-12
Genre: Historical fiction, Adventure
Awards: 2016 Rebecca Caudill Book Award Nominee
Reviewed by: Ms. Mrunal
Shadow on the Mountain by Margi Preus is a spy thriller about the adventures of 14 year old Espen and his friends during the Norwegian resistance movement during World War II.
After Nazi Germany invades and occupies Norway, Espen, his sister, and their parents live in fear of raids and arrests for five years. While secretly taking part in the resistance movement, they begin to question the loyalties of people they have known forever. Espen starts by delivering newspapers, then becomes a courier and finally becomes a spy. On his journey, Espen falls in love, makes new friends, and also loses some.
While everything is going as planned, he makes a small mistake which might threaten his plan to escape on skis over the mountains to Sweden. Does he get caught? Or does the escape plan save his life?
Read this page-turning, thrilling adventure story based on the real-life experiences of a Norwegian spy named Erling Storrusten.
Title: Poop Fountain! by Tom Angleberger
Recommended for: Grades 3-6
Genre: Funny stories
Series: The Qwikpick Papers
Reviewed by: Ms. Laurie
Lyle and his friends, Marilla and Dave, spend a lot of time together at the Qwikpick gas station where Lyle’s parents work. This book is actually the report of the first journey of the Qwikpick Adventure Society, the group the three friends decide to form. They decide to explore the “Poop Fountain” at the Crickenburg Wastewater Treatment Plant. Their report includes photos, drawings, and handwritten notes, and it’s both funny and interesting. Lyle and his friends seem like kids who could live on your street, and it’s easy to become involved in their adventure because they are likeable, realistic characters. I learned a lot with this read, too. I didn’t know much about what happens to water once it is flushed or swirls down the drain, and – although it is sometimes a little gross – it’s an interesting journey that water makes once it leaves your sight! It looks like there will be further adventures of Lyle and his friends, and I can’t wait to see what they’ll do next. If you like stories with a lot of funny and maybe a little bit of gross, too, this might be the perfect book for you.
Title: The Candy Shop War by Brandon Mull
Recommended for: Grades 4-7
Reviewed by: Ms. Sue
What if there was a place where you could get magical candy? Moon rocks that made you feel weightless, jawbreakers that made you unbreakable, or candy that gave animals temporary human intelligence (what would your pet say?).
Four young friends befriend Mrs. White, the owner of Sweet Tooth Ice Cream and Candy Shoppe. However, Mrs. White is not an ordinary candy maker. She is a magician and needs their help in finding a buried treasure. If they help her, she will give them even better candy, magic candy that will give them powers. It turns out Mrs. White isn’t telling the whole truth and she isn’t the only one in town looking for the long buried treasure!
The Candy Shop War is another exciting and creative book from Brandon Mull, NY Times bestselling author of the Fablehaven series. If you are a fan of adventure and fantasy, then you will be sweet on this book!
Title: The Princess in Black by Shannon and Dean Hale
Recommended for: K-3; ages 5-8
Genre: Beginning reader
Awards: Kirkus Reviews Best Book of 2014; ALSC Summer Reading List
Reviewed by: Ms. Gayle
The Princess in Black is perfect for newly independent readers, girls or boys, who like superhero capes or pink sparkles!!! Get ready for some comic action and a self-reliant, adventurous heroine. Princess Magnolia is enjoying hot chocolate and scones with the nosy Duchess Wigtower when her monster alarm (a glitter stone ring) sounds. She quickly changes into her alter ego, Princess in Black, and jumps on her steed Blacky , aka Frimplepants, the unicorn. Princess in Black has a gentle fight with the shaggy blue goat-eating monster to protect Duff, her friend the goat boy, and his goats. Meanwhile, Duchess Wigtower is snooping around the Princess’ castle. Will Duchess Wigtower uncover Princess Magnolia’s secret? Can’t wait for the release of The Princess in Black and The Perfect Princess Party, the next book in this new beginning chapter book series due to be released in October 2015. Hope Princess Magnolia can keep her secret and continue to use her ninja moves as she keeps all safe from the (rather adorable) monsters!