Uh, am I the only one who is hearing the cadence of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie in the annoying third-person-present tense of this book? It is hard tUh, am I the only one who is hearing the cadence of If You Give a Mouse a Cookie in the annoying third-person-present tense of this book? It is hard to take! Just be first-person -present tense like almost all YA literature or be third-person-past tense like most middle grade fiction. Spare me.
Despite that, I suppose the book is okay so far. I'll update when I'm finished. ...more
I really liked this book! It was definitely my kind of mystery where there is more fantasy than clues and gumshoeing. I honestly laughed out loud at mI really liked this book! It was definitely my kind of mystery where there is more fantasy than clues and gumshoeing. I honestly laughed out loud at many of the slapstick mishaps that occurred on Wednesdays. Birds pooping on Max's mom's head, pants splitting open... among all the other things... are always funny. The best part of the humor was that the author was not trying to hard. The book had great pacing--not too slow, not too fast to insult the reader's intelligence. This book would make a great read-aloud for a 5th grade teacher or a family, as well as enjoyed by a child over 3rd grade (not because of content, just vocabulary and subtlety in the writing). I highly recommend this book!
Oh, and I wonder if anyone else noticed the nod to Sendak's 'Where the Wild Things Are'? Ahem... both books' main characters are named Max, both run around with monsters. It was cleverly done though, not a rip-off. ...more
One ordinary day, an adventurous girl named Zita is running home from school with her friend, Joseph ---actually he is chasing her because she stole hOne ordinary day, an adventurous girl named Zita is running home from school with her friend, Joseph ---actually he is chasing her because she stole his notebook. She runs through a field, and then stops suddenly at a large crater in the ground—with a meteorite inside! Joseph says they should report this to the Science squad, but Zita crawls bravely into the crater. Inside the meteorite, she finds an object with a red button. She presses the button! Joseph is so scared but nothing happens . . . right away . . . then Craka Raka … THOOM! Tentacles leap out of a bright flash of light and grab Joseph. Zita! HELP!! But the flash of light is gone. What should Zita do? She must save her friend. She got him into this after all. Zita presses the button again and she is sucked into the flash of light. She ends up in a place that looks more like a Star Wars planet than Earth. . . How will she ever find Joseph ???
Flung far across the universe, faced with monsters … magicians… and maybe new friends… an Earth girl named Zita must find her way home. ...more
**spoiler alert** The pages of my copy of Blubber were wrinkly from all my tears that fell on them when I read it at age 11. The girls in this story d**spoiler alert** The pages of my copy of Blubber were wrinkly from all my tears that fell on them when I read it at age 11. The girls in this story do some pretty bad things to Linda. It is atrocious when they hold her down and lift up her skirt to show the boys her underwear. That could be considered sexual assault! The most hurtful part was when they tried to get Jill to pretend to to cut the blubber/fat off Linda's body with her cardboard sword on Halloween. This part stuck with me for years. Now I just finished the book twenty years later and I am still frustrated by the book. I really don't like the main character, Jill. Even at the end of the book she doesn't seem to really learn a lesson. I wanted her to see the humanity in Linda--to see her not just as a victim but as a person with dignity. Sure, Jill was bullied by Wendy and was hurt by it, but I still feel like the only thing she learned was that bullies can turn on anyone-even their friends if they cross them. Jill didn't really learn anything from the punishment of raking Mr. Machinist's leaves. She still thought he was mean and that he deserved rotten eggs in his mailbox, and her dad seemed to agree instead of teaching her that the meanness of her action was unfair and should have consequences. I couldn't really have sympathy for Jill and I thought she was a bit obnoxious. This book may have some use if it were used to discuss bullying with tweens. But I will be looking for more modern books on this topic. (Seriously, were sixth graders really left alone at lunch and recess and bathroom time like that in the 1970s? Or is that just Judy Blume?) ...more
It should be called The Prophet of YAWNwood. It wasn't terrible, but it definitely lacked suspense and the great sense-of-place that City of Ember hadIt should be called The Prophet of YAWNwood. It wasn't terrible, but it definitely lacked suspense and the great sense-of-place that City of Ember had. I kept waiting for it to get better, then I kept waiting for it to end. I definitely give a disclaimer about this one to kids who are pumped about reading the series. Maybe Jeanne DuPrau scraped together her notes from City of Ember and had it published in order to buy herself time to write Diamond of Darkhold?
I wish the cover of the book exclaimed that it is a prequel to City of Ember, so kids might better choose if they want to read the other three right in order and skip this one... ...more