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May 2013

Kidsreads.com Newsletter May 2013
The Buzz of Summer…And Fun Summer Reading!
Can you feel the buzz of summer drawing closer? I sure can! The days are getting longer and the sun is shining brighter. For many of you the promise of free time to spend reading all those books on your “to-read” list is so close that you can almost smell that new-book smell, while some of you are lucky enough to be done with school already.

For those of you moving to middle school or high school, you may be interested in visiting Teenreads.com, another book website we run, which focuses on Young Adult (YA) books! We edit that site for teens 12-17, so you might be ready to “graduate” to that site.

For us at Kidsreads.com, we’re getting excited for BookExpo America (BEA), which begins this week. This is our chance to get the scoop on what's going on/coming up in the book world and mingling with those who make up the world of publishing. I have TONS of events to go to and am feeling that buzz of anticipation, even if I won’t have the same summer that many of you are looking forward to. BUT I will get plenty of ideas for books YOU’LL love reading this summer!

So let’s see what’s coming out in May! Eoin Colfer’s Artemis Fowl series ended last year, but now he’s BACK with a new science fiction series! In W.A.R.P.: THE RELUCTANT ASSASSIN, as an evil assassin relentlessly hunts them down, Riley and Chevie face a desperate race to stay alive and stop him from returning to his own time --- armed with knowledge and power that could change the world forever. Reviewer Caroline Osborn says, “Colfer is having fun with this book, and when Colfer is having fun, his readers are having fun...In THE RELUCTANT ASSASSIN, Colfer has set himself to create another beloved YA series.”

Even though the sun is shining brightly, that doesn’t mean there isn’t any dark and creepy left. Holly Black’s DOLL BONES follows Zach, Poppy and Alice who realize that they may be too old to continue playing with their dolls, watched over by a bone-china doll they call “the Queen.” That is until Poppy declares she’s been having dreams about the Queen --- and the ghost of a girl who will not rest until the bone-china doll is buried in her empty grave. Sheena Kowalski reviews, “This book is very well written, engaging and most of all, creepy! Black does a great job in capturing the readers’ attention with spooky descriptions, which will send chills down your spine.” Maybe keeping the lights on after the sun sets would be a good idea!

Crime has a new foe, and it’s the PLATYPUS POLICE SQUAD: THE FROG WHO CROAKED by Jarrett J. Krosoczka, author of the Lunch Lady series. When a call comes in about a crime down at the docks involving a missing schoolteacher and a duffel bag full of illegal fish, Zengo and O’Malley are going to have to learn to set their differences aside --- especially when the clues all point to Kallamazoo’s first son and its most powerful, well-respected businessman. Make sure to check out this hilarious mystery…starring platypi!

What if your town was suddenly buried below 5,000 swimming pools’ worth of water? That’s what happens to Cassie’s town in BELOW by Meg McKinlay. On the day Cassie was born, the mayor flipped a lever and everyone cheered as Old Lower Grange was submerged. Now, 12 years later, Cassie feels drawn to the man made lake and the mysteries it hides --- and so is her classmate Liam. What will they find beneath the water? And can Cassie bring her suspicions to light before it’s too late? As reviewer Cyndie Stetsen writes, “BELOW is an intriguing, mysterious and suspenseful book. As events unfold, it's difficult to put the book down.”

Who’s up for a time-traveling adventure? In the third book in Marianne Malone’s Sixty-Eight Room Adventure series, THE PIRATE’S COIN, Ruthie and Jack return to the Art Institute of Chicago’s Thorne Rooms to clear a classmate’s family’s name, and a mysterious coin leads them both back to 1753 Cape Cod and to Jack’s own ancestor, the pirate Jack Norfleet. Can they succeed in fixing the past and saving Jack’s future? Caroline Osborn reviews, “Since Ruthie and Jack travel back in time, this allows for brief, personal history lessons that don’t feel like lessons at all...THE PIRATE’S COIN is an inventive adventure story with elements of mystery that will give young readers both a thrill and a history lesson.” In my opinion, a story with pirates is always worth picking up!

Once again it’s time for another Geronimo Stilton Cavemice book! In the second book in the series, WATCH YOUR TAIL!, Geronimo Stiltonoot --- Geronimo Stilton’s ancient ancestor --- wakes up to a terrible morning. Meteors are falling from the sky, and it seems like everyone in Old Mouse City has an awful stomachache! Geronimo must travel to the Cave of Memories to find the ancient shaman cure for his fellow cavemice. But dangers lurk on his journey --- can he make it back home safely?

We know how much you LOVE The 39 Clues, and now here’s an opportunity to win a book in The Cahill Files series! Enter to win one of 25 copies of THE 39 CLUES: THE CAHILL FILES, Book Two: SPYMASTERS by Clifford Riley. Flee alongside a young Cahill as Washington burns, unlock Houdini's magic, and stow away with young Fiske Cahill on a desperate mission that could cost him his life. This volume contains three stories previously-published as ebook adventures. We’re giving away a LOT of copies, so make sure to tell your friends and family to enter the contest until Monday, July 1st.

Who’s up for a cover reveal? Last week, we were proud to present the cover for M.E. Castle’s GAME OF CLONES, the third book in The Clone Chronicles series. Visit our feature to read more about this book and the first two books, POPULAR CLONE and CLONEWARD BOUND. I just love the titles for these books, don’t you? And make sure to let me know how you like the cover!

Have you been to the theater to see Epic yet? This movie, based on THE LEAFMEN by William Joyce, features the voices of MANY actors and actresses you may know. I’m a HUGE Beyonce fan and am super excited that she’s voicing a character! Visit our April and May Books on Screen feature to see more details on this movie!

On May 13th, the Children’s Book Council and Every Child a Reader announced the winners for the 2013 Children’s Choice Book Awards! You voted for your favorite books of 2012, and now here are the winners! Click here to visit our feature to see which books won, as well as who is the Author of the Year and the Illustrator of the Year.

As your school days are winding down and your excitement is amping up, I hope you all make time to craft your PERFECT and FUN summer reading list…and that Kidsreads.com will help you get there. Set a goal of FUN reading and see if you can make it this summer!

Happy reading!

--- Liz Kossnar (liz@bookreporter.com)

Now in Stores: W.A.R.P., Book One: THE RELUCTANT ASSASSIN by Eoin Colfer

W.A.R.P., Book One: THE RELUCTANT ASSASSIN by Eoin Colfer (Science Fiction)
As an evil assassin relentlessly hunts them down, Riley and Chevie face a desperate race to stay alive and stop him from returning to his own time --- armed with knowledge and power that could change the world forever. Reviewed by Caroline Osborn.

- Click here to read more about the book.
 

Click here to read a review.

 
Now in Stores: DOLL BONES by Holly Black

DOLL BONES by Holly Black (Horror)
Zach, Poppy, and Alice have been playing one continuous, ever-changing game. Ruling over all is the Great Queen, a bone-china doll cursing those who displease her. But they are in middle school now and their friendship might be over, until Poppy declares she’s been having dreams about the Queen --- and the ghost of a girl who will not rest until the bone-china doll is buried in her empty grave. Reviewed by Sheena Kowalski.

- Click here to read more about the book.
 

Click here to read a review.

 
Now in Stores: PLATYPUS POLICE SQUAD: THE FROG WHO CROAKED by Jarrett J. Krosoczka

PLATYPUS POLICE SQUAD: THE FROG WHO CROAKED by Jarrett J. Krosoczka (Humor)
When a call comes in about a crime down at the docks involving a missing schoolteacher and a duffel bag full of illegal fish, Zengo and O’Malley are going to have to learn to set their differences aside if they want to get to the bottom of this. Especially when the clues all point to Frank Pandini Jr., Kallamazoo’s first son and its most powerful, well-respected businessman. Reviewed by Benjamin Boche.

- Click here to read more about the book.
 

Click here to read a review.

 
Now in Stores: BELOW by Meg McKinlay

BELOW by Meg McKinlay (Mystery)
On the day Cassie was born, they drowned her town. Twelve years later, she feels drawn to the manmade lake and the mysteries it hides --- and she’s not the only one. Her classmate Liam joins Cassie in her daily swim across the off-limits side of the lake. Secrets have a way of floating to the surface and when Cassie venture too far from shore, she realizes she can't turn back. Mystery, compelling characters, and an abandoned town beneath a lake make for a must-read adventure. Reviewed by Cyndie Stetsen.

- Click here to read more about the book.
 

Click here to read a review.

 
Now in Stores: THE PIRATE'S COIN: A Sixty-Eight Rooms Adventure by Marianne Malone

THE PIRATE'S COIN: A Sixty-Eight Rooms Adventure by Marianne Malone (Adventure)
Sixth graders Ruthie and Jack discover that their classmate Kendra is descended from Phoebe Monroe, the young slave they befriended when they traveled to 19th-century South Carolina. Kendra tells them that her family lost their good name when mobsters accused them of stealing the recipes! Ruthie and Jack's mission to clear Kendra's name takes them back to 1753 Cape Cod and to Jack's own ancestor...the pirate Jack Norfleet! Can they fix the past and save Jack's future...before it's too late? Reviewed by Caroline Osborn.

- Click here to read more about the book.
 

Click here to read a review.

 
Special Contest: THE 39 CLUES: THE CAHILL FILES, Book 2: SPYMASTERS by Clifford Riley
In honor of the release of the second volume in The 39 Clues: The Cahill Files series, Clifford Riley's SPYMASTERS --- which features three stories previously published exclusively as e-book shorts --- we have a special contest. Twenty-five readers will have the opportunity to win a copy of these adventures through time. To enter, please fill out this form by Monday, July 1st at noon ET.

THE 39 CLUES: THE CAHILL FILES, Book 2: SPYMASTERS by Clifford Riley (Action Adventure)
In 1814, redcoats burned the White House to the ground. In 1889, Harry Houdini discovered a trick that would save his life. In 1955, the U.S. launched the world's first nuclear submarine. And one family pulled the strings behind the scenes at each of these events: the Cahills--- the most powerful family the world has ever known. This volume contains three stories previously-published as ebook adventures.

- Click here to read more about the book.
 
Click here to enter the contest.

 
Cover Reveal: GAME OF CLONES by M.E. Castle
Kidsreads.com is proud to present the cover for GAME OF CLONES: The Clone Chronicles, Book Three by M.E. Castle. This is the third book in M.E. Castle's The Clone Chronicles series, preceded by POPULAR CLONE and CLONEWARD BOUND.

More about GAME OF CLONES:
Fisher Bas was able to track down his gone-Hollywood Clone --- Two --- but only with the help of Amanda Cantrell. Now "Three" and Dr. X remain on the loose. If Fisher is going to stop his secret from coming out, he'll have to figure out a cover for his brother clone and keep Three from helping Dr. X take over the world.

Easier said than done though --- Two’s true identity can no longer be kept secret after a disastrous school dance and when crazy things start happening at Wompalog Middle School. Turns out Three has come to Palo Alto bent on eliminating Fisher and Two. The boys will have to join forces with their friends and an unlikely ally --- with hilarious and explosive consequences --- to stop Three and his clone army. The future of Fisher and Two's hometown depends on it.
 
Click here to visit our feature.

 
Books On Screen

Did you enjoy The Rise of the Guardians? On May 24th, another movie based on a book by William Joyce hit theaters. Epic follows a teenage girl as she finds herself magically transported into a microscopic universe. How would YOU feel if you were shrunk to be bug-sized?

Epic
Cast: Beyonce Knowles, Colin Farrell, Jason Sudakis Amanda Seyfried and Josh Hutcherson
Director: Chris Wedge
Distributor: Twentieth Century Fox Film Corporation
MPAA Rating: PG
Release Date: May 24th
Based On: THE LEAFMEN by William Joyce
 

Click here to visit our feature.

 
Series Update: GERONIMO STILTON CAVEMICE #2: WATCH YOUR TAIL! by Geronimo Stilton

GERONIMO STILTON CAVEMICE #2: WATCH YOUR TAIL! by Geronimo Stilton (Historical Fiction)
Geronimo Stiltonoot --- Geronimo Stilton’s ancient ancestor --- wakes up to a terrible morning. Meteors are falling from the sky, and it seems like everyone in Old Mouse City has an awful stomachache! Geronimo must travel to the Cave of Memories to find the ancient shaman cure for his fellow cavemice. But dangers lurk on his journey --- can he make it back home safely?

 

Click here to read more about the book.


 
2013 Children's Choice Book Award Winners
You VOTED for your favorite books of 2012, and now here are the winners! On May 13th, The Children's Book Council and Every Child a Reader announced the winners to kick off Children's Book Week.

The Children's Choice Book Awards is the only national book awards program where the winning titles are selected by kids and teens. Young readers across the country voted in record numbers for their favorite books, author, and illustrator at bookstores, school libraries, and at bookweekonline.com, casting more than 1,000,000 votes.

Kindergarten to Second Grade Book of the Year:
NIGHTTIME NINJA by Barbara DaCosta, illustrated by Ed Young

Third Grade to Fourth Grade Book of the Year:
BAD KITTY FOR PRESIDENT by Nick Bruel

Fifth Grade to Sixth Grade Book of the Year:
DORK DIARIES 4: TALES FROM A NOT-SO-GRACEFUL ICE PRINCESS by Rachel Renée Russell

Author of the Year:
Jeff Kinney for DIARY OF A WIMPY KID 7: THE THIRD WHEEL

Illustrator of the Year:
Robin Preiss Glasser for FANCY NANCY AND THE MERMAID BALLET

 
Click here to visit our feature!

 
Cool & New Books for May
May's roundup of Cool & New Books includes Holly Black's creepy DOLL BONES, where Zach, Poppy and Alice discover the heirloom doll they've been playing beneath all these years may be more than it appears...and may need to be put to rest; Olympic soccer player Alex Moran's THE KICKS: SAVING THE TEAM, which is about 12-year-old Devin's move to California and how she finds her place, new friends and voice on the soccer team; and the first in Eoin Colfer's next trilogy, W.A.R.P.: THE RELUCTANT ASSASSIN, in which an evil assassin relentlessly hunts down Riley and Chevie, and they face a desperate race to stay alive and stop him from returning to his own time --- armed with knowledge and power that could change the world forever.
 
Click here to see May's Cool & New Books roundup.

 
May’s New in Paperback Roundup
May's roundup of New in Paperback includes Gary Paulsen's CRUSH: The Theory, Practice, and Destructive Properties of Love in which 14-year-old Kevin Spencer has a huge crush on Tina Zabinski, but every time he’s around her, he makes a fool of himself; John Claude Bemis' THE PRINCE WHO FELL FROM THE SKY, which follows Casseomae, who never has had the chance to be the mother bear she'd like to be, as a human cub crashes to earth in a sky vehicle and she chooses to protect him; and GHOST KNIGHT by Cornelia Funke, where 11-year old Jon Whitcroft and his quirky new friend, Ella, must work together to uncover the secrets of a centuries-old murder, all while being haunted by terrifying spirits at their boarding school.
 
Click here to see May’s New in Paperback roundup.

 
This Month’s Reviews
HANDBOOK FOR DRAGON SLAYERS by Merrie Haskell (Fantasy)
Political upheaval sends Princess Tilda fleeing from her kingdom in the company of two hopeful dragon slayers. The princess never had any interest in chasing dragons. The pain from her crippled foot was too great, and her dream was to write a book. But the princess finds herself making friends with magical horses, facing the Wild Hunt, and pointing a sword at the fire-breathing creatures. While doing things she never imagined, Tilda finds qualities in herself she never knew she possessed. Reviewed by Christine M. Irvin.

THE PATH OF NAMES by Ari Goelman (Fantasy & Magic)
Dahlia realizes that summer camp might not be as bad as she'd feared. First, she sees two little girls walk right through the walls of her cabin. Then come the dreams --- frighteningly detailed visions of a young man being pursued through 1930s New York City. How are the dreams and the girls related? Why is Dahlia the only one who can see any of them? Reviewed by Sarah Rachel Egelman.

THE PRINCE WHO FELL FROM THE SKY by John Claude Bemis (Fantasy)
Casseomae is content to live alone, apart from the other bears in her tribe, until one of the ancients' sky vehicles crashes to the ground, and from it emerges a Skinless One, a child. Rather than turn him over to the wolves, Casseomae chooses to protect this human cub, to find someplace safe for him to live. But where among the animals will a human child be safe? And is Casseomae threatening the safety of the Forest and all its tribes by protecting him? Reviewed by Carly Silver.

THEODORE BOONE: THE ACTIVIST by John Grisham (Social Issues)
Theodore Boone is back, and he’s facing his most dangerous case yet. But even face-to-face with danger, Theodore Boone will do whatever it takes to stand up for what’s right. Reviewed by Christine Irvin.

SIGNED BY ZELDA by Kate Feiffer (Mystery)
More than anything, eleven-year-old Lucy wants to be the world’s most famous handwriting expert. When Lucy’s neighbor Zelda goes missing and the only clue is a cryptic handwritten note, Lucy is determined to crack the case using her graphology skills. Reviewed by Sarah Flamm.

THE KICKS: SAVING THE TEAM by Alex Morgan (Fiction)
Twelve-year-old Devin loves to play soccer. If she hadn’t just left Connecticut to move across the country, she would have been named seventh-grade captain on her school soccer team. But now that Devin is starting seventh grade in Kentville, California, all bets are off. After all, some of the best players on the US national team come from California. She’s sure to have stiff competition. Or so she thinks. Reviewed by Liz Kossnar.

LOKI'S WOLVES by Melissa Marr and Kelley Armstrong (Mythology)
While Matt knew he was a modern-day descendent of Thor, he's always lived a normal kid's life. In fact, most people in the small town of Blackwell, South Dakota, are direct descendants of either Thor or Loki, including Matt's classmates Fen and Laurie Brekke. No big deal. But now Ragnarok is coming, and it's up to the champions to fight in the place of the long-dead gods. Matt, Laurie, and Fen's lives will never be the same as they race to put together an unstoppable team, find Thor's hammer and shield, and prevent the end of the world. Reviewed by Benjamin Boche.
 
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