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Mid-June 2008

Kidsreads.com Newsletter for Parents

Mid-June 2008

What's New on Kidsreads.com

Stay "Cool" with a Good Book

THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY Tote Bag Sweepstakes

Special Feature: SIMON BLOOM, THE GRAVITY KEEPER by Michael Reisman

Special Feature: ELVIS & OLIVE by Stephanie Watson

Series Feature Update: Warriors: Power of Three by Erin Hunter

Series Feature Update: Septimus Heap by Angie Sage

Series Feature Update: Geronimo Stilton

Now in Stores: THE BIG FIELD by Mike Lupica

Now in Stores: GOOSEBUMPS HORRORLAND #3: MONSTER BLOOD FOR BREAKFAST! by R. L. Stine

Now in Stores: EARTH MATTERS: An Encyclopedia of Ecology

Don't Miss: PADDINGTON HERE AND NOW by Michael Bond

Cool New Books for May

May's New in Paperback Roundup

Kidsreads.com's Most Recent Reviews

Poll and Question: Summer Reading

Some Links on Kidsreads.com
 
Go to Kidsreads.com here.
Read Our Newsletter Online Here
Series Feature
Play a Trivia Game here
Word Scrambles

Stay "Cool" with a Good Book

Happy summer! While May in New York was very cool, this week has been screaming "summertime" with very hot weather. My sons still are in school, but their heads are on vacation. I am sure many of your kids know what that feels like. It's soooo hard to concentrate when it is this nice outside! So I am glad to share that we have plenty of cool reads this month on Kidsreads.com.

We are THRILLED to announce the start of a brand new MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY giveaway (you may remember we did one last year when the first book in the series came out). This year, Little, Brown for Young Readers is giving away 25 bags stuffed with six great books from some of your favorite series --- including THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY and its sequel, THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY AND THE PERILOUS JOURNEY. Read all the details of the contest here. 

We have series update news on four groups of titles that have new books now available in stores. For Warriors: Power of Three, the third title, OUTCAST, follows the feline heroes in a new, dangerous adventure. In QUESTE, the fourth book in the Septimus Heap series, Septimus and Jenna try to rescue Nicko, who has become trapped in another time. The third of R. L. Stine’s latest Goosebumps Horrorland books, called MONSTER BLOOD FOR BREAKFAST!, will give kids the chills --- they’ll never look at breakfast the same way again! And Geronimo Stilton is back in GERONIMO AND THE GOLD MEDAL MYSTERY, and this time he’s headed to Athens to write a report on the Olympics. This story will get your child in the mood for the Summer Olympics, which begin August 8th. 

Another sporty tale your child may enjoy comes from Mike Lupica. THE BIG FIELD tells the story of a shortstop who is replaced by a better player --- but the new kid has a bad attitude. Anyone who has ever been on a team knows what it’s like to have to play with people who are not “team players.” Read this book to find out how the main character deals with this challenge.  

When I was a kid, A BEAR CALLED PADDINGTON was one of my favorite books. While in London in April, I saw a wonderful collection of Paddington bears at Harrod's, the famous department store. This classic character is back, celebrating his 50th anniversary in a brand new adventure called PADDINGTON HERE AND NOW. After all this time, he still keeps a marmalade sandwich under his hat! 

Just because it’s summer doesn’t mean your child can’t learn new things. If he or she is interested in animals, weather or the environment, pick up a copy of EARTH MATTERS. Kids will find out lots of things they can do to keep our earth happy and healthy. 

For more book suggestions, take a look at our Cool New Books and New in Paperback roundups, as well as our most recent reviews.

Have your kids tell us all about their summer reading habits in this month’s poll and question. Have they been saving some books to read over the long break? Let us know! 

For all the dads out there, check out our Father's Day feature on Bookreporter.com. Fans of history, thrillers, sports stories and memoirs are sure to find books to suit their tastes.

Summer is a great time for pleasure reading, and I know your children will find lots of books here to delight them!
 Happy reading, and stay cool!

Carol Fitzgerald (Carol@bookreporter.com)

 

THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY Tote Bag Sweepstakes

To celebrate the release of THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY AND THE PERILOUS JOURNEY by Trenton Lee Stewart, Kidsreads.com has teamed up with Little, Brown for Young Readers to gives 25(!) lucky kids the chance to win a Bag of Books containing not only a copy of THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY AND THE PERILOUS JOURNEY, but also some of the coolest books from some of your favorite series published by Little, Brown for Young Readers. In a big tote bag, winners will receive one copy of THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY and the sequel, THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY AND THE PERILOUS JOURNEY, along with ATHERTON: THE HOUSE OF POWER and ATHERTON: RIVERS OF FIRE by Patrick Carman, MAXIMUM RIDE: THE ANGEL EXPERIMENT by James Patterson and VAMPIRATES: DEMONS OF THE OCEAN by Justin Somper.

-Read reviews of THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY and THE MYSTERIOUS BENEDICT SOCIETY AND THE PERILOUS JOURNEY.

-Visit the official website of the series, www.MysteriousBenedictSociety.com
 

Click here for all the contest details.


 

Special Feature: SIMON BLOOM, THE GRAVITY KEEPER by Michael Reisman

In Michael Reisman's debut novel, SIMON BLOOM, THE GRAVITY KEEPER, readers are introduced to an inquisitive 11-year-old boy who stumbles upon a way to control the laws of physics. In this interview with Kidsreads.com's Brian Farrey, Reisman describes what inspired the concept behind this series and explains how the story gradually evolved over the course of several drafts. He also reveals plans for recurring characters in future installments, shares his favorite compliment from a fan and recalls the various odd jobs he held before becoming a writer.

SIMON BLOOM, THE GRAVITY KEEPER by Michael Reisman
Sixth-grader Simon Bloom can’t believe his luck when he finds a book that enables him to control the laws of physics. By simply reciting the formulas it contains, he can cancel gravity to fly around his bedroom, or decrease friction so he can slide down the street as if he were on Rollerblades. When two thugs with evil intentions come after Simon, he must use the formulas to save himself and the book from falling into their hands. This funny, fast and imaginative novel from first-time author Michael Reisman will appeal to fans of both fantasy and action adventure.

-Click here to read an excerpt from SIMON BLOOM, THE GRAVITY KEEPER.
-Click here to read our interview with Michael Reisman.
-Click here to read Michael Reisman's bio.

-Visit the author’s official website, www.MichaelReisman.com.
 
Click here to read a review of SIMON BLOOM, THE GRAVITY KEEPER.

 

Special Feature: ELVIS & OLIVE by Stephanie Watson

Stephanie Watson's debut work of fiction, ELVIS & OLIVE, follows two unlikely friends who form a spying club in order to uncover secrets in their neighborhood. In this interview with Kidsreads.com's Alexis Burling, Watson explains how and why she kept the writing of this novel a secret, and describes some of her own childhood friends and memories that inspired elements of the story. She also elaborates on the book's lesson concerning forgiveness, shares a few of her non-writing hobbies and reveals the unusual things she does when she thinks no one is looking.

ELVIS & OLIVE by Stephanie Watson
Natalie Wallis thought she'd be spending her summer riding her bike around and around her block --- but that was before she met her quirky new neighbor, Annie Beckett. Before long, Annie is revealing the hiding place beneath her porch, the dead bird she keeps in her pocket, and the details of her mother's death. Natalie and Annie become fast friends, and soon, they've hatched a plan to spy on their neighbors, using the inscrutable code names Elvis and Olive. Spying is the most fun Natalie's ever had --- but are some things best kept secret?

-Click here to enter the ELVIS & OLIVE giveaway for your chance to win a copy of the book.
-Click here to read an excerpt from ELVIS & OLIVE.
-Click here to read our interview with Stephanie Watson.
-Click here to read Stephanie Watson's bio.

-Visit the author’s official website, www.Stephanie-Watson.com.
 
Click here to read a review of ELVIS & OLIVE.
 

 

Series Feature Update: Warriors: Power of Three by Erin Hunter

WARRIORS: POWER OF THREE #3: OUTCAST by Erin Hunter
In the third installment of Erin Hunter’s popular fantasy series, Lionpaw, Jaypaw and Hollypaw set out on an exciting adventure far from home. Each has a unique goal for the quest, but the journey is fraught with dangers --- and discoveries. Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.

-Click here to read an excerpt from OUTCAST.
-Click here to see the Warriors: Power of Three series feature.

 

Click here to read a review of OUTCAST.

 

Series Feature Update: Septimus Heap by Angie Sage

QUESTE: Septimus Heap, Book Four by Angie Sage
In this exciting fourth installment of Angie Sage’s bestselling series, Septimus Heap and Jenna are determined to rescue Nicko, who is trapped in another time. However, Septimus has been tricked into a Queste --- and he knows that no apprentice has ever returned from one. Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.

-Click here to read an excerpt from QUESTE.
-Click here to see the Septimus Heap series feature.
 

Click here to read a review of QUESTE.


 

Series Feature Update: Geronimo Stilton

GERONIMO AND THE GOLD MEDAL MYSTERY by Geronimo Stilton
Geronimo just doesn't understand why everyone is so excited about the Olympics. His sister, Thea, begs him to cover the games for The Rodent's Gazette. Geronimo refuses, but that does him no good since his grandfather, the founder of the newspaper, insists he head straight to Athens to write an article and host a daily television program about the Olympics. Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.

-Click here to see the Geronimo Stilton series feature.
 

Click here to read a review of GERONIMO AND THE GOLD MEDAL MYSTERY.

 

Now in Stores: THE BIG FIELD by Mike Lupica

THE BIG FIELD by Mike Lupica
Mike Lupica, the veteran sports columnist for the Daily News in New York, is reaching out to younger readers, trying to teach them lessons on the playing field that can be extended to everyday life. His latest offering is THE BIG FIELD, the story of Hutch Hutchinson, a star shortstop for his American Legion team who is displaced by Darryl “D-Will” Williams, a better player with a questionable attitude. Reviewed by Ron Kaplan.
Click here to read a review of THE BIG FIELD.

 

Now in Stores: GOOSEBUMPS HORRORLAND #3: MONSTER BLOOD FOR BREAKFAST! by R. L. Stine

GOOSEBUMPS HORRORLAND: #3: MONSTER BLOOD FOR BREAKFAST! by R. L. Stine
In the third book of this horrifying series, the most important meal of the day (breakfast! You knew that, right?) turns into a creep-fest for poor Matt Daniels. He not only has a Worm for breakfast, but he's about to encounter a "giant" of a problem called Monster Blood. Prepare to be scared…very scared! Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.

 
Click here to read a review of MONSTER BLOOD FOR BREAKFAST!

 

Now in Stores: EARTH MATTERS: An Encyclopedia of Ecology

EARTH MATTERS: An Encyclopedia of Ecology

Celebrate our incredible world from the Arctic to the Amazon!

Our Earth is the only planet in the Universe known to be suitable for life. It contains millions of different life forms, all perfectly adapted to their environments, but it has changed dramatically over time.

Embark on a visual exploration of Earth's amazing habitats --- from the polar ice caps to the struggling savannas, the Ethiopian highlands to the ocean floors of the Pacific. Examine how climate change affects the plants and animals that live in these habitats and learn about practical, positive steps you can take to help protect and preserve our fragile planet.
 

Click here to read more about EARTH MATTERS.


 
Don't Miss: PADDINGTON HERE AND NOW by Michael Bond
PADDINGTON HERE AND NOW by Michael Bond
Since the Browns found Paddington on a railway platform and took him home to live with them, there has never been a dull moment at number 32
Windsor Gardens. But as he explained to them at the start, "Things happen to me: I'm that sort of a bear." After a 30-year absence, everyone's favorite marmalade-eating bear from Peru returns to celebrate his 50th anniversary with a new collection of stories. Reviewed by Brian Farrey.
Click here to read a review of PADDINGTON HERE AND NOW.

 

Cool New Books for May

May’s roundup of Cool New Books includes SAVVY, an enchanting first novel from Ingrid Law that introduces readers to the Beaumont family, whose members have harbored a magical secret --- they each possess a special supernatural power that strikes when they turn 13; THE BATTLE OF THE LABYRINTH by Rick Riordan, the fourth adventure featuring Percy Jackson and the other half-blooded Olympians who populate Camp Half-Blood; RIVERS OF FIRE, a riveting sequel to Patrick Carman’s ATHERTON: THE HOUSE OF POWER, in which the world collapses and a new danger emerges; EVER, Newbery Honor author Gail Carson Levine’s spellbinding tale of a girl confronted with a terrible destiny; and SEEKERS, the debut of a thrilling new animal fantasy series from the author of the bestselling Warriors books.
 

Click here to see our roundup of Cool New Books for May.

 

May's New in Paperback Roundup

May’s roundup of New in Paperback titles includes PETER PAN IN SCARLET by Geraldine McCaughrean, the first-ever authorized sequel to J. M. Barrie's classic tale; SUMMER BALL, the follow-up to Mike Lupica's TRAVEL TEAM that reintroduces readers to Danny Walker, a boy who's passionate about basketball; FAIREST, in which Gail Carson Levine boldly rewrites the Snow White tale into a story that bears little resemblance to the original but offers much more scope for the imagination; THE CASE OF THE LEFT-HANDED LADY, Nancy Springer’s second mystery featuring Sherlock Holmes’s sister, Enola; and the Edgar Award-winning ROOM ONE, a thought-provoking work of fiction from Andrew Clements about a fifth-grader who tries to figure out why he sees a face in the window of a supposedly empty house.

 

Click here to see what's New in Paperback for May.


 

Kidsreads.com's Most Recent Reviews

BIRD LAKE MOON by Kevin Henkes
When Mitch finds out that his family is breaking into pieces, he and his mom go to stay with his grandparents at Bird Lake. Mitch desperately searches for something solid to hold on to, and he clamps onto the empty house next door. But when a family moves in, Mitch schemes to scare them away with ghosts. He doesn’t know that the “intruders” are dealing with family problems of their own. Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman.

THE SEER OF SHADOWS by Avi
In THE SEER OF SHADOWS, prolific, award-winning author Avi takes readers back in time to when photography seemed truly magical and spirits seemed to lurk in every corner. The Newbery Medalist’s latest work of fiction is a first-rate ghost story that effectively blends history and mystery. Reviewed by Norah Piehl.

CLEMENTINE'S LETTER written by Sara Pennypacker and illustrated by Marla Frazee
What's a third grade student to do when the teacher she adores might win a big prize that involves leaving his classroom for the entire year? That's Clementine's problem. Can she live with her solution? Find out in Sara Pennypacker’s thoroughly enjoyable chapter book. Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.

STINK AND THE GREAT GUINEA PIG EXPRESS written by Megan McDonald and illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds
In this good-natured and subtly educational tale, Stink and his friends, Webster and Sophie, are determined to find homes for 101(!) homeless guinea pigs. Along the way, Stink not only learns fascinating facts about the adorable little rodents, he also falls in love with the one he names Astro, even though he knows his parents will never let him keep it. Reviewed by Terry Miller Shannon.

SMILES TO GO by Jerry Spinelli
Champion chess player Will Tuppence loves skateboarding, star gazing and eating pepperoni pizza while playing Monopoly with his best friends. Will is also a first-class worrier whose life would be much happier if his little sister would stop pestering him and he could work up the courage to invite a girl to the freshman dance. Reviewed by Donna Volkenannt. 

WELL WITCHED by Frances Hardinge
Ryan and his friends don't think twice about stealing some money from a wishing well. After all, who's really going to miss a few tarnished coins? The well witch does. And she demands payback: Now Ryan, Josh and Chelle must serve her…and the wishes that lie rotting at the bottom of her well. Reviewed by Sarah Hannah Gómez.

THE POSTCARD by Tony Abbott
At the beginning of his summer vacation, Jason finds out that his grandmother has died. As Jason barely knew her, her death turns out to be more of an annoyance than a sad goodbye, for now he has to travel south to Florida to help his dad clean out her house. But then a strange phone call and an old postcard pull Jason into a family mystery and an adventure of a lifetime. Reviewed by Chris Shanley-Dillman.

SWINDLE by Gordon Korman
Sixth grader Griffin Bing is an 11-year-old boy who likes to make detailed plans. But after he and his best friend, Ben Slovak, spend the night in a haunted house on the eve of its destruction, things happen that Griffin didn’t plan for at all. Reviewed by Donna Volkenannt.

THE TIME TRAVELERS: Book One in The Gideon Trilogy by Linda Buckley-Archer
Gideon Seymour, thief and gentleman, hides from the villainous Tar Man. Suddenly the sky peels away like fabric and from the gaping hole fall two curious-looking children. Peter Schock and Kate Dyer have fallen straight from the 21st century, thanks to an experiment with an antigravity machine. Before Gideon and the kids have a chance to gather their wits, the Tar Man takes off with the machine --- and Peter and Kate's only chance of getting home. Reviewed by Sarah Sawtelle.

THE TIME THIEF: Book Two in The Gideon Trilogy by Linda Buckley-Archer
An accident with an antigravity machine catapulted Peter Schock and Kate Dyer back to 1763. A bungled rescue attempt leaves Peter stranded in the 18th century while a terrifying villain, the Tar Man, takes his place and explodes onto 21st-century London. While the NASA scientists responsible for the situation question whether it is right to rescue Peter, Kate decides to take matters into her own hands --- but things don't go as planned. Reviewed by Sarah Sawtelle.

 

Click here to read our most recent reviews.


 

Poll and Question: Summer Reading

Poll:

During the school year, do you usually have enough time to read for pleasure?

Yes
No
Sometimes


How many books would you like to read for pleasure this summer?

1-3
4-6
7-9
10 or more

None

-Click here to participate in the poll.
 

Question:

Summer vacation is a great time to catch up on books you didn't have time to read during the school year.  Name up to five books on your "summer catch-up" reading list.

-Click here to answer the question.

 


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