Reading Ahead – Books for Ages 9 to 12 (September/October 2008

In these last two months, chapter books have been the biggest collection of “new additions” to the Tub … by far. It looks like there will be something for everyone, covering every genre and every reading level. Here were a few that really stood out.

Enchanted Thyme (Book 1: The Delicious Adventure Series) by Adriane Smith, with recipes by Chef Michael Wilson. A middle grade reader with recipes. It sounds so fun (Big Word Press, 2008)

The Porcupine Year by Louise Erdrich This is the third book in this trilogy of a young Native American girl. I have not heard of the others, but this one caught my attention. It is billed as just as fun for new readers as people who have read the previous titles. We’ll see. (HarperCollins, 2008)

America: The Making of a Nation by Charlie Samuels, illustrated by Sally Launder, Michael WOods, and Tom Connell. This interactive book, with all it’s flaps and illustrations looks like it could keep you busy for days. It strikes me as a book kids will love to explore. (Little, Brown and Company, 2008)

Football Double Threat (Matt Christopher series) text by Stephanie Peters We’re in the throes of football season now, and this one looks like it might just catch a reluctant reader’s eye: sports, friendship, suspense. (Little, Brown and Company, 2008)

Kris Kringle by Maria L. Ciampi This book is set out as a script for a play. That helps bring the reading level down and get kids engaged in the reading. I liked this twist: Charles Dickens had a private writing study, where he would develop his characters through acting. (AuthorHouse, 2008)

Hiding Glory by Laura Chester, illustrated by Gary A. Lippincott. This is an illustrated, chapter-book fairy tale about a girl, a horse, and a magical kingdom. The presentation has that timeles look about it, particularly the pen and ink sketches. (Willow Creek Press, 2008)

Ghost Medicine by Andrew Smith I am so excited about this book. I met Andrew before BEA, when he was still waiting for the book to launch. It is a high interest/low readability book that looks like it will have great appeal for reluctant readers, particularly boys.This coming-of-age novel about three friends that has the sense of being Western and modern all at the same time. (Feiwel and Friends, 2008)

The Mystery of Journeys Crown: An Adventure Drawing Game written and illustrated by K. Michael Crawford This one is hard to nail down. It’s part puzzle book, part workbook, and part mystery. It looks very clever and very engaging … perfect for reluctant readers or kids who want something “to do” when they read. (, 2008)

Humpty Dumpty Jr: Hardboiled Detective by Nate Evans and Paul Hindman, illustrated by Vince Evans and Nate Evans. The subtitle grabbed me on this one! We have two cases we’re going to solve: The Case of the Fiendish Flapjack Flop and The Mystery of Merlin and the Gruesome Ghost. (Jabberwocky, an Imprint of Sourcebooks, Inc., 2008)

If you’ve read any of these books, be sure to click the title. That will take you to our review page, and you can add your link with Mr. Linky.