We’re Not From Here by Geoff Rodkey, a review

One thousand refugees from Earth, likely the only survivors, are in a spaceship orbiting a populated planet, hoping for permission to land. If they can’t live on Choom, they’ll perish –their food and fuel are nearly gone. They came because they were invited twenty years ago when they set out from Mars, asleep on autopilot. […]

Sal and Gabi Break the Universe by Carlos Hernandez, a review

Sal Vidon, able narrator, is somehow calm when outrageous things are happening. And plenty of outrageous things do happen in this book, so the result is hilarious. Carlos Hernandez’ middle grade novel Sal and Gabi Break the Universe focuses on out-of-this-world humor and on an ethnic group, Cuban-Americans. I came away feeling refreshed and much […]

The Parker Inheritance by Varian Johnson, a review

I really enjoy time-slip novels–where two stories are told, one in the past, one in the present, alternating chapters. So I was glad to find this middle-grade mystery novel with time-slip, published in 2018. Also, it focuses on race issues, a topic dear to my heart. In fact, it’s written by an African-American about African-Americans. […]

Big Foot and Little Foot: The Squatchicorns, by Ellen Potter, a review

This chapter book, The Squatchicorns by Ellen Potter, tells a yarn just for that young reader who likes gentle, fantastic stories. Engaging illustrations by Felicita Sala bring it to life. It’s the third book in a series about a friendship between a human boy, Boone, and a young Sasquatch, Hugo. As the story opens Hugo […]

How I Became a Spy by Deborah Hopkinson, a review

I couldn’t put this book down, and it’s been a while since that happened! How I Became a Spy by Deborah Hopkinson, published in 2019, gives us a gripping middle-grade mystery about World War II. Thirteen-year-old Bertie starts volunteering as a bicycle messenger for the civil defense organization. It’s early 1944. The Germans are bombing […]

Louisiana’s Way Home by Kate DiCamillo, a review

Louisiana’s Way Home, a middle-grade historical novel by Kate DiCamillo, took ahold of my heart somehow.

Flight of the Bluebird by Kara LaReau, a review

Flight of the Bluebird is the third and final book of the Unintentional Adventures of the Bland Sisters. It’s a middle-grade adventure featuring the twins from Dullsville who are learning to like a bit of excitement in their lives.

The Faithful Spy by John Hendrix, a review

The Faithful Spy: Dietrich Bonhoeffer and the Plot to Kill Hitler, by John Hendrix, is a hybrid graphic novel for teens and adults,  telling an unforgettable story in an unforgettable way. It was published in 2018 by Amulet. The book alternates chapters about Hitler’s rise and about Bonhoeffer’s life as a young pastor. (There are […]

The Hotel Between by Sean Easley, a review

The Hotel Between by Sean Easley, a middle grade fantasy published 2018 by Simon and Schuster, 341 pages: a review. Cameron, age 12, lives in Texas with his grandma and twin sister Cass, who is confined to a wheelchair. A vacant strip mall he passes every day on the walk home from school suddenly has […]

Crenshaw by Katherine Applegate, a review

Crenshaw by Katherine Applegate, a review Published 2015 by MacMillan, 245 pages Genre: Middle grade, realistic with a touch of fantasy Crenshaw, a huge cat, used to be Jackson’s invisible friend — when Jackson was three years younger. So now that Jackson’s starting fifth grade, why is Crenshaw showing up again, unasked for? Jackson’s family […]