You Asked, We Answered: Mythology and Adventure

November 26th, 2017 by

On November 17, 2017, an anonymous Kidsmomo reader asked us for a book recommendation:

i’m looking for mythology or adventure books. I have read a lot of them, so I need new ideas

Thanks for sending your question, anonymous reader! Mythology or adventure books are very popular and very plentiful, so finding a good one to read is always a QUEST in itself! And narrowing down a list can be quite the adventure:

*WE* are going on an adventure, anonymous reader!

 

Newer Books You Might Enjoy:

  • The Trials of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend
  • Alcatraz vs. the Evil Librarians by Brandon Sanderson
  • The Inquisitor’s Tale: Or, The Three Magical Children and Their Holy Dog by Adam Gidwitz
  • The Door in the Alley by Adrienne Kress

Some Old-School Picks:

  • Dragon’s Milk (The Dragon Chronicles) by Susan Fletcher
  • Dealing with Dragons (Enchanted Forest Chronicles) by Patricia C. Wrede
  • The Will of the Empress (Circle Reforged series) by Tamora Pierce
  • The Keys to the Kingdom series by Garth Nix
  • Quicksilver by Stephanie Spinner
  • The Sea of Trolls by Nancy Farmer

And last but never least, the Usual Suspects:

  • The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
  • Any and all books by Rick Riordan
  • The Land of Stories series by Chris Colfer
  • Wings of Fire series by Tui T. Sutherland
  • School for Good and Evil series by by Soman Chainani
  • The Brotherband series by John Flanagan
  • Spiderwick Chronicles by Tony DiTerlizzi and Holly Black
  • Spirit Animals series (various authors)
  • His Dark Materials series by Philip Pullman
  • Chronicles of Narnia series by C.S. Lewis

Note: Just the list above is 100+ books! But… winter break is just around the corner…

Are you looking to add to your reading list, but not sure what to read? Ask Kidsmomo a question in the form below!

Kids: Ask your parents or teachers for approval before you submit anything to us, and read our Privacy Policy Statement.

Your Name (optional):

Your Message (required):

Some Spectacular Spoooooooky Books

October 31st, 2017 by

Happy Halloween!

What’s the most fun thing to do after a night of trick-or-treating? Well, sorting through all your candy, obviously.

But what’s the second most fun activity? Curling up under the covers with a creepy, bone-chilling book!

If you’re not sure which terrifying tale to choose, then check out these recommendations:

 

The Witches by Roald Dahl:

 

The Monsters of Morley Manor by Bruce Coville:

Do YOU have any can’t-miss spine-tingling books you want to share? Leave a comment below with your scary story recommendations!

Third Additions to Two Favorite Series

October 23rd, 2017 by

Halloween may be just around the corner, but this is no trick — two authors have decided to treat us all to new additions to their series!

Okay, all ghastly puns aside, October really did bring Book #3 in some series that we love. Check out the official descriptions from the publishers below:

mr-lemoncellos-great-library-raceMr. Lemoncello’s Great Library Race (Mr. Lemoncello’s Library #3)

On your marks. Get set. Lemon, cello, GO!

Everyone’s favorite game maker, Mr. Lemoncello, is testing out his new FABULOUS FACT-FINDING FRENZY game! If Kyle can make it through the first round, he and the other lucky finalists will go on a great race — by bicycle, bookmobile, and even Mr. Lemoncello’s corporate banana jet! — to find fascinating facts about famous Americans. The first to bring their facts back to the library will win spectacular prizes! But when a few surprising “facts” surface about Mr. Lemoncello, it might be GO TO JAIL and LOSE A TURN all at once! Could Kyle’s hero be a fraud? It’s winner take all, so Kyle and the other kids will have to dig deep to find out the truth before the GAME is OVER for Mr. Lemoncello and his entire fantastic empire!

Filled with brand-new puzzles and games (including a hidden bonus puzzle!), this fast-paced read will have gamers and readers alike racing to the finish line because, like Mr. Lemoncello’s commercials say, IS IT FUN? … HELLO! IT’S A LEMONCELLO!

magnus-chase-and-the-gods-of-asgard-the-ship-of-the-deadThe Ship of the Dead (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard #3)

Magnus Chase, a once-homeless teen, is a resident of the Hotel Valhalla and one of Odin’s chosen warriors. As the son of Frey, the god of summer, fertility, and health, Magnus isn’t naturally inclined to fighting. But he has strong and steadfast friends, including Hearthstone the elf, Blitzen the dwarf, and Samirah the Valkyrie, and together they have achieved brave deeds, such as defeating Fenris Wolf and battling giants for Thor’s hammer, Mjolnir. Now Magnus faces his most dangerous trial yet. His cousin, Annabeth, recruits her boyfriend, Percy Jackson, to give Magnus some pointers, but will his training be enough

Loki is free from his chains. He’s readying Naglfar, the Ship of the Dead, complete with a host of giants and zombies, to sail against the Asgardian gods and begin the final battle of Ragnarok. It’s up to Magnus and his friends to stop him, but to do so they will have to sail across the oceans of Midgard, Jotunheim, and Niflheim in a desperate race to reach Naglfar before it’s ready to sail. Along the way, they will face angry sea gods, hostile giants, and an evil fire-breathing dragon. Magnus’s biggest challenge will be facing his own inner demons. Does he have what it takes to outwit the wily trickster god?

We don’t know about you, but we’re really looking forward to learning Mr. Lemoncello’s secrets, and to seeing what kind of role Percy and Annabeth play in Magnus’ next adventure! What about you? Do you plan to read these latest installments in the Mr. Lemoncello’s Library and Magnus Chase series?

You Asked, We Answered: Recs for Warriors Fans

April 2nd, 2017 by

Recently, Kidsmomo reader Alexa asked us for book recommendations based on her interests:

Hello! My name is Alexa and I just finished reading the second series of Warrior Cats. My question is : Do you know of a good middle grade series like Warrior Cats?

Alexa, thanks for your question! First off, if you’ve only read two of the Warriors series, then you still have a bunch more to go. You’d think that at some point these catfighting clans would just want to all get along and sing Kumbaya together, but in fact these felines just keep up the drama — resulting in sooooooo many series about them:

  • Dawn of the Clans
  • Warriors (the original series)
  • The New Prophecy
  • Power of Three
  • Omen of the Stars
  • A Vision of Shadows
  • Warriors Manga
  • Warriors Super Editions

When you’re ready for a break from those crazy cats, then there are three other series also by Erin Hunter. Actually, Erin Hunter is six different authors. But these series are all published under the Erin Hunter name:

So, that should be enough books to last you until the year 3874. But after that, if your eyeballs haven’t fallen out from exhaustion, then you can check out these other series about warring animals:

Alexa, we hope that gives you some good ideas for what to read after Warriors!

To the rest of you: If you’re like Alexa and want some customized book recommendations just for you, submit an Ask Kidsmomo question in the form below!

Kids: Ask your parents or teachers for approval before you submit anything to us, and read our Privacy Policy Statement.

Your Name (optional):

Your Message (required):

Triple Travel Book Giveaway!

March 5th, 2017 by

Spring is around the corner, and it’s got us feeling itchy! Not, like, with a rash. (Gross.) No, I mean we’re itching for a break from winter, a break from our everyday schedules, a little trip… or maybe a big adventure!

In that spirit, we thought it was time for a Triple Travel Book Giveaway! We’ve got three prize packs that will transport you out of your regular life — to another country, another time, or another world.

ENTER BY APRIL 1ST FOR A CHANCE TO WIN…

PRIZE PACK #1: TRAVEL AROUND THE WORLD

  • Paris for Two by Phoebe Stone
  • Sealed with a Secret by Lisa Schroeder
  • Mission Mumbai by Mahtab Narsimhan

PRIZE PACK #2: TRAVEL BACK IN TIME

  • Ruby Lee and Me by Shannon Hitchcock
  • My Name is Not Friday by Jon Walter
  • Tru & Nelle by Greg Neri

PRIZE PACK #3: TRAVEL INTO FANTASY

  • Pennyroyal Academy by M.A. Larson
  • Wandmaker by Ed Masessa
  • Fortune Falls by Jenny Goebel

Enter before April 1st! This sweepstakes has ended. Check back regularly for more chances to win!

Your Valentine’s Day Book Match

February 12th, 2017 by

February is the month of LOVE, and the #1 love in our lives is… BOOKS! There are so many amazing new books released recently, we’ve compiled a quiz to determine which book you should read next!

Answer the questions below. When you get your results, be sure to check out the official book description below the cover!

[wp_quiz id=”23903″]

Are you happy with your result? If not, take the quiz again! Leave a comment below and let us know which book you’re most excited about.

2017 Coretta Scott King Book Awards

February 6th, 2017 by

coretta-scott-king-awardsLast week, we gave a rundown of the 2017 Newbery winners. Since February is Black History Month, we wanted to follow that up with a rundown of the 2017 Coretta Scott King Book Awards winners.

You’ve probably heard of Mrs. Coretta Scott King, who was the wife of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and an activist in her own right. The Coretta Scott King Book Awards recognize outstanding books for young adults and children by African-American authors and illustrators that reflect the African-American experience.

Since they were founded in 1969, the Coretta Scott King Book Awards have grown to include several categories. For us here at Kidsmomo, the most exciting is the Author Award. Check out this year’s winner and honor books (descriptions provided by the publishers):
 

THIS YEAR’S WINNER

march-book-threeMarch: Book Three written by John Lewis and Andrew Aydin, illustrated by Nate Powell

Welcome to the stunning conclusion of the award-winning and best-selling MARCH trilogy. Congressman John Lewis, an American icon and one of the key figures of the civil rights movement, joins co-writer Andrew Aydin and artist Nate Powell to bring the lessons of history to vivid life for a new generation, urgently relevant for today’s world.

By the fall of 1963, the Civil Rights Movement has penetrated deep into the American consciousness, and as chairman of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee, John Lewis is guiding the tip of the spear. Through relentless direct action, SNCC continues to force the nation to confront its own blatant injustice, but for every step forward, the danger grows more intense: Jim Crow strikes back through legal tricks, intimidation, violence, and death. The only hope for lasting change is to give voice to the millions of Americans silenced by voter suppression: “One Man, One Vote.”

To carry out their nonviolent revolution, Lewis and an army of young activists launch a series of innovative campaigns, including the Freedom Vote, Mississippi Freedom Summer, and an all-out battle for the soul of the Democratic Party waged live on national television.

With these new struggles come new allies, new opponents, and an unpredictable new president who might be both at once. But fractures within the movement are deepening… even as 25-year-old John Lewis prepares to risk everything in a historic showdown high above the Alabama river, in a town called Selma.

[Note from Kidsmomo: This book is recommended for ages 12 and up.]

 

HONOR BOOKS

as-brave-as-youAs Brave as You by Jason Reynolds

When two brothers decide to prove how brave they are, everything backfires — literally — in this piercing middle grade novel by the winner of the Coretta Scott King/Johnson Steptoe Award.

Genie’s summer is full of surprises. The first is that he and his big brother, Ernie, are leaving Brooklyn for the very first time to spend the summer with their grandparents all the way in Virginia — in the COUNTRY! The second surprise comes when Genie figures out that their grandfather is blind. Thunderstruck and — being a curious kid — Genie peppers Grandpop with questions about how he covers it so well (besides wearing way cool Ray-Bans).

How does he match his clothes? Know where to walk? Cook with a gas stove? Pour a glass of sweet tea without spilling it? Genie thinks Grandpop must be the bravest guy he’s ever known, but he starts to notice that his grandfather never leaves the house — as in NEVER. And when he finds the secret room that Grandpop is always disappearing into — a room so full of songbirds and plants that it’s almost as if it’s been pulled inside-out — he begins to wonder if his grandfather is really so brave after all.

Then Ernie lets him down in the bravery department. It’s his 14th birthday, and, Grandpop says to become a man, you have to learn how to shoot a gun. Genie thinks that is AWESOME until he realizes Ernie has no interest in learning how to shoot. None. Nada. Dumbfounded by Ernie’s reluctance, Genie is left to wonder — is bravery and becoming a man only about proving something, or is it just as important to own up to what you won’t do?

[Note from Kidsmomo: This book is recommended for ages 10 and up.]

 
Freedom Over Me: Eleven Slaves, Their Lives and Dreams Brought to Life by Ashley Bryan written and illustrated by Ashley Bryan

Using original slave auction and plantation estate documents, Ashley Bryan offers a moving and powerful picture book that contrasts the monetary value of a slave with the priceless value of life experiences and dreams that a slave owner could never take away.

Imagine being looked up and down and being valued as less than chair. Less than an ox. Less than a dress. Maybe about the same as… a lantern.

You, an object. An object to sell.

In his gentle yet deeply powerful way, Ashley Bryan goes to the heart of how a slave is given a monetary value by the slave owner, tempering this with the one thing that CAN’T be bought or sold — dreams. Inspired by the actual will of a plantation owner that lists the worth of each and every one of his “workers,” Bryan has created collages around that document, and others like it. Through fierce paintings and expansive poetry he imagines and interprets each person’s life on the plantation, as well as the life their owner knew nothing about — their dreams and pride in knowing that they were worth far more than an Overseer or Madam ever would guess. Visually epic, and never before done, this stunning picture book is unlike anything you’ve seen.

 

Which books have you already read, or are most interested in reading? Vote in the poll below!

Your Coretta Scott King Pick:

2017 Newbery Award Winners

February 1st, 2017 by

It’s a month into 2017, and the American Library Association has rolled out the red carpet for their biggest stars: authors, illustrators, librarians, publishers, and of course, BOOKS!

For those Newbery Newbs out there: The ALA Youth Media Awards are like the Academy Awards or Super Bowl for kids literature, and their big award is the John Newbery Medal. The award is given out to a book published in 2016, and the selection committee is comprised of MVPs of books: librarians from around the country!

Check out this year’s winners (descriptions provided by the publishers):

JOHN NEWBERY MEDAL WINNER

The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill

Every year, the people of the Protectorate leave a baby as an offering to the witch who lives in the forest. They hope this sacrifice will keep her from terrorizing their town. But the witch in the forest, Xan, is kind and gentle. She shares her home with a wise Swamp Monster named Glerk and a Perfectly Tiny Dragon, Fyrian. Xan rescues the abandoned children and delivers them to welcoming families on the other side of the forest, nourishing the babies with starlight on the journey.

One year, Xan accidentally feeds a baby moonlight instead of starlight, filling the ordinary child with extraordinary magic. Xan decides she must raise this enmagicked girl, whom she calls Luna, as her own. To keep young Luna safe from her own unwieldy power, Xan locks her magic deep inside her. When Luna approaches her 13th birthday, her magic begins to emerge on schedule — but Xan is far away. Meanwhile, a young man from the Protectorate is determined to free his people by killing the witch. Soon, it is up to Luna to protect those who have protected her — even if it means the end of the loving, safe world she’s always known.

NEWBERY HONOR BOOKS

Freedom Over Me: Eleven Slaves, Their Lives and Dreams Brought to Life by Ashley Bryan written and illustrated by Ashley Bryan

Using original slave auction and plantation estate documents, Ashley Bryan offers a moving and powerful picture book that contrasts the monetary value of a slave with the priceless value of life experiences and dreams that a slave owner could never take away.

Imagine being looked up and down and being valued as less than chair. Less than an ox. Less than a dress. Maybe about the same as… a lantern.

You, an object. An object to sell.

In his gentle yet deeply powerful way, Ashley Bryan goes to the heart of how a slave is given a monetary value by the slave owner, tempering this with the one thing that CAN’T be bought or sold — dreams. Inspired by the actual will of a plantation owner that lists the worth of each and every one of his “workers,” Bryan has created collages around that document, and others like it. Through fierce paintings and expansive poetry he imagines and interprets each person’s life on the plantation, as well as the life their owner knew nothing about — their dreams and pride in knowing that they were worth far more than an Overseer or Madam ever would guess. Visually epic, and never before done, this stunning picture book is unlike anything you’ve seen.

The Inquisitor’s Tale: Or, The Three Magical Children and Their Holy Dog written by Adam Gidwitz, illustrated by Hatem Aly

An exciting and hilarious medieval adventure from the bestselling author of A Tale Dark and Grimm.

1242. On a dark night, travelers from across France cross paths at an inn and begin to tell stories of three children. Their adventures take them on a chase through France: They are taken captive by knights, sit alongside a king, and save the land from a farting dragon. On the run to escape prejudice and persecution and save precious and holy texts from being burned, their quest drives them forward to a final showdown at Mont Saint-Michel, where all will come to question if these children can perform the miracles of saints.

Join William, an oblate on a mission from his monastery; Jacob, a Jewish boy who has fled his burning village; and Jeanne, a peasant girl who hides her prophetic visions. They are accompanied by Jeanne’s loyal greyhound, Gwenforte… recently brought back from the dead. Told in multiple voices, in a style reminiscent of The Canterbury Tales, our narrator collects their stories and the saga of these three unlikely allies begins to come together.

Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk

Growing up in the shadows cast by two world wars, Annabelle has lived a mostly quiet, steady life in her small Pennsylvania town. Until the day new student Betty Glengarry walks into her class. Betty quickly reveals herself to be cruel and manipulative, and while her bullying seems isolated at first, things quickly escalate, and reclusive World War I veteran Toby becomes a target of her attacks. While others have always seen Toby’s strangeness, Annabelle knows only kindness. She will soon need to find the courage to stand as a lone voice of justice as tensions mount.

Brilliantly crafted, Wolf Hollow is a haunting tale of America at a crossroads and a time when one girl’s resilience, strength, and compassion help to illuminate the darkest corners of our history.

Which books have you already read, or are most interested in reading? Vote in the poll below!

Your Newbery Picks:

You Asked, We Answered: Poetry

December 11th, 2016 by

On October 30, 2016, Kidsmomo reader Aaron asked us for book recommendations based on his interests:

Is poetry nonfiction and fiction ? What is a good poetry book ?

Aaron, thank you for sending in your questions! Let’s go in order:

Is poetry nonfiction and fiction? Yes, it can be either! Poetry is really just a form for telling a story or sharing a message. In other words, it’s the content of the poem that determines whether it’s nonfiction or fiction. For example, Brown Girl Dreaming by Jacqueline Woodson and Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai are both books written in verse, both about girls growing up in the United States in the past. But Brown Girl Dreaming is a memoir about the author’s real life, while Inside Out and Back Again tells a fictional story. That makes Brown Girl Dreaming nonfiction and Inside Out and Back Again fiction, even though both books are in verse.

Brown Girl Dreaming_ Jacqueline Woodson     inside-out-and-back-again

But if you’re just trying to figure out where to find poetry books at the library or bookstore, there’s usually a section specifically for books that are collections of poems, like Laugh-eteria and Bing Bang Boing by Douglas Florian.

laugh-eteriabing-bang-boing

Of course, if you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for, we can help with that too! That leads us to your second question: What is a good poetry book?

To start, check out our Books for Poetry Month blog post, which includes our personal picks:

  • A Kick in the Head: An Everyday Guide to Poetic Forms, written by Paul B. Janeczko and illustrated by Chris Raschka (Karen’s pick)
  • Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein (Nancy’s pick)

 

a-kick-in-the-head   where-the-sidewalk-ends

You can also hear us talking about these books in the podcast episode, “Roses Are Red, Violets Are Blue.”

Of course, Kidsmomo is all about connecting young readers with each other. So instead of just getting book recommendations from old fogeys like Karen and Nancy, check out these Reviews by You(th):

LoveThatDog-SharonCreech  hate-that-cat  A Pizza the Size of the Sun

Aaron, we hope that gives you some good ideas for your next read!

To the rest of you: If you’re like Aaron and want some customized book recommendations just for you, submit an Ask Kidsmomo question in the form below!

Kids: Ask your parents or teachers for approval before you submit anything to us, and read our Privacy Policy Statement.

Your Name (optional):

Your Message (required):

You Asked, We Answered: Historical Fiction

December 4th, 2016 by

On October 30, 2016, Kidsmomo reader Cassie asked us for book recommendations based on her interests:

I love to read Historical fiction and I need help . Do you have a idea

Cassie, thank you for sending in your question! Historical fiction happens to be one of Nancy’s favorite book genres, so this will be a piece of cake. Well, several pieces of cake, since there are so many interesting eras that authors can write about!

alien-typing

Nancy (post-Thanksgiving meal size) is on the historical fiction case!

To start, check out our Timeless Historical Fiction blog post, which includes many classics and our personal picks:

  • A Long Way From Chicago and A Year Down Yonder by Richard Peck (Karen’s pick)
  • By the Great Horn Spoon by Sid Fleischman (Nancy’s pick)

a-long-way-from-chicago a_year_down_yonder by-the-great-horn-spoon

You can also hear us talking about these books in the podcast episode, “History Repeating”.

In addition to our Timeless Historical Fiction book list, you can also check out these books written after we compiled that list:

  • Sugar by Jewell Parker Rhodes (post-Civil War 1860s)
  • One Came Home by Amy Timberlake (1871)
  • Salt: A Story of Friendship in a Time of War by Helen Frost (War of 1812)
  • Stella by Starlight by Sharon Draper (1930s)
  • Wolf Hollow by Lauren Wolk (1930s)
  • Listening for Lucca by Suzanne M. LaFleur (World War II)
  • The War that Saved My Life by Kimberly Brubaker Bradley (World War II)
  • Night on Fire by Ronald Kidd (1960s)
  • Sunny Side Up by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm (1970s)
  • Inside Out & Back Again by Thanhha Lai (Vietnam War, 1975)
  • Raymie Nightingale by Kate DiCamillo (1975)
  • One Crazy Summer, P.S. Be Eleven, and Gone Crazy in Alabama by Rita Williams-Garcia (1968)
  • Finding Someplace by Denise Lewis Patrick (Hurricane Katrina, 2005)

 

If you’re not sure what era to travel to, check out Echo by Pam Muñoz Ryan: The book sweeps across decades and continents, from Nazi Germany to Depression-era Pennsylvania, and more — all tied together by the power of music. Another story that spans multiple time periods is the beautifully illustrated book The Marvels by Brian Selznick.

Echo Pam Munoz Ryan  Marvels Brian Selznick

Also, to our Kidsmomo visitors and Cassie, especially: If you’re interested in a specific era or type of historical fiction, feel free to submit another Ask Kidsmomo question in the form below and we’ll get right on it for you!

Kids: Ask your parents or teachers for approval before you submit anything to us, and read our Privacy Policy Statement.

Your Name (optional):

Your Message (required):

« Older Entries