Thursday, June 29, 2006

I finally read Hilary McKay's new book, Caddy Ever After, which is not really about Caddy at all. This makes sense in a way, since Caddy has been an interesting minor character in the three other books about the Casson family. This book is about Indigo and Rose and Saffron and Sarah and Rose again and Caddy and then finally Rose. It does tell about Caddy's wedding - but not to darling Michael. I can't tell you anymore because then you wouldn't need to read the book. So, I can't tell you about how Indigo got to be in charge of selling tickets to the Valentine's Day dance or about Rose's mass produced Valentine's Day cards, or her black cardboard, or about Saffron and Oscar and how sick Sarah got when she got the flu, or even about how Rose rescued her mother from lightning. Because if you like the Casson family at all you will want to read this book yourself.
It is the weakest book of the four books. - Saffy's Angel was the strongest. Permanent Rose, although third in the series was next strongest. Indigo's Star was a very admirable book. Caddy Ever After doesn't feel like a story because each of Casson siblings tells part of what happens and it is hard to see how it all fits together. Because it is not really about Caddy, I think McKay owes us another book. I read that she has one more book about this brood in her - and I think it should be about Sarah, even though Sarah is not a Casson. She deserves her own book because she puts up with all of them, after all. And so McKay owes us TWO more books about the Cassons - one that is really and truly about Caddy and one about Sarah. Then I will be satisfied. I think I will write to her and tell her that.
Anyway, I liked the ending of this one. So read it.
It's not the only book I have read in the last 10 days. I read Irene Fowler's new book and enjoyed it a lot but I can't remember what it was called. I started Blue Baliet's The Wright 3 and then left it at work so I will have to wait until the weekend to finish it. (I work Saturday.) Caddy Ever After is just the best book I've read in the last several days.
It is Summer Reading Club after all and I have a lot of other things to think about instead - like the over 100 children that came to our first program - the wonderful Steve Abrams and his Aesop's Fables puppet show and the close to 90 children that came to Mrs. Benedetto's Frog and Toad storytime. She is so good and she very kindly let me tell a story. I hope she didn't mind. And making sure that we have enough volunteers and making sure that we have enough supplies and making sure we get into the schools and get the word out. Busy, busy me.

Monday, June 19, 2006

M.T. Anderson must have watched "The Sound of Music" one too many times. Read "The Clue of the Linoleum Lederhosen", the second book in his M. T. Anderson's Amazing Adventures, and I think you'll agree. Normal preteen, Lily Gefelty, and her friends, Katie Mulligan - star of the Horror Hollow book series - and Jasper Dash, Technonaut - star of the Jasper Dash series , go off to the Moose Tongue Lodge for a quiet summer vacation. Are they ever surprised to find out that other stars of kids' series are also at the Moose Tongue Lodge!! Stars like the Manley Brothers, sons of ace detective Jake Manley, and the Cutesy Dell Twins, and Eddie Wax, who starred in only one book with his wonder horse. When the Hooter Quints are kidnapped before they get to the lodge, all heck breaks loose.
Frankly, I liked "Whales on stilts" better - that's the first book in the series. But I think that Anderson's endings are so well written they make any confusion in the rest of the book worth it.
I haven't had a lot of time for reading lately. Summer Reading Club just started. I'm planning a major family reunion thingie. I was teaching Sunday School. And I'm writing for a local weekly paper occasionally PLUS the local storytelling festival - with which I am involved - is next weekend. Phew! I'm ready for a vacation.
I've been asked for booklists for good books. I am the world's worst booklist writer BECAUSE as soon as I finish a booklist another great book comes out and I think I have to wait until I've read it to finish the booklist. I guess I have to get over THAT.
So here are some sites that you can go to to find booklists for teens: This is not just for teens but it is for guys.
The American Library Association puts out a whole bunch of booklists for teens. Go to and click on the link in the left hand column. They tend to suggest edgy problem novels but they also suggest some really fun titles as well.
Also check with your high school for lists of books that you're going to have to read. Believe it or not, those books are very good, although some of them may be challenging.
I have to go. Some kids are here to record the books they read for Summer Reading Club. Tah for now.