If you like magic, friends, excitement, and adventure, this is the perfect series for you or your middle-grade reader! I found this book to be absolutely captivating!
This is the first book that I have read in The Magic Misfits series, and I was SO appreciative that the book lends itself to someone jumping into the series! There’s a “Stop! Halt! Who Goes There!” at the beginning that wonderfully catches a reader up on who the characters are in the book. I loved that!
I read a lot of books with “of Auschwitz” in the title, and I have loved every one of them. While these are stories that are hard to read, I truly feel they are important books that cannot be missed. The Brothers of Auschwitz was an emotional, raw story that left me in awe of the strength of some humans and horrified at the actions of others.
Dov and Yitzhak are two brothers living in a small village, largely untouched by the devastation of WWII. Then, in 1944, the Nazi’s invade their home and take them to Auschwitz. Years later, they share their story with a friend.
“Three months was enough for the Germans to turn healthy young men into a pile of disgusting rags.“ The Brothers of Auschwitz by Malka Adler
Wow! This was a wonderful book! I read a lot of historical fiction, and I really enjoy the WWII timeframe. I haven’t read one that focuses on the direct aftermath of the war though, so this was an exciting new book for me!
The London Restoration introduces us to married couple Diana and Brett in post-world-war-II London. Diana and Brett spent much of the war separated from each other and now are back together, trying to repair their marriage. Diana has secrets that she must keep from Brett about what she was doing during the war, and Brett has secrets of his own.
Wow! This was such a captivating story! I loved the descriptions of the era and location. This historical mystery is set during the Depression in San Francisco, and I felt like I was right in the story!
Jane has hidden her identity by dressing as a boy for a newspaper copy boy job. She’s quite successful and works her way up in the newspaper world. Then, a photo surfaces with her Daddy and his arm around a girl that has recently turned up dead. Jane realizes her Daddy may not be dead, and he could ruin everything she has worked to accomplish.
All Eyes on Her is a young adult thriller that puts the reader in an investigative position, which I thought was fun and original! We start the story with Tabby telling us why she’s not guilty of killing her boyfriend, Mark. It then moves to other character’s perspectives of what they knew about the situation. I liked reading each character’s version of events. It gave me the opportunity to see the situation from so many different points of view.
The story is told through the multiple perspectives, but also provides chat messages, sections of diary entries, as well as newspaper articles. It really played up the social thriller genre with these entries and it was so easy to get into!
How to Live on the Edge by Sarah Lynn Scheerger is such an emotional rollercoaster so buckle in before you start this one! It was a beautifully written book with such an emotional draw!
Cayenne and Saffron lost their mother to breast cancer when they were young, leaving them to live with Aunt Tee. They know that the women in their family don’t live past 40. The BRCA gene mutation that runs in their DNA won’t let them. Cayenne spends her time flirting, very dangerously, with death. She stands in front of oncoming trains, jumping out of the way at the last second, and so many other perilous activities. When she is given video messages her mother made for her before her death, she finds that she doesn’t want them, but continues to be drawn to them.
PINTO! is the only horse to complete a 1912 – 1915 horseback journey to visit all forty-eight state capitols with the “Overland Westerners”. This book takes that real-life event and tells it through the eyes of Pinto. I really enjoyed M.J. Evan’s choice to make the horse the narrator of this story. It did create a fictionalized feel to the story, however, it was obvious that she had worked hard to research and provide real information surrounding this historic event.
This book was stunning. Absolutely, wonderfully fabulous! I love that Jess Redman has brought such a real, relatable character to our children’s fictional world. Alma, our main character is experiencing panic attacks and anxiety, and I thought that Redman did an excellent job at bringing this very real situation to life through her words.
How I Felt:
Alma is a 12-year-old girl that any middle-age child can relate to. She’s just been uprooted from the home she loves to a new, unfamiliar town with her family. This new place is not her home, and she doesn’t know what to do. She begins to have panic attacks and anxiety due to the stress of the move, and her family isn’t sure what to do. Alma ends up in the Astronomy club with some new friends and soon discovers they are a bit more than just a club.
I loved the dark edge that this story had. It’s a twisted book with a noir theme, and I loved that!
How I Felt:
This story is a crazy ride! Noah Spaeth gives us a view into the previous 4 years of his life in a twisted world of film, actors, drugs, and debauchery. Noah meets Adonis Dominick Bambach, the creator of Slow Down, the movie just as the creation is beginning. He’s also the creator of a drug called Fast. Noah becomes his assistant for the movie and gives us a first-view look into this world. Noah soon realizes that he can do a better job of creating this movie. The book is fast-paced and filled will dark twists that will keep you on the edge of your seat!
This book was filled with exciting battles and struggles! It was definitely my favorite in the series and an excellent end to the family’s story!
How I Felt:
Our main character Ella is turning 15! Her birthday celebration involves continuing the family’s journey to find a cure for Ella’s cancer. This family is so amazing. The lengths that they go to to save young Ella are so moving. This final book in the series really speaks to the choices we all have to make in life. Will we be compassionate or unloving? Will we choose to embrace or exclude? Ella and her entire family battle these questions as they navigate the final steps of their journey!
The illustrations in this book were so bright and colorful! It’s a stunning collection of images that will keep children engaged through each page! My daughter and son were both delighted to call out the letters and numbers as we moved through the book!
How I Felt:
ABCs and 123s for Boys is a collection of lovely illustrations that correlate to a letter or number. My kids really enjoyed the scenes for each one. The names for the animals are all boy names, but that should not be a reason to restrict this to one gender. I would really like to stress that this book is completely perfect for boys and girls, so don’t be deterred by the title.
I read a lot of historical fiction, and a significant amount of those books revolves around WWII, so I’m always excited when I find a book that provides a new perspective on the war. The Takeaway Men was a beautiful, emotional journey into the lives of holocaust survivors as they immigrate to America. We experience their joys and sorrows as they try to navigate a new world, and it is a beautiful story.
How I Felt:
The Lubinski family has experienced so many horrors at the hands of the Nazis during World War II and has decided to make a fresh start in America. This new country is so different from anything they have experienced before. It is vast, loud, and new. While the twin girls begin to settle in quickly, Aron is plagued by his past. His Holocaust experiences are a secret from his girls, which creates a rift between the father and his daughters. When their Hebrew school covers the war and the treatment of Jewish people, the girls want to learn about their parents’ past.