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    #73170 - 04/04/10 04:14 PM Re: The Ultimate Book Thread? [Re: chris1234]
    shellymos Offline

    Registered: 08/20/08
    Posts: 847
    Loc: New York
    Thanks Minnie for the suggestions..I had forgotten about Edward Eager...we read a book a while back that DS5 liked...half magic I think. He thought it was pretty funny. Definitely will try some more of those. Headed to the library in the morning and quite excited about it. Looking on the online catalog tonight to plan out the trip. Somehow with a 5yo and 2yo you can't go in and then look for books. It doesn't work that way. : )

    #73181 - 04/04/10 08:04 PM Re: The Ultimate Book Thread? [Re: shellymos]
    intparent Offline

    Registered: 12/16/09
    Posts: 553
    Several mentions of Enid Blyton early in the thread with comments that her books are out of print. Many are still in print in the UK; I couldn't let my children miss out on "The _____ of Adventure" series, so those we couldn't find from the library, I had a friend's "mum" buy in England and ship here. You can also purchase via Amazon UK (but you will probably have a foreign transaction fee, and call your credit card company before you order, or they may reject the transaction). Hefty shipping, but for a great book... And I think I picked up one or two used on the internet in the US.

    Others my Ds really liked that haven't been mentioned yet:

    Snow Treasure, by Marie McSwigan - About kids helping smuggle gold out of Norway on their sleds during WWII. The book blurb claims it is based on a true story, but I have been reading up on WWII in Norway and haven't found any references yet. But it is still a thrilling story. I think gifted D read it in 2nd grade, maybe.

    Bill Bergson and the White Rose Rescue, by Astrid Lindgren (someone mentioned the other Bill Bergson book above, but this one is my favorite). A little scary, but very thrilling. One of those "kids on their own against dangerous grownup" stories. With a Scandinavian flair.

    The Case of the Silver Egg, by Desmond Skirrow. About a club of boys in England who rescue a kidnapped scientist and his invention. The boys are obviously gifted, so our kids would find it an especially fun read smile

    For picture books, our all time favorite was "I, Crocodile" by Fred Marcellino. It is a hilarious account of a crocodile brought back to Paris by Napoleon. Smart, sly, and funny.

    For early teen girls: The Beekeeper's Apprentice, by Laurie King. It is about a 13 year old girl who becomes Sherlock Holmes' apprentice. Again, I think my D loved it so much because she is very like the gifted female girl in the story. There are several more in the series, but that is the one that D read until it fell apart.

    And for those who mentioned the Moomintrolls -- D20 and I are going to Scandinavia this summer, and it is the 65th anniversary of the first publication of those books. We were trying to pick which ferry line to take from Helsinki to Stockhom, and the deal was clinched when we found out that Moomintroll characters are riding on the Silja line all summer. We didn't want to miss that!

    Edited by intparent (04/04/10 08:06 PM)

    #73187 - 04/04/10 10:48 PM Re: The Ultimate Book Thread? [Re: intparent]
    matmum Offline

    Registered: 11/06/09
    Posts: 195
    Loc: Australia
    Doesn't seem to be any shortage of Enid Blyton books in print here either.

    Might be worth a look for those that are interested. I don't know how the exchange rate stacks up but I think it would generally be cheaper when compared to the pound.

    #73194 - 04/05/10 07:57 AM Re: The Ultimate Book Thread? [Re: matmum]
    kec Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 10/12/09
    Posts: 40
    Loc: Pennsylvania
    My DS8 just finished the Extraordinary Adventures of Ordinary Boy series by William Boniface and was disappointed that there was not a book four. They are fun and well written and the main character - Ordinary Boy - uses his brain to make up for the fact that he is the only one in town who does not have a super power. He has interesting discussions with others about such ideas as how is it he is considered ordinary if he is different from everyone else.

    #73293 - 04/06/10 08:21 AM Re: The Ultimate Book Thread? [Re: kec]
    onthegomom Offline

    Registered: 07/28/09
    Posts: 1743
    DS9 just read Redwall. He said it was not too scarey for him. He is a sensitive child. Are the author's other books with the mouse character about like this one?

    #73302 - 04/06/10 09:26 AM Re: The Ultimate Book Thread? [Re: S-T]
    GM5 Offline

    Registered: 11/05/09
    Posts: 90
    Loc: TX
    Okay, I have been trying to make my way through this thread and found a couple of ideas for my GD who is 5, almost 6. She reads at at least 4th grade level and reads a lot of non-fiction, BUT for fiction still prefers books with a lot of pictures AND with animals as the characters. I'm going to try the Cat Club books and Scaredy Squirrell mentioned. Does anyone have any other suggestions for Picture Books with animals - she is also very sensitive so no tragic/scary story lines. She especially likes books with humor although not necessary. Thanks

    #73318 - 04/06/10 11:08 AM Re: The Ultimate Book Thread? [Re: GM5]
    Lan Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 03/09/10
    Posts: 6
    Loc: California
    Thanks for the great suggestions. I already requested some books from this thread.

    DS8 is an avid fantasy reader. Here's the list of books he's read this school year. Sorry, can't give any reviews since I gave up keeping up reading with him.

    Edge Chronicles
    The Stoneheart Trilogy
    Dragons in Our Midst
    Dragon Keepers Chronicle
    The Secrets of the Immortal Nicholas Flamel series
    Percy Jackson and the Olympians
    Guardians of Ga'hoole
    The Mysterious Benedict Society
    Trouble at Timpetill

    The Roman Mysteries

    These books are between 4th to 7th grade reading level.

    #73458 - 04/07/10 04:58 PM Re: The Ultimate Book Thread? [Re: GM5]
    minniemarx Offline

    Registered: 10/31/08
    Posts: 466
    Hi, GM5!

    Some picture books (generally below her reading level, though) with nice illustrations, animals as central characters, not sad or scary, and some funny...I hope some of these might appeal:

    Chris Wormell, Henry and the Fox, George and the Dragon, Two Frogs (brilliant illustrations, easy text, peerlessly funny)

    James Marshall, George and Martha books, Fox books (easy readers, very witty)

    Barbara Reid, The Subway Mouse (really interesting plasticine illustrations--nice sweet little story about taking risks to make a better life for oneself); also The Golden Goose, and The Party (no animals in this one, though)

    Jon Muth, Zen Shorts, Zen Ties, The Three Questions (reinterpretations for children of classic Buddhist tales, haiku form, and a Tolstoy story, respectively; nice watercolour illustrations; good for the thoughtful child)

    David Wiesner, The Three Little Pigs (self-referential telling of the classic; hilarious and clever); also Tuesday has animal protagonists

    Mary Azarian, Barn Cat (a counting book, but with gorgeous woodcuts--worth it for the pictures!)

    Tim Wynne-Jones and Eric Beddows, Zoom at Sea, Zoom Away, Zoom Upstream (delicate pencil drawings, exciting and rather surreal adventures of an intrepid cat, in search of his missing uncle)

    Paul Owen Lewis, Storm Boy, Frog Girl (two quite similar tales drawn from Kwa'kwa'ka'wakw themes of the relationship of humans to animals, and our responsibilities to the natural world)

    Helen Cooper, Tatty Ratty (adventures of a toy rabbit, gone missing from his little girl--gorgeous pictures); Pumpkin Soup (three animal friends quarrel and make up; again, brilliantly imaginative illustrations)

    Marjorie Flack, Angus and the Cat, Angus and the Ducks, Angus Lost (really for quite little ones, but very funny--good at bedtime)

    Munro Leaf and Robert Lawson, Ferdinand the Bull (a classic, with a great message about being true to oneself)

    Ezra Jack Keats, Whistle for Willie, Pet Show, Hey Cat, Over in the Meadow (again really for littles, but sweet--I love the open-endedness of the stories and the textured feeling of the illustrations)

    Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler, The Gruffalo, The Snail and the Whale, Room on the Broom, Charlie Cook's Favourite Book, et al (these two are an industry, but the books are very clever and lots of fun)

    Beatrix Potter's books of course are so beautiful, and a nice little size for small hands; the text in several of them is actually very advanced (The Tailor of Gloucester, for instance)

    Kenneth Grahame, The Reluctant Dragon (not to be missed!)

    Some chapter books with several pictures and animals as central characters (and much closer to her real reading level than the picture books I mentioned) that I can think of include a lot of the classics:

    -EB White's Charlotte's Web, Stuart Little, Trumpet of the Swan;

    -CS Lewis's The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe--a bit too scary at the end?--The Horse and his Boy is less scary, I'd say;

    -Sheila Burnford's The Incredible Journey;

    -Kenneth Grahame's The Wind in the Willows;

    -not enough pictures, probably, but TH White's The Sword in the Stone is completely brilliant--much harder than 4th, though--a good read-aloud?;

    -Carolyn Sherwin Bailey's Miss Hickory (the heroine is actually a doll, but interacts primarily with animals--slightly worrying at the end, but it all turns out all right, I always thought--and I read it a lot at that age);

    -Thornton Burgess--I read several at her age and liked them well enough, but I find them really unbearable now--take a look and see what you think?

    -Dick King-Smith wrote mostly animal stories (the Sheep-Pig, etc.)

    -You already mentioned the Cat Club books--we have loved those here. Also The Voyage of QV66 (Penelope Lively)--but that one has not very many pictures.

    I'll put my thinking toque on, and see what else I can come up with...


    #73459 - 04/07/10 05:10 PM Re: The Ultimate Book Thread? [Re: minniemarx]
    minniemarx Offline

    Registered: 10/31/08
    Posts: 466
    Well, I had a couple of quick afterthoughts:

    -there are Margery Sharpe's Miss Bianca books, which I read a lot at that age--I reread one recently, though, and was surprised at how scary I thought it was (also rather twee, I'm afraid). You might preread one or two (The Rescuers is the first one) and see what you think.

    -JP Martin's Uncle books are really rather fun (Uncle is an elephant), some pictures, not scary at all, quite amusing in a wry sort of way.

    -A Cricket in Times Square is another classic. Garth Williams illustrations, and I'm forgetting the author for a minute--George Selden or something like that?

    -Christie Harris's Mouse Woman books are terrific (retellings of traditional Haida tales).

    -Hugh Lofting's Dr. Dolittle is an oldie but goodie (and there are editions out now that clean up some of the racist bits, thankfully-you may still want to preread, just in case).

    -there's always Aesop's Fables, and Kipling's Just So Stories--lots of lovely illustrated versions of these.

    -I haven't read it since I was a child, but isn't Eleanor Estes' Ginger Pye about a dog?

    -my little animal lovers loved Farley Mowat's Owls in the Family and The Dog who Wouldn't Be (a boy is the protagonist in both cases, but the [true] stories are completely centered on his relationship with the animals in the titles)


    Edited by minniemarx (04/07/10 05:50 PM)
    Edit Reason: a couple more ideas...

    #73464 - 04/07/10 05:53 PM Re: The Ultimate Book Thread? [Re: minniemarx]
    Littlewisestone Offline
    Junior Member

    Registered: 04/27/09
    Posts: 26
    Loc: Down South
    Does anybody know of a beginning chapter book/series (to read aloud) about horses? My daughter is really into horses and I think she'd enjoy hearing stories about them. They cannot be too advanced as she is only 3.5 yrs. However, her comprehension is somewhere between 3rd grade and 4th. Soo... if anyone has any suggestions... I'd appreciate it!

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