Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Book Bits #4: Middle Grade Classics

Book Bits are mini-mini-reviews of books 
that I either don't have the time or inclination to review fully.  
However, I have read in entirety the books mentioned.

Editor's Corner

"Even though my daughter Anna is entering the 6th grade, she still enjoys it when I read to her at bedtime.  We have been reading E.H.Gombrich's A Little History of the World,which is a delight to read aloud-the tone is conversational and easy, and historical figures are described in all their humanity, flaws and all. It opens up ample opportunities for us to marvel at how things used to be.

It's harder to make room for read-aloud time now, as much as Anna enjoys it, because she is also increasingly absorbed with her own reading.  Recently Anna enjoyed The Evolution of Calpurnia Tate and The Compound.  I'm watching her grow more and more passionate about books, but so far-knock on wood-that hasn't diminished her enthusiasm to be read to at night!"

-Sally Doherty, Executive Editor, Henry Holt BYR

A Royal Pain (Point) A Royal Pain
by Ellen Conford
September 1990 by Point
Paperback, 171 pages
0590438212 (isbn13: 9780590438216)
3 of 5 stars
what Meg Cabot read to get the inspiration for The Princess Diaries. Conford's novel is what would have happened if Mia had been mistaken.
Running Out of Time
by Margaret Peterson Haddix
Running Out of Time (An ALA Best Book for Young Adults)2004 (first published 1995) by Scholastic
Paperback, 184 pages
0439632501 (isbn13: 9780439632508)
4 of 5 stars
hard to summarize without spoiling; you should read this especially if you grew up in the Midwest
Just in CaseJust in Case
by Meg Rosoff
February 29th 2008 (first published 2007) by Plume
Paperback, 246 pages
0452289378 (isbn13: 9780452289376)
3 of 5 stars
Rosoff's dark indie humor reminds me why I'm not really a fan, but not because she's not a skilled writer
by Meg Cabot
August 1st 2007 by HarperTeen
JinxHardcover, 272 pages
0060837640 (isbn13: 9780060837648)
3 of 5 stars
speaking of Queen Meg, this is a fun Practical Magic-meets-Gossip Girl novel with teen romance that's appropriate for younger readers (middle grade)


  1. I've just got Jinx. Can't wait to tear into it.

  2. All of these books look really good.

  3. Jinx sounds like such fun! I'm going to have to check out A Royal Pain as well. Love the cover for Just in Case...

  4. I'm ashamed to say I've never read any Haddix. That will be fixed soon!!!

  5. Running Out of Time is probably my favorite Haddix book with Just Ella coming in a close second.

    Jinx I've looked at so many times, but never picked up.

    I hadn't heard of the other two!

  6. Book bits are great - the perfect size for many reviews! I did read one other Haddix but was disappointed...

  7. Oh wow. I had no idea Meg Cabot came up with Mia's story based off A Royal Pain? Is it weird to say that I've actually READ that book? And Running out of Time is a fantastic book.

    (P.S I never told you, but your format of how you do reviews was a great inspiration to me, so thank you so much. You rock).

  8. Blogger's Note:

    OOPS! I didn't mean to suggest Meg actually based Princess Diaries on ROYAL PAIN. But the two storylines are similar enough to make the comparison.



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