Favorite Self-Pub and Small Press Books 2012

I read a decent number of books that are self-published or published by small press. This is typically a very mixed bag—in fact, some reviews never see the light of day because the books feel too unfinished and unpolished. Many self-pub and small press books are wonderful. However, they can be easily overlooked or hard […]

Favorite Books I Read and Reviewed in 2012

  Note: To call special attention to favorite books published by authors and small press publishers, they get their own page. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie This gut punch of a book is made easier by the sense of humor. Very thought provoking—a good read for older kids and […]

Miri Attwater and the Ocean’s Secret

Miri Attwater and the Ocean’s Secret is a cute story about a girl who learns she’s actually a mermaid princess. She’s going to spend her summer in the merworld and she has so many things to learn, all while keeping it secret that she grew up among the “leggers.” I know this is a terrible […]

Sunlight and Shadow

Sunlight and Shadow is another fairytale retelling by Cameron Dokey. I think this is bordering on obsession for me! This one is a version of “The Magic Flute” which is a story I wasn’t familiar with. It’s essentially an origin story of how the Sun and Moon came to share precedence in the world, with […]

The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian

Review written by Jonathan Lavallee. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian tells the story of Arthur Junior Spirit, a fourteen year old boy who decides after his first day of high school at Wellpinit High School that he’s going to go off the reservation and go to school at the white high school. […]

The Name of This Book Is Secret

Lots of people suggested I read The Name of this Book Is Secret, and I’m so glad I finally did. It’s the kind of irreverent metahumor that I love. The narrator speaks directly to the reader, explicitly playing with the nature of what a book is, such as letting the reader write the last chapter […]

The Secret of the Fortune Wookiee

The Secret of the Fortune Wookiee is the third book in the Origami Yoda series. After the events of Darth Paper Strikes Back, Dwight is attending another school that seems to be very supportive of differences. Tommy and the other kids at McQuarrie Middle School struggle without advice from Origami Yoda and begin to fear […]

Johnny Graphic and the Etheric Bomb

Johnny Graphic and the Etheric Bomb takes place in an alternate 1935 America. The geography is just different enough to keep you on your toes and remind you that Johnny’s world isn’t quite our world (there’s a map—it looks like the South won the Civil War, for instance, and our United States became four separate […]

Darth Paper Strikes Back

Darth Paper Strikes Back is the sequel to The Strange Case of Origami Yoda. Dwight, the origami artist who hangs out with Origami Yoda, has been suspended from school and may be transferred to an alternative school for violent kids. Tommy, Kellen, and the other kids join forces to try to convince the school board […]

The Moon Coin

2012 Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards: Gold Medal Winner (Pre-Teen Fiction – Fantasy) The Moon Coin is a delightful fantasy story about Lily and her brother Jasper. Their Uncle Ebb has always told them tales (not stories—there’s a difference) of the Moon Realm. After Ebb disappears, Lily finds the Moon Coin necklace her uncle always wore […]