How to Speak Dragonese

How to Speak Dragonese is the third book in the How to Train Your Dragon series. I’m just going to assume you’ve read the other reviews, so this won’t be repetitive. This book is in keeping with the others—humor aimed squarely at middle grader readers, funny drawings throughout, etc. Hiccup and Fishlegs are learning pirating […]

The Penderwicks on Gardam Street

The Penderwicks on Gardam Street, the sequel to the delightful The Penderwicks, gives us some insight into what life is like for the lovely Penderwick family when they’re at home. We get more insight into Martin Penderwick (always called “Mr. Penderwick in the text, like the reader is friends with the girls and he’s very […]

Tuesdays at the Castle

In Tuesdays at the Castle, 11 year old Celie and two of her older siblings, Lilah and Rolf, must protect themselves and their magic castle from the evil adults who are plotting to take over the kingdom. Celie, the youngest, is the main character. She has a special relationship with the castle—a living thing that […]

The Willoughbys

The Willoughbys is “A Novel Nefariously Written & Ignominiously Illustrated“ by Lois Lowry. The plot is mostly about apathetic families trying to split themselves apart by whatever means they can, all while being as “old-fashioned” as possible. Being old-fashioned means trying to base your decisions on the tropes of old children’s classics—so we have abandoned […]

My Life in Pink and Green

My Life in Pink & Green tells the story of Lucy, a 7th grader who helps her mom and grandma at their drugstore. The store is struggling, and Lucy tries to find ways to help save the family business. She loves makeup and makeovers, which she uses to start her own little business. When she […]

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 […]

The True Meaning of Smekday

Review written by Jonathan Lavallee What does Smekday mean for you? That’s the essay question that Gratuity Tucci answers in the first part of The True Meaning of Smekday. There’s a contest to choose one essay to go into a time capsule to be opened one hundred years in the future. That first essay got […]

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 Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom

Review written by Jocelyn Koehler. In The Hero’s Guide to Saving Your Kingdom, Christopher Healy seems to have distilled all the elements of the most entertaining Disney movies, and then carefully reassembled them into this book, which leaves the famous princesses alone (for the most part) to focus on Prince Charming—or rather Princes Charming, since […]