Category Archives: kid lit

The Seeing Stone by Kevin Crossley-Holland

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The Seeing Stone by Kevin Crossley-Holland, is a unique perspective on the Arthurian cycle. The dichotomy of two disparate Arthurs in diverse time periods is a bit off-putting at first, but I was hooked by the concept of King Arthur’s voice transmitting through a ‘seeing stone’ to a younger Arthur from a later age. I would rate this recommended with reservations.

Availability:  COSMOS
Review Submitted by: M Denise Brace nee Lerch (’82)
Rating: Recommended with Reservations

Keeper of the Grail by Michael P Spradlin

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The Youngest Templar: Keeper of the Grail by Michael P Spradlin in COSMOS is a recommended read. Young orphan Tristan, raised by monks and later squire to Sir Thomas, becomes entrusted with the Holy Grail and must return it to the monks with the aid of friends he meets along the way, while avoiding enemies out to seize the Grail for their own selfish means.

Availability:  COSMOS
Review Submitted by: M Denise Brace nee Lerch (’82)
Rating: Recommended

Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maud Montgomery

cover artI’m pretty sure Anne of Green Gables and its sequels are written for children, but I never got around to reading them as a kid, so I figured now would be a good time. I can understand why it’s a beloved, classic book- the story and characters are sweet and relatable, but there’s enough action and intrigue to make the book interesting and fun. Even though the story takes place in the early 1900s, I think there’s a lot for kids to learn, and for adults to enjoy, from this book. I also read the immediate sequel, Anne of Avonlea, which continues right from the end of the first book and is about Anne’s life as an older teenager dealing with more adult things. I plan on reading more of the series, as it’s an easy and enjoyable read.

Availability:  COSMOS, SMCM, USMAI
Review Submitted by: Hannah Yeager
Rating: Highly Recommended
Challenge: Book to film, book with a color in the title

The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman

Subtle Knife coverThe second book in Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials series has a well paced plot, but overall it is a less rewarding story than the first. The story starts where the last book left off, with Lyra entering an unknown world, but the vibrant mystery from the previous book has lost a bit of it’s intrigue. The book is full of mysterious elements that drive the plot steadily forward. But this time around, there are fewer characters who readers are asked to invest in, and more characters who are necessary for the plot but don’t stay around very long. There is, on the other hand, one significant character addition that helps balance this out.

Overall, The Subtle Knife is a classic that’s worth reading.

Availability: COSMOS, USMAI,
Submitted by: Sage Burch
Rating: Recommended with Reservations

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, by J.K. Rowling.

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets coverI don’t think I need to say much about this book. Harry Potter was everywhere in my childhood, but because I was introduced to the movies first it was hard for me to read something that wasn’t new. I tried to read the first book and was bored. Now as an adult, I decided I’m going to finally read them! I can appreciate the details that weren’t included in the films, and I know as the books go on those differences will be even more meaningful. It may take me a while to get through them all, but I’m really enjoying getting back into this world.

Availability:  COSMOS and SMCM, USMAI
Review Submitted by: Erin Crawford
Rating:  Highly Recommended
Challenge: Book to film

Ultimate Magic by TA Barron

 

Merlin’s Dragon “Ultimate Magic”  by TA Barron takes place in the magical world of Avalon where Merlin and his gigantic dragon, Basil, must plunge into battle after battle together to defend the land from an unspeakable evil entity. All the magical creatures of the land band together and risk life and limb to defend their beloved world.

Availability:  COSMOS
Review Submitted by: M Denise Brace nee Lerch (’82)
Rating: Recommended

The Golden Compass by Philip Pullman

Golden Compass cover

This classic book (His Dark Materials)  was a pleasant read. It brought me back, and I was able to remember what reading was like for me as a kid.

It’s a pretty straightforward book, and the plot moves forward at a steady pace, driven by elements that make the book an intriguing read–witches, armored polar bears, plots to kidnap children, and daemons. It’s not for everyone; while it is a classic and a solid choice for many readers, keep in mind that the narrator is very young and this is the target audience. In the first scene, she foils a plot to poison her uncle’s wine! As long as you’re aware this is the plot you’re in for, it’s a rewarding book with a well-handled, steady plot to it. It was a good read!

Availability: COSMOS, USMAI, SMCM
Submitted by: Sage Burch
Rating: Recommended with Reservations
Challenge: Book to Film