My librarian friend Dedra tweeted a link to the #summerthrowdown back in June and I immediately signed up to participate in the League of Librarians, hoping it would keep me motivated to accomplish my goal of reading one book a day over summer vacation. I didn't quite reach my goal, but the participating in the Summer Throwdown was a lot of fun and it was great be part of a community of readers as well as get some excellent book recommendations. In that spirit of passing it on, here are a few of the most memorable books from my summer reading list:
1. Wonder by R.J. Palacio - Auggie Pullman, after being homeschooled his entire life, is starting his public school as a middle school student. Why is this memorable? Auggie was born with facial deformities so severe that he won't even describe himself.
2. In a Glass Grimmly by Adam Gidwitz - Jack and Jill went up the hill. Did you ever wonder what else happened to them? This venture through the dark side of fairy tales is exciting, gruesome and leaves you hanging on the edge of the page. (Not a good bedtime read!)
3. Chomp by Carl Hiaasen - Filled with fabulously named characters (Wahoo, Tuna and Derek Badger), a surly dad and surlier alligator, and a reality show with a not-so-real star, this novel is a comedy, an adventure and a mystery all wrapped up in one great story.
4. The Grimm Legacy by Polly Shulman - Continuing in a fairy tale vein, this is the story of Elizabeth, who gets a job working in a most extraordinary lending library. This library contains magical objects found in fairy tales - and they work! However, as in fairy tales, magical objects must be treated with great care as they can work for or against you.
5. Legend by Marie Lu - June, a prodigy of the Government, sets out to avenge her brother's death by capturing the elusive rebel and master criminal Day. While undercover in out west, now known as the Republic, she is rescued by Day and befriends him as she unaware of his identity. What defines right and wrong is as slippery as capturing Day. This story twists and turns, keeping your fingers ready to turn the page.
6. Vanished by Sheela Chari - What is a veena? Why would a kid want to play one? Why would someone else want to steal it? Why would it be cursed? Why are Neela's parents so secretive about the veena? What do dragons have to do with everything she seems to find? Read and find out!
7. And last but not least, one YA selection: I Can't Keep My Own Secrets by Larry Smith and Rachel Fershleiser - This book is a compilation of six-word memoirs written by teens. It is sad, funny, and brutally honest. Wow.
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