Thursday, February 13, 2020

The False Prince by Jennifer Nielsen

False Prince, The (c) 2013
by Jennifer A. Nielsen
The False Prince by Jennifer A. Nielsen is an exciting book for middle grade readers and high schoolers. Sage, an orphan, is picked up off the streets and saved from punishment for stealing some meat, but the guy who saves him, Conner, is not doing him any favors. Sage quickly realizes that Conner has some sinister and dishonest plans for him and three other boys; passing one of them off as the prince lost four years before. When Conner callously kills one of the boys, Sage knows that Conner is a bad guy who will stop at nothing to get what he wants.

Will Sage and the other two boys survive their imprisonment in Conner's house? Will the two boys Conner doesn't pick meet the fate of the first boy? And who knew an astounding twist will come toward the end?

If you like adventures with plucky teens as the protagonists in fantastical worlds, then you'll enjoy this book!

Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Henry and the Clubhouse by Beverly Cleary

Henry and the Clubhouse
(c) 1962 by Beverly Cleary
Henry and the Clubhouse by Beverly Cleary is an enjoyable series of chapters following Henry Huggins as he juggles the responsibilities of his paper route and his desire to have a clubhouse for himself and his friends. (Guy friends, no girls allowed!) But what happens, when little Ramona, angry about this dictum, decides to lock him in his precious clubhouse? And is there any Henry can get Ramona to stop pestering him in other ways? Like many of Beverly Cleary's other books, the story doesn't have a main story goal or question, though there is the theme of his paper route and the clubhouse running through it. Each chapter is its own short story following the other chapters in chronological order as Henry works through one conflict after another. Kids and adults who like to remember what it was like to be a kid, would enjoy this book.

Monday, February 3, 2020

Henry Huggins by Beverly Cleary

Henry Huggins (c) 1950 by Beverly Cleary
Henry Huggins by Beverly Cleary is a fun book for kids, especially those who love their pets. Henry Huggins is on his way home from the swimming pool, when a skinny, hungry dog begs him for a taste of his chocolate ice cream cone. He wants the dog to come home with him (it doesn’t have a license, so it can’t possibly have an owner) but he can’t ride the bus with a dog unless it’s in a container of some kind. So what does he do? He puts the dog’s lower half ina paper bag and wraps the upper half of the poor creature in a huge amount of packing paper in an attempt to get the dog on the bus, and all the way home. This begins Henry Huggins’ adventures and misadventures with his new dog Ribsy. Even as an adult, I enjoyed the story as much as I did when I read it as a youngster.

Saturday, February 1, 2020

The Horse and His Boy by CS Lewis

The Horse and His Boy (c) 1954
by CS Lewis
The Horse and His Boy by CS Lewis is an enjoyable tale about Shasta, a human boy, Bree, a male horse, Aravis, a human girl, and Whin, a female horse. Both Whin and Bree are talking horses from Narnia, kidnapped when they were foals, and taken to Calormen, a country to the south of Narnia. Shasta is pale skinned despite the fact that everyone around him has dark skin, and he wonders why. When he meets Bree and Bree tells him that he must be from Narnia, or possibly Arkenland and especially after he overhears the man he thought was his father discussing selling Shasta as a slave with another man, Bree and Shasta decide to run away together. On their journey, they meet Whin and Aravis. Whin’s story is much like Bree’s, and Aravis is running away to escape an arranged marriage. The four team up, but will their combined forces be enough to make it through Tashban, and across the wide desert to reach Arkenland, and Narnia?

I recommend this delightful tale to readers young and old who enjoy adventurous journeys, narrow escapes, and characters with lots of courage.