Month: September 2016

The Goblin’s Puzzle – Mock Newbery 2017

goblins-puzzle

My dear friend and mother of ML’s best friend recently asked for ideas for potential 2017 Newbery Winners.  Begrudgingly, I am making recommendations.  They moved a few weeks before school started.  ML and I were both heartbroken; but I can never resist giving book recommendations.  The fact that ML and SJ will be together next weekend is making this post easier.  A week from tomorrow… not some much.  It will be the day they have to part again.

There are plenty of Mock Newbery Lists out there.  I’ve yet to see the The Goblin’s Puzzle by Andrew Chilton on any list; but it should be.  The only books I include on my list are ones I finish.  I devoured this one.  My friend is a lawyer so the logical thinking this book encourages will make her happy.  Her son is into millitary history; so the  battles will make him happy.  The two Alice’s in the book are feisty, independent girls; just like ML and SJ.

Here’s the synopsis from the publisher:

THE BOY is a nameless slave on a mission to uncover his true destiny.
THE GOBLIN holds all the answers, but he’s too tricky to be trusted.
PLAIN ALICE is a bookish peasant girl carried off by a confused dragon.
And PRINCESS ALICE is the lucky girl who wasn’t kidnapped.

All four are tangled up in a sinister plot to take over the kingdom, and together they must face kind monsters, a cruel magician, and dozens of deathly boring palace bureaucrats. They’re a ragtag bunch, but with strength, courage, and plenty of deductive reasoning, they just might outwit the villains and crack the goblin’s puzzle.

Don’t believe me that it’s worthy of a look?  School Library gave it a starred review.

“Brimming with sarcastic, cheeky, laugh-out-loud humor, this is a smart, original, and completely engaging adventure.” —School Library Journal, starred review

Back to School 2016

Steamboat School

School started this week.  I decided I don’t do New Year’s Resolutions very well.  So I’m doing New School Year’s Resolutions.  ML and and I selected three chapter books we would read together this summer.  We didn’t read any of them.  I don’t think we even read a picture book together.  One of my resolutions is getting back to our reading time.  Another is cooking something on the weekend for Monday night; so I don’t have my usual after work scramble.  Every year ML gets a new responsibility.  Last year, it was packing her lunch.  This year, it’s folding and putting away her laundry.

Reality set in and I returned the books we planned to read this summer weeks ago.  I’m waiting for one of them to arrive at my library.  However, I wanted us to start school on the right foot.  Laundry is folded and put away.  Dinner is ready for tomorrow night.  This left the reading resolution.  I didn’t want to start a chapter book; so I looked through my pile of picture books from the library.  Steamboat School:  Inspired by a True Story by Deborah Hopkinson and illustrated by Ron Husband was sitting there waiting to be read.

I’m not giving a summary of this book because I want you to discover the beauty of the loophole yourself.  Often, when people talk about loopholes it’s because someone is greedy.  The loophole highlighted in this book is selflessness at it’s  purest.