Middle Grade Monday: The Ruins of Noe!

Yes, I’m blogging about my own book today, darnit! 🙂 I figured it was appropriate since today is the first day of my Imaginary Worlds Fall Tour in conjunction with the release of The Ruins of Noe. The book was actually published in May, but I had to postpone the tour for scheduling reasons. In The Ruins of Noe, Brigitta’s adventures continue when she and her High Priestess travel to the old faerie ruins in the Valley of Noe, expecting to find them deserted. The Ancients had brought all the faeries north after the Great World Cry and placed them in the protected realm, after all. But when Brigitta and Ondelle arrive, they discover two warring factions of oppressed faeries they had never been told about. After Ondelle is captured, Brigitta must figure...

Middle Grade Mondays: a Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

A MONSTER CALLS was written from an original idea by author Siobhan Dowd who started the story and died of cancer before she could write it. An editor at Walker Books contacted Ness to write the book after she died. That right there should tell you something about the nature of this book. from GoodReads: The monster showed up after midnight. As they do. But it isn’t the monster Conor’s been expecting. He’s been expecting the one from his nightmare, the one he’s had nearly every night since his mother started her treatments, the one with the darkness and the wind and the screaming… This monster is something different, though. Something ancient, something wild. And it wants the most dangerous thing of all from Conor. It wants the truth...

Middle Grade Mondays: Breadcrumbs by Anne Ursu

Every culture has its rules of storytelling. Books that are more “literary” often break those rules, which either serves to irk readers or intrigue and impress them. Cloud Atlas, for instance, caused a flurry of commentary when it ended chapters in the middle of a We don’t often expect middle grade literature to break the “rules,” we expect it to be linear and simple enough to be understood by children. BREADCRUMBS, a beautifully written book by Anne Ursu, not only breaks a few rules, the journey has so many layers I’m beginning to think this is really a story for adults in the guise of a fairy tale for children. At the very least, it’s a book for highly literate children, as it has so many nods to other books (Narnia, Coraline, Harry Potter, and When You Reach...

Middle Grade Monday: Wonder by R.J. Palacio

I adore this book for many reasons. I don’t believe i’ve ever cried so much reading a middle grade novel. Yes, I’m a big softie, but I dare you to get through this thing without at least two tissues. from Goodreads: August (Auggie) Pullman was born with a facial deformity that prevented him from going to a mainstream school—until now. He’s about to start 5th grade at Beecher Prep, and if you’ve ever been the new kid then you know how hard that can be. The thing is Auggie’s just an ordinary kid, with an extraordinary face. But can he convince his new classmates that he’s just like them, despite appearances? When I first heard about this book, I was wondering how the author was going to pull it off without making the story...

Middle Grade Mondays: Circumnavigating Fairyland with Catherine Valente

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HU4q8dpKhDY&w=480&h=360] Once upon a time, a girl named September grew very tired of her parents’ house, where she washed the same pink-and-yellow teacups and matching gravy boats every day, slept on the same embroidered pillow, and played with the same small and amiable dog. Because she had been born in May, and because she had a mole on her left cheek, and because her feet were very large and ungainly, the Green Wind took pity on her and flew to her window one evening just after her twelfth birthday… Thus begins September’s adventures, whisked away by the Green Wind upon the Leopard of Little Breezes to Fairyland, because she seemed to him an “ill-tempered and irascible child,” where...

Middle Grade Mondays: Liesl and Po by Lauren Oliver

From Goodreads: Liesl lives in a tiny attic bedroom, locked away by her cruel stepmother. Her only friends are the shadows and the mice, until one night a ghost appears from the darkness. It is Po, who comes from the Other Side. Both Liesl and Po are lonely, but together they are less alone. That same night, an alchemist’s apprentice, Will, bungles an important delivery. He accidentally switches a box containing the most powerful magic in the world with one containing something decidedly less remarkable. The box that was switched is actually the ashes of Liesl’s father, who has recently died. With Po’s help, Liesl runs away from home, determined to bury her father’s ashes near a tree at her childhood home. Little does she know she’s...