Tuesday, March 31, 2009


Did you know that author Alex Flinn is a woman? I guess using the more masculine "Alex" I thought it was a male author. Alex loves to read fairy tales to her daughters. She made them sit through numerous readings of Beauty and the Beast while she was writing Beastly.

In this modern retelling of the original Beauty, Kyle Kingsbury is the main character. He is "beautiful and handsome" on the outside, yet inside, where it really counts, he is mean, nasty and arrogant. He asks Kendra to an important school dance, only to stand her up. The last laugh is Kyle's though, when Kendra places a spell on him. She turns him into a beast -- hairy, sharp claws, the whole package. Now he is as ugly on the outside as he is on the inside.

Kendra does give him a chance to redeem himself and possibly turn into a normal human again. Read the book and find out how.


I can't believe I haven't blogged about this book by Nancy Springer. It's always out and always popular during booktalks.

Puberty does crazy things to your body:) Dusssie wakes up one morning and finds she has snakes for hair!! If you're "up" on your Greek mythology you know that Medusa shares the same characteristic. Dusssie finds out that her mother - who always dresses in long, flowing caftans and turbans - is a Gorgon AND Medusa's younger sister!

Inadvertently Dusssie transforms a boy in her class to stone, a boy she secretly has a crush on! Obviously, she is just getting used to her new-found powers. Read the book and find out what Dusssie tries to do to remedy the situation.

Greek gods living in the 21st century is a popular genre!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Neptune's Children

The prologue of this book by Bonnie Dobkin pulled me in right away.......

Terrorists have created a virus and planted it in locations around the world. A timing device is set. But...when the virus is released the unthinkable happens...it mutates! All adults die!

The story is set at the Isles of Wonder Theme Park. Families had been enjoying a warm summer day at the park when the tragedy struck. The survivors band together under the leadership of Josh and Milo. Did you ever watch the TV show, Survivor? Like the television show, alliances are made and broken. Disagreements break out and violence often threatens.

This is a good survival story. Read it and see which side you would choose to be on!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009


Jon Scieszka is an author many are familiar with -- The Stinky Cheeseman and the Time Warp Trio books are popular even in middle school. His newest book, Knucklehead, is Jon's autobiography. I loved this silly book!!

Jon grew up in Flint, Michigan in the 1960's. He was the second of six brothers. Mom was a nurse -- a good thing in a house of rambunctious boys, and his dad was a school principal. I laughed and laughed at the goofy things he did during childhood. Because his mom was a nurse she demanded that the boys use the "proper" name for things. He devotes a chapter to "urinating", not the slang word that most kids use. The chapter on a family vacation was hilarious. Their family cat (a boy also) accompanied them. When it threw up after eating a candy bar that one of the boys dropped, it set off a chain reaction. You can only imagine how the car smelled.

Read the book....the stories are timeless:)

Monday, March 09, 2009

Pictures from the tea!

Tea with author Laura Schaefer. Yes.....we really served tea!
Laura shared a Powerpoint with students that explained the process she went through to have her book published.
You can visit her online at http://teashopgirl.blogspot.com/ Check out the blog for more pictures from our tea!

The Teashop Girls

Laura Schaefer, author of The Teashop Girls, was at Tipler for our "teashop". It was a great opportunity for students to meet a "real" author. Pictures from the event will be posted later......

The book itself revolves around the friendship between three girls -- Annie, Genna, and Zoe. Annie's grandma run the Steeping Leaf, a teashop in Madison, WI. Economic times are tough and the Steeping Leaf is facing stiff competition from local coffeshops. The prospect of closing the tea shop brings the friends together with a purpose. Can they save the shop? What role will the "horrid" Zach Anderson play?