Posts tagged ‘new home’

SCAREDY CAT

A VERY SCARY PUMPKIN

Written by Jeff Minich

Illustrated by Renee Garcia

Book Three in the Nuggies series featuring Chomper and Coco, who are dog and cat friends. Moving day is here, but when the family arrives at their new home, it turns out to be an old, scary hours that is haunted by a pumpkin. The pumpkin does not want the new owners, so she tries mightily to scare them all away. She even locks daddy out of the house, while she imprisons Coco and Chomper.

One night Chomper and Coco discover the true identity of the ghost and realize she is not scary, but really very lonely. How will the three resolve their issues? Will the family be able to settle peacefully in their new home?

This picture book is well laid out and attractively illustrated. I would caution reading it as a bedtime story for children who have nightmares, but it makes a good Halloween read aloud or book for classroom discussion. Especially recommended for children in the three to six age bracket.

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A DIFFICULT CHOICE

Lightmasters – Number 13

Written by M.G. Wells

Lightmasters2,picJessica Wyrd is facing her thirteenth birthday. The last year has been extremely difficult for her. Her parents were both killed in an automobile accident down in Georgia. Jessica is now living with her eccentric maternal grandparents in upstate New York. She misses her best friends, Emma and Hank. In school she is the considered the nerdy newbie, the victim of bullying by students and teachers alike.

Shortly before her thirteenth birthday, Jessica encounters a spiral light and a green haze. A voice urges her to follow the others who are waiting. She meets Dragateen, Torc and Bo, along with other spirits who tell her to shift into another dimension and make the journey to Kiron. Jessica hesitantly walks through an oak tree and enters, but the dark forces of Sartan are waiting to do battle with this new recruit.

Jessica’s journey will lead her to Emerald Pond, Poseidon Pit and mysterious caverns below. She will meet snakes, a slimy octopus, and strange demonic creatures with orange eyes. Jessica has difficulty determining what is reality and what she is experiencing in the “other world.” She receives a special jewel and learns that she bears the mark of the mystic. Still, the decision to use her special powers and whether to become one of the Lightmasters must be her own.

Back here on earth, Jessica is homesick for her friends in Georgia. Wells shifts the story to Jessica’s coming of age conflicts and injects lots of humor in describing the trials and tribulations of a feisty thirteen year old who is intelligent far beyond her chronological age and who must deal with the realities of family, school and death. How does she resolve her conflicts and reconcile two very different lives?

This book of less than two hundred pages is a well written middle grade fantasy adventure that will appeal to readers age nine and up. Lots of twists and turns in plot, humor, and nicely developed characters combined with the kinds of problems kids this age face daily. As an adult, I enjoyed looking back on my early teens through Jessica’s eyes.

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