Tag Archives: books

P – Middle School Books ~ Blogging Through the Alphabet

P

Moving on gets us to the letter P.

I semi-apologize: you can tell that three giggly girls live here by this list. Not much for the boys in this one. The girls had a quick list of several books that fit under the letter P and that they enjoy reading, so let’s get right to it.

Screenshot 2018-02-05 at 2.17.09 PM

Philippa Fisher and the Fairy Godsister (Book 1)  by Liz Kessler

This story is about a young teen girl and she is completely ordinary. Her parents are ridiculous, in her opinion – they are party entertainers, they dress up, they drive an outrageous vehicle, and they don’t do anything normal. When her best friend moves away, she becomes very lonely. When Daisy shows up, Philippa is granted three wishes.

Miss E smiled big when I asked her to share about this book so I know she really enjoys it. There are 3 books in this series and they all look fun.

Screenshot 2018-02-05 at 2.18.49 PM

Pollyanna by Eleanor H. Porter 

Pollyanna is the story of a young orphan girl who is taken in by her spinster aunt. Pollyanna has been given the gift of a cheerful spirit by her missionary father prior to his death and she treasures her memories of him. In her daily attempts to play his Glad Game, she is able to influence many around her. She seems to touch everyone she comes into contact with and pretty soon, even her aunt finds what a treasure Pollyanna is. Even better is when these same people turn the tables on Pollyanna and help her at her lowest point.

I have loved this book since I was a girl and highly recommend to anyone who listens. 🙂 It has such a great message and is an encouragement to me, even now. I read this aloud to the girls and they all loved it. There is a Disney version of the movie that is fun, though as you would expect, it is a tad different. This is one of my “must read” books.

Screenshot 2018-02-05 at 2.28.14 PM

A Prism of Wings by Rebecca Lilly

This gorgeous book is full of beautiful illustrations and lovely haiku poetry. The poetry is all about butterflies. Each haiku teaches about a different butterfly. There is much that you will learn by reading through this short book.

Miss L adores this book, partly for the poetry and partly for the butterflies. She highly recommends this one.

Screenshot 2018-02-05 at 2.29.52 PM

Princess Test (part of the Princess Tales) by Gail Carson Levine

The Princess Test is the story of Lorelai, who grew up spoiled. She was a very fussy baby and had to have everything “just so.” She was very “delicate.” After her mother died, her father got a nursemaid to attend her. Everything Lorelai touched turned out wrong and so the nursemaid was not happy with her. After Lorelai met Prince Nicholas, things got even more difficult for he could only marry a princess. The King made up The Princess Tests to prove that any girl Prince Nicholas marries would be a true princess. Now Lorelai just has to pass them.

This book, and the others in the Princess Tales series, are a fun take on fairy tales and changes them up a bit.

Screenshot 2018-02-05 at 3.06.12 PM

Princess Juniper books by Ammi-Joan Paquette

Book 1 – Princess Juniper wants her own country for her birthday. Accompanied by her entourage, she sets out to claim one (predetermined by her father to help keep her safe amid trouble in the kingdom). Even though it is not a long-term thing, Princess Juniper still encounters many struggles among ruling her own small place. And when they find that the bigger kingdom is at war, can they procure all they need to remain in the country Princess Juniper claimed?

This is a series of books that allows a princess to be more than just a sweet thing that sits in a castle and that is really quite appealing to adventures preteen and early teen girls. Stretching the borders and learning that there is more to life – a good thing, right?

That’s it for this week. See you next week (now I just have to find some Q books that we have read!!!).

Blessings,
At Home.

blogging-through-the-alphabet-300x300

The ABC linkup is not up for this week yet but when it is you can find it hosted by Hopkins HomeschoolDoodleMom’s Homeschooling Life and Biblical Womanhood.

My previous posts in the series:

A – All-of-a-Kind Family and Adventures of the Little Wooden Horse
B – Ballet Shoes and A Bear Called Paddington
C – Counting by 7s and Cheaper By The Dozen
D – Door In The Wall & D’Aulaires’ Book of Greek Myths
E – The Endless Steppe & Ella Enchanted
F – Family Tree & Fog Magic
G – Great Turkey Walk & The Great Brain
H – Half Magic & Horse Diaries
I – Indian in the Cupboard & Island of the Blue Dolphins
J – Journey to America & Julie: An American Girl – 1974
K – Kite Fighters & Key to the Extraordinary
L – Little Women & Long Way From Chicago
M – Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle & Mistakes That Worked
N – North Child & Number the Stars
O – One and Only Ivan & Our Only May Amelia

 

 

Advertisements

Dawn’s Early Light ~ Book Club

Book club:Ladybug Daydrams and At Home where life happens

We decided a bit late for the Book Club selection for this posting but I did remember to share about it. Hope you were able to join us in reading this story.

Dawn's Early Light

Set in Williamsburg at the start of the Revolutionary War, this is a story of dreams, courage, bravery, and finding home where you least expect it. As we join the story, young Julian Day has just lost his father while crossing the ocean to America. He is met and cared for by those who were supposed to meet his father. These aristocratic but independent folks take Julian under their wing and help he find his way. Having never stood on his own two feet before, he is encouraged and strengthened by some good people who want to help him.

He learns what it means to be a teacher, which it turns out he really enjoys. In the process, he learns as much as his students but about a very different subject. They are learning spelling and geography and writing; he is learning how to handle himself, what he truly believes, what friendship really means, and how to stand for what is right.

The story takes us through several of the battles of the war that were important and we meet many of the important participants of the Revolutionary War – Washington, Lafayette, Jefferson, Greene, Patrick Henry, Francis Marion, and many more men and women who work hard to win independence from the tyranny of the King.

This historical fiction is the first in a series of seven novels by Elswyth Thane. She wrote this in 1943 after she spent several summers back and forth between America and England. Well researched and full of interesting characters, this is a story that is really quite easy to read but that will challenge you to think about your own beliefs on freedom and war.

The book I read did not have any discussion questions in it and I did not find any online already set up. Wendy has been busy handling life lately so I am forgoing writing any questions for this one. I just recommend reading this book. I would love to read the rest of the series but our library system does not have them. Perhaps I can get them elsewhere.

Join us in March for the next Book Club post. I am thinking it may be either Uncommon Type: some stories by Tom Hanks or The River Between Us by Richard Peck. Really, though, anything is up for grabs as we haven’t decided on anything yet. Both of these are on my “to read” list.

Blessings,
At Home.

 

N – Middle School Books ~ Blogging Through the Alphabet

So, N was another hard one to find titles for. We came up with two. There are probably tons of books that start with N but few were to be found on our shelves or favorites lists. 🙂

Number the Stars

Number the Stars by Lois Lowry

This story is set in the Nazi occupation of Denmark during WWII. Annemarie’s family takes in her best friend, who is Jewish, when the Nazi overrun their country. They hide her and protect her. This is the war as seen through the eyes of 10 year old Annemarie, watching and helping almost all of the Jewish population of their country be rescued.

Both of my older girls loved this story and were moved by the writing. I also know that a few other girls were introduced to it, and fell in love with it, when Miss E took it with her to church camp a couple of summers ago and shared it during down times. Lois Lowry is a fantastic writer and this is a wonderful historical fiction story told by her.

North Child

North Child by Edith Pattou

It is about a girl named Rose, whose mother is very superstitious. Her mother was facing north when Rose was born and so she is called a North Child. There is a legend that says she will travel far from home. She makes a bargain with a white bear and is whisked away to a castle that is empty, fulfilling that legend. A silent stranger joins her there and as she grows to know more about him, she finds that she must travel farther to discover herself and her destiny.

This story is an adaptation of the old Norwegian folk tale “East of the Sun, West of the Moon.” Miss E remembers really enjoying it, though she hasn’t read it for a year or two with all the other reading she finds to do. Still, to remember it for this long, it must be enjoyable.

N

Do you know any N titled books that are favorites in your family? I’d love to hear about them.

Next week, we will tackle O titled books! We have several.

Blessings,
At Home.

blogging-through-the-alphabet-300x300

The ABC linkup is not up for this week yet but when it is you can find it hosted by Hopkins HomeschoolDoodleMom’s Homeschooling Life and Biblical Womanhood.

My previous posts in the series:

A – All-of-a-Kind Family and Adventures of the Little Wooden Horse
B – Ballet Shoes and A Bear Called Paddington
C – Counting by 7s and Cheaper By The Dozen
D – Door In The Wall & D’Aulaires’ Book of Greek Myths
E – The Endless Steppe & Ella Enchanted
F – Family Tree & Fog Magic
G – Great Turkey Walk & The Great Brain
H – Half Magic & Horse Diaries
I – Indian in the Cupboard & Island of the Blue Dolphins
J – Journey to America & Julie: An American Girl – 1974
K – Kite Fighters & Key to the Extraordinary
L – Little Women & Long Way From Chicago
M – Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle & Mistakes That Worked

 

 

M – Middle School Books ~ Blogging Through the Alphabet

M
After missing last week due to a case of the “blahs”, we are back on today. This week’s letter is “M”. There were quite a few really good options for this one.

Mrs Piggle Wiggle

Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle by Betty MacDonald

Oh my, oh my, are the Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle books hilarious! We absolutely adore them, all of them. There are several. Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle has a way with children and she is capable of curing the most difficult of cases. Her cures work every single time. From the “Won’t-Pick-Up-Toys” cure to the “Fighters-Quarrelers” cure, Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle saves the day. And what makes it even better is that the kids all love her, too.

These books are from the 1940s and 1950s but are ever so much fun to read. These are some of those “don’t miss” books, in our family’s opinion. As a side note for you adults reading, Betty MacDonald has also written several biographies about her own life – as a chicken farmer, with two daughers, and being sent away to a hospital for tuberculosis. Fascinating books!

Magic by the Lake

Magic By The Lake by Edgar Eager

Another of his fun reads about magic, so if magic isn’t your thing or you don’t want your kiddos reading about it, just skip this one. Magic By The Lake is a story about the children (Jane, Mark, Katharine, and Martha) who wish for magic without thinking about how much magic is too much. The wording is everything is wishing for magic and well, that is where the children made their mistake – by the lake, specifically. Find out what hilarious adventures away them as they try to escape the magic by the lake.

Mistakes the Worked

Mistakes that Worked by Charlotte Foltz Jones

This is a fun science read about how some inventors and scientists made mistakes that ended up being of benefit to someone. From potato chips to silly putty to aspirin and more, these little bits of surprise have become useful, helpful, and fun products that we all use. Miss L enjoys checking this book out from the library ever so often and browsing through it over and over. Inspiring ideas about not giving up just because something didn’t work the way you expected.

Mr Poppers Penguins

Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater

Mr. Popper is a house painter, nothing elaborate, nothing fancy. When he is given a penguin, life begins to take on some changes. Eventually, he ends up with a whole flock of penguins and has to do something. What should he do? Take the show on the road, of course. Join Mr. Popper and his penguin troupe as they have some fun and funny adventures. Published in 1938, this is a classic for many reasons but most of all, it is a good read to enjoy with the family. We used this one as a read aloud when I first heard of it and we have enjoyed it a couple of other times since.

That’s it for today but don’t forget to visit the other ABC bloggers to find out all that they are writing about this week.

Blessings,
At Home.

blogging-through-the-alphabet-300x300

The ABC linkup is not up for this week yet but when it is you can find it hosted by Hopkins HomeschoolDoodleMom’s Homeschooling Life and Biblical Womanhood.

My previous posts in the series:

A – All-of-a-Kind Family and Adventures of the Little Wooden Horse
B – Ballet Shoes and A Bear Called Paddington
C – Counting by 7s and Cheaper By The Dozen
D – Door In The Wall & D’Aulaires’ Book of Greek Myths
E – The Endless Steppe & Ella Enchanted
F – Family Tree & Fog Magic
G – Great Turkey Walk & The Great Brain
H – Half Magic & Horse Diaries
I – Indian in the Cupboard & Island of the Blue Dolphins
J – Journey to America & Julie: An American Girl – 1974
K – Kite Fighters & Key to the Extraordinary
L – Little Women & Long Way From Chicago

 

L – Middle School Books ~ Blogging Through The Alphabet

L

The letter L was easy for us to come up with a bundle of titles. And we sure do like them all. These are some of our favorite stories so coming up with this list was not hard at all.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
Little Men by Louisa May Alcott
Jo’s Boys by Louisa May Alcott

This is just my favorite fiction series ever. I have loved the writing of Louisa May Alcott since I was a middle schooler myself and my girls have fallen in love with her writings, as well. We shared both of these stories and a couple more as read alouds and it hooked the girls.

Little Women is the first book in the series (actually her first two combined, depending on how your edition was printed). It focuses on the March family and the four sisters, young women really, who are growing up amid the Civil War. We don’t see much of the war itself but the effects of it are felt upon the family. Marmee is bringing the girls up to be strong, virtuous women who are proud to be wives and mothers and willing to work hard and with pride at all they do. The escapades of the girls is hilarious amid the heartbreak and hardness of life. The stories will take you on a roller-coaster that you will thoroughly enjoy.

Little Men is the next book and picks up with Jo and the Professor (now her husband) running a school for boys. Jo has grown up quite a bit and has grown into her role as wife and confidant to little boys, since she had much of their spirit as a child herself. These antics are even more fun to read than the sisters’ were, if that is possible. A great read that will show little boys and girls how to grow up to be fine men and women with a respect for their fellow man and all creatures. Jo’s Boys follows this one and the story continues on.

2016-12-05 17.48.48

Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles by Julie Andrews Edwards

I wrote a post on this book a while back because this is just the most imaginative, fun story to read. It was a read aloud and I originally picked it up because of the author. This was such a wonderful book! Highly recommend this story and the trip it will take you on to another world. The adventure? Well you’ll have to read it! This is a Don’t Miss!

Synopsis – Three siblings – Ben, Tom, and Lindy – meet the very unusual Professor Savant who becomes convinced that they are just the children who are capable of making the trip to the elusive Whangdoodleland. In order to make the trip and be able to meet the Whangdoodle, the children have to learn to see and understand things in a completely different way than they ever have before. Once they successfully make the trip, they meet amazing creatures and see unbelievable things. Can they find the perseverance and strength needed to meet the Whangdoodle? And what happens if they succeed?

Long Way from Chicago

Long Way From Chicago by Richard Peck

Summer arrives and with it Joey and his sister Mary Alice leave the comfort of Chicago and go south to visit Grandma Dowdel. Thinking it is going to be the longest summer ever, the two get quite the surprise when the arrive in this little town in Illinois to find that Grandma Dowdel is NOT your typical grandmother. Grandma gets them into and out of situations that the normal young man can’t even comprehend, let alone the fact that Grandma is running the show. Joey and Mary Alice find that sleepy little towns are generally not and Grandma Dowdel is lots of fun. They end up having the time of their life over the next few summers.

We did this story as a read-aloud. Again, we stumbled across it. But it is H-i-l-a-r-i-o-u-s! We loved it and there is enough mischief in it to please any young man, as well. We have since read a number of other Richard Peck books and have not yet been disappointed. A great author to read.

Land of Forgotten Girls

Land of Forgotten Girls by Erin Kelly

This story comes highly recommended by Miss L. I have not read it but it sounds interesting so I may be going to pull it off her shelf to read.

Life is not easy in the Philippines but it gets worse when their father moves Soledad and her little sister Ming to Louisiana. Their mother and sister died back in the Philippines so when their father abandons them with their stepmother, misery threatens to overcome these young girls. But Soledad protects her little sister and they immerse themselves in the stories that Soledad tells. When Ming begins to believe that the fictional aunt from the story will rescue them, what should Soledad do? The story of hope and perseverance amid heartbreak is one that many will relate to.

I do hope you try some of these. They are all wonderful stories and some titles that I often tell others they should read. Great books, all of them.

Blessings,
At Home.

blogging-through-the-alphabet-300x300

The ABC linkup is not up for this week yet but when it is you can find it hosted by Hopkins HomeschoolDoodleMom’s Homeschooling Life and Biblical Womanhood.

My previous posts in the series:

A – All-of-a-Kind Family and Adventures of the Little Wooden Horse
B – Ballet Shoes and A Bear Called Paddington
C – Counting by 7s and Cheaper By The Dozen
D – Door In The Wall & D’Aulaires’ Book of Greek Myths
E – The Endless Steppe & Ella Enchanted
F – Family Tree & Fog Magic
G – Great Turkey Walk & The Great Brain
H – Half Magic & Horse Diaries
I – Indian in the Cupboard & Island of the Blue Dolphins
J – Journey to America & Julie: An American Girl – 1974
K – Kite Fighters & Key to the Extraordinary

K – Middle School Books ~ Blogging Through The Alphabet

K

The letter K provides us with a couple of titles that are not “old standbys.” They are titles we have stumbled upon at used book sales or through very recent publication lists. They are varied and each one has its own interesting qualities.

Kite Fighters

The Kite Fighters by Linda Sue Park

Young-sup can control a kite as though he and the kite are one. His older brother, Kee-sup, struggles to make the kite do as he wishes but his kites are strong and more beautiful than any others. 15th century Korea has rules, though, that dictate that the oldest son in the family will represent that family at the New Year kite fighting competition. The brothers different skills get the attention of the king while they are practicing together for the kite fighting competition. Friendship grows and with it the struggle of family and honor and friendship. Will Young-sup ever get the chance to fly a kite in the New Year competition and until he does, can he support his brother?

The story of brotherhood and friendship is one that was really enjoyed by Miss L and this title sprung to mind quickly when we got to K in our list-making. She highly recommends this story. The historical fiction setting is one that is filled with culture and its bounds but the struggles of family? Those are not all that different from what brothers, and sisters, face today.

Key to the ExtraordinaryKey To The Extraordinary by Natalie Lloyd

Family history can run deep and have a profound effect on life. Especially when your family includes famous people who did extraordinary things. And those things were given to them in dreams. Emma is waiting for her own dream when her mother dies. And in her sadness, that wait seems even harder. But when her dream does finally come, can she really do the task set before her? Can she find the legendary hidden treasure of her town? If she doesn’t, is she letting her mother down?

The girls said this one is a fun story that they would recommend.

Katy's BoxKaty’s Box by Mary Evelyn Notgrass McCurdy

Published recently by The Notgrass Company, Katy’s Box is about a young girl and her family as they set out on their first year of homeschooling. What an adventure it is for them. Through the ups and downs and the re-imagining what education is really about, they grow stronger and make new memories while Katy is adding new treasures to her special box. It was a pleasant, easy read and it has gone on the bookshelf for the girls to read and enjoy.

See you next week for the letter L.

Blessings,
At Home

blogging-through-the-alphabet-300x300

The ABC linkup is not up for this week yet but when it is you can find it hosted by Hopkins HomeschoolDoodleMom’s Homeschooling Life and Biblical Womanhood.

My previous posts in the series:

A – All-of-a-Kind Family and Adventures of the Little Wooden Horse
B – Ballet Shoes and A Bear Called Paddington
C – Counting by 7s and Cheaper By The Dozen
D – Door In The Wall & D’Aulaires’ Book of Greek Myths
E – The Endless Steppe & Ella Enchanted
F – Family Tree & Fog Magic
G – Great Turkey Walk & The Great Brain
H – Half Magic & Horse Diaries
I – Indian in the Cupboard & Island of the Blue Dolphins
J – Journey to America & Julie: An American Girl – 1974

Also linking up with the Homeschool Blog Link-up hosted by the Homeschool Review Crew.

 

Homeschool Review Crew Weekly Link Up 

The Crown ~ book review

I honestly had no idea what I was getting into when I started this book but because I am interested in the history that surrounds the Royal Family, I just knew it would be interesting. I was right. And wrong.

I do not watch the TV series The Crown. That made this book a bit difficult. Written by the show’s historical consultant and royal biographer, Robert Lacey, the book is fascinating to read. The full title of this book is The Crown: The Official Companion Volume I – Elizabeth II, Winston Churchill, and the Making of a Young Queen 1947-19559781524762285.

Whew! That’s a long, detailed title. And a pretty accurate description of what the book covers.

The history surrounding the crowing of Elizabeth II at a very young age is where the book starts. It covers much of the royal family, jumping somewhat back and forth between people. And since so many of them have similar names, there can easily be confusion about which person is being talked about. There is a House Of Windsor family tree at the beginning and consulting it often helped.

Robert Lacey did a very nice job with this book, relating well between the TV series and the actual history. One of the parts that would have made this easier would be to have seen the series. A big part of what this companion does is to show you where there were liberties taken in the series over the actual history. I found these parts difficult since I didn’t know the series but if you did, I can only imagine that these would be particularly fascinating.

This book was not a fast read for me but I did really enjoy it. And the photos were just beautiful to view. Some of them are historical photos but many are from the TV series. Again, something that was distinguished for me fairly well.

If you are a fan of the series The Crown, then this companion book will be a really interesting read for you. If you find the history surrounding the Royal Family and history in general interesting, this book will also be interesting for you. You may have to work a bit harder at it than if you are approaching it as the companion to the series but still a very interesting read.

Blessings,
At Home.

FTC Disclaimer: I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review.

%d bloggers like this: