booksinckids's blog

The Popularity Papers by Amy Ignatow

 

I love this book!  I read it twice in two days!  The story and illustrations (pen and ink and colored pencil) are wonderful in this sweet tale of the friendship between two girls in the fifth grade.  The subtitle is: Research for the Social Improvement and General Betterment of Lydia Goldblatt and Julie Graham-Chang (the two protagonists).  It has great characters and laugh-out-loud humor and poignant storylines.  The format is a "dialogue" between the two girls in their own handwriting that share their triumphs and failures in their pursuit of popularity at school.  There are also TWO sequels: The Popularity Papers: The Long Dispatch Between... (where one friend moves away) and The Popularity Papers: The Rocky Road Trip of... (where the friends go on a summer break adventure).  And they include gay dads! What more could you ask for? (Ages 8-12)

 

Reviewed by Darrell Scheidegger from Books Inc. Market St.


Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson

 I’m afraid that I won’t be able to do this review justice because reading it was just magical.  Told from the perspective of Tinker Bell this is a beautiful, dark and haunting retelling of Peter Pan focusing on Tiger Lily who is 15 years old at the time.  Although begrudgingly accepted as the Shaman’s adopted daughter Tiger Lily has always been an outsider in her own village and the stigma only intensifies when she defies the tribe and saves a shipwrecked Englander who was doomed to die on the rocky shores of Neverland.  When she is almost captured by Peter Pan she is slowly drawn in to his wild, carefree and sometimes savage life with the Lost Boys and begins to pull away from her tribe and her impending arranged marriage at potentially devastating costs.  Anderson has delivered a mesmerizing romance with a fearless heroine that is sure to satisfy anyone who has ever wondered about the inhabitants of Neverland. (Ages 14 & up)

 

 --Shannon, Senior Children's Book Buyer for Books Inc.

Minette's Feast by Susanna Reich

A picture book from the point of view of Julia Child’s cat, this book lovingly charts Julia Child’s culinary progress in muted watercolors and her cat’s eventual preference of Child’s cooking over mouse. Bates’s illustrations are richly textured and detailed, offering ample surprises when pored over. A gem of a picture book.

- Georgianna from Books inc. at Opera Plaza

We LOVE Seraphina!

 It's so RARE that we all agree on a book here at Books Inc. that we HAD to share this one with you! Behold, the Books Inc. Kids popularity contest winner (we didn't even know we HAD a popularity contest), SERAPHINA! Good for ages 10+

Dragons are people too... or at least, they have the option to be in Seraphina's world.  Humans and dragons have worked out a fragile truce, which is constantly under threat from the violent members of both races-- and it falls to Seraphina, to combat a conspiracy that would bring ruinous war.  Brilliant storytelling, a fresh and winning voice, and a wholly original approach to the dragon myth make this an exciting, unforgettable read. --Tom Gartner, buyer from Books Inc. Chestnut Street

  I haven’t responded like this to a book since I first read Eon: The Last Dragoneye by Alison Goodman. Seraphina is about bigotry, and the church that feeds it. It is a warning, and illuminates the path away from that sin. Tough going, I wouldn’t give it to anyone younger than 4th grade.
Deeply great stuff. –Elizabeth, children’s specialist from Books Inc. Alameda

I’ll be the first to admit that typically, when confronted with a book about dragons, I shy away. It’s an old prejudice, one that was proved gloriously wrong by Rachel Hartman’s breath-taking debut, Seraphina. Though Hartman’s writing style pays homage to fantasy great J.R.R. Tolkien, and has faint echoes of Megan Whalen Turner’s prose, her world and her characters are completely of her own devising. Masterful pacing and superb character development keep the pages turning, but it was the expert world-building that stirred my imagination. The world of Seraphina is one that I have never seen before, and is also one to which I am eager to return. For once, I found myself thinking, thank goodness it’s a series! --Maggie, Children’s Department Director

If you crave an exquisite fantasy of substance, you have found your prize.  Seraphina is a singularly beautiful story of identity, passion, and, yes, dragons!  Hartman has designed a world and characters that are complex and engaging, and her prose is absolutely brilliant, not a word wasted in creating each perfectly crafted scene and conversation.  This book will question your preconceptions, enliven your imagination, and expand your vocabulary, all in due measure. --Tanya, manager at Books Inc. Palo Alto

I don’t usually read YA but I found this book quickly caught my interest. It’s an amazing story about a girl who is a brilliant musician, an intrepid investigator, who also possesses boundless charm and spirit. She’s haunted by a dark and terrible secret; her mother is a DRAGON! (Ages 12+) --Josh Books Inc. Berkeley

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