Saturday, December 1, 2012

Book buying for the 7th grade set...

I just read a post at Bonnie's Books that inspired me to write this post (and it has been forever since I posted so getting some inspiration was a good thing). Bonnie wrote of going book shopping for one book and coming home with five. I know we've all been there!

Last night my daughter and I went to Chaucer's, our awesome local indie book store. Our goal was to buy my dad's stocking gift: Hugh Johnson's Wine Guide (a must have each year). Well, the wine section is next to the kid/YA section (does anyone else see something odd about this?) so we gravitated over to see if we could find something she'd like to read.

This should be an easy exercise, but it isn't. My daughter is a bright kid and good reader in seventh grade and I feel like there just aren't a ton of great books out there for her. Let me explain.

  • She doesn't want to read books with dating and other teen themes as she isn't there yet herself
  • Not much into fantasy or classics
  • She loves books about other countries and cultures (e.g., Parvana's Journey trilogy, War Horse)
  • She likes books with strong female characters (Out of My Mind by Draper for example)
  • She likes mysteries (we've done the new Nancy Drews, but they are to easy)
  • Our biggest obstacle? She wants "happy" books. Do you know how difficult those are to find?!  Seventh grade sucks. Girls are mean. My daughter is having a tough time.
I'd love any suggestions you have for books that might work. She did like Hunger Games so we may try other dystopians. Here's what we ended up buying:
We got this one since we enjoyed the movie HUGO and figured it would be a quick and fun read

Val Hobbs is a local author and I teach with her husband. Her books have been a hit with my daughter in the past, especially Sheep, which won the California Reader Medal Award

Okay, this one I chose and we'll read together. It's got the international flavor (Iraq) we both like, but it could be depressing

She LOVED When You Reach Me by Rebecca Stead so we were excited to see this new one.



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