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Completing the A-Z Challenge with X, Y, and Z

I was determined to finish the A-Z Reading challenge this year because I didn't want a few difficult letters get the better of me. So this past week when I realized that I only had 4 letters left (K, X, Y, and Z), I thought, "what about childrens' books?" 

I decided the best way to get children's books was to visit our downtown library. I found 3 of the books there (K, Y, and Z), but had to head over to the East Side branch to find a book starting with X. I love our local librarians and the murals painted on the side of the buildings, which celebrate books and our local heritage! So here are my 4 brief reviews to complete this challenge.

Title: Kate, Who Tamed the Wind
AuthorLiz Garton Scanlon and Lee White
Rating: 4 out of 5

Review: This is a sweet book about a man who lives up on a very windy and steep hill (with lots of descriptions of the chaos that causes him) and Kate, who lives below the hill and decides to solve the man's problem. I love that she is a solution-minded girl and that she uses the environment to do it. Kate take sapling trees up to the top of the hill and plants them with the man. They keep in touch, she visits, and each year, there is less wind.

Title: X O, Ox: a Love Story
AuthorAdam Rex
Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Review: This book is written as letters between Ox and Gazelle. Ox is smitten with Gazelle, who is some sort of stuck up celebrity. She responds to each of his letters in a snide and rude way (she even insults his looks, his smell, and his clumsiness), telling him to stop writing to her. Ox doesn't seem to mind or get it and continues to write to her and in his last letter, he sends his photo. Gazelle rips up his photo, pauses, and the last page is her starting another, sweeter, letter to him.

Title: Your Alien
AuthorTammi Sauer
Rating: 4.5 out of 5

Review: The illustrations in this book are delightful. And I love the idea of a child alien landing on earth and instantly making friends with a little boy. While the boy plays with the alien, takes him to school, has meals with him, and more, he also notices that something isn't right. As they go to bed, and the boys parents say good night, the boy realizes that the alien is alone. So, they decorate the house with millions of lights to attract the alien's parents from space so they can be reunited. It was heart warming.

Title: The Z was Zapped
AuthorChris Van Allsburg
Rating: 4 out of 5

Review: I was trying to avoid reading an alphabet book, but the librarian said how much she loved the illustrations in this book so I went for it. She was right; each letter has a large page that is similar in style to the cover. On the following page is a sentence about the letter and each one was very clever indeed. 

Challenges for which this counts: 

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