Maeve Visser Knoth

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Saturday, December 12, 2009

Re: Books for a 9 year old girl

Hi, Maeve,

Can you help me? Our church provides gifts for kids of local parents who are in jail and unable to shop for/provide for their children. We provide the gifts and wrapping paper so the parent can wrap the present and know what the parent is giving. Anyway, I can handle the 2 year old who wants books, but I also have a 9 year old girl who wants books. We are not supposed to spend more than $25 per child. I'd love your suggestions for "my" 9 year old girl.

A friend

Here are a few titles...

Roxie and the Hooligans by Naylor
Clementine by Pennypacker
Anastasia Krupnik by Lowry
Poppy by Avi

and any of the Babymouse books by Jennifer Holm.

- Maeve

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Books relating to Asperger's and Autism

There has been a recent spate of books in which a central character has either Asperger's Syndrome or autism.
Try the following novels for rare and often beautifully written insight into the minds of these children and young adults.
London Eye Mystery by Siobhan Dowd
Anything But Typical by Nora Raleigh Baskin
Al Capone Does My Shirts by Gennifer Choldenko
Are You Alone on Purpose? by Nancy Werlin (young adult)
Boy Who Ate Stars by Kochka
Clay by Colby Rodowsky
Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night by Mark Haddon (young adult)
Marcelo in the Real World by Francisco Stork (young adult)
Rules by Cynthia Lord
A Wizard Alone by Diane Duane
The Very Ordered Existence of Merilee Marvelous by Suzanne Crowley

I have really enjoyed getting into the heads of these characters- some have Asperger's but others experience Asperger's from the outside as a sibling or close friend. All the books leave me with a better understanding and much more empathy for those living with this ever-more-prevalent disorder.

Some recommendations for an 8 year old who loves Harry Potter and Mysterious Benedict Society

I was asked to come up with some suggestions for an 8-year-old who loves Harry Potter and The Mysterious Benedict Society but is not too fond of the Chronicles of Narnia.
Such a reader might try:
Wizard's Hall by Jane Yolen
The Secret of Platform 13 by Eve Ibbotson
Emmy and the Incredible Shrinking Rat by Lynne Jonnell
the mystery/horror stories of John Bellair
The Earthsea Trilogy by Ursula LeGuin
The Dark is Rising series by Susan Cooper
Half Magic by Edward Eager
Redwall by Brian Jacques
So You Want to Be a Wizard by Diane Duane
Dragon Rider by Cornelia Funke
This should keep him busy for a week or so.