All in Middle Grade

Into The End of the Wild, a book by Nicole Helget

The End of the Wild is a sweet little story about fracking. No, not really. It’s about a little girl named Fern coming to term with her mother’s death. Well not really. It’s about what it takes to win the science fair (otherwise known as STEM fair). Except really it’s about a poor girl in a small Michigan town who has to decide between her rich grandpa and poor stepdad. Or maybe it’s about nature, preserving the woods or friendship, or dogs...

On Fairies and Frogs and Such

Rainbow Magic: The Party Fairies, Cherry the Cake Fairy by Daisy Meadows. Rainbow Magic Ltd., 2005.

In my quest to understand early chapter books, I read a handful of the Rainbow Magic series. I enjoyed discovering that strict "logic" isn't so much of a concern for this sort of book. No one is asking...

How to Build a Mosque

The intro is sort of dry, but the melding of fiction and nonfiction with fascinating detail on construction held my interest to the end. Yet why was there such a need for bathing? (I know it’s ritual bathing, but the text doesn’t tell me this.) There’s a ton of info on engineering, but not much...