I just finished an advanced readers copy of a book that seems like it's going to be the beginning of series. It's called "The Entirely True story of the Unbelievable FIB" by Adam Shaughnassey. It's about a girl named Pru (short for Prudence) who has just lost her dad. Her dad was a detective and she misses him terribly. She doesn't have a lot of friends, but she notices a lot of things (a good thing in a detective). A new kid moves to town and she ends up paired up with him which turns out to be a good thing, because he's super smart and he notices things too. They go on a field trip to a local museum and start learning about Norse myths. In this story, it turns out that the myths are not so mythical and that the kids can help solve some of the problems that arise when the mythical figures try to go into the real world. It would be great paired up with the Grimm Sisters series by Michael Buckley. I liked this one a lot and I think the kids will too.
The next one I read was called "Tales of Fifth grade Knight" by Douglas Gibson. It's about a fifth grader named Isaac who attends Castle Elementary, a place where weird things happen a lot. One day his little sister, Lily, loses the jewel gem from her elf crown and Isaac and his friends Max and Emma help look for it. They end up in Underground Town where people become elves through a process called weirding, which is pretty much what it sounds like... you get weirder and weirder until you become an elf. Frogs are the service people (or slaves) and rats are the army. The story is essentially one long chase scene. I think the kids will like it because it's fairly short (the version I read was about 120 pages), has short chapters and is very compelling to read. It looks like in the book version that there will also be pictures, but there weren't any in the advanced readers copy I read. I thought it was a good story.
Then I read "Little Red Riding Hood-the interactive version" by Eric Braun. This is sort of a noir-mashup of Little Red Riding Hood in a choose your own adventure book. I thought it was ok. I'm not a big fan of choose your own adventure books. I always feel let down because I never really like the choices and I'm left feeling like the ending is "and then I woke up." Not bad, but not my favorite either.
There was also a grown up one on my list this week. Well, sort of. It's a cook book called "Everyday Ayurveda Cookbook" by Kate O'Donnell. I had an Ayurvedic massage a few years ago and it was transformative. The diet is fairly strict by some standards (no sugar, mostly no meat, no wheat, no raw onions or garlic, no nightshade vegetables like tomatoes or eggplant) but the healing benefits are big. What I really liked about the book was it started off explaining about Ayurveda, the principles, the flavors and the benefits. It gave some really great background information. The recipes are well laid out and easy to follow. I thought it was a great book and I can't wait to own this one.