Michelle Isenhoff

Month: August 2011

Bridge to Terabithia, by Katherine Patterson, 1977, Book Review

Katherine Patterson is one of only five authors to twice win the Newbery medal. She delivers powerful, thought-provoking stories, beautifully written with a depth of emotion and meaning. The kind of stories I love, yet I wouldn’t count either of her Newbery winners among my favorites. Personal preference, I suppose. Yet there is much I […]

Found (The Missing: Book One), by Margaret Peterson Haddix, 2008, Book Review

This book was recommended to me with little explanation, and I expected it to be just another run-of-the-mill, edgy adventure story, with a little too much language and content a little too old to comfortably call it a tween book. Wrong! Found is much more than I bargained for. It’s a fantastic, clean page-turner entirely suitable for […]

A Dog’s Life: Autobiography of a Stray, by Ann M. Martin, 2005, Book Review

I’m a huge dog-lover and a sucker for any story featuring man’s best friend. Buck, Lad, Kitty, Marley, Lassie, I’ve read them all. Add to that list Squirrel, a loveable stray who tells her story in the first person. Born in a deserted shed, Squirrel was content to live and play with brother, Bone, and […]

Okay for Now, by Gary D. Schmidt, 2011, Book Review (Kind of)

I have one word for you:  A.m.a.z.i.n.g. Gary Schmidt has long been one of my favorite authors. In fact, I’ve kind of made him my very own personal back-pocket author. Years ago, when I was freshly out of college and toying with a writing hobby, I discovered his book, Anson’s Way.  I finished the last […]

The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians), by Rick Riordan, 2005, Book Review

“Look, I didn’t want to be a half-blood. If you’re reading this because you think you might be one, my advice is: close this book right now. Believe whatever lie your mom or dad told you about your birth, and try to lead a normal life.  Being a half-blood is dangerous. It’s scary. Most of […]

Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea, by Jules Verne, 1870, Book Review

Jules Verne’s undersea adventure classic is a smooth blend of science and fantasy, so smooth I had to do a little research to verify where the line blurs. Written as a first person account (the narrator is a scientist), it contains many facts and figures “proving” observations with natural law. Many facts and figures. And […]

Jules Verne (1828-1905), Author Biography

Before this year, I never read a book by Jules Verne. I read lots and lots of American and British classics for my English major, but Verne was French. I’ve been missing out! Since I’ve enjoyed two of his book this summer and added a third to my to-read list, I thought I’d learn a little more about him. […]

The Beyonders Series, A World Without Heroes, by Brandon Mull, 2011, Book Review

I’ve developed a love-hate relationship with this book. It took me a week to really give it a chance. I thought the writing style rather rough, with awkward word choices and excessive adjectives and adverbs. But as I moved into the heart of the adventure, I became hooked. Once I really started, I finished it […]

Trapped, by Michael Northrop, 2011, Book Review

“We were the last seven kids waiting to get picked up from Tattawa Regional High School…But we weren’t going anywhere. Mr. Gossell, Jason’s dad, Krista’s mom, whoever it was we were waiting for, they had nothing to do with us anymore. No one did. It was just the seven of us, the seven of us […]

The Great Fuzz Frenzy, by Janet Stevens and Susan Stevens Grummel, 2005, Book Review

I discovered this fabulous picture book a few years ago with my middle son and we both loved it. Now my youngest son asks me to read it again and again. And I oblige, because it’s one of those rare books that never wears out no matter how many times you read it. The pictures […]

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