I had never been a member of a bookclub – ever. Now I am a member of TWO bookclubs. Each of my granddaughters and I have started granddaugher/grandma bookclubs.
The book club with my 9 year old granddaughter is named the Missouri/Illinois Stars. We have meetings during grandma visits and via telephone calls. (My 7 year old granddaughter and I only started our club a few weeks ago so you will hear more about it at a later date.)
The first book I read in the Stars book club was one I came upon when visiting. I found myself awake while the household slept. I spied a book that my granddaughter had been reading. The Shadow Thieves by Anne Ursu so I picked it up and read a few chapters. Boy, it was good.
My granddaughter loves Greek mythology; as a former Latin teacher, I favor Roman mythology. She and I like to compare our gods and goddesses. This book is a tale filled with Greek gods, sick and shadowless children and a plot to overthrow the Lord of the Dead. Charlotte Mielswetzski (pronounced Meals. Wet. Ski.) and her cousin Zachary (nicknamed Zee) are trying to save the children. Charlotte and Zee had to go to Hades to save the children. How does one find the entrance to Hades – down a nondescript corridor in the Mall of America and through a nondescript door with a nondescript sign NO ADMITTANCE.
My granddaughter and I talked about what each of us liked in the book. Then she said, “Grandma, you need to read the next books. This is a series.” That’s right it is – The Cronus Chronicles, three books about the adventures of Charlotte and Zee.
The second book was The Siren’s Song. Charlotte was ultramegagrounded by her parents when she returned from the Underworld. An educational cruise along the eastern coast of the United States turned into an adventure in the Mediterranean Sea. Charlotte took Poseidon’s trident and was saved by a giant squid while her parents were sleeping in a trance brought on by a siren’s song.
The 3rd book, The Immortal Fire, sends Charlotte and Zee to Mt. Olympus to save the world. Charlotte has a chance to eavesdrop on a gathering of Olympian gods that included Apollo in gold lame shorts and tee shirt roller skating around Zeus’ palace and Athena engrossed in doing Sudokus.
These books were so good. As an adult, I enjoyed the subtle humor that the author sprinkled throughout. The books are long. The final one was 500+ pages, but they go very fast and held the attention of this grandma as well as her granddaughter.
My granddaughter said that I really needed to read a Percy Jackson novel. Since I like the Roman gods, I wanted to skip to that series by Rick Riordan; however, I was told that I really need to read the first one first. Boy, such an orderly plan. The Lightning Thief was really good. I liked the part when oops, during a scuffle a hole gets ripped in the very top of the St. Louis Arch. Percy had to jump into the river, but since he is the son of Poseidon (sorry to let you in on the secret), he was not harmed and didn’t even get wet in the water.
By the way I also watched the movie. I liked the book better.
In our bookclub we do read a variety of books. My granddaughter suggested Bloomability by Sharon Creech. This is the story of Dinnie, a girl who goes to Switzerland with her aunt and uncle who run an international school. She met many kids – different cultures, backgrounds, and beliefs. But deep down they were all the same. Dinnie learned that life is full of bloomabilities – possibilities. Everyone – granddaughters and grandmothers and everyone else has bloomabilities that can enhance and enrich their lives. Since the setting was on the border of Switzerland and Italy, many people spoke Italian. My granddaughter thought it was fun to learn the Italian phrases as Dinnie learned them also.
The next book my granddaughter recommended was 11 Birthdays by Wendy Moss. Remember the movie Groundhog Day? Well, the same concept is here. Amanda and her friend Leo share the same birthday which they lived over and over until they learned how to break a spell they were under.
I found a terrific book that I have recommended for us to read. It is The Sixty-Eight Rooms by Marianne Malone.
Much of the activity in this story takes place in the Art Institute in Chicago – in the Thorne Rooms which are in the children’s area. In the book Ruthie and Jack find a small key. When Ruthie holds it, she becomes 5 inches tall. When she drops it, she returns to her original size. Jack can only be made small if he holds on to Ruthie when she picks up the key. They find ways to get into the miniature rooms to explore. They even meet people from the pre-French Revolution days and from the Salem witch trials.
I took this book and a book about the Thorne Rooms with me when I last visited my granddaughter. I was so excited about this book. It was so much fun to read. I told my granddaughter about it. She walked over to the book shelf in her bedroom and pulled a book from the shelf – The Sixty-Eight Rooms. She has the book. Neat. She said that a lady at the bookstore recommended it to her. I am eager for her to read it so we can talk about it.
Her daddy told me that he thought she was planning to read A Tale of Two Cities next. He was kidding, right? Don’t you think he was?
Thank you for stopping by Grandma in the Mailbox.
What is ON your refrigerator? Over the years many different items have graced the front of my frig. Now something so cute lives there. I hope you stop by to check it out.