The three musketeers by Alexandre Dumas

Amy Three MusketeersI wish I had read this before The Count of Monte Cristo. The Three Musketeers is a wild adventure, with duels, daring escapes, abductions, affairs galore, political machinations, treason, betrayal, romance and friendship. Milady is a clever villain, brilliant evil, and the four ‘heroes’ were almost as bad – vain, callous, manipulative and adulterous. The book is fun, but having really loved The Count of Monte Cristo, I was disappointed.

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Flora & Ulysses by Kate DiCamillo

Caitlin Flora and Ulysses

Flora and Ulysses is a book with a capacious heart and a flying squirrel.

Flora Belle Buckman is a natural-born cynic, lover of comics – especially ones that provide practical advice, with titles like ‘Terrible Things Can Happen To You!’.

Told with a sense of humor, this story about a serious kid who finds adventure in the most unlikely way will make you chuckle, and maybe even cry a little bit. But by the end of the story you’ll be glad you were a passenger on the ride. Continue reading

The books of beginning by John Stephens

Books of beginning by John StephensReminiscent of the many fantasy novels this trilogy is another enjoyable read. It starts with The Emerald Atlas on a snowy winter’s night, when three small children are chased from their home by the forces of a merciless darkness. Thus begins the first stage of a journey that will take Kate, Michael, and Emma from orphanage to orphanage and through time to dangerous and secret corners of the world…a journey of friends and foe and of magic and chaos.  And—if an ancient prophecy is correct—what they do can change history.  A fast paced adventure for readers 10 years and older. If you like The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S Lewis and His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman you will like this trilogy.

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The mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Stewart

The mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee StewartReynie, Sticky, Kate and Constance are four gifted children chosen for a dangerous mission where the world’s freedom to think is at risk. Definitely a book for voracious readers 10+ years who enjoy flexing their minds with challenging words and a puzzle or two. And if you enjoy this you will be pleased to know that it is the first in a series so you can enjoy adventure after adventure. And the fun doesn’t stop there because Trenton Lee Stewart has created online games at www.mysteriousbenedictsociety.com/.

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Rivertime by Trace Balla

Rivertime with AmyNominated for the 2015 Children’s Book of the Year awards in the picture book section, Rivertime is a lovely, graphic novel style book about the joy of nature. Clancy and his bird-loving Uncle Egg head off for a ten day trip down a river in a canoe. At first Clancy misses his TV and all the fun things he had to leave behind, but he ends up having a magical time in the great outdoors. The illustrations are beautiful and each page is packed with Aussie wildlife to discover.

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A walk in the woods by Bill Bryson

A Walk in the Woods - KarenA Walk in the Woods is the journey of two old high school friends who reunite to challenge themselves to hike the legendary Appalachian Trail.

Based on the acclaimed bestseller by travel writer, Bill Bryson, the movie follows Bryson (Robert Redford) and Katz (Nick Nolte) as they set off into the wilderness and encounter one misfortune after another.

Just like the book, the movie made me laugh out loud – attributed mostly to Nick Nolte’s comedic performance of Katz, a dishevelled, Continue reading

The Road to Little Dribbling by Bill Bryson

Brian - Road to Little DribblingThe Road to Little Dribbling is Bill Bryson’s first travel book for fifteen years – a brand new journey around Britain. His last three major works were largely social histories – One Summer: America 1927, At Home: A Short History of Private Life and A Short History of Nearly Everything.

If you’re a Bill Bryson addict, The Road to Little Dribbling is a must read. If you’re looking to read you first Bill Bryson, I’d probably go with something different, either The Lost Continent, Notes from a Small Island or Down Under (his Australian book). Continue reading

Dodger

Dodger by Terry Pratchett

Because I have to wait until a period of time where nothing can interrupt me as I read Terry’s books I have quite a few waiting to be savoured. I had just started Dodger when I heard the sad news that Terry had passed away so there was an added poignancy as I continued. Dodger is set in 19th century London during the reign of Queen Victoria. Along with Victorian vocabulary, Terry uses one of the characters from Charles Dickens’ Oliver to illustrate the clear delineation between poverty and wealth. We follow Jack Dodger as he tries to differentiate between what is good when you are trying to survive and what the wealthy, in their comfortable lives, consider wrong. Continue reading