They say a worn cover is the sign of a well-loved book. So it should be obvious that this book has been popular among Hill Top students. And it’s one of my all-time favorites.
Alcatraz has been in 27 foster homes. He gets moved around a lot because he’s always breaking things. On his 13th birthday, he receives a back of sand in the mail. Shortly after, Alcatraz’s grandfather shows up to let Alcatraz know that he is part of a long line of people fighting against the evil librarians, who are trying to take over the world by spreading misinformation (for example, dinosaurs still exist and they can talk). Alcatraz has to team up with his grandfather and other new-found relatives to defeat the librarians and protect his bag of sand.
I first found out about this book from a comic strip.
Brandon Sanderson, for those of you who enjoy fantasy, completed Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time Cycle after Jordan passed away. So, when it comes to fantasy, he’s up there. Oh, and he’s also going to be at Children’s Book World on January 27th! Can you guess who will be geeking out that night?
For those of you who may need to travel over the river and through the woods to grandmother’s house for the holiday, I have some audiobooks that may make the ride a little more tolerable.
Did you see the movie version of The Great Gatsby? If you liked the whole ’20s feel, you might also enjoy Libba Bray’s The Diviners. Evie is a little out of control for her hometown, so she’s been sent to New York City to live with her uncle. Her uncle runs a museum of oddities and ends up consulting for the police on a murder investigation, which may or may not involve the occult. It turns out that Evie has a supernatural secret of her own (as do a few of her new NYC friends) that may help in solving these murders. Very creepy. January LaVoy does the narration and is wonderful! But be warned, this is the first book in a series and there are lots of loose ends at the end. (I didn’t know this when I read it and you should have seen me yelling at the stereo in my car when I realized I was on the last track and there were still SO MANY QUESTIONS!!)
Want something a little lighter? Try Chomp by Carl Hiaasen. Wahoo Cray lives with her father, Mikey, who is an animal wrangler. He often helps on movie sets when trained “wild” animals are needed. His latest show is a Man Vs. Wild type show in the Florida Everglades with an arrogant and reckless star. The star is bit by a bat and has a little bit of a breakdown. Meanwhile, Wahoo has teamed up with a girl named Tuna, who is running from an abusive dad. Naturally, there’s a showdown in the swamp, in the middle of storm. Hiaasen’s books are always great for their environmental angles and their humor. James Van Der Beek reads this one.
The Eye of the Minds by James Dashner is a new book. I haven’t read or listened to it yet, but I picked up the audio at my conference last week. It sounds fascinating! The main character is a gamer, who is also known for breaking the rules in VirtNet, the total mind and body virtual reality everyone is addicted to. When a hacker starts holding players hostage, the government needs someone who knows the ins and outs of VirtNet and can hack the rules. Dashner also wrote The Maze Runner series, which is awesome, so I can only imagine this book is going to be great. And geek flag alert…James Dashner is going to be at Children’s Book World in Haverford tonight at 7. I’ll be there being my best fangirl self. (And this also means that tomorrow we’ll also have a print copy of the book). This is also the first in a planned series.
Finally, I picked up Scowler by Daniel Kraus. He’s the guy who wrote Rotters, the book about grave robbers. This is his latest book, and it has the same narrator as Rotters. I don’t know much about it, except that it involves a demonic folk doll and it’s scary as all get out. I talked with a woman who is on a bunch of audiobook award committees and she told me she never has nightmares and her dreams are always in black and white. This audiobook gave her nightmares that featured color, sound, and smell. You’ve been warned.