Mrs. Anderson recommends this creative adventure for upper elementary and middle school students. (And she enjoyed it too!)
The Mysterious Benedict Society by Trenton Lee Stewart
While reading the newspaper with his cup of morning tea, orphan Reynie Muldoon notices an advertisement offering a test for gifted children to be admitted to a special school. Reynie is excited by the idea of going to a special school, but little does he know that this ‘special school’ intends to serve a much more serious purpose. Children are being recruited to fight against a mysterious force. Will Reynie and his classmates solve the mystery and stop the plot before it’s too late?
Upper elementary and middle school students will enjoy uncovering the mysteries in the story with Reynie and his friends. The diverse cast of characters makes it easy for readers to find a character they identify with. Reynie is a clever, analytical puzzle solver. His best friend ‘Sticky’ can quickly memorize anything. Kate is an athletic and adventurous girl who ran away from home to join the circus, and Constance is stubborn and free-thinker who is always true to herself. There’s action, intrigue, and humor aplenty to keep younger readers engaged to the very end.
“She announced her age right away, for children consider their ages every bit as important as their names.”
And Mrs. Anderson recommends a classic
For her summer reading, Mrs. Anderson balanced out the newer story with revisiting a classic, reading Jack London’s famed The Call of the Wild. Written for teens and adults, the novel is bursting with raw, exposed adventure. If you haven’t read it in awhile, perhaps an adventure novel at night is just the thing to balance out the stresses of ‘civilized’ work during your day.
“He was mastered by the sheer surging of life, the tidal wave of being, the perfect joy of each separate muscle, joint, and sinew in that it was everything that was not death, that it was aglow and rampant, expressing itself in movement, flying exultantly under the stars.”