It's We Recommend, in which we use our superpowers to find readers the perfect book. Got a kid who needs a recommendation? Write us at thediamondinthewindow (at) gmail (dot) com with the age, reading tastes, favorite books, and any other relevant (or irrelevant) information, and we'll give it a shot. And really? All the good suggestions are in the comments.
You know, we talk about superpowers up there at the top, and I have…evolved, my thinking about those. See, if you were in my house, and you were sad or confused or in need of solace, and you said, "And the worst part is, I just finished my book and I have to ride the subway the whole way home without one!" Why then, I would be able to ask you a few relevant questions and then dip my hand into the shelves and come up with the perfect book. Well, maybe not dip exactly, but you know what I mean.
Or maybe, if we were browsing slowly through a bookstore together, you and I, and you said, "I'm going to Greece for a week, and I need a book that will see me through. See, I just broke up with my honey, and we were supposed to go together, and I can't refund the tickets, what do you think I should buy?" I could help you find the right book for that, too.
But I must also note: that when I was in the bookstore the other day, buying presents, I was befuddled. Overwhelmed. Uncertain. There I was, ready to buy a book for people I actually know and love, and I had no idea what to get. And when I got this week's We Recommend question, I felt that way again. Why? I don't know. See if you feel the same.
My daughter is in second grade, but reads well into a 3rd grade and even some 4th grade chapter books. I want to encourage her, but don't want to seem overly pushy. Here is a list of books or series' that she has enjoyed.
Daisy Dawson Series
Kitty Corner and Puppy Place books
Horrible Harry series
Ivy + Bean
She likes "Frankly Frannie" books, but I am constantly highlighting the slang words, such as fabulicious, which are on almost every page, and if it is highlighted she knows it is not a real word!
OK, first of all: I, too, have issues with intentional fake words, particularly those meant to replicate Children's Adorable Neologisms™ (bestest, etc—and yes, I'm referring to you, Junie B. Jones. You are my enemy.).
But underlining them? It never occurred to me. It must be so tiring. I am not familiar with Frankly Frannie; I hope they're not terrible to read and that it's not torture do do so.
But I'm just avoiding the question here, right? I must say that my gut, as it always is, was The Cobble Street Cousins. Followed closely by Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle. And then I thought: why don't I know any current books—other than the ones she's already read, Ivy and Bean? Chestnut warned me off Clementine. I suppose we don't quite know what this girl loves: people? pets? mysteries? Maybe the Box-Car children? But I wanted to find something new, and wonderful, and fun. See, the excellent thing about this kid, is that it seems like she would like any of these. But what would she love?
Plus there are maybe a billion of these, so they will last, and last, and last.
But I am unsure. If they were making a giant movie about superhero me, this would be the part where I go somewhere else and let my costume get all disheveled and generally demonstrate a lack of belief in my powers and their use to mankind (this vision more or less puts me as an alien, which I guess is fine). Soon to happen: a small, injured kid will be perilously close to falling off a cliff, and only the right book will save them. Or something. I don't really know. Meanwhile, you guys should put all your useful suggestions in the comments, and then we can all meet at the superhero bar.