Monday, December 22, 2008

The Not-So-Random Shelf: Easy Chapter Book

The Not-So-Random Shelf: Easy Chapter Book

My easy chapter book picks for this post range from very simple stories to mature easy chapter books.

When I was reading The Fair-Share Pair, I kept thinking of the Dick and Jane books. Dick and Jane are bashed for their mind-numbing boringness (is that a word?), but they are decent books for practice reading. The Fair-Share Pair is similar in that the sentences are very short and controlled, but the children aren’t nearly as robotic. This morality story about sharing isn’t the most fascinating read, but it’s a good bridge between easy readers and longer easy chapter books.

Suzy Kline’s Horrible Harry books are popular among the easy chapter book set, and it’s not hard to figure out why. Writing an easy chapter book doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice humor and storyline in lieu of easy vocabulary, and Suzy Kline is a prime example of this. Harry’s best friend Doug tells us all about Harry (Horrible Harry in Room 2B), who really isn’t so horrible after all (he just gets into a lot of trouble). Children will definitely want to read more about Horrible Harry’s adventures.

I’m a fan of older dogs, so I loved Not My Dog. Ellie Martin has been waiting for her eighth birthday all her life, or so it seems. For it is on this birthday that she can finally get a puppy! A puppy is not in the cards, however, because her Great-Aunt Margaret can no longer care for her dog. Preston is a rather ordinary brown older dog, and Ellie is not impressed. In spite of herself, Ellie becomes fond of the do and discovers that he is no ordinary dog when he successfully leads her home after getting lost. When she overhears her parents discussing the possibility of finding Preston a new home and getting Ellie a puppy, Ellie realizes that she wants no other dog than Preston. This is an adorable and satisfying read sure to appeal to most readers.

This is my last major post for 2008! Happy holidays and have a terrific New Year. I'll return to posting on January 5.

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