Charlotte’s Web

Our rating: ***

One morning Fern Arable, an eight year-old girl, learned her father was about to kill the runt of the new pig litter. She rushed to stop him and finally Mr. Arable agreed not to harm the pig. Mr. Arable gave the pig to Fern, and she eventually named him Wilbur. However, after a few weeks of happiness together, Mr. Arable told Fern that the pig would have to be sold. Wilbur was getting bigger, along with his appetite, and Mr. Arable wasn’t willing to feed the pig any longer. So Fern sorrowfully sold Wilbur to her Uncle Zuckerman’s farm nearby, where she could go and visit him. However, even with all Fern’s visits, Wilbur became lonely. But a spider named Charlotte was ready to be his friend and would also try to save him from being killed and made into bacon and ham.

A great book. For those who don’t like spiders, this book might help them feel a little more affectionate to the eight-legged insects. Maybe. No guarantees. And all readers should be prepared for a sad and perhaps unexpected part at the end. However, Templeton the rat is rather funny sometimes, and I really like the ending of this book.

The Bloodstone Chronicles

Our rating: ****

Denise finds a strange rock in her uncle’s attic and soon discovers, to her obvious shock, that it reflects moonlight and sends a signal to an alternate dimension. Three strange creatures arrive and whisk her and her friend Nathan off to Fayrah, where they begin to learn about kindness and the love of the creator, Imager. Over the four books, they continue to travel through dimensions, bringing along Nathan’s older brother Joshua, and eventually have the opportunity to be Re-breathed by Imager.

While this could not be ranked as a masterpiece of writing, per say, I still enjoy the story. Some of the characters, Denise in particular, are special to me. Whether or not this book is for you, I can’t say. It has its faults, but you may consider taking a look at least.

Pinky Pye

Our rating: ****

The Pye family, complete with Ginger and Gracie, were going to spend the summer on Fire Island! Once there, they find an “abandid” kitten named Pinky. The Pyes decide to keep her. They find out she has unusual talents, such as boxing with Ginger and even typing on their typewriter! Uncle Bennie came to Fire Island with them and develops an interest in crickets and grasshoppers. He starts keeping them as pets and Rachel will put them, inside their cricket and or grasshopper box, up in the eaves. But when they start disappearing… what’s up?

This is a great book. You can probably guess what’s up, so I didn’t categorize it as a mystery. Still, Pinky’s cute and I like the epilogue.

Boomerang Hunter

Our rating: ***

Balulu is an Australian aborigine hunter. His tribe is suffering from a drought, and is slowly starving. Setting out with his dingo named Warrigal, Balulu searches for a better place for his tribe to live and hunt in. But, when he finally finds the perfect place, it proves to already be inhabited by another tribe, which might have hostile intentions.

There’s a lot of neat stuff in here, although, quite honestly, Balulu’s diet is rather, shall we say, different. Anyway, it’s interesting to read about how the aborigines lived and what they did. It also makes you appreciate even something like brussel sprouts! At least they aren’t sun-dried frog skins! (Although. . . I guess that point is debatable.)

Tucker’s Countryside

Our rating: ***

The Old Meadow is scheduled to be destroyed, and Chester Cricket has sent word to Tucker Mouse and Harry Cat in New York City. Tucker and Harry rush to Hedley, Connecticut. Chester wants Tucker to think of a plan to save the meadow, but what with Harry being adopted by a girl named Ellen, Tucker’s got his hands full.

I enjoyed Tucker’s Countryside a bit less than some of the others in this series, but it’s still very enjoyable and very fun.