Ava and Pip

Author:  Carol Weston                         ava
Publisher:  Sourcebooks Jaberwocky
Genre:  Middle Grade
Source:  BEA



Goodreads:  An endearing tween story about friendship, family, identity, and inspiration

Outgoing Ava loves her older sister, Pip, but can’t understand why Pip is so reserved and never seems to make friends with others. When Ava uses her writing talents to help her sister overcome her shyness, both girls learn the impact their words and stories can have on the world around them.

Ope’s Opinion:  I have to admit upfront that diary form is one of my least favorite ways to be told a story.  It comes from only one point of view and your information is very limited.

The story of Bea, Ava and Pip was cute and meaningful.  All of the references to palindromes became irritating.  I felt like I was in English class instead of reading a story.  I also thought the story was more for elementary classes then middle school classes.  This was not one I think the parents will enjoy along with their student.

I did like that Ava and Pip learned some lessons. I thought Ava and Pip’s relationship was pretty normal for sisters. I also like the involvement of the parents.  It was good to see Bea involved in some of the solutions for Ava and Pip.


Rating:  Three Chairs – I like this book enough to suggest it to a friend or two.
3 chairs

Lucky Me

Author:  Cindy Callaghan                    lucky me
Publisher: Aladdin
Genre: Middle Grade
Source: BookSparks



Goodreads:  After breaking a chain letter, can superstitious Megan find a way to turn her luck around?

Meghan McGlinchey is the most superstitious girl in her family ;and probably in the entire state of Delaware. When she receives a chain letter from a stranger in Ireland, Meghan immediately passes it on, taking only a tiny shortcut in the directions.

But after a disastrous day, made complete by losing the election for class president and embarrassing herself in front of the entire school, Meghan realizes that tiny shortcut was a big mistake. Thankfully, her family was already headed to Ireland on spring break, and Meghan makes it her mission to find the original sender and break her extremely unlucky streak.

With the help of an eccentric cast of characters ;and one very cute Irish boy ;can Meghan figure out a way to stop her bad luck? Or is she cursed forever.

Ope’s Opinion:  This was a cute, middle grade read.  The book read fast.  I read Cindy Callaghan’s Lost in London and really liked it.  So I had high expectations for Lucky Me.  This one did not keep my attention as well as Lost in London.  I found I was getting frustrated with all the “bad luck” Meghan was having.  After a while it was just too much.

I am going to keep this one for my granddaughter.  I hope she will enjoy it when she is old enough to read it.

Rating:  Three Chairs – I like the book enough to suggest it to a friend or two.
3 chairs



Lost in London

Author: Cindy Callaghan               lost in london
Publisher:  Aladdin
Pages: 240
Genre: Middle Grade
Source:  Book Sparks


Goodreads:  A tween’s foreign exchange experience lands her in London luxury—and some hot water as well!

Twelve-year-old Jordan isn’t unhappy, but she’s definitely bored. So when she gets the chance to take part in a London exchange program, she’s thrilled to ditch her small town in Delaware and see the world across the pond.

Unfortunately, Jordan’s host sister in London, Caroline, isn’t exactly enthusiastic about entertaining an American girl. Despite the chilly welcome, Jordan finds herself loving the city and Caroline’s group of friends, who are much nicer than Caroline herself.

And then a major misstep leaves Jordan and Caroline trapped together overnight—inside Daphne’s, the world’s largest department store. Given they have complete access to all the fancy shoes, designer dresses, and coolest makeup around, there are worse places to be stuck. But when the girls’ fun has not-so-fun consequences, Jordan’s wish for excitement abroad turns into a lot more than she ever bargained for..

Ope’s Opinion:  This is a cute, quick read.  I will definitely be putting it on my granddaughter Emma’s shelf.  It is a great pleasure to read, review, and save books for her.

This is every young girls dream – to be locked in a department store.

This may not be a realistic book, but it is very cute and one I would recommend to parents looking for something to keep their girls reading.


Rating:  Four Chairs – I like this book so much I know several friends to share it with.