Saturday, August 4, 2012

Awesome Author


Lynne Jonell


Some of her great award-winning chapter books:

The Secret of Zoom

Christina lives in a big, old stone mansion on the edge of a dark forest surrounded by barbed wire. Deep within the forest is the laboratory where her father works—and where her mother was blown to bits years ago. Christina’s father knows just how dangerous the world can be, so he keeps her safe at home, forbidding her from talking to the very interesting orphans down the road. But when an orphan boy named Taft talks to her, she’s thrilled to help him search for a secret tunnel. But soon she discovers there’s more to the orphanage, the lab, and the mystery of her mother’s accident than she ever suspected. Sinister things are in the works—and the secret of zoom is the most dangerous secret of all!

Hamster Magic

A couple of steps up from an easy reader, Jonell’s latest book will appeal to those who prefer their fantasy stories furry and friendly. It follows four siblings over the course of a day and a very long night as they deal with a wish gone wrong. The Willow kids (ages six and up) have just moved from their suburban neighborhood to a house in the country, and they’re having some trouble adjusting. But those troubles seem simple after Celia, the youngest, turns into a giant hamster when she wishes “to be big.” Dorman’s black-and-white illustrations are appealing, and Jonell handles the children’s problem with a light hand, finding humor in how they hide Celia’s appearance and tremendous stores of energy from their parents. After a night of adventure in which the children sneak out to find the Great Hamster and undo the magic, all ends well. And the Willow kids are sure that next time, they will better handle all of the new rural magic around them. — Abby Nolan  Review from Booklist.

Lawn Mower Magic

With a POP! and a puff of smoke, the Willows' lawn mower calls it quits. A new mower will cost their parents a lot of money, money Derek had hoped to borrow for a train ticket to visit a friend. Luckily Derek and his brother and sisters find a rusty push mower tucked away in the shed. It doesn't look like much, but it turns out that it's been soaking up magic for years. And it's hungry for grass!

Can Derek earn his ticket? Maybe . . . if he, Abner, Tate, and Celia can keep the magic mower under control!

Lynne Jonell follows up her Junior Library Guild selection, Hamster Magic, with a second story of the Willow family's rowdy run-ins with mixed-up magic.

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