I recently put my blog name into effect, so I thought I'd let you know that I'm true to my slogan. I practiced my craft on my unsuspecting 10-year-old nephew and 15-year-old niece in honor of their birthdays, which are only a few days apart.
As far as their reading tastes go, suffice it to say that Kyle is a fan of Rick Riordan's books, while Kristina is a Sarah Dessen fan.
It was too hot to go to the bookstore, so we sat at my sister's computer and shopped on Amazon.com. Here's what I ended up getting for Kyle:
War of the Worlds by H.G. Wells--this was at his request. Kyle is a math-and-science kid, a future Bill Gates, no doubt. I think this title might be self-explanatory, but if you're not familiar with it, it's a classic. Your basic alien invasion.
Leviathan by Scott Westerfeld--I pitched this to my nephew, and he was intrigued. This book is the first in a steampunk series set in an alternate World War I Europe. Great Britain and her allies are the Darwinists, using biologically cultivated war machines like a flying whale that's an airship. The Germans and their allies are known as the Clankers because they use sophisticated mechanical war machines. We follow the adventures of the son of the slain archduke of Austria and a girl who poses as a boy airman on that whale of an airship.
The Atlantis Complex (Artemis Fowl) by Eoin Colfer--also Kyle's request; he's read all of the previous books. In case you're not familiar with these books, Artemis is a young genius, a budding supervillain whose criminal tendencies are sometimes softened or at least diverted by his alliance with the rather tough fairy world.
Some of the other possibilities I brought up were the Ranger's Apprentice series by John Flanagan, the Underland Chronicles by Suzanne Collins, and the Alex Rider series by Anthony Horowitz. I gave Kyle a little list of these books to look for at the library.
On to Kristina's b-day gifts... She was looking for something new to read, so I hit her up with a trio of books I figured she had missed. She was definitely interested.
The Extraordinary Secrets of April, May & June by Robin Benway--this is my review.
Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins--see my review here.
Angus, Thongs and Full-frontal Snogging by Louise Rennison--I found out Kristina had never read any of Rennison's wild-and-crazy Brit books. In case you haven't read them, they're the diaries of one Georgia Nicolson, a girl who is self-centered, but also very funny and off the wall. Worth it for the evil cat alone (see cover art).
So, dear readers, that's how it went down, on the ever-so-sunny 4th of July. Any other thoughts about books for these two kids? Let me know in the comments! Meanwhile, Book Aunt has done her thing, and the summer reading season is properly launched for my sister's offspring. As for the birthday party itself, we had three kinds of pie with ice cream for the main course, then barbecued chicken and steak for dessert. 'Cause why not?
Note for Worried Parents: The books I ordered for Kristina are probably PG, with some teen-type talk about sex, longing, and (from the girl's perspective) breasts, but nothing too strong. Oh, and there's teen drinking in Benway's and Perkins' books, though it's presented in a negative light.