Burly and Grum and the Birthday Surprise
By Kate Tenbeth
This short chapter book about a bear named Burly and his groblin friend Grum having a birthday day trip to a deserted island has many surprises. The blend of unique characters sets the Burly and Grum stories apart. Who would think to put a talking bear, a groblin, a human boy and an angel all in one story? Their personalities are diverse and entertaining. The setting is perfect for such a zany story.
I recommend this book and look forward to the others in the series.
Burly & Grum’s Halloween Adventure
by Kate Tenbeth
Burlington the bear, Grum the groblin and Max all dress up for Halloween as Dracula, the Hulk and a Mummy respectively. Once Burly and Grum get the hang of Halloween, it promises to be a fun night. When they meet a distraught fairy named Meg, it becomes an even more exciting night for the three friends.
This is a nice Halloween story. My 6-year-old thought it was cute. We even loved the surprise addition of finding the audio book link at the end of the ebook. So we listened to the story again.
I recommend this quick and fun little adventure.
Andy Smithson: Blast of the Dragon’s Fury
by L.R.W. Lee
Why did I wait so long to read this?! I absolutely loved this book. It has adventure (quests), dragons, knights, humor, good principles, friendship and self-discovery.
Andy Smithson is a kid that has kind of gotten lazy. He doesn’t feel heard or seen by his parents and he just lets things happen to him because no one is going to listen to him anyway. But one day he is “beamed” to a different place where dragons and Pegasus’ exist. Andy is welcomed warmly and sincerely, which is new to him. He is also gets the opportunity to earn trust and respect, even from adults.
I enjoyed reading about Andy’s adventures. The Prologue was funny as well. The characters seem genuine and easy to relate to. The setting takes some getting to use to because it was hard for me to imagine the landscape and how people functioned under the “curse.” But the author keeps it well in our minds. The pacing and end-of-chapter cliffhangers kept me reading.
There are many good principles brought up in the book. Although they were quite obvious to me (an adult) they may be a good “nudge in the right direction” for the middle graders who are the target reading group.
I would definitely recommend this book to middle graders, boys and girls, especially if you like magic, dragons, knights, and quests (sorry no princesses). This is only the beginning for Andy. Will he be able to break the curse? I can’t wait to read the next adventure.
Rating 5/5 stars