Jun 302014
 
Toothiana Queen of the Tooth Fairy Armies

That is one impressive tooth fairy.

My daughter has been reading the Warriors series by Erin Hunter. There are currently 53 books in the series including manga and field guides and my daughter is adamant that she will read them all. However, because we’re getting them from the library and there is sometimes a delay in the book arriving at our branch she has been crossing over into other series. Another thing she is adamant about is primarily focusing her reading energy on series. I’m not sure why this is other than her rationale that she can keep up a round robin with the different series and hopefully always have one available to read while she waits for the others to arrive. I’ve pointed out all the excellent individual books she could be reading (like Watership Down) and while she’s tempted she really wants to focus on the series. Another part of the challenge is finding books with a strong female point of view that will appeal to a 10-year-old girl. Beyond this she’s not interested in scary, creepy, and/or monster-filled, which leaves out a significant portion of the quasi-Twilight genre. And too much action usually means too much boy stuff. Which leaves us with magic, fairies, and animals of which there are plenty – although the magic stories are not allowed to get too macabre (I’m looking at you Spiderwick Chronicles). Sweet Valley High and the unfeasibly vast YA girl soap opera genre is, thankfully, off her list. So what are we left with after all these conditions? The following is a short list that we are currently exploring. If you have any suggestions to add please let me know. The Guardians of Childhood by William Joyce I’ve come across Toothiana: Queen of the Tooth Fairy Armies several times and tried to steer her to it because: fairies. The last time I tried she had already seen the movie Rise of the Guardians and liked it enough to become seriously interested in the books – but only the entire series and only in order! That meant going back and starting with Nicholas St. North and the Battle of the Nightmare King, which proceeded to shock her with the radical differences between the book and the movie. She likes them both but how dare they change the story! Redwall by Brian Jacques I’ve been aware of Redwall for some time now and have occasionally tried to encourage the kids to read it. When The Tale of Despereaux comes up in conversation I try to steer them over to Redwall but for some reason they have been resistant to pick it up. It may have too much boy energy in general for my daughter’s taste but if she sticks with it there are several books in the series that center around strong female characters. Guardians of Ga’hoole by Kathryn Lasky She’s seen the movie and enjoyed it but we were generally unaware of the book series before the film came out. In our desperation to find more animal adventure fantasy series we’re going to throw this one on the pile – owls, why not? And before you say it, yes we’re aware that Erin Hunter has written a series about bears and dogs as well as the Warriors series. Our daughter already has plans to dig through all of them. Silverwing by Kenneth Oppel I can’t believe I didn’t think of this one sooner. If it had been a fantasy about snake clans in the wild it would have bitten me. Kenneth Oppel’s Airborn series is one of our son’s favorites and I consider my discovery of it and subsequent pairing with my son’s tastes a personal media curatorial triumph. The Silverwing series is about bats, which may or may not take hold with my daughter but I’ve got my fingers crossed. All of this should keep her occupied well into the next school year but I can tell right now that I’m going to have to get an early start on next summer’s reading lists if this well runs dry.

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