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Courtesy of Mother Daughter Book Club com has commented on (398) products.

One Witch at a Time by Stacy Dekeyser
One Witch at a Time

Courtesy of Mother Daughter Book Club com, March 9, 2015

A harsh winter has taken its toll on Rudi’s village of Brixen. Carrying a portion of his dairy farm’s dwindling supply of cheese and butter, he sets off for the market in a nearby town to trade for food, taking the pesky daughter of a friend along. But when Susanna Louisa trades a whole cow to a pretty foreign girl for a handful of beans, Rudi’s troubles truly begin.

One Witch at a Time by Stacy DeKeyser reimagines the Jack in the Beanstalk tale, expanding and updating it for modern readers. Here, a whole community surrounds Rudi. When he sets off with Susanna Louisa to visit the witch who lives in the mountain and set things right, he begins an adventure that will have him figuring out how to return things where they rightfully belong, address injustice for oppressed villagers, and earn the respect of those closest to him. It’s a tall order for a 13-year-old, but Rudi shows he’s up to the task.

While the basics of the tale are well known��"a boy, a giant, a beanstalk��"DeKeyser creates so much more by providing rich detail about the place and the people in it. She also makes a few changes that will delight young readers. Rudi’s town of Brixen, the far-off icy village of Petz, two magic witches, and one clever grandmother all combine to make One Witch at a Time a compelling book for kids to read on their own or for parents to read to them. I highly recommend it for young readers and mother-daughter book clubs with girls aged 8 to 12.

The author provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
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The Truth about Twinkie Pie by Kat Yeh
The Truth about Twinkie Pie

Courtesy of Mother Daughter Book Club com, March 9, 2015

The Truth About Twinkie Pie cover imageSince their mom died when GiGi was a baby, her big sister DiDi has taken care of her. DiDi works hard to make sure GiGi gets what she needs to excel in school and prepare for college. So when she wins a lot of money in a contest, she decides the two of them should move to Long Island where GiGi can attend a challenging prep school.

GiGi sees it as an opportunity to reinvent herself without leaving the things she likes about her life behind. She makes waves as well as friends and enemies in her new town. But her desire to find a special present for her older sister’s birthday will lead her to a shocking discovery about her family.

The Truth About Twinkie Pie by Kat Yeh is about family, friends, and making a better life for yourself when the opportunity arises. As GiGi tries to figure out how to fit into her new, upper-class environment, she learns that people can have troubles no matter what their situation in life.

Sprinkled with recipes from the girls’ trailer park, South Carolina roots, it’s an endearing story that will have you whipping up the dishes described even as you ponder the life situations they serve. I recommend it for mother-daughter book clubs with girls aged 12 to 16.

The publisher provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
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Famous Phonies: Legends, Fakes, and Frauds Who Changed History (Changed History) by Brianna Dumont
Famous Phonies: Legends, Fakes, and Frauds Who Changed History (Changed History)

Courtesy of Mother Daughter Book Club com, March 9, 2015

Famous Phonies: Legends, Fakes and Frauds Who Changed History by Brianna DuMont should put to rest any notion that history is boring. In twelve chapters focusing on historic figures, DuMont sets about answering questions such as: Did a female pope ever sit on the throne in Rome? Did Homer really write The Iliad and The Odyssey? How did Confucius become a legend? Was George Washington a good general?

The people DuMont highlights include those above as well as Shakespeare, Hiawatha, Pythagoras, Gilgamesh and more. In each case she looks in depth into the tales surrounding the person, in some cases even showing that the person of legend never existed. But DuMont also points out how the stories about the famous people often inspired others to go to war, change the rules, or even create new inventions. For instance, The Turk, a famous chess-playing automaton from the 1700s, helped inspire inventors who started the Industrial Revolution. And a planted dead body helped the Allies win World War II.

Famous Phonies is full of interesting tidbits that will have you thinking critically about other legends you take for granted. It’s fun to read, with several pull-out facts and supporting sidebars included with each chapter. The result is a fascinating read for those who love history as well as those who think they don’t. I highly recommend it for readers aged 9 to 12 and their parents.

The author provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
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Love, Lucy by April Lindner
Love, Lucy

Courtesy of Mother Daughter Book Club com, March 9, 2015

Lucy spends the summer before she starts college backpacking around Europe. In Florence she falls in love with the people, the food, the sights…and a guy named Jesse from Philadelphia. She thinks it’s probably just a summer flirtation. Back at home she tells herself she needs to move on and forget about him, but she can’t help hoping that their relationship was more than just a short-term thing.

Love, Lucy by April Lindner is a sweet story about a girl stuck between two worlds, one where she longs to follow her dreams and the other that’s a more practical path to her future. Complicating the issue for Lucy is that she wanted to study acting in college, but her dad has refused to let her major in anything but business. He paid for the trip to Europe in exchange for her agreement to follow the path he chooses for her.

In the end, Lucy has to decide how to be true to herself without alienating her parents. Teens on the cusp of leaving home and establishing their identities on their own should be able to identify with Lucy’s dilemma.

The publisher provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
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Teenagers 101: What a Top Teacher Wishes You Knew about Helping Your Kid Succeed by Rebecca Deurlein
Teenagers 101: What a Top Teacher Wishes You Knew about Helping Your Kid Succeed

Courtesy of Mother Daughter Book Club com, March 9, 2015

As a teacher for many years at both public and private schools, Rebecca Deurlein has seen her share of teenagers. And while some people may wonder at how she could spend years in a classroom dealing with teen behavior, she says she loves teenagers. It was her desire to help them and their parents that led her to write the book Teenagers 101: What a Top Teacher Wishes You Knew About Helping Your Kid Succeed.

Writing from the perspective of someone who has both raised children and interacted with thousands more, Deurlein has insight that is sure to help parents in dealing with their own teens. Topics she covers include how to motivate kids, how to encourage them to persevere when technology supports instant gratification, how to get kids to accept responsibility, and more. She has the unique perspective of seeing not only how kids behave, but also how parents sometimes unwittingly undermine the behavior they hope to encourage.

Before reading Teenagers 101 I was a bit worried that Deurlein would sound too smug in her observations and recommendations, but I found her writing to be straightforward and helpful. She gives examples based on her experiences and the experiences of other teachers she knows. Throughout, it’s easy to see that she cares about teens and wants to help them become successful adults.

While the book doesn’t address every issue that may come up as you are parenting teens, I found it to be a supportive guide on a variety of issues and recommend it for parents of teens and pre-teens.

The publisher provided me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.
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