To begin, I need to announce the winner of last week's giveaway, an ARC of The Lost Treasure of Tuckernuck. That lucky person is . . .
Yay! Email your mailing address to barbarawatson94 (at) gmail (dot) com so I can get this treasure (wink, wink) to you.
And for today's Marvelous Middle Grade Monday . . .
Button Down by Anne Ylvisaker continues the adventures of the down-home Button family of Goodhue, Iowa (but in a stand-alone book way). Set in the late 1920's, these stories--the first being The Luck of the Buttons and featured here--are beautifully written, full of times past but also completely relating to readers today, and simply . . . FUN! Anne sent me an ARC of Button Down (it officially released on September 25!) which I'd like to pass on to one of you. Stay tuned for giveaway details at the end of this post.
The premise: Scrawny Ned Button wins local football hero Lester Ward's football right before Lester heads off to the University of Iowa to play football for the Hawkeyes. But Lester's younger, bully-like brother wants to keep Ned and his friends from playing with or enjoying his brother's prize football. Ned's Granddaddy Ike, although old and growing older, is determined to help--with more than just football.
What keeps readers reading: Cheering for the boy who can't ever seem to win. In pitch perfect middle grade voice, Anne Ylvisaker gives readers a boy (and a grandpa!) who deserve more than our cheers. They deserve our admiration.
What I loved: The way readers are led into the story. We care for the characters, especially Ned and Granddaddy Ike, and we feel what they feel. Anne shows family at its best . . . and also at its most vulnerable. Because I never want to spill too much and ruin the joy of discovery, you'll simply have to read this book yourself and see where it takes Ned and Granddaddy Ike.
To enter the drawing for my ARC of Button Down, just comment on this post by Sunday, September 30, 2012, by 8pm CDT. Blog followers will be entered twice! U.S. mailing addresses only, please. And return this Thursday for an interview with Anne!
For more middle grade reading recommendations, follow the links at Shannon Messenger's blog.
Happy middle grade reading!