Monday, October 15, 2012

Marvelous Middle Grade Monday: The Universe of Fair

The winner of my ARC of Keeping Safe the Stars is:


Woot! Email your mailing address to barbarawatson94(at)gmail(dot)com.

For today's feature, I'm joining the blog tour for Peachtree Publisher's new middle grade book . . .

The Universe of Fair by Leslie Bulion!

This book takes readers (in a very up-close way) to main character Miller Sanford's favorite place on earth -- the Holmsbury Fair. When combined with Frank W. Dormer's fun drawings, it all pulls together for an entertaining, fun, and  adventurous middle grade read. And because Peachtree provided me with a hardcover for giveaway, I have one copy to give away! (This is quite hard for me to do, however. You all know how I love hardcovers.)

The premise: It's Fair Friday, the day Miller Sanford looks forward to more than any other day of the year. And this year, Miller is eleven -- old enough (he's hoping) to spend the day alone with his best friend Lewis. But a bunch of mishaps later, Miller ends up in charge of a group of first graders, has ruined his dad's prize lemon meringue pie, and starts investigating ghosts.  It's not quite the day he had planned.

What keeps readers reading: Miller's determination. As readers walk alongside Miller, we keep hoping that now will be the moment, now will be the time, that he is free of his first graders and will be able to enjoy the Fair on his own. Every one of us, regardless of age, knows what it's like to have your best-laid plans fall flat. And it's what we do next that shows character. And character is something Miller is loaded with.

What I loved: Miller. He's real and rounded. He so badly wants to be on his own at the Fair, but even when his dreams snag on every possible thorn around, he comes through for the reader. And there's so much to love (and relate with) concerning Miller's relationship with his pesky first-grade sister Penelope--or as Miller likes to call her, Pain-elope.

To enter the drawing for the hardcover of The Universe of Fair, just comment on this post. All comments posted by 8pm CDT on Sunday, October 21, 2012, will be entered. Blog followers get their name in the drawing twice. U.S. mailing addresses only, please. Winner announced Monday, October 22nd.

For more middle grade greatness, visit the links put together by Shannon Messenger. 
Happy middle grade reading! 

24 comments:

  1. This book sounds fun! I love books with a fair setting, and I agree, any character who has his plans ruined in some way is instantly relatable. I couldn't help but giggle when I saw that Penelope's nickname was Pain-elope. *hee*

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  2. Congrats to Temre!

    From the cover, I'm sure any other illustrations are fun. Thanks for sharing this one with us! Sounds great.

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  3. Sounds like a fun book. Love finding new books from you. I'll let someone else win while I dig through my to read stack.

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  4. I love the nickname. Sounds like a great book.

    My kids recently told me they're done with PB *gasp*, but then my 8 year old found the elephant & piggie books by Mo Williems. We had to go to the library to pick up a whole bunch, which she proceeded to read to me. That's right. My reluctant reader begged to read to me. :D

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    1. Hallelujah! (I'm feeling the same about my 9-year-old reluctant reader this week, Stina. He's had his nose buried in Roald Dahl's THE BFG!

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  5. I loved this book, too! (I'm going to reluctantly opt out of the giveaway, since I already own it...) Great review!

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  6. Who doesn't love a fair? And that struggle of when you can be on your own is so inherently MG.

    No need to enter me in the drawing since I recently won. Thanks for sharing!

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  7. Great review, Barbara. Thanks for getting THE UNIVERSE OF FAIR on my radar screen.

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  8. Congrats to Temre. She's getting a wonderful book.

    Pain-elope! Ha ha! That's great.

    And what a fun premise. I hadn't heard of this book, but the illustration style looked familiar. So I investigated Frank W. Dormer's website and realized I've read the Aggie books by Lori Reis that he also illustrated. I love MG books with illustrations. Thanks for hosting a giveaway.

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  9. The fair is such a ripe setting for a middle grade! Would love to read this.

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  10. This sounds like a really fun book. I have just the grandchild to read this one after I'm done. It is now on my TBR list. Thanks for the review and the giveaway.

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  11. This looks and sounds like a real gem. Please enter my name for the chance to win a copy. Thanks!

    carlscott(at)prodigy(dot)net(dot)mx

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  12. That looks and sounds like a great MG book! I love the whimsical cover, and fairs are just loaded with possibilities. Good stuff! Thanks for the heads up! :o) <3

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  13. I love the illustration on the cover! Sounds like another good one.

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  14. The voice sounds cute. Definitely a book to check out.

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  15. Sounds wonderful. A great lesson on how to deal with things when our days go astray. Middle Grade Monday's is growing my TBR pile!

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  16. Congrats Temre!

    This sounds like a delightful book and I look forward to reading it. I love a good fair and this sounds like a book I will enjoy. Thanks for sharing and for the giveaway.
    ~Jess

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  17. Miller sounds like a fun character. Even the book cover is bursting with personality. Thanks for the review Barbara!

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  18. Sounds like a fun book. Thanks for posting, Barbara. :)

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  19. Thanks for enjoying Miller and the gang, Barbara, and for introducing THE UNIVERSE OF FAIR to new readers!Yours, Leslie B.

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  20. Loved this book--thanks for letting your readers know about it.

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  21. Sounds like a fun book! (I just checked out Peachtree and their blogger program. Very cool!)

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  22. Really does sound like a great read. Can't wait to get my hands on a copy.

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Comments. Yay! They're almost as good as chocolate. Almost.