The Waning Days of Summer (post II of II)

September is now here, but it is still Summer! As noted last week, Summer is the best time to read stories about daring adventures and survival. As promised, here are some more wonderful picture and chapter adventure books recommended for those of you wrestling with the nearness of Autumn. Find them all at your  favorite local St. Louis Public Library Branch!

How I became a Pirate by Melinda Long

Jeremy is on vacation at the beach with his family when a pirate ships lands and whisks him off on a high seas adventure. His parents, of course, are too busy to notice. After teaching the pirates how to play soccer and helping them bury their treasure, Jeremy returns home just in time for soccer practice.

Emma’s Turtle by Martha Winborn

Emma’s pet turtle digs a hole under his pen and escapes. As he travels around the backyard, he imagines that he is having an adventure in Africa, India, and the other exotic lands that Emma has read to him about, mistaking a tree stump for an elephant leg and a frog for a kangaroo. Just as he starts to get scared, Emma finds him and the turtle decides that it was a grand adventure.

The True Meaning of Smekday by Adam Rex

11-year-old Gratuity Tucci tells her story of Smekday, the day the alien race known as the Boov arrived on Earth and forced all Americans to move to reservations in Florida. After her mother, who was receiving messages from the Boov through a mole in the back of her neck, disappears into a space ship, Gratuity decides to drive her mother’s car to Florida to rescue her. Thus begins her crazy, and hilarious, adventures. On the way, Gratuity (and her cat, Pig) meet a renegade Boov named J.Lo, who decides to come along for the ride. Though this sci-fi story is completely wacky and laugh-out-loud funny, Rex touches on deeper issues as Gratuity, J.Lo, and Pig road trip across the US on a mission to take out the Boov. The humor and illustrations interspersed throughout make this a great book for reluctant readers and for boys and girls alike.

Getting Air by Dan Gutman

While on a cross-country flight to California to gain sponsorship into a skateboarding club, thirteen-year-old Jimmy, his little sister Julia, and his two best friends foil a terrorist group’s attempt to hijack their plane. With both pilots dead, the plane crashes deep in the forest, leaving only the kids, a flight attendant, and an elderly woman alive. As the six try to survive, their true adventure begins. While their situation is dire, the tone of the book remains light and enjoyable as the banter and optimism of the children is preserved.


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