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Hi Mrs. Greiner and Ansley,
This is Sarah McGill. Mama showed me your post about some of Ansley's favorite books. I love to read, so thought I'd share a few of the books that I enjoyed when I was around her age, books that Hannah's been reading lately and really liked.

-I read all of the Elizabeth George Speare books inbetween 5th and 7th grade: Calico Captive, Witch of Blackbird Pond, and The Bronze Bow.
The Bronze Bow was probably my favorite of the three (I'd have to say it's one of my favorite books overall as well)-it's sad at some parts, but it's a really great story. It's set during the time when Jesus was on the earth, a little before His crucifixion. The main character is a boy who has dedicated his life to destroying the Romans who killed his parents. It's sort of the journey that he goes through as he learns to forgive instead of hate.
Witch of Blackbird Pond is also one of my favorite books overall; Hannah read it as well and really enjoyed it. The main character is a young lady who moved to New England in the year 1687 to live with family there. She's accused of being a witch by a very superstitious resident of the town. In the end she's proven innocent, though. The story is very well written, and although I like The Bronze Bow better as far as storyline goes, I think it's the best of the Elizabeth George Speare books.
Calico Captive is probably a little below Ansley's reading level, but it's pretty good as well. (: It's about a family who are captured by Indians during a raid and held captive for a while only to be sold to the French. It's based on the diary of a young woman who actually went through that experience.

-Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm is one of the classics that I really liked. I'm sure you've heard of it, but in case you haven't, it's a about a ten year old girl who goes to live with her aunts for a while. She's pretty headstrong, adventurous, and mischevious, which makes it a rather funny book.

-Jane Eyre is probably one of the classics that's really good but that Ansley could wait a little while to read. I can't think of anything right now that would be inappropriate or anything, but it's quite sad sometimes and a little scary in a few parts. It's not one of my favorites, but it's such a wonderfully written book that I can't really help but like it. It's written in...I don't really know, but I think it's called Old English, which makes it a slow read. Regardless of that, though, I definitely recommend it to her now or when she's a little older. I'm not sure of her reading level, but I think that it's good to read it when you are older than twelve, in my case thirteen.

-Alone Yet Not Alone is based on the true story of a family whose house was raided by Indians in the year 1755. The father and brother who were at the house when the raid occured were killed, and the two young girls were taken captive. Their mother, and I think perhaps an older brother, were away in town and weren't captured. Barbara and her sister were seperated, but in the end they, their mother, and their brother were reunited. It's an amazing book; I read it out loud to Hannah and I couldn't help but cry at a few parts. It's a really sweet story. There is a movie that was made a little while ago based on the book. It's supposed to be a great movie, and Mama and I were going to go see it at the theatre, but we had dinner with family and didn't make it. I think the movie is PG-13, although the reviews said that there is nothing graphic or gory, just some intense scenes.

-The Westing Game is one of my all-time favorites. It's sort of hard to explain, but here's what the back of the book says: "A bizarre chain of events begins when sixteen unlikely people gather for the reading of Samuel Westing's will. And though no one knows why the eccentric, game-loving millionaire has chosen a virtual stranger-and a possible murderer-to inherit his vast fortune, one thing's for sure: Samuel Westing may be dead...but that won't stop him from playing one last game." Have you ever played the board game Clue? It's sort of like that, since you're trying to solve a mystery. The end is my favorite though, as it's entirely unexpected and sort of takes you by surprise. I had to read it several times before I began to really understand it, but it's one of those books that I like better every time I read it.

-Island of the Blue Dolphins is one of Hannah's favorites. She read it in 6th grade at school for her Literature class and really liked it. It's about a girl who lives on a island with her tribe of people, but then is left alone with her brother due to some circumstances that I could go into detail about but I think I'll just let you read it. (: Her brother is killed by wild dogs, and the story is kind of about how she uses resources on the island to survive. It's a really neat book.

-Caddie Woodlawn is a book I read around 4th or 5th grade, but I still like to reread it every now and then. Caddie is a spunky redheaded tomboy living in the 1860's with her two sisters and two brothers. I wouldn't rank it among my favorites, but it's a happy book and a fun read.

-The Mixed up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler is a book that it took me two re-reads to appreciate, but now it's one of my favorites. I thought that I hated it for a little while, and I didn't really understand the point of writing a book about a brother and sister running away to the Metropolitan Museum of Art. It's so crazy that it's hilarious--no one could ever pull off hiding in a museum night after night, but they are so thorough that they make it almost believable.

-When You Reach Me is a book that I read about a year ago and then read to Hannah. It's about a girl named Miranda, living in today's world, who is somehow caught up in the world of time travel. It's really really confusing, so I won't even try to explain. Like the Westing Game, I'll just quote the back of the book, "By sixth grade Miranda and her best friend, Sal, know how to navigate their New York City neighborhood. They know where it's safe to go, and who to avoid. Like the crazy guy on the corner. But things start to unravel. Sal gets punched by a kid on the street for what seems like no reason, and he shuts Miranda out of his life. The apartment key that Miranda's mom keeps hidden for emergencies is stolen. And then a mysterious note arrives, scrawled on a tiny slip of paper. 'I am coming to save your friend's life, and my own. I ask two favors. First, you must write me a letter.' The notes keep coming, and Miranda slowly realizes that whoever is leaving them knows things that no one should know. Each message brings her closer to believing that only she can prevent a tragic death. Until the final note makes her think she's too late." It's pretty much an edge-of-your-seat, can't-put-it-down book, but it's also a tough read. You have to go back and read it again and again before it makes sense. Hannah really liked it; I would't say it's the greatest, but she says it's in her top three favorite books. I think Ansley would like it. (;

And I could go on and on and on. I have a whole stack of books sitting next to me that I could list, but we're actually have a 4th of July celebration with our neighbors in just a minute so I'll have to finish later.

Thanks for reading all of these suggestions, and there's plenty more where that came from. :)
I hope Ansley enjoyes some of these.

God Bless!


Thank you so much Sarah! I so appreciate you giving us your book recommendations! I have added them to our library list, and we can't wait to get them! I also really enjoyed reading your description of each of them - it made me smile. I love that you are a book lover. Make sure and let us know when you come across a good one! Happy Summer! :)

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