Friday, May 8, 2009

Something old, something new - more book recs

1) A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith

Starting with something old, this book is a long-time favourite of mine and my sister's. It has been re-read many times ever since I received it as a gift when I was a teenager.

First published in 1943, the novel is a coming-of-age story of Francie Nolan and her Irish American family struggling to survive in Brooklyn. White's depiction of family relationships is charming and the characters believeable, without romanticising the hardships of poverty and alcoholism. The protagonist, Francie is a girl who loves to read and write and yearns for a better life for herself and her family. The story follows her through to young adulthood where she gets her heart broken and ends with the insinuation that she does find love afterall.

Lesley-Anne is now half-way through the book and she loves it. I suspect it would be more of a hit with girls than boys though.

2) The Cat Royal series by Julia Golding

This second recommendation is purely Lesley-Anne's. She found this series in the library and quickly became hooked. There are six books available in this series so far (she found four in the library): The Diamond of Drury Lane, Cat among the Pigeons, Den of Thieves, Cat O'Nine Tails, Black Heart of Jamaica and Cat's Cradle. Eventually, there will be nine all together.

The protagonist of the series is orphan Cat Royal and the stories are set in the theatre. She sets off to solve mysteries, from recovering a stolen diamond to saving fugitives from slavery.

I haven't read this series so I can't share my views, but Lesley-Anne raves about it and she devoured all four books within a week. She also loves the Companions Quartet by the same author, which is a series of four fantasy books.

Although the protagonist is female, I think boys may also enjoy this author as she writes in the mystery and fantasy genres which boys generally love.


Veronica_L said...

I've also read "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn" and it is very good. I think boys won't like this very much, you;re right...

If you're looking for more books like these you could try Angela's Ashes(not for children).

Good job in exposing Lesley Anne to so many different books! It's always a good idea for kids to read.

monlim said...

I love Angela's Ashes! Wrote about it in one of my book posts. Made me cry buckets :P

But definitely not so suitable for children. Lesley-Anne has stepped up her reading towards end of last year, I think that has helped her compositions.

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