I've read 21 books this year, but that puts me WAY behind in my goal of 75 by the end of the year. I need to pick things up in a BIG way. The boys and I have been reading like crazy together, but my own reading has stunk. SO...here we go!
Ramona the Pest by Beverly Cleary
The boys are on a big Ramona kick. They think she is hysterical. Even Will LOVES these books. This one was about Ramona's first year at school. James is on the fence about kindergarten this year and I think this book helped. Even though Ramona would be almost 70 years old now, kindergarten hasn't changed *that* much and James liked it. She is such a character! Unlike Pippi Longstocking, though, I don't mind reading about the shenanigans that she gets in because she usually doesn't mean to be bad. (Pippi was hard for me for some reason.) We've picked up two more Ramona books from the library. We'll probably also venture into Henry Huggins (the boy character that Beverly Cleary wrote in response to boys not having any books about them in the library) soon.
Jurassic World: Special Edition Junior Novelization by David Lewman
James has begged to see Jurassic World so this was his consolation prize. (The language is not bad - I've seen it twice and I think I counted seven words in my second showing. It IS scary, though, and James would have nightmares. I just don't want to do that to him.) He has two of the Lego sets and we've watched the original so he was pumped about this book. (Hello, I'm Lauren and I'm a Jurassic Park NUT. Hi, Lauren!) The book was great! It follows the movie to. a. tee. It left out a few parts that weren't appropriate for young readers (Owen makes a joke about Claire joining him in his bungalow and another part where Gray asks Zach about their parents getting divorced.). I enjoyed reading it to the boys and they both liked it. James liked it a lot more than Will and could really follow the dialogue (it's hard to understand some of those big dinosaur/science words when you're 3!). It would be great for a pre-teen who liked the movie. Well done!
Marineland by Cheryl Messinger
I read this in a day at the beach a few weeks ago. It was a super quick read, but had some great information. I grew up going to Marineland. We went with both sets of parents to St. Augustine growing up numerous times and I know we went to Marineland a handful of times during those trips. That would've been in the early 90s. The park started in the 1930s so it was old by the time that I knew it. The book follows the history of the early days of the park and doesn't touch as much on the later history, which I felt was a little bit of a shame, but that's just because that's when I knew it. There are TONS of pictures of what the park looked like when it was first built. It's owned by the Georgia Aquarium now, but it has a GREAT history. Marineland was the first place of its kind and was really the gateway for parks like Seaworld. Built as a movie studio, it has been featured in lots and lots and LOTS of movies. The original owners really didn't know anything about sea animals, they just started collecting them and learning about them and they were almost always successful. This was definitely worth my time!