August 8, 2012

August 9th, KKCO News 11, Today, Summer Reads, Mysteries


If you have not seen this list of teen novels put out by NPR, check it out, after you read this blog.  There are some great book suggestions on it.  

     Welcome to my August 9th post.  Is it really August?   Some schools are back in session.  Most of the Grand Valley schools start in seven days.  Where did the summer go?  It's a mystery.  As cliche as it is, I want to know why summer flies by when other parts of the year just seem to drag on.  I am thinking of calling on Slate Stephens for some help.

Today on KKCO, News11 Today, I shared two, fun mysteries in a series for kids ages 8 - 12, the tweens.  Why are mysteries important for kids to read?  Why are there so many fans of mysteries?  What does it take to write a very good mystery for children?  I could write a whole blog on that but I won't do that here.  What I can say is that a good mystery is about solving a problem in a clever way that keeps the reader engaged.  It also engages the reader in thinking about how to solve the mystery. It brings what educators work hard when they teach kids to read, making inferences and deducing. What might happen next?  How is this going to be solved?  A well written mystery does this naturally without the reader even knowing it.

      Sneed B. Collard III has brought his award winning, writing experience and his sense of humor into his newest fiction work, The Slate Stephens Mysteries, THE GOVENOR'S DOG IS MISSING! and HANGMAN'S GOLD.   He also brings his knowledge of child development into his characters.  Sneeds characters are very believable.  The humor, innocence, natural exploration balanced with doing the right thing captures this age group that Slate and his companion Daphne belong to. It's a perfect match for tween readers.  What else makes this series stand out?  Sneed is very good at all aspects of writing, and he carries it off with his great storytelling.  If you think you need zombies, vampires, dragons, or pirates to entertain your children, you will be pleasantly surprised because Sneed's writing will provide more than that and includes some Western history, biology, and geology. This is fun stuff and never a dull moment writing.

I rate both of these books, a 5 apple book, outstanding, cream of the crop.  Sneed uses his writing skills, ability to create believable characters, fun plots, and researched historical history to make the reader want more.

    The Slate Stephens Mysteries, THE GOVENOR'S DOG IS MISSING! and HANGMAN'S GOLD are for tween children ages 8 -12, both genders who can read chapter books. 

    The themes in this book are mystery, history of the West, friendship, and solving problems.

    You can learn more about Sneed and his award winning books and where to buy them at: Sneed's Website.

     You can find this book through the publisher, Bucking Horse Books.  Your local book store can order this book for you.  On the West Slope of Colorado, our local independent seller is Grand Valley BooksIn addition it can be found online at Mountain Press and Amazon.


Anonymous said...

Diane...thanks for great reviews of two outstanding books...I appreciate this because I have a 10-year old niece and am always wondering what books to get for her for Christmas and her birthday!
Would love to win one of these for her. :) I will tweet this review and post it on my Facebook...hopefully some other parents will come and visit.

I totally agree with you about soon as August 1st comes, the summer FLIES by! Some schools have already opened here in Colorado Springs...ouch! Time is definitely relative...when I am reading, an hour is like a minute. :)

Evelyn said...

Both of these mysteries sound like really fun reads for kids. Thanks for sharing them with us, Diane. I'm impressed with the variety of kinds of books you review in this program. It helps to broaden our awareness of what's available out there for kids.