Oh, the Lies that Lie Beneath the Fountain!

Just before the new millineum began, 1999 to be exact, a humorous tale was published about a fountain, an artist, school officials and, yes, a coverup (literally). Kate Klise is the talented wit behind Regarding the Fountain. If your chapter book reader hasn’t delved into this tale told in memos, letters and all sorts of correspondence, he or she is missing out.

The fountain outside Dry Creek Middle School is leaking and the principal has charged a fifth grade student with writing a letter requesting a catalog for a new one. So begins the craziness.  The admnistrators want a basic fountain, the students want a grand one and the fountain company, headed by Flo Waters, an artist, wants to create a masterpiece. As tensions rise, the fifth graders begin to deduce that there is more than cost involved in the administrator’s reluctance to replace the fountain. Namely, a coverup, involving something intentionally hidden UNDER the fountain.

Readers will love following the fifith graders as they discover the mystery of the fountain, expose the adults’ corruption and enjoy a satisying conclusion.

Written by Kate Klise

Copyright 1998 (hardcover), 1999 (paperback).

Accelerated reader level 5.8

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TGIF, Barnes that is!

R.A. Spratt’s other book series takes the plucky qualities of Nanny Piggins and transplants them into a young girl named Friday Barnes.  Unlike the flamboyant Piggins, however, Friday, with her dowdy brown sweater and frumpy hair, is physically easy to miss.  As the youngest of five children and at her swanky private school, Friday is overlooked.  But Friday likes it that way. She is better off unnoticed, after all, she is a detective. Friday  discovers that her boarding school is replete with mysteries, from small puzzles to a reported monster in the bog on campus.  Friday puts herself in harms way and risks unpopularity and possible expulsion to find answers. Happily, Friday does find a new friend and assistant in Melanie, an unusual girl with a flair for noticing details. Friday is quirky, highly intelligent and undeterred in unwinding the story’s mysteries. Both boys and girls will appreciate the odd-ball detective that Spratt has crafted and yearn for the next installment in her sleuthing series.

Books in this series are generally rated level 5 in Accelerated Reader.

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A pig with a sweet tooth and tons of fun!

I simply can’t pass up the opportunity to share the books of R.A. Spratt, an English-born author with a clever style of writing that makes her books highly engaging. Her characters are full of wit and humor and her stories brim with hijinx that thoroughly entertain.  Her first series stars Sarah Piggins, a pig whose former career was with the circus, serving as the projectile shot out of a cannon!   When she answers a front-yard ad to be a nanny, Sarah becomes the caretaker of Derrick, Samantha and Michael. From that moment on, the now Nanny Piggins boldly leads her charges in a succession of wacky adventures. Intermediate readers will giggle at Nanny’s predicaments and revel in her silliness. Nanny is wild and brave and a piggie after my own heart with her crazy ways and obsession with chocolate cake. Once Nanny Piggins has tickled your funny bone and  become a new favorite character, the other books in the series will satisfy your craving for more.

Most books in the series are in the level 6 range for AR. If the level is a bit high for some readers, these chapter books do make for a fun parent/child experience when read aloud!

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