Author Archives: Kristen

Hollywood Costume Exhibit at Virginia Museum of Fine Arts


A high-pitched cackled laugh from the Wicked Witch of the West welcomes us to the start of the Hollywood Costume Exhibit at the Richmond Virginia Fine Arts Museum. The curator mentions this exhibit will visit only four places in the world. The exhibit has already been to London and Australia. Once it’s finished in the east coast it will head over to the west coast. Read More »

Book Review: The 7 Professors of the Far North by John Fardell


  The 7 Professors of the Far North by John Fardell Sam is thrilled when his parents tell him that he gets to spend his Easter holiday with Professor Ampersand and his adopted niece and nephew, Zara and Ben. But he never expected the adventure that soon develops, as the professor and five of his colleagues are kidnapped by the ruthless Professor Murdo. The three children follow an amazing “underground railroad” all the way to ... Read More »

Book Review: The Ear, the Eye, and the Arm by Nancy Farmer


  The Ear, the Eye, and the Arm by Nancy Farmer This Newbery Honor Book by the author of The House of the Scorpion conjures a unique world in which futuristic fantasy and ancient folklore are intertwined. Set in the year 2194 in the African nation of Zimbabwe, it relates the adventures of three sheltered, privileged children when they escape from the walled compound of their father (the country’s ruthlessly efficient security chief) to have an adventure ... Read More »

Book Review: The African Queen by C.S. Forester


The African Queen by C.S. Forester I still haven’t seen the Katharine Hepburn-Humphrey Bogart movie, directed by John Huston, for which Bogie won his acting Oscar. But now I’ve read the book the movie was based on, The African Queen by C.S. Forester, author of the Hornblower saga. Written in the mid-1930s, it takes place in about 1914 when WWI is gearing up. Rose Sayer is the sister of a middle-class English missionary in German Central Africa. ... Read More »

Book Review: Silvertongue by Charlie Fletcher


  Silvertongue by Charlie Fletcher   Completing the trilogy that began with Stoneheart and Ironhand, this book brings the ordeal of young Londoner George Chapman to a terrific climax. A being of pure evil has entered the world through the black mirrors that hold back the outer darkness. The old darkness in the heart of the city has broken loose. The two darknesses have joined forces with all the taints (gargoyles, dragons, and other inhuman statues) to bring ... Read More »

Book Review: Ironhand by Charlie Fletcher


Ironhand by Charlie Fletcher   In Stoneheart, a London schoolboy named George Chapman accidentally damaged a carved stone dragon. This rash act plunged him into a hidden world, an “unLondon,” in which statues and gargoyles move about and have feelings, and where the humanlike “spits” are at war with the monstrous “taints.” George had an opportunity to pay his debt to the city’s heart of stone, but instead he chose to go “the hard way.” In ... Read More »

Book Review: Stoneheart by Charlie Fletcher


Stoneheart by Charlie Fletcher   The first chapter of this book really grabbed me. The rest of it held me in its ruthless grip. And now I eagerly look forward to the rest of the “Stoneheart Trilogy,” of which this is the first book. It begins with a school trip to a London museum, and a lonely, frustrated boy named George. George is having trouble fitting in. He misses his Dad (who is dead). He ... Read More »

Book Review: Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes


Johnny Tremain by Esther Forbes   The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Paul Revere and the World He Lived In revisited that world in this book, which won the Newbery Medal in 1944. It views the early stages of America’s struggle for independence from the British Empire through the eyes of a young silversmith’s apprentice. Jonathan Lyte Tremain is his full name. The “Lyte” bit means that he is related to one of Boston’s richest, most prominent Tory ... Read More »

Book Review: Midnight Blue by Pauline Fisk


  Midnight Blue by Pauline Fisk Bonnie has always believed that there is a land beyond the sky. This belief is probably one of the few things that has kept her sane during the years she was brought up by her nasty Grandbag. Finally, her real mother takes her away from Grandbag and tries to make a home of their own; but even then, Grandbag refuses to leave them alone. So when Bonnie learns that ... Read More »

Book Review: Snow-Walker by Catherine Fisher


Snow-Walker by Catherine Fisher   In a long-ago culture similar to the Norsemen of old Scandinavia, a young woman named Jessa is banished into the frozen wastes of the north – exiled by a sorceress-queen and her usurping husband – sent to all but certain doom, either from cold and hunger or at the hands of the queen’s son Kari, rumored to be a hideous monster. Surprise! Kari isn’t what the stories about him let ... Read More »