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The Eyeball Collector

The Eyeball Collector

The Eyeball CollectorHector Fitzbaudly leads a privileged life. He lives in a mansion with his father, wears stylish, expensive clothes and goes to the best school. He and his father are free to spend as much time and money as they wish on their magnificent butterfly collection.

One night, Hector’s father receives a mysterious guest…and from that night forward Hector’s life begins to unravel. The mysterious man knows something about Hector’s father. Hector’s father is willing to pay a steep price to keep the man quiet.

The stress of the secret extracts an even bigger price when Hector’s father drops dead from a heart attack and leaves Hector to deal with the fact that their fortune is actually gone. Turned out into the street, Hector  sets off on his own. He has nothing…except a burning desire for revenge against the mysterious one-eyed guest that Hector blames for his father’s death and for the loss of his father’s fortune. The one-eyed man might be smart, he might be devious, he might have a sinister plan, but Hector is smart too. He can be devious. He can come up with a plan.

Hector follows the one-eyed man to the home of Lady Mandible. Lady Mandible hires Hector to live at the mansion and raise butterflies, giving Hector the opportunity to sneak around at night hoping to find out more about the one-eyed man. Hector discovers some unsavory information about “Lady” Mandible. She collects all kinds of gruesome art and she paints some pictures herself…with blood!

Creepy enough for you? How about this: her guest, the one-eyed man, well, he collects eyeballs. Glass ones, but still…eyeballs. If you like the deliciously macabre (that means shockingly offensive), then you’ll love reading about Lady Mandible. She’s Cruella DeVil without the puppies, and she’ll stop at nothing to get exactly what she wants.

Hector gets quite a dose of sinister and has to decide what to do with his desire for revenge. Should he play the same game as Lady Mandible and the Eyeball Collector…or is there a sweeter revenge? Author: F.E. Higgins

The Eyeball Collector is a gothic story. That means the mood of it is dark and gloomy; very mysterious with strange events and people. F.E. Higgins wrote The Black Book of Secrets and The Bone Magician & The Eyeball Collector. These are not sequels of each other..but characters and places are shared between all the books. If you like them, try The Wolves of Willoughby Chase or The House With the Clock in its Walls. But read early. With the lights on. 
The Black Book of Secrets The Bone Magician The Wolves of Willoughby Chase The House with a Clock in its Walls
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Kid Review – Charlotte’s Web

Kid Review – Charlotte’s Web

Charlotte's Web

A review came in yesterday from Claire. She says:

Even though this is a book for kids younger than me, I still liked it. The characters are interesting and seem just like people. Charlotte is one of the best characters I’ve ever read about!

I love Charlotte too, but I think my favorite character is Templeton the rat. It’s Templeton, afterall, that finds words for Charlotte to use in the web. He’s self absorbed, obsesses about food and only helps out when it’s in his best intersets to do so…but he’s also funny, which I always like in a character. What do you think?

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Keena Ford and the Field Trip Mix-Up

Keena Ford and the Field Trip Mix-Up

Keena Ford and the field Trip Mix-Up

Keena’s second grade class is going on a field trip to the United States Capitol in Washington D.C. On the night before the big trip Keena is playing around with scissors and accidently cuts one of her braids clean off! To cover up this little mistake (she doesn’t want to get in trouble for playing with scissors) she makes a yarn braid to replace the lost one.

“Something everyone should know about yarn is that it looks different after you sleep on it. …It looked like the hair of this doll I saw in a move one time, when this girl was very, very poor, and she lived in an old barn.”

Since the braid isn’t looking so good Keena has to make do with a patriotic scarf. When one of her classmates yanks it off right in front of Representative Ford, Keena thinks this might be the most embarrassing moment of her life. But nooooo, there’s more. With Keena Ford, there is so much more! Author: Melissa Thomson

If you like girls with moxie (that’s determined) and spunk, here are some that like to do things their own way – try Keena, Moxy, Sunny and Piper:
Keena Ford and the Second Grade Mix-Up Moxy Maxwell Does Not Love Practicing Piano Sunny Holiday Piper Reed Gets a Job
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Racing against the odds : the Story of Wendell Scott, Stock Car Racing’s African-American Champion

Racing against the odds : the Story of Wendell Scott, Stock Car Racing’s African-American Champion

Racing Against the Odds

  • When Wendell Scott was fourteen he bought his first car for $15. Then he tore it apart and put it back together again. A race car driver was born!

Wendell raced cars during segregation. Some racetracks wouldn’t let him race because he was black. He never had a new car or any help from a sponsor or anyone else. His sons were his pit crew.

Despite that he finished in the top ten 147 times. He won one NASCAR race in Jacksonville, Florida in 1963. He is the first and only black race car driver to ever win a NASCAR race.

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Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker

Mrs. Lincoln’s Dressmaker

Mrs. Lincoln's Dressmaker

This is the story of Elizabth Keckley, a slave who became a free woman and a business owner as well as the favored dressmake of Mary Todd Lincoln – President Lincoln’s wife.

Her story begins on a plantation in Virginia. Elizabeth was only four years old when she was given the job of taking care of her mistress’s brand new baby. She was so excited to take care of the pretty baby that she rocked the cradle a little too hard and the baby fell out onto the floor. She was whipped for that…a four year-old! And that whipping would not be her last. Elizabeth had a very hard life as a slave. It’s a wonder she even survived, let alone growing up to be a free woman and the owner of her own business.

Elizabeth’s mom was a gifted seamstress and she taught Elizabeth how to sew. Their master would hire Elizabeth out to other ladies in St. Louis who wanted pretty dresses. One of those clients loaned Elizabeth the money to buy her own freedom. Elizabeth moved to Washington DC and was soon sewing dresses for famous wives – Mrs. Robert E. Lee and Mrs. Jefferson Davis. It was only a matter of time before her dresses caught the eye of Mrs. Lincoln.

That’s when the story gets really intersting. It is the tale of two very different women in very different circumstances who manage to carve our a friendship in the oddest of circumstances. Mary Lincoln didn’t just need pretty dresses, she needed a friend.

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