Books in the Middle: Reading for Middle School

Our focus is on books middle school students might like to read and topics pertaining to books for these students, and we are giving recommendations. Teachers, librarians and middle school students are the contributors to this blog. If you would like to listen to booktalks of some of these books, please check out this site http://www.buzzsprout.com/229361 and enjoy!

One + One = Two December 14, 2016

Image result for one by sarah crossan

Being twins, Tippi and Grace have a very close relationship and are joined at the hip – literally. They are conjoined twins who look separate from the waist up and share one body from the waist down. For most of their lives, they have been safe at home. Their mom chose to home school the twins to protect them from society but Tippi and Grace have to attend public school for the first time because of money issues. The twins friend two outcasts at school – Yasmeen and Jon. It’s the first time the twins have friends and have a life outside of each other.

As the twin’s social life begins to get better, Grace’s heart takes a turn for the worst. The twins must be separated to save their lives. It’s a risky operation but not having the surgery is even riskier.

One by Sarah Crossan is a novel in verse. I was interested in reading this book because I’ve never read a book about conjoined twins before. Grace and Tippi’s stories are definitely interesting. . You have to read and find out what happens in the end!

I would recommend this book to mature 7th and 8th grade readers.

 

Fantasy, or Reality? April 23, 2013

Ever think it would be cool to have a clone? Someone who could do all the things you don’t want to do? What if that person was your identical twin? Would you consider that person a clone? What makes you an individual if another person in the world shares your exact DNA? Brendan is struggling with finding his own identity in The Shadowed Unicorn by Sheila Kelly Welch. Being a twin is hard enough, but being the responsible twin gets old at times. Nick never seems to care what others think, and it’s Brendan who feels he needs to worry about everything. When the family moves to a small farm in the countryside of Pennsylvania after their father is killed, Brendan’s sister Ami seems to be coming apart at the seams. Brendan begins to question her grasp on reality as she becomes swept away in a fantasy world.

imgres-1As Brendan moves through his life, worrying about his sister, his mother, and even his twin brother at times, the reader is drawn into his world. How can he keep everyone safe and moving forward after the devastation of losing their father? And what will happen if he can’t control everything and everyone around him. The Shadow Unicorn gives you a fantastic look at a family trying to survive and move beyond a crisis and shows how each member of a family can deal with pain and loss in their own personal way.

Highly Recommended for grades 6 and up.