It was Ilsa’s turn to put away the dishes:


Here she is on a rainy day when told to do some sit-ups and push-ups for PE:



She does like to read, in the way that normal people like to breathe.

Yesterday, I found out that I have earned $1.60 from Amazon! I’m rather excited at my newfound and amazing sales skillz, but they won’t actually pay me till I get to $10. So I thought, why not exploit my daughter again and get her to review some books she’s read recently? I’m sure you can see why she is uniquely qualified to share her views on books.

So, if you’re looking for some good reads for your tween-age kids, here are some suggestions. I could force more out of her, but she’s–you guessed it–reluctant to stop reading long enough to tell me about them.

Inkheartis a really good book. It’s about a girl named Meggie and she has a dad called Mo. It turns out that her mom disappeared into a book called Inkheart when he was reading it out loud to her. Meggie was 3 at the time. And then the bad guys of the book appeared and for 9 years, he hasn’t told her but they have been on the run. One day she finds out and they go on an adventure and get her mom back. They meet this lady called Elinor (Meggie’s aunt) who is funny to the bad guys.
I recommend it to anyone who is 11 or older, because it’s a long book and you have to stay focused. It took me a while to read it. It is a great book.
The book is by Cornelia Funke, who also wrote Dragon Rider, which I also love. I have that book in storage in Mauritania.

The Book of Story Beginnings
This is a book about a boy named Oscar who was 14 when he disappeared into a sea surrounding his house in Iowa. This happened because he wrote the beginning of a story into “the book of story beginnings” and it comes true. He is the boy in the story. His little sister sees him leave and tells everyone but no one believes her as there isn’t an ocean in Iowa. Nearly 100 years later, he reappears because he drank a potion that his great-niece’s (Lucy) dad made. (He had been a cat. It’s a little complicated.) They go on an adventure to save her dad.
This book is really fun. I liked the whole thing. One of the best parts is when Lucy talks to Oscar for the first time and finally figures out what had happened to him.

More reviews to come.