20 Books of Summer Mini Reviews, Wrap Up

The challenge runs June 1 – September 4 (tomorrow!), and is hosted by Cathy @ 746 Books. For my complete list, see my sign up post. Mini (Goodreads) reviews of my first 15 books can be found here,  here, and here. Now for the last 5:

Heidi by Johanna Spyri

⭐ ⭐ ⭐

The 3rd star is because my kids liked it. For myself, I was not impressed. The children in the book were often horrible (not charmingly mischievous, not dreamily inattentive, just downright awful), except when Heidi was being a sugary sweet Mary Sue. I greatly prefer the Shirley Temple film version! The Railway Children by E. Nesbit

⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Perfectly fine children’s book. Not as charming as Nesbit’s fantasy books, but fun. I enjoyed the equal time between the children, making this neither a “boy” book or “girl” book.

 Appointment with Death by Agatha Christie

⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

A strong Poirot entry but doesn’t hold up to a re-read as well as some others, perhaps because it’s very memorable.

NOTE: I substituted this re-read for The Golem and the Jinni. I got about 1/3 of the way through and realized it was just too dense for the light reading I was craving. I will pick it up again next year.

 The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett

⭐ ⭐ ⭐ ⭐

The Secret Garden is an interesting book to read right after Heidi. Heidi being 30 years older, it’s possible that it actually inspired the similar elements (orphaned MC, invalid friend in a wheelchair, fresh air / good food = cure). The Secret Garden however, is MUCH more interesting with its Gothic setting, Yorkshire accents, and well developed characters. I’m supremely glad I listened to the audiobook rather than reading aloud to my kids – let someone else deal with reading broad Yorkshire aloud. 😜

Ink on His Fingers by Louise A. Vernon

⭐ ⭐ ⭐

Hmm . . . this wasn’t as great as I remembered. The story was occasionally confusing and Gutenberg wasn’t the main character. Still, the kids enjoyed it and learned something about German culture in the 1450s.

NOTE: I substituted this one for The Bronze Bow. School snuck up on me and I had to switch from summer reading to school reading.

See my final complete list here.

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