Wednesday, December 7, 2022

The Book Review Club (December 2022)

Welcome to the December 2022 edition of The Book Review Club. It's a great time to buy books for those on your holiday list. Our reviews won't steer you wrong! And while I have your attention, here's some Dec. trivia. December comes from the Latin word decem, meaning ten because Dec used to be the 10th month in the Roman calendar. Mind you, there were only 10 months back then. Jingle Bells, composed in 1857, was originally meant for Thanksgiving. Dec and Sept. always start on the same day. And, now, please enjoy our reviews!


by Rebecca Wood Barrett (Middle Grade)

After a horrible long hiatus (thanks to the pandemic), I finally made it to Toronto and spent a chunk of this past fall there. I had lots of fun and emotional moments re-connecting with family and friends. It seems only appropriate that I review a Canadian novel this month. 🍁 And it just so happens I recently read a really great whimsical middle grade adventure that fits the bill.

MY BEST FRIEND IS EXTINCT tells the story of Henry Springs, a lonely, lovable, brave, quirky 10 year old who moved with his single mother from Victoria, BC to a snowy resort town. We can all relate to quirkiness and how it affects fitting in to a new situation (like a classroom) and making friends.  In Henry's case, he can't sit still, has no filter and struggles with impulse control. 

So, our hero finds himself in a mountain town where it won't stop snowing. (Who knew "snizzle" and "elephant snot" were words to describe different types of snow?!) All this blizzarding leads to epic snowball fights and tunnels and two rival schoolyard gangs determined to build the biggest, baddest snow fort. Unfortunately, Henry is usually on the receiving end of the snowballs and is kicked out of both groups.

But Henry has his own shovel. And he's a terrific digger. In a tunnel, he discovers an injured prehistoric animal with white fur, blue eyes and a bear-like face. He nurses Yarp (Henry names the creature based on the its vocalizations) back to health, then realizes he must keep Yarp (and its ilk) safe from another larger, more dangerous prehistoric species. In fact, the school kids will have to befriend Henry and band together to keep the Yarpies alive.

Add to all this some bullying, a concussion, a snowplow-driving mom, and engaging illustrations by Cornelia Li, and you've got a middle-grade book hard to put down! 

(Dear FCC: bought for Kindle)

And now......onto the rest of our reviews. Please click through. You won't want to miss a single one!


Jody Feldman: DON'T LET IN THE COLD by Keely Parrack (YA, thriller)

Sarah Laurence: CHANGES IN THE WEATHER by Leela Marie Hidier (YA)


Lucy Sartain: MAD MONEY by Jodi Picot and Jennifer Finney Boylan (women's lit)

Lucy Sartain: THE WIDOW by Kaira Rouda (thriller)

Margie Lutz: MURDER RIDES A GALE FORCE WIND by Yvonne Maximchuk (mystery) 

Patti Abbott:  The Bluest Eye by Toni Morrison (literary)

Scott Parker: THE SEA OF TRANQUILITY by Emily St. John Mandel (science fiction)

Note to Reviewers: Any errors (broken link, missed review, etc), just shoot me an email or leave a comment. Thank you so much for your reviews!

1 comment:

  1. Glad you were able to spend some time with friends and family. =)

    As you know, I moved earlier this year and we get snow here. What constitutes snizzle and elephant snot snow? I don't want to embarrass myself by identifying it wrong. =D

    Thanks for reviewing - it sounds like a.sweet little book!


Comments are always welcome!