No. 18: Mystery at the Barclay Hotel by Fleur Bradley - I really enjoyed this Agatha Christie-esque MG mystery with a supernatural twist. One of my favorite SSYRA titles. (One to go!)
No. 17: How to Test a Friendship by Theanne Griffith. I was starting to worry that there wasn’t much for third graders on this year’s SSYRA list. Most of the books I’ve read so far are pretty long, but this is a great choice for readers of early chapter books, with a Mrs. Frizzle inspired scientist taking the characters on a time out maker space challenge.
No. 16: From the Desk of Zoe Washington by Janae Marks. Zoe would be good friends with Ellie from Roll With it. Both like to bake, and are headstrong about doing what they think is right, whether or not that might land them in trouble.
No. 15: (And four more titles to go before I’ve read all the 3-5 SSYRA titles!): Roll With it by Jamie Sumner - this is one of my favorites on the list so far - about a girl who wants to follow her dreams to bake, and keep her family (both chosen and relation) together.
No. 14: A Field Guide to Getting Lost by Joy McCullough. Two kids who think they have little in common see an overgrown tunnel in Discovery Park. One acts as a scientist to test her hypotheses of where it leads. One wants to imagine it’s a portal to another world. After getting impossibly lost, both might find a friend before they find their way back to the parking lot. I liked the theme that finding your way sometimes means testing alternate routes to get there.
Lucky No. 13: The Newspaper Club by Beth Vrabel - I enjoyed the cub reporters / avid investigative reporting once the local paper in the small town folds. Although I have to admit, (without spoilers), the unnecessary “twist” at the end detracted a little bit from my enjoyment.
Charlie & Frog by Karen Kane - Largely ignored by his animal activist parents and his grandparents, Charlie wants nothing more than to find a place to belong, and he finds it when he’s pulled into solving a mystery with the irrepressible Frog. I really enjoyed this, (and bonus points for the Dewey Decimal system being a key part of solving the mystery!) I hope it becomes a series.
No 11. The Great Pet Heist by Emily Ecton - This one will appeal to fans of the Secret Life of Pets, and heists. Stars three rats, a cat, a long haired dachshund and a myna bird.
No. 10: The Total Eclipse of Nestor Lopez by Adrianna Cuevas. I enjoyed this book about a kid learning to be at home in one place after moving all over. He can speak to animals. After making two new friends and one enemy, he has to solve the mystery of why the animals and his abuela go missing in the woods.
No. 9: The Disaster Days by Rebecca Behrens. First time babysitter has to face an earthquake in Washington state. This one would definitely appeal to fans of the “I Survived” series.
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